Dream Wedding: Dream Bride\Dream Groom [NOOK Book]

Overview


New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery brings her trademark wit and sparkle to these two classic tales of dreams come true…

Dream Bride

According to family legend, Chloe Wright is destined to dream of her future groom on her twenty-fifth birthday. Chloe doesn't believe in fate, so she's shocked to find her path crossing with a handsome stranger. Arizona Smith is everything Chloe has ever wanted in a man. But she's not about to fall in...

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Dream Wedding: Dream Bride\Dream Groom

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Overview


New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery brings her trademark wit and sparkle to these two classic tales of dreams come true…

Dream Bride

According to family legend, Chloe Wright is destined to dream of her future groom on her twenty-fifth birthday. Chloe doesn't believe in fate, so she's shocked to find her path crossing with a handsome stranger. Arizona Smith is everything Chloe has ever wanted in a man. But she's not about to fall in love, especially since Arizona never settles anywhere for long. Still, his electrifying kisses and irresistible charm have Chloe suddenly wondering if there's something to that legend after all….

Dream Groom

Cassie Bradley Wright knows the fantasy of being swept off her feet by her boss is just that—a fantasy. After all, Ryan Lawford is way out of her league. And business and balance sheets are his whole world. But little does Cassie know that her sweet ways are changing his mind. The former determined bachelor just might take on the role of dream groom.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
The wildly popular and prolific Mallery can always be counted on to tell an engaging story of modern romance." -Booklist on Summer Nights

"Susan Mallery is one of my favorites." -#1 New York Times bestselling author Debbie Macomber

"Mallery infuses her story with eccentricity, gentle humor, and smalltown shenanigans, and readers...will enjoy the connection between Heidi and Rafe." -Publishers Weekly on Summer Days

"An adorable, outspoken heroine and an intense hero...set the sparks flying in Mallery's latest lively, comic, and touching family-centered story." -Library Journal on Only Yours

"Romance novels don't get much better than Mallery's expert blend of emotional nuance, humor and superb storytelling." -Booklist

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781460322529
  • Publisher: Harlequin
  • Publication date: 11/26/2013
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 20,586
  • File size: 450 KB

Meet the Author

Susan Mallery

New York Times bestselling author Susan Mallery has entertained millions of readers with her witty and emotional stories about women. Publishers Weekly calls Susan’s prose “luscious and provocative,” and Booklist says “Novels don’t get much better than Mallery’s expert blend of emotional nuance, humor and superb storytelling.” Susan lives in Seattle with her husband and her tiny but intrepid toy poodle. Visit her at SusanMallery.com.

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Read an Excerpt

"I wish I was going to dream about the man I was going to marry," Cassie said and grinned. "I know how excited you are about it."

Chloe Bradley Wright looked at her sister. "Oh, yeah. Too excited for words." She fingered the soft lace of the nightgown she held. "Do I have to do this?"

"You don't have to do anything."

If only that were true, Chloe thought with regret. But she did have to wear the stupid nightgown. It was her twenty-fifth birthday and time for her to participate in the family legend. Not that she believed in magic or happily-ever-after. As far as she was concerned, falling in love or caring about someone was a one-way ticket to heartache.

She opened her mouth to express her opinion, then pressed her lips tightly together. She might not be a believer, but her sister, Cassie, had more than enough faith for the both of them.

Chloe stared into the face that was nearly as familiar as her own. Cassie was adopted, but younger by only six months. The two girls had been together since Cassie was four weeks old and they were best friends. Chloe had shared her admittedly cynical opinion on more than one occasion, but Cassie's belief in the legend had never wavered. Who was she to try and change her sister's mind now? It was just for one night. What could it hurt?

"I'll wear it," she said, trying to sound gracious.

Cassie leaned forward and hugged her. "I knew you would," she said and bounced off the bed. Her short, thick brown hair swung around her face. "I'll go tell Aunt Charity. Won't she be surprised?"

"Probably not," Chloe muttered when she was alone. Aunt Charity had a sixth sense about these things. No doubt the older woman figured she already knew whom Chloe was going to dream about.

"I'm not going to dream about anyone," she said aloud as she pulled her T-shirt over her head, then slipped out of her jeans. "It's just a nightgown. It has no mystic powers. It's now the twenty-first century, for heaven's sake! No one believes that kind of thing."

She unfastened her bra and tossed the garment onto the floor, then picked up the nightgown. The cotton was cool to her touch and she shivered involuntarily.

"It's nothing," she insisted. But she hesitated before pulling the soft fabric over her head. What if the legend was true? What if she was really going to dream about the man she was destined to love? What if—"What if people have been abducted by aliens lurking in cornfields?" she asked aloud.

"Oh, I don't think those stories are true," her aunt said as she entered the bedroom. Charity raised dark eyebrows. "So how much did Cassie have to twist your arm to get you to wear it tonight?"

Chloe shrugged as she smoothed the nightgown in place. "Not too much. I figure it's an inevitable rite of passage for Bradley women, as inescapable as birthdays and taxes. I'm just sorry she's going to be disappointed in the morning."

"Yes," Charity said as she moved to the bed and pulled back the covers. "It will be sad. Cassie is one of those rare types who is a true believer. There aren't many left."

Chloe had turned twenty-five that very day, but suddenly she felt like a ten-year-old with a favorite relative staring at a less than perfect report card, all the while telling her the low grades were fine, as long as she'd tried her best.

"You can't tell me you believe in the legend," Chloe said as she plopped down on the edge of her bed.

Charity settled next to her. The older woman was of average height with the Wright family's dark eyes and hair. She had to be in her mid-fifties, but she could have easily passed for someone a dozen years younger.

"I've traveled all around the world," Charity reminded her. "I've seen many amazing things. As for magic and legends?" She shrugged. "Who's to say what's real and what isn't?"

Chloe snorted indelicately. "Give me a break. So you're saying that this nightgown is several hundred years old and is magical?"

"You never know."

Chloe fingered the soft cotton. "It's in pretty good shape for an antique."

"So am I, dear." Charity patted her hand.

"You're hardly an antique." She drew in a deep breath. "It would be nice if it were all true, but I just can't take that step of faith."

"That's the reporter in you."

"Agreed. But someone in this family has to be practical. Between you and Cassie, you've always got your heads in the clouds."

"I'm back," Cassie announced as she bounded back in the room. She held something in her hand and before Chloe could figure out what it was, she tossed it in the air. Dozens of red, pink and cream rose petals drifted over Chloe, Aunt Charity and the bed.

"My contribution," her sister said with a smile as she settled in the small wingback chair by the closet door.

Chloe pulled rose petals from her hair. Her irritation faded in the presence of such loving support. Who was she to fight against tradition?

"You win," she said as she stood up.

Charity rose as well. "It's best, dear. You'll see." She waited until Chloe climbed into bed, then tucked in the covers. "Sleep well."

When she'd left, Cassie moved close and crouched down. "Dream of someone wonderful," she instructed. "Rich and handsome and very loving." Her wide dark eyes softened at the thought. "Someone who will want to be with you forever."

"What a romantic," Chloe teased. "I'll do my best."

Cassie straightened. "In the morning, I want details. Lots of them."

"I promise. Oh, and thanks for the party. It was great."

Her sister smiled. "My pleasure." She walked out of the room and closed the door behind her.

Chloe leaned up on one elbow and clicked off the lamp, then settled onto the bed that had been hers since she'd turned thirteen. The room had been decorated several times, but except for three years in high school, she'd slept here her whole life. Everything about the room, the house and even the town was familiar to her. Yet tonight, it all felt different.

"Atmosphere," she told herself softly. It was all the talk of magic and legends. Even a confirmed cynic like her was bound to be affected.

She pulled the covers up to her chin and closed her eyes. Memories from her twenty-fifth-birthday party drifted through her mind and made her smile. She'd wanted something small, friends and family only. Cassie and Aunt Charity had prepared dinner. The presents had been mostly gag gifts, which she preferred. Nothing sentimental for her.

She had a busy week planned at the magazine. She mentally listed all she had to do in the next few days.

As her mind relaxed and she started to get sleepy, thoughts of the legend intruded. According to family lore, several centuries ago a young woman had saved an old gypsy from certain death. In return the gypsy had given her a magic nightgown. If the women in her family—the Bradley family—wore this nightgown the night of their twenty-fifth birthday, they would dream of the man they were destined to marry. The union would be long and happy.

"Yeah, right," Chloe muttered as she turned on her side. "He'll probably come riding up on a white horse and sweep me away."

She knew exactly what she was going to dream about—what she always dreamed about. Nothing. Her nights were as quiet and uneventful as an empty drawer and that was just how she liked them. The nightgown wasn't magic. The legend wasn't real. And she was suddenly very, very sleepy.

He appeared out of the darkness, not on a white horse, but in a Jeep that roared up the side of the mountain.

"This isn't happening," Chloe told herself even as anticipation filled her. She clung to the side of the rocks as the wind whipped at her hair and made the hem of her nightgown snap like a sail.

"Nightgown?" She stared down at herself. Dear Lord, she was naked except for a thin layer of lacy cotton. What on earth?

"You're dreaming," she told herself. "That's all. Just dreaming. Go with it and you'll be fine."

But the reassurance didn't keep her heart from pounding as the Jeep drew closer. The man inside stopped it a scant two feet from her, then climbed out.

He was tall—substantially taller than her five feet nine inches—and lean. "At least he's really good-looking," Chloe said to herself. "I mean if I have to dream about some strange guy, I don't want him to look like the king of the nerds or something."

The man didn't speak. Instead he walked over to her, ripped off his shirt, then pulled her hard against his gleaming chest.

"I like this," she said, feeling the masculine length of his body pressing into hers.

"Hush, love. I am your destiny."

"Uh-huh. And I'm a direct descendant of Queen Victoria."

She stared into the greenest eyes she'd ever seen. The dream was amazingly real. She could feel the wind, the heat of the man's body, his breath on her cheek. She swallowed. She even felt him pressing up against her. Wow! She had to get out more. Her subconscious was obviously way too bored with her life.

"I want you," the man said.

"Then take me, big boy. I'm yours."

He kissed her. Chloe stifled a shriek of both shock and pleasure. Talk about going for it. His mouth claimed hers in the most perfect, masterful way. She felt small and delicate and incredibly free. This was a dream, after all. She could say or do anything she wanted and no one would ever have to know.

She clutched his face and pulled back. "I have one request," she said.

"Make it. I'll do anything for you."

"Great. Just don't disappear on me until we're finished, okay? I hate those sex dreams where I wake up about thirty seconds from the good part. It does not make for a restful night."

Instead of answering, he swept her up in his arms and carried her into the cave. There a fire burned low. Their bed was soft, fresh, sweet-smelling straw. How nice of her brain to supply the details.

The stranger made love to her with a tender thoroughness that left her breathless and trembling. He touched and kissed every part of her. Much to her relief, she didn't wake up before the good part. In fact the good part happened at least twice. He even made her scream once and she'd never been a screamer.

"Who are you?" she asked when they at last stretched out together. They were both slick with sweat and breathing hard. She traced his perfect body, her fingers lingering on a scar on his left forearm.

"Your destiny."

"So you said, but do you actually have a name, or should I just call you Mr. D.?"

He raised his head and stared at her. His gaze was so intense, she felt as if she could see down to the bottom of his soul. Whatever lurked there called to her. She wanted to respond, but didn't know how. This was still a dream, right? It wasn't real. But for that second, she desperately wanted it to be.

"You'll know me," he told her as the world around them faded to black.

She tried to grab on to him, but his hand slipped through hers. Before she could even cry out, he was gone and she was alone.

"How was it? Start at the beginning and talk very slowly." Chloe blinked at the bright light and realized it was morning. She glanced around in confusion, then saw she was back in her own room, in her familiar bed. Cassie bounced on the mattress next to her and grinned. "So, who is he? Who did you dream about?"

"What?"

Chloe sat up slowly. Her head was spinning and she couldn't quite wake up. Maybe because she didn't feel rested. It was almost as if she'd spent the night running around. Or making love with a handsome, mysterious stranger.

She pushed the last thought away. Nothing had happened. She'd had a couple of weird dreams. They were probably the result of too much chocolate cake and ice cream. They didn't mean anything.

Cassie was still in the oversized T-shirt she regularly wore to bed. Her thick hair was mussed, her face flushed from sleep. "Do you mean to tell me you didn't dream about anyone? Not even one guy?"

Chloe sat up and hugged her arms to her chest. Her body ached pleasantly and there was a definite dampness between her legs. Too weird, she told herself silently. But she did not believe in family legends. The dream had been a fluke, not a prophecy. She wasn't going to encourage Cassie's flights of fancy.

"I didn't dream of anyone," she said slowly, instantly picturing the handsome man who had swept her into that cave. It was all too embarrassing. What was she supposed to say? That the sex had been great, thank you very much? She couldn't admit anything to anyone.

Cassie's smile faded. "But I thought it was real." She sounded as if someone had stolen her last hope.

Chloe grimaced. She had done exactly that. But she couldn't tell the truth. She just couldn't!

"I'm sorry," she said and touched her sister's arm. "It's just a nightgown, kid. Like any other."

"Okay. Aunt Charity warned me the legend might just be a story, but I didn't want to believe her. I guess I'm going to have to." Cassie looked as if she was going to say more, then untangled herself from the covers and stood up. "I'll go start the coffee."

When Chloe was alone, she collapsed back on the pillow. She felt strange inside. Off center somehow. Was it the dream?

"There is no legend," she said aloud. "The dream was just my subconscious's way of telling me it's time to start dating. I'll take the hint. Today in the office, I'll look around for a likely candidate."

But as she walked to the bathroom, instead of trying to figure out which eligible men would interest her, she found herself picturing him. She shivered…not in fear or irritation, but at the memory of what his touch had done to her.

A hot shower went a long way to restoring her spirits. As she toweled off, she checked her arms and the tops of her breasts. Nothing. Just her regular skin. She'd half expected to see the lingering marks from his lovemaking.

"I must remember to ask Aunt Charity if insanity runs in the family," she said as she chose her clothes for the day.

Fifteen minutes later, her hair was dry and she was dressed. She headed for the kitchen and that healing first cup of coffee. As she reached for the coffeepot, Cassie flipped on the small television. They usually watched one of the morning shows while they ate breakfast.

Chloe had the pot in one hand and a mug in the other. Then a familiar voice filled the room and she froze.

"The gem exhibit is an exciting find," he said. "But I can't take full credit for bringing it to the university. It takes a very large committee to pull this kind of thing together."

Goose bumps puckered up and down her arms. She set the coffeepot back on its burner so she wouldn't drop it, and put the mug on the counter. Then, very slowly, she turned to face the television.

The camera focused on the perky hostess of the local morning show. Then the picture on the screen panned right. A man came into view. A handsome man. A man who, until sometime last night, she'd never seen before. But she knew him. She knew every inch of his body. She'd touched and tasted him, she knew his scent so well, she could have found him in the dark.

"Why do you think you're always the one to make the great discoveries?" the woman asked.

The man smiled. Chloe felt her heart shudder in her chest, and she began to tingle all over. She might not want to remember, but her body wouldn't let her forget.

The man smiled. "Just lucky, I guess."

The hostess practically sighed. "Unfortunately we're out of time. Just to remind our viewers, Arizona Smith will be lecturing at the university on his fabulous gem find. There are still tickets available, but they're going fast. The gems themselves will be on display throughout the month. Mr. Smith, it's been my pleasure having you here this morning."

Chloe's mouth twisted. The woman was practically cooing. So much for professionalism, she thought, refusing to acknowledge the white heat inside of her that some might call jealousy.

So her mystery man had a name. Arizona Smith. Which meant he was real. She thought about the nightgown, the Bradley family legend, the dream. Oh, Lord, it couldn't be true. He was not her destiny. He couldn't be. She didn't want a destiny like that. She avoided relationships.

It doesn't matter, she told herself fiercely. The man is in town for maybe a week. It's not as if I'll ever run into him.

"I've got to get to work early," she told Cassie.

"Don't you want your coffee?"

Chloe was already heading out the door. "I'll grab some on the way," she called over her shoulder, and made her escape to freedom.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 25 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(19)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(1)

2 Star

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1 Star

(3)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 25 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 9, 2013

    Dream Bride:I believe this was the first Susan Mallery book I've

    Dream Bride:I believe this was the first Susan Mallery book I've read that seemed to start out slow, in my opinion at least. Although like
    any great Mallery book, Dream Bride drew me in and kept me turning the pages. Who needs sleep? 
    Arizona was a man determined to stay single because of the way the men in his family behaved towards family and responsibilities.
    Chloe didn't want to believe in the magic of the nightgown she had to wear the night of her 25th birthday. Together they learned to believe
    in magic and love.

    Dream Groom:Cassie was so intent on having roots in her life she didn't realize she was settling for a less than stellar guy. When she
    walked into Ryan's house to help him with his niece her eyes were opened and her plans changed. Settling was no longer in the cards. 

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2014

    Soul

    *sits there crying*

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 10, 2014

    &Tau

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 9, 2014

    Jacob

    Hey

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 24, 2014

    Slate

    Yes its me,

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 27, 2014

    Mossy

    She stared at the two toms.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2014

    Firelight

    Sorry of interupting but heres some prey". She sets down two voles and a mouse. She turns around and pads back to result one.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 23, 2014

    Darkriver

    Padded in

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 6, 2014

    Arimina Jespen

    Name. Arimina Mara Jespen. Age 16. Looks. Se.xy with long black hair and dark blue eyes curves and pale skin. Clothes. A tight navy tank and tan booty shorts with white combat boots hair is in a braid. Uses poison darts learned to play in a bar but never misses she has no family and secretly craves for a bf secretly loves pudding

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 21, 2014

    Jet Tucker

    Name:Jet Tucker*Race:human*looks:short brown hair slightly tan skin jeans with holes in them and a black hoodie with its right arm ripped off to reveal a robotic arm*Personality:Crazy,Loyal,Sarcastic,Vengful,Friendly,Stubborn,Never back down,Means to get on peoples nerves*Weapon:A bow that he painted blac with a quiver of arrows that have a lot of different uses(Think of Green Arrow),two daggers one that is black named 'Ebony' the other is white and named 'Ivory'*Other:His catchphrase is 'Never back down never surrender'

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2014

    Swift

    Male age is your choice race humanoid tiger weapon is a sword of fire

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2014

    Misty

    Name: Misty•Age: you choose•Race: elf•Looks: brown hair, blue eyes, and freackles.•Other: (read my story at 'fisk'[not a typo] res one.)

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 20, 2014

    Character Applications Here!

    For my story, The Heros of Lyt. And remember, they dont have to be human. They can be human or elf (specify which kind of elf) or werewolf or vampire or anything like that! They just have to be humanoid. List name, looks, personality, weapon ( it can be magic, enchanted item, or anything! Just give them something to fight with!), and anything else you can think of! Just have fun making the charactor, and dont be to disapointed if i dont use the charactor.

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  • Posted December 20, 2013

    this is a two-fer. in one story a young girl,chloe has decided

    this is a two-fer. in one story a young girl,chloe has decided never to marry, and the legend of the dream on her 25th birthday has no meaning. but then she meets arizona smith and everything is turned topsy-turvy. she fights the reality but loses. romance is wonderful and miss susan does it very well. the second story concerns chloe's sister, not blood but adopted. cassidy is not sure the dream will come to her since she is not blood relative. she is in love with her boss, ryan. but ryan is looking at cassidy with interested eyes. as her 25th birthday arrives, she is hopeful.....ok, you've just got to read the story to find out. yoju will not be disappointed by either story. susan does romance very well, and i enjoyed this book very much...it will make you go awwwwww!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 20, 2013

    Recommended

    If you like romance novels, you will like anything written by Susan Mallery. I haven't been disappointed yet.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 14, 2013

    -Frozen- Chapter Seven: The Journey To The Cave

    Sakari's heavy eyelids fluttered open. "Hmm?"<p>
    "You passed out." The deep, soothing voice of Alta said.<p>
    "Ohh. Sorry. I guess I held my breath."<p>
    Sakari blinked, the world reappearing around her. A snowbank, a sheet of ice, a huge polar bear spirit, her friend, Qopuk, and.... the baby she had thought up. Qopuk was cradling the little infant in his shirt, it coos filling her ears. "Qopuk! We can't keep her!" She declared, glancing at the trio of vagabonds before her. Her icy eyes trailed to Qopuk's bare chest, her face growing hot. <br>
    "Why not? You materialized it. In a way, this infant-child is you, so you would want to keep yourself, right?" The spirit reasoned with wise words. Sakari untied her braids, her hair flowing down in a twirl of curls. "I guess." She nodded and stepped into the kayak. "Qopuk, Alta, we should get going if we want to save the world!" She raised her hands into the air. "Cmon!" The hulking bear floated inche above the ocean water, almost transparent.
    "I don't need the boat. Traveling spirit-style." He chuckled to himself, though this was not in any way funny. Qopuk hopped in, a worried expression on his face. "Sakari? What if we don't make it in time?" Sakari replied with a smiple answer: "The Spirits will guide us. Haven't any fear." She took his hand as they rowed the boat, gliding across the arctic waters. The baby nestled into Alta's fur, on his back. They decided to name her Katara Lee.<p>
    The mouth of The Cave of Darkness sent dark vibes through the children. It was a grim and cold place. They slipped on thier tunics, then thier coats. Alta lifted his head and set the baby on a soft snowbank, where she rested. "I cannot be with you physically, Sakari." Qopuk and Sakari cocked thier heads as they jumped out of the boat with mere spears and thier newly-discovered powers. "Goodbye." They were still quite confused when Alta's physical form shrank into a mere wisp of light, and then absorbed into her. "Oh!" She exclamied as it sank into her. "That's what he meant. Qopuk watched in amazment. "W'ell defeat him for sure." He grinned, as Sakari gently cradled Katara and slipped her into her hood, where she would remain safe. They started to hustle to the cave. The home of thier worst Nightmares!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 14, 2013

    Frozen_Over

    Wonderful as always :) (more chapters of Grimm are out at 'clareter'. It would be great if yoy read and reviewed them :)

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 2, 2013

    Cute Stories!!

    Susan Mallery is one of my favorite authors and while I would not consider this one of her best efforts the stories of two sisters and their "magic nightgown" were cute stories and I enjoyed them... They were perfect for the Thanksgiving holiday because I only had brief periods to read and since these were short stories and quick reads I did enjoy them and would recommend the book...

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 29, 2013

    Bethany - ADD-ONS

    I have decided this is for addons that you forget in your bio. <p>
    My add-on is my black wings with purple star-like glints and feathers as sharp as knives and hard as steel.

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 29, 2013

    Gee

    So bored

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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