Wild on Books - Book Reviews



Hot Nights, Dark Desires

Eden Bradley, Stephanie Tyler, Sydney Croft
























Bantam Dell

Release Date:
May 20, 2008

Paranormal Romance
Contemporary Romance


Bookmark Rating:

Reviewed by
Jennifer Ray

Review Posted:
May 2008


Bantam Dell brings three talented authors together for one great anthology as hot as the Louisiana bayous the stories are set in!  While I pre-ordered my copy of HOT NIGHTS, DARK DESIRES because I’m a fan of Eden Bradley’s work, authors Stephanie Tyler and Sydney Croft certainly held their own with Ms. Bradley.  Each of the three stories in this anthology are outstanding.  What a treat to begin reading a book for one author, and finish it with two new ones to add to my list of favorite writers.  That is one of the main reasons I enjoy anthologies so much. 

~THE ART OF DESIRE by Eden Bradley~ 

Sophie has always been fascinated by tattoos, to the point of obsession.  That’s why she never allowed herself one before – she’s afraid she wouldn’t be able to stop, and her strict religious upbringing frowns on such marking of the body.  When her friend drags her along to a tattoo salon, Sophie can’t deny her reaction as she watches the artist decorate her friend’s skin, nor can she deny her reaction to the artist himself.

Tristan is the embodiment of everything Sophie has ever fantasized about in a man.  She finds herself compelled to have him do her very first tattoo.  The experience is life changing – for both of them.

Eden Bradley is known for her unconventional romances, and THE ART OF DESIRE ranks right up there with the best of them.  Using the art and beauty of tattoos to bring Tristan and Sophie together, Bradley then builds on their connection, layering their compatibilities until there is no doubt in anyone’s mind that this couple is right for each other. 

If only Tristan’s self-image allowed him to believe he deserved the luxury of loving someone.  Tristan’s past is rife with pain, and before this pair can enjoy their happy ending together, he must first work through his self-recrimination.  When he finally does and sees that Sophie is his chance for redemption and happiness, we have a happily ever after to rival any other.

Through it all, we experience the sensual art of the tattoo, and I must say that the way Eden Bradley presents it had this reviewer, who could barely stand the pain of having her ears pierced, actually considering getting a tattoo!  Perhaps one day, when I find one as meaningful to me as Sophie’s are to her.  Or when I meet a man like the sexy Tristan…  *grin* 

~SHADOW PLAY by Sydney Croft~ 

Brenna St. James makes her living as a well-known, high-paid supermodel.  Well, she used to.  That was before a ghost decided to attach himself to her and blur her image in any photo taken of her.  Desperate to rid herself of the jealous phantasm, she calls the renowned ghost photographer, Hex, for assistance.

Hex knows it is a bad idea to get involved with Brenna; her celebrity lifestyle wouldn’t mix with his job working in the covert ACRO organization.  But he just can’t seem to stop himself. 

Love and Fate definitely work in mysterious ways, and Sydney Croft’s story in this anthology is a perfect example.  In SHADOW PLAY, we have two people set upon completely different paths who come together for what should be a brief interlude in each other’s lives.  Their time together, however, changes the course of their lives forever. 

Brenna goes through quite the transformation in this story, and her paranormal trial forces her to look inside and find who she really is.  Once Hex succeeds in ridding her of the haint ruining her life, she finds her goals are no longer as clear-cut as they were before she met Hex.  While she may begin the tale as the stereotypical self-involved model, the woman she is by the end of the story is one to be admired.

SHADOW PLAY is a fascinating paranormal romance that is as inspiring as it is sexy.  While it is connected to the ACRO series, it can be read easily as a standalone story – something I can easily testify to since this is the first I’ve read yet.  I guarantee you that it will not be the last I read, however! 

~NIGHT VISION by Stephanie Tyler~

Inheriting a bar in Louisiana from an uncle she never knew, Catie is determined to investigate her roots, moving to Bayou Rouge to run the bar herself.  She never counted on the saloon being full of roughnecks sapping the profits from her new business.  Disheartened, she resolves to sell the bar, but must clean house before she can put it on the market.

To that end, she hires the infamous cooler, Bat Kelly, to rid her bar of the undesirable element.  One look at Bat, though, and the normally controlled Catie finds her knees going weak and her heart beating a little faster.

As for Bat, he finds the sexy little barkeep is enough to make him think of planting his own roots right here in his hometown of Bayou Rouge.  Catie makes him long for things he never thought he could have, and even though he knows their time together is temporary, he can’t resist indulging in a very sultry fling with her.

I have to say, NIGHT VISION makes me kick myself when I think of the other Stephanie Tyler books already sitting on my bookshelf, still unread.  I bought them because they looked intriguing and I heard good things about her work, but had I known just how good Tyler’s stories really were, they would have already been at the top of my to-be-read pile.

Bat Kelly is the stuff of every rough and tumble fantasy I’ve ever had.  The man is beyond hot, with his bad boy attitude covering up a heart that is unselfish and kind.  Of course, it doesn’t take Catie long to see the real man underneath that bouncer bluster.

Catie is a wonderful heroine.  A bit repressed at first, when she decides to let herself go with Bat, her personality and sexuality blossoms.

There are some rather delicious moments in this story, and I have to admit when we discover just how Bat earned his unusual name, I do believe I blushed…  Nope, I’m not telling why his name is Bat – you’ll just have to read NIGHT VISION!



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Hot Nights, Dark Desires by Eden Bradley, Stephanie Tyler, Sydney Croft

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