Thursday, 30 October 2014

Review ~ On the Naughty List by Lori Foster, Carly Phillips, Sugar Jamison, Beth Ciotta

On the Naughty ListeARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: October 14th 2014

Publisher: St. Martin's Press

Lori Foster has two co-workers plan a Christmas party side-by-side-and discover a love worth celebrating in Christmas Bonus

Carly Phillips explores a "mistletoe moment" when a no-nonsense lawyer intent on seducing her boss meets his twin instead--and gives him a scintillating kiss that leaves him begging for more inNaughty Under the Mistletoe.

In Sugar Jamison’s Have Yourself a Curvy Little Christmas, former wild child Dina Gregory returns home to New York to find the father of her young son. Instead, she finds his stuffy older brother, Ben. Ben can’t help but admire her tenacity—and her bold beauty. Could it be that Dina has reignited his Christmas spirit?

Beth Ciotta brings two friends who, after years apart, together at home for the holidays. They don’t seem to have much in common anymore, but when the two get stranded together during a blizzard, they are forced to reexamine if they are better off as "just friends"? Or could it be that true love was there all along? in Some Kind of Wonderful.

My Opinion

This was a great Christmas collection. All of the novellas are easy, feel-good reads that keep a smile on your face and would be perfect for a winter read in front of the fireplace. I think the last two were my favourite, which surprised me after reading a few reviews and the, blurbs, but all in all, I'd definitely recommend this to anyone looking to stock up on Christmas reads for December.

Here's what I thought about the individual books:

Christmas Bonus - Lori Foster

This was a quick, fun, flirty read that had a bit of humour and a Christmassy feeling. I've read a few of Lori Foster's books and this novella was a sweet, feel good read that keeps a smile on your face. Whilst I would have loved for it to be longer, it was still an enjoyable read. The characters were likable and things moved along at a good pace.


Naught Under the Mistletoe by Carly Phillips

This was another quick, easy read that was a feel-good, Christmas story. I liked the overall concept and for a novella it was satisfying, however I felt that the characters declared their love too quickly. Still, it was a flirty read that makes you smile.


Some Kind of Wonderful - Beth Ciotta

I really liked this read. It had a bit more tension and wasn't as lighthearted as the previous novella. It also felt more like  Christmas while reading it, and I thought the relationships within the family were great. I liked the progression as Maya worked her way into Zach's heart and how they came to realise what had happened with the letter. The only thing I wasn't keen on was the ending and Zach's dreams. It felt a little random to me. Anyway, still and other enjoyable read.


Have yourself a Curvy Christmas - Sugar Jamison

I didn't think I'd enjoy this read when I saw the title. However, it was surprisingly sweet and endearing. Although falling for your baby's farther's brother was a little weird to start with, you can't help but love Ben. He was kind, caring, and full of love. Of course he has his problems from the past but he was warm and welcoming instantly. As well as this it was clear to see Dina brought the best out in him. This read keeps a smile on your face and tugs at your heart. It's a feel good read and a perfect way to finish what has been an enjoyable collection.


Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Review ~ Waterfall by Lauren Kate

WaterfalleARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: November 7th 2014

Publisher: Random House

Eureka's tears have flooded the earth and now Atlantis is rising, along with its evil king, Atlas. Eureka is the only one who can stop him – but first she must learn how to fight.

She travels across the ocean with Ander to try and make sense of the dark world her sorrow has created. But dark secrets are hidden in the depths – will she be strong enough to defeat Atlas, or is her broken heart just what he needs to power his rising kingdom?

Eureka has the chance to save the world. But she'll have to give up on everything – even love . . .

My Opinion

I've been reading this for at least 2 weeks now and I've only managed to read 30%. I really wanted to like this, and for it to redeem Teardrop, which only picked up towards the end but it just isn't. I loved this author's previous work, however I'm just getting more and more bored with this book. I don't know what it is about this series, but I feel really disconnected and the fact that I put it down and forgot about it (reading 7 other books before I picked it back up again) means I'm probably not going to be able to finish it. It's a shame as I like this author and the covers are beautiful, but a book this length should take me a day at most to finish. I can't continue reading at the pace I'm going so unfortunately I'm going to mark this as DNF and move on--despite my best efforts to stick with it.


Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Review ~ Mistaken 2 (Mistaken, #2) by Renna Peak

Mistaken 2 (The Mistaken Series)ebook downloaded for free via Amazon.

Release Date: April 2014

Jenna Davis thought she was a grown woman, capable of making her own decisions. When her world is turned upside down, she finds herself back under the control of her father, unsure of who she can trust. She's finding it difficult to learn to trust her heart when she just finds it broken over and over again. 

Recommended for adults only audiences. 

This is part two of a multi-part romantic suspense serial, and ends with a cliffhanger. Part one should be read before this novella for maximum enjoyment of the story. The series unfolds over six episodes of approximately 100 pages each. Parts one through six (the complete first season) are available now.

My Opinion

Just like this first book, this was a short, easy read that had many twists and turns. It was an engaging read and I liked how the characters continue to evolve. The pacing was good and it keeps you turning the pages. However the only downside is that I doubt I'll find out what happens in the end because I can't bring myself to pay for reads that take me less than an hour to complete. I know that if I buy one I'll have to keep going because these end on huge cliff hangers.


Monday, 27 October 2014

Blog Tour Review ~ Straight from the Heart (Straight from the Heart #1) by Breigh Forstner

Straight from the Heartebook received for the tour in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: July 13th 2014
Genre: YA, Contemporary Romance
ISBN: 1500525987 

This is a story about a girl discovering and experiencing life for the first time.

Bryn Schaefler grew up rich. Her parents expected the best out of her, picked her boyfriend for her, and groomed her to be the next trophy wife fresh out of High School.

But when they discover she wants to pursue music instead of following in her mothers footsteps, they wanted to hear nothing about it.

That was when Bryn left for good.

By chance, she auditioned for main stream rock band Everlasting. Never in a million years did she think she would make it.

Cale Pelton knew it was his fault for the band scrambling around to find a new guitarist. Once he saw Bryn audition, he knew he had to have her. Not just in the band, but in his mind, body and soul.

Available at Amazon US Amazon UK BN

My Opinion

I'm on the fence about Straight From the Heart. On one hand it was a quick, easy read, but on the other there was just something missing and didn't feel quite right.

I liked the overall concept of Bryn joining a rock band and breaking away from the rich kid lifestyle and her parents. I found it great that she had ambition and wasn't afraid to go for what she wanted. I was shocked by her parents' actions to begin with and admired her for having the courage to realise she didn't have to put up with it.

As well as this, I also liked the underlying tension between Cale and Bryn. Their relationship built nicely, even if it was a bit tame for me. I liked Cale, and he was a character I found easier to feel for; he seemed like an all right guy most of the time. However, saying that there were a few things that either irritated me or had me rolling my eyes. First of all despite Bryn breaking away from her parents, not once did she have to struggle for anything. She was still handed everything on a plate and got what she wanted way too easily. I mean the day she leaves she gets a job, an apartment, and a place in the band! I wish I had that kind of luck. To me it felt unrealistic and the author could have made more of her struggles as for me that's the most interesting parts of books like this.

Similarly, I never really warmed up to Bryn. She wasn't an easy character to like and I found her to be a little annoying. She went from one guy to the next and was always thinking about a different guy to the one she was with. I will say I liked that she had a relationship with Lucy, but with the guys I thought she came across as a tease and not very loyal. I think this is the main reason that has caused me to feel there wasn't something quite right as the book is written from her POV.

The only other thing I wasn't so keen on was the random mystery slotted in at the end. It just didn't work for me and the character who was behind everything's motives didn't seem to warrant the lengths they went to. It all seemed a bit rushed and random. How Bryn jumped straight to who it was with no clue is beyond me and then there's this huge cliff hanger! It seemed like the author was trying to fit too much it to such little space and it didn't work for me.

Overall I'm still on the fence about this book. I'm not sure whether I'll read the next one, but it may internet those looking for a tame, easy read.

About the Author

Breigh Forstner currently resides in her home town in south east Michigan with her two daughters. While she works full-time during the week, at night she spends time with her kids and writes until her fingers can’t type anymore. Her goal is to make it onto a best sellers list at some point in her career, and writes any chance she can get. She is a lover of all types of music and is a sucker for rock bands and tattooed bad boys.

Twitter: @BreighForstner

Sunday, 26 October 2014

Review ~ Between a Jock and a Hard Place by Mona Ingram

Blogging From the Heartebook downloaded for free from Amazon.

Release Date: April 14th 2013

Even though she's surrounded by hockey-crazed family and friends, Claire doesn’t follow the Vancouver Canucks. Her brother has played hockey all of his life and has a promising career in the minors, but that’s as far as her interest goes. So when she meets a large, handsome man with a broken nose she doesn’t recognize him as a key player for the Canucks.
Jack is intrigued with the notion of getting to know a woman who doesn’t know who he is; someone who isn’t attracted to him because of his fame.
When Claire’s brother Cam is injured in a hockey game, she offers to blog anonymously for a local newspaper about the hot-button topic violence in hockey, unaware that Jack will be presenting the opposing view.
Meanwhile, the attraction grows between Claire and Jack, but can they survive the inevitable clash as they discover each other’s true identity?
Between a Jock and a Hard Place is a novella-length Sweet Romance, at 26,700 words.

My Opinion

This was an okay read, but I didn't connect with it as much as I thought I would. It started off good, with an interesting set up of the false identity and secrets, however it soon became repetitive and I didn't feel there was much growth in the relationship. There were a few flirty lines here and there, but I didn't feel a connection between the characters so my attention wasn't held. By the end I wasn't bothered if they stayed together really. Similarly, towards the end things got choppy and felt rushed. It felt like the author was trying to keep under a certain word count rather than use as many as necessary to tell the story. I think things could have been delved into a bit more and fleshed out so there's more personality and chemistry because insta-love needs chemistry to work.

Overall I can only say this was okay, but at least it was free. It's a predictable, easy read that's not at all taxing, but I've read better novellas.


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