The Academy is a book that was recommended to me by somebody (I forget who now) absolutely ages ago. It's been on my TBR file on my Kindle forever, anThe Academy is a book that was recommended to me by somebody (I forget who now) absolutely ages ago. It's been on my TBR file on my Kindle forever, and one day while I was waiting for something (probably the doctor's) I decided to give it a go.
Set in the future, The Academy is told from the heroine, Kristina Jameson's point of view. Kristina has a twin Kristopher, who's father expects to enroll in an academy for boys, in order for him to get a commission to the space corps. The problem is, Kristopher has no interest in flying his own ship, all he wants to do is study music, something which is unacceptable to their father, who's keen for them to uphold the family tradition. Kristina on the other hand would love nothing more than to go the academy, she's the one who excels at astro navigation and inter-dimensional calculus. Unfortunately for Kris, she's a girl and so her only option is to attend charm school. Something she's clearly not interested in.
Anyway, to cut a long story short, Kris manages to fool her way into The Royal Academy by pretending that she's Kristopher. She ends up rooming with an outwardly surly young man called North, and ends up inadvertently making an enemy of one of the main bully boys in the school.
When Kris lands in a dorm room with North, she realises that she may not have thought things through, especially when it came to how to manage her personal hygiene in private. The showers were communal, and the students were restricted in terms of when they could make use of the them. This opportunity to shower was so limited that Kris was unable to shower for a few days, until help came from an unexpected quarter.
This was really a delightful story, and Kris was an engaging heroine. North seemed rude and surly when he first appeared, but gradually him and Kris developed an awkward friendship, that turned into something rather wonderful. Kris was teased because she was smaller than the other boys, so North was instinctively protective of her, obviously having no idea that Kris was in fact a girl. North develops feelings for Kris, and is very confused because he's always liked girls.
I loved the ebb and flow of the book, it moved along at a fairly brisk pace, and didn't really have spare moments for my mind to wander off. I think the author handled the confusion of North coming to terms with his sexuality really well, and even though the reader knows that Kris is a girl, there was a moment in the book that North's feelings for Kris overrode the confusion and shame over his sexuality. There was a really beautiful moment in the book, where North throws off the shackles of his predetermined sexuality, and embraced his new feelings for another 'boy'. I can't lie, I may have cheered a little when that happened.
The villain of the piece was a scrote called Broward and he was the absolute worst. I think that he was actually the weakest part of the story because Ms Andrews made him cookie-cutter, "I will murder you in your sleep" bad, and so there were no layers to peel back, he was just an asshole who needed to die. Sometimes readers prefer to have black and white feelings about their villains. I am not one of those readers. All Broward needed was a handle bar mustache to twirl and his cookie-cutter-ness would have been complete.
That was pretty much my only niggle, ok maybe that and the obligatory campy homosexual teacher.
Overall a really solid effort by Ms Andrews, I eagerly await her next YA book.
Sarah Mayberry is one of those authors that I trust with my reading time. It doesn't matter whether she's writing a category book or a full novel, sheSarah Mayberry is one of those authors that I trust with my reading time. It doesn't matter whether she's writing a category book or a full novel, she always manages to infuse so much heart into every page. I loved Mel and Flynn together, and separately. Mel had been through an emotionally abusive marriage, and she'd come through it, albeit proverbially bruised and battered, and a lot more unsure of herself than she used to be. I loved that even in her vulnerable moments, she was self aware enough to understand that she was broken, and she wanted to get better.
The relationship between the Mel and Flynn was lovely. I loved that Flynn was the one who wanted the Happily Ever After, and Mel was the one who just wanted a casual relationship, it was a nice juxtaposition from the norm.
I think if you're familiar with Mayberry's writing and you've liked what she's done previously, then prepare to enjoy All They Need, and prepare to fall in love with Flynn....more
Oh I loved this book so much. Loved Eveline, loved Graeme, loved the plot. I loved everything about it. Well done Maya Banks, another bloody good readOh I loved this book so much. Loved Eveline, loved Graeme, loved the plot. I loved everything about it. Well done Maya Banks, another bloody good read....more
This was such a fun book. R.L. Mathewson has been a real find, (this is me ignoring the odd typo in my Kindle copy) and I have to say, I've enjoyed thThis was such a fun book. R.L. Mathewson has been a real find, (this is me ignoring the odd typo in my Kindle copy) and I have to say, I've enjoyed the majority her books, and Playing For Keeps was no different.
Usually I hate wimpy females, but I have to say I didn't feel that way about Haley at all. I got her and I was able to empathise with her, and it was quite clear from the beginning that she was fully able to stand up for the things that she really believed in. You understood more about how she'd ended up being this passive person when her family were introduced. They were mostly douchebags, especially her mother, but she did have a great granny who was especially good at wielding her cane. Comedy gold, she was!
Jason was basically a good guy, and although he'd done his best to aggravate Haley since she'd moved in next door, it was fairly obvious that he had a soft spot for her.
I loved their relationship, and I have to say, there were moments during the book where I actually laughed out aloud, and that is such a rare occurrence when reading romance books these days.
I can't help but chuckle to myself when I recall some of the extreme measure Jason went to, in order to stop Haley from dating other guys, whilst denying his own interest in her. There was a particularly funny incident involving him being found by one of Haley's over-amorous dates, tied up on her bed, in just his boxer shorts. Hilarious.
One of my favourite plot lines in the book was commitment-phobe Jason and Haley sleeping in the same bed out of necessity once, then finding that neither can sleep well without the other, which led to mostly Jason climbing through Haley's window to sleep in the same bed as her. I really loved those scenes, and it was something I'd never come across in a romance book before, so bravo to Ms Mathewson for coming up with it.
Ms Mathewson is a fantastic find, and I look forward to more books from her in the future. ...more
Alice and Gabriel have been friends for years, and one night when Alice's romantic entanglement ends in disaster (What a fun friends-to-lovers story.
Alice and Gabriel have been friends for years, and one night when Alice's romantic entanglement ends in disaster (AGAIN), she ends up in Gabriel's house, in Gabriel's bedroom at stupid o'clock, lamenting the state of her love life.
Gabriel's used to Alice bending his ear about what sluts men are, but he could really do with a coffee. Especially if Alice is about to cry. Gabriel really hates seeing women cry, and Alice is a regular walking sob-fest.
Alice has had a crush on her big brother's friend for ages, and the attraction keeps getting stronger. He of course sees her as just his best friend's sister, something that frustrates Alice no end.
Whilst she's crying on his shoulder, Alice detects a look of lust in Gabriel's eyes - perhaps there's something she can do to finally get Gabe to notice her as a woman? She wants him, and he seems to want her, so what's the problem?
The rest of the book sees Alice doing her best to seduce Gabriel, despite his best intentions, with mixed, but amusing results.
I liked that the heroine was the aggressor in this relationship. Poor Gabriel, he didn't really have a chance of escaping Alice's devious machinations.
A hugely likable heroine, and a hard-done-by hero. Definitely a recipe for a good, fun book. Although I got this book free, I'd definitely read this author again.
On thing though, as with any heroine called Alice, I couldn't help but continuously think to myself, "Alice, Alice, who the f*ck is Alice?"
This book had lots of promise, but honestly, it died on its arse. I only finished reading it yesterday, but I'm struggling to remember what it was aboThis book had lots of promise, but honestly, it died on its arse. I only finished reading it yesterday, but I'm struggling to remember what it was about. This is not a good thing. Good job it was free from Amazon....more
Having read The Smoke Thief, I was expecting quite a lot from The Secret Swan. Alas, t'was not meant to be. Good writing, but oh so effing dull. I likHaving read The Smoke Thief, I was expecting quite a lot from The Secret Swan. Alas, t'was not meant to be. Good writing, but oh so effing dull. I like the story of the ugly duckling who turns into a swan as much as the next gal, but did this version really have to be 395 pages long? Really??...more
Loved, loved, loved! Oh Honoria was just a great heroine, and Marcus was ever so lush. I often forget how great Julia Quinn's writing is until I re-reLoved, loved, loved! Oh Honoria was just a great heroine, and Marcus was ever so lush. I often forget how great Julia Quinn's writing is until I re-read one of her books. Fabulous....more
This is still my favourite Shiloh Walker book, after all, who doesn't love a good friends-to-lovers story?
I loved the heroine in this book, Lauren waThis is still my favourite Shiloh Walker book, after all, who doesn't love a good friends-to-lovers story?
I loved the heroine in this book, Lauren was just such a great character. Although she was in love with her best friend, Dale, this doesn't stop her from reading him the riot act, when necessary, and I liked how matter of fact she was about his failings, and how she doesn't lie to herself about how she feels about him. When the reader first meets Dale, he's a bit of an asshole, but as the book goes on, he matures, and changes for the better.
The best thing about this book was what I've learned to think of as a Shiloh Walker staple, I trust her implicitly, and I always feel safe in her hands, from a story-telling point of view. I love the journey that Dale went on in this book, he's the one who needed to grow emotionally, and boy did he. At the beginning of the book, we learn that Dale is in love with his childhood sweetheart, or at least he thinks he is, but the thing is, even Lauren knows that what he feels for his ex isn't love, and one day in a fit of temper, she tells him so. She despairs that he'll never see her as more than a friend even though she's been in love with him for the last five years.
Their friendship take an unexpected turn one night, and in one moment of drunkenness everything changes forever.
Her Best Friend's Lover was my very first Shiloh Walker book, and she's since become one of my go-to authors, because I know she'll never let me down....more
Loved, loved loved. Heroine was fantastic, as was the hero, fantastic plot, and I love that Ms Hoyt adds those little fables all the way through her bLoved, loved loved. Heroine was fantastic, as was the hero, fantastic plot, and I love that Ms Hoyt adds those little fables all the way through her book. Oh, and she keeps the bedroom door wide open. A girl after my own heart!...more