Spring Break Update

Happy Wednesday, everyone!

I’m going to be a little MIA over the next week. It’s Spring Break for my daughter starting tomorrow and we’re going to be spending some quality family time together. I have some book reviews and other fun stuff scheduled to post, but I’m not sure how much I’ll be able to respond to comments. I’m going to try to check in, but I may just be having too much fun to do so. 😉

I’ll be looking forward to catching up with everyone later next week!

Review: Breathe, Annie, Breathe by Miranda Kenneally

16045306Title: Breathe, Annie, Breathe

Series: Hundred Oaks

Author: Miranda Kenneally

Publication Date: July 15, 2014

Publisher: Sourcefire Books

Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance

Goodreads Synopsis:

Annie hates running. No matter how far she jogs, she can’t escape the guilt that if she hadn’t broken up with Kyle, he might still be alive. So to honor his memory, she starts preparing for the marathon he intended to race.

But the training is even more grueling than Annie could have imagined. Despite her coaching, she’s at war with her body, her mind—and her heart. With every mile that athletic Jeremiah cheers her on, she grows more conflicted. She wants to run into his arms…and sprint in the opposite direction. For Annie, opening up to love again may be even more of a challenge than crossing the finish line.

“Breathe, Annie, Breathe is an emotional, heartfelt, and beautiful story about finding yourself after loss and learning to love. It gave me so many feels. Her best book yet.” — Jennifer Armentrout, New York Times bestselling author of Wait for You


 

★ ★ ★ ★ ★


 

The books I’ve read where running is a major part of the story fall into two categories: boring or amazing. Breathe, Annie, Breathe was one of the amazing ones.

What’s so wonderful about Breathe, Annie, Breathe is the realness of story and characters. I loved Annie. Her reaction to the loss of Kyle is what I would expect from a real life teenager in a similar situation. She’s lost the most important person in her life, the one she saw forever with, and she’s not sure how to move on from that. Annie feels guilty for having a future beyond Kyle. Her negative feelings rise to the surface when she’s dealing with her family, the ones who love her best. The only way she can think of to deal with it is to finish the marathon Kyle never got to. I enjoyed the way Annie was able to find herself again with help from Jeremiah, her friends and her family. They let her be who she needed to be and supported her when she needed it most.

Jeremiah was a really cool male love interest. His addiction to extreme sports and the adrenaline rush they gave him added another cool aspect to the story. It made Annie deal with her deepest fears. His witty banter with Annie was so much fun to read.

I also loved the supporting characters. Jeremiah’s family was hilarious. I skipped ahead a couple of books in this series after reading Catching Jordan and Stealing Parker, so Breathe, Annie, Breathe made me want to go back and read Matt’s story.

As for the running aspect of the book…The way each chapter revolved around where Annie was in her training schedule was interesting. I felt like I was learning something about training for a marathon and what it takes. It also helped show the progression of Annie’s life without Kyle, her new relationship with Jeremiah and how she evolved as a person over time. What could have been boring actually made the book fly by.

If you’re looking for a fun, uplifting YA book to read, I would highly recommend Breathe, Annie, Breathe or any other of Miranda Kenneally’s Hundred Oaks novels. The writing is exceptional and I always finish feeling happier than I was before I started reading.

 

WWW Wednesday: March 23, 2016

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading but is now hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words.

IMG_1384-0

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

So here we go…


Currently reading:

1875974825862018

Screwdrivered is still waiting…

Later today, my family is taking off for Spring Break. I’m hoping to get some reading time in here and there.


Recently finished:

All of It1604530625712281EH AMazon

 

Here are the books I read this week:

All of It 

Breathe, Annie, Breathe

Nobody But You

Elastic Hearts

The Dean’s List

You can read their reviews by clicking on the titles. The rest of the reviews will be coming soon!


Reading Next:

26031222

I saw this one on NetGalley and requested it. It looks fun.


What are you reading next?

Review: Elastic Hearts by Claire Contreras

elastic heartsTitle: Elastic Hearts

Series: Hearts, #3

Author: Claire Contreras

Publication Date: March 20, 2016

Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance

Goodreads Synopsis:

Victor Reuben.
Most sought out divorce attorney in LA.

Nicole Alessi.
Soon to be ex-wife of Hollywood’s biggest star, Victor’s latest client and his boss’s daughter.

In such a high profile divorce, they can’t afford any extra drama. Luckily, neither one of them has anything to hide.
Unless you count the mind blowing sex they had…
Once…
Twice…
Three times all those years ago.

As long as they leave the past where it belongs, they’ll be fine. But with her wearing those tight dresses and him giving her those heated glances, keeping their hands to themselves is proving to be more difficult than either one of them realized.

It won’t be long before the paparazzi start to smell smoke, and where there’s smoke…


 ★ ★ ★ ★ ★


The first book I ever read by Claire Contreras was Kaleidoscope Hearts. I saw Colleen Hoover recommend it on her Facebook page when it was released and decided to read it because I was just getting into reading the New Adult genre. I loved Kaleidoscope Hearts. It was so emotional and brilliant. It made me fall in love with Claire Contreras’ characters and her writing. I was so excited when I saw Elastic Hearts was being released. I couldn’t wait to see what was in store for Estelle’s brother, Victor.

Elastic Hearts was a different type of second chance love story than the first two books in the series. It wasn’t based on an old, deep connection between the main characters. Victor and Nicole’s connection was based on a couple of hook-ups they had a few year ago. Now, they were being thrown together in a lawyer-client situation without anyone knowing about their connection or attraction. They had to pretend it didn’t exists. I liked this change. The secrecy around their hook-ups relationship made the story more exciting. It also put me on edge a couple of times wondering if they were going to end up in trouble.

Victor Reuben is going to be many ladies’ new book boyfriend. (I call dibs!) He was just right parts cocky and sweet. Victor knew what he wanted from life and went for it. When his wants changed, he wasn’t afraid to admit it and go for it — even if he did it cautiously. Nicole was a fun surprise. I expected her to be more confident than she was having been married to a movie star. Her little insecurities made her very relatable. I loved watching Victor and Nicole trying to keep things professional. I’m so happy the story was told in dual points of view, so I could see what was going on in each of their heads.

Elastic Hearts is one of my favorite New Adult releases of 2016 so far. It put a smile on my face the entire time I was reading it. It was witty, smart and sweet. I didn’t want to put it down and I’m sad it’s over. (Although, I can’t wait to see what’s going to come next from Claire Contreras!)  I would highly recommend Elastic Hearts and the entire Hearts series to New Adult readers who enjoy emotional stories filled with amazing characters.

 

The Dim Sum Book Tag

 dimsum-booktag-banner-900x600

The Dim Sum Book Tag is the brainchild of Joey @ Thoughts and Afterthoughts and Jenna @ Reading With Jenna. I would like to thank Giovanna @ Book Coma for tagging me for this incredibly yummy tag! Check out her blog if you haven’t had the chance to yet. It’s a lot of fun.

This is the second time I’ve had the pleasure to complete this tag. I thought it would be fun to do it again since it’s been a while and I’m sure my answers have changed.

Dim sum is a style of Chinese cuisine whereby food is served in small (tapas-like) portions and is common during yum cha (which literally means: drinking tea). This tag is inspired by good company and good eats.

Here are some rules to devour this tag:

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you, linking back to their site
  2. Devour dim sum and answer the tag questions
  3. Tag five others to join your round table for some dim sum fun
  4. Food coma

(If you could link to Joey or Jenna’s post, they would love to compile a list of taggers who completed it!)


Tea: A book that started off hot but quickly turned cold:23174274

Glass Sword started out hot because it began right from the cliffhanger at the end of Red Queen. It quickly went cold because Bone Marrow Mare Barrow was the most annoying main character in the history of main characters. If you’ve read it, you know what I mean.

 

 


Chiu Chow Dumpling: A book that features elements of land and sea: 23437156

Six of Crows takes the reader on a journey over land and through the sea. The characters set out on the trip of a lifetime to commit a heist no one saw coming. It was amazing.

 

 


Rice Noodle Roll: A favorite multi-layered character you’ve read (i.e. Traits? Skills? Morally 23253863Ambiguous?)

Grizz from the Nine Minutes trilogy was a complex, multi-layered character. He would definitely qualify as morally ambiguous. I started out hating him for having Ginny kidnapped, but everything that comes out in this series about him twisted and turned my thoughts about him over and over again.

 


26760135Shrimp Dumpling: A book with a transparent blurb that gives the story away

The blurb of Kissed By a Cowboy tells the readers that Cassidy is fresh off a divorce and given up men. She moves next door to the man she once had a childhood crush on. Jarrod wants her and will do everything to get her. That’s pretty much all that happens.

 


Steamed BBQ Pork Buns: A book that is fluffy on the outside but packs a punch of flavor (e.g. Message? Depth? Controversy?)

When I think of books with great messages and surprising depth, Bright Side by Kim Holden comes to mind. What I thought would be a typical New Adult love story was anything but. It was heartwarming, heart-wrenching and uplifting all in one. I still think about Bright Side all the time. It helps me put life in perspective some times. “Do epic” people!

 


Chicken Feet: A book with divided opinions

Colleen Hoover’s books usually land in this category. People seem to either love them or hate them. I usually love them. I loved Ugly Love. My two best friends did as well. I know a lot of people didn’t. Sometimes I wonder if it’s because we’re older and can look back that time in our lives when we might have been a little bit like Tate thinking we could get someone to change and love us.

 


Lotus-Wrapped Sticky Rice: A book you’ve received/given that was nicely packaged

The last book I received was a gift from my mom for my birthday. It was Flight For Control by Karlene Petitt. My mom heard her speak at an event and had the book signed for me. Ms. Petitt is a local author who worked in the airline industry for years. I’m really excited to read this book soon.

 


Egg Custard Tart: A book that uses simple ingredients and clichés but executes it 26259196perfectly

Porn Star is the perfect example of a cliché that works well. Macho, cocky porn star who falls in love and doesn’t think his new relationship will change how he feels about his job. It was pretty funny! And I even learned things about the porn industry since reading erotic romance here and there is as close to porn as I get.

 


Mango Pudding with Evaporated Milk: Any book recommendation + beverage/snack that’s a 23149128winning combination 

You need some coffee and a bunch of chocolate for this one because it’s a great read, but can make you a little sad. You definitely need the sweets to help out emotionally.

 

 


Fried Sesame Balls: A book with embossed text/design you just love to run your fingers over

The last hardback book I read was The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah. It had a little raised area on it that was a nightingale. That was probably the last book cover I ran my fingers over.

 

 


Dim Sum Steam Cart: The type of carrying bag you use to bring books around (take

a picture!)

cropped-20150703_1413531.jpg

When I’m going on a trip or need to carry a book around, I use this awesome tote that my sister got me for my birthday a couple of years ago. It says, “I like big books and I cannot lie.”


I tag:

Alicia @ #lovebooks

Jennifer @ Wonderland Review

Maren @ The Worn Bookmark

Michelle @ Chelles Life in Books

Shealea @ That Bookshelf Bitch

 

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Books I’m Going to Hype (And shocker: They’re not all romances!)

Top Ten Tuesday is an original weekly feature created at The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is Ten Books I Really Love But Feel Like I Haven’t Talked About Enough/In A While, or Ten Books I’m Going to Hype. All book blurbs are courtesy of Goodreads.


15507958 1. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

So beautifully written and heartbreaking, Me Before You explores the question how much does quality of life matter?

Lou Clark knows lots of things. She knows how many footsteps there are between the bus stop and home. She knows she likes working in The Buttered Bun tea shop and she knows she might not love her boyfriend Patrick.

What Lou doesn’t know is she’s about to lose her job or that knowing what’s coming is what keeps her sane.

Will Traynor knows his motorcycle accident took away his desire to live. He knows everything feels very small and rather joyless now and he knows exactly how he’s going to put a stop to that.

What Will doesn’t know is that Lou is about to burst into his world in a riot of colour. And neither of them knows they’re going to change the other for all time


22669832 2. Bright Side by Kim Holden

I know, I talk about this one all of the time. I can’t help it. I try to live my life by the main character Kate’s mantra every day. It’s such an inspiring story.

Secrets.
Everyone has one.
Some are bigger than others.
And when secrets are revealed,
Some will heal you …
And some will end you.

Kate Sedgwick’s life has been anything but typical. She’s endured hardship and tragedy, but throughout it all she remains happy and optimistic (there’s a reason her best friend Gus calls her Bright Side). Kate is strong-willed, funny, smart, and musically gifted. She’s also never believed in love. So when Kate leaves San Diego to attend college in the small town of Grant, Minnesota, the last thing she expects is to fall in love with Keller Banks.

They both feel it.
But they each have a reason to fight it.
They each have a secret.

And when secrets are revealed,
Some will heal you …
And some will end you.


21469108 3. The Ghost of Heaven by Marcus Sedgwick

This book blew my mind. It wasn’t what I was expecting at all. It’s historical fiction, but I think it reaches beyond that.

A bold, genre-bending epic that chronicles madness, obsession, and creation, from the Paleolithic era through the Witch Hunts and into the space-bound future.

Four linked stories boldly chronicle madness, obsession, and creation through the ages. Beginning with the cave-drawings of a young girl on the brink of creating the earliest form of writing, Sedgwick traverses history, plunging into the seventeenth century witch hunts and a 1920s insane asylum where a mad poet’s obsession with spirals seems to be about to unhinge the world of the doctor trying to save him. Sedgwick moves beyond the boundaries of historical fiction and into the future in the book’s final section, set upon a spaceship voyaging to settle another world for the first time. Merging Sedgwick’s gift for suspense with science- and historical-fiction, Ghosts of Heaven is a tale is worthy of intense obsession.


23253863 4. Nine Minutes by Beth Flynn

I couldn’t leave this psychological thriller out. Gone Girl has nothing on Beth Flynn’s Nine Minutes. And the sequel is even better.

On May 15, 1975, fifteen-year-old Ginny Lemon is abducted from a convenience store in Fort Lauderdale by a member of one of the most notorious and brutal motorcycle gangs in South Florida.

From that moment on, her life is forever changed. She gets a new name, a new identity and a new life in the midst of the gang’s base on the edge of the Florida Everglades—a frightening, rough and violent world much like the swamps themselves, where everyone has an alias and loyalty is tantamount to survival.

And at the center of it all is the gang’s leader, Grizz: massive, ruggedly handsome, terrifying and somehow, when it comes to Ginny, tender. She becomes his obsession and the one true love of his life.

So begins a tale of emotional obsession and manipulation, of a young woman ripped from everything she knows and forced to lean on the one person who provides attention, affection and care: her captor. Precocious and intelligent, but still very much a teenager, Ginny struggles to adapt to her existence, initially fighting and then coming to terms with her captivity.

Will she be rescued? Will she escape? Will she get out alive—or get out at all? Part psychological thriller, part coming-of-age novel, filled with mystery, romance and unexpected turns, Nine Minutes takes readers into the world of one motorcycle gang and inside the heart of a young girl, whose abduction brought about its fall.


22449806 5. The Year We Fell Apart by Emily Martin

This is one of my new favorites. Completely heartbreaking but utterly addicting.

In the tradition of Sarah Dessen, this powerful debut novel is a compelling portrait of a young girl coping with her mother’s cancer as she figures out how to learn from—and fix—her past.

Few things come as naturally to Harper as epic mistakes. In the past year she was kicked off the swim team, earned a reputation as Carson High’s easiest hook-up, and officially became the black sheep of her family. But her worst mistake was destroying her relationship with her best friend, Declan.

Now, after two semesters of silence, Declan is home from boarding school for the summer. Everything about him is different—he’s taller, stronger…more handsome. Harper has changed, too, especially in the wake of her mom’s cancer diagnosis.

While Declan wants nothing to do with Harper, he’s still Declan, her Declan, and the only person she wants to talk to about what’s really going on. But he’s also the one person she’s lost the right to seek comfort from.

As their mutual friends and shared histories draw them together again, Harper and Declan must decide which parts of their past are still salvageable, and which parts they’ll have to let go of once and for all.

In this honest and affecting tale of friendship and first love, Emily Martin brings to vivid life the trials and struggles of high school and the ability to learn from past mistakes over the course of one steamy North Carolina summer.


40440 6. The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield

I loved this book. I think it’s time for a reread because I’m beginning to forget the story. It was super weird.

Biographer Margaret Lea returns one night to her apartment above her father’s antiquarian bookshop. On her steps she finds a letter. It is a hand-written request from one of Britain’s most prolific and well-loved novelists. Vida Winter, gravely ill, wants to recount her life story before it is too late, and she wants Margaret to be the one to capture her history. The request takes Margaret by surprise — she doesn’t know the author, nor has she read any of Miss Winter’s dozens of novels.

Late one night while pondering whether to accept the task of recording Miss Winter’s personal story, Margaret begins to read her father’s rare copy of Miss Winter’s Thirteen Tales of Change and Desperation. She is spellbound by the stories and confused when she realizes the book only contains twelve stories. Where is the thirteenth tale? Intrigued, Margaret agrees to meet Miss Winter and act as her biographer.

As Vida Winter unfolds her story, she shares with Margaret the dark family secrets that she has long kept hidden as she remembers her days at Angelfield, the now burnt-out estate that was her childhood home. Margaret carefully records Miss Winter’s account and finds herself more and more deeply immersed in the strange and troubling story.

Both women will have to confront their pasts and the weight of family secrets… and the ghosts that haunt them still.


10283872 7. The Beach Trees by Karen White

This is the first book I read by Karen White. I’ve since read all of her novels. Part historical, part romance, part mystery, this book has it all.

From the time she was twelve, Julie Holt knew what a random tragedy can do to a family. At that tender age, her little sister disappeared-never to be found. It was a loss that slowly eroded the family bonds she once relied on. As an adult with a prestigious job in the arts, Julie meets a struggling artist who reminds her so much of her sister, she can’t help feeling protective. It is a friendship that begins a long and painful process of healing for Julie, leading her to a house on the Gulf Coast, ravaged by hurricane Katrina, and to stories of family that take her deep into the past.


18693753 8. Dear Daughter by Elizabeth Little

I loved this psychological thriller. Think a snarky Paris Hilton who has been incarcerated for killing her mother.

As soon as they processed my release Noah and I hit the ground running. A change of clothes. A wig. An inconspicuous sedan. We doubled back once, twice, then drove south when we were really headed east. In San Francisco we had a girl who looked like me board a plane to Hawaii.

Oh, I thought I was so clever.

But you probably already know that I’m not.

LA IT girl Janie Jenkins has it all. The looks, the brains, the connections. The criminal record.

Ten years ago, in a trial that transfixed America, Janie was convicted of murdering her mother. Now she’s been released on a technicality she’s determined to unravel the mystery of her mother’s last words, words that send her to a tiny town in the very back of beyond. But with the whole of America’s media on her tail, convinced she’s literally got away with murder, she has to do everything she can to throw her pursuers off the scent.

She knows she really didn’t like her mother. Could she have killed her?


19063 9.The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

It was a little slow at times, but I think it’s important to read books set in the World War II area every once in a while. We shouldn’t forget what happened.

It’s just a small story really, about among other things: a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. . . .

Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau.

This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul.


4667024 10. The Help by Kathryn Stockett

Another time that’s important to remember and an amazing book.

Three ordinary women are about to take one extraordinary step….

Twenty-two-year-old Skeeter has just returned home after graduating from Ole Miss. She may have a degree, but it is 1962, Mississippi, and her mother will not be happy till Skeeter has a ring on her finger. Skeeter would normally find solace with her beloved maid Constantine, the woman who raised her, but Constantine has disappeared and no one will tell Skeeter where she has gone.

Aibileen is a black maid, a wise, regal woman raising her seventeenth white child. Something has shifted inside her after the loss of her own son, who died while his bosses looked the other way. She is devoted to the little girl she looks after, though she knows both their hearts may be broken.

Minny, Aibileen’s best friend, is short, fat, and perhaps the sassiest woman in Mississippi. She can cook like nobody’s business, but she can’t mind her tongue, so she’s lost yet another job. Minny finally finds a position working for someone too new to town to know her reputation. But her new boss has secrets of her own.

Seemingly as different from one another as can be, these women will nonetheless come together for a clandestine project that will put them all at risk. And why? Because they are suffocating within the lines that define their town and their times. And sometimes lines are made to be crossed.

In pitch-perfect voices, Kathryn Stockett creates three extraordinary women whose determination to start a movement of their own forever changes a town, and the way women–mothers, daughters, caregivers, friends–view one another. A deeply moving novel filled with poignancy, humor, and hope,The Help is a timeless and universal story about the lines we abide by, and the ones we don’t.

 

 

Release Blitz: Elastic Hearts by Claire Contreras

NOW AVAILABLE ELASTIC HEARTS

Meet Victor and Nicole in Elastic Hearts.
This sexy, forbidden standalone by Claire Contreras is

NOW LIVE!

Grab your copy at the following retailers:

Amazon USAmazon UK iBook Kobo

**Special release week pricing**

elastic hearts

Blurb

From New York Times Bestselling Author, Claire Contreras, comes a sexy new standalone novel.

Victor Reuben.
Most sought out divorce attorney in LA.

Nicole Alessi.
Soon to be ex-wife of Hollywood’s biggest star, Victor’s latest client and his boss’s daughter.

In such a high profile divorce, they can’t afford any extra drama. Luckily, neither one of them has anything to hide.
Unless you count the mind blowing sex they had…
Once…
Twice…
Three times all those years ago.

As long as they leave the past where it belongs, they’ll be fine. But with her wearing those tight dresses and him giving her those heated glances, keeping their hands to themselves is proving to be more difficult than either one of them realized.

It won’t be long before the paparazzi start to smell smoke, and where there’s smoke…

*Each book in the Hearts Series follows a different couple and can be read as a standalone.*

elastic hearts teaser

Excerpt

“This isn’t going to work,” he said finally, turning to face me as he stood behind the desk.
“What?”
“This. Us. Me on this case. It’s not going to work.”
“Because you want to fuck me against the window,” I said.
He gripped the top of the chair tightly and dropped his head, but didn’t comment on what I’d said. “Maybe we should just see each other when we have to . . . for the divorce,” he said.
I let out a laugh. “I didn’t plan to come here tonight, let alone run into you.”
“You’re right,” he said, meeting my gaze. “You’re right, but we should still stick to that plan.”
“As my lawyer, I don’t think you should let me make rash decisions when I’m drunk,” I said. He looked down again, but I saw his smile before he tried to hide it.
“I’m serious, Nicole.”
“That’s fine, Victor. I get it. Is that it? I was talking to a really cute guy upstairs, and I still need to use the restroom. Maybe I’ll take him with me.” Even in my current state, I could see the way his eyes darkened at my suggestion.
“You just said you were drunk,” he growled, gripping the chair harder.
“Not that drunk.” I paused to search his face. “Would that upset you? If I hooked up with that guy in the bathroom? I kind of like bathroom hookups.”
“Nicole,” he said, his tone hard, his eyes searing into mine.
“You know, you’re actually the only guy I’ve done that with,” I admitted. “But it was so hot. You kept saying all these dirty things in my ear, remember?”
“I remember,” he said, voice grating.
“You were doing that,” I said, pointing at his fingers, which were digging into the top of the chair. “Gripping my ass. I had marks the next day, the soreness. So hot.”
“Nicole,” he growled.

elastic hearts now available

Haven’t read this series yet?
What are you waiting for?
*Each book in the Hearts Series follows a different couple
and can be read as a standalone.*

Kaleidoscope Hearts (Book One)
ONLY $2.99

Amazon USAmazon UKiBooksBarnes & NobleKobo

Paper Hearts (Book Two) Mia & Jensen
ONLY $3.99

Amazon USAmazon UKiBooksKobo

Elastic Hearts (Book Three) Victor & Nicole

Amazon USAmazon UK iBook Kobo

**Special release week pricing**

Author Information

claire bio

Claire Contreras graduated with her BA in Psychology from Florida International University. She lives in Miami, Florida with her husband, two little boys, and three dogs.

Her favorite past times are: daydreaming, writing, and reading.

She has been described as a random, sarcastic, crazy girl with no filter.

Life is short, and it’s more bitter than sweet, so she tries to smile as often as her face allows. She enjoys stories with happy endings, because life is full of way too many unhappy ones.

Stalk Her: Website | Facebook | Twitter

Review: Kissed By a Cowboy by Debra Clopton

26760135Title: Kissed By a Cowboy

Series: Four Hearts Ranch, #3

Author: Debra Clopton

Publication Date: February 9, 2016

Publisher: Thomas Nelson

Genre: Contemporary Romance, Christian Fiction

Goodreads Synopsis:

Cassidy was looking for a home and a place to belong . . . not for a cowboy to steal her heart.

Having lived through her parents’ endless string of “matrimonial bliss gone wrong,” Cassidy Starr knows when the odds are not in her favor. Divorced and humiliated, her faith on rocky ground, Cassidy is through with love. She’s been bucked off that horse far too many times. Instead, she returns to Wishing Springs, Texas, and the rundown farm she’s inherited from her great aunt Roxie. She’ll reopen the strawberry farm and a bed & breakfast and follow in her aunt’s footsteps, remaining forever-independent, happy . . . and single.

Rancher Jarrod Monahan’s hands are full running the ranch, looking after his ailing grandfather, and chasing down a group of rustlers on the loose. He’s pushed his longing for a family to the bottom of his list of priorities. Besides, he was in love once but ran scared and lost his shot at happiness. But suddenly, the biggest regret of his life has moved in next door with a wounded heart, determined to become a spinster… and that’s a challenge that Jarrod can’t pass up.

Jarrod sets his mind to breaking down the walls around Cassidy’s stubborn heart. How can he show her that a cowboy’s kiss lasts forever? For the good folks of Wishing Springs, falling in love has never been so much fun to witness.


★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆


First off, I have to admit that I had no idea this was a Christian Fiction romance the entire time I read Kissed By a Cowboy. I honestly thought it was just a contemporary romance. It wasn’t until I went to add the genre and looked at Goodreads that I became aware of that fact. (This explains the no sex! Haha!) There were a couple references to God, but nothing that really stood out or made me think it would have been Christian Fiction. I found it to be a cute and funny contemporary romance. There was even a little mystery and suspense.

Cassidy and Jarrod’s push-pull relationship was really humorous. I found myself laughing several times. I loved the tension between them and the way they wanted to help each other. I also loved their friends and family.

There were a couple of things that hampered my enjoyment of Kissed By A Cowboy, though. It was such a slow-burn romance that I never really got to see Jarrod and Cassidy as a couple. I got a little bored toward the end waiting for Cassidy to come to her senses. I would have liked to have seen how their actual relationship progressed. I don’t really want to give anything away, but I was a little surprised at how quickly things came together for them in the end — especially with 300+ pages of Cassidy fighting her feelings. It wasn’t really believable to me, but I guess that’s the magic of storytelling. 😉

I also found the side romance of Pebble and Rand distracting. I could understand why the author included it for the newspaper story, but it wasn’t interesting enough of a story for me to care about it.

So while I enjoyed Kissed By a Cowboy, I just wanted a little more from it. I would still recommend it to contemporary romance and Christian romance readers who like a sweet love story with a little mystery added in.

**I received a copy of Kissed By a Cowboy from a Goodreads First Reads Giveaway in exchange for an honest review.

 

 

 

Release Blitz: The One Who Got Away by Ava Claire

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The One Who Got Away
by Ava Claire
An Alpha Billionaire Romance
Publication Date: Jan 27, 2016
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance

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Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | iBooks

It was supposed to be the best day. I was marrying the love of my life–and nothing would ever be the same.

And then he left me at the altar.

Five years later, I get a job offer I can’t refuse. The trouble is, the boss just so happens to be the one who got away…

About Ava Claire

Ava Claire is a sucker for Alpha males and happily ever afters. When not putting pen to paper or glued to her Kindle, Ava likes road tripping, watching an unhealthy amount of Netflix, karaoke and vintage fashion.

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Cover Reveal: Steady as the Snow Falls by Lindy Zart

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Title: Steady as the Snow Falls

Author: Lindy Zart

Genre: Contemporary/ Inspirational Romance

Release Date: April 18, 2016

Cover Designer: Cover to Cover Designs

Cover Model: Kailey Dobson

Cover Photography by: Wendi Stizer

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amazon-goodreads.jpgHired by a stranger to write his life story, Beth Lambert arrives at a seemingly abandoned house in the hills near her hometown. She knows the rumors, she knows it is dangerous and unwise. But she needs the money. And she needs to prove that it isn’t a mistake to think she can make a career out of a dream.
Inside the house of emptiness and coldness, she finds a man with curt words and haunted eyes. He is eccentric, odd. Brutish, even. He scares her, and he intrigues her. When she learns who he is, she wants to run. But there is the money, and there is the dream, and eventually, there is simply Harrison Caldwell. The haunted man with the black, ugly truth.
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“What’s happening between us?” When she didn’t immediately answer, Harrison turned.

“We’re getting to know each other’s heart. I’m glad I was introduced to yours.” Beth gingerly set her hand to his chest, felt the beat of his life against her palm. “I like your heart, Harrison.” She looked up, her eyes clashing with his.

“I like your heart too,” he told her falteringly.

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DSC_0060.JPGLindy Zart is the USA Today bestselling author of Roomies. She has been writing since she was a child. Luckily for readers, her writing has improved since then. She lives in Wisconsin with her family. Lindy loves hearing from people who enjoy her work. She also has a completely healthy obsession with the following: coffee, wine, bloody marys, peanut butter, and pizza.

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