Mini Reviews: Boss Man Bridegroom & Riven Knight

Boss Man Bridegroom
Author: Meghan Quinn
Publication Date: January 23, 2020
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

“Will you do me the greatest honor of all time and be my bridegroom?” she asks, hope in her eyes . . .

How did I get here? My assistant, bent on one knee, holding my hand, her expectant face waiting for an answer.

Just . . . how?

How did I go from being insulted by Charlee Cox to hiring her to be my assistant? How is it that she’s chaos in color – making me crazy and my life better at the same time?

I never thought I would be staring down at her bright blue eyes begging me to go along with this ridiculous scheme I suggested.

Yes, I suggested. Like the idiot I am, I thought hey, why not start an HR nightmare and have my assistant ask me to marry her?

Confused? Don’t worry, so am I.

But try to follow along, because this is how I became Boss Man Bridegroom.

My thoughts:

Boss Man Bridegroom was absolutely adorable. It had the humor and romance I have come to expect from Meghan Quinn. Rath was uptight, but also super sweet. Charlie was extra in the best way. I loved every minute of them falling in love. If you love fake relationships that turn real or office romances, this book is for you. If you’re unfamiliar with Meghan Quinn’s writing, but love a good romantic comedy, you could start with this book. Or you could do yourself a favor and start with Diary of a Bad Boy and then read The Secret to Dating Your Best Friend’s Sister before reading this one. Each book is a ton of fun and they feature three male best friends finding love.


Riven Knight
Series: Tin Gypsies, #2
Author: Devney Perry
Publication Date: January 21, 2020
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

Genevieve Daylee didn’t expect to be standing in front of a judge on her twenty-seventh birthday. But ever since her life became entangled with a former motorcycle gang, she’s learned not to expect anything but trouble.

Her mother, a woman she once admired and adored, is gone, leaving behind a trail of secrets and lies. She’s living in a tiny apartment above a garage owned by her brother, a man who loathes her very existence. And the father she met beside her mother’s grave is as much of a stranger as Isaiah Reynolds, the broken man with soulless eyes standing beside her in front of the judge.

Isaiah is her protector from the murderer at large in Clifton Forge. Though he’s more like a riven knight in dented armor than a prince on a white stallion. She knows next to nothing about him, other than he works as a mechanic. As of tonight, he’ll be sharing her bathroom.

And, according to the judge, Isaiah is now her husband.

My thoughts:

I liked Riven Knight even more than Gypsy King. It started out much quicker for me and I immediately bonded with the characters. Genevieve and Isaiah’s story was kind of a slow burn filled with all sorts of sexual tension. I loved how they navigated their new situation. I liked the mystery aspect of things. The only thing I wasn’t a fan of was probably one of the biggest twists because I didn’t think it needed to go there…but that’s my personal opinion. Overall, a great addition to this new series.

Review: Frenemies (Emma Hart)

Frenemies
Author: Emma Hart
Publication Date: January 28, 2020
Publisher: Emma Hart
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

There are some things you just have to deal with. Like your hot as hell college booty call moving in next door with his adorable daughter. The only time we’ve ever gotten along is under the sheets. Old habits die hard because two minutes on my front porch is how long it takes us to bicker. Not that a little fact like that bothers my healthy, eighty-year-old grandmother and roommate who’s determined to see me married before she bites the dust. Unfortunately for me, she’s got her eye set on Mason Black. She’s barking up the wrong tree. He’s not The One, no matter how much I swoon when I see him with his daughter. I have no intentions of rekindling anything with him—until a rubber spider in my mailbox starts off the mother of all neighborhood prank wars, just like the ones we had in college, and throws me right into his path. One that leads right to his bedroom…


Frenemies did in 160 pages what some books can’t do in 400. It told a complete love story filled with just the right amount of banter and hilarious hi-jinks. I loved Mason and his daughter Maya. I adored Imogen and her crazy Grandma Jen. I was invested in the romance from the beginning until the very end. There wasn’t really any angst or drama. This novella was just a fun filled read. It’s great for anyone looking for a quick, light romantic read.

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Emma Hart is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of over thirty novels and has been translated into several different languages. She is a mother, wife, lover of wine, Pink Goddess, and valiant rescuer of wild baby hedgehogs. Emma prides herself on her realistic, snarky smut, with comebacks that would make a PMS-ing teenage girl proud. Yes, really. She’s that sarcastic.

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Review: Heartland (Sarina Bowen)

Heartland
Series: True North, #7
Author: Sarina Bowen
Publication Date: January 28, 2020
Publisher: Tuxbury Publishing LLC
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

An emotional friends to lovers romance full of risky secrets and late-night lessons in seduction.


Dylan is my best friend, and the only person in my life who understands me. He doesn’t mind my social awkwardness or my weird history. The only glitch? He doesn’t know that I’ve been hopelessly, desperately in love with him since the first day we picked apples together in his family’s orchard.
But I know better than to confess.
Now that we’re both in college together, I’m seeing a new side of him. College Dylan drinks and has a lot of sex. None of it with me.
Until the night I foolishly ask him to tutor me in more than algebra…and he actually says yes.
But the cool morning light shows me how badly I’ve endangered our friendship. And I don’t know if anything will be the same again.


From the moment I opened Heartland, I felt like I was back where I needed to be. Reading a True North novel is like coming home. Well, all of Sarina Bowen’s books feel like coming home to me, but especially this series. There’s just something about small farm town Vermont that makes me feel all warm and gooey inside.

I normally start out a review with what I love about a book, but with Heartland I’m going to start with the one and only thing that drove me a little nuts. If you’re a fan of this series, then you know Dylan Shipley is a man who likes the ladies. He’s a commitment phobe. There’s some other woman drama in the beginning of this book that made me cringe. It wasn’t so much that it made me want to stop reading. It did make me question Chastity’s sanity a bit.  BUT, as a die hard Bowen fan, I knew she had a path in this romance that would lead me to happiness and it did.

Despite Dylan’s wild woman ways, I still loved his character. Mrs. Shipley only raises the best of children, and Dylan was a guy who really cared about people — especially Chastity. (She’s the girl who ran away from the cult and is now neighbors with the Shipleys.) He had some stuff to work out in this book, but I loved how it all came together for him.

Chastity was a breath of fresh air when it comes to sheltered, virginal young women characters. I loved how she challenged the beliefs she was raised with and came to terms with how she viewed sex and relationships. This book was sex positive in ways I wasn’t expecting and loved.

Dylan and Chastity’s romance is one of those book romances where you can’t wait for them to get together because you’re already invested in them as characters from previous books. It wasn’t an easy road to romance, but it was one that was appreciated because of all the prior knowledge I had of them, their families, and the town they grew up in. That’s not to say you couldn’t enjoy it without reading the previous six books, it was just more fun having had the knowledge to understand and love the characters despite their flaws.

As for the rest of the Shipleys and friends… All of my old favorites were around to spend some time with Dylan and Chastity. I love how they were woven into the story. There were also a couple of newer characters that I loved meeting. I’m pretty sure Sarina Bowen gave us some hints at what’s next in the True North series, and I honestly can’t wait!

Heartland was a great trip “home” to Vermont. Despite a few reservations at first, I ended up truly loving Dylan and Chastity’s romance. It was sweet with moments of humor and a couple of tears. If you’re a fan of this series, you will love finding out how they get their HEA.

All in one link page: https://shor.by/Heartland

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Review: Marriage on Madison Avenue (Lauren Layne)

Marriage on Madison Avenue
Series: Central Park Pact, #3
Author: Lauren Layne
Publication Date: January 28, 2020
Publisher: Gallery Books
Genre: Women’s Fiction, Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

From New York Times bestselling author Lauren Layne, the “queen of witty dialogue” (Rachel Van Dyken, New York Times bestselling author), comes the final installment of the Central Park Pact series, a heartfelt and laugh-out-loud romantic comedy that’s perfect for fans of Sally Thorne and Christina Lauren.

Can guys and girls ever be just friends? According to Audrey Tate and Clarke West, absolutely. After all, they’ve been best friends since childhood without a single romantic entanglement. Clarke is the charming playboy Audrey can always count on, and he knows that the ever-loyal Audrey will never not play along with his strategy for dodging his matchmaking mother—announcing he’s already engaged…to Audrey.

But what starts out as a playful game between two best friends turns into something infinitely more complicated, as just-for-show kisses begin to stir up forbidden feelings. As the faux wedding date looms closer, Audrey and Clarke realize that they can never go back to the way things were, but deep down, do they really want to?


Lauren Layne ended her popular Central Park Pact series on a high note with Marriage on Madison Avenue. Audrey and Clark’s romance was other readers might have been wanting since the very beginning on the series, but it was one I didn’t know I needed until I read it. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good friends to lovers romance. I also know Lauren Layne excels at that type of story. I just didn’t pick up romance vibes between Audrey and Clark prior to reading this book.

That’s actually a cool statement because Audrey and Clark didn’t feel the vibes until Marriage on Madison Avenue either. Nothing like a little fake engagement between best friends to put things in perspective. I loved the way they navigated their new feelings for each other and how their relationship changed with this engagement. The only thing that would have made it better for me was if the book had been in first person instead of third. I would have connected to it even more than I already did.

Marriage on Madison Avenue was a very sweet fake relationship romance between best friends. I wouldn’t have expected anything less from Lauren Layne. I can’t wait to read what she’s got coming next!

Mini Review: King of the Causeway (T.M. Frazier)

King of the Causeway
Series: King, #9.5
Author: T.M. Frazier
Publication Date: January 9, 2020
Publisher: Frazier Publishing
Genre: Dark Romance, Contemporary, Fiction, New Adult

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

A massive hurricane looms off the coast of Florida while a different kind of storm is brewing in Logan’s beach.
A mysterious newcomer is vying for the title of King of the Causeway. He’ll do anything to steal the crown, including bringing someone back from King’s past who will threaten a lot more than the title King has spent his lifetime earning.
A hurricane is coming.
And it could destroy everything.
(This novella features King & Ray from King & Tyrant)


King of the Causeway was a fun return to the King series. I loved being back in King and Ray’s relationship. It was also fun to get glimpses of other beloved characters from this series. I do wish it would have been a full length novel because there was a lot going on that could have had more attention placed on it and some things happened so quickly it was almost unbelievable, but overall it didn’t really matter. This was still a good addition to the series.

Note: King of the Causeway MUST be read after the first 9 books in this series or you WILL be spoiled. Each series within this series has some great revelations that you wouldn’t want to miss out on.

Review: Great and Precious Things (Rebecca Yarros)

Great and Precious Things
Author: Rebecca Yarros
Publication Date: February 25, 2020
Publisher: Entangled: Amara
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

How do you define yourself when others have already decided who you are?

Six years ago, when Camden Daniels came back from war without his younger brother, no one in the small town of Alba, Colorado, would forgive him—especially his father. He left, swearing never to return.

But a desperate message from his father brings it all back. The betrayal. The pain. And the need to go home again. But home is where the one person he still loves is waiting. Willow. The one woman he can never have. Because there are secrets buried in Alba that are best left in the dark.

If only he could tell his heart to stay locked away when she whispers she’s always loved him, and always will…

Great and Precious Things is a heart-wrenching story about family, betrayal, and ultimately how far we’re willing to go on behalf of those who need us most.


Last year, I found Rebecca Yarros’ books. This year, I’m trying to catch up and read everything she’s written including her newest release, Great and Precious Things.

Great and Precious Things is a romance at heart, but it explores some greater social, moral, familial, and community themes. It hits those themes hard and is unrelenting in its challenges to both the reader and the characters. Perry did an outstanding job tackling all the issues she did, while adding a hint of surprise.

As for the romance, I adored Willow and Cam. I was constantly frustrated on their behalf, but so happy when they found their way to each other. They had each other’s backs in the best ways possible, all while emitting this great chemistry. They were easy to love.

Great and Precious Things is one of those romances that challenges you and makes you feel multiple emotions. It was well written and is sure to be a hit with fans of Yarros’ writing and newcomers as well.

Review: A Favor for a Favor (Helena Hunting)

A Favor for a Favor
Series: All In, #2
Author: Helena Hunting
Publication Date: January 28, 2020
Publisher: Montlake Romance
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Sports
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

From the New York Times bestselling author of Pucked and A Lie for a Lie, a new stand-alone romance about trading favors, battling wills, and winning love.

When I joined Seattle’s NHL expansion team, I thought it was the start of something great. But nothing ever goes the way you expect. Take my introduction to my new neighbor. She came rolling in on the hot mess express at midnight, making a racket while she tried to get into my team captain’s apartment. Did I mention that he’s married to a woman who definitely was not her?

Imagine my surprise when I end up with an injury that has me out of the game for weeks, and she’s the one to offer to help me. I should probably add that she’s not the captain’s mistress. She’s his sexy, pastel-haired younger sister.

So we come up with an arrangement: she rehabs me so that I can get back on the ice sooner, and she can add a professional athlete that isn’t her brother to her client list. Seems simple enough. As long as I can keep my hands to myself and my hormones in check.


A Favor for a Favor was exactly what I was hoping it was going to be when I picked it up. It was an upbeat romantic comedy filled with some great banter. I liked pretty much everything about it. To be be more specific…

My favorite things about this book were:

  • Helena Hunting’s writing was at it’s best. A Favor for a Favor was the perfect mix of funny and sweet. It had it’s over the top moments, but they weren’t too crazy. They were fun. The entire plot was well done and entertaining.
  • Stevie was a cool chick. I loved that she wanted to live outside her brother’s famous hockey player status and make it on her own.
  • The descriptions of Stevie’s ex Joey were perfectly gross.
  • Bishop was a grumpy a-hole that was somehow lovable. His attitude didn’t make him that much of a jerk, though. The reason he was how he was made sense. I appreciated his self-awareness. Plus, he was a big old softy under all that grump.
  • The cameos!

There were only 2 things that rubbed me a little wrong while reading this book:

  • A Lie for a Lie made me fall in love with Rook. The majority of this book made me see him in a different light, and it wasn’t good. It was hard to merge those two perceptions of him. Although, it did get easier once everything went down and I had more understanding of his attitude. I guess that made up for it.
  • There was one point where I just wanted to tell Stevie to get over her insecurities. What happened was pretty predictable, but it all made sense so I guess I can’t complain too much about it.

Overall, A Favor for a Favor was a fantastic sports romantic comedy. It is definitely one of my favorite books by Hunting. I hope this series just gets better and better. I’m really wanting a book about Kingston next!

Series Review: Smart Jocks (Rebecca Jenshak)

I’ve been seeing Rebecca Jenshak’s Smart Jocks new adult college sports romance series around a lot lately, and I kept thinking I read it. After talking to a reader friend who told me she hadn’t been addicted to a series like this in a long time, I decided to jump in. I’m so glad I did! The Smart Jocks series is truly addicting! Here is a short review for each book in the series.


The Assist, Book 1: ★ ★ ★ ★

The Assist had me from the start. Pretty much everything about it was adorable. It combined the right about of sports, college, humor, and just a tiny bit of angst. Blair and Wes had great banter, which is probably what made this book shine. I knew from the minute I met the supporting characters that I would have to keep reading the Smart Jocks series.

The Fadeaway, Book 2: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I’m going to be honest. I didn’t really have much of an opinion about Joel Moreno after reading The Assist. He was just sort of background that didn’t stand out. I was more interested in knowing Zeke’s story. Maybe that’s why I was so surprised by how much I loved Joel Moreno. He might have been a manwhore prior to this book, but he really stepped things up for Katrina. He was a much sweeter, more devoted guy than I expected. I loved him and Katrina together.

The Tip-Off, Book 3: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

The Tip-Off is the book I have been waiting for since I started this series: Zeke and Gabby’s story. Zeke is a hard working young man with a singular focus to make it to the NBA. Gabby is a young woman recovering from a major accident years ago that left her with physical and emotional scars. On their own, each is one of my favorite types of characters, so you can only imagine how I feel about them falling in love. Their story is a sweet slow burn that hit me right in the heart. The Tip-Off is my favorite in this series for sure.

The Fake, Book 4: ★ ★ ★ ★

Honesty again… I don’t know that I really cared about Nathan before this book. I loved that he was a good friend to Gabby and I felt some distress for him in The Tip-Off, but there wasn’t anything that made me want to know him better. The Fake changed that. Nathan meets this new transfer student, Chloe, in this book. What starts out as a one night stand turns to fake dating turns to real dating in an incredibly fun way. I couldn’t give it 5 stars because it stressed me out a little too much in one part, but I was happy I found myself liking Nathan and loving his relationship with Chloe. The way this book wrapped up the series at the end was great.

Overall feeling about Smart Jocks:

If I had to give a rating to the series overall, it would be 5 stars. It’s such an addicting read that I didn’t want to end. I fell in love with each and every character. There’s so much heart and humor involved. It’s definitely a series worth reading and binging — especially if you have Kindle Unlimited.

Review: The Fight for Forever (Meghan March)

The Fight for Forever
Series: Legend Trilogy, #3
Author: Meghan March
Publication Date: January 14, 2020
Publisher: Meghan March LLC
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

You can only keep what you can protect.

That’s all I’ve ever known. It’s the way I’ve lived my life.

Now, everything I never knew I needed is at risk, and I’m not letting anyone take it from me.

I won’t let anyone take her from me.

They say love is a battlefield, so I’m ready for war.

This time, it’s the fight for forever.

The Fight for Forever is the final book in the Legend Trilogy and should be read after The Fall of Legend, book one and House of Scarlett, book two of the utterly addictive Legend Trilogy.


I loved both The Fall of Legend and House of Scarlett, but what I felt for the first two books in this trilogy was only a fraction of what I felt for The Fight for Forever. This book was perfection. Seriously, Meghan March did everything I hoped she would and more. It picked right back up from the brutal cliffhanger in House of Scarlett and answered with action, chemistry, and love.

Gabriel Legend and Scarlett Priest’s story was FIRE. I loved everything about their relationship. They were both strong individual, but together they were a force to be reckoned with. They had a sweet relationship filled with an intense attraction. I loved how they welcomed the (amazing) people in each other’s lives into their own. Many of my favorite moments included them with Bump.

The fight aspect of this book was so much fun to read about. I loved how Gabriel’s preparation for it was worked in. I also loved the suspense the fight brought into this part of the trilogy. March kept me on my toes with everything that went on. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time!

As you can probably tell from all of my gushing, I adored this book. The Fight for Forever was an amazing conclusion to the Legend Trilogy. I’m sad I’m done reading it, but I’m also looking forward to reading what’s next from Meghan March. Her writing gets better and better with each new release.

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About the author:

Making the jump from corporate lawyer to romance author was a leap of faith that New York Times, #1 Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author Meghan March will never regret. With over thirty titles published, she has sold millions of books in nearly a dozen languages to fellow romance-lovers around the world. A nomad at heart, she can currently be found in the woods of the Pacific Northwest, living her happily ever after with her real-life alpha hero.

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Review: Destructive (Jay McLean)

Destructive
Series: Combative, #3
Author: Jay McLean
Publication Date: January 6, 2020
Genre: New Adult, Romance, Suspense

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

Some villains are made.
Some villains are born.
And some villains aren’t villains at all.

Nate DeLuca was born into a life he didn’t want.
Forced to walk a path that was already chosen for him.
Grandson to a mob boss, he’s forever torn between his duty, his honor, his legacy, and the truth.
But the truth is never simple, and it’s not at all what it seems.

In a world full of secrets, heartache, and betrayals, Nate only has one thing on his mind: redemption.
But with redemption comes destruction.
And that destruction might cost him his heart.

***

Three Lives.
Two Loves.
One ticking time bomb…
Tick tock.


Destructive is the third and final book in the Combative series. Each book builds on the last, so you don’t want to jump ahead because you will miss out on the build up and all the good stuff. You can find my review for the first book, Combative, here.

Woah.

If Combative left me slightly confused with its cliffhanger and Redemptive left me mind blown, then Destructive left me fulfilled. It was everything I didn’t know I wanted, but needed from Jay McLean and her characters. It tested everything I thought I knew about Nate, Ky, Madison, and Bailey. There were so many revelations, so many moments of clarity. It took McLean years to wrap up this story, and I now understand why. It both shocked and amazed. What a way to end such an explosive trilogy!