Review: The Butterfly Project by Emma Scott

The Butterfly Project
Author: Emma Scott
Publication Date: February 28, 2017
Publisher: CreateSpace
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Note: I received this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased review.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

“Where you are is home…”

At age fourteen, Zelda Rossi witnessed the unthinkable, and has spent the last ten years hardening her heart against the guilt and grief. She channels her pain into her art: a dystopian graphic novel where vigilantes travel back in time to stop heinous crimes—like child abduction—before they happen. Zelda pitches her graphic novel to several big-time comic book publishers in New York City, only to have her hopes crash and burn. Circumstances leave her stranded in an unfamiliar city, and in an embarrassing moment of weakness, she meets a guarded young man with a past he’d do anything to change…

Beckett Copeland spent two years in prison for armed robbery, and is now struggling to keep his head above water. A bike messenger by day, he speeds around New York City, riding fast and hard but going nowhere, his criminal record holding him back almost as much as the guilt of his crime.

Zelda and Beckett form a grudging alliance of survival, and in between their stubborn clash of wills, they slowly begin to provide each other with the warmth of forgiveness, healing, and maybe even love. But when Zelda and Beckett come face to face with their pasts, they must choose to hold on to the guilt and regret that bind them, or let go and open their hearts for a shot at happiness.

The Butterfly Project is a novel that reveals the power of forgiveness, and how even the smallest decisions of the heart can—like the flutter of a butterfly’s wings—create currents that strengthen into gale winds, altering the course of a life forever.


The Butterfly Project has been sitting on my Kindle waiting to be read since February. I kept putting off reading it because I knew I was going to be in for an emotional ride. Emma Scott is an amazing author, but she packs a powerful emotional punch in all of her books. I wasn’t sure I was ready for the experience The Butterfly Project was going to give me yet.

I’m so happy I went ahead and started reading it. I loved The Butterfly Project! It was definitely an emotional read, but it immediately drew me and had me invested. I wasn’t willing to put the book down. I stayed up way too late reading it because I needed to know what was going to happen to Zelda and Bennett.

If you haven’t read Emma Scott’s Full Tilt duet, you may not know that Zelda was an employee of Theo’s Las Vegas tattoo shop. She’s decided to branch off on her own, and take her comic book to shop publishers in New York. The reception of her comic book is not what she had hoped, and she has to figure out how to spend more time in New York to make the revisions she needs to it. Zelda refuses to give up on the one thing that may help her entire family heal. A chance encounter with Beckett gives her the possibility to stay in New York.

Beckett isn’t super thrilled to have Zelda around. He’s got his own tragedies and regret to deal with. What begins as a partnership, slowly turns into companionship for Beckett. He realizes maybe he’s not as alone as he thought. His friendship with Zelda is the only thing heating up his cold and dreary days.

The more entwined their lives get, the more Zelda and Beckett want more from each other. Before they can truly fall, let will have to decide if they can let go of the past and live in the future.

Zelda and Beckett were really amazing characters. Both were living their lives by the day, trying to make it through. They were emotionally stunted by things they wished they could change in their pasts. The sadness and guilt connected them, but their different outlooks on each other’s situation brought a strength to their friendship. Zelda knew what Beckett needed and Beckett knew what Zelda needed. Their friendship turning into a romantic relationship was inevitable. They got each other and their chemistry was off the charts. I loved every minute of their romance.

All of the secondary characters were magic. Each brought a little bit of something special to the story. I especially loved Zelda and Beckett’s Italian neighbor lady. She cracked me up! I also loved getting a tiny bit of Theo in this story. I had forgotten how much I missed him.

One thing I thought was super cool in this story was the use of the comic book. I liked the glimpses of it I got to see and how the story created helped Zelda and Beckett heal. It was a cool way to connect two characters.

I don’t know what else to say about The Butterfly Project except that I loved it. I would highly recommend it to new adult romance readers. The healing and love in this story is amazing. I’m so happy I finally read it!!!

Top Ten Tuesday: Authors Who Could Write The Phone Book And I’d Still Read It

Top Ten Tuesday is an original weekly feature created by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is Fandom Freebie — top ten fandoms I’m in, 10 reasons X fandom is the best, must have merchandise for x fandom, etc. etc. I don’t know if I’m really in any fandoms or not. I religiously follow some authors, so maybe that counts? For my topic, I’m going with Authors Who Could Write The Phone Book And I’d Still Read It. 

Now, I know some of you youngins might not know what the phone book is, so let me explain. It’s what we used to use back in the old days before the internet when we needed to look up a phone number. They used to drop them on your doorstep once a year. So pretty boring to read, if you get what I’m saying.

Click on the author names to be directed to their websites.


1. Ginger Scott

2. Colleen Hoover

3. Tarryn Fisher

4. Elle Kennedy

5. Sarina Bowen

6. Krista & Becca Ritchie

7. Karen White

8. Kasie West

9. Maggie Stiefvater

10. Emery Lord

 

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Authors I’m Dying To Meet / Ten Authors I Can’t Believe I’ve Met

Top Ten Tuesday is an original weekly feature created by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is Top Ten Authors I’m Dying To Meet / Ten Authors I Can’t Believe I’ve Met  (some other “meeting authors” type spin you want to do). I am going to do both of these, so you’re getting a two-for-one post today. 😉

All author photos are courtesy of Goodreads or their author websites.


Ten Twelve Authors I Can’t Believe I’ve Met

1. Al and Tipper Gore

My BFF dragged me to their book signing for Joined at the Heart back when it was released. Kind of cool.

The rest of the authors on my list I met at The Emerald City Author Event last year.

2. Claire Contreras

3. Tarryn Fisher

So Tarryn Fisher wasn’t on the event list, but she came to hang out and support Claire Contreras.

4. Jay Crownover

5. Emma Chase

6. Tillie Cole

7. Penny Reid

8. L.H. Cosway

9. K.A. Tucker

10. Barbie Borhman

11. Harper Sloan

12. E.L. James

E.L. James wasn’t on the guest list, but showed up to sign autographs anyways.


Ten Authors I’m Dying To Meet

1. Ginger Scott

2. Colleen Hoover

3. Sarina Bowen

4. Elle Kennedy

5. Krista & Becca Ritchie

6. Kim Holden

7. Beth Flynn

8. Jessica Park

9. Kasie West

10. Emery Lord

Review: Read Between the Lines by Jill Breugem

Read Between the Line
Author: Jill Breugem
Publication Date: January 24, 2017
Publisher: Amazon
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Note: I received this book from the author in exchange for an unbiased review.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

Small town girl Sadie continues to live in the city after finishing university. She finds work as a journalist which ultimately leads to her real passion of writing romance novels. Sadie becomes an accomplished author of many New York Times best sellers. At the beginning of her success she is picked up by Levi, a literary agent to represent her. They become close friends and business associates over the years. What happens when Sadie writes her latest novel about the love she has for him? Will she publish it at the risk of losing him as an agent and best friend?


Read Between the Lines is a friends/co-workers to lovers story. Sadie, a bestselling author, has just realized she’s in love with one of her closest friends. Levi isn’t just a friend, though; he’s also her literary agent. And he has a girlfriend. Sadie and Levi have had a crush on each other for years, but the timing has never been right. One of them is always in a relationship when the other’s not. Saddened by the inability to act of her feelings, Sadie resorts to writing a romance novel about her relationship with Levi. Sadie’s not sure what she’ll do with it when she’s done. She can’t chance losing him. Sadie can only hope that Levi still has feelings for her.

Sadie and Levi’s story was fun to read. They had such a great friendship. It was easy to tell they had greater feelings for each other, but they did a good job of keeping things platonic. I especially loved the tension Levi’s girlfriend Barbara created. It was the perfect love triangle. There was a clear winner in my head, and I didn’t feel bad hoping Barbara would be out of the picture soon. Levi and Sadie were just so perfect for each other.  They had so much fun together.

I would have loved to have rated Read Between the Lines higher than 3.5 stars based on how much I liked the story, but I just couldn’t get past one thing. It was written in third person point of view with multiple narrators. While that itself wasn’t a problem, the absence of marked transitions between narrators was. One minute the story would be in Sadie’s perspective, and then all of sudden it would switch to Levi’s. Those transitions were a little hard to follow. It always took me a minute to figure out whose head I was in. It would have been more enjoyable to read had the different perspectives been divided into different marked chapters, or simply marked within the chapter.

Overall, Read Between the Lines was a solid début novel. I truly enjoyed the friends to lovers story. It was filled with fun characters and a believable romance. The writing was good and showed a lot of potential for growth. I imagine with each book Ms. Breugem writes, it will become better and better. Read Between the Lines is a novel contemporary romance fans will enjoy.

Review: Sex Says by Max Monroe

Sex Says
Author: Max Monroe
Publication Date: February 21, 2017
Publisher: Max Monroe LLC
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

Lola
My name is Lola Sexton, and I’m a sex addict.
Okay…that’s a lie.
Truth is, I’m a serial dater turned dating and relationship columnist for The San Francisco Times. My readers call me Sex. Sex Says.
I love my job.
I love my life.
And I hate Reed Luca.
**

Reed

My name is Reed Luca, and I’m a liar.
Ironically, that’s the truth.
I’m 31, and my occupation is…well, complicated.
My favorite kind of woman comes in all shapes and sizes, but always has a big brain.
I’ve never hated anything.
Lola Sexton hates me.
Luckily, it’s a thin line between love and hate, and with my help, pretty Lola will only be able to straddle that line for so long.


This is a tough book for me to review for some reason. I’ve tried several times to start writing it, but I can’t seem to explain what I want to get across. So, I’m going to just lay out my likes and dislikes for you.

What I Liked:

  • Lola. Her character was over the top unique, but I kind of loved her. Her zany personality was funny to me. I loved all the crazy things she did. Lola was so much fun.
  • Lola’s relationship with her family. I loved how close they were and the funny things they shared with each other.
  • The competition between Lola and Reese. Their hatred of each other was entertaining. It created some really witty banter.
  • The way Reed pursued Lola. Again, witty banter.

What I Didn’t Like:

  • How immature both Lola and Reed were for their ages. They were supposed to be in their 30’s, but read a lot younger. It would have been more believable if they were in their 20’s.
  • Reed. I can’t put my finger on it, but there was something about the guy I didn’t care for. Maybe it was his smoking habit. I don’t know. He just didn’t make book boyfriend status for me.
  • The writing was great, but it felt like something was missing to me. I didn’t connect to the story as much as I wanted to. I was expecting to be sucked in by the characters and their stories like I was in Max Monroe’s Billionaire Bad Boys series, but I wasn’t.

Overall, Sex Says was a cute romance filled with funny moments. Even though it wasn’t my favorite romance, it was still good and I would recommend reading it. It might have gained a higher rating from me if I hadn’t read the Billionaire Bad Boys series first. That series set a really high expectation for Max Monroe to hit.

Review: Author Anonymous by E.K. Blair

29613610-1Author Anonymous
Author: E.K. Blair
Publication Date: August 29, 2016
Genre: Romance, Erotica, Based on a True Story

Rating: Unrated – Explanation in review.

Synopsis:

*An intoxicatingly risqué stand-alone book.

She’s an author.
She’s a mother.
She’s a wife.
She’s a fraud, a woman marked and bound by her own deceit.

Experience the astounding tale of how Anonymous battled through a year of scandals and betrayals, how her world fell from its axis with a single choice, and how she lost herself between reality and fantasy.

This is a stand-alone tangled in lust, heartbreak, and contrition.

*Based on a true story.


I’m going to start out by apologizing for this review. It is going to be one giant rant. That can’t be helped, so I’m sorry. I’m also going to warn that if you’re not into books with cheating, this one definitely isn’t for you. The entire focus of Author Anonymous is cheating. There’s nothing happy in it either, so if you’re looking for a dark but uplifting romance this isn’t it.

Let’s start with what I actually liked about this book. E.K. Blair deserves 5 stars for her writing. It’s dark, gritty, and unapologetic. I applaud her for being able to portray the characters the way she did. Their actions and thoughts were hard to read, so they had to be hard to write.

Now for the rant…

I wanted to DNF this book so badly. I basically had to force myself to read it. It was morally disturbing to me. I hated the main character Tori. I hated her thoughts, her actions, her truths. Nothing about what she did was okay. I don’t care what her reasons were. I’m a wife and mother. I’ve been married for 10 years, so I can understand some of her complaints about her marriage but nothing excuses her from the choices she made. I try not to be judgemental, but I’m judging here. She knew what she was doing the entire time. It was intentional. She knew she was hurting everyone around her and did it anyway.

It’s hard to explain my thoughts about the male characters in this “love triangle” without giving too much away, so I’ll keep it simple. I hated Alec. I didn’t trust anything about him. He was just as horrible as Tori. Landon was okay. He wasn’t an innocent bystander, but he wasn’t really malicious either. I understood why he did what he did and I was okay with it for the most part. I also want to point out that Landon said something about 40% in that I really agree with when it comes to cheating.

Obviously, reading Author Anonymous was a struggle for me. I was so looking forward to getting to the end and being able to come to terms with what this book had dealt me. I thought I was getting what I wanted until E.K. Blair did something I was not expecting. I don’t know whether to be pissed off at her or call her a genius. Considering how I felt about the story, I’d probably lean towards pissed off. If I hadn’t been reading this book on my Kindle, I would have thrown it at the wall or, better yet, burnt it!

I seriously hope the real Tori is never revealed. I don’t want to know who she is. I have to admit it took guts for her to ask E.K. Blair to write her story and put it out there. Although, now that I think about it, it seems like an attention-getting scheme.

Ugh. So how do I give Author Anonymous a rating? On one hand, the writing was brilliant. If it wasn’t based on a true story, I might have thought E.K. Blair was super creative for coming up with such a frustrating story and character. I do want to explore her other books. On the other hand, I hated this book the entire time I was reading it (except for maybe one or two chapters) partly because I knew it was based on a true story. I really did want to DNF it. I thought maybe I could come up with a middle ground rating, but I didn’t feel like any rating could properly portray my feelings. I guess that means I’m leaving it unrated. I will say that I’m glad that I was able to borrow this book from the Amazon Prime Kindle Lending Library. I think I would have been angry if I had spent money on a book that was so infuriating.

Review: Turbulence by Whitney G.

Turbulence
Author: Whitney G.

Publication Date: August 29, 2016
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance, Erotic Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

He and I met under a cloud of clichés:
Boy meets girl. Boy charms girl. Boy screws girl.
Our story was supposed to end right after the orgasms, right after we went our separate ways.

But then we saw each other again…

And neither of us could walk away.

Our rules were simple.
Our passion was scandalous.
Our hearts were supposed to be safe…

But when you find something so all-consuming–something so intoxicating and inescapable, you’ll risk everything you’ve ever had, even if you’re destined to crash and burn.

This is us.
This is our messed up love.
This is turbulence.


Over a year ago, I was sad to learn Whitney G. was postponing the release of her upcoming novel Turbulence I absolutely love her writing and was sad to have to wait for this book’s release. I was super excited when I saw that I was finally going to get to read it. 🙂 I don’t want to spoil the surprises of the book for anyone, so this review might seem a little sparse.

Turbulence is the story of Gillian, a woman who is on the hunt for a one night stand. She meets the perfect man for the job. Jake’s a pilot who’s all about sex without strings. Neither of them plan on seeing each other after that night, but the sex is just too good to pass up. Soon they’re hooking up as much as they can with the rule that their relationship never goes beyond sex.

This was such a fun story to read! Whitney G.’s writing was as addicting as always. Her characters were complex, and I loved how their backstories were revealed little by little. There were so many surprises and twists throughout the story that I didn’t see coming. Parts of it that I found weird or confusing at first tied in perfectly at the end. I absolutely loved the experience of reading this book. Readers who love a sexy story that has twists and turns that unravel slowly throughout a book will love Turbulence.