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Review – Just for You – Rosalind James

just for youJust for You
Author: Rosalind James
Series: #.5 in the Escape to New Zealand series
Rating: ☆ ☆ ☆ 1/2

Review Copy Provided by Author

Description:
No shirt, no shoes, no … problems?

Hemi Ranapia isn’t looking for love. Fun, yes. Love, not so much. But a summer fishing holiday to laid-back Russell could turn out to be more adventure than this good-time boy ever bargained for.

Reka Harata hasn’t forgotten the disastrously hot rugby star she met a year ago, no matter how much she wishes she could. Too bad Hemi keeps refusing to be left in her past.

Sometimes, especially in New Zealand’s Maori Northland, it really does take a village. And sometimes it just takes a little faith.

Review:
If you are new to Rosalind James or have previously read her books, Just for You works for everyone. Notionally, a prequel to her Escape to New Zealand series, it focuses on Hemi and Reka who are pivotal secondary characters through the other 5 books in the series. So if you have read the series, like me, you are probably looking forward to their story and if you are new to the series, then it is a great place to start.

Just for You was originally a novella that showed up in one of the Amazon box sets, but the author re-released it as a single title a few months after. So it was also a short read, but I will say that the author managed to put a lot of detail and story into a 33k words. This book, much more than previous ones, really highlighted how much the author knows about rugby – at times I felt like I was actually watching the game.

My biggest gripe was the “big misunderstanding” which is personally one of my least favorite tropes in romance. It just bugs me because most of the time, it could be cleared up with a couple of simple questions. While I liked Reka in previous books, this just kind of irked me – maybe because it wasn’t how I thought she’d act based on previous characterization.

Aside from that, my only other complaint is that I wished it was a little bit longer – I really liked Hemi/Reka as a couple and would love to see more of them as they settled into their lives together. I guess all I can hope is that the author will continue to feature them in more books. Overall, I gave Just for You 3.5 stars and look forward to continuing the series.

 
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Posted by on October 17, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Review – Asking for Trouble – Rosalind James

asking for troubleAsking for Trouble
Author: Rosalind James
Series: #3 in the Kincaids series

Review Copy Provided by Author

Description:
Sometimes you go looking for trouble. And sometimes, trouble finds you.

Alyssa Kincaid knows she needs to make some big changes. A move to San Francisco is the first step, and now it’s time to get serious, and to get the rest of her life on track. If only her messy life would cooperate. And if only it had Joe Hartman in it.

Joe knows one thing for sure: Making a move on his best friend’s little sister, the beloved youngest sibling in the closest thing to a family he’s got, would just be asking for trouble. Unfortunately, Alyssa always does seem to be asking for trouble. And it’s getting harder and harder for Joe to resist answering.

Review:
Ok, i’ll admit to being a huge Rosalind James fan – I stalk her on Twitter to find out what new stuff she has coming out, so when I saw Asking for Trouble mentioned, I jumped on it and asked her oh so nicely, if she would let me review a copy. Thankfully, she agreed (although, I would have bought it if she had said no). But as things go, sooo many books, too little time – so it started at me from my kindle for a good couple of weeks before I managed to get to it (but if you ask me, I was saving it for when I needed a pick me up!)

Anyways, back to the book – this was Alyssa and Joe’s story. Alyssa is the youngest sister of Gabe and Alec who feature in the first two books in the series and Joe is Alec’s best friend and business partner who we met in the second book – although, there is some history to the pairing. I will admit that the brothers best friend/little sister story line often gives me some squick moments because it always seems like there are huge age differences between the two, but thankfully, there is only 4 years between Joe and Alyssa – that made it seem much more believable/workable to me.

I loved Joe – there is something about the tough guy that I love, especially a tough guy with a shaved head – its totally sexy. I will admit that there were a few times that Alyssa drove me a bit nuts, but it was kind of nice seeing her come into her own – especially seeing her tell her brother off – that whole scene made me laugh out loud – i’m sure the people at the bus stop were looking at me like I was nuts. But don’t get me wrong, this wasn’t your mom’s sweet romance – it was hot and sexy and there were a couple of scenes with some lite bondage (since I know not everyone is a fan of that, so this is a warning).

At the end of the book, I that feeling feeling of book depression – you know, when you finish a good book and not sure what you are going to read next. Of course, as soon as I was done, I was bugging the author on what she was going to be releasing next – what can I say…lol! Overall, I gave Asking for Trouble 4 stars and it is probably one of my favorite books by her so far.

 
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Posted by on February 22, 2014 in Book Review

 

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PROMO – Just My Luck – Rosalind James

just my luck

Just My Luck
Author: Rosalind James
Series: #5 in the Escape to New Zealand series

I have to admit that I was super-excited to see this entry into the Escape to New Zealand series pop up in my offers for blog tours.  Rosalind James is one of the best discoveries I have made, since I got my kindle and started using the lending library on Amazon Prime.  While I haven’t read this one yet, I can’t wait to download it.

About Rosalind:
Rosalind_webRosalind James is the author of the bestselling “Escape to New Zealand” series, as well as “Welcome to Paradise,” her first book in the new U.S.-based “Kincaids” series.

Rosalind divides her time between California and New Zealand.

Rosalind’s Website
Rosalind’s Facebook
Rosalind’s Twitter

Description:
A little distraction can be a wonderful thing.

Nate Torrance has a job to do, and the biggest rugby boots in the world to fill. He can’t afford to lose his focus, especially not to a brown-eyed Canadian who pushes all his buttons and looks much too good in a climbing harness.

Allison Villiers may not know what she wants to do with her life, but she’s clear about one thing. She’s not impressed by the new captain of the All Blacks, however big a deal he is to the rest of New Zealand. If only her unfortunate taste for adventure didn’t keep leading her astray . . .

See below for an excerpt from the book:

Excerpt:
“How are you finding Wellington so far?” Nate asked when they were out on the water. He’d managed to launch them from the beach with a shove, and even climb in again behind her without any mishaps. Ally was actually a little sorry. She’d been half-anticipating going over, and enjoying the prospect of teasing him about it. He definitely needed it.

“I love it,” she said, keeping up a steady stroke and feeling the calm that always came over her when she was surrounded by sea and sky, enjoying the effort, the rhythmic motion. She was going to be out here with him for a while, so she might as well keep this pleasant. She didn’t even have to look at him, after all. You couldn’t really turn around in a double kayak without tipping the thing, which was probably for the best in this case. “I’ve been wandering around getting happily lost, and finding my way home again. It’s a lively place, isn’t it? Lots of outdoor stuff to do too, and as you know, that’s my favorite thing.”

“It can get a bit wet and windy,” he cautioned.

“I’ve heard,” she said, unable to keep the amusement from her voice. “I’ve had a few discussions about the weather already, you see.”

She heard him groan. “I’m rubbish at chatting girls up,” he admitted, surprising a laugh from her. “I never know what to say. Everything’s either dull, or it sounds like a pickup line. I generally end up opting for dull.”

“Honesty works, though,” she told him. “That was pretty good right there.”

“Really.” He sounded surprised. “I should throw myself on your mercy, you think?”

“Definitely. A strong man being endearingly awkward . . . I like it. It’s an approach, anyway.”

“Better than spilling a beer on her, I reckon,” he said.

“Much better.” She realized that she was paddling along with a smile on her face. Why hadn’t she met this guy before? She liked him.

“I’ll try again, then,” he said. “Did you spend Christmas here as well, on the Coromandel?”

“No, in Auckland. And it rained one day, but otherwise the weather was good. Just to anticipate you.”

He laughed. “Do anything special?”

“I did, actually. I bungy jumped off the Sky Tower. Kristen’s Christmas present.”

“Crikey. This is me shuddering back here.”

“No, really?” she asked in surprise. “It was amazing. You should try it.”

“I’ll take your word for it,” he decided.

“You don’t like thrills?”

“I love thrills. Know how to get them, too. And it’s not by jumping off buildings.”

Wow. She didn’t think she’d pursue that one. Maybe he meant rugby. Yeah, right. He hadn’t meant rugby.

 
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Posted by on July 20, 2013 in Promo Blitz

 

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Review – Escape to New Zealand series #1-3 – Rosalind James (@RosalindJames5)

Just This Once (#1); Just Good Friends (#2); Just For Now (#3)
Author: Rosalind James
Publisher: Self-published

So originally, I had planned on writing a separate review for each of the books in the series – but then I figured that since I managed to read all 3 of them (the 4th wasn’t available at the time), in the space of about 5 days, that maybe reviewing them together would work.

I discovered Rosalind James when her name popped up as an opportunity to host a promo blitz for the release of the 4th book in the series (Just for Fun) – but I decided that I wanted to read the other three so that I could read the 4th one (since I don’t like promo’ing books that I haven’t read/don’t plan to read).

Just This Once
just-this-onceDescription:
Everyone needs to be rescued sometimes.

Everyone but Hannah Montgomery, that is. She just needs a vacation. Three weeks in New Zealand to sort out her life, figure out what she wants, seems just right. Oh, and to relax. She should definitely put that on the agenda. She certainly isn’t looking for a fling with a professional rugby player, no matter how attractive he is. Hannah doesn’t do casual. But maybe just this once. . .

As much as he’s shared with Hannah, Drew Callahan has kept one very big secret. And learning the truth, now that she’s back home again, has made Hannah warier than ever. Drew knows that she’s right for him. But how can he convince her to let down her guard enough to explore what they could have together?

Review:
This first book in the series started off with a kick – I have to admit that I am a sucker for the knight rescuing the damsel in distress theme – in this case, Drew was most definately a life-saving knight (even in all-black – no laughing at my bad puns please), and Hannah needed his help. I thought that Rosalind was able to do a good job with the short-fused tension between the two of them – and loved that there was a quick resolution and that the story continued to grow. The long-distance part of the story was hard for me to accept – not because it was badly written but because I couldn’t see myself in a situation like that – even though I have lots of friends who have done it (heck, my parents did it in the time before emails – egads…yes, there was such a time). I learnt quite a bit about the All Blacks while reading this – having grown up in a country that played the All Blacks on a regular basis, I loved watching them do the Haka before the games.

Just Good Friends
just good friends
Description
Some bets were made to be lost.

Kate Lamonica isn’t Koti James’s type. Too small. Too dark. And heaps too much work. So it’s an easy bet that he can be her friend for six weeks without making a move on her, no matter what his mates would have said.

Kate can’t believe she’s made the bet at all. New Zealand had seemed like the perfect escape from the stalker who’d threatened first her peace of mind, and then her life. She certainly doesn’t need any more trouble. Why on earth has she agreed to spend time with a Maori rugby player who’s far too handsome and charming for his own good–and knows it?

But there’s more than one game Koti’s good at playing…

Review:
Ahhh, the playboy who falls for a woman that sees past the brash bravado. I think of the 3 books that I read in the series, Kate is my favorite female lead. There is just something ballsy about her (but don’t worry, I won’t say what). She reminds me the most of me, if I was going to try and see aspects of myself in characters (which I did in weird ways sometimes). Unfortunately, I haven’t found my Koti yet (or my Drew or Finn, for a matter of fact). But at the same time, I can’t say that Koti was my favorite guy out of the three – I think that award might have to go to Finn in #3 (see below). I just had a hard time connecting with him as a character – of all the characters in the series so far, I think he was one of the weakest ones developed. Their love story was cute however.

Just For Now
just for nowDescription:
There’s no place like home . . .

For teacher Jenna McKnight, nothing spells “heartbreak” like finding her husband with somebody else–in her bed. It’s clearly time to reinvent herself. A new body, a new city, and a new job later, she’s done just that. The beautiful Auckland villa isn’t really her home, though. Finn Douglas and his kids aren’t really her family, however much she wishes they were. And playing house can be a dangerous game.

Rugby star Finn Douglas is just looking for a temporary nanny and housekeeper. Not a girlfriend, and definitely not a wife. He can’t resist Jenna’s cooking, it’s true. Who knew he’d have so much trouble resisting her? He wants to do what’s right for his kids. But waiting is so hard . . .

Review:
Ok, I am going to be extremely biased and say that Finn is probably my favorite male character so far in the series. There was just something strong about him, yet sweet at the same time. He kind of reminds me of the guy that The Rock (Dwayne Johnson) plays in the Game Plan. Large gruff exterior, but a heart of gold on the inside. I especially loved his interaction with his kids.

One thing that I didn’t touch on in the previous reviews was the reoccurring characters – I liked how Kate and Hannah both made continued appearances in the books. But even better was the one All Black (although I am completely blanking on his name ahhh!!!!) and his wife who appeared in all 3 of the books, and were like the stability couple (for lack of a better word).

But enough of my ramblings – in case you can’t tell, I enjoyed all three of books, and would rate them as 3.5-4 overall, but going to round up to 4. I can’t wait to read the 4th book now that it has been released. Oh and one more thing – I have to go squee over the covers – they are brilliant – some of the best covers I have seen on self-pub’d work – these covers are part of the reason why I made the decision to read the books – because I could tell from looking at them, that there was a level of professionalism that I don’t always see.

 
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Posted by on December 21, 2012 in Book Review

 

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Cover/Excerpt Reveal – Just for Fun – Rosalind James


Just for Fun
Author: Rosalind James
Series: #4 in the Escape to New Zealand series
Release Date: 8 December 2012

Description:
What if the person who broke your heart turned out to be the only one who could mend it?

Nic Wilkinson is a responsible, organized, disciplined rugby player at the top of his game. Emma Martens is a sometimes-scattered, often-emotional, and always-broke would-be designer with a big chip on her shoulder where Nic’s concerned.

They have no history together, except one perfect week. Nothing in common anymore, except the most important thing of all.

Getting together again would be messy. Complicated. Scary. And, just maybe, worth every risk.

Excerpt:
“Mum!” Zack burst in through the front door. “It was brilliant!” He kicked his shoes
off impatiently, dropped his rugby boots next to them before struggling out of his jacket. Nic
followed him in, grabbed the jacket and hung it on the brightly painted rack next to the door
when Zack would have dropped it on the floor.

Emma reached out for a hug that, Nic saw, the boy was still willing to give his mother,
at least here at home. Her eyes met Nic’s as she looked over her son’s head. How did she
always look so soft? So . . . pettable? She was wearing another sweater, that was all, he told his
troublesome libido. Another light, lacy one, prettily trimmed once again. A pale pink cardigan
with pearly shell buttons, edged in cream, over a long stretchy top and leggings. She looked like
an invitation to cuddle. Like the best blankie ever.

“Can Nic stay for dinner, Mum?” Zack asked excitedly, offering a welcome distraction
from his wayward train of thought. “He could help me tell you all the things we did. We’re
having spaghetti!” he told Nic. “It’s really good.”

“Can’t, mate. Sorry,” Nic put in hastily at Emma’s instinctive shake of the head. “But I’ll
have a glass of water, if one’s on offer.”

“Sit down,” Emma told him. “Please.”

Nic slipped off his own shoes before heading to the couch with Zack. “Cheers,” he said
as she came back from the kitchen to hand each of them a glass, then took her own seat in a
small armchair next to the couch, the only other option the little room offered.

“You look tired,” she said abruptly. “And bruised. Are you OK?”

“Just a bit confused on the sleep schedule, still,” Nic admitted. “I took a wee pill on the
flight home, but it never works that well.”

“It’s a long way, Mum,” Zack put in. “South Africa’s really far.”

Nic took a long drink of the cold water, looked around for something to set the glass
on. “Coaster?”

“Just put it down,” Emma told him.

“Don’t want to spoil this,” he said, looking more closely at the coffee table. The simple
rectangle had been transformed into a forest of ferns, with native birds peeping out from
underneath fronds, perched in trees. The parson-throated tui making a meal of red fruit, the
colorful, stumpy takahe on the forest floor, tiny fantails darting overhead.

“You can’t,” Emma assured him. “It’s all enamels. Everything in this house is pretty
indestructible.”

“Did you find the ruru yet?” Zack asked him, leaning forward.

“Don’t tell me,” Nic said. “Let me look.” Zack watched him eagerly as he searched and
finally pointed triumphantly to a notch in a tree where the owl blended into the bark. “There.”

“You did this too, eh,” he asked Emma. “Nice.”

“I did everything. That’s my decorating theme. Things I made.”

“I like it,” he assured her. The warm colors of the lounge seemed to cocoon them. Two
walls were a rich caramel, the others a warm yellow. She didn’t even paint every wall in a
room the same color, he realized. Well, at least in the kitchen it was all the same. Purple. He
wondered what color her bedroom was. How it looked. And found himself wishing, against
every better impulse, that he could see it.

 
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Posted by on November 30, 2012 in Cover Excerpt

 

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