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Book Reviews, Book Recommendations, and Whatnots

My Top 16 Books of 2016

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Happy New Year, bookworms! 🙂

2016 is about to end and now it’s time for me to feature the top 16 books that I consider THE BEST among THE BEST that I’ve read this year. Out of 209 books (yay! that was a first!) I’ve read in 2016, I can say that 16 books are not enough because there were a lot of great books that I’ve come across. I know all of you bookworms can relate, but making a list of your favorite books? The most difficult thing ever!

Now, meet the 16 books that made me swoon, cry, smile, laugh, and feel different emotions. (Top 1 being the best!) If you haven’t read them or some of them, be sure to click the book cover that will take you to my full review. 🙂 Enjoy!

Top 16

Sex Love Repeat

Sex, Love, Repeat was my first Alessandra Torre read. I was blown away by the intensity of her characters and the delightful writing style. This book proved how talented Alessandra Torre is and this made me want to read more books written by her.

Top 15

The Deal (Off-Campus, #1)

Hot ice hockey guy alert, you guys! The Deal is something that I consider New Adult / Sports Romance book at its finest! I loved Garrett. I loved the romance. I loved Elle Kennedy’s writing. Everything was too perfect! *sigh

Top 14

All the Ugly and Wonderful Things

There are a lot of factors to consider when marking a book as your favorite. One of these is the impact that it gives. The emotions that it pulls. The tears. I’ve experienced all these things when I read All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood. The story was so… unusual. So raw. So powerful. And all things wonderful.

Top 13

Sugar Daddy (Sugar Bowl, #1)

Sugar Daddy is one of the books that wowed and somewhat surprised me. Do not be deceived by that girly cover. Not a rom-com, you guys. What I thought was a light-hearted read was actually a dark romance. I loved the romance in this book and the character development. I’m sure fans of dark romance books will also love this book and its sequels.

Top 12

City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments, #6)

Took me some time to finish the series but I’m glad I was able to. The finale was an absolute stunner it made me cry buckets! Not that the ending was sad. It’s just that, after reading this final book of the series, I immediately missed all the characters and the whole journey. Ahhh the nostalgia! The book ended perfectly. So epic. Classic Cassie Clare at her finest!

Top 11

The Score (Off-Campus, #3)

And here I thought Garrett Graham is the perfect guy. But then Dean Di Laurentis came and I just fell in love with him! You know… manslut ice hockey hottie and all. lol. But this book is just one of the best. I laughed, I cried, I smiled… My kind of weakness.

Top 10

Sustained (The Legal Briefs, #2)

Call me shallow but Jake Becker is such a hot lawyer and that’s enough to make this book a personal favorite. Ha. But aside from that, of course, the book has more depth than I expected. I loved that it didn’t just feature the romance between Jake and Chelsea but also highlighted the beautiful McQuiad kids which made this book absolutely adorbs.

Top 9

Paper Princess (The Royals, #1)

Typical swoon-worthy. Paper Princess brings out a modern fairytale-ish kind of story. If the hot Royal boys are not enough to convince you how tasteful this book and the whole series is, then I don’t know what to say anymore. Lol. I want a Royal guy in my life. Please!

Top 8

Mr. President (White House, #1)

I’ve read Katy Evans’ Manwhore series so I was so hyped when I received an ARC of this book. It did not disappoint. In fact, it exceeded my expectations. Katy Evans sure knows how to tickle all the right boxes in me. Because omg, Matt Hamilton!!!

Top 7

Punk 57

Much. Better. Than. Bully. Okay ladies and gentlemen, for those who haven’t read this book yet, prepare yourselves. You will be blown away. It will also change you. The book was not just about romance and steamy scenes but it also tackled a very important issue. I’m glad I’ve read this book because it was a winner!

Top 6

Mud Vein

You guys know how talented Tarryn Fisher is. She’s a pro when it comes to dark and twisted books. Mud Vein surely hit the spot. It pulled out a huge surprise because of how the twist and the overall mystery were delivered. I wouldn’t stop recommending this book to everyone who loves this genre!

Top 5

It Ends with Us

The thing about Collen Hoover is that she just doesn’t stop making an impression. It Ends With Us is a surefire way to destroy you emotionally. You can’t get enough of the writing and the way the story was designed to pull your heartstrings, page by page. I’m so glad I’ve read this book and was able to learn about CoHo’s personal journey. This is a must!

Top 4

Making Faces

Making Faces is a rare gem. After reading this book, I was emotionally stunned. The book was inspired based on real life experiences. It went straight to my favorites because it has all the elements of a story that I’m always looking for. I loved how it was written beautifully and the fact that it made me cry a lot of times, it was enough to consider this book one of the best books I’ve read this year.

Top 3

Sempre: Redemption (Sempre, #2)

Ever finished a book that leaves you feeling nostalgic? Sempre Redemption is one of those books. Everything was so good! So perfect. Haven and Carmine have the best love story ever and every dark romance lover should really get to know this power couple. I believe this book and this series is J.M. Darhower’s masterpiece!

Top 2

A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #2)

THIS BOOK OWNED ME. It took my heart, broke it into a million pieces, and mend it all back together. Rhysand is one of the reasons why this book was so spectacular. If it wasn’t because of him, the book won’t be as perfect as it is. The romance and the storyline are THE BEST and much, much better than ACOTAR. You have to believe the raving reviews of this book and this series. You won’t be disappointed.

Top 1 (And the Best of all the Best!)

November 9

Raw and well fleshed-out characters. November 9 made it to my Top 1 best book this year because I had like, hundreds of emotions while reading this. I consider my opinion as unpopular because this book isn’t really loved (100%) by everybody. For me, though, it is Colleen Hoover’s best. I loved the powerful narration and the plotline and how unique the story was. I couldn’t recommend it enough! I’m sure this story will stick in my mind and heart forever. 🙂

What are your favorite reads this year? I’m sure there are a lot. 🙂 Let’s all greet 2017 with merry hearts! And let’s wish for more books to be devoured and shelved on our ‘favorites’ shelf! Happy holidays, bookworms! kisses!

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Review: Womanizer by Katy Evans

Womanizer (Manwhore, #4)

Womanizer
(Manwhore #4)
Author: Katy Evans
Publisher: Katy Evans
Published: December 5, 2016
Genre: Romance, New Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Katy Evans comes a brand new contemporary romance. WOMANIZER is a full standalone, and no other books in the series need to be read.

You’ve seen the headlines: Womanizing billionaire player! Watch out! Stay away!

We were just two strangers. Facing a forbidden attraction, a chemical connection. Neither of us expected or wanted it to amount to more.
But I had never been drawn to a guy the way I was drawn to this one: my brother’s best friend, and CEO of the company where I interned.
Even knowing I should stay away, I proved to be too human, after all.
The chemistry was amazing.
The laughs were incredible.
I opened up to him in more ways than I’d opened up to anyone before.
But sex was as far as I’d go.
Just sex because he was too irresistible.
Just sex because I wouldn’t be falling for him.
Just sex because I’d leave in three months, and I’d like for my brother not to kill me, and for nobody to find out he was my wicked little secret.
He wasn’t the One.
He was just a womanizer.
But for a time, he would be mine.

my thoughts new

“Life sometimes doesn’t run in the cycles it’s expected to. We are all here for a blink. Life changes in a blink. We fall in love, sometimes, in a blink.”

Forever in love with Katy Evans’ books!

Callan and Olivia. Gaaah!!! I couldn’t even begin to describe the sexual tension and overflowing steamy scenes between these two. I was so rooting for them from start to finish.

Olivia “Livvy” Roth was introduced in the previous Manwhore book Ladies Man and we’ve known her as Tahoe’s little sister. When Tahoe endorsed her to his best friend’s huge company to work as an intern, Olivia expected to meet a ruthless business mogul in the name of Callan Carmichael. While working there, she had an encounter with a literally hot smoker guy whom she thought as an ordinary employee (a mailman) and whom she shared smoking sessions every day and even had a one night stand with. Little did she know that the smoker guy was in fact, the very owner of the company– Callan.

The book was basically steeped in steamy scenes after steamy scenes. Classic Katy Evans. Aaand I loved every bit of it. Callan and Olivia’s chemistry was off the charts. They’re both hot, success-driven, and they both understand each other’s wants. To simply put, they’re made for each other.

I loved that their story was not heavy on the angst and how the scenes were created to make the reader smile and swoon. It basically kept me on my toes. If you are looking for an office romance with over-the-top sensual scenes with less dramas, I believe you will love this book. You don’t have to read the previous books in this series (although I recommend you to read them too because they are equally amazing!) because it is a standalone. All in all, Womanizer was another enjoyable book to devour. I’m excited about Wynn’s story!

Rating:

4 stars

Buy this book at:

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Review: A Countess for Christmas by Christy McKellen

A Countess for Christmas (Maids Under the Mistletoe #1)

A Countess for Christmas
(Maids Under the Mistletoe #1)
Author: Christy McKellen
Publisher: Harlequin
Published: October 1, 2016
Genre: Romance, Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

The earl’s secret bride…

Emma Carmichael is shocked when she sees who she’s waitressing for at a lavish party—Jack Westwood, the new Earl of Redminster. Her new life comes crashing down when Jack announces to the world that they’re married!

Jack has never forgotten his first love despite the tragedy that tore them apart. When the paparazzi cameras intrude, he proposes they live as man and wife until the fuss dies down. Emma feels like Cinderella, masquerading as his countess…only, behind closed doors, their marriage feels tantalizingly real…

my thoughts new

a-countess-for-christmas

Just what I needed this Christmas. The story of A Countess for Christmas is another one of those royal romance books that are all things sweet and are quite simply difficult to resist.

Emma Carmichael has been married to the Earl of Redminster Jack Westwood. However, their marriage was a secret. They were both so young when they made such a sudden decision to settle down and because of an unfortunate event, they were forced to separate but weren’t able to end their marriage. Now six years later, they met again when Emma worked as a waitress at a party and unexpectedly saw Jack.

I love Christmas romances and so are getting-back-together stories. Add the fact that it’s written by Christy McKellen who has always been writing beautiful Harlequin stories, so this book was definitely a win. Our heroine Emma was likeable. She was not annoying and she made such good decisions all throughout the book. Jack was also a swoon-worthy male lead. Always such a gentleman and passionate when it comes to his feelings to Emma.

I also loved their conversations in this book and the way both characters made me feel connected to them. All in all, this book was a delightful quick read with a wholly satisfying ending. While a little cliché was thrown in some places, this was simply designed to make the reader feel good especially when it’s read on Christmas Day.

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR, EVERYONE!

Thank you to Christy McKellen for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Rating:

4

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Review: Hooked by Brenda Rothert

Hooked

Hooked
Author: Brenda Rothert
Publisher: Loveswept
Published: December 6, 2016
Genre: Romance, Contemporary, New Adult

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Synopsis new

From the author of the On the Line and Fire on Ice hockey romance series comes a sultry novel featuring a brooding NHL player who’s hell on skates—and the no-nonsense woman who forces him to clean up his act.

Miranda: Even though I’m broke, putting myself through college, and working two jobs, I’m trying to make the best of it. Meanwhile, Jake Birch, hockey’s hottest bad boy, lives in a luxury hotel in downtown Chicago—and still complains about every little thing in his penthouse. But after I tell him off, instead of getting me fired, Jake requests me as his personal housekeeper. Then he starts flirting with me. Only I’m not flirting back . . . at least, I’m trying not to. Did I mention that he’s hockey’s hottest bad boy?

Jake: I’ve met the best woman at the worst possible time. Miranda is the fire to my ice—a sexy, charmingly candid spark who breaks down my walls and reminds me what it’s like to feel again. But I’m being forced to date my team owner’s daughter to keep my job, so I can’t be caught with Miranda. Still, we’re getting closer—until Miranda finds out about my “girlfriend.” And that’s not the only secret I’ve been keeping. But Miranda’s the one I want . . . even if she doesn’t believe me.

> Includes an excerpt from another Loveswept title.

my thoughts new

I don’t even know where to begin. Let’s just say Hooked really hooked me. It was cute, sexy, and angsty in equal measure.

Miranda Carr and Jake Birch‘s story is one that you can categorize as a fairytale kind of love story. Miranda is unlike any other girl. She’s hardworking and goal-driven. Working in housekeeping at Dupont Tower as well as at Lucky’s nightclub while studying at the same time to pursue a business degree is such a tough thing to do. For her, her dreams and ambitions are more important than relationships. Until she met the super hot but grumpy ice hockey player Jake Birch. She wasn’t supposed to fall in love with him, but their connection was too strong to deny so it wasn’t easy for her to resist him.

I totally loved the chemistry between these two. It was too apparent and strong. There was no moment in this book where I didn’t find myself swooning over how cute they are as a couple. Both Jake and Miranda were likable characters and despite some of their flaws, it wasn’t difficult for me to connect with them. Jake had issues and personal baggage but he was easily redeemable which I really loved. I also loved the way Miranda cared about Jake and supported him all the way until he was emotionally healed.

The story was well-balanced in a way and the sports aspect was also on-point. Although the romantic development between the characters moved a little faster than I anticipated, it was understandable since the story’s pacing was also fast. I highly recommend this book to everyone who loves New Adult sports romance!

(An ARC was provided by Loveswept publishing and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.)

Rating:

4

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Review: Mister O by Lauren Blakely

Mister O

Mister O
Author: Lauren Blakely
Publisher: Lauren Blakely
Published: May 2, 2016
Genre: Romance, Contemporary, Adult

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Synopsis new

From the NYT Bestselling author of BIG ROCK, comes a hot and hilarious new standalone…

Just call me Mister O. Because YOUR pleasure is my super power.

Making a woman feel ‘oh-god-that’s-good’ is the name of the game, and if a man can’t get the job done, he should get the hell out of the bedroom. I’m talking toe-curling, mind-blowing, sheet-grabbing ecstasy. Like I provide every time.

I suppose that makes me a superhero of pleasure, and my mission is to always deliver.

But then I’m thrown for a loop when a certain woman asks me to teach her everything about how to win a man. The only problem? She’s my best friend’s sister, but she’s far too tempting to resist–especially when I learn that sweet, sexy Harper, has a dirty mind too and wants to put it to good use. What could possibly go wrong as I give the woman I’ve secretly wanted some no-strings-attached lessons in seduction?

No one will know, even if we send a few dirty sexts. Okay, a few hundred. Or if the zipper on her dress gets stuck. Not on that! Or if she gives me those f*&k-me-eyes on the train in front of her whole family.

The trouble is the more nights I spend with her in bed, the more days I want to spend with her out of bed. And for the first time ever, I’m not only thinking about how to make a woman cry out in pleasure –I’m thinking about how to keep her in my arms for a long time to come.

Looks like the real Adventures of Mister Orgasm have only just begun….

**MISTER O is a standalone romantic comedy and it follows supporting characters first introduced in BIG ROCK**

my thoughts new

This was supposed to be the book that would get me out of my reading slump. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the one. Too much sexual frustrations and innuendos, not enough romantic development.

I was so excited to find out that Nick Hammer is the leading man here. He was introduced in Big Rock which was my first Lauren Blakely read and which was also the book that I liked. I thought Nick was such an interesting guy. He’s basically sex on legs. He’s a cartoonist who’s well-known for his sexy comic The Adventures of Mister Orgasm. I loved that this book was told in his POV because his thoughts are entertaining and… dirty. Who can say no?

“I suppose that makes me the Magellan of the female orgasm. A true explorer venturing forth, fearless and ready at any moment to map the terrain of her pleasure until she cries out in rapture.”

What I didn’t love was the exaggeration of the smut. Not to mention the lack of plotline. At first, it was fun and entertaining but later on I found myself getting bored because of the repetitive flirtations that seemed to lead both the characters to nowhere. There was a potential conflict, of course. Knowing that Nick was secretly lusting over his best friend’s sister seemed to really create a good clash but then it was resolved easily so…

There was a little bit of chemistry between Harper and Nick but it wasn’t that powerful to make me swoon. Perhaps there just wasn’t anything new here. Sure there were steamy scenes and some romantic development in the near-end but the overdone sexual frustration took most of the time before they figured out that they’re actually in love with each other and they’re not just horny. Meh.

Rating:

2 Stars smile

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