Monday, December 23, 2013

Book: Take Me Out

I was given a digital copy of this anthology by NetGalley for the purposes of review.

Trade Off by Elley Arden:   Scarlett and Ben hit the sheets early in this story - they were sweethearts in school and the chemistry is still there.  Their short romance is hot and sweet.  Second favorite of the four stories.

Slugger Gone South by Alicia Hunter Pace: This story was probably the weakest of the four, and had the most mistakes and formatting errors.  Something that wasn't an error, but jumped out at me to age this story was a reference to Conway Twitty taking the stage at the charity event.  Conway Twitty's been dead since 1993, which tells me this story has been sitting on someone's hard drive for a very long time.  Marc and Bailey try to avoid each other when he's unexpectedly in town for a charity event. Unknown to them, relatives were conspiring to get them together again.  The transition from her anger over his real or imagined infidelities to their HEA was abrupt and a little ridiculous.  He remembered something from when they were together and helped her through a crisis, so she magically gets over everything she's holding against him.  Instant couple.  Of the four stories, I liked this one least.

Safe at Home by Leslie P. García: Amanda seeks out Josh in an effort to save her dad's mom-and-pop hardware store.  She has good reasons for hating a game she used to love, and Josh's patience and sense of humor win her heart over the course of several weeks.  Safe at Home had great characterization, plot, and pacing.  Best of the bunch.

That Ol’ Team Spirit by Bea Moon: Trish's gran has decided that the mischief in their concession stand is the work of a spirit, rather than plain old vandalism.  The premise for this story was cute, and one I should have liked.  It could have benefited from more words to work through the plot - it would have worked better as a novella or novellette.  The romance was rushed and the chemistry between the two leads was more tell than show.  Wrap-up was pretty wham-bam-thank-you-ma'am, and the sudden interest in 'let's get home so we can get horizontal now' came out of nowhere when the entire rest of the story was mostly holding hands (at seances) and the like.

To my knowledge, this anthology is only available through the Crimson Romance website.