Wounded by Jasinda Wilder

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War has taken everything from me. My family. My home. My innocence. In a country blasted by war and wracked by economic hardship, a young orphan girl like me has very few options when it comes to survival. Thus, I do what I must to live, to eat, and I try very hard to not consider the cost to my soul. My heart is empty, and my existence brutal.

The one impossibility in my life is love.

And then I meet HIM.

War is hell. It takes a chunk out of a man’s very soul to do the kinds of things war demands of you. You live with fear, you live with guilt, and you live with nightmares. If you haven’t been through it, there’s no understanding it. War leaves no room for love, no room for tenderness or softness. You gotta be hard, closed off, and ready to fight every moment of every day. Lose focus for a split second, and you’re dead.

Now the only thing that can save me is HER

Review :

3.5 stars / 5 stars

The premise was brilliant. It was unique, a heartbreaking story of Iraqi orphan girl who turn into prostitute in order to survive in the middle of war and the wounded American soldier. The two were from completely different world and culture,  the opposite side of the war for that matter, and even couldn’t communicate due to language barrier. Yet they weer fall in love

Did I mention heartbreaking? Geez, the way Ms. Wilder described the heroine ordeal made me in tears. How the war destroy her life, killed her parents, steal her younger brother and put her in a fate no girl had to endured. She force to sold her body just to get a piece a bread (so to speak) – to survive in the hell she was live in. Her first time was almost a rape but when months after she succumb into starvation again and decide to go after that man – that twist of incident sealed her fate, a prostitute she become. Rania, the girl she used to be was dead to the world and Sabbah take her place.

Men are pigs. I am not a woman, I am a thing. An object, a servant for their needs. Sex is a tool.

Years later when war happen again in Iraq, Rania saved a wounded American soldier. She take him to ease her guilt for another soldier she killed when she was a child (though it was unintentional at the time).  The soldier, Hunter was also an orphan – without no one wait for him at home, no parent, no relatives, not even lover. And their story begun.

Let’s talk about the story. Did it was believable for me? Honestly, it wasn’t. I felt of the grid with how the story evolve. I know romance was supposedly just fantasy, but please put reality check. I didn’t talk about the relationship itself, but more about the background story, plot, storyline, and simple basic facts. Okay, must admit the first chapter hooked me – that part was as real as I could feel. But when Raina starting her profession it was just looking totally like I was purely in romancelandia.  I wanted some real life facts. I need some dose of plausibility.

What made me gave 3.5 stars? Simply the romance. Yes it was beautiful to watch the relationship between Rania and Hunter. Kudos for Ms.Wilder in romance department. Their feeling was bare to the reader to look at – and it was awfully wonderful when Rania taste her first happiness.

He fills me. My heart, my soul. He fills the horrible emptiness that has gaped inside me all my life. The moment that he slid into me, I knew. It has just taken me this long to understand the strange feeling flowing in my veins in place of blood:  Happiness.

Overall it was a great read. A heart wrenching story of a woman who found love in the arms of wounded man.

Immortal In Death by J.D Robb

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Immortal In Death (In Death #3)

By J.D Robb

She was one of the most sought after women in the world. A top model who would stop at nothing to get what she wanted—even another woman’s man. And now she was dead, the victim of a brutal murder. Police Lieutenant Eve Dallas put her life on the line to take the case when suspicion fell on her best friend, the other woman in the fatal love triangle. Beneath the facade of glamor, Eve found that the world of high fashion thrived on an all-consuming obsession with youth and fame. One that led from the runway to the dark underworld of New York City where drugs could be found to fulfill any desire—for a price..

Review :

4 stars / 5 stars

Marriage… yup, Roarke and Eve getting married in this book.

Another great suspense and quite heartbreaking story. The murder in this book involve glamorous top model world and new deadly drugs, also the case was a personal one for Eve, for Mavis become the suspect. In the middle of her wedding preparations – include gown from Mavis’s designer boyfriend, flower, etc – Eve must looking for the murder, solving the complex investigation, and like usual put her in danger.

Peabody got herself some attention in the story, Feeney kept his appearance like always, and Summerset still with his attitude though he showed his soft side to Eve – briefly and secretly off course. The twist was surprisingly good, made the reader couldn’t even guess who the villain was. And the climax scene between Eve and the bad guy was not nearly as great as I hope for, but the element of surprise redeem it.

Eve’s past little by little come to the surface. Her memories more distinct and it was totally heart wrenching and tear jerking moments for the couple. It was beautiful to see how strong Roarke feeling toward Eve, the deep of his love and devotion, and in the end sealed into marriage vow. Their relationship always was a wonderful thing to follow – lots of bump but still a beautiful journey.

Friday’s Recommendation : Extreme Exposure by Pamela Clare

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Hola Romanceland-ers!!!

Welcome back to Friday’s Recommendation,  meme hosted by Ren”s. What book was I going to recommended to you guys? No other than a book from fabulous author, Pamela Clare, with her infamous I-Team Series. I actually wanted to recommended the 5th book (the recent one I read) but all the books in the series are must to be read, and you must seriously read this in right order.

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Extreme Exposure (I-Team #1)

By Pamela Clare

Published August 2nd 2005 by Berkley

It’s been years since her child’s father dumped her, and since then Kara McMillan has kept men at bay – although every day she aches more for a lover’s touch. But to get that, the hard-boiled journalist must become vulnerable – a feeling she vowed never to have again.

With his dangerous good looks, charm, and power, Senator Reece Sheridan could have just about any woman he sets his piercing eyes on. But he’s intrigued by only one. This Kara, this gutsy investigative reporter, has a sensuality that arouses him to no end. If she’s a firebrand in print, he guesses, she must be just as fiery in bed…

But this is no fling. A sudden political scandal – and attempts on Kara’s life – could very well drive them apart. Or maybe, just maybe, adversity could draw them into a bond even more intense than their steamy sexual embraces.

I read this book last year, after got it from some friend, without looking the glowing reviews about this amazing story. And I LOVE IT! As romantic suspense addict I was eager to read new author, and Pamela Clare definitely held her place as my favorite writer along with Linda Howard. So, why I just now mentioned about her? First and foremost, her books were hard to find. Seriously rare to find her paperbacks in here, except you bought the new one, and my budget didn’t cut it.  So, her book was forgotten.

Early this year I found her used book , the 5th installment of the series – Breaking Point- , and yeah I grab it fast. And it was awesome!!!!! More so than the the first book in my opinion. And I must share with another romance reader, of how wonderfully great the books are. If you ladies loved romance, enjoy reading romantic suspense with OMG hot scenes, pick the series right now.

Read the first book first, please. And it means, read this one. It was about a beautiful investigative journalist and gorgeous senator. For me, as couple they profession made their relationship very interesting. The romance was believable, not too slow but also not too fast paced, just right. The characters, not only the hero and heroine, but also the secondary were superbly described. And again very real. The author, who also a journalist, bring her real life experience and issues into the story and made the book more than just romance novel. With her background profession I wouldn’t questioned about the greatness of the plot and storyline, simply great. Writing skill? equally way more than good. Did I mention hot scenes? Yeah, hot without felt raunchy, just beautiful.

The book bring the suspense not just a shady background story, it was the story. The issue was real and it made the story felt darker. We also  introduce of how and who investigative reporters really are. Kara MacMillan was part of the I-Team,  an investigative reporting team at the Denver Independent newspaper. Reece profession as senator also bring us some light as how political person of interest revolve. Romantic suspense heroes used to be military, and it was a fresh air to find a politician become the alpha one – though I must admit I didn’t regard highly that particularly profession.

Overall, this book was a great read (4 stars/5stars), worthy of your time, and please simply grab it. Finger cross it will publish here in my country 🙂