Tag Archives: Jean Johnson

The Mammoth Book of Paranormal Romance edited by Trisha Telep

Overview
Image result for the mammoth book of paranormal romance book cover

Title: The Mammoth Book of Paranormal Romance
Author: Trisha Telep, Carrie Vaughn, Cheyenne McCray, Kelley Armstrong, Anna Windsor, Anya Bast, Jean Johnson, C. T. Adams, Cathy Clamp, Holly Lisle, Mary Jo Putney, Eve Silver, Ilona Andrews, Dina James, Maria V. Snyder, Catherine Mulvany, Jeaniene Frost, Lori Devoti, Sara Mackenzie, Lynda Hilburn, Alyssa Day, Michelle Rowen, Rachel Caine, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Meljean Brook & Allyson James
Series: Mammoth Books
In: The Mammoth Book of Paranormal Romance (Trisha Telep)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal romance, Short story collections
Dates read: 3rd July – 30th December 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Anthology
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2009
5th sentence, 74th page: I also didn’t feel threatened, or that I should try to escape his firm but tender grip.

Synopsis

Fall in love with someone out of this world

If love transcends all boundaries then paranormal romance is its logical conclusion. From the biggest names around, here are 24 tales to take you to another time and place.

Let Alyssa Day, Sherrilyn Kenyon, Cheyenne McCray, Jeaniene Frost, Ilona Andrews, Kelley Armstrong, Maria V. Snyder, Carrie Vaughn, Allyson James Marland and others show you powers beyond your wildest imaginings.

Within these pages mythical beasts, magical creatures of all shapes and sizes, heart-stoppingly handsome ghosts, angels, and mortals with extra-sensitive sensory perception play out the themes of extraordinary desires.

Thoughts

The thing that I love most about this collection is that it completely runs the gambit of supernatural and paranormal creatures. There are a number of standalone stories and tales that are part of series. But mostly, there’s just stories which feature vampires and werewolves; djinn and selkies. Some of the paranormal beings that feature in this are not ones that I normally come across. Which of course just made it all that much more exciting. You didn’t know what sort of paranormal creature would be next!

These stories were all sweet and incredibly easy to read. They’re tales which make you happy and kind of hopeful about true love. Something which I think everyone needs at some point in their lives. Having said that, there were a few unwieldy stories in this collection. They weren’t annoyingly so, but a few did need to be reread so that I could grasp what was really happening.

I recognised most of the authors in this collection. Which was good, because then I could turn to my shelves in some cases and grab down the books that will get me a further fix of their writing. There were a few that I need to add to my wish list. But mostly I got to enjoy the collection, without feeling the insane need to buy more, more, more books… which is probably a good thing for my bank account.

<- The Mammoth Book of On the RoadThe Temptation of Robin Green ->

Image source: Goodreads

The Mammoth Book of Time Travel Romance edited by Trisha Telep

Overview
Image result for the mammoth book of time travel romance book cover

Title: The Mammoth Book of Time Travel Romance
Author: Trisha Telep, Gwyn Cready, Sandy Blair, Maureen McGowan, Sara Mackenzie, Margo Maguire, Sandra Newgent, Michelle Maddox, Patrice Sarath, Jean Johnson, Patti O’Shea, Autumn Dawn, Holly Lisle, Cindy Miles, Michelle Willingham, Colby Hodge, Michele Lang, Madeline Baker, Allie Mackay & A. J. Menden
Series: Mammoth Books
In: The Mammoth Book of Time Travel Romance (Trisha Telep)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Romance, Science fictionShort story collections, Time travel
Dates read: 11th April – 30th December 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Anthology
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2009
5th sentence, 74th page: She glanced over her shoulder, towards the light left on in her home, as if to remind herself she wasn’t so very far from safety.

Synopsis

Time has no meaning for true love.

Twenty tales of swachbuckling adventure and passionate romance from some of the most exciting names in romantic fiction, including Margo Maguire, Autumn Dawn, Sandy Blair, Michelle Maddox, Patti O’Shea, Holly Lisle, Kimberly Raye and Madeline Baker.

Join the heroines in this delightful anthology as they step backwards – or forwards – in time, transported to the Scottish Highlands of yesteryear, the Wild West or the distant future. Propelled through time into situations rich with possibility and fraught with danger, these sexy, sassy heroines each seek their dreamed of happy ending.

Will souls separated by time be reunited – or separated, forever?

Thoughts

This is an absolutely brilliant collection. I haven’t read any time travel romances before. So it was kind of nice to read a whole collection of them. I do have a few full length novels in this genre sitting on my shelves ready to go though. Now that I’ve read this collection, I kind of can’t wait!

Even though all of these stories featured time travel and romance in some way, shape or form, the themes and messages throughout were vastly different. The stories weren’t overly lustful like many of the romances that I’ve read. Actually, there tended to be more of a focus on the romances and the finding true love message. Or just on the ways in which time travel actually works.

The stories were generally a mix of present and past; or present and future. Only one or two stories feature the past and the future, but most had a great blending of realities. Sometimes characters ended up back in their own time, sometimes in a different time that fulfilled their greatest desires. There really was something for everyone in this.

Whilst I absolutely adored this collection, it isn’t one that I will probably read again and again. As much as I loved everything, there was nothing that stood out as a story that I wanted to reread.

<- The Mammoth Book of Thrillers, Ghosts and MysteriesThe Key to Happiness ->

Image source: Goodreads

Steam by Jean Johnson

Overview
Image result for the mammoth book of time travel romance book cover

Title: Steam
Author: Jean Johnson
In: The Mammoth Book of Time Travel Romance (Trisha Telep)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Romance, Time travel
Dates read: 29th December 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Short story
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2009
5th sentence, 74th page: Heat suffused his face.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

David has just inherited his family’s mysterious uncles estate. What he finds is a trip through time and the woman of his dreams.

Thoughts

I loved the premise of this story. Actually, a lot of it reminded me of The Alchemist’s Key by Traci Harding. Same idea of a modern setting and time travel. An eccentric family member bequeathing an estate to an unsuspecting young man. And ultimately, the guy finding true love as an aspect of all his time travelling activities. It was just quite sweet.

However, there are a series of letters throughout this romance to the two leads, from themselves. Which tells them that they end up together. Which, quite honestly, took a lot of the romance out of it. The excitement of finding out how they were going together and what barriers would be in the way were just completely removed. Which was a little bit frustrating.

I did love the loop effect of time though. The idea that what they are doing has been done before so that they know what to expect. But then I wonder where the loop starts. It all becomes very confusing. Does that mean that life is preordained and they don’t get any choices? Is everything in their lives outlined in these letters? Time travel is confusing.

 <- Catch the Lightning ReviewFalling in Time Review ->
Image source: Goodreads

Saint James’ Way by Jean Johnson

Overview
Image result for the mammoth book of time travel romance book cover

Title: Saint James’ Way
Author: Jean Johnson
In: The Mammoth Book of Time Travel Romance (Trisha Telep)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Anthropology, Historical romance, Time travel
Dates read: 28th October 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Short story
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2009
5th sentence, 74th page: “If my shoes weren’t falling apart, I would hasten in a more seemly manner,” Phinneas countered out loud.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

A time travelling anthropologist is fascinated by one of the men in her study cohort. But she can’t change the past… or can she? Has she finally found true love?

Thoughts

Love, love, love the idea of a time travelling anthropologist! After all, anthropology is all about participating and observing. In studies today, we mostly have to tell our participants that we are actually observing them… but if we travelled back in time? Before anthropologists existed? Well, I can understand not telling people that you’re observing them, after all, anthropologists aren’t something that exists yet.

I thought that the attachment between Anne and James was incredibly cute and sweet. But it wasn’t overwhelmingly lustful. They simply found each other intriguing, and intellectually fulfilling. For me, that’s something that I find far more powerful than physical attraction – the ability to find a partner who will intellectually stimulate you as well as physically. Anne and James are perfect for this. They’re so intellectually in tune, that the physicality comes second.

Really, who doesn’t want a knight in somewhat shiny armour in their lives? James manages to fulfil this fantasy far more than I had ever expected. I’ve never truly wanted a knight, until reading this short story. Now… I can imagine my partner dressed as a knight riding up on a white horse… somehow don’t think he’d go for it though…

 <- Pilot’s Forge ReviewThe Troll Bridge Review ->
Image source: Goodreads

How to Date a Superhero by Jean Johnson

Overview
Image result for the mammoth book of paranormal romance book cover

Title: How to Date a Superhero
Author: Jean Johnson
In: The Mammoth Book of Paranormal Romance (Trisha Telep)
Rating Out of 5: 4.5 (Amazing, but not quite perfect)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal romance, Superheroes
Dates read: 16th September 2019
Pace: Medium
Format: Short story
Publisher: Robinson
Year: 2009
5th sentence, 74th page: That was the frustrating thing about her gift; she only ever saw in glimpses and snatches, incomplete pieces.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

Farsight has had a crush on her partner, Steelhand for what seems like forever. But, he just won’t return her affections. So when she has a vision of what could happen between them, things are about to get a little awkward…

Thoughts

For all of my love of paranormal, people with superpowers and the many superhero movies, I’ve never actually read a story which features a superhero couple. Or at least, none that I remember. And I only have one superhero book on my entire bookshelf. Which is saying something… is this a niche that I need to expand on?

This story didn’t actually have a couple getting together. It had all of the lead up, it had the premonition of it happening… but it didn’t actually happen. Which was different, and unique. I kind of liked it though. It really took the idea of leaving a short story open ended and emphasised this. After all, they are planning on getting together, but there is still the little matter of the villains to contend with…

After reading this short story, I just wanted to delve into the world of superheroes. For me, this story wasn’t so much about romance, but about the genre of people running around in tights. Which is why, as soon as I finished it, I pulled out a copy of Smallville and put it in my DVD player… if I can’t immediately find a superhero book, I may as well watch a superhero show…

 <- Taking Hold ReviewDaniel Review ->
Image source: Goodreads

Gifts of the Magi by Jean Johnson

Overview
Image result for an enchanted season book cover

Title: Gift of the Magi
Author: Jean Johnson
In: An Enchanted Season (Nalini Singh, Maggie Shayne, Erin McCarthy & Jean Johnson)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: ChristmasRomance
Pace: Fast
Format: Novella
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Year: 2007
5th sentence, 74th page: God forgives when it’s with good intentions.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
Synopsis

Rachel is trying to run an inn with her fiance and things haven’t quite been going as planned. Then, just before Christmas, three strangers arrive on the cusp of a blizzard and things start to get… miraculous.

Thoughts

It took me longer than it should have to realise that this novella featured the three wise men. Although, in this case, they’re not necessarily men. But, the story was still amazing, and that moment at the end of the story, when I finally clicked as to who they were made it all the more enjoyable. Not only as an ending to a fantastic novella, but also as an ending to a great Christmas collection.

Unlike most of the romance stories that I read, this one isn’t about those initial, fall madly in love, love at first sight moments. It’s a love story about a couple that have been together a long time, are about to get married, and sometimes struggle to find the passion in amongst the daily grind of life. It’s the point that I’m at. Those first moments of a relationship are beautiful, but it isn’t until that first courtship is over, that relationships find their staying power and pace. So it was incredible to read a novella which takes this and still inspires love, passion and makes you swoon a little.

I liked the Christmas theme in this story. And although I’ve never experienced my own white Christmas, it was fun imagining one near a wedding and being swept away by this.

 <- Beat of Temptation ReviewAn Enchanted Season Review ->
Image source: Amazon

An Enchanted Season by Nalini Singh, Maggie Shayne, Erin McCarthy & Jean Johnson

Overview
Image result for an enchanted season book cover

Title: An Enchanted Season
Author: Nalini Singh, Maggie Shayne, Erin McCarthy & Jean Johnson
In: An Enchanted Season (Nalini Singh, Maggie Shayne, Erin McCarthy & Jean Johnson)
Rating Out of 5: 5 (I will read this again and again and again)
My Bookshelves: ChristmasParanormal romanceShort story collections
Pace: Fast
Format: Novella
Publisher: Berkley Sensation
Year: 2007
5th sentence, 74th page: Merry Christmas.

Synopsis

It’s the time of year when dreams come true, miracles happen every day, and love is the greatest gift of all. The holidays always seem to bring out the best in everyone, with heartfelt hugs for long-missed friends, sincere smiles in the spirit of the season, and a feeling of magic in the air…

This scintillating collection of paranormal romances celebrates the holidays as never before. From a shape-shifting leopardess who wants a packmate to be her soul mate to a sudden snow-storm that brings a surprise gift, these four tales by Nalini Singh, Maggie Shayne, Erin McCarthy, and Jean Johnson will stir your spirit in all the right places.

Thoughts

Naw. This collection left me with such happy, Christmassy, gooey feelings. All four of these novellas are simple, cute and incredibly sweet. They encompass the feelings of love and giving that to me is the true spirit of Christmas. After finishing every single one of these novellas, I not only bought something by each of the authors, but I just sat there with a feeling of bliss and happiness that there is still goodness in the world.

I know that the storyline is really good and sweet when it makes me tear up a bit. The fact that every single story in this collection did that to me is a fantastic indication of just how special this entire collection is. If you need something feel good and beautiful, this is certainly a reflection worth reading!

 <- Gifts of the MagiMelting Frosty ->

Image source: Amazon