Adrian Lesson's was a new adult book that felt fresh and different. I t**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Adrian Lesson's was a new adult book that felt fresh and different. I thought it was going to be a girl and popular playing guy dancing around each, leading to an inevitable romance. But there was a whole other element that took me completely by surprise. I loved the added depth from Adrian where Cleo was concerned. It made the story feel fresh and so endearing. But don't worry there is still the URST (unresolved sexual tension) and romance build up that I love in my new adult contemporaries.
Adrian is his college's "sex King". He has a column in the newspaper and he earns his reputation. Cleo is a quiet girl that just so happens to writer her newly signed roommate/author's sex scenes in her books. I think that would be a really fun collaboration by the way. But Cleo is out of inspiration, and in a writing funk. I loved not only Cleo and Adrian, but her roommate is a hoot and a half. I want her to get her own book! I loved how meddling she was with Cleo, and how she pushed Adrian to help her act out some of her scenes- kind of. She didn't make them so the dirty or anything like that, but she did get them pretty close to each other. It was pretty hot and a whole lot of fun. I thought it was a great method of driving the story forward.
But this was not just a fluff read. You really got to know Cleo and Adrian so well. Especially Adrian. The deeper he went in revealing his past, the more I liked him. It is hard not to like him. He seems so genuine and nice, and I thought Cleo gave him way too hard of a time. Even when she realized that he wasn't the shallow guy she thought he was, she sill didn't really let up on him. But Adrian was a gem through it all. They don't make a ton of guys like him. I really enjoyed Adrian Lessons. The writing is sexy, fun and the pacing of the story is great. It felt like a well thought out read, but I easily read it in one setting. I just didn't want to put the book down. I really enjoyed L.A. Rose's characters and romance so I am excited to read her other books. I have James Games sitting in my to be read pile right now, in fact. I think Adrian Lessons is a standalone read, but I am kind of hoping that Cleo's roommate gets her own companion book. If you like fun and steamy college romances, Adrian Lessons is a great book for you to check out.
The Duality Principle is a quick, fun and sexy romance that I enjoyed i**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
The Duality Principle is a quick, fun and sexy romance that I enjoyed immensely. The story centers around Gabby and Conner, who are both in their mid 20s. I think that is the perfect age for new adult books. Gabby is a graduate student writing her thesis, and I loved the way Rebecca Grace Allen actually worked Gabby's thesis into the story. It sounds like a great idea for a thesis first of all (too bad I am not math inclined in the slightest, unless it comes to taxes and estate planning.) , but the even cooler part what how her thesis related to her relationship and journey with Conner. It was my favorite part of the book. Along with the romance, of course.
Gabby and Conner are such an interesting mix. I love the nerdy side along with the more daring. They pull out the good and the bad in the other one. It turned out to be a perfect balance and was a lot of fun to read about. The book is told in dual narrative between Gabby and Conner, which worked out well. We got to see each of their likes and holdups about the relationship. And hearing about their own fantasies in their point of view chapters was also a lot of fun in the story.
The Duality Principle was a very quick read. The length was a little strange. I wasn't sure whether it was just a short quick full length novel, or a longer novella? I tend to wish that it was a bit longer. The characters were fleshed out well and the story flowed nicely, but it was a very quick read. I would have liked some more to the story at points. I never really felt like the story was lacking in any department, it was just over very quickly. Nevertheless, if you like fun and sexy new adult romances, The Duality Principle is one that I think you should check out.
Yes! I have been hitting Urban Fantasy Jackpot gold lately. I loved Kar**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Yes! I have been hitting Urban Fantasy Jackpot gold lately. I loved Karma! I thought that the world Donna Augustine created was intriguing and addictive. I loved how mysterious and creative her working idea of the universe was. Even though I still have lots of questions, as does Camilla, I can't wait for the second book to try and figure some of them out. Just to give you a quick setup of this world, basically there are people assigned for each one of the forces of the universe. There is Murphy, as in Murphy's law, the cat lady responsible for sending the black cats, Karma, fate, cupid, santa. Everything and anything you have imagined. And they all take care to assure that their aspect of the world is balanced. Most of the people are like immortals and they have been doing their jobs forever, but every so often they get a transfer, which is a human that dies and takes on one of their roles. And that is where Camilla comes in and where our story takes off.
Camilla was an attorney in her lifetime. She was a public defender and I really admired what a spitfire she was. She is a stubborn little thing, but she never backs down. It was gutsy of her, and it could be annoying, but she somehow managed to even make her stubborn-ness seem charming. I guess that is because I feel like I would have been the same way in her situation. These people are not very big on the "why" or "how" when it comes to instructions. "Don't do this"- but they never say why. "do you job"- but they never say what that is or how to do it. It would drive me a little crazy.
Some of the story is focused on Camilla getting set up and used to everything in her new job, but most of the story is focused on finding who and what her murderer was. We found out the who, but we are still not exactly sure about the what. Like I said, there are still a lot of unanswered questions. But instead of annoying me, like that sometimes would, I am itching like crazy to get my hands on the next book. The unanswered questions did not stem from the author just leaving something by the wayside. This is a very complex organization and we learned a great many things about it and the people working there, but there are still many, many secrets to uncover. I have no idea when it will be out and that is killing me! This series has the potential to be a favorite of mine.
There is not a ton of romance in this book, but there are lots of heated exchanges between Karma and Fate. I wish we could have gotten some glimpses inside his head because he was a really hard one to read. But the book is told entirely from Karma's point of view. I am hoping to see a lot more of Fate and Karma in the next book. I just love them together. At least I think I would. I love the idea of them. They banter and bicker with the best of them.
I was super impressed with Karma, and I can't wait to read the next book. I really hope it is out soon. Fans of Urban Fantasy that love a good mystery to solve and don't mind a few unanswered questions will love this book.
The Last Changeling is the first book in the young adult series, the Fa**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
The Last Changeling is the first book in the young adult series, the Faerie Revolutions. I am a huge fan of faerie books, and what I especially loved about The Last Changeling is not only is it a great representation of Faerie lore, but it is also heavy on the romance. I really loved reading about the strong emotional connection between Elora and Taylor. That boy crushed hard on her and I ate it all up! Fans of faerie books will love this new series. It was so well done, and in addition to the heavy romance and paranormal elements, there was also some social issues mixed into the high school scene in the story. I only had one minor issue with that aspect of the story, but everything else was great.
The book is told in dual perspective between Taylor and Elora, or Lora as Taylor knows her. I loved this narration style for this book. I thought allowed us to get to know both main characters really well. I don't even know who I liked more. Those are my favorite kinds of books, where I connect with each of the main characters for different reasons. Taylor is dealing with some dark demons of his past. And I can't quite put my finger on it, but I always kind of felt this mysterious air surrounding him. I thought there might be a connection of him to the faerie world. I can't wait to see whether there is or not and see how that all unfolds in the next book.
Elora is trapped in the middle of a war, both a prisoner and an active participant. She is an enigma, and I loved watching her grow as a faerie and person, and watching her wage war within herself. Being around Taylor and his friends was a great aid to her personal growth. The Last Changeling is a pleasure to read. I don't know how else to say it. The pacing of this book is great and the words just seem to flow from the pages. There are many things competing within the story for the main theme of the story, but Chelsea Pitcher somehow makes all of the elements meld together flawlessly. The faerie lore mixes in perfectly with the strong romance. And at the same time there are very prominent secondary characters which bring a slew of teenage social issues into the story. There was bullying and gay/straight tensions, along with drug use. I really admired the way Chelsea Pitcher worked in such serious issues facing teens today, but I had a small issue with there being so many "issues" in play in the story. It almost felt like too much and I thought it took away from the main message about the bullying people for being different. I almost feel like if the drugging and drinking didn't come into play the bullying and identity message would have been stronger. That being said, I loved everything else about the story. I thought it was really well done a great setup for the series.
Game On is the third book in the New Adult sports romance series,**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Game On is the third book in the New Adult sports romance series, Night Games. The series each focuses on a different player on the baseball team, the New York Kings. I was already half in love with Jilly before I started Game On. I really liked him in Game Changer, and I was super excited that he was going to be getting his own book. And once I found out a bit more of his story, that he always seems to be the ones women are leaving- for who knows what reason, seriously, why??- I felt for him even more. He is such a sweetheart. He might not be the most expressive guy in the world, but he doesn't play any games. He doesn't hold any punches with the people that he cares about.
It is so clear to see that Jilly is crazy about Hailey. She is the one that got away from high school. And while she drove me kind of batty at times, I liked how happy she made Jilly. I have no idea why she self sabotaged everything with her and Jilly, and if she were my friend I would have shook some sense into within the first couple of chapters, but she eventually has her "light bulb moment" about her behavior, and she tried to change. So I was pleased with her growth. Because of my holdups with Hailey, I didn't love this book as much as I loved Sasha and Brooks story, but I really really love Jilly so it was a close call.
Something that I really loved about Game On was that Hailey was writing a series of books about the players under a pen name. I liked to imagine that the books she was writing were in fact the night games series that I was reading right now. It made it all really fun. Like looking in a window and seeing yourself looking in a window within the story. I still have to read the first book in the series, and getting to see a little more of Chase and Grey makes me even more excited to finally get around to reading their story. You won't be lost if you read this series out of order, but if you have the choice, I would pick reading them in order. Fans of sports romances and contemporary romances will love the night games series. And wait until you meet Jilly. You will love him too. I wanted to be the one to nurse him back to health with his injury. (Chase knew what he was talking about when he mentioned women wanting to do that. )
Bittersweet is a standalone New Adult contemporary Romance from Sunday**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Bittersweet is a standalone New Adult contemporary Romance from Sunday James. It was an interesting read. At times I felt like there was too much going on for me to really start loving the story, but I did end up liking the overall flow of the storyline. It was a quick read that worked well as a standalone. I loved the small town setting. The writing was very atmospheric and rich with detail. The setting and the quaint feelings that the descriptions of the town of dogwood evoked were my favorite part of Bittersweet.
Cathy was great. I liked how wonderful she was to her dad and brother, and I loved that she loved her town so much. Sure, she had plans to get out and go away to college, but her father's health kept her in town and kept her helping out the family business. I liked Greg well enough, but Cathy was the real star of the book for me. I don't know if I just related to her more, or if it was because the book was told entirely by her point of view. I also really liked Cathy's best friend and roommate, Max. That girl is a true friend. And feisty as heck! She needs her own story.
Greg was a nice guy. He actually had these moments of such sweetness. I loved the start of the story, when he kept seeing all these things Cathy and him had in common, and he was almost in disbelief. He would say things to that effect and get so embarrassed. It was super cute. But my problem with Greg was that he held his cards so close to his chest all the time. I could never tell where his head was at. He was hot and then cold. And when he was cold or angry he was very angry. And that extreme anger never really got addressed the way I wanted it to. We did learn some things about him and his past, I just felt like we 90% of the way with him and didn't get a chance to connect that last little 10%.
I liked the tv filming aspect of the story too. It was cool to see the way filming was done on a location, and the whole Bethany aspect added intrigue to the story. Bittersweet will appeal to fans of standalone contemporary romances. It is an interesting story that you can knock out in one afternoon, and while I had a few issues with it, I did enjoy Bittersweet. Fans of small town atmospheres will love Dogwood.
#Nerd is the first book in the #hastag Series, which is a n**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
#Nerd is the first book in the #hastag Series, which is a new adult series that mostly focuses on the same couple! Do you even know how exciting that is? I don't have to say goodbye to Rimmel and Romeo just yet. They have at least two more books about them. I love that. The books are told in dual narrative between Rimmel and Romeo. I love the name Rimmel, by the way. Romeo is the star football player, and Rimmel is a scholarship girl who seems to only study and volunteer at the animal shelter. She is forced to tutor him and he is forced to go to tutoring three days a week. Throw in a secret fraternity initiation challenge for Romeo where he has to use Rimmel in some way, and it looks like you have a typical new adult "bet" story. But I would implore you to look past that, because I normally find those books enjoyable, but very predictable. #Nerd was not like that. It handles the situation in a very different way, and I really liked that.
The hashtag series idea is so great, and I am honestly surprised this is the first time we are seeing it. (or at least the first time I am) There is a campus wide app that every student seems to have to get school updates and info called Alpha Buzz. But there is one person called the Buzz Boss that seemed like gossip girl. They were always texting the latest gossip and the hastags they used were so funny. There are little #AlphaBuzz texts at the start of each chapter. It was a great addition to the story. If anything, the texts showed me just how popular Romeo was to this school. Everyone seemed to know everything about him, and most of the buzz boss' texts seem to center around him. I wish we found out who the buzz boss was.
Rimmel is a great girl. I felt so bad for her that she really didn't have anyone. She moved from out of state, so she didn't have her father, and between studying, and her animal shelter work she didn't make any time to make any friends. Her roommate actually ended up pleasantly surprising me. Rimmel is shy, and you know she is haunted by something in her past, but we don't find out just what for a while. It was nice to see her finally get close to someone and slowly let her guard down. Romeo really took the time and effort to get to know her. And to me, it never really was about the initiation. I'm not telling you more than that, you just have to read and experience it for yourself.
Romeo was a breath of fresh air for me. He has this gooey marshmellow center that I love so much when it came to Rimmel. I loved that she brought out his tender side without either of them really even noticing. It was effortless between the two of them, and I am so excited that this is only the start of their story. I really liked Heven and Hell series by Cambria Hebert and now that I have gotten a taste of what her new adult contemporary is like, I really, really want to read her take it off series. If you like new adult, you will really enjoy the hashtag series. #IKnowIt #ReadItLoveIt
Love's Last Call is the first in a new adult series called the Lad**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Love's Last Call is the first in a new adult series called the Ladies of jezebel's. Jezebel's is a bar that both of the main characters work at. I had no idea when I started reading the story that this would be a series about some of the various secondary characters, but now that I know that I am super excited. I can't wait for Ronnie's story. We didn't get to really know any of the other shot girls, but I can't wait to get to know them too. Love's Last Call was a classic New Adult story. Told in Dual Narrative between Norm and Lucy. It was a secret romance, because shot girls and bouncers are NOT allowed to date. It is pretty much the only rule the bar has.
Norm and Lucy each have to keep their job for various reasons and because of that, they didn't rush into a relationship. I really liked that because it gave me, as the reader, a chance to watch them interact a bunch and get to know each other before they acted on their attraction for one another. Even so, Norm was more invested than Lucy. I felt for him. It was always her pushing to keep them a secret. You could tell that she genuinely cared for him, but I don't think she got how much she was hurting him. I just wanted to hug him.
But what I loved about Love's Last Call was how their inner geek-dom brought the two of them together. They love comic books and science fiction, and everytime Lucy brought up something else "nerdy" that she liked, Norm swooned a bit. I 100% approve bonding with other people over your nerdy loves. It makes me swoon a little too. Beth Matthews did a great job with the writing in Love's Last Call. I do wish the chapters were labeled with whose point of view they were, but it was easy enough to follow along. I loved Norman and I really liked Lucy, even though she was the thickheaded one most of the time. But when she came to that realization after meeting Norm's father, I started to love her. It is always great when a character has a breakthrough about themselves.
Love's Last Call was great. It wasn't incredibly different than many new adults out there, but it was a good quality book. If a book is well done and it is a formula that I like, I don't mind it when a book is a little predictable. And this one had all the elements that I love. And like I was saying earlier, I am very excited to read Ronnie's story. I know Lucy said her and Ronnie had a love hate relationship and that Ronnie liked to cause trouble and sit back and watch, but when it came to Lucy's friendship, I didn't see the hate. Only love. Ronnie was great towards Lucy. I can't wait to see her get her happy ending, hopefully in the next book.
Audrey Bell sold me on The Fall of January Cooper. I read her fir**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Audrey Bell sold me on The Fall of January Cooper. I read her first novel, Love Show, and I can't even say how much I loved it. I would recommend it to fans of new adult everywhere. So I knew that I couldn't pass up The Fall of January Cooper. And when Audrey had me tearing up within the first two chapters of the book, I knew I was dealing with a powerful story. The romance aspect was a little tame compared to a lot of new adult, but the emotional slow burn reluctant romance between January and Christian was fantastic.
January starts the story out as a rich harvard student. Everyone painted her out to being this huge B**ch, but that wasn't exactly what I saw. I saw someone who was stuck up, yes, but not really a complete mean girl. I know that is what her friends described her as, but to be honest that only made me believe it less, because her friends were all beyond awful. I would hate to be associated with their group. Even if you disagree with me, and you do think she is a raging B, you will feel for this girl. There is no way that you can't. Her world crumbles around her overnight. Her and Christian have that in common. Everything in their lives took an awful turn in a split second.
Christian and his brother were both college hockey players. They got into a fatal car crash as they were arguing about Sam feeling inadequate to Christian, who is the star player. Sam died and Christian had a career ending injury. (and no I didn't spoil anything, this all happens within the first two chapters) It was so heartbreaking. I hate that his brother died while they were fighting, and it was such a guilt inducing fight too. The story moves forward by having January and Christian meet at and working at the bar in town. I loved watching the two of them interact with each other. It was different from each of their perspectives. For Christian, January got under his skin and was really the only new person in his life that could get him outside of his head. He didn't really interact with anyone, and the few that he did were very surface. I loved watching January edge her way under his skin. Even if they were bickering for most of the time. It was cute.
And January was ostracized when news of her father got out. I would say I wanted to punch her father, but what he did, didn't even shock me. I know that is kind of awful and jaded, but I have seen it happen more frequently than I would care to. (Think Joe Guidice from real housewives of new jersey.) These two are put through the ringer. The story is told in dual narrative between January and Christian, and each of them is really battling their own demons. I really didn't have much to complain about with this book, other than the fact that I wanted more story. I just wanted the story to keep going. I thought for about 60% of the book, the story was pretty evenly split between January and Christian's issued and I loved that about the story. But from there on, the main focus was on January and Christian helping her, which I loved, but I kept wanting to go back to Christian's family and see more of him and their issues dealt with.
I also wanted a little bit more of a steamy romance with them. I felt like we were tiptoeing around that for a lot of the book, and the slow burn romance was great. I loved the story, but when we finally did get to the romance, there was so little of the story left. I want another book about them. Maybe focusing on Christian's injury. Please Audrey! Give me more January and Christian. I love them!
Just Desserts is a really sweet story about finding love in the afterma**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Just Desserts is a really sweet story about finding love in the aftermath of a loss. Quinn comes into Sadie, and her fathers' lives at the perfect time. They are sturggling to tread water both emotionally and financially. Sadie's mom passed away and left her husband and daughter her popular healthy diner. And they are both trying so hard to make it live up to her name in her mother's honor. She seemed like such an amazing woman and it was clear to see that she meant so much to both of them. But Sadie's dad wants to sell the diner because he knows that it is downhill for them. Quinn does fabulous restoration work and he promises to keep the integrity of the diner. I know that I just gave you a lot of back ground type information but one of the things that I loved the most about this story was the setup the author did. I thought this adorably sweet romance had a great plot to jump off of.
Quinn didn't want to step of Sadie's toes, and at the start of the story they were a bit too much ping ponging between extremes for the two of them, especially on Sadie's end. They were cold, they were hot and they were back to cold again so fast you could hardly keep up. But I cut her some slack because her emotions were all over the place with everything she had on her plate. (ha, another thing I loved was how they used food references at innuendo. I thought that was too funny.) After a while, they fell into a better routine around each other and that was when I really felt their connection and romance started to build.
I really liked how protective Quinn was over Sadie. He really looked out for her. Sadie had more demons to overcome in the story, so she had more character growth an Quinn, I felt like. She blamed her mother for leaving her and she just had so many negative emotions rolling around inside of her. Just Desserts is a great book for people looking for quick cute reads, and for people who like love after loss books. Just Desserts is a quick read that will satisfy your sweet tooth.
Sweet Unrest is a standalone read that will appeal to fans of reads**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Sweet Unrest is a standalone read that will appeal to fans of reads that feel eerie, and have a healthy mixture of ghost story and voodoo magic. I loved the plantation setting that author Lisa Maxwell chose for Sweet Unrest. It was the perfect place for this tale to take place. I'm going to do my best to not give anything away because that is half the fun of this mystery. There are so many different layers and unknowns that come to light throughout the story, and I loved watching everything unfold bit by bit for the main character, Lucy.
The cast of characters were as rich and complex as was the scenery and landscape of New Orleans. I loved Mama Legba, Chloe, Piers and Alex. Lucy's family kind of faded into the background for me, but I didn't dislike them. They just weren't really the focus of this story. The focus came through Lucy's dreams and her trying to piece together the puzzle they presented.
Past and Present swirl together in Sweet Unrest. Sometimes it came in predictable ways and sometimes things were totally unpredictable. I loved it because it was always just enough to keep me on my toes. There were a couple of little snafus that I still don't understand, or wish were explained a little better and that was all that was holding me back from a higher rating. (like with a certain character that shows up at the end to help and suddenly knows everything that has been going on. If you have read the book, let me know and we can talk.)
The romance was sweet and heartbreaking all at the same time. It just was never the focal point for me as a reader. I was way more wrapped up in the mystery. I liked the romance and I think the ending was very fitting, but Sweet Unrest was a lot more for me than just a simple romance. (even though there really was nothing simple about Lucy and Alex.) Sweet Unrest is all about the story. I really appreciated the research that the author did on Voodoo. I thought it really added a level of authority to her writing. I want to meet Mama Legba and have her read me. Voodoo + a chilling New Orleans setting that grows in the creep factor as the story goes on + a fresh and interesting mystery = a complex book that is sure to delight ya readers.
As Long As You Love me is the second book in the New Adult 2B Trilogy.**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
As Long As You Love me is the second book in the New Adult 2B Trilogy. It follows the original roommates of Apartment 2B. As Long As you Love Me is Lauren's story. When the first book, I want it that way, left off Lauren had moved back home after college not working out. I felt for Lauren. For most of the first book, she was completely withdrawn and I had no idea what was going on with her until her breakdown at the end of the story. I was interested to get to know her better in this book.
Lauren gets back home and moves in with her mom. Her hometown is a small town so she runs into people from her past. It had to be strange for her to be back, but she was like a completely different person in As Long As You Love Me from basically the first page. I could feel her relief. It was like she was finally able to breathe, and the longer she hung around Rob, it was easy to see she was becoming more and more comfortable.
Even though As Long As You Love Me was told entirely from Lauren's point of view, we got to know Rob, Nadia's brother extremely well. I wish that we got to see his point of view a little better. I felt for Rob so much. I can't believe that everyone in his life belittled him so much. I can't even imagine everyone I know discounting me as dumb and just a pretty face. No one gave him any credit. It almost amounted to emotional abuse. My heart just broke for him. And it wasn't any one person, it really was everyone around him. He turned down a college football scholarship because he genuinely believed, because everyone told him over and over again, that he wouldn't be smart enough to make it in college. How awful is that??! So when Lauren ran into Rob and they started hanging out again, the thing that I loved the most about the two of them was how she was constantly reassuring him how great he was. It was a bit of a role reversal from most books, in the fact that the guy was the one with major insecurity issues. But Rob has a heart of gold, and I wanted so badly for him to believe more in himself.
I loved the Flipping/renovating houses theme running throughout As Long As You Love Me. I am a bit of a HGTV freak, so the YouTube Channel and TV show idea was the coolest thing ever. I would love to see some inspiration pictures of the house he was working on. My only gripe with As Long As You Love Me was what Lauren did when the idea of the TV show came up. I have a pet peeve when characters act this way, and while I "get" why they do it, it always makes me mad because I simply think there are better ways for them to handle things. It seems like an easy out. And I wanted to punch Lauren in the face. And hug Rob. But other than that bump in the road, As Long As You Love Me is a fantastic read. It is sweet and romantic, and the journey that Rob and Lauren go on. They spoke each others language. I actually laughed out loud when Rob mentioned "Lauren Bait". It was so cute. He knows her so well. This book felt really different than I Want it That Way, and I think I liked that best of all. Nadia and Lauren are very different people, so it was fitting that their stories felt completely different. The 2B trilogy is a wonderful example of New Adult Fiction. I am super excited for Max's story, but we need to take the word trilogy off, and write more books! I want Avery's story now that I have gotten to know her.
Hidden Sins might have been my favorite Karice Bolton book yet! It is t**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Hidden Sins might have been my favorite Karice Bolton book yet! It is the first in the new adult suspense series, about Luke Fletcher. I have only read paranormal books by Karice Bolton before, which I have enjoyed but this romantic suspense kept me on the edge of my seat! I love that this series is about Luke. It is told in dual point of view between Luke and Hannah, but it seems like Luke is going to be the main character of the series. It is about time a guy gets his own series.
Hannah is on the run from her community. For a lot of the book we just know that she knows some secrets about her hometown, but we don't know what they are. Just that they are bad enough to make her want to pack up and leave everyone and everything she has ever known. Luke runs into Hannah in a starbucks in LA. Right away, I knew he was going to be a sweetheart. I loved how nice he was to Hannah without even really knowing her. Luke runs a private security firm, and I loved the detail that Karice Bolton went into about his job. I found it all fascinating.
The romance between Luke and Hannah was slow and built up over much of the book. Nothing was rushed and the romance was so well balanced with the mystery and action in the book. Neither one took center stage over the other. As far as the action goes, there is never a dull moment in Hidden Sins. There were many attempts on Hannah's life. I would have been downright terrified in her situation. I probably would have put my trust in Luke a little sooner than she did, but I do understand her hesitance. It has to be scary being in a new place, not knowing who you could trust.
On a side note, I have no idea if the kind of house that Hannah stayed in when she first got to LA actually exists or not, but it is an interesting concept. I think it is great how it gives people a chance to start over. Regardless of how things turned out for Hannah with it, the house idea had me thinking long after I finished the book. I am extremely interested in continuing this series. I am not quite sure where the next book, Buried Sins, is going to go, but I can't wait to find out. I know that it will feature Luke again, but I am really hoping that Hannah and Luke are the focus again. I really like the two of them together. I am also hoping that romance continues to be one of the focuses of the story just like the suspense. The combination worked really well for me.
Midnight Runes is the first in the young adult paranormal series, The B**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Midnight Runes is the first in the young adult paranormal series, The Bestowed Ones. I ended up liking Midnight Runes and the characters have intrigued me enough to want to read the next book. I feel like I really want to know what is going to happen with Landon and Brynn, and even Trevor. But it really took me a while to get there. For over the first half of the book we didn't have any hint of any idea of what was going on, or what the paranormal element of the story was going to be. And because of that, I was becoming a little frustrated as a reader. Beause Brynn was in the same boat as me and because I was interested in what might possibly be going on with Trevor and with Landon, I kept reading to get some aswers. And I am glad that I did. Around 65% into the book Landon slowly, very slowly starts sharing a few bits and pieces with Brynn and it was around that time that I really started gaining some interest in their world. I still have many more unanswered questions that I hope are addressed in the next book, but at least now I have some bearings on to what is going on. It was also around this point where I started to like Landon.
There is and there isn't really a love triangle in this book. Romance is not the main feature of the story, so while Trevor starts out as Brynn's boyfriend and promptly breaks up with her early in the book and then the new guy Landon shows up. I didn't really feel like it was a love triangle in the traditional sense. She doesn't date Landon, and while you can tell there are some feelings there at the end of the story, it was more about answers for Brynn. There may be a love triangle in the next book though. And I feel bad but I will have to root for Landon. We didn't really get a chance to get to know Trevor. I couldn't figure out what his deal was and all of the secrecy made him look like kin of a jerk. I don't think he is but I don't really have anything else to go on about him at this point. We got to know Landon a lot better because he was simply around in the story more.
Midnight Runes is a really interesting premise and I think Celeste Buie did a great job imagining this paranormal world. I am certainly interested in getting to know the ins and outs of the bestowed ones better in the next book. But I do think she kept her readers in total darkness for too long. It became frustrating to know nothing about what was going on. I am all for a mysterious atmosphere, but you have to throw a couple of little breadcrumb sized clues along the way to keep us intrigued and guessing. I had nothing, not a single thing to go off of for over half of the book. And it wasn't for lack of trying on Brynn's part. She was asking questions and trying to figure stuff out, but still zip. This eventually changed, and that was what made me like the book. Because once I started to get answers I started wanting more and more and more. The set up of everything is so interesting, I just wish it didn't take so long for us to get there. I am hoping that in the next book since we have already pried out little bits of answers (and because of what happened at the end of Midnight Runes) that we won't be left so much in the dark in the next book. I am hoping that we can jump right into the action of the story and go from there. If you are a fan of Young Adult paranormal and you like mysterious atmospheres and are patient with getting some answers, the Bestowed Ones would be a good series for you to check out.
I am so excited that Eden and Grey got another book. I loved Kissing Eden. Grey is my favorite of T.A. Foster's male characters, and I just can't get enough of him. Not to mention, it is hard enough to find a sequel in new adult contemporary romances that follows the same characters. I loved that we got to go back and visit with Grey and Eden some more. The Story starts out with Eden packing up and moving across the country to move in with Grey. I was super excited to get to see the two of them back at the palm for some fun times, but things are not such smooth sailing for them. Living with a boyfriend for the first time is tough enough, but throw in an injury that makes it hard to work and a lawsuit from a long lost family member on top of that, and things can get ugly really fast.
Loving Eden was a quick read that drew me in from the first page. It helped that I already knew and loved the characters, so I was rooting for them to get through all of this BS so they could get back to their happy ending. I will admit that I was super interested in the law suit, and I do wish that had been described a little more. (not for the stories sake, it was gone into enough detail for that, but rather for my sick amusement. Wills and Will contests are kind of my thing.) Never fear though, I thought the way everything resolved itself was perfect as it was.
I was more than a little wary of Mason when he showed up. I am super biased though. I would be on Team Grey even if he started spitting in babies faces. Probably. So I knew I wasn't going to like anything Mason had to offer. I also knew that while I liked Eden a ton, if she so much as wasn't on team Grey for a split second, I would have turned on her. In Loving Eden we got to visit again with all of the colorful locals, including seeing Marin and Pike get married! The wedding was something fun and nice to break up the more serious things going on in the book. And so was Eden's friend Taylor coming to visit. Taylor got on my nerves a few times. I was ok with her by the end of the book, but I just didn't think she was being a great friend all the time to Eden.
Fans of Kissing Eden will really enjoy Loving Eden as well. Grey is so perfect. I want more, more, more of him. I want a ring tone of him saying Darlin' to me. For real. I will fully admit that I have it bad for him. I love Eden and Grey, and I want more from them. I think the end of this book set up a good situation for a third book. Wink wink! BUT I am always Team Grey. So I will cut anyone that comes between Grey and what he wants. (just a friendly, albeit confusing note to T.A. Foster asking for no love triangles. haha) If you have not had the pleasure of meeting Grey yet, read Kissing Eden. You can thank me after. :)
The Edge of You is a clean new adult contemporary romance. There i**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
The Edge of You is a clean new adult contemporary romance. There is some new adult content but it is mostly just alluded to, and I think would be appropriate for upper young adult readers. It is also a standalone book, which is refreshing. The Edge of You is a story that is equally about two people finding each other as it is a story about each of their journeys and dealing with loss/sickness. Maya and Jake are each dealing with a ton of stuff. Holy cow, you really feel for these two young adults. Their issues are at the same time very different, yet the same.
Jake is dealing with a sick mother and paying her hospital and medication bills, while trying to go to school. Maya is dealing with the death of her sister and her mother's alcoholism. They seem like very different situations on their face, right? But when you look a little closer at the two of them you see that they are both dealing with this pressure all alone. They each have the weight of their respective worlds on their shoulders and they both feel very lonely. The Edge of You had this undertone of despair throughout so much of it. It made the book feel dark, but the ray of light shining through was Jake and Maya relationship. You could so easily see them light up around each other. They were each others' hope. It was so beautiful to witness.
Maya was complicated for me. At times I thought she acted selfishly and a little immature when it came to Jake dealing with his mom, and then at other times she was so patient and understanding and very mature. It was like a struggle within herself. She knew the right thing to do, but she didn't always express it.
My favorite part of the book was Maya's paintings. I loved the descriptions of the light and her sister in her art. I thought it was really beautiful. I would love to see some inspiration pieces for her work. Theresa DaLayne did an excellent job with her description. Her writing was very emotional. The Edge of You is a story that will make you you feel both happiness and despair at the same time. It was an interesting combination for me. The Edge of You is a great read for people that like their romance realistic with a healthy dose of turmoil thrown in. At times, I simply did not know if this book was going to get a happily ever after for the characters. Life threw a lot at these two. And the journey this book took me on was worth it.
Unrequited is a vampire book. It is marked as a new adult novel, but it**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Unrequited is a vampire book. It is marked as a new adult novel, but it felt more as a young adult. It does span the college years of Ashton, so I think that is where the New Adult element comes into play. But it is completely clean so it would work for readers of young adult as well. These are a different twist on the conventional vampire. I enjoyed Emily Shaffer's view on them. It was strange how few of them there were in a world where vampires existed though. I really felt for Will. He felt completely alone. He honestly felt like there was a good chance that he was the only vampire out there. He is teaching at a local high school, and then he meets Ashton. And the story begins.
We get to know Ashton first basically through the story of her attack and change. It was really traumatic and I couldn't help but feel for her. I completely got her desire to be as normal as possible right now because now is the time that the least amount of questions will be asked. Right now she basically is a high school student. So it made complete sense to me what she wanted. What I didn't understand was why she had to be so rude to Will. I have such a soft spot in my heart for Will. He is the nicest guy. I didn't always understand why he picked Ashton. At times I felt like it was because she was the only female he knew like him. He honestly seemed too good for her. But his intentions seemed to come from the best place so I still rooted for the two of them for his stake.
When Griffin came into the picture it obviously complicated things. My initial impression of him wasn't correct. I will be the first to admit that I got it wrong when it comes to him. The book felt a bit rushed and choppy at parts. I would have liked for the story to have been stretched out a bit more, with some more detail added in, but the story still sucked me in. I couldn't stop reading because I honestly didn't know what was going to happen. Some things were predictable but not everything. Not the main things. It has been a while since I have read a story about just vampires. I liked it but like I said, these vampires seemed to be very different. They didn't need to drink blood to survive and the sun only made them tired if they were out in it for a long time. So they seemed more just like immortals to me. The book ended at a pretty bad spot in the story, with one heck of a cliff hanger. I have no idea what is going to happen next and that alone is enough to make me want to continue the series. Fans of vampires should check out Unrequited.
Rewind To You is a heart-breakingly emotional story about forgiveness a**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Rewind To You is a heart-breakingly emotional story about forgiveness and loss and love. I expected it to be a happy go lucky summer romance, and while the romance was sweet and adorable, there are much deeper and darker emotions at play for many of the characters in the story. There is a lot going on in this story and it will take you on a rollercoaster ride of emotions. I really loved the setting of Rewind to You. I have always wanted to visit Tybee Island in Georgia, and the book had the characters visiting all parts of the island and it made me want to go even more.
Sienna doesn't want to be back on Tybee island. She always used to come here with her father, and now he is gone. This book is a tough journey for Sienna. I really felt for her. And while I didn't always like the choices she made when it came to how she dealt with the Kyle and Austin situation, it is really hard not to like this girl. She is a total sweetheart. Laura Johnston does a fantastic job making you fall in love with her characters. And as much as I liked Sienna, I freakin' loved Austin. This guy is a white knight if I ever saw one. He has his own issues to deal with of course, but with Sienna he was so wonderful. Honestly, his only downfall is that he was going to be a Gator football player and not a seminole. ;) I will forgive him for this lapse in judgement because I loved him oh so much.
Rewind to You is an onion of a story. And by that of course I mean that it has so many layers. You cannot possibly predict everything that Laura is going to throw at you. It was so nice to see a fresh plotline and story progression. Not to mention I am kind of in love with Laura's writing. It is beautiful and fresh, and very very moving. I loved Sienna's "rewind" moments with her dad, and I loved even more when Austin made his way into her moments. For so much of the story Sienna takes main stage, even during Austin's point of view chapters. But about 70% through the book, the focus shifts in such an unexpected way and Austin is in the spotlight for a while with some of his demons and issues. I loved that both characters had their moments in the story. It felt very complete because of that.
Rewind to You is a fantastic young adult book. It has it all and it does it all so very well. Romance, heartbreak, loss, growth. You really can't ask for more with a book. Laura Johnston created a little master piece in this otherwise unassuming young adult contemporary. If you are thinking that it is just like all the other young adult and new adult contemporaries, stop right now! It isn't. This one is special. And I think Laura Johnston is an author to look out for. If this is what she did with her first book, I can't wait to see what else she is going to write.
I love Eliza Gordon. Her romances are quirky and full of humor. They ar**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
I love Eliza Gordon. Her romances are quirky and full of humor. They are great reads to put a smile on my face. Must Love Otters was one of my surprise favorites of 2013, so I was super excited to read Neurotica. And while the story was completely different, there was still that same brand of charm and humor that I have come to love about Eliza's writing. Neurotica is the story of a Jayne. The story starts out with Jayne in her therapists' office, where we got a pretty good idea of some of her Neuroses. Jayne is afraid of intimacy. I really respected her for seeing a therapist, and I loved that her therapist suggested that Jayne write some erotica help her with her visualization and to get her more comfortable with the idea of S-E-X. Now, I feel like I should say that even though a main part of this book centers around the idea that Jayne is afraid of sex and the fact that she writes and later publishes her erotica novels, that Neurotica is actually a clean book. It is adult, but there are no graphic scenes, and it would actually work as new adult because the main characters are 26 or so.
Neurotica has a great cast of characters. I really enjoyed them all. There was Luke, the owner of the Piewalkers food truck. I have a love of foodtrucks and of witty names, so this one was right up my alley. I would track this truck down across the nation if it was real. Just sayin'. Then you have the best friend Gretchen, who was always there for Jayne, sometimes in a tough love kind of not so gentle pushing way, but that was just Gretchen. She really cared for Jayne and wanted the best for her. I actually really liked their dynamic. And then there is Holden. While I really did like Luke, I also really liked Holden. I thought he was beyond adorable. No more information on that. Read the book people!
Jayne really wants to be a writer. She wrote the obits and sale notices at her job (while she was working there) and she was forever trying to pitch them on all kinds of articles. I admired her tenacity at work. They totally didn't deserve her there. In her spare time she wrote science fiction and fantasy books, and throughout Neurotica we got to see chapters of her books written under her pen name. I really would have preferred to see some erotica chapters as the story went on and Jayne made some character growth progress on that front, but we only saw her fantasy book. I was so wrapped up in the story of Jayne that stopping that to read the excerpts from the book were sometimes a bit of a drag for me. I caught myself starting to skim some of them.
Neurotica is so much fun to read. I loved all the dorkdom and star wars references. Eliza Gordon is great with her word choice and one liners to advance the humor of the book. She not only has the overly funny in your face humor aspect down, but also the subtle wit form of humor in spades. Reading her books is like reading a finely tuned work of art. I really love her writing. The ending did leave me wanting more though. Add another chapter or two Mr. Gordon. Please! Neurotica was a great read.
Tempting Sydney is a great read. Plain and simple. It is a satisfying r**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Tempting Sydney is a great read. Plain and simple. It is a satisfying romance that was extremely well executed. It is a new adult romance. I thought it was a standalone, but it is actually the first book in the Tempting series. If I had to guess, each book would be act as a standalone and be about a different group of characters. If the rest of the series is anything like Tempting Sydney, the rest of the books are going to be fantastic as well. Told in dual narrative between Sydney and Jax, this book is all about character development. You know that is right up my alley.
Sydney and Jax are not initially what you would think would work as a couple, but the closer you look at the two of them, the more you get it. Both of them are completely scared of relationships for very different reasons. In some ways they very different- Sydney is so by the book and structured and Jax is more spontaneous and in the moment, but in others they are so similar- they are both super stubborn to a fault.
There are so many things that I loved about Tempting Sydney. I loved the chemistry and connection that so clearly existed between Sydney and Jax, and I loved their back and forth flirting. These two just made you smile and your pulse pick up a few beats. Jax is the king of the innuendo, and I liked it....a lot. But past that, he is surprisingly caring. The way he looked out for Sydney was so touching.
The secondary characters were good too, but for me it was all about Jax and Sydney. I couldn't put this book down, and when Sydney was on a date with another guy, I was mad at her! That normally doesn't happen for me. I really liked Sydney, but I liked her and Jax together more than I liked them individually. Initially, I thought that Sydney was going to have more of the issues to work through, but Jax's past was dark and debilitating to him. Angela Corbett does a fantastic job of delving into each characters backstory and making the reader completely understand and empathize with why they are acting the way they are acting. I loved watching these two grow individually and seeing how it led them together.
If you like new adult contemporary romance, Tempting Sydney is a book that you don't want to miss. You will love the chemistry and banter between Sydney and Jax. You won't be able to put this one down. I know I couldn't. It is the kind of book that makes you smile and makes you want to go pick up every other romance that the author has written so you can fall in love with some of her other characters.
A Blind Spot for Boys is so much more than just a cute young adult cont**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
A Blind Spot for Boys is so much more than just a cute young adult contemporary romance. It is about finding yourself, and experiencing new things, and family, and relationships and really so much more. There is also a really cute romance. :p I felt like I was discovering the Inca Trail and Machu Picchu right along with all of the hikers in the story. The beauty in Justina Chen's book is the writing. It was elegant and detailed. The story flowed along beautifully and I could vividly picture all of the scenes, even feel the horror of the mudslide.
Shana and Quattro have each experienced too much sadness for people their age. Quattro has lost his mother and Shana's father is suddenly going blind. They are each on this journey, or dream walk hike to Machu Picchu for different reasons. Neither of them are looking for a relationship, and they ended up each finding each other, but for me that was secondary to the whole storyline. It really wasn't but I still felt like there was a bigger message at play than just a romance. And I loved that about A Blind Spot for Boys.
I enjoyed how real the book felt. Justina Chen didn't sugar coat things. When Shana's dad first learns that he will lose his sight in 6 months, he does not take it well. In fact, he doesn't take it well for most of the book. This might sounds weird, but I really appreciated that. Not that I wanted him to be unhappy and take it out on his family, but come on! I know I wouldn't be all sunshine and roses if I found out something like that. I would be scared and grumpy and not pleasant. This book is about a different journey for each of the characters. It was a treat to see all of it. And Grace just stole my heart! I loved her!
A Blind Spot for boys is a powerful read. Shana is on the search for the kind of photos that will "crack your heart open" and that is really what this book is about. What will crack the hearts open of each of the characters. Plus it both made me yearn to go to Machu Picchu and at the same time, terrified to. It is such a beautiful place, and A Blind Spot for Boys was a beautiful story.
Yay for some good new adult paranormal. We need more of that, in my opi**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Yay for some good new adult paranormal. We need more of that, in my opinion. And yay for Alyssa Rose Ivy for creating an original storyline. It was part kidnapper story, part shifter and a whole lot of interesting. I really enjoyed Dire. I wasn't sure what to make of the romance a lot of the time. I liked Cage, and Hunter left me with mixed emotions. But I do know one thing for sure, I need to get my hands on a copy of Dusk as soon as possible because I am dying to know what is going to happen next. Alyssa Rose Ivy created this world I think set in the world of the Empire Chronicles and the Crescent Chronicles because the creatures are the same and a king was alluded to, but there hasn't been any character cross over yet (although I haven't completed the Empire Chronicles, so maybe there is) I think that was a really cool way to set up a book. I love that the paranormal world is the same one that I loved in Crescent Chronicles. It is not as daunting, but still felt fresh and different since we were exploring a different creature.
Cage and Mary Anne are driving home in a snowstorm when they are stranded and found by Hunter and his crew. Cage and Mary Anne have known each other their whole lives, but were never more than neighbors until this trip. I couldn't get a good read on Cage before the wolves were introduced. I didn't know if his feelings were genuine or not, and because of that I didn't write Hunter completely out. I am just a mess of emotions between the two of them. Yes, Cage seems to care about Mary Anne the more the book went on, and yes Hunter is technically the person holding them hostage, but I have no idea who I want the romance to be between. And the awesome thing about Dire is the book doesn't go one way or the other! There isn't really a ton of romance. The bulk of the story was set up on Mary Anne and this world she found herself thrown into.
I can't even get into how terrifying this must all be for Mary Anne and Cage. I mean being forcibly taken into this whole new world, and being so powerless to do anything is scary. I admired Mary Anne a lot. And I admired Cage for sticking by her side the whole time. He really does seem like a good guy.
Alyssa Rose Ivy certainly knows how to keep a girl on the edge of her seat. This was unlike any book that I have read in a while. I can't get a good read on what is going to happen in the coming books. Sure, I know some things, and I have a guess as to what the conflicts will be, but the Dire Wolves Chronicles is turning out to be anything but predictable. There was a lot of stage-setting in this Dire, and I feel like the romance and conflicts are really going to take off in Dusk. I am not revealing any of my "teams" or "sides" until I read the next book. But fans of Alyssa Rose Ivy will really enjoy Dire. It is another solidly enjoyable read. (not that I am surprised, I seem to love everything Alyssa writes.) People that are burned out on new adult contemporary should give new adult paranormal, and Dire, a chance!
Blood Beyond Darkness is the 4th and final book in the New Adult Parano**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Blood Beyond Darkness is the 4th and final book in the New Adult Paranormal, Darkness Series by Stacey Marie Brown. I can't believe that this series is done. I am still hoping that the author will come out with some novellas about the characters. I absolutely love this series. It is one of my favorites, so Blood Beyond Darkness was bittersweet for me. In some ways I didn't want to read it because I didn't want to be done with the series. Endings are hard for me. I don't like saying goodbye to characters that I have grown to love. The Darkness series is excellent. The attention to detail and world building is great and there is non stop action. Blood Beyond Darkness was basically all action from the first page until the last. We left off in the third book on the edge of a great war that threatened both the Seelie and Unseelie court as well as the earth realm. Blood Beyond Darkness is all about this war. There is no happy go lucky lovey dovey stuff. This book is hardcore and darker than the others.
This is a series that you need to read in order or you will be completely lost. But that is ok because the first three books are blow your mind good! I loved the 4th book as well, but Stacey Marie Brown does not hold any punches. Some of your favorite characters will live, but some of your favorites will die. A lot of people die. This is a huge war that spreads over multiple realms. I was not expecting the ending at all! The whole last quarter of the book took me by complete surprise.
Fans of the series might be upset about a few things that happen in the book, but there is a lot to love about this book. The whole cast of characters that you loved from the first 3 books all show up, and I do mean everyone! People you haven't seen in a book or two will be there and some of them will be very surprising. Ember and Eli are hot and cold as ever, just like always, but you do get some more answers on Eli's past. Craziness ensues. But I do love the two of them. I will say one thing about someone, not exactly a spoiler- but when Kennedy finally showed up she royally pissed me off. The way she was acting drove me crazy. But she eventually started acting more like the nice Kennedy. I love the cast of characters that Stacey Marie Brown has created- I can't even name them all. Obviously, I love Ember and Eli, but Cole, West, Lars, Cal and Simmons rank really high up there as well!
As I said before, the ending of this book was very bittersweet for me. In some ways, it was completely fitting for the story, but in some ways I wanted more of a happily ever after for everyone. But that just doesn't always happen with war. There are so many inbetween shades- it is not just winning and losing. The Darkest series will go down as one of my favorite paranormal series. I have loved all of the books and the characters. I can't wait to see what more people think. Did you love the ending? Was it bittersweet for you too? Do you want more books? I do! One thing is for sure- Stacey Marie Brown can write her butt off. Hats off to her for a fantastic series that I am sad to see an end to.
Her Best Shot is the first book in the new adult Hot & Nerdy trilog**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Her Best Shot is the first book in the new adult Hot & Nerdy trilogy by Shannyn Schroeder. I love so many things about the way this trilogy is set up. First, I love that the books are releasing each within a month of each other- at the ends of September, October and November of 2014. That is perfect for people that don't like waiting long in between books. Second, the books are told in dual narrative between each of the main guys and girls and I think you all know by now that is my favorite story telling narrative method. and Third, the trilogy follows a group of three friends. The books are each of their stories, BUT the cool part is that each of the books take place in roughly the same time period. For example, Her Best Shot is the story of Layla and Phin. Layla was on her way to spend spring break with her friend Felicity when her car broke down and she met Phin. The third book, Her Winning Formula is Felicity's story and it takes place on their spring break trip that Layla was supposed to go on. What a cool concept right? I can't wait to read the second and third books and see how they all fit together.
Ok, now let's talk some more about Her Best Shot. As I mentioned, it is the story of Layla and Phin. Layla is super smart. She picks up on things almost immediately, she loves to be in control and she hates losing at things. She is beyond your average nerd. I mean, she goes to MIT and the book starts out with her getting a job as a code analyst. Phin could not be more different, where Layla likes to calculate odds and plan her moves out ahead, Phin is much more a fly by the seat of your pants kind of guy. And this is defiantly a story of opposites attract. Most of the book takes place over 1 week so the attraction is pretty instant. They moved a bit fast for my tastes, but it was clear to see that they had a real connection. But Layla had a panic attack and did a complete 180 of her personality at one point. I was kind of thrown. I wish we had gotten a little bit more insight into her panic attacks so that I could understand her drastic mindset change a little better. It was a strange point in the story too, and while I completely detested Phin's method, I actually think what he did to Layla was for the best. She was about to make a huge mistake in my opinion. It was right around this time in the story where everything stopped being predictable and started getting a whole lot more interesting. I really didn't know where the author was going to take us next and I was so excited to find out.
Her Best Shot is a quick read. At under 200 pages it felt more like a very short story than a novella. It was fleshed out and felt complete, which is impressive for its' length. The only thing I wish there was more of was some background on Layla's panic attacks and then the outcome of the tournament! I want to know who wins! haha. Her Best Shot is perfect for when you are looking for a quick, pick me up read. The romance is great and the characters are likable. But like I said before, the real winner here is how Shannyn Schroeder structured the trilogy. I just love that all of the stories take place in the same time frame. I can't wait to meet Layla's friends and see what they were up to while she was off falling for Phin. The Hot & Nerdy series is a very cool concept, one that I would like to see more of in New Adult.
Finding Mr. Darcy is a younger feeling YA story that will appeal to peo**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Finding Mr. Darcy is a younger feeling YA story that will appeal to people who enjoy Jane Austen and a heroine has to kiss many frogs to find her prince kind of story. There are guys galore at this high school. And Liza seems to be jumping all over the place. She wasn't really, but there are three...count them three love "interests" in this book. Finding Mr. Darcy: High School Edition was a cute read and I was pleased with the way things turned out. I did have some character issues with the book but the Jane Austen aspect of the story and the writing were wonderful.
Liza starts out as kind of a loner with her best friend Janie. I really liked Liza and Janie both at the start of the story. Liza was kooky with her Jane Austen t-shirts and proper way of speaking. She was endearing. She lost a little bit of that appeal to me throughout the story with the way she was ping ponging back and forth between the guys and how she wouldn't tell Will how she felt. She is young though and at times she acted immaturely, like someone her age is prone to do.
Janie is a good friend. She was jealous at times, but I thought considering everything she was remarkably loyal. I think I liked Janie most of all. Will, Ben and Ryan are the guys in this book. Let's just cut Ben out of the equation because I don't think anyone will actually put him as a front runner, but Will and Ryan had me going back and forth quite a bit. There are ups and downs with all of the characters throughout the story and you feel like you are thrown into a Jane Austen inspire high school soap opera. Or maybe the Jane Austen contemporary version of the vampire diaries or something.
I did enjoy the way Erin Butler wrapped everything up. I think Liza ended up with the best guy for her, but it was almost too much at times for her to figure it out. I enjoyed the story, but I think it would appeal most to a younger YA crowd. The Jane Austen aspect of the story was by far my favorite. I loved Liza's trip to England and I loved all of the Austen inspired assignments and balls that they had. This made me want to dive back into Pride and Prejudice. I'm glad that Liza had a few epiphany growth moments about herself and how she was acting towards the end of the story as well, they redeemed her in my eyes. Finding Mr. Darcy might not have been my favorite book of 2014, but it was a good read. One that I think fans of Ms. Austen and a girl just trying to find her way in high school might really enjoy.
**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**Bespoken is the first book by new author, Marie Michelle Coleman. It is**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**Bespoken is the first book by new author, Marie Michelle Coleman. It is a new adult paranormal series called Nightangel and Daydreamer series. Casey lives two separate lives, one as a high powered, overworked associate in a large law firm, and the other as a pretty serious daydreamer. I enjoyed Bespoken. I had a few hiccups with it, but overall I thought it was a strong debut for Marie Michelle Coleman. Casey's daydreams are about a creature named Gabriel, who is a nightangel. I had never heard of a night angel before, so I was really intrigued.
Turns out a nightangel is part angel part vampire. That was certainly a cool combo. Casey was interesting. Some of the time, I really liked her and some of the time I couldn't figure out my feelings for her. I can't exactly pin down what it was about her that irked me, but whatever it was, it was pretty minor. Gabriel took a while to grow on me as well. But for very different reasons. Because Casey was all over the place in the start of the book, I had no idea whether she liked her daydream Gabriel or was scared of him. I really loved the descriptive writing in Bespoken. The daydream landscapes were always so vividly painted. I think that Marie Michelle Coleman did an excellent job describing everything.
Another one of my favorite parts of the story was actually watching Casey at her law firm. I know, I am probably the only one on earth that will say this because she was overworked most of the time, but I could just relate to the environment. (not necessarily just because of the work load though.) The whole law firm scene reminded me of my summer with "big law". I got a kick out of watching another associate go through the typical stuff.
As for the whole nightangel- gabriel- Casey aspect, I am having a really hard time reviewing without being too spoilery. Bespoken definitely took me by surprise a few times, and because of that I think this is just a book that you are better off experiencing for yourself. It took me a while to get into. The book starts off fine but very quickly we are thrown this new guy int he world and Casey is freaking out because it is her daydream. I just thought she handled the whole thing very strangely. I had no idea how she knew some of the things she knew about him and they weren't explained to us until much later on, if at all. So it was kind of a choppy start. Even her first daydream meeting with Gabriel after she saw him in her world was weird. But once I kept reading, the book kind of evened out and got better. I just fell into the flow of the story, I think. And once I did, I enjoyed Bespoken.This review was originally posted on Book Briefs...more
Into the Fire is the first in a new young adult paranormal romance seri**You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs: http://bookbriefs.net**
Into the Fire is the first in a new young adult paranormal romance series written by Kelly Hashway writing as Ashelyn Drake. Kelly wrote a really nice note at the start of the book explaining that that because Into the Fire is equal parts paranormal and romance she is using both her paranormal writing name as well as her romance writing name. Seeing as I love both paranormal and romance books, her foreword made me even more excited for Into the Fire. I have not yet experienced a book where the main character is a phoenix. Basically, the only phoenix I was familiar with before was Fawkes.
I think they are fascinating creatures and Ashelyn Drake did a great job making them her own in this book. Her Phoenixes get 5 lives, but the most important transition by far is between the first and second life for them. That is when they become a full phoenix and that is also the life where they forget everything about their first life. I am not quite sure why this is the only like they forget about, but I am guessing that it has something to do with the fact that they weren't a full phoenix before this first transition. But that isn't really something covered by the book.
The book starts out with Cara's brother going through the transition and everyone takes it pretty hard. I suppose it would be tough to watch someone you are so close with forget all about you. But this story is more about Cara and the new guy in town, Logan. Logan is beyond adorable. He is so cute with Cara. I loved that the book really was very evenly split between their romance and "imprint" and the phoenix history. I will say that I called the hunter right off the bat. I didn't want it to be who it was, but I was not surprised at the reveal towards the end.
You learn a lot of phoenixes and phoenix hunters in this book. I do wish we got a little bit more hunter history though. I think that would have been interesting. Either way, Into the Fire is a great read. The book flows along at a brisk pace and it is so easy to get swept up in the story. I read this book in one sitting and I enjoyed myself the whole time- right up until that humdinger of an ending! It was not what I wanted to happen at all! The second book had better do some damage control for that because it looked pretty serious left where it was. I can't wait to see what the author is going to do. I am going to continue this series for sure. If you are a fan of paranormal romance books and you are looking for a new creature to discover and fall in love with, check out Into the Fire and the Birth of the Phoenix series. I love finding series about unique paranormals, and Ashelyn Drake did a really good job with this one.