BLOG REVIEW : Carny by Simone Sowood
March 19, 2017
Title : Carny
Author : Simone Sowood
Series : n/a
Release date : November 11th 2016
Rating : 5 Stars
Blurb : Different town every week means a different woman in my bed. No complaints here. That’s how I f*cking want it. One look of my handsome smile has them weak in the knees. One touch of my rock hard muscles has their panties dropping. One night of pounding with my pierced, tattooed c*ck and they beg me to stay.But when the weekend’s over, I move on to the next town, and next woman.Until Emily.One look at the beautiful blonde and I know she’s the one I want in this town. One taste of her innocence and I need more.The last thing she wants is anything to do with me; she know’s I’m nothing but trouble — until a fight with her parents pushes her straight into my arms. I’ll be damned if I’m letting her walk away, no matter what her rich parents think of their precious princess with a bad boy.I finally have a woman I wanna keep. I’m not letting her go now. *** A steamy STANDALONE contemporary romance with a smoking hot alpha. No cliffhanger, no cheating, and a guaranteed happily-ever-after.***
Review : You also sometimes have this phenomenon that you bring a song and a book in close relation ?
Either because that song is mentioned in a specific moment of the book or just because you relate the context of the song closely to the plot ?
I have that quite frequently because music is very important for my reading and writing. So when I was asked to read Simone Sowood’s latest book “carny” it only took me a few pages and I was unconsciously (at first) humming a song (and testing with my singing talents by husbands nerves).
It was a very old song my mother loved and probably nobody knows because the text is not English and the woman singing that song died a long time ago in 1969 and very young and became a member of the infamous club 27.
Amongst the few songs she had there was one referring to a situation just like the one described in Ms. Sowood’s “Carny” and it actually brought tears to my eyes while I read and hummed that song.
I have read quite a few books by this author now but this is the first time she actually reached a depth in her writing that made me cry. Not because the moment was so deep but because of all the assumptions that “towny” people are capable of and because of the actual raw beauty of the “carny” life.
She really draws the perfect small town cliché life that is turned up side down by just one event and I really loved the beauty of the plot.
You might come up with the fact that there is a lot of naïveté on Emily’s side and I tend to agree but it fit the plot so I can not find it in me to complain about it. Its part of the raw beauty I was talking about.
The story unfolds in such a beautiful way that I can only recommend it warmly
|The Controversial Princess|
|Smoke & Mirrors #1|
|Jodi Ellen Malpas|
|May 22nd 2018|
|Her father is The King of England.
She is The Controversial Princess.
Regarded as down to earth by the press and rebellious by The King, Princess Adeline refuses to bow to the royal expectations her title carries. She knows better than anyone that the united front of the royal family is nothing but smoke and mirrors – lies and secrets masked by power and privilege. She wants no part of it, and she will never surrender to The King’s demand to marry a man she does not love. But despite Adeline’s determination to retain her free will, she remains deeply unfulfilled, feeling caged and suffocated.
That is until she meets Josh Jameson. Drawn in by his confidence, Adeline is soon captivated by the scandalously sexy American actor. His ability to penetrate her defences overwhelms her – his touch is pure fire, and his allure overpowering. Nothing has ever made her feel so alive in a world where she’s otherwise slowly drowning. However, while Josh may be Hollywood royalty, he’s not actual royalty, and Adeline knows The King and his advisors will do everything in their power to keep them apart.
But Josh Jameson becomes the princess’s ultimate vice.
And although she bows to no one, she bows to him.
|This morning when I turned on the radio – the first song I heard was “Human” from Rag’n’Bone Man – and to be honest – it shocked me how well it fitted the book I just spend an allnighter with. When I finished my last read yesterday and went to check for my next book I noticed that I had a new arrival – I was gifted with “The Controversial Princess” (Smoke & Mirrors, #1) by Jodi Ellen Malpas and I thought why not directly start … Well I can tell you it was a good and a bad idea – the bad part being that it was a Sunday and I needed to work on Monday.
If there ever was a perfect time to release this book at the moment than Ms. Malpas sure found it.
I love the books by this author since I read This Man when it was released several years back so it was no question that I would at least love her writing style. But I have to admit when I read the blurb of this book I wasn’t to sure if the plot was for me. I am not even sure if there ever has been a book like this – I doubt it.
On the other hand I usually do not read books with princesses and it is really only the unique way of writing that this author is able to get me to dive into a plot like that.
Also I am trying to remember when I first heard about the book if I knew that it would be a duet – or if that came up later – not that it would have mattered – because I also trust her to be one of the few authors that I will start a series without all books being released.
Well back to the issue of the music – so this song “human” really is the essence of this book for me. Adeline is such a contradiction. She knows what is expected of her – and she follows the rules ! … mostly ! …. Sometimes ? … well lets be honest … when she is forced to. Deep down I feel she would follow many of the rules if she had some room to breath but as this is always refused her reactions to that are only logical – rebellion in any way that is possible.
So when I heard that song on the radio – it felt like Adeline. Not sure if Ms. Malpas listens to music when she is writing but I could imagine this song to be an inspiration for the character.
Then there is Josh – I am not sure I can get a clear picture of him yet. And that is my only problem with this first part of the duet and the reason why I am at 4.5 Stars just now (I always reserve the right to change my mind when a series is complete).
So about Josh – The whole story is in the beginning basically Adeline’s struggle with life. And believe me it IS a struggle because I feel deeply sorry for her. So when Josh enters the story he is like a beacon,
he shouldn’t be there – yet he is,
He is everything she can not have and maybe in the beginning that is the reason that he is all she wants.
As the story moves on Adeline gets more desperate by the minute her life is not only a cage – it becomes a prison, the walls are closing in on her and her few ways to escape are shut down one after the other – and her desperation feels very real.
Usually when I read books I am very connected to the male leads but in case of this book I felt truly connected to the Princess because even though Josh has a remarkable presence the plot doesn’t give the reader much of his intentions.
He felt like the calm right in the middle of the storm without giving away anything of himself to the reader and maybe that was on purpose because he was like a quiet source of strength – while I grew more and more desperate alongside of Adeline.
And while we are at that point – there are some very well written secondary characters in this plot – both in the good and bad way of the storyline. Believe me you are going to dislike some people very deeply. I know I did.
Oh and – yeah true to Ms. Malpas wicked sense of ?shall I call it humor? … she placed some cruel twists and turns you will not see coming – (well that’s not entirely true because if you read books from her you know what you are in for – so no mercy for us fans) … Yes you are a cruel cruel Woman Ms. Malpas and I mean that in the most loving way ever.
Because I am sitting here thinking about what I read and there really isn’t much that I can add to my review as that would add spoilers which I will under no circumstance give away.
My thoughts on book one : Just let me say. If you think you know the story – forget about it. There is nothing familiar about this plot. And I officially want to state – that “the Lord” now has a Highness at this side in the bookshelf and this women really bows to no one.
My hopes for book two : I want to see more of Josh to understand him better. And all the other things I hope for are too much of a spoiler so please just cross your fingers together with me because I know you will want the same things.
BLOG REVIEW : Blind (Senses #1) by Xavier Neal
March 23, 2017
Title : Blind
Author : Xavier Neal
Series : Senses #1
Release date : September 1st 2014
Rating : 2 Stars
Blurb : Aside from being blind to the fact his best friend, Maxx Hughes, is madly in love with him, Logan ‘Unbreakable’ Kellar has it made. He’s the best amateur fighter at TKO, has a buffet line of women desperate to be taken by him, and three friends that are his family. However, when Maxx crosses over from Logan’s blind spot on the side lines to the dead center of his vision, he realizes that he can’t stay blind to the fact this girl, is the girl.
Review : Yeah its probably me being the odd one out here but this was an almost DNF for me – because I found myself skimming the pages. Others found the writings style charming – I thought it was rather annoying. And the leading characters were not that good either. I am really sorry for being so blunt but this was not a book for me.
|May 14th 2018|
Dating, who has time for that? Between working and my art, I have room for nothing else. That is until my best friend sets me up on Tailor Made: a website where I can design the perfect guy and my dream date. Crazy? I thought so too. Until he shows up and proves me wrong. It’s supposed to be just one night of fun, but in my life, things rarely go according to plan.
Sometimes the perfect fit comes along when you least expect it.
I usually don’t “do” spoilers and this is actually not a review – this is the email that I send the author to explain my rating therfore it contains spoilers so do not read further if you would like to avoid those
Knowing how hard it is to place your debut “baby” out there it is double bad to get the first rating that is not good.
Thing is reviews need to be respectful BUT honest otherwise they do not help in any way
I liked the storyline really but I feel it needs editing. There are the issues I mentioned and while I read on (and finished) there were a few others that I did not list because at that time I already felt that the story needed someone to have a look at it. I rarely do Beta reading because English is only my second language and hesitate to correct grammar when I can hardly follow the rules myself.
What I do is automatically check the consistency of stories … it’s like a curse like an OCD I can not stop it.
Don’t feel bad if several people read the story and did not find the issues … I think its impossible to have one person do both at the same time – check grammar and consistency.
The consistency issues are one thing but why I honestly can not give the book the 4/5 stars that the storyline should have received is another problem. This book is designed as a romance and it starts out great and mysterious but then the romance gets lost in tiny details that are repeated several times (like the way the breakfast sandwich is prepared – just one example). The spark is taken out of the plot to early (he knows where she lives – he could have simply dropped the phone number at any given time in her mailbox) and the characters seem to be sidelined around their issues (at times they almost forget about each other I could not feel the yearning), after their first meeting where they really had something in the storyline going for them THEIR story is lost … People pop up throwing things into the plot just to disappear again leaving me as a reader wondering about the meaning – her boss – the tailor … there were just too many things around their romance that left me wondering …. other issues were left open or disappeared into thin air (he could not contact her – even given her his number for months and then suddenly it was just a mistake that he kind of misunderstood the contract he requested himself) – at the end I wondered where the romance went because the spark I felt, in the beginning, was not there anymore #sigh
Really it might be just me and my curse to always think too deep when I go into a book but I need things to make sense no matter if a story is contemporary or even paranormal – my “curse” demands that.
But one thing is sure – I will not be the only one noticing things and now there is still time to consider combing the story with some very critical beta readers.
So – this email is basically my review that I will hide on Goodreads as I usually don’t post spoilers but when I started reviewing – much like Mason made his contract – I made my review rules so I do not waver when it gets hard/difficult and when I take a look at them I have no other choice and I hope you can forgive me for only leaving two stars with the story as it is .
Today we have the blog tour for The Protector by HelenKay Dimon! Check it out and get your copy today!
Title: The Protector:
Author: HelenKay Dimon
Genre Romantic Suspense
About The Protector:
Salvation, Pennsylvania. The commune located in the small town was advertised as a modern Utopia: a place to live, share, and learn with other like-minded young people. Cate Pendleton’s sister was one of them. Now she’s dead—and Cate won’t rest until she finds out who killed her. Stonewalled at every turn, she approaches a DC Fixer for help and ends up with Damon Knox, a mysterious man with a secretive past. But Cate soon discovers that she not only needs Damon, she wants him, which isn’t good—for the attraction brewing between them will only lead to complications that can turn into danger . . .
Damon has tried to erase the hellish memories and the evil that happened in Salvation ever since he left a long time ago. Still, he can’t turn his back on Cate. As Damon works with Cate to uncover her sister’s killer, he finds himself drawn to her more and more. But how will she feel about him when she learns about his connection to the place?
Joining forces to uncover the truth, they must stay one step ahead of a cunning killer who’s bent on not being exposed.
Get Your Copy Now:
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Kindle | Nook | iBooks | Google Play | Kobo | Avon Digital
Kindle | Nook | iBooks | Google Play | Kobo | Avon Digital
Kindle | Nook | iBooks | Google Play | Kobo | Avon Digital
Kindle | Nook | iBooks | Google Play | Kobo | Avon Digital
About HelenKay Dimon:
HelenKay Dimon spent the years before becoming a romance author as a…divorce attorney. Not the usual transition, she knows. Good news is she now writes full time and is much happier. She has sold over forty novels and novellas to numerous publishers, including HarperCollins, Kensington, Harlequin, Penguin Random House, Riptide and Carina Press. Her nationally bestselling and award-winning books have been showcased in numerous venues and her books have twice been named “Red-Hot Reads” and excerpted in Cosmopolitan magazine. She is on the Board of Directors of the Romance Writers of America and teaches fiction writing at UC San Diego and MiraCosta College. You can learn more at her website: www.HelenKaydimon.com
Connect with HelenKay:
Enter HelenKay’s Giveaway:
5 ‘colour me surprised how fabulous this book is’ Stars.
Characters & Chemistry.
Cate Pendleton has exhausted every avenue in trying to find out what happened to her sister. Her last chance is talking to the mysterious Fixer of D.C. you need help? If you are legit. You’ll be helped. The last ten years or so she has put her life on hold. To find out the truth of what truly happened that night.
I really liked Cate. She is strong, resilient, observant and a heroine who knows what she wants and has no TSTL moments. At the beginning she came off as a bit boring but there is a calmness about her and a strength that runs deep.
Damon Knox doesn’t want to take this job, but the Fixer knows how to get to him. Helping a damsel in distress. As it connects strongly to Damon’s past, the Fixer is also hoping Damon will get closure. At the beginning that is a road Damon doesn’t want to take. He is carrying one whooper of a secret around with him.
Damon is one of those alphas, a tortured soul with a need to make amendments of what happened in the past. Damon is a fantastic Hero and he has great character development throughout the book. He has my stamp of approval although he does come across as heavy handed.
Now the chemistry is one of a kind. What with a fake relationship as their undercover they are going to have to figure some things out. It’s a rocky start but they have chemistry and, in the end,, they act on it. They are good together.
Writing, Plot & Pace.
The writing is flawless, the story is engaging. The author hits every note perfectly be it the suspense, the banter and especially romance. For those of you who follow my reviews you know that I have had enough of all the too much sex, same old, same old romance. But once again I am so effing ecstatic that it didn’t happen here. Add in some mystery and unsolved murder and decade old secrets and you have a fantastic read right here.
The plot is one of a kind. There are twists and turns that kept me guessing and believe me it is hard to surprise me when it comes to some plots that are out there.
I’m sure I mentioned the pace but that won’t stop me from mentioning it again. There was never a dull moment, the pace flowed well and kept me on my toes.
Seeing as I came in on the tail end of this series I really do hope that all the previous books are the same but there is only one to find out, I’m off to the beginning to read The Fixer. As to The Protector it gets to thumb up from me. If I had more thumbs, then I would stick those up as well.
What does niggle at me is what happened to the relationship between Damon and his father? What happened to the Sullivan school? Those are my two loose ends that should be tied up in a pretty bow.
|Sinners of Saint #4|
|May 10th 2018|
|A COMPLETE standalone and a Sinners of Saint spin-off.
|No matter how hard the blub tries …. It can not convey what really is going on in this book.
I read a bunch of books by this author and even I was not prepared for THIS
Loving the writing style of LJ Shen it was no secret that I needed to read this book – but what surprised me was that her writing style was again stronger and bolder than before (like that was even possible?!?) We def. reached the point in “our reader/writer relationship” where I can say without a doubt “until further notice this author has reached ONE-CLICK status”
Bane the male lead and eponym of the book was an asshole (no nice way around the truth) but his view upon himself is pure and honest and I loved it. And it didn’t hurt that his description simply sounded delicious. Also I am pretty sure that I know the exact moment when I fell in love with him. Its no spoiler just now as you have no idea of the context but it happens on the birthday of the female lead … when he looks up from under his hoodie – you will understand when you get to that point.
I know precisely what it was about this book that made it so special and made me want to read on and on … it was the way the author allowed the reader to look into the male leads mind.
His “thoughts” were simply unique. It made you wish that the world was full of assholes – if they all could be like him. My kindle is full of markings – did you know that there is a maximum that one can mark in one book ? – well I reached it .
Then there is Jesse, I could tell you so many things about her, yet it would never be enough so I will simply say that I think she is one of the strongest female leads I read so far. Also very unique in a way.
The plot was also so much more than you might have imagined at first look. The depth was overwhelming and I had to stop at times to take a breath – But I could never stop for long because the book was like a beacon. And then there were the surprises the story had in store for the reader – so never feel to save … never assume you know what will happen – because it probably won’t be what you thought.
So in short
READ THIS BOOK ITS EPIC
|Stacey Marie Brown|
|Everyone has a story about a broken heart, but Jaymerson’s heart wasn’t just broken. It was completely shattered…
Along with her body and mind.
Jaymerson Holloway had it all—until one moment. One bad decision. A split second and her life was altered forever. Faced with unimaginable grief and guilt, while learning to simply walk again, Jaymerson realizes she will never be the same. Everyone wants her to get back to who she was before. But nothing of her old life feels real to her anymore.
The only one who understands what she is going through is someone who has always been cruel to her and someone she hated. The other survivor.
Hunter Harris is totally off-limits and full of secrets.
Though each blame the other, they are the only ones to help start to repair their shattered lives.
But as the undeniable pull between them intensifies, she starts to wonder if she will ever learn the secrets he’s been hiding—or if she even wants to.
|After getting to meet this author at a convention I was looking forward to finding a perfect book to start my reading journey. It seems I finally found it
when I came across “Shattered Love” the latest release by Stacey Marie Brown. The story of Hunter and Jaymerson is so deep and unexpected that I was left speechless after I finished this book. The writing is incredible and I am glad that I waited for the perfect blurb to start reading this author.
One bad decision and everything you thought you knew might change
Life as you know it is gone and no matter what other people tell you, or how they say they understand you. Only someone in the same situation, someone who was there when it happened … can understand.
Others remain on the outside, to them you will look normal and they will never understand what goes on inside your mind.
Nothing will ever be the same.
There is so much heartache and hurt, anger, regret, blame and sorrow it this book that it seems at times it would be enough for not one but two lifetimes, yet the characters never give up. Life bends them to the point where they should break yet somehow they survive. Their connection seems unexplainable and inappropriate at best, but some things might not be what they look like.
While this book does have an end – I learned that it is in fact a duet so there will be more of these incredible characters and honestly ? I cannot wait …
BLOG REVIEW : Riddick (The Saints #1) by Kathy Coopmans
April 2, 2017
Title : Riddick
Author : Kathy Coopmans
Series : The Saints #1
Release date : December 5th 2016
Rating : 4 Stars
Blurb : From USA Today Best Selling Author comes the first book in a series of standalone’s.
The Saints Series.
She told me Heaven would knock on my door one day.
That I would be swept away from the hell I lived in.
She was right about one thing and so wrong about the other.
Heaven came in the form of an angel just like she said.
My life became hell.
Went to war.
All for her.
Every face was the man who took her. Every dream filled with her.
For twelve years I existed in hell.
Breathed in the fires from down below.
Until her, the woman on the beach outside of my home.
It couldn’t be my Cora, my angel, my heaven on earth.
She was dead.
Review : I just finished reading Riddick (The Saints #1) by Kathy Coopmans. It was not my first book by this author so I was positive I was going to like her writing style (and I was right to assume so).
But you are probably wondering just now “Isn’t that an MC romance?” – Yes it is..
Further you might be asking “and YOU chose to read it?” – Yes I did
I understand your surprise – believe me – I was surprised too and I took some time considering if I wanted to read this book. Really “normal” MC romances are not my “thing” – true. But the Blurb of this book drew me in. I am a hopeless romantic.
One of those people that gave up watching movies like Titanic because I can not change the outcome. Yeah … I am one of those that whish to rewrite Romeo and Juliet so that it finally goes “my way”.
And that is where Riddick comes into view… I am not saying it’s a “version” of Romeo and Juliet – no that is not what it is but in some ways reading this story made me think of it. I liked the characters and the plotline very much.
Why it “only” got 4 instead of 5 stars ?There is this one thing in the plot that does not add up with the natural curiosity of human kind, which with the addition of the age of digital information’s everywhere is hard for me to stomach. I know it is needed to support the plot and I tried to ignore it but it kept coming to my mind so I can not ignore it in my rating (yeah that’s me being vague on purpose because of spoilers – so in case you need to know – PM me)
And the second thing is … 5 Stars in my rating world require me either to laugh my ass of or cry a river or be shocked to (almost) death – neither of these three things happened.
Having said my piece … I can totally recommend this book to all those hopeless romantics that want to believe.
Please believe in Riddick
|May 21st 2018|
|Trent McNeil was a classic trust-fund kid until he watched a team of firefighters save his family home. From that moment on, he rebelled against the path his parents were determined to keep him on. Now a San Diego firefighter, he knows he’ll eventually be expected to take over the family empire. But until that day, his only plan is to have fun and enjoy life.
After a childhood of upset and uncertainty, Amy Hodge is going to make something out of herself. She has her future all planned out. She’s starting medical school and is going to be busy…far too busy for a relationship. But she does have time for a quick fling before she buckles down and concentrates on her studies.
Amy quickly realizes that playboy Trent is not all he seems to be. Never relinquishing control and sticking to her plans has done well for Amy, but no one has ever made her want to throw caution to the wind like this sexy firefighter.
Each book in the Under the Pier series is STANDALONE:
I already read several books by this author and so far I liked them all. The same goes for the writing style of this book. But this book is actually the first where I am not that sure if I loved the characters. Amy was an OK female lead for me but while I like strong male leads – Trent is a strange? Confusing? Too much? Character. And on the other hand he tends to be somehow frozen when it comes to his family – especially his mother. Its not that he doesn’t know or understand all that is going on it just seems that he is unable? Unwilling? to stop it…
He seems to be the cliché of the “How-do-I-rebel-against-my-parents-without-becoming-a-bad-boy” guy. From the outside everyone looking at him sees a hard working firefighter someone you could be proud of … everyone … except his father.
– to me his rebellion was sort of shallow especially when it came to his mother….don’t let me get started on that women (the author did a great job there – she serves her purpose well – I do not tend to be violent but I experienced a moment where I was considering how to physically hurt a virtual person)
There is a lot going on in this story and there was a moment when I wanted to put the book aside because the actions of the leading characters were really not what I wanted to read at that moment – yet strangely I could not because I also wanted to know what comes next.
So may I say that I liked the story but not so much the characters ? … I guess I am not conventional somehow but still the story alone was enough for me in this special case to give 4 stars. But I am pretty sure that this is not a regular / normal thing to happen when you read a book but really just this authors magic.
Usually I am pretty depending on my like or dislike of the characters and if I do not like them – then the plot will not be able to keep a good rating. I believe this book will find lovers in several corners of the reader world, for either its characters or the plotline or in best cases both – give it a try if you think the blurb appeals to you
BLOG REVIEW : A Promise Made by Anissa Garcia
April 3, 2017
Title : A Promise Made
Author : Anissa Garcia
Series : n/a
Release date : November 3rd 2016
Rating : 4 Stars
Blurb : Josh McKenzie may come off as intimidating with his solid build and cold stare, but when trouble calls, Marla quickly learns there is more to the sexy tatted man with the British accent. And if she’s not careful, she can easily lose herself in his gentle touch and soft voice. A feisty redhead with a mouth that won’t quit, Marla Sullivan knows how to push all of Josh’s buttons, making him want her in the worst way. His biggest hurdle is breaking through her stubborn walls and proving he’s here to stay. When Marla’s faced with an unknown danger, Josh is forced to reveal his buried past. Promises made and surfaced truths may be the catalyst that brings them together…or pushes them further apart.
Review : Reading “A Promise Made” by Anissa Garcia was an interesting experience for me because it taught me that I do not have to love the characters to like the book.
Because I seriously could not wrap my brain around Marla. Always when I felt I was nearly connecting to her she did something or said something that threw me of course.
Josh was so sweet and attending and yet confusingly deep and thoughtful at times, while Marla always felt like Josh was a nuisance to her. I wondered why he did not give up and kept on trying.
Reading my thoughts you must think that I did not like this story but that is honestly not true – I just did not love Marla. The story itself was pretty good and held my attention from beginning to end.
I even consider to read the first book of that series now because some things mentioned during the plot piqued my interest (even though I already know how it will end, because it is obvious as the character that are featured in “A Promise Kept” re-appear in this book here).
Thinking about it I even wonder if I could have connected better to Marla if I had read the first book before ? Basically they are standalone stories but still featuring the same group of characters and therefore they are bound to have a story in the first book that I missed so far.
The plot is well developed even if some things were quiet obvious to me as a reader but I did not mind that fact, as all the characters including a certain gorgeous dog drew me into their story and kept me there until the end.
And I have certain ideas on which character might be featured the next book in that series – lets see…
Anyway I can totally recommend this book but I would suggest to read the series in the right order and start with “A Promise Kept” before reading this book