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Erotic Romance Review: Sex Love Repeat by Alessandra Torre

Sex Love Repeat by Alessandra Torre


bought

Synopsis from Goodreads
In Malibu, I sleep late in our worn out bed. Dance to Bob Marley in the sand. Find love and peace in Paul's arms.

In Hollywood, I drink champagne and watch our chef fix dinner. I visit Stewart at work and let him take me on top of his desk.

Two separate lives. Two separate men. A woman that watched us all.

I should have known that it wouldn't work out.


 
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository 



8/10

* * *
This was my first Alessandra Torre book, and it won't be the last. She's got soul, she's got balls, and she has a raw integrity which takes a plotline that could have made me roll my eyes in exasperation with a lesser writer, and makes it touching and meaningful.

Historical Romance Review: Lady Be Good by Meredith Duran

Lady Be Good by Meredith Duran (Rules for the Reckless #3)


bought

Synopsis from Goodreads
The third searing novel in the Rules for the Reckless series by Meredith Duran, the USA Today bestselling author of sexy and evocative Regency romances in the tradition of Sarah MacLean.

Catching the Lady Red-Handed

Born to a family of infamous criminals, Lilah Marshall has left behind her past and made herself into the perfect lady. Working as a hostess at Eveleigh's, London’s premier auction house, she leads a life full of art, culture, and virtue. All her dreams are within reach—until a gorgeous and enigmatic viscount catches her in the act of one last, very reluctant theft.

Chasing One Red-Hot Passion

Christian “Kit” Stratton, Viscount Palmer, is society's most dashing war hero. But Kit’s easy smiles hide a dark secret: he is haunted by a madman’s vow to destroy anyone he loves. When his hunt for the enemy leads to Everleigh’s Auction Rooms, he compels Lilah to help him. But one tempting touch may be their undoing—for what Kit needs threatens all Lilah holds dear, and losing her may destroy Kit.
 


Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

9/10

* * *
 God, I loved this book so much! I haven't read a historical for awhile, and to stumble on such little gem was everything.

Why read this one? you'd ask.

The heroine is a total badass who does not take mansplaining kindly. A former thief determined to climb out of the gutter and onto the social ladder, Lilah Marshall works as a hostess in an auction house where she manipulates guests with her refined accent, easy smiles and witty flirtations.

Urban Fantasy Novel Review: Wildfire by Ilona Andrews

Wildfire by Ilona Andrews (Hidden Legacy #3)


bought

Synopsis from Goodreads
Just when Nevada Baylor has finally come to accept the depths of her magical powers, she also realizes she’s fallen in love. Connor “Mad” Rogan is in many ways her equal when it comes to magic, but she’s completely out of her elements when it comes to her feelings for him. To make matters more complicated, an old flame comes back into Rogan’s life…

Rogan knows there’s nothing between him and his ex-fiance, Rynda Sherwood. But as Nevada begins to learn more about her past, her power, and her potential future, he knows she will be faced with choices she never dreamed of and the promise of a life spent without him.

As Nevada and Rogan race to discover the whereabouts of Rynda’s kidnapped husband and are forced to confront Nevada’s grandmother, who may or may not have evil motives, these two people must decide if they can trust in each other or allow everything to go up in smoke.
 


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

9.5/10

* * *
One thing for sure, I'll be re-reading this in the near future as I gulped it down way too fast instead of savouring.

Explosive. Snarky. Poignant. Exhilarating. These are just some of the suitable epitomes for Ilona Andrews' books. I honestly can't get enough of them, and this series is one of the finest in urban fantasy, from my point of view.

Contemporary Romance Review: Beard in Mind by Penny Reid

Beard in Mind by Penny Reid (Winston Brothers #4)


ecopy thanks to the author

Synopsis from Goodreads
All's fair in love and auto maintenance.


Beau Winston is the nicest, most accommodating guy in the world. Usually.
Handsome as the devil and twice as charismatic, Beau lives a charmed life as everyone’s favorite Winston Brother. But since his twin decided to leave town, and his other brother hired a stunning human-porcupine hybrid as a replacement mechanic for their auto shop, Beau Winston’s charmed life has gone to hell in a handbasket.


Shelly Sullivan is not nice and is never accommodating. Ever.
She mumbles to herself, but won’t respond when asked a question. She glares at everyone, especially babies. She won’t shake hands with or touch another person, but has no problems cuddling with a dog. And her damn parrot speaks only in curse words.


Beau wants her gone. He wants her out of his auto shop, out of Tennessee, and out of his life.


The only problem is, learning why this porcupine wears her coat of spikes opens a Pandora’s box of complexity—exquisite, tempting, heartbreaking complexity—and Beau Winston soon discovers being nice and accommodating might mean missing out on what matters most.


Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK

8.5/10

* * *
 I'll be honest with you, peeps. Cletus and Jennifer's shennanigans was a very tough act to follow, and it didn't help that the timeline of Beard in Mind was overlapping the events of Beard Science.

Saying all that, Beau's book has a less comedic vibe and takes on a very serious, heartbreaking issue of mental illness very well. I loved and appreciated that.

Erotic Romance Review: Team Player by Cate Ellink

Team Player by Cate Ellink


Egalley courtesy of Escape Publishing

Synopsis from Goodreads
She’s never been shy about what she wants – and now she wants them both...

Hannah Maynard, sports reporter, is sure it’s only her lust-filled fantasies linking Australian rugby league captain, Charlie Maxxin, with relative newcomer, Lyle Smythe-Jones. She and Charlie have shared quite a few steamy sessions over the years, so surely he’s not in a relationship with the young, unflappable player she’s dubbed Marble Boy?

Hannah lures Charlie to dinner and his reaction is all the answer she needs. But she doesn’t want to report on the biggest secret in Australian sport – she wants to take part. However, it’s not just Charlie’s decision and it can’t be just casual. If Hannah wants in, she has to be all in, with Lyle, with Charlie, and with the hottest action any of them have ever experienced.


Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

5/10

* * *

Right, I'm going to try and be short explaining why this didn't work for me.

You know that I review plenty of erotic romances exploring topics of MMF/MFM relationship? I hope the experience gave me an understanding that this kind of dynamics can be tricky to pull off, and I can count the authors who managed to do it on one hand. Unfortunately, Miss Ellink isn't one of them.

Paranormal Fantasy Review: The Silent by Elizabeth Hunter

The Silent by Elizabeth Hunter (Irin Chronicles #5)


ecopy thanks to the author

Synopsis from Goodreads
They are called kareshta, the silent ones.
But the silent are waking.

Kyra has lived her life in the shadow of a powerful Grigori brother. She’s ignored her own desires for the good of her family, but an unexpected request from Thailand sends her on a mission that could change her life and alter the fate of free Grigori all over the world. Sons of the Fallen hidden in the mountains of Thailand have adapted an ancient human magic for their own purposes. Will this practice bring peace or lead to even greater danger for the Irin race?

A simple diplomatic mission sends Leo to Bangkok, but he didn’t expect to see a familiar face in surveillance photographs. He’s tried everything to drive Kyra from his mind, since he was convinced the gentle kareshta wanted to hide from the world. How did she turn up halfway across the globe, living with Grigori who may or may not be Irin allies?

Leo has bided his time. He’s given Kyra her space.

But this scribe is ready to hear a kareshta sing.

THE SILENT is a romantic fantasy, and the fifth book in the Irin Chronicles series.
 


Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

8.5/10

* * *
 The Silent is an intriguing read as it expands the Irin mythology considerably.

I love how things stopped being black and white. Not all Grigori are evil, some choose to fight their nature and protect their sisters, kareshta.

Not all kareshta are meek and helpless. Some fought the tide of madness and won, others succumbed to it and went dark.

Dystopian Fiction Audiobook Review: The Sunlight Pilgrims by Jenni Fagan

The Sunlight Pilgrims by Jenni Fagan



audiocopy courtesy of Audible Studios

Synopsis from Goodreads
Set in a Scottish caravan park during a freak winter – it is snowing in Jerusalem, the Thames is overflowing, and an iceberg separated from the Fjords in Norway is expected to arrive off the coast of Scotland – THE SUNLIGHT PILGRIMS tells the story of a small Scottish community living through what people have begun to think is the end of times. Bodies are found frozen in the street with their eyes open, euthanasia has become an acceptable response to economic collapse, schooling and health care are run primarily on a voluntary basis. But daily life carries on: Dylan, a refugee from panic-stricken London who is grieving for his mother and his grandmother, arrives in the caravan park in the middle of the night – to begin his life anew.

Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
 


6/10

* * *
 I am actually torn about this book.

On one hand, the writing is beautiful, no question about it. It's introspective, meditative, poetic. The characters are fascinating and lovingly drawn. The atmosphere reminded me of The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker.

Paranormal Romance Review: Kato by D.B. Reynolds

Kato by D.B. Reynolds (Stone Warriors #2)


Egalley courtesy of ImaJinn Books

Synopsis from Goodreads
It was a time when gods walked the earth, when armies fought not for bits of land, but for the very existence of humanity. On such a battlefield, five formidable warriors stood against an evil greater than any the earth had ever seen. But evil is not an honorable foe. Betrayed by someone they trusted, the warriors were cursed, one by one, tossed into the maelstrom of time, imprisoned in stone, their freedom resting on nearly impossible conditions. Until...

Kato Amadi...born of darkest sorcery, unstoppable on the battlefield, his magic is as deadly as his blade. But not even magic could save him from vicious betrayal. Trapped for millennia in darkness and silence, he is freed at last, only to find himself in the middle of a battle against the very beasts of hell he was created to destroy.

Grace Van Allen is a scholar of ancient languages who toils in the dim recesses of a museum basement with only a beautiful stone warrior to keep her company. But when Grace calls upon her silent warrior to help her translate an obscure new language, she breaks the ancient curse holding him prisoner...and frees three deadly demons to rampage through her city.

Tracking demons is what Kato was born to do, but he’ll need Grace’s help. And when they discover that Kato’s enemy is still alive and still plotting against him, their hunt takes a dangerous turn, one that might just prove fatal for both of them...
 


Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

7.5/10

* * *
 I think I'm jinxed with this series, peeps. I adore D.B.'s Vampires in America series, but I can not buy into romantic lines in Stone Warriors. Love the overall plot, but not the instalove. I far prefer slow burn attraction, but I totally understand that the format of this series dictates otherwise.

Erotic Romance Review: The Red by Tiffany Reisz

The Red by Tiffany Reisz


Egalley thanks to 8th Circle Press

Synopsis from Goodreads
Mona Lisa St. James made a deathbed promise that she would do anything to save her mother's art gallery. Unfortunately, not only is The Red painted red, but it's in the red. She soon realizes she has no choice but to sell it.

Just as she realizes she has no choice but to sell it, a mysterious man comes in after closing time and makes her an offer: He will save The Red if she agrees to submit to him for the period of one year.

The man is handsome, English, and terribly tempting...but surely her mother didn't mean for Mona to sell herself to a stranger. Then again, she did promise to do anything to save The Red...

The Red is a standalone novel of erotic fantasy from Tiffany Reisz, international bestselling author of The Bourbon Thief and the Original Sinners series.


Audible US | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

 8/10

* * *

The Red is complex and intriguing. And it's also not what you think. Somehow it had a feel of old erotic novels, particularly Emmanuelle.

As you may guess, I liked it. Not in the way of The Original Sinners novels, but it had its own niche.

July New Book Releases I'm Dying to Read!

Some awesome releases this month, peeps! I'm reviewing The Red (read and enjoyed) and The Silent (can't wait!), and of course, Wildfire is on pre-order.
How about you? What books are you waiting for?

Erotic Romance Review: By The Hour by Roni Loren

By The Hour by Roni Loren (Pleasure Principle #2)


bought

Synopsis from Goodreads
, Lane Cannon, dares to flirt with her, she shuts him down cold. Too gorgeous. Too cocky. And his job as The Grove’s sexual surrogate is to sleep with patients. No, thank you.

Former escort Lane Cannon has spent enough years with people looking down on him. Stupid. Trailer trash. Rent boy. He’s heard it all. He’s worked too hard to shed his past to let some haughty doctor cut him down. But something about Elle’s ice queen act has his dominant instincts perking up and his body taking notice. He can’t walk away.

After an evening of verbal sparring turns into a night of steamy hate sex, Lane’s ready for round two. But Elle proposes a business deal. How better to keep things strictly physical than to pay him for his services?

Lane wants her, not her money. But he’ll play along in exchange for one thing—all the control. It’s only supposed to be a dirty little fling between colleagues, but these two are about to learn a lesson in love…by the hour.


  Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

8/10

* * *
Dedicated to my friend, B., a closet fan of erotic romance, who keeps pestering me to post another review soon.

I like how you always know where you stand with Roni Loren. She consistently delivers good, complex, thought-provoking characters in subversive, steamy situations.

Paranormal Mystery Novella Release Day Review: A Ghost in the Glamour by Elizabeth Hunter

A Ghost in The Glamour: A Linx & Bogie Story by Elizabeth Hunter


Ecopy from the author

Synopsis from Goodreads
Linx Maxwell’s life is on the verge of greatness. She’s finally graduated from street fairs and hopping chain link to making art that pays the bills. Her family life is… not dull. And it looks like her van might just be able to exist on hope and duct tape.

If only she could get rid of the ghost who’s plagued her since the eighth grade.

Frank Bogle is a detective who lost his life in the line of duty. Everyone on the other side knows that the Maxwell women are the best mediums in the business, but did he have to get attached to the one whose hair had been attacked by a weed wacker?

Frank doesn’t like his afterlife any more than Linx does. He just doesn’t know how to leave.

Linx & Bogie is a stand-alone, short fiction, paranormal series by Elizabeth Hunter, author of the Elemental World, the Irin Chronicles, and the Cambio Springs Mysteries.


Amazon kindle US/UK

8/10

* * *
 
Linx and Bogie's story ended up a surprising mix of light and grave, humorous full-bodied characters and engaging world-building. I gobbled it up in one bite and found it absolutely adorable.

Erotic Romance Novella Review: Obsession by Calista Fox

Obsession by Calista Fox (Bayfront Billionaires #4)


Egalley thanks to St. Martin's Press

Synopsis from Goodreads
100 Shades of Sin...

Delicious and hot, the seductive Bayfront Billionaires need one thing, and one thing only: the woman made for them, the one woman on earth who can complete their trio of passion and desire.

When Roxy Shea arrived in Bayfront, she had no idea she would instantly attract the attention of two of the town’s sexiest and most eligible bachelors. She doesn’t want anything to do with them—with a dangerous past in her rearview mirror, a new relationship would be disastrous. But with every smoldering gaze and unspoken promise of pleasure, these billionaire bad boys are determined to make her theirs, to claim her body and soul.

Nick Faulkner and Hunter Valens are forces in their respective entertainment industries, but a past conflict has put a strain on their lifelong friendship—and vying for the mysterious Roxy’s affection doesn’t help matters. Until their craving for her leads to an explosive night with for threesome. But can they show Roxy that she can trust the men responsible for the sizzling pleasure she finds with them—and that their love is soul-deep?


Amazon kindle US/UK

6/10

* * *
 Oh my god, why did I punish myself and read this author again? We are obviously not suited as I find her flowery style very annoying.

Urban Fantasy Review: White Hot by Ilona Andrews

White Hot by Ilona Andrews (Hidden Legacy #2)


Egalley thanks to Avon

Synopsis from Goodreads
The Hidden Legacy series by #1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews continues as Nevada and Rogan navigate a world where magic is the norm…and their relationship burns hot

Nevada Baylor has a unique and secret skill—she knows when people are lying—and she's used that magic (along with plain, hard work) to keep her colorful and close-knit family's detective agency afloat. But her new case pits her against the shadowy forces that almost destroyed the city of Houston once before, bringing Nevada back into contact with Connor "Mad" Rogan.

Rogan is a billionaire Prime—the highest rank of magic user—and as unreadable as ever, despite Nevada’s “talent.” But there’s no hiding the sparks between them. Now that the stakes are even higher, both professionally and personally, and their foes are unimaginably powerful, Rogan and Nevada will find that nothing burns like ice …


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

9/10

* * *
 
I've devoured this book as soon as I got my grabby hands on a review copy, and then I had to re-read it again because it was simply delicious.

Urban Fantasy Review: Spectacle by Rachel Vincent

Spectacle by Rachel Vincent (Menagerie #2)


Egalley thanks to MIRA

Synopsis from Goodreads
In this riveting sequel to New York Times bestselling author Rachel Vincent's acclaimed novel Menagerie, Delilah Marlow will discover that there is no crueler cage than the confines of the human mind…

When their coup of Metzger's Menagerie is discovered, Delilah and her fellow cryptids find their newly won freedom brutally stripped away as they are sold into The Savage Spectacle, a private collection of "exotic wildlife." Specializing in ruthless cryptid cage matches, safari-style creature hunts and living party favors, the Spectacle's owner, Willem Vandekamp, caters to the forbidden fetishes of the wealthy and powerful. At the Spectacle, any wish can be granted—for the right price.

But Vandekamp's closely guarded client list isn't the only secret being kept at the Spectacle. Beneath the beauty and brutality of life in the collection lie much darker truths, and no one is more determined than Delilah to strip the masks from the human monsters and drag all dark things into the light.



Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository


 8/10

* * *
 I personally think that Menagerie was a stronger, more coherent read. Spectacle delivers a powerful emotional impact, but the continuity of the plot was compromised and the ending - definitely rushed.

Historical Mystery/Romantic Suspense Review: The Girl Who Knew Too Much by Amanda Quick

The Girl Who Knew Too Much by Amanda Quick


Egalley thanks to Berkley Books

Synopsis from Goodreads
Amanda Quick, the bestselling author of ’Til Death Do Us Part, transports readers to 1930s California, where glamour and seduction spawn a multitude of sins…

When Hollywood moguls and stars want privacy, they head to an idyllic small town on the coast, where the exclusive Burning Cove Hotel caters to their every need. It’s where reporter Irene Glasson finds herself staring down at a beautiful actress at the bottom of a pool…

The dead woman had a red-hot secret about up-and-coming leading man Nick Tremayne, a scoop that Irene couldn’t resist—especially since she’s just a rookie at a third-rate gossip rag. But now Irene’s investigation into the drowning threatens to tear down the wall of illusion that is so deftly built around the famous actor, and there are powerful men willing to do anything to protect their investment.

Seeking the truth, Irene finds herself drawn to a master of deception. Oliver Ward was once a world-famous magician—until he was mysteriously injured during his last performance. Now the owner of the Burning Cove Hotel, he can’t let scandal threaten his livelihood, even if it means trusting Irene, a woman who seems to have appeared in Los Angeles out of nowhere four months ago…

With Oliver’s help, Irene soon learns that the glamorous paradise of Burning Cove hides dark and dangerous secrets. And that the past—always just out of sight—could drag them both under…


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
 

 8/10

* * *

I have to say as a long-term fan of this author, this was Amanda Quick at her finest.

Sci-Fi YA Audiobook Review: Future Threat by Elizabeth Briggs

Future Threat by Elizabeth Briggs (Future Shock #2)


audiocopy courtesy of Audible Studios

Synopsis from Goodreads
Six months ago Aether Corporation sent Elena, Adam, and three other recruits on a trip to the future where they brought back secret information--but not everyone made it back to the present alive. Now Elena's dealing with her survivor's guilt and trying to make her relationship with Adam work. All she knows for sure is that she's done with time travel and Aether Corporation.

But Aether's not done with her--or Adam, or fellow survivor Chris. The travelers on Aether's latest mission to the future have gone missing, and Elena and her friends are drafted into the rescue effort. They arrive in a future that's amazingly advanced, thanks to Aether Corporation's reverse-engineered technology. The mission has deadly consequences, though, and they return to the future to try to alter the course of events.

But the future is different yet again. Now every trip through time reveals new complications, and more lives lost--or never born. Elena and Adam must risk everything--including their relationship--to save their friends.

The second book in the New York Times bestselling Future Shock trilogy.
 


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

 8/10

* * *
Surprisingly, Elizabeth Briggs did not suffer from the dreaded second book syndrome. In fact, Future Threat is even better than Future Shock. It's pretty non-stop action, breathless and tense.

Contemporary Romance Early Review: Dating-ish by Penny Reid

Dating-ish by Penny Reid (Knitting in the City #6)


ecopy thanks to the author

Synopsis from Goodreads
There are three things you need to know about Marie Harris:
1) She’s fed up with online dating,
2) She’s so fed up, she’s willing to forego the annoyance and consider more creative alternatives, and
3) She knows how to knit.

After the most bizarre and irritating first date in the history of human kind, Marie is looking for an alternative to men. With the help of her friends, she quickly identifies a few possibilities:

Need a cuddle? Use a professional cuddler. Need affirmation? Get yourself a life coach. Need an orgasm? Try orgasm meditation! Why does she need the hassle of a romantic partner when she can meet all her needs with paid services?
But then her irritating date resurfaces. And he’s not at all the person she thought he was. And he suggests a different—and crazier—solution to her dilemma . . .
As everyone knows (or will soon come to realize), traditional relations between humans are a thing of the past. Robots are our future. And if robots are our future, then why do we need other people at all?


Release Date: May 16, 2017.

  Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | The Book Depository

 9.5/10

* * *
I want to start my review with this amazing bit of wisdom from Dan:

"You like this guy, you tell him flat out. You just lay what you want and everything that needs to be said. He'll always be in your mind, wrecking the possibility of things with other people, because your heart can't move on until it knows for sure a door is closed."

Friday Mini Reviews #105: Julie McElwain, Rainbow Rowell & Lindsay Buroker



A Murder in Time by Julie McElwain (Kendra Donovan #1)
bought
Synopsis from Goodreads
Beautiful and brilliant, Kendra Donovan is a rising star at the FBI. Yet her path to professional success hits a speed bump during a disastrous raid where half her team is murdered, a mole in the FBI is uncovered and she herself is severely wounded. As soon as she recovers, she goes rogue and travels to England to assassinate the man responsible for the deaths of her teammates.

While fleeing from an unexpected assassin herself, Kendra escapes into a stairwell that promises sanctuary but when she stumbles out again, she is in the same place - Aldrich Castle - but in a different time: 1815, to be exact.

Mistaken for a lady's maid hired to help with weekend guests, Kendra is forced to quickly adapt to the time period until she can figure out how she got there; and, more importantly, how to get back home. However, after the body of a girl is found on the extensive grounds of the county estate, she starts to feel there's some purpose to her bizarre circumstances. Stripped of her twenty-first century tools, Kendra must use her wits alone in order to unmask a cunning madman.
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
9/10
 So fascinating! If you like time-travel, kick-ass heroines and Diana Gabaldon's novel, then this one is for you! Kendra Donovan is a tough as nails FBI profiler who is ready to climb walls when she is transferred to Regency England and none of her skills are applied to female roles of the era. Then the murders start, and she realises that she does have a purpose here after all: to find the killer. A lightning-fast, gripping read, one of the highlights of the year for me.
* * *
Очень захватывающе! Если вам нравятся путешественники во времени, романы Дианы Гэбэльдон и крутосваренные героини, то вам сюда! Кендра Донован - специалист по профилям серийных убийц в ФБР. Когда она случайно проваливается во времени в Англию Регентства, она от отчаяния на стенку лезет, так как всё, что она знает, не входит в рамки гендерных ролей эпохи. Однако когда вокруг неё начинает происходить цепь убийств, она наконец понимает, что в это время попала не зря, и что её задача - найти и остановить опасного преступника. Прям от книги оторваться было невозможно, читалось на одном духу. Очень рекомендую!
 Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
bought on audio and kindle
Synopsis from Goodreads
From the author of the New York Times bestseller Eleanor & Park. A coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love.

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan...

But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving. Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words... And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this? Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?
 
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
8/10
This was an extremely lovely book, especially on audio. A sweet coming-of-age story, a mostly blind to everything out of her comfort zone heroine, which leads to tragic and hilarious situations, and very interesting, sympathetic secondary characters. I think this would be a must read for fans of Harry Potter fandom and Penny Reid. I really enjoyed it!
* * *
Ну безумно милая книженция, дамы и господа, особенно в формате аудио. Болезненный процесс взросления, потери наивности детства, здесь очень хорошо чувствуется. Главная героиня вообще слепа ко всему, что происходит за пределами её комфортной зоны, что приводит к траикомическим ситуациям. А вторичные персонажи ну очень симпатичные и живые. Рекомендую фанатам фандома о Гарри Поттере и любителям Пенни Рид. Вам должно понравиться.

Star Nomad by Lindsay Buroker (Fallen Empire #1)

bought

Synopsis from Goodreads
They have her daughter. She will stop at nothing to get her back.

When system-wide civil war broke out, fighter pilot Captain Alisa Marchenko left her family and accepted a commission in the Alliance Army to battle the empire’s tyranny. Four years later, the empire has been toppled, but chaos and anarchy now rule the system. Alisa, after being injured in the final battle, is stranded on a dustball of a planet billions of miles from home. She learns that her husband died during the bombings, leaving their daughter on Perun, a planet that has become the last imperial stronghold.

Alisa must find a way to Perun, even if she has to steal a dilapidated ship from a junkyard overrun by murdering savages to do it. She’s ready for the challenge. She did not, however, count on finding an elite imperial cyborg soldier squatting in the ship and planning to use it for a mysterious mission of his own. Alisa can’t let him or anyone else stop her, or she'll never see her daughter again.


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

 7.5/10
I don't know what happened, peeps. I should have enjoyed it more but it just didn't do anything for me emotionally. The plot was good, the characters had interesting banter going on, but backstory felt very murky, and it just felt bland comparing to the vibrancy of Sara King's Outer Bounds or emotional warmth of Wayfarers by Becky Chambers.
* * *
Я не знаю, что случилось, ребята. Я вроде как должна была прочитать эту книгу с удовольствием, однако она меня совсем не зацепила. Интересный сюжет, хорошие перепалки между командой корабля, однако картина построения мира была мутной, и сама книга лично для меня была лишена яркости той же самой Сары Кинг или теплоты Беки Чэмберс.


Murder Mystery Review: The Awkward Squad by Sophie Henaff

The Awkward Squad by Sophie Henaff, Sam Gordon (Awkward Squad / Anne Capestan #1)


egalley thanks to MacLehose Press

Synopsis from Goodreads
Suspended from her job as a promising police officer for firing "one bullet too many", Anne Capestan is expecting the worst when she is summoned to H.Q. to learn her fate. Instead, she is surprised to be told that she is to head up a new police squad, working on solving old cold cases.

Though relived to still have a job, Capestan is not overjoyed by the prospect of her new role. Even less so when she meets her new team: a crowd of misfits, troublemakers and problem cases, none of whom are fit for purpose and yet none of whom can be fired.

But from this inauspicious start, investigating the cold cases throws up a number a number of strange mysteries for Capestan and her team: was the old lady murdered seven years ago really just the victim of a botched robbery? Who was behind the dead sailor discovered in the Seine with three gunshot wounds? And why does there seem to be a curious link with a ferry that was shipwrecked off the Florida coast many years previously?


Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

8/10

* * *
 What a refreshing find! A French police procedural with snappy characters, multilayered narration and certain "je ne sais quoi"... *grins*

 It's got elements of comedy and tragedy, but they are so intermixed that it's a fairly light, cosy mystery type of read.

Historical Romance Review: A Lady's Code of Misconduct by Meredith Duran

A Lady's Code of Misconduct by Meredith Duran (Rules for the Reckless #5)


Egalley thanks to Pocket Books

Synopsis from Goodreads
A DEAL WITH THE DEVIL...
Trapped in the countryside, facing an unwanted marriage and the theft of her fortune, Jane Mason is done behaving nicely. To win her freedom, she’ll strike a deal with the most dangerous man she knows—a rising star in politics, whose dark good looks mask an even darker heart.

...NEVER GOES TO PLAN.
The bitter past has taught Crispin Burke to trust no one. He’ll gladly help a lovely young heiress, provided she pays a price. Yet when a single mistake shatters his life, it is Jane who holds the key to his salvation. And in a world that no longer makes sense, Crispin slowly realizes that she may be the only thing worth fighting for...


Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

8/10

* * *
 It was one of my favourite tropes, peeps, - an antihero in love.

Both Jane, the heiress, and Crispin, the young and already ruthless politician, are more than they seem. Jane is forced to be quiet and mousy to avoid attention and a heavy hand of her uncle who is currently going through her inheritance, while she is trying to plot an escape.

Friday Mini Reviews #104: Selina Sak Chin Yoke,


The Woman Who Breathed Two Worlds by Selina Siak Chin Yoke (Malayan #1)

bought on audio

Synopsis from Goodreads
Facing challenges in an increasingly colonial world, Chye Hoon, a rebellious young girl, must learn to embrace her mixed Malayan-Chinese identity as a Nyonya—and her destiny as a cook, rather than following her first dream of attending school like her brother.

Amidst the smells of chillies and garlic frying, Chye Hoon begins to appreciate the richness of her traditions, eventually marrying Wong Peng Choon, a Chinese man. Together, they have ten children. At last, she can pass on the stories she has heard—magical tales of men from the sea—and her warrior’s courage, along with her wonderful kueh (cakes).

But the cultural shift towards the West has begun. Chye Hoon finds herself afraid of losing the heritage she so prizes as her children move more and more into the modernising Western world.
 
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
8/10
 A really lovely, rich cultural immersion in Malaysia on the brink of major changes. The main heroine's life begins in the country before the Great War and any modern developments, and ends in a very different environment. It's sentimental, a bit heart-breaking and with a lot of feeling. I'm not ashamed to admit I had tears in my eyes a few times. Recommended to everyone interested in the history of the region.
* * *
Замечательный, насыщенный культурными деталями, погружающий в атмосферу Малайзии роман, рассказывающий о жизни женщины в эпоху традиционализма, поднявшей свою семью через все сумбурные и радикальные перемены начала 20-го века. Очень интересно, грустно и колоритно. Аж слёзы стояли на глазах временами. Рекомендую, особенно тем, кому интересен регион.

Random Acts of Trust by Julia Kent (Random #2)

ecopy thanks to the author

Synopsis from Goodreads
Giving up is hard...but giving in is even harder.

When did my life become a demented episode from The Mindy Project?

Moving to Boston to begin grad school meant I was supposed to start a new life--not dig through a past I thought I'd left behind four years ago. But when I saw the poster for Random Acts of Crazy, all I could think about was the drummer, Sam Hinton, the boy I'd loved in high school and who disappeared with my heart.

Who knew I'd become the living version of Magic Mike?

Seeing Amy Smithson at my gig and watching her win a kiss from my bandmate, Liam, was a gut punch. Four years ago we squared off in a high school debate that had higher stakes than we ever imagined, and here I was...wanting what I'd walked away from. Are there too many secrets between us to allow her to trust me again?

And can I trust myself?
 
Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository

 6.5/10
This was cute, but I am not a big fan of Sam and Amy. I found their interactions a bit forceful. However, Darla was awesome as usual. Tons of laughter in between drama. Recommended for a light, comforting & sassy read!
* * *
Довольно мило, однако я не большой фанат Сэма и Эйми. Мне их диалог показался натужным. Однако, Дарла как всегда всех затмевала. Смех сквозь слёзы в этой уютной комедии ошибок. Рекомендую, но с колебаниями.

Red Seas Under Red Skies by Scott Lynch (Gentleman Bastard #2)

bought on audio

Synopsis from Goodreads
Thief and con-man extraordinaire, Locke Lamora, and the ever lethal Jean Tannen have fled their home city and the wreckage of their lives. But theersy can't run forever and when they stop they decide to head for the richest, and most difficult, target on the horizon. The city state of Tal Verarr. And the Sinspire.

The Sinspire is the ultimate gambling house. No-one has stolen so much as a single coin from it and lived. It's the sort of challenge Locke simply can't resist...

...but Locke's perfect crime is going to have to wait.

Someone else in Tal Verarr wants the Gentleman Bastards' expertise and is quite prepared to kill them to get it. Before long, Locke and Jean find themselves engaged in piracy. Fine work for thieves who don't know one end of a galley from another.
Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK | Book Depository
8.5/10
I might have been slightly prejudiced against this book after the amazeballs of The Lies of Locke Lamora. It's amazing in its own right if you love your Pirates of The Carribean and there are some intense layers upon layers of diabolical scheming, but there are also parts where whatever happens is very muted and rushed... and I am not a fan of "I can't be bothered to be specific anymore" plot twists. So, it's awesome and grand, but the first book is better. Recommended.
* * *
Я может быть настроена была немного против этой книги с самого начала после фантасмагории книги первой. Нет, она конечно хороша в своём праве и полна хитроумных схем, особенно если вы фанатеете от Пиратов Карибского Моря, однако ленивые моменты, когда сюжет убыстрялся и замутнялся в угоду писателю, меня в восторг не приводили. И всё-равно, классно! Рекомендую.

Contemporary Romance Review: Bombshell by C.D. Reiss

Bombshell by C.D. Reiss (Hollywood A-List #1)


Egalley courtesy of Montlake Romance

Synopsis from Goodreads
From New York Times bestselling author CD Reiss, a standalone romance about a nanny, a Hollywood star, and a love they never expected.

Hollywood bad boy Brad Sinclair always gets his way, whether it’s the role he wants or the bikini-clad model he has to have. But when a bombshell gets dropped in his lap in the form of a dimpled five-year-old from a forgotten relationship, he knows his life is about to change forever.

Cara DuMont isn’t exactly thrilled when she gets assigned to be the nanny for the latest box-office king. She has one rule: no celebrity fathers, especially single ones with devilish good looks and rock-hard abs.

But as soon as Cara meets Brad and his adorable little girl, she knows she’s in for a world of trouble. Because there’s something about the way Brad looks at her that makes her believe that some rules are meant to be broken…
 


Audible US/UK | Amazon US/UK | Amazon kindle US/UK

8.5/10

* * *
 I think out of all the novels in this particular setting from C.D. Reiss Bombshell is my favorite.

Partly because here two strong characters allowed themselves to open up and be vulnerable to each other, which was a heady experience for me as a reader.

May New Book Releases I'm Dying to Read!

So many awesome books this month! White Hot, Dating-Ish and Bombshell were amazing, and I'll post my reviews shortly. What about you? What are you dying to read?
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Hey, guys! I feel like I should say this just in case :)
If you'd like to sponsor a fellow book addict who sometimes can't sleep at night worrying that she won't have enough books to read if internet goes down in the event of zombie apocalypse (I'm convinced it's one of the top five ways to go for human race) you can donate through Paypal to olivesandacorns at gmail dot com or buy a book through any of the links provided with my reviews which will send me a small percentage from the sale. All proceeds will go towards my enormous TBR. I will also shelter you on the remote farm in Portugal when zombie apocalypse starts provided you survive getting there. There will be books, yay?
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