Thrifty Thursday: Secrets on the Sand by Roxanne St. Claire

Posted February 26, 2015 by Anne - Books of My Heart in Book Review, Thrifty Thursday / 5 Comments

Thrifty Thursday: Secrets on the Sand by Roxanne St. ClaireSecrets on the Sand Series: The Billionaires of Barefoot Bay #1
on 12/09/2013
Pages: 128 pages
Format: eBook
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New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Roxanne St. Claire has been enchanting readers with stories set on an idyllic slice of paradise off the coast of Florida known as Barefoot Bay for two years. In the first Barefoot Bay series, four friends joined forces to build and run a homegrown resort and spa and, in the process, found life-long love.

Now it is time to get to know some of the special guests of Casa Blanca Resort & Spa, which is fast turning into a playground for the rich and an elite destination wedding site. In the brand new Billionaires of Barefoot Bay trilogy, meet a trio of sexy heroes and the most unlikely ladies who steal their hearts in three novella-length (appx. 150 pages) love stories.

In Secrets on the Sand, Zeke Nicholas has turned his mathematical genius skills into a mountain of money. But Zeke sits on that mountain all alone, longing for the one thing money cannot buy: a lifelong partner and true love. Zeke grew up near Barefoot Bay and is staying at the resort for a week while he’s in town for a family event. Enter Mandy Mitchell...the maid. Except, Mandy is much more than that to Zeke—she was the object of his every teenage dream back in the days when she was known as “Mandy the Magnificent” but he'd earned the unflattering high school senior adjective of “Ezekiel the Geekiel.”

Zeke is no longer a geek—he’s gorgeous. And Mandy doesn’t feel so magnificent since her marriage fell apart and left her up to her eyeballs in debt and despair. The minute they meet again, Mandy knows he’s exactly the kind of trouble she should avoid...but Zeke does have one thing Mandy needs to gain the independence she craves. Will he give it to her? One look at Mandy, and Zeke turns his relentless ability to get what he wants into a full-on seduction and he’s ready to give her anything. But can Mandy face down the secrets of her past to find a fairy-tale future with Zeke?

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Free on Kindle, Nook and Kobo on July 26, 2014 

I like almost all forms of romance, although not so much historical, but I have a prejudice against the billionaire thing.  How likely is it there would be so many young, handsome billionaires running around and they always fall for the pretty but down on her luck, no money lady.  I enjoy something light and fluffy as long as it isn’t totally unbelievable.

Sadly, this book is a classic example of what I hate.  It shows me why I stopped reading contemporary romance for more than 20 years!  I just couldn’t take the unrealistic characters and the unbelievable storylines.

The man in SECRETS ON THE SAND, Zeke was a geek in high school who went on to be successful. He’s rich, smart, kind and he’s a billionaire.  Mandy was his high school crush, cheerleader, prom queen, blah, blah, blah.   They are ok, but every character including them is such a cliché.

SECRETS ON THE SAND is a novella, so it’s short. I just couldn’t get excited about any of the characters, the plot, or even the beach setting.  It all felt fake to me. It is a clean read too, which isn’t really a good thing.  I like some sexy times.  But if I feel the character’s connection, sexy times aren’t important.

There may be physical attraction between Zeke and Mandy but they hardly talk to one another.  Other than the initial meeting, there is little dialog.  For example, SECRETS ON THE SAND just tells us they worked together on the business proposal for Mandy’s new venture.  That would have been an opportunity to show them sharing, getting to know each other, and letting us get to know them.  Things like that happen off page and the facts are just stated to us afterward.

I hadn’t previously read Roxanne St. Claire,  I hope SECRETS ON THE SAND is not representative of her work because if it is, I won’t like it.  I can’t recommend this to anyone unless you are totally into the billionaire romance genre, even then, I think there are better choices.


About Roxanne St. Claire

Published since 2003, Roxanne St. Claire is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of more than fifty romance and suspense novels. She has written several popular series, including The Dogfather, Barefoot Bay, the Guardian Angelinos, and the Bullet Catchers.

In addition to being an ten-time nominee and one-time winner of the prestigious RITA™ Award for the best in romance writing, Roxanne has won the National Reader’s Choice Award for best romantic suspense four times, as well as the Maggie, the Daphne du Maurier Award, the HOLT Medallion, Booksellers Best, Book Buyers Best, the Award of Excellence, and many others.

A mother of two but recent empty-nester, Roxanne lives in Florida with her husband. She loves dogs, books, chocolate, and wine, especially all at the same time.

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Posted February 26, 2015 by Anne - Books of My Heart in Book Review, Thrifty Thursday / 5 Comments

5 responses to “Thrifty Thursday: Secrets on the Sand by Roxanne St. Claire

  1. Jonetta (Ejaygirl)

    This is a spinoff of the Barefoot Bay series which is pretty wonderful. Sorry this was a bad experience for you as St. Claire normally writes strong contemporary and romantic suspense stories. I’d try one of her full length novels before final judgment.

    • When I was formatting the post for Anne I thought wow, Jonetta loves St. Claire. I love it when we can show different ends of the rating scale when it comes to an author. It just goes to show what works for some of us will not work for others.

      • Jonetta (Ejaygirl)

        It just may be the brevity of a novella. Just suggesting a try at her full-length work before signing off. And, it could very well be her style that doesn’t work. Not meant as a criticism. Just a suggestion.

  2. Jonetta – Yes, I’m sure I will try some of her other work at some point. Possibly in the romantic suspense genre since that appeals to me more. This book just hit all my buttons for some reason and not in a good way. Just remembering makes me unhappy. But I know there are those who love her work so I’m not against the author in any way.

    Jennifer – Thanks for supporting diversity and varying opinions!

    • I’ve run across diversity within myself with authors. I’ve loved one series by an author but didn’t like one of their other series. Not every read is going to our favorite.