2018 End of the Year Survey

For the past 9 years, The Perpetual Page Turner has posted this fun year end survey for book bloggers. I have participated the past few years and thought I would again. Here are my answers to the survey.


Number Of Books You Read: a ton (I am not giving out my # because I think we shouldn’t compare ours to each other. It’s all about the love of reading, right?)
Number of Re-Reads: 7
Genre You Read The Most From: Contemporary Romance

best-YA-books-20141. Best Book You Read In 2018?

It’s hard to pick just one because I read so many good books and have a lot of favorites.

If I had to pick just one, I would go with The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang.

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

I listened to Cora Cormack’s Losing It series this year. I had so much fun listening to the first two books that I thought I would love the third book, Finding It. I really didn’t.

 3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?  

I chose The Sweet Gum Tree by Katherine Allred because it’s not a book I would normally pick up. It has this old school romance vibe that I’m not really into. A couple of my blogging friends (Stephanie & Brandie) loved it, so I decided to request it from my library and give it a chance. I ended up really liking it.

 4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?

Gosh, I don’t know. Does anyone have any ideas for this? I know I told people to read The Kiss Quotient a lot since it is my favorite of the year.

 5. Best series you started in 2018? Best Sequel of 2018? Best Series Ender of 2018?

Best series I started: Nowhere But Here by Katie McGarry

Best Sequel of 2018: The Boy I Grew Up With by Tijan

Best Series Ender of 2018: 4th & Girl by Max Monroe

 6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2018?

I discovered so many great authors this year! My favorites were Helen Hoang, Katherine Center, Katie McGarry, Meghan March, Sally Thorne…I could go on and on.

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

I am not a science fiction or fantasy fan, but I loved The Raging Ones by Krista and Becca Ritchie.

 8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

I didn’t read a ton of thriller or action type books this year. I did read one thriller that kept me on my toes. It was Verity by Colleen Hoover.

9. Book You Read In 2018 That You Would Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

I don’t normally do re-reads. This year, I re-listened to all of the Fallen Crest Series by Tijan. If I did another, I might re-read one of Max Monroe’s Bad Boy Billionaires books because they make me laugh so much.

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2018?

I love the cover for Tillie Cole’s A Wish for Us. It is beautiful and reflects the book so well. It’s all about how some people see color while hearing music.

11. Most memorable character of 2018?

It’s a toss up for me. It’s either Hazel from Josh & Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren because of her unforgettable quirkiness or it’s Preppy from the King series by T.M. Frazier because of his personality combined with his style.

 12. Most beautifully written book read in 2018?

I read a lot of beautifully written books this year. I was lucky in that aspect. Since I have to choose just one, I’m going with How to Walk Away by Katherine Center.

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2018?

This might seem like an odd choice, but I listened to Modern Romance by Aziz Ansari and Eric Klinenberg this year. I’m so far out of the dating world, that I hadn’t really thought about all of the changes that have gone on in the past ten years or more. It was a really eye opening and thought provoking read for me. It wasn’t exactly life changing, but it made me understand some of my single friends better.

 14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2018 to finally read? 

The Opportunist and the rest of the other Love Me with Lies books by Tarryn Fisher. So crazy, but so good.

 15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2018?


p style=”text-align: center;”>“Someone else’s opinion of you is none of your business.”
-Rachel Hollis, Girl Wash Your Face

I chose this quote because it’s something that I remind myself of a lot. Before I heard this quote, I used to tell myself that 99% of the time people are just thinking about themselves, but this really puts that in more perspective.

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2018?

Shortest: Studly Period (The Ivy Years, #5.5) by Sarina Bowen, 50 pages

Longest: Cocktales by Penny Reid & friends, 998 pages

How I did this: Went to my read books on Goodreads and sorted by page number and just looked for what I knew I read this year that was the shortest and longest.

 17. Book That Shocked You The Most

(Because of a plot twist, character death, left you hanging with your mouth wide open, etc.)

The Upside of Falling and The Downside of Love by Meghan Quinn. I can’t tell you why. You will just have to read it yourself.

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)

(OTP = one true pairing if you aren’t familiar)

Heather & Channing from The Boy I Grew Up With by Tijan.

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

Millie, Reid, and the guys from My Favorite Half-Night Stand by Christina Lauren.

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2018 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

Love & Other Words by Christina Lauren

21. Best Book You Read In 2018 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure/Bookstagram, Etc.:

The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

(Thanks, Ari!)

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2018?

I think I’ll go with Rowdy Wade from Jock Row by Sara Ney.

23. Best 2018 debut you read?

The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

Crew by Tijan and/or Cry Baby by Ginger Scott

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

4th & Girl by Max Monroe

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2018?

Long Shot by Kennedy Ryan

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

Intercepted by Alexa Martin

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

The Butterfly Garden by Dot Hutchison

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2018?

Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

It’s probably a toss up between two series: Blue Line Duet by Meghan Quinn or the Love Me with Lies series by Tarryn Fisher.

book-blogging1. New favorite book blog/Bookstagram/Youtube channel you discovered in 2018?

Kayla from Books & Blends

2. Favorite post you wrote in 2018?

I don’t really have a favorite. I try to write posts I’m proud of.

3. Favorite bookish related photo you took in 2018?

This is me and my friend Ashley at Book Bonanza 2018. I hadn’t seen her in over 5 years when we met there for the fun that the event was. I have some favorite pictures of me with authors and blogger friends, but this one I’ll call my favorite because I miss getting to see her when she lives in South Carolina and I live in Washington state.

4. Best bookish event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events,  etc.)?

Book Bonanza 2018!!! I got to meet so many of my favorite authors and a couple of my favorite bloggers (Celebrity Readers & DG Book Blog) well! I wish I was going again next year. It was such a great, uplifting experience.

5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2018?

I’m going to go with Book Bonanza again. I loved meeting people who love books as much as I do.

6. Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year?

Letting go. I decided after this past summer that I didn’t need to sign up for every ARC or blog tour. I switched my focus to reading what I already have and to not having to post reviews for all the books I read. I actually want to read LESS next year. Crazy, right?

7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?

My most viewed post for 2018 was my review for Ryan’s Bed by Tijan.

8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?

Honestly, all of them.

9. Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?

I didn’t really discover any new ones this year. Sorry.

10.  Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?

Yes, I completed my Goodreads Challenge for year, lowered my Want to Read shelf numbers on there, and read a ton of backlist books off my Kindle.

looking-ahead-books-20151. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2018 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2019?

Flight Patterns by Karen White

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2019 (non-debut)?

Just one? Torture again! The one that instantly pops to mind, though, is The Risk by Elle Kennedy.

3. 2019 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

I don’t know that I have a debut I’m looking forward to most. I haven’t looked up what books are debuting yet.

 4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2019?

The Bride Test by Helen Hoang. I could have gone with The Risk again, but I wanted to list another book I’m excited to read.

5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2019?

I want to continue to slay my backlist TBR!

6. A 2019 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone (if applicable):

Gert ready for list…You all should read The Last Letter by Rebecca Yarros, Overnight Sensation by Sarina Bowen, Deal with the Devil by Meghan March, and The Hail Mary by Ginger Scott when they release.

And that’s a wrap! I answered all of the questions, but if you have any more for me, let me know. This gives a snapshot of my year in books, but I read so many great ones I probably could have answered the questions several different ways.

Mini Review: The Duet (R.S. Grey)

The Duet
Series: A Heart Novel, #1
Author: R.S. Grey
Publication Date: October 25, 2014
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Fiction, New Adult, Music

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★


When 27-year-old pop sensation Brooklyn Heart steps in front of a microphone, her love songs enchant audiences worldwide. But when it comes to her own love life, the only spell she’s under is a dry one.

So when her label slots her for a Grammy performance with the sexy and soulful Jason Monroe, she can’t help but entertain certain fantasies… those in which her G-string gets more play than her guitars’.

Only one problem. Jason is a lyrical lone wolf that isn’t happy about sharing the stage—nor his ranch—with the sassy singer. But while it may seem like a song entitled ‘Jason Monroe Is an Arrogant Ho’ basically writes itself, their label and their millions of fans are expecting recording gold…

They’re expecting The Duet.

The Duet is my new favorite R.S. Grey novel. It’s also my new favorite rock star romance. I loved everything about it. Brooklyn and Jason start as musicians forced to work together. Their relationship starts off roughly and morphs into something hot and complicated as the book goes on. I really loved how everything was set up. I adored feisty Brooklyn and silent, secretive Jason. They had a chemistry that worked perfectly with their music. I really, really loved the lyrics R.S. Grey included. I wish they were real songs… I could totally imagine this book as a movie!

2018 New Adult Reading Challenge Wrap Up

Hi, guys! This is my monthly update for the 2018 New Adult Reading Challenge. This challenge was created and is hosted by Cátia @ The Girl Who Read Too Much.

This year, I met my goal and read over 150 NA books!!! Woohoo! I get the title of New Adult Supreme. I am shocked I was able to reach this goal. It was looking rough up until December.

Here are the books I read. Links are to the ones I reviewed on this blog.

  1. We Were One by Elizabeth Reyes
  2. Midnight Blue by L.J. Shen
  3. Very Bad Things by Ilsa Madden-Mills
  4. Very Wicked Beginnings by Ilsa Madden-Mills
  5. Very Wicked Things by Ilsa Madden-Mills
  6. Very Twisted Things by Ilsa Madden-Mills
  7. Moonshot by Alessandra Torre
  8. The Vincent Boys by Abbi Glines
  9. The Vincent Brothers by Abbi Glines
  10. The Coaching Hours by Sara Ney
  11. Scoring Wilder by R.S. Grey
  12. From Lukov with Love by Mariana Zapata
  13. Sweet Little Lies by Sierra Hill
  14. Amber by Elle Casey
  15. Emerald by Elle Casey
  16. The Weight of Life by Whitney Barbetti
  17. The Sounds of Secrets by Whitney Barbetti
  18. Penalty by Jacob Chance
  19. Drive by Jacob Chance
  20. Roomies by Christina Lauren
  21. All Lined Up by Cora Carmack
  22. All Broke Down by Cora Carmack
  23. All Played Out by Cora Carmack
  24. Alphas Like Us by Krista & Becca Ritchie
  25. Hot Stuff by Kim Karr
  26. Long Shot by Kennedy Ryan
  27. Beneath This Mask by Meghan March
  28. Beneath This Ink by Meghan March
  29. Shooting for the Stars by Sarina Bowen
  30. For Crosby by J. Nathan
  31. Professor’s Pet by Alex Wolf
  32. Birthday Girl by Penelope Douglas
  33. Bad Judgment by Meghan March
  34. For Finlay by J. Nathan
  35. Bad Boy Brody by Tijan
  36. Six Feet Under by Whitney Barbetti
  37. I Dare You by Ilsa Madden-Mills
  38. Jock Row by Sara Ney
  39. Bane by L.J. Shen
  40. Studly Period by Sarina Bowen
  41. Breathe by Abbi Glines
  42. Because of Low by Abbi Glines
  43. While It Lasts by Abbi Glines
  44. Just For Now by Abbi Glines
  45. Sometimes It Lasts by Abbi Glines
  46. Bad For You by Abbi Glines
  47. Hold On Tight by Abbi Glines
  48. More Than Words by Mia Sheridan
  49. The Allure of Julian Lefray by R.S. Grey
  50. The Allure of Dean Harper by R.S. Grey
  51. Tethered Souls by Beth Flynn
  52. How to Kill a Rock Star by Tiffanie DeBartolo
  53. Sustain by Tijan
  54. A Wish for Us by Tillie Cole
  55. Misbehaving by Abbi Glines
  56. Beautiful Bastard by Christina Lauren
  57. Beautiful Bitch by Christina Lauren
  58. Until the End by Abbi Glines
  59. The Upside of Falling by Meghan Quinn
  60. Pucked by Helena Hunting
  61. Losing It by Cora Carmack
  62. Pucked Up by Helena Hunting
  63. Cry Baby by Ginger Scott
  64. Faking It by Cora Carmack
  65. Pucked Over by Helena Hunting
  66. Want You by Jen Frederick
  67. The Downside of Love by Meghan Quinn
  68. Kings of Rittenhouse by Maya Hughes
  69. Shameless King by Maya Hughes
  70. In Harmony by Emma Scott
  71. Forever Pucked by Helena Hunting
  72. Pucked Under by Helena Hunting
  73. Pucked Off by Helena Hunting
  74. Finding It by Cora Carmack
  75. The Hardest Fall by Ella Maise
  76. Tragic by J.A. Huss
  77. Manic by J.A. Huss
  78. Panic by J.A. Huss
  79. Slack by J.A. Huss
  80. Taut by J.A. Huss
  81. Bomb by J.A. Huss
  82. Guns by J.A. Huss
  83. Happily Ever After by J.A. Huss
  84. Rebel Heart by L.K. Farlow
  85. The Chase by Elle Kennedy
  86. Forget You, Ethan by Whitney G.
  87. The Return by Jennifer L. Armentrout
  88. Reckless King by Maya Hughes
  89. I Wanna Text You Up by Teagan Hunter
  90. Kissing in Cars by Sara Ney
  91. He Kissed Me First by Sara Ney
  92. A Kiss Like This by Sara Ney
  93. Things Liars Say by Sara Ney
  94. Things Liars Hide by Sara Ney
  95. Things Liars Fake by Sara Ney
  96. The Sweet Gum Tree by Katherine AllredB
  97. Fear Me by B.B. Reid
  98. Fear You by B.B. Reid
  99. Fear Us by B.B. Reid
  100. Breaking Love by B.B. Reid
  101. Fearless by B.B. Reid
  102. Wasted Words by Staci Hart
  103. Can’t Text This by Teagan Hunter
  104. The Charlotte Chronicles by Jen Frederick
  105. Be Mine by Jen Frederick
  106. Sweetness by Sierra Hill
  107. Sweet Girl by Sierra Hill
  108. Sweet Disaster by Sierra Hill
  109. The Boy I Grew Up With by Tijan
  110. Royally Yours by Emma Chase
  111. I Bet You by Ilsa Madden-Mills
  112. Best Laid Plans by L.K. Farlow
  113. Sparrow by L.J. Shen
  114. Losing It by Jen Frederick
  115. Taking Control by Jen Frederick
  116. Fair Catch by Meghan Quinn
  117. King by T.M. Frazier
  118. Tyrant by T.M. Frazier
  119. Lawless by T.M. Frazier
  120. Soulless by T.M. Frazier
  121. Preppy: The Life and Death of Samuel Clearwater, Part 1
  122. Preppy: The Life and Death of Samuel Clearwater, Part 2
  123. Preppy: The Life and Death of Samuel Clearwater, Part 3
  124. Pucked Love by Helena Hunting
  125. Cocktales Anthology by Penny Reid and friends
  126. Beautiful Boss by Christina Lauren
  127. Home Tears by Tijan
  128. The Bride by S. Doyle
  129. The Wife by S. Doyle
  130. The Lover by S. Doyle
  131. The Baby by S. Doyle
  132. The Homecoming by S. Doyle
  133. The Fire Between High and Lo by Brittainy C. Cherry
  134. Up in Smoke by T.M. Frazier
  135. The Opportunist by Tarryn Fisher
  136. Dirty Red by Tarryn Fisher
  137. Thief by Tarryn Fisher
  138. Filthy Beautiful Lies by Kendall Ryan
  139. Filthy Beautiful Love by Kendall Ryan
  140. Bring Down the Stars by Emma Scott
  141. Long Live the Beautiful Hearts by Emma Scott
  142. Jock Rule by Sara Ney
  143. Between the Lines by Tammara Webber
  144. Where You Are by Tammara Webber
  145. Good for You by Tammara Webber
  146. Here Without You by Tammara Webber
  147. Fallen Crest High by Tijan (re-read)
  148. Weightless by Kandi Steiner
  149. Fallen Crest Family by Tijan (re-read)
  150. Hotshot Doc by R.S. Grey
  151. Fallen Crest Public by Tijan (re-read)
  152. Fallen Fourth Down by Tijan (re-read)
  153. Fallen Crest University by Tijan (re-read)
  154. Fallen Crest Home by Tijan (re-read)
  155. Fallen Crest Forever by Tijan (re-read)
  156. XO, Zach by Kendall Ryan
  157. Cupcakes & Ink by Helena Hunting
  158. Fighter by Tijan
  159. Diced by Ginger Scott
  160. The Foxe and the Hound by R.S. Grey
  161. Anything You Can Do by R.S. Grey
  162. The Fortunate Ones by R.S. Grey
  163. The Design by R.S. Grey
  164. The Duet by R.S. Grey

Review: Darling, All at Once (Piper Lennox)

Darling, All at Once
Series: The Fairfields, #1
Author: Piper Lennox
Publication Date: August 27, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Fiction

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½


Wasted, covered in glitter, and wearing the ugliest dress in existence.
Also known as: me, the night I stumble into bed with a Fairfield.

Cohen isn’t my type. Not even a little. I mean, other than his legendary family genes, and a smirk that leaves me as breathless as it does enraged.

One night. That’s all I want.

Then daylight comes, and all I want is to forget him. There’s just one problem: that night was too incredible to black out.

Actually, there are two problems.

Now my sister wants me to be her surrogate. To carry her child. To be pregnant.

But, as luck would have it…I already am.

* * *

Wasted, hungover, in that dress or out of it: there’s not a single version of Juliet I don’t find beautiful. Including knocked-up.

I’m a joker. I’m immature. She’s got a long list of reasons why I’m not her type.

But thank God for hormones: now she needs something. Bad. And I can give it to her, in about a hundred different ways.

I promise her our arrangement will stay purely physical.

I’m a liar.

There have been a couple of times lately where Facebook ads for books have sucked me in. Darling, All at Once is one of the books that got my attention enough for me to download it. It sounded so cute and fun.

Darling, All at Once is about Juliet and Cohen’s “backwards” romance. The two meet at Juliet’s sister’s wedding. Juliet, weighed down by being the only single sister left, has a one night stand with easy go lucky Cohen. Their one night stand quickly turns into something more when Juliet learns — while trying to decide whether to be her sister’s surrogate or not — that she’s pregnant. Juliet’s not so sure a relationship with Cohen is the right thing, but he’s determined to win her heart.

This book was exactly what I thought it would be: cute and fun. I loved the way Juliet and Cohen’s relationship happened. Juliet and Cohen were very different people. Juliet was more serious and a planner. Cohen was pretty much a grown up boy. They were two people who wouldn’t normally seem like a perfect match, but they were. Their relationship (or lack of it at times) was not smooth sailing, but bumpy and totally entertaining. I loved how they worked backwards from baby to falling in love.

My favorite thing about this book were all the situations and emotions it combined. There were things that made me laugh. A few time I got a little sad. There were things that made me swoon. Those things were balanced out by things that made me angry with one of the characters. Darling, All at Once was one of those romances that was able to make the mixture of all of that into a great story. I might have thought this book would be cute and fun, but I didn’t realize how much I would come to love it. I loved it so much that I started to read the second book in the series immediately after finishing this one.

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Books I Hope I Find Under the Christmas Tree

Welcome to Top Ten Tuesday!
Merry Christmas to all who celebrate!

Top Ten Tuesday is an original weekly feature created by The Broke and the Bookish and is now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s is Books I Hope I Find Under My Christmas Tree This Morning. Maybe I’ll be lucky enough to find one of these bad boys under there. 😉

1. Hindsight: And All the Things I Can’t See in Front of Me
Author: Justin Timberlake

2. Whiskey in a Teacup: What Growing Up in the South Taught Me About Life, Love, & Baking Biscuits
Author: Reese Witherspoon

3. Good Luck with That
Author: Kristan Higgins

4. Love the One Your With
Author: Lauren Layne

5. Cyndi Lauper:  A Memoir
Author: Cyndi Lauper

6. Becoming
Authors: Michelle Obama

7. The Greatest Love Story Ever Told
Author: Megan Mullally, Nick Offerman

8. The 15 Invaluabe Laws of Growth: Live Them and Reach Your Potential
Author: John C. Maxwell

9. Beautiful Stranger
Author: Christina Lauren

10. Rebel Heart
Author: Vi Keeland, Penelope Ward

A Surprise New Year’s Novella from Ginger Scott!

I don’t know if you guys saw this already, but Ginger Scott just re-released a novella she originally wrote as part of an anthology in 2016. She’s retooled and added more to it. It’s only $0.99 or free on Kindle Unlimited and is only available for a limited time. I am so excited to read this one! Check it out below!

Diced: A New Year’s Romance Novella
Author: Ginger Scott

Find it here —> https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07MMYNZLZ

It’s been 10 years since Jamie Augusthill left Mia Stone’s life, and he
was in a tight pair of handcuffs when he went. Now, she’s finally on the
verge of reaching her dreams. One perfect dinner service at the hottest
new hotel in Vegas means landing her own restaurant. But what happens
when her right hand man turns out to be working against her? Mia needs
help. And there’s really only one person she can call. But damn is it
ever gonna hurt.
Jamie always knew he wanted to stand in front of the love of his life
again one day. He also knew he’d never be ready for it. But the
cut-throat culinary world left him without a choice. He couldn’t ignore
her call for help; he owed her too much.
He owed her everything.
Besides…it’s New Year’s Eve.
Time for new beginnings, and second chances, right?

My review:

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I loved Diced! It was such a fun romance revolving around chefs. I’m not normally into books about chefs because sometimes the food descriptions take over,  but this one was perfectly balanced. I was also impressed with how quickly I connected to the main character and her story. It takes a talented writer to make you feel as connected in a novella as in a full length novel. Ginger Scott achieved that with this one.  It was such a fun holiday read.

Review: Luna and the Lie (Mariana Zapata)

Luna and the Lie
Author: Mariana Zapata
Publication Date: December 12, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Fiction

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★


The problem with secrets is that they’re too easy to keep collecting.

Luna Allen has done some things she would rather no one ever know about. She also knows that, if she could go back in time, she wouldn’t change a single thing.

With three sisters she loves, a job she (mostly) adores, and a family built up of friends she’s made over the years, Luna figures everything has worked out the way it was supposed to.

But when one of those secrets involves the man who signs her paycheck, she can’t find it in her to regret it. Despite the fact that he’s not the friendliest man in the world. Or the most patient.

Sometimes there are things you’re better off keeping to yourself.

When Luna and the Lie released I was in the middle of reading another book. I couldn’t drop it and immediately start reading this one, so I had some time to read reviews as they were posted for Luna by readers I trust. Some were high praising, some total dislike, and others somewhere in the middle. Seeing as I haven’t met a book by Ms. Zapata that I haven’t liked, I wasn’t totally worried that might find myself not enjoying this one so much but it did cross my mind. Still, I went into it with an open mind. I’m happy I didn’t let those not so positive reviews sway me because I had a positive experience reading Luna and the Lie.

If you haven’t read a Mariana Zapata book, I think it’s important to explain that her stories are slow burn romances. Incredibly slow burning — like it usually takes characters until the very end to get together. A lot happens over a long time. That’s probably why her books are so dang long. They’re long, but they’re so good and worth every page. If you have read one or more of her books, you already knew that. I felt Luna and the Lie was a great representation of her writing and the ability it has to pull at one’s emotions. It definitely pulled at mine.

Luna is a character who completely tugged at my heart. The poor thing was the most upbeat, positive person. She could have been a whiny, complaining person and I would have understood. Luna wasn’t, though. I marveled at her positivity and dedication to happiness. It was so inspiring. I do have to point out that she was pretty hard on herself in her head and that did get annoying at times because it was repetitive, BUT it was also easy to relate to. I think we all talk to ourselves like that at times. I found Luna’s pain to be very upsetting. I have to admit that I teared up several times. Anyways. I adored Luna.

I also adored Rip. He wasn’t this shiny, perfect guy. Rip had a history and look that not many would find attractive. His current situation was better, but his past made him gruff and not necessarily friendly or nice. What I loved about Rip was his silent affection for Luna. He showed her niceness in some special ways that mattered more than words. The way their relationship built was sweet — even in the painful moments. Luna and Rip had a special bond and I loved the way it grew.

There were some other great relationships in this book besides the love story between Rip and Luna. I found all of the relationships Luna had with others intriguing. The camaraderie between Luna and her coworkers was really cool. I wouldn’t have minded knowing even more about her relationship with her sisters. That one wasn’t touched on as much as I wanted it to be. It played out exactly like I expected. I also felt like I needed to know more about other members of her family and what was going down with them. That wasn’t fleshed out as much as it could have been. Although, that would have made for a much longer book and this one was long as it was. (Not that I’m complaining. I would take more pages!)

I almost forgot to mention this, but I loved where Luna and the Lie was set. A lot of it takes place at Luna and Rip’s workplace. Luna has a job that many would say is a “man’s job”. I thought the way Mariana Zapata approached that whole subject was smart. I loved that despite the fact that Luna’s job was a “dirtier” one, she was still soft and feminine. That was so cool!

Overall, I cherished every moment I spent with Luna and the Lie. It wasn’t my favorite Mariana Zapata book, but it touched me in ways some of my favorites haven’t. It’s definitely worth a read if you’re a fan of her writing or of slow burn romances.

Review: Late Night Kisses (Whitney G.)

Late Night Kisses
Author: Whitney G.
Publication Date: December 19, 2018
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Holiday, Fiction
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★


The Official Recipe for Nathan Benson:

2 cups cockiness
1 mouth that’s far sexier when it’s shut
1 huge ego that can’t fit in the damn mixer
1 BIG, HARD co—Well, you get the picture…

As a professional baker, I can tell exactly what a man is made of the moment he walks through my shop’s frosted glass doors.

So, the moment Nathan Benson showed up over half an hour late to our blind date (with no explanation), caught the gaze of every woman in the diner with his panty-wetting smile, and said, “I personally don’t think we should waste any more of our time sitting here talking,” after only five minutes of conversation, I knew he was one of the rudest concoctions ever created.

I also knew there was no way in hell I was going to see him again.

Or, so I thought.

Days after I abandoned him on our first date, he tracked me down with one hell of a way to get me to agree to a second one. (And a third, and a fourth.)

I swear if it weren’t for the fact that I was being blackmailed by the sexiest man I’ve ever met, I would’ve reported him to the authorities a long time ago.

Then again, holding out for a few late night kisses (and maybe a bit more) from his mouth of perfection may not be a complete recipe for disaster after all…

I am always excited to hear Whitney G. is releasing a new book or novella. I was even more excited when I realized this time she was giving us a holiday novella. I haven’t read many of those this season, and I’ve been wanting to pick one up.

Late Night Kisses was fun and flirty. It was about two people who meet on a blind date and get off on the wrong foot. Christina is not impressed with Nathan, and it’s up to him to convince her that they’re perfect for each other. That might not sound much like a holiday novella, but set in a town that revolves around Christmas, holiday wishes, snow, and some baking, the holiday cheer was abundant.

I really enjoyed Late Night Kisses. Christina and Nathan had a great enemies to lovers vibe going on like only Whitney G. can write. The banter was sexy and hilarious. I liked both Christina and Nathan. I could feel their instant connection. The start to their relationship was so much fun. Although, I’m not sure I would have given Nathan a second chance at all. I’m glad Christina did.

This was a novella, so it was short and sweet. I liked that and then I didn’t. Whitney G. always makes me want more. I wanted a full length novel and love story out of Late Night Kisses because I would have enjoyed it that much more. I wanted to experience more build up and development. I did get one amazing ending, though!

Review: Beartown (Frederik Backman)

Series: Beartown, #1
Author: Frederik Backman
Publication Date: April 25, 2017
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: Fiction, Contemporary, Sports

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★


The #1 New York Times bestselling author of A Man Called Ove returns with a dazzling, profound novel about a small town with a big dream—and the price required to make it come true.

People say Beartown is finished. A tiny community nestled deep in the forest, it is slowly losing ground to the ever encroaching trees. But down by the lake stands an old ice rink, built generations ago by the working men who founded this town. And in that ice rink is the reason people in Beartown believe tomorrow will be better than today. Their junior ice hockey team is about to compete in the national semi-finals, and they actually have a shot at winning. All the hopes and dreams of this place now rest on the shoulders of a handful of teenage boys.

Being responsible for the hopes of an entire town is a heavy burden, and the semi-final match is the catalyst for a violent act that will leave a young girl traumatized and a town in turmoil. Accusations are made and, like ripples on a pond, they travel through all of Beartown, leaving no resident unaffected.

Beartown explores the hopes that bring a small community together, the secrets that tear it apart, and the courage it takes for an individual to go against the grain. In this story of a small forest town, Fredrik Backman has found the entire world.

I chose to read Beartown because of the rave reviews I read by Stephanie and Brandie. They both loved it. I had a feeling I would like it, too. I was warned that I might find the pace a little slow and the story hard to get into, but it would be well worth it. Was it for me? Well, read on. 😉

Beartown is extremely character driven. I lost count at how many different perspectives there were. Each was important, but it made the beginning cumbersome. With all those different thoughts and backgrounds, it took a long time to get to the main part of the story. I caught myself wondering if it was going to be a book for me. I wasn’t completely sold on Beartown until I got to around page 150 or so. That’s a long build up — especially for someone who reads fast-paced romances normally.

Once I got into the story, I was hooked. Everything began to move faster at that point. The story and characters came together in the best way. The topic was really heavy, but I didn’t find it as depressing as I could have. The author did a phenomenal job showcasing all the different thoughts and opinions surrounding what went down. I was so impressed by that! I was also very impressed with the ending. It wasn’t what I was expecting and I loved it.

It was hard for me to rate this book. I wasn’t in love with it in the beginning, but it definitely won me over in the end. The thing that strikes me the most about Beartown is that the thing that bugged me the most at the beginning of the book is the thing that I loved the most at the end of it. The cumbersome multiple points of view tied things together in a way that had me wishing this 400+ page book wasn’t coming to an end. That proved to me what an outstanding writer Frederik Backman is. I hope to read the sequel some day soon.

Late Night Kisses Release Blitz

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Late Night Kisses, an all new Holiday romance by New York Times Bestselling author Whitney G. is available now!


The Official Recipe for Nathan Benson:

2 cups cockiness

1 mouth that’s far sexier when it’s shut

1 huge ego that can’t fit in the damn mixer

1 BIG, HARD co—Well, you get the picture…

As a professional baker, I can tell exactly what a man is made of the moment he walks through my shop’s frosted glass doors.

So, the moment Nathan Benson showed up over half an hour late to our blind date (with no explanation), caught the gaze of every woman in the diner with his panty-wetting smile, and said, “I personally don’t think we should waste any more of our time sitting here talking,” after only five minutes of conversation, I knew he was one of the rudest concoctions ever created.

I also knew there was no way in hell I was going to see him again.

Or, so I thought.

Days after I abandoned him on our first date, he tracked me down with one hell of a way to get me to agree to a second one. (And a third, and a fourth.)

I swear if it weren’t for the fact that I was being blackmailed by the sexiest man I’ve ever met, I would’ve reported him to the authorities a long time ago.

Then again, holding out for a few late night kisses (and maybe a bit more) from his mouth of perfection may not be a complete recipe for disaster after all…

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Download your copy today!

Amazon US: https://amzn.to/2Lq6ipV

Amazon Worldwide: http://mybook.to/LateNightKissesWG

Add to Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2ry5I0i

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About the Whitney G.:

Whitney G. is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling author. Her books have been published in twelve languages.

Whenever she’s not penning a new novel, you can find her blogging about self-publishing at The Indie Tea, drinking hot coffee, or traveling the world in sweater boots.

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Facebook: Facebook.com/AuthorWhitneyG

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Website: http://www.whitneygbooks.com