Phantom Love by Rachel Pierre

If this book demonstrates anything, it’s that seemingly innocent church ladies can be wild and crazy chicas. Not to mention, there’s a chance they may have visited a sex shop within the last 24 hours.

What’s it About? 

phantom love

They called him “The Phantom.” He would appear in church, sit in the back pew and then mysteriously disappear. Each of the young women in the ministry wanted to know who he was because he was so damn handsome and mysterious. Abby thought he was out of her league. Until a dare from her teasing girlfriends forces her to introduce herself to him. And she finds him quite charming to say the least. A mystery man who disappears for days at a time, drives a Bugatti and speaks French. Not to mention the fact that he was devastatingly handsome. Abby soon becomes the envy of all the women in the church as she begins dating the mercurial stranger. He is everything she wants in a man as he helps her grow spiritually and intellectually. She has never been treated with more tenderness and respect in all her life. But there is something about him that Abby can’t put her finger on. A sad event from his past that has traumatized his spirit. Something that is holding back his growing feelings for her. Can she heal his soul and keep his love?

First Impressions

phantom

“The Phantom” is a mystery. Nobody knows his real name, or what he does for a living. Throughout the entire book I was waiting for the ball to drop; the big reveal. Who was this guy? All of the church ladies gossiped about his possible nefarious past, and I was pretty curious myself. Was he a hitman? A drug dealer? Some other kind of criminal? With so much mystery surrounding this guy I was expecting something exciting. Well…nope. Nothing special. He’s just a wealthy guy who doesn’t reveal his name when asked for it. Honestly, kind of a let down.

What’s the Plot? 

Unfortunately, there really isn’t much of one. The whole book is basically a build-up to Abby and the Phantom having sex. He wants it to be special, while she just wants to rip off his clothing as soon as possible. The rest of the novel just focuses on them dating, and dealing with nosey church gossips.

church lady

The other major aspect of this novel was Abby uncovering the Phantom’s name. Personally, I thought it was pretty ridiculous that she quickly enters into a serious, committed relationship with this guy, and she doesn’t even know his name. I mean, I could maybe understand not knowing his profession, as it adds a certain sexy measure of mystery to their relationship. Sure, there’s the whole “what’s in a name” bull crap, but if you don’t know the guy’s name how are you supposed to know what to scream out in the throes of passion? Riddle me this!

Narration

While the male voices in the audio book were a bit too deep for my taste, I must say that D. Gaunt did a damn fine job with the female voices. She was able to inject enough personality by changing up the inflections of the characters, and it added another level of humor to some of the church ladies. I’ll admit, I laughed out loud a few times while driving alone in my car. I hope other drivers didn’t notice me laughing by myself. Awkward.

awkward

*A copy of this audio book was provided for an honest review*

Series: Nada

Should you read it? Overall, the fact that the Phantom didn’t turn out to be some kind of international spy was a bit of a let down. It sort of seemed like there was an unnecessary build-up of drama surrounding his entire character.

Smut Level: Lots and lots of build-up.

Get it on Amazon: Click Here for the $2.99 Kindle version. Click Here for the $14.95 Audible version. Self-Published. 179 Pages or 3 hours and 8 minutes.

Meant to Be by Laramie Briscoe

The narrator of this audio book reminded me of a mix between Dr. Phil and that informative talking DNA strand from the original Jurassic Park film. While he was relating the amorous exploits of our lead characters, I kept expecting him to switch gears and talk about dinosaurs.

What’s it About? 

meant to be

Single mother. Laid off factory worker. Drug runner for the Heaven Hill Motorcycle Club. When Denise Cunningham is served with foreclosure papers on her birthday it’s the last straw in a long line of bad luck. Sitting and crying about things has never been how she solved her problems, but this time she decides to do just that. A phone call interrupts her pity party and changes the course of her life forever.

Loyal brother. Grease monkey mechanic. Vice President of the Heaven Hill Motorcycle Club. William Walker Jr., known as Liam to his club, needs a new recruit that is just naïve enough and desperate enough to do what he asks without question. When Denise Cunningham lands in his lap, he decides to hire her – not because he wants to, because he has to. Neither are comfortable in their new roles, but he needs help and she can’t stand to lose anything else. As bullets fly and a local Bowling Green, KY reporter works to bring the club down, Liam and Denise find themselves getting closer to one another. When the stakes get high and outside forces try to keep them away from each other, they have to decide if they really are meant to be.

First Impressions

Obviously, the narration wasn’t exactly what I was expecting. Of all the romance novels I’ve ever listened to in audio format, this is the only one I’ve come across with a male narrator. Not too shabby. As for the storyline itself, I must say I’ve never been a huge fan of books featuring motorcycle clubs, as the male leads are almost too alpha for my taste. However, for a biker book, this one was pretty tame as far as the whole “me Tarzan, you Jane” mentality.

biker

Although, something I never understand in these biker gangs is when the guy refers to his woman as his old lady. I know it’s supposed to be respectful, but what 20-year-old woman wants to be referred to as old? And then there’s the whole aspect of having her wear his cut, which declares her as his property. Hell, if I were in that situation I’d be like, “Alright, now what are you gonna wear that proclaims you to be my property?” Sorry, consider that rant to be over.

Motorcycle Club My Ass

I feel like in most romance novels revolving around a motorcycle club, the members of the club are just minding their own business when they are somehow drawn into a kerfuffle with another club/gang. They just want to be free and ride like the wind. This book was a little different. Instead of it focusing on our biker bad boy rescuing his woman from a rival gang, it tells a tale of Liam drawing Denise further into his  world. And it doesn’t necessarily consist of law-abiding citizens.

sonsThese particular bikers are criminals! No other word for it. At the start of the book, they are dealing drugs, and by the end of it they are considering selling guns to a Mexican cartel. They took advantage of Denise’s desperate financial situation to get her to abet them in smuggling drugs, and I personally had difficulty liking them because of that. Sure, they’re all about protecting their own, and Liam treats Denise like she’s his old lady (charming!), but that doesn’t eliminate the fact that the police are after them for a reason.

*This audio book was provided for an honest review*

Series: Heaven Hill, book 1. There are a lot of books in this series.

Should you read it? There were definitely some conflicting emotions revolving around this book. On the one hand, you are really rooting for Denise and Liam to get together, but on the other you don’t really want Denise to be drawn further into this criminal world. Although this book doesn’t necessarily end on a cliffhanger, there are a lot of important questions left unanswered.

Smut Level: There aren’t too many sex scenes, and you have to wait a bit before you get to the good stuff. But the build-up of sexual tension is delicious, and the scenes themselves are pretty steamy.

Get it on Amazon: Click Here for free Kindle version. Click Here for $17.95 Audible version.  Self-published. 255 Pages or 6 hours and 27 minutes.