Review: Then There Was You by Claire Contreras

Then There Was You
Series: Second Chances Duet, #1
Author: Claire Contreras
Publication Date: March 1, 2018
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Love and the right timing were two things I didn’t believe in.

Love is about walking to the edge of the cliff and taking the leap together.
Timing was never on our side.
My first mistake was hooking up with my best friend.
My second came years later, when we met again, and I fell for her.
My third was letting her go, because I had to. Because a love like this wasn’t built to withstand the winds coming in our direction.

Love and timing.
I didn’t believe in either.
Then there was you . . .


Hmm… This is a tough review for me to write. I love Claire Contreras’ writing, but I didn’t exactly love this book. It wasn’t the story that rubbed me the wrong way, but the tone of it. Really, it was because of Tessa. I had a hard time connecting with her character. She was so hostile and angry for the majority of the book. Her anger and resentment made me feel those exact emotions while reading. It was so uncomfortable! That’s actually a compliment to Claire Contreras’ writing. She’s so talented that she made me feel what her characters were feeling. I just didn’t like feeling that way, and it affected my reading experience.

That being said, there were some great things about this book. The plot was unique and very good. I couldn’t have guessed where the story was headed, even though I did guess what the big shocker would be at the end. The last third of the book was definitely my favorite part of the story because of everything that went down. It’s made me excited for the next book in this duet.

I also liked Rowan. Many of his decisions drove me nuts, but he tried to do what he thought was the right thing. His relationship with his family interested me. The more I learned about them, the more I wanted to know. I was especially curious about his relationship with his brother.

While I didn’t love this book, I think it was well worth reading because I have a feeling the next book in the duet is going to be epic. I really, really want to know what’s to come!

Mini Reviews: Scoring Wilder, Do Over & Burn for Me

Today, I have three short book reviews for you. Two are books I read after reading reviews from other bloggers. I was reminded I wanted to read Scoring Wilder by reading Corina‘s review. I found out about Do Over from Nick and Nereyda‘s review. Thanks for the recommendations, ladies! One is a book my book club is read.


Scoring Wilder
Author: R.S. Grey
Publication Date: June 15, 2014
Publisher: R.S. Grey
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Sports

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

What started out as a joke— seduce Coach Wilder—soon became a goal she had to score.

With Olympic tryouts on the horizon, the last thing nineteen-year-old Kinsley Bryant needs to add to her plate is Liam Wilder. He’s a professional soccer player, America’s favorite bad-boy, and has all the qualities of a skilled panty-dropper.

• A face that makes girls weep – check.
• Abs that can shred Parmesan cheese (the expensive kind) – check.
• Enough confidence to shift the earth’s gravitational pull – double check.

Not to mention Liam is strictly off limits . Forbidden. Her coaches have made that perfectly clear. (i.e. “Score with Coach Wilder anywhere other than the field and you’ll be cut from the team faster than you can count his tattoos.”) But that just makes him all the more enticing…Besides, Kinsley’s already counted the visible ones, and she is not one to leave a project unfinished.

Kinsley tries to play the game her way as they navigate through forbidden territory, but Liam is determined to teach her a whole new definition for the term “team bonding.”


Around the time of the last Olympic summer games, I read R.S. Grey’s The Sumer Games series. I really enjoyed Settling the Score, and wanted to know more about some of the characters mentioned in that book — they were part of Scoring Wilder. I had completely forgot they were part of this book until I read Corina’s review.

Despite being a little uncomfortable about the coach/player situation in this book at first, I really enjoyed Scoring Wilder. I loved Kinsley. She was just so cool and confident. I also loved Liam, and how he put Kinsley first. Their romance was so cute! Another thing I loved were all the aspects of training for a college soccer team that were included. Scoring Wilder was a fun book to read, and fans of NA sports romances are sure to enjoy it.



Do Over
Author: Serena Bell
Publication Date: January 30, 2018
Publisher: Loveswept
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

Toe-curling? Check. Sheet-twisting? Check. But is that enough for a second chance?

Jack: I’m pretty much as tough as they come. But when a woman comes to me in tears, I’m jelly. Scratch that—when Maddie Adams comes to me in tears, I’m jelly. That’s how we ended up making our incredible son five years ago, and that’s why I practically beg her to move in with me when she’s in a tight spot. Of course, the last time I got the chance to be the hero, I let her down, but I’m not making the same mistake twice. This time, I’m going to be the man she deserves—and then I’m going to lay every ounce of sexy on her until she lets me back into her heart.

Maddie: Jack Parker is hot, and he knows it. What he’s not is a family man, something this single mom had to learn the hard way. Still, moving into his place until I get back on my feet makes all kinds of sense. He’s an old friend. He’s, ahem, the father of my child. And let’s face it, now that I’ve just been colossally dumped, we’ve got nowhere else to go. The truth is, I never could resist Jack. Living under the same roof puts dirty thoughts in my head. And when my brilliant plan backfires, my whole body is begging for a do-over. . . .


Do Over is the first book I’ve read by Serena Bell, but it won’t be my last. I adored this book. It was a second chance romance between childhood best friends — who already had a 5-year-old son together. Both harbor secret feelings for each other but are worried the other doesn’t feel the same. I loved how their son helped bring them even closer together. It was so cute and pretty funny. I smiled many times while reading it. I am so happy I spent time with Maddie and Jack. This is definitely a book contemporary romance readers will love.



Burn for Me
Series: Hidden Legacy, #1
Author: Ilona Andrews
Narrator: Renée Raudman
Publication Date: October 28, 2014
Publisher: HarperAudio
Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance, Romantic Suspense

Rating: DNF 20%

Synopsis:

#1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews launches a brand new Hidden Legacy series, in which one woman must place her trust in a seductive, dangerous man who sets off an even more dangerous desire…

Nevada Baylor is faced with the most challenging case of her detective career—a suicide mission to bring in a suspect in a volatile case. Nevada isn’t sure she has the chops. Her quarry is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, who can set anyone and anything on fire.

Then she’s kidnapped by Connor “Mad” Rogan—a darkly tempting billionaire with equally devastating powers. Torn between wanting to run or surrender to their overwhelming attraction, Nevada must join forces with Rogan to stay alive.

Rogan’s after the same target, so he needs Nevada. But she’s getting under his skin, making him care about someone other than himself for a change. And, as Rogan has learned, love can be as perilous as death, especially in the magic world.


Burn for Me was a book chosen by my book group to read for the month. Since fantasy/paranormal romance isn’t really my thing, I decided to listen to the audio version. Sometimes, that makes it easier for me to get into a book in a genre that’s not my favorite.

All that being said, listening to Burn for Me didn’t work out for me. There were just too many things at play. One, I had a hard time connecting to the characters. I think part of this has to do with the narration of the story. Some of the characters sounded ancient when they weren’t past their 40’s. Two, there was a lot of world building to build the foundation of the magical story. That’s probably normal, but I wanted to get to the romance part of the book. The MCs were just meeting at 20%. Three, not only was it fantasy/paranormal based, there was a romantic suspense element to it. Those sub genres combined were an even worse fit for me.

When I found out I wasn’t going to be able to attend my book group, I decided to go ahead and let go of listening to this book. I’ve read several positive reviews, so I’m sure it’s a good book. I admit I might not have given it enough time, but with so many other books I need/want to read it just wasn’t worth going any further on for me.

Review: Long Way Home by Katie McGarry

Long Way Home
Series: Thunder Road, #3
Author: Katie McGarry
Publication Date: January 31, 2017
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

Seventeen-year-old Violet has always been expected to sit back and let the boys do all the saving.

It’s the code her father, a member of the Reign of Terror motorcycle club, raised her to live by. Yet when her dad is killed carrying out Terror business, Violet knows it’s up to her to do the saving. To protect herself, and her vulnerable younger brother, she needs to cut all ties with the club—including Chevy, the boy she’s known and loved her whole life.

But when a rival club comes after Violet, exposing old secrets and making new threats, she’s forced to question what she thought she knew about her father, the Reign of Terror, and what she thinks she wants. Which means re-evaluating everything: love, family, friends . . . and forgiveness.

Caught in the crosshairs between loyalty and freedom, Violet must decide whether old friends can be trusted—and if she’s strong enough to be the one person to save them all.


Utter devastation. That’s what I’m feeling right now. I am so, so sad the Thunder Road series is over. Done. Caput. No more books. Finishing Long Way Home has given me book hangover.

Long Way Home was just as amazing as the first two books in the Thunder Road series. The plot was brilliant, the characters continued to shine, and it was just so much fun to read. My experience with reading it was a little different from my experience with the first two book because I listened to them. I enjoyed both formats. I do have to admit that I did miss listening to the narrators’ accents, though. They made the first two books exceptionally fun.

Katie McGarry had to up the ante in Long Way Home. We don’t just get one Reign of Terror / Riot plot with this one, we get two. Violet and Chevy face a life changing ordeal together. It faces them to deal with lingering questions they’ve had over the years. Each forced to deal with an issue they have regarding the clubs they’re dealing with. This made Violet and Chevy’s book more stressful than the last two books.

I can’t say I was particularly a fan of Violet in the past couple of books. I felt a dedication to the Reign of Terror like the other characters did. I wanted her to get over her problems with them. Long Way Home had me rethinking my judgement of Violet. I finally understood her point and got it. She was right in a lot of ways I didn’t realize. I loved how Violet stood her ground and didn’t back down based on tradition.

Chevy was as lovable as I knew he would be. He had a happy-go-lucky feeling to him. I enjoyed getting to know him better. I loved the realizations he came to in this book. He really matured from a teenager to a young man during Long Way Home.

Violet and Chevy’s relationship had a special magic to it. They were childhood best friend, practically siblings, who grew to love each other. I hurt for them when they weren’t together, and knew how tough their decisions to be apart and together were. Their love was cemented down deep, and I couldn’t imagine them not ending up together.

As for the other series characters, don’t worry, they make appearances. There were some great moments between both Violet and Eli. I especially liked the touching moments between Violet and her mom and Eli and his mom and Cyrus.

The only slight frustration I had with Long Way Home was some unanswered questions that lingered after finishing it. I had some confusion surrounding Issac’s mother in relation to his father. I didn’t how she ended up somewhere based on his job. It didn’t add up to me. Also, who was the new prospect mentioned toward the end that was mentioned with Addison? I really needed the fourth book we didn’t get to make things clearer for me. Dang Harlequin Teen for keeping it from me! 😉

Long Way Home was everything I expected it to be. It reunited Violet and Chevy in the best way possible. It was a fitting ending for the series, even if I wanted more. I guess the sadness of losing this series will motivate me to read the rest of McGarry’s books (I didn’t really need motivation. Her writing speaks for itself.).

Release Day Review: The Smallest Part by Amy Harmon

The Smallest Part
Author: Amy Harmon

Publication Date: February 13, 2018
Publisher: Amy Harmon
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

“In the end, only three things matter. How much you loved, how gently you lived, and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you.” 
– Unknown

It was a big lie. The biggest lie she’d ever told. It reverberated through her head as she said it, ringing eerily, and the girl behind her eyes—the girl who knew the truth—screamed, and her scream echoed along with the lie.
“Are you in love with Noah, Mercedes?” Cora asked. “I mean . . . I know you love him. You’ve been friends forever. We all have. But are you in love with him?”
If it had been anyone else—anyone—Mercedes would have stuck out her chest, folded her skinny arms, and let her feelings be known. She would have claimed him. But it was Cora. Brave, beautiful, broken Cora, and Cora loved Noah too.
So Mercedes lied.
And with that lie, she lost him. With that lie, she sealed her fate.
She was the best friend, the bridesmaid, the godmother, the glue. She was there for the good times and the bad, the ups and the downs, the biggest moments and the smallest parts. And she was there when it all came crashing down.
This is the tale of the girl who didn’t get the guy.


Before I begin, I want to give some advice. If you haven’t read The Law of Moses, I highly recommend reading that book prior to reading The Smallest Part. Noah, one of the main characters, is from that series. It’s not necessarily a have-to situation, but there are scenes and situations that cross over. I felt like those scenes had a greater impact on me while reading The Smallest Part than if I hadn’t read The Law of Moses first. You can still enjoy the book if you haven’t, though. It can be read as a standalone. Now, to get down to business…

The Smallest Part was a very beautiful book. The writing was exactly what I have come to expect from Amy Harmon. There’s a little bit of mystery, a whole lot of love, tons of emotions, and a bunch of inspirational sentences that will be some of my favorite book quotes from here on out. I loved every moment I spent with The Smallest Part — even those that hurt.

The Smallest Part was pieced together in the best way with bits of the past and the present. I felt like I truly got a complete image of what the relationships between Noah and Cora and Mercedes, Noah and Cora, Noah and Mercedes, and Mercedes and Cora were. These friendships felt very real and the dynamics of those relationships are ones I know are out in the real world. Their friendship and love for each other were such an integral part of this story. They were beautiful even when they shouldn’t have been.

Going into The Smallest Part, I already knew I loved Noah Andelin. I knew his story was sad. I knew he was an amazing guy and doctor. What I didn’t realize was that is story could get sadder and that I was going to love him even more after this book. Sometimes he made me angry, but his heart was so good.

Prior to this book, I knew about Cora, but I didn’t know her. I was surprised and, honestly, shocked by her and Noah’s love story. It wasn’t what I had imagined for them. I especially wasn’t expecting the aftermath of it all. I didn’t expect to feel the way about Cora that I did. I don’t want to give away too much in this review because Amy Harmon’s books are always the best going in blind, but Cora might just be her most complex character yet.

As for Mercedes, the girl who didn’t get the guy, I loved her. While I didn’t always like her choices, she was an example of real love and friendship. I loved how she made peace with the choices in her life and tried to do best by herself and others. I also loved that she got a second chance at getting the guy because Noah and Mercedes belonged together.

And that’s it. That’s all I’m going to say other than The Smallest Part is not a book you want to miss.

Review: Love Me Like This by Bella Andre

Love Me Like This
Series: The Morrisons, #3
Author: Bella Andre
Publication Date: January 24, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

Eight years have passed since Justin Morrison first laid eyes on Taylor and fell head over heels in love with her, even though he knew she could never be his. He’s tried everything he can to get over her–including moving to another country–but she’s still the only woman he’ll ever want.

Eight years is a heck of a long time to secretly love someone. Taylor knows all too well how impossible it is to forget a man as sexy, sweet, and brilliant as Justin Morrison. So when he turns up on the doorstep of her Napa Valley bed and breakfast, she can’t help but long for the happily-ever-after of her dreams.

As Taylor and Justin spend beautifully romantic mornings together watching the sun rise over the vineyards–and can’t help but fall into each other’s arms on wickedly sexy nights–it looks like they might finally get their chance at the love they’ve been waiting for. But will the secret Taylor has been keeping shatter everything in the end?


Justin and Taylor started their romance back in earlier The Morrisons books, but they never got together. Things — especially Taylor having a boyfriend — kept them apart. In order to avoid his feelings for Taylor, Justin took a job in Germany. But now he’s back and he’s got a chance to win Taylor’s heart. Only Taylor doesn’t think she’s able to give it to Justin. She’s got a big secret she’s been keeping all these years they’ve been friends.

Love Me Like This is a classic contemporary romance. It’s written in third person dual point of view. Taylor and Justin get to tell their sides of why they never ended up together in college along with their regrets. They also get to experience a second chance to make things right.

In the back of my mind (it’s been a couple of years since I read that last The Morrisons book), I can remember Justin and Taylor. I liked them and was eager to get their story. I remember loving the whole best friends aspect and hoping they would become more. Love Me Like This isn’t exactly what I had hoped for them, though. The past two books in the series were new adult romances. This one is an adult contemporary romance set ten years after college. I really wanted another new adult romance. It was a cute story, but it didn’t work 100% for me. I just have a really hard time believing these two harbored such intense feelings after one kiss and ten years later. That’s a long time to pine after someone you’ve maybe talked to but haven’t seen.

Don’t get me wrong. I still liked Justin and Taylor. I still enjoyed their romance. Love Me Like This was a classic Bella Andre romance. It was a sweet, sexy romance filled with family members from past books slipped in here and there for quick updates. Fans of Andre’s are sure to love it. I just wanted something a little different.

Review: Royal Ruin by Jessica Peterson

Title: Royal Ruin
Series: Flings with Kings #1
Author: Jessica Peterson
Genre: Royal Romance/Contemporary Romance
Release Date: January 18, 2018
Blurb
To: Emily@EPDesigns.com
From: HRHKit@PrimrosePalace.org.uk
SUBJECT: ENGAGEMENT CONTRACT (Marked Confidential)

FROM THE DESK OF
HIS ROYAL HIGHNESS PRINCE CHRISTOPHER
Emily—Thank you for joining me for dinner tonight. And for agreeing to my proposal, as ludicrous as it is. Desperate times call for fake engagements. At least in my family.
I am attaching the contract we discussed. Our lawyers asked that I highlight the following clauses:
  • The engagement shall last ninety days
  • Both parties are to appear genuinely in love at all royal appearances
  • Beyond required public displays of affection, there shall be no contact of any kind between the parties
The first half of your payment will be deposited into your account upon the signing of this contract. Be sure to note your ring size. We would like to make prompt delivery of the family emerald. The Queen and I thank you in advance for your discretion.
Cheers,
Kit
P.S.—Sorry to hear about your divorce. Your ex sounds like a proper knob head.
P.P.S.—You looked stunning tonight.

MY REVIEW:

Rating: ★ ★ ★
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased review.

Royal Ruin is one of those books I wanted to love, but ended up just liking. There was one major reason for that and I’ll get to it soon, but first let me tell you what I loved about this book.

I really enjoy Jessica Peterson’s writing style. I’ve been reading her contemporary romances for a while now, and they are very entertaining. I like how she sets them in countries other than the United States. I also like how she uses first person dual point of view. Her characters always have such distinct voices. Kit and Emily surely did.

I adored Kit. He was a handsome prince, but he was also an amazing guy. The path he chose to follow was very noble. He was so giving of himself to others. I loved his relationship with his family, and how he would do anything for them. He made this book for me.

My problem with Royal Ruin was Emily. I didn’t like her. I couldn’t connect with her. I especially didn’t like her issues with an emotionally physical connection. To me, that was a HUGE issue to have and it was dealt with so quickly. One minute she can’t handle it, the next she’s cured by Kit. Maybe things happen that way, but I was skeptical. I also didn’t like her decisions. She was pretty selfish. For a moment, I actually understood what Luke was saying, and he was supposed to be the jerk in all of this. These things made it hard to get behind Kit’s love for Emily.

Even though I didn’t fall completely in love with Kit and Emily’s relationship, I did like the majority of the story. I especially liked the how the story ended. The way it all wrapped up was perfect. It had me rooting for Kit and Emily when I wasn’t so sure about them before.

Purchase Links
99c for release week only!
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU
Free in Kindle Unlimited
Author Bio
Jessica Peterson began reading romance to escape the decidedly unromantic awkwardness of her teenage years. Having found solace in
the likes of Mr. Darcy, Jamie Fraser (OMG love the gingers!), and Edward Cullen, it wasn’t long before she began creating tall, dark and handsome heroes of her own.
She lives in Charlotte, North Carolina with her husband, Mr.
Peterson, and her smelly Goldendoodle Martha Bean. She is the author of the super sexy STUDY ABROAD and FLINGS WITH KINGS series. Check her out at www.jessicapeterson.com
Author Links

 

Review: My Enemy Next Door by Whitney G. & Nicole London

My Enemy Next Door
Authors: Whitney G., Nicole London
Publication Date: January 11, 2018
Publisher: Nicole London & Whitney G.
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

We used to be close.
We used to be best friends.
Until we became enemies all over again…

Courtney Ryan ruined our on and off again friendship with one swipe of her sexy, red pen. After the final rude message she wrote in my yearbook, I decided that we didn’t need to see each other anymore. (But if we ever did, I would show her exactly why I had every reason to be “cocky,” and make her admit that I really *was* “that damn sexy.”)

Now that it’s ten years later, I’ve graduated from law school at the top of my class, and I’m being recruited to work at the number one law firm in New York City.

Since I’m in desperate need of a change and want to meet new people, I don’t hesitate to accept the offer.

Until I find out that Courtney Ryan graduated from law school, too.
Until I realize that she’ll be working at the same exact firm, in the office right across from me.

And if this timing isn’t unfortunate enough, she’s far more tempting and sexier than I originally remembered.
(Oh, and last night I found out that she lives right next door…)

We don’t have to be close.
We don’t have to be best friends.
But she’s going to pay me back for making us enemies all over again…


My Enemy Next Door is a romance I liked, but I could have loved. It was the story of  former high school best friends and lovers whose romance ends horribly. They get a second chance at love as adults when the enemies end up working together.

I loved the second chance and enemies to lovers tropes in this book. Courtney and Jace’s high school romance was sweet. They were opposites who connected in a fun, cool way. Even their demise (when revealed) was cool — and relevant to today’s society. I also loved their stint as enemies. Their high jinks cracked me up.

So, what kept me from loving My Enemy Next Door? It was the combination of a couple of things. First, it started out a little roughly. It wasn’t the actual story, but the characters that I wasn’t sure of. Every single one of them came across in an argumentative way. Their words were so brisk and unkind. The only one who seemed nice was Jace, and he was supposed to be the bad boy. It was uncomfortable to read all the negativity. That got better as the story went on, but it left a mark on the story for me. The other big thing that stood out was the ending. The book was short, and I think there should have been more meat to it, but that’s not what I’m complaining about. The ending was just so abrupt. It was done in a cute, but kind of impersonal way. I needed a stronger conclusion.

Overall, My Enemy Next Door was a cute enemies to lovers / second chance romance. It was fun to read, and had some really great parts. It just needed a couple of tweaks, in my opinion.

Review: Over Us, Over You by Whitney G.

Over Us, Over You
Author: Whitney G.
Publication Date: December 7, 2017
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

From New York Times bestselling author Whitney G. comes a falling for my older brother’s best friend romance.

Subject: Delete this message after you read it…

Dear Hayley,

I’m assuming you’re still hungover, so I’ll make this brief.

Last night, you slipped under my sheets (without my permission), and we almost had sex. I got the hell out of the bed once I realized it was you, and I took you home.

That’s the story.

The end.

Period.

Just in case you’ve forgotten, you’re my best friend’s little sister. We will never be anything more. (We can’t be anything more.) Our previous friendship is still unresolved–or “over” in your terms, so I’d prefer if we worked on becoming ‘just friends’ again since you’re in town.

Nonetheless, I’m not a man who leaves questions unanswered–even the drunken ones, so to properly close our inappropriate conversation:

1) Yes, I liked the way your lips felt against mine when you were on top of me.
2) Yes, I do “prefer” rough sex, but I’m pretty sure I wasn’t rough with you.
3) No, I had no idea you were still a virgin…

This message never happened,
Corey


I have loved the novellas Whitney G. has released in the past year or so, but I’ve been craving a full length novella from her. I was so happy to hear that was what Over Us, Over You was going to be.

Over Us, Over You was a love story in true Whitney G. fashion. It had her normal sexy humor and witty banter, but it also contained a lot more tenderness than her most recent novellas. Corey and Hayley had a deep back story that was shared throughout the book. Their teenage friendship shaped who they were, and helped showcase their current connection to each other.

Corey was a standard Whitney G. man. He was successful, confident, and not the nicest. Despite his initial cockiness, I found him to be a great guy. He tried to do the right thing for himself, Hayley, and Jonathon.

Hayley was a bit of mess. Well, actually, she was a huge mess. Surprisingly, that didn’t bother me. Everything that was going on in her life led her back to Corey, so I can’t complain about it. I loved their relationship, so Hayley being a disaster at times didn’t matter. What mattered to me was her feelings, and I could feel every one of them through Whitney G.’s talented writing.

What I loved most about Over Us, Over You was that it was a friends to lovers romance. Corey and Hayley had hard times growing up, and the bonds they built during those times were so sweet. The fact that love grew from their shared hardships made this book that much more swoon worthy.

I can’t even begin to explain how much I enjoyed reading Over Us, Over You. I know I”m not giving it the review it deserves. It was such a great romance. I want to write over and over that I loved this book. I highly recommend reading it whether you’re a fan of Whitney G. or have never read her books before.

Review: The Way Back to Us by Jamie Howard

The Way Back to Us
Series: Love Unplugged, #3
Author: Jamie Howard
Publication Date: December 12, 2017
Publisher: St. Martin’s Swerve
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Gavin MacCormack found the one. He fell in love. Hard. Until one night he ran out for some ice cream and came back to an empty dorm room, closets bare and nothing but a quick hand-written note saying, I’m sorry. Those two words taught Gavin the meaning of heartbreak. A feeling he never wants to encounter again. And as the lead singer of a Grammy award-winning band he’s had plenty of opportunities for casual, no-strings fun, which is just the way he likes it.

Dani Winters has had more names than birthdays. On the run with her father for nearly as long as she can remember, she’s lived her life by three rules—always plan for the worst, maintain a low profile at all costs, and never let anyone get too close. Except she broke that last rule once and her heart has never forgiven her.

One chance encounter changes everything. Seeing Dani resurrects feelings in Gavin he thought were long buried, and this time he’s not letting her disappear without getting some answers. But Dani’s life is the definition of complicated and she’s playing with fire by letting Gavin back in. When the time comes to run again, Dani needs to decide if a life without love is worth living, or if it’s time to stop running and fight.


If you’re a fan of the Love Unplugged series, you were probably wondering what was up with Gavin and the red head at the party just like I was. Well, The Way Back to Us will answer all of your questions!

The Way Back to Us wasn’t really what I was expecting. That was mostly because I didn’t read the blurb before I started reading it. I was completely in the dark about Dani and her father, so it took a while for the story to unravel for me. I liked that, even though I did side with Gavin’s friends’ concern about Dani back in his life. It made it harder to like Dani at first, but it gave the story a lot of great mystery.

Dani and Gavin’s relationship was a rocky one. There were so many uncertainties. I was amazed at how supportive Gavin was of Dani despite not knowing a lot of things. He gave her the benefit of the doubt when I might not have. I loved his devotion to her. And despite having a hard time liking her at first, Dani grew on me. She obviously loved Gavin, and felt torn by the need to follow her rules for life. Things might have been messy for them, but their love for each other really shined through.

The Way Back to Us was a fun addition to the Love Unplugged series. It wasn’t my favorite book in the series (that spot is reserved for book 2 at the moment), but I still loved it. Jamie Howard is a phenomenal writer, and her stories always keep me wanting more. I can’t wait to read the next book in this series!

Review: So Over You by Kate Meader

So Over You
Series: Chicago Rebels, #2
Author: Kate Meader
Publication Date: December 4, 2017
Publisher: Pocket Star
Genre: Contemporary, Romance, Sports
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Three estranged sisters struggle to sustain their late father’s failing hockey franchise in Kate Meader’s sizzling Chicago Rebels series. In this second entry, middle sister Isobel is at a crossroads in her personal and professional lives. But both are about to get a significant boost with the addition of a domineering Russian powerhouse to the Rebels….

Isobel Chase knows hockey. She played NCAA, won Olympic silver, and made it thirty-seven minutes into the new National Women’s Hockey League before an injury sidelined her dreams. Those who can’t, coach, and a position as a skating consultant to her late father’s hockey franchise, the Chicago Rebels, seems like a perfect fit. Until she’s assigned her first job: the man who skated into her heart as a teen and relieved her of her pesky virginity. These days, left-winger Vadim Petrov is known as the Czar of Pleasure, a magnet for puck bunnies and the tabloids alike. But back then… let’s just say his inability to sink the puck left Isobel frustratingly scoreless.

Vadim has a first name that means “ruler,” and it doesn’t stop at his birth certificate. He dominates on the ice, the practice rink, and in the backseat of a limo. But a knee injury has produced a bad year, and bad years in the NHL don’t go unrewarded. His penance? To be traded to a troubled team where his personal coach is Isobel Chase, the woman who drove him wild years ago when they were hormonal teens. But apparently the feeling was not entirely mutual.

That Vadim might have failed to give Isobel the pleasure that was her right is intolerable, and he plans to make it up to her—one bone-melting orgasm at a time. After all, no player can perfect his game without a helluva lot of practice…


Earlier this year, I read the first book in the Chicago Rebels series. I liked Irresistible You, but so much of it was a setting up the Chase family drama for books to come. I felt like Harper and Remy’s relationship took a back seat, and I didn’t connect to them as much as I wanted. I finished that book wondering if Isobel’s story would feel the same way.

It didn’t. Isobel and Vadim’s story felt more like their own. There wasn’t as much family drama, and what there was fit into their lives. It made it easier to connect with them and their love story — which I adored.

Isobel and Vadim had a lot in common. They were both in love with playing hockey, both had previous injuries, and both were strong-willed. The first two things bonded them. The third had the potential to destroy them. Every interaction between them was passionate. I never thought coaching someone in drill could be fiery, but I was wrong. I loved how their shared hockey experiences connected them.

The sisters weren’t quite as involved in this story, but the moments they were together were magic. Instead of bonding, they had moved onto a deeper relationship. They were there for advice and friendship. It wasn’t such a struggle for them anymore. I liked that.

I also liked Vadim’s family dynamic. It was almost as scandalous as the Chase family. His relationship with his sister was so sweet. (Can she grow up and get her own book?)

Overall, So Over You was a fun second chance romance. It moved the Chase family onto a new time in their hockey owning career while spotlighting a special relationship.