Sunday, 30 August 2020

Three Blind Dates - Meghan Quinn

                                       44587164. sy475 
Book: Three Blind Dates
Author: Meghan Quinn
Series: Dating By Numbers, #1
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 4th January 2018

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 30th August 2020

Description:

"Good Morning Malibu, it’s another beautiful day on the west coast! I'm Noely Clark, your host: and I'm in the market for love…”

When the publicity team of the new local restaurant, Going in Blind, began their search for a hot, local celebrity to promote the wildly popular eatery, they couldn’t have found a better person than me.

Outgoing? Check.
Single? Check.
Open to finding love? Check.

I signed up immediately.

A hopeless romantic with an exceedingly demanding schedule, I've found it impossible to find the man of my dreams—so Going in Blind seems too good to be true! That’s until they start setting me up on dates—three very different, very attractive, very distinct blind dates—and only one thing is for certain...

I’m in big trouble.

Good Morning Malibu,
I'm Noely Clark, and I have a choice to make.
The question is who will I choose; the suit, the rebel, or the jock.


Review:

I picked this up a month or so ago when it was 99p as I've enjoyed this authors books before.

So this starts with Noely doing her Going in Blind profile interview. She's a Good Morning Malibu show host and has used some of their equipment to film the interview, which, when her producer finds the disc informs her that she will be doing a segment on the show detailing her dates. She tries to protest but he's not having any of it and she reluctantly agrees.

Noely has three dates, as the title suggest and has a great time with all three, all for different reasons. Jack is her first option, the mysterious Suit. Then Beck, the bike riding Rebel. And lastly Hayden, the ice hockey Jock. She gets on with all three really well but something seems to go wrong on the second dates, leading her to look for someone else.

Then we get a "mystery man". One of the above guys who starts messaging Noely in the hopes of getting her to fall for him after the mess he made of their date. I was a bit stumped about who it was going to end up being but a certain guy did keep turning up places quite regularly.

I liked this but it did seem quite long for what went down. Each guy took up about a quarter of the book, including the final mystery one. It didn't entirely pull me in but there were some truly fun bits, and for me, personally, those involved Noely's brother, Alex, and his wife, Lauren. And little Chloe, too

Tuesday, 25 August 2020

Hidden Power - Fiona Starr

                                         48888566. sy475
Book: Hidden Power
Author: Fiona Starr
Series: Academy of Elemental Magic, #1
Genres: Fantasy, Magic, Reverse Harem
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 23rd January 2020

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 25th August 2020

Description:

A shifter, three sexy mages, and an Elemental with magic thought to be extinct… what could possibly go wrong?

I was born the day my parents died—talk about luck. I grew up bouncing around the foster system, never knowing when the rug would be pulled out from under me. Now, I’m twenty-two and while I’m free of the dangers of my childhood, life still isn’t easy.

When a strange couple appears chanting in some weird language, I try to walk away, but the guy whips out a freaking fire lasso and starts making like he’s going to hogtie me right there on the street. That’s when all kinds of crazy breaks loose. Next thing I know, I’m strapped to a bed in what looks like a hospital, I can’t speak, and some woman is telling me I’m a Vox Elemental, which leaves me a choice between getting shipped off to a magic school to train my voice or be silenced forever.

Of course I choose the school; who wouldn’t? Turns out my new home is a highly competitive, cut-throat academy where one wrong step could cost me everything. I promise myself that I’ll work hard and get free, which all goes out the window when I meet not one, not two, but four of the hottest guys I have ever seen, and they are definitely not part of the curriculum. As if juggling new relationships, a new school, and some rather testy mean girls weren’t enough, there’s also someone or something making a meal out of the student body—literally. Add that to the things I have to manage. Assuming I survive…

Some luck, huh?

Review:

I got this as a freebie a few months ago as I hunted for books to finish my Paranormal Roman & Urban Fantasy A-Z challenge on Goodreads.

This starts with Avaline doing her job as a lifeguard at the lake when she is attacked with magic by two assailants who know her name. She wakes up a month later to learn she, too, has magic. A dangerous magic. She has two choices and decides to stay at the school to learn how to control her vox magic.

I can't decide whether I liked this or not.

Everything was happening so quickly in it. She meets the guys, she lusts after them, she sleeps with one of them very quickly. She gets to lessons and on her second try ever she manages to make fire. I just expected things to take time...for her to initially struggle considering she didn't even know she had magic until a day or two ago.

I struggled to connect with the characters and wasn't really convinced by their relationships. I didn't feel any real sort of chemistry going on between any of them. Once again, I feel like this bit was rushed. I get lust but... I wasn't a fan of how the author wrote the romance parts.

This story had a lot of promise but we don't really learn much of anything. Ava learns about magic in lessons but we don't get to hear it. To me it feels like a bit of paper that's been scrunched into a ball and then flattened causing creases and ripples that means some details in the story have been glossed over. It could do with expanding a little with more details on certain aspects.

At this point I don't believe I'll be reading more of this series.

Sunday, 23 August 2020

Dangerous Lies - Becca Fitzpatrick

                                      30102491. sy475
Book: Dangerous Lies
Author: Becca Fitzpatrick
Genres: Suspense-ish, Romance, Young Adult
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 10th November 2015

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 22nd August 2020

Description:

A teen is forced to make a fresh start after witnessing a violent crime—but love and danger find her anyway in this novel from Becca Fitzpatrick, the New York Times bestselling author of the Hush, Hush saga.

Stella Gordon is not her real name. Thunder Basin, Nebraska, is not her real home. This is not her real life.

After witnessing a lethal crime, Stella Gordon is sent to the middle of nowhere for her own safety before she testifies against the man she saw kill her mother’s drug dealer.

But Stella was about to start her senior year with the boyfriend she loves. How can she be pulled away from the only life she knows and expected to start a new one in Nebraska? Stella chafes at her protection and is rude to everyone she meets. She’s not planning on staying long, so why be friendly? Then she meets Chet Falconer and it becomes harder to keep her guard up, even as her guilt about having to lie to him grows.

As Stella starts to feel safer, the real threat to her life increases—because her enemies are actually closer than she thinks…

Review:

This has been on my Kindle since 2016 so it's about time I read this, I think.

It starts with Estella going into witness protection after seeing something at her old house involving a gangster. Her name is changed to Stella and she goes to a small town called Thunder Basin where she will live with retired cop, Carmina. Initially, she rebels against everything but she slowly comes around thanks to local boy, Chet Falconer, who shows her that the town isn't so bad.

I did find Stella to be a bit of a brat when I first started reading. I mean, how dare they keep her safe by parting her from her boyfriend? She did grow on me after a while, once she just let herself get to know the town and the people in it. She ended up with real friends and people who cared about her.

That brings me to Chet once more. I really liked the guy. He was sweet, protective and a bit of a joker at times. I loved the scene with the bike and the junkyard. I liked how their relationship progressed. It was slow but you knew it was going to happen eventually.

As for the whole witness protection program thing... It was over very quickly in the end. It took up about 2% of the book. I expected a few more attempts to find her and stuff, like strangers appearing in town, no one on the other end phone calls or something There was nothing to suspect they were looking for her or had found her. And the truth of what really happened that night didn't particularly shock me that much. Her story did have a few holes in it in my opinion. I guess I just expected more of a showdown with the bad guys. I found that bit a little disappointing.


Tuesday, 18 August 2020

rock - Anyta Sunday

                                                
Book: rock
Author: Anyta Sunday
Genres: MM Romance, Young Adult, New Adult, LGBTQ+
Format: Kindle e-Book
Date Published: 1st October 2014

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒœ
Date Finished: 18th August 2020

Description:

Igneous.

When Cooper’s parents divorce, he finds himself landed in Week About—one week with his mum and one week with his dad.
Only, it’s not just his dad he has to live with. There’s Lila, too: The other woman, the one who stole the rock-solid foundation of his life.

And then ...

There’s Jace. Lila’s son. Lila’s smug, regurgitated-fish-scale-blue eyed son.

All Cooper wants is to have his family back the way it once was, but there’s something about this boy that promises things will never be the same again.

Sedimentary.

Resisting the realities of his new life, Cooper and Jace get off to a rocky start. But rocky start or not, after hundreds of shared memories together, they forge something new. A close ... friendship.

Because friendship is all they can have. Although it’s not like they are real brothers...

Metamorphic.

But how does that friendship evolve under the pressures of life?
Under pressures of the heart?


Review:

This starts with Cooper, at age 13, finding out that his parents are divorcing and that his dad has had another "family" on the go for the last five years. He's asked to go spend time at his dad's every weekend to get to know his new family and he meet's Jace, his dad's girlfriends son. They initially dislike each other but as they begin to know each other it turns into a deep friendship. And as they get older, the friendship turns into more.

I honestly had no idea what to expect with this and I read a few reviews on Goodreads and figured that this was going to put me through an emotional wringer. Boy, it did. I think because we see it all happen. From the tender ages of 13 and 14, to 23/24. We see it all grow; the friendship and the hope for more, the love for Lila and their now extended family. How much it hurts them both when they're apart. It's so beautifully written. So beautifully thought out. I really enjoyed this.

It's hard to right a detailed review without giving loads of things away that happen and affect this story but if you love MM Romances then this should definitely not be missed.

I feel like I have to mention Ernie. Ha! He's a legend in my eyes by the end. And Lila. *sigh* I cried like a baby for a while.

Sunday, 16 August 2020

Crimson Midnight - Amos Cassidy

                                    
Book: Crimson Midnight
Author: Amos Cassidy
Series: Crimson, #1
Genres: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 9th May 2014

My Rating: DNF'd at 28%
Date Finished: 16th August 2020

Description:

They say London is the city that never sleeps. Man, you have no idea…

A new job, a new life and a new home, Rose has left the pain of the past behind. But if she thinks she’s going to have it easy she’s in for a shock. There’s Roman for starters, a complication with a capital C. With the racing pulses and the x-rated thoughts, she can barely keep it together. And then he decides to drop a bombshell. It’s the domino effect alright, because hot on the heels of his revelation come a few unpleasant ones of her own. Rose discovers that there is a darker side to London, an ancient secret, a world that she belongs to and one that could get her killed.

Question is, can she keep it together long enough to kick danger’s arse?


Review:

I was asked several years ago to review this when I had the chance and then I kinda forgot, so I apologise to the authors for that.

This starts with Rose walking in on her boyfriend(?) cheating on her and deciding to head to London to stay with a friend of her mothers for a while. She meets new people and gets a job teaching self defence classes at a local gym. The new people she meets; Roman, Harold, Raven, Kris and Damon are part of a pack of werewolves and are hunting a pack of strays.

First, I feel I have to mention that shape shifters are not my favourite paranormal creature to read about so I was a little wary once I started this and realised. I don't know why I don't get along with this type of story sometimes because I've read and kept a lot of shape shifter paperbacks over the years.

To be honest, I don't think it was the werewolves that put me off with this. I found it a little complicated to tell the difference between different character POV's in this. It was jumping from place to place, person to person within one chapter and I had no idea where the story was going and I wasn't gelling with any of the characters. 

I think with a good looking over the book may have been a lot better on the eye.

As a reader of romance, I think I saw the beginning of what is mentioned in the description with Roman and Rose (at the 28% marker) but neither character was doing anything for me and I'd already long ago lost any interest in this...apart from Raven's catching of that scent that drove him wild a little bit before but I wasn't really going to read the rest of this just to see where it was heading.

Sorry, guys, but this really didn't work for me. I've scoured amazon and it appears the book is no longer available to buy on there apart from in paperback now, anyway.


Tuesday, 11 August 2020

Baking Me Crazy - Karla Sorensen

                                     
Book: Baking Me Crazy
Author: Karla Sorensen
Series: Donner Bakery, #1
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 8th October 2019

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 10th August 2019

Description:

I'm Levi Buchanan, and until five years ago, I thought the legend of my family's curse was a load of crazy, Southern nonsense.

No curse can make you fall in love at first sight. No curse can force a true, deep, passionate, all-consuming love that will haunt you all the days of your life.

Then I met Jocelyn Abernathy and I realized how completely wrong I was.

The problem is, Jocelyn guards her feelings like well-armed soldier. She's the most beautiful, stubborn, infuriating woman I've ever met. Every time she talks, I want to kiss the living daylights out of her. But I can't.

Because when we met, she didn't need true love. She needed a best friend. And that's what I've been to her... for five years.

But when Jocelyn meets a handsome stranger her first day working at Donner Bakery and she lets him buy her a dill pickle cupcake, I realize with ominous regret that I may have missed my window with my best friend.

If I can't get her to see past our friendship, my new curse may be to watch the love of my life move on with someone else.


Review:

So this starts with Levi and his best friend - and love of his life - Joss heading to Donner Bakery where Joss is starting work. He's been in love with her for the past five years but she just sees him as her best friend. It's on her first day at the bakery that she meets an attractive new guy who openly flirts with her and buys her a cupcake and Joss suddenly has all these feelings running through her. Levi eventually finds out about the guy and realises he has to do something to make Joss see him as more than best friend material.

I'll be honest, this took a lot of getting into initially. It was a slow build up. We know he's in love with her, she just sees him as a friend. It took until somewhere around half way through before anything really happened. It was cute after that. And then we have the PT job that Levi applied to a while ago and how that's going to affect their relationship.

I think this may be the first book I've read where a character is in a wheelchair. Joss was having physical therapy to try and help her walk better since she was only paralyzed from the knees down but she was amazing with her chair. She did pretty much every sport that was possible from her chair, worked out regularly with Levi and could pop a wheelie whenever she wanted.

This was a rather sweet story but it took a little too long to properly get going, in my opinion, so my attention had started to wane by the time they did finally even think of turning their friendship into more.

I read a Winston Brothers book a while ago and I have to admit I wasn't the biggest fan but Cletus popping up in this has made me want to read his and Jenn's story at least.

Thursday, 6 August 2020

You, Me, Forever - Jo Watson


Book: You, Me, Forever
Author: Jo Watson
Genres: Chick Lit, Romance
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 3rd December 2019

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒœ
Date Finished: 5th August 2020

Description:
It all started with faulty elevator - and a love letter...

Writer Becca Thorne needs an idea - fast! She might have a huge bestseller to her name but, with the deadline for book two approaching, Becca knows she's in danger of losing the career she cares so much about. But Fate has other plans for her when she almost plummets to her death with two strangers in a faulty elevator.

Although Becca emerges in one piece, her precious vintage handbag doesn't, and that's when she realises that inspiration has been with her alll along. Hidden inside the bag's now-torn lining is a set of beautiful love letters.

It might not be her story, yet Becca can't seem to get the romantic words out of her head and feels compelled to discover who wrote the letters. But there's more waiting for Becca than the tale of a romance from long ago - it might be the chance to live her own love story and follow the path Fate has always intended her to...

Review:

I do enjoy a good Jo Watson book. I think this one is my fifth book.

This one follows Becca - full name Pebecca after an incident at the registry office - after she struggles to come up with a new story for her agent. She has a near death experience just before going to see her agent and in the chaos, the lining of her antique bag splits and she finds a collection of love letters. She reads a few and then heads to her agents, who's a fiery personality. In a panic, Becca reads one of the love letters out and the agent gets very excited at the thought of the "book". Becca, still panicking, reads a few more of the letters and then heads out to find the place where the letters were written.

I definitely think Becca is a "do now, think later" kind of girl. She seems to get herself into a lot of mischief without trying. And then she meets Mike, the town's only police officer. There's an instant attraction between them but they ignore it, at first, until they bump into each other that third time at the bar. Their relationship was cute, if a little unorthodox. Mike always seems to turn up as Becca is doing something crazy and annoying the locals. 

As well as the romance there is the mystery of the letters and figuring out who sent them and who they were meant for so Becca could successfully write her story. They go on a journey through the small town and it was a fun little adventure. From a fenced compound of eco lovers to a nudist beach, they do end up doing some crazy things.

I liked how Becca finally wrote her story. It was a brilliant idea and I'm glad she found somewhere where she felt like she belonged with people who cared. It was all she'd really wanted since she was a child.

Sunday, 2 August 2020

Anti-Romance - Cassia Leo


Book: Anti-Romance
Author: Cassia Leo
Series: Anti-Romance, #1
Genres: Contemporary, Romance-ish
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 6th March 2016

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒœ
Date Finished: 1st August 2020

Description:

Laney Hill is screwed. On the bed. On the treadmill. On the hood of a BMW. And on her boss’s desk. Then she’s screwed again when she steps into the free clinic and finds out she has gonorrhea. That dirty prick gave her gonorrhea! She’s totally going to break up with him...until he breaks up with her...because he’s married!

A night out drinking with friends leads to a fateful--yet awkwardly-sloppy--kiss between her and her best friend George Bratton.

George has been single and pining for his ex-girlfriend ever since their breakup two years ago. When his ex invites him to her destination wedding in London, self-destructive George and gonorrhea survivor Laney make a deal to go as each other’s dates. It will make great material for Laney’s “Anti-Romance” blog and maybe it will help George finally get over his ex. Nothing could possibly go wrong, right?

Review:

This was a freebie I downloaded about four years ago and I've put it off for a while because of it's rather bad rating on Goodreads of 3.64. I feel I should point out that most books I read have a rating of between 3.9 and 4.5 stars, so I was wary that I wouldn't like it.

We follow Laney, who writes a blog about her exploits with different men and it's very anti-romance/romance is dead - hence the name of the book. She's currently seeing someone in politics but he gives her an STI and it turns out he is married so she's ready to write her post about him. Then she meets her neighbour Kade, a hot musician who really likes her. And then there's her best friend of years, George, who's been in love with her for years.

I had nothing against Laney spreading the love, really, but I generally prefer to focus on one guy and she was changing between Kade and George rather quickly and easily.

And then the book ended at 49%, mid chapter, mid crisis. It felt too abrupt. Just cut off without some sort of proper ending. I'm understanding it's low rating.

I feel I should also point out that this book is no longer available on Amazon unless you want it as an audiobook and the second part Pro-Love isn't anywhere I can see so I will never know how this story ends. I have to say I was pro Kade since I like the kind of bad boy he seemed to be.

P.S. The best bit for me was probably the four pictures that had hidden penises in them.

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