Just read a great romance? We would love to know!!
A little bit of what it was about without spoiling it would be great, so other moms know why it was so good, and will want to read it too!!
The Companion by Susan Squires
Finding love in England during the 1800s was not an easy task when marriages were arranged based on status, money and bloodlines. However, for Elizabeth Rochewell and Ian Rufford, this task was doubly hard because the blood that flowed through their bodies made them outcasts in their society. In Susan Squires' THE COMPANION, this couple defies the odds and finds an everlasting love that neither time nor death could destroy.
Elizabeth is a young woman whose mother was Egyptian and her father an Englishman. The combination of the two made Elizabeth a striking beauty with brown skin and golden green eyes. It is this physical difference, along with her strong personality and her father's intellect, that sets her apart from her female counterparts. So it is no wonder she follows her father on his archeological expeditions in Africa. While on an expedition, her father dies unexpectedly, and Elizabeth is forced to return to England. While on the long merchant ship voyage, she befriends the mysterious Ian Rufford. What she discovers about her new friend should have sent her screaming to the hills; instead, it enables her to understand the brooding man and recognize his pain and the reason behind his dark moods. Even when they return to England and go their separate ways, she cannot keep her mind off the strong man whose secret she keeps, and her heart cannot deny her strong feelings for him.
Ian Rufford feels he has contracted a disease that has made him sensitive to sunlight, stronger than the average man and makes him crave human blood. He knows when and how he contracted this so called "disease" and wishes beyond all reason he could forget, but he cannot. He travels to England to find a cure, only to discover he is a vampire. For Ian, it is a curse that he must live with for eternity. The only bright light for Ian is Elizabeth with her beauty and intellect. However, he must convince himself that she would desire a vampire. When the evil vampire who made him creates havoc in a quest to control the world, Ian must trust in Elizabeth and her skills to help him decipher the code that will stop this vampire and save the free world.
Vampires, blood and sensuality are an unusual combination for a romance. In this paranormal romance, a man has been turned into a vampire against his will, and he falls in love with a young, spirited and exotic English female. However, the strength of both characters shines through as they sacrifice their lives for a love that will be everlasting. The author brought the characters to life by giving sensory descriptions that allowed readers to fully visualize them. The period depictions also allowed readers into English life during the 1800s and the hot sands of the African desert. The use of flashbacks gave depth to Ian's character so readers could understand his struggle and why his soul was so tortured. The chemistry of the characters kept the sensuality on a heightened level as well. What really kept this story moving was the build up to the confrontation with Ian and the vampire who created him. Even though romance was involved, the paranormal suspense enhanced this wonderful read.
Reviewed by Cashana Seals
Patience by Lisa Valdez
PATIENCE is the story of two strong-willed, independent creatures that have each been betrayed by those whom they trustingly gave their hearts only to be found lacking. Now, having brutally learned their lesson, neither is interested in repeating their previous pain but thankfully there's an undeniable pull that draws these two fated beings together. And once in each others arms, their well fortified walls begin crumble as if so much dust.
An incomparable beauty, Patience Emmalina Dare is coveted by all the male members of the ton. As they preen, peck and squawk their candidacy as potential suitors, they know not that their efforts fall upon deaf ears for Patience has no desire to belong to any man. Instead, her heart - her everything - belongs to her cello and the music she persuades from its strings for you see, her instrument could never forsake her, can never ever leave her thus providing the perfect guard against any who contrive to poach upon her love. However, despite Patience's instrumental guard, she also recognizes a deep-seeded yearning for one man that has the very real potential to obliterate all that she is but the secrets he dangles before her are utter temptation and they have her leaping for a glimpse of the freedom he offers.
Matthew Morgan Hawkmore, formally the second son of an earl but now a known bastard and recent social pariah of the ton, is grasping with white knuckles to the remaining pieces of his former life that he can still call his own. But there are those that would glory at seeing his financial demise and none is more hungry for that than Archibald Benchley - the Earl of Benchley and Matthew's would be father-in-law if news of his bastard birth had never made light. Accused of withholding his bastardy from "good society", Matthew has been snubbed by those he had once called friends and now to have his name and his honor slandered atop of the fierce financial crush that Benchley has heaped upon him, the desire for revenge has him swirling in an all encompassing darkness of anger and hatred. There is only one light capable of piercing through the black that is now Matthew's tarnished soul and that is Patience. Her goodness and her light calls to him, beckoning with sensual promise as well as soothing acceptance.
It's really no surprise that from an early age, Matthew recognized and cultivated a burning need and desire to sexually dominate. With evidence of his already controlling nature, his role as a sexual dominant is no coincidence for he's a man that inherently seeks control - needs control - and in his current uncontrollable and crumbling world this unequivocal need to dominate gravitates him on a very primal level towards Patience. As if viewing a mirror image of himself, Matthew recognizes a deep-seeded and complicated pain within her and his reaction to it is fierce. Ultimately, Matthew desperately craves Patience's absolute surrender; to strip her of all her fortified walls, crumble her resistance, and tear asunder the pain that has burdened her so greatly. Perhaps by unleashing and healing Patience, Matthew can heal his own dark pain and the only way he knows how to do this is by requiring her complete and utter submission.
Patience, nervous and unsure of the submission Matthew is demanding, follows him with a tentative trust. No man has ever demanded anything of her and while she should be affronted by his commands, instead Matthew brings to light a curious feeling that she's never before felt; one that awakens a previously dormant and unknown faucet of her nature that ultimately causes her to grasp hold of it with desperate hands and an aching heart. Soon, Patience finds solace in her submissive bonds. She no longer has to control her thoughts or maintain her strict independence for in truth they're not her nature. She was meant to be a nurturer, a calm example but instead she became closed off, seemingly un-needing of anyone but her cello. For years Patience has unknowingly forced herself into something she's not and with Matthew's help she's released from these constricting bonds of her own making and instead basks in the silken bonds of his dominance.
However, while Patience unveils hidden aspects of her personality, hauntingly painful moments in her past, as well as gifted Matthew with her complete trust, he's hidden a plan from her that could potentially tear apart their burgeoning relationship. His revenge scheme for his enemy, Archibald Bentley, has escalated to such a high degree that Matthew recognizes no moral bounds. It's kill or be killed in his mind and he has every intention of beating Benchley to the punch despite the fact that his conscience is saying he's wrong. There's strong evidence of this because Matthew does his absolute best to make sure that Patience is kept completely in the dark from his nefarious plotting. She is everything that is good and beautiful in his world and to make his plans known to her would only spell his doom. Instead, Matthew is so twisted with anger and hatred that he becomes nearly blinded by the revenge he seeks rather than the cling to the love he's already been given by the woman that longs to lighten his world.
Truly, what I think surprised me the most about PATIENCE, and it's not the unbelievable depths that Valdez explored with the D/s relationship between Matthew and Patience, but the fact that it didn't resemble PASSION in any way. Instead, the novel is compellingly unique and held its own superbly against its famous predecessor. That accomplishment in and of itself is rare and quite splendid. Bravo Ms. Valdez!
If you love intense romance with graphic sex, x-rated language, an uber alpha hero who also happens to be a sexual dominant, and a complex heroine who lives and breathes to submit to her hero, than PATIENCE is the historical romance for you.