Monday, November 9, 2009

Review & Giveaway: The Ocean Between by Lynda Coker

From the back cover:

Victoria Ballard, a New York financial executive, is one woman who considers men to be an unnecessary bother and annoyance. With her career on track, she focuses on the adoption of four beautiful orphans, a crowning completion of her well designed life-plan. But, life is a nasty trickster, and it's about to spring one on her. Unknown to Victoria, Prince Rashid Davar has just completed a marriage contract with her father, However, what the prince does not realize is that is is easier to marry a woman that it is to control one. She may be his wife, but it will take a kidnapping, a battle of wills, and some desert heat of his own before he can claim her love.

My thoughts: When Jacob Ballard first proposed his idea of Rashid marrying his daughter, Rashid was taken aback and explained that since he is a prince of his people, much will be expected of his wife. He wanted to reject Jacob's proposition at first but when he got sight of Victoria, his heart said yes while his mind was saying no. Through some hasty paper shuffling on Jacob's part and without any input from Victoria, the deed was done.

Prince Rashid may be arrogant and used to having his own way, but he has not encountered a woman like Victoria before. Victoria is also used to being independent and has a hard time adjusting to the ways of Ahalamin, the Prince's homeland. At the same time that she is rebelling, a part of her is intrigued by the desert and the people. Some times the heart rebels and what a person thinks they want is not what they want after all. Will one of them eventually get their own way, as their cultures dictate, or will they manage a compromise that will suit them both?

*Sigh*, I feel like I have been to the desert and back. Coker definitely has the gift of putting the reader right in the scene. Her descriptions of the landscape and the people are most intriguing. I almost felt like a voyeur when Rashid and Victoria were,. . . ahem, trying to sort out their differences. This is one lady who knows how to write a Love story with a capital L! Hot as the desert wind, sweet as the date cakes served with mint tea, this is one romance that will grab you by the heartstrings. I can almost guarantee that the ending of this book will make you teary-eyed but in a good way, of course. I loved it! Once I started the book, I couldn't put it down until the end. That earns it a 5***** rating.

Author info: Lynda Coker lives in the rolling hills of East Texas with her favorite alpha-male, her husband of 45 years. Now that she has retired from the field of Photographic Art, she writes full-time and blesses her husband for patiently sharing her with some factitiously strange, exotic, and mischievous characters. A voracious reader, she decided to try writing the type of stories she loved to read.

Lynda strives to peel back the layers that obscure the emotion we call love. She believes her readers choose romance, not to explore the physical, but rather, the compelling desires of their hearts. "Physical love is a glorious gift," she says. "But without the heights and depths of the emotional journey, it is only an empty reflection of what could have been."

A review copy of the book was provided by the author.

Now for the giveaway: Lynda is generously allowing me to give away a copy of her book to one very lucky reader. Here's the scoop!

No P.O. Boxes and open to residents of the US & Canada only. For your official entry, let me know the best romance you have read lately. Put all info in ONE box, please! If you are already a follower, remind me.

Be sure to leave an e mail address; no e-mail, no entry. Bonus entries can be earned by:

+2 Becoming a new google friends connect follower
+2 Already being a follower
+ 2 Post about contest and leave me a link
+1 Put contest in sidebar or tweet and leave me a link

Deadline to enter is December 1st at 5 P.M. Good Luck !


  1. I'd love to be entered into this one. It sounds wonderful!

    I think my most favorite recent romance would be 92 Pacific Boulevard by Debbie Macomber.

    I'm already a follower.


  2. Hello! I read the excerpt, and the sparks really fly between these two strong-willed people! This is a smokin' romance! Please enter my name in the drawing.

    +2 Already a follower.

    gcwhiskas at aol dot com

  3. Sounds like a book right up my alley :D I'll be back later to sign up for the giveaway. Nice review, Kaye!

  4. This book sounds very good.
    It has been a while since I
    read a good romance book so
    I would like to win this one.

    I follow by google reader.

    cenya2 at hotmail dot com

  5. This looks like a great read. Please count me in. The best romance I have read lately is If Angels Burn.

    +2 I already follow.

    lizzi0915 at aol dot com

  6. Ok, I'm back : )

    I'm a follower.

    Posted in my sidebar:

    meah56 at gmail dot com

  7. Phew! It IS hot in here after that sizzling review! I am not sure I have read a really good romance in so long that I can't even name one! Isn't that sad? Let's hope that changes some time soon!

    I am already a follower, you know!

    kdhaney (AT) gmail dot com

  8. The best romance I read lately was Alpha and Omega by Patrica Brigg.

    kalynnick AT yahoo DOT com

  9. I loved this book too! Don't enter me though:)

    You've been splashed with an award!

  10. I read Pride and Prejudice for the first time a few months ago. It hasn't been beat yet :)

    stacybooks at yahoo

  11. Sounds like a good read please enter me

    +2 Already a Follower

  12. Great review-- this one sounds interesting! :D

    Hmm.. my favorite romance (lately) would have to be the YA novel, Shiver. Amazingly written, touching, emotional... Just wow! :D

    I'm now a follower.
    I'm posting a link on my sidebar (


  13. You totally sold me on this one!! Excellent review and it would be too fun to win a copy!!

  14. It sounds like a great book, please count me in.
    I recently read Casting Spells by Barbara Bretton, a kind of paranormal romance type of story, it was very good.

  15. Great review! The books sounds great! And I'd love to be entered!

    I guess the best romance I read lately was Benny & Shrimp by Katarina Mazetti. It was quirky and fun. Nothing HOT lately, so would love to read this one! :D

    +2 I'm a follower! Of course!

    Thanks for hosting this giveaway!
    quzy (AT) mac (DOT) com

  16. I enjoyed reading "eve: a novel of the first woman"...

    thanks for the opportunity to read this fabulous book.

    karen k

  17. I think the "Twilight" series is an awesome romance. That is the last romance I've read.
    Please enter my name in your draw. Thanks.

  18. I just became a follower of your blog.

  19. I must say that the best romance story I've come across lately is a re-reading of "Pride and Prejudice." I am truly a sucker for happy endings (well at least for the two characters I'm thinking about!)

    +2 new follower

    mabelilly28 at yahoo dot com

  20. My most recent was PS, I Love You. Thanks for sharing.

    s.mickelson at gmail dot com

  21. No need to enter me but I wanted to tell you that this was a great review! Even Mrs. Nottso Pudgy got all hot and bothered! I'm adding this contest to my sidebar too. Awesome job Kaye!

    (That's a beautiful photo for Veteran's Day too.)

  22. Hmmm....I haven't read a good romance in a long time! I need this!

    I follow.


  23. I enjoyed Foul Play by Janet Evanovich.

    I'm already a follower.

    BethsBookReviewBlog AT gmail DOT com

  24. Great giveaway! I would love to read and win this book.

    The best romance I've read recently was Bet Me by Jennifer Cruise. I'll never think about donuts quite in the same way again:-)

    I am a new follower.



  25. No need to enter me, babe -- although it sounds intriguing as anything.

    I'm dropping in to say thanks for the e-mail. I've got this posted at Win a Book for you.

  26. This sounds like a great book. New follower.

  27. I really want to read this one.


  28. Here is my link.

  29. I have the contest in my sidebar linking to you.

  30. Oh I love Nora Robert's The Garden Trilogy!


  31. The best romance I've read lately was What I did for Love by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. It was cute and sweet and there was a secondary love story in the background.

    +2 Becoming a new google friends connect follower (as booklover0226...)

    Tracey D
    booklover0226 AT gmail DOT com

  32. +2 I follow you.

    Best romance lately was a Romantic Comedy Janice Thompson titled FOOLS RUSH IN.

  33. I have to agree with The_Book_Queen, Shiver was the best romance that I've read lately. Before that it was Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles. Two of my most favorite books of the year. :0)

    librarygrinch at gmail dot com

  34. sounds like a great read i can really use a good romance novel it has been a while since i read one thanks minsthins at optonline dot net

  35. I just finished A Creed Country Christmas by Linda Lael Miller. I'm a sucker for anything with Christmas in it.

  36. Well currently I am reading a series called "Weather Wardens" with an interesting love story between a human and a djinn - normally I'm a historical romance buff but I read so many none of them really stick in my mind more than my current reads!

  37. The best romance I have read lately... I dont read a lot of romance but I am working my way through Pride and Prejudice and I think that one counts! :)

    I am a new follower!

    journey through books @ gmail dot com

  38. I just read Lavendar Morning by Jude Devereaux and it was wonderful!
    I am already a follower.

  39. The best romance I've read lately is "Off Season" by Anne Rivers Siddons.

    +2 Already being a follower

    Thanks ~ megalon22/at/yahoo/dot/com


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