Saturday, 28 February 2015

(ARC) Book Review (445): Back In The Game (Stardust, Texas #1) - Lori Wilde

Back in the Game (Stardust, Texas #1)

Publication: 24th February 2015
Publisher: Avon
Pages: 384
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Age Appropriate: Adult
Buy It:  Amazon | Barnes | ITunes | Kobo
New York Times bestselling author Lori Wilde welcomes you to Stardust, Texas . . . where dreams come true and love is always right around the corner

Wanted: ghostwriter. Must be female, a baseball fan, and have a great pair of legs.

Ex-pitcher Rowdy Blanton never saw a woman he couldn't conquer or a team he couldn't beat. And now that he's off the field he's ready to tell all about when he played the field. So he chooses Breeanne Carlyle to do the job—she's got the requirements, but more important, there's something about her that makes him want to be a better man.

Convinced there's more to Rowdy than a good fastball, a wicked smile, and a tight pair of pants, Breeanne can't help but be tempted. After all, it's boring always being the good girl, and Rowdy dares her to be just a little bad. The stakes are high, but win or lose, this time Breeanne's breaking all the rules playing the game of love.
My Thoughts.
I have to admit that this is the first Lori Wilde book I've ever read, although I own quite a few books of hers I've just now gotten around to being able to pick one up and I'm kicking myself for having waited so long, I loved this book!

Back In The Game is the first book in an all new series Stardust,Texas, this story has elements that I love in a book, a famous sports star Rowdy Blanton famous for his many conquests, who is finally brought to his knees by the virginal Breeanne Carlyle.

Rowdy a baseball ex-pitcher has decided to write his biography, for that he'll need a ghostwriter to help get it done, enter Breeanne who works at her family's bookstore and has published a couple of books which didn't exactly sell like hotcakes, so being a huge fan of baseball and Rowdy she jumps at the chance.

With some smokin' hot chemistry between these two it's only a matter of time before things start to become less than professional, and the more Rowdy reveals of his childhood and career the deeper Breeanne's feelings for him become.

I really enjoyed reading about Breeanne's family the Carlyle's, I'm excited to read the other three sisters stories and see who they find their happily ever afters with, this story was humorous, heart warming and just so much fun to read.

Very enjoyable, highly recommended.

I give this 5/5 stars.

About The Author

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author, Lori Wilde has sold seventy-eight works of fiction to four major New York Publishing houses.

Her first NYT bestseller, the third book in her Twilight, Texas series, The First Love Cookie Club has been optioned for a television movie. The town of Granbury, Texas, upon which her fictional town of Twilight, Texas is loosely based, honors Lori with an annual Twilight, Texas weekend each Christmas.

A popular writing instructor, Lori is a two time RITA finalist and has four times been nominated for Romantic Times Reviewer's Choice Award. She's won the Colorado Award of Excellence, the Wisconsin Write Touch Award, The Golden Quill, the Lories, and The More than Magic.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | Goodreads

Friday, 27 February 2015

(ARC) Book Review (444): Better Than Perfect - Melissa Kantor

Better Than Perfect

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Better Than Perfect is a contemporary novel about a girl Juliet Newman who has what she believes is the perfect life, when her Dad ups and leaves her Mom isn't coping well at all, and life as she knew it is changing in ways she never expected.

Juliet and her boyfriend Jason both have their futures mapped out including attending Harvard together, but Juliet is coming to realise that all that she's strived so hard to achieve may not be what she really wants after all, especially after meeting Declan and his siblings who have their own band which Juliet ends up helping out with by singing lead vocals, the attraction is pretty hard to ignore and they both have a lapse of judgement a couple of times, I'm not a fan of reading books with cheating, especially when it's the main character, so as much as I would have liked Juliet and Declan as a couple I couldn't get over how wrong it was.

Better Than Perfect was an alright book for me, I absolutely adored Maybe One Day last year so I was really excited to receive an ARC of this book, but I was left disappointed it was a book that I wasn't really in a rush to get through and I was a bit underwhelmed.

I still want to read whatever else Melissa releases as I do enjoy her writing.

I give this 3.5/5 stars.

 I was born in New York City in 1970. And even though teachers never care about this, I'll give you my sign--Capricorn.
When I was in seventh grade, I told people I was going to be a writer. Then in college I got interested in other things, and after I graduated I started teaching, which I love. But ideas for stories kept popping into my head. One was an image of two girls walking down Montague Street (that’s the main drag in Brooklyn Heights) during their lunch period. They were best friends, only one of the girls was cooler and prettier and more successful with boys than the other one. They were talking about a party they’d been invited to, trying to decide if they wanted to go or not. Finally I decided I had to know what happened to them. Those girls became Jan and Rebecca, and their story is Confessions of a Not It Girl.

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Tuesday, 24 February 2015

(ARC) Book Review (443): The Last Time We Say Goodbye - Cynthia Hand

The Last Time We Say Goodbye

Publication: 10th February 2015
Publisher: Harper Teen
Pages: 400
Genre: Contemporary
Age Appropriate: Young Adult
Buy It:  Amazon • Barnes & Noble
There's death all around us.
We just don't pay attention.
Until we do.

The last time Lex was happy, it was before. When she had a family that was whole. A boyfriend she loved. Friends who didn't look at her like she might break down at any moment.

Now she's just the girl whose brother killed himself. And it feels like that's all she'll ever be.

As Lex starts to put her life back together, she tries to block out what happened the night Tyler died. But there's a secret she hasn't told anyone-a text Tyler sent, that could have changed everything.

Lex's brother is gone. But Lex is about to discover that a ghost doesn't have to be real to keep you from moving on.

From New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Hand, The Last Time We Say Goodbye is a gorgeous and heart-wrenching story of love, loss, and letting go.
My Thoughts.
It's not very often that I read a book that has me in tears countless times throughout the story, I was so  emotionally invested that I lost count of the amount of times that I had to put the book down because it was just so sad and I couldn't stop the tears from falling without taking a break to calm down.

The Last Time We Say Goodbye is a devastatingly sad story, heartbreaking and hard to read without thinking about how you would handle it if it happened to you.

After her brother Ty kills himself, Lex is finding it hard to cope, she has broken up with her boyfriend and closed herself off from her friends, and just seems to be going through the motions, same as her Mom who isn't dealing with it at all, her therapist gets her to start writing her thoughts and feelings down, and it's through this that we see how much Lex is hurting, we also get to read about memories of Ty throughout his life, up to the day he ended it.

Even now that I've finished reading this book, just thinking about it has me tearing up, it made such an impact, the fact that we discover in the acknowledgements that Cynthia's own brother committed suicide when he was seventeen helps you to understand how she was able to make this story as devastating as it was from her own personal experience.

I love Cynthia's books, I'm a huge fan of her Unearthly series, and I was excited when I received a copy to review, I flew through it it's a beautifully written story that will stay with me for a long time to come.

You'll definitely need the tissues for this one,I can't praise this book enough.

I give this 5/5 stars.

Cynthia HandCynthia Hand is the New York Times bestselling author of the Unearthly series with HarperTeen: UNEARTHLY, HALLOWED, RADIANT (an enovella) and BOUNDLESS. Currently she lives in southern California with her husband and two small children. She teaches courses in creative writing at Pepperdine University. Her next book, THE LAST TIME WE SAY GOODBYE, will be released in February 2015.

Monday, 23 February 2015

(ARC) Book Review (442): When Reason Breaks - Cindy L. Rodriguez

When Reason Breaks

Publication: 10th February 2015
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's 
Pages: 304
Genre: Contemporary
Age Appropriate: Young Adult
13 Reasons Why meets the poetry of Emily Dickinson in this gripping debut novel perfect for fans of Sara Zarr or Jennifer Brown.

A Goth girl with an attitude problem, Elizabeth Davis must learn to control her anger before it destroys her. Emily Delgado appears to be a smart, sweet girl, with a normal life, but as depression clutches at her, she struggles to feel normal. Both girls are in Ms. Diaz’s English class, where they connect to the words of Emily Dickinson. Both are hovering on the edge of an emotional precipice. One of them will attempt suicide. And with Dickinson’s poetry as their guide, both girls must conquer their personal demons to ever be happy.

In an emotionally taut novel with a richly diverse cast of characters, readers will relish in the poetry of Emily Dickinson and be completely swept up in the turmoil of two girls grappling with demons beyond their control.
My Thoughts.
When Reason Breaks is a heartbreaking novel about two girls who are each harboring feelings of pain and depression, but the face they show to the outside world is markedly different.

So much so for one girl who believes the only way to handle it is to end her life and put herself out of her misery, and this is how the book begins, we see a girl as she's lying close to death, will someone arrive in time or will it be too late?

What's interesting about this book is the way it's set up with the story going back in time leading up to the opening scene, we also never get told at the start who this girl is, but we know it's one of two girls, Emily a very smart student, the daughter of the town's council chairman who has to be on her best behaviour for her Father's public image and Elizabeth a goth girl with a serious attitude problem.

Throughout this story these two girls will connect, their lives will be changed and they may just get the help they need.

This was an amazing story, emotional and at times uplifting, featuring a sensitive subject that will get you thinking.

I really enjoyed Cindy's writing and I'll be sure to keep an eye out for whatever she releases next.

I give this 5/5 stars.

Cindy'Facebook Goodreads Twitter | Website |

Hi! I’m Cindy L. Rodriguez, the author of WHEN REASON BREAKS, a young adult novel that released 2/10/15 with Bloomsbury. I am represented by Laura Langlie. I teach middle school reading and college-level composition. I'm a big fan of the three Cs: coconut, coffee, and chocolate. I live in Connecticut with my daughter and rescue mutt.

Sunday, 22 February 2015

(ARC) Book Review (441): I Remember You - Cathleen Davitt Bell

I Remember You

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It's always great when I come across a book that tugs at the heart strings and makes such an emotional impact, that hours later I'm still thinking about it.

I really enjoy any story that has a past/future intertwining, when it's written so well like this book was, it also helps when the characters are extremely likeable and easy for the reader to connect to and hence you find yourself emotionally vested.

Lucas is a high school star hockey player, Juliet is a straight A student, so when Lucas admits to Juliet that he has memories of the two of them together Juliet thinks he has a few screws loose, but when events that he has described start to occur, Juliet comes to the realisation that he's telling the truth and that Lucas' future self is somehow sending memories to his seventeen year old past self.

I shed quite a few tears throughout this book, it's a sad story in a way.

I really liked Cathleen's writing and I hope to read her other published works at some point.

I adored this book and I can't praise it enough.

I give this 5/5 stars.

I was born in Princeton, NJ in 1971 and lived there until I was twelve, when we moved with my mom moved to West Hartford, CT.
My dad and mom had been divorced when I was two, and my dad lived in Williamstown, MA. I spent summers and school vacations with him.
I went to college in New York, at Barnard, and stayed in New York after I graduated. I worked as a newspaper reporter for three months, as a salesperson for a multimedia publisher for three years, and as a market researcher, and finally a copywriter.
I’m married and have two awesome kids ages two and five. I lived in Manhattan for sixteen years, but now am in Brooklyn, living downstairs from my sister and her family. I have two dogs named Oscar and Oprah. My favorite food is pizza and, strangely, in my thirties, I’ve developed a great love for playing catch. Slipping is my first book.

Website • Twitter • Facebook • Goodreads

Saturday, 21 February 2015

(ARC) Book Review (440): A Ghostly Undertaking (Ghostly Southern Mysteries #1) - Tonya Kappes

A Ghostly Undertaking (Ghostly Southern Mysteries #1)

Publication: 24th February 2015
Publisher: Harper Collins/Witness Impulse
Pages: 288
Genre: Mystery
Age Appropriate: Adult
Buy It:  AmazonBarnes & Noble
A funeral, a ghost, a murder…it’s all in a day’s work for Emma Lee Raines…

Bopped on the head from a falling plastic Santa, local undertaker Emma Lee Raines is told she’s suffering from “funeral trauma.” It’s trauma all right, because the not so dearly departed keep talking to her. Take Ruthie Sue Payne--innkeeper, gossip queen, and arch-nemesis of Emma Lee’s granny—she’s adamant that she didn’t just fall down those stairs. She was pushed.

Ruthie has no idea who wanted her pushing up daisies. All she knows is that she can’t cross over until the matter is laid to eternal rest. In the land of the living, Emma Lee’s high-school crush, Sheriff Jack Henry Ross, isn’t ready to rule out foul play. Granny Raines, the widow of Ruthie’s ex-husband and co-owner of the Sleepy Hollow Inn, is the prime suspect. Now Emma Lee is stuck playing detective or risk being haunted forever.
My Thoughts.
The first in an all new series, A Ghostly Undertaking is what I'd call a cozy mystery, a genre which I've been meaning to get around to reading at some point, and this book finally gave me the chance to and I really loved it.

The concept and synopsis is what drew me in initially, I loved the idea of murders being investigated by a funeral director and the ghost of the murder victim, Emma Lee has been different ever since she was hit on the head by a plastic Santa, now she can see the spirit of Ruthie Sue Payne the local town gossip who claims she was murdered, Emma Lee spends her spare time finding clues to the killer, all the while trying to prove her Granny who is the main suspect is innocent.

With a potential romance on the horizon with the local Sheriff, there is plenty to keep you entertained.

This book was so enjoyable to read, so enjoyable in fact that I read it in just one sitting, I just couldn't  seem to put it down, I look forward to continuing on with the next book and the series as a whole.

Tonya is a new author to me and I want to at some point read all the other books she's released.

I recommend this to anyone who loves a good mystery with a paranormal aspect.

I give this 4/5 stars.

Tonya has written over 15 novels and 4 novellas, all of which have graced numerous bestseller lists including USA Today. Best known for stories charged with emotion and humor, and filled with flawed characters, her novels have garnered reader praise and glowing critical reviews. She lives with her husband, three teenage boys, two very spoiled schnauzers and one ex-stray cats in northern Kentucky and grew up in Nicholasville. Now that her boys are teenagers, Tonya writes full time but can be found at all of her guys high school games with a pencil and paper in hand.
Become a member of Tonya’s STREET TEAM! It’s a gathering place of readers who love Tonya Kappes novels and Tonya gives away prizes! To sign up for Tonya’s STREET TEAM, newsletter, view book trailer, and upcoming news, check out Tonya’s website,

Friday, 20 February 2015

Feature And Follow Friday.

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee’s View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it’ll allow us to show off more new blogs!

 Just remember it is required, if you participate, to follow our Features and you must follow the hosts (Parajunkee & Alison Can Read) as a courtesy.

This weeks Question:
Do you like fantasy or realistic books? via The Realm of Books

This is a hard one because I love them both, but if I had to choose I'd go with realistic books.

(ARC) Book Review (439): The Sin Eater's Daughter (The Sin Eater's Daughter #1) - Melinda Salisbury

The Sin Eater's Daughter (The Sin Eater’s Daughter #1)

Publication: 24th February 2015
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Pages: 320
Genre: Fantasy
Age Appropriate: Young Adult
Buy It: Amazon Barnes & Noble
Seventeen-year-old Twylla lives in the castle. But although she’s engaged to the prince, Twylla isn’t exactly a member of the court.

She’s the executioner.

As the Goddess embodied, Twylla instantly kills anyone she touches. Each month she’s taken to the prison and forced to lay her hands on those accused of treason. No one will ever love a girl with murder in her veins. Even the prince, whose royal blood supposedly makes him immune to Twylla’s fatal touch, avoids her company.

But then a new guard arrives, a boy whose easy smile belies his deadly swordsmanship. And unlike the others, he’s able to look past Twylla’s executioner robes and see the girl, not the Goddess. Yet Twylla’s been promised to the prince, and knows what happens to people who cross the queen.

However, a treasonous secret is the least of Twylla’s problems. The queen has a plan to destroy her enemies, a plan that requires a stomach-churning, unthinkable sacrifice. Will Twylla do what it takes to protect her kingdom? Or will she abandon her duty in favor of a doomed love?
My Thoughts.
I had heard so many good things about this book, so when I received a copy for review I was extremely happy.

From the utterly gorgeous cover to the fantastic story within that will captivate and enchant you, this is one book you'll find hard to put down.

Twylla is the Daunon Embodied (executioner) of her kingdom, working for the Queen she kills the people charged with treason, but the reason why she is so feared is because she kills with just her touch, which means she leads a lonely existence with no friends and no one wanting to get too close to her just in case.

When she gains a new guard Leif, she finds herself attracted to him and he to her, but when Twylla's betrothed who happens to be the Prince comes back to the kingdom after a couple of years away, things you could say become complicated.

With deceit and betrayal around every corner, two big twists especially the one at the end of the book which will definitely shock you and leave you in disbelief, this story will get the adrenaline pumping.

I'm quite excited for the next book, I can't wait to see what happens next.

I give this 5/5 stars.

About Melinda:
Melinda Salisbury lives by the sea, somewhere in the south of England. As a child she genuinely thought Roald Dahl’s Matilda was her biography, in part helped by her grandfather often mistakenly calling her Matilda, and the local library having a pretty cavalier attitude to the books she borrowed. Sadly she never manifested telekinetic powers. She likes to travel, and have adventures. She also likes medieval castles, non-medieval aquariums, Richard III, and all things Scandinavian. The Sin Eater’s Daughter is her first novel, and will be published by Scholastic in 2015. She is represented by the amazing Claire Wilson at Rogers, Coleridge and White.
She tweets. A lot.

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

(ARC) Book Review (438): The First Kiss (Sweetest Kisses #2) - Grace Burrowes

The First Kiss (Sweetest Kisses #2)

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes
I was a huge fan of the first book in this series A Single Kiss, so to say that I was excited to read this book was an understatement, and I'm happy to say that I loved it, I would even go so far as to say that I thought it was even better than the first book.

This series focuses on the three Knightley brothers who run their own law firm, this story belongs to the youngest brother James, the ladies man who can have his pick of any woman he wants, when he meets Vera Waltham and her daughter Twyla he realises that maybe it's time to finally settle down when he finds that the idea of domesticity suits him.

With Vera's career as a world renowned concert pianist on hiatus, and troubles with her ex-husband is she ready to take a chance on James, will they both get the happily ever afters that they both want and deserve.

With some subplots going on in the background it does not take anything away from the main storyline whatsoever but ties in nicely and makes this book a resounding success.

I really enjoy Grace's writing, whether it be contemporary or historical romances she can't put a foot wrong, whatever she releases I am sure to love, such is the enjoyment I get out of each and every novel.

I look forward to the third and final book in the trilogy although I'll be sad to see this series end.

I give this 5/5 stars.

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Grace Burrowes’ bestsellers include The Heir, The Soldier, Lady Maggie’s Secret Scandal, Lady Sophie’s Christmas Wish
and Lady Eve’s Indiscretion. The Heir was a Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2010, The Soldier was a PW Best Spring Romance of 2011, Lady Sophie’s Christmas Wish won Best Historical Romance of the Year in 2011 from RT Reviewers’ Choice Awards, Lady Louisa’s Christmas Knight was a Library Journal Best Book of 2012, and The Bridegroom Wore Plaid was a PW Best Book of 2012.
Her Regency romances have received extensive praise, including starred reviews from Publishers Weekly and Booklist. Grace is branching out into short stories and Scotland-set Victorian romance with Sourcebooks. She is a practicing family law attorney and lives in rural Maryland.
 Website /  Facebook / Twitter

Monday, 16 February 2015

(ARC) Book Review (437): Give It All (Desert Dogs #2) - Cara McKenna

Give It All (Desert Dogs #2) / Barnes and Noble / KOBO / The Book Depository
Give It All is the second book in the Desert Dogs series which was even better than the first, full of mystery, suspense and action, and of course let's not forget the steamy hot romance to go along with it.

It didn't take long once I'd started reading to recall the events of Lay It Down, I really enjoyed reading about Raina and Duncan far more than I thought I would, in the previous book Duncan came across as a British snob who was better than everyone, it's in this story that we find out why he's the way that he is and and the facade he feels he needs to show the world.

Paired with Raina who doesn't do romance or anything mushy and it just works and as a couple they make sense, providing quite a few laughs throughout with their dialogue towards one another.

When Duncan is set up and then accused of taking bribes to cut corners on the building of the casino, his life will unravel and he'll finally come to discover that he's more than fancy suits and money, he may even find people in town that will have his back and be willing to stand up for him, something he has never had in his life before.

I look forward to the third book which will focus on Casey, his interactions with barmaid Abilene are highly amusing and I think that their book will be full of laughs and a delight to read.

I'm really enjoying this series, which seems to be getting better with each new book released.

I give this 4/5 stars.

Cara McKenna writes smart erotica—sexy stories with depth. A little dark, a little funny, always emotional. She also writes red-hot romance under the name Meg Maguire. Her wonderful publishers are Ellora's Cave, Harlequin Blaze, Penguin / InterMix, Samhain, and Signet Eclipse. She loves writing sexy, character-driven stories about strong-willed men and women who keep each other on their toes, and bring one another to their knees.
Before becoming a purveyor of red-hot romance and smart erotica, Cara was a record store bitch, a lousy barista, a decent designer, and an over-enthusiastic penguin handler.
Cara now writes full-time and lives in the Pacific Northwest with her bearded husband. When she's not trapped in her own head she can usually be found in the kitchen, the coffee shop, or jogging around the nearest duck-filled pond. She is a very proud member of the Romance Writers of America® and its New England Chapter. She was a 2010 Golden Heart® finalist, a 2012 Golden Leaf finalist, and a 2011 and 2013Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Award nominee.
Have questions or comments? Email her! You can also find Cara on TwitterCara on Goodreads and Meg on Goodreads. And if you play Words With Friends, feel free to challenge Cara to a game—her user name is caramckenna.