Reviews for Bad Case of Loving You

Bad Case of Loving You, book #6 in the Flatiron Five series of contemporary romances by Deborah CookeIt’s been a good week for reviews – the first week for reviews of Bad Case of Loving You – and I thought I’d share some of them with you.

Sandy at The Reading Cafe said:
“BAD CASE OF LOVING YOU is a story of family, friendship, secrets and lies; of betrayal and heartbreak; second chances and falling in love. The premise is inviting; the romance is spicy and sexy; the characters are sassy and wounded. BAD CASE OF LOVING YOU is an animated look at rekindling love.”

You can read the whole review right here.

Heather at Rendezvous with a Romance said:
“So good. I always enjoy returning to Flatiron Five and Theo is the last partner not attached to someone and we find out why in this installment. He is already in love with a woman and has been for the past 11 years. The rest I will leave up to you to find out. Their story was great, shocking, and beautiful. Deborah Cooke handled their second chance romance beautifully. Lyssa has kept quite a few secrets during the past decade since she saw Theo last and she also has some deep scars that Theo doesn’t know about. When they reconnect near New Years, she sets out to right some wrongs and hopefully rekindle a friendship, if nothing else, though she does hope for more. Start to finish the story was enjoyable and engrossing. Passionate and beautiful. Overall, a great read. This series just gets better and better.”

You can read the whole review right here.

Eva at Stormy Vixen said:
“This second chance romance is a “Boom” of a story and has readers dancing to the beat of its vivid intensity. The characters are strong, captivating and easily draw readers into their emotionally gripping and heartwarming story.”

You can read the whole review right here.

There are also terrific reviews posted on the product pages at the portals. Thanks to all of these reviewers for loving this story and making my week!

If you don’t have your copy of Theo and Lyssa’s story yet, that’s easy to fix.

Theo knows what’s possible…
Because he’s learned the hard way what’s not. The internationally successful supermodel known as Angel stole his heart forever when she was just Lyssa Monroe. There’s never been another woman who could compete—he even loved Lyssa enough to let her walk away when she said it was over. When he sees her again, he’s resolved to make one glimpse of her sustain him for another ten years. When she offers him one night together, Theo can’t say no—even though he knows a taste will only tempt him to hope for more all over again.

Lyssa has tasted forbidden fruit…
And she can’t forget it, no matter how hard she tries. Theo’s love is a touchstone for all that is pure and good in the chaos her life has become. When she sees him again, everything is simple for once and only one choice is possible. The secret she keeps from Theo could destroy any chance of a future together, but surely she can keep it hidden for just one more night. Or maybe two. How much will she sacrifice to defend her son—and how far will Theo go to give them a second chance?

Buy ebook at:
Amazon.com
Apple
Nook
KOBO
Books2Read Universal Link

Review at the Reading Cafe

The Reading Cafe has posted reviews of all three books in the Secret Heart Ink series in a feature on their blog. Here are some excerpts from the reviews:

Snowbound, #1 of the Secret Heart Ink series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke“Secret Heart Ink is a tattoo shop, owned by the mysterious Chynna, located in Manhattan’s Flatiron Five. Along with her sidekick Tristan, during the full moon, Chynna creates one tattoo to set two hearts afire in the hopes of the recipient finding ever lasting love….

Deborah Cooke pulls the reader into a sexy and engaging story line with a stubborn and guarded heroine, and a determined hero. The premise is moving; the romance is provocative and fated; the characters are strong and edgy. A quick read, SNOWBOUND is an energetic, sensual and erotic read for all to enjoy.”—The Reading Cafe

“SPRING FEVER is a story of betrayal and loss; acceptance and denial; love and a happily ever after. The premise is engaging; the romance struggles in the face of Reyna’s emotional up and downs; the characters are colorful but damaged and lost.”—The Reading Cafe

One Hot Summer Night, #3 of the Secret Heart Ink series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke“ONE HOT SUMMER NIGHT is a story of second chances; a rekindling, of a sort, for two people whose lives went in opposite directions eventually finding one another when the time was right. The premise is heart breaking and emotional; the romance is passionate; the characters struggle to move on from the past. Deborah Cooke invites the reader into a spirited yet tender, revealing and sensual tale of family, loss, commitment, and love.”—The Reading Cafe

You can see the feature and complete reviews at The Reading Cafe right here.

Thank you for the wonderful reviews, Sandy!

Find out more about the Secret Heart Ink series: Snowbound, Spring Fever and One Hot Summer Night.

New Reviews from Heather

I have some wonderful reviews to share with you today from Heather at Rendezvous with a Romance!

Snowbound, #1 of the Secret Heart Ink series of contemporary romances by Deborah CookeHere’s her review for Snowbound:

“First off, I didn’t want this to end. I wanted more from Olivia and Spencer; I really wish this had been a full novel. They were such strong characters together and the plot was entertaining and wonderful. Loved every second and wanted more. Second, I didn’t even mind that this was pretty close to being a novella; the plot was strong enough, the characters were great, and the chemistry just made for an awesome story. This does not fall to the novella curse! Loved. Every. Second. Deborah, why did this one have to end so soon??”

LOL. This review made me laugh. 🙂 Don’t worry, Heather. I’m not done with Spencer and Olivia.

You can read the whole post right here.

Addicted to Love, a contemporary romance by Deborah CookeHere’s her review for Addicted to Love:

“Loved every second of it. It has the kind of character development rarely seen in romance novels. Everything happens within a few days, maybe a week or two, but this one started twelve years ago when they first met, then flash-forward to present day and he is her brother’s best friend, their past is a secret, she is married and he is the bearer of bad news. From that moment on it is a slow burn and a strong build up to a great relationship. It spans months and Cooke does it seamlessly with no dull parts. It was great. I loved the slow build. I loved that Kyle had to work for it and that Lauren refused to settle. The progression of the book was great and the conflicts were strong. I loved how Lauren set her cheating ex-husband straight in front of a group of strangers, and I love how Kyle grew from a man who wanted nothing but one night stands, to one who wanted forever and how he grew as a character. There isn’t anything I didn’t like about this book.”

You can read the whole review right here.

Finally, here’s her review for In the Midnight Hour:

In the Midnight Hour, book #3 of the Flatiron Five series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke“Book three in the Flatiron Five series was passionate, with a well developed plot and great characters. Book 2, Addicted to Love, is definitely still my favorite in the series, but this one is a close second. Haley is the perfect partner for Damon and Damon has demons that need to be faced before he can find his happy ever after. Damon’s mom is dying of cancer and he hasn’t told his partners at F5 any of what he has been dealing with alone for months. They think that he has a girlfriend that he sees every Friday when in fact he is at the hospital with his mom. Haley is a nurse interested in therapeutic methods that don’t require medications and has heard that every Friday Damon gives his ailing mom a massage and it seems to help her more than the medications. She wants to see for herself, and possibly, ask him some questions about his methods. What she doesn’t expect is for him to offer to teach her. He doesn’t expect the prim little nurse to actually take him up on his offer, but when she does he is intrigued. Their relationship was hot from the start and I really like how the characters in this book, and in book 2, were honest and straightforward. They didn’t play games. They didn’t say one thing but mean another. Haley was straight up honest with Damon and it was that which pulled him in, just like Lauren and Kyle. Loved it and am definitely now looking forward to more in this series. So good.”

You can read the whole review on Heather’s blog right here.

Thank you, Heather!

The Reading Frenzy Best of 2016 List

Debbie Haupt has a blog called The Reading Frenzy and today she posted her top 20 picks of 2016. I’m delighted and honored to have made her short list TWICE, once for Simply Irresistible and once for The Crusader’s Handfast. (Both of my writer brands are very happy this morning. LOL) Debbie also included her reviews in the post, but I’ll share them here too.

Simply Irresistible, a contemporary romance by Deborah Cooke and first in the Flatiron Five series.Deb Cooke’s debut in her new Flatiron 5 contemporary series is a delight, and a bit naughty romantic comedy. In it she gives readers a fantastic fake date trope starring a closet reading e-rom, nerd girl with some rather wicked fantasies and matches her with a hot, too sexy for his Brooks Brother’s suit wearing vanilla-nice guy. Her dialogue is catchy and fast-paced, it’s full of poetry and great quotes and is a love letter to the Manhattan setting in this sexy and sweet with a lot of heat romance. So if you’re looking for something to keep you warm on a cold winter’s night you’ve come to the right place. I can’t wait to see what she has in store for us next but if you read book one you might get a hint!

Tyler McKay has a big problem: his little sister is getting married and if he shows up stag to the wedding he knows his big, noisy, interfering family, especially his fanatic for grandbabies mother will try to fix him up. He’s not opposed to marriage, he simply wants to choose his own partner in his own time. So his solution is proposing a fake dating scheme with the woman he’s been noticing in his building’s lunchroom, the buttoned-up, voracious reader he’s affectionately nicknamed, the librarian. When he finally meets her, he learns that she can also benefit from a fake wedding date, plus he’s pleased to learn she’s not as buttoned-up as he first thought. And he’s actually looking forward to making this fake date as fun as possible.

With a dead-end job, a house that’s falling apart and no funds for repairs, Amy Thornton’s only outlet was living vicariously through the characters in her erotic romance novels. Until the hot sexy guy she’s been secretly referring to as Mr. Yum approaches her with the most hare-brained proposition. She knows it won’t work, she knows no one will believe they’re dating but she also knows it will be sweet revenge bringing him to her Bridezilla cousin’s wedding. So her answer as implausible as it seems, is a resounding YES!”


The Crusader's Handfast, #5 in the Champions of Saint Euphemia series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix“Like all the previous in her fabulous Champions of St. Euphemia tales, Claire Delacroix’s 5th in the series, The Crusader’s Handfast is like stepping through time back to the era of the Knights Templar. Her masterful storytelling is informative and insightful and the magnificent pageantry and the infusion of interesting historical facts with her incredible fiction gives the read an honesty not readily found in the genre. Her suspenseful side stories and co-stars add depth but it’s the May-September romance between her feisty heroine and principled hero that really rock this medieval read. Stands well on its own but better read in order.

After two years of adventure with her lady Ysmaine and now her part in saving the sacred reliquary of St. Euphemia Radegunde knows her future will pale in comparison. So before she’s married off by either her lady or lord she decides to celebrate with a night of passion and she has the perfect warrior candidate in mind.
Duncan MacDonald longed to give this fiery, feisty lady’s maid her heart’s desire of a life filled with passion and adventure, but not only is he too old for her he also has other obligations and no right to take what can never be his. But resisting her may be impossible because her spirited soul speaks to his.”

Thank you, Debbie, and all the best to you for 2017!

You can read Debbie’s reviews for her complete list on her blog, right here.

Amazon and Reviews

Another thing I learned last week at NINC involves posting reviews at Amazon. Many of us have noticed – or been notified of – reviews being removed from the Amazon website, because Amazon perceives that the reviewer and the author know each other. This is obviously an effort to keep people from abusing the review option by having all their friends give their book five star reviews, but is kind of annoying for reviewers who receive copies specifically so that they can post an honest review.

The solution is this: so long as you include the language “I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review” in your review, the review won’t be removed.

I would include this language as well if you win a copy of a book in a contest or giveaway and end up reviewing it. If the book was gifted through Amazon, Amazon will know it, and this will ensure your review doesn’t evaporate after you spend the time to write it.

How simple is that? And now we know!

Bitten by Books Review of Fallen

Fallen, book #1 of the Prometheus Project of urban fantasy romances by Claire DelacroixOne of the fun things about attending conferences is meeting reviewers, readers and other writers. I met Carol Malcolm from Bitten by Books at the Coastal Magic Conference and we ended up talking about my Prometheus Project. She said she’d reviewed the books when they were originally published, but I had never seen the reviews. Well, she very kindly sent me the links, so I’m going to share these wonderful reviews with you.

Here’s the concluding paragraph of her review of Fallen:
“Delacroix’s fully-realized, disturbing world pulls the reader in on the first page and the narrative maintains both its suspenseful pace and intriguing storyline for the duration of the novel. The appealing Lilia and Adam and their respective backstories set against the backdrop of a post-apocalyptic landscape combine to provide a multi-layered reading experience. This absorbing and compelling urban fantasy/science fiction hybrid will satisfy fans of both genres and has this reviewer looking ahead to book two.”

You can read her complete review right here, and you can read an excerpt from Fallen, right here.

 

November Reviewer Contest

Here we go again – another month means another reviewer contest here on the blog.

There are two monthly contests here on the blog. This is the contest for people who post online reviews of my books. The idea is that if you read one of my books and like it, then post a review somewhere out there on the Internet, you can comment on this post to be eligible to win a signed book from me.

What you need to do to enter:
1. Read one of my books and like it. :-)
2. Write a review of the book and post it online – you can do that at Amazon, Barnes&Noble, AllRomanceEbooks, Smashwords, Sony, KOBO, Apple, Goodreads or Shelfari. (If I missed a place where you can post reviews, let me know!) Just a word to the wise, here: Amazon has been removing reviews. I’m not sure why, but you might want to post your review on Goodreads or Shelfari so it sticks.
3. Add a comment to this post, saying which book you reviewed. Your comment will be your contest entry.

N.B. Your email address will not be displayed to the world, just to me, and it needs to be right if I’m going to be able to contact you. Also, if you add a link to the book page in question, that’s okay but your comment will go to moderation. Your comment won’t appear immediately, but will be waiting on me. Once I approve it, it’ll be there for all to see. All comments with links go to moderation on this blog.

Please only enter once for each review. If you review multiple books in a month, you are welcome to enter multiple times. The contest is open to international winners.

The Prizes

The winner can choose a print book from the following list of my books – I’ll sign it and mail it to the winner. I do have some gaps in my collection, so here are the choices:

Claire Cross/Delacroix time travels – new trade paperback editions.

Bride Quest I (PRINCESS, DAMSEL, HEIRESS) – mass market copies of TD and TH only.

Bride Quest II (COUNTESS, BEAUTY, TEMPTRESS) – new trade paperback editions.

Rogues of Ravensmuir – new trade paperback editions. I have WARRIOR in mass market, too.

Jewels of Kinfairlie – new trade paperback editions. I have BEAUTY BRIDE in mass market, too.

The Renegade’s Heart – trade paperback edition.

The Highlander’s Curse – trade paperback edition.

The Prometheus Project – mass market paperback of GUARDIAN and REBEL.

Dragonfire – I have all titles in mass market, EXCEPT I have no way to give away the digital short story “Harmonia’s Kiss”. The Dragon Legion Collection in trade paperback is also available.

The Dragon Diaries – trade paperback edition, and UK trade of the first two titles.

The Coxwells – all in new trade paperback editions.

Of course, if you want something in French, Spanish or German, that’s a whole ‘nuther list!

As usual, the contest is open internationally and for every 25 entries, I’ll draw for another prize.

Good luck, everyone!

Reviews

Miss me yesterday? It was a bank holiday here – but more importantly, it was the day the humidity broke. A perfect summer’s day meant that I took the holiday and enjoyed it. Hope you had a good day, too.

Recently I’ve been hearing a lot about book reviews, so thought we might talk about that today.

There have always been reviews, of course, and each book in the world has always gathered a collection of reviews that cover the full range of reactions. You can look at any book and discover that there were people who loved it and people who hated it. This makes sense and, in a way, it’s reassuring that we don’t all like the same things. If we were all in complete agreement about books, I’ve always thought there’d be one book published a month and we’d all read it in unison, like a massive book club. That’s a horrifying idea to me. I’d much rather there were thousands of choices.

Just as there have always been reviews, there have always been writers who were very sensitive about their reviews. This also makes sense – we spend a lot of time creating a book, then even more time taking it through the production process. By the time a book is published, an author has lived with it for at least two years and knows it inside and out. Quite frequently, the author also loves the book, so it can be crushing to realize that not everyone in the world feels the same way. A very common topic of discussion in writers’ groups is how to deal with bad reviews. (The good ones are never a problem!)

One of the things that has made reviews an even hotter topic in recent years is the ability to review books on online sites. There are two changes here. Once upon a time, only official reviewers with official review publications – like Publishers’ Weekly or the New York Times Book Review or Romantic Times – could post reviews of books. Now anyone can – that’s the first change. (The second change is the immediacy of reviewing – since such reviews are posted online, they appear instantly. Traditionally, reviews were printed in magazines or newspapers, so took more time to appear. ) This has meant a proliferation of reviews; it also has meant that a certain kind of review has grown in popularity. Reviews of this variety are more than just negative: they often include plot spoilers, inflammatory language, and can be personal attacks on the author. They can be venomous. The strange thing is that they tend to appear when a book is made free. Naturally, many authors who are troubled by bad reviews find these reviews particularly disturbing.

The thing is that we are all entitled to our opinion. Overall, I quite like this democratization of the review process: I like that anyone can post a review on Amazon or Goodreads. The world is full of avid readers, many of whom are more informed about the expectations in a particular sub-genre than the official reviewers who are assigned to review books for some publications might be. (I used to have a joke that a great review in one particular publication was a bad omen, because their reviewers often didn’t understand the expectations of the romance genre. In those days, the books that sold best for me were the ones with the crummiest reviews in that publication.)

If nothing else, we are all aware of what works for us as a reader. The really great thing about this proliferation of reviews is that they are not anonymous reviews: if I discover that a reviewer and I have similar tastes, I can follow that person’s reviews to find recommendations for new books. One of the things that is annoying about certain review publications is that their reviews are posted anonymously, just attributed to the publication. You can see that the reviews in any given niche would appear to be erratic if there are two or more reviewers in that niche (because we all have different taste) which makes the reviews less useful to readers.

One of the things I tell writers who get upset about reviews is that I’m not sure they matter in terms of sales. It has always been believed that a great review would propel the sales of a book, and that an endorsement from a famous author would drive sales. In my experience, though, it doesn’t seem to have happened – or if it has, the relationship between quote and sales is not perfectly linear. A good quote helps, but it doesn’t make bestsellerdom inevitable. Similarly, having only great reviews prompts suspicion among readers, so a book with all 5-star reviews might not sell well at all. Even a bad review can help a reader made an informed choice: if a reviewer complains about a certain plot element he or she dislikes and the prospective reader likes that element, knowing its there can make the sale. Overall, the popularity of my books doesn’t seem to have much to do with their overall reviews and ratings.

Despite that, I do think reviews matter. They can provide insight to the author as to whether a book met readers’ expectations for that genre, and whether the cover effectively communicated the kind of book it is. They can reveal weaknesses in the book, perhaps areas the author has more to learn. They can also be incredibly rewarding when a reviewer “gets” the book, just as the author intended. Reviews do matter and can influence sales, but I don’t spend hours poring over them, much less become devastated when someone doesn’t like my book. There are lots of books I don’t like – the difference is that I’d rather dive back into my TBR in hopes of finding one I like better than spend time composing a bad review. We’re all different, and that’s a good thing.

Do you read reviews of books? Do you write reviews? Have you ever disputed a review? If you’re an author, how do you deal with bad reviews?

KOBO and Reviews

In recent weeks, I’ve been migrating my content so that I publish directly to KOBO instead of going through the Smashwords portal. This is a good thing because it means that books will appear more quickly on KOBO and that I have more control over my content. All good.

I’ve discovered a teensy glitch in the migration. For my Smashwords editions of backlist titles, I used the ISBN# available through SW. Obviously, I couldn’t use that ISBN# for other portals, because it listed Smashwords as the publisher. So I have obtained shiny new ISBN#s for my books. These ISBN#s are already in use at Overdrive’s Content Reserve and at All Romance eBooks. Because I got into the ISBN# acquisition habit last winter, the new releases since then have the same ISBN#s (mine) everywhere. That includes the boxed sets and THE RENEGADE’S HEART. It’s the backlist that is primarily affected by the migration.

It makes sense that these booksellers identify books by ISBN# – that’s what the number is for, after all. But the associated data is hung on the the ISBN#, so when I published those backlist titles to KOBO, they appeared without any reviews or ratings. Some of the reviews on KOBO come from Goodreads, so after some discussion with the tech support people, I hopped over to Goodreads and added the new ISBN#’s as new editions there. That meant that the link from Goodreads to KOBO could find the books again, which is good. Thus far, KOBO’s engine isn’t finding reviews on Goodreads for all of my titles. It might be that it performs its search when the book is being published, and the link subsequently needs to be added manually. The KOBO tech guys are digging into that now and the reviews/ratings are back for most of the books this morning.

But it does appear that the reviews and ratings that were posted directly to KOBO for those books have disappeared for good.

So, if you wrote a review for one of my books on KOBO or posted a rating there, that’s why it’s gone. If you’d like to add it again and hook it to the new edition, that would be marvelous. I think all the Smashwords editions have disappeared from KOBO now – you can tell which are the new ones because under the price and author name, the listing says “Deborah A. Cooke, July 2012.” That’s me, my new publisher. 🙂

We’re might see this glitch again as I migrate editions on other portals, so I’ll let you know when things are on the move.