On the Plus Side (by Tabatha Vargo)

Lilly is young, plus size woman. She is wealthy and has close friends but on a deeper lever she is lonely and has resigned herself to being the woman men don’t see.

Devin desperately needs to find $8000. The bank is threatening foreclosure on the home and business he shares with his father and young sister, and if he doesn’t pay up they’ll be on the street with nothing. When Lilly’s mother offers to pay the loan if he’ll date her daughter it’s an offer he can’t refuse.

As he gets to know Lilly he realizes she is the woman for him, but for there to be any hope of a future he needs to come clean.

On the Plus Side is cute and quirky contemporary romance with a bit of a sting in the tail. It deals in part with issues of self-image, of bullying and violence against women but it manages to address those issues without ever getting bogged down in them. It is a light and fluffy read and well worth the effort for fans of contemporary romance.

Deadly Sting (by Jennifer Estep)

Gin Blanco (the Spider) returns in this the 8th instalment in Jennifer Estep’s Elemental Assassin series.

In Deadly Sting, Gin finds herself attending the gala opening of an exhibit of Mab Monroe’s collection of art, jewellery and other artefacts. But when a gang of giants hold up the venue and take all the guests hostage, Gin finds herself once again cast in the role of rescuer.

There is nothing subtle about this book. It’s violent, brash and in your face. Jennifer Estep beats you down with words in much the same way as her protagonist takes down her enemies with her collection of five silverstone knives.

Deadly Sting is great urban fantasy. It doesn’t try to be too tricky, just delivers what fans of the genre expect.

Many thanks to Pocket Books for providing me with this ARC.

The Cat’s Meow (by Stacey Kennedy)

Libby is an enchantress. It’s her job to investigate crimes committed by witches and warlocks within her Charlston coven. When cats start showing up badly mutilated all the signs point to them being used in dark rituals. With the unwelcome help of Kale, a mysterious and powerful warlock she sets out to hunt down the miscreants.

There are some good things in this book, but all those things when added up don’t quite make a good book.  Within the 182 pages of this novel there is an exceptional 90 page novella.

Many thanks to Entangled Publishing and Netgalley for providing me with this ARC