Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Review- The Champion by Carla Capshaw (and giveaway!)

Until now, I assumed Love Inspired was synonymous with light romance (not that there's anything wrong with that) but thanks to Carla Capshaw I'll have to mentally re-shelve the line. Sparks started flying in chapter one of The Champion and the romantic tension continued to build making this summer read as refreshing as a glass of iced tea, and not nearly as sweet as I expected.

Fans of the line needn't worry, your favorite Love Inspired authors haven't swapped places with Harlequin Blaze writers. But if you read a lot of Christian category, you might notice an uptick in the heat level- a fact that wasn't wasted on this edgy Christian fiction lover.

Alexius is a gladiator with rage issues, Tibi is the woman who brings out his tender side. Both of the leads were extremely likable, and their faith journeys didn't feel heavy handed. I found the setting and tone reminiscent of Francine Rivers' Mark of the Lion series (but obviously not as graphic).

I'm not sure if Capshaw's work represents what we can expect from Love Inspired in the future, but in my best British waif accent, "Please sir, I want some more!"

Want more info? Here's the back cover blurb:
A warrior without equal. A woman without options...

Triumphs in the Coliseum--and society bedchambers--made gladiator Alexius of Iolcos famous for his brutal skill and womanizing ways. Yet the only woman who intrigues him is Tiberia the Younger, who now needs his help. Protecting Tiberia places Alexius in the greatest danger he has ever known: from her vengeful father and his own heart...

Becoming a temple priestess may be an honor, but Tibi can't bear to surrender her freedom or her newfound faith. Alexius's solution stuns her. a gladiator! Scorned by her noble family, Tibi always felt unworthy. But with her champion by her side, can she accept--and give--a love strong enough to vanquish their enemies?
My rating:

It's giveaway time!

I'm giving readers a chance to win both The Champion and an earlier novel in the series, The Gladiator. To enter, leave a comment with your email address on this post between now and Saturday.


  1. I love Carla Capshaw, and I loved The Champion!!! All of her books are fabulous and "blazing" with tension. I too hope for more "heat" in Christian fiction. ;)

  2. Oh both books sound wonderful. Please enter me in contest. I would love to read both books.

  3. I have been wanting to read both these books. They look great. Thanks for the giveaway!!

  4. Sounds awesome.
    What a hot cover too.
    Totally beats the average cover.
    (not an entry)

  5. Loved your review, Joy! I saw this book at Wal-mart yesterday, and was *this* close to picking it up. I didn't! What's wrong with me?!?

    I'd love it if you'd put my name in the hat, too, and even if I don't win, looks like I'll be marching back over to Wal-mart and buying it like I should've done in the first place!

    southernsassythings at gmail dot com

  6. I would love to read these!! :)

  7. The Gladiator has been on my TBR list for awhile. I'd love a chance to win these books!


  8. I echo Juju -- hot cover!

    I felt the same way about Love Inspired, so I'm glad to hear that there's a little differentiation going on with that line.

    Smashing review, dahling!

  9. Loved the review you had me grinning the whole time. Sounds like I will be adding these to my wishlist.

    Would love to win a copy sign me up!


  10. Oh my gosh, I neeed this book!! It's going straight on my to read list. Thank you for the contest, Joy!!

    inthehammockblog at gmail dot com

  11. Thank you so much for the chance to win this. This book looks great. I would love to read this. Thanks again.


  12. This sounds really good...I had to do a double take of the cover though, it looks like one of those .99 cent is he going to take his shirt off covers....


  13. I would love to read these books. I mean really. Thanks for the giveaway!


  14. Please don't enter me since I already have both books. I just had to say thank you for helping me pick out what to read next from my TBR pile! I was complaining about reading three 2 star books in a row on Goodreads but since you gave this 4 I just know I'll love it too!

    XOXO~ Renee

  15. I'd love to win these books..they both sound very interesting. Thank you!

  16. Thanks for entering everyone. The winner of these Carla Chapshaw books is The Wilson Family! I'm sending an email now.


I love comments more than Starbucks! Thanks for leaving one!


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