Spellbound literally had me spellbound while reading it! Allie Therin is a new-to-me author and I saw this book reviewed over at Kristen's (go check her blog out too!) and I had to have it. Boy, did it NOT disappoint! This story had me giggling the whole time. That Rory is spunky! and the relationship between Rory and Arthur was pure gold. This is actually my first M/M romance that I've read. Read on to find out some of the top 5 quotes from this book!
1. "Triple. Rory cursed into his tea, because now he was listening. "And what does he want for triple? Me in a maid's uniform, scrying all the china in his Fifth Avenue mansion?""
Yeah, if I was drinking tea while reading this I would have definitely spit it out. It puts such an image into your head that you can't get out. Funny.
2. "People can still see you," Arthur pointed out. "You're not that short."" "You're not that funny."
Love, love, love, Arthur and Rory's sarcastic dialogues. There are so many gems in this book.
3. "Why're you so happy?" He said suspiciously. "Not all of us shop at Scowls and Brooding, dear."
It wouldn't be fair if I didn't mention Mrs. Brodigan, who can stand up for herself against anything. Especially, sarcastic little sh*ts like Rory. And, I say that with all the love in my heart.
4."Yes, because Rory would never tell you what he really thought. He's such a wilting flower." "Even hellcats can be taken advantage of-"
Arthur's lucky Rory wasn't there to hear this conversation. But it was still funny.
5. Then you hold on to me, because I won't let go.
Probably the most romantic line and overall theme to this whole dang story. I loved how it was brought up on a couple of occasions. It really did bring the sweet to balance out the sassy.
It's hard to pass up a Caity Shaw story. Her travel mishaps are very relatable and that's why I fell in loveReview also posted on lampshadereader.com
It's hard to pass up a Caity Shaw story. Her travel mishaps are very relatable and that's why I fell in love with the character. In Live to Fly Another Day, Caity focuses on family and her genealogy research.
It's always a delight to read about Caity's adventures (or rather misadventures). Something is always going negative but in such a funny way that you can't help but giggle at her expense.
I really enjoyed her dog Mac. Let's just say he brings out her certain tendencies to act just like her mom, much to her chagrin of course. It was truly entertaining. Caity's and Declan's relationship grows even more and he, as a character is growing on me as well. He's just so darn sweet.
Caity's side project of researching into her family history builds in this installment. Her long lost uncle Geroge plays a crucial role in this and I gotta say I wanted to bop him over the head towards the end of the story. So glad that was a fleeting feeling though...
Caity doesn't travel as much in this one, but I loved the planning that went into saving George's estate and the various side characters were also fun. Enid, Fanny, and Thomas all are great additions. (Well, Enid is a slag ;) ). I loved learning that new insult, going to definitely use it more in conversations!
I feel like with each book I become more endeared to the characters and their ups and downs. Caity's is like a roller coaster that I hope doesn't end soon.
Pick this series up if you love family drama, klutzy heroines, rambunctious puppies, hot Irish men, and characters that you just want to bop on the head ;).
Not bad but not great either. For an assassin she's not really assassin like. Okay so she wants to kill but she's not cool and calm like one. I wouldNot bad but not great either. For an assassin she's not really assassin like. Okay so she wants to kill but she's not cool and calm like one. I would have liked it more if they didn't ship the assassin theme too much. Mercenary might have been better.
Also, her past exploits sounded more interesting than the story itself. It did get slow in the middle, but overall it was still entertaining to read. Regardless of the issues I had with this book, I'm still interested in the rest....more
It's been awhile since I've read an honest to goodness ContemporaReview also published on lampshadereader.com
*Received a review copy from NetGalley.*
It's been awhile since I've read an honest to goodness Contemporary Romance. Kind of glad I did. I went into Once Upon a Bad Boy with fresh eyes and a heart that was willing to have another go at the genre. This is the perfect book to take with you to the beach, since summer is just around the corner.
Okay, let me start by saying that I just jumped into this series. It's book #3 and while reading this book, I didn't feel out of place at all. It's such a cozy feeling reading about characters that have such great chemistry with each other. The friendships are where it's at, let me say. Especially between our heroine, Sadie and one of her besties Ana. Ana is a hoot.
While talking about donuts and love lives:
"Delayed gratification only works up to a point." Ana eyed her up and down pointedly. "Trust me, you don't want to end up with a stale donut."
"Ryan was grocery store cake. You don't fall in love with grocery store cake."
(Me thinks she'll be eating those words later...) <---see what I did there? ;) har har har.
Anyways, this is a second chance at love romance between Sadie and Bo. Childhood sweethearts that broke up and miraculously find their way back to each other. I liked the movie star aspect of this as well. Sadie is an aspiring actress who got a big role in a major film. Coming right out of the soap opera scene and kind of labeled a spoiled brat (which she's anything but! I was kind of worried about that), Sadie wants to prove to herself and her audience that she has the acting chops. Bo finds his way back to her by being the stunt coordinator on set. So sparks fly (angry sparks on Sadie's end), friendships are rebuilt, and the sizzling between the sheets happens. Major sizzling, I might add. In fact, I was kind of tired of it midway through the book. A big chunk of the story is dedicated to it. I wanted them to get back on track with filming the movie.
There are secrets being held in this story, a major secret that not even the reader is privy too until almost the very end of the book. Well, let me say that there was something Sadie wasn't telling us (the reader and Bo), but her actual thoughts weren't made clear until much further in the story. I actually liked that, because even then it still wasn't brought out into the open until she told Bo. So big surprise. It was handled well and Bo handled that news realistically in my honest opinion.
All in all, this was a fun and fast paced read with some good drama thrown in. Totally beach worthy read, if you're headed that way this summer. ...more
The hacker romance concept was a bit new to me and I found myself totally entertained throughout this one. I'vOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
The hacker romance concept was a bit new to me and I found myself totally entertained throughout this one. I've never had so many laugh out loud moments while reading a book. Kate and Ian's banter was the best.
I liked the cute play on Robin Hood, where hacker Ian robs from other hackers and gives money to Kate's food pantry. It really was sweet.
However, I'm not sure how I would feel in Kate's shoes if someone admitted to me that they hacked my information, only just because. Ian had a slight controlling personality, but that was downplayed by his playfulness and his sweetness.
Despite how I loved their relationship, certain aspects just slowed down the pace and I was getting tired of hearing about nighties and lingerie. It picks up past the half way mark, and a little suspense is thrown in for good measure.
Overall, I would like to read the next book in the series, but I'm not rushing for it. ...more
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
Help. I've suffered a book coma! Vermilion Lies left me reeling and has ruined me for all other vampire themed books. If you're looking for a super fast paced, gut punching novel, this is the one for you.
Let's revisit my statement about book coma, shall we?
It's not uncommon for the author, L.D. Rose, to totally make me feel for the characters that she writes. She has a knack for writing fast paced action and for writing lust inducing heroes. Or shall I say, unconventional heroes. Because what's cooler than vampire hybrids kicking evil vampire butt?
Rose's heroes and heroines are tattered, bruised, and brutally put through torture. It's a dark dystopian type world that the Senary (our heroes) live in. Where humans are few and vampires (or leeches as they're referenced in the series) have taken over cities.
Each of the Senary hybrids have certain talents that have manifested within themselves. In Dax's case, his ability is to conjure ice from his hands. (Whereas, for example, in Releasing the Demons, Blaze had the ability of fire).
"Cindel looked at the hybrid with new perspective, tuning into the dark aura radiating from his pores. It eddied around him like a storm, a maelstrom of blue, and the deeper it went, the colder it became, much like the open ocean itself."
Dax's vampire hunting leads him to Cindel. An equally tortured soul who happens to be a vampire and because of that, persona non grata to all of the Senary. They're chemistry was on fire! (or should I say ice cold in this instance?), and of course you'll encounter that famous trope of enemies to lovers. Cindel, is a little strange, in that for a vampire, she's actually more human in emotions and crying. But despite my description of her, she is a very deep character who has been tortured and abused by her sire (the main baddie in this story).
Both Dax and Cindel push the limits of their attraction and lot's of sizzling scenes are to be had. While most of the story revolves around them, it's always a pleasure to revisit the other characters like Blaze and Jon from the previous 2 books. I love the camaraderie of the Senary. Their banter, nicknames for each other, and tight knit bonds.
From beginning to the end, this book was filled to brim with action--bloody action. Gore. So much gore. But I'm not complaining. It's written well, and that's just what you expect with this kind of setting.
So yeah, I forgot. Book coma.
By the time I finished this book, I pretty much experienced a whole gamut of emotions. Just like the characters in this book, I too left bruised and battered. But in a good way. At the risk of spoiling anything, Dax goes through A LOT in this book. It's heartbreaking.
I do believe this series can be read out of order. Everything is presented in a way that would make sense if you just picked it up....more
I haven't read much travel adventure stories, so this was a new type of read for me. While I wouldn't characteOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
I haven't read much travel adventure stories, so this was a new type of read for me. While I wouldn't characterize this as a light read per se, the first half of the book is focused on the main character, Jessica, trying to prove to herself that she can live a different country. With the death of her mom that she wasn't really close to always in the background weighing her down, Jessica finds her self in Thailand teaching children English.
Her bravery aside, I couldn't imagine doing that myself, so I was waiting for the difficulty of that decision to catch up with the character. While nothing really happens for quite a bit, I feel like it was building up to the last half of the story where the majority of the drama takes place. I really couldn't understand Jessica at times. Her application to be a shipmate on a boat with people she doesn't know, and the fact that she doesn't know anything about sailing baffled me. Yes, at this point the reader does know how she wants to step out of her comfort zone, but come on! That's a little too risky.
The fact that she kind of guilt trips Grant to sail on his ship irked me too.
It was a bit jarring to read what happens during their sailing "vacation", and the I told you so's, were going through my mind the whole time.
Overall, I couldn't connect to any of the characters in this one and the romance factor was a bit meh....more
If you're one of the lucky ones and plan on heading to the beach this summer, well I've got a book recommendation for you! Barefoot Beach by Debbie MIf you're one of the lucky ones and plan on heading to the beach this summer, well I've got a book recommendation for you! Barefoot Beach by Debbie Mason provides fun, family dynamic, sweet romance, matchmaking grandmothers, and drama.
First off let me say that I couldn't get enough of this installment. I finished reading this after waking up in the middle of the night. 4 hours later, I knew this was one of my favorites in this series.
At first, I wasn't sure what to think of the main female protagonist, Theia. The first few chapters seem like there was something stuck up her butt. I didn't care for her attitude. But after some things were pointed out to her (you gotta love small towns), she softened a bit.
Marco, the hunky fireman, had a definite role in it. This whole series revolves around a large family trying to save Greystone Manor, which has been in their family for generations. It's rival in the next town is trying to buy them out and make room for condos.
So a lot of back and forth about family members either wanting to sell their share and being on Team Greystone. It's fun to read that's for sure.
If you also enjoy the fake relationship trope this one has some cute and funny scenes.
I really wanted to like this one. I just had really high expectations, but just couldn’t connect to the new chOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
I really wanted to like this one. I just had really high expectations, but just couldn’t connect to the new characters. I loved the premise of the robot killing it’s maker and the opening scene on the trapeze was awesome! However, I really don’t know why this didn’t resonate with me.
This totally reads as a standalone, which is a shame because I loved the established characters. They don’t really make a big appearance in this, just a tease really. It could be because there was a lot going on. The whole prototype thing could get convoluted. Amalie’s and Matthias’s romance was a bit blah. So in other worlds, not my favorite. I do look forward to more in this series though....more
Claire's story is a heartfelt one. Suffering from PTSD, she struggles to findOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
-Received a copy from NetGalley.-
Claire's story is a heartfelt one. Suffering from PTSD, she struggles to find her center. After being a victim to a terrorist shooting, Claire loses her future and her sense of being safe in public places. She places her recovery around those who love her and her two closest friends Peyton and Steffi.
But a betrayal and the passage of time force Claire to become deadset in her views and insecurities. The small town playboy and brother to her now frenemy, comes back to town with a mission.
While I did not agree to Logan's motives (which were to try and win forgiveness on behalf of his sister), and his way of forcing Claire to obviously do what she didn't feel comfortable doing (which was to break out of her comfort barrier). I did appreciate that he was just trying to be a friend.
His sudden awareness about being attracted to her may have been a bit forced and Claire being the total opposite of him, may have contributed to me rolling my eyes a few times at both of them. Claire may seem to come off as bitter, but I guess she's earned it. Her family didn't help her situation either by always being worried and telling her to "be safe". Granted, she did need the push to break free, and Logan was totally responsible for all character growth for her. So it was nice to see his playboy character taken down a notch by grumpy Claire.
"For all the ways he'd criticized Claire for letting fear stop her from trying new things, he'd let fear stop him from grasping on to love."
I like the sub story of Claire and Steffi owning their own contracting business. Claire's love for decorating and design was a fresh spin on her otherwise tough character. It also plays a factor in bringing Logan and Claire together as well....more
My Favorite Cowboy is your quintessential romance with a little suspense throOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
-Received a copy from NetGalley.-
My Favorite Cowboy is your quintessential romance with a little suspense thrown in. You've got two characters who are dead set against serious relationships.
"He knew better than anyone that he had no intentions of settling down. He'd never be able to get past his abandonment issues enough to trust someone with his heart."
Well little does Caleb know that when he meets Audrey (a former HEA believer), sparks will fly and so will the zippers--to his pants. *ahem*
If you read further in the story you'll get this:
"Dammit, Audrey. Tell me to walk away!"
With that one word, he was lost. Utterly.
Besides those gems, I really did enjoy the plot including the horses. The whole suspense was Audrey trying to figure out who was poisoning them and why. While she becomes the target as well, it becomes quite an entertaining read.
While I did enjoy this, I wasn't really invested in the characters. I won't go out of my way to read the next one, but If I do come across it, I won't say no.
I jumped into this series with this one so you could as well. I enjoy Donna Grant's historical romances and it was a treat to read one of her contemporaries....more
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
The Body in Griffith Park by Jennifer Kincheloe was a hoot. I can never get tired of Anna Blanc and this installment did not disappoint. Below is the Top 5 Reasons why I loved The Body in Griffith Park.
1. Anna Blanc
I'm pretty sure that the lead character is a given. But I seriously cannot stress enough about how unique of a character she is. I don't think I've read one quite like her. As Anna says: Jupiter!
She's frustratingly annoying, but yet endearing at the same time. I just can't get over her. Maybe I understand how Joe feels.
"After several misstarts. Anna finally had the love of her life, just like a Valentine's card. Well, perhaps not just like a Valentine's card. There was nothing quaint or charming about the way she felt a about Joe Singer. She wanted to eat him."
Given that Anna lives in The Progressive Era in America, the series focuses on the lack of women's rights. I think this quote put it perfectly.
"He said "no" was the story of Anna's life."
I love how she "steals" books in order to learn how to read a crime scene.
2. Family Dynamics
Anna's dad is still a douche bag, but I have a feeling that someday they might repair their relationship. I really liked the added family drama in this one.
3. The Overall Theme
The secret admirer in the beginning was fun. Anna and Joe's continued romantic faux pas. Anna's continued support for the prostitutes that she got to know from the previous book. The hunt for a killer that turns into breaking up a bigger crime ring.
4. Joe Singer
I consider Joe a beta hero. He doesn't act macho and he kind of lets Anna walk all over him. The instance on the train (which was hilarious) would have made me a little miffed, but it's Joe, so all we get is concern for Anna's safety first and foremost. What a sweetie.
Joe can be my Arrow Collar Man any day.
Oh and his singing gets me all the time.
5. Bittersweet Ending
Oh my, but this one made me really sorry for Anna. It really showed the nuances to Anna's personality. Even though she comes off as spoiled and bratty, deep down she really just needs someone. She displays kindness and vulnerability. At least she has Joe....more
Can’t go wrong with a classic. It had been awhile since I’ve read Northanger Abbey, so it was a treat to hearOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
Can’t go wrong with a classic. It had been awhile since I’ve read Northanger Abbey, so it was a treat to hear the audiobook version narrated by Emma Thompson. She does a lovely job and so do the other voice actors.
I forgot how much Catherine is an annoying character. Annoying, but yet funny. Her overreactions in this story is really what makes it a great read. A tongue-in-cheek Jane Austen that makes fun of Gothic novels. I totally get it.
I loved the sound effects in the audiobook, but at times the background noises were a bit overwhelming. All in all this was a great rendition and one that I would listen to again....more
One of my favorite Woman's Fiction authors, Jamie Beck, brings us a new book series set in Sanctuary Sound, Connecticut. The Memory of You has all of the signatures true to a Jamie Beck story and will guarantee a few heartbreaking themes as well as heartwarming.
This series brings a certain divergence from a typically book by Jamie Beck. A form of PTSD plays a major role in each of the heroine's lives and while Steffi's is not completely explained in every detail, it's pretty much apparent what happened to her.
Steffi moves back to her hometown to recover from a mugging (and horrid assault) that happened to her. For those who don't like to read about those kind of themes, no worries, nothing is really explained in full detail, just implied. That experience causes Steffi to space out and causes some added troubles for her.
She has a small business of home remodeling with her childhood friend and she finds that moving back to her hometown is not without troubles as well.
Enter: an old flame.
This story also has the second chance at romance trope. Steffi and Ryan's relationship was hard won but well worth the emotional trust roller coaster. Steffi ghosted Ryan during college for completely selfish, but understandable reasons: (she wanted to live her life and didn't want to get tied down). While it is a cruel way to dump someone, I felt like Ryan wanted to hold on to that grudge way too long.
"He'd changed, no doubt. She'd started that ball rolling; then his wife and his job had exposed him to even more injustice, making him cynical and, sometimes, bitter."
Thankfully, that doesn't last too long in the story, and Steffi's problem is the main concern to the story and plot. However, let me point out the little gem that is their relationship when it does get rolling again:
"Time slowed while they held each other's gaze, shoulder to shoulder, flashbacks floating around them like dandelion fluff. He suppressed the sudden urge to kiss her right there in the moonlight."
The Memory of You is really such a robust read, full of relevant themes that can speak to a lot of people out there. While it tips the scale more towards Women's Fiction, it has enough romance in it to really balance it out. The friendships and family theme are prominent and introduces new characters that I can grow to love....more
While this is listed as a YA book, I would take into account the subject matter of the book. Jack the Ripper iOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
While this is listed as a YA book, I would take into account the subject matter of the book. Jack the Ripper is an interesting subject and one that I have been reading about for awhile. Since his crimes (murders of prostitutes in the most horrendous way) were never solved, there is plenty of room for fictional speculation. Stalking Jack the Ripper has an interesting tag line: I was the girl who loved The Ripper.
That line alone made me go into the story with high expectations and it actually made me think that the mystery would be cut an dry. However, expect a lot of smoke and mirrors, because there are actually a few more suspects than I thought there would be.
I loved the constant question that I was asking myself: Who the heck is it really?
It's a gritty world, as Victorian London is wont to be. Audrey Rose, our protagonist, takes some getting used to. She does fall into strong woman category, but I could not find her endearing. Her questionable decisions which had the potential to put her in danger, were a little annoying because of how her character was supposed to be level headed and "smart".
Besides that, it was a fairly fast-paced read that kept me on my toes. I really enjoyed the secondary characters and the unique take on the infamous murders. It also has a sort of Steampunk feel to it, for those who enjoy that genre. Some chapters do have images (not from the actual murder scenes) but ones that tie in with what's going on in the story.
"The dead speak to those who listen. Be quieter than even them."
Quite possibly my favorite installment so far in The Travel Mishaps of Caity Shaw series. I really enjoyed the setting of this story and the whole macQuite possibly my favorite installment so far in The Travel Mishaps of Caity Shaw series. I really enjoyed the setting of this story and the whole macaron incident was fun.
Caity's relationship with Declan develops even more so and her ongoing research into her family history continues with even more surprises revealed.
Overall, I really liked this one and found that Caity keeps growing as a character and she has matured a lot since the first book. ...more
I'm not usually prone to jump on really popular books because I've quite often been underwhelmed by them. GirOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
I'm not usually prone to jump on really popular books because I've quite often been underwhelmed by them. Girls of Paper and Fire was in my November OwlCrate box so I decided to give it a go. It turned out that this was a book that I couldn't put down. I was pleasantly surprised by all that this book had to offer.
"Even that which seems impossible at first can be overcome by strength of mind and heart."
**Just a little warning to those who might be sensitive to certain themes in books. This has instances of sexual abuse/rape in it. Although not explained in detail, the reader is aware of it happening.**
In the world of Ikhara, humans and non-humans (demons) live in a contentious environment ruled by a demon King. Lei is in a villiage that prefers not to interfere too much with politics and hopefully stays out of the King's notice. However, when Lei's mother is taken forcibly from her home, the unfortunate village must come to terms with all that is around them. After that event, Lei's life becomes routine again until it's her unlucky fate to be taken by the King's General.
There's so much world building in this book with interesting characters. The demons are actually human/animal hybrids. Ox/human, bear/human, bird/human, etc. They, of course are the higher caste. Lei, being human, is on the lowest level and treated horribly. They are called paper skin because of their vulnerability and thin skin. Lei really has two things to look forward to, finding her mother and finding out what her word is. Or in other words her birth-blessing. Everyone gets one at birth and it determines the fate of the person wearing it. Their word is revealed on their 18th birthday.
It's this birth-blessing that carries Lei through after her abduction and forced into the harem of the King. With 8 other paper girls, Lei lives in fear for the time that she gets called to be with the King. It really is such a nail biting and heart wrenching story. Natasha Ngan has such a way with words that it flows really easily. Despite such a vast world, with politics and rules, it really was not overwhelming. It's really easy to get caught up with the everyday struggles of Lei. It was amazing to read about Lei's growth throughout. How it really was just about her when she first arrived at the palace and how it took love to make her open her eyes and really figure out what was going on around her.
While the ordeals of all the girls was horrible and the King a total douche of a character, I loved the friendships that were forged and Lei's forbidden love. Her tenacity to fight back and her ability to fiercely protect those she cares about make the climax of this book even more amazing.
I have to say Lei's and Wren's love is the sweetest love story that I have ever read. I love those two girls and I can't wait to see what the next book in the series brings them. The story sort of ends in a cliff hanger, but not one that I'm mad at really. I'm curious to know more about Lei's unique eyes and what it really means as well.
A little side note:
I didn't know how much this excerpt from the book would be quoted everywhere, but when I read it, it pretty much summed up my whole experience with the book, so I'm quoting it too. :)
We might be Paper Girls, easily torn and written upon. The very title we’re given suggests that we are blank, waiting to be filled. But what the Demon King and his court do not understand is that paper is flammable. And there is a fire catching among us.
A truly unique take on the world of Pride and Prejudice, with Mary being theAlso posted on lampshadereader.com
Received a review copy from NetGalley.
A truly unique take on the world of Pride and Prejudice, with Mary being the main character. Imaginative and different, take all of your preconceived notions about P&P and hold them back; don't bring them with you while reading this. If you are a fan of P&P (like I am), you will be shocked by the liberties the author took with all of the beloved characters. There's already a lot of controversy about this book and all of the negative press that it's receiving. This actually made me want to read the novel even more and I'm glad I did. Embrace this fresh new look on the lives of these fictional characters.
I had to mull a little bit on my review for this story. I have to say Mary is the least likeable characters from Pride and Prejudice and I always was a bit curious to know her point of view on certain events. While she still did not come off as extremely likeable, I did appreciate the certain realism it brought to the beloved original story. The other sisters (besides Jane) came off as more of a caricature of their original personalities. Lydia and Kitty were more annoying and mean, and Lizzie was not as witty as she should be; she actually came off as selfish.
This story is, after all, about Mary, so my sympathies were always with her character. She easily fell in love and quite easily fell out of love too. Perhaps it's my growing cynical nature, but I enjoyed the glimpse of the after HEA and how it was not sunshine and daisies for some.
Personally, I enjoyed this different take on the classic. It added more grit and seriousness (in certain parts). While I still prefer the original story, I do believe this brought something entirely different to the table. ...more
What more can I say about Angel? Rather, how much more can I say about her character and how much she grows onOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
What more can I say about Angel? Rather, how much more can I say about her character and how much she grows on me every time I delve into this wonderful series.
I listen to this series in audiobook format, which I highly recommend. Allison McLemore, brings the southern twang without being cringey and cliche’. However, I did notice that 3/4 of the way through this book it sounded like the narrator had a cold and Angel’s character sounded stuffy.
I did enjoy the plot of this book a lot. The whole movie set zombie idea with real life zombies thrown in the mix was fun and suspenseful. Angel really has the worst luck and it is turned up to the max in this one. As far as the romance goes, it was not hot and heavy. Not complaining, because I really think Angel does not need that right now....more
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
I've practically waited a long time for Hal's story. That cute little rambunctious kid, all grown up and a knight no less. A ladies man through and through, I enjoyed seeing Hal grow up (in character) in this story. Gift of Honor, follows Hal's journey through the tumultuous time of King Richard II's rule of England; and finding love as well.
Hal certainly does not have it easy being a knight during King Richard II's rule. This little back story takes place throughout the books in this series and it's nice to learn a little history at the same time. (BTW, it's not necessary to read these books in order). Serving King and Country is what he has learned to do and wants to live up to his Brother's and Father's example.
Through unfortunate circumstances Hal finds himself bereft of his honor and shamed. On his desolate journey back to his home he encounters Elinor. Although, one might say it's wasn't in the best of circumstances. However, their love does bloom in the close confines of a little cottage and through the bonding with falcons.
Now, it's Elinor's story that really pulls at the heartstrings. Why is it that there always has to be a harpy of a woman behind every heartbreaking story? (well make that: one horrible Father, one spineless Cousin, and one absolutely horrendous (deserved her fate) harpy of a woman). But I digress. I did find that I enjoy my heart being dragged through mud before receiving my reward of reading a HEA.
Elinor was an interesting character in that she is a Medieval woman who knows about Falconry. (Put that down as one of my favorite jobs a historical heroine can have.) That also includes, her independence and as her relationship with Hal grew, her sense of low self worth. The "I'm not good enough for him" mentality. Which, in fact, made me want to shake her towards the end of the story. But, I still loved her, and her story. ...more
The girls at Two Love Lane are a pleasure to read about. While SecondOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
Received a review copy from Netgalley.
The girls at Two Love Lane are a pleasure to read about. While Second Chance at Two Love Lane is book 3 in the series, it does read as a standalone. Having missed reading the second book in the series, I did not feel that I missed any storyline since this book focuses on Ella.
It was a light read, full of giggly moments and sweet romance. I found that I enjoy reading stories including fictional movie stars. It brings a sort of new dilemma in relationships involving movie stars and regular people. How would they make it work? The scheduling, fame, and all that. As the title of the book states, Ella and Hank get a second chance at their relationship. While Hank is a big movie star, Ella has put her dreams of also becoming a star on hold and now works at Two Love Lane as a matchmaker.
The story has a Rom-Com feel to it when Ella and Hank find themselves in the same town and same house after all those years apart. It really was a cute read, and had the added drama of Ella's large Italian family thrown in for good measure. However, I don't feel like that side story added much to the main plot.
Author Kieran Kramer excels with creating very likeable characters and creating fictional friendships that are fun to read and follow....more
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
All good things must come to an end. Sad to see that this wonderful series is over. The last story in the Dark Destinies series, Dark Child of Forever, follows Dominic's and Cassidy's adventure to the ultimate climax.
S.K. Ryder brings vampires to a whole new level.
Vampires are simply vampires, but in the Dark Destinies Dominic wants to unite vampires and convert them into beings of love, not hatred nor fear. This journey sees Dominic evolving from just a youngling vampire into the master of all. Of course his quest to see his dreams come true must come with road bumps. The biggest one called, Adilla. Quite honestly, a brat with anger issues.
Dominic's and Cassidy's relationship grows.
If you love getting the "feels" reading about characters, Dominic and Cassidy is the perfect example. Having read the first two stories in this trilogy, one can really get a feel about how much these too have grown. One being a vampire and the other human bring all of the expected problems, but this story actually focuses on it. I loved that Dominic wanted to give Cassidy a child, but obviously couldn't. (BTW--major tears with this story-NO SPOILERS).
Secondary characters that I actually love now.
One character that has truly evolved is Jackson. Hate for vampires was his major personality trait. But his growth was a major "aww" moment. He was actually cute. (You could not have gotten this response from me in book 1 and 2).
I wished Serge got more play in this story. Totally underrepresented. He is the quirkiest vampire that I've ever read about and was totally happy to read his HEA as well.
OMG this ending. Totally satisfying, but sad for me because it's the end. So glad that the author gave the reader what they wanted and still keeping the integrity of the story.
Y'all I LOVE THIS SERIES. But if you want to read it, start from book 1....more
A little note about this series: Life is Strange is actuallyOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
Just one word when I saw this graphic novel: YES!
A little note about this series: Life is Strange is actually a video game. One where choices matter. In the game, the lead character Max, gains powers that grant her the ability to rewind time. Which in turn lets her save the life of her childhood friend Chloe. However, all power comes with repercussions as Max finds out. In the end it all comes down to this: Save Chloe or save her hometown Arcadia Bay from disaster.
I totally was on the save Chloe side and well, turns out I made the canon choice. When I found out that they were writing a graphic novel depicting what happens after that choice in the game, I went total fan girl crazy.
Anyways, this picks up right after where the game ends and Max is still paying the price for her power. Things are acting up and there seems to be little hiccoughs in time. It by no means ties anything up, since this graphic novel series continues. I’m really into it and I love Max and Chloe’s sweet romance.
The artwork stayed true to the style of the video game and the writing style also felt genuine. Loved it!...more
I know it's a little early for Christmas, but I can't resist such a booOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
Received a review copy from NetGalley.
I know it's a little early for Christmas, but I can't resist such a book when it presents itself to me. I've enjoyed books from the Eternity Springs series before and I know it will satisfy my need for small town romances. The Christmas Wishing Tree is a story that gave me the feels and made me fall in love with the characters both young and old.
Eternity Springs is a town full of great characters that it might seem a bit daunting keeping them all straight, but I do believe you can read these out of order. Personally, I haven't read them all, but jumping into this one didn't give me problems.
The star of the story is little Reilly. His one wish is for a daddy and relays his wish to Santa (Devin) on his very own hotline. A hotline pretty much orchestrated by none other than Eternity Springs' very own Celeste. Celeste makes the magic happen for everyone in town and she is one of the cutest characters that I've ever read. Well, she takes a second to Reilly for sure.
Reilly's adoptive mom, Jenna, is going through her own problems and that gives this story a little bit of suspense. A stalker is pretty much terrorizing both mother and son with pranks that border on the very dangerous. Since Eternity Springs is a sort of safe haven, they both find themselves enchanted by the town and are eventually taken in.
Enchantment is pretty much the basis of the romance between Jenna and Devin. The whole Santa hotline thing brings them together and Devin starts craving to have his very own family. Something that he was dead set against during the beginning of the story. The reason for his feelings? You probably guessed it: a former lover.
If you're a fan of small town romances you will be happy to know that this one will not disappoint. It has all of aspects: large family, tight community, friends, quaint little shops, and quirky characters....more
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book, via Netgalley.
This story was so cute. It played on the Cinderella trope with Jenna a rose colored glasses type of character. Her naivete was a little sad, but as she is in the business of HEA, she kind of wishes that for herself as well. Her decisions are a little questionable if not based on the fact that she's stubborn, but yet I couldn't help but think her a charming character. There's nothing wrong for dreaming about a Prince Charming or a HEA.
Besides the fairy tale feel of the story, Colleen's ghostly presence was there but a little subdued. Her sidekick Simon the cat was still a hoot. A couple of catalysts were thrown into the plot which expanded the overall story and made it all the more interesting.
Overall, Logan and Jenna were a really cute couple and the story complemented them both. ...more
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy of this book.
What more can be said about the Knights of Honor series? Every book takes me on a Medieval journey full of sweet romance and chivalry. Alexa Aston has the perfect formula for coming up with endearing characters that make you root for them.
I’ve read every book, so far, in the Knights of Honor series and it's fun to see Geoffry’s and Merryn’s children grow up and find their happily ever afters. In Love and Honor, Edward comes front and center. He becomes a Knight (naturally), and finds himself serving a young King who has surrounded himself with questionable advisers. While this story does not take place in the court setting, Edward still encounters shady characters and he must serve his King and country as best as he can.
There’s always that one heartbreaking factor and that one character that you love to hate in an Alexa Aston Knights of Honor book.
Heartbreaking factor: Rosalyn’s back story. Love to hate: Rosalyn’s uncles’ wife.
I was so incensed as I read the opening scenes but I was kind of relieved to get that over with because the rest of the book, I knew, would be worry free. (It’s that formula I was talking about). Except for that one admission towards the end which made me a little sad.
Insta Love: Not a fan, but somehow it works out in Medieval's. It’s a sweet romance with a little touch of heat.
Rosalyn and Edward are the perfect couple for each other and I just love their easy going temperaments. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and totally look forward to Hal’s story.
Julie Anne Long is technically not a new author for me. I’veOriginally posted on lampshadereader.com
Received a copy of this book through Edelweiss.
Julie Anne Long is technically not a new author for me. I’ve enjoyed her Pennyroyal Green Historical Romance series before. But her Contemporary Romance was an unexplored area. I can easily say that I love her Contemporary style a lot better!
Top 5 reasons why I loved First Time at Firelight Falls, in no particular order.
1. Book Boyfriend Alert!!
Are you in a reading stump? Can’t find the next book boyfriend to crush on? Look no further because I’ve got two words for you: GABE CALDERA.
Just like his last name suggests he is HOT like lava. And sweet to boot too. I haven’t come across a hero like this one in a while. A humbled fellow with a sweet disposition and the cutest conversationalist ever. *swoon*. (I haven’t swooned over a character in a LONG time and yes, I haven’t used all caps in my reviews in a while either).
2. The hard to get factor
I’m not just talking about the relationship between Gabe and Eden. I loved the fact that their relationship did not zoom straight into bed. It was a long drawn out process of back and forth and conversations that would stop abruptly. The "to be continued" flirtation was so adorable. It totally made me impatient for the end result, for sure. So yes, the author played hard to get with the reader as well.
3. Eden’s fight or flight personality, but mostly flight.
Okay, so normally, I’m not into heroines who are squirrely. Eden might have come off like that, but I totally get her reasons. She has a teenaged child. Priorities and all. The fact that she didn’t jump into bed with the totally hawt guy crushing on her, made me respect her as a character more. Hint:That aspect made Gabe totally respect her too.
4. Secrets: Relationship Destroyer?
Eden’s secret plays a special role and as the reader the clues start adding up and we figure it out. However, true to romance story form, that secret might just destroy trust. This secret however, was a legitimate one that even I couldn’t get angry at. Usually, secrets between characters can get a bit overwhelming. It really was just one, and I could totally handle it. So yes, to sum this up: juicy drama.
Leesy was one of the cutest kids in fictional form. (Technically, I did get tired of the “colty legs” adjective every now and then to describer her TBH). But, her personality was not teenage angsty *whew* yet. So glad that she wasn’t a teen character. It just added a certain charm factor to the whole story. Lightened it up even more.
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader Copy, received via NetGalley, of this book.
A Manga that grabs you in the feels is a new experience for me. While most Manga can be fantastical and have Kawaii written all over them, Perfect World by Rie Aruga is a step away from that.
Reading this brought several issues to light:
Disabled people are not fragile. Disabled people can have romance in their lives. Disabled people can have careers. I cannot begin to understand what disabled people go through.
Kawana encounters all of these issues as she is dealt a surprising blast from her past, a surprising blast in more ways than one. Her long time crush has become disabled. Tsugumi’s feelings are then turned upside down as she begins to question her own thoughts on disability. Can she be in a relationship with him? What does it all mean?
I loved the inner character growth of Kawana. While this is not the full story (it continues in volumes), I can safely say that romance is budding between Kawana and Ayukawa. They both find themselves working together and testing both of their resolves. For Ayukawa, his disability has altered him emotionally and physically.
The artwork in this Manga is very easy going and cute (I did say there wasn’t Kawaii written all over this, but it’s not overboard). It was a heartfelt drama and candy for the eyes. I really can’t wait to find out what happens and this is definitely a Manga that I’m invested in....more