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Romance #7

Passion's Bright Fury

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When a trauma surgeon and a filmmaker become reluctant allies on the battleground between life and death, passion strikes without warning.

Saxon Sinclair, the broodingly secretive Chief of Trauma at a busy Manhattan hospital, is less than pleased to learn that her new resident is going to be the subject of a documentary film. The arrival of Jude Castle, a fiery independent filmmaker, soon sets sparks flying as the two driven women clash both personally and professionally.

Both have secrets they have spent a lifetime guarding, and both have chosen careers over love. Desire and destiny clash in this blazing romance.

246 pages, Paperback

First published January 1, 2003

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About the author


131 books1,474 followers
Radclyffe has written over forty-five romance and romantic intrigue novels, dozens of short stories, and, writing as L.L. Raand, has authored a paranormal romance series, The Midnight Hunters. She has also edited Best Lesbian Romance 2009 through 2015 as well as multiple other anthologies. She is an eight-time Lambda Literary Award finalist in romance, mystery, and erotica—winning in both romance and erotica. A member of the Saints and Sinners Literary Hall of Fame, she is also an RWA Prism, Lories, Beanpot, Aspen Gold, and Laurel Wreath winner in multiple mainstream romance categories. In 2014, she received the Dr. James Duggins Outstanding Mid-Career Novelist award from the Lambda Literary Foundation. In 2004, she founded Bold Strokes Books, an independent LGBTQ publishing company, and in 2013, she founded the Flax Mill Creek Writers Retreat offering writing workshops to authors in all stages of their careers.

She states, “I began reading lesbian fiction at the age of twelve when I found a copy of Ann Bannon’s Beebo Brinker. That book and others like it convinced me that I was not alone, that there were other women who felt like I did. Our literature provides support and validation and very often, a lifeline, for members of our community throughout the world. I am proud and honored to be able to publish the many fine authors at Bold Strokes Books and to contribute in some small way to the words that celebrate the LGBTQ experience.”

Radclyffe lives with her partner, Lee, in New York state.

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5 stars
1,039 (47%)
4 stars
771 (35%)
3 stars
296 (13%)
2 stars
71 (3%)
1 star
23 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 74 reviews
Profile Image for Arien.
385 reviews114 followers
September 30, 2018
DNF @ 50%. At this point, I feel that because I've read a couple of Radclyffe's medical romances in the past I've read them all. Same characters, same inability to keep it in the pants, same angst filled longing when your object of obsession is shagging someone else. Everything's always about the physical aspects in her books, and if it's not physical then it's some kind of thing that's a sexual turn on anyway. As usual, I don't feel any love in a Radclyffe book, only lust, and selfishness. Ehh... She sure doesn't deviate from her template much.

The hospital part of it is interesting, but that's not what I came for, and their lust-filled longings do nothing for me. I wanted a romance, and I don't think this dance between overinflated egos and libidos is romance. They just want to fuck because they're in lust. And then they do fuck, but other people first until the moment these other people can't satiate their immeasurable lust for each other so they fuck each other in the end. It's not about love, it's about fucking the object of your lust.

I'd swear less if I understood why Radclyffe is always rated so high when she keeps rehashing the same formula again and again. I can accept that I simply dislike her writing style but this is as close to a copy/paste as it gets. I don't think I'm ever picking up another of her books again.
Profile Image for Luce.
521 reviews
September 1, 2017
4.5 Stars rounded up to 5 Stars for the Audible book

I think I first read the online story over 10 yrs ago and later the print version. So I've re-read it multiple times. This is the first time reading the audible book.

It is narrated by Coleen Marlo. She does a very good job. What I liked is that she subtlety makes the two MC's voices different enough to tell them apart but not so different that they almost sound like caricatures. I think the impulse would be to make Saxo's voice very deep. My only complaint, was that sometimes when she said Sax, it sounded like Sex. Could be my audio.

This is a Xena Uberish book. You've got Saxon Sinclair, head trauma surgeon, brilliant and best at everything she does, tall, dark and beautiful and nobody messes with her. Then there is Jude Castle, a director of documentaries, redhead, beautiful, and brilliant in her own right and for a change of pace, she is of similar height to Saxon. Jude comes to film a year in the life of Saxon's new Trauma Fellow, Deborah Stein (also beautiful, brilliant and an Olympic basketball player). I did learn that a Fellow is already MD and in this case a qualified surgeon, but she wanted to learn from Saxon. In spite of my snarkiness, I still enjoy the story and the MC's and also the supporting characters. Jude's camerawoman, Melissa is a character and good foil to Jude.

Yeah, I know. You are probably thinking "Yadda, Yadda, Yadda. I've read this all before - yet another Radclyffe medical romance." and you are right and it has all the tropes. The difference is that Radclyffe was probably one of the first to do it well and continues to do so. It was also her first medical romance. It may had been the first Radclyffe that I read. In the past I would have given it 5+ stars. If I read it for the first time today, I'd probably give it a 4.0 stars. But for today's re-read, 4.5 - 5 stars for this audiobook.

Try it, if you haven't.
Profile Image for PharmDoc.
25 reviews6 followers
September 26, 2014
I know many are critical of Radclyffe's "formula". I've truthfully been avoiding reading more of her work because, well, I shouldn't allow myself to be such easy prey. But there is something special here. For one, Jude, is NOT short, blond, blue-eyed or without any singular talents or abilities. She's very interesting, engaging and gifted (in addition to her appearance). The tall, dark, tortured surgeon, Saxon Sinclair, is compelling. Two powerful leads is an element often missing in so many books in this genre and fairly typical in real life. Plus Radclyffe knows how to write authentic medical dramas. She just does. Couldn't put it down. 4 stars instead of 5 because it is formulaic --just because I'm a sucker for it doesn't mean it's right.
Profile Image for Sophie.
20 reviews
June 18, 2019
Okay so first of, I liked the characters and the bad-assery they potrait in their lives. I especially liked that both characters were equals in regards to their strong wills.

The only thing I can hold against the story is that at a certain point the story got too unrealistic for me. I am not sure when the story sort of lost me but after a while I decided my mind could only accept the story as a perfect fantasy. One could say dream like.

Now, besides that the story is well written and as I said the characters are great so I definitely enjoyed the book and would recommend it to anyone who doesn't mind an almost "too" perfect story.
Profile Image for Char Dafoe.
Author 14 books136 followers
May 23, 2022
Smart writing. Tension of every colour. Suspenseful. Sexy. My only gripe, it's personal, the author gave the sexy as hell, stupidly intelligent surgeon a unique name: Sax. And gave the intelligent, beautiful filmmaker a mundane name: Jude.
Profile Image for Pricelessfem.
44 reviews18 followers
June 26, 2011
Really good book, love the attraction between Sax and Jude. I wish I would have read this book before I read Fated Love, because they mentioned Sax in that book and I think I would have had a better idea of who she was if I would have read this book first. Great love story!
Profile Image for M.
289 reviews56 followers
October 2, 2014
Actually one of Radclyffe's best books.

You know what you are likely to get with her work, but that doesn't make it any less enjoyable.

Probably a 3.5 star book.
Profile Image for Mfred.
505 reviews15 followers
July 1, 2010
Trauma surgeon Saxon Sinclair does not want Jude Castle filming a documentary in her top-rated NYC trauma center. Jude Castle does not want Bossy McBossersons Sinclair telling her a damn thing, ever. Both have emotional baggage and dark secrets to hide.

Again, Radclyffe gets so many things right, the romance was a joy to read. Each character, for all her dark emotional turmoil, felt relatable in basic and fundamental ways.

However, a caveat:

Passion’s did have some disconcerting moments for me— during the sexxoring, both characters were often described as getting “hard”. Ok, sure, I know clitorises (clitori?) engorge, etc., but I kept thinking, “you feel it get hard? really?” And then I flashed on Lisa Valdez’s books and some of Robin Schone and started giggling over over-the-top anatomical scenes of erotica and the sexxoring got a little less hot.

I’m not gonna lie, describing a clitoris as erect/hard/engorged — penis-esque, if you will— just gets weird for me (I’m not saying I want to read sappy “touch my lady flower” books either, though).

Three out of five stars.
60 reviews
August 11, 2011
The story's a fun little romance, and I like the characters and detail...but the author hops back and forth between viewpoints without separating them at all, and it can be a bit confusing and annoying.
Profile Image for Pam Holzner.
676 reviews45 followers
February 29, 2020
One of Radclyffe's earlier works I think. It's a bit overdone at times but still satisfying.

Our conflict centers around an unusual and fiercely private trauma surgeon (Saxon Sinclair) and a documentary film maker (Jude Campbell?). Naturally having a film crew in the ER makes the normally difficult work harder and then there's the whole privacy thing. Of course our MCs are attracted to each other and will eventually break free from restraint.

Radclyffe uses a bit of a near death experience to help push them together.

Once the romance starts, there's no big breakup. The story transitions to more of a medical drama.

I have read this before but couldn't remember the "mysteries" in both of the characters backgrounds. So trying to remember the backstory helped to propel me along.

I listened to this via Audible and I wasn't crazy about Coleen Marlo's narration. It was listenable bu t sounded affected at points.

Recommended for fans of Radclyffe and medical romances.
Profile Image for Donna Melton.
23 reviews2 followers
March 27, 2016
An easy ready. The characters are a bit shallow but believable. I love medical dramas and this book delivers. Lusty story lines too. At 60 though, I'm a bit skeptical of love that comes so quickly. Have seen far too many U-haul relationships crash and burn. That being said, I can't wait to read more of Sax's and Jude's story. I am following another reviewer's suggestion to follow their story by following this book with Fated Love, then Turn Back Time, and finally, Trauma Alert. I purchased all four and brought the first 2 with me. I wish I'd brought all 4. With 9 more days before I return home I'll have to visit the local library with my gal's library card. I know I'll enjoy the next installment of this quartet on my trip home although it will make me long for my gal's company.
Profile Image for Dani.
403 reviews12 followers
November 11, 2020
One of my favorite Rad stand-alones. Every time I read it a fall further in love. There is just something about Saxon Sinclair and Jude Castle that stole my heart. Saxon’s mind is amazing and I love that Jude was a champion Chest Tournament player when she was younger. Best last name for that. I love catching little glimpse’s of them in other books like Fated Love and Secrets in the Stone. I would love another story with these two more centrally located. See more on where they are now.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Evren.
183 reviews1 follower
April 10, 2021

I’ve not read a Radclyffe book before this one, despite how popular she seems to be in the FF category of books. I’m really happy that this book was my first one from her.

Saxon is the Chief of Trauma at her hospital and she’s very secretive about her past. She doesn’t like to share her past with others but that becomes difficult when she has Deb Stein as a resident. Deb Stein just also happens to be having a documentary made that focuses on her. Jude Castle is the filmmaker for the documentary and the two of them immediately have sparks.

Sax seems like a perfect definition for tall, dark, and brooding. She doesn’t want to discuss her past with people and after reading the story it makes sense why. I was initially a bit annoyed by how secretive she was being, but it made sense by the end. Jude is more than willing to push Sax’s boundaries and I found their chemistry hot. Jude is a dedicated worker who knows how to make the most of what she’s filming and is very gifted at finding exactly what she wants to capture.

I like to avoid medical romances because they can sometimes be a bit too heavy on the medical part of the story. This story did have a lot of medical terms and issues in it, obviously, but it was written in a way that kept me engaged. I think Radclyffe did a good job at writing the trauma sections of the book. When situations were occurring in the trauma bay the writing felt faster and kept me engaged. I really enjoyed the medical parts even if some of the terms went over my head.

I had a couple of issues with them, one of them being the medical terms going over my head. It wasn’t a lot, but it was enough to draw me out of the book in order to google what was going on. I also expected more to happen with Preston Smith. With how he was written in the first chapter I expected him to be a villain or negative force in the book, but he wasn’t. He was only in the first chapter and later mentioned in a future chapter when Sax began to reveal some of her past unless I’m forgetting some other mentions.

I really, really liked reading this book. It’s not a favorite or even a full five-stars but it was engaging with characters who had really nice chemistry together.
June 23, 2018
An amazing book about love and passion. With the incredible suspense and drama that characterizes the great writer; Radclyffe.
Profile Image for Det. Nidhi.
138 reviews10 followers
April 12, 2018
I think I've found a favourite genre. Books set in the field of medicine can connect with me. I can actually understand what's being said as I'm studying medicine, and top it off with romance and it's freaking perfect.
This story progressed believably, and I wasn't left surprised by love at first sight.

There are a lot of characters in the book who need to get a story of their own. I'm so gonna be stalking the author to see if that actually happened.

This is something to read on a rainy day and it's surely a book worth reading again and again. The combination of a aloof character and a bubbly character seems to be a favourite ship of mine.
This book is great, and you have to read it😍😍😍
Profile Image for Serena.
100 reviews23 followers
February 4, 2014
Saxon Sinclair, what a great character! The attraction between Jude and Saxon was well defined, I felt the electricity. If the story is set in the medical world then Radclyffe's at her best, this is not strange with her background! I enjoyed the whole trip that Saxon and Jude have to go through. And chemistry, I can only say, Hot, Hot, Hot!
Profile Image for Kennedy.
982 reviews69 followers
October 1, 2015
Hospital setting with a brilliant surgeon and a talented producer/director. Saxon and Jude are on a collision course figuratively and literally toward self-discovery and possibly love. There are a series of stressful and challenging events that pull them together and force them apart. I appreciated the strength and determination of both women.
Profile Image for Karen.
731 reviews8 followers
April 16, 2021
This romance is between two very successful, very attractive women. One is a trauma surgeon and the other is a filmmaker. They meet at a hospital when Jude is making a documentary about another surgeon that Saxon is mentoring. It's pretty typical with both characters instantly attracted to the other, but there is some push and pull as they get to know each other. Because this is a medical romance, and because Saxon is the Chief of Trauma, there is a massive dangerous accident scene to which she rushes. That was actually interesting as were a couple of other scenes in the hospital. There's a little humor in there, too. It was a quick easy read. If you want a comfortable read without a lot of angst, this could work.
Profile Image for Mike.
104 reviews5 followers
April 5, 2016
This is the first book I've read by Radclyffe. I know that many people have said that it just follows a formula - but I haven't actually read any books like this one before (although in scanning her other books, almost all of them seem to have a similar theme so maybe it does *shrugs*). Keep that in mind when reading the review below:

Passion's Bright Fury follows the lives of two dominant women who are in two very distinct roles; one is a trauma surgeon and the other is a film director. They meet when the later is tasked with doing a documentary about trauma at the hospital that the former works at. It's a really sweet and positive story that you walk away from feeling happy. There were numerous scenes throughout that I enjoyed enough to want to come back to and re-read - which is not something I feel for most books. The author even managed to pull off a few intense scenes that, normally, would turn me off from a book, in a way that I thought added a lot to the core romance. I think my favorite thing, though, was how the author portrayed the two main characters. The evolution of their relationship kept me captivated and their slow realization that there is more to life than just their job made me happy. It was also great to see that, even with that knowledge, the two of them still were able to do their jobs well.

That being said, I did have a few issues with the book. There was a decent amount of random drama that felt out of place. Like, there was this love square type of thing where both of the main characters had other characters who were infatuated with them - but that wasn't really expanded on. It seemed like the author was just trying to arbitrarily add some drama for the sake of drama - which I'm not a fan of. Aside from that, I also felt like the medical scenes were sometimes overdone. It's clear that Radclyffe is experienced in the medical field and you definitely feel immersed in various medical scenarios, but I think some of them were out of place. I found it difficult to get into the book at first because it felt like more time was spent discussing injuries and depressing situations than developing the characters (although this is probably more of a personal taste thing as I'm sure many people would contend that it helped set the stage for Sax's character).

Despite those negatives, I still very much enjoyed this book. I will definitely be searching for other stories by this author and I'd encourage anyone who is interested in less dramatic lesbian romances to check this one out.
Profile Image for Alealea.
647 reviews4 followers
January 9, 2021
This book just made me very happy to have started a Radclyffe binge as I found myself reading books I never picked up amid the rereads.
I really enjoy Radclyffe work though I rarely rate her books high. Too much insta love insta lust, some drama that is not always necessary to push the relationship in the right direction despite her characters lack of good sense. I usually suspend part of my brain to enjoy the stories.
Still the writing is usually fluid and some characters are just beautiful.

To be able to rate a 5 is something. Here it was mind blowing, painfully bright and heartwrenching.
I don't know why this story worked so much for me because it has all the usual criteria of her other works that usually don't but it did and boy, it made my day.
14 reviews1 follower
February 18, 2012
Definitely one of Radclyffe's more successful romances in terms of story and characterization. While these characters are a bit too good to be true, this is a romance so I can't really fault the author for that. The setup (a documentary filmmaker invading a trauma surgeon's domain) makes for some nice tension and these characters are relatively well-rounded. Although Dr. Sinclair is left a bit opaque in terms of her motivations (she's purposefully left sort of dark and mysterious in order to surprise the reader with her history, which is more or less successful), the buildup isn't rushed making this one of the more believable romances in terms of chemistry for me.
Profile Image for Evan.
84 reviews30 followers
July 13, 2008
The cool thing about this one is that the love story is between a very skilled surgeon and a filmmaker taping at her hospital for a year. Radclyffe (the author) is a retired surgeon so I found myself completely captivated by her description of the medical world. The writing paints a clear picture without overwhelming the reader with too much medical jargon. I was surprised at a revelation in the book. This was a real page turner.
3 reviews1 follower
March 23, 2010
the start os a crossover series with fated Love and some others, the PMC group of books. Beautiful story, I just love the main characters here, both Jude and especially Sinclair are very interesting characters.
Profile Image for Pam Parrott.
1 review1 follower
December 17, 2012
I thought Radclyffe did another amazing job in capturing my attention from beginning to end. This book was actually quite comical at times to me and i very much enjoyed it. I'd say it's a must read!
5 reviews
December 7, 2018
I loved this book!

I loved this book! It was very easy to read. You got to know the characters more though out the book which is nice. And the chemistry ...just wow. I found it very hard to put this book down. Five stars- highly recommend!
Displaying 1 - 30 of 74 reviews

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