Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Landline by Rainbow Rowell


Landline


Synopsis:

Georgie McCool knows her marriage is in trouble. That it’s been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and Neal still loves her, deeply — but that almost seems beside the point now.

Maybe that was always beside the point.

Two days before they’re supposed to visit Neal’s family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells Neal that she can’t go. She’s a TV writer, and something’s come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her — Neal is always a little upset with Georgie — but she doesn’t expect to him to pack up the kids and go home without her.

When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she’s finally done it. If she’s ruined everything.

That night, Georgie discovers a way to communicate with Neal in the past. It’s not time travel, not exactly, but she feels like she’s been given an opportunity to fix her marriage before it starts . . .

Is that what she’s supposed to do?


Or would Georgie and Neal be better off if their marriage never happened?

Review:

After finishing A Knight in Shining Armor the other day and having issues with the time travel element I was hesitant to start Landline. Yes it is not really time travel, but the whole premise is present day Georgie talks with Neal in the past which is similar enough that it made me pause before starting it. I still jumped in because, well it is Rainbow Rowell and I tend to enjoy her books. I am so glad I did. This book was really a great story and the time travel like elements actually worked. By the end I was just like thank you for making this story make sense! So yes, thank you Rainbow Rowell for not making this one of those stories that explodes my head a little because it doesn't make sense. 

Georgie is a comedy writer with her best friend. They work on TV shows with the dream of one day having their own show they can write themselves. Well as luck would have it they have a meeting to sell their show just after Christmas! Yey for Georgie, not yey for her family. Everyone was supposed to go to Nebraska for Christmas with Neal's (the husband) family. Well, now Georgie can't go, but Neal decides to go anyways with the kids and leave Georgie behind. It was a really interesting read as you can see Georgie's point of view, but not Neal's. Georgie feels like she needs Neal and the kids more than they need her. Neal and the kids are this package and she is the outsider almost. It was really interesting to see her view of everything.

Throughout the story you also get the backstory of how Neal and Georgie got together. I loved that. Neal is so odd in such a good way in this book. They just seemed to work even though Georgie now thinks it might have been better for him had they never gotten married. Neal might have been happier without her even though she cannot imagine not having him. She needs him, but he doesn't need her. Well she starts staying with her mom while Neal is away and she uses the landline to call him at his parents. She quickly realizes she is not talking to present day Neal, but past Neal where he went back to Nebraska by himself for Christmas again. At the time Georgie had thought Neal broke up with her, but on Christmas day that year he came back and proposed. At first Georgie thinks she is crazy, losing her mind as how can she talk to someone in the past?  Then she figures maybe she needs to change what happened. Maybe things shouldn't have happened the way they did. It was really fun to read her trying to figure all of this out and see her connect with Neal again. It was kind of obvious what would happen at the end, but it was still fun getting there.

Thankfully when you get to the end it all makes sense. There is none of this time travel not working things like most time travel books. It all works out and everyone is happy. Well most everyone. It really was a great read and I really enjoyed it.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★1/2

Monday, September 29, 2014

Blog Tour: Beauty and the Mustache by Penny Reid - Review, Excerpt & Giveaway




Synopsis:

There are three things you need to know about Ashley Winston: 1) She has six brothers and they all have beards, 2) She is a reader, and 3) She knows how to knit.

Former beauty queen, Ashley Winston’s preferred coping strategy is escapism. She escaped her Tennessee small town, loathsome father, and six brothers eight years ago. Now she escapes life daily via her Amazon kindle one-click addiction. However, when a family tragedy forces her to return home, Ashley can’t escape the notice of Drew Runous— local Game Warden, bear wrestler, philosopher, and everyone’s favorite guy. Drew’s irksome philosophizing in particular makes Ashley want to run for the skyscrapers, especially since he can’t seem to keep his exasperating opinions— or his soulful poetry, steadfast support, and delightful hands— to himself. Pretty soon the girl who wanted nothing more than the escape of the big city finds she’s lost her heart in small town Tennessee.

This is a full-length novel, can be read as a standalone, and is the fourth book in the 'Knitting in the City' series.


Review:

*Note: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*

Oh. My. Goodness. I...I don't know how to express how I am feeling in a way that will adequately get across how amazing and beautiful and romantic and incredible and everything this book was. Let me start off by saying I am not a romantic. I'm just not. I read a lot of romances and love some of them, but they are not really romantic romances. Usually I do not get super romantic things. Nothing super mushy and lovey dovey. Like something is wrong with me and I do not understand them. Grand romantic gestures are lost on me. Love poems? Hate them. If a character in a book is a poet I am always like ugh...and hope that we don't have to read too much of their poetry. Someone whispering sweet nothings in my ear? Awkward. Not my thing. At all. My favorite book boyfriends are tattooed dirty talking pierced rough around the edges guys. They are the ones I super swoon over and would love in real life. There are other book guys I love for the characters in the stories, but the dirty talking bad boys are my thing.

Now let me tell you a secret. Drew changed everything. Drew made me want love poems. Drew made me want grand romantic gestures. Drew made me want sweet nothings whispered in my ear. Drew. Drew blew me away with how much I absolutely fell in love with him. And he is a romantic romantic. He made me a believer though. He made me want super romantic things. I still don't know how he did that. He is definitely not anything like who I would normally love, but somehow he is everything I never knew I wanted and thought I hated. He is by far my favorite book boyfriend ever. All those tattooed dirty talking guys? Gone. Who are we even talking about? There is Drew. Just Drew. His poems I crave. I want more. I need more. Poems. Me, non-super romance Jen wants more love poems? I don't know how Penny did it. I really don't. This story is so romantic it just shouldn't work for me but somehow it works better than anything else. Mind blown. This is definitely my favorite book I have read so far this year. I don't know how something will top it. That last chapter, the epilogue, from Drew's point of view? Oh. My. Goodness. If the whole book would have been from Drew's point of view I don't know how I would have been able to handle it. I would have been a pile of mush and not been able to form a coherent thought. As it is I am writing this weeks after reading it as it has taken me this long to be able to express in words some of the amazingness that is this book. Before it was just random sounds and hand gestures and like...you know...it is...yeah...like...you know....ah! You need to read it! But that last chapter...That last chapter is like my favorite thing I have ever read. It is incredible. Amazing. Stunning. Just like Drew.

It is hard for me to think of something to say about this book that is not just gushing about how amazing it is, how amazing Drew is. I fell hard and he kind of overshadowed everything else by the end. It really is Ashley's story and was a really incredible read. It is not just sunshine and roses, there are some ups and downs in here. There are times when I almost cried (especially when you add in the knitting group ladies...they get me every time). Before I started this book Penny kept posting about how this book is very different from her other books. It is more serious and not like the rest in the series. Well I have to say I agree but also kind of disagree with that. This book did have those serious moments, and was more romantic, but it still felt very much like a Penny Reid KitC book. It did have those moments I almost cried and such, but through it all it still felt like it fit into the series, so if you enjoyed the others you will love this one as well. Until the last chapter I feel I could have told you who wrote it without knowing it was Penny. The characters were still her characters, so still amazing.

So as I said this is really Ashley's story. I loved getting to know her even if I had to do so over some rough times. She is so sweet and caring, serious and worries a lot, but still gets into these crazy situations in that way Penny Reid has. She comes home after many years away to find her brothers are all grown up now and not exactly as she left them. Oh Ashley's brothers. I am so glad we got to meet them and will get to know them better in future books. When she first gets there and all the mixups with the bathroom? Hilarious! She has been pretty independent these past few years so she is not used to leaning on anyone or needing anyone. She tries to do it all herself, but then Drew with his quiet reserved self comes along and shakes things up a bit. It is really a hard time for her and she doesn't always think straight, never really knows where she stands with Drew, but watching the two of them come together was amazing. Absolutely amazing.

I loved Ashley partly because she is a reader. She loves her fictional worlds. She loves meeting and interacting with her fictional characters. She loves books as much as I do.

"Reading, for me, is like breathing."

Exactly Ashley. Exactly. I love that she rants at one point about stupid romance novel heroines who don't see what is right in front of them, but this book is one of those books. When she realizes what she is doing it is just so amazing. This book was incredible. I laughed, I almost cried, I loved, I felt everything. It was simply incredible. I cannot say enough good things about it. Penny Reid has topped herself again. Go read this now. Seriously best book I have read this year by far. Amazing. Spectacular. Thank you so much for writing such an incredible story Penny. I will cherish it for a long, long time. This definitely goes on my list of all time favorite books.

Rating: A billion stars, or in my 5 star system ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Available on Amazon • Amazon.de • Nook • Kobo • iBooks  Goodreads




Also in the series (click the title for my review):

Friends Without Benefits available on Amazon • Amazon.de •  Barnes & Noble • Kobo • Goodreads

Love Hacked available on Amazon • Amazon.de •  Barnes & Noble • Kobo • Goodreads


About Penny Reid

SEX! It all started with sex, between my parents. Personally I don’t like thinking about it, but whatever works for you is a-ok with me. No judgment. The sex happened in California and much of my life also occurred in that state until I moved from the land of nuts (almonds), wine, silicon... boobs, and heavy traffic to the southeast US. Like most writers I like to write, but let’s get back to sex. Eventually I married and gave birth to 2 small people-children (boy-6, girl-4 as of this writing).
By day I’m a biomedical researcher with focus on rare diseases. By night I’m a knitter, sewer, lino block carver, fabric printer, soap maker, and general crafter. By the wee hours of the morning or when I’m intoxicated I love to listen to the voices in my head and let them tell me stories. I hope you enjoy their stories.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh


The Language of Flowers: A Novel

Synopsis:

The Victorian language of flowers was used to convey romantic expressions: honeysuckle for devotion, asters for patience, and red roses for love. But for Victoria Jones, it’s been more useful in communicating mistrust and solitude. After a childhood spent in the foster-care system, she is unable to get close to anybody, and her only connection to the world is through flowers and their meanings. Now eighteen and emancipated from the system with nowhere to go, Victoria realizes she has a gift for helping others through the flowers she chooses for them. But an unexpected encounter with a mysterious stranger has her questioning what’s been missing in her life. And when she’s forced to confront a painful secret from her past, she must decide whether it’s worth risking everything for a second chance at happiness.

Review:

The Language of Flowers was a very interesting read. Victoria is unlike any character I have read before. Sure she has similar background and issues, but the way she comes across and is is just...there is something sweet and beautiful and touching about it. She has issues, but she doesn't normally seem broken or hardened like a lot of people in her situation.

The story opens when Victoria ages out of the system. She is so unique and was so much fun to read, at least for a while. She just wants to be alone with her flowers. When she moves out of the group home she doesn't really do anything except start a garden. Gradually she transfers that garden to a park and when she gets kicked out for not paying rent she just lives amongst her flowers. Whenever things get really rough she can always go to her garden in the park. It was such an interesting read, her bond with the flowers and how she knows the meanings of them. She uses flowers to communicate with other people, even though most other people don't know what she is saying. It is a way for her to communicate, but also keep herself separated from everyone else. It was so different and the way it was described was kind of beautiful. It made me want to learn all the meanings of flowers and communicate more with them. It is so simple and beautiful and even if people didn't know what I was saying, they would still get flowers. I loved it.

Gradually throughout the story you get Victoria's backstory for her time with Elizabeth. You know something had to have happened with Elizabeth, but you are just waiting for what. At the same time you get the story of her current life, how she slowly start to make friends even if she doesn't recognize that. She does have people who care about her even if she tries to keep herself cut off from everyone. I loved how she gets her job and works with flowers and Grant and their back and forth with the flowers and everything. It was just really amazing.

Then about 60% of the way through I started to get annoyed with Victoria. She started making excuses and returning to her old self destructive way. That and not telling Grant important information. That made me really angry, and the fact that no one else did either. It is one of the few things that just angers me to no end, and one of those things that I have a hard time forgiving. So the last part of the book I found myself learning to not like Victoria very much. I found I just wanted her to stop with her stupid lies to herself. Stop with her pushing everyone away. Stop with her not thinking she deserves anything or anyone. Stop making decisions for other people. I just...not sure why but she really started to bug me. Where in the beginning I loved her and how unique and interesting she was, how she just carried on even though she had a lot of issues, by the second half I was just like come on! Do something! The end almost saved it, but I needed a little more (especially from Grant). I wanted it to be a little bit harder, wanted to see her work for something for once in her life. Wanted to see her just change a little bit. She does talk about how they will change and grow and live happily ever after eventually, but I wanted to see just a little bit more of that before we said goodbye. Still overall I did enjoy the story and it made me really interested to read more about plants and their meanings.

Rating: ★ ★ ★1/2

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Banded by Logan Byrne


Banded


Synopsis:

In dystopian Manhattan, society is divided into six zones, with each one representing a citizen’s benefit to society: Stalwart (strength), Astute (intelligence), Collusive (greed), Radiant (beauty), Quixotic (no life direction), and the Altruistic (willingness to help others). On a citizen’s sixteenth birthday, a computer suggests a new zone for them based on their inherent benefit to society. When Kalenna Slater is sorted out of her home zone Quixotic and into Altruistic, she thinks things can’t get worse. Life looks dismal until she meets Gavin, a boy also just sorted into Altruistic who becomes the light needed on her cloudy days.

During sorting she receives a device known as ‘The Band’. It’s a large watch-like device that never comes off, and it measures a citizen’s karma on a scale from one to one hundred. If a citizen does good, they gain points. If a citizen does bad, including breaking laws, they lose points. When your number reaches zero, the band acts as judge, jury, and executioner, and you are injected with toxins that kill you within minutes.

After sorting, recruits are taken to a three month long mandatory school named HQ. It’s at HQ she meets new friends from different zones, and finally begins to feel at ease. Everything goes well until a rare trip home makes her discover that her father, who has been missing for a decade, may have taken part in a terrible program that stands to shake the fabric of society.

Review:

Banded reads like a bad, simplified version of other popular dystopian books. It is like it was written for a younger audience, one who cannot understand things. The story was so simple, and at the same time not developed very well at all.

This story is one of those were the people are broken up into sections by the corrupt government, with the sections not able to talk to each other. You get placed into your section when you turn 16 based on what skills you are best at. You also have this band places on your arm that tracks how good you are. If you do something bad it deducts points and if you reach zero it instantly injects you with poison and you die. So that is slightly different, but the bands don't actually seem to be that big a part of the story. They keep warning if you do x, y or z you will get points taken off, but Kalenna keeps doing these things and not having anything happen.

So the story starts off with Kalenna turning 16 and having to go off to HQ to learn what she will do for the rest of her life. She gets sorted and instantly becomes friends with a cute boy who is also in her section so you know that is the instant love interest. Then they quickly make friends with a smart guy and a strong, tough guy and they have the perfect little band of misfits for anything they might need. Yey. It was just odd the way they came together, and they didn't even seem to be friends really. They weren't developed enough and it was a tell not show. The love interest aspect? That was definitely told not shown. People kept saying how the two of them obviously liked each other, but there wasn't really anything that happened to show that.

So Kalenna has her band of misfits, and she also knows her mom has this secret box that has something secret in it her dad was hiding. So she goes to HQ with the thought of just trying to survive, but pretty instantly for some unknown reason she suddenly decides that the government needs to be taken down. Why? I don't know. I have no idea what prompted this sudden change in her, but she kept bringing it up on occasion after that. It didn't make much sense. But then again Kaleena was kind of stupid and didn't make much sense. There is a tournament and whoever wins gets three hours to visit with their family as their prize. Well Kaleena definitely wants to win that, especially once they find some stuff about this black box holding something secret, but she is so obsessed with Gavin, the love interest, winning as well. She keeps bringing it up to him like you want to go home! And he is all no I don't and she is just adamant that he wants to no matter what he says. Her other friends who are in the tournament as well? Who cares. Gavin must try super hard to actually win so he can go home! Again I have no idea why this is so important to her...

She also needs to learn to keep her mouth shut. She keeps spouting off to the people in charge when they provoke her, but again she doesn't get points taken off every time like they said you would so she doesn't have the most motivation to stay in line. She also is often times like I cannot do anything physical cause I am just a girl. Like she is not going to win the tournament as she is just a girl and not strong and poor her so yeah not going to win (though somehow she keeps advancing in the tournament cause it makes sense that she somehow is just super awesome at everything she tries). It was just a bit tedious to read, and really it didn't seem like much happened in this story. The tournament is the main focus, and I thought that was all just a rouse by the government to get information but apparently I was wrong as nothing seemed to happen with it. It was just a tournament. It was just not good. Not much happened, the story and characters and everything lacked development, Kaleena was incredibly stupid most of the time, it was just bad. I will not be reading any more of this series as I just don't care what happens.

Rating:

Friday, September 26, 2014

A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux


A Knight in Shining Armor (The Montgomery/Taggert Family Book 15)

Synopsis:

Once upon a time...
...as a fair maiden lay weeping upon a cold tombstone, her heartfelt desire was suddenly made real before her: tall, broad of shoulder, attired in gleaming silver and gold, her knight in shining armor had come to rescue his damsel in distress....

A Knight in Shining Armor 

Jude Deveraux's beloved bestseller has captivated readers the world over; now in a special edition featuring new material, this timeless love story greets a new generation. Abandoned by her lover, thoroughly modern Dougless Montgomery finds herself alone and brokenhearted in an old English church. She never dreamed that a love more powerful than time awaited her there...until Nicholas Stafford, Earl of Thornwyck, a sixteenth-century knight, appeared. Drawn to him by a bond so sudden and compelling that it defied reason, Dougless knew that Nicholas was nothing less than a miracle: a man who would not seek to change her, who found her perfect just as she was. But she could not know how strong were the chains that tied them to the past -- or the grand adventure that lay before them.

Review:

A Knight in Shining Armor is my first Jude Deveraux book. I knew the name, but never read anything by her until this book was picked for my book club this month. It was an interesting story, but the time travel elements didn't make sense for time travel for me so that got in the way of the story (and is why I normally don't read time travel stories). There will be some spoilers ahead for the second half of the book.

This book started off interestingly enough. Dougless was a bit of a doormat and I have no idea why she stayed with Robert for so long (and made so many excuses for him). I was glad to see him go and hoped that now Dougless would gain some self confidence (really that is why she stayed. She did not have much self confidence and didn't want to be seen as a failure yet again by her family). Shortly after Robert leaves her stranded Nicholas appears. Nicholas from the sixteenth century. Dougless is not sure what to think of him. She thinks he is an actor or something who is really really into his role. For his part he thinks Dougless is a witch who brought him to her time for some reason. It was fun watching Nicholas try to familiarize himself with the twentieth century and see how Dougless slowly starts to believe he is from the past. They work well together and they both start falling for the other, but Nicholas doesn't want to leave her hurt and alone when he must go back to his time so he tries not to encourage her. He still needs her help to try and figure out what he needs to know to go back and clear his name (he was accused of treason and is awaiting execution), but he tries to keep Dougless at arms length.

The whole first half of the book is the two of them researching things and falling in love. Once they consummate that love though Nicholas gets taken back to his time leaving Dougless sad and alone. She tries to see what happened to him, how history changed, but finds nothing really changed! Well that just cannot be. History cannot keep thinking of Nicholas as a womanizer! No way. And he especially cannot be executed once he returned to his time because...well I am not sure. Yeah it is great to think of him living a long, healthy life, but at the same time he is going to be dead now no matter what so....anyways. So then Dougless is somehow able to get back to his time, but four years before he traveled to her time (so plenty of time to stop bad things from happening).

Once she traveled back in time the story went downhill for me. Nicholas did not remember Douglas since he hadn't met her yet, but then somehow he starts remembering their time together even though it didn't happen yet...not sure how that works. Then she starts changing everything, helping everyone, saving his brothers life and his son's and so on. She stops the sex that leads to him being known as a womanizer from happening and eventually makes him fall in love with her again and stops the wedding to the lovely Lettice. That part was a bit much for me. Dougless doesn't want Nicholas to marry as she knows Lettice will try and kill his entire family, but he has to and she cannot understand that. She keeps trying to keep her twentieth century values and ways back in the sixteenth century. It annoyed me a bit. What also annoyed me? Apparently having sex is what makes you travel back to your own time. So if you go back in time but never have sex you could stay forever! Have sex? Tavel back the next day. I just found that odd.

Then she changed everything so history was different and she saved the family and their good name! Yey...but what about everything else that would have changed? And how did Nicholas come back to her to find out who framed him, fall in love with her, then have Dougless travel back in time if everything was changed? If he was never accused of treason, never in jail awaiting execution then he never travel forward in time so he never met her so she never traveled back in time so things didn't change? This is why I don't like time travel things in general. They make no sense to me! Then one last thing that bugged me about the time travel aspect - Robert and Gloria. So when Dougless gets back from the past Robert shows up the next day and he and his daughter both really seem like they have changed. They want her back and Gloria is even being nice to her! She asks him why? What happened to make him change his ways? His reply? He was always really angry with her for having a rich family while he has always had to work for everything, but then yesterday (when Dougless comes back from the past apparently) suddenly he just wasn't angry anymore. Um what? So she changes the past, and the past for the person who looks just like Robert in the past, and this doesn't change Robert's entire life until the moment that Dougless gets back to the present? So are these two times like parallel instead of past and present? It made no sense. It was like the author didn't want to deal with him actually having his life be different so then maybe things would have worked out differently for Robert and Dougless so then maybe she wouldn't have been left at the church and so on and so on (or maybe they never even meet in this new reality). Argh! These things annoy me with time travel as they just don't make sense to me, but this in particular bugged me.

Then the very end was kind of sad. I mean Nicholas has to live his life alone and Dougless gets to meet his soul again right away? How is that fair? Lame. Also if you are messing everything up with this time travel business and just doing whatever why not make it so he could actually come forward to her time and be with her again? It would make more sense to me and be a happier ending than the one we got. So the first half of the book I enjoyed, the second half the time travel aspects kept me from being able to enjoy the story and the ending was really not that good.

Rating: ★ ★

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Out of Sight Out of Mind by Evonne Wareham


Out of Sight Out of Mind (Choc Lit)


Synopsis:

Everyone has secrets. Some are stranger than others.

Madison Albi is a scientist with a very special talent – for reading minds. When she stumbles across a homeless man with whom she feels an inexplicable connection, she can’t resist the dangerous impulse to use her skills to help him.

J is a non-person – a vagrant who can’t even remember his own name. He’s got no hope, until he meets Madison. Is she the one woman who can restore his past?

Madison agrees to help J recover his memory, but as she delves deeper into his mind, it soon becomes clear that some secrets are better off staying hidden.

Is J really the man Madison believes him to be?

Evonne describes J, the hero, in terms of chocolate:

J would be the last perfect liqueur in the battered box at the back of the fridge. The contents is a mystery, but on biting into it there is a breathtaking rush of fire, spirit and power.

Review:

Out of Sight, Out of Mind was a strange read for me. I didn't really like it, was constantly like what is going on? But at the same time understanding, but not understanding why I care or why anything was happening. It was just...missing something.

Madison is a mind-reader of sorts and she works in this lab and the book starts off with her walking home and feeling a power down this dark alley. She needs to find it and see if it is what she has been looking for her whole life, if this power is what she needs. Why? I have no idea. The whole power things and what she needs and whatnot was not explained very well. It was just...I didn't really care. It was like cool you are a scientist, you are taking in this homeless man cause you want to study him and he is letting you since he can't remember anything about himself so...

The whole first part of the book is just Madison and Jay doing mind experiments to try and break through the wall in his mind so he will know who he is. It was kind of boring and I just didn't get why Madison was so intrigued with him. They both are attracted to one another, but they try not to do anything about it. Again this was missing something. It was a romantic suspense, but it didn't really follow through for me on either aspect. You keep getting glimpses of the bad guys, but they were written like they were supposed to be creepy pervs, but it didn't feel real to me. Like they didn't really seem like real people.

So when you find out what is happening, who the bad guys are and what they are trying to do I kind of just felt like okay....so? Like I didn't really understand why this was such a terrible thing. Are there that many people out there with mind reading powers? Is this a big thing? Would this really be this terrible terrible thing if someone bad got ahold of what they are doing? Maybe I just didn't understand what exactly they were doing. It didn't seem like a big deal to me, but the way the whole mind reading thing came across was just blah in the story so...not a very good book. It does get more exciting by the end as they try and defeat the bad guys, but still not so good. When Madison finds out who Jay really is she is instantly super angry, then not so much, just all over the place. I didn't get it. I didn't understand why she would react like that to him and why everything just went crazy there for a bit. Oh well. Not the book for me.

Rating: ★1/2

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Finding Eden by Mia Sheridan



Synopsis:

**Finding Eden is the continuation of Becoming Calder. Both books will release simultaneously, October 5, 2014**

Review:

*Note I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.*

Finding Eden is the second book and a continuation of Becoming Calder. While I enjoyed Becoming Calder, I did have a few issues with it (my review here). I thought I would enjoy Finding Eden more based on the first chapter of Becoming Calder and I was right. I did enjoy this story a lot more, but still it wasn't my all time favorite. It is not bad or anything, it was a good read, but it was a bit too mushy romantic for me. See I am not really romantic romantic. I read romances, but I don't like them if they are too sappy and mushy and lovey dovey. This book is lovey dovey. They characters are just soooo in love and they cannot live without the other and will never find anyone else they can only be with each other! It is not my thing, and they are like that right from the start in the first book. I finally realized that was the biggest issue with these books for me - they are too romantic for me. Most people will probably love it since most people like that kind of thing, it just was a bit much for my tastes. Still I did enjoy the book.

Finding Eden starts off where Becoming Calder left off. I was surprised by how quickly the story moved and I was glad for that. I don't really want to say too much about it since it is not out yet and I don't want to give anything away from either book, so this will be short. Both characters have a lot of change happening, they learn a lot of things about themselves that they previously didn't know, and they have a lot of issues to work through. Eden has to be really strong, stronger than the last book, and she is just a survivor. She does what she needs to do, but yet she still keeps her sweet, kind way about her. I did really like her and how she just kept going when it would have been easy to shut down or become jaded.

Calder has his own things to deal with, and he is not always as strong as Eden. I did enjoy the two of them together, but as I said at times it was a bit sappy for me. If you enjoy really loving books you will enjoy these. While their situations might not be all sunshine and roses, when the two of them are together they seem to see the world with rose colored glasses. A good read and I enjoyed it more that the first book.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Available on Goodreads

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The Marquess of Cake (Redcakes #1) by Heather Hiestand


The Marquess of Cake (Redcakes)


Synopsis:

Coffee…tea…or a pastry chef sweeter than any confection…

Scotch trifle fit for Queen Victoria, scones with clotted cream…Alys Redcake knows the way to a man’s heart. Yet she is unaware that with each morsel—and flash of ankle—she is seducing the handsome marquess frequenting her father’s tea shop. Unmarried at twenty-six, Alys’s first love is the family business. But thoughts of the gentleman’s touch are driving her to distraction…

With his weakness for sugar, the Marquess of Hatbrook can imagine no more desirable woman than one scented with cake and spice. Mistaking Alys for a mere waitress, he has no doubt she would make a most delicious mistress. And when he finds himself in need of an heir, he plans to make her his convenient bride. Yet as they satisfy their craving for one another, business and pleasure suddenly collide. Will Hatbrook’s passion for sweets—and for Alys—be his heart’s undoing?

Review:

The Marquess of Cakes was a fun read. It is set in the Victorian era, which I love, but the writing and story are more modern at the same time. You wouldn't pick up this book and think it was really written then, but it was fun to read. It has been updated a bit and is kind of ridiculous but I really enjoyed it.

Alys loves making cakes. She works at her father's tea shop and cannot imagine anything else. She is older for the time period and has no intention of marrying. She doesn't need or want a man in her life. She just wants her cakes.

Hatbrook has a weakness for sugar. He needs to eat something every hour or he gets shaky and ill tempered. Usually that something is a sweet of some sort. He really is a bit obsessed with sugary treats. He does not really have any interest in getting married and all that, he just wants to work and eat treats. When he first sees Alys he is intrigued. She smells like cake and entices him just with the way she is. They keep running into each other and they are both intrigued by the other.

Of course everything is not just sunshine and roses. Alys' father gets a bump up in society so things start to change, namely Alys can no longer work in the the tea shop and now her father wants to marry her off. Even though she is upset she knows that her working would hurt her sisters chances for a good marriage. She does try to help them out as much as she can all the while growing closer to Hatbrook. Their romance grows and there are some issues long the way, but you still get that sudden ending where everything is perfect and everyone in love that I love so much in older romances. All along the way you have the normal society things that would be in a book from this time, but they way they were written was a little lax. I loved it. Really a fun, kind of ridiculous, victorian read.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Monday, September 22, 2014

Hero of Her Heart by Lindsey Brookes


Hero of Her Heart


Synopsis:

From the moment Bethany Warner was born, Sheriff Tanner Montgomery was on the run. And he was only four at the time. Their mothers’ matchmaking efforts finally ended when Bethany’s family moved away. Now, ten years later, she’s coming back to Ruby Creek and his mother is up to her old tricks again.

Tanner is happy with his life just the way it is. No emotional entanglements. No wife or child to worry about leaving behind if something should happen to him in the line of duty. Then Bethany returns, all grown up and sexier than sin. Now he’s on the run for a whole new reason.

Growing up, Bethany idolized Tanner. He was the HERO OF HER HEART. But to him she’d been nothing more than a tag-a-long little kid. Too tall, too thin, with unruly curls and teeth she could whistle through.

That was then. Now she’s coming back to Ruby Creek, a successful, confident businesswoman, and no longer the ugly duckling she had once been. Can Bethany convince Tanner to give love a chance? And if she does, will it be everything she had always dreamt it would be?

Review:

Hero of Her Heart was a quick, fun summer read. From the moment Bethany was born both her parents and Tanner's parents were pushing them together. Tanner did not like this at all, especially since he was only four years old when it all started. His whole life his mom has been trying to get him together with Bethany, the tall lanky girl who follows him everywhere.

Bethany has always loved Tanner. She follows him around and hopes that one day he will notice her. Her family moved away at the end of high school and she hasn't been back in a number of years. Now she is back and incredibly beautiful so of course Tanner notices her as more than a friend.

Tanner doesn't want to get married ever. Bethany knows this, but hopes once he notices her he will change his mind. He doesn't want to leave a wife and kid behind like his dad did. He knows his job has risks and he doesn't want someone else to suffer because of that.

Bethany hasn't really dated much. She has always been in love with Tanner so she has never hooked up with anyone else. She has a successful business and she is happy with that. When she comes back and Tanner finally seems to notice her she is so happy. She is more confident and flirty with him than she has ever been and she eventually wears him down. It was just a fun read. A bit silly and you know what is going to happen, of course there is some drama, but it is still enjoyable.

Rating: ★ ★ ★

Available on Amazon, Amazon.de, and Goodreads

Sunday, September 21, 2014

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart


We Were Liars

Synopsis:

A beautiful and distinguished family.
A private island.
A brilliant, damaged girl; a passionate, political boy.
A group of four friends—the Liars—whose friendship turns destructive.
A revolution. An accident. A secret.
Lies upon lies.
True love.
The truth.

We Were Liars is a modern, sophisticated suspense novel from National Book Award finalist and Printz Award honoree E. Lockhart...

Review:

Wow. We Were Liars really left me a bit stunned. Stunned by the story, stunned by how much I loved it, stunned at how amazing it was. I remember when it came out and I read a few things and they all said you shouldn't know anything going into the book, so I stopped reading things about it. I think it is true, you don't want to know what happens as it would just ruin the story. The beautifully written story. So this will probably be short as I don't want to ruin anything.

Besides the story what did I love about this book? The writing. It was beautiful. I can see where it might annoy some people, but it just drew me in and kept me captivated.
Sometimes the lines are broken up,
almost like a poem
and I can see where some might hate that.
To me it worked. It made the story flow, it helped get across the emotions and feelings of the characters. I loved it. Which is odd as if you read my Ugly Love review I hated it in that book. This author did it in a way that worked. Beautiful.

I loved the main character and how she told the story. She had such an amazing way of describing everything, especially how she was at the moment. She just had a really beautiful way for telling the story. Right from the start you see it and it gets you the first time. Or it did me. Really surprised by how much I loved this book. A beautiful story which is a little odd saying after finishing the book, but it is true. Highly recommended.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Becoming Calder by Mia Sheridan


Becoming Calder


Synopsis:

There is a place in modern day America with no electricity, no plumbing, and no modern conveniences. In this place, there is no room for dreams, no space for self-expression, and no tolerance for ambition.

In this place, there is a boy with the body of a God and the heart of a warrior. He is strong and faithful and serves his family honorably. But he dares to dream of more.

In this place, there is a girl with the face of an angel and a heart full of courage. To her family, she is the vision of obedient perfection. But she dares to want that which she has been told can never be hers. 

Becoming Calder is the story of good versus evil, fear versus bravery, and the truth that the light of love has always found its way into even the darkest of places... From the beginning of time, to the end of the world.

THIS IS THE FIRST PART IN A TWO-PART SIGN OF LOVE SERIES INSPIRED BY AQUARIUS. THE SECOND PART, FINDING EDEN, WILL RELEASE SIMULTANEOUSLY.

Review:

*Note: I received an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*
Becoming Calder will be released on Oct 5 together with the second part of the story, Finding Eden. You can pre-order Becoming Calder here.

Let me start of by saying I did really enjoy most of this book, and would recommend it, but I did have a few issues with it at the same time. When I first finished I was just like woah! I was really excited to start reading Becoming Calder. I mean I love love loved Archer's Voice so I couldn't wait for more from the author.

Calder seems like such a sweet guy, honest and helpful and just tries to do what is right and live up to what he has been taught his whole life. He knows he shouldn't be with Eden, he knows she will never be his, but he can't help it. He can't stay away from her and once things start to happen he can't stop it, especially when she wants it too. They are sweet together, but pretty insta love that worked somewhat.

Eden is fated to be with someone else. She wants Calder though. With only ever having spoken to him once she is in love. She wants desperately to be with Calder, but it is not to be. She knows she is not supposed to want him, but she can't help it. When the two of them get together she doesn't hold back. She wants what she wants and doesn't really care that she shouldn't have it.

So the parts of the book with Calder and Eden and the spring and all of it were really sweet. They did go well together, they felt the same way towards each other and knew what they felt was supposed to be wrong, but they didn't care by the end. They wanted a life together even if that wasn't supposed to happen.

So their basic story was sweet and lovely and great. What didn't I like? Well the setting of the story, what is actually going on. I was disappointed in that as it was a bit too nice. From everything I know of these types of situations and from other books I have read with similar settings I was expecting it to be much worse. I was expecting Eden's life to be really terrible. I was expecting more heartache and hardship and distress reading what is going on. Instead it was just okay. Sure it is not the best situation ever, but it is not as bad as I had thought it would be. She gets off really easy and I wasn't expecting that...I just felt a bit let down. I felt like the whole situation should have been a lot worse and it just seemed like overall a nice place to be and not that bad. I wanted it pushed a step farther to really make this story powerful and engaging. I wanted a darker story with an unbelievably hopeful story over top.

My second issue? Eden hasn't had schooling. She doesn't know basic math or science of anything except how to play the piano and read the holy book. My issue? She doesn't really come across that way. She uses some big words, or responds to Calder when he uses them, and I would just think how does she know these words? They are not common everyday words that she would easily pick up so...She just seemed like a normal teenage girl, not someone with no education, but then once and a while we would have a passage where Calder would teach her something and she would be like oh! That is how that works or whatever. Another small thing that bugged me.

I know I have some complaints about this story, but I did enjoy this book. Once I got into it I was savoring it like a sweet treat. I was reading it slowly and taking it all in. I was invested in Calder and Eden and their story. I did really enjoy it, up until the very very very end. I won't talk about it in specifics as I don't want to spoil anything but while reading the end gets pretty intense. I was like on the edge of my seat reading it until the last pages. Updated: I originally found one part of the last pages a little lame and a let down, but since I just started Finding Eden I think I just didn't understand the layout of the setting and where things were. Still not my favorite, still wanted a little more from the very end with the one character, but it is not as bad as I had thought. I think the second book will be better based on the first chapter of this book. I seem to be the only one with these issues as all the other reviews are just about how amazing the story is, and I did enjoy reading it so you probably will as well. I would recommend it and it was a good read.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ 1/2

Pre-order now on Amazon and add to your TBR list on Goodreads

Friday, September 19, 2014

Love By Deception by K.C. Barnard


Love by Deception: A harrowing true story of love and betrayal.

Synopsis:

Meet K.C. a gregarious, fun loving woman in her thirties. With an abundance of friends, and an enviable position as a jet-setting stewardess in the prestigious world of private aviation, she seems to have it all....but does she? 

Love by Deception is a compelling read of how meeting the wrong person can bring not only heartache, but real devastation in the most brutal of ways. We follow K.C.’s turmoil, as we unravel her disastrous relationships where she becomes the unwitting victim to four extremely cruel men. 

Throughout K.C.’s journey she is determined to never allow anyone to break her spirit.

Review:

Love By Deception could have been an amazing book, but unfortunately the writing is just not that good and the story not fleshed out enough. Instead of feeling for the main character I just kept thinking how is this thirty something world traveler so naive? Why does she stay with these guys when she knows they are not good? Why does she keep suppressing her intuition and not listening to anyone else? It just...I wish the author would have went into more details on the little things and what life was like before everything went crazy with Devil Man especially. He seemed genuinely crazy, and I understand the whole cycle of violence and such, how abusers get their victims to stay with them and whatnot, but Devil Man didn't seem to fit into this exactly. It was so quick and seemed relatively easy to get out. I just didn't understand.

 Really I think that was the issue with most of the book for me. Everything seemed to be too quickly explained so I didn't really get why she would stay or go back with these guys. It didn't make any sense based on what I was told and she didn't seem like the normal beaten down victim who stays because they are terrified or anything. I wish this would have been more in depth so I would have understood. Instead I kept thinking why is this girl so naive and gullible? You believe someone just because they had said before that they are honest? Even when everything is telling you not to believe them? Okay. The author does say throughout the book that she knew something was wrong but time and time again ignored that voice that told here something was off. Without seeing why she would stay with these men I didn't understand why she would ignore all the red flags that she said she did notice. And it just kept happening. Really it seems like this cycle of being with a terrible guy will just keep continuing. She said after Devil Man she didn't really feel broken or need to talk to someone about what happened, she talked to her friends and that was good enough. She was fine pretty quick and no big deal, or that is the way it came across in the book. I can't help but think if she was in this really terribly abusive relationship where she was beaten down mentally and feared for her life would she really just be okay that easily? She also was really lucky that Devil Man never tried to find her again once it was over for good. A lot women are not so lucky and they live in fear that their abuser will find them and kill them.

So the author is stuck in this horrible pattern of picking terrible men then staying with them just because. I know it is probably more than that, she is probably worn down by these men little by little like most abusers, but through the writing and what I was told in this story I just didn't see it. I just saw a gullible lady making poor decisions and excuses for bad behavior in her partner. If I didn't know more about domestic abuse this book unfortunately would not have opened my eyes. This book would have made me even more confused as to why a woman would stay with a man like this. It makes it seem like women in abused relationships are just kind of stupid, which is not the case. So I was very disappointed in this book. Instead of highlighting and showing how truly horrible it is to be in a situation like this and how hard it is to get out (especially Devil Man and Floppy) it just made me confused as to why anyone would stay. She kept saying she doesn't know, and hindsight is everything and whatever, but she just seemed stupid. It all starts with Tomcat and his weird marriage arrangement. Why did she just believe him and never look into that? So right from the beginning in terms of relationships shown in this book she makes poor decision after poor decision (and once she makes a decision she sticks with it even if her intuition tells her it is the wrong choice).

I hope the author has actually learned from all of these relationships and has better ones going forward, but I don't think that will actually happen. I wouldn't be surprised to find out she keeps dating the wrong men again and again. Who knows though. Maybe this book did help her see some truths and she will find a nice guy and settle down (or stay single and be happy that way). I do wish nothing but the best for her and hope she can make better decision in the future.

Rating: ★ ★

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Juliette and the Monday ManDates (Gustafson Girls #1) by Becky Doughty


Juliette and the Monday ManDates: The Gustafson Girls Book 1


Synopsis:

Juliette Gustafson is heart-broken after waiting nearly ten years for a proposal from her boyfriend that never came. Determined she isn’t “getting over Mike” quickly enough, her three sisters devise The Monday ManDates; an intervention plan requiring Juliette to endure what turns out to be a series of remarkably disastrous blind dates: TheraPaul, Frisky Frank, TAZ the rock star, and the stoic Tim Larsen, among others. Then there’s Victor Jarrett, the police officer with an affinity for pulling Juliette over when she’s at her very worst. But no one is more surprised than Juliette when she meets the one man who can right the wrongs in her past and change her future, if she will only let herself fall in love with him. 

MEET THE GUSTAFSON GIRLS 

When Paul and Simone Gustafson are killed by a drunk driver, the lives of their daughters change irrevocably. Although raised by loving grandparents, it’s the G-FOURce—the Gustafson Four Sisters Club—that binds them together when their differences would tear them apart. All grown up now, Juliette has become the quintessential doormat, Renata, the self-appointed matriarchal figure. Phoebe is, at least according to Renata, borderline narcissistic, and Gia is on the verge of a major identity crisis. 


Then there’s Angela Clinton, the senior class darling who drove her cherry black 1970 el Camino into the side of their parents’ car on the night of Juliette’s high school graduation. Angela’s prison sentence is winding down; soon she’ll be eligible for parole and moving back to town. Will the G-FOURce be strong enough to hold them together as they step into the eye of the storm that’s been brewing for the last fifteen years? Will they finally be able to let go of the past and embrace the future, no matter what it holds?

Review:

I am not the best person to review Juliette and the Monday ManDates since it is a really preachy Christian romance. I didn't realize this before I started it and for the first couple chapter it was fine. Then suddenly you have page after page after page of God/Jesus talk that was too much for me. As a non-religious person I don't mind religious characters but I can't really get behind preachy books. When it feels like it is aimed at the reader and not just the that is the way the characters are I do not like it. It just seemed to come out of left field and then would drop off and show up again throughout. Really the first passages was Juliette's friend talking about how she had to put God above everyone even her husband, that is why her husband broke up with her before the wedding, because she was putting him before God and then she realized she hadn't actually accepted Jesus into her heart yet and once she did she got her husband back and they married and are living happily ever after. It just...I don't like it. I think it is because it is not realistic for me. I grew up in a very Christian town and no one spoke like the people in this book. Sure you get God talk and whatnot, I went to church and participated in church events, but no one spoke like this books sections. At least no one I know so it gets to be too much for me.

So the non-Christian parts of this book were okay. Not my favorite, but good. I kept getting into a groove and started really enjoying it, and then I would get waylaid with church and stuff. You know right from the start that Victor will be a part of the story. He just pulls Juliette over for speeding and you know he is probably the one. Her ManDates were alright. I was expecting worse, but really it was a lot of Juliette not being confident and running away. Really it was an alright read.

I really didn't like her one sister Renata. She annoyed the heck out of me. She always needed to have her way and she thought she knew what was best for everyone. She wasn't nice about it though. She would be really harsh and just not listen to anyone else or what they wanted. Did not like her at all. Her other sisters were okay, but overall, even without the Christian parts I wouldn't read another book in this series. It was an alright read, but I skimmed huge chunks of it.

Rating: ★1/2

Available on Amazon, Amazon.de, and Goodreads

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Take by Silvia Ami


Take

Synopsis:

When FBI special agent Joss Dubois discovers that her best friend’s life is being threatened, she volunteers to be the Vegas dancer's official protection. Determined to solve the case before she loses one of the only people she loves, Joss becomes caught up in terrorism, attempted murder, and life behind-the-scenes of the seedy nightlife of Sin City.

Joss is forced to partner with the security manager at the Desert Casino, former Intel Marine, Ethan Gallagher. Despite her resistance to his charm, and her stubborn insistence on controlling the investigation, Ethan finds himself drawn to the smart, beautiful, tempting FBI agent. But Joss isn’t so eager to risk heartbreak after the tragedies of her past and her job has become the only thing she can count on.

When the threats against the people they’re protecting turn deadly, Ethan and Joss have to find a way to trust each other to track the hunter who lies in wait for the Desert’s dancers. But trust is a rare and fragile thing to Joss, and Ethan may not be up to the task despite the mutual attraction they can't deny or fight.

Will their new partnership blow up, or can it survive to take down the predator before it’s too late?


Review:

When I first started reading Take I thought oh I am not going to like this. The attraction between the main characters was too much and seemed like it would just be an insta love story with just lots of sex. You know one of those romances that love is really just physical attraction and nothing more. Thankfully this book quickly proved me wrong and was a great read.

Joss is an FBI agent on vacation visiting with her best friend Iris. When Iris' life is threatened Joss takes over the investigation in Las Vegas. Joss, Iris, and Don, Iris' boyfriend, have been best friends for a long time. They grew up together and have kept in touch ever since. Joss has had some not so good things happen in her past that make her keep people at a distance and it can be hard to get close to her, but she always tries to be there for her friend. She is also a smart female main character which is so refreshing. When Iris tries to be stupid and not tell the guys what is going on Joss is just like nope. They need to know, we need to tell them so they can help keep you safe. I was just like yes! Thank you for not being the idiot female.

Ethan is a former marine and security manager where Iris dances (and where Don is in charge). He doesn't mind Joss being in charge of the investigation into the threats against Iris, but he wants to be a part of it (which is fine with Joss). Since the moment the two of them meet there are sparks. They are attracted to each other, but they both try and hold back and not do anything about it. They have a job to do and they need to focus on trying to figure out who is responsible for the threats.

Joss also hold back because she is not sure she wants to pursue something with Ethan. She hold back a little afraid to let someone in and she doesn't know if she wants a relationship. She also doesn't know if she can do casual no-strings either. Ethan is not looking for a relationship either. He is not a player or anything, he is just a guy. If he finds someone he is interested he is not opposed to a relationship, but he is not searching it out either. Joss makes him want to get to know her better. She makes him want to see where this goes between them after they catch the bad guy.

They are very sweet together. They try to not do anything until they close the case, but they just can't help it. They are working together and hanging out together and they just really like each other. I really liked them together. Ethan is so sweet with Joss and they were just great together. My favorite thing about them? They seem like normal people. Like someone I would hang out with in real life. I really liked that. They are an FBI agent and an ex marine security guy, but they just seem really down to earth like normal people. I loved that.

So they work together and become closer and it was just really a nice story. The secondary characters, Iris and Don, I didn't like as much. They were a bit too much for me at times, but they seem to be there for comedic relief. Sometimes it was fine, but if the book was just about them, they were the main characters, I don't think I could get through it. They just weren't for me, but they were find as secondary characters.

So overall I really enjoyed this book. I thought it was going to be insta love and instead I got slow relationship building which I loved. When you find out who it is and why it is just like really? and Ethan even thinks it is a joke when Joss tells him. But it makes sense at the same time. It doesn't seem cheesy or anything, it seems realistic even if the reason is a bit ridiculous. A great read.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Available on Amazon, Amazon.de, and Goodreads

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Kiss a Girl in the Rain (Take a Chance #1) by Nancy Warren


Kiss a Girl in the Rain (Take a Chance Book 1)


Synopsis:

In this sexy, humorous contemporary romance, a lost dog brings together a wealthy drifter and a small town doctor and changes all their lives forever. 

Evan Chance is a man out to complete the bucket list he made as a kid, starting with ride a motorcycle across America. Caitlyn Sorenson is the sexy country doctor standing in his way. Or is she the dream he’s been searching for? 

Evan's Amazing Life List 
1. Ride a motorcycle across America 
2. Kiss a girl in the rain 
3. Swim in every ocean… 

When Evan Chance gives up a successful corporate law career to tackle the bucket list he wrote when he was twelve, he has no idea where the road will lead him. 

Caitlyn Sorenson is a happily settled small town doctor. When a sexy drifter rolls into town after a motorcycle accident leaves him stranded in Miller's Pond for a few days with the homeliest dog ever, she can smell trouble even as she's drawn to a man who is only passing through town. 

But some scorching hot nights and a blooming tenderness mean two people will have to face up to the challenges of love. 


From USA Today Bestselling Author Nancy Warren comes the first in an exciting new series of sexy, humorous romances about a family named Chance.

Review:

Kiss a Girl in the Rain is a cute, well written story. This is another one where I thought it would just be a quick summer read but it was actually more. The writing was great, the story well thought out, it was just a really good read. 

Evan is a successful lawyer at one of the top firms in Seattle. He has a great mentor and second father figure he works with and a girlfriend who is also a lawyer at the firm. When his mom sends him his list of life goals he wrote when he was 12 and he realize he did not accomplish much since then he is a bit unsettled. He is not really liking his life at the moment, and when his mentor passes and he sees his girlfriend for what she really is, what they really are, he gets out. He is off to have adventures and complete his list, only he doesn't get very far. He gets stuck in a small town not far from where he started waiting for a part for his bike. 

Caitlyn came from a wasp family. She was never good enough no matter what she did. She was a fancy surgeon in New York City and was living the life her parents wanted for her, always trying to gain their approval. Of course it never came and when things start to go south she runs to her grandfathers practice in the same small town Evan gets stuck in. She is the doctor there and tries to keep her life neat and organized and safe. That doesn't include having an affair with the hot drifter, but she decides to go for it. 

They both know Evan is leaving soon, but they can't stay away. It was nice watching these two very different but very similar people find their way together. They were sweet and you know what will happen at the end, but still it was a sweet read. I really enjoy it and all of the characters in the book. From the homely dog to the crazy towns people offering Evan everything from a job to places to live it was a lot of fun. 

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Available on Amazon, Amazon.de, Barnes & Noble, and Goodreads