Romance, Historical, Contemporary, Paranormal, Young Adult, Book reviews, industry news, and commentary from a reader's point of view

My Favorite Things

REVIEW:  A Passion for Him by Sylvia Day

REVIEW: A Passion for Him by Sylvia Day

This review comes to us from guest blogger, Yapaway Jay who has given up her fiction books for law books. Go Jay, only one semester left?

* * *

Dear Ms. Day,

075821761701mzzzzzzz.jpgI fell in love with the first book I read by you, The Stranger I Married, and ever since then you’ve been on my auto-buy list. In fact, you’ve become one of those authors where I break my neck to get your books but then don’t read them because I’m saving them for a proverbial rainy day – times when none of the other books I have are holding my interest, and are annoying me. At times like this, I pull out one of my rainy-day authors and know I’m in for a treat. So when I first started A Passion for Him, I found I wasn’t in the right frame of mind to read it yet. I had to put it to the side and wait for the right time. A few weeks later, it was time. I picked A Passion for Him back up and devoured in it a matter of hours.

Amelia Benbridge is betrothed to her longtime friend Lord Ware. Amelia knows she is not in love with Lord Ware the way he loves her, but she agrees to marry him because the one she does love passed away years ago. At a masquerade ball, she is approached by a (masked, duh!) man who appears to be taken with her. She is drawn to him as well, though she doesn’t know why. The reader, however, knows this masked man is none other than Colin, the boy she loved long ago, but believed to be dead. Lord Ware eventually steps aside to allow Amelia to explore her feelings for the masked Colin, who reveals his identity.

This summary definitely doesn’t do justice to the book; its not easy to capture the gravitational pull between Amelia and Colin. I thought I might have a problem with the ease with which she left Lord Ware, but in the end, I think Amelia actually liked Lord Ware too much to string him along. There’s a French-spy/intrigue subplot that I could have done without, but that’s mainly because I just wanted the story to get back to Amelia and Colin.

This is the second book in what I guess is labeled the Passion series, and though I haven’t read the first book, I found this story line very easy to follow and it piqued my interest in the previous book, which was already high to begin with. Kudos to you for another great read. B+/A-


This book can be purchased in trade paperback or ebook format.


Do you have a favorite book? Would you like to share that with Dear Author? Send your review to jane at Every Monday we share books that we love to inspire more reading.

REVIEW:  Memory by Lois McMaster Bujold

REVIEW: Memory by Lois McMaster Bujold

This review comes to use from Charlene Teglia whose 2007 book, Wild, Wild West, was a big winner here at DearAuthor. Her next latest release, Satisfaction Guaranteed, is due out March 08.


Dear Jane:

I love the Vorkosigan series. It’s full of adventure and excitement and clashing cultures, romance, mystery, humor, space battles, diplomatic struggles, and the best cast of characters I’ve ever come across. When Memory came out, though, I was almost afraid to read it because the plot essentially assassinates the main character. Bujold is not an author who plays nice with her characters or flinches away from the tough questions. That said, this book is overwhelmingly positive in its inevitable resolution. I can’t recommend it highly enough and it’s my favorite of the series, the one I re-read most often.

Miles Vorkosigan has been living a double life until the events in Memory. In one life, he is an unassuming Vor lord and low-ranking Barrayaran military officer, very visibly handicapped in a society that prizes perfection and has a horror of any sign of mutation. In his other life, he is a galactic hero who leads a mercenary force to spectacular victories utilizing the mental strengths he’s cultivated to compensate for physical weakness. Admiral Naismith, his alter ego, is successful, brilliant, and has the love of Elli Quinn.

But both of his selves are forced to deal with the consequences of his death and revival when lingering effects make him unfit to command. In a very messy and public disaster, Miles has a seizure and injures the party he’s rescuing. Rather than admit his infirmity, he fights to cover up his weakness and his mistake by falsifying the mission report. When the truth comes out, Admiral Naismith is dead and his covert ops career is over. He’s confined to Barrayar and his life as Lord Vorkosigan.

I can’t think of any other book I’ve ever read with a blacker moment. Miles has lost everything – his career, his freedom, his friends and his lover – and if it ended there, it would have been heart-breaking. But that’s the beginning.

While Miles grapples with the issue of his forsworn honor and the loss of his identity, another crisis erupts. Simon Illyan, Barrayaran Imperial Security Chief and Miles’ former mentor and boss, disintegrates into mental confusion when his eidetic memory chip is the target of a peculiar form of assassination. Miles has to intervene on Simon’s behalf and solve the mystery of his collapse to identify Simon’s enemy inside ImpSec itself.

His actions on Barrayar force him not only to resolve his own personal dilemma and forgive himself for his mistakes, but to act as Lord Vorkosigan. It takes killing his covert operation identity to force Miles to integrate his two selves. The result is full of surprises for everyone, most especially for Miles himself.

This book does the impossible and does it so brilliantly that it makes my jaw hang open. When I grow up, I want to write like this. It’s amazing, wonderful, profound, entertaining, thought-provoking, and the kind of book you want to save from a burning building. Buy it, read it, and read it again. You won’t be sorry.

Charlene Teglia

This book can be purchased in mass market or ebook format.


Do you have a favorite book? Would you like to share that with Dear Author? Send your review to jane at Every Monday we share books that we love to inspire more reading.