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Book Reviews, Book Recommendations, and Whatnots

Review: Marriage Games by C.D. Reiss

Marriage Games (The Games Duet, #1)

Marriage Games
(The Games Duet #1)
Author: C.D. Reiss
Publisher: Flip City Media Inc.
Published: October 22, 2016
Genre: Romance, Adult, Erotica, BDSM, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

THIRTY DAYS
That’s all Adam Steinbeck demands of his wife.
Thirty days in a remote cottage, doing everything he demands. After that, he’ll sign her divorce papers and give her complete ownership of their company.

THIRTY DAYS
That’s how long he has to rediscover the man he once was. The Dominant Master he hid when he fell in love with her five years ago.

THIRTY DAYS
She wants the business they built badly enough to go to the cottage for a month. Cut off ties to the world and do his bidding. She can submit to him with her body, but her heart will never yield.

She thinks this is his pathetic attempt to repair their marriage.

She’s wrong.

my thoughts new

This book stunned me in so many levels. It’s been quite a while since I enjoyed a dark love story with a BDSM content that does not suffer a “wannabe” syndrome like some books do. So you can just imagine how amazed I was after reading this book. It was so gripping it managed to stir me up all the way through.

Caution: This book is not for everybody, and certainly not for the faint-hearted.:-)

Told in 2 different POVs, Marriage Games started when the marriage of Diana Barnes Steinbeck and Adam Steinbeck was about to fall down. Diana left a letter to Adam saying that she needs a divorce because she no longer felt their connection as a married couple. Adam did not immediately let her, but instead, he asked for thirty days for them to be together and to show her the things that he hid all throughout their marriage– his life as a Dom.

“Bedroom games. That’s all it is. But they’re serious, and when played right, everyone wins.”

I didn’t set high expectations prior to reading this. Seeing my friends’ 5-star ratings made me felt skeptical because some top-rated books just do not work out for me. BUT THIS. WAS. SO. FREAKING. GOOD.

I loved C.D. Reiss‘s writing. It’s my first time to read a book written by her and she just blew my mind with her poetic and lyrical tone that felt so right for a dark book like this. I was amazed by the back-and-forth narration between the past and the present events. It was so engaging and it made me want to read more and more in order for me to find out what the heck is really happening with the two.

“You’re a submmissive, and the Dominant in me always knew it.”

This book basically explored deep and complex thoughts from a man who fell into the world of BDSM. It was then when I read Adam’s POV that I felt kind of enlightened. His thoughts simply show that not everyone who gets involved with this strange sexual act wants to do it to their loved partner. Some people hide it because they do not want to show their “dark” side which would taunt the relationship. They have this need to protect and to just be “normal”.

What I especially loved about this book was the balance between the romance and the intimate scenes. Just by reading it, you can feel the deep connection between the two characters. You can feel the emotions, the conflict, and the confusion through their POVs.

The characters were also admirable. This is a BDSM book but I was surprised to find a feisty, strong heroine. Diana is the kind of heroine that does not annoy me nor bother me because of her tendency to become vulnerable, but she was such an amazing character.

Everything about this book– the plotline, the characters, the writing, the romance, the hot kinky scenes — was good. I daresay it’s one of the best page-turners I’ve read so far. The ending was a cliffhanger, but it made me feel excited to find out how the story would end.

“I love you. Every version of me loves you.”

Rating:

5 stars new

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Blog Tour & Review: Commander in Chief by Katy Evans

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Commander in Chief (White House, #2)

Commander in Chief
(White House #2)
Author: Katy Evans
Publisher: Katy Evans
Published: January 5, 2017
Genre: Romance, Adult, New Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

The sizzling second installment of the White House series, by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Katy Evans.

We fell in love during the campaign.
The stakes were high.
Reputations could have been ruined.
Scandal hovered over us like a cloud.
Now the man I love is the President of the United States of America.
And its not my vote he is after.
He wants it all.
My heart. My body. My soul.
He wants me by his side.
In the White House.
Normalcy will be gone from my life, privacy forgotten.
I am only twenty three. I just wanted to play a part in history. But it seems like history wasn’t done with me. The part where I lost my heart to Matthew Hamilton? It was only the beginning…

my thoughts new

“I want you. I want you indefinitely– and eventually, baby, you’re going to need to own up to the fact that the man you’re in love with is the president, and you helped put me here.”

(I buddyread this book with my lovely sis Bea. Click her name to read her awesome review!)

Katy Evans manages each time to suck me into the story she writes. I loved Mr. President and now after finishing this conclusion of Matthew and Charlotte’s story, I am so happy because of their satisfying ending.

In this book, the hot and super swoon-worthy Matthew “Matt” Hamilton is already the President-elect of the United States. Charlotte flew to Europe to stay away from him and try to move on after he won the presidency. But when she returned to witness his first day as a ruler in the States, she wasn’t able to deny the fact that her feelings toward him still remain. And when their paths crossed once again, she did not expect him to pull such a shocking proposal to her– to become his acting First Lady of the United States.

I loved most parts in this book– especially the scenes where Matt was trying to win Charlotte back and woo her. Despite his busy schedule, he was still able to make time for her, doing his best to make her feel that she’s the most beautiful, most worthy First Lady in his heart.

The thing that has awed me most was the loyalty they had for each other. I loved how strong they were together and how tough they were despite some political issues that surround them. Over the course of Matt’s presidency, I was afraid that he’s going to be destructed while being in love with Charlotte but omg, I was so wrong. He is the man! The best President ever.

Maybe I was looking for a little bit more angst and depth that’s why I rated it 4 out 5 but otherwise, I loved how the story turned out in the end. There was a resolution regarding the crime of Matt’s father. The final chapters also brought me a whirlwind of emotions as well as the ending which just made me grin from ear to ear. Matt and Charlotte’s love story, as a whole, was more than beautiful. They said their lives aren’t fairytale. Um, I don’t think so. There could never be any more perfect than their love for each other.

“I shed more than my clothes when I’m with her. I shed every preconceived notion of who I should be. My last name, the presidency, everything is gone– only I remain. A man, flesh and blood, not perfect, but trying his damn best to be, and a man who wants her. Bad.”

An ARC was provided by Katy Evans and Social Butterfly PR in exchange for an honest review.

Rating:

4

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Review: Deep by Kylie Scott

Deep (Stage Dive, #4)

Deep
(Stage Dive #4)
Author: Kylie Scott
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Published: March 10, 2015
Genre: Romance, New Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

Don’t miss a beat with the fourth and final novel in the USA Today bestselling Stage Dive series from Kylie Scott.

Positive. With two little lines on a pregnancy test, everything in Lizzy Rollins’ ordinary life is about to change forever. And all because of one big mistake in Vegas with Ben Nicholson, the irresistibly sexy bass player for Stage Dive. So what if Ben’s the only man she’s ever met who can make her feel completely safe, cherished, and out of control with desire at the same time? Lizzy knows the gorgeous rock star isn’t looking for anything more permanent than a good time, no matter how much she wishes differently.

Ben knows Lizzy is off limits. Completely and utterly. She’s his best friend’s little sister now, and no matter how hot the chemistry is between them, no matter how sweet and sexy she is, he’s not going to go there. But when Ben is forced to keep the one girl he’s always had a weakness for out of trouble in Sin City, he quickly learns that what happens in Vegas, doesn’t always stay there. Now he and Lizzie are connected in the deepest way possible… but will it lead to a connection of the heart?

my thoughts new

“Good girls don’t fall for rock stars.”

Oh man. These rock stars rock my world. Deep is the last installment of Stage Dive series and I couldn’t help but feel a little bit sad because all the characters (David, Ev, Mal, Anne, Jimmy, Lena, Ben, and Lizzy) have grown on me. How can I not?

In Deep, we finally get to have the story of Ben Nicholson, Stage Dive’s bass player, and Elizabeth “Lizzy” Rollins, Anne’s sister. Ever since Lizzy set her eyes on Ben, she has been crushing and sort of ‘obsessing’ over him. To the point where she texted him and basically flirted with him. Much as Ben tried, he wasn’t able to resist Lizzy so he flirted her back in secret. But because Mal warned him to stay away from Lizzy, and because there was a huge gap between their age, he tried to ignore her– to no avail. One night in Vegas though, the two of them had a drunken sex which later on resulted to Lizzy’s pregnancy.

“So I’d been knocked up by a rock star. Big time.”

I love unexpected pregnancy love stories. These tropes are my weakness, so I wasn’t surprised when I found myself so smitten with this book. Apart from Lizzy’s entertaining POV which made me crack up every time, I also enjoyed the push-and-pull relationship between her and Ben. It was sweet in a way that swoons and sort of frustrates you at the same. Their story wasn’t built to be perfect as each of them has flaws (especially Ben who acted immaturely in the first half of the book). But I loved how both of them became well-developed characters in the end. Especially how Ben’s principles in life slowly changed as he got to know Liz and shared a complicated relationship with her.

Yes, there were lots of bumps in the road for them but those things gave them the opportunity to explore their feelings. I also loved how the other Stage Dive characters helped them figure out their issues. (Let’s not forget Sam who’s always been there haha!) These characters are literally SQUAD GOALS!

The ending was of course, a joy to read. All of them have their piece of happy endings and I loved it. I just felt kind of emotional because the series already ended. I am looking forward to reading more Kylie Scott books, though. 🙂

Rating:

4 stars

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Review: Naughty Boss by Whitney G.

Naughty Boss

Naughty Boss
Author: Whitney G.
Publisher: Whitney G.
Published: December 15, 2016
Genre: New Adult, Adult, Romance, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

A steamy, office-romance novella from New York Times bestselling author, Whitney G…

He definitely wasn’t supposed to get that email…

Subject: My Boss.

Have I already told you that I hate my boss today?

Sexy as hell or not, this pompous, arrogant, ASSHOLE asked me to pick up his dry cleaning the second I walked through the door. Then he told me that I needed to take his Jaguar to a car wash that was ten miles outside of the city, but only after I needed to stand in a never-ending line to buy some type of limited, hundred-dollar watch.

I honestly can’t wait to see the look on his face two months from now when I tell him that I’m quitting his company and that he can kiss my ass. KISS. MY. ASS.

All those former fantasies about him kissing me with his “mouth of perfection” or bending me over my desk and filling me with his cock are long over. OVER.

Your bestie,
Mya

PS–Please tell me your day is going better than mine…

Subject: Re: My Boss.

No, you haven’t already told me that you hate your “boss” today, but seeing as though you’ve sent me this email directly, I know now

Yes, I did ask you to pick up my dry cleaning the second you arrived to work to day. (Where is it?) And I did tell you to take my Jaguar to the car wash and pick up my thousand-dollar watch. (Thank you for taking five hours to do something that could be accomplished in two.)

You don’t have to wait two months from now to see the look on my face when you tell me you’re quitting. I’m standing outside your office at this very moment. ( Open the door. )

No comment on your “fantasies,” although I highly doubt they’re “long over.”

Your boss,
Michael

PS—Yes. My day is definitely going far better than yours…

my thoughts new

Not bad for an office romance novella. This was quite a fun, hilarious read. The entertainment factor was there. However, it didn’t offer anything new. Just the same old hot af womanizer boss who lusted over his attractive employee… etc. etc.

Michael Leighton is Leighton Publishing’s playboy CEO. He is one of tabloids’ most favorite subjects because of his appetite with different women each week. Despite his success in the corporate world, he seemed to encounter a lot of problems when it comes to his previous executive assistants. This led him to post a job hiring for interested applicants, offering a much higher compensation. When Mya London applied for it and was immediately employed, she didn’t expect to develop a love-hate relationship with Michael because he is simply such an arrogant and domineering boss and they always go against each other.

There was overwhelming chemistry in this novella. Both characters were hot and sexy. And there were certainly steamy office scenes that could make everyone blush. This was sure to be a guilty-pleasure read and if you are a type of person who doesn’t mind a story with a stereotypical storyline — just pure entertainment laid on to take away your stress, then go go go read this quick-read story. 🙂

Rating:

3 Stars

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Review: A Thousand Boy Kisses by Tillie Cole

A Thousand Boy Kisses

A Thousand Boy Kisses
Author: Tillie Cole
Publisher: Tillie Cole
Published: March 15, 2016
Genre: Young Adult, Romance, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

One kiss lasts a moment. But a thousand kisses can last a lifetime.One boy. One girl. A bond that is forged in an instant and cherished for a decade. A bond that neither time nor distance can break. A bond that will last forever. Or so they believe.When seventeen-year-old Rune Kristiansen returns from his native Norway to the sleepy town of Blossom Grove, Georgia, where he befriended Poppy Litchfield as a child, he has just one thing on his mind. Why did the girl who was one half of his soul, who promised to wait faithfully for his return, cut him off without a word of explanation?Rune’s heart was broken two years ago when Poppy fell silent. When he discovers the truth, he finds that the greatest heartache is yet to come.A stand-alone young adult tearjerker romance, recommended for ages fourteen and up.

my thoughts new

Tillie Cole is a new-to-me author. I have heard a lot of great things about her books and A Thousand Boy Kisses is one of them. The cover is so beautiful as well as the title. I must say though that I wasn’t prepared for its intensity and heaviness. The moment I started it, I knew it would be a challenging book to read because of its melancholy tone. It sure was. The story was more poignant than I’ve expected.

“Maybe we’re like a cherry blossom, Rune. Like shooting stars. Maybe we loved too much too young and burned so bright that we had to fade out.”

Rune Erik Kristiansen and Poppy Litchfield have been best of friends since they were kids. Their friendship started when Rune and his family left their roots in Norway and started their lives in the U.S. He didn’t want to live in the new country where it required him to speak English and adapt to the culture, but when he met the beautiful and bubbly child Poppy, his feelings changed. The two of them grew up and somehow developed a much deeper relationship as the year went by. Poppy, whose grandmother passed away, grew up with a goal in life to collect a thousand boy kisses. It’s an idea left by her grandma to her. Each time she gets a kiss from her special boy, the details should be written in a pink heart and be placed in a jar. The boy kisses, of course, were given by Rune.

“It’s okay to laugh. It’s okay to smile. It’s okay to feel happy. Or what’s the point in life?”

This book is a real heartbreaker. It actually reminded me of those books I’ve read in the past that made me cry a river (I won’t mention any title because it would be a spoiler). I was able to connect with the story. However, I failed to appreciate it even more because of its predictability. I knew exactly what’s about to come even before the ‘twist’ in the early part of the book happened. I wasn’t surprised when Poppy finally revealed why she went away and didn’t communicate with Rune anymore.

Also, lots and lots of cheese were thrown everywhere. I couldn’t even count the number of sappy dialogues and scenes. For me, they are a little bit exaggerated. Not to mention how their conversations slowly became repetitive each chapter.

Despite the flaws I’ve mentioned, the ending somehow moved me. I was blown away by the things that happened. Of course I knew at the back of my mind that their story would end that way, but still, I wasn’t prepared for it. There was still a small part of me that longed for a different ending. A twist, perhaps. A Thousand Boy Kisses, as a whole, was a highly emotional YA love story. It’s a book that touches the soul and makes you realize a lot of things in life. If you love heavy, angsty, and heartbreaking books, then this book is the one that you should devour. Just prepare lots and lots of tissues. You will really need them.

Rating:

three point five

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