Review: A SEAL’s Surrender by Tawny Weber

a seal's surrenderTitle: A SEAL’s Surrender

Author: Tawny Weber

Mills & Boon imprint: Blaze

Year of publication: 2013

The heroine: Vet Eden Gillespie

The hero: Navy SEAL Cade Sullivan

The blurb: Lieutenant Commander Cade Sullivan is the job. His commitment to the Navy SEALs is absolute – almost. Worse still, he’s been summoned home, where his privileged family is the town royality and women vie to be one of Cade’s conquests. One of them in particular….

Ever since they were kids, Cade has been rescuing Eden Gillespie. Now she’s decided she owes him one heck of a thank-you-one that involves a bed, naked bodies and sweet satisfaction. But when their sexy trysts are discovered, Eden becomes a bit of a town sensation-and not in a good way. Can she convince her SEAL to risk one last rescue operation?

Standalone or series: Part of the Uniformly Hot! series, but can be read as a standalone

The review: Almost a dozen of the Uniformly Hot! series are currently on sale as e-books for $1.99 at Amazon.com.au and even cheaper at Amazon. com, so if you like e-books and want to get them cheaply, go now! I bought all the ones on sale bar one which I’d already read.

This is book two of the SEAL series, which appears to be a sub-series in the Uniformly Hot! range. I’ve gotta say… this didn’t read like a Blaze book. It didn’t feel as polished, for some reason. Which is an odd thing to say, I know, since I can’t really articulate why I feel that way. Alas.

Eden Gillespie has been in love with Cade Sullivan, her next door neighbour, for years. Cade has a bit of a reputation amongst the local ladies, and everyone wants into the exclusive club of women who’ve slept with Cade. Eden is a vet and has just opened her own practice, and since she won’t kiss ass to the rich, snooty townsfolk and doesn’t get invited to everything, she’s struggling to get customers.

On top of that, she finds out – on her birthday, no less – that her mother has taken a $30,000 loan against the house that Eden owns. She took over the mortgage from her mother but her lawyer cousin persuaded her to leave her mother on it since she was a student, and now that’s come back to bite her. She can’t get in touch with her mother, who’s gallivanting around the country in an RV, and the bank has given her one month to come up with the money.

Cade has never been particularly close to his father, since the latter was disappointed that Cade did not want to take over the family business and became a SEAL instead, but when Robert has a heart attack Cade reluctantly comes home. He seems to turn up just as Eden gets stuck in a tree or needs rescuing from something, and this time is no exception.

Eden’s birthday wish has been the same for the last few years – have sex with Cade. She invites him out for a drink to thank him for helping her out of a tree, and it turns out that Eden gets more than a drink. She tells herself she only wants a fling with Cade, since he’s only in town for a week or so, and Cade has always found her attractive but off limits… but they start having sex anyway.

Once the townsfolk get wind of Eden hooking up with Cade, her vet business gets busier than it’s ever been – because everybody wants to know if they’re actually having sex or not. Man, this is a gossipy town. Cade is having doubts about whether to remain a SEAL after losing a teammate, and his father is badgering him to chase Eden for the $10,000 he loaned her mother that Eden has no idea about.

Cade’s uncle, who is also in the Navy, wants him to become a trainer, and although Cade resists at first, he starts to think that maybe it’s the right path for him. The more time he spends around Eden, the more he falls for her, despite saying that was never a life he wanted. Eden, for her part, has already fallen in love with Cade, but doesn’t want him to resent her down the track if he takes a different job.

In the end, Mama Gillespie is found and hands over all the money she owes from having sold her sculptures, Cade realises he wants a life with Eden, and she agrees to split her time between him and San Diego, where he’ll be based. I really liked Eden, she was a great heroine who refused to kowtow to the snobs and wanted to be seen as more than being an accident-prone klutz. And you know how it ends – with a happy little epilogue, yay!

Review: Her Sexy Marine Valentine by Candace Havens

her sexy marine valentineTitle: Her Sexy Marine Valentine

Author: Candace Havens

Mills & Boon imprint: Blaze

Year of publication: 2016

The heroine: Interior designer Marigold McDaniels

The hero: Marine Brody Williams

The blurb: When First Lieutenant Brody Williams rescues Mari McDaniels from an awkward run-in with her ex by pretending to be her boyfriend, Mari knows she’s got it bad for the gorgeous, ripped military man.

They’re friends first, and friends help each other out. Mari needs a hand renovating her old Victorian and Brody needs a girlfriend to secure his promotion. It’s the perfect temporary arrangement – and then there’s the sizzling chemistry. It’s wickedly racy and addictive. But neither of them expects Cupid’s arrow to aim for their hearts!

Standalone or series: Part of the Uniformly Hot! series, but can be read as a standalone.

The review: I really enjoyed this book. I liked both the leads and I enjoyed their romance. There were a few clichéd subplots happening – she lacks confidence in bed because her douchebag ex said she sucked (and not in a good way), and he’s led to believe he needs a partner to secure a promotion – and I’ve read quite a few books with the same themes. But it didn’t detract from the story.

Brody lives across the road from Mari, and when he rescues her from her ex at the supermarket, she makes him dinner. She then asks him to help her restore the house she bought with her ex, who then dumped her the day she signed the papers and she can’t afford to sell it as is, and Brody finds he can’t say no.

They both agree this is just a temporary fling while they’re restoring the house.  They’re attracted to each other – can’t keep their hands off each other – so they agree to a fling and they both walk away at the end. Brody is not a forever kind of guy, and Mari is happy to having great sex. Her parents’ marriage has been the yardstick with which she bases all relationships, so she’s horrified when they confess to her at an inopportune moment that all is not what it seems. Stunned and angry, she pushes everyone away… including Brody. She tells him she loves him and then shoves him out the door. He’s never said it back, but then she finds a card in which he’s written he loves her.

When the renovated house sells, Mari is distraught because it’s the house she and Brody renovated together. But this wouldn’t be a good romance without the happily ever after, so you know Brody refuses to let her push him away and they get to keep the house after all. Hurrah!

Daring Her SEAL by Anne Marsh

daring her sealTitle: Daring Her SEAL

Author: Anne Marsh

Mills & Boon imprint: Blaze

Year of publication: 2016

The heroine: DEA agent Ashley Dixon

The hero: Navy SEAL Levi Brandon

The blurb: Devil-may-care Navy SEAL Levi Brandon faces a terrifying task: telling Ashley Dixon that their faux wedding during their last mission together was actually real. It’s bad enough that she completely loathes him, but she’s DEA. Levi will be lucky to get away with his life…

Now Ashley and Levi have returned to Fantasy Island to sort things out…and are tempted to play a dangerous game of lust and restraint. A game of dares. All Levi has to do is keep himself from having sex with the hottie DEA agent. But Ashley’s playing to win—and darers always go first.

Standalone or series: Part of the Uniformly Hot! series, but can be read as a standalone. However, it will make more sense if you have read Pleasing Her SEAL first.

The review: Oh boy. When I found out that Levi and Ashley from Pleasing Her SEAL had their own book, I just had to buy it! I loaded it up to my e-reader and devoured it.

In Maddie and Mason’s book, Maddie asked Levi, one of Mason’s teammates, and Ashley, a DEA agent who sometimes works with the SEALs, to stand in for the bride and groom who ditched her at the last minute so she can take some photos for her wedding blog. Levi and Ashley agree to go through a mock ceremony and Maddie gets her photos.

However, three months later when this book opens, Levi receives a wedding certificate in the mail. A real one. It seems that someone on Fantasy Island didn’t get the memo that the wedding was fake, and Levi and Ashley are hitched for real. Levi finds it doesn’t bother him that much, because he’s attracted to Ashley and she’s hot, but Ashley apparently hates him so breaking the news is going to be hard.

Levi blackmails her into going back to Fantasy Island for a week so they can sort out this mess once and for all. However, when they get there, Ashley is drawn into a game of truth or dare with Levi, and she can’t help but notice how hot Levi is. Turns out she’s never hated him, but doesn’t care much for his apparent love of bedhopping with his flavour of the week. Levi is actually more discerning about who he beds, and has a hard time getting Ashley to believe it.

She dares him to go without sex for a week, and he agrees on one condition: for every night he goes without, she agrees to act out the name of a drink on a secret cocktail menu the island has, which is just code for ordering sex. Ashley can’t resist a dare, especially one she’s going to win, because she thinks Levi doesn’t take anything seriously. However, Ashley finds herself giving in to her attraction to Levi before the week is over, an attraction that has been simmering for a year, and they have hot sex. Levi asks Ashley to marry him for real, and she turns him down because she thinks he’s a player who can’t settle with just one woman.

Levi’s determined to prove her wrong, especially when they find out that the marriage isn’t real after all. They eventually leave the island and Levi realises he wants Ashley to be his wife for real, so he drives from Louisiana, where he’s attending a joint bucks night for Mason and their team leader Gray, to Virginia where Ashley lives. When Ashley gets home, she finds Levi naked and waiting for her. She has a surprise of her own – she’s gotten him an engagement ring, because she’s also realised she loves him and wants to marry him for real. She asks the question, he says yes, she puts on the pearl and diamond ring he gave her on the island, and they live happily ever after.

Another excellent book from Anne Marsh. A hot Navy SEAL, even hotter sex, and a happy ending. What more could a girl want?

Pleasing Her SEAL by Anne Marsh

pleasing her sealTitle: Pleasing Her SEAL

Author: Anne Marsh

Mills & Boon imprint: Blaze

Year of publication: 2016

The heroine: Wedding blogger Maddie Holmes

The hero: SEAL Mason Black

The blurb: Wedding blogger Maddie Holmes is always the bridesmaid and never the bride. Still, being on the sidelines of everyone else’s happy endings has its perks, like staying at the luxurious, decadent Fantasy Island. The resort isn’t just romantic—it’s filled with sinful temptations…like delicious hottie resort chef Mason Black. And Maddie can’t wait to take a bite!

There’s just a problem with her plan. She has no idea that Mason is an undercover Navy SEAL who needs photographs Maddie took that put both his mission and her life at risk. Mason’s plan? Retrieve the pics and indulge in a few X-rated fantasies with the curvy redhead…and hope like hell that being between the sheets doesn’t blow his cover.

Standalone or series: Part of the Uniformly Hot! series, but can be read as a standalone

The review: I think Maddie Holmes is one of my favourite heroines ever! Redhead? Check. Not afraid to tell a man exactly what she wants? Check. Not afraid to go after Mason, despite her misgivings? Check. She proposes to Mason first? Check. Maddie is sassy and sexy and straight forward, and I absolutely loved her.

Fantasy Island flies her there on an all expenses paid week holiday, so she can review the resort for her popular wedding blog and hopefully bring in more business for them as a luxury wedding resort. Maddie lays eyes on Mason, the resort’s chef, and can’t get him off her mind. Unfortunately, what Maddie doesn’t know is that Mason is not only a good cook, but an undercover Navy SEAL on a mission to capture a wanted warlord. When Maddie inadvertently takes pictures of the SEALs and becomes a potential target, Mason is assigned to not only protect her, but get to her laptop so his team can destroy any photos that could put them in danger.

Mason is attracted to Maddie and loves her lack of shyness, but he was married and divorced by the age of twenty, and his job isn’t exactly conductive to a long-term relationship. But he finds himself unable to resist Maddie’s repeated and blatant attempts at seduction, and they have majorly hot sex. I loved the teasing and lead up to the initial sex scene, and I also loved that while Mason went down on Maddie several times, she didn’t reciprocate – not for lack of trying, but because they were too hot for each other and couldn’t wait.

Maddie follows her heart and takes a leap, asking Mason to marry her. He doesn’t actually say no, but knows he can’t possibly give her the life she deserves and he’s pulled away from the island, so he flees, leaving a heartbroken Maddie behind. When the SEALs storm the compound of their target and find photos of Maddie everywhere, Mason bolts back to Fantasy Island. Maddie finds out the truth about him and is understandably so angry that she ends their relationship and walks away without a second glance.

But, three weeks later, while once again a bridesmaid, Maddie admits to herself that she misses Mason. When he turns up in uniform at the wedding and proposes with a gorgeous ring, Maddie can’t say anything but yes.

This book could definitely have been part of the Dare imprint (had it been around at time of publication) and I actually enjoyed this more than Anne Marsh’s Dare book. The language was certainly racy enough for Dare. Loved, loved, loved, and will be seeking out more Blaze book by Anne pronto 🙂