Review: Christmas in the City

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Authors: L.J. Shen, Vi Keeland, Penelope Ward, Helena Hunting, Corinne Michaels, Melanie Harlow, Sierra Simone, Kennedy Ryan, Penny Reid, L.H. Cosway, Sarina Bowen, Elle Kennedy
Publication Date: November 26, 2019
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Twelve bestselling authors have come together to brighten your holiday with six ALL NEW co-written novels. Travel through six cities and fall in love with these enchanting love stories.

Helena Hunting & L.J. Shen
Just The Tip
It’s not every day you meet a stranger who knows how to jingle your bells…

Corinne Michaels & Melanie Harlow
Baby it’s Cold Outside
My Christmas list did not include a broken heart, freezing temperatures, or my tree stuck in the door to my apartment building, but that’s what I got. Just when I thought Santa had failed me, I got something I never thought to ask for …

Vi Keeland & Penelope Ward
Kissmas in New York
It was just supposed to be a simple kiss with a stranger.  I’d done it to prove a point–that I hadn’t lost my sense of adventure. But you know what they say about the best laid plans. Maybe I’d get something in my stocking after all this holiday season…

Sierra Simone & Kennedy Ryan
The Christmas Crown
Noelani, queen of Manaroa, has one mission on her diplomatic visit to the States: forge strategic alliances for her homeland. When she meets brooding security specialist Brock Grimsby, their unexpected alliance heats up the holiday. One night. No promises, but come Christmas, will either be able to walk away?

Penny Reid & LH Cosway
Songbird
Two lonely souls find companionship in Dublin for one magical night. Broderick Adams doesn’t mind his solitude, until she walks in. Ophelia Kelly sings to heal her heart, but has no idea he’s listening.

Elle Kennedy & Sarina Bowen
EPIC
Jamie and Wes are having a blast living and working in Toronto. Until a scout for another team swoops in to make one of them an offer that might complicate the life they’ve built together.

CHRISTMAS IN THE CITY is a holiday gift as a thank you! It is available for a LIMITED TIME!


I have to admit I didn’t know who all was a part of of this anthology before purchasing because all I saw was Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy & Jamie & Wes and hit one-click. Then, I got the added bonus of seeing several authors I’ve read and loved. This Christmas in the City collection is a no-brainer. Fans will want to read it. Here are my reviews for each short story.

Just the Tip ★ ★ ★ ★ ½
The chemistry in this one was HOT. It got almost a little nutty, but that added a funny aspect to the story.

Baby It’s Cold Outside ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I really loved this collaboration. I’ve only read one of the books they collaborated on before and it wasn’t my favorite, but this one was really fun. I loved the little connections in it.

Kissmiss in New York ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I love Keeland & Ward’s collaborations and this novella was no different. It was so much fun to read and managed to surprise me.

The Christmas Crown ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Simone + Kennedy = FIRE
There’s really no other way to describe their writing together. They make insta-love work in this short story.

Songbird ★ ★ ★ ★ ½
This Reid-Cosway collaboration was shorter than I wanted, but I really enjoyed it. I would love to see it become a full length novel.

EPIC ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Wesmie… Wes & Jaime… It’s always a pleasure to be back in their world. I love where this short story went. I would have been even happier if it was a full length novel because, well, Wesmie…

So, yeah. This was an EXCELLENT compilation of Christmas themed romance. I highly recommend it and it’s FREE for a limited time.

Reviews: Would Like to Meet (Rachel Winters)

Would Like to Meet
Author: Rachel Winters
Publication Date: December 3, 2019
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Women’s Fiction
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

In this charming, feel-good debut novel, a cynical assistant at a screenwriting agency must reenact the meet-cute scenes from classic romantic comedy movies in order to help her #1 client get his scriptwriting mojo back–but can a real-life meet-cute be in store for someone who doesn’t believe in happily ever after?

After seven years as an assistant, 29-year-old Evie Summers is ready to finally get the promotion she deserves. But now the TV and film agency she’s been running behind the scenes is in trouble, and Evie will lose her job unless she can convince the agency’s biggest and most arrogant client, Ezra Chester, to finish writing the script for a Hollywood romantic comedy.

The catch? Ezra is suffering from writer’s block–and he’ll only put pen to paper if singleton Evie can prove to him that you can fall in love like they do in the movies. With the future of the agency in jeopardy, Evie embarks on a mission to meet a man the way Sally met Harry or Hugh Grant met Julia Roberts.

But in the course of testing out the meet-cute scenes from classic romantic comedies IRL, not only will Evie encounter one humiliating situation after another, but she’ll have to confront the romantic past that soured her on love. In a novel as hilarious as it is heartwarming, debut author Rachel Winters proves that sometimes real life is better than the movies–and that the best kind of meet-cutes happen when you least expect them.


Would Like to Meet was a strange reading experience for me. I loved the opening scenes, but then I hit a weird patch where I wasn’t really into the book. I think I need to blame that on my mood. I was super tired. I set the book down for the day and when I came back to it, it picked up for me in a couple of chapters. I was into the story for pretty much the rest of the book.

What I liked about Would Like to Meet:

  • The meet-cutes. They were hilarious!
  • Ben. He was quiet and a little judge-y, but I totally identified with his judging. I was judging Evie in a similar way. Plus, he was the perfect love interest for the story.
  • Anette. She’s Ben’s daughter and involved in all the cuteness of the story. I loved the part she played in this romance.
  • Ezra/NOB. He was a great villain. I loved his ridiculousness.
  • All the awkward, horrible mistakes Evie made.
  • The writing was good for a début author.

Things I disliked:

  • The screenplay sections at the beginning of each chapter. They fit the story, I just wasn’t a fan of them. They bogged down my reading experience.
  • Evie. I wasn’t a fan of her. She drove me nuts because she was so oblivious. If I could see what was coming, why couldn’t she? It was that predictable.
  • It needed more Ben and Anette.

Overall, I enjoyed reading Would Like to Meet. It wasn’t my favorite book, but there were a lot of great things about it. I really loved all the awkward meet-cutes and the parts with Ben and Anette. It was a strong début novel, and I’m looking forward to seeing what’s next for this author.

Series Review: Kiss Me (Emma Hart)

Emma Hart is one of those authors who can be hit or miss for me — most being hits. I really wanted to read the second book in the Kiss Me series, so I decided to go ahead and binge the entire thing. Here are my short but sweet thoughts on each of these Contemporary Romances.


Kiss Me Not★ ★ ★

To be honest, Kiss Me Not is not my favorite Emma Hart novel. It was a fun read, but it didn’t feel like it had much of story to it. Halley’s personality was kind of off-putting. She was supposed to be cooky and she her weirdness as something to hide behind, but I didn’t really find her all that cooky besides the racoon thing. I didn’t get the enemies vibe she had going with Preston. She had a crush on him, yet she threw all this nasty banter his way. He gave it right back, but it just didn’t make sense to me. What was adorable was the way Halley and Preston ended up getting together. The end of the book reinforced that fact that I wanted to read Kiss Me Tonight.


Kiss Me Tonight★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Kiss Me Tonight was almost everything I hoped it was going to be. I loved Reagan and Noah together. The way they met over text was hilarious and continued to be hilarious as they texted throughout the story. Reagan was a little over the top, but her personality felt true to her character. Noah was, well Noah. I loved him. The only slight issue I had with this story was the short length of time it took place over. I would have loved to have seen it play out over months, not just weeks.


Kiss Me Again★ ★ ★ ★

Kiss Me Again was and wasn’t a lot like Kiss Me Not. Again, both Ava and Ethan have been secretly in love with each other for years. They also treat each other like dirt and argue constantly. Their connection, Ava’s brother Leo, has always known they like each other. That’s where the similarities end. Ava and Ethan go all out war with each other and I loved the hi-jinks. I still didn’t get the animosity, but it was easy to stomach this go around. I enjoyed this one more than the first one. It had me laughing a lot.

Overall thoughts on this series:

Kiss Me ties together by the three best friends who are main characters. They all had over the top personalities that would probably rub a lot of men or even people wrong. Halley and Ava’s enemies (or really you could just call it being mean to your crush) relationships were almost too similar. My favorite of the bunch had to be Reagan’s book with all the hilarious texting. Overall, it was a good series.

WWW Wednesday: November 27, 2019

Welcome to WWW Wednesday!

WWW Wednesday is a meme hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words. The purpose is to share what I’ve reading lately. The three W’s stand for:

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


Recently Read

This week I read an ARC of Enemies and Headstrong Like Us (Like Us, #6). Then I binge read the Kiss Me series.


Sadly, I had one DNF this week. I love Kristan Higgins’s other books, but Life and Other Inconveniences wasn’t for me. Emma drove me too insane to finish.

Currently Reading

I’m reading House of Scarlett (Legend Trilogy, #2)

I’m also listening to The How & the Why.

Reading Next

Next I’m planning to read The Lineup.

What are you reading? Make sure to leave me your link below so I can check out your post. 🙂

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Books I’m Thankful For

Welcome to Top Ten Tuesday!

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 topic is:

Thankful Freebie: Ten Books I’m Thankful For

1. Bright Side
Author: Kim Holden

There’s a big message in this book that spoke to me. It made me think about how I live my life and how I want to.

2. The Other Side
Author: Kim Holden

Another Kim Holden book…This one was a good reminder to me that you can’t judge a book or someone by their cover.

3. Far from the Tree
Author: Robin Benway

I’m an adoptee and while I hadn’t been through what these characters had been through, I could identify with some of their thoughts. For some reason, that brought me some peace.

4. Me Before You
Author: Jojo Moyes

I am thankful for this book because it made me reexamine some of my personal beliefs.

5. The Villa
Author: Nora Roberts

I am thankful for all of the Nora Roberts’ books I have read, but this is the one I feel like really got me into reading as an adult.

6. Slammed
Author: Colleen Hoover

It’s not my favorite CoHo book, but it’s the first one I read and it is the book that introduced me to CoHo’s writing which got me into New Adult romance.

7. Always Time to Die
Author: Elizabeth Lowell

This was the first audiobook I ever listened to. My old boss let me borrow it and I was hooked not only on Elizabeth Lowell romantic suspense but on listening to audiobooks on my commute home.

8. Tapping the Billionaire
Author: Max Monroe

I’m thankful for this book because it’s over the top funny. Sometimes I just need a good laugh and reading this book gave me an author to look for when I need a pick me up read.

9. Grip
Author: Kennedy Ryan

Grip beautifully encompassed so many important issues like racial profiling, interracial relationships, family and forgiveness. It taught me so much while making me feel so much.

10. Nine Minutes
Author: Beth Flynn

This book taught me to 1. not judge a book by its cover, and 2. to challenge myself by picking up books that might make me uncomfortable.

Review: The Rebel King (Kennedy Ryan)

The Rebel King
Series: All the King’s Men Duet, #2
Author: Kennedy Ryan
Publication Date: November 18, 2019
Publisher: Scribechick Media, LLC
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Ambition. Revenge. Love.

Rita Award-winning author Kennedy Ryan delivers the gripping conclusion to the All the King’s Men Duet.

Raised to resist. Bred to fight. Survival is in my blood and surrender is never an option.

Though surrender is what Maxim Cade demanded of my body and heart, I had other plans. We were fast-burning fascination and combustible chemistry, but the man I trusted with everything was a trickster. A thief who stole my love. If what we had was a lie, why did it feel so real? The man I swore to hate will have it all, and wants me at his side. But power is a game, and we’re the pawns and players.

Facing insurmountable odds, will we win the world, or will we lose it all?


I’m at a loss for words after finishing The Rebel King. I’m in a state of shock and awe. I don’t know what I expected, but whatever it was, it wasn’t the direction this book ended up taking. Some parts killed me emotionally. Other parts brought my heart back to life. The Rebel King had the perfection storm of emotions and once again proved why Kennedy Ryan is a force in the contemporary romance world. She always teaches me so much when she could simply entertain. I’m in awe of her writing, her research, and her heart. The Rebel King was worth every frustrating minute of wait over the three-week period after the The Kingmaker release. It was a satisfying end to an outstanding duet.

YA Mini Reviews: Girl at Heart & One of the Girls

Today, I’m sharing with you two YA contemporary sports romances I read recently. I put them in this mini review together because while they’re written by two different authors, they are part of the same Roosevelt High School world/series.

Girl at Heart
Author: Kelly Oram
Publication Date: November 4, 2019
Publisher: Bluefields
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance, Sports

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

As the daughter of a successful Major League pitcher, Charlie Hastings has baseball in her blood. Unfortunately, being the only girl on her high school baseball team, Charlie has always been just one of the guys.

When her best friend, and secret love of her life, asks another girl to the prom, Charlie is devastated. She’s tired of being overlooked by boys because she’s not like other girls. Suffering a massive identity crisis, she decides to hang up her cleats and finally learn how to be a girl.

But with only two weeks until the state championships, the Roosevelt High Ravens can’t afford to lose their star catcher. Team captain Jace King makes her a deal: Don’t quit the team, and he’ll help her become the girl she’s so desperate to be. After all, he’s got four sisters, one of whom happens to be a cheerleader. He knows a thing or two about girls. (And if he can win her heart in the process, all the better.)

From the bestselling young adult author of Cinder & Ella, V is for Virgin, and the Avery Shaw Experiment comes a new sweet romance that’s sure to leave you with all the feels! Girl at Heart is a clean and wholesome sports romance that will leave you with warm fuzzies and an itch to watch a baseball game.

My thoughts:

First, can I just love on this cover? The colors are all so pretty together and it’s just so adorable. It fits the book so well. As for what’s inside the book… I loved every minute of Girl at Heart. It’s the story of a girl who is on the high school boys’ baseball team. She’s always been “just one of the guys”, but Charlie wants to be seen as a girl. Girl at Heart is a really sweet story about Charlie finding herself and falling in love. I was surprised by the emotions I felt while reading it (I teared up and had to stop myself from sobbing, guys.) and the way things played out. It was more than I expected it to be. That shouldn’t have been a shock since I’ve read and loved Oram’s books before, but it was. I loved it so much that when I saw there was another book set in this world with characters I recognized, I knew I needed to read that book, too.

One of the Girls
Author: Robin Daniels
Publication Date: June 20, 2019
Publisher: Bluefields
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary Romance, Sports

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

FROM ENDZONE TO FRIENDZONE…

Senior Nick Moody is the second string quarterback on Roosevelt High School’s championship football team. He’s crushed on Mia for years, but she doesn’t know he exists. It’s time to come off the bench and into the game. Nick refuses to graduate without getting the girl or the glory.

Mia Ashlock is the remarkably kind cheer captain. She’s a yes girl, and her penchant for people pleasing always leads to bad relationships. After being humiliated in a very public dumping, her teammates decide to break her bad habit with a ban on boyfriends.

When Nick sees a poster, advertising cheer tryouts, he has a crazy idea: quit football and become a cheerleader. It’s perfect! He can get close to Mia and steal the spotlight, using his true and hidden talent—gymnastics. Nick and Mia have instant chemistry, but it does him little good. If Mia’s zero dating rule weren’t bad enough, the team treats him less like boyfriend material and more like one of the girls. Breaching the friendzone will be much harder than he thought.

Content: This book contains kissing along with limited/mild swearing and minimal inuendo/crude humor. No explicit language or references to sex.

My thoughts:

Like I said above, this book is connected to Oram’s by the setting and some characters. It actually came out first, but it doesn’t matter which order you read them in. I had never read a book by Robin Daniels before, but I want to read more of them now. I loved One of the Girls just as much as Girl at Heart. This book was opposite that one as it was a boy joining the cheerleading squad. Nick was joined to use his gymnastics skills and to win cheerleading captain Mia’s heart. It was so sweet and definitely a feel good story.

I really, really hope there are more books to come set at Roosevelt High. Whether they’re from Daniels, Oram, or another author, I would happily read them.

Review: The One for You (Roni Loren)

The One for You
Series: The Ones Who Got Away, #4
Author: Roni Loren
Publication Date: December 31, 2019
Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

The highly-anticipated fourth book in Roni Loren’s unforgettable The Ones Who Got Away series.

She got a second chance at life.
Will she take a second chance at love?

Kincaid Breslin wasn’t supposed to survive that fateful night at Long Acre when so many died, including her boyfriend—but survive she did. She doesn’t know why she got that chance, but now she takes life by the horns and doesn’t let anybody stand in her way

Ashton Isaacs was her best friend when disaster struck all those years ago, but he chose to run as far away as he could. Now fate has brought him back to town, and Ash doesn’t know how to cope with his feelings for Kincaid and his grief over their lost friendship. For Ash has been carrying secrets, and he knows that once Kincaid learns the truth, he’ll lose any chance he might have had with the only woman he’s ever loved.


Roni Loren saved the best for last with The One for You. It is by far my favorite book in The Ones Who Got Away series. I want to say there was something so special about it, but it wasn’t just one thing. It was the whole package.

Kincaid has always been the character who stood out for me throughout the whole series. She’s the reason why I kept reading the series because I didn’t want to miss out on anything that led up to her book. I was greatly rewarded for keeping up with the series because Kincaid’s story was EVERYTHING. She thought she lost everything that fateful night of the shooting. While she did lose someone very important to her, she didn’t lose everything. I loved how it took her estranged best friend Ash turning up in town to show her that.

Ash… I didn’t expect his back story to be as important to me as Kincaid’s, but it was. He was such a great guy. He was generous and kind. Ash truly wanted the people he loved to be happy, even if it was at his own expense. His friendship with Kincaid and the direction it took in this book warmed my heart. It was the type of best friends to lovers / almost second chance at love story a romance reader loves.

I truly adored The One for You. It brought the entire The Ones Who Got Away series full circle and ended it in the best way possible. Kudos to Loren for giving us the story we have been waiting for.

WWW Wednesday: November 20, 2019

Welcome to WWW Wednesday!

WWW Wednesday is a meme hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words. The purpose is to share what I’ve reading lately. The three W’s stand for:

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


Recently Read

I started this week with two connected YA books, Girl at Heart and One of the Girls. Then I read ARCs of Echoes Between Us and Would Like to Meet. I also read Hindsight: And All the Things I Can’t See In Front of Me. It was like 80% pictures and most of the rest was fluff. Finally, I read Conheartists.

Currently Reading

I’m reading The Rebel King (All the King’s Men Duet, #2)

.

Reading Next

Next up should be an ARC of Enemies.

What are you reading? Make sure to leave me your link below so I can check out your post. 🙂

Cover Reveal: The Lineup (Meghan Quinn)

THE LINEUP COVER REVEAL!!

MQTheLineupBookCover55x85_HIGH

Want to know a secret? It’s about that girl over there. Don’t look, but she’s the one in the power suit—with the long, black hair and the serious expression, the one I’m about to go on a date with . . . Yeah, according to her, she “accidentally” donated an obscene amount of money to my charity — The Lineup — to win said date but I found out the truth. Miss. Button Up Blouse has a secret, passionate crush on me. I didn’t know her name until two days ago, despite the friends we have in common. Was I oblivious? Probably. Was I blind to it? Definitely. But I’m no fool, I see it now. The High Heel Harlot wants more than just a date with Jason Orson, she wants to be able to claim the best butt in baseball as hers. Here’s another secret . . . she has no idea I know.

THE LINEUP RELEASES DECEMBER 5TH!!!!

Add to your Goodreads TBR: https://bit.ly/2ZxlFGJ
Pre order your copy here: mybook.to/THELINEUP USEUSEUES FULL WRAP ABOUT THE AUTHOR: USA Today Bestselling Author, wife, adoptive mother, and peanut butter lover. Author of romantic comedies and contemporary romance, Meghan Quinn brings readers the perfect combination of heart, humor, and heat in every book. M_Quinn_photo Facebook | Follow on Goodreads | Website | Amazon Author Page | Instagram | Follow on BookBub