Mr One Night Stand – Rachael Stewart

Welcome back everyone, we’re moving from historically accurate Viking times all the way into present day London. I decided to give this book a go since Rachael addressed a sensitive topic so well last time that I was interested to see if she’d be doing something similar again.


Writing Style

Overall Rachael has an engaging style that I enjoy reading. The main difference between Unshackled and this one was that this one follows two character not just the one. I’m not sure if this is a new thing for Rachael or not, but there were a couple of times when it felt like we’d start off a section following Marcus. Yet somehow it switches to Jennifer when he’s thinking about her?

There were obvious breaks throughout the book to show when you switched point of view. But those unexpected ones threw me a little and made me go back and reread the start of the section to make sure I hadn’t just read it wrong.

Compared with the last book I read (I actually read No Place Like Home directly before this one) Rachael’s writing style is definitely character driver rather than location driven. There’s hardly any descriptions of the places, other than to set the scene (e.g. a penthouse with a view over London or a cosy, fancy restaurant) Rachael focuses her efforts on describing the characters thoughts, feelings and emotional turmoil.


Initial Thoughts

First jumping into this I thought the focus of the book was going to be on the sex, or erotica, of Marcus and Jennifer’s relationship. But it turned out it wasn’t. Like, yes, the book did start off with some heavy sex scenes. But it felt like the focus was on their emotional rather than their physical needs.

In all honesty, I didn’t have much else to think to begin with because I mostly read this book while half asleep on my way to work. And I kept getting distracted by the people around me because I’ve almost run out of data so can’t stream music to listen to while I read.


Final Thoughts

Overall, I enjoyed reading this story. But I felt like there was an opportunity to explore the way our past haunts us more. Rachael touched on it, but it felt like it was only done to give the characters some depth rather than exploring and unpacking something most of us experience in one way or another.

Compared to Unshackled I felt really let down on this front. But then again, if Rachael never wanted to focus on a topic like it felt like she did in Unshackled then it makes sense. I guess it’d be hard to come up with new issues to explore and unpack for every book you write in a meaningful way.


Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, next week I will be reviewing Spring Skies Over Bluebell Castle by Sarah Bennet. Continue to read further down to find out about the author and any extra giveaways available.


Author Bio

Rachael Stewart adores conjuring up stories for the readers of Harlequin Mills & Boon and Deep Desires Press, with tales varying from the heart-warmingly romantic to the wildly erotic.

Despite a degree in Business Studies and spending many years in the corporate world, the desire to become an author never waned and it's now her full-time pleasure, a dream come true. 

A Welsh lass at heart, she now lives in Yorkshire with her husband and three children, and if she's not glued to her laptop, she's wrapped up in them or enjoying the great outdoors seeking out inspiration.

Giveaway - Win an e-copy of Mr. One Night Stand by Rachael Stewart (Open Internationally)

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.


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Naked Truths – Karen Botha

Welcome back to another week on Book Tour. Just to let you know I seem to be reading books a little quicker now and I don't know if that's because the books I'm reading are shorter or because I've gotten a new job I actually get more reading time. So you may see some extra reviews go up on Fridays if I'm reading 2 books a week. I will have to see how I go!

So I want to start off this review at the end of the book momentarily, but it is for good reason. It's so I can say: nooooo!!!! I turned the page to get closer to closing off the book and was left with the book abruptly ending RIGHT as it was getting really interesting!!! WHY?!?!?!?!?! Now I've gota wait until the next book to find out what they said!

As frustrating as I find that it's one hell of a way to ensure people come back and buy the second book. And I'm sure you will want to because I totally got suckered in with this one. It slowly builds up the tension then seems to release it, only to build it up to breaking point and when you think everything is all good all of a sudden things don't make sense anymore!

I don't know if this is because one of the characters has split personalities, or whether Karen didn't realise (and I'm not comparing exact words, just my memory of the wording) that at one stage of the book they were thinking and saying one set of thoughts and feelings only to have that completely contradicted at the end of the book. I honestly don't know, but it really added to the suspense levels and my brain going "what the hell is going on?!"

Anyway I should probably tell you a little about it! We have 3 characters that this book follows and it's not really an even spread as to who you're following. It's more of a who does it make sense to follow at this point of the book? We start off following Lucy as she's painting her house on a public holiday and she gets a call for a new client to get a massage.

Giles is the only guy that we follow and the book pretty much rotates around him. He's at the centre of everything and it's his character that I felt had those conflicts. Some of the conflicts made sense but some of them didn't.

The final character we follow is Paula. Paula is Lucy's best friend and an ex-homicide detective. And it's this that brings her into the story and what forces the story to evolve, change and grow throughout the book. I honestly believe without Paula being the unfortunate third wheel this book would be just another typical romance novel. So having her in the mix throws that out the window and gives us the suspense and craziness that hooks you in.

I feel like I can't really say much else about the book without ruining it for you. With the suspense novels you really need to read the build up and what exactly causes it to really get the full impact. General romance novels you can typically say a little bit about it since they all follow the same framework but I feel like with this style you need to discover each little fact and contemplate it yourself to really enjoy it.

I hope you enjoyed this weeks review. I will see you next week with "All Wrapped Up" by Sun Chara. Don't forget to keep reading to find out about Karen!

Karen Botha was born in Lincolnshire, England where her father was in the Royal Air Force. As a young girl she always had a passion for reading and writing, studying English Language before University.

Working most of her adult life in digital marketing didn't leave her much time to pursue her passion for stories. But, at the age of 36 she retrained as a reflexologist and started working for herself. This helped her free up more than enough time to enjoy a re-found passion; writing.

Her first novel was inspired by the true lift experiences of her clients. But don't believe everything you read, she has more than enough imagination to catch you out with twist and turns galore.

She enjoys romance, travelling and motor sport, which also provide her inspiration for her books.

She currently lives in London with her husband and rescue dog, Shadow.

If you'd like to get in touch with Karen or check out what she's up to make sure you check out her website and social media pages:

Webpage: www.karenbotha.com

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KarenBothaAuthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/KarenBothaNovel

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/karenbothaauthor/

Don't forget to check out the other review's on Chasing Ghosts and you can see who's writing reviews below:

Vanilla Extract – Louisa Berry

Welcome back everyone, this week is another week on a book tour. This week's read is not one I'd recommend to under 18s given the amount of sex scenes throughout this one.

We start off with Lou, our main character, in bed considering if this guy is the one she wants to settle down back into a "vanilla" relationship with. Which leads me to believe that she's been known to have unusual sexual relationships and shes considering going back to what most of us consider to be a "normal" relationship.

But this is something I hate. Telling us that we have to find a guy, date him for a period of time, get engaged, get married, have 2.5 kids and live happily ever after but only for our family. I personally hate this idea. I have a guy, we are living happily (mostly, as with all relationships we have our ups and downs) and neither of us have any inclination to expand our "family" by anything other than dogs (yea that's totally me but I'm sure I'll wear him down!).

As such I loved the idea of Lou having been through a marriage, having had kids and now finding herself sexually and deciding what she does and doesn't want in her life. I think this is something everyone should do away from their family or friends pressures to know that what they decide is truly what they want. What I didn't find so great was that it felt like every chapter was a new instalment in the "Lou's sexual exploits" that read like a porno. I mean seriously. How many of you ladies (or guys) have come across every sexual partner being totally ripped, huge dick AND likes going down on you?

Personally, my experience with guys is that the vast majority only want to fuck you and leave you, often have pot bellies going on and have no interest in your pleasure through anything other than their dick in your vagina. How does Lou come across so many guys who revel in her pleasure?! Where are all these guys in real life?! And who makes guys feel like this behaviour is ok?

Also, how many of us have casual conversation during sex? Like past telling them what you want them to do (maybe), does anyone actually compliment their partner, make jokes etc while having sex? I found this concept quite funny and I can see how some conversations can be funny and/ or needed during sex but some of the conversations she has with these guys while having sex are just bizarre. I was reading them and thinking "I don't know if I'd say that to my partner, let alone during sex!" so it felt a little weird to me. But good on her for feeling comfortable enough with herself to have those conversations.

What I liked most about this book was the final chapter where it felt like there was more of her heart and soul in the book than almost anywhere else during it. So I'd be interested to see where this goes in the next book (which incidentally is coming out soon!). If you like reading about raunchy sex scenes and female empowerment and control you'll really enjoy this one. I just personally prefer a bit more of the emotional side of the character's explored. But it feels like this will be explored more in the next book which I'm looking forward to reading.

Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed this review, next week I will be reviewing “The Merest Loss” by Steven Neil. Read on below to know a bit more about our author and see where you can buy this book.

Louisa lives in Hertfordshire with her four children. While not on ‘Mum-duties’ she works in high finance in London

Social Media Links

Twitter - @louisaberry69

Instagram – louisaberry69

If you like the sound of this, please support the author by buying the book from here.

Don't forget to check out the other reviews which can be found at the below blogs:

The Brilliant Game – A. Gavazzoni

Welcome back all, I hope you've been looking forward to this review because I've been looking forward to sharing it with you!

This is the final instalment of Behind the Door and Lara's Journal and I can honestly say I enjoyed reading this one and was cursing my Kindle when it was taking forever to download so I could get started.

So this one picked up a little bit after Lara's Journal ended but not before Simone's daughter was freed. Following on from the previous book I can tell you that you're in for one hell of a ride!

Firstly Peter's sister isn't connected to any of the murders and gets released. At first I couldn't believe this because how else did Peter escape? And how else could he have known when to kidnap Simone's daughter? And then I thought, maybe Peter has another accomplice? Maybe a guy? Maybe that's how the sperm samples aren't related to Peter's sister.

That certainly felt more plausible than Peter being adopted since it was never mentioned in any of the previous books. And surely if Peter was adopted that would've come out sooner. I mean, it'd just have to right? Which means Peter's sister and the receptionist are now out of the running for being the killer. Which leaves us with the ex-boyfriend; although he seems to have dropped off the map so I think we can scratch him off as well. So really we're left with Peter Hay, Carl and Edward.

And somehow I couldn't see Carl being responsible. I mean he really doesn't feel right for this. He goes to Simone honestly looking for help. He's in crisis over what happened with Lara and needs to absolve his guilt over her death. To begin with that's in the form of getting her to read his memoir and analysing the possibility that he purposely killed Lara. Then he is given a copy of Lara's story, her whole life on paper for him to read and really understand why she was who she was. Except facing those details can be tough so I understand why he'd need someone else, a third party, to read it along with him.

During this book we're introduced to two more possible candidates for all the murders. A necrophiliac that Simone had previously treated, and John, one of Lara's lovers. Even though when the necrophiliac angle was introduced because Peter's DNA didn't match the semen found on the body it just didn't feel right. This necrophiliac was one who sought out already dead bodies. Unless of course he was brought in as the accomplice who would get rid of the bodies? But I dunno... It just didn't feel right to me.

John on the other hand went of the rails a bit once he read Lara's Journal. So I could see him killing people. But again, he didn't know Simone previously, so why was he attacking people and leaving them on her doorstep, and why attack her patients?

Now normally I would like to leave some mystery to the book so you can enjoy the full impact when you read it for yourself. But there's a few things I need to tell you because OMG! Adriana really left it to the last minute making me feel like there'd need to be a fourth book just to give me the answers I wanted!

But, instead she made it so that it all came out during Peter's trial in the final chapter of the book so you're only left with a couple of pages to process what's happened. Although I'm not a big fan of Tolkien's writing style where it takes 5+ pages to describe a leaf falling. I would have felt a little bit better with A LITTLE bit more time to have the reveal occur and see how everyone responds to it. I think one more chapter would have REALLY made this book amazing.

But Adriana really leaves you on tenterhooks that whole way through. Guessing, and guessing who could be behind the murders. How could Peter be innocent but not innocent? How did it take the FBI until the last minute, and even then it took Simone to figure out and expose what had happened?

I definitely feel like I need longer to just sit and process everything that came out in the last chapter of this book. So I think I should take a day before I start a new book.

I hope you enjoyed reading the final review on this trilogy and I honestly think you should give this trilogy a go if you enjoy books with suspense, sex and romance.

Thank you Adriana for giving me to opportunity to read your series. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading all 3 books the whole way through!

Mastering the Marchioness – Em Brown

Welcome back all, So while reading this one I was enjoying a nice relaxing time in New Zealand. I'm so much of a reader that it took strangers prompting me to join them for a drink for me to snap out of it to stop reading!

After reading the blurb about this one I thought it was going to be about a couple that's been married for years and are bored with each other. Hence why they separately go to this sex club place, the "Cavern of Pleasures". Now I'm all for doing what feels right for you and your partner. But at the same time, you need to give it a good fair go before resorting to these methods I think.

The first surprise for me with this book is that this couple is newly married. Like REALLY newly married! And at that they are young, don't have heirs and have known each other since childhood. Literally they only just got married and moved to London and yet they still haven't consummated their marriage.

The thing that I found amusing about this book was that Harrietta didn't know it was her husband Vale she was visiting, whereas he knew it was her. He's trying to make sure that she trusts him, while at the same time doing something that is guaranteed to make her not trust him. Being as un-trusting as I am I don't understand how this could ever work out in Vale's favour. Surely when Harrietta finds out that Vale is her mysterious "my lord" she won't be happy and will make his life misery?

So reading how Harrietta tries to remain independent while also having to rely on her husband really rings true for me. Like yes, I could survive and be fine without my partner. But do I want to? Will I enjoy the quality of life I enjoy now without him? No, I probably wouldn't. Purely because two incomes working towards the same thing makes everything so much cheaper!

So Harrietta tries to do her independent woman act and ends up failing. Only to have Vale try to rescue her. Only he's too late and she rescues herself. Kind of... (I'll let you read it to find out what I mean by that) And yada yada yada. Typical regency romance story they figure things out and that's the end of the story.

But what intrigues me about this is that it's a series. And this is only the first book. Does the series change it's character focus each book? Or does it continue to develop the characters in this book further? I look forward to reading the series. But that will have to wait.

Next week I will be reviewing "An Unconventional Affair" by Mollie Blake. I look forward to seeing you next week.

Lara’s Journal – A Gavazzoni

Welcome back all, as promised I have the next instalment of Behind the Door for you! Now something that I often find when reading book series is that they get repetitive and a bit boring so sometimes I go into these with a grain of salt when the first book has really grabbed my attention.

But I didn't need to with this one. I was really unsure how we could continue on from the previous book when the killer has fled the country and we've solved the murder. Other than literally just reading Lara's side to her relationship with Carl (which I wanted to read anyway) I wasn't sure what else could be done. Like really, what would you have done if you were the author? Because I am a big fan of, if you've gotten it right don't ruin it by trying to make more money out of sequels when you had never planned on writing them.

Now the set up for this book is no where near as good as the set up for the third novel so I get the feeling that Adriana finished the first book intending to wrap it up there. Then really wanted to share more. Whereas the ending of this book is a total, blatant set up for a third book. Which I don't mind because it show's there's a plan. And she's ended it on a cliff hanger. And I am a TOTAL sucker for a good cliff hanger!

Anyway I feel like I've jumped ahead because I'm SOOOO eager to read the next book! Like normally I'd space it out a bit to give you guys, my readers, a bit of variety but I don't think I can with this one 😐

ANYWAY! I must move on to give you reason's why I liked this one so much! So we start off with a girl hooking up with a guy at a nightclub and having sex in the bathroom. Since I thought this was Lara, whatevs! Only, it turns out it's Simone, and she's slept with her friends cousin! How completely unlike Simone! But then again she had been kidnapped and drunk A LOT of wine and it's not like she's in a relationship. So she can totally live her life the way she want's to!

Next thing we know one of her reliable crazy patients has attacked his mistress, wife and the club his mistress works in so Simone has to rush home. Just in time to find out that the cousin is a crazy stalker. Just what she needs when she's still recovering from being kidnapped!

Within a couple of weeks of returning like 3 or 4 of her patients have turned up dead, the FBI don't know whether to suspect her or Peter Hay (the guy that kidnapped her). And I was tossing up between the stalker boyfriend, the new receptionist, Peter, Peter's sister, Carl and Edward as to who the guilty party could be! Now to give you a bit of an idea where's why I suspect each of them:

  • Stalker boyfriend rocked up then everything turned to shit for Simone in a way that's different to before which suggests someone new
  • The new receptionist doesn't seem to smile, is happy to take the job of someone who was just killed. And no one died until after she started...
  • Peter Hay because you know, he did kidnap her and kill all those other people!
  • His sister, for revenge against Simone for Peter having to flee the country, and poison is typically known to be a female choice
  • Carl because both times he entered Simone's life shit hits the fan
  • And finally Edward, with him I don't really have a tangible reason why, it's just a gut feeling

Since this book ends on a cliff hanger I never get to find out who the one responsible for this round of deaths is. But my main suspects are the new receptionist and Peter's sister but with her I feel that Peter would have to be involved somehow. Ideally my gut is telling me the receptionist and Peter's sister are either one and the same or somehow linked.

So now that I feel like I've turned into a bit of a conspiracy theorist I'll let you go! And I look forward to sharing my next review on "Master the Marchioness" by Em Brown next week.

Secrets of Agent 13 – C S Duru

Welcome back all, because of the type of person I am, I feel that I have to mention that most likely at the time you're reading this I will be sitting by an adults only pool with a cocktail in one hand and my Kindle in the other somewhere in Fiji. Ahhhhh.... the serenity!

Anyway, moving on to the book! I have some really conflicting feelings about this one. I felt really uncomfortable reading like the first half of this book on my way to and from work on the train. And I'm pretty sure I spent just as much time looking around for people reading over my shoulder as I did actually reading. On the other hand, I can't wait for book 2 to tell me more!

I feel like the first half of this book was pretty much copied from a bad porno. You know those one's where say a plumber turns up to a house wive's home to fix the "plumbing" only to end up having sex with her? It was like that but with real estate. Like yes, I can admit as a woman when we've had tradies over sometimes you do admire how they look. But do we act on it? No. And that's because it's inappropriate! So how is it that the first 4 house valuations our main character does, he ends up sleeping with the client?

I persisted because I feel like I owe it to the author to read the whole book (don't judge a book by it's cover and all) and I've always said that you need to finish a book to be truly able to form an opinion about it. So I did. But I gota say it took me longer than it really should have. And that came from the fact that I wasn't emotionally invested in it. And my lack of investment came from the fact that the first half of the book is all superficial. We don't get anything emotionally real happening until after the halfway mark, when our main character gets suspended for sleeping with his clients (no surprises there right?). But why did it take 4 encounters rather than just one? Given the reasons cited for causing the issue to be raised there was no need for the senseless porn feel happening.

What really got me after this point what that he really started to evaluate what he was doing with his life, what he wanted to achieve and was it worthwhile. And in the second half of the book you can see his character really developing. And that's when I started to get hooked. He starts entertaining the idea of starting up his own real estate firm to help him earn a million by the time he's 30. And he acts on it. I can feel for him at this point because the job security in my country isn't the greatest at the moment, and so I'm trying to find other ways to make sure my income will always be secure. Because, you know, you wana keep your quality of life!

So I admire him for going after what he wants, and I'm also jealous of him for forming contacts that allow him to achieve these dreams without too much risk. If I was to quit my job today and start my own business I'm pretty sure I'd be broke within a month! So that fact that he's able to run with it and succeed with the support of one of his side pieces is pretty cool. And btw when I say side piece, every woman he slept with in this book offered it to him rather than him chasing them. Which pisses me off and pleases my feminist side all at the same time. Like what kind of god is he that women throw themselves at him? But at the same time, he never once forced himself on a woman even though they were in highly emotional states.

So I'm really hoping when (if?) a book 2 comes out that we will continue to explore the character development and their relationship rather than the sex. I honestly feel that sex should be well placed in a book and add meaning to the story rather than random sex scenes just coz. And a lot of them in this book felt "just coz" which really disappointed me.

Anyway, to finish off, I think you'd enjoy this one so long as you can get past all the porno level sex scenes and get to the character development parts. Coz those are really well written!

And time for me to head back to my sun, water and booze for my last week of holidays for 6 months! I hope you liked it and next week I will be reviewing "Reinventing Mona" by Jennifer Coburn. See you then!

Behind the Door – A. Gavazzoni

A Gavazzoni contacted me to read this book and I'm really glad she did. I'm not sure if she's read my blog, but if she has I can see why she thought I'd enjoy it. Yes it had some graphic sex scenes in it (be prepared for way more than Fifty Shades of Grey). However the focus of this book was the psychology behind the characters which is something I really enjoy. Even in my job I love to be challenged. I even commented that I was getting bored at work recently because it was all making sense and I had to quickly get some easy stuff done due to a really tough deadline.

With the boring work having to be done I found myself constantly thinking about what could possibly be driving these characters, why were they reacting in certain ways? How were they all linked? Why did my gut tell me that such and such a character had more to them than it sounded like? So this definitely kept my mind active when I really needed it.

We start off this book with Simone who is a psychiatrist lecturing in New York and was interrupted by a lawyer; Carl; which I thought was odd. Lawyers don't tend to hang around those types of conferences, and if they do want to speak to a psychiatrist then they'd make an appointment or call them to their office. Then when he didn't pressure her to drop everything and focus on what he needed to meet his court deadline, it made me wonder what was going on. Not that you'll find out until right near the very end!

Due to Carl approaching Simone to help him with his court case the book takes two different approaches. One is Mark's story about Lara which he has written as a manuscript while the other is the murders happening in Simone's home town that start to impact her in her day to day life and her psychiatry practice. At this point I started to wonder if the two stories were intertwined or if this was just the beginning of a series to really explore both avenues.

I won't go into what happens in this story too much because I think it'd ruin the intensity for you. But basically someone starts murdering women in Simone's home town while she's working on the manuscript Carl gave her. The murderer even leaves a dead body on Simone's doorstep which freaks everyone out. And eventually Simone is kidnapped and tortured by the murderer. While held by them she figures out who they are and is able to report them to the police when she is rescued days after her kidnapping took place.

Meanwhile we get to read Mark's manuscript alongside Simone (this is where all the graphic details are) to find out what actually happened between Mark and Lara. Mark sounds like a decidedly normal and kinda boring guy, while Lara sounds like she has a LOT of mental issues that have been left unresolved that she doesn't seem to want to work on. Simone diagnoses her as sadomasochistic with ADHD tendencies that resulted in an addiction to adrenaline. That addiction is what seems to control her life as we know it and ends up being what killed her.

The thing that I really liked about this book that a few other books I've read recently hasn't really done when talking about these kinds of topics is that it showed the bad as well as how to combat it. Yes, Lara's mum was awful and sold her off and didn't act like a mother should. However her friends and the rest of her family supported her in any way that they could, including supporting her to leave those situations. Unfortunately for her it seems it was all too late to "fix" what happened, but it was good to hear about others that are willing to do the right thing. Including getting restraining orders, which I feel many people in those situations are too scared to do. I also liked the fact A. Gavazzoni explored how these events impacted those around Lara which is something most people tend to shy away from.

So although the sex scenes were a bit too graphic for my liking, I really liked the fact that Simone then explored the psychology behind these behaviours. In these situations it's the psychology, the thought process and the analysis that really gets me involved and hooked. And A. Gavazzoni nails this aspect of her writing and I love it. I got so hooked on the what and why the events occurred that I almost ditched my boyfriend on a Friday night to finish the book! Which is unheard of for me, especially since it was game night for my footy team which I always watch.

If you like brain teasers and can get through the sex scenes I think you'd really enjoy this book just like I did.

Thank you for reading, next week I will be participating in another Book Tour, this time with a brand new release called "One Summer Weekend" by Juliet Archer. I look forward to seeing you then.