Series Review: Flawed Love (Lisa De Jong)

My friend Ari asked me if I had read any books by Lisa De Jong. I told her I had read and enjoyed her Ruin series. Ari said I had to read the Flawed Love series. I honestly think she just wanted to torture me. If you want to find out why I think that, check out my reviews below.

Lies Unspoken
Series: Flawed Love, #1
Author: Lisa De Jong
Publication Date: December 14, 2014
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

I tried hard not to fall for the bad guy.

My new roommate, Blake, is a jerk—an unemployed artist with a chip on his shoulder. I can’t stand him unless his hands are on me. He makes me desperate for him, and everything he makes me feel.

And then there’s my new boss, Pierce–successful, charming, and extremely good-looking. He goes after what he wants, but what does he see in me?

I try to stay away, but I end up in the arms of exactly who I was hiding from. And when I find out what’s being hidden from me, my heart twists in ways it never should.

I thought I knew him.
I didn’t.
The way he kissed me.
The way his hands traveled every inch of my skin.
I thought it meant something, but as it turns out, it was all lies unspoken.

My thoughts:

I don’t even know how to explain my feelings about this book. The writing is exceptional, and De Jong hit me in all the feels — both good and bad. I loved Lila and liked Blake. Their relationship was a disaster in the making, but I still managed to fall for them as a couple.

Things weren’t that simple, though. This is kind of a love triangle towards the end. I’m not a fan, so that’s when things started to get iffy for me. Lies Unspoken went places I didn’t want to go. Blake and Lila both disappointed me. I wasn’t a fan of the third wheel, Pierce. I didn’t like the feelings I got from him. There was just this underlying thing that kept me from liking his character.

Then, there was that cliffhanger. It kept me reading. That’s all I will say about that.

Love Unspoken
Series: Flawed Love, #1
Author: Lisa De Jong
Publication Date: October 17, 2015
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

I lent my heart to the bad boy, and he did exactly what I expected he would. He broke it.

And the guy I should have been with—he’s still here. He tries to take my mind off everything I’ve lost while showing me what I could have. I’m ready for a new start, to fall in love again … to do what I should have done in the first place.

Everything seems perfect.

Then the past comes walking back in. I thought I was over him, but one look and I know that’s not true. We went through too much together for those feelings to completely fade away.

When my past and present collide, how am I supposed to choose? They both love me, and I love them.

A heart will be broken … and it could be mine.

My thoughts:

I hated this book. HATED. It took me places I didn’t want to go. It’s getting 3 stars for 3 reasons:

  1. Lisa De Jong is a talented writer. She wove a complicated tale.
  2. I understood Lila’s up and down feelings and why she made some of the dumb choices she did.
  3. The last couple of chapters and epilogue. They pretty much wiped away my anger.

So what didn’t I like?

Pretty much everything else. The love triangle was in full swing. I was not a fan of Pierce. He was controlling, jealous, and manipulative. Pierce would have done anything to get what he wanted: Lila. It didn’t matter what he knew her true feelings to be. He was more worried about having her for himself. The way Lila played to his demands made me angry. I was so fed up with them both for most of the story.

I do have one complaint about the end, too. There was supposed to be a novella about Blake’s sister. I don’t know that it was released and I really need it right now.

Overall thoughts on this series: If you like a good love triangle and aren’t scared off by OW/OM drama, this has some great angst and even better writing.

Mini Reviews: Books Off My TBR Backlist

Today is all about the mini reviews. I finally finished off my ARCs, so these are all books I’ve had on my TBR for quite a while. It was nice to get them off the list. I even have a series review included.

Love in Lingerie
Series: Unzipped, #1
Author: Alessandra Torre
Publication Date: January 16, 2017
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

I hired her to fix my company, to bring Marks Lingerie back to life. I didn’t expect her to become my friend. I didn’t expect to fall in love with her.

The first rule of business is to never touch your employees. I think there is another rule about not falling for your best friend—a rule against imagining the curves of her body, or the way her breathing would change if I pulled down her panties and unzipped my pants.

Now, I can’t wait any longer. I’m tossing out the rules.

Damn the company.
Damn our friendship.
Damn my fears.

My thoughts:

Oh, boy. I don’t even know where to start with this book. On one hand, I loved it. The chemistry between the characters was off the charts. There was such a sweetness between them and a real friendship developed. On the other, it drove me absolutely crazy with all the angst, OW, OM, and the slowest of slow burns brimming with sexual tension. It was worth every minute of that frustration for how it ended — with a giant smile on my face and happiness in my heart.

Kat Fight
Author: Dina Silver
Publication Date: June 1, 2012
Genre: Contemporary Romance, New Adult

Rating: DNF @ 16%

Synopsis:

The seriously funny, fabulously flawed Kat Porter has arrived, and she may just steal your heart—not to mention your boyfriend. Readers everywhere will revel in this sharp-witted, well-meaning whirlwind in author Dina Silver’s hilarious new novel, Kat Fight. In her quest for love, Kat makes every wrong turn, juggling two men, one best friend, and her own deeply confused heart’s desires.

Kat Porter is a consummate romantic, eager for her chance to find love and commitment. But after her boyfriend of four years, Marc, begins to grow apathetic and sends her calls straight to voicemail one too many times, Kat finally musters the courage to confront her so-called sweetheart, who seems more interested in dodging her than courting her. Though she’s no fan of ultimatums, Kat is at the end of her considerable wits, and lobs a massive one his way, completely confident that he’ll make the right decision when faced with losing her. He doesn’t.

With radio silence from Marc, Kat’s lifelong dream of finding a husband and forging a family is decidedly on the skids. That’s when her childhood friend Julie steps in, forcing Kat on a blind date to help her move beyond the break-up. Not only does Kat botch the setup, she instead finds herself in hot pursuit of Julie’s love interest, Ryan Sullivan. A man who, in addition to literally taking her breath away, is the living, breathing personification of everything Kat wants in a husband.

Can Kat connect with the man of her dreams without hurting two of the people she cares most about? At the same time, she must also contend with the quips of her beloved catty coworker Adam, her bi-polar boss Brooke, and a string of comic, unpredictable plot twists. All the while, Kat’s cheeky perspective and generous heart will leave readers adoring every moment of her journey while chuckling and cheering for the ever cute, razor-sharp Kat as she fights to land the love of a lifetime.

My thoughts:

I picked this book up at Book Bonanza 18 after talking with the author. She told me it was loosely related to how she met her husband and that it was a romantic comedy. That sold me on it, and I really wanted to love it because she was so lovely. I don’t know if it’s my mood or what, but I couldn’t get into the writing style. The MC drove me nuts. There was just something about the tone of her thoughts… I just didn’t feel like spending any more time with her, so I gave up at 16%.

Crash
Series: Crash, #1
Author: Nicole Williams
Publication Date: July 18, 2012
Genre: Mature Young Adult, New Adult, Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Southpointe High is the last place Lucy wanted to wind up her senior year of school. Right up until she stumbles into Jude Ryder, a guy whose name has become its own verb, and synonymous with trouble. He’s got a rap sheet that runs longer than a senior thesis, has had his name sighed, shouted, and cursed by more women than Lucy dares to ask, and lives at the local boys home where disturbed seems to be the status quo for the residents. Lucy had a stable at best, quirky at worst, upbringing. She lives for wearing the satin down on her ballet shoes, has her sights set on Juilliard, and has been careful to keep trouble out of her life. Up until now.

Jude’s everything she needs to stay away from if she wants to separate her past from her future. Staying away, she’s about to find out, is the only thing she’s incapable of.

For Lucy Larson and Jude Ryder, love’s about to become the thing that tears them apart.

My thoughts:

Crash was a mess of craziness that I somehow found myself addicted to. So much happened that wasn’t quite believable. I could see most of the twists coming, but that didn’t stop them from being impactful. Neither Lucy nor Jude was all that likable. Lucy drove me nuts with her inner dialog and the way she reacted to stuff. Jude was crazy controlling and made the worst decisions. So why did I give this book 4 stars? What made this such a great read for me was the relationship between the main characters. The way they were together made me root for them. They truly brought out the best parts of each other. For some reason, that was enough to make me enjoy this book.

Clash
Series: Crash, #2
Author: Nicole Williams
Publication Date: September 1, 2012
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Their Romeo-and-Juliet-level passion is the only thing Jude and Lucy agree on. That, and fighting all the time…

Also not helping? Lucy’s raging jealousy of the cheerleader who’s wormed her way into Jude’s life.

While trying to hang on to her quintessential bad boy and also training to be the top ballet dancer in her class, Lucy knows something’s going to give… soon.

How can she live without the boy she loves? How can she live with herself if she gives up on her dreams? If Lucy doesn’t make the right choice, she could lose everything.

My thoughts:

Clash wasn’t as crazy as Crash, but it had its moments. There are 3 things that had me giving this one 4 stars:

  1. Reformed Jude is a lovable Jude.
  2. There was one of the best cat fights in a book I have read yet.
  3. Lucy frustrated the heck out of me with the immature choices she made, but at least she knew she was the problem.

Crush
Series: Crash, #3
Author: Nicole Williams
Publication Date: April 23, 2013
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Football glory. A giant diamond. A wandering eye.

Jude and Lucy are happily engaged . . . but that doesn’t mean life’s a bed of roses.

Once again, Jude and Lucy are torn apart by football training and a summer job that creates new tensions. This time Jude’s the one with trust issues. Will Lucy’s life-changing news bring them back together or end their relationship for good? Can love triumph forever?

My thoughts:

Oh, boy. Lucy took her brand of crazy to another level here. To be honest, it was SO HARD to read this book because of her insecurities and immaturity. It was hard to believe four years had passed since the last book for her. Which was sad because Jude had matured beautifully for the most part. The only reason this book was worth reading was for the HEA Jude and Lucy finally got. That was super cute.

Review: Varsity Heartbreaker (Ginger Scott)

Varsity Heartbreaker
Series: Varsity, #1
Author: Ginger Scott
Publication Date: May 28, 2020
Genre: Mature Young Adult, Contemporary Romance, Sports
Note: This review is for an ARC from WordSmith Publicity and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Lucas Fuller is a lot of things.
He’s the boy next door.
He’s the first crush I ever had.
He was my first kiss.
He’s also the only person who has ever broken my heart.

For two years, I’ve wondered what happened to the us I used to know.
We were best friends, and then suddenly…we weren’t.
I tried to run away from it. I even changed schools just to make the hurt disappear.
But no matter how hard I tried to not think about Lucas, I just couldn’t stay away from the high school quarterback with perfect blue eyes and so many secrets.

I’m back. We’re seniors now. We’ve grown—all of us. And Lucas Fuller might be different, but I’m different too. This is my time to take risks, to experience life and to fall in love for real.

I want Lucas Fuller to be a part of my story, but I know for that to happen, I need to know the truth about our past.


One of the things I have always loved about Ginger Scott’s writing is that she evolves with each book. It’s like she’s five different writers in one body. To me, that proves how talented a writer she is. I feel like each new release has gotten edgier and spotlighted something different but just as important as the last. While I love that, I have to admit that I have missed her mature YA/NA contemporary sports romances. There’s just something so pure and fun about them. Needless to say, I was SUPER excited when I learned she was returning to that type of romance novel with Varsity Heartbreaker.

Varsity Heartbreaker was exactly what I needed during this crazy time. It got me out of a major book funk. I loved the whole vibe it had going on. It was slightly angsty, but not overly so. June dreads going back to her old high school where her ex childhood best friend and next door neighbor, Lucas, reigns. Her new best friend Abby pushes her to broaden her horizons, which puts her in the same orbit as Lucas. The plot was messy in the best way with a slight mysterious feel wrapped around what went down to make Lucas abandon his friendship with June.

I loved June. Her teenage embarrassment, frustration, and crush were spot on. I usually like my romance novels to have dual points of view, but this one was perfect with just her. I loved being in her mind and experiencing her figuring things out.

Lucas was frustrating to say the least. For much of the book I just wanted to shout at him to give it up and admit to what was going on with him. I’m not complaining about that, though. The secrecy around his character was fabulous for the storyline and June.

With everything going on with June and her feelings toward Lucas, I was surprised that there was actually something (I dare say) even better than their romance going on in this book. I think I might have loved the friendships even more. June and Abby’s was fun. Lucas and Tory’s seemed like a great bromance. The one that really got me, though, was June and Tory’s friendship. That one made me smile so hard and laugh quite a bit. If I was SUPER excited about Varsity Heartbreaker, I don’t even know how to describe how excited I am for Tory’s book. Thank goodness it’s coming up next!

As you can tell, I loved Varsity Heartbreaker. I would bet on the fact that it’s going to be a hit with fans of Wild Reckless, Waiting on the Sidelines, and This is Falling. Or with anyone who loves a mature YA sports romance. It was a great read, one I didn’t want to be over. If I was a cheerleader, I would do some sort of cheer here for Ginger Scott and what a winner she and this book are.

Purchase Varsity Heartbreaker
 
 
 
Head over to Goodreads and vote for Varsity Heartbreaker as a May 2020 Most-Anticipated Romances!
 

Pre-Order books two and three in the series here!
Varsity Tiebreaker – https://amzn.to/2zluA2u
Varsity Rulebreaker – https://amzn.to/3bgh7pN

About the Author:

Ginger Scott is an Amazon-bestselling and Goodreads Choice Award-nominated author of several young and new adult romances, including Waiting on the Sidelines, Going Long, Blindness, How We Deal With Gravity, This Is Falling, You and Everything After, The Girl I Was Before, Wild Reckless, Wicked Restless, In Your Dreams, The Hard Count, Hold My Breath, and A Boy Like You.

Ginger Scott is an Amazon-bestselling and Goodreads Choice Award-nominated author of several young and new adult romances, including Waiting on the Sidelines, Going Long, Blindness, How We Deal With Gravity, This Is Falling, You and Everything After, The Girl I Was Before, Wild Reckless, Wicked Restless, In Your Dreams, The Hard Count, Hold My Breath, and A Boy Like You.

A sucker for a good romance, Ginger’s other passion is sports, and she often blends the two in her stories. (She’s also a sucker for a hot quarterback, catcher, pitcher, point guard…the list goes on.) Ginger has been writing and editing for newspapers, magazines and blogs for more than 15 years. She has told the stories of Olympians, politicians, actors, scientists, cowboys, criminals and towns. For more on her and her work, visit her website at http://www.littlemisswrite.com.

When she’s not writing, the odds are high that she’s somewhere near a baseball diamond, either watching her son field pop flies like Bryce Harper or cheering on her favorite baseball team, the Arizona Diamondbacks. Ginger lives in Arizona and is married to her college sweetheart whom she met at ASU (fork ’em, Devils).

Social Media Links:
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/GingerScottAuthor
Twitter: @TheGingerScott
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/thegingerscott/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/user/GingerScottAuthor
Google: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+GingerScottAuthor/posts
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/GingerScott
Website: http://www.littlemisswrite.com

Review: The F List (Alessandra Torre)

The F List
Author: Alessandra Torre
Publication Date: April 29, 2020
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

There was a lot I did to get to this point, to get 42 million followers. Some of it I was proud of, most of it I wasn’t.

There was a group of us, all internet celebrities, and everyone wanted in, which is how six of us ended up living in this mansion, a camera always on, the public always watching. Two months and nine carefully scripted TV episodes that would get us more of the three F’s we were desperately chasing.

Fame. Fortune. Followers.

I knew my role. I was Emma, the unlikeable one. The dark villain with the devious smile. The package of dynamite that would blow up any chance of peaceful living and harmony.

Cash knew his role. He was the good guy. The lovable one. The one that everyone, even the darkest cast member of them all, would fall in love with.

They were supposed to just be roles.
None of it was supposed to be real.

My heart didn’t get that memo.


If you’re looking for a fun book to take your mind off things, look no further. You’ve found it. The F List is a uniquely written take on two celebrity influencers who hate each other. They end up on a reality show together, and it was non-stop entertainment.

I loved the way this book was written. It gave us both Emma and Cash’s thoughts. They told us what it took to get where they are.  It gave us quotes from people around them. All of this made for a dramatic (but not too dramatic) look at everything that went down. It was all sorts of crazy fun.

Emma and her whole back story drew me in. I didn’t necessarily like her all the time, but somehow she managed to win me over anyways. Cash was instantaneously likable. His situation was very different from hers. Every moment between them would have been true camera gold — if they were real people. It was real book gold as it was. I could totally see this book being made into a TV series or movie. It would be perfect for that.

So, like I said, if you’re looking for a fun way to escape, read this book. If you like reality TV, read this book. If you’re big into Instagram influencers, read this book. I would just recommend reading this book. It’s so entertaining.

Series Review: The Wolf Hotel (Nina West)

Today, I have a series review for The Wolf Hotel by Nina West (AKA: K.A. Tucker).


Rating: ★★★★

So I have to be honest. I hadn’t heard of Nina West or this series until a friend clued me in that K.A. Tucker wrote under a pseudonym. Normally this series isn’t something I would review, but I love Tucker’s other books so I wanted to give it a try.

The Wolf Hotel series is WAY sexier than anything I’ve ever read by Tucker before. It reminds me of some of those popular erotic romances with an innocent college girl and an older, millionaire hero. I guess you could say it’s kind of trope-y in that way. The story felt fresh and new to me, though. I actually really loved most of the storyline.

Abby was a fun heroine. She was so sheltered and out of her element for most of the series. I loved how her character grew a backbone and sense of self. She made some questionable choices that at times enraged me, but I understood her mistakes. There was a lot going on emotionally for her and it felt true to her age.

Henry was a hard guy to always love. We don’t get his POV, so I just had to believe he was going to be worth all the trouble. I think he did a pretty good job proving himself. I found his willingness to let Abby learn about herself and his spurring her on to believe in herself really cool. I liked his surprisingly supportive nature.

There was so much going on between the relationship between Abby and Henry and the plots, that I don’t even know what to say. This series took me on a trip. I especially loved the moments in Alaska at the Wolf Hotel. There were actually a couple other characters I ended up loving more than I thought I would in this series, too. Ronan especially. He proved himself to be a great guy.

If you’re looking for a sexier read that might push your boundaries, this series might be for you. Just be prepared for a lot more than you’re used to from K.A. Tucker as Nina West.

Review: Treyton (J. Nathan)

Treyton
Series: Savage Beasts,#2
Author: J. Nathan
Publication Date: February 3, 2020
Publisher: Amazon Digital Services
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Treyton Collins is Savage Beasts’ drummer.
He’s the band’s resident bad boy with the
tattoos and tongue ring to prove it.
And though his big personality hides secrets and
his smile conceals a troubled past,
no woman has yet to be immune to Treyton’s charm.
That’s why he’s fascinated by the one who is…

Brielle Patrick is Savage Beasts’ publicist.
She couldn’t be any more different than Treyton.
She’s business suits and he’s torn jeans.
She’s bossy and he’s fun-loving.
She’s got an attitude and he can’t stand it.
And, her latest publicity stunt left her on the outs with the band.
But, if nothing else, Brielle is persistent.
And she’ll prove it by spending the summer on tour with the band.
She’s convinced herself she’s there to keep Treyton out of trouble.
But that isn’t the only reason she’s overseas for two months.
She’s searching for something her life is missing.

Is it possible she could find it when she least expects it?
With the guy she least expects to find it with?


I loved Kozart when I read it last year, so reading Treyton was a given for me. I was excited to see what the Savage Beasts were up to as a band, and where life and rock and roll was going to take them. What I wasn’t expecting was a romance between the person who almost ruined Z and Aubrey in the last book and Treyton. This added a really cool aspect in it surrounding trust.

Brielle was one of those buttoned up chicks who spent way too much time trying to be perfect and prove herself to her father. It made her boring, uptight, and she missed out on a lot of life and friendships. I liked seeing her break out of her rut and fall in love.

Treyton was a bada$$ drummer. He wasn’t always the nicest, but his attitude and actions made a lot of sense. I loved how he pushed Brielle’s boundaries and helped her find herself. They were both super strong people, and their relationship made both of them softer somehow.

I don’t want to say too much more because it would give the entire plot away. There’s a lot of great friendship and family moments in this book. I enjoyed reading it a lot. If you like rockstar romances, this is one that is full of summertime fun with just the right amount of emotion and angst spattered through it.

Review: Heartless King (Maya Hughes)

Heartless King
Series: Kings of Rittenhouse, #5
Author: Maya Hughes
Publication Date: April 23, 2020
Genre: Contemporary Romance, New Adult, Sports
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Two blue lines. That means not pregnant, right? Right? Oh, sh*t.

Five years ago, Colm Frost asked me to marry him and I ran. I ran from my painful past too raw and fresh to escape. He was the only one who looked at me like I wasn’t broken and made me believe it. He made me feel it.

Now, he’s the hot, angry, hockey player on the mend.

I’m the physiotherapist who’s supposed to get him back on his feet.

I don’t think our night together was what his doctor prescribed, but that doesn’t mean I haven’t dreamt of him every time I close my eyes. I woke up beside him with my body still singing from the way he fanned the flames of my desire, but I couldn’t stay.

His lips on my neck. His hands wrapped around my waist. His impressive…ahem, touch leaving me breathless.

One moment of wild inhibition and it’s come back to bite me in the butt. Kind of like he did that night.

But a baby? Our night was supposed to be a one time thing, closing a door on the future I couldn’t handle.

Will this new bump in the road be everything we needed to find our forever?

Heartless King is a standalone friends to enemies to lovers, accidental pregnancy romance that brings all the laugh out loud, angsty feels!


I feel like I’ve been waiting on this last Kings of Rittenhouse book for a long time. It was nice to finally get Colm’s story — and his side of things when it came to everything that went down in the last book. I can’t say I loved or even liked how he dealt with Liv and Ford, but finding out how he hit rock bottom cleared some things up. His actions/reactions didn’t make me feel bad for him, but it did make me understand him. When the blurb talks about angst, it’s pretty much all Colm created.

Imogen (or Imo for short) was one of those nice people who give everything to others. She sacrificed so much of herself to her past, her clients, and to Colm. Her journey in this one was just as important as Colm’s — if not more so. So, yeah, she had big stuff going on too.

Colm and Imo together… Sigh. These two had nothing but an uphill battle. A lot of that was due to their separate issues and things only got easier when they worked together. I loved that. I could truly feel their relationship building as they worked through Colm’s injury. Col and Imo were actually great together.

As for the accidental pregnancy… I have some mixed feelings about this one. I don’t wan to give too much away, but how the timing all worked out was fine. It was where things went with it after. I felt like I was missing some doctor appointments and such. I guess maybe that part of the story felt rushed? I mean, I like what the pregnancy did to the love story.

Overall, I found Heartless King to be a great ending to a wonderful series that I will miss.

Review: The Guy in the Middle (Kate Stewart)

The Guy in the Middle
Series: The Underdogs, #3
Author: Kate Stewart
Publication Date: February 29, 2020
Genre: New Adult, Sports, Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

I was born to play and bred to win.

My priorities were instilled in me early on—family and football. Those ideals led me to TGU and a coach whose ironclad principles mirrored my own.

With one last college season to play, my goal was singular—get drafted. By realizing my NFL dream, I could save my family, our ranch, and the only home I’d ever known.

Two birds, one ball.

Playing hard was my only option, but there’s always a wild card.

For all of my planning and hard work, I never anticipated falling for the coach’s daughter. Harper was a fair catch, but who knew loving her could be the one play to throw my career before it started or that the weight of our secret would change the game.


Back when the Team Player 2 Anthology was released, I read a preview of The Guy in the Middle. I had read the first two books in the series and knew I wanted to read this one to finish it off.  To be honest, this book was really hard to review because each part almost feels like a book of its own.

Part 1 is all about Lance and Harper’s college relationship. It’s full of secrecy and falling in love when they least expect it. Things end dramatically for them and they go off to do their own things for a while. I loved how they fell for each other. I wasn’t a big fan of how Part 1 ended at first, mostly because I didn’t want to leave this college setting.

Part 2 is Lance going after he wants, but it’s complicated. Lance and Harper’s lives are in different places. It’s a bittersweet, frustrating section of their relationship. I liked this part, but, like I said, it was frustrating. I wanted to hurry up and get to that happy ending. I was also super shocked by some revelations. I think I got whiplash for a second.

Part 3 is where both Harper and Lance figure their stuff out. It was full of ups and downs, and I loved every angst-filled moment. There were more revelations and reactions and I felt for these characters every minute of it all. I loved how things worked out for Lance and Harper.

I lied. It was actually 4 parts. The Epilogue was basically its own part. At first, I wasn’t sure I liked going back to characters from the first two books. I ended up really liking how it wrapped everything up, though. It was fun to find out where everyone was and how their friendships and relationships weathered.

After writing this all down, I’m still a little confused on my feelings for this story in its entirety. It still feels a little disjointed. When it comes down to it, I did love reading the entire story — even when it stressed me out a bit. I think fans of the series will appreciate how everything came full circle and love Lance and Harper together.

Review: One Big Mistake (Whitney Barbetti)

One Big Mistake
Author: Whitney Barbetti
Publication Date: February 27, 2020
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is an unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

One night together could ruin everything…

Keane Colburn was my best friend. Ever since childhood, we could always count on each other to be there no matter what—though when I confessed my love to him, things didn’t turn out as planned.

Thankfully, my little crush didn’t ruin our friendship. I shoved those feelings to the back of my mind, watching him chase after other girls and silently wishing it was me. I resigned us to friendship—that was more important than anything else.

But a drunken one-night stand changed everything. Because even though we vowed to forget about it, I couldn’t get it out of my head. And as old memories began to rise to the surface, our lives collided in ways we had never imagined.


I’ve been in this weird reading mood lately — almost a funk of sorts. I’ve read some good books and I’ve read some mediocre books. When One Big Mistake hit my Kindle, I thought, “This is the book I’ve been waiting for.” I don’t know how I knew it was going to get me out of my funk, but I was right. One Big Mistake WAS the book I was waiting for.

Why? Well, let me break it down without giving too much away.

This is a best friends to lovers story that starts off with an accidental bang…if you know what I’m saying. Keane and Navy have a lot of feelings to work through. Navy – her unrequited crush on Keane. Keane – not seeing Navy as someone other than a best friend. It’s all very cute, even when it was a little distressing.

Navy is a nice girl who tries to help everyone. She puts herself last. The little distressing I talked about before goes with this aspect of her personality. It is both one of the best and worst things about her. A few times I wanted to give her a good shake. Keane, on the other hand, is a much more relaxed character. He is kind of oblivious, but totally lovable. Together, they balance each other out in a good way. Their friendship and possible relationship is super sweet and all sorts of fun.

A couple other things to come play in this book. Family has a big impact. Keane’s family issues are subtler in this book, but just as important as the family drama going on in Navy’s life. Navy’s sisters…Oh please, dear God. Do not let my daughter act like them when she gets older!

One thing that surprised me was I expected other friends to be a bigger part of this book.  This books is related to One Little Lie and I just expected those characters to be a larger part of the story. They all weren’t, but at least Tori played a little part. Navy’s interactions with her were priceless and important.

Overall, One Big Mistake was a great best friends to lovers romance. I could tell Whitney Barbetti put a lot of thought into the actions and reactions of Keane and Navy. Their relationship felt like something that could truly happen in real life between best friends. I loved every minute of it.

Mini Reviews: Doughn’t Let Me Go, Fake It ‘Til You Break It, Bad Business & AWK-WEIRD

Doughn’t Let Me Go
Series: Slice, #3
Author: Teagan Hunter
Publication: February 6, 2020
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

It was just supposed to be one night.

No kissing. No feelings. A wham-bam-thank-you-ma’am tangle in the sheets and we go our own ways.

Only it’s a small town, and I was bound to run into the irresistible Porter Jones again.

I just didn’t expect it to be at my job interview…which he’s conducting.

Now the live-in nanny to his adorable seven-year-old daughter, I’m doing my best to avoid falling for his charms.

Except it’s much harder than either of us anticipated.

What’s a few romps between friends?
No kissing. No feelings. Just fun.

Sounds simple, right?
Right…

My thoughts:

The Slice series just gets better and better with each book. I adored Doughn’t Let Me Go. It was both funny and sweet. There were so many little tugs at my heart from both Porter and Dory’s back stories. I loved Porter’s relationship with his daughter and how Dory fit into that. Everything was just so perfect! Porter and Dory’s story was just what I hoped it would be.

Fake It ‘Til You Break It
Author: Meagan Brandy
Publication: February 5, 2020
Genre: New Adult, Mature YA, Contemporary Romance, Sports

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

Fake.
That’s what we are.
That’s what we agreed to be.

I thought it would be harder, convincing everyone our school’s star receiver was mine and mine alone, but we played our parts well.

So well, the lines between us began to blur until they disappeared completely.

The thing about pretending, though, someone’s always better at it, and by the time I realized my mistake, there was no going back.

I fell for our lie.
And then everything fell apart.

It turned out, he and I were never playing the same game.

He didn’t have to break me to win.
But he did it anyway.

My thoughts:

Fake It ‘Til You Break It is hands down my favorite book I’ve read by Meagan Brandy. While it was angsty and drama filled like her previous books, it also felt less crazy and lighter. The fake relationship between Demi and Nico was actually super cute and I loved their transition from almost enemeies to boyfriend/girlfriend. There were still some a little out there twists and absent parents, but while I noticed those things they didn’t ruin my reading experience. I appreciated that there wasn’t some crazy cliffhanger. This is Meagan Brandy’s best book yet. I’m hoping she writes more romances like this one.

Bad Business
Series: Bad Boys of Sports, #2
Author: Nicole Edwards
Publication: March 27, 2018
Publisher: Loveswept
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

This player’s got a lot to learn if he wants to score . . . with the boss’s daughter.

Stone: Football is more than a game to me. It’s my calling. Becoming the Dallas Wranglers’ starting quarterback before I retire is a dream come true, but with a few wins under my belt, suddenly everyone wants a piece of me. And even though being in the spotlight has its perks—beautiful women, star treatment, more beautiful women—what really gets me sweating is the watchful gaze of my sexy-as-hell PR coach, Savannah Andrews. The catch? Her father is kind of my boss. . . .

Savannah: In my family, football is big business. When your dad owns an NFL franchise, you learn a thing or two about schmoozing, and from what I can tell, it’s not a skill in Jason Stone’s playbook. Sure, the veteran quarterback is literally larger than life. With broad shoulders, muscles on muscles, and a mouth made for kissing, he may be one of the hottest men in the league—and I should know. I’ve turned down enough players to start my own all-star team. But those guys just wanted to get close to my father. Meanwhile, Stone is getting temptingly close . . . to me.

My thoughts:

I had a hard time rating this book. I loved the instant chemistry between the characters and the general story line. What kept me from rating it higher was that it was kind of anti-climactic. There was a build up to drama that just kind of fizzled out. The love story was so good, though.

AWK-WEIRD
S
eries: Ice Knights, #2
Author: Avery Flynn
Narrators: Tim Paige, Kelsey Navarro
Publication: October 11, 2019
Publisher: Dreamscape Media, LLC
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

There’s more to me than just being awk-weird. I own my own flower shop, have some great friends, and I have my eye on adopting the most adorable kitten. But sadly, hot guys don’t tend to be blown away by my trivia-spouting, dorky self.

So when a Thor-lookalike who happens to be a professional hockey player hits on me at my bestie’s wedding rehearsal party… You better believe I climbed that tree like a cat. And the fact that it happened not once, not twice, but three times? Yeah, that’s pretty much a once-in-a-lifetime experience for a woman like me.

There’s zero chance I’ll end up ever seeing him again…right?

Until the pregnancy test comes up positive. What happens next?

Oh my God, I wish I knew…

My thoughts:

This book wasn’t awkward or weird. It was totally adorable from beginning to end. I loved Tess and Cole. It was just such a cute romance. I couldn’t stop listening to it.