Tag Archives: Nora Roberts

Abridged Book Review: Midnight Bayou by Nora Roberts

I know, another Nora Roberts. What can I say? They’re good! Midnight Bayou has magic, history, murder, and romance, all in a fantastic New Orleans setting. It’s yet another page turner from Roberts, and I was happy to have picked it up!


Ashley O’Melia is an independent author and freelancer from Southern Illinois.  She holds her Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing and English from Southern New Hampshire University.  Her books include The Wanderer’s Guide to Dragon Keeping and The Graveside DetectiveHer short stories have been published in The Penmen Review, Siren’s Call, and Subcutaneous.  Ashley’s freelance work has spanned numerous genres for clients around the world.  You can find her on Facebook and Amazon.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please consider using my links to do your shopping and help me out at no extra cost to you!

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Abridged Book Review: Homeport by Nora Roberts

If you want to know a lot about art restoration or art theft, then I highly recommend Homeport by Nora Roberts! The characters are well-developed, revealing not only their own internal arc but all the family history that turned them into what they are. The story is surprisingly fast paced considering many of the scenes take place in a museum. 4 stars!

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Ashley O’Melia is an independent author and freelancer from Southern Illinois.  She holds her Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing and English from Southern New Hampshire University.  Her books include The Wanderer’s Guide to Dragon Keepingand The Graveside DetectiveHer short stories have been published in The Penmen Review, Siren’s Call, and Subcutaneous.  Ashley’s freelance work has spanned numerous genres for clients around the world.  You can find her on Facebook and Amazon.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please consider using my links to do your shopping and help me out at no extra cost to you!

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Book Review: Rebellion by Nora Roberts

Do you ever get those advertisements in your social media feed along the lines of: If you love Outlander, you’ll love This Book! Rebellion would definitely fit in that category.

I have a huge pile of books that I have yet to read, and so I have a very specialized system when it comes time to pick out a new one: I close my eyes and grab something. This time, it was Rebellion. Historical fiction is always a fun genre for me, so I dove right in. And English man and a Scottish woman in 1745. The term Sassenach. Some other plot points that I can’t give away because it’d ruin the book completely. Oh, yes.

There are definitely some similarities, enough to make me go look up the publication years. Rebellion was written in 1988, which I figured was way before Outlander. Um, no. Outlander was first published in 1991. I wasn’t aware of it until sometime in the mid-2000’s, so that was a bit of a surprise to me. Granted, there’s not time travel in Rebellion, and any story that takes place at this time and location could easily have a lot of the same parallels, but I thought it was interesting nevertheless.

Now, on to the good stuff!

What I Loved: I mean, it’s Nora Roberts. You know it’s going to be pretty good. I’ve read plenty of her stuff (enough that I almost didn’t bother with an official review except that I just had to talk about the Outlander thing), and I’m never disappointed. The characters are deep, the settings are beautiful, and the story moves along with just the right combination of inner dialogue and action. It’s

What I Didn’t Love as Much: If there’s one thing Roberts does drive me crazy with it’s repeated words. We all do it sometimes, but and sometimes it can’t be helped. In this case, it was ‘pressed.’ That’s a pretty basic word, and one that might not be avoidable, but when it’s used once or twice a page for several pages in the same chapter it’s a bit much. I think a decent editor could have switched a few of those out.

Rating and Review: If you like historical fiction, and you love Outlander, then Rebellion belongs at the top of your TBR pile! 🙂 Seriously, though, it’s a pretty good book. 4 stars.

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Ashley O’Melia is an independent author and freelancer from Southern Illinois.  She holds her Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing and English from Southern New Hampshire University.  Her books include The Wanderer’s Guide to Dragon Keepingand The Graveside DetectiveHer short stories have been published in The Penmen Review, Siren’s Call, and Subcutaneous.  Ashley’s freelance work has spanned numerous genres for clients around the world.  You can find her on Facebook and Amazon.

As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Please consider using my links to do your shopping and help me out at no extra cost to you!

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Book Review: Summer Pleasures by Nora Roberts

Roast me if you will, but I’ve just finished another Nora Roberts book. I’ve ended up with quite a few of them on my shelf after various library sales and book stashes that friends have passed on to me, and even though it’s winter I picked up Summer Pleasures.

What I Loved: While sometimes I don’t like the idea of putting two novels into one volume (because I’m impatient and finishing a book makes me feel like I’ve achieved something), it does work quite well for a lot of NR’s books. She has so many of them that it’d be impossible to locate only two novels with crossover characters.

As with any of her other books, Roberts is simply a master of romantic tension. The characters’ desires are all laid out in front of us very close to the beginning, but they relentlessly struggle until they finally let themselves have what they always wanted. Anyone who thinks that’s not realistic might never have been in love before.

What I Didn’t Love As Much: These were written back in the 80s, and while I love the fashion references and the lack of cell phones, there are some things that just don’t age well. One is that almost every Nora Roberts book I’ve read includes a scene in which the man grabs the woman by the arms and shakes her. To shake some sense into her? To display his masculine passion? If some guy shakes me, this romance is gonna turn into a murder mystery.

Unfortunately, there were some typos. It’s not enough to make me put the book down, but it’s a shame to see from a big publisher.

Rating and Review: Overall, Summer Pleasures is an easy read that delivered just what the title promised. 4 stars.

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Ashley O’Melia is an independent author and freelancer from Southern Illinois.  She holds her Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing and English from Southern New Hampshire University.  Her books include The Wanderer’s Guide to Dragon Keepingand The Graveside DetectiveHer short stories have been published in The Penmen Review, Siren’s Call, and Subcutaneous.  Ashley’s freelance work has spanned numerous genres for clients around the world.  You can find her on Facebook and Amazon.

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Book Review: The Reef by Nora Roberts

A fun and exciting adventure of a romance, The Reef is one of those novels that proves romance isn’t purely about human relationships.

From the Cover:  Tate Beaumont has a passion for treasure-hunting. Over the years, she and her father have uncovered many fabulous riches, but one treasure has always eluded them: Angelique’s Curse—a jeweled amulet heavy with history, dark with legend, and tainted with blood. In order to find this precious artifact, the Beaumonts reluctantly form a partnership with salvagers Buck and Matthew Lassiter.
 
As the Beaumonts and Lassiters pool their resources to locate Angelique’s Curse, the Caribbean waters darken with shadowy deceptions and hidden threats. Their partnership is placed in jeopardy when Matthew refuses to share information—including the truth behind his father’s mysterious death. For now, Tate and Matthew continue their uneasy alliance—until danger and desire begin to rise to the surface…

What I Loved:  I grabbed this book randomly from a shelf practically groaning with used books I’ve acquired over the years.  In fact, I had one of my kids randomly pick it for me because I just couldn’t decide.  It turned out to be a great choice.

The Reef dives into the world of treasure hunting, unraveling the tale of the Beaumonts and the Lassiters as they search for the ultimate treasure buried beneath the sea.  While of course boy-meets-girl is the main arc of the plot, there’s simply so much more that’s going on here!  Family history, old and new tragedy, gain and loss are all wonderfully told over the beautiful backdrops of the sea and sun.  The details that help paint the scenery and the background are a lot of what makes this book a real winner.

What I Didn’t Love:  Honestly, there’s not much!  I think I’d have preferred a slightly different ending, but I can’t say that I was unhappy with it.

Rating and Recommendation:  The Reef could be a great summer read or just one that makes you feel like it’s summer.  If you’re not sure about romance as a genre, The Reef just might change your mind. 5 stars.

Have you read The Reef or another book by Nora Roberts? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!

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Ashley O’Melia is an independent author and freelancer from Southern Illinois.  She holds her Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing and English from Southern New Hampshire University.  Her books include The Wanderer’s Guide to Dragon Keepingand The Graveside DetectiveHer short stories have been published in The Penmen Review, Siren’s Call, and Subcutaneous.  Ashley’s freelance work has spanned numerous genres for clients around the world.  You can find her on Facebook and Amazon.

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Book Review: Charmed and Enchanted by Nora Roberts

A beautiful, fantastical pair of stories, Charmed and Enchanted by Nora Roberts was my latest choice for my bookshelf cleanout.

From the Cover:

Charmed

Her legacy had been as much a curse as a blessing, so Anastasia Donovan had learned to keep it hidden. But when single dad Boone Sawyer swept into her heart, she longed to reveal everything despite her fear of the consequences. Then fate stepped in….

Enchanted

Lovely, guileless Rowan Murray was drawn to darkly enigmatic Liam Donovan with a force she’d never imagined could exist. But before Liam could give Rowan his love, he first had to trust her with the incredible truth about himself…and his family.

What I Loved:

Both of these stories incorporate magic and fantasy into the real world, or perhaps it’s more that there’s a little bit of real world among the magic and the fantasy.  The third-person omniscient viewpoint provides a lot of head-hopping even within scenes, but it serves to really show how the characters are thinking and feeling about each other.  There’s a very real sense of who each character is, even those that aren’t all that important to the story.

What I Didn’t Love As Much:

When I skimmed over other reviews for this book on Amazon, I noticed there were several that criticized these stories for being too warm and gooey and too predictable.  I thought it was interesting that some of these reviewers were upset that the two main characters should meet, feel that they were supposed to be together, have some sort of falling out, and then get together at the end.  That’s a pretty normal romance trope, and that’s exactly what we read romance for!  We all want to see them live happily ever after, right?

I do have to say that one scene in Charmed was pretty cheesy, with rainbows and billowing curtains and birds outside the window.

Rating and Review:

If romance, witches, magic, and loads of great descriptions are your thing, then Charmed and Enchanted is for you. 4 stars.

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Ashley O’Melia is an independent author and freelancer from Southern Illinois. She holds her Bachelor’s Degree in Creative Writing and English from Southern New Hampshire University. Her books include The Wanderer’s Guide to Dragon Keeping and The Graveside Detective. Her short stories have been published in The Penmen Review, Siren’s Call, and Subcutaneous. Ashley’s freelance work has spanned numerous genres for clients around the world. You can find her on Facebook and Amazon.

Note:  I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for me to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.  I will always give you my honest opinion on something before linking to it.

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