Take Me, I’m Yours by Lizzie Lamb

India Buchanan plans to set up an English-Style bed and breakfast establishment in her great-aunt’s home, MacFarlane’s Landing, Wisconsin. But she’s reckoned without opposition from Logan MacFarlane whose family once owned her aunt’s house and now want it back. MacFarlane is in no mood to be denied. His grandfather’s living on borrowed time and Logan has vowed to ensure the old man sees out his days in their former home. India’s great-aunt has other ideas and has threatened to burn the house to the ground before she lets a MacFarlane set foot in it. There’s a story here. One the family elders aren’t prepared to share. When India finds herself in Logan’s debt, her feelings towards him change. However, the past casts a long shadow and events conspire to deny them the love and happiness they both deserve. Can India and Logan’s love overcome all odds? Or is history about to repeat itself?

Another winner from Lizzie Lamb. Despite taking us away from her usual setting of Scotland, Lizzie nevertheless manages to weave her magic as she brings us this passionate story of love, land, family feuds and sizzling sexual attraction.
India Buchanan has arrived at her family home of MacFarlane’s Landing, having left her well-paid job behind to take on a new challenge. With her great-aunt ill, someone needs to protect the house from those pesky MacFarlane varmints, as they are determined to win back the property that originally belonged to them. India has plans of her own for the place, and has no intention of letting a MacFarlane anywhere near.
What she didn’t count on was meeting the powerful, gorgeous and ultra-sexy Logan MacFarlane, who is just as determined that he will win the house back for his own family.
To say sparks fly between the two of them is an understatement, and doesn’t really do justice to this story. This is a real romance novel, and with the witty repartee and verbal squash game going on between the two main characters, it did remind me rather of an old Cary Grant/Katherine Hepburn movie – but with a lot more passion.
The sexual tension between India and Logan is palpable, and I was just longing for them to admit how they felt about each other.
With a setting that’s beautifully described, a great supporting cast, and a genuine conflict at the heart of the story, this is far more than just a will-they-won’t-they novel.
I was worried I would miss Scotland, but Lizzie has proved herself capable of taking her readers anywhere she wants them to go. I won’t worry again. Set your next novel wherever you like, Ms Lamb. I’ll happily go along for the ride!

Fur Coat & No Knickers by Adrienne Vaughan

Oh, I really adored this book! I have read Adrienne Vaughan’s full-length novels and loved them all – The Hollow Heart, A Change of Heart, and Secrets of the Heart, highly recommended! – so I was a bit worried, if I’m being really honest, about reading her collection of short stories. Could someone, so clearly gifted at writing novels, transfer that talent to the craft of short story writing? It’s not as straightforward as many people suppose. Full-length books and short stories are different beasts and take different skills. Could Adrienne do it?

Well, of course she could! And so she did. This collection is absolutely wonderful. It’s a series of snapshots – peeps into the lives of a varied assortment of characters. Each and every one of them is interesting, but for different reasons. Some are poignant, some hilariously funny. My favourite stories were: The Messenger, a longer short story, absolutely gripping, with some beautiful characterisation; Fur Coat and No Knickers, which is really witty and amusing; the gentle story of The Adventuress; and the heart-rending A Visit at Christmas.

But the book doesn’t just showcase Adrienne’s talent for short story writing. It also shows off her poetic skills. I loved the variety of poems, sprinkled between the short stories, signalling a change of mood, or heralding a forthcoming story theme, or simply providing a breathing space before plunging the reader headlong into the next tale. Among my favourites are A Pink Day, Friends in Graveyards, Marco – My Eldest (bliss!), Southsands September, and Middle Aged Crush.

When I started reading this, I really did think it would be the sort of book that I would be able to dip in and out of, reading a story here, a poem there…Little did I realise how addictive the contents of this book would be! I read it all in two sittings, and it would have been one sitting if it wasn’t for the annoying matter of the pesky day job!

In conclusion, all I can really say is, try this book for yourself. It really is a delight, and I hope Adrienne releases another volume of short stories and poems soon. Well, as soon as she’s published her next novel, please. 🙂 5/5

You can buy Fur Coat and No Knickers here.

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