Saturday, June 24, 2017

The Silent Waters by Brittainy C. Cherry (audiobook)

Title:  The Silent Waters
Author: Brittainy C. Cherry
My Rating: A+
Narrator: Joe Arden, Erin Mallon

Genre: New Adult Romance
Series: Elements #3
Main Characters: Brooks and Maggie
Release Date: December 2016 (audiobook)
Publisher: Audible
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: spicy

Story Overview:

Our lives are a collection of moments. Some utterly painful and full of yesterday's hurts. Some beautifully hopeful and full of tomorrow's promises.

I’ve had many moments in my lifetime, moments that changed me, challenged me. Moments that scared me and engulfed me. However, the biggest ones—the most heartbreaking and breathtaking ones—all included him.

I was ten years old when I lost my voice. A piece of me was stolen away, and the only person who could truly hear my silence was Brooks Griffin. He was the light during my dark days, the promise of tomorrow, until tragedy found him. Tragedy that eventually drowned him in a sea of memories.

This is the story of a boy and girl who loved each other, but didn’t love themselves. A story of life and death. Of love and broken promises.

Of moments.
My Review:
Overall: 4.75
Performance: 4.5
Story: 4.75

Wow! This was my first time reading Brittainy C. Cherry so I didn't know what to expect. I was blown away by this book..and immediately got online to see which of her books I need to read next. This book was so good...almost perfection in every single way...almost. I had one tiny niggle about the story that I'll talk about in a moment.

Brooks and Maggie's story was the same time that it broke my heart. I love how long and deep their friendship and ties are. It hurts that they lost so much time together though. Everything about this story was amazing, and gorgeous, and romantic, and sweet, and heartbreaking. I loved this story.

NOTE...That niggle...there is a serious flaw in this entire plot. Such a big deal is made of Maggie's ritual every night to make sure she remembers the victim of the murder. With that, I find it impossible to believe that she never tells anyone about that night and what she saw. Yes, she was young and traumatized so I can understand at first, but this book covers years when she would have let the police know what happened and what she knew. I just can't believe anything matter her inability to talk. She could still write and communicate. And most importantly...she remembered every detail. 

For the sake of the book and because I loved it so much, I've just purely chosen to ignore all that ^^^ and suspended disbelief, but it's still a thing.

But without a doubt, I adored this book. It was fantastic! I highly, highly, highly recommend it. 

Friday, June 23, 2017

Promo Post: Deliciously Bitter by KB Jacobs

It's the final book in the series, and the reviewers are LOVING it...
Story Description:
Three years ago, my perfect life ended. I got trapped inside a burning Army MRAP and watched my friends die. I was the only one to survive, if you can call this survival. 

Now I’m the beast of nightmares. Horrific scars mean I don’t leave my house...ever. 

But my best friend made sure I continued to live when all I wanted was to give up. I owe him everything, and now he needs me for two weeks. 

Two weeks with strangers who I’ll never have to see again. I can do this. I can ignore the stares and revulsion.

But what I can’t ignore is the stunning beauty next door who sees past my scars. 

She’s Hollywood royalty. I’m a recluse, a hermit. Her life is glamour and paparazzi. My life is NOT. No matter how much I want her, I’m no good for her. 

Beauty and the beast was a romantic fairy tale, but this is real life and she deserves better...

This is the final installment to the Naked Brews trilogy.
1. Deliciously Smooth
2. Deliciously Thick
3. Deliciously Bitter
(and don't miss our free prequel novella, Desperately Unprepared, available via the KB Jacobs newsletter)
(special $.99 new release pricing...for a limited time only!)
The whole series is available:

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Uncommon Ground by Kelly Jensen

Title: Uncommon Ground (Aliens in New York #1)
Author: Kelly Jensen
My Rating: A

Genre: Sci Fi Romance (m/m)
Series: Memories with the Breakfast Club- Kindle Worlds
Main Characters: Lang and Dillon
Release Date: June 2017
Publisher: Kindle Worlds
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
Dillon Lee’s grandfather was a conspiracy theorist. Every summer he’d take Dillon on a tour of New York City while entertaining him with tales of aliens. Fifteen years later, after a phone call from a lawyer, Dillon is carrying his grandfather’s ashes from landmark to landmark, paying a sort of tribute, and trying to figure out what to do with his unexpected legacy. When someone tries to steal the ashes, a guy Dillon has barely met leaps to the rescue, saving the urn and the day.
Steilang Skovgaard is a reclusive billionaire—and not human. He’s been living in Manhattan for over twenty years, working on a long-term plan to establish a safe haven for his people. For seven years, his reports have gone unanswered, however, and he is the only surviving member of his interstellar team. The connection he forms with Dillon soon after meeting him is something he’s missed, something he craves.
But after someone keeps trying to steal the ashes, it looks as though Dillon’s grandfather was involved in more than theories—and might not have been exactly who everyone thought he was. Steilang doesn’t know how close he can get to the truth without revealing himself, and Dillon is running out of people to trust. Can these two work out what’s going on before the thieves set their sights higher?
My Review:
OMG, this book was good. While it's listed as sci-fi...and totally is a sci-fi romance, the entire book takes place in the contemporary world, so it feels like a contemporary romance...with just super-creative details. And I kind of adore it for that. It's seriously the best of both worlds...and keeps the science in the story from bogging down with confusing details. 

So...this story...Dillon has just arrived in NYC. His grandfather, who's been missing for the last 15 years has died and left all his belongings to Dillon. While Dillon believes his grandfather was a complete nut because he believed that aliens really existed, Dillon loved him and those summers he got to spend with him. So he's grieving and trying to figure out what to do now. He's getting coffee when he runs into Lang. 

Lang is a bit of an eccentric, reclusive billionaire. While he doesn't like people all that much...especially crowds or standing out...he's drawn to Dillon and gets caught up in the mess as someone tries to steal Dillon's backpack. The backpack that just happens to have Dillon's grandfather's ashes inside. And things develop from there. 

There is so much to love about this book. Dillon has always felt a little bit of an outsider. He's a bit weird looking and awkward, but Lang is completely taken with him. He sees Dillon as sexy and perfect. Neither of these guys are the type to just take up with anyone, but their connection is immediate. I loved how perfectly they fit together. I loved both of them...they were incredible characters. Dillon has always been a bit of an outsider. Lang has been alone in this world for 20 years. I LOVED that they found one another. They deserved that happiness.

But in the midst of this developing relationship are all these attacks on Dillon...they have to have something to do with his grandfather, but neither Lang nor Dillon has any idea what's really going on. 

Like I said...the sci fi elements in this story are really well done. It has just the perfect amount of those other-world details, but in the middle of current day NYC. I loved this, so much. I'm ready for more to come... (I happen to like the idea of aliens living in NYC).

I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Gone to Dust by Liliana Hart

Title: Gone to Dust
Author: Liliana Hart
My Rating: B+

Genre: Romantic Suspense
Series: Gravediggers #2
Main Characters: Miller and Elias
Release Date: June 2017
Publisher:  Pocket Books
Links to Purchase:
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
The Gravediggers aren’t exactly what they seem. They’re the most elite of the world’s fighting forces—and all they have in common is that they’ve been betrayed by the countries they’ve died for. Because they are dead. To their country, their military, and their families.

Sometimes the dead do rise....

Miller Darling is one of the most popular romance novelists of her time. Not bad for a woman who doesn’t believe in romance. She’s as logical as they come, and she doesn’t believe in happily-ever-afters. What she does believe in is family, so when her brother disappears, she doesn’t think twice about packing her bag and her laptop and heading out to find him.

Elias Cole lived and breathed the life of a Navy SEAL. Now he’s “dead” and his hero’s honor tarnished. The only thing keeping him sane are the men who are like him—The Gravediggers—and the woman who makes his head spin. He’s never met anyone like Miller Darling. Her smart mouth and quick wit keep him on his toes, and damned if he doesn’t find that appealing.

When Miller receives a package from the brother who abandoned her asking for help, it’s clear she’s in over her head with the mess he’s gotten himself into. She needs a professional, and Elias is just the man for the job. Only her brother is a former SEAL—the man who left his team to die—and Elias is more interested in vengeance than saving his life.

My Review:
The best thing about this book was getting all these tiny glimpses into Miller's head. She's a romance writer and every single thing happening around her can be part of a story...and if it doesn't fit into her story, she can tie it back to a movie (someone else's story). She's a bit insane and I loved her for that. She's quirky, but doesn't ever back down from a challenge. She's well aware of her limitations, but isn't willing to back down when it comes to saving her brother. 

Elias is a dead man and he desperately wants Miller, but he knows that would never be fair to after a particularly heated night he stepped away at just the wrong moment. She can't forgive him for that and hates that she STILL wants him.

This book is a LOT like the movie Romancing the Stone. Miller is a romance author, trying to save her brother, rather than her sister like in the movie. Everything else pretty much is spot onto the movie...except we have SEALS rather than treasure hunters...although her brother is a treasure hunter and a SEAL. 

I enjoyed the book a lot. I loved the conflict between Elias and Miller. They have so much sexual tension, that translates into a lot of conflict for a lot of the book. Overall, it was a fun book to read if not particularly creative. I loved how Elias thought he had Miller pegged and then she just continued to prove she was so much tougher than he expected. 

I just have to comment though...that cover is so NOT right for this book, which takes place mostly in a rainy, hot jungle. And the title doesn't really work either. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

Hidden Hearts by Olivia Dade

Title: Hidden Hearts
Author: Olivia Dade
My Rating: A

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Lovestruck Librarians #6
Main Characters: Mary and Miles
Release Date: June 2017
Publisher: Lyrical Shine
Links to Purchase

Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:

Mary Higgs could be the poster girl for the buttoned-up librarian. She follows the rules. Stays ╩╝til closing. Her kindness and dedication to her patrons are legendary. But those patrons have no idea what she's typing to the mysterious shut-in who emailed the library three months ago . . .

A year ago, Miles O'Connor was a gleaming, ab-sational star of the small screen. Then came the accident. Now he's a wounded recluse with a pizza habit and fears so unshakable that only the thought of losing Mary to an online date could lure him out of his cabin.

Soon their email rapport has turned into weekends on the couch, watching tearjerkers and driving each other insane with red-hot makeout sessions. But as their desire grows and their horizons expand, the life that brought them together might not be enough for either of them . . .

My Review:
I've loved this series so much, but I'm pretty positive this has been my favorite book of the bunch. And now I'm sitting here wondering how much I can explain that love without giving away spoilers, because I think that description is perfect. It gives you just enough so that you can read along in the dark with the characters...wondering EXACTLY how Miles got to this place. 

Because Miles is a recluse...he doesn't leave his house. He doesn't bathe. He doesn't shave. From what the reader can tell at the beginning, he simply eats a lot of pizza. But he's young...only 33. What happened to him?

Mary wonders the same thing. She's this small town librarian and ends up exchanging emails with him...daily...many times a day. She knows he's young, but has no idea why he's housebound, but she enjoys their exchanges and is more than a little intrigued. 

As a long time romance reader...and fan of washboard abs...Miles's story broke my heart and totally captured my imagination. I wanted to gather him up in my arms and take care of him. Luckily, as the reader, I got to do that through Mary...and it was so good. 

On the surface, Miles is the one with mental hangups, but as the story evolves, we come to find out that Mary has some significant ones of her own. I had no idea how the author was going to sort this all out for both of them. But she did and it was so good. I loved this book! 

And just let me say that although I loved and adored Miles and Mary, the pizza guy was hands-down my favorite character in the book. OMG, he had me rolling. I loved him so much. I even read some of his scenes out loud to my husband because they were so freaking fun and funny.

This book was amazing. If you like librarians...and the delicious images of sweaty abs...I highly recommend you check it out. 

I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.

Second Chance Season by Liora Blake

Title: Second Chance Season
Author:  Liora Blake
My Rating: A

Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Grand Valley #2
Main Characters: Garrett and Cara
Release Date: May 2017
Publisher: Pocket Books
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: hot

Story Overview:
Return to Liora Blake’s Grand Valley series with Second Chance Season, in which an avowed country boy with a family duty meets an ambitious city girl with even bigger goals and who shows him just what he’s been missing.

Garrett Strickland is unapologetically country, fiercely loyal, and perfectly happy with his job at the Hotchkiss Co-op. Garrett is all about living in the present and not dwelling in the past—even if he was once on his way to a lofty agricultural sciences degree that would guarantee the brightest of futures, only to end up back home when his old man died, leaving behind a debt-ridden family farm that was impossible to keep afloat. After that, it was easy to see why dreaming big wasn’t worth the heartache. And until he crosses paths with a city girl who’s hell-bent on kick-starting her own future, he’s sure that good enough is just that.

Cara Cavanaugh is ready for more from life, even if that means changing everything; including dumping her boyfriend of ten years, turning down a lucrative job at a major newspaper, and leaving behind the upscale suburbs of Chicago where she grew up. Now, she just has to pray that temporarily relocating to the middle of nowhere in Colorado will be the first step in building a career as a freelance journalist—all she has to do is prove she’s got what it takes to make a name for herself. Unfortunately, her tony country day school is as close to “country” as she’s ever been. But when a goodhearted guy who looks like he just stumbled out of a country music video offers to help, she ends up falling hard…and discovering that the perfect story is a love story. And it’s theirs.

Second Chance Season, book two in the Grand Valley series, is a charming, feel-good romance, perfect for fans of Jennifer Probst and Kristan Higgins.

My Review:
We met Garrett in the first book in this series so I already knew his backstory...he had to give up the family farm when his dad died unexpectedly when he was only 21. He'd had a full academic and sports scholarship to college that he also let go. Now, he works at the coop and everyone in town agrees that he deserves so much more. He's the guy who's always there for every other farmer and rancher in town, but he doesn't have his dream...his own plot of land. It's a heartbreaking story. 

Cara is a freelance writer from a wealthy family. She's on the cusp of changing her life. She broke off her engagement to the guy she was "supposed" to marry and left her job at the newspaper to do more meaningful writing as a freelancer. Her first assignment is reporting on the changes in the landscape of the Colorado farmer and she's in Hotchkiss for 2 months to do her research on the piece. She meets Garrett pretty much immediately and the chemistry is off the rails. 

There are so many reasons I love this book. I live in ranching country in Texas and our introduction to Garrett in this book is his monologue about how you can read a guy from his truck. This is my life...LOL. There is so much about the ranching/farming community and the way people think that Liora Blake just absolutely nailed. I found myself reading passages from Garrett's pov to my husband just because they were so spot on and so funny...Braden talking about the hunting chick...pure gold. Hubby asked if the author was a guy...seriously a high compliment there. 

The characters in this series are so engaging. I loved every one of them...from Cara with her being out of her depth to the old farmer, Gerald, who I fell in love with in only a few pages. She writes believable, relatable characters that I thoroughly enjoyed spending my time with. I had no idea how the author would fix things so that Cara and Garrett could find their HEA, but I adore what she did with them. The book was amazingly good!!

Note... where Liora Blake really excels is her breadth and depth of knowledge for all things farming. The little tidbits that came through the text gave this book an air of "so much more" than a normal romance. I felt immersed in this world, but it was never done in the cheesy 'aw shucks' style that drives me insane when authors take on a country themed book. 

And now I'm salivating with need for Braden's book. His scenes...I love this gorgeous, grumpy curmudgeon and can't wait to read his book. The glimpses into the conflict between him and his heroine were gold. I already adore him. I just can't wait to see how she deals with his grumpy self. It promises to be another fantastic read. Come on October!!

I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review, but I had to order a print copy for my keeper/reread shelf because I adored this book and will definitely want to revisit it.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Snow's Surrender by Kristin Miller

Title: Snow's Surrender
Author: Kristin Miller
My Rating: A

Genre: Erotic Romance
Series: A SnowWhite Werewolf Tale #3
Main Characters: Snow
Release Date: June 2017
Publisher: Entangled
Links to Purchase
Sexual Intensity: erotic

Story Overview:
Time is running out… 

I have to choose between Hunter, my best friend turned lover, and Malcolm, the jeweler who wants to pleasure me senseless. There’s too much at stake to screw up now. If I choose Hunter, the pack will lose the only home its ever known. Selfishness isn’t exactly the beaming trait of an Alpha, and I long to rule someday. But if I make the smarter choice, the one that will save us all, I’ll be betraying my heart.

Hunter taught me the rules of seduction. Only he taught them too well and I’ve fallen hard for the wrong guy...

My Review:
Yay...the final book in the serial and I was really happy with how it all ended. Major bonus...we finally saw some werewolf activity, too. 

I've said from the very beginning that I enjoyed watching the author twist the original fairy tale into this story she's created. This installment took that creativity even higher. I loved the way she made the 'deep sleep' work within her erotic story parameters. 

I'll admit, I'm not a huge erotic reader, but this one was a pleasant surprise. I enjoyed it more than I ever expected. I had no idea how the author would tie it all up, but she did it brilliantly. 

I definitely recommend the serial. NOTE: you need to read all three installments of the story to get the full story. This isn't one that you can only read one installment.
I received a complimentary copy of this book in return for an honest review.