Tag Archives: author: cardeno c.

Red River by Cardeno C.

Red River

Book Info

Title: Red River (Pack, Book 2)
Author: Cardeno C.
Published: January 19, 2016
Pages: 122
Publisher: The Romance Authors
Author’s Website: link
Rating: ★★★

Review

Wesley Stone is next in line to be the Alpha of his pack. Well, he should be whenever his uncle finally decides to step down from the role. But Wesley is different. He is a scar on his abdomen that many in his pack see as a weakness, though he doesn’t quite understand why. He’s always been a bit of an outsider, but he’s completely shocked when his uncle lets him know he’ll never be able to lead their pack. If he wants to become an Alpha, he’ll need to trade places with an Alpha from a nearby pack and take the current Alpha’s son as his mate. While it’s not anything close to the ideal situation, Wesley agrees, thinking he will find a way to make the best of it. But when he meets Jobe Root, his intended mate, everything turns out to be far different than he expected. The way the Red River pack functions is not at all like the pack in which Wesley has lived his life. He quickly learns that many of the things he thought were absolute might be a bit more fluid than he believed. It turns out there are some things that Wesley didn’t know about himself, either…

This is a quick and engaging read. The pace is just right to keep the reader interested without ever feeling too rushed. And the slow reveal of some of the information about Jobe and the Red River pack certainly allows for a few twists to be thrown in along the way.

This is the second book in a series, but it appears to be stand-alone. I’ve not read the first book, and I had no problems at all following what was happening here or knowing who all of the characters were. One thing that did throw me, and I’ll share it even though it might be a bit of a spoiler, is some MPreg near the end. I’m not one for MPreg stories–it’s something I’ve never been able to suspend disbelief enough to not catch me up in a story, even in those with paranormal themes–but despite that being in the book, I still found myself enjoying the story.

[Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.]

Strong Enough by Cardeno C.

Strong Enough

Book Info

Title: Strong Enough (Family, Book 2)
Author: Cardeno C.
Published: October 13, 2015 (originally released in 2013)
Pages: 247
Publisher: The Romance Authors
Author’s Website: link
Rating: ★★★

Review

Spencer Derdinger is a college professor who just might be the definition of shy. Which is why he has no idea how to respond when the hot construction worker he’s been watching approaches him and asks him out–right now. Emilio Sanchez is anything but shy. He’s an outgoing, confident guy who knows what he wants and doesn’t hesitate. While he knows his personality is in direct contrast to Spencer’s, he can’t help noticing that there’s something causing Spencer to hold back. Both will need patience and strength if they’re going to pursue anything together–and they’ll have to overcome some distractions and challenges along the way.

Emilio! What can I say about him? He’s unlike any character I think I’ve ever read before. He’s just so care-free and confident in the way he presents himself, and it’s genuine. Of course it doesn’t mean everything is perfect for him all the time, but he’s not going to apologize for who he is and for expressing himself. And poor Spencer finds himself overwhelmed but equally intrigued by this man he never expected to speak to–never mind bring him home. What transpires here is a sweet story of a relationship that builds organically but in a nontraditional manner. And I loved every minute of it.

This is the second book of the series, but it can be read as a standalone story. I haven’t read the first book and had no problem following the story.

[Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.]

Strange Bedfellows by Cardeno C.

25734007Title: Strange Bedfellows
Author: Cardeno C.
Published: June 26, 2015
Pages: 226
Publisher: The Romance Authors
Author Website: link
Rating: ★★★★☆

[Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.]

Bradford “Ford” Hollingsworth III is in the early stages of a bright career. He’s a junior U.S. congressman whose senator (and former presidential candidate) father has created quite a legacy for him to follow in the Republican party. But he’s keeping a secret that might just derail those plans: he’s gay, something that’s likely not going to go over well with the conservative base. But when a random one-night stand turns into a desire for something more, he’s not sure just how long he can keep his secret hidden. And to complicate matters even more, the object of his affection is Trevor Moga, son of the current President–a Democrat, and someone who has done his best to stay out of politics. Can Ford find a way to have his career and Trevor? Or will he give that all up if it means happiness with someone he loves? And how will his family react when they learn the truth–both truths?

What a fun and interesting read! There are some definitely steamy moments, but the focus here is on the story and these two endearing and wonderful characters. One of things that I’ve found with Cardeno’s novels is that I’m never disappointed with the characters, and this book is no exception. They are dynamic individuals, they are flawed in just the right ways, and there’s never really a question of how their actions and motivations line up. And in this book, even the side characters pulled me in, as there’s quite a cast here with Trevor’s parents and Ford’s larger family.

I’m not usually one for books with a political background–not that I’m particularly averse, it’s just not where I go when I’m looking for a good read. But after reading this, I’m thinking maybe I need to give more of them a chance. This is great and I definitely recommend it.

Johnnie by Cardeno C.

Jonnie_cover1800x2700Title: Johnnie (Siphon, Book 1)
Author: Cardeno C.
Published: March 11, 2015
Pages: 224
Publisher: The Romance Authors, LLC
Author Website: link
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
Review:

[Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.]

Hugh is a Premier lion shifter and leader of the Berk pride, and he’s been around for over a century. As a Premier ages, the only way to contain his power is to have a Siphon whose role is to take some of the power that he has built up to ensure the pressure doesn’t overwhelm and kill him. When Hugh’s Siphon does something unthinkable that puts him, Hugh, and the entire pride in danger, Hugh is forced to learn more about the Siphon, the role of the Siphon in the pride, and about himself.

I don’t know that I’ve ever read lion shifters before. And while to some extent, shifters are shifters, there are some unique aspects to these particular individuals in the world that Cardeno C. has created. I definitely felt for Johnnie and everything that he’s been through. The life of a Siphon is definitely one with challenges that many in the pride notice or consider. And while Hugh begins to understand, it’s still not very easy for him to grasp the enormity of what Johnnie’s life has been like. Hugh’s approach to Johnnie changes, but I can’t help wondering how things will go for them going forward. Can Hugh really change his entire nature for Johnnie’s happiness?

Jumping In by Cardeno C.

23782977Title: Jumping In (Alphas, Book 6)
Author: Cardeno C.
Published: February 6, 2015
Pages: 58
Publisher: OmniLit / All Romance eBooks
Publisher Website: link
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
Review:

[Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review.]

Clint Rivera returns from a camping trip to find things worse than when he left. His closeted ex is now getting married (and, of all things, has invited him to the engagement party). He’s being evicted, his dogs have destroyed his furniture, his refrigerator is broken, and he’s out of beer. But no doubt there would be free alcohol at the engagement party, so he takes his chances on going. While his presence may not be expected by the one who invited him, he quickly finds someone else was hoping he would show up–someone who has been waiting for a while.

This is a jam-packed short, but it works. It doesn’t feel rushed or like anything is skimmed over, even though there is a large amount of backstory that needs to be revealed in addition to the action of the story itself. The dynamics between the characters are heavy and really just ooze off the page. I will say, though, that there were aspects of Hawk’s character and actions that came across as a bit creepy. In the end, it’s a nice steamy read for those who are looking for something to fill that need.