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: American Queen by Sierra Simone

American Queen (American Queen, #1)

American Queen
(American Queen #1)
Author: Sierra Simone
Publisher: Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
Published: October 25, 2016
Genre: Adult, Erotica, Romance, Contemporary, BDSM

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It starts with a stolen kiss under an English sky, and it ends with a walk down the aisle. It starts with the President sending his best friend to woo me on his behalf, and it ends with my heart split in two. It starts with buried secrets and dangerous desires…and ends with the three of us bound together with a hateful love sharper than any barbed wire.

My name is Greer Galloway, and I serve at the pleasure of the President of the United States.

This is the story of an American Queen.

Well, what can I say? This book is Fifty Shades of Grey, Mr. President, and A Table for Three rolled into one. I have to say this was so out of my comfort zone but I was able to successfully finish it because the story was a lot more interesting than I could have ever expected.

I knew what I was signing for when I started American Queen. Knew that it has some kind of strange and complicated love story about three characters and it has a menage and BDSM content. I have read quite a number of books with these themes but this was sure to be my first read that has M-M romance.

I loved the fact that the story centered around the political world. Our two heroes namely Mexen Ashley “Ash” Colchester and Embry Moore are best friends and they happen to be politicians (Maxen is the United States’ President while Embry is the Vice President). The heroine Greer Galloway also comes from Political roots as her grandfather is an ex-Vice President. In a way, I found the political aspect quite refreshing and full of sense which managed to fill the story with substance.

There were lots and lots of kinky scenes here (if you know what I mean) and my inner goddess rejoiced lol. I loved that the author didn’t shy away from making all those scenes a bit graphic for the readers. However, I didn’t like how the relationship between the three characters eventually appeared to be manipulative. Ash was manipulative and selfish. I didn’t like the way he made sure all things work in his favor. I mean, a relationship should have a give and take process on all sides. In this case, Ash was the one who always took but didn’t give. I couldn’t even get the reason why Greer and Embry allowed it. Was it because Ash is the President? And oh, don’t even get me started on his romance with Jenny.

I also have an issue with Greer. I understood her recklessness in her decisions when she was still 16. But as she grew, there was no character development that happened. She turned out to be such a weak heroine all throughout the book, easily forgiving Ash and letting him control her decisions.

description

Although this book suffered quite a number of flaws, this was still a well-written adult fiction erotica book. This was my first Sierra Simone read and I can say that her writing, her choice of words, and the way she delivered the plot and those toe-curling sexy scenes absolutely drew me in. For fans of erotica, MM romance, and menage, you might love this.

Rating:

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Review: Heat Wave by Karina Halle

Heat Wave

Heat Wave
Author: Karina Halle
Publisher: Karina Halle
Published: November 16, 2016
Genre: Romance, Adult, New Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

They say when life closes one door, another one opens.
This door happens to lead to paradise.
And a man I can never, ever have.

~~~

Still grieving the loss of her sister who died two years ago, the last thing Veronica “Ronnie” Locke needed was to lose her job at one of Chicago’s finest restaurants and have to move back in with her parents. So when a window of opportunity opens for her – running a kitchen at a small Hawaiian hotel – she’d be crazy not to take it.

The only problem is, the man running the hotel drives her crazy:
Logan Shephard.
It doesn’t matter that he’s got dark brown eyes, a tall, muscular build that’s sculpted from daily surfing sessions, and a deep Australian accent that makes your toes curl.
What does matter is that he’s a grump.
Kind of an asshole, too.
And gets under Ronnie’s skin like no one else.

But the more time Ronnie spends on the island of Kauai, falling in love with the lush land and its carefree lifestyle, the closer she gets to Logan. And the closer she gets to Logan, the more she realizes she may have pegged him all wrong. Maybe it’s the hot, steamy jungles or the invigorating ocean air, but soon their relationship becomes utterly intoxicating.

There’s just one major catch.

The two of them together would incite a scandal neither Ronnie, nor her family, would ever recover from.

Forbidden, Illicit, off-limits – sometimes the heat is worth surrendering to, even if you get burned.

Note: this is a standalone novel, unrelated to any previous books. It does NOT contain cheating of any kind.

my thoughts new

“Because I should have been with you, Ronnie. It’s always been you.”

Heat Wave is my second Karina Halle read. Although I loved some of its parts, it fell short of my expectations. It didn’t wow me as much as Smut did.

Veronica “Ronnie” Locke became attracted to Logan Shephard when they met at a fundraising event which was hosted by her mom. With their instant connection, they’re supposed to start going out and fall in love. It didn’t happen, though. Because Logan’s attention shifted to her sister Juliet right when he saw her for the first time. Eventually, Logan and Juliet dated and got married. Now seven years later, Juliet’s already dead and Ronnie and Logan reunited in Hawaii– the place where Logan’s hotel is located and where Ronnie is going to work as the hotel’s chef.

I loved that there was an angst. Angst is good. However, the forbidden love story didn’t quite amaze me because the characters lacked some depth. I wasn’t also convinced when it comes to Logan’s feelings to Ronnie. How come he married Juliet but deep down inside he’s in love with Ronnie? His reason was too shallow and I didn’t buy it.

The pacing of the book was also a let-down for me. It was too slow and too many scenes that are unnecessary should’ve never been included.

It’s good that the book promised a mild entertainment in the first few chapters but it kinda lost its momentum in the second half with Ronnie and Logan’s romantic development moving a little too fast.

The thing that somehow made this book redeemable was the writing of Karina Halle which was hands down beautiful and poetic. I loved how it was written with an air of melancholy. The setting was also beyond captivating. For me, this book is a really great summer read. You can read this when you’re staying on a tropical island, sipping a mojito or something. This was a good angsty romance book as a whole, but it wasn’t as spectacular as I expected. I believe there are a lot of Karina Halle’s books that are better than this. For now, Smut remains my favorite.

“There are moments in your life, people in your life, that when they cross your path and meet your eye, you know.”

Rating:

3 Stars

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Review: Color Me Yours by Diana T. Scott

Color Me Yours (Half of Me, #3)

Color Me Yours
(Half of Me #3)
Author: Diana T. Scott
Publisher: Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
Published: August 8, 2016
Genre: Romance, New Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

What happens if you wake up one morning and you don’t recognize the person staring back at you in the mirror? When you throw yourself into a relationship so deeply, it swallows you whole and spits you out a totally different person? A person you don’t particularly like… For Paige, it takes ten minutes to decide she needs to go back to Chicago, the first place she ever called home and the last she felt like herself in. The place where she’ll find a purpose and friends she never knew she needed.
But what if her best friend starts to see her before she sees herself? Can she trust him to search between scattered pieces and handpick the ones that belong only to her?

my thoughts new

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The medical residents of Half of Me series are back and this time the story focuses on the adorable couple Miles and Paige. I’ve been a fan of these lovebirds ever since Our Demons, Best Friends and Love Me While I’m Gone so you could imagine how happy I was when Diana announced that they’re going to have their own story.

Paige and Miles meet at the hospital where they’re training as medical residents. They both came from different cities and they both have something in common… a hope that the new environment will change their lives for the better. What started off as friendship turned to something else when they became not just workmates but also roommates at their rented apartment. How can they resist each other when the attraction is mutual and they seem to have a real connection?

First of all, I loved Miles. He’s one of the sweetest male leads I’ve read about. I couldn’t help but swoon every time he does some sweet gestures to Paige. And Paige is one funny woman. I loved her guts and her determination to follow her dreams. These characters are so perfect for each other and that’s also because of their chemistry which was off the charts.

Although Ava and Sebastian remain my favorite couple in this series, I adored Paige and Miles and how cute they were all throughout the book. The relationship development– from being friends, to best friends, to lovers –was amazing. *sigh I also loved how their story was written in an easy and carefree way. Sure, there was a conflict but I loved how it was resolved immediately without getting into lots of drama.

Color Me Yours is the final book of this series and I’m sure I’m going to miss these characters. I feel like they’re already part of my life. If you want to read light romance books with less drama and more swoon-worthy moments, then I highly recommend this series! 🙂

(Thank you to Diana T. Scott for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review! 🙂 )

Rating:

4

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Review: Pull Me Close by Sidney Halston

Pull Me Close (The Panic, #1)

Pull Me Close
(Panic #1)
Author: Sidney Halston
Publisher: Loveswept
Date of Publication: October 25, 2016
Genre: Romance, Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

Welcome to Panic, a sultry Miami nightclub where bodies and hearts move to a beat that doesn’t stop at sunrise—the setting for “a magnificent story full of deep emotion” (Sawyer Bennett).

Katherine: I thought I could enjoy a night out like a normal person. I thought I could handle the flashing lights, the pulsing music, the crowded dance floor. I couldn’t have been more wrong. After having an anxiety attack and passing out during my sister’s engagement party at Panic, I wake up in the arms of the hottest guy I’ve ever seen. Nick Moreno’s no gentleman. But he might just be the man I need to help me take control of my life.

Nick: When I hear there’s some random girl passed out in the back room of my family’s South Beach nightclub, I’m pissed. My dad’s already behind bars and we can’t afford any more bad press. But after giving her a lift—literally—back to her apartment, I stop seeing Katherine Wilson as some random girl. She’s gorgeous, vulnerable, and braver than she knows. And when we kiss, all I want to do is pull her close and promise that she’ll always be safe in my arms.

Advance praise for Pull Me Close

“Pull Me Close is a heart-gripping story about one of the most beautiful things in the world: the power of love.”—New York Times bestselling author Aurora Rose Reynolds

“Pull Me Close is a magnificent story full of deep emotion that will get you straight in the feels. Sidney Halston nailed it with this one.”—New York Times bestselling author Sawyer Bennett

“An intriguing tale of anxiety and depression so authentic that readers will feel as if they are in the story with the characters. The plot is fresh and tackles a fascinating topic. The relationship between the main characters is very intense and consuming. . . . A great read!”—RT Book Reviews

Praise for Sidney Halston’s Worth the Fight series

“Against the Cage is funny, steamy, scorching—and holy hot MMA fighter, I wanted more. Five stars all the way!”—New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Toni Aleo

“A steamy and fun romance that will leave readers begging for more. Sidney Halston is an author to watch!”—New York Times bestselling author Cherry Adair, on Against the Cage

“Halston’s new series opener creates an organic and sensual dynamic between Jack and Chrissy that makes an easy buy-in for readers.”—Library Journal (starred review), on Against the Cage

“Sidney Halston has another knockout with her latest release in the Worth the Fight series. Full Contact is a heavyweight contender in the world of MMA romances.”—Smut Book Junkie Book Reviews

“If you love cracktastic drama and sexy times, this is for you!”—RT Book Reviews, on Fighting Dirty

my thoughts new

“I’m falling in love with the man who saved me from myself.”

What a real surprise. This book is a gem!

There are so many reasons to love Pull Me Close. One of these is the writing which was absolutely good! It’s my first time to read a Sidney Halston book and wow, I was hooked. I loved how she nicely delivered a story that has a very challenging theme which is battling the mental illness known as PTSD.

The story started when Katherine “Katie” Wilson woke up in the arms of Nico “Nick” Moreno, the owner of the popular Miami Beach Night Club named Panic. She lost consciousness after having a panic attack right when she stepped into the club. Katie is claustrophobic. In her younger years, she experienced a traumatic experience that changed her life and made her became scared to face the outside world. While her friendship with Nico developed and her feelings toward him progressed, her fears also became stronger. But she has no choice but to conquer those fears in order to have a normal relationship with Nico and in order to give herself a chance to live a normal life again.

“You pull me close and hold me tight, and I’ll be okay.”

What impressed me most was how the PTSD aspect was well-researched. The details were so accurate. This issue actually hits home because I, myself, am one of the people who experienced panic attacks in the past. This is not an easy condition to carry. I still can remember the nerves, the fast heartbeats, the feeling of not being able to control the situation, the feeling of helplessness, and the anticipation that something worst is about to happen at any moment. All these were experienced by Katie in this book and I can say that they really do happen to someone who has panic attacks.

The book was powerful not only because of its realistic storyline but also because of the sincere and believable romance between Katie and Nico. I found myself unable to resist these characters– especially Nico because of his assertiveness and willingness to help Katie get over her condition and face her fears. Their story was not only about falling in love with each other but also about building mutual trust, understanding each other’s differences, and overcoming bad situations by simply being there for each other.

Pull Me Close was as deep and rich as it was emotional and romantic. I highly recommend this book to everyone who wants to read a romance book that has enough substance to move and melt your heart in the end.

“You’re my kind of crazy.”

Rating:

4 stars

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ARC Review: His to Cherish by Stacey Lynn

His to Cherish (Fireside, #3)

His to Cherish
(Fireside #3)
Author: Stacey Lynn
Publisher: Loveswept
Date of Publication: November 15, 2016
Genre: Romance, Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

Can two hearts entwined by hardship move on to form a healthy bond? From the author of His to Love and His to Protect, this tender, bittersweet romance brings together a man who loses everything—and a woman with everything to give.

Chelsea Dwyer arrives home from her job at the middle-school library in Latham Hills, Michigan, expecting another quiet evening—until she hears the screams for help through her living room window. As the first witness to a terrible accident involving two local students, Chelsea doesn’t anticipate how her own life will be irrevocably changed by the father of one of the boys. In the wake of tragedy, she’s the only one who seems to understand his grief. Chelsea’s a survivor, too—and she knows that there are brighter days ahead.

As a single father, Aidan Deveraux worked his entire life to provide a stable home for his son, Derrick. Without him, Aidan feels the deepest despair imaginable. The one thing that keeps him going is his connection with the woman who tried to save his son. Hard as he tries, Aidan just can’t stay away. Chelsea’s warm embrace is the comforting solace he desperately craves—and it doesn’t hurt that Aidan had noticed the beautiful librarian and wanted to ask her out for years. Now that she’s in his life, he doesn’t ever want to let go.

my thoughts new

You know what’s so wonderful about this book? It’s the way I felt the raw emotions of the characters. The way the story weaved not just romance but also an element of family drama which I became emotionally involved with.

His to Cherish started when Chelsea Dwyer witnessed the death of Aidan Deveraux‘s son Derrick from a skateboarding accident. Since Aidan’s loss, she has been there for him, comforting him and giving him her company with no expectations. Despite the fact that she’s attracted to him and she’s completely single after her divorce with her ex-husband, she didn’t entertain the idea of them falling in love with each other. But what if Aidan is also secretly into her but is just not ready to commit to a relationship because of his grief and depression?

It’s my first time to read a book by Stacey Lynn and I must say she writes beautifully. Her characters are well fleshed-out and the narration was tightly constructed. I became invested in the story mostly because of the feels I’ve had while reading the book. Aidan and Chelsea’s chemistry was spot-on and the sexual tension was there all the time.

I especially loved the characters’ romantic development. It wasn’t hurried. And I loved the fact that they didn’t immediately jump to the sex after a series of conversations and encounters. Their mutual respect for each other amazed me to no end.

Can I also say I loved Aidan and Chelsea’s group of friends? I swear they’re all very supportive when it comes to their love affair. Friendship goals!

So, why 4 stars? I wished there weren’t unnecessary scenes. They kind of ruined the overall beauty of this book. I have nothing against slow burn romance but at times I felt the book’s pace was overstretched because of those fillers. Nevertheless, I did love this book. It was a bittersweet, emotionally-driven story but certainly with a HEA that made me smile. And oh, did I mention that Aidan Deveraux is such a perfect male lead? Gaaaah!

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

Rating:

4

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Review: Wanting My Stepsister by Alexa Riley

Wanting My Stepsister

Wanting My Stepsister
Author: Alexa Riley
Publisher: Alexa Riley
Date of Publication: November 15, 2016
Genre: Romance, Adult, Contemporary, Erotica

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Synopsis new

Libby Moore is trying to figure out what to do with her life. She has graduated high school, but there’s only one thing she’s ever truly wanted in life…the one thing she can’t have…her stepbrother, Jasper.

Jasper Lewis tried to get away from the one person he shouldn’t want. But moving only a couple of miles away was a pitiful effort, and he’s tired of resisting what he wants. He’s coming back to claim what’s been his since day one, no matter what the consequences.

This taboo love is so dirty, so wrong, and your lady business is gonna thank you!

Warning: It’s okay if you like it, because this is a judgment-free zone. But these two are about to get it on like their dad may walk in at any moment. Enjoy!!

my thoughts new

Don’t get me wrong. I love Alexa Riley. Her taboo smutty books are really enticing. But I feel like her storylines are kind of repetitive and they are slowly getting old (in my opinion). This book was no different.

Libby Moore is secretly in love with her stepbrother Jasper Lewis. Jasper, on the other hand, feels the same way about Libby. Ever since Libby’s mom married Jasper’s dad, they’ve already been attracted to each other. However, Jasper didn’t want to cross the line by hitting on his stepsister so he moved on his own so he can avoid her. But because they simply can’t get away from each other and the sexual tension is always there, they’re about to do the forbidden.

Just like Alexa Riley’s previous books, this book was a short and fast moving read. What I loved about it was the fact that it has enough substance that equals the amount of smut. However, I didn’t feel connected to any of the characters. The steamy scenes were of course, uber hot and Jasper was such a dirty talker but oh my, why did I encounter the word “kitty” again? I swear this word was always present in the previous books. (?) lol.

Anyways, I believe fans of Alexa Riley will enjoy this book more than I did. I just don’t think this is her best.

Rating:

2.5

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Review: Punk 57 by Penelope Douglas

Punk 57

Punk 57
Author: Penelope Douglas
Publisher: Penelope Douglas
Published: October 21, 2016
Genre: Romance, New Adult, Contemporary

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“We were perfect together. Until we met.”

Misha

I can’t help but smile at the words in her letter. She misses me.

In fifth grade, my teacher set us up with pen pals from a different school. Thinking I was a girl, with a name like Misha, the other teacher paired me up with her student, Ryen. My teacher, believing Ryen was a boy like me, agreed.

It didn’t take long for us to figure out the mistake. And in no time at all, we were arguing about everything. The best take-out pizza. Android vs. iPhone. Whether or not Eminem is the greatest rapper ever…

And that was the start. For the next seven years, it was us.

Her letters are always on black paper with silver writing. Sometimes there’s one a week or three in a day, but I need them. She’s the only one who keeps me on track, talks me down, and accepts everything I am.

We only had three rules. No social media, no phone numbers, no pictures. We had a good thing going. Why ruin it?

Until I run across a photo of a girl online. Name’s Ryen, loves Gallo’s pizza, and worships her iPhone. What are the chances?

F*ck it. I need to meet her.

I just don’t expect to hate what I find.

Ryen

He hasn’t written in three months. Something’s wrong. Did he die? Get arrested? Knowing Misha, neither would be a stretch.

Without him around, I’m going crazy. I need to know someone is listening. It’s my own fault. I should’ve gotten his number or picture or something.

He could be gone forever.

Or right under my nose, and I wouldn’t even know it.

Rarely have I read a book as raw and amazing as this one. Punk 57 was quite possibly one of the best books that I have read this year. Such well-constructed storyline. Such real characters that are flawed yet redeemable. Such unique plot twist. It’s packed full of everything. HATS OFF, PENELOPE DOUGLAS!

“Do you notice that, too? How all of us just want to get through life as quickly and easily as possible? And even though we know that without risk there’s no reward, we’re still so scared to chance it?”

description

The story is all about childhood pen pals Misha Lare and Ryen Trevarrow. They’ve been writing letters for each other since grade school and for about seven years, they’ve never seen each others’ faces. They promised not to search each other’s name on social media to keep their identity a mystery and to keep their meaningful friendship as it is. But one unexpected night at his band’s party, Misha wasn’t able to resist the temptation of looking at Ryen’s Facebook account after he accidentally saw her picture online. That’s when he knew that Ryen was actually there at the party’s venue.

I’d be honest. This book was HOT. Like RATED PG HOT. And I’m warning you, Ryen and Misha’s smoking chemistry and their steamy scenes will possibly burn your e-reader. lol. And since it’s written by THE PENELOPE DOUGLAS, it’ll be impossible to stop reading.

Steamy scenes aside, this book resonated a powerful message. I loved how it tackled a very important issue which is bullying that happens in every school. The anti-bullying theme here was quite different compared to Douglas’s previous book Bully because in this book, the storyline was centered around the issue and most of the events happened at school. It presented a look at what kids go through every day. It was honest and terrifying and it served as an eye-opening view of what these kids’ lives are like.

One of the things that I also loved about this book was Ryen’s character which came as a huge surprise for me. She was not easy to like especially in the first few chapters, but I totally understood her. She’s a famous student at her school. A beautiful and sexy cheerleader. But underneath it all, she’s insecure. She’s worried about losing her place and losing her friends. She’s afraid to be alone. Afraid to be bullied. And that’s what made me appreciate her character. For me, she was real.

Same goes for Misha. I loved that both of these characters shared the same passion for words, the same desire for attention and love. Not to mention the same rebellious trait which was quite entertaining. And as I’ve mentioned, these characters were redeemable ones.

“We’re rebels with a reason.”

And you know what especially blew me away? The PLOT TWIST. Yes, that twist was a shocker and totally unpredictable!

It will surely take me a lot of time to get over this book. It was simply amazing. A new favorite of mine. 🙂

“We’re all ugly, Ryen. The only difference is, some hide it and some wear it.”

Rating:

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Review: Heartbreaker by Kat Bastion with Stone Bastion

Heartbreaker (Unbreakable, #1)

Heartbreaker
(Unbreakable #1)
Author: Kat Bastion, Stone Bastion
Publisher: Kat Bastion, Stone Bastion
Date of Publication: March 22, 2016
Genre: Romance, New Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

Kiki Michaelson wants one wild night to forget her starving-artist worries. Simple.

Only instead of Darren Cole becoming her one-night stand, he taunts her with a challenge. Then while she’s trying to best him at his own game, he turns out to be the last thing she’s prepared for: someone she wants to keep.

Which means all he can ever be…is a friend.

Darren Cole never allows a girl to get close—not close enough to matter.

Then storms in Kiki Michaelson, a beautiful, fearless temptation that rocks his world off-balance. But he fights their attraction, unwilling to gamble something physical with their close ties. Until the passionate sculptor exposes her heart and breaks his wide open.

In that moment it becomes clear: she could never be just a friend.

Sometimes what you run from…is exactly what you need.

***HEARTBREAKER is a standalone, full-length new adult romance told in dual POV. Due to mature themes and adult language, this book is for those 18 and older.***

my thoughts new

First off, I didn’t know this is a spin-off and I think I could’ve enjoyed Heartbreaker more if I’ve read the previous series first. Anyways, the characters, the storyline, the writing style… they are all good! My only real (and perhaps biggest) concern is that there were so many things that confused me. The characters kept mentioning about these things and that but I found myself having no such clue what they’re all talking about.

Despite my problem though, it wasn’t difficult for me to like the main characters Kiki Michaelson and Darren Cole. They have real and special connection. And how can one not praise their chemistry that is so apparent from the first page to the last?

And for someone like me who has a penchant for angst-driven love stories, I was sold by how their romance was coated with a little bit of drama and (just mild) family conflicts. Not to mention the sweet slow burn of their romantic development which just added a little spice to the story. And oh, did I mention that Darren Cole is such a sweetheart? He’s one responsible and *sigh boyfriend material guy. Despite his baggage, he didn’t set Kiki aside. She’s one of the persons that always come first, and that’s just something.

Trust and relationship issues… these are things that very much highlight Heartbreaker. I really do think, despite the issue that I mentioned, that it is still a lovable and possibly an all-consuming romance book as a whole.

“Whenever I care too much about something-” I sucked in a shaking breath– “it gets ripped away.”

“I know.” His tone quieted. “Me too.”

“So… how do we get past that?”

He trailed his fingers along my jaw, then cupped the side of my face with his hand. “We fight harder to keep what we want.”

Rating:

three point five

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ARC Review: Her Unexpected Engagement by Kyra Jacobs

Her Unexpected Engagement (Checkerberry Inn, #2)

Her Unexpected Engagement
(Checkerberry Inn #2)
Author: Kyra Jacobs
Publisher: Entangled: Bliss
Date of Publication: November 7, 2016
Genre: Romance, Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

Sometimes you’ve got to fake it ‘til you make it…

Stephanie Fitzpatrick wanted out of the spotlight after her pro-golfer husband was caught on camera cheating. But when she returns to Michigan for a job interview and some much-needed R&R, a fib told by her well-meaning sister has her looking for a temporary fiancé, or she can kiss her new start good-bye.

Desperate to hide the truth, she goes to the one man who can help—her former best friend.

Miles Masterson is relieved to see the Checkerberry Inn beginning to thrive once more. Not only does it ease his mind about his grandmother’s financial future, but also about his decision to finally escape town. But then one all grown up and sexy as hell friend from the past shows up needing rescue. Now the temptation to change the “temporary” arrangement into something more is making it harder to think about leaving.

Each book in the Checkerberry Inn series is a standalone, full-length story that can be enjoyed out of order.

my thoughts new

I finished this book with a smile on my face.

Her Unexpected Engagement was an enjoyable light-spirited romance read. The kind of book that gives you warm and fuzzy feelings all because of its sweet portrayal of second chance romance. I’ve never read anything by Kyra Jacobs prior to this book but her way of writing captivated me. It was so Harlequin-ish and it certainly brought out nostalgic feels.

The story started when Stephanie Fitzpatrick‘s famous golf player ex-husband cheated on her in public. Fresh from heartache, she went back to her roots in Michigan to start a new life. By going back there, however, her heart got confused when she reunited with her college best friend Miles Masterson who also happened to be someone she secretly loved before she fell for her ex.

The setting was one of the things that made me fall in love with this book. Checkerberry Inn was beautifully described and living in this romantic place through the pages made me feel so comfortable. I also loved both the main characters and how their romantic development was built up. They certainly have that chemistry.

All throughout the book I found myself swooning, smiling, and laughing over how sweet their reunion was. There were of course scenes that I consider my favorite especially the one where Stephanie cooked a baked ziti that ended up in a disaster lol.

This book, as a whole, was a pleasure to read. Fast-paced, heartfelt, and with a little pinch of humor, this was one of the beautiful reunion romance books I’ve ever read! 🙂

(An ARC was provided by Entangled: Bliss and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.)

Rating:

4

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ARC Review: Blow by Heidi McLaughlin

Blow (Virtuous Paradox, #1)

Blow
(Virtuous Paradox #1)
Author: Heidi McLauglin
Publisher: Loveswept
Date of Publication: November 8, 2016
Genre: Romance, New Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

Meet the complicated men behind the sexiest boy band in America! In Blow, the start of an emotionally charged series from bestselling author Heidi McLaughlin, an insatiable heartthrob gets blinded by the spotlight—and learns to fight for love.

Bodhi McKnight has always had everything handed to him on a silver platter: fame, success, money, girls. The raven-haired, blue-eyed hottie is the son of Hollywood A-listers, and when he’s asked to join the boy band Virtuous Paradox, his star shoots even higher. But so do expectations, leading Bodhi down a destructive path of addiction—until a drop-dead gorgeous guardian angel shows him her sizzling brand of tough love.

When Bodhi ends up in rehab, he doesn’t expect to meet someone as cool and down-to-earth as Kimberly Gordon. Although he’s enjoyed the company of beautiful, charming women before, none of them have tried to get to know the “real” Bodhi. But Kimberly isn’t fazed by his stardom. She’d rather go horseback riding, teach Bodhi to play guitar, or ask him about his feelings. Soon Bodhi realizes he’s fallen head over heels for her. He just hopes that he’s strong enough to protect what they have from all the pressures and temptations of the outside world.

Includes a special message from the editor, as well as an excerpt from another Loveswept title.

my thoughts new

So I’ve heard a lot of great things about Heidi McLaughlin and her previous rock star series and I admit that I really wanted to delve into those books prior to reading this. This is my first Heidi McLaughlin read. Sad to say, I was disappointed.

While Blow has an interesting premise about a rock star falling for an ordinary woman who helps him get over his drug addiction, this book was ruined by a lot of things. For once, both the male lead and the heroine were not likable enough for me to feel fascinated with their story.

There was an absolute insta-love insta-lust. All throughout the book all Bodhi McKnight and Kimberly Gordon ever did was lust after each other. I didn’t really think that what they felt for each other was love at all. There were also scenes that kind of made me cringe. Tell you what, I am not against over-the-top sensual scenes but when (view spoiler).

I also wasn’t sold on how Bodhi’s drug addiction quickly faded. Drug addiction has never been an easy condition to be dealt with and to be easily treated. It may take more than 30 days for a person to completely be sober without thinking about going back to it and without experiencing some undesired symptoms all throughout the recovery process. So no, I wasn’t convinced.

And oh, did I tell you that there was cheating involved here? Not that it was done willingly, but still, it was cheating. Ugh.

As a whole, I did not like this book. Things were just too unbelievable and unrealistic for me that I found myself having a hard time resisting the urge to groan in frustration.

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

Rating:

2.5

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ARC Review: Crazy Pucking Love by Cindi Madsen

Crazy Pucking Love (Taking Shots, #3)

Crazy Pucking Love
(Taking Shots #3)
Author: Cindi Madsen
Publisher: Entangled: Embrace
Date of Publication: November 7, 2016
Genre: Romance, New Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

I just met the girl of my dreams.

Megan Davenport is funny and smart, and she’s as much of an insomniac as I am. She’s also my team captain’s little sister, which I only found out after our passionate kiss.

Megan is completely off-limits—her brother makes that very clear—and I know better than to think I can keep a relationship going during hockey season anyway. But that doesn’t mean we can’t be late-night friends, right?

The only problem is, love makes you do crazy things, like breaking all the rules.

my thoughts new

“I saw you, I wanted you, and I ignored everything else. I knew I was crossing a line I shouldn’t, but crossing it felt so damn good.”

Another potentially lovable NA sports romance that was well-written but unfortunately suffered a number of flaws.

We met Megan Davenport in Getting Lucky Number Seven as Beck’s little sister who was quite a rebel that time. Now she is already a freshman at Boston College and is about to have an exciting college life with the help of her “Fresh Start Checklist” that contains all her goals. In a college drunken party, she meets a gorgeous guy named Dane Kowalski and sort of forms an instant friendship with him. She doesn’t know that Dane is actually an ice hockey star and a co-player of her brother, which is quite a conflict since Beck is such a protective brother and she’s already attracted with Dane. Plus, Dane seems to feel the same way, too.

You know what’s the obvious similarity of this book to the previous books of this series? The characters, the storyline, the dramas.. same old same old. It’s the repetitive idea by which the male lead carries heavier baggage, thus he cannot give his “all” to the heroine because he’s not capable enough to give it. Ugh.

What’s with these hockey men and their never ending issues?

Now onto the good side.

I still found this book swoon-worthy despite my complaints. I felt the strong connection shared by the characters as well as the angst. Both characters were okay. I thought Dane was such a hot mess but he was a sweet person with a soft heart nonetheless. The sexy scenes, on the other hand, were burning hawt. There was certainly a chemistry between Dane and Megan and for that, I was at least happy. You just have to prepare for that cheesy ending though.

All in all, it was an okay read. Just another typical college sports romance with cliché tropes such as friends-to-lovers and friends-with-benefits. I wasn’t completely drawn but I think other readers may find this book enjoyable and may love it more than I did.

(An ARC was provided to me by Entangled: Embrace and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.)

Rating:

3 Stars

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Review: Anatomy of a Player by Cindi Madsen

Anatomy of a Player (Taking Shots, #2)

Anatomy of a Player
(Taking Shots #2)
Author: Cindi Madsen
Publisher: Entangled: Embrace
Published: January 25, 2016
Genre: Romance, New Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

This bad boy is about to get played…

After getting her heart broken by a player again, Whitney Porter is done with men. She’s focusing on her future career and her first assignment at the college newspaper: Posing as a sports writer for an exposé on the extra perks jocks receive. But Hudson Decker, the bad boy of the hockey team, is about to test her resolve. To keep herself from breaking her no-sex rule with the temptingly tattooed athlete, she decides to use him for a side project: Anatomy of a Player, to help Whitney—and women everywhere—spot a player, learn what makes him tick, and how to avoid falling for one.

With his life spiraling out of control, Hudson Decker’s looking for a distraction. When his teammates bet him that he can’t land the gorgeous but prickly new reporter, he accepts the challenge, boasting he’ll have her in bed by the end of the semester. But Whitney is so much more than Hudson expected, and soon enough, he’s in too deep. The last thing he needs is another complication, but staying away isn’t an option. One thing’s for certain: this girl totally throws him off his game.

my thoughts new

Anatomy of a Player is much better compared to the first book of the series. However, it took me a while to warm up to the story.

The book follows journalism student Whitney Porter and ice hockey player Hudson Decker. After getting Whitney’s heart broken by her cheating ex, she swore to never fall in love again with guys– most especially athletes. When she met hockey star Hudson though, her plans to avoid athletes failed. It’s difficult to resist a sexy, tatted, and packed-with-abs guy who knows how to treat her right. When she knew she’s about to fall for him, that’s the time when conflict began. Dating him is not an option because she’s also secretly working for an article that may destroy Hudson’s hockey life.

The writing once again especially awed me. It was good! There was also an angst here which made me like it. However, Whitney turned me off. She was weak for a character. And she didn’t fail to annoy me most of the time. For once, she was so full of drama and the way she treated Hudson at the first few chapters was immature.

While I loved that there were also conflicts, I found the story packed with too many issues and problems and that’s just so frustrating.

1. Hudson has mommy issues.
2. Hudson is having academic problems.
3. Hudson has a bet with his teammates that he can get Whitney to sleep with him.
4. Whitney has relationship issues.
5. Whitney is secretly writing an article that may hurt Hudson.

Yep, too many issues.

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As a whole, The Anatomy of a Player was just okay. It could have been a lovable NA romance book if there weren’t too many issues that ruined my enjoyment.

Rating:

3 Stars

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Review: The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

The Hating Game

The Hating Game
Author: Sally Thorne
Publisher: William Morrow
Published: August 29, 2016
Genre: Romance, Adult, Contemporary

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Debut author Sally Thorne bursts on the scene with a hilarious and sexy workplace comedy all about that thin, fine line between hate and love.

Nemesis (n.) 1) An opponent or rival whom a person cannot best or overcome.
2) A person’s undoing
3) Joshua Templeman

Lucy Hutton has always been certain that the nice girl can get the corner office. She’s charming and accommodating and prides herself on being loved by everyone at Bexley & Gamin. Everyone except for coldly efficient, impeccably attired, physically intimidating Joshua Templeman. And the feeling is mutual.

Trapped in a shared office together 40 (OK, 50 or 60) hours a week, they’ve become entrenched in an addictive, ridiculous never-ending game of one-upmanship. There’s the Staring Game. The Mirror Game. The HR Game. Lucy can’t let Joshua beat her at anything—especially when a huge new promotion goes up for the taking.

If Lucy wins this game, she’ll be Joshua’s boss. If she loses, she’ll resign. So why is she suddenly having steamy dreams about Joshua, and dressing for work like she’s got a hot date? After a perfectly innocent elevator ride ends with an earth shattering kiss, Lucy starts to wonder whether she’s got Joshua Templeman all wrong.

Maybe Lucy Hutton doesn’t hate Joshua Templeman. And maybe, he doesn’t hate her either. Or maybe this is just another game.

What a perfect combination of cute and sexy. I kept seeing The Hating Game on my Twitter, Instagram, and Goodreads timeline and since it’s been gathering high ratings, of course my curiosity was piqued.

Lucy Hutton and Joshua Templeman, both executive assistants to the co-owners of Bexley & Gamin, have always been at a clash with each other. They share an office room together but they don’t get along well. When their respective bosses announced that one of them will be promoted as the other boss, their competitive drive became stronger and of course, they hated each other more. If Lucy loses the job position to Joshua, she has to resign. Is she gets it, then she’ll rule over Joshua. But everything turned to chaos when their daily banters slowly converted into strange attraction and irresistible sexual tension.

Despite the usual tropes — office romance and enemies to lovers, the author Sally Thorne was able to bring life to the story through her fun and quirky characters. Lucy’s narration was all kind of hilarious. I found myself unable to stop laughing with the way she described her working relationship with Joshua and the rest of the employees of Bexley & Gamin. I also loved how the author painted Joshua’s character in a hot and adorable executive kind of way.

The daily bickering was the one that truly stood out here. It was so entertaining to see them exchange witty dialogues that just make their chemistry more apparent. The only complaint I had in this book was the inconsistency of the plotline. I admit I was a bit unsatisfied with their hating game. I thought the romantic development (enemies to lovers) progressed real quick. I kind of wished their hate relationship was longer and that it lasted at least until the middle part of the book. It would be fun to see more of them acting like a cat and a dog in a box. lol.

As a whole, this book was a nice, sweet, and enjoyable story. Nothing extravagant when it comes to angst and conflicts but just an entertaining romantic comedy book that I’m sure everyone will enjoy. For fans of contemporary books and rom-coms, give this book a chance!

Rating:

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Review: Lead by Kylie Scott

Lead (Stage Dive, #3)

Lead
(Stage Dive #3)
Author: Kylie Scott
Publisher: Macmillan Australia
Published: July 29, 2014
Genre: Romance, New Adult, Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

Stay up all night with the sexy rockers in Stage Dive, the epic New Adult series from New York Times bestselling author Kylie Scott, author of Lick and Play.

As the lead singer of Stage Dive, Jimmy is used to getting whatever he wants, whenever he wants it, whether it’s booze, drugs, or women. However, when a PR disaster serves as a wake-up call about his life and lands him in rehab, he finds himself with Lena, a new assistant to keep him out of trouble.

Lena’s not willing to take any crap from the sexy rocker and is determined to keep their relationship completely professional, despite their sizzling chemistry. But when Jimmy pushes her too far and Lena leaves, he realizes that he may just have lost the best thing that ever happened to him.

my thoughts new

“God damn mother-f*cking rock stars.”

I honestly didn’t think I would love Jimmy Ferris because he was such a douche in the previous books. But my oh my. This book totally changed my opinion and feelings for him.

James Dylan “Jimmy” Ferris, Stage Dive’s lead singer, is a difficult man to understand. He comes full of baggage. Spoiled, vain, and sensitive, the way he manages his issues changed when Lena Morrissey came into his life as his personal live-in assistant. Lena is a different girl. She doesn’t put up with Jimmy’s crap, thus they were like a cat and a dog who are always at clash with each other. But because they seriously have this strange connection between them and a chemistry that is so apparent, Lena slowly became infatuated with him. However, relationship is not in Jimmy’s vocabulary so she has to hide her feelings.

“Whatever he might be, Jimmy Ferris was special and complicated, beautiful and beastly, all rolled into one.”

I loved how their relationship had no insta-love. The build-up was done so well and it was packed with sexual tension and frustration. lol. I especially loved their banters and those parts where Jimmy tried so hard to control his jealousy each time Lena is with another guy. You can expect to find a push and pull kind of romance here which I found really entertaining. All throughout the book, all I was ever hoping for was for them to say those magic words and finally be together as a couple.

I guess what truly made this book stand out was the way Jimmy’s character was fleshed out and how his family issues were highlighted. I finally understood why he’s acting like a jerk. It’s because of this book that I realized he’s more than just a tortured hero. He’s a man who’s also capable to care for someone as good as Lena. Another thing that made me appreciate this book was Lena’s patience to Jimmy and her acceptance to his issues. It was quite remarkable. I just wished this book highlighted Jimmy’s performance on stage. I would have loved to see him singing on stage together with his bandmates. Also, I wished the resolution to their conflict wasn’t that rushed.

All in all, Lead was a knock-my-socks-off kind of book. There was certainly A LOT to love about it. Definitely one of the entertaining and wonderfully written sequels ever!

“Love came in all sorts of shapes and size, but if it wasn’t based upon doing what was right for the one you loved, then what was it worth, really?”

Rating:

4 stars

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Blog Tour & Review: Mr. President by Katy Evans

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Mr. President (White House, #1)

Mr. President
(White House #1)
Author: Katy Evans
Publisher: Katy Evans
Published: October 31, 2016
Genre: Romance, Adult, New Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

From New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Katy Evans comes a sizzling new contemporary romance.

He’s won the hearts of millions. But is he willing to lose his?

I met the president’s son when we were both young. Matthew Hamilton was handsome, polished, and intelligent. I’d never met a guy like him.

He promised me that he’d never run for president. I promised that if he did, I’d be by his side.

Three terms later, an invitation to join Matthew Hamilton’s campaign is the most exhilarating opportunity I’ve ever experienced. I’m determined to make a difference; he is determined to win.

Focused on his goal, Matt is steadfast, ruthless, and disarming. All eyes are on him and his popularity is surging. But soon, the next possible president of the United States is possessing me in more ways than one—and despite the risks, I’m helpless to resist.

We’re stealing touches, stealing moments, and stealing away at night. But our chemical connection is quickly becoming dangerously combustive, putting not only my heart, but Matt’s chance at the presidency on the line.

Winning will take everything. Walking away will be the hardest thing of all.

my thoughts new

 

(I’ve read this book together with my lovely sis Bea. Click her name to read her wonderful review.)

You can always count on Katy Evans delivering such a novel complete with a perfect mix of angst and steam. I’ve been a fan of her works since her Manwhore series because of her way of writing that is simply addicting and her Alpha male men that are hot and irresistible.

Apparently Mr. President has rendered me utterly amazed. It was an all-consuming novel, so different compared to her previous works. As what the blurb says, this book tells a story about two characters living in a political world, Matthew “Matt” Hamilton and Chralotte Wells. Matt is the son of an ex US President while Charlotte is the daughter of an ex Senator. They first met when Charlotte was 11 years old and Matt and her father went to her family’s house for a visit. She has been crushing on Matt ever since that day and she even promised to support him if he ever runs for presidency in the future. Now after 11 years, they met again and this time, Matt is already a candidate for President and Charlotte is working for his campaign.

“You will not be the reason for me losing. If anything, you’ll be the reason for me winning.”

What made this book stand out for me was the off-the-charts chemistry between Charlotte and Matt. They simply hit it off! I loved how their relationship was built up from a simple crush to a deep attraction which later on bloomed into sexual tension and frustration and yes– white-hot love.

“She grounds me. She obsesses me. She fuels me. This woman not only makes me want to be a great man, she makes me want to be the best goddamn president that ever lived.”

Both characters are also likeable. Matt is such a sweet and passionate person. The way he looks at Charlotte like he’s the last woman on earth even when there are tons of people around. Oh MY GOD. And don’t even get me started on his irresistible charm that wins millions of people. On the other hand, I adore Charlotte’s character. She’s a natural. She has a soft heart for the place where she grew up and she’s a down to earth person despite the fact that she belongs to a well-endowed family.

What’s even great about Charlotte’s character is the way she loves Matt in a selfless way. She doesn’t set expectations right when they started their secret love affair. She knows what’s bound to happen and that their relationship is about to fall when America chooses Matt as the next president. She’s not whiny and needy and these qualities made me love her.

“I don’t care about more. I don’t care that there is no future for us if he wins. I won’t deny us both this moment. He said he needs me. And I need him.”

As for the ending, well, this was me after that ending…

description

…a hot mess. A steaming pile of mess.

It’s not yet a happily-ever-after for Charlotte and Matt but the ending promised all kinds of feels and goodness in the upcoming sequel. And I so need the next installment so bad it hurts!

A real page-turner, this book is no doubt one of the best romance novels I’ve read this year and possibly one of the most beautiful political romance books ever written. The story was brought out in a passionate and intoxicating way. The angst was overwhelming and the love the characters both share for each other made this book a keeper. Yet another book added to my favorites shelf!

“Love has no place in the White House.”

(An ARC was provided by the author Katy Evans in exchange for an honest review)

Rating:

5 stars new

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Review: All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood

All the Ugly and Wonderful Things

All the Ugly and Wonderful Things
Author: Bryn Greenwood
Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books
Date of Publication: August 9, 2016
Genre: Romance, Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

As the daughter of a meth dealer, Wavy knows not to trust people, not even her own parents. Struggling to raise her little brother, eight-year-old Wavy is the only responsible “adult” around. She finds peace in the starry Midwestern night sky above the fields behind her house. One night everything changes when she witnesses one of her father’s thugs, Kellen, a tattooed ex-con with a heart of gold, wreck his motorcycle. What follows is a powerful and shocking love story between two unlikely people that asks tough questions, reminding us of all the ugly and wonderful things that life has to offer.

my thoughts new

Heartbreakingly beautiful!

description

There goes my feelings. After reading this book, I found myself playing all the events in my mind over and over again. They were too absorbing and nothing short of brilliant. I didn’t expect I was in for a roller coaster ride!

All the Ugly and Wonderful Things was a tough book to read. It screamed heartache and many different overwhelming emotions. A well thought-out story about a girl named Wavonna Lee “Wavy” Quinn, the book opens in the year 1975 when she was 6 years old and has started to live under the roof of her aunt Brenda and her husband and two daughters Amy and Leslie. Wavy has always been a different girl. She doesn’t eat, doesn’t speak if she doesn’t want to, and always sneaks out of the house. It was when her parents came around to take her and her brother Donal when her life went back to being miserable. Her irresponsible parents are the worst. Her dad is a drug dealer while her mom suffers a mental illness. But when a tattooed ex-con named Kellen came into her life and basically helped her manage her awful childhood, she started looking up to him and she developed more than brotherly feelings to him.

Told in multiple POVs, I found this book in a way, emotionally challenging. It wasn’t that easy to dive into various characters’ minds and perhaps explore their feelings and thoughts. Wavy’s thoughts alone were more than enough to destroy me. What more when it comes to her cousin, to the people around her, and especially Kellen? But the good thing that I found in this multi-POVed book was that it made me become more open-minded to the main characters’ situation. If I have read this book without getting into other characters’ perspective, I think I may have the tendency to judge Wavy and Kellen’s relationship. Their age gap was odd and I can’t blame this story if it led to so many negative reactions from the people around her, especially from Wavy’s aunt. Reading this book made me feel accepting. It made me feel as though I was the one wearing their shoes, thus I found myself empathizing with them.

I was awestruck by the series of events here, both the good and the bad. It was pretty much unpredictable. All throughout the book, I didn’t know what’s about to happen and worse, I already envisioned a sad and tragic ending. Because gaaah books like this tend to end that way! But despite all the ugly things that happened here, there were of course wonderful things as what the title implies.

“I liked to pet his feet with mine. Touch his hands with mine. Rub my cheek against his. I liked how we were different, but the same.”

I believe this is one of the most unforgettable books that I’ve read this year and I’m glad I really read this gem. It was gripping and it definitely offered a whirlwind of emotions. The characters were painted with enough realism and everything kept me on the edge. Just a heads up though, there were many delicate issues here such as drugs, abuse, marital cheatings, and crime. All in all, it was a highly emotional read and certainly one of the best books ever written in 2016!

(Apart from being intrigued with this book, I’ve also read it for a purpose which is to greet my dear friend AJ a happiest birthday. Happiest birthday, my dear! I hope you did have a blast! AJ happens to love this book so I decided to delve into it, too. Click her name to read her fabulous review and send her birthday wishes as well. 🙂

Rating:

4 stars

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ARC Review: Beautiful Crazy by Kasey Lane

Beautiful Crazy (Rock 'n' Ink, #1)

Beautiful Crazy
(Rock ‘n’ Ink #1)
Author: Kasey Lane
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Date of Publication: November 1, 2016
Genre: Romance, Adult, New Adult, Contemporary

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Synopsis new

“Vibrant and sexy! The chemistry between Kevan and Mason is explosive and I was cheering for their happy ever after from page one.” -Stefanie London, USA Today bestselling author of the Dangerous Bachelors Club series

“You confound me. You’re all these maddening contradictions that don’t make any sense… And I can’t get enough of your special brand of beautiful crazy.”

She’s a rocker with attitude and ink…
He’s a sexy suit who gets what he wants

Kevan Landry is trying to keep her life on track and her brother in rehab. If her fledgling marketing firm can sign the hot new band, Manix Curse, it will make a world of difference. Mason Dillon heads the most successful music PR firm in Portland. He’s desperate to breathe new life into the company by signing Manix Curse.

The last thing either one needs is a one-night stand with a smoldering stranger…

The stakes are high when a battle for the band-in the bedroom and the boardroom-becomes a battle of the heart. But if these two can set aside their differences, they may find they’re the right mix of sexy savvy to conquer both their worlds.

“Get ready for your new auto-buy author! Kasey Lane’s debut hits all the high notes in this rock-infused love story! I loved it!” -Megan Crane, USA Today bestselling author of Edge of Control and Devil’s Honor

“Beautiful Crazy is like driving a vintage convertible in August-hot to the touch and sexy as hell!” -Kaylie Newell, author of the Wolfe Creek series

my thoughts new

If I could describe this book in one word, it would be “kick-ass”. Tatted and with punk personality, our heroine Kevan Landry is on a mission and that is to sign the coolest metal band known as “Manix Curse” as her first major entertainment marketing client. However, someone is ruining her chances and that is Mason Dillon— CEO of Global Entertainment Marketing who happens to also pursue Manix Curse for the same project. Worse, he also happens to be the guy she had a one-night-stand with at a club.

While Beautiful Crazy didn’t capture me like I wish it would, there were still parts that I enjoyed. Like Kevan and Mason’s push and pull romance. I loved that these two were able to bring out the best in them by simply having that tight competition they were up against each other. At first I thought I wouldn’t like Kevan’s street-smart personality (I envisioned her to be somewhat sarcastic) but I was wrong. She was indeed a likeable character. She’s responsible and success-driven– things that I like about a character.

The only thing that made this book quite a drawback was Mason. His character wasn’t that consistent. When he was introduced at the first chapter during their club scene, he appeared to be like all-Alpha and panty-dropping dominant but later on his character did change and as I went through the pages, I no longer saw any glimpse of his Alpha personality. Instead I saw a man with playful, carefree playboy personality. Where did that Mason-from-the-club go???

The romance was good. There were of course tons of hot and smexy scenes in places and the chemistry was also palpable. There was also a conflict but the resolution was fairly predictable. I found the writing also promising, although I wish this book was written in a 1st person POV. I don’t know but reading it in a 3rd person POV sounds a bit awkward. As a whole, it was a good romance book but it didn’t really knock my socks off. I would recommend it to fans of romance books with one-night-stand tropes.

(An ARC was provided to me by Sourcebooks Casablanca and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.)

Rating:

3 Stars

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