Contemporary Blend #3

Vanilla on Top

Game for Marriage

 

 

 

    Versus.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Vanilla on Top by C.J. Ellisson                                Game for Marriage by Karen Erickson

Series: Walk on the Wild Side #1                                                Series: Game for It #1

Published: January 11th 2013                                                     Published: January 11th 2013

As you know I’ve recently developed an obsession for Entangled Publishing books, particularly their Brazen collection and here are two more, very different books to add to my collection. So I thought I’d try and mix something up with my review and do a little bit of a rating system.

  Vanilla on Top Game for Marriage
Seduction 7 / 10 9 / 10
Angst Levels 8 / 10 4 / 10
Fun 6 / 10 8 / 10
Male Candy 6 / 10 8 / 10
Sexual Adventures 8 / 10 7 / 10
Strong Female Character 8 / 10 6 / 10
Plot 6 / 10 6 / 10
Set-up for Sequel 4 / 10 7 / 10
Clichés 7 / 10 6 / 10
Overall Rating 6 / 10 8 / 10

Mini-Reviews

Game for Marriage

Game for Marriage was an awful lot of fun and exactly what I needed to put a smile on my face and make it stay there. It had very little angst as it focused on a fake wedding between a super hot, quarterback, Jared and struggling artist, Sheridan. They have lots of laughs and problems, but they tend to work them through with minimal pain and angst that can get a little oppressive in the contemporary genre. My favourite quote from the book has to be…

“No, not really. My grandma said she was like Elizabeth Taylor. I guess Elizabeth was once quoted saying she was in love with falling in love. My grandma said that described her to a T.”

Jared was all around sexy, he had me drooling and sighing in all the right places and he was certainly the man for me. I couldn’t have wanted anybody else. He balanced confidence, arrogance and the ability to let loose as well as being serious to give him a fairly rounded character. He plays the “bad boy” appeal, but beneath the surface he genuinely cares about Sheridan and watching their relationship blossoming is exciting.

It’s not perfect, they’re not perfect, but Game for Marriage has to be a fun, flirty read and my only complaint is it was far too short. I felt that the author could have added more to flesh out the time period because she seemed to skim over it all very quickly to cram it into the time period and that she would have gained much more in adding in a few more details just to give substance to the characters and the plot as we moved through several months in a very quick time.

Overall, I recommend this to contemporary and romance fans alike and somebody looking for a little fun.

4 books

Vanilla on Top

Vanilla on Top takes on a very different approach to the contemporary genre, and it wasn’t quite what I expected. It was nothing alike to my recent read, Game for Marriage but I appreciated the differences and found Vanilla on Top to be a refreshing addition to the contemporary genre. Vanilla on Top focused on Heather our main character coming out of herself from a rather downtrodden character to somebody with confidence, esteem and authority and whilst she still had her doubts, it was enchanting to watch her progression since the story focused around her character.

“Turn it off,” I say, with a challenge in my tone. I sit up straighter and stare into the depths of his caramel eyes. “You want someone to tell you what to do?” He nods, his calculating gaze on me as the phone continues to ring, “Turn off that damn phone,” I bite out, pretending I’m issuing a command. “Now.”

Vanilla on Top very much entwines business and pleasure and we get a lot more angst as we look at relationships, confidence and personalities and changing images, but it works for the novels approach and whilst it felt well placed in Vanilla on Top it hasn’t in previous angst novels. Heather and Tony have sexual encounters a dozen, but the real entertainment comes when they realise who the other is and how they develop from there on out.

I loved how Heather took the control of the novel and whilst it isn’t entirely my thing, she was very much an assertive woman and she knew what she wanted. I like how she teased Tony, yet again the typical “playboy” which to be honest, I didn’t really see it.

I didn’t like the supporting characters in Vanilla on Top and I felt very little time was given to developing their characters and especially if they are to be in the sequel to this as a series, which I fear they will. I found that the secondary characters changed their attitudes a lot and were very self-centered and unsupportive of the protagonists so I didn’t take to them at all.

Overall, Vanilla on Top was an interesting read and I may read the sequel, but I haven’t fully decided.

*Quote taken from an uncorrected e-arc provided through Netgalley by Entangled Publishing.

3 books

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15 Comments

Filed under 2013 Publication, 3 Books, 4 Books, Adult, C.J. Ellisson, Contemporary, E-book, Entangled Publishing, Karen Erickson, Romance

15 responses to “Contemporary Blend #3

  1. I love the chart you made, Olivia, and I’m so glad you’ve had more luck with your contemporary reads this time around!(: Great reviews!

  2. Livvy I love rating system you decide to include in your review, from just reading this I would think that Vanilla on Top would be a book that I would enjoy, but after reading your review I know Game For Marriage, would be more my sort of book! Lovely reviews Livvy! 🙂

  3. Jared with his bit of bad boy appeal and being a well rounded sexy love interest sounds great.
    Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

  4. I love your chart! What a great idea. Entangled publishing are fab for romance novels, I wish I had a little more time to branch out of the YA genre and read more of what they have to offer.

  5. Great reviews, Livvy! I like the sound of both of these, though I think I’d probably have more fun with the first. Also, I like the name Jared. 😉

    Love the comparative chart, too! Less angst and more fun for me, I guess Game for Marriage is the one. 🙂

  6. Like everyone else, I love this chart Livvy, how you’ve really broken down the stories into all the different elements. I have to agree that Game for Marriage appeals to me loads more – less angst, fun, flirty, and the whole fake marriage thing sounds so cute! I’ve seen it on GR a few times but now I’ve officially added it. Lovely reviews. hon. 🙂

    • Livvy @Nerdy Book Reviews

      Thank you, Aa’Ishah. I though the breakdown worked really well to compare the main elements of these kind of novels. I hope you enjoy it! 🙂

  7. I love this rating system! These are all such important factors, especially in contemporary romance. I actually think these both sound fantastic, but I might be more inclined to pick up Game for Marriage. It just sounds like my kind of read. Awesome reviews and ratings! 🙂

  8. Pingback: Stacking the Shelves (27) | Nerdy Book Reviews

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