Friday, July 31, 2015

Regret Me Not by Danielle Sibarium


Regret Me Not

Synopsis:

For Mackenzie Green life is full of regrets; regrets from choices she made in the past, regrets for the things she’ll never see in her future. She regrets letting her grades slip while her sister was in rehab, ensuring she’ll never break away from the rumor-run, small town she lives in. She regrets breaking up with her future All American football playing boyfriend, Brayden Turner out of fear of getting hurt. Most of all she regrets every decision she made leading up to the night that changed her life forever. 

It’s only after Brayden cuts her off completely that Mackenzie realizes how much she wants him in her life. 

Can Mackenzie find the courage to learn from her mistakes and move forward or will she spend her days consumed with regrets? Is it too late to convince Brayden she wants him in her life and that she’s in it for the long haul? Most of all, can she accept that sometimes bad things happen no matter how hard you try to protect yourself from them? Can she put it all behind her or will she live an unfulfilled life full of regrets? 

Review:

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

I was not expecting Regret Me Not to be such an emotional read. I thought this will be a book I will hopefully enjoy, but nothing too serious. Boy was I wrong. Right from the beginning I was drawn in and man...this book made me feel all the feels. It was incredible. I don't know that I can accurately express how much I enjoyed this story, but I will try.

I started reading Regret Me Not one afternoon before meeting up with a friend. It opens with what happens to make Brayden cut Mackenzie off completely. I was instantly hooked. Like oh no, what are you doing? Why is this happening? No! I was already sad for both of them. I was just like you have to fix this!?! You then get the story of how these two became a couple and everything leading up to that fateful night. Oh that was hard to read because it was so moving and you know where it will end up so it just breaks your heart. I felt too much. I had to put the book aside right when it got back to present day and meet my friend and I just couldn't get the story out of my head. I was a bit devastated when I showed up to meet her, still stuck with these characters. I just couldn't let it go. Even now I am still like man, these characters. This was so sad for them, but then so good. It was great. I love books that make me feel this much.

Mackenzie is a character that I would normally hate in a book, but I didn't. She is this not very confidant girl who is afraid of feeling too strongly for someone, doesn't always make smart decision, she is just gliding through her life kind of. Just everything about her, what she does, the decisions she makes, how she is I normally do not like in a person, but I loved her.

"It felt so natural to push everyone away, to hide behind my wall of anger and antagonism"

She makes stupid decision, is kind of terrible to people at times, but I loved her. I felt for her. I was so invested in her relationship with Brayden. Afterwards I kept thinking in the grand scheme of things her life is not that bad. I thought well I have read books about people who have really terrible things happen to them, situations that are just horrible and yet I didn't feel half as much for them as I did for Mackenzie. Not that one person's suffering is worse than another, but the author made me feel so much for Mackenzie when other have not been able to do that with worse situations. Amazing. While normally I would want to yell at a character like her, with Mackenzie I just wanted everything to be okay. One of the things I hate the most is when someone makes decisions for other people, takes their choices away from them, which is what Mackenzie does and yet I didn't hate her for it. I understood her. Maybe that is why this was different from most. I understood the characters and they seemed real to me. My heart broke for Mackenzie. The author wrote her in such a way that it was impossible to really be upset with her. She was just doing what she thought she should do/had to do to protect herself. She really felt like a real person.

And Brayden? Brayden is such a sweetheart. He loves Mackenzie so much and you can see it. He just wants to be with her. She makes him happy and he would do anything for her. Reading those last scenes before the big night just tore my heart to pieces. It was devastating. I felt so much for him. It was like I was him, like I was being torn apart by the one I love as well. You can just see how much he is hurting and it is... it was hard to read (in a great way).

"You're so worried that I'll hurt and forget you, that you missed how you destroyed me."


I just loved both of them, felt for both of them. Though I will say I am glad it was written from Mackenzie's point of view. If it wasn't I don't know that I would have enjoyed this story. I needed it to be from her side so I could see why she did things.

So right from the moment these two meet you could just see there was something there between them. Mackenzie is a bit afraid of it though as she has seen what happened to her sister and she doesn't want to end up the same way. They were really a couple that I believed would stay together forever even though they met when they were young. They seemed genuinely like they would make it. You could just see how in love they were, how strong their connection was. I could see them growing old together. When Mackenzie gets scared and runs from their connection it was painful to see how it affected both of them.

You do get quite a bit of what happens after that night which I wasn't expecting (but was really glad for). It made it even more like these were real people. Like you were really reading their life and not just some quick happily ever after. You get to see these two try and work things out, see what life has in store for them. These two go through a lot, but that just makes them stronger. My heart just kept breaking for them again and again, but the end was so sweet.

"Sometimes you fight destiny with every bit of your free will, but you end up lost and find yourself right there, on the road you tried to avoid, because that was the path you were meant to take all along."

The author did an amazing job with this story. I loved it. I should hate most things about it, but the author wouldn't let me. The writing was beautiful. The author wrote it in such a way that it is impossible for me to dislike the people and things that happened. Everything that happened worked perfectly. It just was what happened. It was their story. It was beautiful even if it was heartbreaking and devastating at times. I will definitely be reading more from this author.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★1/2

Available on

Thursday, July 30, 2015

All in My Head by Kristen James


All In My Head

Synopsis:

Avery Waldorf wakes up from a concussion to find a voice inside her head—an adventurous male voice belonging to Marcus, who doesn’t know where he came from, but has an opinion on everything about her life. She just wants to work on her screenplay, go to her writing classes and flirt with the guy of her dreams, Nash, who is finally noticing her. Marcus wants to get up at dawn, run, snowboard, and basically take over her life, and even her body at times. He thinks she’s freaking hot and does not like Nash touching her. Marcus may be smart, talented at snowboarding, drawing and playing the guitar, but he’s not real! When she needs help, she has to call Nash. She can’t tell anyone about Marcus without sounding like she’s crazy. Meanwhile Marcus doesn’t know where he’ll go if he leaves her mind. Maybe she is losing it… 

Review:

All in My Head was an interesting idea, but the execution wasn't my favorite. I didn't really see the connections between the characters and it just wasn't as good as I had hoped it would be.

Avery has a snowboarding accident and wakes up from a concussion to find that she is hearing a voice in her head. The voice of Marcus. Marcus who doesn't remember anything about himself. He is quite opinionated right from the start about Avery and her life. Marcus is a doer, an adventure seeker. He is always doing something so being stuck in her head is killing him. Especially when she lazes around.

For her part Avery is not really sure what to think of Marcus. Is he a real person? Is she just crazy? Did she make him up? He doesn't seem to think so, and he knows how to do things she doesn't, can make her do things she doesn't know how to, so eventually she admits that he is not just in her head. Only they don't know where he might be or why he is there.

I really like the idea behind this story, but the execution wasn't my favorite. Marcus was like instantly in love with Avery and I am not sure why. He was instantly jealous of other guys, of Avery wanting to spend time with Nash (finally!), and so he made it hard on her. For as much as he was in her head and could hear her thoughts and everything I never felt like they really got to know each other. Only surface level stuff which...I just expected more. Especially since he is in her head. At some point Avery goes from wanting Marcus out of her head to wanting him to stay. Again not sure why she built this fondness for him. I didn't see it through the interactions they had. It just was alright.

Also Avery's "friends" are wonderful. They leave her at the hospital, then you find that her one friend/roommate is dating her jerk ex. It was just all a mess. They don't seem to really care about each other and are just superficial nice when they are supposed to be bff. It just didn't work that well for me.

The end was alright. I would be curious to read more and see what happens after the ending. I think that has the potential to be better than this in her head story.

Rating: ★ ★1/2

Available on

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Brailling for Wile by James Zerndt


Brailling For Wile

Synopsis:

BRAILLING: Feeling the surface of a tile while your hand is in the bag in order to draw a blank or other specific letter. This is strictly forbidden. -from SCRABBLE’s Official Glossary

Brailling was something twelve-year-old Mattias Long learned to master during the games of Scrabble he used to play with his mother while they waited for his father, Wile, to close up the family restaurant. But now, one year after his father’s suicide, it’s Mattias who feels cheated. He hates his father. He hates him for leaving Mattias and his sister, Georgie, alone. He hates him for turning his mother into a young widow who hasn’t left the house in months. And he hates his father for leaving behind his stupid tree. Four of them are planted outside the restaurant, one for each family member, his father’s now casting the biggest shadow. That is until Mattias’s mother, no longer able to stand the sight of the tree, hires a local landscaper to remove it in the middle of the night. This seemingly unremarkable act soon sets in motion of series of events in the small Colorado ski town that leaves more than just young Mattias groping in the dark for answers.

Brailling For Wile is a unique novel told from multiple points of view about loss and the lengths some will go to heal the human heart. Ultimately, it is a story about lives being uprooted and what it takes to go on living even when everything in the world might be telling us it isn’t possible to.

Review:

Brailling for Wile was an interesting read. I enjoyed the story, but it was not quite what I was expecting. 

I was expecting Scrabble to play more of a role in this book, but it really didn't. In the very beginning Mattias is playing with his mom, but then it doesn't really come up again until the very end. I just thought there would be more to it since it seemed to be a main theme of the story from the title and synopsis. 

This story is told from multiple people's points of view and really shows how everyone was affected by Wile's suicide. The story starts a year after he killed himself so you never really get to know him. Mattias still doesn't quite know how to deal with everything. He has this crazy religious friend who was very strange to read. She was kind of crazy and kind of terrible. She does bad things, but then lies about them and pretends to be all sweet and honest. Not cool. She was an odd one for sure. 

Then there is Georgie, Mattias' sister. She is kind of like a zombie. It was hard to get a good read on her. She sneaks out one night and goes up to the ski lifts and meets a guy there. You get some of the story from the guys point of view and the people he interacts with. You really do get a lot of points of view in this book. It was interesting to read for sure. 

The mom is still trying to deal with her husbands death and some things she finds recently. She goes a little crazy and doesn't always respond in the right way. Really this whole book was like being in a fog. You get bits of story from lots of people in town and Wile's family. It was like everyone is a bit unhappy, but not too bad. It is just an interesting read as it doesn't really feel real, yet it does at the same time. It was odd and I enjoyed it even though it wasn't what I was expecting. Eventually everyone deals with their issues in their way and that is that. 

Rating: ★ ★ ★1/2

Available on

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Xoe: Vampries, and Werewolves, and Demons, oh my! by Sara C. Roethle


Xoe: Vampires, and Werewolves, and Demons, oh my! (Xoe Meyers Fantasy/Horror Series Book 1)

Synopsis:

Xoe Meyers had a normal life. So she was stuck going to high school, and she only had a few friends to call her own. She liked her normal life. Things were about to change though, because there's a new guy in her small town, and he is anything but normal. Before Xoe can say, "Werewolf," her best friend's life is in peril, and Xoe's world is turned upside-down. Then, of course, there's Jason. Xoe doesn't trust him as far as she can throw him, and given that he's a vampire, she'd have to be able to catch him first.

Review:

I was excited to start reading Xoe even though it is not my normal read, but oh my goodness were these kids stupid. It was like every two pages I was just thinking seriously? Why, why would you do this? This makes no sense! Do you want bad things to happen to you? Yeah, it was not for me. *spoilers ahead*

Xoe is a high school girl who only has a few good friends. Nothing special, until a new guy, Dan shows up. He creeps Xoe out. Something is definitely off with him. He keeps staring at her and is just not right. He says things that are not cool, but then tries to be like they were just a joke. She doesn't like him.

If only her two friends wouldn't throw themselves at him and invite him along on their movie plans for the weekend. Lucy and Allison just love Dan even though there is something off with him. Xoe is the only one who seems to pick up on it, though at times her friends agree (particularly Allison). It was odd as they would be oh he's so dreamy, wait no there is something odd with him I don't know about him, wait he is so dreamy. I didn't understand why they would be so wishy washy about it.

So why are they all so stupid? Well that first day when Dan shows up Xoe and Lucy are walking home from school through the woods and they get chased by something. They never saw it, but it was scary. So they should probably stay out of the woods right? So then at movie night they are just like dude, creepy guy, we are totally going to go hiking in the woods, just Xoe and Lucy, just so you know. Cause you are hella creepy so why wouldn't we want you to know we are going out there by ourselves? Okay they don't tell him like that, but they might as well have. They just make the plans while he is listening/staring intently at them. Later creepy guy scratches Lucy which really freaks them both out and they think okay, maybe he is a werewolf! I know what we should do to calm down - go take a hike in the woods like we told creepy guy we were going to do today. I mean maybe creepy guy will be there and he can attack both of us! Wouldn't that be fun? *bangs head against desk* Seriously they go into the woods on a hike after Dan attacked Lucy and are surprised to find Dan there. It is just like really? Why would you be surprised to come upon him all alone in the woods? He knew your plans...

Then they think Lucy might turn into a werewolf the next night with the full moon so they need somewhere to chain Lucy up so she doesn't hurt anyone. Somewhere with no one around, so Xoe's house is out because of her mom. Lucy's house is empty since her parents are off somewhere so I guess that only leaves them with the woods. Yep, they planned on going into the woods in the middle of the night with crazy bad werewolf guy in there somewhere to chain up their friend. Yeah, that is a great plan. It was just like seriously? Do you have brains? Better not use Lucy's house since no one is home. Nope the woods are a much better plan....Thankfully Jason, the guy who saved them from Dan when he attacked them in the woods, is there to tell them what an idiotic plan they have (though not really for the woods part of it...). He is really the only reason any of them are still alive.  Geez.

So throughout this all Xoe keeps getting super angry at nothing. Her anger issues are insane. She finds out she is probably half some supernatural being, but she doesn't know what. At least this explained why she would get super pissed off at nothing all the time. And with it she gets this cool being able to burn people/things when she is mad! Yey. Only when they are in the big showdown at the end after Lucy gets kidnapped by the bad werewolves she is all not angry and has no idea what to do. They almost kill her and her friends before she is like wait a minute...I have these crazy powers. How about I get angry now that I was stupid for long enough. Yeah it was lame. It didn't fit with the rest of the story. Someone would say some slight thing before and she is beyond angry, but these people take your bff and you cannot even summon a little anger over that? They hurt your friends and you don't get mad? They talk about killing everyone you love and you do not get angry? Really? Okay. Sure. I buy that.

So the storyline was frustrating as I don't know how these girls survived as long as they did. Without Jason and Max (a good werewolf) they wouldn't have that is for sure. So besides the storyline I also just didn't like the way it was written. It was way bogged down in useless details. I thought if I just got through the first chapter and met all the characters it wouldn't be so bad (they were all described in way too much detail), but no, the whole book is like that. Want an example? Okay!

"The rest of us sat eating out pancakes, Jason and I on one side of the table, Brian on the other, and Lucy at the head of the table. Allison waltzed in ahead of Max, wearing a lavender tunic-style top and skinny jeans and black ballet flats. She tossed her black and silver overnight bag on the floor in a corner of the dining room, then sat down next to Brian as Max sat on the other side of Jason. "

Did you get all that? It was important that we knew what Allison was wearing and what color everything was cause without that crucial information this would be way less bogged down in details. It was like every room and article of clothing was described in detail. Way too much for me. And in the above, where everyone is sitting, just comes off as awkward since it didn't really matter to the plot where everyone is. They could have been sitting anywhere and the story after would have been the same. A lot of the writing was just this over detailed descriptions of things which I really don't like. It makes it hard to get into the story.

So overall not a great read. There are more books after this, but I am going to skip them. I don't know that I can deal with the details and the stupidity.

Rating:

Available on

Monday, July 27, 2015

The Homecoming (Thunder Point #6) by Robyn Carr


The Homecoming: Thunder Point #6

Synopsis:

In a small town, reputation is everything. In her latest novel, #1New York Times bestselling author Robyn Carr explores the burden placed on a young man returning home to face his mistakes—the first step in claiming the life he was meant to live ... 

At the age of nineteen, Seth Sileski had everything. A superb athlete and scholar, handsome and popular, he was the pride of Thunder Point. Destined for greatness, he lost it all in a terrible accident that put an end to his professional football career when it had barely begun. The people in his hometown have never forgotten what might have been. 

Seth has come to terms with the turns his life has taken. But now he's been presented with an opportunity to return home and show his father—and the people of Thunder Point—he's become a better, humbler version of his former self. 


Winning over his father isn't the only challenge. Seth must also find a way to convince his childhood neighbor and best friend, Iris McKinley, to forgive him for breaking her heart. With his homecoming, will Seth be able to convince the town, his family and especially Iris that he's finally ready to be the man who will make them all proud? 

Review:

The Homecoming takes a little bit to get into, but once I did I enjoyed it. This book is kind of dry and clinical, but something about that I like. I don't remember if the others in the series were like that as well, but it takes a bit to get used to.

Seth and Iris used to be best friends until he told her he would take her to the prom then backed out the next day when he got back together with his girlfriend. Seth thinks that is all that happened and doesn't really understand why Iris would still be upset with him all these years later. Unfortunately Seth doesn't remember that night so well as he was really drunk, something he almost never is.

Iris loved Seth forever. Then the fateful night happened and she thought she was getting her dream come true - Seth. She thought things would be different now, they would be together and everything would be amazing. Only he doesn't remember that night or what happened. She is angry with him and with herself for not realizing what a mistake it was. For not seeing that of course he was too drunk for all of the things that happened. When Seth comes back to town he tries to start up at least a friendship with Iris again, but she runs away whenever he gets near. Seth still gets to her, she still wants him, but she is afraid to let him hurt her again.

When Seth finds out everything that happens he is upset. He never meant to hurt her and will do anything to win her back. He knows Iris is it for him. He just needs to make her see that too.

They were cute together. Iris doesn't want to trust him easily, but it was fun watching them work things out. Like I said it is a bit dry and clinical writing wise, but I enjoyed it. You get to see the two of them work together to help some kids that need it. You get to see some of the other characters from prior books and how they are doing. You are introduced to a few new characters that I don't remember meeting before. Through it all you have Seth and Iris falling in love again. It was a sweet read.

Rating: ★ ★ ★

Available on

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Losing It (Losing It #1) by Cora Carmack


Losing It

Synopsis:

Sick of being the only virgin among her friends, Bliss Edwards decides the best way to deal with the problem is to lose it as quickly and simply as possible - a one-night stand. But her plan turns out to be anything but simple when she freaks out and leaves a gorgeous guy alone and naked in her bed with an excuse that no one with half-a-brain would ever believe. And as if that weren't embarrassing enough, when she arrives for her first class of her last college semester, she recognizes her new theatre professor. She'd left him naked in her bed about 8 hours earlier.

Review:

I remember when I first read Losing It I enjoyed it. It had been a while though and I had forgotten most almost all of the storyline, so when I saw there was a sequel I thought I should re-read it. I had been meaning to anyways since I love the authors other series, but unfortunately I was a bit disappointed. The story just isn't as good as I had expected. 

Bliss is soon to graduate college and is still a virgin. Apparently she is a control freak and so it hasn't happened yet, but she wants to change that before graduation. Her bff, who didn't seem to be a very good bff, takes her out one night to seduce some random guy. Enter Garrick who she stumbles upon after a few drinks. The big appeal of Garrick? He has a British accent! Woo hoo. I found I didn't actually like Garrick at all, even though he does have the British accent which just makes him oh so hot. He comes across as kind of a jerk at times and I didn't really see why Bliss would like him so much. So what he has an accent, there has to be something more there. 

Well it turns out Garrick is her new teacher so oh noes! What to do? Well just try and pretend nothing happened between them before, that they were not going to have sex, and everything with be fine. Only they can't stay away. Ugh. It just didn't work for me. I didn't see the attraction between them. I didn't see why they liked each other or that there really was anything between them. 

Bliss was also not my favorite. She comes across as very young and naive. She gets flustered and makes stuff up, then continues with her ridiculous lies when it would be so much easier to just come clean and talk to people. She is not very strong, she just tries to avoid conflict. Instead of talking to someone and telling them what she thinks she will just make it worse by avoiding it or making up lies. Really not my favroite character. 

Overall I just was disappointed in the story. I didn't care for Garrick, he was not dreamy to me, and Bliss was annoying at times. 

Rating: ★ ★

Available on

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Bride In Bloom (Beachy Bride #3) by J.B. Hartnett


Bride in Bloom (The Beachy Bride Book 3)

Synopsis:

For Victoria, it started with the perfect dress and the perfect man...well, she thought he was perfect.

For Cameron, it started with a devoted wife and a bright future...until he discovered devotion was never high on his wife's list of marital duties.

When trust is tested and faith in the power of true love is lost, there is only way one to restore it:

Give that person everything you’ve got, nurture her, love her…

And watch her bloom. 

In the first installment of The Beachy Bride series, we experience the love story of Victoria and Cameron. Both are no stranger to heartache, but both believe in the power of love.

*This book contains mature content for an audience of 18 years or older. Sexual scenes M/M and M/F

Review:

Bride in Bloom was a strange read at times, but I really enjoyed it. I was curious about the M/M scenes mentioned in the synopsis and ooh was it good.

Victoria is set to marry this guy. She is ready to start her life with him even if she isn't really head over heels for him. She thinks she loves him, but you can just tell it is not right. Something is up with him and she doesn't even realize it.

Cameron was married before, until his wife destroyed that with her infidelity. He works for Victoria's finace and has always sorta had a thing for her. She is beautiful and smart and funny and just everything. Anyone would be lucky to be with her. When he finds out some secrets about her fiance he gives the guy an ultimatum. Tell her or he will before the wedding. He has a plan for winning Victoria over. A plan for making her his. I really liked Cameron. He has this bad marriage which could have made him cynical and closed off, but he just knew that Victoria was it for him and he acted on that once he finds out he can. It is pretty instant that he wants to be with her forever, but it worked. He was sweet. 

For Victoria the betrayal by her finace is not as great as it should have been. There was always something there with Cameron, but she never really thought about it. And now he is being so sweet, so kind, so there for her while at the same time telling her he has plans for them. Telling her he wants to be with her, but when she is ready. It was so sweet. Cameron is not traditionally romantic. The things he said weren't all super flowery and everything, but I loved that. He seemed more real than a lot of romances. He was just a normal guy and my kind of romantic.

This book was just a really great read. Cameron does so much for Victoria it is just amazing. He is there for her, encourages her, makes a home for her. They are great together.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Available on

Friday, July 24, 2015

Westin's Chase (Titan #3) by Cristin Harber


Westin's Chase (Titan Book 3)

Synopsis:

THE MASTER OF EVERYTHING HAS FOUND HIS MATCH

Jared Westin knows his reputation and likes it. He gets the job done. No emotion. No baggage. That’s why his elite ops company, The Titan Group, is better than the best. They complete projects classified as mission impossible.

And then, in walks a woman as tough as she is sexy. His counterpart in every way, should he choose to admit it.

SHE’S NOT WILLING TO LET HER HEART FALL

Ousted undercover ATF agent Lilly Chase only answers to “Sugar.” Jared is the only man who can see past her leather-and-lipstick demeanor, and that revelation is terrifying. She was fired for helping Titan on a questionable arrest she should’ve ignored, then partnered with Jared’s rival on an assignment in Afghanistan.

Distance and danger do nothing to change her feelings. When she’s left on the side of a mountain to die, an unexpected ally comes forward, and might open her heart.

THE STAKES COULDN’T BE HIGHER

Saving Sugar isn’t a normal rescue operation. It pits Titan against its rival, Jared against his nemesis. Chasing Sugar’s heart isn’t a simple task, either. She fights him, fights them, always ready to run. When she becomes a pawn in a game of collateral damage, Jared must risk his life to save her—the woman whose bravado and surprising sweetness has given him the one thing he never had. Love.

Review:

Westin's Chase is another great Titan read. I love these books so much! This one is the story of Sugar and Jared and oh is it good.

Jared and Sugar know each other because of their business interests. There is something between them, an attraction, but neither really wants to act on it. Sugar definitely doesn't. She is usually a laid back, non serious, no commitment kind of person just like Jared, but she knows with him she wouldn't be. She just can't go there and get her heart broken when he walks away. Which he definitely will.

Jared knows there is something there between him and Sugar. This books opens at the tail end of a mission where they are trying to get someone out of enemy territory. Only they didn't know there should have been two people extracted until they got back to their base. The second person? Sugar. Oh Jared did not like that. Things between these two are just electric. These books have got it all. Super hot scenes, super intense scenes, super fun scenes, super everything!

Sugar was set up as a fall girl and was never meant to make it out of her mission alive. Who wants her dead? Well that would be Jared's nemesis. Oh they were evil and I loved watching the Titan guys and gals do their things. It is like no matter who or what comes at them they've got it under control. Love these books!

In this story Sugar could annoy the bejeezus out of me, but I still loved it. She does whatever she wants, is really hot headed and acts without thinking, and is just one of the most stubborn people ever. She is constantly fighting with Jared, trying to keep her heart locked away so he cannot hurt her. She gets angry then gets herself in trouble and then Jared has to save her. These two were just explosive together. But they just worked at the same time. For all of Sugar's bravado and stupid decision making, they just went so well together.

Jared never thought he would be one for the whole married settle down have kids things. He thought it was great for others, but not really in the cards for him. He didn't know that he would find Sugar and she would be that person to complete him.

"I was born to be with you. Hell, I only existed before I chased you down. Held you to me. Made you love me. And now I live.”

Through all the fighting and special ops, all the drama and intense situations, through it all these two manage to work everything out. Sugar has her issues and is afraid to trust anyone completely, but Jared is just so amazing she cannot help it. Really if I had someone like Jared, or any of these Titan guys, I don't know how I could resist either. Man they are hot and sexy and oh it would be worrying to be with them, but they are just so amazing at what they do. I love these books. I loved watching Jared and team Titan take down his nemesis. I loved it all. These books are great.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★1/2

Available on

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Release Blitz: Truth or Beard by Penny Reid - Excerpt & Giveaway




Available now on
Amazon * Amazon.de * Barnes & Noble * Goodreads

Synopsis:

Beards, brothers, and bikers! Oh my!

Identical twins Beau and Duane Winston might share the same devastatingly handsome face, but where Beau is outgoing and sociable, Duane is broody and reserved. This is why Jessica James, recent college graduate and perpetual level headed good girl, has been in naïve and unhealthy infatuation with Beau Winston for most of her life. 

His friendly smiles make her tongue-tied and weak-kneed, and she’s never been able to move beyond her childhood crush. Whereas Duane and Jessica have always been adversaries. She can’t stand him, and she’s pretty sure he can’t stand the sight of her…

But after a case of mistaken identity, Jessica finds herself in a massive confusion kerfuffle. Jessica James has spent her whole life paralyzed by the fantasy of Beau and her assumptions of Duane’s disdain; therefore she’s unprepared for the reality that is Duane’s insatiable interest, as well as his hot hands and hot mouth and hotter looks. Not helping Jessica’s muddled mind and good girl sensibilities, Duane seems to have gotten himself in trouble with the local biker gang, the Iron Order. Certainly, Beau’s magic spell is broken. Yet when Jessica finds herself drawn to the man who was always her adversary, now more dangerous than ever, how much of her level-head heart is she willing to risk? 

Series Description: Everyone in Green Valley, Tennessee knows that the six bearded Winston brothers have been imbued with an unfair share of charm and charisma… and are prone to mischief. Truth or Beard is book #1 in the Winston Brother’s series. Each book is a standalone, full length (110k words), contemporary romantic comedy novel, and follows the romantic exploits and adventures of one of the six Winston Brothers. 


Excerpt:

I was going to kiss her.

But first I was going to strangle her.

“Duane…” She said my name again in that breathless way, making my neck itch and my throat tight.

Jessica was looking at me expectantly. Her big amber eyes on mine like I was the center of her world. I liked it too much. It was also irritating because I didn’t know what it meant, what she was thinking. She hadn’t said a damn word to me on our walk back from the lake. She hadn’t called me. We hadn’t spoken since Friday.

Five days. Five days without touching or tasting her.

I was going to kiss her while I strangled her.

“Yeah?” I said, the edge of my irritation clear. I wasn’t trying to hide it, there was no need. One way or the other we were coming to an agreement that involved definites, not definitely maybes.

Better she knew I wasn’t planning on rolling over unless it involved her beneath me.

Jessica blinked at me, likely because of my tone, and I watched her shake herself a little like I’d startled her.

“Uh, so… the truck.” She cleared her throat, her eyes sliding to the side and away from me.

“What about the truck?”

“You towed it.”

“Yes I did.” I allowed myself a moment to look at her body. She was wearing a pink shirt with buttons down the front, thin fabric with a white, lacy tank top under. It was tucked into a tan skirt that ended at her knees. She was also wearing brown high heeled boots, the kind that don’t make sense.

Boots are for working, for walking through wet mud, for keeping feet from getting shredded by broken glass and falling machine parts. Boots with spiked heels were just as practical as sandals with steel toes.

Still not looking at me, she asked, “So, you want to buy it?” Her voice was different, higher pitched.

“That’s what I just said.” Again, my irritation was clear.

Her eyes cut to mine, throwing me splinters of frustration. “Well there’s no need to be rude, Duane.”

“I’m sorry, was I being rude?” I couldn’t help myself, I took a full step forward, forcing her to lift her chin to keep eye contact. “Should I have called?”

“Yes.” She ground out, “You can’t just tow other peoples’ cars without asking.”

“Excuse me, princess. But Mike McClure called me and asked me if I minded moving the truck here. I figured he was calling on your behalf.”

“No he wasn’t calling on my behalf. If I wanted to call you, I would have just called you.”

I felt those words in my stomach, just under my ribs, a quick slice. I’m sure I winced because her expression changed, but before she could explain away her meaning, I cut her off.

“Fine, I get you, loud and clear.”

“Duane-”

I lifted my hands to keep her from talking. She was so lovely, even her voice was pretty. But suddenly I couldn’t wait for her to leave and put me out of this misery of being with her when she wasn’t interested in being mine.

“We want to buy the truck and I’m willing to offer you a fair amount.”

“Would you just hold on a sec-” Jessica took my hand between hers, her grip surprisingly strong, her skin against mine sending a shock up my arm. I ignored it and ground my teeth.

“You can use the money for a new car, something smaller that gets better mileage.”

Paying no heed, Jessica took a half step forward catching me unawares. One second she was glaring at me, the next she was lifting to her tip toes and brushing her lips against mine.

And that was it, I was done for.

About the Author:


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.


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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Africa39: New Writing from Africa South of the Sahara


Africa39: New Writing from Africa South of the Sahara

Synopsis:

In 2014, UNESCO's World Book Capital is Port Harcourt, Nigeria-the first city in Africa to receive the designation by public bid. 

This makes it a special year for the Port Harcourt Book Festival, which will be in its seventh year, and bigger than ever. They are joining forces with the internationally renowned Hay Festival, which will bring to Port Harcourt its 39 Project-a competition to identify the thirty-nine most promising young talents under the age of forty in sub-Saharan Africa and the diaspora. It follows the success of Bogotá 39 in 2007 and Beirut 39 in 2010. Both recognized a number of authors who now have international profiles: in Bogotá, Adriana Lisboa, Alejandro Zambra, Juan Gabriel Vásquez, Daniel Alarcón, and Junot Díaz; in Beirut, Randa Jarrar, Joumana Haddad, Abdellah Taia, Samar Yazbek, and Faiza Guene. In Nigeria this year, the esteemed judges include leading-edge publisher Margaret Busby; novelist and playwright Elechi Amadi,writer and scholar Osonye Tess Onwueme, and Caine Prize winner Binyavanga Wainaina.

For the second time, Bloomsbury is honored to be a part of the festivities, publishing worldwide Africa39-a collection of brand new work from these talented thirty-nine.


With an introduction by Wole Soyinka, Africa39 is a must-read for anyone curious about Africa today and Africa tomorrow, as envisioned through the eyes of its brightest literary stars. 

Review:

Africa39 was my book club read for this month. Normally I don't start my book club book until a day or two before book club. I read too much so if I read it early I don't have it fresh in my head by the time the discussion comes around. Well with Africa 39 I think that was my first mistake. I read this book in two days. Two. That is a lot of short stories and excerpts to get through. Everything started to just blend together unless it was really good or really bad. Instead of making notes on all the stories I think I will just highlight a few that stood out in a good way. As I said the rest kind of blended together and were just okay.

*Two Fragments of Love by Eileen Almeida Barbosa - This was really short, but absolutely beautiful. It was a heartbreaking love story and I would definitely read more by this author. The imagery, the language used, the story itself was just breathtaking. It is really amazing that this author was able to write such a story in so few pages.

*From Our Time of Sorrow by Jackee Budesta Batanda - This is a part of a larger work that I would really like to read. You get a snapshot of this religious cult which always interests me. The main character seems like a good person, but people will never let her forget she was born of sin so she is not pure.

*The Occupant, from Azotus, the Kingdom by Shadreck Chikoti - I really really want to read the rest of this story.


"For many years Kamoto had not thought of going outside. The world outside offered him nothing that he could not find within the confines of his own home." 

It starts off with this guy who finally starts going outside at sunset, and a girl spies on him. The ideas behind it, how everyone has freedom, everyone could go outside, but no one does was really interesting. It was like well anyone can do anything, but since no one does when one person does is it then wrong? Should the person spying report this guy for going outside, even though he is allowed to? I really would like to finish this story and see what happens. This was one of my favorites from the entire book.

*Number 9 by Nadifa Mohmed - Kind of a sad story about a lady on her way to meet a date she met online. This is to be their first meeting and it was kind of sweet, but kind of sad at the same time. Another short story that the author did a very good job with. It felt like a complete story and made me feel the main characters emotions with her.

*From Harlot by Lola Shoneyin -

"I will never be ashamed of my life because I have lived the way only a few women can. I have lived like a man." 

I LOVED this one. This was my other favorite from this book. I definitely want to read the rest of this story. I loved how open and unashamed the main character was. So what she has sex with a lot of men? She enjoys it so why shouldn't she? Guys can sleep with a lot of women and people don't care so why shouldn't she? I loved how she just didn't care what other thought. She had such a strong voice that I wanted to read a lot more. I am curious where the story goes.

*Migrant Labour by Zukiswa Wanner - One of the last stories, and a stand alone. This immigrant guy from Zimbabwe is working in South Africa and they won't give him a raise or let him out of his work contract. He could possibly find a better job, but it doesn't matter since he has to work at his job for 4 years, one year shy of the residency requirements. So since he cannot get out of his work contract he plans to marry a South African woman - problem solved. Things are going well, until they aren't. I loved where this story ended.

So those were my favorites of the bunch. 39 short stories or excerpts is a lot to read in two days. I probably would have enjoyed them more had I spaced it out some. Read one or two a day until I finished. The rest weren't bad, they just weren't as memorable.

Overall rating: ★ ★

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Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Release Day: How To Save A Life (Emerald Cove #1) By Lauren K. McKellar - Review, Excerpt, & Giveaway





Available now on
Amazon * Amazon.de * Goodreads


Synopsis:

Life is not a love song …

I learnt the hard way that labels stick. Laura took “lovely”, and the teacher branded me “lady-like”.
It stuck with me, even through my high school years. It felt like that was all I’d ever be.

Until everything changed.

Lonely Lia.
Little Lia.
Lia the liar.
Lia the lost …

Now the choices are endless. But I don’t want to be any of those either.

My name is Lia Stanton. And this is my story.

Review:

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

How To Save A Life was a heartbreakingly beautiful read. This was so much more than I thought it would be. I really commend the author for dealing with this story in such a beautiful way. I loved it. I couldn't stop reading it. It was so so good.

Lia has a lot going on. Something happened 18 months ago, maybe a few things that compounded to lead to where we are when this book opens. Lia is in a new town, new school, new everything from 18 months ago. She doesn't want anyone to know who she really is. Not her best friend, not her boyfriend, no one. She has issues and she thinks if she can just make it till she runs away to college everything will be fine. If she can just hold on that long, if she can just get a scholarship, everything will be okay.

Because Lia won't talk to anyone about what happened, won't let anyone in to help her, she shoulders a lot of it herself. She is so young and she doesn't always make the right choices. You see her try and help people who don't want to help themselves. You see just how much she needs someone or something to help her. Oh I felt so much for Lia. I wanted everything to work out for her. I really wanted her to actually be happy.

This book is really intense at times. About halfway through I had to put it aside for a moment as it just got really real. It is definitely not sunshine and roses, it is hard to read at times, but it is such an amazing read. Lia has music as the only really great thing in her life. Yes she has a best friend and a boyfriend whom she is not really real with, but music never leaves her. She gets a few days where she can just let it all out on the piano. I loved that that was her outlet. Her music sounds amazing and beautiful.

Through letting her feelings out through her music she finds Jase. Jase who has a dark past of his own, but who is changing and trying to be better. Jase who pushes Lia when she needs it, is there for her, who falls in love with her. Lia is frightened of Jase. She doesn't want any ties to this town, to this area. She needs to get out, to forget the past, to start over and Jase would be a distraction from her plans. Her feelings for him frighten her. She finds someone that she might be able to actually open up to, but what then? What will happen if he finds out? How could he still want her? Oh Lia has issues, but you can't help but love her. Jase is so wonderful with her, everything she never knew she needed, and I just loved them together.

The best part of this book though? How until it was told to you you don't really know what happened to lead us to where the characters are now. You keep getting hints here and there, someone who shows up or someone says something, but I never would have guessed everything that happened. It was so heartbreaking seeing everything that lead up to the present. Some of those scenes...I just wanted to scoop Lia up and get her help. I wanted to just make everything better for her, for her family. At times I just wanted to talk to her, to tell her this isn't the way, to help her. It was lovely.

I really loved this book. Emotional, heartbreaking, but oh so well written it was a privilege to read. I'm definitely going to have to look for more from this author as this was just fantastic.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★1/2


Excerpt:

She walks up the stairs, and straight away my heart leaps from my chest, beating a staccato that raps into my throat, the pulse point at my wrist, all throughout my body. I go from steady to strung-out in the blink of an eye.

"Mum," I call, and this time on the staircase, she spins around.

"Yes?" She frowns.

Don't go up there,

I try to say the words, but my stupid voice won't work. My mouth moves, but no sound comes out, and Mum tilts her head to the side. "Lia ..."

Don't!

I try to scream so loud my lungs hurt, and still, nothing.

Don't go into your bedroom.

You can't see that.

It will ruin you.

"Lia, you're normally such a sensible girl." She sighs and turns her back, then walks up the stairs again.

My voice mightn't work but my feet do, and I charge after her, leaping up those stairs two at a time. She floats down the hall toward their room, and I run, run as fast as I can, and grab onto her shoulder just as she tightens her grip on the door.

"Lia, will you drop it?" She turns to face me. "I'm just going to see if your father is home. What harm could I possibly do?"

My stupid voice is without once again, and as I try to yell at her, to tell her that no, she shouldn't go in there, that seeing what's behind that door will destroy her—

She twists the handle.

She opens the door.

And she screams.

And straight away I'm back on the couch, hearing that blood-curdling noise that chills me to my very bones, that signifies the start of the end of life as I know it. I race up the stairs to try help her, to try and make it stop, but when I get there she has collapsed in the hall.

She's broken. And nothing I try to do will fix that.


About the Author:



Lauren K. McKellar is the author of romance reads that make you feel. She lives by the beach in Australia with her husband and their two dogs. Most of the time, all three of them are well behaved.





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Monday, July 20, 2015

Blog Tour: Black Dawn (Titan #6) by Cristin Harber - Review & Giveaway



Available now on


Synopsis:

What happens when nothing is as it seems?

Lexi Dare is on a one-woman mission to stay alive. Both at home and at work. Because how did she end up with a ring on her finger and an abuser in bed as she readies to hit the high point in her career? Everything should be perfect. Amazing job. Handsome fiancé. It's all a disaster.

Parker Black is the brains behind Titan Group, an elite security firm. In his world, everything is ordered and controlled, except what he feels for his buddy’s girl. Something in her eye screams for help, but he has no idea what.

When Lexi disappears, Parker realizes what he should have known. The lines blur between friendships and work, and they must find each other to survive a terror attack that only Lexi can stop.

Black Dawn can be read as a standalone and does not have a cliffhanger.




Review:

Wow these Titan series books are amazing. They are just so intense from beginning to end. I was telling my husband about the story and how awesome it is and he just kind of laughed. I was just like no, you don't understand. This author takes these characters and makes you instantly fall in love with them, instantly care about them and want them to be okay, then throws them into so many intense situations they have to get through and you just cannot put it down. Whenever I think okay, I can relax a minute, the danger is passed something else comes up. I love it. All the emotions are just cranked up a level and it is such an amazing read. It is hotter, steamer, more tense, just more everything. I love this series.

Black Dawn was just as amazing as all the other books by this author I have read (which reminds me - I have a few more books from this series I haven't gotten to yet. I really need to fit them in). When I first started reading this book, the prologue, I was a bit confused. I didn't like Matt at all, even when he was being a "nice" guy. I hadn't read the synopsis (I just saw it was a new Titan book and said yes please!) and was wondering how in the world this would be about Lexi and Parker if Matt was involved. Oh you quickly find out and ah, these books. Lexi was an interesting one to read. She is kind of leading a double life. There is her fun, strong hacker self on one side and her weak, puts up with abusive a-hole other side. I didn't understand how such a strong person could put up with so much. She even thinks how she doesn't know why she puts up with it. How did she get to this place where she is slowly losing herself? Where she is losing her friends because she never gets to see or talk to then. Where she is just becoming a shadow of her real self. You just feel bad for Lexi and everything she is going through, but at the same time you can see how strong she can be. How amazing she really is. She doesn't always make the best or right decisions, but she needs to figure things out herself.

Parker has always likes Lexi, but she is his friend Matt's girl. He doesn't really care for Matt, especially more recently as he has become an even bigger jerk. but he puts up with him for the small amount of time he can spend with Lexi. Parker works for Titan as the computer hacker expert. He is really good at his job, working under the handle Black Dawn online. He sometimes teams up with another hacker, Silver Chaos, who is also amazing. He thinks highly of the guy and Silver has helped him out when he needed it in  mission critical times.

When Parker witnesses first hand how out of control Matt is with Lexi he is torn up inside. He wants to help, wants to keep her safe, but he doesn't know what to do if she won't leave Matt. Man I loved Parker. His whole analytical style, his not knowing what to say or do at certain times, was all just so cute! He was adorable, and really really hot. Phew, things between Lexi and him were just on fire!

Parker knows Lexi is keeping secrets, but that is okay. He knows she has some issues to work through and just hopes that one day she will trust him enough to tell him. He was wonderful with her, always thinking about what she needs and trying not to force his wants onto her. They were amazing together.

When their two worlds combine, their online world and their real life world, it was so awesome. These two are just perfect for each other! When things go wrong and someone is after Lexi she has to learn to trust Parker to take care of her. She didn't realize exactly who he is and what he does so she tries to keep him out of trouble for his own good. Oh it was perfect. These two are just amazing together and I loved every minute of this book. Now to go back and read the rest of the books in the series I have missed because man are these books good.

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

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★1/2


About the author:

Cristin Harber is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling romance author. She writes sexy, steamy romantic suspense and military romance. Readers voted her onto Amazon’s Top Picks for Debut Romance Authors in 2013, and her debut Titan series was both a #1 romantic suspense and #1 military romance bestseller.


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Sunday, July 19, 2015

Easy Silence by Beth Rinyu


Synopsis:

They say you never forget your first love. No matter how many more come along or how much time goes by, there will always be that one person who will be forever embedded deep inside your heart and soul. For me, that was Jaxson Callahan.
We were complete opposites. I was a senator’s daughter. My parents were always too busy keeping up appearances on the political scene to show me love, so instead they bought my affection.
He was the son of a woman who allowed men to use and abuse her as well as him, just for her next fix. 
We became each other’s solace during that summer we met, creating a lifetime of memories in three short months. I provided him with a sense of hope that there was more than just the harsh reality of the life he had grown accustomed to, and he showed me a genuine love that I had been yearning for my entire life. We vowed to be together forever. I loved him and he loved me…. and nothing would keep us apart.
Nothing except the secrets that were hiding in that small seaside town.
Secrets that altered our destiny. We were never given any warning as we watched our future shake, crumble and disappear altogether, leaving us with nothing but memories of a bittersweet past.
Life can be beautiful. 
Life can be kind.
And, life can be heartless…..because nothing about our situation was fair.

Review:

Easy Silence left me a bit conflicted. Honestly for the most part the book was just okay. Not amazing, but not the worst I have read either. 

Samantha, or Sam, is the senators daughter. She seems to have everything, but in reality she would give it all up for a family that loved her. A family that was there for her. While her parents are off traveling through Europe Sam is staying with her grandmother who has Alzheimer's. She keeps thinking Sam is her dad's first girlfriend. She meets some of her dad's old friends and they obviously know some secret about her dad, but she cannot seem to figure out what it is. This was part of the not so good. It is obvious what the big secret is, it is even almost pointed out to her directly, and yet she is still like I have no idea what is going on. What is the big secret? Who was grandma talking about? I am going to be wilfully ignorant because it is not frustrating to read a character that seems to have their head stuck on the sand. That or is incredibly stupid and cannot add two and two to make four. Either way not the best. 

Jaxson, or Jax, has not had the best of lives. Everyone in town thinks he is good for nothing since his parents both are. That annoyed me a bit. I was glad that Sam would stick up for him with everyone. She would always yell at them to not judge him based on what his parents did. That was one of the good parts of the story, one of the things I liked. Jaxson needed someone on his side since almost everyone in their town seems to be against him. When Jaxson first meets Samantha he is pretty terrible to her. He thinks she has it all and she is too good for him. They slowly get together and fall in love and make plans for the future. Everything is great until secrets from the past are revealed and then it all implodes.
 

My main issue with this book is I couldn't connect with any of the characters. The storyline sounds great, something I would enjoy, but the writing just left me feeling like I didn't really know anyone. I didn't understand why they did some of the things they did, or thought the things they did. There was just a disconnect for me. In a story like this where you have someone with a terribly abusive past you should be able to at least feel for the character, but Jax was just not a full enough character for me to really relate to. It wasn't the worst ever, but again it wasn't great either. I didn't see the connection between Jax and Sam, didn't see them as really being in love. It just wasn't quite there for me. 

Then you get to the end and man it was beautiful. The last two of three chapters were perfect. I loved them. They just made me feel the feels and made the end just wonderfully beautiful. If you would have told me the ending before I got there I probably would have rolled my eyes and thought how terrible it was going to be, but it really wasn't. I am not sure exactly what changed, but it was wonderful. Then that made me really think if this could be so great, so perfect, why wasn't the rest of the story? Why couldn't I relate to the characters and feel their emotions the rest of the time? I'm not sure why I couldn't, but I didn't. The ending really made the rest of the story that much worse for me since then I saw what it could have been but wasn't. Not the worst read ever, the ending is perfect, but the rest of the story is just not as good as I would have liked. 

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

Rating: ★ ★1/2

Available on

Saturday, July 18, 2015

The Art of War by Sun Tzu - Rory Gilmore Reading Challenge




The Art Of War

Synopsis:

Conflict is an inevitable part of life, according to this ancient Chinese classic of strategy, but everything necessary to deal with conflict wisely, honorably, victoriously, is already present within us. Compiled more than two thousand years ago by a mysterious warrior-philosopher, The Art of War is still perhaps the most prestigious and influential book of strategy in the world, as eagerly studied in Asia by modern politicians and executives as it has been by military leaders since ancient times. As a study of the anatomy of organizations in conflict, The Art of War applies to competition and conflict in general, on every level from the interpersonal to the international. Its aim is invincibility, victory without battle, and unassailable strength through understanding the physics, politics, and psychology of conflict.

(Original publish date was circa 500 BCE.)

Review:

I'm not really sure what to think of The Art of War. It is on the Rory Gilmore Reading Challenge and I have been struggling to read it. It is mostly just common sense or really obvious things. Maybe when it was written it was not as obvious. While I was reading it I was just like yep, wait do people not already realize this? Did they need this book to point out common sense? Apparently. 

Overall I just found this book to be a bit boring. It could be the translation, or how old it is, or whatever but it just didn't jive with me. I don't think I am the target audience anyways since I don't treat things like conflicts I need to win. I am sure some people get something from this book, but it is just not for me. 

Rating: ★ ★

Available on 

Friday, July 17, 2015

Unspeakable (Tracers #2) by Laura Griffin


Unspeakable (Tracers Book 2)

Synopsis:

Elaina McCord Wants to Find a Killer.
But He's Already Found Her.

Elaina McCord's dream of being an FBI profiler is threatened by her very first case - investigating a string of murders near a Texas beach resort. The victims, all young women, were drugged and brutally murdered, their bodies abandoned in desolate marshland. Elaina's hunch - met with disbelief by local police - is that these are only the latest offerings from a serial killer who has been perfecting his art for years, growing bolder and more cunning with each strike.


True-crime writer Troy Stockton has a reputation as an irresistible playboy who gets his story at any cost. He's the last person Elaina should trust, let alone be attracted to. But right now Troy, along with the elite team of forensics experts known as the Tracers, is her only ally in a case that's turning dangerously personal. A killer is reaching out to Elaina, taunting her, letting her know how ruthless he is and how close he's getting. Now it's not just her career that's in jeopardy - it's her life....

Review:

When I saw that Unspeakable was Troy's story I was intrigued. I enjoyed him in the first book, but he is such a player. I was curious to see who he would settle down with.

Elaina has always wanted to be an FBI profiler. Her dad is famous for that, and she has always wanted to follow in his footsteps (even if he never ever encouraged her). She is new to the academy and gets stuck on assignment in Texas. She doesn't mind much, she is just happy to be out in the field. That is until she tries to actually work the case and no one will include her. There is a killer brutally murdering women and leaving them in isolated places and she just wants to help out however she can. The cops in the area treat her like a joke and just refuse to include her. She was about to give up until Troy comes along and goaded her into staying and trying to prove herself capable of doing what she does best.

Troy is a true crime writer and he becomes interested in this case since it might be related to another that someone else already confessed to. He already wrote a book about the other killer, with this old case included, so it kind of annoys him that that guy could have been lying this whole time. He sees how smart and capable Elaina is, how she thinks about things differently, how she would be a real asset, and tries to help her out whenever he can. He is friendly with the cops in the area so his stamp of approval cannot hurt.

Working together they slowly start to figure out who might be killing these women and why. I love all the investigative work in these books. I love the forensics and field work and how it all comes together in the end. These books seem to be more about the crimes and solving them than romance. The romantic aspect is there, it just doesn't take center stage. I loved watching Elaina try and figure things out, even if she would be stubborn and not so smart at times. She notices little details and is willing to follow even the slightest of leads. She was great and was really helpful in catching the killer.

Troy is just as good and it was really sweet watching him get to know Elaina. They are really perfect for each other and it was nice watching their friendship grow to more. If you like crime dramas then this is the book for you. All the collecting and testing evidence, the tracking down data, the field work involved in catching a killer was so interesting. I am loving this series.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Available on