Revisiting Old Favorites: Amanda Quick’s Mischief, Affair, and Deception

I have a weakness for Amanda Quick’s historical romance novels, especially those from before her paranormal phase. Ravished, MistressMischiefDeception, Affair  these are five of my favorites and I had a chance to read MischiefAffair, and Deception for the umpteenth this past week or so and I had a great time doing it.

Mischief - Amanda Quick Affair - Amanda Quick Deception - Amanda Quick

I have a difficult time sometimes putting into words why I liked (or didn’t like) a book I’ve read, but I’ll see what I can come up with for these three books.

Mischief

Mischief is a fun book, and I liked the fake romance (that of course turns into a real romance right away). And then there’s the treasure map and the fact that it couldn’t be clearer these two belong together. I won’t spoil the fun, but it’s obvious in the first ten pages why. I don’t know what it is in particular that makes this book stand out from some of the others, but it does, and it remains one of my favorites. Get your own copy of this book.

Affair

I’ve always thought Affair had an especially strong opening. It plops me right into a compelling story that I can’t resist. Note to self: don’t read the first chapter of any of these books if I don’t have any time I can devote to reading, because if I do, I’ll end up reading the entire book. That’s what happened with my reread of Affair. I read an excerpt of chapter one at the end of Mischief and ended up having to read this entire book again. It is definitely a great book and was well worth reading just one more time. Get your own copy of this book.

Deception

Deception is my all-time favorite Amanda Quick book after Ravished. The pirate angle is charming and I adore Jared Chillhurst … and his pocket watch. In fact, this entire book works so well that I have a hard time not wishing Ms. Quick would discover some distant relative of Jared’s and write a story about him. I simply adore this book and I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve read it because I lost count years ago. If I had to recommend only two Amanda Quick books to someone, this one would be one of those books. Get your own copy of this book.

Guinevere Jones Books from Jayne Castle to Be Released as Ebooks

I received an exciting email today from Berkley/NAL. In their announcement of a new eBook imprint, InterMix, they also mentioned Jayne Castle, a known pseudonym of Jayne Ann Krentz/Amanda Quick.

…later in the year [2012], InterMix will bring back four novels in the classic Guinevere Jones series from bestselling writer Jayne Ann Krentz, writing as Jayne Castle, that have long been out of print and have never been available as eBooks

Guinevere Jones Books

A short list of the 4 books in question. Click the links to go to Amazon, where you’ll find more information. I wouldn’t buy just yet, because all these books are out of print and sell for ridiculously high prices. Unless you’re a collector of course, then you might want to buy the Guinevere Jones books just to add them to your collection. Who am I to judge?

About Reading the New Jayne Castle Book Canyons of Night

Canyons of Night by Jayne Castle is in my hands and next on my to-be-read list. That means I could get to it as soon as tomorrow night, assuming I can finish the non-fiction book I’m in the middle of. I am practicing patience, so I will finish that book first before I move on to Canyons of Night but to be frank, I’m very excited. If you’ve read anything here on this site, you probably realize how big a fan I am of the Jayne Castle books.

So between the news about the Guinevere Jones books and the prospect of reading Canyons of Night finally, this has been a really nice day!

Quick Review: Forgotten Sea by Virginia Kantra

Forgotten Sea - Virginia Kantra
Consider buying Forgotten Sea for your personal library if you enjoy paranormal romance. Click the bookcover to go to Amazon.

I’m glad I didn’t realize this book had been published right away. A devastating upheaval in my personal life happened only a week before the release date back in June and there’s no way I could have enjoyed this story if I had picked up a copy right then. And I would have, because I love Virginia Kantra’s Children of the Sea series. No personal upheaval is going to change that.

Now, however, I’m ready to read again and Forgotten Sea is one of the first books I’ve read since late May.

Forgotten Sea by Virginia Kantra follows Immortal Sea, probably my favorite book of the entire series (although Sea Lord was absolutely wonderful). In Forgotten Sea, we’re introduced to Justin and Lara, and there’s a mystery there right away. Justin can’t remember anything from his life prior to seven years ago, while Lara is introduced as one of the fallen children of the air, a fallen angel.

As a reader of the series–this isn’t my first Children of the Sea book–I could feel that Justin’s story was tied to the events of Sea Lord, and any fan is going to figure it out quickly, who he is and what happened to him seven years previous.

There’s a lot to like about this book. Kantra writes with the same flair that made the other Children of the Sea books special. She also introduces plenty of interesting backstory for Lara’s people, leaving me wondering if there’s going to be future stories there. At the moment, it seems that she’s run out of people to continue the selkie / finfolk stories, but just because I think that doesn’t mean it’s true.

Forgotten Sea didn’t disappoint me. I read it in one sitting and don’t regret a moment I spent with the characters, living the romance, the mystery, and the excitement of another great book in Kantra’s Children of the Sea series.

Click Here to Buy Forgotten Sea at Amazon or to Read More Reviews

Favorite 2011 Paranormal Romance Novel

What is your favorite paranormal romance novel published in 2011?

I’m going to leave this post open to comments for the rest of the year. I would like to know what book you think is the best paranormal romance novel of 2011.

Guidelines:

  1. Novel should be a paranormal romance novel (I’m asking that you don’t add futuristic sci-fi romance to this post unless the book has strong paranormal elements that make the book more fantasy than sci-fi)
  2. Should be a novel, not a short story or novella
  3. Original publication date should be 2011 and it should not be a reprint or reissue of a book published in a prior year.

That’s it! Have fun telling me and everyone else about your favorite paranormal romance read of 2011.

Virginia Kantra Books

Virginia Kantra writes suspense novels and paranormal romance novels.

I highly recommend the Children of the Sea books to anyone who enjoys shape-shifter romance. You can buy Virginia Kantra books by following any of the links below. If you try only one book, pick up Immortal Sea. It’s my current favorite and it’s seriously enjoyable reading.

Virginia Kantra Books & Ebooks

Novels by Virginia Kantra

Virginia Kantra Anthologies

Books containing stories or novellas written by Virginia Kantra.

Virginia Kantra Series

Virginia Kantra has contributed to the following series.

Immortal Sea is fantastic, and the latest in the series, Forgotten Sea, is also a great read. I posted my commentary on Forgotten Sea just recently.

Best places to find more Virginia Kantra books

  • Virginia Kantra books in print, ebooks and audio books at Amazon.com.
  • Virginia Kantra ebooks for download at ebooks.com.
  • Virginia Kantra books in audio download formats at Audible.com

Jayne Ann Krentz Pseudonyms

Amanda Quick, Jayne Castle, Stephanie James, Jayne Bentley, Jayne Taylor, Amanda Glass

Shield's Lady by Amanda Glass (Jayne Ann Krentz)
Shield's Lady is the only novel written by Jayne Ann Krentz as Amanda Glass

Jayne Ann Krentz is a prolific author and she uses several other names to author her books. Many authors use different names for their books depending on what type of book it is and these days, that’s exactly what JAK does with her other author names. Jayne Krentz currently writes under three distinct names, and she has a few older pseudonyms too that she doesn’t use any longer.

Jayne Ann Krentz
Krentz uses this one for contemporary romantic suspense and she also used to write for Harlequin Temptation, many of my favorites including The Family Way.
Jayne Castle
These days, as Jayne Castle, JAK writes futuristic paranormal romance in which the characters have psychic powers. Once, this pseudonym wrote series romance and other contemporary romance novels.
Amanda Quick
Under this name, Jayne Ann Krentz writes historical romance novels. I’ve only ever read one that didn’t have a strong suspense or mystery element to it and that is Scandal, which is actually one of my top five favorites.
Stephanie James
This pseudonym has been inactive, but many of the titles written under this name have been rereleased. Most of Jayne Ann Krentz’s works under the name of Stephanie James were written for Silhouette Desire.
Amanda Glass
[inactive, rereleased title as Jayne Ann Krentz]
Jayne Bentley
[inactive]
Jayne Taylor
[inactive]

Amanda Quick Books

Amanda Quick Books, Also Writing as Jayne Ann Krentz, Jayne Castle

Books written as: Jayne Ann Krentz | Amanda Quick | Jayne Castle | Stephanie James | Jayne Bentley | Jayne Taylor | Amanda Glass

On this page: Series and Connections | My Favorites

The River Knows
The River Knows is a recent favorite.

The good thing about historical romance (or period romance) is that it doesn’t age in the same what that novels with contemporary settings do. For that reason, Jayne Krentz’s Amanda Quick historicals have stayed current in a way that her older contemporary romantic suspense hasn’t managed. Therefore, don’t hesitate to get all the old books and read from the earliest Amanda Quick novel to the most recent. Several of her older stories are my absolute favorites.

Until recently, most Jayne Ann Krentz and her Amanda Quick novels have been stand alone, but she’s started the Arcane Society series of novels and these share much more in common. They’re still stand alone novels. I prefer JAK’s Amanda Quick novels. They’re much sexier than the contemporary stuff she writes under JAK.

Also, I have a page that details some summary information about pseudonyms for Amanda Quick.

Ravished (Amanda Quick) bookcover
Ravished (Amanda Quick) is without doubt my all time favorite historical romance novel and I’ve read it an embarrassing number of times since I bought it.

Books by series or connection and interconnected stories

My Favorites

Ravished remains my most beloved Amanda Quick novel.

The Beast of Blackthorne Hall is beyond compare, and Harriet is my favorite heroine of all the great Amanda Quick novels.

I adored the chemistry between Gideon and Harriet, but I think the thing I liked most about the book was Harriet’s unrelenting faith is Gideon’s goodness and honor.

And the opening had to contain my favorite lines of all time.

— From the opening of Ravished by Amanda Quick

It was a scene straight out of a nightmare. Gideon Westbrook, Viscount St. Justin, stood on the threshold and gazed into the cheerful little anteroom of hell.

There were bones everywhere. Savagely grinning skulls, bleached ribs, and shattered femurs were scattered about like so much devil’s garbage. Chunks of stone with teeth and toes and other odd bits embedded in them were stacked on the windowsill. A pile of vertebrae littered the floor in one corner.

In the center of the unholy clutter sat a slender figure in a stained apron. A white muslin cap was perched askew atop a wild, tangled mane of chestnut-brown curls. The woman, obviously young, was seated at a heavy mahogany desk. Her slender, graceful back was turned to Gideon. She was sketching busily, her entire attention focused on what appeared to be a long bone embedded in a chunk of stone.

From where he was standing, Gideon could see that there was no wedding band on the supple fingers that held the quill. This would be one of the daughters, then, not the widow of the late Reverend Pomeroy.

Just what he needed, Gideon thought, another rector’s daughter.

Another favorite is Deception, which I recently reread. Olympia and Jared are a fun couple and I loved the pirate themes in the story. It’s also another story where there’s family involved–loving, if misguided family–and I really enjoy stories that have that added depth.

The River Knows is my most recent favorite for several reasons. The suspense was neatly done and the hero, Anthony Stalbridge, and heroine, Louisa Bryce, were interesting. I liked that the hero had a loving family–many of Quick’s heroes aren’t that lucky.

Available as ebooks:

Amanda Quick Books

Jayne Ann Krentz Books

Jayne Ann Krentz, Also Writing as Amanda Quick, Jayne Castle

On this page: Series and Connections | My Favorites

Trust Me bookcover
Trust Me by Jayne Ann Krentz, a truly wonderful story

I’m a huge fan of Jayne Ann Krentz and I’ve read every JAK book I’ve been able to get my hands on. I pick up her old stuff whenever I run across it at a yard sale and I’ve got a nice little collection going–although even I admit some of the old stuff is very dated. However, I began reading Harlequin Temptation when I was thirteen-ish (snuck the books away from my grandmother’s house :-) I did put them back when I was through though!), so I can handle dated. If you’re a new JAK reader, stick to the recommended stuff first.

There’s a reason Jayne Krentz is a bestselling author. I don’t think there’s any other author out there in the marketplace like her, and that makes her books special to a lot of people. I also adore her Amanda Quick novels–even more than I love the JAK books.

I’m actively trying to get the books listed in a way that shows the interconnections of the stories. Until recently, most Jayne Ann Krentz and her Amanda Quick novels have been stand alone, but she’s started the Arcane Society series of novels and these share much more in common. They’re still stand alone novels. I read Sizzle and Burn before White Lies and both of those before any of the historical books written as Amanda Quick, and I didn’t have any problems keeping things straight.

White Lies bookcover
White Lies, a recent Arcane Society novel that was very good reading

Also, I have some info about Jayne Ann Krentz’s pseudonyms on a separate page.

Absolutely, Positively bookcover
Absolutely, Positively is a fan favorite

Books by series or connection and interconnected stories

My Favorites

When I think Jayne Ann Krentz, I immediately think about melting swan ice sculptures. Trust Me is the quintessential Krentz novel, with strong, distinctive characters, romantic suspense and mystery. I think the thing I liked best about this book was the hero, Sam Stark. He chose to show his affections to the heroine Desdemona Wainwright in several unique ways and although the technology used in the story has become commonplace, it’s still a story I reread and enjoy.

White Lies is another favorite. I loved Jake and Claire, and this one had a good, strong plot to fill out the story.

Then there’s Absolutely, Positively, Light in Shadow, Lost & Found, and Falling Awake, each of which I think are wonderful reads.

Available as ebooks:

Jayne Ann Krentz Books

Amanda Quick Book Trailers

Book Trailers and Videos for Amanda Quick’s Books

The Perfect Poison bookcover image Amanda Quick has released a book trailer for her latest book, The Perfect Poison. This is the latest book in the Arcane Society series, book #6.

The first trailers were for her Jayne Castle books in the Ghost Hunters series. While I really liked the Dark Light trailer, I also really liked her Jayne Ann Krentz book trailer for Running Hot. This is the second book trailer for a book in the Arcane Society series.

The Perfect Poison

This book trailer is for Amanda Quick’s The Perfect Poison. The music isn’t that great but the visuals are neat. It’s a nice teaser for The Perfect Poison.

The Perfect Poison (Caleb Jones, Lucinda Bromley) :: This is an interesting book trailer, but I admit to liking the Running Hot and Dark Light trailers better. :)

All “Arcane Society” Books

All Amanda Quick Books

Arcane Society Novels from Jayne Ann Krentz, Amanda Quick, Jayne Castle

The Arcane Society Series

Contemporary Setting
Book #5Jayne Ann Krentz weaves together historical, futuristic, and contemporary stories in her tales of the Arcane Society, writing as Jayne Ann Krentz and her pseudonym Amanda Quick and Jayne Castle.

Click the image to buy or read reviews
bookcover image of The Perfect Poison bookcover image of The Third Circle bookcover image for Second Sight bookcover image for Running Hot, Jayne Krentz bookcover image of Sizzle and Burn bookcover image for White Lies

An interesting aside is that the newest Jayne Castle book, Dark Light, is set in the Harmony universe and as usual revolves around psychic ghosts and alien ruins. In it, there is a clear tie to the Arcane Society. So it’s not an Arcane Society book, but it’s definitely linked.

[Update: The link is complete. With Midnight Crystal, Jayne Castle’s books are now part of the Arcane Society novels.]

Second Sight

Historical Setting
Book #1

Like many other of Amanda Quick’s most recent historical romance novels, this particular book was heavy on the suspense plot and light on the romance. If that’s what you most like, then you’re going to be more than happy with this book. As for me, I’d rather have had the romance.

The thing I’ve always love most about Amanda Quick books is how much the hero needs the heroine, and how much the heroine needs the hero. That’s been lacking lately, but not just in Amanda Quick’s novels. Many authors have taken to writing more “mainstream” and less romanticism into their works. Lately, I’ve seen that trend in many Amanda Quick novels.

Gabriel was a great guy, but he wasn’t a particularly enthralling hero. Venetia was an interesting female, but she lacked much of the singularity that makes Quick’s heroines so appealing to me.

That’s not to say this was a bad book. It just wasn’t a great book. As the start of a series, this book was good. As a romance, it lacked the impact and emotionalism that I needed to completely enjoy the romance between Venetia and Gabriel. The book read quickly but it’s not one of the many Amanda Quick novels I’ll be rereading anytime soon.

White Lies

Contemporary Setting
Book #2

White Lies introduces the psychic detective agency J&J (Jones and Jones) and the Arcane Society into a contemporary 21st century setting. The second book in the Arcane Society series, White Lies is a fast-moving tale of romance and mystery as Claire Lancaster and Jake Salter try to discover who might be out to harm Claire and put the blame on her for murder.

Claire’s ability to tell truth from deception is all that saved her half sister from death at the hands of her husband eight months prior. Now Claire is back in Arizona at her father’s behest and she’s suddenly become the target of someone out for revenge. Jake Salter works for the psychic detective agency of J&J as a consultant using his psychic abilities to work a very important case. Claire wasn’t supposed to be a factor, but now she’s here and Jake has an immediate desire to get to know her very well indeed.

Jake is a somewhat less than politically correct hero with a take charge attitude and a talent for dealing with danger. I liked him enormously and think his attitude is mostly to blame. I prefer Amanda Quick’s historicals for this very reason usually, because I prefer the strong, take-charge heroes–at least those who have an equally strong appreciation for the heorine and her abilities.

Compared to Sizzle and Burn and Zack Jones, Jake Salter is much more my style. I’m sure this is one big reason why I prefered White Lies to the more recent addition Sizzle and Burn.

As for Claire, her take on lying is a key part of the story, and honestly, this is what made her such a great character. Krentz did a fabulous job of building Claire’s personality, not to mention the very visual descriptions. This was one heroine that stands out in my mind, and although I love Jayne Krentz’s and Amanda Quick’s heroines, even I can admit that sometimes there just isn’t that much to differentiate them. In this case, though, Claire is well-defined and memorable.

I liked White Lies, but I will warn you that this isn’t a character focused book. The focus stays firmly on the mystery and suspense plot. The romance is hot, but you won’t wonder if the characters will get together, only if they’ll survive to enjoy it.

Nevertheless, White Lies was an excellent and engaging read. Highly recommended.

Sizzle and Burn

Contemporary Setting
Book #3

Certainly not the strongest book of the series, Sizzle and Burn is nevertheless a nice read. I almost feel like I’m insulting JAK when I qualify any story she’s written as less than stellar, but the fact is, I compare everything she writes to the best of her works, and those best are spectacular indeed.

In this addition to the Arcane Society, Raine Tallentyre hears voices, but they’re all in her head. The voices of victims, murderers and the like lead her to save an intended victim of a serial killer who is locked in the basement of Raine’s desceased aunt’s home. Zack Jones is hired by the Arcane Society’s PI firm, J&J. He has visions. Together, Zack and Raine must figure out the mystery surrounding the death of Raine’s aunt. Woven throughout is the continuing arc of the founder’s formula and the dark organization that’s developed a way to produce and use the psychic energy enhancing drug.

Although the two leads in this story were intriguing, the plot was a little flat and the twists seem to come out of nowhere, with little to tie it all together. However, I can’t stand to read a series and skip a book, and the rest of the books in this series certainly make it hard to pass any new addition to the tales of the Arcane Society.

There’s some interesting byplay between Zack and Raine that gives the book a readability factor that might have been missing otherwise. A weak plot for Krentz but an entertaining read anyway.

The Third Circle

Historical Setting
Book #4

The Third Circle is my favorite historical entry in the Arcane Society books. I liked Second Sight, but I didn’t love it, not the way I usually love Amanda Quick’s novels. This book dealt much more heavily with the romance between the characters, Leona Hewitt and Thaddeus Ware.

Leona is can work psychic energy through crystal and Thaddeus is a strong mesmerist. Leona is mostly immune to his psychic powers, and that’s a great thing for Thaddeus, since his abilities have made it difficult for him to find love.

They meet when they both happen to be looking for a very special crystal and end up standing over the dead body of a woman who appears to have become the latest victim of The Midnight Monster.

This book had both a mystery and a romance that entertwined nicely. I enjoyed Leona’s spirit, and Thaddeus is an intriguing hero.

I learned more about the mysterious Mr. Pierce and Adam in this book, and although they aren’t my favorite characters (they often bring out a little too much womens’ lib preachiness in Amanda Quick’s writing), I found that in this book, they started to grow on me—somewhat.

My only complaint about this one was that I wanted a bigger ending. I won’t say too much about that to avoid spoiling the book for another reader, but I thought Leona’s powers could have been used much more effectively at the end so that I could have the big ending I wanted. Ravished and other older Amanda Quick novels have very well done high-impact endings. That’s what I would have liked to have seen here.

This is a book I could enjoy rereading.

Running Hot

Contemporary Setting
Book #5

The Perfect Poison

Historical Setting
Book #6

There’s a video book trailer for The Perfect Poison, although it’s not one of the best. I enjoyed this book a lot, and in a way it reminded me of an earlier Amanda Quick book, Wicked Widow, because in both books the heroine is believed to be involved in wicked deeds.

Fired Up

Contemporary Setting / Hawaii
Book #7
Dreamlight Trilogy Book #1

Burning Lamp

Historical Setting
Book #8
Dreamlight Trilogy Book #2

Midnight Crystal

Futuristic/Paranormal Setting
Book #9
Dreamlight Trilogy Book #3

In Too Deep

Contemporary Setting
Book #10
Looking Glass Trilogy Book #1

Quicksilver

Historical Setting
Book #11
Looking Glass Trilogy Book #2

Canyons of Night

Futuristic/Paranormal Setting
Book #12
Looking Glass Trilogy Book #3