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Archive for the ‘Elizabeth Hoyt’ Category

I remember this time last year: I was on some forum and was amazed at the sheer number of books my fellow posters could go thru in a year. I am a slow reader and i consider myself lucky if i read over 150 books in a year. Well — if I count rereads and books that I only finished half of — I did read over 160+ romances this year. The entire list can be found here.

I was hoping to put away over 200 this year but it just didnt happen. Of the 160+ books, about 66 were published in 2007. Of those 66, these five are the ones that I remember with the most affection looking back. In no particular order:

Just Wicked Enough by Lorraine Heath
This is the second book in a series which the author is stretching out a bit just to torture me. I found the premise intriguing when Heath was doing the blogging rounds in promotion of the book. A nobleman selling himself in marriage to the highest bidder; very Consuelo Vanderbilt, I thought. I didnt like either the H/H in the beginning but I loved the way that Heath revealed their layers slowly and made the romance painful and believable. Some authors just click for me where so many others dont for whatever reason. I can see all the manipulations in Heath’s writing a mile away, she uses no bells-and-whistles but it still leaves me a sobbing mess at the end of most of her books.

And Then He Kissed Her by Laura Lee Guhrke
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The mailman came and he brought me all sorts of goodies 🙂

From Amazon.com, I received:

  1. Tanner’s Scheme — Lora Leigh
  2. Dangeous Lover — Lisa Marie Rice
  3. The Serpent Prince — Elizabeth Hoyt (this isnt suppose to be out until Sept. 1st!)

BTW, I got the Amazon order in just 3 days using their Free Shipping option. Thanks, Amazon!

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Heart and Soul

The first telling of Cupid and Psyche (the allegorical representation of Heart and Soul) appears in the 2nd century Latin novel The Golden Ass by Apuleius. In the romance genre, Elizabeth Hoyt has used it for the basis of the fairy tale the begins each chapter of her popular The Raven Prince and Roberta Gellis also does a romantic retelling in her series of romances based on Greco-Roman mythology. Karen Harbaugh’s paranormal regency, Cupid’s Kiss, is also based upon the myth.

Cupid’s Kiss (1998) by Karen Harbaugh

Grade: D

Set in Regency England, Eros is looking for his wife, Psyche. Over a thousand years ago, they got separated and Eros just keeps missing Psyche as she keep getting reincarnated. The longer Eros & Psyche are separated, the more the Greek gods’ power dwindle. Unless Eros finds Psyche soon, the Greek gods will become extinct altogether.


Eros knows all this and he is racing against the clock to find Psyche. However, he cant help dawdling with his friend, Psyche Hathaway, whom he befriended years ago as her neighbor, Harry D’Amant. Just because Eros/Harry is drawn to Psyche and she shares the same name as his beloved wife, there is no way that she can really be the Psyche that he is looking for. Nuh-uh. Of course not.

I hated this book. I just wanted to throw a quid at Eros/Harry (real hard) so that he can buy a clue. I think this book is suppose to be charmingly whimsical but Harbaugh’s use of the Greek gods in Regency England was so incongruous that I just couldnt buy it. And because technically, this is a story of reunited lovers, there is little romance shown. Just a lot of internal monologue about is-she-or-isnt-she-Psyche. Blech.

This is the last book in a trilogy. Maybe if I had read the first two books, I might be more invested in the characters but since I didnt, this was far from a satisfactory reading experience for me.


Simmering Splendor (1995) by Roberta Gellis

Grade: B

Shimmering Splendor is the second in a series of five novels that Gellis did based on Greco-Roman myths. The first book is Dazzling Brightness, a retelling of the abduction of Persephone by Hades. Shimmering Splendor does make reference to the first book screaming ‘yes! it’s a series!’ but due to the familiarity of the story, it can be read on its own.

Set in Ancient Greece, in Gellis’s version, the Olympians are not really immortal gods but long-living mages, each with specific talents (an interesting twist). Thus, for example, Aphrodite’s talents lie mostly in love spells and if she wants to transport long distances, she must buy, or beg favor for, a transportation spell from Hermes. The fact that they are not really gods is a secret that the Olympians guard most carefully because they have use for the tributes/gifts they receive from mortals. When one of Aphrodite’s temples is boycotted because her oracle refused to accept Psyche as a priestess there, Eros (the Greek version of Cupid), a friend (but not the son) of Aphrodite decides to investigate the matter for her and dole out the punishment demanded by Aphrodite.

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Free Image Hosting - www.supload.comHere is the cover for Madeline Hunter‘s next book in her current series that started with The Rules of Seduction. It will be released on September 25, 2007. This is Elliot and Phaedra’s story, the younger brother and best friend from Rules of Seduction. I wish they had kept the grey grisaille look and large font of ROS. Also, Phaedra’s shift looks more like a nightie to me. Too modern looking IMO.

Also coming in September is Elizabeth Hoyt‘s last book in her Prince Trilogy — The Serpent Prince. This one features Simon Iddesleigh, the dandy from The Raven Prince and I can’t wait. Here are Hoyt’s comments on Serpent Prince from various sites:

Everyone does remember Simon Iddesleigh, the elegant viscount and Edward’s second at the end of TRP. I’ve saved the best for last so his book comes out in September and is called, The Serpent Prince. When rakes fall, they fall hard!

My editor ending up loving LEOPARD and even the third book in my PRINCE trilogy, THE SERPENT PRINCE (Simon! A rake who loves to talk, likes red heels, and is one by one revenging himself on his brother’s murderers. What’s not to love?) so as it turned out, she must’ve liked diversity, too.

A sword wielding dandy wearing RED HEELS? I am already in love.

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This debut novel from 2006 is a sexy historical in the style of Elizabeth Hoyt, Nicole Jordan, and Cheryl Holt. It is set in Regency times.

Grade: C+ (Average)

Sensuality: R

Long Ramblings: I pretty much forgot the plot as soon as I finished the book. Basically, beautiful Julia Freemont is left with huge gambling debts after her daddy commits suicide. She offers herself to a previous suitor whom she had previously rejected. Because he was illegitimate. He accepts her offers and wants to train her to be the perfect mistress s-l-o-w-l-y. So slowly that the first 300 pages is nothing but one looooooong foreplay. I got really bored about halfway thru the book when I could see what the author was doing. And that is pretty much the whole book. There is a small sideplot about someone trying to kill the hero but it’s pretty obvious who is the villain and why he is trying to kill him. It is wrapped up pretty quickly at the end.

Since both Elizabeth Hoyt (The Raven Prince) and Renee Bernard (A Lady’s Pleasure) came out with sensual debut novels in 2006, I think this book fell by the wayside. I’m sure the fact that it’s published by Dorian Press (who?) doesn’t help, either. It’s nowhere near as good as The Raven Prince (which had singular characters with a nice balance of humor, wit, and sensuality and gets my vote for best book of the year) but I would put it on par with the Bernard. If you have already read the Hoyt and Bernard and have no more Nicole Jordans on hand to read, I think this might be a good option.

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