Tuesday, 28 September 2021

My (Mostly) Secret Baby - Penelope Bloom

                                             54435732. sy475 
Book: My (Mostly) Secret Baby
Author: Penelope Bloom
Series: My (Mostly) Funny Romances, #1
Genres: Romance, Comedy, Erotica
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 6th July 2020

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒœ
Date Finished: 27th September 2021

Description:

You know that instinct to run when something bad is coming? Yeah. I apparently missed out on that one.
Because Damon Rose came, and instead of running, I got pregnant.

Damon
Yes. I remember Chelsea Cross.
I remember five years ago when she thought she could handle me.
Proving her wrong was… enjoyable.
With hair I wanted to fist. A mouth that only stopped when I kissed it. A body that I needed to press against the nearest wall and claim.

And now she wants a job.
A smart man would say “no”.
Or, I could teach her the same lesson I taught her five years ago.
She can’t even begin to handle me.

Review:

I've read one other book by this author before, His Banana, that was an office romance/enemies to lovers thing and thought it was totally bonkers but funny. 

So this one starts with Damon trying to find his elusive brother, Chris, as they head to an important meeting about his brothers career when he ends up bumping into Chelsea outside the hotel. They instantly lock horns due to Damon's rather horrible personality and Chelsea's stubbornness means she has to have the last word...which leads them to having angry sex in one of the hotel's conference rooms. Fast forward five years and Chelsea is in dire need of a job and Damon is looking for a new employee. Sparks still fly between them but what's going to happen when Damon finds out the condom broke and he has a four year old daughter?

One thing I will say for this authors books: they're not the longest and therefore you can probably read them in one sitting in just a few hours.

I wasn't entirely pulled into this, not until about half way when the weird little stunts they'd been pulling on each other started to get reactions and the tension between them erupted. Damon had a bit of a kinky side, which is why I've classed this as erotica because the sex was rather steamy. 

Their relationship was a little odd, especially at the start, but I think I understood it enough by the end.

One person I did like was little Luna. She's a riot. Chelsea has brought her up to be an independent little thing and her own cheekiness makes her such a cute little package and I have a big weakness for cute kids in my stories.

I haven't decided if I'll read another of this authors works yet.

Saturday, 25 September 2021

Dead of Night - Emily Goodwin

                                              44583687. sy475
Book: Dead of Night
Author: Emily Goodwin
Series: Thorne Hill, #1
Genres: Paranormal Romance, Vampires, Witches
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 23rd March 2019

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒœ
Date Finished: 25th September 2021

Description:

Never trust a vampire.

I might have learned that lesson the hard way. But when I find myself in a vampire-owned bar, I don’t have much of a choice. With vampires still trying to assimilate into mainstream society, I’ve done Lucas King a favor by stopping one of his patrons from draining a human dry in the basement of his bar. A favor he'd prefer to repay in bed than in kind.

Vampires and witches have had more than a jaded history, and when witches start showing up dead in surrounding covens, all signs point to something old and powerful. Something that knows the ways of the witches.

Something--or someone--like Lucas. 

What's worse than trusting a vampire? Falling in love with one.

Review:

I grabbed this as a freebie last year and something about the cover just drew me in. And then the description had me intrigued. 

This starts with Callie defeating some low level demons that have been attacking hikers in her local country park before heading to the bookshop she owns with fellow witch and her best friend before they head out for a meeting at her local coven where she finds out that witches are being hunted by something. She bumps into a vampire on a night out and when she attacks him for taking blood without permission, she also meets ancient vampire, Lucas, who is instantly drawn to the pretty witch who isn't afraid of him and who makes him feel for the first time in centuries.

On one hand I really liked this. Their romance was pretty cute and I like how it progressed. Lucas was all in from pretty early on after meeting the first person in centuries who made him feel anything while Callie was a little wary of dating a vampire but unable to resist him when he's continuously coming to her aid and helping her with her errands and figuring out who or what has been killing the witches.

On the other hand, I felt like not all that much happened - even though I know, at times, there was a lot of things going on. It's just that the bits involving the witchcraft and the demon hunting bored me a little. It was the romance that kept me reading.

I am intrigued by the continuing trials of these two in a society where they should be enemies but I'm not in a hurry to continue the series.

Monday, 20 September 2021

Date Me, Bryson Keller - Kevin van Whye

                                            56625076. sy475 
Book: Date Me, Bryson Keller
Author: Kevin van Whye
Genres: LGBTQ+, Young Adult
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: January 2021

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 20th September 2021

Description:

Everyone at Fairvale Academy knows Bryson Keller, the super-hot soccer captain who doesn't believe in high-school relationships. They also know about the dare Bryson accepted - each week he has to date the first person who asks him out.

A single school week is all anyone gets. There have been no exceptions to this. None.

Until me, that is.

Because brilliant Bryson Keller forgot one thing. He never said it could only be girls . . .

Review:

I've been eyeing this on my Kindle for a while now, the cover is just so bright and colourful which kept catching my attention when I scrolled through my books for my next read. So, here goes.

This starts with a prologue in which we learn about Bryson Keller and the dare that allows him to date a different senior for a week for the next three months. Then we skip to the start of the last school week of the dare and Kai being late for his lift and then stopping for his morning drink from the temperamental vending machine known as "Big Bertha". Only his drink gets spilt down himself by the crowd of girls waiting for Bryson to arrive and things only go downhill from there with him getting detention. He blames Bryson and in an act of vengeance/craziness he asks Bryson to date him.

Since I loved Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda, I thought this would be a great read, too, and I did really enjoy it. It's in the same sort of cute teen romance trope that I like. 

I loved thirteen year old Yazz and her support of Kai coming out. The strongly worded letter she ;eaves their parents when they aren't as supportive as they could be at first. As Bryson points out:
"Your sister is amazing."
I 100% agree. And then we got to read that letter. Ha! Good one, kid. I laughed, I cried but I did so enjoy it. If anyone knows any more books like this one or Simon then please leave me a comment.

Sunday, 19 September 2021

Vision In Silver - Anne Bishop

                                             25489473. sy475
Book: Vision In Silver
Author: Anne Bishop
Series: The Others, #3
Genres: Paranormal, Urban Fantasy
Format: e-Book
Publication Date: 3rd March 2015

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 19th September 2021

Description:

The Others freed the  cassandra sangue  to protect the blood prophets from exploitation, not realizing their actions would have dire consequences. Now the fragile seers are in greater danger than ever before—both from their own weaknesses and from those who seek to control their divinations for wicked purposes. In desperate need of answers, Simon Wolfgard, a shape-shifter leader among the Others, has no choice but to enlist blood prophet Meg Corbyn’s help, regardless of the risks she faces by aiding him.

Meg is still deep in the throes of her addiction to the euphoria she feels when she cuts and speaks prophecy. She knows each slice of her blade tempts death. But Others and humans alike need answers, and her visions may be Simon’s only hope of ending the conflict.

For the shadows of war are deepening across the Atlantik, and the prejudice of a fanatic faction is threatening to bring the battle right to Meg and Simon’s doorstep…
 

Review:

It's been a while since I read the first and second book in this series so I had forgotten a lot of what had gone down previously but I did remember Simon and Meg and their tentative relationship/friendship.

So this picks up where the last left off with Humans and the Others still at odds, especially with the Humans First and Last party creating issues that don't exist to further their end. The cassandra sangue, now freed, are still struggling to keep themselves sane but Meg and her friends in the courtyard decide to make some sort of book on what to expect to help them try and integrate. And then there's Monty and the unexpected arrival of his daughter Lizzy and her favourite bear that are carrying secrets.

This is another one of those need to read every line books - I admit it, I do skip paragraphs sometimes! - because if you skip things you miss something important. There is just so much happening in these books.

I am still very much pro-Others, or at least Simon's Courtyard. They've just grown on me a lot over the last three books from these rather terrifying creatures that cared little for humans to these creatures willing to protect their human "pack" - the people they have grown fond of who reside in their Courtyard.

I'm also still hoping for a Simon/Meg romance and it does seem to be happening but in tiny increments all the time. A certain thought here, a touch there. It's kinda cute.

I'll be reading more of this series at some point in the future.

Thursday, 16 September 2021

The Darkest Warrior - Gena Showalter

                                             36574742. sy475
Book: The Darkest Warrior
Author: Gena Showalter
Series: Lords of the Underworld, #14
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Format: Paperback
Publication Date: 28th May 2019

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒœ
Date Finished: 16th September 2021

Description:

He is ice…

Possessed by the demon of Indifference, Puck the Undefeated is unable to experience emotion without pain…until her. According to an ancient prophecy, she is the key to avenging his past, saving his realm and ruling as king. All he must do? Marry her.

She is fire…

Gillian Shaw has suffered many tragedies in her too-short life, but the worst is yet to come. To survive a transition into immortality, she must give herself to a monster who both intrigues and frightens her…and become the warrior queen she was born to be.

Together they burn.

The more he learns about his clever, resourceful wife, the more he craves her. And the more time Gillian spends with her protective husband, the more she aches for him. But the prophecy also predicts an unhappily-ever-after. Can Puck defy fate to keep the woman who brought his deadened heart back to life? Or will they succumb to destiny, losing each other…and everything they’ve been fighting for?

Review:

I've been reading this series for about 10 years now. I picked up three paperbacks in the series last year or so and this is the only one I haven't got around to reading yet, so here goes. I hope Puck and young Gillian's story is as interesting as I expected her romance with William to have been...

So, this starts with Puck and his younger brother Sin warring for their realm of Amaranthia before Puck is betrayed by his brother over the long spoken prophecy about them both. Puck heads out to the Oracles of his land and they tell him what he must do. He must marry Gillian, the one meant for William of the Dark.

I wasn't sure how I was going to feel about this one, after the above mentioned thing, but I did like it but not as much as some of the previous books in this series. I think the span of time when Gillian is left in Amaranthia without Puck - 500+ years - and we don't see her change from the meek little teen to the kick-arse warrior apart from in those letters addressed to Puck. I feel like we missed out on some fun scenes.

I did enjoy seeing some of the previous characters making an appearance in this one like Keeley and Torin and even once-upon-a-time bad guy Galen. There is still that fun dynamic between characters where they rib each other and even sometimes attack each other and it's all in jest. It's crazy but I love it.

I do feel the ending was a bit of a let down after all that build up. The battle took all of about six pages in the end. 

I am glad that Puck and Gillian got their HEA but I think I'm more interested in the "geek" that is going to be William's salvation and the woman he will fall in love with. Need to buy that book!

Thursday, 9 September 2021

Not My Romeo - Ilsa Madden-Mills

                                             50365912. sy475
Book: Not My Romeo
Author: Ilsa Madden-Mills
Series: The Game Changers, #1
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Sports
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 18th August 2020

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 9th September 2021

Description:

We start off with a lie on Valentine’s Day.

My blind date isn’t the studious guy I expected: he’s a drop-dead gorgeous player with sinful amber eyes. Somehow we end up at his penthouse. I blame the gin and tonic.

The next day I learn he’s Jack Hawke—bad-boy professional quarterback with a murky past. The NDA he has me sign should be a warning that he isn’t a regular person. Please. I sign it Juliet Capulet, so goodbye, famous football player with abs of steel, and good luck tracking down this small-town librarian.

But Jack keeps showing up in places I least expect him. Just when I’m sure he’s gone, he waltzes into my community theater and wins the part of Romeo to my Juliet. How’s a plain, mostly innocent girl like me supposed to resist a man like him?

Is Jack my real Romeo… or will this gorgeous football player only break my heart?

Review:

You know when you read a book's description and question how it can go from a mix up on a date to the jock turning up in your small towns play? Well, I was intrigued by that part the most. And also, a bit of cover love! I mean, look at that guy!

So, as I mentioned above, this starts with a mix up on Valentine's Day when Elena sits down with her supposed date for the evening. It's a bit of "crossed-wires" but they can't help but be drawn to each other for various reasons and they end up spending the night together. A series of events sees them thrown together again and again and their attraction grows into something uncontrollable.

Elena was that character that's a little bit quirky, a little bit ballsy but also a little nerdy. She was great and I quickly fell into her character arc with her naughty underwear she created herself and wore all the time. I liked how she had a great camaraderie with her housemate and her Aunt and reading her thoughts about people's reactions to meeting Jack and what she would love to do to them. She had me smiling a lot.

I grew to really like Jack the more we got to know him. He was this mix of shy, sweet and alpha. He'd had a troubled childhood and struggled to connect with people he didn't know well, and after being burned by his last girlfriend he's wary of letting people get close. But it was so beautifully tragic in a way, because you could see how much he cared for her but not enough to let her in and this quote from the book pulled at me in it's perfect grasping of the situation.
"But Elena isn't a mistake.
[...]
God.
She's the girl a man dreams of finding someday...everything I always wanted.
And I threw it back in her face.
I reacted without listening.
You lobbed another interception, Jack.
You lost the fucking game."

I was almost in tears by this point in the book. We'd seen both characters with their alternate POV's and we knew they both had feelings for the other and I had become emotionally invested in these two. I wanted them to get their HEA's! Luckily we have a rather fun version of Romeo & Juliet to read through as we see these lovers ad lib their way through their lines as they try and tell the other how they feel.

"I did so much wrong, and it's my own damn fault for being...broken since the moment we met."

"I meant it as a symbol that I wanted more with you, but then I'd get nervous and not bring it up. I felt so unsure. I've never loved anyone. I'm stupid." 

*Sigh* Jack, Jack, Jack, you sweetheart. Yeah, this one hit me in the feels.

I do have several more books by this author to read on my Kindle and I will be reading them shortly but for now, I'm going to read a non contemporary book since I'm pretty sure this is going to give me a book hangover and I'll be thinking about it for a while.

Wednesday, 8 September 2021

Flame - Chelle Bliss

                                              45870487. sy475
Book: Flame
Author: Chelle Bliss
Series: Men of Inked: Heatwave, #1
Genres: Romance, Contemporary
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: 17th September 2019

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒœ
Date Finished: 6th September 2021

Description:

Could you love a man surrounded by danger?

Gigi Gallo’s childhood was filled with the roar of a motorcycle and the hum of a tattoo gun. Fresh out of college, she’s about to start working at her family’s tattoo studio — Inked. But when she shows up the first day, she never expects to run into someone tall, dark, and totally sexy from her not-so-innocent past.

Pike Moore is a bossy biker with a cocky attitude and an even bigger ego. He came to Inked to start over. New town. New job. New roots. None of that included coming face-to-face with the hot chick who spent a week in his bed before she vanished without a trace.

But when Pike’s dark family history catches up with him, can he stop Gigi from being caught in the crossfire?

Review:

This starts with Gigi eyeing up the guy at the end of the bar and being too chicken to approach him despite the fact he's been staring at her, too. With a bit of coaxing from her friends and a lot of alcohol, she finally heads over and asks if he wants to go back to his hotel. Things take a strange turn and they end up spending several days together before they end up going their separate ways. Fifteen months later they unexpectedly meet again at Gigi's family's tattoo parlour, Inked, which is the place to work and be tattooed. Gigi is initially angry to see Pike but the feelings that had started to stir within her all those months ago start to unravel once more but it seems trouble may be after Pike and he wants her far away from it.

I was intrigued not long after this started - when their night together didn't go according to plan - and I wanted to see where it was going to go from there. It was fun and a little steamy. So I didn't entirely understand Gigi's reaction to Pike's turning up in her neighbourhood. Like he was some vile creature or worse. And then suddenly, she wanted him again. I was confused.

The book went downhill for me when they ended up at the MC. I am not a fan of motorcycle clubs at all. Maybe because I'm British and we don't have them. They just seem so lawless and do whatever they want. That kind of thing does nothing for me.

I won't be reading any more of this series.

Friday, 3 September 2021

Duncan - D.B. Reynolds

                                              20762229
Book: Duncan
Author: D.B. Reynolds
Series: Vampires in America, #5
Genres: Vampires, Paranormal Romance
Format: Kindle e-Book
Publication Date: January 2014

My Rating: πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•πŸŒ•
Date Finished: 3rd September 2021

Description:

Washington, D.C. … capital of an empire. Powerful. Exhilarating. Corrupt. And in the shadows … vampires far older than the nation itself.

A power unto himself, Duncan has served at Raphael’s side for a hundred and fifty years. But long laid plans have finally borne fruit, and the time has come for Duncan to leave Raphael and tackle the greatest challenge of his life. He will face treacherous vampires and murderous humans. He will rock the halls of human power if necessary. But Washington, D.C. will be his.

Emma Duquet cares nothing for vampire politics. She just wants to find her missing roommate and best friend, Lacey. But Lacey’s been playing with vampires of a particularly dangerous kind, and Emma will have to deal with the new vampire in town if she’s going to find her friend.

Battling powerful enemies who will stop at nothing to keep their secrets, Duncan and Emma will dig beneath the corruption and depravity that is Washington, D.C. and uncover the most heinous conspiracy of all…

Review:

I read Sophie not that long ago and decided to head back into this authors series...but I'm not too clear on the thing that happened at the end that means Duncan is no longer Raphael's.

So Duncan heads off on his own, meeting two of his children when he lands in Washington D.C, to take over the territory from Victor - who it seems has had a vicious system running for however long where he hosts parties and attacks the women who attend. Duncan ends up meeting Emma Duquet who is looking for her lost friend and housemate that frequented Victor's parties and who he instantly feels a connection to. He vows to help her find her friend and deal out vengeance to those who may have hurt her.

I was drawn into this one from the start. Duncan was very clearly on a mission and nothing was going to stop him. I loved following him on his journeys around DC as he hunted down the men who had done the atrocities that permeated the walls of the house he now resided in.

Weirdly I've enjoyed following Cyn and Raphael's journey in the previous books but I have to admit, I enjoyed focusing fully on Duncan and Emma in this one. It wasn't entirely focused on their romance, either. He was cleaning up his new territory - without any help from Raphael - and we saw glimpses of his past, as well as how he became one of Raphael's vampires.

I think apart from the first book in the series that this is one of my favourite books so far. I do have book 6, Lucas, but I won't be reading it straight away.

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