Tag Archives: Nora Roberts

Nora Roberts – Chesapeake Bay Saga

23 May

Books read:

  • Sea Swept (Jove Books, 1998)
  • Rising Tides (Jove Books, 1998)
  • Inner Habor (Jove Books, 1999)

Things the books did:

  • got me out of my reading slump (although I don’t know if it was because of the books, or the draft I wrote the day before about my reading slump, or because it was time)
  • a lot of head hopping
  • make me wonder about the way adoption is handled

Things learned:

  • In some way I read for the heroine. I mean, I don’t have to like her, I don’t have to want to be her, I don’t have to identify with her to get really engaged in my reading – but (in romance novels) novels where the heroine is central and which are about her journey seem to work best for me (or maybe it’s just the constant head hopping that kept me from becoming fully engaged).

Overall remarks about this trilogy:

  • Most of all, these are stories about the men and their relationship with each other.
  • I like the way Nora Roberts writes about how men relate to each other.
  • Seth is a very vivid character
  • I think the “ghost” element made the stories more “unreal” (diminishing the “message” about family and blood?)

Overall trilogy grade: 4,5 / 5 (for Seth’s story and the relationship between the men)

Nora Roberts – Sea Swept

Genre: Romance / Contemporary

From the “Dear Reader”-letter inside the book:
“Cameron, Ethan, and Phillip were all troubled young boys who were adopted at difficult periods in their lives by Raymond and Stella Quinn. they didn’t share blood, but they became a family. In “Sea Swept”, Cameron’s story, the family faces tragedy and scandal that will change lives. Cameron’s lived the reckless life of a daredevil since leaving the quiet community on Maryland’s Eastern Shore where Ray and Stella raised him and his brothers. He likes fast boats, fast cars, and fast women. Now he’s been called home, not only to say good-bye to the only father he ever loved, but also to face the challenge of caring for the last lost boy Ray was determined to save.
Who is Seth, this prickly young boy a dying Ray asked his sons to protect? To find out, and to keep his promise, Cameron will have to put the life he’d chosen on hold. And deal with a certain sexy social worker who’s every bit a determined as he to provide Seth with the right home. Anna Spinelli is full of surprises, and challenges.”

I liked Anna for her straight-forwardness. It’s refreshing to encounter such a woman from time to time in romance novel. Of course, in a story which is more about the hero and his brothers, the romance kind of takes second place so a heroine who knows what she wants and is rather uncomplicated works best there. Cam tended to irritate me with his “refuse” to do certain kinds of work. Thankfully, he had a match in Anna there.

Read again: as part of a trilogy reading / Recommend: Yes / Grade: 4 /5

Nora Roberts – Rising Tides

Genre: Romance / Contemporary

From the “Dear Reader”-letter inside the book:
“Ethan is a waterman. He wasn’t born to the traditon, but has embraced it. He’s a quiet man whose heart runs as deep as the waters he loves. In “Rising Tides” he’ll face more than the challenge of making his living on the Bay or struggling to make the fledgling boat-building business he and his brothers began a success.
There’s a young boy who needs him, and a woman and child he loves but never believed he could have. To shape his life around them, Ethan must face his own dark past, accept not only who he is but what he hopes to become.”

Ethan had a thing for Grace since she was fourteen and he in his early twenties so he didn’t act on it. Now they’re older but he’s still reluctant to do anything because he wants to treat her right and he knows he won’t ever marry. And Grace sure is a marrying, all-or-nothing kind of girl. She’s nice and kind and (because of that) Ethan thinks she’s delicate and he has to stay away because of his horrid past. Favourite scene: near the end, when Grace tells Ethan what she thinks.

Read again: as part of a trilogy reading / Recommend: Yes / Grade: 4 / 5

Nora Roberts – Inner Habor

Genre: Romance / Contemporary

From the “Dear Reader”-letter inside the book:
“Ray and Stella Quinn had given Phillip a second chance at life. He’d never forgotten what they’d done for him. With his brothers, Cameron, Ethan, and now Seth, Phillip worked to maintain their home and keep a promise to a man he loved. Maybe he preferred his life in Annapolis, the museums, the restaurants, the crowds, but he’d keep his promise even if it meant splitting his time on the Shore, laboring over hulls and homework.
Home was what Ray had wanted for his sons, all of his sons. To keep his promise, and his home, Phillip must accept the boy Ray brought into their lives, and deal with a beautiful woman who has secrets that will affect all of them – a woman who needs both his trust and his heart.”

I know that this one is the least favourite of this trilogy for a lot of readers. I enjoyed this one the most. While I might think that Sybil should have acted differently concerning Seth in the past, this didn’t influence my enjoyment (and the resulting grade) of the novel (see above “things learned”). I guess what counted was that Sybil was more central to the story than the woman in the previous two novels. Her story was more spelled out and I got more glimpses of her journey. Also, Inner Habor had the benefit to conclude Seth’s story.

Read again: Yes / Recommend: Yes / Grade: 4,5 / 5

Nora Roberts – “Valley Of Silence”

14 Dec

GENRE: Romance / Paranormal
PUBLISHED: Jove Books, 2006

The back blurb:
“In the kingdom of Gaell, the scholarly Moira has taken up the sword of her people. Now, as queen, she must prepare her subjects for the greatest battle they will ever fight – against an enemy more vicious than any they have seen. For Lilith, the most powerful vampire in the world, has followed the circle of six through time to Gaell.
Moira also has a personal score to settle. Vampires killed her mother – and now, she is ready to exact her revenge. But there is one vampire to whom she would trust her soul …
Cian was changed by Lilith centuries ago. But now, he stands with the circle. Without hesitation, he will kill others of his kind – and has earned the respect of the sorcerer, with, warrior and shape-shifter. But he wants more than respect from Moira – even though his desire for her makes him vulnerable. For how can a man with an eternity to live love a woman whose life is sure to end – if not by Lilith’s hand, then by the curse of time?”

As with the previous one, this novel is smoothly written and has a nice sense of friendship. There were mainly two things that kept me reading: 1) it delivers the end of the overarching story (final battle between Lilith and the Circle of Six); 2) how can the hero and the heroine be together in the end when he is a vampire and she’s a mortal? (This novel is in part a romance so there was never any question about the if, just about the how.)

The love story between Cian and Moira is nice with some touching moments between the hero and the heroine. It gets even more punch from from the tension inherent in impossible relationships. So all is good here.

In contrast, I thought the final confrontation between Lilith and the Circle of Six a bit of a let down. It was shorter than I expected and sometimes confusing. also, Lilith’s sorcerer suddenly plays an important role in the battle, leading to a showdown between him and Glenna and Hoyt. There was no real built up to this and so it had a whiff of “each pair needs a worthy opponent in the final battle”. I was left wondering how Lilith, with all the time that she had, couldn’t be more prepared = have more people to fight for this battle.

Would I recommend this novel? Yes.

Would I read this novel again? Probably not.

Grade: 4 / 5

Nora Roberts – "Dance Of The Gods"

27 Nov

GENRE: Romance / Paranormal
PUBLISHED: Jove Books, 2006

The back blurb:
“Blair Murphy has always worked alone. Destined to be a demon hunter in a world that doesn’t believe in such things, she lives for the kill. But now, she finds herself the warrior in a circle of six, chosen by the goddess Morrigan to defeat the vampire Lilith and her minions.
Learning to trust the others has been hard , for Blair has never allowed herself such a luxury. But she finds herself drawn to Larkin, a man of many shapes. As a horse, he is proud and graceful; as a dragon, beautifully fierce; and as a man … well, Blair has seen her share of hunks, but none quite so ruggedly handsome and playfully charming as this nobleman from the past.
In two months’ time, the circle of six will face Lilith and her army in Geall. To complete preparations and round up forces to fight, the circle travels through time to Larkin’s world, where Blair must choose between battling her overwhelming attraction to him – or risking everything for a love that can never be …”

I only read a couple of Roberts’s novels (in German) and somehow was never tempted to try more (in English). So this novel was an unplanned purchase. I spotted it in a local bookshop for 6,64 Euro and I thought “why not?”.

Dance of the Gods is the second in a trilogy. I knew this but I figured that I could cope with it. It turns out I was right. I didn’t have problems trying to follow the story. It is the middle part of a trilogy and as such the overarching story line of the trilogy of the battle against Lilith feels a bit unsatisfying (no definite beginning and no definite end), but that was to be expected. It’s a sort of bridge between the first part and the third part and as such there are some “skirmishes” between the circle of six and Lilith’s minions. The story ends when all is set for the final stage in the battle: the circle of six and Lilith are now in Gaell.

The fantasy elements in this story are on the light side. It is a nice mixture and Roberts makes good use of them. Sure, some things might seem a bit too easy to be convincing (learning to fight in such a short time?) but this never bothered me overmuch. I went along with it.

It’s the love story between Blair and Larkin which has to deliver the sense of reading a complete story. And this worked quite well considering what is going on. I especially like Larkin and the way he dealt with Blair. They have a nice and touching story. But what I liked best about this novel was the way Roberts portrayed the friendship and fellowship between the six characters of the circle. There is a promising scene near the end of the story for the “last couple”.

Nice read.

Would I recommend this novel? Yes.

Would I read this novel again? Probably.

Grade: 4 / 5