Category: 5/5 Stars

One Week in Paris by Roya Carmen

RUBYprintCOVERfinal2Book: One Week in Paris

Series: One Week #3

Author: Roya Carmen

Release date: 21 February 2019

Main characters: Kayla Wilson, a yogi who is struggling to remain zen; Oscar Cohen, her roommate and friends with benefits who might not be as casual about Kayla as she believes.

Plot: Kayla Wilson has come a long way since her difficult childhood. Now a successful masseuse and yoga teacher, she has a crew of great friends and life is good.

When her mother announces that she’s getting married, things look like they couldn’t get any better. That is until her future stepfather’s offspring and heir apparent Matt, turns out to be her teenage bully and childhood nemesis.

Reeling from this development and determined not to fall back into her old insecurities, Kayla hatches a plan to stop the wedding. With her friend Corrie and more-than-friend Oscar by her side she can’t lose herself. Can she? Or will she discover that what she’s actually been looking for was under her nose all along?

Why you should read it: I really enjoyed this third instalment in the series. A lot! Kayla was complicated – adorable and she’s overcome a lot to get to where she is. She’s also obtuse, a little selfish and at times petulant. I adored all of her – she felt real to me. I could relate to her insecurities upon seeing Matt again.

It was quite a refreshing change for the hero to be desperate to get the heroine’s attention, rather than vice versa. Oscar is gentle, not an alpha, but he holds his own and makes his boundaries pretty clear, and he’s funny. He was super cute! The chemistry between the pair had me fanning myself throughout. Their mutual acts of making the other person jealous were super hot!

What you may not like: not sure – I really enjoyed this tale. There was a pretty elaborate plan to stop the wedding and that may or may not float your boat. But I enjoyed it for the humour and the very palpable sexual tension between the main characters!

Rating: 5/5 for an entertaining and really sexy read. It’ll make you want to head to Paris for sure!

Blog tour: Laws of Physics: Motion by Penny Reid

Book: Laws of Physics: Motion

Series: Hypothesis trilogies #2

Author: Penny Reid

Release date: 12 February 2019

Plot: Mona is a genius. And a good person. She’s straightforward and low on the drama scale. She’s also a twin. Her twin sister Lisa couldn’t be more different. Dubbed ‘a wild child’ by the press, Lisa is in a sticky situation and begs Mona to cover for her until she’s able to extricate herself from the rather large hole she’s dug for herself. Not being a master of subterfuge, Mona tries to think it out logically. Tell as few lies as possible, barely speak and keep herself to herself. Elementary.
She doesn’t bargain on Abram however. He perplexes her completely. He’s intelligent yet a bit of a slacker, her opposite in many ways. Yet he sees her, and seems to appreciate who she is and how she thinks. Which can only make a bad situation dire…

Why you should read it: Penny Reid releases a book, I must read it. Simple as that. I loved the Elements of Chemistry series, so the next set of trilogies has me super excited. Mona is adorable and her family dynamics had me eager for more info. What has her sister done and why have they grown apart? What’s Abram going to say when he realises what’s been going??? So.Many.Questions. And then the wolves came.

What you may not like: Not much in my opinion – it was well written, it includes appearances of some much-loved characters from Knitting in the City series. Yes this ends on a cliffhanger – but I knew this going in. You may prefer to wait for all 3 books to release. Not a bad idea if you hate waiting months for resolution to your characters’ problems!

Rating: 5/5 for a very promising start to what is set to be a story full of misunderstandings and angst. Knowing Penny Reid though, there’s bound to be lots of hilarity along the way!

The Consequences of Falling by Claire Contreras

cof coverBook: The Consequences of Falling

Author: Claire Contreras

Release date: 12 January 2019

Genre: Contemporary romance

Main characters: Presley Rose, young, soon-to-be-divorcee, keen to prove herself in her father’s firm. Nathaniel Bradley, her nemesis, and her father’s protégé who knows just how to push all her buttons.

Blurb:

The list of things I hate is short. Not even my soon-to-be ex-husband is on that list. Nope. I save only the worst of the worst, the crème de la crème, the absolute I cannot even for this list . . .

1. Black coffee
2. Rude people
3. Nathaniel Bradley

Which is why when my father informs me that he’s making Nathaniel Bradley his new business partner, and in turn, my boss, I flip out. 

1. He’s an annoying know-it-all. 
2. He calls me a spoiled princess every chance he gets. 
3. He disapproves of everything I do.

I go into this knowing I’ll hate every second in his presence. Except the longer he’s around, the more I find myself staring at his lips and remembering the one time they were on mine. I randomly find myself looking at his hands and wondering how they’d feel on my skin. 

I try to snap out of it, but I guess I’m not as smart as I thought I was. No matter how many times I remind myself of the times I’ve practically thrown myself at him and he’s pushed me away, I keep falling little by little.

I’d always heard that it was a bad idea to mix business with pleasure and if that’s the case, this thing with Nathaniel has demise written all over it.

Why you should read it: I haven’t read many books by Claire Contreras in the last few months – no idea why as I enjoy her work immensely. I was drawn into this story from the first page and I truly loved Presley – her inner monologue and the exploration of her difficult relationship with her parents was fascinating. Nathaniel is also a really interesting hero. He fires back at and challenges Presley in a way no-one else does in her life. I thought he was a bit harsh at times, but it became apparent as to why and then I understood where he was coming from.

Presley came across as a spoilt princess at times but I felt for her quite a bit. Going through the stress of divorce, she’s left feeling that she can’t trust anyone. She doesn’t know what to do in her professional life, as no-one really thought she was capable of much to begin with. The chemistry between Nate and Presley and the time span of the book really made for a deep love story. I loved every minute.

What you may not like: Presley has a tendency towards stubbornness which may, or may not annoy you. I found it entertaining and completely understood where she was coming from. Other than that, I can’t recommend it enough.

Rating: 5/5 for a sweet, sad and sexy read about second chances, being enough and forgiveness.

Buy links:

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2SRmseV
Amazon Worldwide: mybook.to/TCoF

Hotshot Doc by R.S. Grey

Book: Hotshot Doc

Series: a standalone

Author: R.S. Grey

Release date: 6 December 2018

Main characters: Bailey Jennings, surgical assistant and guardian to her younger sister. Matt Russell, terrifying surgeon at the top of his game, who’s about to meet his match in Bailey.

Dr. Russell has a bad reputation around our hospital. The scrub techs say he’s cold-blooded, the nurses say he’s too cocky for his own good, and the residents say he’s the best surgeon in the world—really, just a swell guy!—on the off chance he’s within earshot.

I try to avoid him and his temper at all costs. It’s just as easy to admire his sexy, grip-it-while-he’s-ravishing-you hair and chiseled jaw from a healthy distance, preferably from the other end of the hallway…half-hidden behind a plant.

Unfortunately, my plan crumbles when my trusty ol’ boss decides to swap his white coat for a Hawaiian shirt. His retirement leaves me with two terrible options: switch specialties and spend months retraining, or take an open position as Dr. Russell’s surgical assistant.

That means I have to stand near him in the OR for hours on end and anticipate his every need without letting his biting words and bad attitude intimidate me. Oh, and as if that’s not difficult enough, my silly crush on him—the one I’ve tried to stomp on until it disappears—might just be reciprocated.

It’s fine.
I’m fine.

I take my job seriously. There will be no smoldering bedroom eyes across the operating table, no angry almost-kisses in the supply closet. (Well, no more of those.)

What’s the phrase? An apple a day keeps the doctor away?
Maybe I should go for a whole damn bushel.

 

Why you should read it: Oh my goodness! This book feel into my lap at the right time! I loved EVERY minute of it! A lot of books out there are classed as romantic comedies, but not that many of them actually have much of the comedy going on. With this book I laughed and felt good, then was knocked sideways by some of the more tender and serious moments. Matt was a great hero – complete ass who terrorises his staff. But he’s brilliant – so he gets to do whatever he likes. We all know people like that, AmIRight? Then there’s Bailey. She’s brilliant too. Could have been destined for Matt’s success, but life had different ideas. Does she whine about and navel gaze? Nope, she finds satisfaction in her job and the demands of raising a teen sibling. Her outlook and her inner monologue had me laughing out loud and dying for her to take Dr. Russell down a peg or five.

The chemistry is pretty hot from the outset and boy, believe me when I say I was glued to my Kindle – slowburning romance with comedy thrown in – it ticked all of my boxes.

What you may not like: I can’t fault this book – you know I don’t hold back, but for me, this was PITCH PERFECT. I have read a few of R.S. Grey’s books and some of them have landed (IMO) and others have not – but I cannot recommend this one to you enough.

Rating: 5/5 for a fun, upbeat and really sexy read. I’ll leave you with one of my favourite quotes:

His king-sized bed has white sheets and a fluffy gray comforter. Four oversized black and white framed maps hang on one wall. There’s a plant in the corner that looks as if he waters it regularly. I half-expected him to sleep standing up, next to the power station he plugs himself into every night. The fact that he has such a warm, welcoming bedroom does weird things to my heart…

Sweet on the Greek by Talia Hibbert

SOTG

Book: Sweet on the Greek

Series: Just For Him #3

Author: Talia Hibbert

Main characters: Aria Granger, tattoo artist, who’s currently masquerading as wedding planner for her best friend’s wedding. Nikolas Christou, retired athlete, now trying to figure out life after football. The only thing he knows is that he wants Aria to be part of it.

Blurb:

This soccer star is determined to win… his woman’s heart.

For millionaire footballer Nikolas Christou, one look is all it takes. The minute he sees Aria Granger, he’s a goner. Playboy Nik knows lust—intimately—but his need for Aria goes far beyond that. Of course, the plus-sized beauty isn’t interested in romance… but Nik isn’t interested in giving up.

Aria Granger has sworn off relationships for her own good. After all, her ex nearly murdered her best friend, so clearly her taste is questionable. When charming, gorgeous Nik bounds into her life, Aria can’t decide if he’s as innocent as he seems… or if her bullsh*t-ometer is broken.

The super-sweet sports star claims he needs a fake girlfriend to protect him from ‘misunderstandings’. And Aria, with her tattoos, piercings and dangerous scowl, fits the bill. But there’s no way a guy as handsome as Nik can be that bad at handling relationships. Can he?

Why you should read it: Oh my! I finished this book on New Year’s Eve, and I couldn’t have picked a better read to end 2018! Talk about ending the year on a reading high note. Where to start? We have a totally dreamy hero, who, yes,  falls victim to the insta-love, but the author manages to stay the right side of crazy. He isn’t over the top and he’s not unbelievable with it either. Aria has a lot of stuff to resolve in her life, but she doesn’t let that stand in her way. Some characters have a way of sabotaging themselves, but she doesn’t. She’s cautious and wary of being hurt, but she’s brave enough to go for what she wants anyway. The chemistry between this pair is OFF THE HOOK! It was quite a slow build and man, was it sexy as all get out. I loved the dialogue and the extra peripheral characters too. They were interesting and had depth and I wanted to know more about them.

What you may not like: I have no idea – this read is getting a rare 5/5 from me, so I can’t even tell you what you might not like…

Rating: 5/5 for a well-rounded, super sexy read. You need this book…

 

Blog tour: If We Fly by Nina Lane

IWFly - EBOOK COVERBook: If We Fly

Series: What If series, book #2

Author: Nina Lane

Release date: 13 September 2018

***Spoiler alert: Do not read on if you have read the prequel and Book 1 If We Fall.***

Main characters: Cole Danforth, the love of Josie May’s life. Josie, the heroine of this series who is about to learn some devastating new information…

Plot: Josie has so many questions bubbling under the surface of her consciousness. For 10 years she’s been unable to remember exactly what happened in the accident that killed her family. Cole said he was driving – the police reports backed it up, so then why all the crazy dreams? – and now that picture of her that makes Josie doubt everything. Determined to find out in order to finally move on is what she intends to do – but the answers will come with devastating consequences.

One thing Josie can depend on is her love for Cole. He has changed, but so has she. She sees sparks of the old Cole and think she can walk away from him…

Cole has done everything he can to protect Josie from the spectres of the past, but his carefully constructed plans are unravelling fast. Will the unveiled secrets bind them together, or will the painful revelations succeed in tearing them apart, once and for all?

Why you should read it: I couldn’t wait for the conclusion to this duet. I really couldn’t – there was a heck of a cliffhanger at the end of book one and I had to know more. I thoroughly enjoyed this story – it was masterful storytelling that advanced at a steady speed. It didn’t drag – it didn’t repeat itself. It was soulful and romantic and heartbreaking. I’ve never rooted for a couple to find happiness so much before! Josie and Cole’s chemistry leapt off the page and their love was believable and undeniable. I can’t gush anymore about it – I really can’t!

What you might not like: I don’t know really. There is some upsetting stuff in the book – incidents and accidents and angst, but honestly, it isn’t applied in a heavy-handed way. It makes a compelling and heart-rending read. So the ultimate pay off is so very cathartic! I needed this HEA!

Rating: 5/5 for a satisfying and swoon-making read. I loved the main characters, and I desperately wanted them to find some peace.

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Blog tour: If We Fall by Nina Lane

Book: If IWF - EBOOK COVERWe Fall

Series: What if duet #1

Author: Nina Lane

Release date: 30 August 2018

Main characters: Josie Mays, once a bright and shiny optimist, now a shadow of her former self. Cole Danforth, the man who has always had Josie’s heart and the only one who could shatter it.

 

Blurb:

We fell in love. Then our world fell apart. 

I wished so hard for Cole Danforth. And one day, he came true. He was my first boyfriend, my first lover, my first and only love. He should also have been my last. 

But in a split-second, we were ripped apart, our lives broken, my heart shattered. After ten years, I’ve returned to my hometown, the place of my greatest joy and darkest pain. 

Cole is still here, but the beautiful boy I’d loved is gone. Now he’s a ruthless, unforgiving man determined to feed both my resentment and my lust. 

Then our torturous past encroaches again, trapping us in a violent storm. 

But this time, there is no escape.

Why you should read it: Oh my! Both the prequel (If We Leap) and this book shredded my heart! Shredded it! We have the tragic couple, Cole and Josie and all they want is to be together. They are lucky to have a year or so of bliss, but then all hell breaks loose and neither one will ever be the same again. I loved the narrative of this story. Book one flips between present day and events from ten years earlier. Bit by bit we understand what happened to destroy the happy couple, and their grief is palpable. This book is deeper than your average romance. It has secrets galore, heartbreak and thankfully, hope.

What you may not like: You should know this series is a duet. If you cannot bear a cliffhanger (and believe me when I say this ends on one heck of a cliffie!) then wait until you have all the books in your possession before you start reading. I was hooked from the first page!

Rating: 5/5 for a smart, sexy and heartbreaking read. I’m really rooting for Cole Danforth and Josie Mays.

Buy linksGOODREADS|Amazon|Apple|Nook|Google|Kobo|

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Sleepover by Serena Bell

Book: Sleepover

Series: a standalone

Author: Serena Bell

Release date: 13 November 2018

Main characters: Elle Dunning, newly-divorced mother of one who is still adjusting to life as a single mother. Sawyer Paulson, her new enigmatic neighbour.

Plot: Elle has been through the mill this past year. Her cheating husband has returned to his former high school girlfriend, leaving her adjusting to single life with her son Madden. Trying to make the best out of a painful situation, she has her work and a good network of friends to keep her sane.

When Sawyer Dunning moves in next door, that sanity is about to be tested. Elle knows Sawyer – quite well already. It’s it everyday that a former one night stand moves in next door. She could ignore him – but that option is soon made impossible when her son becomes fast friends with Sawyer’s son, Jonah.

Sawyer is struggling with single parenthood and the spectre of grief. It’s been two years since his wife died, but her presence lingers and moving on seems impossible. Sawyer allows himself the odd meaningless encounter – always the one time, never to be repeated with nameless women. Until Elle. Something about her reaches out to him and he’s terrified of what that could mean for his life, his family and his piece of mind…

Why you should read it: I really enjoyed this down to earth story. Elle was so relatable and had been treated shabbily. You can’t help but feel for her. Her ex and his fiancée are shameless. I felt a lot of righteous indignation about her situation, but she dealt with it all with such grace, it was admirable. I enjoyed the slow-burning chemistry between Elle and Sawyer. Their kids bring them together and in many ways force them to confront their situation head on. Sawyer was a well drawn male character. He was a mixture of private and vulnerable and strong and he was in a very familiar situation to many.

What you may not like: Not a great deal to dislike in this book. It’s fresh, entertaining and a story of personal growth. What’s not to like?

Rating: 4/5 for a very sexy and page-turning story. I love the characters and the premise. I think you might, too.

Blog tour: Dr. Strange Beard by Penny Reid

9046FE82-8988-426B-9C78-47237A203E4EBook: Dr. Strange Beard

Series: Winston Brothers #5

Author: Penny Reid

Release date: 30 July 2018

Main characters: Simone Payton, logical thinker, on assignment for the FBI in her hometown. Roscoe Winston, youngest of the Winston clan, and hellbent on avoiding Simone at all costs.

Blurb:

Hunches, horse races, and heartbreak

Ten years after Simone Payton broke his heart, all Roscoe Winston wants is a doughnut. He’d also like to forget her entirely, but that’s never going to happen. Roscoe remembers everything—every look, every word, every single unrequited second—and the last thing he needs is another memory of Simone.

Unfortunately, after one chance encounter, Simone keeps popping up everywhere he happens to be . . .

Ten years after Roscoe Winston dropped out of her life, all Simone Payton wants is to exploit him. She’d also like some answers from her former best friend about why he ghosted her, but if she never gets those answers, that’s a-okay. Simone let go of the past a long time ago. Seriously, she has. She totally, totally has. She is definitely not still thinking about Roscoe. Nope. She’s more than happy to forget he exists.

But first, she needs just one teeny-tiny favor . . .

Why you should read it: Come on people, it’s Penny-fricking-Reid, of course you should read it! If you follow my reviews, then you’ll know how much of a sad fan girl I am about her! I haven’t really read this series in orders – I tend to dip in and out of it when I need a damn good read and this one fell into my lap when I needed a particularly good read. It didn’t disappoint! The narrative was engaging, quirky and as always, it was smart as hell. Simone and Roscoe were complex and interesting characters – their inner monologues gave insight and also humour – and I couldn’t put the book down until it was done. The intense attraction between Simone and Roscoe really was palpable – it was a slow-burning seduction and I had to fan myself quite a bit during this read! I also enjoyed the role reversals, where Simone was the more worldly character and she took the lead. Hot! It also had a lot of pathos, heart and damn well made me cry in places. Like proper, full on blubbing!

What you may not like: I usually try to play devil’s advocate in my reviews, but I’m truly struggling here. I appreciated Penny Reid’s treatment of the heroine – I know some authors are afraid of writing about non-white characters in case they get it ‘wrong’ and I get it – some people have done it well, while others have done a horrible job! Simone was a multi-faceted character, who was just getting on with her life. There were no lazy stereotypes and hopefully, authors like Penny Reid and Tiffany Reisz will inspire other authors to not be so afraid of writing about POC.

Rating: 5/5 for a truly wonderful, exciting and engaging read. I forgot how much I love this series.

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Blog tour: One Week by Roya Carmen

PrintBook: One Week

Series: One Week #1

Author: Roya Carmen

Release date: 21 June 2018

Main characters: Gabriella Moore, mum to two adorable kids; easy-going wife and artist in her own right. Eli Anderson, artist who will flip Gabriella’s life entirely.

Plot: Gabriella Moore is a great mum, a great wife and a talented artist. Life is comfortable and simple – she and her successful husband have a great life together, but lately she hasn’t seen much of him, due to his book tour commitments.

She’s not unhappy per se… She has friends and two great kids, but she never thought she’d be doing the parenthood thing alone most of the time. If she’s honest with herself, she’s lonely.

When she strikes up a friendship online with fellow artist, Eli, everyone thinks she’s crazy and warns her to be careful. Their chats become more frequent and their appreciation for each other spills over into life outside of art. When Gabriella makes a painful discovery, she decides to go visit Eli in Denmark. She’ll take a week out of her life and live for herself. She can do what she wants for that week before returning to her normal life. Simple…

Why you should read it: Oh my goodness! This was a stellar read! I love Roya Carmen and when she announced she was writing a book in a similar vein to The Ground Rules trilogy – I did an unbecoming happy dance (think of a chicken twerking and you’ll get the idea). I love angst-ridden married people struggling with temptation. I know it’s not for everyone but I can’t get enough of it. Roya really makes you feel for the characters, whatever their actions. I loved the budding friendship between Eli and Gabriella and I didn’t know how it was going to end up – I was quite surprised actually (but ecstatic!) by the outcome.

What you might not like: A lot of you don’t like cheating in fiction. Well, fair enough. Some of the best literature is based on infidelities, but I get it. It makes you feel icky. However, there is a pretty good loophole in this book so… is it really cheating?! Anyway – if you can’t handle it, maybe it’s not for you. But I simply adored it and inhaled it and now I’m re-reading The Ground Rules – because I need more angst!

Rating: 5/5 for an emotional story that resonated with me (my marriage is fine, I hasten to add!) and it made me want more. It’s also the start of what should be an exciting series! I’ll post more details on the series when I get them. It’s great to see Roya back with another exciting and angsty series!

Buy Links:

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2KwTfl3

Amazon CA: https://amzn.to/2IlQSVw

Amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2InCE2i

Amazon AU: https://amzn.to/2Il26JL

Apple: https://apple.co/2Gtl0Z3

Nook: https://bit.ly/2Gp2h0V

Kobo: https://bit.ly/2IP7ape

 

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