Archive | March 2019

Enthralled: (The Enslaved Duet #1) by Giana Darling–Review

Wow, ok…I’m confused here. Let me preface this by saying I LOVE Giana Darling. I have read many of her books and have nothing but positive reviews for her. Enthralled, however, left me a little perplexed.

The blurb was so fascinating and addictive to me, that I had to have this story. When I got it, though, I felt that it was a little chaotic. For me, the beginning, didn’t have any flow. I started reading and was plunked right in the middle of a high-tension situation, leaving me asking why, what’s going on, who and where are they going. It didn’t make sense. It continued to build off this premise for a bit.

‘Well, for Seamus Moore, I could only wish for the best his soul would buy him in this life. A quick death.’

Giana did write a killer book about dark BDSM that it almost felt positively slightly uncomfortable. I tried many times to get inside the head of Cosima as I was having a hard time implanting myself in those situations. I couldn’t. I understood her superficial why, but the psychological part of me was trying to dissect her and couldn’t. Alexander on the other hand, was easy to see why he was the way he was (and I won’t tell you the reason😉). It is pretty much explained to you.

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Here’s the kicker…as much as I was/am confused by this book/situation, I do want to read the second part to see how this all plays out. There is a cliffhanger and it did its job perfectly. It teased me into needing more…now! I guess that’s not going to happen, so I will have to exercise patience here. ⌚⌚⌚ I have been known to overanalyze everything and seeing as I’m in the minority here, you may want to give this book a look even if you start only by sampling it.

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3.5 ‘Topolina’ stars

 

Star Crossed by Autumn Ruby–Review

Do you believe in second chances? What if this second chance at love also included having to go through the worst experience of your life to come through the other side which is the best? Autumn Ruby explores this possibility in her newest novel, ‘Star Crossed’.

‘Tell me what you see’… ‘You, Gabe. I see you.’

Star crossed is a beautiful telling of two lost individual souls who are trudging through life, just trying to make it and create something better out of past experiences. Gabe and Evelyn have been through different circumstances, yet still resulting in the same current ending…starting over, facing down their demons and creating some roots for them and their children.

Evelyn is a sweet, younger individual who has more life wisdom than most adults her age. Due to circumstances, she may be chronologically young, but has an older and wiser soul. She has a young son, Marshall, whom she loves with all her heart. Marshall is extra special to her, because he is the spitting image of his father and besides both having the same name, he is all she has left of him (Marshall the father).

Gabe is also experiencing life as a single father to Poppy. He was finally able to put down some roots and they are the newest residents of the local strawberry farm. Gabe’s ex is a popular actress and he had assumed to role of house daddy, which included traveling with Poppy’s mom to create some stability in her young life.

Gabe is about eleven years older than Evie, but this is where her ‘old soul’ comes in handy. Evie was taking her son strawberry picking and through a calamity of issues she first meets Poppy and then Gabe inside their house. Gabe is smitten instantly and knows she’s different, while Evie acknowledges there’s something there, but she is scared.

‘He loves me. I’ve let someone fall in love with me’.

I have read the other two books in the Crossed Series and I have to say, that this one is my hands down absolute favorite. Autumn had me from page one, hook, line and sinker. Star Crossed is a beautiful retelling of second chances and what they can encompass if children are involved. It was emotional and lyrically worded. I am not afraid to say that she had me tearing up or straight up crying at points in the book. You will fall in love with two incredible guys, get tickled with the ‘family’ reunion, feel a sense of completeness at Gabe and Evie’s ending, and become irate with Gabe’s ex.

‘That’s the thing with hearts, if there’s love there to begin with, then it doesn’t matter how many times they are broke, they’ll always find a way to become whole again.’

5 ‘Strawberry’ Stars

Cabezón (The Mendoza Family, #1) by Rose Croft–Review

Rose Croft is not a new to me author. What is new to me from Rose is Cabezon. It is different from her other two books, Baseball Lover and High School Lover, yet still carries the same quality that we know and love from her as an author.

Ms. Croft has delivered a book that is chock full of emotions, extremely informative to socioeconomic issues in other countries as well as here in the states along with a beautiful storyline that was full of angst. I was hooked, and I wanted more. Cabezon had me crying, shocked, intrigued, sympathetic, it was thought provoking and finally elation! I was riding a positive book high for days! Now don’t get me wrong, there are many deep themes and situations that our characters encounter, such as atonement and adversity, to get that ever elusive happily ever after.

Vince is surrounded by his 2 bothers, sister, Aunt, Uncle & 2 cousins. It is shortly after we meet the family that his Aunt, Uncle and two cousins go to live in the US. Teresa, Vince’s mom, who is extremely pregnant, was reluctant to go as they were entering the states via coyotes. Teresa decided to stay and not risk it.

Vince is a very sweet boy who looks up to his mother and in his eyes, she could do no wrong as she works long hours to take care of her family. Shortly after her sister left, his mom goes into labor and something happens. It is on this day as a six-year-old little boy that Vicenta Gabriel Garcia Mendoza grew up.

Dani Mendenhall is not a weed to be discarded, but a person with an extremely kind and caring heart. Despite what might appear like polar social status, Dani and Vince are a lot alike. All it takes is for one temperamental, petulant and sullen teen/adult to drop all pretenses and not judge a book by its cover to see this. (Easier said than done). Dani is the epitome of hopefulness, forgiveness and continues to show what it takes to make one’s dreams come true, despite bumps in the road.

‘She was gentle, kind and always sympathetic to people’s needs. But underneath it all was a strength and determination that sometimes left me in awe.’

Truthfully, I wasn’t sure what to expect when I read Cabezon. I didn’t expect it to enlighten me to cultural socioeconomic status, both here and abroad; display the fact that family does mean everything, even though there can be fighting or disagreements, in the end that family unit will unite and be stronger together than apart or what stripped down, no pretenses love is like.

‘I now know all of the feelings that you stirred in me—the hate, lust, obsessiveness eventually melded into one thing. Love. I’m not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. However, my love for you is true and pure, so don’t ever doubt that.’

I have read all of Ms. Croft’s books, and while I loved her High School Lover and Baseball Lover books (hello, John is my boy), Cabezon is easily my ‘All Time Favorite’ of hers. It is so complex and intriguing, I. WAS. SUCKED. IN!! The depth that Rose achieved while writing this book is amazing and shows how much she has grown and developed her style. It was beautiful to watch!! Take a chance on Cabezon and get to know the Mendoza/Mendenhall families along their journey to forever.

5 ‘Seashell’ Stars

Amazon:

US: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07Q55PVHM/

CA: https://www.amazon.com/s?k=cabezon+ro…

AUS: https://www.amazon.com.au/s?k=rose+cr…

UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/s?k=rose+croft+cabez…

 

Hook Shot by Kennedy Ryan–Review

I experienced a ‘slow start’ to this book. In retrospect, my reflection led me to the conclusion, that I should have a slow start. Hook Shot is a slow burn romance and that’s the feeling I was trying to acclimate to. I love Kennedy Ryan and am addicted to her Hoops series and the way she just drags you into her world is amazing. It truly wasn’t long before I was sucked in and sucked in deep. We’re talking, hubby don’t bother me, take care of you and the dogs yourself, because I couldn’t wait to find out more.

‘There is no one else but you, my friend, my equal.’

-Song of Solomon 5:2 

Lotus is a fascinating, mystical and intriguing character. She is Iris’ cousin from Long Shot with August. August is on the same San Diego basketball team as Kenan Ross. Lotus is a NOLA transplant working in the fashion industry with Jean Pierre Louis in New York. She is his right-hand woman. She does as he requests, but also designs clothes in her spare time.

Kenan Ross (sigh) is a gentleman among boys. He’s an introvert, still holds open doors for women, he loves Jazz and hates text message language/abbreviations. He LIVES for his daughter, Moni, and unfortunately, has an ex-wife to deal with.

Both Lotus and Kenan are instantly attracted to each other. Unfortunately, the timing is all wrong. Lotus is trying to find herself and work through some issues and Kenan’s life is just plain chaotic. They both acquiesced to each other and decide to keep things simple as friends. Kenan figures he has the summer to get to know more about the mysterious Lotus. Both parties have secrets, and both are trying to better themselves and their lives for different reasons.

‘I have found the one whom my soul loves’

I loved Kenan and his giant sweetness and protectiveness, what I didn’t expect to love is Lotus. She completely won me over through the course of the book. She may be small, but she is mighty. Despite having a horrible upbringing, she was a true star and her spirit sparkled like her ‘cotton candy clouds’. This is all in thanks to Mimi, her great-grandmother who raised her.

‘My beloved is mine and I am his, Kenan, I’m yours.’

Kennedy Ryan has made me a fan of another one of her books. Everything about it was sheer perfection. The two characters and their undeniable love for each other, Lotus’ concern and love for his daughter, the manners of Kenan, the distinct way they hold each other up and bring out the best in each other. Everything was sheer perfection.

‘It’s in Kenan’s arms, in the harbor of his love. That’s the safest place I’ve ever known.’

5 ‘Button’ Stars to PYT

Hook Shot by Kennedy Ryan–New Release

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“This book was utter perfection! Hook Shot is full of emotion, sizzle and a breathtaking romance. It is a book I will never forget and one I will revisit often to get swept away in its magic.”- Devney Perry, USA Today bestselling author

Hook Shot, a deeply emotional standalone set in the worlds of professional basketball and high fashion from Kennedy Ryan, is available now and FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

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Enter the Release Giveaway for a $50 Gift Card +Signed HOOK SHOT Paperback here:

https://www.facebook.com/KennedyRyanAuthor/

Divorced. Single dad. Traded to a losing squad.

Cheated on, betrayed, exposed.

My perfect life blew up in my face and I’m still picking up the pieces.

The last thing I need is her.

A wildflower. A storm. A woman I can’t resist.

Lotus DuPree is a kick to my gut and a wrench in my plans

from the moment our eyes meet.

I promised myself I wouldn’t trust a woman again,

but I’ve never wanted anyone the way I want Lo.

She’s not the plan I made, but she’s the risk I have to take.

A warrior. A baller. The one they call Gladiator.

Kenan Ross charged into my life smelling all good, looking even better and snatching my breath from the moment we met.

The last thing I need is him.

I’m working on me. Facing my pain and conquering my demons.

I’ve seen what trusting a man gets you.

Don’t. Have. Time. For. This.

But he just keeps coming for me.

Keeps knocking down my defenses and stealing my excuses

one by one.

He never gives up, and now…I’m not sure I want him to.

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Download your copy today or read FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Amazon: https://amzn.to/2FA9vk6

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Audiobook Release: April 30th

About Kennedy

A Top 30 Amazon Bestseller, Kennedy Ryan writes about women from all walks of life, empowering them and placing them firmly at the center of each story and in charge of their own destinies. Her heroes respect, cherish and lose their minds for the women who capture their hearts.

She is a wife to her lifetime lover and mother to an extraordinary son. She has always leveraged her journalism background to write for charity and non-profit organizations, but enjoys writing to raise Autism awareness most. A contributor for Modern Mom Magazine and Frolic, Kennedy’s writings have appeared in Chicken Soup for the Soul, USA Today and many others. The founder and executive director of a foundation serving Atlanta Autism families, she has appeared on Headline News, Montel Williams, NPR and other media outlets as an advocate for families living with autism.

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Connect with Kennedy

Never Miss A Release! Follow Kennedy on BookBub: http://bit.ly/2HcRuee

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Envy (The Elite series, book 4) by M.N. Forgy–Review

WHAT THE HECK DID I JUST READ? I, mean, seriously, what da fuq, did I just read?

We ended Wrath, with a mountain of questions and I expected to go into Envy getting some resolution. While some questions were answered, Ms. Forgy opened a can of worms and threw question’s all over the place. The series has been ratcheted up to another level with the release of Envy, and I expect it will end with a blowout bomb.

Sebastian Westbrook is a very complicated and complex character. His mind, thoughts and inner dialogue was always a constant chatter in his life. Due to his upbringing, he developed a fascination with others and slowly that intense curiousity will lead him into all kinds of situations.

“I’d give Michael Myers a run for his money in the stalking territory. Man, I hate that word. It’s just intense curiosity”.

Sebastian Westbrook had every materialistic item he could ever want, but there was one thing he could never attain. Sebastian longed for love, affection and someone to care about. He was insanely jealous of others, specifically if they had a significant other/girlfriend. He couldn’t understand why things like that wouldn’t happen for him. So, he took drastic measures, which included being an Elite, to get what he wanted.

“Something in my chest swells at the thought, and a smile rises to my face. Wouldn’t that be fucking awesome. Sam–my Elite brother and maybe my brother-in-law. We’d double date and have barbeques on the weekend…I swallow down my excitement. It’s too soon to be thinking about all that, but Sabella said she wanted to do this again. She hugged me–that has to mean something.”

With his newfound Elite family, He anticipated things changing for him. He had this new brother ship, with like-minded boys that he could always rely on, yet still didn’t feel he was gelling with. He still had this insatiable need to stalk others and was a pro at manipulation. They way Sabastian’s mind worked is downright scary. I mean, truly, psychological thriller, keep you on the edge of your seat until you jump, popcorn goes flying and you want to watch/read it with all the lights on in the daylight scary. Sebastian had me on edge with the twists, turns and things that he did.

“I don’t know. He’s super sweet, but I get this Ted Bundy feeling around him, you know?”

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I will admit that upon immediately finishing, I didn’t like Sebastian and truthfully didn’t know how I felt about the book. Time travel to 5 days in the future and I am applauding Ms. Forgy. As uncomfortable, bothered and irritated as I was, it reiterates to me how well she did her job as an author. She set up an incredible character profile and setting to be handing a baton to Amo Jones in Greed. With this information, my mind is flying with possibilities as to where the Elites are going to go. I know enough, never to anticipate anything with Amo, however, that ending…that epilogue and ending in Envy had me screaming. I’m glad I only have to wait until 4/8/19 to get the next book!! M.N. Forgy for a new to me author, you now have a dedicated stalker…I mean, follower! Well done!!

4 ‘Stalking’ Stars

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Violent Delights (White Monarch, book 1) by Jessica Hawkins–Review

I am not new to Jessica Hawkins. After all, I barely survived her ‘Something in the Way’ series. (I still get flashbacks). Well, I happily report that her ‘White Monarch’ series will most likely take that place.

Now, if you know Ms. Hawkins, you know she delivers on tension, angst, twists and turns, drama and sexual tension. She delivers all this and more in Violent Delights. She kicks off the beginning of Violent Delights with a bang. A real shocking moment that sucked me in completely.

We have three main characters: Natalia, Cristiano and Diego. One an actual member of the family, and two who are like family. When talking about the Mexican cartel trust means EVERYTHING and something happens within the family that shocks them to the core.

Natalia has been sent to the states to attend college. This year she decided to come home for Easter and to see her dad.  Since she was young, she has been best friends with Diego. They have plans to either get her dads approval for marriage or they will elope. They both have big dreams of running away to the states. Cristiano meanwhile makes a dramatic return. The three of them make an interesting dynamic. I would say this they are embroiled in a dramatic and explosive non-love triangle, which brings a whole unique perspective to this book.

Just a quick thought on the ending. Yes, this is a multi-arc series with Violent Delights being book one. I would say the ending is not so much a cliffhanger, but an inappropriately timed ending in the story. I am anxiously awaiting, ‘Violent Ends’, coming June 2019.

Jessica has this innate ability to write a story that not only has layers upon layers to create such depth, but also throws so many shocking twists and turns that you will never see coming.  She will have you on the edge of your seat, screaming at the pages or just plain breathless. I, highly recommend, this book.

 

5 ‘White Monarch’ Stars

Cristiano

Violent Delights

In the de la Rosa family, old grudges run deeper than loyalty, and betrayal is a three-letter word: war. But this feud isn’t between enemies. It’s between brothers. And I’m the prize.

I was born a princess among criminals. An untouchable among thieves. Heiress to a life others have killed for, and one I’d do anything to escape. I vowed not to leave without Diego, my first love and best friend, but if his ruthless brother has his way, I won’t leave at all. Cristiano de la Rosa is a man as big and bold as his legend. Once upon a time, he was our cartel’s best soldier . . . until he became my family’s worst enemy.

A man like Cristiano will bend fate to his will to get what he wants. Even if it means dragging me to hell—and tearing me from his brother’s arms.

“She is mine.” Three words from two different men.
A life, future, and love I don’t get to choose.

Genre: Contemporary Romance; slow burn, angst, dark, cartel

Buy Now:

Amazon ➜ http://smarturl.it/violentdelights
Apple Books ➜ http://bit.ly/violentdelightsapple
Nook ➜ http://bit.ly/violentdelightsnook
Google Play ➜ http://bit.ly/violentdelightsplay
Kobo ➜ http://bit.ly/violentdelightskobo

Audible Alert ➜ https://www.subscribepage.com/audiobookmailinglist_vide
Add on Goodreads ➜ http://bit.ly/violentdelightsgr
Series Links ➜ http://www.jessicahawkins.net/violentdelights

 

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