February’s reading was surprisingly light. Despite being off work and snowed in for a week, my reading is still down — I was too restless during the Snowpocalypse to settle down and read much. Anywaye, here it is:
Lessons in French by Laura Kinsale, which I wrote about here. Regency-set romance, which sound very generic and average, but this one isn’t. Wonderful dialogue and writing. An enjoyable story, but probably not a book I’m going to reread. It may prompt me to pull the other Kinsale books off the TBR shelves, though.
Seducing Stephen by Bonnie Dee and Summer Devon. Gay romance set in Victorian England. Discussed here. I’m looking forward to their next collaboration, which is now titled The Gentleman and the Rogue.
Hot Under Pressure by Kathleen O’Reilly. Contemporary category. This book was a huge disappointment, as I mentioned here.
Lessons in Seduction: A Cambridge Fellows Mystery by Charlie Cochrane. Edwardian-set mystery with gay sleuths. An ex-lover of the king has died in suspicious circumstances while at a holiday resort, and Orlando & Jonty are commissioned by the king to investigate discreetly. Orlando poses as a dancing instructor while Jonty and his father holiday at the resort. Very nicely done, though this one won’t replace Lessons in Discovery as my favorite book of the series.
Goodnight, Beautiful by Dorothy Koomson. Women’s fiction. Koomson’s earlier books were not romance, per se, but had romance threads and semi-HEAs. This one? Not so much. The ending left me terribly depressed. Frankly, if I’d realized it was going to end that way, I would not have read it, because that ending poked at a tender spot for me.
No Mercy by Lori Armstrong. Contemporary mystery, set in South Dakota. This is a new protagonist for Armstrong (beginning of a new series?): Mercy Gunderson is an Army sniper who has spent the last 20 years in very dangerous places doing things that she couldn’t talk about while she was home on leave. Home now to adminster her father’s estate and recover after an injury, Mercy gets drawn into the investigation of local deaths when first a body is found on the Gunderson ranch and then when her nephew is killed. I’m not entirely sure what I think about this book — need to reread it.
Fantasy in Death by J.D. Robb. Ongoing series set in the not-to-distant future (2060). Eh, this installment did not thrill me. Roarke’s emotions seemed…not quite right to me based on the character established. I guessed the killer early on, but the entire set up of the killings didn’t make sense to me. Maybe I lack imagination. Or maybe it’s time to set this series aside — 30+ books is a long time to stick with any series, longer than any other I’ve ever read.
Other People’s Weddings by Josh Lanyon. Short contemporary gay romance/mystery. Griffin is a wedding planner, and he’s planning the sort of wedding that could make or break his career, in part because it’s for the monied family of his town, and in part because the groom is his ex-boyfriend. Except the ex part isn’t entirely accurate, and there are other people who aren’t entirely thrilled with the wedding. There actually isn’t much romance here at all, and I’m not sure how to classify the story. Short and bittersweet, perhaps?
Slings and Arrows by Josh Lanyon. Short contemporary gay romance. Liked this short better: Carey, a college student, receives chocolates from a secret admirer just before Valentine’s Day. And then someone pushes him down the stairs. Is his admirer the Valentine’s Day Serial Killer, a campus urban legend come true? Or was it just a coincidence? And how does Walt, the standoffish TA he has a crush on, figure into the whole thing? Short and sweet, I enjoyed this one. Not necessarily a keeper but entertaining.