Tuesday, November 24, 2015

{Book Review} Hearts of Blue by L.H. Cosway

 She upholds the law. He breaks it. 

Two blue hearts, both alike in bravery
In not-so-fair London, where we lay our scene
From gun crime to petty theft
Where family is blood and survival makes hands unclean
In this place, we find two hearts who should be foes
And yet, amidst the turmoil their love still grows
Misadventure abounds and the divide will bring them strife
But with luck, death doesn’t always mean an end to life.

Hearts of Blue is a standalone contemporary romance that tells the story of star-crossed lovers Karla Sheehan and Lee Cross, a police constable and the thief who steals her heart.

She upholds the law.....

Karla Sheehan is a straight-laced constable for the London police force. After growing up in a cold, loveless home, Karla made it her mission in life to help people. She loves her job on the force, despite having to struggle for respect in a very male-dominated environment. She has an unshakable view on the law and what it means to be a good person. 
Until she meets Lee Cross.

He breaks it.

Lee Cross is a thief. He's been involved in one illegal activity or another since his early teens, doing whatever he can to feed and care for his brothers after their mother deserted them. Now in his mid-twenties, he's in too deep to get out of the business. He admittedly loves the thrill of it all, and doesn't think much about going legit. 
Until he meets Karla Sheehan.

Their attraction to each other is undeniable, but with such different backgrounds and so many risks surrounding them, is love worth the risk?

Hearts of Blue is the fourth book in L.H. Cosway's Hearts series, with the reading order being Six of Hearts (5 stars), Hearts of Fire (4 stars),  King of Hearts (5 stars), and Hearts of Blue (4.5 stars). They can be read as standalones, but I highly suggest reading them in order, especially if you're planning to read King of Hearts. 
This is one of my favorite series of all time, and I'm thrilled to have gotten an ARC of this gorgeous story. On to the review!

4.5 Thieving Stars!

Hearts of Blue was a beautiful, unique forbidden love story, with plenty of steam and humor and a dash of moral conflict. It's the lightest book in the Hearts series so far, and was a wonderfully fast paced read! I breezed through it in a day, and was anxious to get to back into the world of Lee and Karla whenever I was forced to adult to, engage in real life to stop reading. 

This was going to end in disaster. We lived in two different worlds.
And yet....

I've never read a book where the woman is in law enforcement, and the man is the criminal, so I was quite curious to see how things would pan out. L.H. Cosway made it a fascinating concept! Karla and Lee are complete opposites on every level, and it somehow worked all the better for them. There was plenty of action to go along with the romance and humor, too! 
As an American, I found it quite interesting to see inside a London police force. Between the officers not being outfitted with deadly weapons and the sheer size of such a city, it was neat to see. 

"I love that about you,"
"How you act all tough, but as soon as I touch you, you melt and go all shy. It's gorgeous."

Karla was an interesting heroine, one I wasn't quite sure how to take a first. She was ridged in her ideas of right and wrong, and it was intriguing to see how her feelings shifted over the course of the story. I'm a bit of an anarchist, yet Karla made me think of things from the other side, and brought some compelling ideas to the table. 
Her voice was easy to sink into, and her dry humor kept me giggling. She was a genuinely good person, and I admired her relentless dedication to her job. She was funny, honest, caring, and very smart.
There were a few times I wanted to shake her for refusing to see things from someone else's perspective right off the bat, and I didn't connect to her as much as other Hearts heroines, but she grew on me, and by the end of the story I throughly enjoyed her. I think the disconnect had more to deal with my...flexible views on the law than it her character, I think.

"Sometimes the innocent ones are guilty only because the world didn't give them a chance to stay innocent."

Lee...oh, Lee! The connection that was lacking with Karla was more than made up for with Lee. I loved everything about that man! He was so charismatic, one of those characters that just comes to life before your eyes. He was a badass with a conscience, a generous and attentive lover, a fiercely loyal and protective brother, and an all around good guy, despite his...extracurricular activities. ;)
The icing on the cake with this man is that he's an amazing cook. Be still my beating heart, there is nothing I love more than a hot guy who can cook. Mmmm.

Karla and Lee had great chemistry, with smoking hot sex scenes and plenty of flirty, hilarious banter. I really enjoyed seeing them together!

The side characters were one of my favorite parts of the story. It fleshed out some of the missing information from King Of Hearts, giving us a new peek into Alexis' life and giving more depth to a truly wonderful character. Lee's brothers were a hilarious and intriguing bunch of fellows, and I'm eagerly awaiting their stories!

My favorite thing about Cosway's writing is she never kills us with angst. All of her stories have the potential to turn into serious angst-fests, but it never happens. Real life isn't usually like those stories, and it's so refreshing to pick up a book by her and read something realistic and relatable. The hard parts of the characters' lives are mentioned and acknowledged (and there is some real heartbreak), but not wallowed in. I love it. 

The world isn't blue, isn't lonely anymore, and though I was supposed to be the thief, she was the one who stole my heart. 

Overall, Hearts of Blue is a great forbidden romance, and a lovely addition to the Hearts series. If you like sexy bad boys, humor, romance, action, and some seriously dirty sex, I highly recommend it!


Rating: 4.5 stars
Genre: Adult/new adult, contemporary romance
Series: Hearts, #4
POV: 1st person, primarily single perspective
Steam/sexual content: So steamy, graphic sex
Warnings: Some violence
HEA: Yes
Cliffhanger: No
Format: eBook

ARC for review. Thank you, L.H. Cosway!

Hearts of Blue Buy Links


Tony was about to throw some barb back at him when his radio went off with a call from dispatch. He stepped away so that he could talk to the person on the other end, thus leaving me alone with Lee, who leaned against the doorjamb and gave me a heated little look. “I have to say, I like you in uniform.”
“Oh, shut it.” I rolled my eyes. There was nothing attractive about my uniform. It was basically men’s clothing on a woman.
“I’m not lying. How’s about you come up to my room for a bit and I’ll show you how much I like it?” He paused, eyes flicking to the top of my head as he winked. “You can even leave your hat on.”Completely against my own will, I snickered a laugh, folding my arms across my chest. “No thanks, Tom Jones.”

“I think you’ll find it was Randy Newman who penned the tune. Tom Jones did the cover,” Lee quipped.
I made a concerted effort to regain my professionalism and throw a bucket of cold water over his flirty banter. “When you see your brother, tell him to get himself down the nick to see me.”
“Fucking hell, Snap, you really are Ross Sheehan’s daughter. Growing up must have been shit for you.”
The empathy in his voice caught me off guard. I swallowed but didn’t say anything. Our gazes locked and held, something thick and unspoken passing between us. He took a step outside, past the threshold of his doorway and onto the street. I glanced down at the toes of my boots and back up again, a strand of hair falling from behind my ear. Lee’s hand reached out, as though he were about to tuck it back in, but then he froze before he could touch me. Touching a constable could technically be considered assault. And technically, I could arrest him for that. Maybe that’s why he stopped. Or maybe it was something else.

His eyes softened when he whispered, “If that cranky string of piss weren’t with you right now, it’d be a whole other ball game.”
I looked to Tony, who had just finished with his call. Lee turned and casually went back inside his house, closing the door softly behind him.

L.H. Cosway has a BA in English Literature and Greek and Roman Civilisation, and an MA in Postcolonial Literature. She lives in Dublin city. Her inspiration to write comes from music. Her favourite things in life include writing stories, vintage clothing, dark cabaret music, food, musical comedy, and of course, books.

She thinks that imperfect people are the most interesting kind. They tell the best stories.

As a special treat, the author will write a bonus scene after the tour ends. There will be a poll on her FB page – please direct readers there to vote for the scene in which they would like to see in the male POV – winning scene will be announced at the end of the tour

Tour Poll for Male Pov Scene:
Which scene from Hearts of Blue would you most like to read from Lee’s perspective?
  1. The football riot scene.
  2. The warehouse rave scene.
  3. Karla & Lee’s ‘first time’ at the night club.

Competition prizes:
1st prize:
Signed paperback copies of the entire ‘Hearts’ series.
L.H. Cosway swag.
$25 Amazon gift card.
2nd prize:
Signed copy of Hearts of Blue.
L.H. Cosway swag.
$10 Amazon gift card.

L.H. Cosway Hearts of Blue Release Week Giveaway


  1. Oh I love forbidden romance Amanda! Yes and please. And the only books I've read with a woman in law enforcement is JD Robb's In Death series (ROARKE!!!!) but I adore those, so I'm very much looking forward to meeting Karla. And Lee of course:)

  2. I have "Painted faces" by the same author, but haven't read it yet - moving it up my list ;)

  3. I love a good forbidden romance as well and the twist where the woman is the cop and the man the criminal is fun. Sounds like a good escape.

  4. That book sounds awesome! I really like this author! I'm going to have to check it out!

  5. Sounds like I need this in my life. Great review, and thanks for the excerpt!!