Series Review: Washington Wolves (Karla Sorenson)

A couple of weeks ago I received an author’s newsletter with a free book download. That book was Karla Sorensen’s The Marriage Effect. I love a good fake relationship and the blurb sounded super cute. I read it, and from there I was hooked. I had to read the entire series. Here’s my mini reviews for each book.

The Marraige Effect (book 3) – ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I’m starting a little backwards, but since book 3 was my first by this author and of this series it’s where I feel I should start. I absolutely adored this book. Not only did it have a fake marriage of convenience, but it had a gruff and grumpy hero with a heart of gold. Logan Wade was a stand up guy who kept his professional football playing self out of the media. He had custody of his four younger sisters and that was the most important thing to him. I loved how falling for his fake wife, Paige, changed his and his sister’s lives. It was such a quick, sweet read that I knew I had to go back to where the series started.

The Bombshell Effect (book 1) – ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Since I had already read book 3, I kind of knew how this book was going to end up. What I didn’t know was how much fun it was going to be to experience Luke and Allie fall in love. Things started off on the wrong foot for them, but that made the story all that more entertaining. I loved their romance, how fierce of a dad Luke was, and how Allie stood up for herself. The Bombshell Effect was a strong start to the series — I almost wish I had read it before The Marriage Effect.

The Ex Effect (book 2) – ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

It can be tricky to pull off a book about someone falling in love with their sister’s ex-fiancé, but Karla Sorensen wrote this trope beautifully. The taboo of the situation wasn’t entirely left out, but the time between the relationships and the actual relationship between Ava and Matthew made it more than okay in my book. I loved them and I loved their love story. I was sad to be finished with this series (since I started with book 3).

But wait…

I wasn’t exactly finished with the world of the Washington Wolves. There’s a spin-off series!!! And it’s about Logan Wade’s sisters! There’s only one book out so far, but of course I had to finish my binge with it. Here’s a review for Focused.

Focused ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

In The Marriage Effect (Washington Wolves, #3), we met Logan Wade’s younger sister Molly. Molly may have been 16 in that book, but she’s all grown up now and working for the Washington Wolves organization. Her job has just reunited Molly with someone from her past, Noah. Neither of them are excited to work with each other, but the work time they have to spend together leads to something more. I have to admit I really loved this book and the romance at heart. Both of these characters had grown from their previous interactions in Logan and Paige’s book, and I enjoyed seeing how that shaped them and their new romance.

If you can’t already tell from these four mini reviews, I absolutely loved spending time with these characters. I cannot wait for books for Logan’s other sisters so I can keep revisiting this world.

Review: That Secret Crush (Meghan Quinn)

That Secret Crush
Series: Getting Lucky, #3
Author: Meghan Quinn
Publication Date: February 11, 2020
Publisher: Montlake
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

USA Today bestselling author Meghan Quinn brings more humor and heart with the third novel of her Getting Lucky series: a story about breaking curses and laying your heart on the line.

What happens when your secret crush isn’t so secret anymore?

I’ve had feelings for Eve Roberts for as long as I can remember, but because she also happens to be the twin sister of my best friend, Eric, I’ve never acted on my feelings and long ago resigned myself to keeping my crush under wraps.

But after a terrible falling-out with Eric involving a failed restaurant venture and plenty of blame on both sides, I’m back in Port Snow without my best friend and without any direction. But can you guess who’s here? Eve. And my attraction to her is as strong as ever.

As old feelings rush back, Eve and I find ourselves pulled together, whether we like it or not. Lines are crossed, secrets are kept, and we soon discover that the difference between love and friendship may not be so black and white, after all.

Everyone wants that secret crush to love them back…but will I be ready when she does?


If you wanted to know if the Getting Lucky series could get any better…the answer is YES. Yes, it could and it did with That Secret Crush. Going into this book, I didn’t remember anything about Reid Knightly. I didn’t even remember his character from the first couple of books other than his name. Well, Reid must have been saving all of his pizazz for his own book because he definitely stood out in That Secret Crush.

Reid was a man whose dreams had been crushed early on in adulthood. He just gave up and went with good enough. It made him cranky. I didn’t mind his crankiness, but what I loved was the the guy he was underneath it. He was teasing, fun, and joyful. The person who brought all of those qualities out in him was Eve.

Eve was the perfect love interest for Reid. Having grown up together (Reid’s best friend was Eve’s twin brother), they knew it each other so well and understood each other well. She could put up with sexual humor and moments of stupidity better than anyone. The only thing they didn’t know was their secret crushes on each other. It made their acting on their attractions that much more satisfying.

I don’t want to say too much more about this story. Honestly, I could go on and on about how much I loved it and why. I just loved how the entire romance and story around it played out. I loved how Meghan Quinn added in her rom-com humor through Reid’s character. It was all so much fun. That Secret Crush is definitely my new favorite in this series and moving toward the top of my list of all-time favorite Meghan Quinn books.

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.

Review: For the Win (Kelly Jamieson)

For the Win
Series: Wynn Hockey, #4
Author: Kelly Jamieson
Publication Date: March 3, 2020
Publisher: Loveswept
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Sports
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Harrison Wynn
Even though I’m the oldest player on the farm team, I’m playing my heart out this year to prove that I have what it takes to play in the NHL.
Everyone expects me to live up to my dying hockey hero dad’s legacy, but my chances are receding every season.
What I need is to focus, but the team’s new yoga instructor is a major distraction; I’ve had my eye on her from the first time we met.
Except she’s not interested—okay, maybe actively disinterested—since I accidentally dumped her into the ocean during our paddleboard yoga class.
How can I prove to her—and to the NHL—that I’m worth taking a chance on?

Arya Ross
Men are the last thing I need in my life.
Yoga is my priority; it helps me center myself and heal my soul.
But I can’t turn down the once-in-a-lifetime offer to be the personal yoga instructor for the local hockey team.
Sure, there are some cute players—including Harrison Wynn, who seemingly won’t take no for an answer, and whose boyish smile and sexy charm are hard to resist.
He seems genuine, and I wonder . . .
Can I put my past behind me to start a future with him?


The Wynn Hockey series started out a little bumpy with the amount of family member characters to sort through, but I feel like it’s finally hit its stride with the third and fourth book in the series. I really enjoyed reading For the Win. I loved how Harrison and Arya met and fell in love. Both had personal issues to work through. Harrison had family problems and his hockey career. Arya had a scary incident from her past that kept her from moving forward. I loved how those issues didn’t get magically better because of their love for each other, but that their love pushed them to finally deal with the issues. That doesn’t always happen in romance. A lot of time the love saves the day. I appreciated the difference with this book.

Review: Undercover Bromance (Lyssa Kay Adams)

Undercover Bromance
Series: Bromance Book Club, #2
Author: Lyssa Kay Adams
Publication Date: March 10, 2020
Publisher: Berkley
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

Braden Mack thinks reading romance novels makes him an expert in love, but he’ll soon discover that real life is better than fiction.

Liv Papandreas has a dream job as a sous chef at Nashville’s hottest restaurant. Too bad the celebrity chef owner is less than charming behind kitchen doors. After she catches him harassing a young hostess, she confronts him and gets fired. Liv vows revenge, but she’ll need assistance to take on the powerful chef.

Unfortunately, that means turning to Braden Mack. When Liv’s blackballed from the restaurant scene, the charismatic nightclub entrepreneur offers to help expose her ex-boss, but she is suspicious of his motives. He’ll need to call in reinforcements: the Bromance Book Club.

Inspired by the romantic suspense novel they’re reading, the book club assist Liv in setting up a sting operation to take down the chef. But they’re just as eager to help Mack figure out the way to Liv’s heart… even while she’s determined to squelch the sparks between them before she gets burned.


Undercover Bromance is one of those reads that feel effortless. From the moment it began, I was immediately in love with the story. Liv and Mack’s antagonistic relationship from The Bromance Book Club spilled over perfectly into this book. Liv’s love to hate on Mack and his constant need to impress her and make her admit she liked him made for some spectacular banter and chemistry. It made for a really fun enemies to lovers romance.

Liv and Mack’s romance wasn’t the only thing that stood out positively in Undercover Bromance. The way Lyssa Kay Adams approached sexual harassment in the work place and the way society has normalized it over the years was outstanding. She brought opinions from all sides and educated while she entertained. I also have to applaud the way such a serious subject was also made to feel “lighter” within this romance — even when it really wasn’t.

I also have to say how much fun it was to be back with the gang from The Bromance Book Club. I love those guys. Their advice and love of romance novels always makes me smile. (Now, can I get a book for the Russian, please?) Undercover Bromance was a hit for me and a great sophomore addition to the Bromance Book Club series.

Review: Bastard Bachelor Society (Sara Ney)

Bastard Bachelor Society
Series: The Bachelors Club, #1
Author: Sara Ney
Publication Date: January 28, 2020
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

What is the Bastard Bachelor Society?

It’s a gentleman’s club—like the dignified men of the past used to have.

Except, we’re not gentleman, and we’re not dignified.

We’re ineligible bachelors; bored, jaded and not looking for relationships. Quite the opposite actually…

We’re so committed to being single, we’ve created a high stakes bet to see who can remain single the longest. Rules are involved. Prizes.

Laugh it up, but I’m no loser.

Enemy number one to my single status? My irresistible neighbor, Abbott Margolis. She with her evil cat Desdemona, and Sexy AF pencil skirts. She’s kind and beautiful and hilarious. We can’t get involved, no matter how much her meddling grandmother pushes us together. But if I was going to lose this bet for anyone? It would be for Abbott.

Let’s face facts: I’m a bastard, unwilling to settle down. Especially when there’s a bet to win.


I’ve read all of Sara Ney’s books. It’s safe to say I’m a fan of her books and humor. That being said, when I started Bachelor Bastard Society I had this “oh no” feeling. Like maybe this was the first book of hers I wasn’t going to love. It started out with Brooks’ point of view and I WAS NOT a fan. His little boys’ club was so idiotic and I can’t believe those dudes all signed on for it.

Then came Abbot. Abbot was such a joy to read. She was hilarious. Her cat was the perfect demon pet. She had the coolest grandma around. There wasn’t anything I didn’t love about her. Once she started interacting with Brooks, he became tolerable. He was still an idiot, but one that grew on me. By the end of Bachelor Bastard Society I loved them together.

I ended having WAY MORE fun reading this book than I thought I was going to have at the beginning. I’m pleasingly kind of surprised to say I loved it.

Wherever You Are (Krista & Becca Ritchie)

Wherever You Are
Series: Bad Reputation Duet, #2
Authors: Krista & Becca Ritchie
Publication Date: January 28, 2020
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ½

Synopsis:

I WILL RUIN HER.

You know that old saying “opposites attract” — well, no one ever tells you what happens after the attraction part.

Do opposites stick together forever?

Or do they just self-combust?

And then there’s the third option: someone or something forces them apart.

Look, the third option isn’t happening to us. I will end the bastard who thinks he can keep me from her. I only need to worry about one thing. . .

Epic, soul-crushing self-destruction.
Because I screw up everything I touch.
Even her.


I just have to thank Krista & Becca Ritchie for not making us wait forever for Wherever You Are. One week was long enough to stew over that end in Whatever It Takes. It was nice to be able to quickly jump back in right where the story left off.

I loved how Willow and Garrison’s story came full circle in Wherever You Are. Their love story was sweet. It was satisfying to see them make it through a long distance relationship, the media focus on them, and really everything life through at them. Their story was both a little heartbreaking at times, while also being very uplifting.

My only little issue with this story was all the back and forth between present and past. It didn’t bother me in the first book, but I felt the switches more in this one. Part of that was probably because I was wanting that happy ending. The other was that with every past section, the time in the future jumped so I wasn’t taken back to the last present moment. It was a little jarring at time. It didn’t ruin my reading experience or anything. It was just noticeable this time around.

Overall, this Wherever You Are was a strong conclusion to the Bad Reputation Duet. I’m so happy to have finally gotten Willow and Garrison’s story!

Mini Review: King of Lies (Whitney G.)

King of Lies
Series: Empire of Lies, #1
Author: Whitney G.
Publication Date: January 30, 2020
Publisher: WGW Books, LLC
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

The man I fell in love with is a f*cking liar…
I don’t have much time to reveal all the details, but I will say this: The “Woman disappears after wedding” and “Woman flees before honeymoon” headlines are lying.
I’m not missing.
I didn’t run away after my wedding.
I would’ve never run away right before our scheduled honeymoon.
My husband has taken me.
No, correction: He’s kidnapped me because he claims that “it’s what’s best”. That I’m a mere pawn in his twisted game of chess.
Despite the fact that my heart is still tethered to his, or the fact that he’s still the most gorgeous and beautiful man I’ve ever met in my life (he can still make me wet with a single sentence), I have to focus on getting away from him.
I have to accept that he’s no longer the man I fell in love with.
He’s the king of lies


After the opening of King of Lies, all I could think was, “Oh, wow.” I was so curious about how Meredith ended up in the situation she was in with her husband holding her captive. As the story went on and revelations started coming, the more hooked I became to the story. It was truly fascinating. This romance isn’t something I’m used to reading from Whitney G. It’s her addictive romantic writing style, but it was also slightly erotic and all sorts of twisty thriller-ish. I loved it. I can’t wait to read the next installment, Queen of Lies.

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: 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!