The Gypsy Ribbon by Shannon MacLeod (Arcana Love #2)

The Gypsy Ribbon by Shannon MacLeodAvailable: Now Amazon/B&N

Type: Contemporary Romance (Paranormal Elements)

Publisher: Lyrical Press

My Copy: Sent

Reviewer: Michelle

Internationally known wild child James Kelly is a filthy rich rock star, devilishly handsome, with silicone beauties aplenty to grace both his arm and his bed. He has it all. Or does he? What he wants most is a real woman to tell him no once in a while…and thanks to his inherited precognition, he knows her when he meets her. But the vision of his future is shrouded in darkness and shadows.

Tarot reader Lisbeth Vargo works at the local renaissance faire. She’s still stinging from her last bad relationship when her best friend marries James Kelley’s brother. After being paired up in the wedding party, sparks fly between Lisbeth and James. Even her tarot cards tell her he’s the one, but is the interest of a “bad boy” something she can take seriously?

Sometimes falling in love takes a leap of faith. Occasionally it needs a push off the cliff. James is more than happy to give Lisbeth that needed shove, but will his love save her…or get her killed?

This is the first book I’ve read by Shannon MacLeod and it’s the second in the Arcana Love series. After reading this, I wish I had read the previous book first. I didn’t feel like I missed out on anything (other than a really good story!) but I think this book would have been even more meaningful if I already had “history” with the Kelly family. I like the way Shannon MacLeod writes, and she has a way of creating male characters who definitely earn their hero status.

Seamus “James” Kelly is an international rock star living the good life. He travels all over the world performing for his band’s adoring fans. Fancy cars, trips, women… they’re all at his fingertips. Unfortunately having everything anyone could want isn’t what he wants. Raised in a close Irish family and watching his brothers and sister fall in love and start families makes him realize what he’s missing in his own life. James Kelly has it all, but Seamus Kelly longs for someone to call his own who will love him as Seamus, not just James Kelly the celebrity.

Lisbeth Vargo has worshipped the lead singer of the band Horizon for what seems like forever. She is more than a little starstruck when her best friend falls in love and marries James Kelly’s brother Ian. Paired with James at the wedding, Beth and James share an instant attraction. After an evening of fun and flirting, Beth panics and runs, thinking there’s no way someone like him would be truly interested in her.

What follows is a gorgeous, charming, sexy man’s dogged pursuit of the woman he wants. Every member of the Kelly family has a “gift”. James sees visions sometimes, although he doesn’t always know what to do about them or what they might mean. He does know deep in his soul the minute he sees Beth, though, that she is the woman of his heart. Spending more time with her only solidifies that belief and he is determined to prove he is more than just a shallow bad boy unable to commit.

Beth is both amazed and scared to death that the man she’s been crushing on for years is actually interested in her. While she doesn’t find it difficult to see past the rocker to the man inside, she does find it almost impossible to have faith that there could be anything real and lasting between them. Thanks to his persistence and a little help from his family, James is able to convince Beth to give them a chance.

I love that most of this book was written around James. The male characters take a strong lead in his story, including his brother Ian – the hero of the first book – and even his bodyguard. When career issues threaten both his relationship with Beth as well as his health, James takes control over his life in order to focus on what’s important to him. Their love was romantic and touching and had an innocent quality that I found really endearing. I believed in James’ appreciation for Beth and what she brought into his life. The characters relate to each other in a very realistic way and I loved the dialogue. Overall this was a very enjoyable read.

I give The Gypsy Ribbon by Shannon MacLeod 4.25 stars!

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