Review: Leaving Blue Bayou by Joann Ross

Title:Leaving Blue Bayou
Author:Joann Ross
Release Date: October 2nd 2012
Publisher: Kensington
Genre: Erotic Romance
Rating: 3.5 Hoots
Reviewer: Lydia
Buy From: Amazon/ Barnes and Noble

Sum It Up!  Be sure to put it in place when you’re in the midst of winter looking for a holiday read.

Cajun Heat:  Movie star Gabe Broussard has come back to his Louisiana hometown for some peace, but things only up the minute he reunites with Emma Quinlan. With her lush body and hearty appetite, she’s no Hollywood matchstick, and oh cher, does he like that. Emma just has to stop thinking about her former Cajun crush, so she makes a list of all the things she wishes he would do to her and buries it in a graveyard at night. Except it’s the wrong list – Gabe finds the right one, and he intends to fulfill every blissful one of them …
Lotion Potion #9: It’s bad enough that Hollywood hotshot Sloan Hawthorne’s knowledge of Roxi Dupree’s witchcraft comes from comic books and fairy tales. What’s worse is that she’s falling hard for the outrageously sexy hunk. Pretty soon they’re both finding that the steamy Savannah nights are perfect for conjuring up some mischievous magic of the own…
Dear Santa: Mystery author Holly Berry’s SUV has broken down in the little hamlet of Santa’s Village, Washington. Holly hates the holidays – that is until lodge owner Gabriel O’Halloran and his five-year-old daughter rekindle her belief in passion, magic and Christmas wishes…  (Book cover)
Joann Ross’ novella trilogy is an exciting erotica romance read. The first novella, Cajun Heat, is an engaging tale set in Louisiana bayou country before Hurricane Katrina. Love Potion #9 follows a character, introduced in the first novella, who moves to Savannah, Georgia, post-Katrina. The bonus novella is basically a stand-alone set in the state of Washington. Despite the distinctively different settings, all of the characters question whether they believe in destiny or fate, particularly in terms of finding love.
The primary characters in the trilogy, Emma Quinlan, Roxie Dupree, and Holly Berry, are strong, independent and self-sufficient women aware of their sexual desires and needs. More importantly, they understand the difference between sex and love. However each character also has apprehension about misinterpreting a sexual liaison as an introduction to an enduring emotional relationship. The men in these characters’ lives, Gabe, Sloan, and Gabe, are renaissance men – compassionate, caring and respectful of their loves’ professional and personal interests.
The sexual scenes portrayed in these novellas are explicit in language and action. Within the context of the first two stories, these scenes are well crafted and add excitement. In the third novella, the sexual scenes appear to be more forced and ill-placed, perhaps a result of the introduction of Gabe as a single father.
 Ross is an accomplished author. She has a flair for placing engaging characters in distinctive settings as she crafts an enticing romantic plot. In terms of writing, the only issues involve the repetitiveness of certain phrases and the redundancy in description. Within the trilogy, the names are repetitive; confusion lies in that the characters of Gabe and Emma in the third novella are not the same as in the first two.
Readers looking for an erotic romantic read will find the first two novellas fulfilling. However, the “bonus” novella may seem ill-placed. But be sure to put it in place when you’re in the midst of winter looking for a holiday read.

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