unusual romance

Non-Traditional Romances in “Gambled Away”

29726166Gambled Away by Joanna Bourne, Isabel Cooper, Rose Lerner, Jeannie Lin, & Molly O’Keefe
Genre: Historical Romance
Source: Free From Author

The view was nice, but the food was bad

Gambled Away is a novella collection that I find difficult to review. Objectively, this collection is well written and I enjoyed how all of the authors played with the historical romance genre, offering readers something different in a genre that is often slammed for its sameness. While intellectually I appreciate how unique all of the novellas were, I confess to feeling that none were to my personal taste. Perhaps it was the constraints of the novella format, perhaps it was just me, but I will admit to feeling that none of the novellas were particularly romantic. Now, I’m not saying that everything must be hearts and flowers, but I did personally feel that there was a lack of emotional depth to the majority of the novellas in this collection, at least for this reader. (more…)

Dead Bodies, a Sure Fire way to Kickstart Your Romance: “Honor Among Thieves”

roses2Honor Among Thieves by Elizabeth Boyce (The Honorables #1)
Crimson Romance: October 27, 2014 (Historical Romance)*

My rating: Beach Vacation (3/5)

Honor Among Thieves is an unusual historical romance, one that’s in the same vein as Brenda Novak’s A Matter of Grave Concern. The heroine in Honor Among Thieves reluctantly joins a group of resurrection men when her elder brother leaves her family in steep debt. In order to repay these loans, Lorna Robbins needs ready cash yesterday. Due to her higher social station she can gain information and access to corpses that most resurrection men cannot. Before long, Lorna and her band of men are snagging all the best corpses in London. Unfortunately, this success brings suspicion, making it more difficult to keep her secret life as Blackbird separate from her life as Lorna Robbins.

Complicating matters is Brandon Dewhurst, a younger son who became a surgeon. At the behest of his mentor, Brandon has been purchasing specimens from resurrection men to further the study of pregnancy. This is certainly not a job Brandon relishes, but he is aware of the advancements that this research could bring to women. The only trouble is that Brandon’s supply has diminished because of the success of the mysterious Blackbird and her gang of men.

When Brandon and Lorna meet, sparks fly; however, their romance is put on hold with Lorna’s secrets. It’s hard to romance a girl, when she’s off stealing bodies (and when you have no idea that this is what she’s doing in her spare time). (more…)