Review: Uninvited by Elizabeth Reyes


Series: Fate, #7

Author: Elizabeth Reyes

Publication Date: April 30, 2016

Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance, Romantic Suspense, Fiction

Note: I received an electronic ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Goodreads Synopsis:

When Aiyanna Casilieris becomes stranded in a snowed in mountain cabin, the last thing she imagined was that she’d be welcoming a wickedly sexy intruder to keep her company. But within days, she’s invited him to do so much more.

First instincts are usually right.

Falling for someone on the rebound is never a good idea. But Nathan Romero has never been one to pass up a harmless and meaningless good time. Even when it turns out the sexy stranger he’s stranded with is a lot more innocent than he imagined.

Even before they’re rescued, he finds himself asking for more time with her once they’re out of there. As their relationship back in the real world intensifies, nothing surprises Nathan anymore. Not how fast things move between them nor even their talk of moving in together.

Anything too good to be true . . . always is.

Surrounded by friends and family who are all for the relationship despite it moving at lightning speed, Nathan couldn’t be surer that what he’s feeling for Aiyanna is the real deal. Things between them couldn’t be more perfect. Until the unspeakable happens.

Could their love survive the most brutal of betrayals, especially when there’s no denying it? Or was their rapid but perfect relationship really too good to be true?

Note to readers who are not caught up yet and wondering who Nathan is? The Fate series is a Moreno Brothers spin off series Isaiah, Nathan and AJ “Rage” Romero are cousins of Romero from the MB series. They were introduced in the 3rd Fate book Suspicious Minds (Fate #3).

 ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Elizabeth Reyes brought the Fate series to an end in a really fun way. Uninvited was exactly what I expected. It was extremely fun and sexy. Aiyanna and Nathan’s crazy introduction was cute and made me laugh. Their relationship was sweet and, of course, Nathan brought out the Moreno jealousy. (Oh, Nathan…I love how macho, overprotective and jealous you are — just like all of my favorite Moreno brothers men.)  What I didn’t expect was the surprise twist Elizabeth Reyes had in surprise for the readers. It was crazy! It certainly surprised me! I thought I knew what was going to happen, but I didn’t… Readers are going to love it!

If you’re a fan of the Fate series, you’re truly going to enjoy Nathan’s story. It’s one of my favorites of the series. I had so much fun reading it!

If you’re interested in Uninvited, but haven’t read any of the rest of the series yet, I suggest reading at least Rage and His to Guard first. Nathan makes appearances in both of those and his story is set up in them.


Review: Leveled by Jay Crownover


Series: Saints of Denver, #0.5

Author: Jay Crownover

Publication Date: November 2, 2015

Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, GLBT, Romance

Goodreads Synopsis:

We all need a hero…let the Saints of Denver begin

Orlando Frederick knows what it is to be leveled by pain. Instead of focusing on his own, he’s made it his mission to help others: sports stars, wounded war vets, survivors of all kinds. But when Dom, a rugged, damaged, sinfully attractive cop, makes his way into Lando’s physical therapy practice, he might be the biggest challenge yet. Lando loved one stubborn man before and barely survived the fallout. He’s not sure he can do it again.

Dominic Voss is a protector. The police badge he wears is not only his job, it’s his identity, so when he’s sidelined because of an injury, the only thing he cares about is getting back on the force. He expects Lando to mend his body, he just doesn’t realize the trainer will also have him working toward a hell of a lot more. As attraction simmers and flares, Dom sees that Lando needs repair of his own…if only the man will let him close enough to mend what’s broken.

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I have to admit that Leveled is my first Jay Crownover book. I chose it because it’s the first book (novella actually) in the Saints of Denver series and I thought it would be a great way to get to know the author’s writing. Well, I miscalculated a little bit because Leveled ties together the Marked Men and Saints of Denver series. There is an overlap of characters between the two series. It wasn’t a big deal, though. Orlando and Dominic’s love story was easily read as a standalone.

Dominic was a rugged cop who was proud of being gay. He may not have flaunted his lifestyle, but he was happy with who he was. I found this very refreshing after reading several M/M romance novels where characters struggle with their sexuality. I liked how he fought hard for both his job and the relationship he wanted with Orlando.

Orlando, a character from previous Marked Men books, was also comfortable with his sexuality. He wasn’t looking for love, but was excited to have found someone who was willing to claim him as his own. But giving his heart away wasn’t as easy for Lando. He has spent years trying to get over the loss of his first love and he’s not sure he’s willing to love again. Lando was a sweet and gentle man compared to Dominic’s cocky persona. The story of his past was so heartbreaking and moving.

Dominic and Orlando’s relationship was super sexy, but also very sweet. I loved how their relationship wasn’t all about what happened in the bedroom. They had a love and respect for each other that helped them deal with the issues they were facing in and outside of their relationship.

Leveled was so much fun to read. I loved it! I’m really excited to finish reading this series and also to go back and read the Marked Men series. If you’re a fan of M/M contemporary romances, you should pick this one up.

Review: My Perfect Mistake by Kelly Siskind

25798815Title: My Perfect Mistake

Series: Over the Top, #1

Author: Kelly Siskind

Publication Date: April 5, 2016

Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Note: I received an electronic copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Goodreads Synopsis:

What happens in Aspen
is definitely not staying in Aspen. . .

A girls’ trip to Aspen was exactly what Shay needed to forget about her toxic ex-boyfriend. She’s got her girls, pristine slopes for skiing, and hot guys everywhere. Of course, her epic self-rediscovery goes completely to hell when a wild (and deliciously hot) skier knocks Shay on her ass . . . and war is declared.

Kolton doesn’t know what it is about Shay that makes him lose it. Not just his cool—although she does have an unholy gift for that—but his restraint. When anger gives way to explosive chemistry, they’re both shaken with the intensity of it. But somewhere between lust and hate, Kolton and Shay realize they could have something real . . . if they don’t kill each other first.

  ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I think I found another new favorite NA author.

My Perfect Mistake was an enemy to lovers story that was so much fun to read. All of the bickering banter between Shay and Kolton was hilarious. It made their unwanted sexual chemistry so hot! I wasn’t sure if I ever wanted them to get past the hating each other stage because I didn’t want to lose the laughs. I shouldn’t have worried, though. Even when they decided they liked each other more than they wanted to admit, the humor continued.

The story wasn’t just funny, though. It was also had moments where it tugged at my emotions. Shay and Kolton had some real-life obstacles to face. Being together wasn’t going to be effortless for them. Neither of them wanted to be the one to back down from the decisions they made based on their pasts. It was frustrating and sad. I wanted to give both of them a good shake and tell them their love was worth it!

I absolutely loved My Perfect Mistake. It was a fun, sassy and sexy contemporary New Adult romance. I didn’t want it to end and I’m even sadder I’m done reading it because the next book in the series isn’t out yet! Now, I’m impatiently waiting for the next book to find out more about Shay and Kolton’s friends.

Review: Almost Broken Up by A.O. Peart

Almost Broken Up

Series: Almost Bad Boys, #2

Author: A.O. Peart

Publication Date: January 19, 2014

Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance, Humor

Goodreads Synopsis:


How far would you go to protect the one you love?

The terrors of Colin’s past are revealed and accepted by Natalie. Her doubts about letting him into her life are finally disbanded and replaced by a sense of security and commitment. But Natalie doesn’t know that Colin’s past hides more dark secrets unknown even to him.

When a delusional psychopath threatens Colin’s life, things quickly become complicated. Natalie’s stubborn character and desire to kick ass won’t let her step aside and allow the authorities to handle the danger. She gets herself tangled up with street hoodlums, befriends a Russian mobster’s high-maintenance girlfriend, and becomes expert at picking locks and hiding evidence.
This contemporary romantic comedy/mystery blends humor and sensuality with enough thriller elements to make you clutch the pages with terror. The offbeat characters and witty dialogue from Almost Matched are here to stay.

**Warning: contains sexual situations, profanity, and a high dose of sarcasm. Oh, and the appletini is still the drink of choice.
May not be appropriate for readers under 18 years old. Not intended for prigs and sourpusses who get easily affronted**

***Almost Broken Up is the second installment in the Almost Bad Boys series, and it comes after book one, Almost Matched. The books in this series should be read in order. They are not stand-alone books***

  ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

This past weekend I reviewed the first book in the Almost Bad Boys series, Almost Matched. For several reason, I only gave it 2 stars. I thought it had a lot of potential, but there were some major issues I had with it. (You can find my review here.) I was happy to just leave Natalie and Colin’s relationship where the first book ended. Then, author A.O. Peart contacted me on Twitter. She was very understanding of my review and asked if I would consider reading books 2 and 3. She thought I would like them better. I agreed and immediately downloaded Almost Broken Up.

I’m really happy I did. Almost Broken Up was hilarious! In a way, it reminded me of a female version of The Hangover movie — minus the bachelor party and Vegas. Natalie found herself in several crazy situations with her friends. She was doing things she never imagined doing, with people who may have been a lot dangerous. It was so out there and made for a really fun story.

It wasn’t all a crazy ride, though. It was also super steamy and sexy. Colin and Natalie spent a lot of time enjoying each other. I spent a lot of time fanning myself.

There was one little issue that continued from book 1 to book 2 for me, though. It was the switching of the tone of the story mid-book. Almost Broken Up started out with a look at Colin’s past, which was very angsty. I absolutely loved his point of view, but it didn’t fit well with the comedic tone of the rest of the story. It did set up a part of the story, though; so it was needed. The only way I could see to maybe remedy the issue would have been to give Colin his own novella in between books 1 and 2.

Almost Broken Up was an entertaining book to read. I’m so happy the author encouraged me to continue with the series. It was so worth it for all of the laughs.

Review: Out of Focus by L.B. Simmons

28459891Out of Focus

Series: Chosen Paths, #2

Author: L.B. Simmons

Publication Date: February 19, 2016

Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Fiction, Mental Health

Goodreads Synopsis:

*** Upper New Adult Spinoff Standalone to the USA Today Bestselling Novel, Under the Influence***

“Shhhh, Cassandra, it’s our little secret.”
Secrets are stubborn things when they refuse to remain hidden. They tear through your soul, clawing and lashing until the pain becomes so unbearable, you’re left no choice but to silently scream your agony. No one hears you, of course. You smile on the outside and drift through life as though your mind is at peace, but all the while, you remain your own tortured prisoner. Sealed inside the darkened, soundproof room of your conscience, deafening cries echo as you plead for someone to unlock the door and release you from your nightmares. And eventually, when no one comes, you find ways to cope. To dull the suffering the only way you know how.
But what happens when you’ve become so numb, when everything around you has become so blurred, that you begin to lose focus on the saving grace standing directly in front of you? When you’ve anesthetized yourself to the point of losing consciousness, forced to watch as his once solid image fades away, lost to your reach in the haze as it smothers you?
What do you do then?
You fight. You heal. Then you bring him back.
Well, my name is Cassie Cooper, and it’s time.
No more secrets.
This is my story.

***WARNING – The subject matter of this novel centers around the psychological effects due to sexual abuse experienced during childhood. For this reason, as well as sexual situations, language, and adult themes, suggested reading age is 17+.***

  ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

I have to admit that I hesitated a minute before purchasing Out of Focus. It’s the second book in the Chosen Paths series and, while I liked the first book Under the Influence, I didn’t love it. There was something about the pace and structure of the book I didn’t like. But when I saw Out of Focus was going to be Cassie’s story I was intrigued. I always wondered while reading Under the Influence what Cassie’s story was. I’m so happy I decided to read it.

Cassie Cooper is no angel. She prides herself on being the wild child. Cassie’s perfectly happy avoiding her thoughts by drowning them in alcohol and men. Her reasons are buried deep down within herself. So deep, no one knows them — not even her best friend Spencer.

Cassie’s doing what she can to make it through each day when she meets Grady, a martial arts instructor. The connection she feels to Grady scares her. She feels like he gets her without even really knowing her, a feeling she’s only had once before.

As Cassie gets to know Grady, her walls begin to drop. Life is suddenly much brighter than it was before. Then, her past comes back to haunt her, threatening everything she’s built with Grady.

I loved, loved, loved Out of Focus. I couldn’t put it down. L.B. Simmons did an amazing job portraying a victim of child sexual abuse. Cassie’s story was heartbreaking, but also uplifting. Her actions felt real and honest. Her cocky, bad attitude was funny, but sad at the same time.

Grady is now one of my favorite book boyfriends. The way he stood by Cassie through her journey was awesome. He understood what she needed and was there for her when it mattered most. The thoughtfulness and care he used with Cassie was super sexy.

Out of Focus is one of those rare sequels that is actually better than first book in the series. It was witty, devastating and hopeful. It’s a book I would highly recommend. But first, read Under the InfluenceOut of Focus overlaps the last section of time in Under the Influence and sets up Cassie and Grady’s story. Without reading it, you’ll be missing some very big pieces.


Review: Ride Hard by Laura Kaye

Title: Ride Hard

Series: Raven Riders, #1

Author: Laura Kaye

Publication Date: April 26, 2016

Genre: Contemporary Romance, Romantic Suspense

Note: I received an ARC of Ride Hard from Harper Collins through Goodreads First Reads in exchange for an honest review.

Goodreads Synopsis:

A shy and distrustful woman running from a controlling ex-fiance seeks shelter with an outlaw motorcycle club with a tradition of protecting those who can’t defend themselves, and falls under the watchful eye of the club’s mysterious and intense leader who’s intent on discovering all her secrets

Brotherhood. Club. Family.

They live and ride by their own rules.

These are the Raven Riders . . .

Raven Riders Motorcycle Club President Dare Kenyon rides hard and values loyalty above all else. He’ll do anything to protect the brotherhood of bikers—the only family he’s got—as well as those who can’t defend themselves. So when mistrustful Haven Randall lands on the club’s doorstep scared that she’s being hunted, Dare takes her in, swears to keep her safe, and pushes to learn the secrets overshadowing her pretty smile.

Haven fled from years of abuse at the hands of her criminal father and is suspicious of any man’s promises, including those of the darkly sexy and overwhelmingly intense Ravens’ leader. But as the powerful attraction between them flares to life, Dare pushes her boundaries and tempts her to want things she never thought she could.

The past never dies without a fight, but Dare Kenyon’s never backed down before . . .

 ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

It seems like ever since Sons of Anarchy became a big hit, motorcycle club/gang romances have been everywhere. I’ve read my fair share of them. When I started Ride Hard, I wondered what would make it stand out from the rest. The answer was the tone of the story.

Ride Hard put a more positive spin on the motorcycle club theme. While most motorcycle clubs are into smuggling drugs and guns, the Raven Riders were all about helping women and children in need. This gave the story a lighter, more upbeat feel than most of the MC romances I’ve read before. It wasn’t angsty or dark. It was fun and sexy, which is exactly what I’m looking for when I pick up a contemporary romance. Not that there weren’t any intense or violent moments in Ride Hard, there were. They just weren’t the main focus of the story. That was left to the budding romance between Dare and Haven.

Speaking of the romance, it was pretty dang sweet. I love it when a strong, commanding leader falls for a shy, wholesome young woman. It was fun to experience Dare’s resolve slowly weaken when it came to Haven. I also loved how Haven became a strong, independent woman who could ask for what she needed and wanted from Dare. The chemistry between them was super sexy.

Ride Hard was a very enjoyable read. I can’t wait to read the next book in this series. Contemporary readers who are looking for a lighter MC romance are sure to love this one.



Review: Return of the Bad Boy by Jessica Lemmon

Title: Return of the Bad Boy

Series: Second Chance, #4

Author: Jessica Lemmon

Publication Date: April 26, 2016

Publisher: Forever

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Goodreads Synopsis:

He’s a mess…

Asher Knight has three constants in his life: music, beautiful women, and a bottle of Jack. He lives for the next gig, the next city, and dreams only of a life spent in front of an arena full of screaming fans. But Asher’s nomad ways come to a sudden stop when he learns he’s the father of a three-year-old from a past relationship and suddenly this rock star bad boy is forced to put down roots.

Only she can clean up

Gloria Shields is no one’s fool. Sure, the sexual chemistry between her and Asher has always been intense, but she’d never risk giving her heart to a man who has a perfect record for breaking them. Except the man desperate to make things right with his newfound son is nothing like the rock god she’s guarded her heart against for years. And it isn’t long before she starts to wonder if life with this bad boy might be the best thing that’s ever happened to her.

Return of the Bad Boy was a little confusing for me at first. I blame that on the fact I hadn’t read the first three books in the series. I’m guessing Asher and Gloria’s past was introduced in them. But once I got past the first chapter and got what was happening, I was hooked.

Gloria has all the reason not to want to reconnect emotionally with Asher. Just when she was beginning to let him in, he broke her heart. Problem is, she can’t keep her hands off him.

Asher knows he shouldn’t have let Gloria run without knowing the truth, but he wasn’t ready to settle down. Now, he’s regretting that decision. A more mature Asher needs Gloria in his life. He wants her bad. He just has to prove to her that taking a chance on him is worth it. It would be a lot easier if he didn’t have his baby mama around to remind Gloria of all the reasons she shouldn’t trust him.

I loved the characters and dynamics of this book! This second chance romance was sweet and well written. Despite all of her insecurities, Gloria was a strong woman and was so much fun to read. I couldn’t blame her for not being able to keep her hands off Asher. He was just the right mix of cocky and sweet. They had some serious chemistry. This book was so sexy!

Now that I’ve gotten a taste of this series and Jessica Lemmon’s writing, I can’t wait to read the rest of the series! Return of the Bad Boy is definitely a novel contemporary romance readers will love.

Review: Ten Tiny Breaths by K.A. Tucker

Ten Tiny Breaths

Series: Ten Tiny Breaths, #1

Author: K.A. Tucker

Publication Date: December 11, 2012

Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance, Fiction

Goodreads Synopsis:

Kacey Cleary’s whole life imploded four years ago in a drunk-driving accident. Now she’s working hard to bury the pieces left behind—all but one. Her little sister, Livie. Kacey can swallow the constant disapproval from her born-again aunt Darla over her self-destructive lifestyle; she can stop herself from going kick-boxer crazy on Uncle Raymond when he loses the girls’ college funds at a blackjack table. She just needs to keep it together until Livie is no longer a minor, and then they can get the hell out of Grand Rapids, Michigan.

But when Uncle Raymond slides into bed next to Livie one night, Kacey decides it’s time to run. Armed with two bus tickets and dreams of living near the coast, Kacey and Livie start their new lives in a Miami apartment complex, complete with a grumpy landlord, a pervert upstairs, and a neighbor with a stage name perfectly matched to her chosen “profession.” But Kacey’s not worried. She can handle all of them. What she can’t handle is Trent Emerson in apartment 1D.

Kacey doesn’t want to feel. She doesn’t. It’s safer that way. For everyone. But sexy Trent finds a way into her numb heart, reigniting her ability to love again. She starts to believe that maybe she can leave the past where it belongs and start over. Maybe she’s not beyond repair.

But Kacey isn’t the only one who’s broken. Seemingly perfect Trent has an unforgiveable past of his own; one that, when discovered, will shatter Kacey’s newly constructed life and send her back into suffocating darkness.

  ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Wow. I’m not even sure what to write when it comes to Ten Tiny Breaths. This review is probably going to sound like one big ramble.

The writing in Ten Tiny Breaths was simply stunning. The story was addictive and set up in a very cool way. I loved all of the characters. My heart broke for Kasey and everything she had to deal with. While not everything surprised me in it, the path to the end did. I’m really looking forward to reading the rest of this series. I’m not ready to say goodbye to the characters yet.

If you’re a New Adult fan, you need to read this book!


Review: Almost Matched by A.O. Peart

Almost Matched

Series: Almost Bad Boys, #1

Author: A.O. Peart

Publication Date: November 7, 2013

Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Romance, Humor

Goodreads Synopsis:

Would you take another shot at love? Or just settle on a friend with benefits?


Twenty-five-year-old Natalie Davenport lugs substantial baggage. One boyfriend after the next has been a total disaster, leaving Natalie distrustful toward the male population in general. So when Colin Hampton crosses her path, she’s cautious. Her heart (and some other body parts!) nudges her to go for it, while her head wants her to run for the hills.

Colin is one of those gorgeous guys who attract women, no matter the age or marital status. With a successful career at a popular Seattle radio station, hard body, and charming personality, he is the complete package. But something dark lurks in the corners of his soul; some murky experience that has changed him—maybe for the better, but maybe for the worse.

Will he steal her heart and stomp over it like other guys did?

Will she let him into her heavily fortified world despite herself?

Or will they settle somewhere in the middle—establishing the emotional boundaries to protect them from falling in love?

This contemporary romantic comedy blends humor, sensuality, and angst, with zany characters and witty dialogue.

***Warning: contains sexual situations (some quite vivid!), profanity, and a high dose of sarcasm. Oh, and there is a lot of appletini and beer drinking.
May not be appropriate for readers under 18 years old. Not intended for prudes and killjoys with no sense of humor***

★ ★ ☆ ☆ ☆

I’m really sad that I’m giving Almost Matched 2 stars. First, because it was written by a local author. Second, because it had so much potential. The first two chapters were cute and funny. I loved the way Natalie and Colin met and their traffic run in. But then the story started to fall flat for me.

I didn’t really find Natalie and her friends’ conversations funny. It wasn’t the sexual nature of their joking around, but the forced feeling of it. It didn’t feel natural. It also felt like the author was including a bunch of information about Natalie’s friends for future stories about them, but the information didn’t really add anything to Natalie and Colin’s story.

Natalie and Colin’s chemistry was apparent in the first part of the book, but then it kind of fizzled toward the end. I blame it on the change in the tone of the story. Almost Matched went from romantic NA comedy to angsty NA romance. The shift just didn’t work for me. I also found it weird that their first sexual encounter was an entire chapter by itself, titled “BONUS CHAPTER: A PEAK INTO COLIN AND NATALIE’S FIRST NIGHT TOGETHER”. I’m not sure why there would be a bonus chapter in the middle of a book or why their first encounter wasn’t just included as a regular part of the story.

It makes me sad to say this, but I didn’t enjoy Almost Matched enough to want to read the next book in the series, Almost Broken Up. I’m happy leaving Natalie and Colin where Almost Matched left them.

Review: Fractured Faith by Jasmine Denton

Fractured Faith

Series: Glass Houses, #1

Author: Jasmine Denton

Publication Date: March 25, 2016

Genre: Young Adult, Suspense, Thriller, Mystery

Note: I received an electronic copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Goodreads Synopsis:

When her sophomore year of high school began, all Faith cared about was fitting in. She’d made up her mind that this was the year—she’d be the most stylish girl in school, finally catch the eye of hottie athlete Tyler. All of that changed with a class assignment. The project was simple enough: write an autobiography.
When Faith looks into her past, she realizes her history isn’t as clear as she thought was. Driven by the nagging feeling that her parents are hiding something sinister and an ever growing pile of questions, Faith enlists the help of her cousins (and best friends) to uncover the truth. Faith is about to discover that some secrets are kept for a reason….
As she pokes at the past, she unleashes a hidden danger that could put her–and everyone she loves–in the ground.

  ★ ★ ★ ★ ☆

Oh my goodness. I think it’s going to take me a bit to recover from reading Fractured Faith.

Fractured Faith felt like a wild ride. It captivated me and kept me wanting to know the answers to all of Faith’s questions. It was so intense! I kept having to take little breaks while reading it because I couldn’t handle the suspense at times. I thought I knew where the story was headed but the twist and turns it took surprised me.

I felt bad for Faith. The truths she found weren’t something anyone would ever want to know. The way she acted out after learning her history made complete sense. I wish her parents would have been open and honest with her about it all. It might have saved Faith from being so self-destructive.

The only thing that kept me from giving Fractured Faith 5 stars was the major twist at the end. While it shocked me, part of it just didn’t feel like it could happen in real life…


…I could see the Carver still being alive, but having multiple children with his victims? That seemed a little out there. Up to that point, it was a believable situation.


Fractured Faith was a dark and intense Young Adult novel that readers who like thrillers will enjoy.