Tuesday, 30 June 2009

Review – Anthology: Pleasure Bound – Jenna Byrnes






Back Of The Book

Aloha Kaua by Jenna Byrnes
On her first trip to Hawaii, Michaela Donovan discovers lust and love in the most unusual place.
Aloha Kaua. May there be love between us. Michaela Donovan isn't sure about love, but she's looking for something on her first trip to the Hawaiian island of Oahu. Her week-long stay with a group of sales contest winners, real estate agents like herself, starts out as boring as the man from Sheboygan who has eyes for her. Desperate to squeeze some fun from the rest of her vacation, Michaela sets her sights on the handsome surfer she sees every time she turns around.
Kale Mahai hangs out on the beach, surfs, then hangs out on the beach some more. Michaela can't help noticing his silky, shoulder-length black hair and smooth, muscular chest. She can only imagine what's under his colourful board shorts, and spends a lot of time doing exactly that. Kale's blue eyes are enticing, his manner seductive. His style is totally different from anyone Michaela ever met in Chicago.
What happens in Oahu stays in Oahu, right? Michaela might as well enjoy herself. It's not every day she has a vacation from ordinary, and the Hawaiian-speaking hunk who turns her world upside down isn't the type to stick around forever. When Kale predictably disappears, Michaela's reaction, and response, surprise even her.


Michaela blinked then laughed. “Um, yeah. Whatever you said.”
The handsome hunk smiled, replying in a more serious, sophisticated voice. “I said, ‘That’s right. But you’re pretty enough, you make yourself right at home, okay?’”
Michaela thought once again about unleashing his ponytail and letting that thick, gorgeous hair flow. She batted her lashes. “You’re a smooth talker. I’m in the mood for a little smooth talk, tonight.”
“Oh, yeah?” He took step closer, his eyes still sparkling. “That’s interesting, because you’ve been avoiding me for the last two days.”
She pretended to be shocked. “I haven’t been avoiding you! I must not have seen you.”
He grinned, moving closer yet. “Really. Not sure I buy that. But you’re here now, that’s the important thing. So, would you like to get a drink or something?”
ALOHA KAUA Jenna Byrnes 52
Warm breath wafted over her face, immobilising her. Michaela could only gaze into his dark eyes. “Or something…sounds good.”
She inhaled and held her breath.
Michaela opened her mouth as his lips pressed against hers. She didn’t remember exhaling, but it quickly felt as if he were breathing for both of them. Their soul-wrenching kiss was better than anything she’d experienced in a long time, and more seductive than she could have imagined.
When it ended, she bit her lip nervously. She needed to ground herself and remain alert, but he made it difficult.
He smiled again, pressing his hands against the small of her back and drawing her near. “Let me chew on that for a while.” He nibbled her lower lip before resuming their warm, wet kiss.

Aloha Kaua © Jenna Byrnes




Michaela is in beautiful Hawaii with a group of her colleagues as part of a sales contest win. She however might as well be alone as nothing so far has perked her interest.

Nothing so far except the man that she has been seeing on and off since arriving and he was definately giving her the eye. Michaela, to herself feels she is a good girl, does what she needs to do, has a job and get through her day as best as she can, however she is in Hawaii, what could it hurt to indulge and enjoy a fling for once – after all what happens in Hawaii stays in Hawaii.

Kale Mahai is here and now, hangs out on the beach and seems not to be able to take his eyes off her. When Michaela makes up her mind to do something just for her – he was her first choice and for a whole lot of reasons, however first choices are sometimes never the best choice. 

First let me say i am not a fan of anthology for a whole lot of reasons. However two of my favourite authors or in this so you know I have to give it a shot.

Ms. Byrnes introduces us to Michaela and Kale in ALOHA KAUA. Michaela is on an unexpected vacation of sorts , as her stay in Hawaii was due to a contest win – she isn’t having a good time, but tries to make the best of it. The only noteworthy event so far of her stay, is being hit on by one of the guys who was a part of her group and of course the all muscled man with the hair to die for who she keeps seeing everywhere - Kale.

Soon – she hooks up with him the two are getting it on hot and heavy, however doubts are attached to everything that happens between the two and something has to give – sooner rather than later.

This book starts off really weird and move at a pace of a one night stand speed  when it comes to the smut. I could not get a handle of either of the protags and I was not enjoying the first half of this book. Ms. Byrnes then did what she does best and brought out the angst and the second half is  a whole new ball game.

The emotions came out, the certainty, the uncertainty – the anticipation and I was loving it. Then the inevitable happens – the story is more or less cut short with a rush end and a feeling that  I was not seeing Ms. Byrnes at her best.

I would love for Ms. Byrnes to revisit Michaela and Kale at some point in a book of their own as  I was left with the feeling that this story is only just beginning and a lot more is left to be said between these two.

Bottom Line

A sweet contemporary romance that somehow does not capture Ms.Byrnes  at her best. The characters did not come into their own until midway and by them it was over. Little bits of what Ms. Byrne's is all about is there and as soon as it hit you you will know that there is more to this author. For fans of Ms. Byrnes work this is a must read, for new readers try reading another of Ms. Byrnes short stories to get the best of this author before going onto this one.

New Website – Jenna Byrnes


7 Speak To Me:

Sassy Brit @ Alternative-Read.com on 30 June 2009 at 09:01 said...

Sounds a good anthology. So you picked out Jenna Byrnes story to review out of all of them?

I enjoyed the guest blogger post - Behind Closed Doors IS a good read.

Fancy looking at what is in my mailbox!

I'm posting this comment late, since I have caught a nasty cold (poor me) and didn't feel like coming online much yesterday. Sniff!

Take care,


Anonymous said...

Hi EH,

Thanks for giving the anthology a try. Short stories are easy to pop out but I keep hearing that people wish they were longer, and would like to delve into the characters a bit more.

I think I'll try to focus on longer stuff for the sake of the plot and the readers!

Thanks again, have a great day!


Blodeuedd on 30 June 2009 at 14:34 said...

I guess if I were to read her then i would start with another story. If I started with this one I might just not like it and then not read any more

Erotic Horizon on 30 June 2009 at 21:04 said...

Hey Sassy...

I actually have two reviews - one more from Jude to be posted tomorrow..

The Mckenna books are always good - loads of mystery...

Hope you feel better soon


Erotic Horizon on 30 June 2009 at 21:05 said...

Hey Jenna..

I tend to go with the masses when it comes to anthology... not an authors best moment...

Could you revisit them or was this a one off for the Anthology..


Erotic Horizon on 30 June 2009 at 21:08 said...

Yeah Blodeuedd..

She is a fantastic Author - she has one contemp series that not only hits the spot, but is really funny..

Try her.."Unexpected Love" series...

I loved them..


Anonymous said...

Don't think I'll revisit these two, EH. But I promise to try and do better in the future!