Thursday, May 30, 2013

Review: Tangled

By: Emma Chase

Synopsis:  Drew Evans is a winner. Handsome and arrogant, he makes multimillion-dollar business deals and seduces New York’s most beautiful women with just a smile. He has loyal friends and an indulgent family. So why has he been shuttered in his apartment for seven days, miserable and depressed?
       He’ll tell you he has the flu.
       But we all know that’s not really true.
       Katherine Brooks is brilliant, beautiful, and ambitious. She refuses to let anything—or anyone—derail her path to success. When Kate is hired as the newassociate at Drew’s father’s investment banking firm, every aspect of the dashing playboy’s life is thrown into a tailspin. The professional competition she brings is unnerving, his attraction to her is distracting, and his failure to entice her into his bed is exasperating.
       Then, just when Drew is on the cusp of having everything he wants, his overblown confidence threatens to ruin it all. Will he be able untangle his feelings of lust and tenderness, frustration and fulfillment? Will he rise to the most important challenge of his life?
Can Drew Evans win at love?

My Review: 4/5 Stars

     This novel was a breath of fresh air.  I loved seeing the world through Drew’s eyes.  His antics had be laughing until my sides hurt.  I may have been as in love with him as Kate.
Drew is not your typical leading man.  Yes, he is rich, handsome, and has no problem finding a girl to take home each night, but he is not the overbearing and controlling alpha man type.  He is a man who has never believed in love, until…
Kate is strong, intelligent and funny.  She is not afraid to give Drew a dose of his own shit.  After spending several years with her boyfriend, Billy, she is stuck in a romance rut.
Drew and Kate a forced to work together in order to land a big client.  Their competitive natures kick into over driver and the tension between them stokes the passion laying under the surface.  The desire that pulls them together grows into something more.  Something Drew has never experienced and is scared to death of.  After acting rashly he must attempt to win Kate back.  Will he succeed?

Review: Geoducks Are For Lovers

Geoducks Are For Lovers
By:  Daisy Prescott

Synopsis: Food writer Maggie Marrion is just getting back on her feet after  a horrible year, or two, or three. With their twentieth reunion approaching, she invites four of her closest friends from college for a weekend at her beach cabin on Whidbey Island. What she doesn't expect is her best friends, artist Quinn Dayton and part-time erotica novelist, Selah Elmore, to play matchmaker. The two plot a surprise that will make the weekend, and her life, a lot more interesting.

Gil Morrow, former grunge musician turned history professor, joins them as Selah's date for the weekend. After coming face to face with the one who got away, he decides he's waited long enough to get the girl. With the support of old friends, a few wishing rocks, the world's largest burrowing clam, and a hot lumberjack thrown into the mix, Gil reminds Maggie that forty-something isn't too old for second chances.
Can we learn to love the life we have and let go of who we expected to be? What happens when the generation from The Breakfast Club and Reality Bites meets The Big Chill? Come spend a weekend with these Generation X-ers as they share laughter, tears, life's ups and downs, old stories, and new beginnings.

My Review: 

        Boy, I am sure glad that the author put the pronunciation of “geoduck” at the beginning of this book.  I would have stumbled through the book pronouncing it “Ge-O-Duck” the entire time.  The descriptions the author graces us with are amazing.  I want to flee to Whidbey Island, curl up in an Adirondack chair under a warm blanket, while sipping coffee and eating s’mores watching the tide go out.
This novel is about falling in love again, later in life.  This was a change from the many books in my repertoire.  Maggie is in her early forties.  She is a divorcee living alone on Whidbey Island after the passing of her mother.  After a rough few years she is finally beginning to feel content with her life.  With her twentieth college class reunion just around the corner she invites her closest friends to spend the weekend with her so they can catch up.
Maggie is thrown for a loop when Gil, her college sweetheart, decides to tag along.  Gil’s arrival throws Maggie for a loop.  The author takes us through the twist and turns of their relationship as we wait to see if their smoldering love left beneath the ashes of life will be reignited or extinguished.

Review: Until I Break

Until I Break
By: M. Leighton

Synopsis: Until I Break In love, sometimes what you fear most is exactly what you need. Laura Drake is an author. She writes bestselling paranormal romances that continue to top the charts. She is sharp. She is confident. She is in control. And she doesn't exist. Samantha Jansen is the woman behind the wig, the woman most of the world doesn't know exists. She is shy. She is insecure. She is nothing like her main character or her alter ego. She is scarred—deeply scarred—by a past she can’t let go of and a present she can’t make peace with. Samantha’s dreams are consumed by one man, the broken hero from her books. Mason Strait is both her wildest fantasy and her most terrifying nightmare. When Samantha meets Alec Brand, a corporate consultant, it is as though Mason has come to life. Alec is handsome to a fault, as elegant as he is arrogant, and more intense than any man has a right to be. Samantha is soon sucked into a world that mirrors the fiction she writes. Just like her main character, Daire Kirby, Samantha finds herself unable to resist the forbidden lure of Alec. And just like Daire, she also finds that she is faced with taking a chance on a man who could either set her free or destroy her. The scale tilts toward destruction when Samantha finds out that Alec is as much a work of fiction as Mason. And he has scars of his own, scars that could ruin them both.

My Review: 2/5 Stars

     I wanted to like this book.  I really did.  I went in with high expectations.  It is rare I cannot finish a novel, but this was that rare occasion.
Samantha is an author, writing steamy romance novels.  The persona she portrays as Laura Drake is strong and confident, everything Samantha is not.  She lives two separate lives, working diligently to keep the two words apart.  That is until she meets Alec.  Alec is the man of her dreams, literally.  He is the main character she has dreamed up in her novels.
Alec has a dark and haunting past.  His demons plague him daily.  He desperately tries to turn over a new leaf, but meeting Samantha sets off a frenzy with in him that he is unsure he can control.  Pursuing Samantha is something he shouldn't do, but he is compelled to.  All too soon he finds that she is unlike any woman he has tried to seduce before.
… This is where I left off.  Midway.  Samantha and Alec were beginning their relationship when I put this book down one evening and I never felt the desire to pick it up again.  The story was written well, but I never connected with the character.  I never fell in love with them.  Maybe I will try again another time, but for now I have placed this one back on the shelf.

First ARC!

I am so excited!  I just received my first ARC, which is Being Me by Lisa Renee Jones. I can't wait to start it.  Review to follow.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Starting "Until I Break" by M. Leighton

I am starting Until I Break by M. Leighton tonight.  Review to follow!!

Review: Beauty in the Breakbown

Beauty in the Breakdown
By:  Natalie Baird

Synopsis:  Alexa Vansant isn't the type of girl to go looking for trouble, so what was she doing sitting in a Lower East Side dive bar waiting for Jackson Brent? What did she expect from a meeting with an international rock star sensation, infamous millionaire playboy, and notorious womanizer? He said the meeting was about business, and it had to be with her, alone, and on his terms...

When the most gorgeous man she's ever laid eyes on walks through the door, Alexa knows she's done for. Agreeing to meet with Jackson Brent may be the worst mistake she's ever made.

The moment his striking blue eyes meet hers, the rock star immediately has her fumbling. His British accent renders her helpless against his charms and Alexa is unable to control the desire welling inside her as a result of the sheer physical attraction she feels toward him.

It's unbecoming for a professional media journalist to get star-struck, this was supposed to be strictly business, or so she thought.

When Jackson reveals that he wants her to write his tell-all bio, Alexa is astonished. The privilege would mean instant fame and notoriety for her and her magazine. The only catch? She has to join him on his month long European tour, to experience who he really is... to get the proper intimate details...

Jackson pulls her into a whirlwind of lust, heartbreak, and utter passion. If she is the one to finally discover the real Jackson Brent, will she be strong enough to fight for his love?

My Review: 3/5 Stars

This story begins with us meeting Alexa. She is a strong independent woman trying to make her way in the world of journalism while living in NYC. Her life is structured and organized. Forced, by her over zealous boss, to meet with world famous Jackson Brent she learns there is more to the man than meets the eye.

Jackson seeks out Alexa to write an exposé about him. I loved how he had his "way" of always knowing where she was or what she doing. Typical controlling lead male character. Jackson invites Alexa to come along with him and his band.  With a little convincing and some pinning Alexa agrees, but she wasn't prepared for life on the road. Sex, drugs, ex-lovers and multiple versions of the man she is falling for await her.

Is she strong enough to fight for the man she knows lays below the many layers?

Review: The Upside of Letting Go

The Upside of Letting Go
By: Nicole Stayton

Synopsis: Haley Martin decides the only way to let go of her lingering nightmares is to literally move on. Taking a leap of faith she finds herself enrolling at a campus hundreds of miles away from home. 

She leaves any thoughts of dating again in Jersey, that is until fate crosses her path with a blue-eyed stud named Kyler King. He is notoriously known for being emotionally unattainable, but his façade is only to hide the burdens he bares every day.

As Kyler and Haley’s physical attraction becomes deeper, the secrets of the past threaten to surface. When Haley’s past collides with the present, will her secrets prove too big of an obstacle hindering their happily ever after, or will letting go be the key that locks their bond forever?

My Review: 4/5 Stars

     I was immediately drawn into Haley. Haley has experience pain like no other. A pain that throws her world upside down and leaves her a shell of her former self.  Fleeing from the only home she has ever known she escapes to Alabama, hoping to start over.

     Kyle King has a reputation of being completely unattainable. With his blue eye and good looks he is every girls dream, but he has a past with woman and a pattern of using them and leaving them.  Always keeping everyone at arms length, that is until he bumps into Haley, literally.

     Haley and Kyle have an instant connection. Regardless of how much either of them fights it, fate other plans.  I found myself cheering them on.  Through a series of trials and tribulations they learn how to rely on each other through the darkest of times. They learn the connection they have is unlike any other, but will it be enough?