Friday, May 1, 2015

#ShelfLove Review ~ Secrets #1 ~ HM Ward (Ella Steele)

Secrets (Secrets, #1)Secrets
Secrets #1
Release Date: August 18, 2012
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance
Source: Purchased from B&N
Rating: 4 Bookworms

Sex is supposed to be sexy, tantalizing, and completely erotic, but Anna never seems to find the right guy. This one seems to be a germ-a-phobe, and the previous boyfriend wasn't much better. Anna just wants to be wanted. Is that too much to ask?

As Anna tries to wiggle out of one relationship, a new one surfaces, but it's forbidden. Cole Stevens is twice her age, arrogant, rich, sexy as hell, and her boss. When Anna's internship plans derail, she ends up interning at Cole's elite New York City studio. Close proximity leads Anna to discover that the billionaire bachelor is emotionally scarred. Everyone has secrets, but Cole's run deeper, cutting him to his core. Cole is trouble in a sexy shell. He's nothing Anna needs and everything she wants.

I'd been anxious to read Secrets since I read the teaser chapters at the end of The Arrangement (1 or 2). I was not disappointed. Secrets Volume 1 delivered all that it promised in those teaser chapters. I would like to point out that I think the synopsis is maybe more for the overall story line.

Anna has basically pulled herself up by her bootstraps and is about to graduate with her Masters degree. She just needs an internship. She thinks she knows exactly what she wants out of that internship and Cole Stevens is not it. He comes from a moneyed family, has had everything handed to him and objectifies women in his photography. But is that the true story?

Cole is successful and definitely good at what he does. He seemingly comes from privilege but has he really had it all that easy? He does have a lot to offer Anna towards her education though and he's willing to personally teach her.

The banter between Anna and Cole was fantastic fun. It was one thing I was most excited about. The sexual tension between them is so thick you could cut it. And - Cole is ~15 years Anna's senior. I don't see this much in romance and I liked it.

Secrets Volume 1 is all about setting the state and Ward has done an excellent job. Anna is fierce and fun. She knows what she wants - personally and professionally - and she's driven to achieve her goals. Cole is just the person to help her get there. We see a few clues as to the real Cole but I'm really excited to get better acquainted with the man who'd hire an intern who shows up to her interview in a tutu and hot pink sneakers. I'm also anxious to see how the sparks fly between these two - because they're gonna fly!


  1. Her novels confuse me. Are they serials or full length ones? I looked upThe Arrangement via Amazon one time and there's a LOT. And if they're serials, they're expensive to get.

  2. Love the sound of Anna being fun and fierce

  3. Yay for quality banter and sexual tension! Lol, that sounded weird... Anyway, this sounds really lovely. And you've written a thoughtful review :)

  4. I love driven characters and I also love great banter so this sounds like a good fit for me. Cant wait to see what you think of the rest of the serial =]

  5. So this is a serial? I'd much rather read a full book even if it is a series-but it does sound pretty good Brandee. Just don't Know?

  6. Sharrice HewlettMay 4, 2015 at 8:58 PM

    I am so happy you enjoyed this series. I loved it and I'm telling you it gets better and better. Anna and Cole take sexual tension to a WHOLE new level!

  7. Bookworm BrandeeMay 5, 2015 at 9:07 PM

    *haha* Me too, Braine. I don't know about all her novels...The Arrangement series seems to be more novella in length. Secrets #1 and #2 are both ~250 pages and #3 is ~200. So I suppose it depends. And I totally agree that they get expensive. Really expensive depending on which series/serials you choose to go with.

  8. Bookworm BrandeeMay 5, 2015 at 9:07 PM

    She's a great heroine, Brandi.

  9. Bookworm BrandeeMay 5, 2015 at 9:08 PM

    *haha* But it was great, Ramona. ;) I'm really looking forward to seeing where Anna and Cole go from here.

  10. Bookworm BrandeeMay 5, 2015 at 9:08 PM

    You'll love Anna, Teresa. And Cole, too. ;) I hope to get to #2 soon. :)

  11. Bookworm BrandeeMay 5, 2015 at 9:10 PM

    In this series, they actually are full length reads, Lorna. At least #1-3 are. I was looking at Ward's others books and The Arrangement (which I've read the first 2 of) are all novella in length. Just wait to decide once I get the next one read. :)

  12. Bookworm BrandeeMay 5, 2015 at 9:10 PM

    I'm really eager to read #2, Sharrice. And I get to thank YOU for getting me into reading Ward. ;)


Now you know what I think...what are your thoughts??