Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Review ~ No Regrets (Pace of Love #1) by Heather Allen

No Regrets (No Regrets Series Book 1)ebook downloaded via Amazon for free

Release Date: July 28th 2014

Publisher: Limitless Publishing 

Greylan Pace has been a fighter his entire life...
He's worked hard to get to the top as a mixed martial arts fighter, and finally his time in the spotlight has come. Everything he's ever wanted is at his fingertips.

Then, one event changed his life forever...
Now Greylan finds himself back on top, going to battle in the biggest fight of his life. But he soon learns that what he's strived for means nothing in comparison to his fight to keep his sister, his best friend Christina, and Mollie Andrews, the girl he can't stop thinking about.

He fights with everything he's got to keep his focus on his goal, but for the first time ever, he's afraid he might lose.

My Opinion

This book started off well. The event of Greylan going to jail and the situation that put him there was intriguing. Similarly how he started dealing with things when he got out made for an interesting set up. However, unfortunately things didn't get better than the first few chapters.

I was expecting an MMA romance from this book, but there was literally no romance involved. There's a girl Grey can't keep his mind off and that's about it. I kept reading hoping that something was going to happen between him and at least one of the girls in the book, but it just dragged on and on with little development. I found myself skimming a lot because the writing and events were repetitive and didn't seem to go anywhere.

There was a lot of MMA fighting, however fights do become samey when there's no emotional attachment to the characters. And in No Regrets I just didn't feel anything for them. Greylan was okay but the rest of the characters are never featured enough to gain a connection. There's also the problem that story lines are only developed right at the end making for a rushed ending after a badly paced book.

I will say that things pick up at the end. But for me it's not enough to convince me to read on. The 5% at the end should have come into play a lot sooner, in my opinion, to make for a more interesting story. For me it made the rest of the book seem even slower and irrelevant because it was so long and dragged out.

Overall, I had high hopes for this book but it just didn't deliver. I've read a lot of MMA books this year and unfortunately it didn't compare to them. It's a slow read, but it has potential to be interesting if the pacing is sorted out. Just be warned there is no romance.


Tuesday, 30 December 2014

Review ~ Twisted Perfection (Perfection #1) by Abbi Glines

Twisted Perfection (Perfection, #1)
Paperback purchased by myself

Release Date: April 24th 2013

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Life outside of her house was a new experience for Della Sloane. The dark secrets of her past weren’t something she ever intended to share with anyone. They would never understand. No one would ever get close enough to find out. There was always a chance she’d go crazy sooner than they expected…

Woods Kerrington had never been one to be attracted to fragile females. They seemed like too much work. He wasn’t in it for the work just the pleasure. A night full of naughty fun had been exactly what was on his mind when he’d laid eyes on the hot little number that didn’t know how to pump gas and needed some help.

What he didn’t know was she was as fragile as they came.
The carefree girl who spoke her mind and didn’t care what the world thought of her was more breakable than he could ever imagine…

My Opinion

This was an enjoyable, quick, and easy read. It's the dirt of Abbi Gline's work I've read and it's definitely made me want to read more.

I found Twisted Perfection to be an engaging book that I couldn't put down. I fell in love with the characters instantly and thought things developed well. Yeah, it was a little predictable and fast-paced, but it was a relaxing read that you didn't have to concentrate too hard on.

I liked Della. She was a character that was easy to connect with and you feel for her. Her episodes and blackouts draw you in and keep you hooked, while making you want Wood to take it all away for her. I thought their bond was believable and the chemistry between them was good.

Overall, I'll definitely be reading more by this author. I can't wait to read more about Della and Woods, and also the other characters in the series.


Monday, 29 December 2014

Review ~ Consumed (Consumed #1) by Skyla Madi

Consumed (Consumed, #1)Paperback purchased by myself.

Release Date: September 11th 2013

Publisher: Limitless Publishing

Olivia James has never been one to walk on the wild side, at least not until she meets Seth Marc—a cocky, sexy fighter at her father’s gym. He’s infuriating, nauseatingly addictive and she just can’t seem to shake him. He’s only been in town a short while and his name is already on everyone’s lips. He's the kind of guy moms’ warn their daughters about—the kind that leaves a trail of shattered hearts behind him and he has Olivia in his sights.

Olivia has never met anyone as confusing as Seth and his hot and cold attitude constantly sends her reeling. She’s never wanted anyone’s touch so badly in her life, but having recently come out of a long term relationship diving into another is something she'd prefer to avoid.

Determined for his touch, but not to let him under her skin, Olivia embarks on the most thrilling ride of her life.

My Opinion

I couldn't put this down! I have been waiting for months to get this as I kept asking for it as a present and I'm so glad it didn't disappoint. In fact, I've gone ahead and bought the next 2 as soon as I finished this one. I think it's one of my favourite MMA books this year.

I didn't really know what to expect going into this series, just that I have a thing for MMA fighters right now. Seth is no exception. This book was hot, intriguing, brilliantly paced, and hard to put down. There was a great mixture of romance and fighting and I think the author did a great job of keeping a good balance throughout the entire novel. There wasn't one moment I felt dragged and I wish I had the next one on hand already.

The characters are just as great as the story. They make you love them and I really liked the connection between Olivia and Seth--after all who doesn't love a bad boy?

Seth did have a softer side too though and it makes you adore him all the more.

Overall I'm eagerly awaiting the next book to arrive at my door. This book exceeded my expectations and it's definitely up there in my favourite MMA books of the year.


Sunday, 28 December 2014

Blog Tour Review ~ Paxton's Promise (Gloves Off #3) by L.P. Dover

Paxton's Promise (Gloves Off, #3)
eARC received via InkSlinger PR in exchange for an honest review for the tour.

Release Date: December 29th 2014

She hates him, yet she can’t get him out of her mind. 

Female Bantamweight fighter, Gabriella Reynolds, has a bad habit of falling for forbidden fighters. Enter Paxton Emerson. He’s tall, tattooed, and the current UFC Light Heavyweight Champion. Everyone wants a piece of him, and he only has eyes for her. Through no choice of her own, she’s fallen in his debt and he’s now demanding payment. Too bad it doesn’t involve currency. Gabby’s decision to fulfill her promise to him ultimately brings out her true feelings, but also spurs the unwanted attention of another. 

Rage’s fixation on his newest obsession reaches dangerous levels. Unfortunately, Paxton Emerson has become a roadblock to his end goal and needs to be removed from the equation—by any means necessary. 

Gabby will do anything to save Pax, but what happens when she’s the one who needs saving?

My Opinion
I think I'm running out of words to describe how much I love this author's work. I seem to just be repeating myself now, but that doesn't make it any less true. L.P. Dover has created a great cast of characters in this series and I adore them all--Paxton was no exception.

This book has everything I love about this author: romance, suspense, tension, and of course hot MMA fighters. I really struggle to put down a Gloves Off book and despite telling myself I'm going to drag reading it out so that I get a few days with the characters, I always finish them within a day.

Paxton's Promise tells of Gabby's story and picks up where her relationship ends with Pax from Ryley's Revenge. Whilst it is a standalone read, I'd read all of the books in order as there are references to past books/character stories, and they're also too good not to.

I really liked Gabby ever since she first made an appearance in the series. She's a strong female lead and I like that she's not afraid to speak her mind or stand up for those she cares about. Moreover, I like the tension between her and Pax. It made for an interesting start as she tries to resist him and deny herself what she really wants. Similarly, you see a different side to Pax in this book and I loved that. You get his back story and just like all of the other fighters, you can't help but fall in love with him.

I will admit that I didn't really know what else was going to happen in this book because I bought the paperback as soon as I saw it was live without reading the blurb. Therefore parts with Rage--which I'm not going to reveal--shocked me slightly as it wasn't what I was expecting. I really enjoyed the sinister/dark underground fighting world, and how it added this dangerous undertone to the book. Also with the added drama caused by Rage it really became an engaging read that was impossible to put down.

The only negative was that I did guess what was going on before the end. However, I really don't care about that because I love L.P's writing. Also, Mason returns! YAY! So that makes me care even less because he's still my favourite since he introduced me to this author.

Overall, Paxton's Promise is another brilliant addition to this series, and near the top on my list of favourites. I'd highly recommend this author's work, and I can't wait for Camden's book now!



Monday, 22 December 2014

ARC Review ~ Stung (Struck #2) by Joss Stirling

Stung (Struck, #2)eARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: February 5th 2015

Publisher: Oxford University Press

Sixteen-year-old Kate has a talent for disappearing. Framed for murder, and hunted by a violent gang, she's running for her life . . .

Nathan is the young recruit tasked with finding Kate before her enemies track her down. He's determined to stay detached no matter what. 

But when Nathan and Kate's paths collide, neither is prepared for the electricity that sparks between them.

As the net tightens, can they trust each other long enough to stay alive? Or will their next kiss be their last?

My Opinion

When I won an ARC of Storm and Stone (now Struck) I was ecstatic, so when I got approved to read this book in advance I was equally excited. Joss Stirling is my favourite author--no matter what name she writes under--and I couldn't wait to read more about the YDA, hoping Raven, Kieran, and Joe still featured. 

I think the spy genre is one of this author's strengths. She creates believable situations and there are no flashy gadgets or miracle solutions that get the characters out of everything. I like the action and tension that comes from the characters knowing how to fight so they can get themselves out of a situation. It makes for a more interesting and engaging read as they only have themselves to rely on.

Just like with Storm and Stone the new characters introduced in this book where interesting and easy to connect with. I will admit that I was disappointed Joe never featured as I was hoping this would be his book, but Nathan grew on me and made me overcome that. By the end of the book I fully supported and loved him. I thought he had a great balance of loyalty and strength. He was a consistent character that people were able to rely on and for that you end up respecting him, especially when he chooses sides. Similarly, Kate was also a strong character. However she has this past that also makes her vulnerable. I thought the author mixed the two emotions and traits brilliantly. She felt very real and I enjoyed watching her have to open up slowly. She was distrusting of everyone, which made things different.

Moreover I liked the added romance. Once again it's not the main focus in the book and therefore you don't get the feeling it's insta-love or rushed. It's more of a slow, background add-on an therefore it doesn't detract from the main story, but adds another thread to the book to keep you engaged.

The only criticism I have--and I hate to say this about this author--is that I thought the pacing could have been better. I found myself skimming a few denser sections in this book wishing things would hurry up because parts were quite obvious. I'm not going to reveal anything, but I did find this book didn't have me sat on the edge of my seat like the first. It felt tamer and slower until things picked up for the action-packed ending. 

Overall though it was a good follow up and I hope there's going to be more. I would love Joe to be included again, but the cast is interesting and the plots are believable. I'd highly recommend this author and any of her books.


Sunday, 21 December 2014

ARC Review ~ Bad Romeo (Starcrossed #1) by Leisa Rayven

Bad Romeo (Starcrossed, #1)eARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: December 23rd 2014

Publisher: Pan Macmillan

When Cassie Taylor met Ethan Holt at acting school, sparks flew. She was the good girl actress. He was the bad boy about campus. But one fated casting choice for Romeo and Juliet changed it all. Like the characters they were playing, Cassie and Ethan's romance seemed destined. Until he broke her heart and betrayed her trust. Now the A-list heartthrob is back in her life and turning her world around. One touch at a time. 

Cast as romantic leads once again, they're forced to confront raw memories of the heartbreaking lows and pulse-pounding highs of their secret college affair. But they'll also discover that people who rub each other the wrong way often make the best sparks.

My Opinion

I was curious to read this book when I first saw it because 1) the cover attracted me to the book and 2) I love acting so I was intrigued by the theatre setting of the book. Needless to say that I was excited to start reading this when I got approved to read a copy and whilst I had a few issues, for the most part it was a good read.

The main thing I liked in the book was the acting and theatre. I felt it was a believable representation and that the characters knew what they were doing. I did assume there would be more Romeo and Juliet as that play ends pretty quickly, but I like the development after. Overall I enjoyed the slow build in Ethan and Cassie's romance. The tension was good for the most part and there were quite a few humourous moments that arose from these situations. This book did have me smiling quite often, which was great.

Similarly I also liked the divide in stories between the past a present. It was nice to actually read what had happened between them in the beginning, however this is also the cause of one of my issues. I felt that the stories were unbalanced in length and split in the wrong places. Sometimes it was hard to figure out which year I was reading about, and it also stopped the flow of the part I was reading. Sometimes I was really getting involved in the section I was reading and then it switched. It also meant that there is a lot of detail left out from both stories as it was like the author was trying to tell 2 books in one. I liked both stories, just not together.

Moreover, the major scenes I wanted told or explained --like why the hell did Ethan leave!!--were left out completely. I could see my percentage on my kindle getting higher and higher and I knew I wasn't going to get a satisfying ending. In fact, what I got was one of the worst endings I've read this year. It didn't even feel like a proper cliffhanger. It was like the author just stopped writing. I'm assuming there will a sequel, and I'll more than likely read it, but the ending in this was atrocious. I was intending to give this book 4 stars until I got to it.

Overall, this book has some good chemistry and tension. I like the overall idea and themes, the characters were good and easy to connect with, but the issues that were there were irritating and quite big. I wouldn't discourage people reading it as it was an enjoyable read for 80% of the book, just be warned about the ending.


Saturday, 20 December 2014

Review ~ Love Nouveau by B.L. Berry

Love Nouveauebook purchased by myself.

Release Date: September 29th 2014

The only thing inevitable in love
is despair.

I knew from the start that he would wreck me.
Nothing could have prepared me for the day he walked into my life ...
or the day he walked out of it.

I self-destructed.

All that remained was a shell of the girl I once was.

And I don't know if I'll ever recover.

My Opinion

I bought this book as I'd seen it on a few sites, loved the cover, and saw that it was on sale. It's been on my to-read list since it's release but with all of the requests I get I find it hard to buy books and read those. So, when I could download it for 77p I thought it was the perfect time to give it a chance.

Now that I've read it though, I'm glad I waited until it was on sale. I really wanted to enjoy this book and it sounded exactly like my kind of thing. However, no matter how much I wished it, I couldn't bring myself to connect with it. Things started off badly really when the main character (Ivy) admits to cheating multiple times and basically acting slutty. From then on she lost my respect and she never did anything that made me want to like her. Similarly, because of this it's hard to connect with her and feel sorry for her. A few times she comes across as hypocritical and I didn't feel her character was very consistent.

Moreover, even though Phoenix was more likable and sweet, I didn't find their romance believable. It was way to insta-lovey for my liking and the fact that it then turns into a distance relationship lost the heat and passion these kinds of books need to pull this theme off. I wanted them to be together, but there isn't enough excitement with text messages for me to end up caring about their relationship.

As well as this, because the characters are apart for the majority of the book, it means that it is very text heavy and has very little conversations. I hate this in books as that's where you create the personalities for me. In Love Nouveau you get a lot of inner monologues and thoughts from Ivy, but they didn't really move the story on. In fact I'm not really sure what the main story line was. In the beginning I thought it was about a girl breaking free from her old life to start somewhere else free from the restrictions of a rich family. However, by the end the twists that come in to play derail that line of thought completely and things get really messed up. It just didn't add up or link in my opinion and it felt like drama for the sake of drama. 

Overall, no matter how much I wanted to like this book I just couldn't. It was an okay read, but Ivy was an asshole who acts first and thinks later, has no respect for herself, and wasn't a likable heroine because of her antics. This meant her inner thoughts were kind of whiny and annoying, so I found myself losing interest and skimming a lot. I wish I did like this, but it didn't work for me.


Friday, 19 December 2014

Review ~ Twas The Nate Before Christmsa by Sophie Sloane

Twas The Nate Before Christmsaebook received from the author in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: December 6th 2014

Daisy, a young, American woman, has moved to Henley-on-Thames, Oxfordshire, England. Amidst the hustle and bustle of the town centre at Christmastime, she rather clumsily falls to the ground. She looks up to see the most handsome face she had ever seen. Nate. It was love at first fall. 

He is a gardener at Friar Park, but things don’t seem to add up, as he is constantly jumping into black sports cars, using code names, and hiding her from his friends. At other times, he is the perfect gentleman; wining and dining her at fancy restaurants, zipping around on their scooters, and wooing her with his British wit and banter. 

Will he tell her the truth, or will she end up alone at Christmas? 

My Opinion

I'm always looking for festive romances around this time of year so I jumped at the chance to read this novella when I was offered a copy. It had an air of mystery in the blurb, which caught my interest, and the short length was perfect for my busy schedule.

'Twas The Nate Before Christmas was a quick, easy read. Things move at a fast pace like most novellas, and you get swept along in the whirlwind drama. I did expect a little more romance and humour from the story though. It was sweet and cute, but there wasn't really much development or laugh out loud moments. Even for a novella it felt a little abrupt and jumped from day to day with emotions coming quickly. I'd probably say this has more of a short story feel to it than a novella in hindsight.

Saying that, even though it raced through the days, the time line was clear. Things fitted and moved on logically so that it was easy to follow. 

I can't say too much about the characters because you hardly get to know them in such a small space, but I didn't think Nate's secret would be that from the blurb (my mind went to ninja/spy). I will admit it was a little disappointing when it came to light what he really was hiding, but that might be down to my age and not being a fan of who he's related to.

Overall it was a short read that was nice to break up the day. If you don't mind short stories and insta-love you may want to give it a go.


Thursday, 18 December 2014

Review ~ Can't Get Enough (River Bend #2) by Molly McLain

Can't Get Enough (River Bend, #2)
eARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: November 24th 2014

When life gives you lemons, find a former Marine with sexy abs to lick the lemonade from…

Tony Dunn's panty-snatching bachelor life has been turned upside down—he now has custody of a daughter he didn't even know he fathered. With his focus solely on doing right by his little girl, the last thing he needs is a sexy, totally distracting blonde showing up on his doorstep. 

Nicole Hodges is in River Bend temporarily, to handle her grandmother's estate and get the heck out of Dodge before her past catches up with her. Only problem is…she likes the quiet little town more than she expects, and she can't resist overextending herself to help her built-like-a-bad-boy neighbor get his life back on track. 

Tony and Nicole have different goals in mind, none of which include a relationship. But what harm could come from a little fun--the naked kind--if they both know the rules up front?

Warning: This book contains a sex-deprived single dad with a wicked tongue. Enough said.

My Opinion

Can't Get Enough was one of those books that caught my interest slightly, but I was on the fence about requesting. Something about the blurb just didn't make me jump into requesting it, but I kept coming back to it. I think it was the cover that pulled me back again and again so that in the end I had to read it just to see if I would enjoy it or not. I haven't read any of this author's previous work so I wasn't sure what I was letting myself in for, and I did notice that this was book 2 in a series but I ended up really enjoying this read.

Like I said, this is book 2 in a series, however it can be read as a standalone. I had no trouble understanding who everyone was and what was going on as from what I can gather the books follow different couples. I thought everything was detailed well and the story created around Tony and Nicole was interesting and engaging. When I started this book I didn't expect to like it as much because of the child theme. However, you just can't help but love Tony.

Similarly, you'll feel just as strongly about Nicole. I enjoyed watching her help Tony, and him trying to do the same for her but with a bit more resistance. She was great with Bri and as the two fell for each other it was a heartwarming to read. The emotions conveyed in the relationship were believable and true. They felt natural and this book had and easy, laid back flow that kept you turning the pages in a good mood.

Of course it's not all plain sailing, but I felt these parts were slightly underdone. For example the drama with the ex was mentioned a few times but it never really felt like it was a problem and didn't add enough drama for me. There were a few things like this, which is why I didn't rate it five stars. I felt this book was a short read as it is and it could handle a bit more drama, detail in certain background areas, or for certain scenes to be expanded upon.

Overall though Can't Get Enough was a lovable and hot read. The characters are endearing and in general it is a feel-good, lighthearted romance that I'd recommend as an easy read to chill out to.


Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Review ~ What If (If Only... #2) by A.J. Pine

What If (If Only..., #2)eARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: December 8th 2014

Publisher: Entangled Publishing

Sometimes it takes letting go of the past to find out who you want to be.
During his semester abroad, Griffin Reed almost gave his heart to a girl who loved someone else. Lesson learned. Now he’s home, where following in his father’s footsteps may not be what he wants, but it’s what his parents expect. It might be taking the easy road, but he doesn’t see a way out.

Something that could have killed Maggie Kendall took away the person she used to be instead. Her condition makes her dependent on sticky notes, photos, and medication just to get through each day. The last thing she needs is a distraction—or someone new to disappoint.

What they refuse to see is they are perfect for each other. Maggie makes Griffin want to be a better man, and he makes her believe a future is possible. But these two have to find a way to share the secrets ripping them apart, if they’re ever going to have a chance at happiness.

My Opinion

I'm really not sure about this book. I've put off writing this review hoping that something would come to me but it hasn't. So, please bear with this review.

What If was a strange read for me. On one hand it hasn't drawn many emotions from me and on the other something kept me reading. I think I expected it to be more emotional than it was and because of that I feel a bit let down. I didn't really sympathise with Maggie. She never engaged me in a way where I was routing for her. It's not easy to say why, but I found her a little repetitive and even though she had a problem, it felt she made it a lot bigger than it was. Of course I've never been in that situation so I don't know how realistic it is, but from what came across in the book that's how I felt.

I did like Griffin more. He had less repetitive chapters and was easier to connect with. I thought he dealt with Maggie well, and the way he came to terms with his true feeling for her was good. I would have liked more information in the aspects of his life you don't see in this book though. He supposedly makes these big decisions but they're always relayed after the event and sometimes I wanted to be present for them--if that makes sense.

In general the storyline was okay. I don't think it was anything spectacular, and I've read a lot of NA romances like this that I prefer, but I wouldn't discourage someone from giving it a go. I think I just had a hard time connecting with this one and it wasn't for me, but it may suit someone else better.


Tuesday, 16 December 2014

Reviews ~ Christmas Novella Roundup #1!

ebooks purchased by myself or downloaded for free via Amazon

Rather than post a load of mini review, I've summed them all up into one post. Information on the books can be found by clicking on the titles. Information on the authors can be found by clicking on their name.

I will be doing a few of these posts up until December 25th.

All I want for Christmas: A festive short storyAll I want for Christmas: A festive short story by Claudia Carroll

A quick easy read, but it felt more like a teaser for the real book. I had expected the characters to link, but they don't in these short stories so you only get a brief snippet of their Christmas and no conclusion. It was okay, but really only a teaser.


Her Christmas BonusHer Christmas Bonus by Rain Danvers

This was a cute read. The plot was simple and easy to follow, even if it was a little rushed at times--but hey that's what you get with a short story. It didn't feel that Christmassy but was still an enjoyable way to take a break for 15 minutes.


The Santa DragThe Santa Drag by Liv Rancourt

Things were going great at the start. Everything was heading towards an interesting, cheeky short story. However, then it ends at 60% and the rest of the book is a preview of the author's next title. This was so frustrating as things were just starting to get interesting, and then suddenly you get a final paragraph that sums up what happens in the future in about 5 sentence. It was too sudden and wasn't what I was expecting. I'm not sure if this continues or is a spin off from another book, but I don't think it did enough to convince me to read more.

Christmas Ever AfterChristmas Ever After by Jude Ryan

A short easy read. It's very quick and follows the basic emotions of a person who's having doubts on the eve of her wedding. There isn't much to say because it's so short and you don't get to engage with the characters, but for a freebie it was a good way to kill 15 minutes.


Monday, 15 December 2014

Review ~ Driving Home for Christmas by A.L. Michael

Driving Home for ChristmaseARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: October 28th 2014

Publisher: Carina UK

Megan McAllister is home for Christmas…whether she likes it or not!

Christmas is about family…and for Megan family means two people: herself, and her daughter Skye. It doesn’t mean her parents who, ten years ago, saw her pregnancy as anything but a miracle. And it definitely doesn’t include her irresistible ex-boyfriend Lucas Bright.

So ‘Driving Home for Christmas’ has never been top of Megan’s festive playlist. But for Skye, she knows she needs to spend the holiday season with the people she’s left behind. She can do this. Even if the thought of meeting Lucas under the mistletoe still has her feeling like she’s drunk one-too-many Snowballs!

But somewhere between the hanging of stockings and the crackle of wrapping paper, Christmas starts to sparkle. And Megan begins to wonder if family could be bigger than her and Skye after all…

My Opinion

First of all I have a bone to pick with whoever came up with this title. I've had this book on my Kindle since October and every time I've loaded it to read another book, I've seen this one and ended up singing the Christmas song for the rest of the day! Finally I can archive it so I don't have it stuck in my head. However saying that, it might need to stay on there a little longer because it was a great Christmas read that I might have to pull out again before the 25th. I didn't think I was going to enjoy it from the slow start but I'm glad I stuck with it.

Driving Home For Christmas is just one of those books that makes you feel good. It's a read that keeps a smile on your face--most of the time--and the characters are adorable, especially Skye. I'm not normally a fan on kids in books, but she was unbelievably cute and I loved her meddling.

Similarly, I loved how things developed and Megan grew to become more trusting. Lucas was great at getting her to open up eventually and the story of how their relationship evolved was interesting and engaging. I also liked the memory/flashback sections that have snippets of the past and what had happened. They gave a deeper insight into why things had happened the way they did so you could really sympathise for Megan.

The only thing I wasn't so keen on was the ending (the chapter before the epilogue). It was a bit sudden for me even if the epilogue ends it nicely.

Overall this was a great read that I didn't expect to fall in love with as much as I did. There is a bit of a slow, jumbled start but it's well worth sticking with.


Sunday, 14 December 2014

Review ~ Watch Me (Dark Obsession #1) by Cynthia Eden

Watch Me (Dark Obsession, #1)eARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: December 9th 2014

Publisher: Hocus Pocus Publishing

Watch Me…The first book in New York Times and USA Today best-selling author Cynthia Eden’s sexy new romantic suspense series…DARK OBSESSION.

He was hired to protect her.

Watching gorgeous Gwen Hawthorne wasn’t a hard job—but it certainly was tempting. Chance Valentine had tried to keep his distance from the sexy socialite for years, but when her father hired him to keep watch on her—as a twenty-four, seven bodyguard—Chance knew his control was about to be pushed to the limit.

He’d never wanted another woman the way he desired her. Hot. Intense. Consuming. Being so close to Gwen, Chance knew that he wouldn’t be able to resist her. So he gave into his need, her need, and he took them both to the edge of a dark and consuming desire.

But Chance soon realizes that he isn’t the only one watching Gwen. Someone else is out there, a stalker who won’t rest until Gwen is destroyed. Every day, every moment…Gwen is in danger. And Chance knows that if he can’t unmask the stalker, then he may just lose the only woman he has ever loved.

My Opinion

I'm all for books with bodyguards and hot alpha males so when I saw the blurb on this book I instantly requested it. I love the romantic suspense genre and this book didn't fail to live up to the others I've read this year.

Having not read anything by this author before, I wasn't sure what I was going to get. However, I was hooked instantly and found myself unable to put my Kindle down. Watch Me is a fast-paced read that's filled with plenty of action and the right amount of romance ... Well it's more reconnecting and heated scenes but it's still great to see as it unfolds, even if I would have wanted more detail on their pasts.

I liked Gwen. She was stubborn and feisty, and although sometimes I felt she was a bit stupid for pushing the guards away, I can understand why she did it. Most of the time I thought her reactions were believable and I enjoyed how she came to admit her feelings. Similarly I really liked Chance. He was everything you want in an bodyguard and he didn't come across as an asshole, which was refreshing. You could tell he really was putting Gwen first out of love.

The only downside to this book is that it was on the shorter side. I was enjoying everything, and just wanted a few more chapters at the end so it didn't feel as rushed. Also, who was behind everything wasn't hidden as well as I would have liked, but I didn't guess the reasoning for it so there were some surprises.

Overall, it was a good romantic suspense. The characters were likable and the fast-paced action stopped me from being able to put it down.


Saturday, 13 December 2014

Review ~ Baby, It's Cold Outside (Tangled #4.5) Anthology

Baby, It's Cold OutsideeARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: October 28th 2014

Publisher: Pocket Books


New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling indie authors Jennifer Probst, Emma Chase, Kristen Proby, Melody Anne, and debut author Kate Meader come together to write a sizzling romance anthology. 

Outside it may be frosty, so turn the heat way up with these stories of desire!

Can a determined woman executive and a playboy billionaire survive being stranded together in a snowstorm? Jennifer Probst depicts an encounter almost too hot to handle... 

Drew and Kate play an encore to Tangled in this sexy take on a "Christmas Carol" by Emma Chase. When a Christmas Eve argument condemns Drew to a troubled night, three dream women teach him that no gift could be more tantalizing than Kate... 

With Kristen Proby, ski slopes are quite delightful. Grace Douglas is sure she'll never learn to ski, but instructor Jacob Baxter could teach her lessons of a different kind... 

Can a southern California transplant survive Montana's deep snows?Melody Anne, author of the bestselling Andersons series, melts the icy drifts completely away with the heat between sexy Hawk Winchester and brand-new teacher Natalie Duncan... 

What could be hotter than a firefighter? Kate Meader shows how, as Beck Rivera and heiress-turned-tattoo-artist Lucy Cochrane discover, nothing ignites holiday flames like rekindling a lost love...

My Opinion

Overall this was an enjoyable set of novellas. Some were better than others, but in general they were good wintry reads. The lengths were about right most of the time, the settings were good and I liked most of the characters. This may be for you if you want quick romances for winter. 


Searching for You - Jennifer Probst This was a cute read. It moved a bit too quickly for my liking, even for a novella, but it was enjoyable. 

It's a Wonderful Tangled Christmas Carol - Emma Chase This was okay. It started off well and I was intrigued but then it became really, really generic. It's a story I've heard over and over and it didn't have any variation. It was a Christmassy read but nothing amazing. 

Saving Grace - Kristen Proby This was my favourite so far. Despite the British references which are a pet peeve of mine when overdone, I found this to be a fun flirty read. It made me smile and laugh and although not set around Christmas it's a great winter novella. 

Safe In His Arms - Melody Anne One again this was only an okay read. It was sweet and a little festive but I didn't feel much connection. The story was once again a little samey. 

Rekindle the Flame - Kate Meader This one grew on me. It was a little longer than all of the others and I think it's become my second favourite in the anthology. Things were more developed and I believed in the emotions better than the others.

Friday, 12 December 2014

Review ~ Trouble by Samantha Towle

TroublePaperback purchased by myself

Release Date: November 2013

Mia Monroe is running. Running from a person she doesn’t ever want to find her. Running from a past she doesn’t ever want anyone to know. Desperate to find a future, that yesterday, she could only dream of having. 

Jordan Matthews likes easy. Easy women. Easy life. 

Then he meets Mia. 

She’s damaged, troubled and has more baggage than any person can carry. But the more Jordan gets to know Mia-for the first time in his life-he finds himself wanting to try hard for something … for someone … for her.

And then life isn’t so easy anymore. 

Jordan is everything Mia shouldn’t want. A whole bunch of dirty hotness, tattooed, cocky bad boy, who made his money at poker tables and picked his women up in bars. Yet, Mia finds herself falling for him. Then the past Mia was running from, quickly starts to catch up with her. Because that’s the problem with running … you have to stop sometime. 

And when you stop, you get caught.

Full length New Adult Contemporary Romance.
Recommended Reading Age 18+

My Opinion

This wasn't an easy read, but it was one that kept me hooked and unable to put it down. Seriously, I had a lot of plans today but all I did was read this book instead.

Trouble was one of those reads that deals with hard hitting subjects such as abuse, violence, and rape. It's also one that doesn't shy away from the detail--so if you don't handle things like that well this isn't the book for you. However, whilst it's not enjoyable to read about domestic violence, it gave the book context and made you symapthise and feel for Mia. You could feel her pain, and therefore when she started to open up you do get this sense of relief.

Similarly, the more she's around Jordan, the more you grow to love him. Yes the plot's predictable in every aspect, but that didn't stop me from reading. I enjoyed this author's casual style of writing and thought both characters, but especially Jordan, were good narrators. I didn't find them annoying at all, but rather they draw you in so that you are routing for them both to move forward not only in their lives but in their relationship. I probably could have read another few chapters if I'm honest, but the ending is satisfying.

The only thing that stopped me rating this a 5 is that I didn't feel as emotionally invested in this book as  have with others in this genre. It was a great read, but there was that spark missing that really pulled on my heartstrings. Saying that though, I'd definitely recommend this, but it isn;t for the faint-hearted.


Thursday, 11 December 2014

Review ~ Skating at Somerset House by Nikki Moore

Skating at Somerset HouseeARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: December 4th 2014

Publisher: HarperImpulse

The first short story in the fun & flirty #LoveLondon series from exciting new chick lit author Nikki Moore!

There’s nothing Holly Winterlake loves more than Christmas and skating, so working as an Ice Marshall at London's Somerset House is a dream come true.

Noel Summerford hates the festive season and is a disaster on the ice, so taking his godson to Somerset House is his idea of the nightmare before Christmas!

Things are bound to get interesting when these two collide…

With a forty foot Christmas tree, an assortment of well meaning friends and relatives, and a mad chocolate Labrador, will this festive season be one to remember … or forget?

My Opinion

This was a sweet, flirty read that was easy to read and engage with. Although I thought it was a little slow to start with, I enjoyed how the characters met and warmed up to each other. I loved the setting and thought it was the perfect place for a short festive romance. There was also a surprising amount of information about the characters. They had a clear personality and I liked how they interacted with each other.

I did think this series of short stories would follow Noel and Holly over the course of the books, but that doesn't look like it's going to happen ... If that's the case, I would loved for it to have been longer as I really enjoyed the characters and thought it set things up beautifully for more. If it isn't there'll be a nice surprise. Either way, I looked forward to the next installment.


Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Review ~ Christmas is Cancelled (Christmas is Cancelled #1) by Aurelia B. Rowl

Christmas is Cancelled (Christmas is Cancelled, #1)eARC received via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Release Date: December 1st 2014

Publisher: Carina UK

It’s impossible to forget…

Matilda ‘Tilly’ Carter has had the week from hell – and now, with all trains cancelled, it looks like Christmas will be too! With a mascara-streaked face, a broken heel and nowhere to go, there’s never been a worse time to run into the man who once broke her heart. Especially when he looks better than ever. 

The one that got away…

For Dean, Christmas has always been hard. The Tilly standing before him is no longer the firecracker of his memories—even if the way she makes his heart race hasn’t changed at all. He is determined to uphold the promise that kept them apart nine years ago. But spending a cosy Christmas with Tilly would break a better man and each accidental touch, heated look and stolen kiss is taking its toll on Dean.

After all this time, can the magic of Christmas bring Tilly and Dean together at last?

My Opinion

This was a quick easy read that had a surprising amount of emotion in it. I really enjoyed the story and how the characters progressed. Of course, being a novella it was a bit predictable and quick in pace, however that's to be expected.

I like how the narrative unfolded, and thought the emotions and situations created were believable. Dean's secrets kept me reading on and I liked the Visitor Book ending. I'm glad that got added and thought it concluded the book well.

Overall, although this didn't feel that Christmassy, it was still a great novella. It's a sweet, easy read that's good for a cold night.


Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Review ~ Dominic (Slater Brothers #1) by L.A. Casey

Dominic (Slater Brothers, #1)Paperback purchased by myself

Release Date: March 17th 2014


WARNING: If you don't like a leading male that is a possessive pr**k, Dominic is NOT for you. If you don't like a leading female that is a stubborn bi**h, Dominic is NOT for you. If you don't like over the top drama and characters who have bad tempers, Dominic is NOT for you. Most of all, if you don't like characters who CURSE A LOT and say EXACTLYwhat they feel and are thinking without sugar coating it then Dominic is REALLY NOT for you.

After a car accident killed her parents when she was a child, Bronagh Murphy chose to box herself off from people in an effort to keep herself from future hurt. If she doesn't befriend people, talk to them or acknowledge them in any way they leave her alone just like she wants. 

When Dominic Slater enters her life, ignoring him is all she has to do to get his attention. Dominic is used to attention, and when he and his brothers move to Dublin, Ireland for family business, he gets nothing but attention. Attention from everyone except the beautiful brunette with a sharp tongue. 

Dominic wants Bronagh and the only way he can get to her, is by dragging her from the boxed off corner she has herself trapped in the only way he knows force. 

Dominic wants her, and what Dominic wants, Dominic gets.

My Opinion

I've been really looking forward to this book. In fact out of all of the MMA books I've bought recently, I left this one until last because it was the one I had the biggest expectations for. However, the only phrase that comes to my mind is "what the hell have I just read?!"

Things started off badly when I saw the author's note saying she's deliberately written how Irish people supposedly speak e.g using me for my. I know this is a common thing in certain areas in the UK (I do it occasionally in speech), but in a book it grate on me. I hate reading books that try to write an accent, it's irritating and unnecessary. Tell me the characters are Irish and let my imagination take it from there. Similarly, even though I have no problem with cursing, the characters probably swore more than they talked sense. I'm sorry, but you can get away with it when used sparingly for effect, but that effect becomes lost when it's every line. I don't know anyone who actually talks like these characters.

Moreover, this relationship--can I call it that?--was just f***d up. And you can see how annoyed I was by it as I never want to swear in reviews, but there just isn't any other way to describe it. The blurb said cocky and possessive and I don't mind the alpha thing. However, Dominic took things to extremes and it just seemed like abuse. I don't know why Bronagh even fell for him in the first place. He was very rarely sweet, always angry, and the two had destructive personalities that meant they were constantly shouting at each other. Seriously, it felt like the whole book was one big shouting match way way too many exclamation marks. I'm sorry but I just don't buy it. There wasn't enough growth in either character to make me like or believe in their relationship. It all seemed wrong.

Saying that though, there was something weird about this book that kept me reading. I think it's like a seeing car crash. You know you shouldn't look and should stop staring, but you can't. I'm not sure I would recommend it, and I'm still confused by what I've read, but something drew me in despite all of the unnecessary stuff mentioned above.


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