March 2020 Wrap-up // Books I Read in March

FEBRUARY STATS
REREADS

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Marriage for One by Ella Maise
Audiobook from Audible Escape

I re-read this book in preparation for my book club.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Jack and I, we did everything backward. The day he lured me into his office-which was also the first day we met-he proposed. You’d think a guy who looked like him-a bit cold maybe, but still striking and very unattainable-would only ask the love of his life to marry him, right? You’d think he must be madly in love.

Nope. It was me he asked. A complete stranger who had never even heard of him. A stranger who had been dumped by her fiancé only weeks before. You’d think I’d laugh in his face, call him insane-and a few other names-then walk away as quickly as possible. Well…I did all those things except the walking away part.

It took him only minutes to talk me into a business deal…erm, I mean marriage, and only days for us to officially tie the knot. Happiest day of my life. Magical. Pop the champagne… Not. It was the worst day. Jack Hawthorne was nothing like what I’d imagined for myself.
I blamed him for my lapse in judgment. I blamed his eyes, the ocean blue eyes that looked straight into mine unapologetically, and that frown on his face I had no idea I would become so fascinated with in time.

It wasn’t long after he said I was the biggest mistake of his life that things started to change. No, he still didn’t talk much, but anyone can string a few words together. His actions spoke the loudest to me. And day after day my heart started to get a mind of its own.

One second he was no one. The next he became everything.
One second he was unattainable. The next he seemed to be completely mine.
One second I thought we were in love. The next it was still nothing but a lie.

After all, I was Rose and he was Jack. We were doomed from the very beginning with those names. Did you expect anything else?

GOODREADS

 

★★★ 3 Stars

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Dancing at Midnight (The Splendid Trilogy #2) by Julia Quinn

Read my review in my Historical Readathon Wrap Up post.

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Lady Arabella Blydon has beauty and a brain, and she’s tired of men who can see only one without the other.

When a suitor tells Arabella he’s willing to overlook her appalling bluestocking tendencies on account of her looks and fortune, she decides to take a break from the Marriage Mart. During an extended stay in the country, she never expects to meet Lord John Blackwood, a wounded war hero who intrigues her like no other man.

Lord John has lived through the worst horrors of war… but nothing could have been as terrifying to his tormented heart as Lady Arabella. She is intoxicating, infuriating… and she makes him want to live again. Suddenly he’s writing bad poetry and climbing trees in the pitch-dark night… just so he can dance with her as the clock strikes midnight. And even though he knows he can never be the sort of man she deserves, he can’t help wanting her. But when the harsh light of day replaces the magic of midnight, can this tormented soul learn to love again?

GOODREADS

 

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Sins of a Duke (Scandalous House of Claydon #3) by Stacy Reid

Read my review in my Historical Readathon Wrap Up post.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

All of the young ladies whispered about the Duke of Mondvale in hushed tones, their eyes following his tall, dark figure with barely disguised lust. For the newly-ostracized Lady Constance Thornton, he is magnetic and altogether desirable. Irresistibly so. Since her reputation is already ruined in London society, why shouldn’t she be impudent and dance with the scandalous “Lord of Sin”?

Little does she know of his plans.

The beautiful and innocent Lady Constance is no mere plaything for Lucan Wynwood. She will be his revenge. By ruining her, he will have his vengeance against her brother. Except that the Lady Constance is full of surprises…and now she could well be the ruin of him.

GOODREADS

 

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Silent Melody (Georgian #2) by Mary Balogh

Read my review in my Historical Readathon Wrap Up post.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Lady Emily Marlowe was beautiful, wild, and unspoiled. She could not hear or speak, though she listened with her eyes and answered with her smile. She was betrothed to a man who would have her as a pretty possession, a captive listener. But there was only one man for her—the dark and reckless Lord Ashley Kendrick, the childhood amour who inspired her fantasies—then left for India and found another love.

Seven years and countless dreams later, he returned to her, and love was born with a dance, a minuet that stirred her soul, a song so passionate it has no words.

GOODREADS

 

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Off Sides (Off #1) by Sawyer Bennett

Check out my Backlist Readathon Wrap-up for my thoughts on this book.

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“I’m not sure what possessed me to do it. Maybe it was the impossible expectations I faced, maybe it was my own self-loathing. But I just knew I needed something different to happen. I needed someone… something… to derail me from my current path. Otherwise, I would become lost… a hollowed out shell of a man. So I did it. I approached her, then I pursued her, then I made her mine. And my life was saved…”

Ryan Burnham is the privileged son of a U.S. Congressman and captain of his university’s hockey team. While he is on the verge of fulfilling his dreams to play in the NHL, his parents want him on a different course. One he is expected to accept for the sake of his family’s public image.

Forced her to abandon her music career after the heart breaking death of her parents, Danny Cross exists on the opposite side of the tracks from Ryan. She is struggling to make her own way, working two jobs, attending college part time and volunteering in a homeless shelter. She is on a mission to build her own success.

With a chance meeting, their vastly different worlds collide, causing each to evaluate whether they are truly on the correct path to self-fulfillment and happiness. Can their relationship survive? Particularly when others are against them every step of the way. A lot can happen in just ten short days…

GOODREADS

 

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Tithe (Modern Faerie Tales #1) by Holly Black
Check out my Backlist Readathon Wrap-up for my thoughts on this book.
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Welcome to the realm of very scary faeries!

Sixteen-year-old Kaye is a modern nomad. Fierce and independent, she travels from city to city with her mother’s rock band until an ominous attack forces Kaye back to her childhood home. There, amid the industrial, blue-collar New Jersey backdrop, Kaye soon finds herself an unwilling pawn in an ancient power struggle between two rival faerie kingdoms – a struggle that could very well mean her death.

GOODREADS

★★★★ 4 Stars

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Love from A to Z by SK Ali

Check out my Backlist Readathon Wrap-up for my thoughts on this book.
CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

marvel: something you find amazing. Even ordinary-amazing. Like potatoes—because they make French fries happen. Like the perfect fries Adam and his mom used to make together.

An oddity: whatever gives you pause. Like the fact that there are hateful people in the world. Like Zayneb’s teacher, who won’t stop reminding the class how “bad” Muslims are.

But Zayneb, the only Muslim in class, isn’t bad. She’s angry.

When she gets suspended for confronting her teacher, and he begins investigating her activist friends, Zayneb heads to her aunt’s house in Doha, Qatar, for an early start to spring break.

Fueled by the guilt of getting her friends in trouble, she resolves to try out a newer, “nicer” version of herself in a place where no one knows her.

Then her path crosses with Adam’s.

Since he got diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in November, Adam’s stopped going to classes, intent, instead, on perfecting the making of things. Intent on keeping the memory of his mom alive for his little sister.

Adam’s also intent on keeping his diagnosis a secret from his grieving father.

Alone, Adam and Zayneb are playing roles for others, keeping their real thoughts locked away in their journals.

Until a marvel and an oddity occurs…

Marvel: Adam and Zayneb meeting.

Oddity: Adam and Zayneb meeting.

GOODREADS

 

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Borne to be Wilde (The Wildes of Lindlow Castle #3) by Eloisa James

Read my review in my Historical Readathon Wrap Up post.

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The richest bachelor in England plays matchmaker…for an heiress he wants for himself!

For beautiful, witty Lavinia Gray, there’s only one thing worse than having to ask the appalling Parth Sterling to marry her: being turned down by him.

Now the richest bachelor in England, Parth is not about to marry a woman as reckless and fashion-obsessed as Lavinia; he’s chosen a far more suitable bride.

But when he learns of Lavinia’s desperate circumstances, he offers to find her a husband. Even better, he’ll find her a prince.

As usual, there’s no problem Parth can’t fix. But the more time he spends with the beguiling Lavinia, the more he finds himself wondering…

Why does the woman who’s completely wrong feel so right in his arms?

GOODREADS

 

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Scandal in Spring (The Wallflowers #4) by Lisa Kleypas

Read my review in my Historical Readathon Wrap Up post.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

After spending three London seasons searching for a husband, Daisy Bowman’s father has told her in no uncertain terms that she must find a husband. Now. And if Daisy can’t snare an appropriate suitor, she will marry the man he chooses—the ruthless and aloof Matthew Swift.

Daisy is horrified. A Bowman never admits defeat, and she decides to do whatever it takes to marry someone… anyone… other than Matthew. But she doesn’t count on Matthew’s unexpected charm… or the blazing sensuality that soon flares beyond both their control. And Daisy discovers that the man she has always hated just might turn out to be the man of her dreams.

But right at the moment of sweet surrender, a scandalous secret is uncovered… one that could destroy both Matthew and a love more passionate and irresistible than Daisy’s wildest fantasies.

GOODREADS

 

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How to Hack a Heartbreak by Kristin Rockaway

Check out my review in my March Wrap Up on my Booktube channel.

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Swipe right for love. Swipe left for disaster.

By day, Mel Strickland is an underemployed helpdesk tech at a startup incubator, Hatch, where she helps entitled brogrammers—”Hatchlings”—who can’t even fix their own laptops, but are apparently the next wave of startup geniuses. And by night, she goes on bad dates with misbehaving dudes she’s matched with on the ubiquitous dating app, Fluttr.

But after one dick pic too many, Mel has had it. Using her brilliant coding skills, she designs an app of her own, one that allows users to log harrassers and abusers in online dating space. It’s called JerkAlert, and it goes viral overnight.

Mel is suddenly in way over her head. Worse still, her almost-boyfriend, the dreamy Alex Hernandez—the only non-douchey guy at Hatch—has no idea she’s the brains behind the app. Soon, Mel is faced with a terrible choice: one that could destroy her career, love life, and friendships, or change her life forever.

GOODREADS

 

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Bloom by Kevin Panetta, Illustrated by Savanna Ganucheau

Check out my Backlist Readathon Wrap-up for my thoughts on this book.
CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Now that high school is over, Ari is dying to move to the big city with his ultra-hip band—if he can just persuade his dad to let him quit his job at their struggling family bakery. Though he loved working there as a kid, Ari cannot fathom a life wasting away over rising dough and hot ovens. But while interviewing candidates for his replacement, Ari meets Hector, an easygoing guy who loves baking as much as Ari wants to escape it. As they become closer over batches of bread, love is ready to bloom . . . that is, if Ari doesn’t ruin everything.

Writer Kevin Panetta and artist Savanna Ganucheau concoct a delicious recipe of intricately illustrated baking scenes and blushing young love, in which the choices we make can have terrible consequences, but the people who love us can help us grow.

GOODREADS

 

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Scorpio Hates Virgo (Signs of Love #2) by Anyta Sunday

Check out my review in my March Wrap Up on my Booktube channel.

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This year is all about healing the heart, Scorpio. It’s time to leave negative attitudes and stoic facades at the door and let others see the real, more vulnerable you.

Percy Freedman is not grieving. Absolutely not, take that back at once. No, he’s entirely sure that selling his dead aunt’s home and leaving the neighbors he’s known for years is the sane thing to do. Who in their right mind would keep the house that smells like all the hugs he’ll never have again?

Nobody, that’s who.

Well, except his cul-de-sac neighbors. They all seem to think some paint and new furniture will clean the emotional slate. They all want him to stay.

Even his nemesis, Callaghan Glover.

Especially his nemesis, Callaghan Glover.

Lured into a game of Sherlock Gnomes, Percy finds himself hanging out with his neighbors more than might be considered healthy. Along with juggling new and surprising verbal grenades from Cal, and his burgeoning friendship with Gnomber9, Percy is starting to wonder if selling might have been the grief talking after all . . .

That’s right, Scorpio. With a little patience, heartbreak might be a thing of the past . . .

GOODREADS

 

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The Princess Saves Herself in This One by Amanda Lovelace

Check out my Backlist Readathon Wrap-up for my thoughts on this book.
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“Ah, life- the thing that happens to us while we’re off somewhere else blowing on dandelions & wishing ourselves into the pages of our favorite fairy tales.”

A poetry collection divided into four different parts: the princess, the damsel, the queen, & you. the princess, the damsel, & the queen piece together the life of the author in three stages, while you serves as a note to the reader & all of humankind. Explores life & all of its love, loss, grief, healing, empowerment, & inspirations.

GOODREADS

 

 

★★★★★ 5 Stars

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Bringing Down the Duke (A League of Extraordinary Women) by Evie Dunmore

Check out my review in my March Wrap Up on my Booktube channel.

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A stunning debut for author Evie Dunmore and her Oxford Rebels, in which a fiercely independent vicar’s daughter takes on a duke in a fiery love story that threatens to upend the British social order.

England, 1879. Annabelle Archer, the brilliant but destitute daughter of a country vicar, has earned herself a place among the first cohort of female students at the renowned University of Oxford. In return for her scholarship, she must support the rising women’s suffrage movement. Her charge: recruit men of influence to champion their cause. Her target: Sebastian Devereux, the cold and calculating Duke of Montgomery who steers Britain’s politics at the Queen’s command. Her challenge: not to give in to the powerful attraction she can’t deny for the man who opposes everything she stands for.

Sebastian is appalled to find a suffragist squad has infiltrated his ducal home, but the real threat is his impossible feelings for green-eyed beauty Annabelle. He is looking for a wife of equal standing to secure the legacy he has worked so hard to rebuild, not an outspoken commoner who could never be his duchess. But he wouldn’t be the greatest strategist of the Kingdom if he couldn’t claim this alluring bluestocking without the promise of a ring…or could he?

Locked in a battle with rising passion and a will matching her own, Annabelle will learn just what it takes to topple a duke….

GOODREADS

 

 

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Scarlet (The Lunar Chronicles #2) by Marissa Meyer

Check out my review in my March Wrap Up on my Booktube channel.

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Cinder, the cyborg mechanic, returns in the second thrilling installment of the bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She’s trying to break out of prison—even though if she succeeds, she’ll be the Commonwealth’s most wanted fugitive.

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she is loath to trust this stranger, but is inexplicably drawn to him, and he to her. As Scarlet and Wolf unravel one mystery, they encounter another when they meet Cinder. Now, all of them must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen Levana, who will do anything for the handsome Prince Kai to become her husband, her king, her prisoner.

GOODREADS

 

 

 

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The Silent Waters (Elements #3) by Brittainy C Cherry

Check out my review in my March Wrap Up on my Booktube channel.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Moments.

Our lives are a collection of moments. Some utterly painful and full of yesterday’s hurts. Some beautifully hopeful and full of tomorrow’s promises.

I’ve had many moments in my lifetime, moments that changed me, challenged me. Moments that scared me and engulfed me. However, the biggest ones—the most heartbreaking and breathtaking ones—all included him.

I was ten years old when I lost my voice. A piece of me was stolen away, and the only person who could truly hear my silence was Brooks Griffin. He was the light during my dark days, the promise of tomorrow, until tragedy found him. Tragedy that eventually drowned him in a sea of memories.

This is the story of a boy and girl who loved each other, but didn’t love themselves. A story of life and death. Of love and broken promises.

Of moments.

GOODREADS

 

 

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The Highwayman (Victorian Rebels #1) by Kerrigan Byrne

Check out my review in my March Wrap Up on my Booktube channel.

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They’re rebels, scoundrels, and blackguards—dark, dashing men on the wrong side of the law. But for the women who love them, a hint of danger only makes the heart beat faster…

STEALING BEAUTY
Dorian Blackwell, the Blackheart of Ben More, is a ruthless villain. Scarred and hard-hearted, Dorian is one of London’s wealthiest, most influential men who will stop at nothing to wreak vengeance on those who’ve wronged him…and will fight to the death to seize what he wants. The lovely, still innocent widow Farah Leigh Mackenzie is no exception—and soon Dorian whisks the beautiful lass away to his sanctuary in the wild Highlands…

COURTING DESIRE
But Farah is no one’s puppet. She possesses a powerful secret—one that threatens her very life. When being held captive by Dorian proves to be the only way to keep Farah safe from those who would see her dead, Dorian makes Farah a scandalous proposition: marry him for protection in exchange for using her secret to help him exact revenge on his enemies. But what the Blackheart of Ben More never could have imagined is that Farah has terms of her own, igniting a tempestuous desire that consumes them both. Could it be that the woman he captured is the only one who can touch the black heart he’d long thought dead?

GOODREADS

 

 

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Desperate Measures (Wicked Villains #1) by Katee Robert

Check out my Backlist Readathon Wrap-up for my thoughts on this book.
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My Savior… Or My Ruin?

One night, and my entire life went up in flames. All because of him. Jafar. As my world burned down around me, he offered me a choice. Walk away with nothing but my freedom… Or rise to his challenge and win my fortune back.

I bargained.

I lost.

Now Jafar owns me, and even as my mind rails against his rules, my body loves the punishments he deals out when I break them.

But a gilded cage is still a prison, I’ll do anything to obtain my freedom.

Even betray the man I’m falling for.

GOODREADS

 

 

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That’s Not a Thing by Jacqueline Friedland

Check out my review in my March Wrap Up on my Booktube channel.

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Meredith Altman’s engagement to Wesley Latner ended in spectacular disaster—one that shattered her completely. Years have passed since then, and now she’s about to marry Aaron Rapp, a former Ivy League football player and baby-saving doctor. As they celebrate their engagement at a new TriBeCa hotspot, Meredith is stunned to find the restaurant owner is none other than Wesley, the man she is still secretly trying to forget.

When Meredith learns that Wesley has been diagnosed with ALS, her feelings about their past become all the more confusing. As she spends more time with Wesley and is pulled further under his spell, she discovers what kind of man her new fiancé really is—and what kind of woman she wants to be.

GOODREADS

 

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Undercover Bromance (The Bromance Book Club #2) by Lyssa Kay Adams

Read my review here.

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Braden Mack thinks reading romance novels makes him an expert in love, but he’ll soon discover that real life is better than fiction.

Liv Papandreas has a dream job as a sous chef at Nashville’s hottest restaurant. Too bad the celebrity chef owner is less than charming behind kitchen doors. After she catches him harassing a young hostess, she confronts him and gets fired. Liv vows revenge, but she’ll need assistance to take on the powerful chef.

Unfortunately, that means turning to Braden Mack. When Liv’s blackballed from the restaurant scene, the charismatic nightclub entrepreneur offers to help expose her ex-boss, but she is suspicious of his motives. He’ll need to call in reinforcements: the Bromance Book Club.

Inspired by the romantic suspense novel they’re reading, the book club assist Liv in setting up a sting operation to take down the chef. But they’re just as eager to help Mack figure out the way to Liv’s heart… even while she’s determined to squelch the sparks between them before she gets burned.

GOODREADS

 

 

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The Reed Rivers Trilogy by Lauren Rowe

Check out my review in my March Wrap Up on my Booktube channel.

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Swallowing lies has never felt so good.

Reed freaking Rivers. I wouldn’t trust a word out of the arrogant music mogul’s mouth if his gold-plated tongue were notarized. The Man with the Midas Touch would say anything to get me into his bed, and I know it. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want him to succeed.
Indeed, the moment I laid eyes on Reed while he was speaking at an on-campus event I’d crashed, my body physically ached to feel his golden fingers—and tongue—all over me. Unfortunately, though, I can’t give into my powerful craving to jump Reed’s cocky bones. Not until I’ve figured out my best strategy with him . . .
The truth is Reed has something I desperately want. Something my heart desires even more than my body craves one night of delicious fun with the yummiest man alive. Reed assumes he’s running this game of seduction. He thinks he’s a thirty-four-year-old big cat on the prowl, and I’m nothing but a blushing twenty-one-year old field mouse with stars in my eyes.
Yeah . . . no.
As Reed is about to find out, he’s not the only cat on the hunt in this game of cat-and-mouse . . . .

BAD LIAR is the first book of the standalone REED RIVERS TRILOGY. The full trilogy is BAD LIAR, BEAUTIFUL LIAR, and BELOVED LIAR, to be read in order.

GOODREADS

 

 

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Truth or Beard (The Winston Brothers #1) by Penny Reid

Check out my review in my March Wrap Up on my Booktube channel.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Beards, brothers, and bikers! Oh my!

Identical twins Beau and Duane Winston might share the same devastatingly handsome face, but where Beau is outgoing and sociable, Duane is broody and reserved. This is why Jessica James, recent college graduate and perpetual level-headed good girl, has been in naïve and unhealthy infatuation with Beau Winston for most of her life.

His friendly smiles make her tongue-tied and weak-kneed, and she’s never been able to move beyond her childhood crush. Whereas Duane and Jessica have always been adversaries. She can’t stand him, and she’s pretty sure he can’t stand the sight of her…

But after a case of mistaken identity, Jessica finds herself in a massive confusion kerfuffle. Jessica James has spent her whole life paralyzed by the fantasy of Beau and her assumptions of Duane’s disdain; therefore she’s unprepared for the reality that is Duane’s insatiable interest, as well as his hot hands and hot mouth and hotter looks. Not helping Jessica’s muddled mind and good girl sensibilities, Duane seems to have gotten himself in trouble with the local biker gang, the Iron Order.

Certainly, Beau’s magic spell is broken. Yet when Jessica finds herself drawn to the man who was always her adversary, now more dangerous than ever, how much of her level-head heart is she willing to risk?

GOODREADS

Historical Readathon Wrap Up

The Historical Romance Readathon wrapped up on Sunday and I’m really glad I participated. First of all, it was hosted by some of my BookTube favs: RemarkablyLisa, PeaceLoveBooks, and LaceyBookLovers. They did such a great job hosting.

As I mentioned in my TBR for this challenge, I’m not a big historical romance reader. My sister and my mom are huge HR readers, but for whatever reason – probably because of the book covers to be completely honest – I’ve never gotten into the genre.

However, I’ve been intrigued by a lot of the books thanks to these booktubers. So, I decided to participate.

The books I chose were books that my sister and mom gave to me, as well as one recommended by Lacey.

Overall, this was a successful readathon. I read five books during the week, but I didn’t have any five-star books.

I have certainly read a few five-star historicals, but I just didn’t vibe completely with the books I read during the readathon.

I haven’t given up on the genre, if anything, I’m more motivated to find some that I love, but these were all just ok or pretty good.

 

Here’s what I read for the Historical Romance Readathon

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Sins of a Duke (Scandalous House of Calydon #3) by Stacy Reid

Bingo Categories: Titled Hero, In a Series, Pub after 2000, Rake, By an Author of Color
Rating: ★★★
I really loved the first book I read by Stacy Reid, My Darling Duke, and I’m not going to give up on this author just yet.

I really enjoyed the premise of this book, which is about a Lady who has been shamed in society because of her mother’s indiscretions and a rakish Duke who is secretly responsible for starting the rumor about her to exact revenge on her brother.

I felt like this had a lot of potential, but I ended up getting a little annoyed with the heroine. The Duke was kind of a jerk to her – very hot and cold – throughout the entire book and she just kept chasing after him. She wasn’t necessarily needy, but I still felt like she needed to hang on to some form of her dignity. I just didn’t see why she was putting up with him.

That really was the only complaint I had against this one, otherwise I enjoyed it. It’s a short book and the length felt just right – nothing dragged on for too long and it didn’t feel rushed either.

 

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Scandal in Spring (Wallflowers #4) by Lisa Kleypas

Bingo Categories: Pub before 2000, In a Series, Wallfower
Rating: ★★★★

This was my first Lisa Kleypas, and it won’t be my last. Lacey LOVES this author, so I looked on Scribd and found this one. It was available and the shortest one I could find – and I also really liked the premise.

It’s about somewhat flighty Daisy whose businessman father is demanding she marry ASAP, otherwise he is making her marry one of his favorite ruthless employees, Matthew. Matthew is very business-savvy and seemingly just like Daisy’s father (which isn’t a good thing), so Daisy has no interest in marrying him. However, people aren’t always what they seem and sometimes chemistry is hard to deny.

I can already tell from this book that I love Lisa Kleypas and I’m going to enjoy other books in this series. I really liked the side characters in this novel, and I can tell that Daisy’s sister likely had a novel before this one that I really want to read because I loved her sister and her sister’s husband.

There were quite a few really entertaining scenes in this and I felt like Daisy and Matthew had great chemistry and banter. I subtracted a star only because the story dragged a bit. I felt like there was a lot of unnecessary drama toward the end that I could’ve done without.

 

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Silent Melody (Georgian #2) by Mary Balogh

Bingo Categories: Titled Hero, Pub Before 2000, In a Series,
Rating: ★★★

I was most excited for this book out of all of the books I chose for this readathon. My mom really likes this author and I really liked the premise.

It’s about Lady Emily who is mute and deaf, she’s also wild and free and an artist. Growing up she would follow around family friend Lord Ashley until he moved to India. Ashley and Emily had a strong connection, they could read each other really well and had their own way of communicating, so when he left, Emily took quite a blow. Fast forward and Emily is no longer a child, she’s a beautiful Lady in society about to get betrothed and Ashley returns, married and with a child.

This book had so much potential, but it rubbed me the wrong way from the very beginning. I was fine with the relationship Ashley and Emily had when she was a child, until Ashley – a grown man – kisses 13 year old Emily in a very adult way when he leaves. I get that this takes place in a different time period, but it totally skeeved me out. The story would’ve worked just fine without that. Their connection was completely innocent before it happened, and to me, that totally ruined it.

I liked the book well enough, but I could give or take Lord Ashley. I didn’t really like his character.

 

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Born to Be Wilde (The Wildes of Lindow Castle #3) by Eloisa James

Bingo Categories: Pub before 2000, In a series, Set outside of London, POC MC
Rating: ★★★★

Lacey recommended this book for the POC MC category, and I thought that the premise sounded promising.

It’s about Lavinia who, under desperate circumstances, proposes to her long-time friendly rival, Parth… and gets rejected. Instead, he offers to find her someone to marry, even though he is harboring some serious feelings for her.

This definitely lived up to my expectations based on the synopsis. There was just the right amount of drama, there was great chemistry between the characters, and I just loved Parth. I’m a big fan of the hero who “loves from a distance” aspect and I totally understood why he initially turned down her offer to marry. I also liked the history these two characters had with each other.

 

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Dancing at Midnight (The Splendid Trilogy #2) by Julia Quinn

Bingo Categories: Scarred hero, Bookish MC, Published before 2000, In a series
Rating: ★★★

This was a bit of a disappointment. I was totally here for the bookish, smart main character and a grumpy wounded war hero thing, but … I just felt like it wasn’t done well. Or, at least, it could’ve been done much better.

I was hoping for more of a brooding hero and more of a witty main character, but both of them fell pretty flat. The entire book kind of felt forced somehow. To be completely honest, I kind of immediately forgot about this one as soon as I finished it.

 

February 2020 Wrap Up

FEBRUARY STATS
  • 18 Books total
  • 1 Re-reads
  • 0 two-star book
  • 1 three-star book
  • 5 four-star book
  • 11 five-star books
  • 16 audiobooks
  • 0 hard copy
  • 2 eBook
  • 3 currently reading
  • 1 readathons
REREADS

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The Best Thing by Mariana Zapata

Audiobook purchased from Audible

I read the ebook for this when it came out and the audiobook was released in Feb., so I gave it a listen.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Some things are easily forgiven. Other things… not so much.

Lenny DeMaio made herself a promise: she was done.

Done thinking about him.

Done worrying about him.

Done reaching out to a man who clearly didn’t want to be found.

Too bad no one gave Jonah Collins the memo.

GOODREADS

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★★★ 3 Stars

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Saving Angel (Divisa #1) by JL Weil

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

This book was Twilight, but with demons.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

With millions of pages read in the series and thousands of copies sold, Saving Angel will transport fans of Twilight, The Mortal Instruments, and Divergent to a world unlike any other… Now includes bonus novella Losing Emma!

I couldn’t help but wonder what my life would be like if we had never moved to the ho-dunk town of Spring Valley, Illinois. Sure the internet service is splotchy, there is nothing but miles of wheat fields, and I probably wouldn’t be faced with death at every corner.

My only neighbor in this god forsaken town is…well, there really is only one to describe him—hot as hell. With his sinful dark looks, unusually silver eyes, and kissable lips, there is something about Chase Winters that is more than meets the eye.

Of course I am determined to find out.

Chase might be drool-worthy, but he is also insufferable, arrogant and…in short a d-bag. Our relationship is anything but love at first sight. Not even close. There is something weird about the family living next door.

What I hadn’t expected to find is an underworld of trouble.

Chase and his cousins Lexi and Travis are Divisa—half-demon, half-human. Getting them angry is hardly in my best interest, not if I want to live.

As it turns out, that might be the least of my problems. I’ve been tagged by Hell.

Now every ugly, nasty being from hades is on my trail. I have suddenly became a magnet for demon disaster, and the only way I am getting out of this alive is by putting my life in the demon spawn’s hands.

One wrong decision and my butt is toast.

Buy now to find out if Angel survives…

GOODREADS

 

★★★★ 4 Stars

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The Infatuation (The Josh and Kat Trilogy #1) by Lauren Rowe

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

This book wasn’t anything earth shattering, but it was nice being back with the Morgan family and reading Lauren Rowe.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

It’s a war of wills between stubborn and sexy Josh Faraday and Kat Morgan. A fight to the bed. Arrogant, wealthy playboy Josh is used to getting what he wants. And what he wants is Kat Morgan.

The minute Josh Faraday meets feisty, vivacious Kat Morgan, he wants her. Not for a relationship, of course. He doesn’t do those. He wants her in his bed. But, to his shock and extreme frustration, Kat won’t play by Josh’s rules like all the others. No, this stubborn woman declares she won’t so much as kiss Josh until he divulges some highly personal information . . . But it’s something Josh has never told anyone, and won’t be telling Kat. Not over his dead body, no matter how gorgeous and sexy she is.

But the chemistry between the pair is explosive, scorching hot electricity like nothing he’s felt before. Oh, God, he’s got to get a taste. He figures all he has to do is wear the sexy woman down with is patented “playboy razzle dazzle”—show her the hotness she’s missing out on and she’ll cave, like all the rest . . . The only problem with that strategy? It’s Kat’s strategy, too: she plans to wear Josh down and get what she wants by showing him the hotness he’s missing out on.

It’s a war of wills. A match to the bed. Who will crack first? And when they do, will either of their hearts be on the line?

INFATUATION is first book of the JOSH AND KAT TRILOGY. The next two books are REVELATION and CONSUMMATION, to be read in order.

GOODREADS

 

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Raze (Scarred Souls #1) by Tillie Cole

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

This book was overly intense.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

To take back life, one must first face death…

One man stripped of his freedom, his morals…his life.

Conditioned in captivity to maim, to kill and to slaughter, prisoner 818 becomes an unremorseful, unrivaled and unstoppable fighter in the ring. Violence is all he knows. Death and brutality are the masters of his fate.

After years of incarceration in an underground hell, only one thought occupies his mind: revenge…bloody, slow and violent revenge.

Revenge on the man who lied.

Revenge on the man who wronged him.

Revenge on the man who condemned him and turned him into this: a rage-fueled killing machine. A monster void of humanity; a monster filled with hate.

And no one will stand in the way of getting what he wants.

One woman stripped of her freedom, her morals…her life.

Kisa Volkova is the only daughter of Kirill ‘The Silencer’ Volkov, head of the infamous ‘Triad’ bosses of New York’s Russian Bratva. Her life is protected. In reality, it’s a virtual prison. Her father’s savage treatment of his rivals and his lucrative and coveted underground gambling ring—The Dungeon—ensures too many enemies lurk at their door.

She dreams to be set free.

Kisa has known only cruelty and loss in her short life. As manager of her father’s death match enterprise, only grief and pain fill her days. Her mafia boss father, in her world, rules absolute. And her fiancé, Alik Durov, is no better; the Dungeon’s five-time champion, a stone-cold killer, the treasured son of her father’s best friend, and her very own—and much resented—personal guard. Unrivaled in both strength and social standing, Alik controls every facet of Kisa’s life, dominates her every move; keeps her subdued and dead inside…then one night changes everything.

While working for her church—the only reprieve in her constant surveillance—Kisa stumbles across a tattooed, scarred, but stunningly beautiful homeless man on the streets. Something about him stirs feelings deep within her; familiar yet impossibly forbidden desires. He doesn’t talk. Doesn’t communicate with anyone. He’s a man beyond saving, and a man she must quickly forget…for both their sakes.

But when weeks later, out of the blue and to her complete surprise, he’s announced as the replacement fighter in The Dungeon, Kisa knows she’s in a whole lot of trouble. He’s built, ripped and lethally unforgiving to his opponents, leaving fear in his wake and the look of death in his eyes.

Kisa becomes obsessed with him. Yearns for him. Craves his touch. Needs to possess this mysterious man…this man they call Raze.

GOODREADS

 

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Thirty Day Boyfriend by Whitney G.

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

This was so good for such a short book!

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

GOODREADS

 

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Disgrace by Brittainy C Cherry

Audiobook available on Audible Escape
Not my favorite by this author, but still really good.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Each day I prayed for my husband to love me again.

After fifteen years together, he walked away from me, and into the arms of another.

I didn’t know how to cope. I didn’t know my worth. I didn’t know how to exist without him by my side.

All I wanted was for him to come back to me.

Then, Jackson Emery appeared.

He was supposed to be a distraction for my mind. A summer fling. A confidence boost to my bruised heart.

We were perfect for one another, because we both knew we wouldn’t last. Jackson didn’t believe in commitment, and I no longer believed in love. He was too closed-off for me, and I was too damaged for him.

Everything was fine, until one night my heart skipped a beat.

I didn’t expect him to make me laugh. To make me think. To make my sadness somewhat disappear.

When our time was up, my heart didn’t know how to walk away.

Each day I prayed for my husband to love me again, yet slowly my prayers began to shift toward the man who wasn’t right for me.

I prayed for one more smile, one more kiss, one more laugh, one more touch…

I prayed for him to be mine.

Even though I knew his heart wasn’t destined to love.

GOODREADS

 

★★★★★ 5 Stars

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War (The Four Horseman #2) by Laura Thalassa

I liked this as much as the first in the series and was surprised by how different it was.

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They came to earth—Pestilence, War, Famine, Death—four horsemen riding their screaming steeds, racing to the corners of the world. Four horsemen with the power to destroy all of humanity. They came to earth, and they came to end us all.

The day Jerusalem falls, Miriam Elmahdy knows her life is over. Houses are burning, the streets run red with blood, and a traitorous army is massacring every last resident. There is no surviving this, especially not once Miriam catches the eye of War himself. But when the massive and terrifying horseman corners Miriam, he calls her his wife, and instead of killing her, he takes her back to his camp.

Now Miriam faces a terrifying future, one where she watches her world burn town by town, and the one man responsible for it all is her seemingly indestructible “husband”. But there’s another side to him, one that’s gentle and loving and dead set on winning her over, and she might not be strong enough to resist.

However, if there’s one thing Miriam has learned, it’s that love and war cannot coexist. And so she must make the ultimate choice: surrender to War and watch humankind fall, or sacrifice everything and stop him.

GOODREADS

 

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Get a Life Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert

Loved the chronic illness rep and Talia Hibbert writes the best steamy scenes.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Chloe Brown is a chronically ill computer geek with a goal, a plan, and a list. After almost—but not quite—dying, she’s come up with seven directives to help her “Get a Life”, and she’s already completed the first: finally moving out of her glamorous family’s mansion. The next items?

• Enjoy a drunken night out.
• Ride a motorcycle.
• Go camping.
• Have meaningless but thoroughly enjoyable sex.
• Travel the world with nothing but hand luggage.
• And… do something bad.

But it’s not easy being bad, even when you’ve written step-by-step guidelines on how to do it correctly. What Chloe needs is a teacher, and she knows just the man for the job.

Redford ‘Red’ Morgan is a handyman with tattoos, a motorcycle, and more sex appeal than ten-thousand Hollywood heartthrobs. He’s also an artist who paints at night and hides his work in the light of day, which Chloe knows because she spies on him occasionally. Just the teeniest, tiniest bit.

But when she enlists Red in her mission to rebel, she learns things about him that no spy session could teach her. Like why he clearly resents Chloe’s wealthy background. And why he never shows his art to anyone. And what really lies beneath his rough exterior…

GOODREADS

 

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Passion on Park Avenue (Central Park Pact #1) by Lauren Layne

This was very refreshing, my second fav Lauren Layne after Blurred Lines.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

For as long as she can remember, Bronx-born Naomi Powell has had one goal: to prove her worth among the Upper East Side elite—the same people for which her mom worked as a housekeeper. Now, as the strongminded, sassy CEO of one of the biggest jewelry empires in the country, Naomi finally has exactly what she wants—but it’s going to take more than just the right address to make Manhattan’s upper class stop treating her like an outsider.

The worst offender is her new neighbor, Oliver Cunningham—the grown son of the very family Naomi’s mother used to work for. Oliver used to torment Naomi when they were children, and as a ridiculously attractive adult, he’s tormenting her in entirely different ways. Now they find themselves engaged in a battle-of-wills that will either consume or destroy them…

Filled with charm and heart and plenty of sex and snark, this entertaining series will hook you from the very first page.

GOODREADS

 

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The Bromance Book Club (The Bromance Book Club #1) by Lyssa Kay Adams

This book lived up to its premise.

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The first rule of book club: You don’t talk about book club.

Nashville Legends second baseman Gavin Scott’s marriage is in major league trouble. He’s recently discovered a humiliating secret: his wife Thea has always faked the Big O. When he loses his cool at the revelation, it’s the final straw on their already strained relationship. Thea asks for a divorce, and Gavin realizes he’s let his pride and fear get the better of him.

Welcome to the Bromance Book Club.

Distraught and desperate, Gavin finds help from an unlikely source: a secret romance book club made up of Nashville’s top alpha men. With the help of their current read, a steamy Regency titled Courting the Countess, the guys coach Gavin on saving his marriage. But it’ll take a lot more than flowery words and grand gestures for this hapless Romeo to find his inner hero and win back the trust of his wife.

GOODREADS

 

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Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1) by Marissa Meyer

I’m FINALLY reading this series… and loving it!

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The first book in the Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer! See where the futuristic YA fairytale saga all began, with the tale of a teenage cyborg who must fight for Earth’s survival against villains from outer space.

Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl. . . .

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future.

With high-stakes action and a smart, resourceful heroine, Cinder is a Cinderella retelling that is at once classic and strikingly original.

GOODREADS

 

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Fix Her Up (Hot and Hammered #1) by Tessa Bailey

I got so many Lucy from The Hating Game vibes from this!

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Georgette Castle’s family runs the best home renovation business in town, but she picked balloons instead of blueprints and they haven’t taken her seriously since. Frankly, she’s over it. Georgie loves planning children’s birthday parties and making people laugh, just not at her own expense. She’s determined to fix herself up into a Woman of the World… whatever that means.

Phase one: new framework for her business (a website from this decade, perhaps?)

Phase two: a gut-reno on her wardrobe (fyi, leggings are pants.)

Phase three: updates to her exterior (do people still wax?)

Phase four: put herself on the market (and stop crushing on Travis Ford!)

Living her best life means facing the truth: Georgie hasn’t been on a date since, well, ever. Nobody’s asking the town clown out for a night of hot sex, that’s for sure. Maybe if people think she’s having a steamy love affair, they’ll acknowledge she’s not just the “little sister” who paints faces for a living. And who better to help demolish that image than the resident sports star and tabloid favorite?

Travis Ford was major league baseball’s hottest rookie when an injury ended his career. Now he’s flipping houses to keep busy and trying to forget his glory days. But he can’t even cross the street without someone recapping his greatest hits. Or making a joke about his… bat. And then there’s Georgie, his best friend’s sister, who is not a kid anymore. When she proposes a wild scheme—that they pretend to date, to shock her family and help him land a new job—he agrees. What’s the harm? It’s not like it’s real. But the girl Travis used to tease is now a funny, full-of-life woman and there’s nothing fake about how much he wants her…

GOODREADS

 

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One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

This freaking book was SO good! It’s everything love triangles should be.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

In her twenties, Emma Blair marries her high school sweetheart, Jesse. They build a life for themselves, far away from the expectations of their parents and the people of their hometown in Massachusetts. They travel the world together, living life to the fullest and seizing every opportunity for adventure.

On their first wedding anniversary, Jesse is on a helicopter over the Pacific when it goes missing. Just like that, Jesse is gone forever.

Emma quits her job and moves home in an effort to put her life back together. Years later, now in her thirties, Emma runs into an old friend, Sam, and finds herself falling in love again. When Emma and Sam get engaged, it feels like Emma’s second chance at happiness.

That is, until Jesse is found. He’s alive, and he’s been trying all these years to come home to her. With a husband and a fiancé, Emma has to now figure out who she is and what she wants, while trying to protect the ones she loves.

Who is her one true love? What does it mean to love truly?

Emma knows she has to listen to her heart. She’s just not sure what it’s saying.

GOODREADS

 

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Leo Loves Aries (Signs of Love #1) by Anyta Sunday

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

THIS BOOK WAS SO FREAKING ADORABLE AND SWOONY I CAN’T EVEN!

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

A new person will enter your life in the early year, Leo. Look past any moments of frustration they might bring and laugh—this could be the start of a thriving friendship.

Theo Wallace usually laughs at the horoscopes his mom sends. Still hung up on his ex-girlfriend and practically friendless, this one begs him to reconsider. Because a friendship that stuck, that thrived…

Well, that would be a reason to leave past pains behind and look to the Bright Future.

When his sister Leone challenges him to find her the perfect date for a spring wedding, Theo uses it as a chance to make new friends. Theo’s ex economics tutor and newest roommate Mr Jamie Cooper seems to be a possible and convenient match. Real convenient. Like written in the stars, convenient.

All he has to do is make sure this Jamie is good enough. Could really be the one for her, and the friend for him.

But watch out, Leo, the stars have a surprise in store…

GOODREADS

 

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A Heart in a Body in the World by Deb Caletti

This one hurt a bit.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

When everything has been taken from you, what else is there to do but run?

So that’s what Annabelle does—she runs from Seattle to Washington, DC, through mountain passes and suburban landscapes, from long lonely roads to college towns. She’s not ready to think about the why yet, just the how—muscles burning, heart pumping, feet pounding the earth. But no matter how hard she tries, she can’t outrun the tragedy from the past year, or the person—The Taker—that haunts her.

Followed by Grandpa Ed in his RV and backed by her brother and two friends (her self-appointed publicity team), Annabelle becomes a reluctant activist as people connect her journey to the trauma from her past. Her cross-country run gains media attention and she is cheered on as she crosses state borders, and is even thrown a block party and given gifts. The support would be nice, if Annabelle could escape the guilt and the shame from what happened back home. They say it isn’t her fault, but she can’t feel the truth of that.

Through welcome and unwelcome distractions, she just keeps running, to the destination that awaits her. There, she’ll finally face what lies behind her—the miles and love and loss…and what is to come.

GOODREADS

 

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Credence by Penelope Douglas

This could’ve been an, “Oh, hell no,” but it was a HELL YES!

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Tiernan de Haas doesn’t care about anything anymore. The only child of a film producer and his starlet wife, she’s grown up with wealth and privilege but not love or guidance. Shipped off to boarding schools from an early age, it was still impossible to escape the loneliness and carve out a life of her own. The shadow of her parents’ fame followed her everywhere.

And when they suddenly pass away, she knows she should be devastated. But has anything really changed? She’s always been alone, hasn’t she?

Jake Van der Berg, her father’s stepbrother and her only living relative, assumes guardianship of Tiernan who is still two months shy of eighteen. Sent to live with him and his two sons, Noah and Kaleb, in the mountains of Colorado, Tiernan soon learns that these men now have a say in what she chooses to care and not care about anymore. As the three of them take her under their wing, teach her to work and survive in the remote woods far away from the rest of the world, she slowly finds her place among them.

And as a part of them.

She also realizes that lines blur and rules become easy to break when no one else is watching.

One of them has her.

The other one wants her.

But he…

He’s going to keep her.

GOODREADS

 

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Behind the Bars (Music Street #1) by Brittainy C Cherry

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

My favorite read of the month and my favorite Brittainy C Cherry book so far this year!

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

When I first met Jasmine Greene, she came in as raindrops.

I was the awkward musician, and she was the high school queen.
The only things we had in common were our music and our loneliness.

Something in her eyes told me her smile wasn’t always the truth.
Something in her voice gave me a hope I always wished to find.
And in a flash, she was gone.

Years later, she was standing in front of me on a street in New Orleans.
She was different, but so was I. Life made us colder. Harder. Isolated.

Caged.

Even though we were different, the broken pieces of me recognized the sadness in her.
Now she was back, and I wouldn’t make the mistake of letting her go again.

When I first met Jasmine Greene, she came in as raindrops.
When we met again, I became her darkest storm.

GOODREADS

 

January 2020 Wrap Up

JANUARY STATS
  • 21 Books total
  • 8 Re-reads
  • 0 two-star book
  • 2 three-star book
  • 4 four-star book
  • 7 five-star books
  • 18 audiobooks
  • 3 hard copy
  • 0 eBook
  • 0 currently reading
  • 2 readathons

 

 

REREADS

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Shadow Kiss (Vampire Academy #3) by Richelle Mead

Audiobook purchased from Audible

My niece was reading this series for the first time and I decided to join her and reread them! I forgot how much I loved this series 🙂

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

WHAT IF FOLLOWING HER HEART MEANS ROSE COULD LOSE HER BEST FRIEND FOREVER?

Lissa Dragomir is a Moroi princess: a mortal vampire with a rare gift for harnessing the earth’s magic. She must be protected at all times from Strigoi; the fiercest vampires – the ones who never die. The powerful blend of human and vampire blood that flows through Rose Hathaway, Lissa’s best friend, makes her a Dhampir. Rose is dedicated to a dangerous life of protecting Lissa from the Strigoi, who are hell-bent on making Lissa one of them.

Rose knows it is forbidden to love another guardian. Her best friend, Lissa – the last Dragomir princess – must always come first. Unfortunately, when it comes to gorgeous Dimitri Belikov, some rules are meant to be broken…

Then a strange darkness begins to grow in Rose’s mind, and ghostly shadows warn of a terrible evil drawing nearer to the Academy’s iron gates. The immortal undead are closing in, and they want vengeance for the lives Rose has stolen. In a heart-stopping battle to rival her worst nightmares, Rose will have to choose between life, love, and the two people who matter most… but will her choice mean that only one can survive?

GOODREADS

  

 

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Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy #4) by Richelle Mead

Audiobook purchased from Audible

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

After a long and heartbreaking journey to Dimitri’s birthplace in Siberia, Rose Hathaway has finally returned to St. Vladimir’s—and to her best friend, Lissa. It is nearly graduation, and the girls can’t wait for their real lives beyond the Academy’s iron gates to begin. But Rose’s heart still aches for Dimitri, and she knows he’s out there, somewhere.

GOODREADS

  

 

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A Curse So Dark and Lonely (Cursebreakers #1) by Brigid Kemmerer

Audiobook purchased from Audible

This was the first time this book was (FINALLY) available on audio and after reading the newest book in the series, I definitely wanted to go back and reread this one.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Fall in love, break the curse.

Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year, Prince Rhen, the heir of Emberfall, thought he could be saved easily if a girl fell for him. But that was before he turned into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. Before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.

Nothing has ever been easy for Harper. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, Harper learned to be tough enough to survive. When she tries to save a stranger on the streets of Washington, DC, she’s pulled into a magical world.

Break the curse, save the kingdom.

Harper doesn’t know where she is or what to believe. A prince? A curse? A monster? As she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what’s at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.

GOODREADS

  

 

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Keepsake (True North #3) by Sarina Bowen

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

I talked about this book in a video I recorded and it made me want to reread it!

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

There’s a first time for everything.

Lark Wainwright used to be fearless. Her life was a series of adventures, each one more exhilarating than the last. But her recent overseas adventure was one too many. Now she’s home and in one piece. Mostly. But her nights are filled with terror.

When her best friend offers her a stay at the orchard in exchange for help at the farmers’ markets, Lark jumps at the chance to spend fall in Vermont. But her nightmares don’t stop. Desperate to keep her fragile state a secret, she relies on the most soft-spoken resident of the Shipley Farm to soothe her when her dreams prove too much.

Zachariah is a survivor, too. It’s been four years since he was tossed aside by the polygamist cult where he grew up. He’s found a peaceful existence on the Shipley’s farm, picking apples and fixing machinery. But getting thrown away by your own people at nineteen leaves a mark on a guy. He doesn’t always know what to make of a world where movie quotes are the primary means of communication. Before hitchhiking to Vermont, he’d never watched TV or spoken on the phone.

Actually, there are a lot of things he’s never done.

Zach and Lark slowly grow to trust one another. One night they become even closer than they’d planned. But Lark may still be too broken to trust anyone. When she pushes Zach away, he will have to prove to himself that he’s good for much more than farm labor.

GOODREADS

  

 

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Archer’s Voice by Mia Sheridan

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

After reading Keepsake, I wanted to read this one. Gotta love those virginal heroes!

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

When Bree Prescott arrives in the sleepy, lakeside town of Pelion, Maine, she hopes against hope that this is the place where she will finally find the peace she so desperately seeks. On her first day there, her life collides with Archer Hale, an isolated man who holds a secret agony of his own. A man no one else sees.

Archer’s Voice is the story of a woman chained to the memory of one horrifying night and the man whose love is the key to her freedom. It is the story of a silent man who lives with an excruciating wound and the woman who helps him find his voice. It is the story of suffering, fate, and the transformative power of love.

GOODREADS

 

 

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To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before Series by Jenny Han

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

I read this series for the Lunar New Year Weekend Readathon also in preparation for the release of the second movie based on the second book, PS I Still Love You. I so enjoyed coming back to Lara Jean’s world! #TeamJohnAmbrose

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

New York Times bestselling author Jenny Han’s beloved novels are now available together for the first time in this delightful hardcover boxed set!

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them…all at once?

Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control.

GOODREADS

 

 

★★★ 3 Stars

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My Best Friend’s Ex (Binghamton #2) by Meghan Quinn

Audiobook available on Audible Escape & Kindle Unlimited

I read this book for Smutathon. It was my Forbidden Romance pick. I DNF’d the first book in this series, so I didn’t have high hopes for this one … and it lived up to my expectations.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

When I found an eviction notice taped on my apartment door, I had two options: find a comfortable cardboard box to call home, or move in with Tucker Jameson.

Seeing that cardboard makes me feel itchy, I chose the latter. Which shouldn’t be that big of a deal since Tucker is one of my good friends. And because he’s still pining after his ex-girlfriend and I’m trying to finish my nursing degree, there is nothing to worry about in the romance department, making my last semester an easy one to conquer.

Boy, was I wrong.

Rules are set, dinners are made, conversations are had, and a shirtless, swoony roommate walks around in nothing but a pair of black briefs, ruining me for every other man.

Before I know it, I turn into a panting, lust-filled woman begging for Tucker to kiss me, touch me, and show me exactly what is hiding under those briefs.

But with great orgasms, comes great consequences.

Tucker might be my friend and roommate but he’s also my best friend’s ex-boyfriend, making him completely off-limits. At least that’s what my brain is telling me, my heart is speaking an entirely different language.

GOODREADS

 

 

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Water Bound (Sea Haven/Sisters of the Heart #1) by Christine Freehan

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

This book read like a mass market paperback. I think if I was still in my Black Dagger Brotherhood phase, I would’ve liked this more, but it was a little too cheesy for me.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

On the shores of Sea Haven, six women touched by great loss have come together in a sisterhood strengthened by the elements—a bond each will need as new love and danger enter their lives…

The last thing Lev Prakenskii remembers is being lost in the swirling currents of the ocean. Just as quickly, he is saved—pulled ashore by a beautiful stranger. But Lev has no memory of who he was—or why he seems to possess the violent instincts of a trained killer. All he knows is that he fears for his life, and the life of his unexpected savior.

Rikki has always felt an affinity for the ocean and the relentless flow of the tides. Now, she can’t deny the seductive pull of the enigmatic man she rescued. But soon they will be bound by something even stronger: the tantalizing secrets that threaten to engulf them both in a whirlpool of dizzying passion and inescapable danger

GOODREADS

 

 

★★★★ 4 Stars

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Easy Virtue (Virtue #1) by Mia Asher

Audiobook Available on Audible Escape & Kindle Unlimited

This was my Out of My Comfort Zone choice for Smutathon and it was surprisingly good despite its taboo subject and cliff hanger ending.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Love is selfish…

My name is Blaire.
I’m the bad girl.
The other woman.
The one who never gets the guy in the end.

I’m the gold digger.
The bitch.
The one no one roots for.
The one you love to hate.

I hate myself too…

Everyone has a story. Are you ready for mine?

GOODREADS

  

 

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Let’s Get Textual by Teagan Hunter

Audiobook Available on Audible Escape & Kindle Unlimited

This was my Recommended to You choice for Smutathon. I really liked the premise of this one and it was done well.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

A wrong number is supposed to be just that—a wrong number.

Delete. Done.

Do not continue to text. Do not flirt.

A wrong number shouldn’t be the first person on your mind in the morning, or the last at night…and you’re definitely not supposed to talk them into buying a baby goat.

Because that would be weird.

When Zach Hastings and I get into a wrong-number mix-up, we don’t follow the rules. We keep texting and flirting, because he’s wicked funny and perfectly nerdy and a wonderful distraction.

I’m not looking for love, and Zach definitely had the wrong number.

But maybe…

Maybe he’s the right guy.

GOODREADS

  

 

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Roar (Stormheart #1) by Cora Carmack

Hard copy purchased from the author at Shameless

I was plesantly surprised by this contemporary romance author’s very first YA Fantasy!

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

In a land ruled and shaped by violent magical storms, power lies with those who control them.

Aurora Pavan comes from one of the oldest Stormling families in existence. Long ago, the ungifted pledged fealty and service to her family in exchange for safe haven, and a kingdom was carved out from the wildlands and sustained by magic capable of repelling the world’s deadliest foes. As the sole heir of Pavan, Aurora’s been groomed to be the perfect queen. She’s intelligent and brave and honorable. But she’s yet to show any trace of the magic she’ll need to protect her people.

To keep her secret and save her crown, Aurora’s mother arranges for her to marry a dark and brooding Stormling prince from another kingdom. At first, the prince seems like the perfect solution to all her problems. He’ll guarantee her spot as the next queen and be the champion her people need to remain safe. But the more secrets Aurora uncovers about him, the more a future with him frightens her. When she dons a disguise and sneaks out of the palace one night to spy on him, she stumbles upon a black market dealing in the very thing she lacks—storm magic. And the people selling it? They’re not Stormlings. They’re storm hunters.

Legend says that her ancestors first gained their magic by facing a storm and stealing part of its essence. And when a handsome young storm hunter reveals he was born without magic, but possesses it now, Aurora realizes there’s a third option for her future besides ruin or marriage.

She might not have magic now, but she can steal it if she’s brave enough.

Challenge a tempest. Survive it. And you become its master.

GOODREADS

  

 

★★★★★ 5 Stars

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The Gravity of Us (Elements #4) by Brittainy C. Cherry

Audiobook available on Audible Escape & Kindle Unlimited

I read this book for Smutathon. It was my Enemies to Lovers pick. This was also my first book by this author and I absolutely fell in love! I want to read everything she wrote!

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Graham Russell and I weren’t made for one another.

I was driven by emotion; he was apathetic. I dreamed while he lived in nightmares. I cried when he had no tears to shed.

Despite his frozen heart and my readiness to run, we sometimes shared seconds. Seconds when our eyes locked and we saw each other’s secrets. Seconds when his lips tasted my fears, and I breathed in his pains. Seconds when we both imagined what it would be like to love one another.

Those seconds left us floating, but when reality knocked us sideways, gravity forced us to descend.

Graham Russell wasn’t a man who knew how to love, and I wasn’t a woman who knew how to either. Yet if I had the chance to fall again, I’d fall with him forever.

Even if we were destined to crash against solid ground.

GOODREADS

 

 

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A Heart So Fierce and Broke (Cursebreakers #2) by Brigid Kemmerer

Hard copy purchased from Barnes & Noble

This was my most anticipated read for 2020 and it was everything I hoped it would be.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Find the heir, win the crown.

The curse is finally broken, but Prince Rhen of Emberfall faces darker troubles still. Rumors circulate that he is not the true heir and that forbidden magic has been unleashed in Emberfall. Although Rhen has Harper by his side, his guardsman Grey is missing, leaving more questions than answers.

Win the crown, save the kingdom.

Rumored to be the heir, Grey has been on the run since he destroyed Lilith. He has no desire to challenge Rhen–until Karis Luran once again threatens to take Emberfall by force. Her own daughter Lia Mara sees the flaws in her mother’s violent plan, but can she convince Grey to stand against Rhen, even for the good of Emberfall?

The heart-pounding, compulsively readable saga continues as loyalties are tested and new love blooms in a kingdom on the brink of war.

In the sequel to New York Times bestselling A Curse So Dark and Lonely, Brigid Kemmerer returns to the world of Emberfall in a lush fantasy where friends become foes and love blooms in the darkest of places.

GOODREADS

 

 

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Eleanor & Grey by Brittainy C. Cherry

Audiobook Available on Audible Escape & Kindle Unlimited

This is the beginning of my attempt to read Brittainy C. Cherry’s backlist. I really, really liked this one, too!

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Greyson East left his mark on me.

As the young girl who first fell for him, I didn’t know much about life. I did know about his smiles, though, and his laughs, and the strange way my stomach flipped when he was near.

Life was perfect…until it wasn’t, and when we were forced to go our separate ways, I held on to our memories, let go of my first crush, and wished for the day I’d find him again.

When my wish came true, it was nothing like I imagined.

I couldn’t have known when I took the nanny position that it would be his children I looked after, that my new boss would be that boy I used to know, that boy who was now a man—a cold, lonely, detached man.

The smile and laugh I had loved so much were gone, now distant memories. Every part of him was covered in a fresh pain.

When he realized who I was, he made me promise to do my job and my job only.
He made me promise not to try to get to know him, not to recall the memories I’d treasured all this time.

But, sometimes, I saw the boy I’d once known in his stormy eyes. I saw the Greyson who smiled and laughed, who had stolen a young girl’s heart, and there was no doubt in my mind that this boy was worth fighting for.

I was given a second chance with the one who’d left his mark on me. All I hoped was that somehow I’d leave a mark on his soul, too.

GOODREADS

 

 

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Pestilence (The Four Horseman #1) by Laura Thalassa

Audiobook purchased from Audible, Available on Kindle Unlimited

I read this because Jessica from PeaceLoveBooks always gushes about this series. And she was so right! This is such a unique romance.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

They came to earth—Pestilence, War, Famine, Death—four horsemen riding their screaming steeds, racing to the corners of the world. Four horsemen with the power to destroy all of humanity. They came to earth, and they came to end us all.

When Pestilence comes for Sara Burn’s town, one thing is certain: everyone she knows and loves is marked for death. Unless, of course, the angelic-looking horseman is stopped, which is exactly what Sara has in mind when she shoots the unholy beast off his steed.

Too bad no one told her Pestilence can’t be killed.

Now the horseman, very much alive and very pissed off, has taken her prisoner, and he’s eager to make her suffer. Only, the longer she’s with him, the more uncertain she is about his true feelings towards her … and hers towards him.

And now, well, Sara might still be able to save the world, but in order to do so, she’ll have to sacrifice her heart in the process.

GOODREADS

 

 

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Rage (Stormheart #2) by Cora Carmack

Audiobook available on Audible Escape

This book was a lot more fast-paced than the first book and I really, really liked it.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Princess or adventurer.

Duty or freedom.

Her Kingdom or the Stormhunter she loves.

If Aurora knows anything, it’s that choices have consequences. To set things right, she joins a growing revolution on the streets of Pavan.

In disguise as the rebel Roar, she puts her knowledge of the palace to use to aid the rebellion. But the Rage season is at its peak and not a day passes without the skies raining down destruction. Yet these storms are different—they churn with darkness, and attack with a will that’s desperate and violent.

This feels like more than rage.

It feels like war.

GOODREADS

 

 

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A Quiet Kind of Thunder by Sara Barnard

Physical book purchased from Books a Million

I fell so hard for this book for so many reasons. The anxiety rep was one of the best I’ve read.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

A girl who can’t speak and a boy who can’t hear go on a journey of self-discovery and find support with each other in this gripping, emotionally resonant novel from bestselling author Sara Barnard. Perfect for fans of Morgan Matson and Jandy Nelson.

Steffi doesn’t talk, but she has so much to say.
Rhys can’t hear, but he can listen.

Steffi has been a selective mute for most of her life. The condition’s name has always felt ironic to her, because she certainly does not “select” not to speak. In fact, she would give anything to be able to speak as easily and often as everyone around her can. She suffers from crippling anxiety, and uncontrollably, in most situations simply can’t open her mouth to get out the words.

Steffi’s been silent for so long that she feels completely invisible. But Rhys, the new boy at school, sees her. He’s deaf, and her knowledge of basic sign language means that she’s assigned to help him acclimate. To Rhys, it doesn’t matter that Steffi doesn’t talk. As they find ways to communicate, Steffi discovers that she does have a voice, and that she’s falling in love with the one person who makes her feel brave enough to use it. But as she starts to overcome a lifelong challenge, she’ll soon confront questions about the nature of her own identity and the very essence of what it is to know another person.

GOODREADS

 

 

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My Darling Duke (Sinful Wallflowers #1) by Stacy Reid

Audiobook from Scribd

I haven’t read a historical romance in such a long time, but I was drawn to the premise and it so delivered.

CLICK FOR SYNOPSIS

Miss Katherine Danvers is a desperate wallflower. Her family is on the brink of financial ruin, and it is up her to save her mother and sisters from a life of indignities. So she transforms herself into the incomparable Kitty Danvers, the fiancée of the enigmatic and reclusive Alexander Masters, Duke of Thornton—once dubbed the mad, bad, and dangerous catch of the Season.

Ten years ago, society and the woman Alexander Masters loved called him a monster, after a tragic accident left him scarred and confined to a wheelchair. His heart exists in cold, lonely exile, until he learns he has a fiancée—a deceptive, clever, and utterly intriguing woman he’s never met. Miss Danvers will now learn the consequences of engaging herself to the beast, for Alexander is determined to make her his. Soon, they are involved in a chase, a clash of wills, and though he once vowed to never love again, he burns for the enchanting Miss Danvers. And denying his heart may cost him an exquisite love that happens only once in a lifetime.

GOODREADS

 

 

Happy New Year! + December 20 Wrap Up

 

new years

December was an excellent reading month for me thanks for my last-minute rush to reach my Goodreads Goal and the Kindle Unlimited Readathon. I ended up completely surpassing my goal of 200 books by 16!

Below I will list my December stats, the books I read, and my ratings. If you want to hear my thoughts you can watch my wrap up video or check out my reviews once they are posted.

 

December Stats

  • 32 Books total
  • 0 Re-reads
  • 1 two-star book
  • 2 three-star book
  • 13 four-star book
  • 16 five-star books
  • 21 audiobooks
  • 2 hard copy
  • 9 eBook
  • 2 currently reading

 

Continue reading “Happy New Year! + December 20 Wrap Up”

Kindle Unlimited Weekend Readathon Wrap Up

The Kindle Unlimited Weekend Readathon was this past weekend – and it was the best readathon I’ve ever participated in.

I read so many books (granted they were all super short) in such a short amount of time and I interacted with so many fun people on Twitter, Instagram, and even on YouTube.

I read 9 books in total Friday, Dec. 27-29.

Here are all the books I read, their ratings, and mini-reviews:

Something in the Water by Anne Frasier
★★★★★
This book was only a few pages long and I read it in under 20 minutes. This was such a delightful short read that packed a punch. Fair warning, it does end on a cliff-hanger, but I wasn’t mad about it. Knowing that this is a super short story changed my expectations, and I appreciated the ending more than I would have otherwise. I do wish that this book was longer because I love the premise of it, but it was absolutely great as is.
Goodreads

Fling (Wrong #2.5) by Jana Aston
★★★★★
I totally forgot how much I adored this series! I have no idea why I didn’t read this book, I skipped right over it when I was reading the series, but it’s actually my favorite book in the entire series and my favorite read for this entire readathon. Nobody writes hilariously cringey romance scenes as good as Jana Aston.
Goodreads

Brock (Bourne Bodyguards #1) by Mandy Morgan
★★★
I loved the beginning of this book. I thought it started off really strong and I was really liking Brock’s character. But then, it did the thing that short romance novellas usually do, which is rush through the romance, taking away the believability. It ended up taking me out of the story in the end, unfortunately. I am curious about the rest of this series because you do get to see a little something happening between the main character’s roommate and the Hero’s best friend that seemed really interesting.
Goodreads

Hot Doctor by Hope Ford
★★
The idea of this was better than the execution. I think this would’ve been better as a slow burn, full-length novel, but that basically changes the entire story, so… yeah. LOL! This was another case of instalove that I wasn’t invested in. I also wish, since it is called Hot Doctor, that it was more of a hospital romance, but it was much more of a nanny romance than anything.
Goodreads

Sacrificed to the Beast by Jessa Kane
★★★★
This book was so wonderfully steamy! It has one of my favorite tropes, which is the inexperienced guy who needs “teaching.” Also, I’m always a fan of Beauty and the Beast reimaginings. While this wasn’t anything ground-breaking, the romance definitely was on point, in my opinion. This story wasn’t as serious as I anticipated it to be, it was written more like a romcom than you’d imagine from the cover. It honestly reminds me a lot of the Ice Planet Barbarians series that I’ve been reading lately because of how secluded the beast is.
Goodreads

Cellar Door by Trisha Wolfe
★★★★★
Ughhhh it’s been way too long since I’ve read a book by Trisha Wolfe and I’m so happy I did! I’d forgotten how much I adore her writing and her storytelling. I will admit that the beginning seemed a little slow only because I was expecting a romance right from the beginning, however, the romance doesn’t kick in until much later in the story and it’s very low key. But JUST as good as her other dark romances. This was such an interesting thriller with twist and turns I didn’t see coming.
Goodreads

Barbarian’s Mate (Ice Planet Barbarians #6) by Ruby Dixon
★★★★
I’ve been loving this entire freaking series even though they seem utterly ridiculous. At the end of the day, this series is Avatar fanfiction, let’s be real. But I’m not against that. These books are steamy AF and have, again, my favorite thing in romance novels – an inexperienced hero. This book in particular wasn’t my favorite, but I ate it up like candy. I didn’t really like Josie’s character in previous books, however, she didn’t annoy me nearly as much in this book as she did in others. Also, I LOVE the love interest and have loved him since he was introduced in previous books.
Goodreads

The Music of the Night by Amanda Ashley
★★★★
The Phantom of the Opera retelling I never asked for, but am so glad I read. To be honest, this book started off super cheesey. I was like, “Really, this is what we’re doing?” at first, however, I was not expecting the angle it took in the end… and it completely changed my view of the entire thing. I wish this book was longer, because I absolutely would’ve loved more to this story!
Goodreads

Masquerade by Amanda Ashley
★★★★
Amanda Ashley obviously loves Phantom of the Opera as much as I do, because this has very Phantom-ish feels, though not as blatant as the previous book on this list. It was a paranormal romance novella and I adored it. It has your stereotypical dark, brooding, mysterious hero who lurks in the shadows, and I’d forgotten how much I love that trope. I was absolutely here for it with this book.
Goodreads

Books I Read in November | November 2019 Wrap-up

November was a fantastic reading month for me, mostly because I’m hustling to catch up to my Goodreads goal and because I implemented little challenges for myself.

I decided to read all of the books that were nominated in the romance category for the Goodreads Choice Awards, then I decided to round up all the shortest books on my bookshelves and read as many of those during Thanksgiving Week as I could.

If you’re interested in hearing my thoughts on these books, you can watch my wrap-up video here:

 

 

November Stats

  • 20 Books total
  • 1 Re-read
  • 2 DNF
  • 1 one-star book
  • 1 two-star book
  • 3 three-star book
  • 7 four-star book
  • 8 five-star books
  • 15 audiobooks
  • 5 hard copy
  • 0 eBook
  • 2 currently reading

Continue reading “Books I Read in November | November 2019 Wrap-up”

October 2019 Wrap Up

Check out my October Wrap Up video here:

September Stats

  • 8 Books total
  • 1 Re-reads
  • 1 three-star book
  • 4 four-star book
  • 2 five-star books
  • 7 audiobooks
  • 0 hard copy
  • 1 eBook
  • 1 currently reading

Re-reads

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Maybe Someday
(Maybe #1)
by Colleen Hoover

Contains exclusive content: songs from Griffin Peterson

Sydney is living in an idyllic bubble—she’s a dedicated student with a steady job on the side. She lives with her best friend, has a great boyfriend, and the music coming from the balcony opposite hers is fast becoming the soundtrack to her life. But when Sydney finds out her boyfriend is cheating on her, the bubble bursts. The mysterious and attractive man behind the music, Ridge, gives Sydney hope that she can move on and they begin to write songs together. But moving on is harder than she expects, Sydney can only hope….

Maybe someday…

Colleen Hoover draws you in to this passionate tale of music, love and betrayal…

♥♥♥

★★★ 3 Star Reads

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Broken Prince
(The Royals #2)
by Erin Watt

From wharf fights and school brawls to crumbling lives inside glittery mansions, one guy tries to save himself.

THESE ROYALS WILL RUIN YOU…

Reed Royal has it all—looks, status, money. The girls at his elite prep school line up to date him, the guys want to be him, but Reed never gave a damn about anyone but his family until Ella Harper walked into his life. From wharf fights and school brawls to crumbling lives inside glittery mansions, one guy tries to save himself.

THESE ROYALS WILL RUIN YOU…

Reed Royal has it all—looks, status, money. The girls at his elite prep school line up to date him, the guys want to be him, but Reed never gave a damn about anyone but his family until Ella Harper walked into his life.

What started off as burning resentment and the need to make his father’s new ward suffer turned into something else entirely—keep Ella close. Keep Ella safe. But when one foolish mistake drives her out of Reed’s arms and brings chaos to the Royal household, Reed’s entire world begins to fall apart around him.

Ella doesn’t want him anymore. She says they’ll only destroy each other.

SHE MIGHT BE RIGHT.

Secrets. Betrayal. Enemies. It’s like nothing Reed has ever dealt with before, and if he’s going to win back his princess, he’ll need to prove himself Royally worthy.

♥♥♥

★★★★ 4 Star Reads

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Remedial Rocket Science
(Chemistry Lessons #1)
by Susannah Nix

Rocket science is no problem. Falling in love, on the other hand…

College student Melody Gage is craving a night of no-strings fun when she meets charming out-of-towner Jeremy, and that’s exactly what she gets. Until three years later, when Melody relocates to Los Angeles and finds herself thrust back into Jeremy’s orbit.

Not only does her hunky one-night stand work at the same aerospace company where she’s just started her dream job, he’s the CEO’s son. Jeremy’s got a girlfriend and a reputation as a bad boy, so Melody resolves to keep her distance. Despite her good intentions, a series of awkward circumstances—including an embarrassing crying jag, a latte vs. computer catastrophe, and an emergency fake date—throw her together with the heavenly-smelling paragon of hotness.

As the billionaire playboy and nerdy IT girl forge an unlikely friendship, Melody’s attraction to Jeremy grows deeper than she’s ready to admit. Will she risk it all for a shot at her happy ending?

The debut novel from author Susannah Nix, Remedial Rocket Science follows in the tradition of contemporary romantic comedy favorites like Penny Reid, Sally Thorne, and Jennifer Crusie. This lighthearted slow burn romance is the first in a series of standalone rom-coms featuring geeky heroines who work in STEM fields.

♥♥♥

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Heidi’s Guide to Four Letter Words
by Tara Sivec & Andi Arndt

Cowritten by USA Today best-selling author Tara Sivec and award-winning narrator Andi Arndt, a hysterically funny, heartfelt romance about starting over and taking chances.

Nothing good ever comes from drinking a box of wine alone. So when I decided to entertain my drunken self by setting up some hand-me-down podcasting equipment and reading the steamy parts from romance novels, I never thought anyone would actually listen. The fact that I admitted my huge crush on my sexy next door neighbor made the whole thing even more mortifying. But sometimes life surprises you, and that’s how my podcast, Heidi’s Discount Erotica, was born.

Now I, Heidi Larsen, a sweet former kindergarten teacher in Waconia, Minnesota, lead a scandalous double life reading erotic novels to the listening world. And with each episode, I find myself embracing my new alter ego more and more. Now I’m starting to feel more comfortable in my own skin and do things I never would have dreamed of – like kissing my neighbor.

Look out, Waconia, because Heidi’s on the loose! She’s in your ears, in your hearts, and down your pants…wait, that didn’t sound as good as it did in my head. Well, you get the picture, don’tcha know!

♥♥♥

Be the Girl
by K.A. Tucker

Almost sixteen-year-old Aria Jones is starting over. New postal code, new last name, new rules. But she doesn’t mind, because it means she can leave her painful regrets behind. In the bustling town of Eastmonte, she can become someone else. Someone better.

With the Hartford family living next door, it seems she will succeed. Sure, Cassie Hartford may be the epitome of social awkwardness thanks to her autism, but she also offers an innocent and sincere friendship that Aria learns to appreciate. And Cassie’s older brother, Emmett—a popular Junior A hockey player with a bright future—well … Aria wishes that friendship could lead to something more. If he didn’t already have a girlfriend, maybe it would.

But Aria soon finds herself in a dicey moral predicament that could derail her attempt at a fresh start. It is her loyalty to Cassie and her growing crush on Emmett that leads her to make a risky move, one that earns her a vindictive enemy who is determined to splinter her happy new world.

♥♥♥

Dane’s Storm
by Mia Sheridan

A gripping, exquisitely romantic new standalone by New York Times bestselling author Mia Sheridan.

Dane was her first kiss and the only man she ever loved . . . until their marriage crashed and burned. Now Audra has built a quiet life for herself running a flower shop she’s put her whole heart into. But Audra is left reeling when an unexpected circumstance brings Dane back into her world. He’s still as breathtaking as he ever was, and he still affects her more than any man she’s ever known. Yet learning to trust him again could be a matter of life and death . . .

When Dane offers to fly his ex-wife from California to Colorado to help correct a wrong, he never imagined the harrowing twist of fate awaiting them. When their plane goes down in the snowy mountain wilderness, Dane and Audra are stranded with no one to turn to but each other. Will their second crash end their lives—or save their souls?

THIS IS A STAND-ALONE SIGN OF LOVE NOVEL, INSPIRED BY CANCER. New Adult Contemporary Romance: Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.

♥♥♥

★★★★★ 5 Star Reads

I Wish You All the Best
by Mason Deaver

When Ben De Backer comes out to their parents as nonbinary, they’re thrown out of their house and forced to move in with their estranged older sister, Hannah, and her husband, Thomas, whom Ben has never even met. Struggling with an anxiety disorder compounded by their parents’ rejection, they come out only to Hannah, Thomas, and their therapist and try to keep a low profile in a new school.

But Ben’s attempts to survive the last half of senior year unnoticed are thwarted when Nathan Allan, a funny and charismatic student, decides to take Ben under his wing. As Ben and Nathan’s friendship grows, their feelings for each other begin to change, and what started as a disastrous turn of events looks like it might just be a chance to start a happier new life.

At turns heartbreaking and joyous, I Wish You All the Best is both a celebration of life, friendship, and love, and a shining example of hope in the face of adversity.

♥♥♥

The Best Thing
by Mariana Zapata

Some things are easily forgiven. Other things… not so much.

Lenny DeMaio made herself a promise: she was done.
Done thinking about him.
Done worrying about him.
Done reaching out to a man who clearly didn’t want to be found.

Too bad no one gave Jonah Collins the memo.

September 2019 Wrap Up

I’m finally getting back into the swing of things here on the blog and over on my BookTube channel.

If you feel up to it, you can watch my September Wrap-Up here:

Otherwise, check out the books I read in September. Hopefully, reviews will happen soon!

September Stats

  • 8 Books total
  • # Re-reads
  • # three-star book
  • # four-star book
  • # five-star books
  • # audiobooks
  • # hard copy
  • # eBook
  • 1 currently reading

Re-reads

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The Bride Test (The Kiss Quotient #2) by Helen Hoang

Khai Diep has no feelings. Well, he feels irritation when people move his things or contentment when ledgers balance down to the penny, but not big, important emotions—like grief. And love. He thinks he’s defective. His family knows better—that his autism means he just processes emotions differently. When he steadfastly avoids relationships, his mother takes matters into her own hands and returns to Vietnam to find him the perfect bride.

As a mixed-race girl living in the slums of Ho Chi Minh City, Esme Tran has always felt out of place. When the opportunity arises to come to America and meet a potential husband, she can’t turn it down, thinking this could be the break her family needs. Seducing Khai, however, doesn’t go as planned. Esme’s lessons in love seem to be working…but only on herself. She’s hopelessly smitten with a man who’s convinced he can never return her affection.

With Esme’s time in the United States dwindling, Khai is forced to understand he’s been wrong all along. And there’s more than one way to love.

★★★ 3 Star Reads

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Black Sheep (Dirty Mafia Duet #1) by Meghan March

From New York Times bestselling author Meghan March comes a story of untold truths and one man’s redemption in the Dirty Mafia Duet.

Every family has a black sheep.
In the infamous Casso crime family, that black sheep is me—Cannon Freeman.
Except I’m not a free man. I’ve never been free. Not since the day I was born.
I owe my loyalty to my father, Dominic Casso, even if he won’t publicly acknowledge me as his blood.
I’ve never had a reason to go against his wishes… until I met her.
Drew Carson turned my world upside when she walked into my club looking for a job.
Now, my honor and my life are on the line.
Going against my father’s wishes might buy me a bullet straight from his gun, but black sheep or not, it’s time to make my stand.
She’s worth the fallout.

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Fallen Too Far (Rosemary Beach #1) by Abbi Glines

To want what you’re not supposed to have…

She is only nineteen.

She is his new stepfather’s daughter.

She is still naïve and innocent due to spending the last three years taking care of her sick mother.

But for twenty-four year old Rush Finlay, she is the only thing that has ever been off limits. His famous father’s guilt money, his mother’s desperation to win his love, and his charm are the three reasons he has never been told no.

Blaire Wynn left her small farmhouse in Alabama, after her mother passed away, to move in with her father and his new wife in their sprawling beach house along the Florida gulf coast. She isn’t prepared for the lifestyle change and she knows she’ll never fit into this world. Then there is her sexy stepbrother who her father leaves her with for the summer while he runs off to Paris with his wife. Rush is as spoiled as he is gorgeous. He is also getting under her skin. She knows he is anything but good for her and that he’ll never be faithful to anyone. He is jaded and has secrets Blaire knows she may never uncover but even knowing all of that…

Blaire just may have fallen too far.

Finding Our Course: Collision Course Duet (Finding our Way #1-2) by Ahren Sanders

I fell in love with my brother’s best friend the first time I laid eyes on him. He walked through the door, flashing me a crooked smile with his blue eyes shining bright. I knew in that instant, he was the man of my dreams.
As the years went on, my feelings grew stronger, waiting for the day he’d see me as more.

“Devon Harris, when you turn eighteen, I hope to God you still feel this way.” Bryce whispered sweetly, hugging me close.

“I will.” I vowed, knowing this was a promise I’d keep.

Then the unthinkable happened.
Bryce shattered my heart into a million pieces, leaving me devastated beyond repair.
I took the only choice I had, leaving behind my dreams of him and any chance at a future together.
Time and distance did little to heal my heartache, but I forced myself to move on.

Right when my life starts to make sense, Bryce returns.
I tell him it’s too late, but he’s determined to prove me wrong.
Together, we’re thrust into a world of undying passion, unrelenting devotion, and promises of a future worth fighting for.
But life has a way of threatening even the most solid foundation and our bonds are tested.
Can we really have it all?
We find ourselves facing obstacles and decisions that change the course of our lives-forever.

For the first time ever you can read the epic love story of Bryce and Devon in one edition. Finding Our Course, the Collision Course Duet was previously published in two separate books, Finding our Way and Staying on Course.

Pride by Ibi Zoboi

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Pride and Prejudice gets remixed in this smart, funny, gorgeous retelling of the classic, starring all characters of color, from Ibi Zoboi, National Book Award finalist and author of American Street.

Zuri Benitez has pride. Brooklyn pride, family pride, and pride in her Afro-Latino roots. But pride might not be enough to save her rapidly gentrifying neighborhood from becoming unrecognizable.

When the wealthy Darcy family moves in across the street, Zuri wants nothing to do with their two teenage sons, even as her older sister, Janae, starts to fall for the charming Ainsley. She especially can’t stand the judgmental and arrogant Darius. Yet as Zuri and Darius are forced to find common ground, their initial dislike shifts into an unexpected understanding.

But with four wild sisters pulling her in different directions, cute boy Warren vying for her attention, and college applications hovering on the horizon, Zuri fights to find her place in Bushwick’s changing landscape, or lose it all.

In a timely update of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, critically acclaimed author Ibi Zoboi skillfully balances cultural identity, class, and gentrification against the heady magic of first love in her vibrant reimagining of this beloved classic.

 

★★★★ 4 Star Reads

Maybe This Time by Kasie West

One year. Nine events. Nine chances to . . . fall in love?

Weddings. Funerals. Barbecues. New Year’s Eve parties. Name the occasion, and Sophie Evans will be there. Well, she has to be there. Sophie works for the local florist, so she can be found at every big event in her small hometown, arranging bouquets and managing family dramas.

Enter Andrew Hart. The son of the fancy new chef in town, Andrew is suddenly required to attend all the same events as Sophie. Entitled, arrogant, preppy Andrew. Sophie just wants to get her job done and finish up her sketches so she can apply to design school. But every time she turns around, there is Andrew, getting in her way and making her life more complicated. Until one day she wonders if maybe complicated isn’t so bad after all . . .

Told over the course of one year and following Sophie from event to event, this delightful novel from master of romantic comedy Kasie West shows how love can blossom in unexpected places.

★★★★★ 5 Star Reads

The Wish Collector by Mia Sheridan

New Orleans, a city of mystery and magic, of secrets and dreams, and a history drenched in both love and the deepest of heartache.

When ballet dancer Clara Campbell arrives in New Orleans, lonely and homesick, she is immediately captivated by the story of Windisle Plantation and the tragic tale that is said to have transpired beyond its gate. Legend has it that it is abandoned by all living souls, but to Clara’s great surprise, it is not a ghost she hears through the stone wall surrounding the property, but a flesh and blood man. A scarred stranger with a pain deeper and darker than the churning waters of the Mississippi river that flows beside his self-imposed prison.

The ruined man behind the wall hides himself from the world. The last thing he expects is to find a friend in the selfless girl who speaks to him through the cracks in the rock. The girl who keeps returning week after week. The girl who makes him wish for things he has long since given up on. The girl who strikes both fear and hope within his wounded heart. But there can be no future for them, no life beyond Windisle, for no one knows better than him that monsters only live in the dark.

The Wish Collector is the story of shame and triumph, of loneliness and love, and the miracle of two hearts connecting despite the strongest of barriers between them.

Savaged by Mia Sheridan

When wilderness guide, Harper Ward, is summoned to the small town sheriff’s office in Helena Springs, Montana, to provide assistance on a case, she is shocked to find that their only suspect in the double murder investigation is a man described as a savage.

But the longer she watches the man known only as Lucas, on the station surveillance camera, the more intrigued she becomes. He certainly looks primitive with his unkempt appearance and animal skin attire, but she also sees intelligence in his eyes, sensitivity in his expression. Who is he? And how is it possible that he’s lived alone in the forest since he was a small child?

As secrets begin to emerge, Harper is thrust into something bigger and more diabolical than she ever could have imagined. And standing right at the center of it all, is Lucas. But is he truly the wild man he appears to be? A cold blooded killer? An innocent victim? Or a perplexing mix of all three?

Harper must find out the answers to these questions because the more time she spends with him, the more she risks losing her heart.

The Distance Between Us by Kasie West

Seventeen-year-old Caymen Meyers studies the rich like her own personal science experiment, and after years of observation she’s pretty sure they’re only good for one thing—spending money on useless stuff, like the porcelain dolls in her mother’s shop.

So when Xander Spence walks into the store to pick up a doll for his grandmother, it only takes one glance for Caymen to figure out he’s oozing rich. Despite his charming ways and that he’s one of the first people who actually gets her, she’s smart enough to know his interest won’t last. Because if there’s one thing she’s learned from her mother’s warnings, it’s that the rich have a short attention span. But Xander keeps coming around, despite her best efforts to scare him off. And much to her dismay, she’s beginning to enjoy his company.

She knows her mom can’t find out—she wouldn’t approve. She’d much rather Caymen hang out with the local rocker who hasn’t been raised by money. But just when Xander’s attention and loyalty are about to convince Caymen that being rich isn’t a character flaw, she finds out that money is a much bigger part of their relationship than she’d ever realized. And that Xander’s not the only one she should’ve been worried about.

June Wrap Up ~ Books I Read in June

As I mentioned in my previous post – June was a crazy month for me and it’s definitely spilling over into July.  We are renovating our entire house (mostly just replacing the floors), I went on vacation, my home library is completely torn apart due to renos, etc.

But… that didn’t stop me from reading! Granted, I didn’t read quite as much as I anticipated during my vacation, but I was able to read one physical book and one ebook while we were at the beach.

I wish I had a Wrap-Up video to share with you this month, but since my library is in boxes and all my shelves are pushed into one corner, I don’t have a filming space!

Anyway, here is what I had going on book-wise in June:

June Stats

  • 11 Books total
  • 8 Re-reads
  • 1 three-star book
  • 1 four-star book
  • 1 five-star books
  • 10 audiobooks
  • 1 hard copy
  • 1 eBook

 

Re-reads

Jacob and Gideon (Nightwalkers Books 1 & 2) by Jacquelyn Frank

I can’t even count how many times I’ve reread this entire series, but these first two are my absolute favorite!
Goodreads

Since time began, there have been Nightwalkers – the races of the night who live in the shadows of the moonlight. Love with humans is absolutely forbidden, and one man makes certain to uphold this ancient law: Jacob, the Enforcer…

For 700 Years, He has resisted temptation. But not tonight…

Jacob knows the excuses his people give when the madness overtakes them and they fall prey to their lust for humans. He’s heard every one and still brought the trespassers to justice. Immune to forbidden desires, uncontrollable hungers, or the curse of the moon, his control is total…until the moment he sees Isabella on a shadowy New York City street. Saving her life wasn’t in his plans. Nor were the overwhelming feelings she arouses in him. But the moment he holds her in his arms and feels the soft explosion of her body against his, everything changes. Their attraction is undeniable, volatile, and completely against the law. Suddenly everything Jacob has ever believed is inflamed by the heat of desire…

Bring on the night.

Full Tilt & All In (Full Tilt Duet Books 1 & 2) by Emma Scott

Another perfect duet that I’ve read over and over again. I always reach for this when I want something full of angst and emotion.
Goodreads

I would love you forever, if I only had the chance…

Kacey Dawson has always lived life on the edge–impulsively, sometimes recklessly. And now, as lead guitarist for a hot up-and-coming band, she is poised at the brink of fame and fortune. But she is torn between wanting to be a serious musician, and the demons that lure her down the glittering, but alcohol-soaked path of rock stardom. A wrecked concert in Las Vegas threatens to ruin her career entirely. She wakes up with the hangover from hell and no memory of the night before, or how she ended up on her limo driver’s couch…

Jonah Fletcher is running out of time. He knows his situation is hopeless, and he’s vowed to make the most of the handful of months he has left to him. His plans include seeing the opening of his glass installation at a prestigious art gallery…they do not include falling in love with a wild, tempestuous rock musician who wound up passed out on his couch.

Jonah sees that Kacey is on a path to self-destruction. He lets her crash with him for a few days to dry out and get her head on straight. But neither of them expected the deep connection they felt, or how that connection could grow so fast from friendship into something more. Something deep and pure and life-changing…something as fragile as glass, that they both know will shatter in the end no matter how hard they try to hold on to it.

Full Tilt is a story about what it means to love with your whole heart, to sacrifice, to experience terrible grief and soaring joy. To live life with all its beauty, and all its pain, and in the end to be able to smile through tears and know you wouldn’t have changed a thing.

***FIRST BOOK IN A TWO PART DUET***
All In (Full Tilt #2) available here: http://amzn.to/2cBvM26

The Wall of Winnipeg and Me, Dear Aaron, From Lukov with Love, and Lingus by Mariana Zapata

Thus began my binge of ALL of Mariana Zapata’s books. The Wall of Winnipeg and Me I’ve read a zillion times, the rest were books that I’ve only read once and I came to realize that the handful I rated 4 instead of 5 stars, are actually 5 star reads. I freaking love Mariana!
Goodreads

Vanessa Mazur knows she’s doing the right thing. She shouldn’t feel bad for quitting. Being an assistant/housekeeper/fairy godmother to the top defensive end in the National Football Organization was always supposed to be temporary. She has plans and none of them include washing extra-large underwear longer than necessary.

But when Aiden Graves shows up at her door wanting her to come back, she’s beyond shocked.

For two years, the man known as The Wall of Winnipeg couldn’t find it in him to tell her good morning or congratulate her on her birthday. Now? He’s asking for the unthinkable.

What do you say to the man who is used to getting everything he wants?

★★★ 3 Star Reads

Leo by Mia Sheridan

One of my 5 star reads in June was from this author, so I thought I’d give another one of her books a shot, but this one was completely forgettable and not entirely believable despite the interesting premise.
Goodreads

Evie and Leo met in foster care as children and formed a bond of friendship. As they grew, their bond turned to love, and they vowed to make a life together when they turned 18 and were no longer a part of the system.

When Leo unexpectedly gets adopted as a teen and moves to another city, he promises Evie that he will contact her as soon as he gets there and come back for her in a few short years. She never hears from him again.

Now eight years later, in spite of the odds, Evie has made a life for herself. She has a job. She has friends. She’s content. Then a man shows up out of the blue, claiming that her long lost love, Leo, sent him to check up on her. The attraction between them is undeniable. But, should she trust this sexy stranger? Or is he keeping a secret about what his connection to Leo is really all about and why Leo disappeared all those years ago?

THIS IS A STANDALONE SIGN OF LOVE NOVEL, INSPIRED BY LEO. New Adult Contemporary Romance: Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18.

 

★★★★ 4 Star Reads

On the Way to You by Kandi Steiner

The thing that stood out the most to me with this story was the representation of depression. Even though I didn’t completely fall for the couple, I appreciated it in any case.
Goodreads

What makes you happy?

That was the question Emery Reed asked me the day we met, and I couldn’t give him a single answer. I could have said my dog, or my books, or yoga – but I just stared.

And then, I got in his car.

It was crazy to take a road trip with a stranger, but after years of standing still, he was my one-way ticket to a new life, and I wasn’t going to miss it.

We shared the same space, the same car, the same hotel room – and still, we were strangers. One day we’d be laughing, the next, we wouldn’t speak. Emery was surrounded by impenetrable walls, but I wanted in.

Discovering his journal changed everything.

I read his thoughts, words not meant for anyone’s eyes, and the more I learned about him, the harder I fell. It turned out nothing made Emery Reed happy, and I wanted to change that.

I earned his trust by violating his privacy, and as wrong as it was, it worked – until one entry revealed a darkness I never knew existed, a timer I never knew was ticking.

Suddenly, what made me happy was saving Emery from himself. I just didn’t know if I could.

★★★★★ 5 Star Reads

Meet Cute by Helena Hunting

This is classic Helena Hunting that I love!
Goodreads

The New York Times bestselling author of Pucked and The Good Luck Charm delivers a Hollywood happily-ever-after where a famous heartthrob falls for his ultimate fangirl in this sexy standalone romantic comedy.

Talk about an embarrassing introduction. On her first day of law school, Kailyn ran – quite literally – into the actor she crushed on as a teenager, ending with him sprawled on top of her. Mortified to discover the Daxton Hughes was also a student in her class, her embarrassment over their meet-cute quickly turned into a friendship she never expected. Of course, she never saw his betrayal coming either…

Now, eight years later, Dax is in her office asking for legal advice. Despite her anger, Kailyn can’t help feeling sorry for the devastated man who just became sole guardian to his thirteen-year-old sister. But when her boss gets wind of Kailyn’s new celebrity client, there’s even more at stake than Dax’s custody issues: if she gets Dax to work at their firm, she’ll be promoted to partner.

The more time Kailyn spends with Dax and his sister, the more she starts to feel like a family, and the more she realizes the chemistry they had all those years ago is as fresh as ever. But will they be able to forgive the mistakes of the past, or will one betrayal lead to another?