Review: Blue Lights and Boatmen- A Swamp Bottom Novella by Cora Kenborn and KA Ware

Blue Lights and Boatmen (Swamp Bottom Novella #4)Blue Lights and Boatmen by K.A. Ware

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

5 Let’s Hear It For The Boys Stars for Blue Lights and Boatmen

“Men are famous for claiming that women talk too much. Zep and Pope got their own book, and it ended up being the longest out of all the Swamp Bottom series, thus far. Just sayin’.” – These are the first words you will read as you open this book. You know, the opening quote that has been a trend in books pretty much since books were written. To kind of set the tone or theme or whatever for the book. More often than not, I have to admit they are pompous and pretentious, or just confusing, or whatever. This, however, was absolutely perfect – like everything else in this book and series. I was laughing as soon as I read it, and this was all it took to remind me why I so anxiously await each volume of the series. Ms. Kenborn and Ms. Ware have created the perfect RomCom series that will take you straight into the Bayou. The Dubois girls captured my heart and imagination within the first few pages of Front Porches and Funerals, and I don’t see them letting go anytime soon.

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So, as the opening line of this volume and this review state, we are finally hearing from those long suffering men who are head over heels in love with Addie and Savvy. I might have, needlessly, hesitated for just a moment as I let it sink in that their points of view might change…I don’t know…something…about the magic of the series. I should have known it could only enhance. I think I was worried I wouldn’t get my Babs fix. No issues there either. One of my favorite scenes in the book involves Babs and BamBam “inviting” Pope and Zep to a Dubois Family barbecue. Another favorite is when Babs crashes Zep and Addie’s dinner with Zep’s mom – who, in my mind, is referred to as Babs Junior. I am looking forward to getting to see more of her in future books. Her grasp of the English language may be a bit better (though Babs’ misinterpretations continue to be a joy) but she is a complete hoot as well.

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Both couples hit some major bumps in this book that I can’t wait to see play out. Zep and Addie’s bump has the potential to be huge. I am trying to remember how many novellas this series was stated to be, because I am a bit sad to think we may be halfway through. This series has been a highlight of my reading year. The serial format is working perfectly; these ladies are doing a great job getting these out approximately every six weeks. Long enough to make us anxiously anticipate, but not so long to lose interest or need to go back and reread before the next book comes out (though I am positive when, sadly, it is all done, I will reread this series many times.)

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There is just a very special chemistry here. Every character has so much personality that hops off the page and makes you think this is the story of the crazy friends you haven’t seen for a while but sorely miss and will never forget. The chemistry between the characters is off the charts – not just the romantic chemistry, but the chemistry in every relationship; between the sisters, between the guys who have fallen for them, between each sister and the other’s boyfriend, between their cousin and…everyone, and the force of nature who is the girls’ grandmother. They are the perfect storm all the way around, and I love being in the vortex for a few hours every month or so.

Beyond my highest recommendations- if you haven’t fallen yet, one click Front Porches and Funerals and dive in right now.

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Some Favorite Quotes

☆☆☆PLEASE NOTE-NOT APPROPRIATE FOR ALL AUDIENCES☆☆☆

 

 

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“Two hours of absolute torture that no person on the planet should be subjected to. Two hours of sitting across the table from my father, listening to all the ways I’d screwed up my life in the most polite and condescending way imaginable.”

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“When a son defends another woman over his mother it can’t be anything but forever.”

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” However, since the breakthrough of her admission of wanting me two weeks ago and us fucking like Viagra-spiked crack rabbits, she held something back.”

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” My mother either wanted to prove a point or feed Bourbon Street. Either way, my need to take care of her usually met with a middle finger and a story about a cow needing to chew her own grass. Whatever the fuck that meant.”

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“They were douche wagons at their finest with mini truck nuts swinging off the back and an enormous chrome grill that, when reflected off sunlight, could easily set fire to small children and the elderly.”

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” She didn’t like to admit to making mistakes, and the last ten years of her life had been a big one. I had to show her that the next fifty with me would be what her life should’ve been.”

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” Adelaide Dubois had some type of pussy voodoo hold over me I couldn’t explain. When I’d run into her sister on the side of the highway in that fucking ugly ass Tit-van so many months ago, Addie had no choice at that point. I could be a relentless motherfucker when I wanted something. And I’d wanted her. For thirteen goddamn years.”

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” Focusing on the road and having phone sex with your girlfriend was like trying to wrestle an alligator and play a game of chess at the same time.”

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” I crept into the kitchen where the sounds of her off-key singing told me I’d find her. She was awful. She was talented and artistic in so many other ways, but her singing voice would make William Hung cringe.”

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” That was the strangest figure of speech I’d ever heard, then again; I had met their grandmother and probably shouldn’t be surprised.”

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” she wore the more horrified gaze of a hillbilly at a debutante ball.”

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” While most moms enjoyed ladies’ groups and social niceties, my mother got no greater joy in life than turning a room uncomfortable and fucking with people’s heads.”

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” She was about eighteen months pregnant with twins. I had never seen a belly that big, it looked like the babies might burst out of her Alien style.”

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” Once I managed to disengage from Princess Placenta, I went in search of Savannah.”

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“Hey, you got a guy, Savannah?” Savannah didn’t miss a beat. “Why, would you like to double date with yours?”

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Review: Transparent by Joy Eileen

TRANSPARENTTRANSPARENT by Joy Eileen

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I adore Joy Eileen’s Jackholes series; I was lucky enough to stumble upon it shortly after the publication of the first book, and can’t wait for more of those boys, especially D. Then again, anyone who has read my reviews knows what an obsession I have with rockstars. I have had Transparent on my kindle for some time, but admittedly, I was a bit torn because paranormal just really isn’t my thing. But the basic premise had me intrigued from the moment I read the blurb.

Morley (what a lovely, unique name – well suited to this lovely, unique heroine) is a self admitted bit of a hermit, who loves her job at Art – an art gallery she was blessed to have been offered a job at shortly before she graduated with a degree in art history. She has a wonderful relationship with the gallery owner, who is a bit of a father figure perhaps to this girl who was orphaned at 18 and had her heart shredded by a most unworthy man shortly thereafter. She thinks she is satisfied with her lonely existence, she has a career and a home she loves, even if she despises the busy body HOA queen who lives next door (and gives her endless grief over her choice of painting her front door red – a nod to the past when a red door had nothing to do with prostitution and everything to do with welcoming weary travelers.)

In unloading a high dollar shipment at Art, she finds herself unexplainedly drawn to a portrait of an 19th century Lord. The owner notices her interest and convinces her you take it as a gift, as he claims it has no real value in comparison to the rest of the shipment and will wind up in storage if she doesn’t take it to her meticulously decorated sanctuary. The fact that the man in the portrait looks like everything she has ever wanted in a man, she gives in. Through a series of typically hysterical events and mishaps and such (Ms. Eileen’s humor always makes me laugh- “I didn’t remember turning the TV on. Maybe the cat accidentally stepped on the remote. That would have been a very plausible explanation, if I owned a cat.” is just one of many literal laugh out loud moments for me….too bad the others stuck in the emergency room waiting room as I read were not as amused.) Morley eventually has to admit the man of her dreams, that gorgeous hunk in the painting, really is talking to her…is responsible for the sudden chills following her.

As I said, paranormal is not my thing, but Joy Eileen’s writing style certainly is. There are parts of this story that are almost too relatable for me…at 25, I was that recluse that spent all my energy on my career, and had that bff, much like Morley’s Heather, who would almost literally drag me out once in a while. Luckily my neighbors were quite the opposite of the aptly named Mrs. Crabington, in the form of my nearly life long male best friend and his roommate who quickly became another friend. If nothing else, I could count on them to raid my refrigerator and make sure my leftovers never went to waste (and I just had to cross the sidewalk if I needed company, or anything else – the roommate was a nurse who may have saved my life one night by rushing me to the hospital he worked at. But I have gone well beyond a slight digression here…) I also had picked up a print of a long haired warrior at a Renaissance Festival in college, who starred in more of my fantasies and dreams than I care to admit to – maybe that explains my draw to the storyline despite my distaste of paranormal. Whatever the reasons may be, I am certainly glad I was willing to put my narrow-minded genre snob tendencies aside and delve into this one.

Without spoilers, the ending was perhaps a bit much to wrap my head around fully, but isn’t that a hallmark of fantasy? And how much more hypocritical could I be to embrace all the rockstar story
lines I don’t discredit, no matter how unrealistic they are, but criticize a paranormal book – a genre that never claims realism – for being over the top? I can’t do it. I pride myself on not meandering into spoiler territory in my reviews, so I am not comfortable sharing much about the story line itself, but real or just an old painting, Lord Alexander has an undeniable magnetism. Morley does too.

I surprised myself greatly as I searched the waiting room for tissues. As much as I would like to blame it on the nasty summer allergy weather (and these jaded eyes rarely leak) but I did discretely work my way through quite a number of tissues. At least as many as my equally embarrassing inappropriate outbursts of laughter. Some incredibly executed sexy scenes keep this squarely in 18 + age categories, but beyond that, it gets my highest recommendations, even for those like me who aren’t PNR fans. I fins myself hoping for a bit more of their story sometime down the road.

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Release Day! LB Dunbar’s The History in Us

Cover Design: Shanoff Formats

Release Date: June 2, 2017

Synopsis

Are you a hero yet?
Her words rang in my head.
I wanted to be.
For you, I want to be, I told her in my dream, the dream where she kissed me again.

A hero-worthy kiss.

Stay safe, she had said. Come back to me.
My lips tingled.
The brush of hers over mine a memory held in the blackest of night,
the hottest of desert days,
and the cold-evil hell of war against hidden enemies.

I wanted another chance to taste those lips,
melt them against mine,
and mold her body to me.
I wanted to live.
For Katie.
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