Tag: alice clayton

Nuts by Alice Clayton

img_0135Book: Nuts

Series: Hudson Valley #1

Author: Alice Clayton

Main characters: Roxie Callahan, chef to the rich and famous, Leo Maxwell, local farmer, from one of the oldest families in Bailey Falls.

Plot: When Rosie Callahan is unceremoniously fired from her job as chef to the rich and powerful, she has no choice but to return to her childhood home of Bailey Falls. Her mother runs a diner there and needing her to cover while she’s away, Roxie reluctantly accepts.

Roxie soon finds that not everything about the home she left behind is bad. One of her suppliers, a young farmer named Leo, has her optimistic about her summer stuck in podunk. Perhaps a little dalliance with no strings attached will make the time pass faster…Leo has an easy smile, a relaxed way of being, and a bod that was made for sin. Despite the flannel, I t’s clear he comes from a privileged and monied background. Roxie suspects they both come from very different worlds, but it’s not forever so who cares?

Why you should read it: This is a seriously good read! I’ve only just got around to reading this series – I think I was saving it up, as I love Alice Clayton and her stories in general. Leo and Roxie had a chemistry that was incandescent! It burned and it was quite a slow burn too. I loved that it didn’t rush to sexy times straightaway. It was funny, gave a real sense of the geographical location and made me love the characters.

What you may not like: Nada! It was a strong opener to the Hudson Valley series and having read Cream of the Crop too, it’s every bit as good!

Rating: 5/5 for a hugely entertaining and super sexy read. I love this series!

Cream of the Crop by Alice Clayton

COTCBook: Cream of the Crop

Series: Hudson Valley #2

Author: Alice Clayton

Main characters: Natalie Grayson, force of nature and Marketing whizz. Oscar Mendoza, surly cheesemonger and the object of Natalie’s affections.

Plot: Natalie Grayson is at the top of her game. She’s awesome in life and in her career. She’s pretty good in her love life too. Her rule is simple – if she sees someone she wants to hook up with, she goes for it – and they’re more than grateful when she does. Her confidence seems to desert her however, when she interacts with a certain cheesemonger and owner of the Bailey Falls Creamery.

Every Saturday at Natalie’s local farmers’ market he doesn’t seem to register her existence. Determined to have him but unsure of how, when she can’t say more than two words to him, Natalie can’t stop thinking about him.

Oscar is a man of few words. He loves his job, knows his product is the best in town, and therefore doesn’t feel the need to be friendly or outgoing. As much as he likes to keep himself to himself, he would have to be dead not to notice the statuesque woman who frequents the market every week. Perhaps he could make one exception to the rule…

Why you should read it: Oh my – this book! It’s so sensual – the descriptions of food, the area of Bailey Falls, the sheer amount of lust between Natalie and Oscar – it’s all palpable! It was seriously hot and seriously fun. I enjoyed it immensely. I really liked Natalie – she wasn’t the archetypal large gal who has to be a jolly clown – she was real, had great self-esteem and owned her world and her body. I loved her. Oscar was a grouch, like his namesake, but he really developed throughout the book and seeing the world through his eyes was pretty refreshing.

What you may not like: if you’re a fan of Alice Clayton, you’ll enjoy her sense of humour and her ability to be lighthearted one moment and full of pathos at another moment. There really wasn’t much to dislike. For real.

Rating: 4/5 for a truly enjoyable story. At the time of writing, the rest of the series – Nuts and Buns are currently on sale. Needless to say I now have the complete series and can’t wait to read more!

Release day review: Rusty Nailed by Alice Clayton

I don’t know about you but I think we’ve all been pretty damned patient waiting for our next fix of Wallbanger goodness! Well, the wait is finally over and I was so happy to receive a copy of Rusty Nailed in order to share it with you. Wallbanger was so much fun: Simon the sex-god who always ‘stood to attention’ (if you take my meaning) and Caroline, such a fun character – someone you’d definitely want to be friends with. And Clive – how could you fail to love a cat with such attitude?

Here’s a quick review – enjoy.

9781476766669

Book: Rusty Nailed

Series: The Cocktail series #2

Author: Alice Clayton

Format: Uncorrected arc

Review by: Onnica

 

Basic story: Caroline and Simon have been together for a whole, perfect, sex-filled year. They maintain their separate residences, although Simon can mostly be found with Caroline and Clive. When Caroline’s boss gets married and decides to take an extended break for her honeymoon, Caroline has to rise to the occasion and take on the running of the company. Scared and overwhelmed? You bet! But it’s the chance of a lifetime and she’s determined to make it work. With Simon gone a lot of the time on work assignments it won’t make much difference, will it?

Except, Simon has been getting ‘that look’ lately and is accepting less and less work. Throw in an invitation to his class reunion and he’s forced to face some issues in his past that he’d successfully buried. With Simon home more, the pair are getting to know each other better and Caroline feels that she should be rejoicing. That’s what any sane woman would do who had the Wallbanger all to herself, right? Then why isn’t she happy? With the demands of adulthood bearing down on her, Caroline must decide what she wants out of life and whether she can have it all and still stay sane.

Why you should read this: Hellooooo, it’s Alice Clayton – of course you have to read it! I don’t know anyone out there who didn’t like Wallbanger, so I’m thinking if you want more Caroline, more Simon (seriously – swoon) and of course more Clive, then it’s a no-brainer. The couple are SERIOUSLY hot for each other. They never stop – and that’s cool, because the scenes are always delivered with humour and style. I still love Caroline for her self-confidence and her non-shrewish behaviour. We really got a better look at these two characters, we find out more about Simon – who he was and why he was the way he was. He’s not just the hunky, cocky next door neighbour, he’s also a devastatingly sweet boyfriend and human being. (Okay, okay I’m going overboard, but I’m in love with a fictional character – like you haven’t been there?!)

What you might hate: You won’t! But to play devil’s advocate for a moment, Caroline goes through some stuff that she needs to work through – you may find her perhaps a little bit exasperating – but it’ll all be fine! Don’t panic! Some readers weren’t taken with Clive and perhaps there was a bit too much cat pov in the book!

Rating: 4/5 for a sexy, satisfying read and a very welcome return to two beloved characters. Makes me want to find my copy of Wallbanger and delve in all over again…

Rusty Nailed is out today! (24 June)

Blog Tour: The Redhead Plays Her Hand by Alice Clayton

We’re very happy to be today’s stop on the Redhead Plays Her Hand blog tour. *Fanfares please.* I know everyone who is an Alice Clayton fan has been waiting not so patiently for the final chapter in the Redhead series. Well, fear not! The wait is over…

redhead

Book: The Redhead Plays Her Hand

Series: The Redhead Series #3

Author: Alice Clayton

Reviewer: Onnica

Basic story: Grace is about to take the television world by storm. Busy rehearsing for the pilot of ‘Mabel’s Unstable?’, the TV version of the successful stage show she worked on in New York, the world is soon to be Grace’s oyster. The only fly in the ointment? The Director and her manager/bff have suggested that she lose 15 pounds for her TV debut. Determined not to make an fuss in the face of her big break, Grace complies, upping her workout regimen and curtailing her candy habit. It’s only fifteen pounds right?

Meanwhile, Grace and Jack are going as strong as ever and he is about to embark on a new film. Practically inseparable, yet never admitting their relationship to the press, the pair are as in love as ever. So what if Jack had been hitting the party circuit a little harder than before. Grace puts it down to being 24, the toast of the town and the need to blow off a little steam.

When the weight loss plan goes a little awry, Grace decides not to stay quiet about her struggles any longer. As a mere size 8, she’s hardly a poster girl for plus size, but being linked to Jack Hamilton is a double-edged sword. The press and some of Jack’s online fans aren’t being very complimentary about her and so she decides to fight back. If only things were that simple when it came to handling Jack. He’s becoming increasingly surly with his manager and whenever she suggests that he party a little less, he goes postal. Is this just a phase, or has Grace lost her Sweet Nuts for good?

Why you should read this: I don’t know about you, but I’ve been waiting ages to see what would happen to Grace and Jack – would they weather the storm and be together forever? Can love conquer all? Of course it can. Alice Clayton has put a lot of heart into the characters of Jack and Grace – their story had me wanting more from The Unidentified Redhead. The level of angst in book two took me by surprise, but I feel that book three has ironed out a lot of issues and we got to see very different sides to all of the characters we thought we knew in depth already. This book is sexy, has a serious side and makes you think twice about reaching for the tabloids at the checkout on your next shopping trip.

What you might hate: This book is all about Jack’s wobble. In The Redhead Revealed, Grace had a massive wobble which led to a lot of angst and in this final book, it’s Jack’s turn. For me, he acted like a huge jerk for a significant portion of the book – completely out of character up until now and he behaved like any 24 year old, with a lot a fame would probably behave. It’s realistic, but don’t expect to love him for it. In fact, he really got on my nerves if I’m honest. At times, the couple were too scared to confront their issues and instead, just had sex as that part of their relationship never failed. The usual humour that Alice Clayton uses in earlier books was missing from this one too – I get that the honeymoon period was over for Grace and Jack, but this book felt a lot more serious than before. You’ll have to make the call whether you prefer bright and breezy or angst-ridden drama.

Rating3.5/5 – A satisfying ending to the saga that is Grace and Jack. I liked it – I liked completing their journey. I didn’t love it for the reasons I mentioned above, but I’m glad that I read it. It’s actually a very interesting commentary on how celebrities are treated by the press and how crazy their lives can get.

The Redhead Plays Her Hand is out now!

Fancy winning a copy? Go to our FB page to enter.

Our Top Romance Picks from 2012

Hello hello! Judith and Onni here. Well, it was a rough year on us, romantically speaking. We both read a ton of great books only to discover while compiling this list that the majority were published prior to the current year. “Wait, what!–I can’t add Bone Deep by Bonnie Dee to my list?!” I whined to Onni just last night. “Nope, I’m afraid not. Not published in 2012,” she countered. Well, it doesn’t matter any way since we have 6 books we both loved, no! Adored, no! WANT TO FORCE ON YOU SINCE THEY ARE SO GOOD!

So you have it: our top picks of 2012.

Onnica:

It’s such a tough job looking back on a year’s worth of reading and then picking a favourite, but here goes:

Gabriel's Inferno (UK cover)

1) Gabriel’s Inferno, by Sylvain Reynard

How much do I love this book? Let me count the ways. The arrogant, surly and beautiful Professor Gabriel Emerson is without doubt one of my favourite leading men of 2012. The story is intelligent and sexy and its overall theme that kindness is never wasted and redemption is always possible, made this an unforgettable tale. The love story between Gabriel and Julianne is one I will return to again and again.

Wallbanger

2) Wallbanger, by Alice Clayton

A lot of books this year have made me smile and feel good, but none have actually had me laughing out loud in public. Bar this one. The balance was impeccable – a likeable heroine, a sexy and down to earth hero, a cat with tons of attitude and gentle humour that didn’t get too over the top. If you haven’t read it yet, what have you been doing? Get on it!

50 Shades Trilogy

3) Fifty Shades Series, by E L James

Ok, ok, I know it’s not really the done thing to stand up and admit to liking this series these days, but I did! That’s right – I said it and I’m owning it. So the dialogue wasn’t Shakespeare, but I really fancied Christian Grey and if I’m honest, these books re-ignited my love for the whole romance/smut-tastic genre. Ana was a great heroine too – she didn’t put up with all of Christian’s nonsense and stayed true to herself. This series has also spawned a whole sub-genre: just look at how many stories there are now on the market about rich/broken/bored billionaires!

Judith: 

Back to You_Cover

1. Back to You by Priscilla Glenn

If you follow our sister site, http://www.iloveyafiction.com, you’ll know how much I absolutely love Back to You.  It’s the story of Lauren and Michael, past loves meeting again ten years later in the midst of very different circumstances. You fall in love with Michael in the present, you fall in love with Adam, Lauren’s new love, and you fall in love with Lauren and Michael’s past. IMO, this was a breakout book. With phenomenal writing and varying viewpoints that left me wondering if they would ever get back together, it’s sweet, funny, and oh-so-sexy. I can’t praise this one highly enough. Buy it and read it again and again. I bet you can’t read it just one time!

Laurie Breton Coming Home

2. Coming Home (Jackson Falls series) by  Laurie Breton

True story! Back to You by Priscilla Glenn used to have a different cover. In fact, it was the same cover as Coming Home. Well naturally, one day I was searching for something new to read on Amazon and saw the image of what I assumed was Back to You. I clicked on it, wanting to see what rave reviews it was receiving from readers and ended up so confused as I landed on a completely different story than the one I thought I was getting. Luckily I did though, cause the premise intrigued me and I bought it. This was as amazing as Back to You but in a wholly separate way. It’s very different than my usual romance fare in that it begins in the 70s and works its way through the 80s into the 90s. If you know my romance preferences they’re pretty cut and dry: basically I despise the 70s and 80s and love everything else. But this book romanticized those decades wonderfully, making each of the characters seem fresh and modern in a way I’ve never read. The story is lyrical and gorgeous, detailing the life and love of one woman as she faces challenges over the span of 20 years. What she wants in a man as a teen and what she wants and needs as a grown woman are two different things and this story is just beautiful in its portrayal of the devastating changes of love over time. Plus it’s a series! That means seeing more of these characters. Yes, please!!!

On The Island

3. On the Island by Tracey Garvis-Graves

Before reading this, if you would have told me that I would not only like but become enthralled by a book with pretty much only 2 characters set almost entirely on a desert island, I would have laughed at you. Seriously, I would have laughed so hard because that premise sounds utterly ridiculous. Romance thrives on a strong supporting cast and lots of exotic backdrops. But not this one. Honestly, I dare you to read the first 50 pages and not be hooked. It is so unique, so wholly out of the scope of what I usually read that I was floored by it. It is perhaps one of my favorite books of the year. Two survivors of a plane crash in the Maldives have to learn how to survive while also learning to trust one another in a savage environment. There’s a May-December aspect that you wouldn’t see coming if not for the fact that it’s labelled as romance. There are a lot of difficult to read scenes but also some amazingly poignant moments. This is a book you’ll never be disappointed you in purchasing and all I can say it: BUY IT!

Do you agree with any of our choices? What would you want to see on our list of Top Picks? Let us know!

Wallbanger by Alice Clayton

Wallbanger

Book: Wallbanger

Author: Alice Clayton

Reviewed by: Onnica

Basic Story: Caroline Reynolds has moved into a kickass, rent-controlled apartment in San Francisco. Life is good – she works too hard but she is fairly happy with her lot in life and her cat Clive. There’s just one problem – she’s lost her ability to climax and is clueless about how to get it back. Cue the arrival of super stud Simon Parker next door. Day and night, his bed (and Caroline’s, since they share an adjoining wall) is banging and Caroline realises with horror just how thin the wall dividing them actually is.

Severely sleep deprived and super horny, she decides to confront her neighbour’s anti-social behaviour and shut him up for good. So begins a journey of friendship, plenty of sexual tension, possessive cats and clueless best friends.

Why you should read it: for a change, our heroine isn’t damaged, she isn’t a shrew, and she doesn’t hate having a good time. She’s easy going and very, very likeable. We probably all know someone a bit like her. The sexual chemistry between her and Simon is electrifying – there aren’t any contrivances to keep them apart and try to build up suspense; their story is an engaging one. The book is the perfect balance between humour, (seriously, some parts with Clive the cat made me laugh out loud) romance and sexy times.

What you might hate: I honestly don’t know what you’d hate about this book – it’s not over the top and it’s hot, hot and did I mention it’s hot?

Rating: 4/5 because it’s just that good. It’s received a lot of hype on Twitter and it’s completely justified. I’m now going to read Alice Clayton’s entire back catalogue – that’s how impressed I am by this book!