Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Blog Tour Review and Giveaway - Hello Stranger by Lisa Kleypas @LisaKleypas @avonbooks

Hello Stranger by Lisa Kleypas
Series: The Ravenels #4
Publisher: HarperCollins - Avon
Publication Date:  February 27, 2018
Date Read:  February 25, 2018
Length:  400 pages
Source: Publisher
New York Times bestselling author Lisa Kleypas delivers a scintillating tale of an unconventional beauty who finds passion with the spy who can’t resist her

A woman who defies her time
Dr. Garrett Gibson, the only female physician in England, is as daring and independent as any man—why not take her pleasures like one? Yet she has never been tempted to embark on an affair, until now. Ethan Ransom, a former detective for Scotland Yard, is as gallant as he is secretive, a rumored assassin whose true loyalties are a mystery. For one exhilarating night, they give in to their potent attraction before becoming strangers again.

A man who breaks every rule
As a Ravenel by-blow spurned by his father, Ethan has little interest in polite society, yet he is captivated by the bold and beautiful Garrett. Despite their vow to resist each other after that sublime night, she is soon drawn into his most dangerous assignment yet. When the mission goes wrong, it will take all of Garrett’s skill and courage to save him. As they face the menace of a treacherous government plot, Ethan is willing to take any risk for the love of the most extraordinary woman he’s ever known.
My Review

I loved this book!  I have been a huge fan of Lisa Kleypas for a long time but for some reason I haven't read a lot of her work during the past few years.  I can see now that this has been a big mistake on my part and that I should have made time for the Ravenels series because this was oh so good.  I loved it on the first page, the last page, and all the pages in between.

The characters in this book were amazing.  Dr. Garrett Gibson was such a refreshing character.  She was willing to do what made her happy instead of what society expected of her.  Can you even imagine the guts it would take to be the only female doctor in England?  Garrett had the toughness needed to excel in her profession.  Ethan Ransom was so easy to like.  He started out as a bit of a mystery and worked to help keep Garrett safe.  The more we learned about Ransom the more that I liked him.

Garrett and Ethan were wonderful together.  I love that we get to see them with each other at the start of the book and the chemistry is there from the start.  It only grows stronger as the book progresses.  Ethan quickly showed that he is a romantic at heart and his words had me swooning quite a few times.  While the chemistry between them was off the charts, they also really showed a lot of respect for each other and just seemed to enjoy being in each other's company.  These two just belonged with each other.

There are some pretty exciting moments in the story.  I did worry about how things would work out for a little while.  There are some pretty serious nail biting moments in this book and a few characters that seemed to make the perfect villain since they were easy to hate.  There are also some really lovable secondary characters in this book.  I haven't read the other books in the series so I am not sure if West has played a large role in the other stories or not but I loved him. Just as Ethan had the ability to make me swoon, West often made me laugh.  I really hope West gets his own book very soon.

I highly recommend this book to others.  This book had all of the elements that I hope for when I pick up a romance with a fantastic plot, amazing characters, off the chart chemistry, a few laughs, and moments that melted my heart.  The only thing about the book that I am not sure that I like is the cover.  I think that the cover is very pretty but it looks way too modern for the story.  I can deal with a cover that I am not sure about because watching Garrett and Ethan find their happily ever after was a wonderful reading experience.  I am definitely going to be reading the other books in the series very soon.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from HarperCollins - Avon.
The Ravenels Series
Book #1 - Cold-Hearted Rake
Book #2 - Marrying Winterborne
Book #3 - Devil in Spring
Book #4 - Hello Stranger
About the Author
Credit - Danielle Barnum Photography
New York Times bestselling author Lisa Kleypas graduated from Wellesley College with a political science degree. She is a RITA award winning author of both historical romance and contemporary women’s fiction. Her novels are published in fourteen different languages and are bestsellers all over the world. She lives in Washington State with her husband Gregory and their two children.

Author Links: Website | Google+ | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook
I am thrilled to have the opportunity to give away a copy of Hello Stranger to one lucky reader of this blog, courtesy of Avon Books.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

March 2018 Take Control of your TBR Pile Challenge Sign Up

I am excited to participate in the Take Control of your TBR Pile Challenge hosted by Kimberly @ Caffeinated Reviewer.  You can sign up for the challenge HERE.

The rules are pretty simple for the challenge.  The goal is to read as many books from your TBR pile published before March 1, 2018.  Old ARCs count towards the challenge as long as they are published before March 1, 2018. 

See the official rules and feel free to sign up at the official sign up post - HERE.

New Releases - February 27, 2018 #newreleases #newbooks

It's Tuesday!  That means it is time to make a little bit of room on the bookshelves, load up your ereader, or make your way to your local library.  In other words - It is time to get your hands on a new book!

Here are just a few books that have just been released that you may want to grab soon:

Hello Stranger by Lisa Kleypas

Find it at:
Goodreads | Booklikes | LibraryThing
A woman who defies her time

Dr. Garrett Gibson, the only female physician in England, is as daring and independent as any man—why not take her pleasures like one? Yet she has never been tempted to embark on an affair, until now. Ethan Ransom, a former detective for Scotland Yard, is as gallant as he is secretive, a rumored assassin whose true loyalties are a mystery. For one exhilarating night, they give in to their potent attraction before becoming strangers again.

A man who breaks every rule

As a Ravenel by-blow spurned by his father, Ethan has little interest in polite society, yet he is captivated by the bold and beautiful Garrett. Despite their vow to resist each other after that sublime night, she is soon drawn into his most dangerous assignment yet. When the mission goes wrong, it will take all of Garrett's skill and courage to save him. As they face the menace of a treacherous government plot, Ethan is willing to take any risk for the love of the most extraordinary woman he's ever known.

Zero Day by Ezekiel Boone

Find it at:
In the thrilling, nerve-wracking finale of Ezekiel Boone’s “hair-raising” (Parade) Hatching series, the United States goes to war against the queen spiders that threaten to overtake the human race forever.

The world is on the brink of apocalypse. Zero Day has come.

The only thing more terrifying than millions of spiders is the realization that those spiders work as one. But among the government, there is dissent: do we try to kill all of the spiders, or do we gamble on Professor Guyer’s theory that we need to kill only the queens?

For President Stephanie Pilgrim, it’s an easy answer. She’s gone as far as she can—more than two dozen American cities hit with tactical nukes, the country torn asunder—and the only answer is to believe in Professor Guyer. Unfortunately, Ben Broussard and the military men who follow him don’t agree, and Pilgrim, Guyer, and the loyal members of the government have to flee, leaving the question: what’s more dangerous, the spiders or ourselves?

The Bad Daughter by Joy Fielding

Find it at:
Goodreads | Booklikes | LibraryThing
What first appears to be a random home invasion reveals a family's dark secrets in this domestic ticking-clock suspense from the New York Times bestselling author of See Jane Run.

A hostile relationship with her sister and a complicated past with her father's second wife have kept Robin estranged from her family for many years. But when her father's new family is attacked in their house, with her father, his wife, and young daughter in critical condition in the hospital, she returns home to await their fate and hopefully mend fences. It looks like a random robbery gone awry, but as Robin spends more time with her family members, she learns they all had their secrets -- and one of those secrets may have put them all in horrible danger.

One and Only by Jenny Holiday

Find it at:
Goodreads | Booklikes | LibraryThing
In this laugh-out-loud romantic comedy, USA Today bestselling author Jenny Holiday proves that when opposites attract, sparks fly.

Miss Responsibility meets Mr. Reckless
With her bridezilla friend on a DIY project rampage, bridesmaid Jane Denning will do anything to escape - even if it means babysitting the groom's troublemaker brother before the wedding. It should be a piece of cake, except the "cake" is a sarcastic former soldier who is 100% wicked hotness and absolutely off-limits.

Cameron MacKinnon is ready to let loose after returning from his deployment. But first he'll have to sweet talk the ultra-responsible Jane into taking a walk on the wild side. Turns out, riling her up is the best time he's had in years. But what happens when the fun and games start to turn into something real?
More Great Books Being Released Today
(Covers link to Goodreads)

Which new releases are you excited about this week?

Monday, February 26, 2018

Review - Skitter by Ezekiel Boone @ezekiel_boone @EmilyBestler

Skitter by Ezekiel Boone
Series: The Hatching #2
Publisher: Atria/Emily Bestler Books
Publication Date: May 2, 2017
Date Read: February 23, 2018
Length:  368 pages
Source: NetGalley

First, there was the black swarm that swallowed a man whole, the suspicious seismic irregularities in India that confounded scientists, the nuclear bomb China dropped on its own territory without any explanation. Then, scientist Melanie Guyer's lab received a package containing a mysterious egg sac; little did Dr. Guyer know that, almost overnight, Earth would be consumed by previously dormant spiders that suddenly wanted out.

Now, tens of millions of people around the world are dead. Half of China is a nuclear wasteland. Mysterious flesh-eating spiders are marching through Los Angeles, Oslo, Delhi, Rio de Janeiro, and countless other cities. According to Dr. Guyer, the crisis may soon be over.

But in Japan, a giant, glowing egg sac gives a shocking preview of what is to come, even as survivors in Los Angeles panic and break the quarantine zone. Out in the desert, survivalists Gordo and Shotgun are trying to invent a weapon to fight back, but it may be too late, because President Stephanie Pilgrim has been forced to enact the plan of last resort.

America, you are on your own.

My Review

I am really enjoying this series.  I have had a copy of this book for a long time.  I had planned to read it around the publication date but for some reason it didn't happen.  I am glad that I was able to get to it now because it really is a great story.  This is the second book in the Hatching series which is a series that really does need to be read in order since this is a continuation of the story from the first book.  I ended up enjoying this book just as much as the first book.

I really like the way that this story is told.  I don't think it would work for every book but it does work well with this story.  We get to see the outbreak from a lot of different points of view instead of following only a handful of characters.  Sometimes we get a point of view and never encounter that character again.  Other times, we get to see a point of view at various points in the story.  All of these points of view helps to really paint a picture of the outbreak across the globe.

The spider outbreak in the first book was bad and many had hoped that would get better.  It looks like it might be getting better.  The spiders seem to have died off a bit and the pods are being taken care of.  Unfortunately, things can get worse.  Much worse.  The spider outbreak takes a turn that is truly frightening and it was really interesting to see how things were developing and how the key characters would deal with it.

This was a really exciting story.  I couldn't wait to see what would happen next with the spider outbreak and was also eager to find out what the authorities would decide to do to handle things.  I couldn't imagine being responsible or having people look to you for answers during a time like this.  Whenever I had a guess about how things would go, I would quickly find out that I was wrong so I just kept turning pages to enjoy the story.

I would recommend this series to others.  This creepy crawly story was very original and entertaining.  I ended up most of the book in a single evening because I had to see how things would work out.  I am really excited to start the next book, Zero Day, very soon.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Atria/Emily Bestler Books via NetGalley.

The Hatching Series
Book #1 - The Hatching - My Review
Book #2 - Skitter
Book #3 - Zero Day
About the Author

Ezekiel Boone lives in upstate New York with his wife and children. He is the author of The Hatching, Skitter, and Zero Day.

Author Links: Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Stacking the Shelves #108

I am really excited to participate in Stacking the Shelves, a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews and Reading Reality.

My Life
This was another good week.  My daughter received her results from the ACT which she took a few weeks ago.  She scored a 33 and it was her first time taking the test.  This kid amazes me!  We ended up spend a lot of the week talking about college plans and career choices which was great. 

My daughter is currently on a trip to Chicago with the Jazz Ensemble from her school so my husband and I are enjoying a weekend with just the two of us (plus 3 dogs).   I haven't spent as much time on the blog so that I could do a few fun things with my husband.  That is why this post is a day late.  I do promise to start getting around to all of the blogs soon.

This was a weird reading week for me.  I usually listen to several audiobooks every week but for some reason nothing seemed to appeal to me.  I listened to about a half hour of 3 or 4 books on day before just giving up.  I was able to listen to one for a bit by the end of the week so I hope that slump is over. 

Books Won

Legally Charming by Lauren Smith (Won - Delighted Reader)

I was thrilled to win a copy of Legally Charming courtesy of Lauren Smith.  I entered this giveaway over at Delighted Reader as part of The Great Pick Up Line #TGPUL series which has been a lot of fun so far this February.  

What books do you add to your shelves this week? 
Let me know in the comments and be sure to leave a link to your own STS post!

Friday, February 23, 2018

Audiobook Review - One Foot in the Grave by Jeaniene Frost @Jeaniene_Frost

One Foot in the Grave by Jeaniene Frost
Narrated by Tavia Gilbert
Series: Night Huntress #2
Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Publication Date: October 20, 2010
Date Read: January 29, 2018
Length: 9 hours 47 minutes
Source: Purchased
You can run from the grave, but you can’t hide…

Half-vampire Cat Crawfield is now Special Agent Cat Crawfield, working for the government to rid the world of the rogue undead. She’s still using everything Bones, her sexy and dangerous ex, taught her, but when Cat is targeted for assassination, the only man who can help her is the vampire she left behind.

Being around Bones awakens all her emotions, from the adrenaline rush of slaying vamps side by side to the reckless passion that consumed them. But a price on her head—wanted: dead or half-alive—means her survival depends on teaming up with Bones. And no matter how hard Cat tries to keep things professional between them, she’ll find that desire lasts forever…and Bones won’t let her get away again.
My Review

I am having a lot of fun with my audio re-read of this series.  It has been a little more than five years since I read this book the first time so it was definitely time to revisit this wonderful story.  This was a book that once I really got into the story, I didn't want to put it down.  I ended up listening to the whole audiobook in just a couple of days and I think I liked the book even more the second time around.

I do have to admit that I had a bit of a rough start with this book.  This book begins several years after the events of the previous book where Cat left Bones to protect him.  She is working her government job that she took to protect her mother at the end of the first book.  She is very good at her job and has a good team working around her.

I learned something very important while listening to this book.  I like Bones a whole lot more than I like Cat.  So much more.  Bones wasn't around for the first part of this book so it was all Cat.  I missed Bones.  A lot.  As soon as Bones entered the story again, my enjoyment increased dramatically.  If you had asked me a year ago, I would have told you that I loved Cat and Bones.  I discovered that I do love Bones but Cat has the potential to drive me a little crazy at times.  Maybe by the end of my re-read of the series, I will love her just as much as Bones.

There are quite a few really important developments in this book.  Bones and Cat are reunited which is a very good thing.  Cat is in some danger which is not so good but Bones is able to help keep her safe since he is back in her life.  We do also get to meet some other important characters including Cat's team and some of Bone's friends and acquaintances.  There are some pretty intense action scenes and some scenes that are more than a little hot.

Tavia Gilbert does such a great job with this series.  She really brings both Cat and Bones to life.  I love the voice that she used for Bones and think that the accent is perfect.  All of the characters are very easy to distinguish with each voice used being unique and very believable.  She handled a wide range of emotions and a lot of different types of scenes with ease in this book.  I had no trouble listening to this book for hours at a time.

I do highly recommend this series to others.  This is the second book in the Night Huntress series which really should be read in order since each book builds on previous events.  I can't wait to continue my re-read of this amazing series!

The Night Huntress Series

Book #1 - Halfway to the Grave - My Review
Book #2 - One Foot in the Grave
Book #3 - At Grave's End
Book #4 - Destined for an Early Grave
Book #5 - This Side of the Grave
Book #6 - One Grave at a Time
Book #7 - Up From the Grave - My Review
About the Author

Jeaniene Frost is a New York Times, USA Today, and international bestselling author whose works include the Night Huntress series, the Night Prince series, and the Broken Destiny series.  To date, foreign rights for her novels have sold to twenty different countries. Jeaniene lives in North Carolina with her husband Matthew, who long ago accepted that she rarely cooks and always sleeps in on the weekends. Aside from writing, Jeaniene enjoys reading, poetry, watching movies, exploring old cemeteries, spelunking and traveling – by car. Airplanes, children, and cook books frighten her. Jeaniene is represented by Nancy Yost at Nancy Yost Literary Agency.

Author Links: Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Review - The Duke of Her Desire by Sophie Barnes @BarnesSophie @AvonBooks

The Duke of Her Desire by Sophie Barnes
Series: Diamonds in the Rough #2
Publisher: Avon Books
Publication Date: December 26, 2017
Date Read: February 17, 2018
Length:  384 pages
Source: Edelweiss
He was only supposed to keep an eye on his friend’s sister . . . now he’s about to lose his heart . . .

When Thomas Heathmore, Duke of Coventry, agrees to steer his friend’s inexperienced younger sister through society, he doesn’t expect the lady in question to be so infernally stubborn. Amelia Matthews seems to have little interest in balls or suitors at all. Instead, she intends to open a school, and against his better instincts, Thomas offers to help. Yet somewhere along the line, Amelia ceases to be a simple responsibility . . . and becomes an undeniable temptation.

Since her brother inherited a dukedom, Amelia’s prospects have transformed. But though she’s long been secretly infatuated with Thomas, she refuses to heed the arrogant aristocrat’s advice. If only it were as easy to ignore his heated touch. And as Amelia soon learns, the ton is a minefield, where one moment’s indiscretion can unleash a scandal—or entice her to surrender everything to the duke of her desire...
My Review

I liked this book.  I really enjoyed the first book in this series, A Most Unlikely Duke, so I was really excited to read more of the series.  I didn't love it and I don't think I will remember much about it long term but it was a nice enough story.   I thought that this was a pleasant read and am glad that I read it.

Thomas, the Duke of Coventry, agrees to watch over his friend's sisters while he is away.  Amelia and Juliette are still trying to fit into society after living in poverty most of their lives.  Amelia has other dreams and hopes to open a school for children where she used to live.  Of course, she starts this process while her brother is away and Coventry jumps into to help.  She is still keeping social commitments and considering potential husbands at the same time.

This was a really tame historical romance.  I actually don't remember ever reading one quite this innocent.  I don't need a lot of heat in this kind of story to find it enjoyable but I found it rather surprising.  I really didn't feel a whole lot of chemistry between this pair and I do wonder if part of that could be because most of the book was rather chaste until the story got closer to the end.  I don't think that you need sex in a story to have chemistry but it just seems that something was missing between this pair.

I did find both Amelia and Thomas to be interesting characters.  Thomas has quite the story which I was very eager to learn more about as the story progressed.  Amelia's quest to run a school was ambitious and really showed what kind of person she was.  I was probably most entertained by everything that went wrong with the preparations for the school.  I liked that they both seemed really committed to the cause.

This was a book that I liked in the end.  It was a nice enough read and a nice way to spend a bit of time.  It wasn't my favorite in the series but it was an acceptable installment.  I am actually not sure if I will be picking up the next book in the series or not at this point but I would like to read more from Sophie Barnes in the future.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Avon Books via Edelweiss.
About the Author

Born in Denmark, Sophie Barnes spent her youth traveling with her parents to wonderful places all around the world. She's lived in five different countries, on three different continents, and speaks Danish, English, French, Spanish, and Romanian. But, most impressive of all, she's been married to the same man three times—in three different countries and in three different dresses.

When she's not busy dreaming up her next romance novel, Sophie enjoys spending time with her family, swimming, cooking, gardening, watching romantic comedies and, of course, reading.

Author Links: Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Audiobook Review - Bountiful by Sarina Bowen @SarinaBowen

Bountiful by Sarina Bowen
Narrated by Teddy Hamilton & Seraphine Valentine
Series: True North #4; Brooklyn Bruisers #3.5
Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.
Publication Date: November 28, 2017
Date Read: February 16, 2018
Length: 10 hours 51 minutes
Source: Audiobook Jukebox
No last names. No life stories. Those were the rules.

Once upon a time a cocky, copper-haired tourist sauntered into Zara’s bar. And even though she knew better, Zara indulged in a cure for the small-town blues. It was supposed to be an uncomplicated fling—a few sizzling weeks before he went back to his life, and she moved on.

Until an accidental pregnancy changed her life.

Two years later, she’s made peace with the notion that Dave No-Last-Name will never be found. Until one summer day when he walks into her coffee shop, leveling her with the same hot smile that always renders her defenseless.

Dave Beringer has never forgotten the intense month he spent with prickly Zara. Their nights together were the first true intimacy he’d ever experienced. But the discovery of his child is the shock of a lifetime, and his ugly past puts relationships and family out of reach.

Or does it? Vermont’s countryside has a way of nurturing even tortured souls. The fields and the orchards—and hard won love—are Bountiful.
My Review

I absolutely loved this book!  I had heard good things about Sarina Bowen but hadn't had the chance to read any of her work before this book.  I can now see that I have been missing out and have a lot of catching up to do.  This was a book that held my attention and never let go.  I could not stop listening and finished the book in just a day and a half.  I was totally swept away by this amazing romance.

It is really hard to put into words my love for this book but I am going to do my best.  I fell in love with these characters from the very start.  As the book progressed, I loved them more and more.  Dave and Zara just seemed to work well together.  I loved the chemistry between them at the start of the story and thought that the awkwardness when they met again felt real.  They just seem to be good for each other.

This story starts out with Dave on vacation in Vermont where he meets Zara at the bar she runs.  They have a fling over the course of a month but don't share details about themselves.  Two years later when Dave returns for another vacation, he learns that he has a daughter.  I am not always a fan of the secret baby trope but this works perfectly because Zara tried to find Dave but couldn't.  She never makes any attempt to hide the baby from Dave.  Dave is floored by the news but quickly adapts and learns that the things he wants in life may be different than he had originally thought.

It was so wonderful to watch Dave and Zara fall in love.  The chemistry between them was always off the charts but watching them really get to know each other and care for their daughter together was great.  Zara is not used to having Dave's help and doesn't want to owe anyone anything while Dave wants to take care of things.  Some of Zara's family are not thrilled with Dave since he hasn't been around but he never backs down and keeps his focus on Zara and their daughter, Nicole.

This was the first time that I have listened to Teddy Hamilton and Seraphine Valentine's narration.  I love romances that use two narrators and I thought that both of these narrators did a great job with their characters.  There are a lot of emotions in this book and a few steamy moments and everything flowed flawlessly.  I thought that they both did a great job with the different character voices.  They both had very pleasant voices that made it easy to listen for hours at a time.

I highly recommend this book to fans of contemporary romances.  This incredibly romantic story had all the things I was looking for when I decided to read it.  I was pleasantly surprised to find that Dave was a hockey player which only made things better since I love a good sport romance.  This is the fourth book in the True North series and also fits into the Brooklyn Bruisers series but I had no problems reading it as a stand alone.  Of course, I do want to read all of the other books now!

I received a review copy of this audiobook from Blackstone Audio, Inc. via Audiobook Jukebox.
About the Author

Sarina Bowen is a USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance. She lives in Vermont's Green Mountains with her family, six chickens and too much ski gear and hockey equipment.

In 2016, Sarina became a Rita Award winner! The Romance Writers of America honored HIM by Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy with Best Contemporary Romance, Mid-Length.

Author Link:  Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter 

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

New Releases - February 20, 2018 #newreleases #newbooks

It's Tuesday!  That means it is time to make a little bit of room on the bookshelves, load up your ereader, or make your way to your local library.  In other words - It is time to get your hands on a new book!

Here are just a few books that have just been released that you may want to grab soon:

Sirens by Joseph Knox

Find it at:
Goodreads | Booklikes | LibraryThing
The breathtakingly propulsive and stunningly assured debut thriller, perfect for readers of Tana French, Don Winslow and Dennis Lehane

The mission is suicide.

Infiltrating the inner circle of enigmatic criminal Zain Carver is dangerous enough. Pulling it off while also rescuing Isabelle Rossiter, a runaway politician's daughter, from Zain's influence? Impossible. That's why Aidan Waits is the perfect man for the job. Disgraced, emotionally damaged, and despised by his superiors. In other words, completely expendable.

But Aidan is a born survivor. And as he works his way deep into Zain's shadowy world, he finds that nothing is as it seems. Zain is a mesmerizing, Gatsby-esque figure who lures young women into his orbit--women who have a bad habit of turning up dead. But is Zain really responsible? And will Isabelle be next?

Before long, Aidan finds himself in over his head, cut loose by his superiors, and dangerously attracted to the wrong woman.

How can he save the girl if he can't even save himself?

Rosie Colored Glasses by Brianna Wolfson

Find it at:
Sometimes even all the love in the world is not enough to save someone.

Willow Thorpe knows friction… The friction between her parents, Rosie and Rex. The friction inside herself as she tries to navigate two worlds since their divorce.

But life has not always been like this.

When Rosie and Rex first met, theirs was an attraction of opposites. Rosie lived life for those heightened moments when love reveals its true secrets. Rex lived life safely, by the rules. Common sense would say theirs was a union not meant to last, but it was genuine love.

Now Willow just wants to be with Rosie, to bask in her mother’s outsize glow and, she thinks, protection. Because Rosie is the only person who can make Willow feel totally alive and completely loved.

But as Willow and Rosie and Rex try harder and harder to stay connected as a family, Rosie’s manic tornado of love continues to sweep up everyone in sight, ultimately to heartbreaking results.

Smooth-Talking Cowboy by Maisey Yates

Find it at:
Goodreads | Booklikes | LibraryThing
Welcome to Gold Valley, Oregon, where a rough-and-tumble rancher and the girl next door are about to learn that opposites attract

Olivia Logan has a plan: win back her ex by making him see what he’s missing. But first she needs to find a man who’s willing to play along. With his laid-back cowboy charm and knack for getting under her skin, Luke Hollister is an unlikely hero—but he wants her help convincing her father to sell him land, which means he needs her as much as she needs him.

Luke likes his life—and his women—uncomplicated. So why does good girl Olivia heat his blood like no one else? She’s always been off-limits, but the more time they spend as Gold Valley’s hottest new “couple,” the more real it’s starting to feel. Luke was supposed to help her win back another man…not keep her in his arms. But now that he has her there, he’s not sure he’ll ever let go.

Sunburn by Laura Lippman

Find it at:
Goodreads | Booklikes | LibraryThing
One is playing a long game. But which one?

They meet at a local tavern in the small town of Belleville, Delaware. Polly is set on heading west. Adam says he’s also passing through.

Yet she stays and he stays—drawn to this mysterious redhead whose quiet stillness both unnerves and excites him. Over the course of a punishing summer, Polly and Adam abandon themselves to a steamy, inexorable affair. Still, each holds something back from the other—dangerous, even lethal, secrets that begin to accumulate as autumn approaches, feeding the growing doubts they conceal.

Then someone dies. Was it an accident, or part of a plan? By now, Adam and Polly are so ensnared in each other’s lives and lies that neither one knows how to get away—or even if they want to. Is their love strong enough to withstand the truth, or will it ultimately destroy them?

Something—or someone—has to give.

Which one will it be?
More Great Books Being Released Today
(Covers link to Goodreads)

Which new releases are you excited about this week?

Monday, February 19, 2018

Review - Runaway Groom by Lauren Layne @_laurenlayne @readloveswept

Runaway Groom by Lauren Layne
Series: I Do, I Don't #2
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group - Loveswept
Publication Date: January 30, 2018
Date Read: February 15, 2018
Length: 240 pages
Source: NetGalley
For one charming playboy, getting cast on a Bachelor-esque reality TV show is the shock of a lifetime—until he finds love where he least expects it. And now the chase is on!

Gage Barrett’s reputation as a ladies’ man has been greatly exaggerated, but none of that matters after a drunken bet lands him on Jilted, a reality TV show that matches runaway grooms with wannabe brides. Now he’s stuck at a Hawaiian resort with nineteen women competing to drag him back to the altar—and one contestant who’s even more miserable than he is. Gage has no idea how feisty, independent Ellie Wright wound up in the cast, but it’s obvious she hates his guts. And if there’s one thing Gage likes, it’s a challenge. . . .

Ellie can’t believe she let her best friend talk her into exchanging her dignity for a glorified bikini contest. Still, she could use the exposure—her business is struggling—and she’ll probably be one of the first to get eliminated anyway. But Gage isn’t the shallow jerk Ellie anticipated—and he’s in no rush to send her home. As stolen kisses turn into secret trysts, she finds herself losing track of what’s real and what’s for the camera. With the wedding finale looming, this runaway groom is tempting Ellie to start believing in storybook endings.

My Review

I loved this book!  I am really kind of surprised about that to be honest.  I don't like television shows like The Bachelor at all.  I think they are kind of dumb and cannot understand why anyone would subject themselves to participating in something like that.  So why would I want to read a book based on the same kind of thing?  It is simple - Lauren Layne wrote it so I want to read it.  I have to admit that I was a little apprehensive about it though.  It actually turns out that this book is one of my favorites Lauren Layne books.

Gage and Ellie both end up on the reality show, Jilted.  Gage is a famous actor that ends up on the show after losing a bet.  He has left two women at the alter so he is the perfect man to fill the role for the show even if he is less than excited about it.  Ellie wanted on the show so that she could promote her company.  She hatched a plan with her friend and business partner that it would be good for business if she could wear the designer t-shirts that they sell.  It turns out that Gage and Ellie seem to be the only two people that don't want to be on the show even though they are doing a pretty good job of faking it.

I loved Gage and Ellie together.  They have such wonderful chemistry with each other and I really felt their connection.  I loved how they interacted with each other and I think that the parts of the book that they were alone with each other were the only times either of them really showed their true selves.  I really enjoyed getting the chance to be in each of their heads so that I could really see what they were feeling.

I had really wondered how a romance could be set on a reality show like this.  It is not romantic to see the romantic interest spending time with other women.  I liked that the relationship between Gage and Ellie happened when the cameras were off.  Yes, there were a few situations that made things uncomfortable but I felt like both characters handled themselves well and it really helped them to realize what they were feeling for each other.

I would highly recommend this book to fans of contemporary romance.  I read this book with a big grin on my face the entire time and there were a few scenes that really had my heart beating like crazy.  I had a fantastic time watching Ellie and Gage find their happily ever after and look forward to more from Lauren Layne soon.

I received an advance reader edition of this book from Random House Publishing Group - Loveswept via NetGalley.
About the Author

Lauren Layne is the New York Times bestselling author of over a dozen romantic comedies.

A former e-commerce and web marketing manager from Seattle, Lauren relocated to New York City in 2011 to pursue a full-time writing career.

She lives in midtown Manhattan with her high-school sweetheart, where she writes smart romantic comedies with just enough sexy-times to make your mother blush. In LL's ideal world, every stiletto-wearing, Kate Spade wielding woman would carry a Kindle stocked with Lauren Layne books.

Author Links: Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook
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