90s Playlist – a romance rewind anthology


This review is only for The Belle vs. the BDOC

The Belle vs. the BDOC by Amy Jo Cousins
Shelby Summerfield is a gold star lesbian, even if she doesn’t look like one. Florence Truong is the only other dyke at Carlisle College in 1993 not wearing plaid flannel, and Shelby sets her sights on seduction. But instead of a delightful tumble in the sheets, Florence calls her out for being a straight girl. With seduction off the table, Shelby settles for revenge for her humiliation. But if all she wants is to show up her campus rival, how come Shelby can’t stop herself from saving Florence instead of annihilating her?

I didn’t read all of the stories in this anthology yet but I did skip to Amy Jo Cousins The Belle vs. the BDOC because I generally love this author and everything she writes. This wasn’t any different. I haven’t read many f/f stories previously so this was a bit different for me. I really liked the character of Shelby as she dressed very girly and hated when people judges her based on her looks alone. So when Florence does this I loved Shelby’s reaction of incredible anger. Over and over again Florence judges her based on stereotypes. I enjoyed Shelby’s anger turning to indignation and revenge.

Cousins’ books have all been set mainly on college campuses and this one is the same. Part of Shelby’s revenge takes place during a quiz game at a bar and then on campus itself for the majority of the book for a very fun game of Assassin. The chemistry between Florence and Shelby was palpable and to add in the tension of the game made everything, including the romance, heightened.

Shelby was a great, fun loving character. She pursues Florence relentlessly which is fun to watch. The lesbians were accepted without question and that’s always something I love to see.

ARC received in return for an honest review.

4 stars

~ Melinda



the Rebel by Adrienne Giordano


A brilliant civil lawyer, David Hennings has always been the outsider at odds with his wealthy family, shunning relationships, defying convention as a sexy leather-jacketed biker. Which is why sculptor Amanda LeBlanc agrees to his request to reconstruct a skull from a cold case murder. The instant heat between them is scorching.

 But once Amanda takes the job and gets too close to the rebellious attorney, her carefully balanced life is upended by a series of methodical attacks. Someone doesn’t want her to finish the job. Now David will risk everything not to lose the woman he unknowingly put in jeopardy.

Amanda is a sculptor and artist who takes on projects for wealthy clients. She eventually wants to earn enough to open her own gallery. When she is asked to reconstruct a skull for a murder investigation her life is systematically torn apart from every angle imaginable. She tries to keep her life under tight control after seeing how forensic work affected her mother; she doesn’t want to get involved in that kind of emotional work.

David tries to help Amanda with the attacks on her life and livelihood. As she struggles with her past and her tightly wrapped emotions and control issues he is there to help her but the more he wants to help the more she pulls away. While she struggles with her feelings for David and with her past, is she willing to let go and to try to be happy?

This story touches a bit on bi-polar disorder and some mental health issues making this story different from others that Adrienne has written. While there is sexual tension, it’s a slow build and tentative with how Amanda is dealing with her own issues. I love her action romance series and love that you get to see more of the Henning family. This one kept me reading to find out what and who was behind the attack on Amanda. The books are stand alone and can be read in any order.

Adrienne writes amazing stories that have well written characters who get you involved in their plight and has you hooked from the start. I always look forward to a new book by her and I am never disappointed by any of them.

ARC provided by author in exchange for a fair and honest review.


4.5 out of 5 stars


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