Pageviews last month


Northern Temptress

This was a engaging and sweeping flight of fancy from our past. Ms. McCaffrey has done a magnificent job of entwining a deeply moving forbidden love story with history. And without spoiling the plot she also does a more than creditable job of bringing the story of two honorable, devoted individuals to a believable conclusion. As a Civil War buff and a writer and fan of tastefully and artfully written romantic fiction I found this sweeping novel spellbinding. The author teases us with both the burgeoning and passionate love between Alexa and Caleb and the ever-present threat that fate and circumstance will bring their burning love affair to a sad and abrupt end. I couldn't put it down. Buy it! Read it and enjoy it! You won't be disappointed! – Author Kevin Symmons


I read and enjoyed this author's novella, This Moment in Time a while ago, so when I saw this title I grabbed it. I'm so glad I did - it's one of the best Civil War era romances I've ever read. This is the kind of story that draws you into the characters' lives and won't let go till the very end.

The hero, Caleb McKenna, is the quintessential Southern gentleman. An officer with the Confederate army when the story begins, right before the battle of Gettysburg, he's tired of the war and tired of seeing his men, to whom he is devoted, die. That won't keep him from doing his duty because he's a man of honor, a characteristic he shows throughout the book. I'm not sure how the author managed to make this man so strong and so gentle at the same time, but it's very effective and more than once Caleb made me melt. I could just see him with his fair hair and blue eyes, in his gray uniform and hat, making a gentlemanly bow.

The heroine, Alexandra Winters, is anything but a typical woman of her time. Having followed in her father's footsteps and trained as a doctor, she's as devoted to her duty in her way as Caleb is to his. Her life is complicated by the fact that though her father supports the Northern cause, her brother is away fighting for the South. She's also a divorcee which - gasp! - scandalizes the people of her town. She meets McKenna when he, ever the gentleman, steps in to defend her household of women against some over-zealous Confederate soldiers and again when she donates her services to tend the wounded men of both sides following the battle. The attraction is instantaneous but Caleb is engaged to a girl back home and the war divides them. How can their love ever be?

When Caleb is gravely injured in the fighting, Alexa saves his life and then hides him so he won't be dragged off to one of the federal prison camps where she knows he won't stand a chance of surviving. Their feelings for one another grow and several times nearly overwhelm them. I thought the love scenes in this book were wonderful, because they combined such tenderness with such passion. And the attraction was as much intellectual as physical. If you like your stories sweet and fiery, this one's for you.

I don't want to give away the ending here, but the road these two have to walk is long and heartbreaking. Of course, so was the time they inhabited. They both need all their strength to hold on to their love and belief in one another. I thought the research for this story was impeccable. There were so many details about the aftermath of the Battle of Gettysburg and its effect on the lives of the military and townsfolk alike. Sights, scents and sounds were all here. In my opinion this is the way Historical Romance should be. But be warned - once you start you won't be able to put it down! – Reviewer Laura Hartland

Wild Texas Wind:

4 1/2 stars from RT (see October/November 2011 issue) 

Genre: Historical Romance, Western, America
Sensuality: MILD
Setting: 1884 Texas and New Mexico Territory

**** ½ RT Rating

An excellent story with a spitfire heroine, a great hero and a wonderful, slightly humorous climax. Readers who enjoy a more traditional western with a strong romantic element will enjoy this.

Hired gun Raz Colt wants to live quietly on his own ranch, so he sets out to rescue kidnapped heiress Arden O’Hara and earn the reward. But Arden set up the kidnapping herself, hoping her fiancé would ride to her rescue. She is not happy when Raz shows up, even when he kills a man she doesn’t believe was trying to kill her.
While Raz drags her toward home, it’s clear that someone is sending hired guns after her. He struggles to keep her safe, and struggles with his attraction to her, knowing they can’t have a future. But Arden is slowly discovering that Raz is someone worth fighting for. 

4 spurs from Love Western Romances

Hired gun, Raz Colt, believes money is the only thing that keeps a man warm at night.  When he hears a $10,000 reward is being offered to return kidnapped Arden O’Hara to her father, Colt jumps at the chance.  The only stipulation is that she is brought home with her virtue intact.  Rescuing the incredibly lovely Arden from her first set of captors proves no problem for Colt, but dealing with her hot temper, spoiled nature and propensity for cussing is another matter.  Colt discovers traveling with Arden is dangerous to his health.  Not only are the pair chased, shot at and waylaid by a host of desperadoes who are after Arden, but she does her best to injure Colt herself.

Raised by a wealthy, doting father who overcompensated for the loss of her mother with material things, Arden’s temperament alienated most people.  When a new neighbor proposed to her, her suspicions became aroused.  In retrospect, she realizes that faking the kidnapping to test her betrothed’s love may have been imprudent, especially when a host of people now seem to be gunning for her for real.  Coming to her rescue is a handsome gunslinger, who puts up with none of her tantrums and relishes telling her exactly what he thinks of her.  Colt delights in reminding Arden that if it were not for the reward money, he would have left her to her own means long ago.  

Weaving in and out of towns, trying to find the identity of who is so intent on killing Arden, the couple learns to rely and trust each other.  Arden, although still fiery and courageous, has softened, and Raz finds himself caring for someone for the first time in his life.  The journey they make back to Arden’s home is fraught with danger, and while they manage to fight off their attackers, they cannot fight their growing attraction to one another.  Despite her tough façade, Arden is a virgin, and Raz is a half-breed gunslinger who knows he has nothing to offer her other than safe passage home.  He teaches her the physical aspect of love and finds her a willing student.  When they finally make love, it is with such intensity that both know in their hearts things will never be the same. 

The identity of the would-be killer is revealed and Arden is safe at last.  Raz cannot take the reward money, as he did not hold up his end of the bargain – Arden did not return home with her virtue intact.  He leaves, believing it is the honorable thing to do, and since Arden does not follow him, he assumes she agrees they have no future together.  Everyone, including the reader, holds their collective breath to see if ill-placed pride will keep the pair apart or if unforeseen circumstances will bring them together.

This was a fun, quick read, with lots of sharp dialogue and interesting secondary characters.  At first, Colt and Arden seem shallow and sometimes unlikable, but as the story progresses, they evolve into sympathetic individuals you want to root for.  There is plenty of action and it gives a realistic depiction of the violence of that era (some of the descriptions are not for the faint of heart) along with well written, if explicit, intimate scenes.

I fell in love with this couple. Wild Texas Wind was a wonderfully romantic western tale. For anyone who appreciates a bad boy cowboy, Raz Colt fits the bill. He’s arrogant, demanding and doesn’t like to explain himself. And Arden O’Hara is a woman with a fiery temper and a sharp tongue. Wild Texas Wind is the classicTaming of the Shrew set in the old west. I had a hard time putting this book down.
Arden O’Hara and Raz Colt were at loggers head many times but they always pulled together when the threat of danger appeared. And Kip Cooper was an added bonus as a lovable conman.
I loved the whole book and was actually surprised at the ending. I look forward to reading more of Ms. McCaffrey’s books.

With some author friends at a book signing  for The Model Man

Long and Short Reviews

Rating: 4 Books
Reviewed by Camellia

Arden O’Hara and Raz Colt strike sparks off each other at first sight. Both, with strong personalities, plot to reach their individual goals even if they do have to do some “giving and taking” while they zigzag their way across West Texas dodging bad guys as they work their way back to Arden’s home. Raz, a “mix-breed” gunfighter and Arden O’Hara a rich, spoiled “daddy’s girl” could hardly be any farther apart socially. Raz, of Indian, Mexican, and Anglo heritage and reared by prostitutes, finds a welcome in few places. Moreover, he makes a living with his fast gun. Conversely, Arden at age four years lost her mother and was reared by a doting, rich father and by the men on the ranch. She is welcomed everywhere—even if her father had to buy that welcome at times.

Arden’s failed plan to find out if her fiancé loves her puts her at the mercy of the gunfighter -- or so it seems -- but she is no shrinking violet. Raz, may have the upper-hand physically, but Arden does not give up easily. Her maturation as the trip progresses is remarkable.

An undercurrent of humor lightens the desperate mood some of the characters feel as they try to make a meaningful life for themselves. Kit Cooper and Dusty are two secondary characters that grab the attention of the reader. Raz’s tolerance of them and understanding of needs that drive them shows a different aspect of his personality. Another part of his personality is evident in his love for Arden and his sense of not being good enough for her. It is evocative.
 Wild Texas Wind is a love story that touches the heart.

Nicole McCaffrey creates a hero and heroine, along with diverse secondary characters that take the reader on a lively trip from New Mexico Territory to the O’Hara ranch near San Antonio, Texas. Along the way and amid some scary encounters with bad guys motivated by greed, the reader get to know Raz and Arden and their hopes, fears, motivations, insecurities, and finally their capacity to overcome all obstacles to reach for their happy-ever-after. The special twist at the end of
 Wild Texas Wind is terrific. 

The Model Man:

From Faith V. Smith for

McCaffrey's contemporary tale is a fairytale romance for real women. Her characters are true to life, hot and so fascinating.  This author rocks when it comes to giving romance addicts a book that will make them believe in fantasies come to life and happy-ever-after. The plot is unique, and readers will be thumbing the pages until the last word.
A romance author who turns down a night of hot sex with a cover model is not normal, but Kelly Michaels is anything but run-of-the-mill.  It's her stand off personality, enticing blushes, and shy demeanor that attract Derek, cover model extraordinaire, to her like a duck to water. The only problem is. he is younger than she is, and she feels like she would be robbing the cradle if she takes him up on his offer.
Derek’s plans to seduce Ms. Prim and Proper divorcee, mother of teenagers, gets out of hand when Kelly lets her hair down.  If only she would keep her hair down, then just maybe he would be able to convince her he wants more than a publicity stunt, more than just a one-night stand; he wants Kelly forever.
What neither realizes until it's too late to pull back, is that love knows no barriers, be it age, culture, or conflict when it comes to affairs of the heart.

The Model Man

Nicole McCaffrey can certainly write a contemporary romance! The Model Man is one of the most entertaining books I’ve read in a long time. I loved every minute of it and will definitely read this one again!

Kelly is a single mother who attends a romance writers’ conference and meets a to-die-for hunky cover model. Derek tries to seduce her right away but falls short of his target. Unfortunately photos emerge of the writer and the model, and the media feeding frenzy begins. Kelly’s agent convinces Derek to pretend he’s going out with her for a few weeks. The two weeks are more than either bargain for. Their feelings take on a life of their own.

I enjoyed every aspect of this story, but I especially liked the characters. Kelly is so filled with realistic qualities. She could be someone I know. I especially like the way she deals with her kids. There is a very clear link between Kelly and her daughter that I loved seeing. Kelly never puts her own needs above her kids’ needs yet she finds a way to satisfy all areas of her life. She is smart and I like that about her. Of course Derek is a dream, even in a rickety row boat! The chemistry between them is hot. The couple’s growing relationship kept me spellbound.

The Model Man is a great story. Well done!

Reviewed by: Marlene

Small Town Christmas:

Holland McCall has grown up to be thin and famous by being a weather girl, something she never dreamed of becoming. Growing up overweight, she fantasized about her Prince Charming coming to rescue her. Prince Charming was football jock Tucker Callahan, the one boy who she crushed on when she was in high school but couldn’t do anything about it. Now years later, she’s ready for anything this Christmas and plans to share the big news in her career with her family, but she never imagined meeting Tucker again. Holland might not have seen him in years, yet the love she thought was a crush is back with a vengeance and this time she is not sure whether she wants to be apart from Tucker again.

Tucker Callahan has had one woman in his life get into his heart. One woman that has somehow come back into his life, making the crush he had when he was young grow into something more that he ever expected. With a failed marriage behind him, he’s ready to really settle down with the love of his life, the one woman that touches his heart with her innocence and her vulnerability. He’s known forever that Holland is his woman, yet he never made a move because back then football jocks did not hang out with fat girls. Now he’s ready to make his move and this time make Holland see that she is meant for him in every part of his life.

Holland McCall may have come home for the Christmas holiday but it is going to be a Christmas that she will never forget. Small Town Christmas is one of those stories that make you appreciate families and the special loved ones in your life. I liked that Holland has grown up so much, made a name for herself, and not fallen back to the girl who always doubted herself, afraid to take a chance. Now Tucker, here is a man any reader will somewhat hate yet love at the same time. I liked that like all young crushes, he shows us that he’s not the immature boy he used to be, but one that has grown up. He is a man ready to make Holland see that he has changed. Great job for Nicole McCaffrey for making readers remember that family is important, but also to never forget the beauty of youthful love.

Reviewed by: Lena C.

Four Angels from Fallen Angels Reviewers

Score: 4 / 5 Rising star newscaster Holland McCall returns home for the Thanksgiving holidays with mixed feelings. When she left she was overweight and unattractive, but times have changed and so has she. Tucker Callahan was a popular athlete who did not give his neighbor a second glance. Now, Holland is on her way to further fame and fortune and Tucker is a divorced father of two daughters who has returned to live in the small town of his youth. Although they both left for different reasons, an unexpected encounter wreaks emotional havoc on the lives they have created for themselves. Small Town Christmas by Nicole McCaffrey is a wonderful holiday story of love, forgiveness and the importance of family. The engaging small town atmosphere prompts both Holland and Tucker to rethink their priorities and their future. ~ Reviewer: Gail of Night Owl Romance

Joyfully Reviewed:

Holland McCall moved to Syracuse and got a job as a newscaster, but she’s back in her hometown for Thanksgiving. Holly prefers being in the city; she doesn’t like small town life anymore. Tucker Callahan is recently divorced and living in Castleford with his two little girls. Holly had a crush on Tucker when they were young but Tucker broke her heart. After all these years, Holly is still attracted to Tucker and now that she’s changed, it seems Tucker is finally noticing Holly too.
Small Town Christmas is syrupy sweet and classically romantic. Tucker is a good guy and his girls are darling. Holly and Tucker’s romantic movie ending is heartwarming and fun. 


No comments:

Monday Morning Musing: A Shot of Adrenaline

I found the review below on Facebook last week when someone posted it about Northern Temptress, and it lifted my spirits considerably. Last ...