All stories are exclusive new content and can be read without reading the series, but will be icing on the cake for readers loyal to each saga.
I received a copy of Just Desserts in exchange for an honest review. To be fair to each author, I will review and rate each one individually and then give my final thoughts and a final rating for the entire Anthology as a whole. I will also be adding as a note, whether it can truly be read as a standalone, or if I recommend reading books prior to the short story.
Honey Bear ~ The Pearson’s Security Series by Michele Bardsley
When bear shifter bodyguard Mike Pearson is tasked to protect celebrity baker Amelia Delacorte, he thinks the job will be a piece of cake.
Amelia has a secret, one she must protect at all costs, especially from the nosy werebear with the gorgeous see-your-soul eyes and hunky, drooll-worthy muscles.
Stuck in a basement kitchen until danger is nullified, Amelia can only think of one way to distract her protector: She’ll make him dessert. But it turns out the only dessert Mike Pearson wants … is her.
I absolutely loved this story! Michele Bardsley is a new to me author, but I WILL be getting acquainted with more of her writing and this series! The way she describes her characters and scenario put in into the moment 100%! It was refreshing to read about a curvy woman as well. I’m not sure how things will go between Mike and Amelia, or what the author’s writing style is…but all I could think about was “I wouldn’t mind a bit of Twin Action!” As it is though, Mike sounds completely delicious and edible, as well as his sexy twin Gabe! I can’t wait to get my hands on more in The Pearson’s Security Series!
5 PERFECT Stars!
Alpha-Bites ~ The Cull: Claimed by the Alpha by Renee George
Ever since gorgeous werewolf Conor Evens saved her life by “culling” her into the local lycanosapien pack, Anna Davis has been happy as Conor’s mate–even though it means keeping secrets from her family. However, Conor has a sweet surprise for his beloved and Anna will soon learn the true delight of an alpha’s bite…
Renee George is also a new to me author. In this case, I think it’s best to read prior books in this series to truly appreciate it, despite the fact all of these stories supposedly “can be read without reading the series, but will be icing on the cake for readers loyal to each saga” . I just felt completely lost while reading, simply because the story takes us basically right into a second honeymoon for the couple and it’s completely obvious there is a backstory I’m missing out on. Unfortunately I’m not sure how much I would’ve liked it even if I had read the other books. I just felt it was a bit predictable and the images of the half changing was awkward. Perhaps being lost was just too much for me to overcome in this case.
Perfect Passion ~ Perfect Chemistry by Jodi Redford
Sidney Chase knows too well the potent side effects of the infamous Xtacy aphrodisiac elixir. So when Leo and Dev enlist her help with their latest kinky concoction, she’s all too willing to put in the overtime. Because the best perk of working for two sexy chemist geeks? Getting to be their sinful science experiment. And this time the results promise to be just as deliciously wicked.
Jodi Redford is another new to me author. I enjoyed the story, however this is another one I felt like I was missing out on a backstory. I also feel like I should give somewhat of a warning about this story. I’m not a prude by any means, but I know there are several people out there who would take issue with the idea of a drug that makes a woman have “endless hours of uncontrollable horniness” and that she’d been the subject of an “erotic science experiment” in the past after she had “accidentally” exposed herself to their “wildly potent aphrodisiac elixir”. It might sound a bit too much like date rape. HOWEVER if the entire backstory was known, it may be completely different then how it’s worded in this short story. I might have to check out the other books in this series, since I’m totally into menage books and this has really piqued my interest.
Indigo Velvet ~ Indigo Lounge Series by Zara Cox
Reader, I married her. She was broken when we met. But then so was I. We healed each other. We’re crazy about each other. But I’m quickly learning that love isn’t enough. To make it through each day, we’ll have to be consumed by each other.
Zara Cox is another new to me author. I loved this story. I could totally relate to being a new mom and having the insecurities Leia does about her after baby body. But I don’t think you have to be a mom at all to appreciate her insecurities about her husband seeing her naked. Noah sounds yummy and it was so sexy to have him bounce between Dom, Daddy and Husband. I laughed when Noah’s patience had been tested by the interruptions and sighed with an “aaawww” when I found out what he did for Leia. I could tell there was a backstory, but it didn’t leave me feeling like I missed out on anything. In fact I found myself somewhat thankful I had, since it’s implied they had a rough go in the past. This won’t stop me from picking up other books in the Indigo Lounge Series though!!
Tasting Paris ~The Good Doctor Trilogy by Renea Mason
When Elaine complains to Dr. Vincent, Sebastian and Marco that she missed out on all the points of interest in Paris on her last trip, the trio brings Paris to her, in the doctor’s New York penthouse.
Renea Mason is one of my favorite authors. Because of this, I have EXTREMELY high expectations for her books. If she isn’t up to par, I’m going to be the first one to say it and bitch about it. Luckily she didn’t disappoint me! This might be a short story for her brand new series, but I actually liked the sex scenes in this story better then a couple of them in “Curing Dr. Vincent“. I think it’s a combination of her getting a better feel for the Doctor and also his intense feelings for Elaine. He’s more exposed then he’s ever been. But he’s also a very sexy and commanding presence. I loved seeing another side of Sebastian and Marco as well. Did I mention the foursome? What girl wouldn’t want to be spread out on the counter with 3 smoking hot men tasting Nutella, honey and chocolate off her body!!? Damn, I’m jealous of Elaine! Once again Renea Mason brings panty dropping sex scenes, meanwhile keeping realism and a love story in the mix. Between her Good Doctor Trilogy and her Symphony of Light Series, I’m a happy, horny girl!
5 PERFECT Stars!!
*This short story can definitely be read as a stand alone, but you’re also aware there is more to the story. I know from experience it can only be enhanced by reading “Curing Dr. Vincent”, Book 1 in the Trilogy.
Confidential Craving ~ Fantasies Inc. Series by Piper Denna
Victoria walks into her friend’s law practice for an appointment regarding her new business, but leaves with a dinner date to pick up her documents…from his partner. The sexy attorney with a British accent has managed to reawaken the libido she’s ignored for months while launching Fantasies, Inc., an upscale resort pandering to sexual yearnings. And hey, if she’s going to capitalize on cravings, she might as well have some of her own, right? Brett has been warned to stay away from Victoria. He’s to draw up her papers. Nothing more. Except, upon meeting her, he’s compelled to ask her out. First item on his menu? Seduction. He senses her bottled-up cravings and intends to uncork her, warnings be damned.
Piper Denna is a new to me author, but I look forward to reading more from her. Victoria’s heart may be broken, but her libido isn’t. She goes from being the prey to the predator and I loved the sex scenes! The story ends with a cliff hanger, but it’s a good one. I loved the chemistry between Victoria and Brett. He’s on a mission and he isn’t going to stop until he has her heart. I also can NOT wait to read some sex play at the Fantasies Inc Resort. This book hints to the steaminess that is yet to come in future books. It leaves me wishing I had the money to visit a place like this! As it is I’ll live my fantasies through the Fantasies Inc. Series!!
Black Magic Café by Erzabet Bishop
A Thibedeaux wolf and a Conway witch… Elodie Conway is the owner of The Black Magic Café, where love and chocolate go hand in hand. When journalist Jason Thibedeaux runs a critique of her business all is fair in love and war when there’s magic under the moonlight.
Erzabet Bishop is a new to me author. I really enjoyed this story. It has a curvy girl, witch and a werewolf. It has a cocky man and a confident woman. He gets set in his place and she gets the orgasm of a lifetime. It’s a win/win! As a reader it’s definitely a win! I”m anxious to check out some of Erzabet Bishop’s other titles! These are a few that really appeal to me: “Tethered” and “Fantasies in Red”, which just came out in April 2015! I didn’t find any sign that “Black Magic Café” is a series, but I think it would be a great one to elaborate on! I’m also craving chocolate!!
*This can be read as a standalone. In fact I’m pretty sure it IS a standalone, despite the hint of a backstory. I might be wrong though.
Strictly Professional by Iyana Jenna
Zane Kotsky is a senior graphic designer at Downey Bags. When the company is extending its market, they pick someone from outside to be the head of the art department instead. Before Joachim Wessling turns up at the company to be his new boss, Zane, is heartbroken and envious. But that was then.
Iyana Jenna is a new to me author. This was a m/m story, which I love. It was also little older/little younger men. Normally I’d be totally ok with this scenario. However the usage of “Baby Zane”, “the kid” and then “kinky old man” made the sentence “Come for me, boy” feel really……I’ll just say…awkward. It was a good story, just word usage made things come across less then appealing for me. However as I’ve always stated, this is just my opinion.
Blind Taste Test by Anne Lange
An erotic romance author who needs to inject more realism into her sex scenes finds herself in the middle of a blind taste test in which she’s the dish for a double helping of dessert.
I’ve read one other story by Anne Lange, “Friends With Benefits” and I freaking loved it! So again, I went into this story with very high expectations. I wasn’t disappointed AT ALL!! I freaking loved this story! It was my fantasy come to life. m/f/m. YUM!! The way Anne Lange writes, puts you in the moment, in the “hot” seat. You hold your breath, waiting for them to approach, meanwhile all your senses are on alert, because you’re blindfolded….then waiting for the climax. By the end I was left breathless and wanting more. This would make an amazing series. I would truly love to read more about these three wonderful characters!! I haven’t read anything by Anne Lange for quite awhile…this reminded me what I’ve been missing out on. Definitely going to be picking up some other titles of hers!
5 PERFECT Stars!!!
Common Grounds by S.J. Maylee
While Kate Sanderson mixes batter and pumps buttercream inside her tasty creations at the West Egg restaurant, she dreams about two things, owning a bakery of her own and finding a man capable of satisfying her every desire. Mark Larosa designs little masterpieces daily at his tiny barista station at the local Star Coffee and he tailors each to the customer. The only cup he can’t seem to get right is for the sassy baker, Kate. He’s determined to give her what she really wants. When a new building goes up across the street, the pair trip over each other trying to grab the last unit before a chain restaurant claims their dream. To get what they crave, they might have to work together and find the elusive common ground.
S.J. Maylee is a new to me author. This story was a great introduction to her writing! The scene in the Pleasure Emporium was smoking hot! So was the one in the bakery! What I loved about this story is Kate Sanderson brought romance into an s/M relationship. It wasn’t the hard core BDSM I really love, but it was a refreshing taste of it. If someone is looking to delve into the BDSM books, this would be a great one to start with. It’s sexy as hell, with an innocence about it. I will definitely be checking more out from this talented author!
Feast on Me by Terri George
They have the perfect marriage. They are happy. There’s nothing he wouldn’t do to keep her. There’s nothing she wouldn’t do for him. Even agreeing to the ultimate test of her love. But will their love survive it?
Terri George is a new to me author and is now on my favorites list. Jessica and David are a husband/wife, D/s couple. David decides he wants to share Jessica with another Dom. At first she’s reluctant, but if it makes David happy, then it will make her happy. When she meets the new Dom, she’s torn. Alex is David’s best friend. He’s been on Jessica’s mind since the night he kissed her and expressed his feelings for her. When she chose David, Alex took off. Now he’s back and he has only one night to show her how he feels about her….with David’s permission. The ending had a slight cliff hanger, but I’m totally ok with it. It left me breathless and hot…I needed time to cool down and ponder what I would do in her situation. Terry George brings real feelings mixed with a whole hell of a lot of heat! She puts you in the moment and you never want to leave! I’m not sure if this is a series, but I pray to the literary Gods that it is/will be!!! I don’t think I can wait much longer to see what happens between Jessica, Alex and David!!!!!!
5 PERFECT Stars!!!
The Sweetness in the Pudding by Lee Rene
Lizzie, a New Orleans native and recent college graduate, has come to a standstill in her first relationship. She loves Nicholas, a young law student, but because of his misplaced religious notions, he refuses to be sexual with her. They live in the most sexual city in the States yet he refuses to even French kiss her. After their turbulent breakup, Lizzie flees to the Vieux Carre for comfort food. She’s unaware that Nicholas has followed her into one of the Quarter’s bakery shops. The place is a strange, old-fashioned sweet-shop, deserted except for the proprietress who escorts them into a private drawing room. Lizzie and Nicholas decide to share a bowl of banana pudding and end up sharing a great deal more.
Lee Rene is a new to me author and I’m sad to say it, but I REALLY did not like this story or her writing. At all. The couple argue about whether to have sex or not for 98% of this story. We also get a religious lesson about premarital sex, which, as much as I love God, I DON’T want to read in a book that’s supposed to be Erotic. Then….the multiple names for Vagina….seriously…pick one and stick to it. We had Cunt, Cootchie, pussy, hot triangle, honey pot, twat, vulva and precious spot. Sometimes the change was within the same sentence. THEN, if I had to read the words baby or baby girl one more freaking time I was going to scream or as they said in the book a couple times slap someones mama. This story was a huge disappointment. Had it been any longer, I would’ve had to stamp DNF onto this one.
Sweet Tooth by Mindy Larson
Meet Pastry chef, Finley Cooper and her dark lover, Beck Overly. Dentist by day. Vampire by night. The two errant souls have met before. Many times. In many lifetimes. Finley’s wicked sweet tooth has gotten her in trouble before but never like this, luckily, Dr. Overly ‘Hot’ has just what she needs. Beck has a sweet tooth all of his own, a feigning taste for his irresistible Finley. He seduces her with the one thing she can never say no to: dark chocolate. Neither Finley or Beck can ever be satiated with the other near by. Can Beck convince her to join him in his path of lust and seduction? Or will her sweet tooth get the best of them both?
Mindy Larson is a new to me author. The story had some good scenes in it, but mostly it left me confused and having to read, go back and read again to make sure I was understanding what was going on. I normally love Paranormal, but in this case I wish it hadn’t been in the mix. I wish the story would’ve just stuck with a patient lusting after a hot dentist. Before adding the paranormal into the mix, the story was delicious and held such potential. The paranormal aspect ruined it. Perhaps it was the way it was written, but as I said, it just left me confused and wondering why the story even went in that direction. The first sex scene is what saved this story from being a 1 star. The author impressed me with the sex, so I might check out something else written by her. This one just wasn’t my cup of tea unfortunately.
Super-Sex Me ~ The Little Miss Kick-Ass Series by Felicity Kates
Astrid Bitten isn’t smitten. All she wants is a night of sexual adventure to bring some excitement to her lonely life. When she meets the most gorgeous guy she’s ever seen at a Fan Expo convention, she jumps at the chance to explore what lies beneath the stretchy spandex of his superhero suit. But is she ready to discover the truth of her secret cravings? Race Lindstrom wants a second chance. At life, at love, at using the gods-given talents he’s been born with for good rather than evil. When he spies the golden-haired goddess across a crowded room, he knows he’ll never let her go. But second chances don’t come easy. He’ll have to satisfy her deepest hunger if he wants to make her his forever.
Felicity Kates is an author I know of and even though “Steam Bunny” is on my TBR List, I’ve never read her books. Until now. At first the cosplay scenario wasn’t doing it for me. But when they got into Race’s room…HOLY HOT PANTS BATMAN! And when he does that thing with their clothes….that was so freaking sexy! After reading this, I have full intention of putting “Steam Bunny” at the top of my list and also another author I can’t wait to read more from!!
Sinfully Sweet ~ The Sweet Series by Emma Nichols
As specialty caterers, Grace and her sisters are used to unusual requests in exotic venues. When a mystery client hires them to create not just a meal for two, but an entire experience designed for seduction in an upscale hotel, she thinks nothing of it. Then she discovers the client is her long time crush, Lucas, and the sinfully sweet night he has planned is all for her. Can she shed her all-business persona and give in to a night of pleasure?
Emma Nichols is a new to me author. I really enjoyed this story a lot. I wasn’t sure I was going to though, because there was some conflict between the characters. Luckily it turned playful. Sex became a game to get her to say a specific word and it was fun to read all the ways he almost got her to say it! I also thought it was sweet how Lucas stripped her bare, not just for sex….but to help him see HER….not her other two identical twin sisters who she was trying so hard to pretend to be like. This was a sweet short story. The sex was ok, but it was more making love then it was the “fuck me against the wall” type of sex I’d come to love in the other stories. I must say though…I have a chocolate craving after reading this though!! I will definitely be checking out Emma Nichols other books!
Cake Topper ~ The Incarnation Chronicles by Libby Sinclair
Emilee has had her eye on Grieg since the first time she met the tall blue alien. Now that the treaty is signed turning enemies into allies, she can make her move and find out just how blue he can get.
Libby Sinclair is another author whose name I’m familiar with, but I’ve yet had the pleasure of reading anything by. At first, I was out of my element. Scifi is not a genre I normally pick up and read. So when I was reading about a blue skinned alien, I was kind of thinking “eh”. But then….Grieg lifted her onto the counter and my blood started boiling!! Their chemistry was freaking off the charts!! I will be snatching every book in this series that I can!! Libby Sinclair has totally pulled me and made me a new fan…of her writing AND the genre!
5 PERFECT Stars!!
A Little Taste of Naughty ~ The Shattered Lives Series by Rissa Blakeley
Elaina is sassy and full of attitude. Henry lives a life full of lies and deceit. Somehow, the two complement one another, especially when it comes to getting naughty with a slice of cake at a wedding reception.
Rissa Blakely is yet another author who I’m familiar with but haven’t read anything by before now. I have to admit I was a little confused by this story. I think Henry might be a vampire or mutant, I’m not sure? I might be intrigued enough to want to find out more about what happened to him though! I have to confess, the romantic and sex aspect of the story didn’t do too much for me. I think by the time we got to that part of the story, I’d gotten sick of shopping for a dress with Elaine. But I still want to find out more about Henry!
Sugar and Spice by Mariah Kingsley
Layla will do anything to make her father happy, even marry Jimmy a man that she doesn’t love. She thinks she can go through with the marriage, even if it means a lifetime of boring sex and monotony. Until she meets Giovanni, the owner of Sugar and Spice Bakery.Giovanna’s eyes never leave Layla the night she comes in for a sample of his world famous chocolate. As her eyes roll back in pure delight, he has a new goal in life–make Layla scream in the middle of Spice, his luxury sex club.
Mariah Kingsley is an author I’m familiar with, but who I’ve never read anything by. I’m kicking myself in the ass now! This was a wonderful story! The sex, the romance, everything was perfect! I get the impression it could easily be turned into a series and I hope it will be! I really want to find out what happens when Layla goes to the club with Gio!! I want to know more about Lance. I want to see him in action at the sex club! I will be getting my hands on more books by Mariah Kingsley, she’s found her way into my head and onto my favorites list!
5 PERFECT Stars!!
Always the Last One by Rosemary Rey
When writer Elyce Fielding last saw Griffin Belanger for their last sexual tryst, Elyce had an epiphany that she could no longer continue having a “no strings attached” relationship with Griffin, who was her best friend in college. The curvy, young woman could no longer live in the background of the handsome actor who was in the city for his film premiere. Elyce had tried everything to forget about his presence in Boston by getting her favorite take-out and raided her small studio apartment for a sweet treat. When Griffin calls in the middle of the night, can Elyce deny him the very thing which kept them connected all the years since graduating from college?
Rosemary Rey is a new to me author. This was a good story, it was a relatable one. We all have that one person who we have a tough time saying no to. Griffin is Elyce’s. He sends mixed messages all the time. He says he loves her, but yet doesn’t want a life with her. He says she’s beautiful, yet has model types on his arm for movie premieres. Elyce has had enough of the yo-yo games. She’s going to be with him one last time, then that’s it. And this one last time she’ll make sure lasts her a lifetime. The sex is smokin’ hot, the feelings are real. The story leaves off with a potential cliffhanger, giving the impression we’ll be seeing more about these characters and I really hope we will!!!
Cherry Tart by Persephone Jones
Divorced Cherry Hartley has an embarrassment of riches. A beautiful house, a flourishing business and not one but two gorgeous men living across the street from her. Both of whom keep sending her unmistakable come-hither looks. She could pick bad boy Bryce, whose reputation in bed precedes him. Or she could choose newly arrived good guy, Gavin. Lucky for Cherry, Gavin has a sweet tooth. She knows exactly how she’d like to welcome the handsome young architect to the neighborhood…with a yummy homemade cherry tart.
Persephone Jones is a new to me author and I plan on checking out her other work! This was a good story, however I just felt something was lacking a little. I can’t quite put my finger on it though. It didn’t hold any of my pet peeves, it was a great love story, but had too much play by play during sex and too many cheesy references to her name, her sexuality and actual cherry desserts. It also might be the fact it held two scenes in the same conversation between the two characters that reminded me of the movies “Waiting To Exhale” and “Pretty Woman”. Perhaps those things held me back from fulling appreciating this story. It was still good though!!
Cherry Lips by Christine Severin
What if she had given into Ben back when they were young? Thanks to a chance happening and a retro tube of lip gloss with a magic spell, Jen gets a chance to find out.
Christine Severin is a new to me author. This was an interesting story. A time traveling story. I loved what I read, but it ended so abruptly and right as the story took a turn that could be VERY steamy! So that was a bit disappointing. Even so, I still plan on checking out her other work. I’m very interested in Christine Severin’s writing style!
Claiming by J.S Snow
Garrett and Mariah Latimer enjoy a good Cabernet Sauvignon. Besides having a discerning palate, it’s not the only thing Garrett has a particular taste for. Mariah’s too are just as refined and individual and only one man, her beloved husband can curb her craving. Wanting to please each other in every way, there are times when it’s difficult, for being subservient to one another can be challenging and tests the limits of what one is truly willing to do to make the other happy. In the end, they both prove, a good wine isn’t the only thing that ages well over time.
J.S. Snow is a new to me author. The story starts out right away steamy, but then it ends with a lot of talk about being grandparents. I just felt like there was no real feeling in the words. There are some stories that bring you into the story. You’re part of the experience. This unfortunately wasn’t one of those times. Maybe it was the lack of build up to the first sexual encounter….or maybe it was the grandparent talk. I’m not sure, but I just wasn’t able to connect to the characters or story.
*Can be read as a standalone.
My final thoughts on the “Just Desserts” Anthology: There were quite a few not so great stories in the book, I’m not going to lie, but the ones that weren’t, were FREAKING FANTASTIC! Any of the 5 Stars make this book worth picking up. I was able to get more delicious tidbits from a couple of my favorite authors and found a few new favorites as well. That alone makes picking this anthology worth it! If you’re looking for a few panty dropping stories, grab this up immediately, especially since it’s ONLY $0.99 right now!!!
I also want to add, I’m just one person, nobody special, just a person who loves to read and offers an opinion on what I personally thought. There are many factors to take in. My personality, my idea of what makes a great story, my pet peeves, etc. So what I may find as issues others might find as virtues. I always encourage anyone reading my reviews to still take a chance on the author/book.
There is a quote that goes around the internet and it’s accredited to MANY people, so I don’t know who exactly said it, but it is soooo true!
“In a sense, one can never read the book that the author originally wrote, and one can never read the same book twice.”
My Rating for Entire “Just Desserts” Anthology is: