Why are alpha males so attractive? Four talented authors show us why romance readers are attracted to them. I picked up this book specifically because of two authors: Lora Leigh and Shiloh Walker. Both are marvelous authors who write steamy romances.
In Erin's Kiss, those familiar with Ms. Leigh's trope will find this one to be a bit of a letdown. When I first started reading Ms. Leigh, she created a very erotic series, Bound Hearts. The kinky stories in there pulled me in and captivated me. This one, it seems as if Ms. Leigh has lost her erotic mojo. The characters Turk and Erin are cookie cutter and forgettable. The chemistry between the two characters is lackluster. It is disheartening to see a talented writer recycling an old and worn trope.
In Mistaken by Ms. McGee, I thought I'd stop this anthology and graciously decline reviewing the book. I'm so disgusted with Jaylene Kim in this book. She's not a feminist. She's a femi-nazi who gives women a bad name. The chip on her should is the size of a boulder. Her deprecating sneer about erotic books is annoying. Everything about this character makes her unappetizing and honestly, it's a mystery as to why any man, let alone an erotic man writer would want to date her. Her lack of self-esteem and crazed repressed sexual desires screams "WARNING! Back away slowly". She's not worth it. Any alpha male with a lick of sense would ignore her and walk away. For me, if I can't stand the lead character, the book is not enjoyable at all. At the end of this story, I'm close to a do not finish for this book.
Between the first two stories, I'm hovering over a 1.5 star review and I'm distressed. I had such high hopes for this anthology. My eagerness to read this book wanes. Since I'm not a quitter, I pick this collection back up. The last two stories pulls the anthology up.
In Burn for Me by Ms. Walker, it's an angsty story about a pigheaded alpha male who has daddy issues. It's sad and I can't help but feel bad for Tate. He let one event in time completely destroy his present and future. This is not to diminish the event. It's tragic and painful. His avoidance to deal with his pain and trauma makes him not qualify as an alpha male. Instead, in this story, it's an alpha female. Ali is what saves this story. I'm moved to tears with her pain and love. Ms. Walker excels at pulling the emotion out of me so that by the end of the book, I'm exhausted. This one, she does in a loving way. The chemistry between Tate and Ali is so good. The conflict is believable and it seems insurmountable. Yet when Tate finally comes to terms with his past, it becomes incredibly apparent that Tate has only been hurting himself and others. The evil villain in Tate's mind is not who he's been accusing all these years. Tate is the one causing all the hurt. And this is what makes the story so tragically angst filled. Loved it.
The surprise story which caught my attention is Tangled by Ms. Douglas. This one is a moving story about a strong woman who seems to have lost so much and yet she continues to truck on. Again this is an alpha female story rather than an alpha male. Cassie is a woman who expected to inherit the winery her father created with her mother. This small family business is her father's legacy. When they lose it to bad financial decisions, it breaks both father and daughter's hearts.
The sex in this story is good. The sexual tension between Cassie and Nate is delicious. These two characters are admirable and easy to relate to. Even the mysterious new owner who is absent throughout most of the story is a nice guy. This is an all-around feel good tale with suspense, love and redemption. Ms. Douglas does a good job of writing a tightly focus story which captivates my attention from beginning to end. Best story in this quartet. *provided by NetGalley