Claimed by Love (Love in Bloom: The Ryders, Book 2): Duke Ryder

Claimed by Love (Love in Bloom: The Ryders, Book 2): Duke Ryder

4.7 44
by Melissa Foster
     
 

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The Ryders are a series of stand-alone romances that may also be enjoyed as part of the larger Love in Bloom series.

CLAIMED BY LOVE is a USA TODAY BESTSELLER

"You can always rely on Melissa Foster to deliver a story that's fresh, emotional and entertaining. Make sure you have all night, because once you start you won't want to stop reading. Every

Overview

The Ryders are a series of stand-alone romances that may also be enjoyed as part of the larger Love in Bloom series.

CLAIMED BY LOVE is a USA TODAY BESTSELLER

"You can always rely on Melissa Foster to deliver a story that's fresh, emotional and entertaining. Make sure you have all night, because once you start you won't want to stop reading. Every book's a winner!"New York Times Bestselling Author Brenda Novak

"Melissa Foster is synonymous with sexy, swoony, heartfelt romance!"New York Times Bestseller Lauren Blakely

In CLAIMED BY LOVE...

Family law attorney Gabriella Liakos has one true love, Elpitha Island, where she grew up and hopes someday to return. But Elpitha is in financial ruins, and Gabriella will do anything to keep it from falling into the wrong hands.

Duke Ryder is a savvy real estate investor set on making Elpitha into an exclusive resort. Unlike other investors, he's not scared of purchasing a property where one family has roots so deep they practically reach the ocean floor...until he meets his beautiful, stubborn, and enticing tour host―the daughter of the owner of most of the island.

Gabriella sets out to dissuade Duke from purchasing Elpitha, but Duke has other ideas. He wants Gabriella and the island. Duke's powerful seduction draws Gabriella in, but can a savvy investor who's used to glamour and glitz, and a woman interested in preserving the culture she adores find a happily ever after together?

***

READY FOR MORE RYDERS?

Seized by Love(Blue)

Claimed by Love (Duke)

Chased by Love(Trish)

Swept Into Love(Gage)

Rescued by Love(Jake)

***

The RYDERS are the newest addition to the Love in Bloom series. Characters from each series appear in future books. Each book may be read as a stand-alone novel, or as part of the series. Visit Melissa's website for a series guides and checklists.

READ THE FULL LOVE IN BLOOM SERIES:

SNOW SISTERS: Sisters in Love, Sisters in Bloom, Sisters in White

THE BRADENS (Weston, CO): Lovers at Heart, Destined for Love, Friendship on Fire,
Sea of Love, Bursting with Love, Hearts at Play, Promise My Love (novella), Daring Her Love (novella)

THE BRADENS (Trusty, CO): Taken by Love, Fated for Love, Romancing My Love, Flirting with Love, Dreaming of Love, Crashing into Love

THE BRADENS (Peaceful Harbor, MD): Healed by Love (Nate), Surrender My Love
River of Love, Crushing on Love, Whisper of Love, Thrill of Love

THE REMINGTONS: Game of Love, Stroke of Love, Flames of Love, Slope of Love, Read, Write, Love, Touched by Love

SEASIDE SUMMERS: Seaside Dreams, Seaside Hearts, Seaside Sunsets, Seaside Secrets, Seaside Nights, Seaside Embrace,Seaside Lovers, Seaside Whispers

WILD BOYS AFTER DARK: Logan, Heath, Jackson, Cooper

BAD BOYS AFTER DARK: Mick, Dylan, Brett, Carson

HARBORSIDE NIGHTS: Catching Cassidy, Discovering Delilah, Tempting Tristan

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
PRAISE FOR MELISSA FOSTER:

"You can always rely on Melissa Foster to deliver a story that's fresh, emotional and entertaining. Make sure you have all night, because once you start you won't want to stop reading. Every book's a winner!" —New York Times bestselling author Brenda Novak

"​With her wonderful characters and resonating emotions, Melissa Foster is a must-read author!" –New York Times bestselling author Julie Kenner​

"Melissa Foster is synonymous with sexy, swoony, heartfelt romance!" –New York Times Bestseller Lauren Blakely​

PRAISE FOR CATCHING CASSIDY:

"Catching Cassidy is laugh out loud funny, heartwarming, sexy, and hands down one of my favorite reads so far this year!" —#1 New York Times bestselling author of The Bet, Rachel Van Dyken

PRAISE FOR SISTERS IN WHITE:
"Steamy sex scenes and heartfelt confessions...a satisfying addition to the 'Love in Bloom' series." —Midwest Book Review

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781941480298
Publisher:
EverAfter Romance
Publication date:
03/23/2016
Series:
Love in Bloom: The Ryders Series , #2
Pages:
300
Sales rank:
550,229
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.00(d)

Read an Excerpt

DUKE RYDER BALANCED his cell phone against his shoulder, listening to his buddy and investment partner Pierce Braden talk about their newest potential investment property as he followed the rickety wooden dock onto the white sandy beach.

“The dock just might be the most stable thing on Elpitha Island,” Pierce said. “Try to soak in a little sand and sun while you’re there. That’s the best part of the island.”

Duke’s eyes were immediately drawn to the sprawling oak trees he’d read about, standing sentinel over the forested acreage beyond. Long, thick branches spread like languid arms draped in moss, reaching for…what? One glance told him that there wasn’t much to reach for, save for a building that looked more like a forgotten Mediterranean villa than the welcome center of the small Southern island. The stone and wood building had a deep porch that spanned the entire length of the left side with stone pillars. A wooden trellis laced with the most captivating flowering vines shaded the area. Although the structure itself was in need of repair, it was surrounded by perfectly manicured, ornate gardens, which contrasted sharply with overgrown and unkempt bushes littering the far edges of the property.

“The proximity to the mainland isn’t bad,” Duke said to Pierce. He set his suitcase on the sand and looked back at the Atlantic. “It only took an hour fifteen to get here.” Elpitha was the smallest of the vacation islands off of South Carolina, and more than half of the land had been owned by the Liakos family for centuries. It was just over eight square miles, and not many investors wanted such a small tract of land, or to deal with families that were as entrenched as the Liakos family was thought to be. Some families might sell out, but they would fight tooth and nail against change, which could cause discourse on an island this small. Duke and Pierce weren’t deterred. The restrictive size of the property would only increase the value, making it an exclusive vacation spot for the elite.

“With Hilton Head and the other islands so overrun,” Pierce said, “Elpitha is ripe for development. Although we’ll have to work around that name. Who wants to go to an island called Elpitha? It sounds more like a disease than an island.”

Duke squinted up at the blazing sun and loosened his tie. “I don’t know. I kind of like it.” He noticed a plantation-style home tucked behind the trees in the distance. “They weren’t kidding about the strange mix of Mediterranean and Southern feel of the place. This should be interesting.” Duke knew some of the island’s history, and though he still didn’t understand why Greeks would immigrate to the South and try to re-create their country’s feel, it didn’t much matter. If he and Pierce decided to purchase the land, they would bulldoze every structure and give the island a complete Southern overhaul, making it the most desirable resort area in the South.

“Chuck called earlier and said Liakos’s granddaughter Gabriella is an attorney,” Pierce explained. “He thinks they might bring her in on things. Apparently their family keeps things tight. So if you meet her, play nice.”

The hollow clank of a screen door hitting its frame drew Duke’s attention. A woman stood on the porch of the old building, shading her eyes from the sun as she looked out at the water. Her long dark hair hung halfway down her back. Duke was too far away to see her features, but there was no missing her curvaceous ass and full breasts, not to mention legs that seemed to go on forever beneath her short summery dress. Duke watched with interest as he listened to Pierce relay the most recent information from the attorneys and engineers.

The woman glanced at her watch, then settled her hand on her hip. A voice rang out from inside the building, and the pretty woman hurried back inside.

“I just found proof of life,” he said to Pierce as he stepped onto the sandy path. “I’ll call you once I’ve done some recon.”

Meet the Author

Melissa Foster is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning author. She writes sexy and heartwarming contemporary romance and new adult romance with emotionally compelling characters that stay with you long after you turn the last page. Melissa's emotional journeys are lovingly erotic and always family oriented--perfect beach reads for contemporary romance lovers who enjoy reading about wealthy heroes and smart, sassy heroines.

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Claimed by Love (Love in Bloom: The Ryders, Book Two): Duke Ryder 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 44 reviews.
CassandraNZ 3 months ago
Sisters in Love is book #39 in the Love in Bloom series and is book #2 in the Ryders series but can be read as a standalone. Family law attorney Gabriella Liakos has one true love, Elpitha Island where she grew up and hopes to someday return. But Elpitha is in financial ruins and Gabriella will do anything to keep in from falling into the wrong hands. Duke Ryder is a real estate investor set on making Elpitha into an exclusive resort. He’s not scared of purchasing a property where one family had roots so deep they practically reach the ocean floor until he meets his beautiful, stubborn and enticing tour host, the daughter of the owner of most of the island. But as hot, rough and dirty as this man is, he is also sweet, caring and supportive. Both Duke and Gabriella are immediately drawn to each other but have conflicting agendas. Can they successfully separate business and pleasure? **CONTENT WARNING: Due to mature content, recommended for readers aged 18+**
JenPH 3 months ago
Claimed by Love is the second novel in The Ryders, a mini-series in the Love in Bloom universe by bestselling author Melissa Foster. Set on Elpitha Island, this is the story of real estate investor Duke Ryder and family law attorney Gabriella Liakos. Duke and his partners are interested in purchasing the Liakos-owned island, which isn't as profitable as it once was. Gabriella has been brought in by her grandfather to make sure Duke sees everything the Elpitha Island has to offer, but Gabriella isn't keen on selling the one place she's always considered home. Profitability is key in every business deal, but Duke finds himself distracted by his tour guide. He's never been one to cross the line between business and pleasure, but the more time he spends on the island and the more he learns about Gabriella, her family, and their heritage, the more Duke is enchanted. The mix of Greek culture and Southern charm are in full force, but a deal still needs to be made. Can Duke lay claim over Elpitha Island as well as the passionate woman who so loves it? This was a straight-up romance without any significant issues that either of the main character needs to overcome, whether as individuals or as a couple. There's that instant chemistry between Gabriella and Duke and there are definitely both sweet and steamy moments that make for a good read for any romance reader. They're both very close to their respective families and Duke can fully understand and appreciate why Gabriella isn't too thrilled over the idea of selling Elpitha Island. Other than the thing with the island, however, there isn't really any conflict that would have upped my overall enjoyment of the book. Don't get me wrong. The love story itself--Duke and Gabriella meeting and falling in love and realizing that they're each other's "the one"--made for a huge reason why I liked this second in the series. However, I personally think some conflict or a truly believable challenge to their relationship and a happily-ever-after would have been the extra something to make it better. Still, Claimed by Love was a worthwhile four-star read. ♥
TheUltimateFanBlog More than 1 year ago
I continue to enjoy the world of Melissa Foster. She has created such an enticing web of people and continues to build on each character. Each story has its own flair in that it doesn’t repeat what you’ve already read in the previous stories. You become familiar with the families, seeing how they fit in each other’s lives and ultimately how their new found love is integrated. Claimed By Love is Duke and Gabriella’s story. In the opening, we get an individual perspective on how they feel about the pending purchase of the island. Gabriella’s family owns and lives on the island, so we get the “personal” side. Duke comes in as the perspective investor so his viewpoint is based on “how can we improve?”. You may wonder why I put this in my review, but it’s one of the first things that stood out to me. I thought it was interesting because of what each had at stake if things went south. As far as the characters, I thought Gabriella was definitely a strong-willed and family oriented person. She was also someone you could rely on and is a good friend. I thought Duke was also a strong-willed person, ambitious, and when he loves, he loves hard. They both had an intense, passionate side. They were perfect for each other. As with all of Ms. Foster’s books, I thoroughly enjoyed Duke and Gabriella’s story. It always feels like I’m catching up with old friends.
wifetoalineman02 More than 1 year ago
I never wanted to eat Hershey's Kisses this bad again Claimed By Love by Ms. Melissa Foster is another amazing series from The Ryders' brothers. This book is another fun, hot and hopelessly romantic story between Duke and Gabriella that I cannot put my Nook down. I have read so many books of Ms. Foster but her story always put a smile on my face. It is always different though the characters are related with the other books. You will never get dull reading her writings. You will always get bothered (the best kind) when you read her books. I never wanted to eat Hershey's Kisses so badly again. No wonder I love munching those tiny chocolates and I get the feeling of Gabriella and Addy every time they eat this chocolates. It melted not just in your mouth. Duke is another heroine that makes you head fall in-love big time. This guy is not only tall, handsome, successful but carrying his heart on his sleeve. No girl cannot resist his charm and Gabriella is one of them. These two are insatiable. Their intimate scenes are so special that feels like you are in the story. I LOVED it. Disclosure: I received an e-book in exchange of my honest review.
AngelaMc1 More than 1 year ago
Sometimes I read books by the same author and I get bored. Melissa Foster keeps her books steamy and I definitely do not get bored with her series. This was another well written hot book that I enjoyed a lot. The story line is a really good one. Duke wants to buy an island to build a resort and Gabriella is his tour guide. From the moment Duke meets her he is smitten. Does Duke win her over? Their journey brings in some Greek culture and I thought that made the read interesting. I was not disappointed with this book at all!
missfee81 More than 1 year ago
I received this book to review through Beck Valley Books Book Tours, all the opinions above are 100% my own. The Ryders are back and Claimed by Love follows Duke Ryder and Gabriella Liakos set in the beautiful surroundings of Elpitha Island. The island sounds amazing and is a mix of Greek and Southern US heritage. I fell in love with the island and Gabriella so it was any wonder that Duke did as well. He is on the island as a potential investor due to Gabrialla’s grandfather putting the island up for sale – the tourism is suffering and most of the younger generations have moved to the main land. Gabriella is back on the island to facilitate the sale on behalf of he grandfathers wishes and be Duke’s tour guide – she has taken a break form her high flying job as divorce lawyer. This is a slower paced story form Melissa with no drama and I think with the island setting this is the perfect story and perfect way to tell it. The intense chemistry between them from the outset and the struggle to keep business and pleasure apart and throw in a beautiful island is a recipe for a great love story. For all this is book 2 in the Ryders and part of the Love in Bloom series this can easily be read as a stand alone = as will all Melissa’s book. 5 Stars
skybluepink More than 1 year ago
I’ve been a fan of Melissa Foster’s for awhile now. Everytime I get my hands on one of her books i know that I don't want to do anything else until I’ve finished with the book. This book was no exception. Gabriella’s family lives on an island. Her grandfather wants to sell it and she doesn’t want to see that happen. Duke is one of investors that comes to the island to see take a look around and size it up. Gabriella’s grandfather arranges for her to give Duke a tour of the island. Duke sizes up more than just the island, or was that part of the plan? You can never tell when love will start to bloom. It can start from the similiest of meetings. Fireworks start from day 1 for Gabriella and Duke. I really enjoy Melissa’s forms of romance. They are hot (like 3 alarm hot) but yet you can totally see it happening in real life as well. I highly recommend this book and the rest in the series. I received this book for free in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions in this book are 100% my own.
Majorly_Delicious More than 1 year ago
Claimed by Love in the highly anticipated second installment in Melissa Foster's Love in Bloom: Ryder Family series. Gabriella Liakos is a tough family law attorney from New York. When she receives a phone call from her grandfather asking for her help to save her family's island from investors she rushed home. Duke Ryder is a real estate investor who, along with his partner Pierce Braden, is looking at opening a new resort on Gabriella's family island. Gabriella's family has charged her with showing the good-looking Duke around the island in hopes that she will be able to scare him away from investing and building on the island. Duke however has other plans. He is instantly attracted to the beautiful Gabriella and the more time he spends with her the more he wants to get to know her and make he his. The pull and tug dynamics of this relationship makes this book such a great read. These two are deeply attracted to each other both physically and emotionally but neither are willing to sway on their view points for the island. Only time will tell if these two will be able to work together in to turning the island into the vision they both have and if this vision will include a HEA for them. I received an eARC of the book compliments of the publisher for my honest review and opinion. All ratings and opinions stated are my own.
Aiesa1 More than 1 year ago
I do like this couple. The island home Gabriella has grown up with seem to be getting lost in today’s world. Duke can see potential and progress on the horizon for this quaint tourist destination. Tourist season never lasts long enough for the island to survive much longer. As we follow Duke and his ambition to create something lasting here, the bells and whistles sound admist his encounters with Gabriella. The question is whether the two can come to the conclusion that the island needs this, just as they need each other. Melissa Foster has created another beloved couple for us to adore. Her writing leaves us where we are, as it should be, a part of their story.
Silvie_MySillyLittleGang More than 1 year ago
With every book I read by Melissa Foster she becomes more and more a favorite of mine. In this book we meet Duke and Gabriella. This is another hot and steamy romance that had me coming up for air constantly. Even though this is the second book in the series, it is a great stand alone book and can be read separately. But trust me you are going to want to read all of Melissa Foster’s books. In this book Melissa Foster gives us great insight into the fictional Island of Elpitha. The author has such a way with words that when reading any of her books you can really picture the scene and characters. This is definitely another great read, I can’t wait for the next book.
A_Gluten_Free_Mom More than 1 year ago
I really liked how the focus of this particular romance novel was on investing first, love second. Recently my personal focus has been on the financial aspect of my life. Let's face it, I'm not getting any younger and providing for my kids future has taken a center stage. I really liked the fact that Duke started off with a clear financial plan and didn't let anything change his goal of making a profit. Of course, meeting Gabriella throws a wrench in those plans, but making the deal is never far from his mind. Foster intricately weaves a growing love story between Gabriella, Duke, and Elpitha island that you can't put down. This is the first time I've witnessed a love triangle of this nature and totally love the new dynamic that this provided.
IrishDaisy More than 1 year ago
This is another great read by one of my most favourite authors - Melissa Foster who definitely knows her stuff when it comes to steamy romance novels. We meet Gabriella and Duke in this latest instalment of The Ryders Series. Duke is a sexy, sweet strong family man and Gabriella is no different especially when it comes to family and their Island of Elpitha which is in bad need of some investment. Gabriella is in no way supportive of the Island being sold, it is her home where she finds peace and tranquil that gives her a break from her New York lawyers office. But her grandfather has asked for her help and she can not refuse. The author gives us great insight into the fictional Island of Elpitha and when reading you can picture the scene. Without going into too much detail if your a fan of Melissa Foster you need to read this!! Their is chemistry between these two character and you can see a strong family bond on both sides, we also get a little peak at past Braden's which is always a plus when reading Ms Foster's books
JessicaCali More than 1 year ago
I don’t think Melissa Foster is capable of writing a bad book! All of her books are 100% addictive and oh so good! I love the plot line in this book & learning a little about some of the Greek Culture, since this book is set on Elpitha Island, a small island owned and inhabited by an extended family of Greeks. Gabriella’s Grandfather asked her to come home & meet with an investor who is looking at purchasing the island for a result. The investor is Duke Ryder, one of the oh so handsome Ryder clan! They meet at the Ferry and BAM! Instant attraction! As with all of Melissa’s books, there is a HUGE feeling of family, because all of the families in her books are super close! This book, such as with all of her books, are great as a part of a series, however they CAN be read as a stand alone also! Book received as a part of Beck Valley Book Tours in exchange for my honest opinion. All opinions are 100% my own,
BookMomto6 More than 1 year ago
While I am, and always will be, a mountain girl. Islands call my name in a different way. Elpitha is no exception. I want to spend time there, walking all over, exploring. I’m also in love with Gabriella. I am routinely drawn to strong female characters. Gabriella is not only strong, but also smart and brave. She is floundering in her career. It is not what she wants, or has ever wanted. I enjoyed reading about the struggle that was internal to her part of the story. Yes, she was struggling with doing what was best for her family and the island but her personal struggle was almost of more interest to me. Foster has once again taken the writing of a romance novel and given the reader so much more. There is the pull of big family ties, the internal struggle Gabriella faces, and the love story that evolves. Claimed by Love will make a great read anywhere, anytime but I can definitely see it as one of my summer beach reads.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was too darn cheesy. Duke and gabriella kept saying the same thinkbeach chapter. Not worth 4.99.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Looking to invest money in improving an island, whose majority of land is owned by a loving family. Sparks fly between investor and family negotiator. The plot takes the two of them down a loving road. Can two different ideas merge? Time to read the book!
ReneeEntress More than 1 year ago
4.5 star I was pulled right into this story. The story has laughs, secrets, sadness, pain, and heartbreak. If you have not read the below I would recommend reading those books(s) first Seized By Love (Love In Bloom; The Ryders, #1) This is Gabriella and Duke’s story. Gabriella will do anything to protect her home and her one love, Elpitha Island. Duke wants the Island so he can turn it into an exclusive resort. When he meets Gabriella the daughter of the family that owns most of the island sparks fly. Gabriella wants Duke but not in place of losing the Island. Duke who at first only wanted the Island knows now he also wants Gabriella. Can he get her to understand he wants it all? Can he convince her that he is not just after the Island he is after forever with her? Can Gabriella trust Duke wants her or really is he only after the Island and she is standing in the way of that? I felt I was able to connect with the characters and the story was a great read. I highly recommend this book and this author.
LynchburgMama More than 1 year ago
You know the old saying, "Opposites attract"? Melissa captures this phrase so perfectly with Duke and Gabriella! Gabriella is deep-rooted in her family and their history while Duke is more about innovation and future movement. It's like oil and water - however, the instant attraction catches Gabriella off guard because she wants to save the island without destroying what is most precious to her. Duke challenges her (in more ways than one!) with his abilities to embrace changes in the world. Quickly, the pair becomes more like a match to a flame. They may have differences in their wants initially, but soon, they can't resist the fact that they want the exact same things in life. Their connection is strong and deep-rooted in their families. I think that makes this a power couple that, together, can do anything! For someone who resists change so much, Gabriella makes a lot of changes throughout the book and the ending left me hopeful in the fact that love still conquers all! I received this book to review through Beck Valley Books Book Tours, all the opinions above are 100% my own.
LynnB888 More than 1 year ago
Filled with instant attraction, battling from two different sides of a coin, fun loving families, and HOT sex! I felt this one was slightly slower to get started than some of Melissa's others books, but once they decided to act on their attraction and become the center of the story line, it really got interesting! Duke Ryder is a successful real estate investor, and visits Elpitha Island to look the property over in anticipation of making the head of the Liakos family an offer to develop a resort there. Gabriella Liakos is an attorney in New York City, but her heart is on Elpitha Island where her family is and where she grew up. She returns to the island at her grandfather's request to give Duke a tour and answer his questions about the property. She hopes she can dissuade him from buying it, because she doesn't want her quiet island ruined by development. When she and Duke have an instant attraction to each other that they decide not to try to fight, will there be able to be a happy ending for either of them?
CharlotteLynnsReviews More than 1 year ago
Panty melting smile…. How can you not love a book that uses that to describe the hunky, sexy, and wonderful main character? I couldn’t pass up on reading Duke’s story when that is how Gabriella describes him. Who am I kidding? I couldn’t pass up reading Claimed by Love because it is written by the amazing Melissa Foster and is part of the Love in Bloom series. In true Love in Bloom style, Duke and Gabriella have a true and real love. Their attraction is instantaneous but they have to work for it. It would have been easy to just fall in to bed and hope for the best but Duke is just too good of a guy for a quick lay with Gabriella. Gabriella is also a wonderful character. She calls out Duke on his intentions with the island, she hold tight to her beliefs and wants, and make Duke work to win her over for good. Together these two are absolutely on fire. I also loved that other Love in Bloom characters make appearances in Claimed by Love. Pierce Braden (sigh), Emily, and of course those wonderful Ryder siblings all made appearances. This book can be read as part of the series, which I recommend, or it can be read as a standalone. **CONTENT WARNING: Due to mature content, recommended for readers aged 18+**
lifeasleels More than 1 year ago
Oh oh oh how I loved Claimed by Love! First and foremost – where can I find an island just like Elpitha? Seriously. I want to live there. I loved everything about this book and that Gabriella’s grandfather had so much faith in not only her, but in Duke as well. I wondered (and still do wonder) if her grandfather had checked Duke out prior to Duke arriving to the island. It would certainly explain some things! As usual, this was a hot, steamy romance from Melissa and one that I would love nothing more than to have a follow up with to see what happened after. Trust me when I say, Claimed by Love will put a silly smile on your face and a dreamy look in your eyes!
SherryMH More than 1 year ago
I could spend months in Melissa Foster's fictional worlds, but I have to say that Duke's world ranks up there at the top of my favorite's list. A great setting on Elpitha Island and a decent match up with Gabriella. I think my heart was invested in this one even before the end of the tour around the island. Will this man risk everything he had planned for one feisty woman? As with other Melissa Foster books within the Love in Bloom series, family is a mainstay and is always at the forefront of her storytelling. Gabriella's family takes the cake with their ability to make you feel like an outsider, or one of the family, depending on how they view the outsider. An intimate setting with two strong characters makes for an emotional read with a great love story. Duke is another strong, willing, able man from the mind of Melissa Foster! Great writing, interesting twists and not much angst make me glad I picked up Claimed by Love. Witty banter, heart-pulling emotion, and the love of family surround Duke and Gabriella in this sweet and sexy romance novel.
dewer421 More than 1 year ago
Gabriella's family has owned most of Elpitha Island for generations, and their enormous extended family is a unique combination of Southern and Greek. However, their island is slowly falling apart. With a lack of tourism income, houses are falling apart and families are sending their youth off the island to college and to have a better life. Gabriella is a family law lawyer, and her grandfather has asked her to come back to Elpitha to show around an investor who is coming to purchase part of the island to develop it. Since Gabriella loves the island and doesn't want to see it turned into a huge casino complex, she's ready to fight the development at all costs. When Duke Ryder shows up, he is definitely not what she was expecting. However, no matter how interested they are in each other, the potential development will always be between them. Can they find love and agree about the future of the island? Or will they let a few square miles of land come between the love of a lifetime? I loved this story, the romance (and the steamy scenes), but I missed seeing many of my favorite characters from the other Love in Bloom books. Since this story was set on an island and so devoted to Gabriella and Duke we didn't hear many updates about previous characters in Mrs. Foster's books. This book is part of a series but can definitely be read as a stand alone book. *I received this book to review through Beck Valley Books Book Tours, all the opinions above are 100% my own.
BFF_K_BFF_Book_Blog More than 1 year ago
You have to be ok with Insta-Love....Just a warning about this story line. When Duke and Gabriella meet one another there is an instant chemistry and attraction that overwhelms them both. Their trip from strangers to soul mates is so quick it will leave you spinning. If you're ok with Insta-Love, this is a really wonderful, romantic, heart-felt story. Gabriella grew up on the fictional island of Elpitha. Though she spends her days as a successful family attorney in NYC, her heart longs for to be on the island surrounded by family and friends. Duke comes to the island to consider the possibility of investing in the property and turning it into a bright and shiny playground for people with time and money to spend. But, when he meets Gabriella, his thoughts are only about saving the island and preserving her visions of both what it is and what it can be. There is tension in the story, a push and pull of Gabriella and Duke learning one another and learning how to trust one another. (Though that's not really surprising considering the short time they've known each other.) There is no denying the spark that ignites between the two and their roller coaster relationship is steamy and sweet, just be sure to hold on for the quick and wild ride! If you can accept and embrace an Insta-Love story with a sweet and determined heroine and a protective, caring, committed alpha hero, then this is definitely a one-click. Claimed by Love is a solid romance that takes the reader on a fun little ride. An advance copy was received in exchange for an honest review. BFF Book Blog uses an additional set of icon ratings. This book received additional ratings for: character development, happily ever after, hero, heroine, romance, steamy, sweet and tension.
MikiHope More than 1 year ago
Love at first glance--Duke took one look at Gabriella who was doing her darndest to get him to leave Elpitha Island, and that is all it took--one glance. Gabriella wasn't making much headway getting him to leave the island--and he was really good looking. But she had to save her family's island home at all costs--and if that meant trying to get this investor to leave--- Duke ---well he would do anything to get and keep Gabriella for all time--and boy does he ever--it gets really steamy. Will Gabriella be able to learn to really trust after handling all the divorce cases she's been involved in in her law practice? Will Duke be able to finally convince her that he is for real and never says anything that he doesn't mean?