'To Have and to Hold' is the first book I've read by Lauren Layne and kicks off her brand new series, The Wedding Belles. An indulgent treat, this was'To Have and to Hold' is the first book I've read by Lauren Layne and kicks off her brand new series, The Wedding Belles. An indulgent treat, this was exactly the kind of book that I was in the mood for. It was sweet and romantic and reminded me a lot of some of my favourite Jill Shalvis titles. I'm so pleased that there is a whole series about the Belles to look forward to. I'm going to be reading them all!
Brooke is a wedding planner who has recently moved to New York and has got a job working for the Wedding Belles - a service which helps brides to plan their dream weddings. She's been hurt in the past but wants to put all of that behind her and move on with her life. I liked the steely centre that Brooke has and the way that she is always looking for the positives in a situation. She is one tough lady but she 's also a real sweetheart and I'm sure readers will identify a lot with her. In the course of helping to plan the wedding of Maya Tyler, she meets his brother, handsome businessman Seth. Although she is instantly attracted to him, he is much more of a closed book. He is gruff and appeared controlling at first, but it soon becomes evident that he is just trying to look out for his sister and ensure that she doesn't get her heart broken. Once you get past his tough exterior, he is a real softie underneath.
Brooke and Seth both have issues to deal with and there are some ups and downs as they traverse the numerous obstacles in their path. I never doubted though that they would perfectly compliment each other if only they could truly open up their hearts.
I thought that the book was sweet, sexy and romantic and very well written. The characters were rounded individuals who I really liked and there were some intriguing secondary characters too, who I'm hoping to see more of in the future. They all seem to have their own stories to tell.
The ending genuinely made me cry and Lauren Layne made me a very happy reader indeed.
Bring on more of the Belles! 'For Better or Worse' is next in the series and I can't wait. ...more
'Sweet Little Lies' is the first book in Jill Shalvis's new series Heartbreaker Bay. With every book I read by this author, I become more and more a f'Sweet Little Lies' is the first book in Jill Shalvis's new series Heartbreaker Bay. With every book I read by this author, I become more and more a fan of her stories. I adore her Lucky Harbor series and this was in a very similar vein. It was feel good, romantic, uplifting and a perfect read to pick up and devour while snuggling into your favourite chair with a big cup of tea. I am so pleased that Shalvis has such an extensive back catalogue of titles because I seriously want to read them all!
The main character Pru, has spent a large proportion of her life trying to make amends for the terrible series of events that her parents caused. Her need to give to others and her selflessness lies at the core of her being. She is always thinking of how she can help people and often puts their needs before her own. She was a wonderful character and one that I immediately found myself liking and rooting for. Her latest wish is that handsome bartender Finn will find true love.
I adored the romance which begins to flourish between Pru and Finn. She gives him fun and warmth and adventure and in return, he gives her stability, trust and support. They really compliment each other and I definitely fell for them as a couple. I cared about what happened to them and I couldn't wait for them to realise that they were just perfect together. There are some pretty hot and steamy scenes between the two of them and you will be guaranteed to get very hot under the collar.
The ending was beyond perfect and for some reason reminded me a little bit of Jane Austen's 'Persuasion' which is one of my favourite classics. I also have to give a shout out to Thor the dog who was utterly adorable and a complete sweetie. If you haven't discovered Jill Shalvis yet then you need to remedy that immediately. She's my new go-to author for heart warming romances which leave you feeling all fuzzy inside. ...more
'Nobody But You' is the third book in the Cedar Ridge series, about the elusive Kincaid brother Jacob. I've heard a lot about him but this is the firs'Nobody But You' is the third book in the Cedar Ridge series, about the elusive Kincaid brother Jacob. I've heard a lot about him but this is the first time that he's actually appeared in the flesh. Returning from active service, Jacob is determined to heal the rifts with his family and especially with his twin brother Hud. What he doesn't expect is to fall for sexy redhead Sophie, who has just left her cheating ex-husband and is now living on his boat.
I really liked Jacob but I definitely found him more of a closed book than either Hud or Aidan. It took me a lot longer to understand what made him tick and he was certainly very enigmatic. Saying that, although he kept his feelings close to his chest, it was obvious how much he cared about his family. However, having left them behind once before, they are wary of him hurting them again.
As well as dealing with family matters, Jacob also unexpectedly finds romance with Sophie. Hot, hot, hot! If you like your romance smokin', then this is the book for you.
I love the way that Jill Shalvis intertwines all the characters of Cedar Ridge, showing all the happy couples together. It makes you want to be a part of their family and community.
Jill Shalvis's books are the best. I'm so glad that I discovered her and thrilled that she has such a big back catalogue for me to savour. Her stories are always a real treat and this was no exception. ...more
'Tempting the Best Man' is the first book in the Gamble Brothers series, featuring the utterly irresistible Chase Gamble. You have been warned ladies!'Tempting the Best Man' is the first book in the Gamble Brothers series, featuring the utterly irresistible Chase Gamble. You have been warned ladies!
I knew I wanted to read this book as soon as I heard about it, even though it is an adult, rather than a YA title. Jennifer L. Armentrout is one of my absolute favourite authors and having her write an adult romance with a sexy hero, definitely ticked all my boxes. The romance scenes were actually a little tamer than I was expecting, although things did get pretty steamy at times.
The heroine of the story, Madison, has loved Chase ever since they were little. Having grown-up together, she has seen his good side and his bad (not that there is very much bad about him!) and she loves him still. If only she can made him see her as something other than his best friend's little sister. At her brother's wedding she gets the perfect opportunity to show him the new grown-up Madison, although there are plenty of obstacles in her path.
I enjoyed every single second of reading this story and the only negative thing I have to say about it, is that it was far too short. I wanted it to go on and on. It was so fab! Jennifer L. Armentrout writes such fantastic romances with couples who you absolutely fall in love with. I was rooting for Madison and Chase from the start and I enjoyed seeing the dynamics of their relationship change as they spent more time in each others company.
Next in the series is 'Tempting the Player' which features Chase's brother, Chad Gamble. I need to get my hands on it asap. ...more
Jill Shalvis's books are my happy place. I adore her writing and they always give me a much needed injection of romance with a guaranteed happy endingJill Shalvis's books are my happy place. I adore her writing and they always give me a much needed injection of romance with a guaranteed happy ending. Her stories are dreamy, her couples are always perfectly matched (even if they don't always realise it!), there are obstacles to overcome which make the resolution even more satisfactory and they always leave me with a smile on my face.
'My Kind of Wonderful' is the second book in the Cedar Ridge series and is centred around Hudson Kincaid, ski patroller extraordinaire and the Prince Charming to artist Bailey, who arrives in Cedar Ridge to paint a family mural at the ski lodge. Hud falls hook, line and sinker for Bailey, who has recently determined to live her life to the full, embracing new experiences and taking chances. After having overcome illness, Bailey wants to grasp her future with both hands and with no holding back. I adored Bailey's outlook on life. Now she has been given the all clear by her doctors and is finally healthy, she is determined to really go for what she wants - and that includes Hud.
I loved both central characters and I was rooting for them from the start. I also enjoyed getting to see all of Hud's extended family again too, particularly Aidan and Lily who featured heavily in the first book in the series. Gray and Penny always make me laugh, so it was great seeing them as well.
This book left me feeling all warm and fuzzy. A perfect read to devour while curled up by the fire in a comfy chair and with a big mug of hot chocolate and marshmallows. Jill Shalvis has most definitely done it again! Fans are in for a real treat! ...more
Jill Shalvis's Lucky Harbor books are my go-to series when I'm in the mood for a generous helping of romance. 'Second Chance Summer' is the first titlJill Shalvis's Lucky Harbor books are my go-to series when I'm in the mood for a generous helping of romance. 'Second Chance Summer' is the first title in her new Cedar Ridge series which didn't let me down. It gave me lashings of romance, as well as hot sparks flying around left, right and centre. Well it does feature firemen. Yes, that's right firemen!
What I love about Jill's books, is the way that she creates a whole community of wonderful characters who you instantly care about and want to see more of. This time, it's the Kincaid family who live and work on Cedar Ridge and are determined to make a success of their family business at all costs. Although Aidan is one of the main characters, I also really loved his older brother Gray and his domineering and feisty wife Penny, as well as his younger siblings Hudson and Kenna. My favourite thing about them all is that you know they are always watching each other's backs. Although they joke and fight with one another, there is no doubt in your mind that they will stand together through thick and thin.
When Aidan hears that local girl Lily Danville is back in town after a ten year absence, his heart can't help skipping a beat. Lily was the girl that got away and now that she is back, he won't let her escape so easily next time. However, Aidan and Lily are both carrying their own burdens of guilt and until they can leave the past behind, they won't be able to move on with their futures together.
I absolutely adored the setting for the story too. Cedar Ridge sounds picturesque with it's beautiful mountains and hiking trails. First, I wanted to live at the beach and now I'm thinking that the mountains sound right up my alley!
This was a super read which swept me away on a tide of romance. I'm most definitely eager to read the second book in the series now which will be centred around Hudson. ...more
Described as "The Hunger Games meets The Princess Diaries" if ever a tagline is going to make me want to read a book, that is it! And what an unusualDescribed as "The Hunger Games meets The Princess Diaries" if ever a tagline is going to make me want to read a book, that is it! And what an unusual book, 'The Potion Diaries' by Amy Alward turned out to be. Unusual in a good way but not at all what I was expecting. It leant much more heavily towards the fantasy genre but was unlike anything else I've read before.
The book combines a modern setting with one where magic is still prevalent. This took a bit of getting used to because it's not every day that you experience magic being talked about in such a matter of fact way. The main character Samantha Kemi has the ability to mix potions. Her talent as an alchemist is second to none and is needed when her family are summoned to take part in an ancient quest to save the Princess from a potion gone awry. Fantasy, magical adventures and drama aplenty enthuse, as Sam joins the hunt to find all the ingredients for an anti-dote.
I have to admit that I wasn't immediately hooked by the story, although I loved the premise. I didn't really get engrossed in it properly until at least six or seven chapters in, so stick with it if it is the same for you because it's definitely worth it. The hunt itself was intriguing and trust me, you wouldn't even begin to be able to predict what was going to happen. It's best to just strap in and enjoy the ride.
I loved the character of Sam. She is brave, resourceful and talented but also incredibly modest. She wants to win the quest so that she can help provide for her family but along the way she learns a lot about her own abilities and talents. Handsome Zain is one of her rival competitors. Dark black hair and blue eyes is always a killer combination, so I was drawn to Zain even though I didn't know if he could be trusted. There are romantic sparks between the two of them, although the romance angle takes more of a backseat to the quest itself, so more romance and kissing next time please!
The book's recipe is to take a dash of humour and a sprinkle of romance. Stir it up with adventure, excitement and danger and you have 'The Potion Diaries'. ...more
This is the 6th book in the Lucky Harbor series. I am falling more in love with this series with every new instalment that I read. I looked forward alThis is the 6th book in the Lucky Harbor series. I am falling more in love with this series with every new instalment that I read. I looked forward all day to getting home from work so that I could pick this up and catch up with all the Lucky Harbor ladies and their handsome guys.
Grace and Dr Josh in this one weren't even my favourite couple (although don't get me wrong, I still really liked them) but what I did love about this book so much was the circumstances that were set up to bring the two of them together. Josh's five year old son Toby is so cute (little kids always melt my heart), as is his new dog Tank. I loved seeing Grace become more and more like a mother to him, without her even really realising it. She has a very open heart and a lot of love to share, not only with Josh but his family too.
Grace and Josh both have to deal with the responsibilities placed on them and in Grace's case, the fear of not living up to the expectations of her perfect parents. It was nice to see them both learning to do some things for themselves, rather than always trying to please the people around them. The similarities and differences they share make them the perfect couple.
Fans of the series will love 'Forever and a Day' and if you haven't yet discovered any of these books yet, then you could still pick this one up and read it as a stand-alone. A heart-warming, romantic and brilliantly written story to pull at all your emotions. Romance fans out there, this one is for you! ...more
At the start of this book I wasn't sure that I was going to like the main character Amy. From the glimpses I'd already seen of her, I thought she mighAt the start of this book I wasn't sure that I was going to like the main character Amy. From the glimpses I'd already seen of her, I thought she might be quite prickly. I really warmed to her though and I was definitely rooting hard for her and Matt to get their shot at happiness together.
Such wonderful friendships between the girls and guys in this series....more
'Lucky in Love' is the fourth book in the Lucky Harbor series by Jill Shalvis. I am really enjoying this series and it's perfect for when I want to in'Lucky in Love' is the fourth book in the Lucky Harbor series by Jill Shalvis. I am really enjoying this series and it's perfect for when I want to indulge the side of me that loves a good romance novel.
Local girl Mallory Quinn is the one that always looks after everyone else. Her family and her patients at the hospital consume all of her time, until a mysterious hot new guy arrives in town and makes her go weak at the knees. The mysterious hot new guy aka Ty Garrison, is just stopping through as he recovers from his own mental and physical demons. That is until Mallory comes into his life and makes Lucky Harbor look like the perfect stopping place.
Sparks flew off the page whenever Mallory and Ty got together. Jill Shalvis can certainly write hot and sexy but I also like the way that she portrays genuine warmth, love and mutual respect between her characters. I always believe that her couples will stand the test of time. By the end of her stories you know that they are in it for the long haul.
I really enjoyed seeing Mallory grow in confidence throughout the book. She has always tried to please everyone else and do what they think she should do, so it was nice to see her finally taking control of her own life. Although I had to adjust to a whole new set of characters at the beginning of the book, I quite quickly became absorbed in their lives and was rooting for them to overcome their own personal obstacles.
I'm so looking forward to reading Mallory's friends stories next in 'At Last' and 'Forever and a Day'. Both Amy and Grace are introduced at the start and appear throughout as fellow cake and chocolate lovers. There is definitely something going on between Amy and local park ranger Matt so I can't wait to see if this blossoms into love! ...more
The second book in the Lucky Harbor series was another sweet romance from Jill Shalvis. I didn't think it was quite as good as the first book but it wThe second book in the Lucky Harbor series was another sweet romance from Jill Shalvis. I didn't think it was quite as good as the first book but it was still an enjoyable way to while away a couple of hours. ...more
This is the first book in the Lucky Harbor series by Jill Shalvis and the first one by this author that I've read. Her writing reminded me of Lisa KleThis is the first book in the Lucky Harbor series by Jill Shalvis and the first one by this author that I've read. Her writing reminded me of Lisa Kleypass and I will definitely be seeking out more of her back catalogue of titles.
'Simply Irresistible' is about three sisters that are left a small beach side inn by their late mother in the town of Lucky Harbor. The story centres around the middle sister, Maddie, who after losing her job and ditching her boyfriend, desperately wants to make the inn her new home. When she meets gorgeous local guy Jax, she has another very good reason to want to stay.
Maddie is a great character. She has let herself be walked over in her life but she is determined to become more assertive and stand up for herself. She is incredible likeable and I loved her slightly up and down sibling relationship with her half-sisters Tara and Chloe. They all have extremely different personalities but their strengths and weaknesses complement each other. As they begin to bond, you have no doubt that they would do anything to support one another.
Sexy Jax is enough to turn anyone's head! He and Maddie together make a great couple. I loved the way he had to work to win over her trust and her heart. Particularly knowing the way she had been hurt in the past. There are some steamy moments between them but on the whole it is more about the wooing and the romance.
Lucky Harbor is like my dream coastal town. It is exactly the sort of place that I would like to live in. By the sea, simple and uncomplicated and where everyone in the small community looks out for each other.
A sweet, sexy and romantic read, this is the perfect book to settle down with on a warm summer's night. I'm going to be picking up the second in the series 'The Sweetest Thing' about the oldest sister Tara immediately and then I will be searching out all of Jill Shalvis's other books too. A delightful read! ...more
The first book I've read by Jennifer E Smith. I really enjoyed it and will definitely be seeking out more of her previous novels. If they are all as gThe first book I've read by Jennifer E Smith. I really enjoyed it and will definitely be seeking out more of her previous novels. If they are all as good as this then I'm in for a real treat....more
An extremely sweet romance. I enjoyed The Boy Next Door and the skating element of the story. I look forward to reading more by this author in the futAn extremely sweet romance. I enjoyed The Boy Next Door and the skating element of the story. I look forward to reading more by this author in the future....more