Dragonfly in Amber, the second book in the Outlander series, brings readers back into the lives of Claire and Jamie Fraser. This book just confirmed m...moreDragonfly in Amber, the second book in the Outlander series, brings readers back into the lives of Claire and Jamie Fraser. This book just confirmed my love for this series.
All the original characters are back in this sequel but it also introduces readers to a bunch of new characters. Two of those characters play a prominent role in the story but I wasn’t all that impressed with them. Brianna Fraser and Roger Wakefield are introduced early in the book but readers are not given a lot of background information about either of them. I know this is a long series and these characters are going to play parts in the following books though so I’m assuming Diana Gabaldon did that on purpose. I liked them both but I look forward to finding out more about them.
As for the original cast of characters, I didn’t think it was possible to love them more but I was wrong. Jamie and Claire only grow more amazing throughout the course of the book. Claire is just as strong as she was in the first book, if not stronger. She may not fit the mold of women in the eighteenth century but she doesn’t care and neither does Jamie. Jamie is a strong man who loves Claire exactly the way she is. They are both stubborn and like to argue but I think that only added depth to their relationship. I loved Jamie but he was seriously hard-headed and made some very bad choices in Dragonfly in Amber. He did make up for them though.
The story is full of politics and mystery and a good amount of romance. The politics are what really had me hooked though. The majority of the story is set in the eighteenth century and it focuses on the rising of Charles Stuart (Bonnie Prince Charlie.) I don’t know how much of the story was fact and how much was fiction but it was so captivating! This is definitely one of those books that will have you intrigued enough to actually look into more of the history surrounding the story.
Overall, Dragonfly in Amber is a solid sequel to Outlander. I’m continuing my binge read of this series with Voyager and I seriously need to get started after that crazy ending!(less)
After watching the first episode of the new Starz TV show, Outlander, I couldn’t resist picking up the first book in the series that it was adapted fr...moreAfter watching the first episode of the new Starz TV show, Outlander, I couldn’t resist picking up the first book in the series that it was adapted from. I’d heard about Outlander before watching the show but I’d never actually picked it up. I’m so glad the show gave me that final push to give the series a try.
Outlander is unlike anything I’ve read before. It’s such a mix of genres that I honestly have a hard time describing it when people ask about it. It’s definitely mostly historical fiction but it’s also romance with a hint of science fiction and fantasy. Outlander incorporates everything I love from all those genres and it all blends so perfectly in this series.
The characters are what will keep readers invested in Outlander. The book is long. The version I read was almost 900 pages but I never once felt the urge to stop reading. By 100 pages in I wanted to know everything that would happen to Claire, Jamie, Frank, Colum, Dougal, and the others. Every character is extremely unique and that’s hard to do with a cast of characters that is so large. Jamie and Claire were by far my favorites though. Their love story was absolutely amazing. Jamie was strong, fierce, protective, and kind. Yes there was one thing he did that I did not approve of but it didn’t change my opinion of him. (If you’ve read the book, I’m sure you know what I’m talking about!) Claire was a lot like Jamie. She was strong and protective but she was also so smart and so outspoken. It definitely made for some interesting situations seeing as women weren’t really like that back then. She and Jamie butted heads quite a bit but it only made their relationship stronger. Also, don’t ever think you can trust someone in this book. Holy crap were they a bunch of backstabbers.
The first 100 pages are a little dull. Don’t let that stop you from reading though. Outlander is a wonderful start to the series of the same name and I’m eager to continue with the series. I’m 100% invested in the lives of these characters now.
Note: There are explicit scenes in Outlander. It is an adult novel. It contains graphic descriptions of torture and rape. You have been warned.(less)
When I saw Dearest Clementine on sale on Amazon, I decided to give it a shot. It was free, what could it hurt? Well, I realized there was a good reaso...moreWhen I saw Dearest Clementine on sale on Amazon, I decided to give it a shot. It was free, what could it hurt? Well, I realized there was a good reason it was free: it’d be a complete waste of money to actually pay for it.
Clementine was a grade A bitch. She was only nice to a handful of people and those people were her close friends. Hell, one of her roommates was even scared of her. When she first meets Gavin she’s not even willing to tell him her name and he’s nothing but nice. Clementine really didn’t have much personality either. It seemed all she had going for her was her looks.
Speaking of looks, the author spends way too much time talking about Clementine’s. It’s all about how gorgeous Clem is, how skinny, how lightweight, etc. We get it, she’s pretty! No need to mention it on every page.
There was also way too much going on, plotwise. There was this whole storyline with Clementine’s professor, another storyline about a missing girl, another storyline about Clementine being a YA writer but nobody knows it, another storyline involving Clementine’s cheating ex, etc. Holy crap! The sad part was that the book still wasn’t very gripping even with all that going on.
As for the love interest (or three) I didn’t mind him but I didn’t particularly like him either. He was very secretive and his secrets ended up being really stupid. If he had just talked to Clementine they would have had no drama in their relationship. Of course he couldn’t do that and Clementine freaked out because she had trust issues. Those trust issues revolved around her ex, Daren, who I actually maybe liked more than Gavin. And that is saying something. Sure he messed up but he apologized and seemed like a really sweet guy.
Overall, Dearest Clementine is one new adult novel that I cannot recommend. This is one series that I will not be continuing.(less)
Gates of Thread and Stone is a strong debut from Lori M. Lee and a wonderful start to a new fantasy series. It’s got a little something for all reader...moreGates of Thread and Stone is a strong debut from Lori M. Lee and a wonderful start to a new fantasy series. It’s got a little something for all readers and I think it’s a great introduction to fantasy if that’s not a genre you’re familiar with.
The story starts off strong and continues that way throughout. I was hooked from the very first page. The pacing was fabulous and I never felt the urge to put the book down. It’s a quick read that will leave readers wanting more. There is mystery, romance, action, and deception woven through every page. I never could guess what was going to happen next. (Until the very end when I had a tiny inkling that something might happen!) Like I said, this book really has a little something for everyone. Also, the fantasy aspect of it wasn’t quite as strong as other young adult fantasy novels like Rae Carson’s or Leigh Bardugo’s. I don’t mean that in a bad way though. I think this would be a great introduction to the fantasy genre for people who may be a little intimidated by some of the other fantasy novels out there.
The characters were a little bit lacking for me. I never felt truly invested in their stories. When one of them was hurt or taken, I didn’t get all that upset. Kai, Avan, Reev, and the others felt a little unreal to me. I never got enough information about them to feel like I knew their stories. I know this is only the first in a series but by the end of the book I felt like I should have cared more than I did for the characters. They were far from terrible though. Kai was strong and self-sufficient. She didn’t require saving every other page. She could take care of herself and in fact, she could help others too. Avan and Kai shared a lot of characteristics and I think that was part of why they fought so much. They both wanted to look out for the other when really both of them could easily look out for themselves. Avan was a true gentleman though. He was protective of Kai but he didn’t try to stifle her independence. I liked that he was confident enough in himself to not need to put her down. Reev was the most lacking for me. I liked him but there were a lot of mysteries surrounding him and I feel like some of those mysteries still weren’t cleared up at the end of Gates of Thread and Stone.
Kai’s ability was another big issue of mine for most of the book. It went unexplained for quite some time. Kai would use her ability but as the reader, I didn’t have a clue what she was doing, how she was doing it, or how it could possibly help her. Not until one of the last few chapters was her ability explained and I felt confused about it even then. I think there will be a lot more exploring of Kai’s powers in the next book.
Overall, Gates of Thread and Stone didn’t wow me like I hoped but it did get me interested enough to check out the next book. Fantasy fans will enjoy this one.(less)
Bridge is part of the Shade series which I didn’t know when I started it. I’ve only read the first book in the Shade trilogy and I felt like I was def...moreBridge is part of the Shade series which I didn’t know when I started it. I’ve only read the first book in the Shade trilogy and I felt like I was definitely missing some information. However, I still really enjoyed the story and the fact that it was written in verse made it awesome.
Bridge is the story of Logan and Mickey. Logan knows that Mickey blames himself for Logan’s death and he has a feeling that Mickey might hurt himself so he doesn’t have to deal with the guilt any longer. With the help of Krista, Logan finally talks to Mickey and tries to help him see that Logan’s death was not his fault.
There is a surprising amount of info in Bridge. It’s not only a short story, it’s also written in verse. For so few words, a lot is contained within them. Jeri Smith-Ready managed to get so much emotion into Bridge. Like I said, I’ve only read the first book in this trilogy but I still felt really connected to both Logan and Mickey. Bridge is the first short story in the Enthralled collection that really made me emotional.
Overall, Bridge seems like a wonderful addition to the Shade series and while it’s definitely not required for you to read, I would recommend it. It’s a short story that really packs a punch.(less)
Better When He’s Bad is the first book I’ve read by Jay Crownover but it will not be my last. I’m eager to continue the Welcome to the Point series if...moreBetter When He’s Bad is the first book I’ve read by Jay Crownover but it will not be my last. I’m eager to continue the Welcome to the Point series if the rest of the books are anywhere close to as awesome as this one.
Shane Baxter (Bax) is not only a bad boy, he’s a boy that does bad things. He’s a player, a criminal, a fighter, and more. He’s everything Dovie should avoid but he’s also the only person who can help her. She needs to find her brother, the guy who betrayed Bax and landed him behind bars. He also used to be Bax’s best friend. Needless to say, Bax and Dovie’s relationship is complicated from the start. Neither of them really want anything to do with each other but they both quickly realize that they need each other. They are both willing to do whatever it takes to find Dovie’s brother and the more time they spend together, the more attracted to each other they get. There’s chemistry between them from the time they meet but once they start to spend more time together things really heat up. They may not want to want each other but some things are just unavoidable.
Dovie is the good girl with crappy circumstances. Her brother has always been her protector and ever since he went missing, she’s been on her own and struggling. She needs to find him and she knows that she is going to have to team up with Bax to do that. She’s immediately attracted to Bax even though his reputation precedes him and there is very little about it that’s good. Bax is a boy who does bad things and he doesn’t have a problem with that. He figures that Dovie can’t handle the stuff he does and so he doesn’t want to team up with her. However, they both know things that will help them find her brother and so he resigns himself to teaming up with her. He never expects to actually have feelings for her. Seeing Bax thrown for a loop was pretty entertaining.
The chemistry between Bax and Dovie was crazy hot. They may not like each other but their bodies do. Dovie is pretty innocent but her thoughts are never innocent around Bax. This book really deserves the new adult label. There are some steamy times that definitely do not fall under the YA range. Jay Crownover is right up there with Jennifer L. Armentrout when it comes to the sexytimes. I was impressed!
The story reminded me a lot of the Pushing The Limit series from Katie McGarry; Crash Into You, to be precise. It really came across as a more mature version of that book with a lot higher stakes. Things are life and death for Bax, Dovie, and Dovie’s brother. There is a serious mystery involved and I never figured out how things were going to play out. Also, while Dovie’s brother may have betrayed Bax, they truly were friends and you could easily see it.
Overall, Better When He’s Bad is a steamy new adult novel featuring a wonderful romance, suspenseful mystery, and characters that I couldn’t help but love. I look forward to continuing this series.(less)
I don’t even know where to start with this book. Sharing You was one of the worst books I have ever read. I know a lot of people have a love/hate rela...moreI don’t even know where to start with this book. Sharing You was one of the worst books I have ever read. I know a lot of people have a love/hate relationship with Molly McAdams’ books and after reading this one, I can certainly see why.
I knew going into this one that it was about cheating and that I have issues with cheating. However, I had just finished another book about cheating that was done rather tastefully and didn’t feature any physical cheating. I hoped for a similar type of story with Sharing You but that was so not the case. Sharing You was completely tasteless when it came to the cheating aspect and it played a huge role in the story. I kid you not, the two main characters were sleeping with each other within a few weeks of meeting each other, all while one of them was married. I get that you can be unhappy in your relationship but that is no excuse for cheating. How hard is it to get a freaking divorce before you start sleeping with some random chick you just met?
Also, let me tell you about the worst case of insta-love ever. Yeah, it’s in this book. Kamryn and Brody bump into each other in the hallway and are immediately drawn to each other and neither of them even know why! They can’t explain it and they don’t even try to. They just immediately decide they have to be together even though Brody is married. I could not even understand why they were together. As the book progressed I continued to wonder what it was they saw in each other. It never became clear to me.
As for the whole horrible, manipulative wife situation; it got old really fast. Molly McAdams painted Olivia as this horrible villain that nobody could possibly like and I guess she figured that that would help readers justify the fact that Brody cheated on her. It didn’t. Brody kept saying he was going to leave Olivia but that she was depressed and suicidal and he couldn’t leave her until he got her help. Then he decided that she was just manipulative and he was going to leave her without getting her help. Then he decided not to leave her because she really did need help. This went on and on and on. The book could have been so much shorter if Brody would have just made up his mind to leave Olivia.
Oh and don’t even get me started on Kamryn. She was the whiniest, neediest, most annoying character ever. All she did was cry. Holy crap I have never read a book with more crying. And it was always over the same things. Brody had to go home to Olivia, she didn’t get to spend enough time with Brody, she couldn’t tell anyone about her and Brody, etc. Maybe if you weren’t sleeping with a married man you wouldn’t have these problems. I felt absolutely no sympathy for her. She was just annoying to read about.
Overall, I’m amazed I even finished Sharing You. I honestly can’t tell you why I kept reading. There is nothing about this book to redeem it. I wouldn’t recommend this even if you had nothing else to read. Skip this one and try something else by Molly McAdams.(less)
Foreplay, the first book in Sophie Jordan’s new adult series, was fabulous. I adored it and by the end of the book I was dying for more from the serie...moreForeplay, the first book in Sophie Jordan’s new adult series, was fabulous. I adored it and by the end of the book I was dying for more from the series. I requested Tease as soon as possible and dropped everything to read it once I was approved. While I enjoyed it, it didn’t compare to Foreplay.
Tease features one character that readers will remember from Foreplay, Pepper’s kind of slutty friend Emerson. Emerson has been burned by guys before and so she doesn’t let them get close now. She is more than happy to sleep with someone but she won’t get attached. Of course that changes when she meets Shaw. Shaw is unlike any guy she’s met before and she is immediately attracted to him even though she knows that she should not let him get close to her. Shaw is a bad boy through and through. He works as a mechanic and he rides motorcycles and dreams of having his own motorcycle shop where he can build custom bikes. He’s not the type of guy that Emerson is normally attracted to but they keep running into each other and sparks fly.
The story is totally cliche. I think that was my biggest issue with Tease. Emerson had a rather horrific incident in her past with someone she should have been able to trust and she stopped trusting everyone after that. Of course that changes when some bad boy mystery guy enters her life and she can’t get him off of her mind. I’m not saying that readers won’t enjoy this story, I’m just saying that readers should expect something that’s been done in books many times before (especially in new adult.)
Emerson and Shaw had some serious chemistry and I applaud Sophie Jordan for always making her characters relationships so intense both physically and emotionally. I was definitely rooting for Emerson and Shaw’s relationship to work out. They were good together but they also had some very big flaws to work past. Sometimes it felt like their relationship was a little doomed but I enjoyed seeing how things were going to play out.
Overall, Tease was a mediocre followup to Foreplay. I just couldn’t love the characters as much as I did with Pepper and Reece (who I was happy to see in Tease for a few cameos.) If you enjoyed the first book, definitely check this one out though.(less)
Sarah Beth Durst’s first novel for adults definitely lived up to it’s potential. While it’s clear that this is a novel meant for adults, the crossover...moreSarah Beth Durst’s first novel for adults definitely lived up to it’s potential. While it’s clear that this is a novel meant for adults, the crossover YA potential is there, especially from an author who is so well versed in the YA world.
What happens to lost things; wallets, car keys, toys, etc.? They end up in Lost, just like Lauren Chase. Lauren has lost her way, in more ways than one. When she ends up in Lost, all she wants to do is go home but that decision is up to the Missing Man who takes one look at her and hightails it out of town. Now, Lauren isn’t the only one who can’t leave and the townspeople aren’t exactly happy that they are all stuck in Lost as well. The only people willing to help Lauren are a knife-wielding little girl and a man called the Finder. Lauren has to figure out what it is she’s lost, find the Missing Man, and find her way home, before it’s too late for someone she loves very much.
Lauren is an easy character to connect with. She’s lost her dreams, her way, and her sense of hope. Who hasn’t felt like that at some point in life? The town of Lost is there to help her find all these things and more. Lauren is a strong willed person though and she’s not willing to accept that she’s stuck in Lost with no way out except for with the help of the Missing Man. She’s not used to relying on other people and that’s not going to change now. Sure she has a little help along the way from Claire and the Finder, but she never relies fully on them. She’s smart, she’s tough, and she’s willing to work for what she wants. Claire and the Finder are there to help her figure out the ways of Lost but they don’t want to help her leave. Claire is the little sister that Lauren never had and the bond between them is immediate and real. Their relationship was absolutely adorable. The Finder’s relationship with Lauren was a bit more complicated. There is definitely attraction between the two of them but they both know that it can’t really go anywhere with Lauren planning to eventually find her way home. Still, he’s willing to stick around and show her how to defend herself and also to fend for herself. He was an interesting character but really an all around good guy.
The rest of the townspeople were a little weird. Well, maybe a lot weird. They were hostile and ferocious and they did not like that Lauren ran off the Missing Man. It’s pretty clear early on in the book that you do not want to get on these people’s bad sides and that’s exactly where Lauren ends up. And while it became clear relatively early on that Claire was a friend to Lauren, thinking about a knife wielding six-year-old is kind of terrifying.
The story is beyond unique. Lost things end up in Lost but so do people that have lost dreams and hopes and so many other things. It’s a much deeper story than I originally thought and while that did slow the pace down a bit, it made me end up liking it a lot more than I expected. It’s definitely not a fast-paced story that you will breeze through but instead it’s a story that will really make you think, long after you’ve actually finished the book.
Overall, The Lost is a great start to this new trilogy from Sarah Beth Durst. I’ve become majorly invested in the lives of all the characters and I can’t wait to see what happens in the next installment.(less)
This review is going to be extremely hard for me to write. My feelings for Strange and Ever After are all over the place! I loved it, I hated it, I co...moreThis review is going to be extremely hard for me to write. My feelings for Strange and Ever After are all over the place! I loved it, I hated it, I couldn’t stop reading it.
Strange and Ever After picks up immediately after the ending of A Darkness Strange and Lovely. Eleanor, Daniel, Joseph, and Oliver are heading to Marseille to chase down Marcus and get Jie back. They aren’t sure what Marcus wants with Jie but they know she’s been compelled by him and the only way to break the spell is to kill Marcus. However, Marcus is always one step ahead of them and he’s much more powerful than even Eleanor, Joseph, and Oliver combined. Strange and Ever After takes the crew on a journey through Europe that tests their magic and their loyalties more than any of the other books.
Eleanor really bothered me in Strange and Ever After. I loved her in Something Strange and Deadly, lost some respect for her in A Darkness Strange and Lovely and really couldn’t care less for her in Strange and Ever After. Her magic has completely taken over her mind and she can’t even see what it’s done to her. She cares so much about her magic that she has lost sight of her friendships and relationships. She has pushed everyone away and she constantly blames others for it, especially Oliver. Oliver really confused me in Strange and Ever After. I liked him but didn’t completely trust him in A Darkness Strange and Lovely but this time around I didn’t even really like him all that much. He had a horrible temper and he treated Eleanor pretty badly. Sure, sometimes she deserved it but I felt like he could have taken a different approach. However, he did some things throughout the book that made up for that and by the end I really did like him. Daniel really shined in Strange and Ever After. He grew so much throughout the course of the trilogy. I can’t even put into words how amazing he was. He was caring, smart, kind, and brave. He has got to be one of the best love interests I’ve ever read about.
The story wasn’t quite as fast-paced as the first two books but it was definitely never boring. Marcus had lots of surprises in store for Eleanor, Oliver, and the Spirit-Hunters. I truly never knew what he was going to do next. However, sometimes I was a little skeptical about how he knew to be one step ahead of them all the time. How did he possibly know what they were going to do next when sometimes they didn’t even know what they were going to do next?
The ending completely broke me. I’m not even kidding. There were not enough tissues in my house for the ending of this book. I know some readers didn’t believe the ending was completely necessary but I really don’t see how it could have worked out any other way. I’m still torn up about the way things worked out but I can totally appreciate how great this ending was.
Overall, Strange and Ever After is a wonderful conclusion to the Something Strange and Deadly series. Susan Dennard has definitely gained a fan and I can’t wait to see what she has in store for readers next.(less)
Perfect Kind of Trouble, the second book in the Finding Fate series, is the cute, fun new adult story that I expected with some twists thrown in.
Daren...morePerfect Kind of Trouble, the second book in the Finding Fate series, is the cute, fun new adult story that I expected with some twists thrown in.
Daren was introduced to readers in the first book in this series, Best Kind of Broken. Kayla is a new addition, back in town after the death of her father. Kayla only plans to drop in, go to the funeral, and sign off on the will but she soon learns that her father left her an inheritance but it comes with a catch; she has to be handcuffed to Daren while going on a scavenger hunt to find the money. Things wouldn’t be so bad if Kayla wasn’t supremely attracted to Daren even though she can’t stand him. Daren wouldn’t mind either except Kayla abandoned her father and he has no respect for her. However, Kayla and Daren quickly find out that the things they think they know about each other aren’t exactly true. Oh and the scavenger hunt they expected to last a few hours? Yeah, try a few days instead.
Kayla and Daren are both majorly flawed characters. One of Kayla’s biggest flaws and my only real problem with the book was her vanity. She never stopped talking about how guys treated her like an object and how women were intimidated by her beauty. I know she hated that about herself but it really did make her seem vain. Other than that though, she was smart, kind, caring, and witty. I grew to like her once I learned to look past all the talk of her beauty and her body. Daren was easier to like from the start since I did know a bit about him from the first book in the series. He was cocky and full of himself but it was pretty obvious from the start that it was all a shield so people never saw the real him. He’s a kind person with a big heart but no one to share it with. Life definitely gave him lemons but he wasn’t quite sure how to make lemonade. Kayla helped him figure it out. They really helped each other figure a lot of things out.
The story was nothing special but it was really fun. A scavenger hunt that could lead to a quarter or a couple thousand dollars? Sign me up. Sure, Kayla and Daren were handcuffed together the whole time but that just made it even more fun. There was tons of madness and mayhem and some seriously funny moments. The development of their relationship was also fun to see. They started off thinking the worst of each other and really not getting along. By the end, they definitely saw different sides to each other. There was some serious chemistry between the two of them from the start and I loved watching it all play out.
Overall, Perfect Kind of Trouble is a solid second novel in the Finding Fate series. This book also introduces the two main characters from the next book and I look forward to reading their story next!(less)
Something Real by Heather Demetrios has garnered a lot of praise in the few short months that it’s been out. I’m a huge contemporary fan but for some...moreSomething Real by Heather Demetrios has garnered a lot of praise in the few short months that it’s been out. I’m a huge contemporary fan but for some reason this one wasn’t on my radar until after publication. It’s safe to say that every bit of praise this book has gotten has been well-deserved. Heather Demetrios’ debut novel has definitely put her on my radar as an author to watch for.
Bonnie™ Baker is one of 13 kids and one of the key members of the reality show Baker’s Dozen. The fact that she doesn’t want anything to do with the show or MetaReel, the company behind the show, means nothing to her parents. 4 years after the show is cancelled (following the split of Bonnie™’s parents) MetaReel decides it’s time for a reboot with the clever name of Baker’s Dozen: Fresh Batch. Once again, Bonnie™ has no say in being on the show. She is one of the main reasons people watch the show and MetaReel will do anything they have to to keep her on it. What follows is a lot of televised drama and Bonnie™ coming to terms with who she is and who she wants to be.
First off, this book may come off as a fluffy contemporary read but that really isn’t all there is to it. Bonnie™ has a lot more going on in her life than just being forced to be on a reality tv show with her crazy family. She’s got high school, friends, boys, college, depression, anxiety, and all of it is broadcast to the world through 24/7 live streaming cameras throughout her house. Her phone is bugged, she’s followed everywhere she goes by paparazzi and while the cameras aren’t allowed on school grounds, they are allowed in the car on the way to and from school. Bonnie™ has nowhere to escape to and she’s got a lot to escape from.
Don’t get me wrong though, there are some very fluffy aspects of Something Real. Patrick Sheldon, for instance. I’ve heard a lot of people complain that he’s too perfect but in this case, I didn’t mind it. I thought Bonnie™ deserved a little something perfect in her life and Patrick was it. He was supremely quirky, super cute in a grungy way, smart, and so funny. He got Bonnie™’s sense of humor and he completely understood where she was coming from with all the fame drama. He was always there for her even when she tried her hardest to push him away. He is my new literary love.
Bonnie™‘s friends were also pretty perfect although they sometimes didn’t quite understand why she was so camera shy. Tessa and Mer stood by Bonnie™ through everything and that was tough since she was kind of a bitch at times. They got that she had been through a lot and just needed them by her side no matter what she wanted to do. Benton™ was also always there for Bonnie™. Her family may not have been the greatest but at least she got Benton™. Benny cracked me up. He definitely lightened the mood throughout the book. Also, he and Matt had some of the most aww inducing moments. They were adorable. There was also Lexie™ who didn’t initially impress me but by the end I was pleased with her.
The family aspect really grated on my nerves. I was so mad at Bonnie™’s parents, both Andrew and Beth (her real parents) and Kirk (her stepdad). None of them stood up for her rights. They made her out to be the bad guy when it was very clearly all of them that were the bad guys. I really wanted to reach in the book and slap some sense into all three of them. For people who wanted a big family, they didn’t know how to act like a family at all.
As for the ending, it was perfect for this situation. I wasn’t happy necessarily but it was realistic and that made me happy. While there were some things I really wanted to see happen, I’m almost glad they didn’t because I don’t think Bonnie™’s strength would have come across as well as it did.
Overall, I’ll stop rambling now so you can go out and buy your own copy of Something Real. Listen to all the amazing reviews and read this as soon as you can!(less)
All Lined Up, the first book in the Rusk University series, is nothing short of spectacular. Cora Carmack has a sure hit on her hands with this one. I...moreAll Lined Up, the first book in the Rusk University series, is nothing short of spectacular. Cora Carmack has a sure hit on her hands with this one. It’s the perfect blend of football, forbidden romance, and family bonding.
All Lined Up is the story of Dallas Cole, daughter to college football coach at Rusk University, and dancer extraordinaire. She’s tired of living in the shadow of her father’s legacy and all she wanted from college was to get away from it all. However, plans changed when her dad accepted the coaching job at Rusk, the same place Dallas is starting her freshman year. Dallas is determined to leave the football life behind her but that’s easier said than done when she starts falling for backup QB, Carter McClain.
All Lined Up has Cora Carmack’s usual sense of humor and while Dallas isn’t nearly as awkward as some of the characters in the Losing It trilogy, she does have some of the same qualities as those main characters which definitely helps her be easy to relate to. She does seem a little cold at first but it’s easy to see that she has been hurt in the past and does not have the best luck with guys. With the help of her best friend, Stella (Dallas’ total opposite), Dallas starts to open up and be a bit more optimistic about life in college and all it has to offer. Stella is quite the funny character and I liked how she helped balance out Dallas. Then there was Carter. Carter was a great guy but he did sometimes seem a little too perfect, at least at first. Don’t let that turn you off though. He does have his flaws, it just takes a little time for readers to see them. That doesn’t mean he’s not a wonderful guy though. I loved him.
The football aspect was fabulously done. I have come to really love any young adult/new adult sports related books and All Lined Up is at the top of my list of recommendations for books in that category. Cora Carmack does not overdo it with the sports or the lingo or anything like that. I know some things about football but not enough to play the game. Cora Carmack throws in just enough knowledge so that readers know what’s going on but not enough to be overbearing. It’s the perfect balance.
The romance is just as steamy as I’ve come to expect from Cora Carmack. I was greatly impressed with how realistic the relationship was and how mature both Dallas and Carter were about everything. They do have an immediate attraction but luckily it’s nothing that would be considered insta-love. Dallas and Carter spend a lot of time together getting to know each other and what they want from each other before they take things to the next level. It was refreshingly well done.
Overall, All Lined Up is the perfect read for new adult fans as well as fans of Cora Carmack. It’s a wonderful start to the Rusk University series and I can’t wait for the next story.(less)
Finding It is the third book in the Losing It trilogy and it is by far my least favorite. The first two books in the trilogy were some of my favorite...moreFinding It is the third book in the Losing It trilogy and it is by far my least favorite. The first two books in the trilogy were some of my favorite new adult books but this one just did not measure up.
Kelsey is a spoiled brat, no other way of saying it. She is travelling the world, paying with her dad’s money, and all she can do is complain about her life. She hooks up with tons of random men and can’t understand why any guy would not be interested in her. That’s the real appeal with Jackson Hunt. He’s not interested (or doesn’t seem to be) and so of course Kelsey has to have him. However, it really doesn’t take long for him to give in to Kelsey and from there the mystery lies in why he was so reluctant to get with her to begin with.
I was really let down with Kelsey as a character. I liked her in Losing It (even though she didn’t have a huge role) but I couldn’t stand her in Finding It. She was whiny and really immature. She was always complaining and I thought it was pretty ridiculous. Your life must be so tough if you’re travelling all over Europe using your daddy’s money and not having to worry about a thing. Jackson Hunt was also pretty disappointing. Sure he seemed really attractive but he didn’t seem that deep. I wanted to know a lot more about him.
The story was pretty typical of new adult. There was some mysterious reason why Jackson couldn’t be with Kelsey. That part was the only thing that really kept me reading. I couldn’t figure out what he was hiding from her. Other than that, I did enjoy the setting. I haven’t left the United States (yet) so it was nice to read about some amazing places.
Overall, Finding It was a very disappointing ending to the Losing It trilogy. Also, I was kind of hoping for some cameos from Bliss, Garrick, Max, and Cade. There was a little bit of Bliss in the book but that was it.(less)