E-Originals from de Salle, Halston, and Lovelace | Xpress Reviews

Week ending March 10, 2017

de Salle, Thea. The King of Bourbon Street. Pocket Star. (NOLA Nights, Bk. 1). Feb. 2017. 299p. ebk. ISBN 9781501156076. $4.99. EROTIC ROMANCE
Sexually adventurous and recently divorced, Sol DuMont is in New Orleans licking his wounds at his favorite accommodation in his string of luxury hotels. While the split was mutual, Sol was the bottom in that feisty relationship, and now he has to make his way on his own. Into his life steps Arianna “Rain” Barrington, a member of the tony Connecticut Barringtons. She is hiding from her dragon of a mother after an alleged sex tape of Rain with one of the gardeners wrecked her mother’s plan of marrying her off to a terrible but very wealthy playboy. Rain is quirky, overweight, and unfiltered, but she immediately intrigues Sol. He decides she could be his perfect bottom, and he could experience being a top for the first time. They embark on a daring sexual relationship that includes spanking, sex toys, restraints, dominance/submission, and anal sex. There is real character development here as well and loads of humor, especially owing to Rain’s inability to self-censor. Readers will agree with Sol that she is simply irresistible.
Verdict Fans of Fifty Shades will find the pseudonymous de Salle’s start to the “NOLA Nights” series a well-written, enjoyably sexy novel, with fully fleshed-out characters.—B. Allison Gray, Goleta Lib., CA

Halston, Sidney. Kiss Marry Kill. Swerve: St. Martin’s. (Iron Clad Security, Bk. 1). Mar. 2017. 244p. ebk. ISBN 9781250132420. $3.99. ROMANTIC SUSPENSE
When Miami singing sensation Megan Cruz’s life is threatened by a stalker and former marine/security specialist Jackson “Jax” Irons gets wind of it on the local news, he is at the scene immediately. He hasn’t seen Megan in the five years of his deployment, having parted ways after a whirlwind romance. Jax offers his firm’s services and vows to take care of Megan until they find the perpetrator. There’s no question that the sparks are back and bigger than ever, but Jax is concerned that falling for Megan again will distract him from his duties, just as the times when he lost focus and consequently his brothers overseas. The feisty Megan is determined not to let this potential danger stop her from doing what she loves, so when she receives another threat on tour that suggests a second suspect, Jax will stop at nothing to keep her safe, even if it means his own life and ultimately their future are on the line.
Verdict Although Halston’s (Pull Me Close) first series entry doesn’t break any new ground, a well-thought-out plot with enough tension to keep readers engaged and the romantic elements set to medium heat make for an agreeable read that smoothly sets the scene for the second installment.—Kara Kohn, Plainfield P.L., IL

Lovelace, Sharla. A Charmed Little Lie. Lyrical Shine: Kensington. (Charmed in Texas, Bk. 1). Apr. 2017. 241p. ebk. ISBN 9781516101238. $3.99. CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE
charmedlittlelie031017Lanie Barrett may have told a few lies so that her aunt wouldn’t worry about her and would believe she was happy. Now Aunt Ruby is calling her bluff from beyond the grave. In order to inherit the only home she has ever known, Lanie must come up with a marriage license and a husband—and quick. Nick McKane just lost his job and will do anything to help ensure that his daughter can attend the school of her dreams. He has no idea that the opportunity will come in the form of a scheming female. If it means marrying a woman he just met, so be it—it is just an agreement to meet a common goal. But could this game of pretend turn into the real thing? Lovelace (Hero in Disguise) creates a fun-filled adventure in the adorable, honey-obsessed Charmed, TX.
Verdict Contemporary romance readers will love this story, its characters, and the town they call home and will be eagerly awaiting the next novel in the series.—Jessica M. Strefling, U.S. Court of Appeals, Federal Circuit, Washington, DC