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Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Martial Hearts

Martial Hearts by Kelly McCrady
Publisher: The Wild Rose Press
Genre: Contemporary
Length: Short
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4.5 Books
Review by Amaranth

Austin Li, Kenpo Karate instructor and first-degree black belt, is everybody's favorite. Gregarious and talented, he’s as popular with adult students as with the kids he teaches. After a hot day at the karate school’s annual picnic, shy nurse April Martin is anxious to get him alone. If she risks rejection and wrestles Austin to the mat, will she be defeated by disappointment or stand victorious in love?

“Martial Hearts” by Kelly McCrady is a quick, fun read that I enjoyed from the first page to the last. The book opens during a water gun fight, surprising me with the fun action between the characters. However, it quickly heats up when I learn that April has a huge crush on her martial arts instructor, Austin. Ms. McCrady did a wonderful job of describing, in detail, their surroundings at the park, including a river with a small island of rocks. The only other setting was in the martial arts studio, which was also described in great detail. The dialogue was just enough to keep the story interesting in between the descriptions and thoughts of the characters and was also very realistic. I could imagine that I would have a similar conversation in the same setting. Each of the characters’ physical characteristics were also described in detail, and I could imagine in my head what they may look like in person.

The editing was very clean and I only noticed a couple of mistakes. The only thing I missed in this story was character development. However, with so few pages and a fun and entertaining plot, it would have been too much to try to develop them more, and the lack of development did not take away from this short story.

If you are looking for a fun, quick read, with just a hit of spice, then “Martial Hearts” is surely for you! I enjoyed this book and wouldn’t even mind reading more about these characters, learning more about them, and their lives outside of the studio.