Reviews

[Review] Caged by Grace White

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With Atchison College deemed too unsafe, Terra Materson finds herself whisked away to a safe house; a short-term solution while the guys figure out their next steps. But her safe haven becomes Terra’s worst nightmare.

As Gaia’s power grows stronger by the minute; Terra’s feelings towards her four protectors become more confusing than ever. While she doesn’t want to lose herself to the ancient goddess inside her, Terra knows Gaia’s memories hold the answers they seek.

Sol, Endo, Cael, and Ross are convinced the risk of her fully connecting with Gaia is too high and insist on searching for another answer. But they have underestimated one thing: Terra’s resolve.

Because she’s finally ready to fulfill her destiny. Whether they want her to or not.*official synopsis coming soon*

Caged is the third book in The Gaia Chronicles, an urban fantasy reverse harem series, and must be read after books #1 and #2. Recommended for readers 17+

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Review

Calm before the storm…

This is such a fabulous young adult series: the premise, as far as I am aware, is original and the imagined world wonderfully constructed … I am a big fan of Reverse Harem books and have been for several years…recently there has been an increase in these type of stories but too often the male characters lack individuality or there is a bun fight between them all to identify who should get the girl..but the author has successfully created a perfectly balanced RH with distinct and relatable male leads who are as loyal to each other as they are in love with their girl…. Until this instalment I found the four main guys beguiling, with their super-human powers..but in this instalment their inner conflicts and individualities come to the fore and I have become completely invested in their lives and their relationship with the irrepressible and beautiful Terra…

Terra is under increasing pressure to find answers to so many questions she is pulled in too many directions…some things are becoming clearer some things less certain; I love the ebb and flow of this story… emotions run high as the storyline begins to explore the strength of the eternal bonds between the guys and their queen and I was totally caught up in the drama…… Darkness has arrived; Terra and her four protectors (not forgetting a witch or two thrown in, for good measure) are all that stand between evil and the end of the world…

The climactic cliffhanger ending signals that there is still a tortuous journey ahead, this may be the relative calm before the storm but it does feel like we have reached the beginning of the end rather than the end of the beginning…and I am waiting impatiently for the final stand…

~Sheena

Reviews

[Review] Family Ties by Stephie Walls

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With a history like ours, the meaning of the word family tended to tangle into something unrecognizable. DNA and bloodlines didn’t tie us together, and neither did our last names. Various shades of grey blurred the branches of our twisted family tree.

I wasn’t her brother.
They weren’t my parents.
Not that it mattered…

She was off limits.

Portia was my friend.
Then my foster sister.
And she’d always be the love of my life.

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Review

Family is a funny word. Some people think it means blood, some people think you choose your own.
For Jude and Portia, it means both.

Put in the foster system at a young age, they both grew up at the Shaw house (Jude going back and forth when his mom was well enough). While the world sees them as siblings, the two have a bond stronger than that. Acting on those feelings, now that they’re all grown up, is harder than it seems.

I loved this story. From start to finish, it tugs at every emotion you can think of. It also draws you in so deep that you don’t even realise you’re reading (which are the best kind of books, let’s be honest). Going between their POV’s, we get a full glance at what exactly their bond is and a beautiful story of true love. 4.5 stars!

~Alex

Reviews

[Review] Bride to Keep by Alta Hensley & Maggie Ryan

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Do you take these men?
To honor and obey from this day forth…

Stolen away by dangerous men on a mission.
Dark intentions I don’t understand yet cannot refuse.
Commanded to comply, obey, and serve in every way.
I am captured in a twisted world of not one man…
— but four.
With a pull stronger than anything I have ever known, I march down the aisle compelled to surrender to the darkness.

With these rings… I become their bride to keep.

*This is a standalone full-length dark reverse harem. Dirty taboo with not just one, but four. You may be afraid to walk down the aisle on this one.

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Review

Wanton and wicked….

This is the raw and, at times, shocking, story of Monet a seller of magical remedies, hopes and dreams and four bad boy, Irish mobster brothers……

Having grown up in the world of organised crime the four O’Shea brothers are hell bent on revenge and in trying to protect their little sister, Alana, end up entangled with the defiant and mouthy Monet …I do enjoy reading about heroines with some feistiness, and Monet is up there with the best of them….. I feel the authors created a wonderful character in Alana who is the most relatable character: she is a tenderhearted innocent with a tragic backstory… as for the O’Shea’s, in truth there is not much to differentiate between them in terms of personality…met one you’ve met them all…I would have preferred more diversity but since I am a sucker for dirty talking uber protective alpha types I cannot complain too intensely….

Where I do have a complaint is regarding Monet’s acceptance of her situation; she is such a strong character that I felt she acquiesced a little too easily … this was a full length book and so there was time for more of a slow-burn regarding her relationship with the brothers…

Heed the warning, as always, there is a sinister side to this reverse harem….the men are morally corrupt on so many levels and their actions at best overbearing and coercive, but at worst brutal, abusive and murderous; I was particularly horrified by their actions during and immediately following Monet’s capture. ….thankfully, to counterbalance the darkness, there are some sweet and funny moments and of course some seriously wanton and wicked licentiousness ……

All in all this was a dark and twisty romance with a completely unrealistic premise, and yet there was something about it that kept me turning the pages desperate to see how the story of Monet, Alana and the four brothers would turn out in the end …

~Sheena

Reviews

[Review] Monday Night Guy by Liz Lovelock

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Parker Kent . . .

Deliciously good-looking

Basketball captain

Complete and utter jerk

I made a vow—a vow to steer clear of guys like Parker. But when he shows up every Monday night at my workplace, that vow is torn to shreds. As much as I’d like, to I can’t ignore a customer.

At some point, a friendship forms. It’s not what I expected; he’s not what I expected. Those walls I put up are being torn down piece by piece, allowing Parker into my heart. Am I setting myself up for disaster, or is my Monday-night guy just the antidote my wounded heart needs?

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Review

Monday Nights will never be the same…..

This was a fun relatively angst free college romance….the story focuses on Addison and Parker; initially they both seemed to be rather shallow and I did not immediately warm to them…Addison was just a little too feisty and prickly, Parker was too inconsistent in his dealings with her, and both of them blew hot and cold too frequently…… however, slowly but surely their relationship developed and I began to appreciate Addison’s strength and Parker’s yumminess and protectiveness…

There are numerous secondary characters from loyal best friends to abusive boyfriends and hateful sisters…and altogether they provided both humour and drama to the proceedings….. I particularly enjoyed the interactions between Addison and her group of close friends.. and a special mention also for Devon, Addison’s younger brother, who demonstrated so much courage….In some ways I felt there were almost too many members in the supporting cast.. at times I forgot which character was which…and more importantly I wanted to know more about each and every one of them and there simply wasn’t enough opportunity in one book to do them all justice..

This story deals with a number of challenging issues bullying, cheating and abuse; but whilst the subject matter is serious it is delivered with a light touch and therefore prevents the storyline descending into darkness… In the interests of honesty I did feel that the title of the book suggested that Monday Nights would be the main focus of the story and that was not the case… and as I mentioned previously I did not immediately fall in love with Addison and Parker…

That being said as the plot progressed I became more and more invested in his and her story and by the end was standing on the sidelines in my cheerleaders skirt, not a pretty sight I can assure you, willing them to find their HEA together…

~Sheena

Reviews

[Review] Wicked Games by L.A. Cotton

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The edgy, angsty, addictive YA/NA crossover series from L. A. Cotton continues…

They thought the fight was over…

All Maverick Prince ever wanted was to play basketball in college. So starting for the Steinbeck Scorpions should be a dream come true. But not everyone wants to see him succeed. Just because you’re on the same team, doesn’t mean you play by the same rules.

Lo Stone thought her life was finally on an even keel. As if being a senior and having to think about her future isn’t bad enough, she’s a stranger in her own house. And the longer she goes without seeing Maverick, the harder it is to ignore the little voice of doubt whispering in her ear.

They thought the games were over, but the war is only just beginning…

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Review

I’m a Wicked addict…..

I am confident that you will understand what I mean when I say that every so often you meet a book couple that you love as individuals and by fortunate happenstance they are also perfect together, and for each other…. this is not a regular occurrence: too often I like one protagonist more than the other or their relationship does not seem genuine, but, for me, Lo and Mav are the quintessentially ideal couple and for the record I love both of them equally, together and apart…

This series just keeps getting better and better… it deals with challenging and dark subject matter and tackles issues, that so many face, in a sensitive and emotionally intelligent way… what is particularly rewarding is the fact that whilst Lo and Mav are the central characters, thank goodness, and rightly so, the secondary characters are also wonderfully complex and well developed … no matter which character is the main focus of the scene, I am invested and they all bring added depth to the story..

You can probably tell I am addicted to everything about this series… the concept, the setting and the cast members … Each time I reach the end of the latest instalment I find myself immediately checking a) to make sure there are more books planned, and b) to identify when the next one is due… thankfully I do not have to say goodbye, just yet, and look forward to the next book with bated breath…

~Sheena

Reviews

[Review] Kandiland by T.L. Smith

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He was forbidden, my boss and incapable of loving me.

People talked about him, whispered about him in passing.

He was the king of his town.

And I was a visitor.

I was by no means a smart girl. Never loved with my head, always with my heart.

That fact alone almost killed me once.

I should have listened the second time around.

But the king of this small town, had me starving. Had me craving his taste.

My name is Kandi, and he called me his Kandiland.

The king declared I was his medicine, and with each dose, he became better and better.

He was the perfect liar.

And I was his perfect Kandi.

Together, we were explosive, and toxic in every way.

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Review

Dark and intense …

Well that was completely unexpected…the blurb had me anticipating a hot forbidden boss/employee romance….. but of course I should have known that with this author it would be so much more….what I actually got was a tale of loss, deceit, love and desire… and I was enthralled…

The prologue is the first shocker… only two pages turned and I was already invested in Kandi as her world irrevocably falls apart around her…. I am amazed at how much emotion the author was able to engender in such a short space of time…. in addition she masterfully created an authentic and detailed landscape….evoking the sights, sounds and smells of the imagined world with her words alone…

The story is told, almost exclusively, through the eyes of the two main characters….Kandi is quirky and sassy, and she is a perfect foil for the brooding, sinister alpha antihero that is Huxley… the sexual tension between these two is palpable; but with so much baggage and too many secrets their challenges seem insurmountable…. the supporting cast is also worthy of note…filled with an array of diverse and fascinating characters

This is an intense, erotic romance, which took me on an emotional and at times shocking journey….A compelling story that once read is impossible to forget…

~Sheena

Reviews

[Review] Tesoro by Nicole Banks

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Tommy worked hard to establish a life outside of his father’s legacy. Son to the infamous Delucia family, he’s the heir to a throne he doesn’t want. As loyalties keep pulling him back in, he struggles to obtain a clean break. Becoming a new man is just out of arm’s reach.

Naila is a sassy, headstrong entrepreneur with businesses in the Delucia territory. A chance meeting between the two has Tommy questioning everything about his life and what his future holds.

As circumstances keep putting them in each other’s paths, the two can’t deny the building chemistry between them. As passions ignite, so does the tension surrounding the Delucia family, catching them both in the crosshairs of an all-out war.

When the dust settles, there’s only one question remaining: how deep are they willing to go?

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Review

First instalment…

Mafia romance is one of my most favourite genres, and I always look forward to reading the start of a new series by a new, to me, author.. so I was really excited by this book.. the premise sounded promising, and indeed it was interesting and the narrative well paced with a suspenseful plot… a classic mob story of family ties, the old guard making way for the new and the resultant turf wars……unfortunately the delivery, or more precisely, the main characters were not as compelling as I had initially hoped…..

Naila is a smart, independant business woman, and I liked her feistiness, but at times she came across as weak, and in truth a bit naive when it came to her boyfriend… Tommy had the potential to be a strong, protective and determined character, but his personality was full of inconsistencies: he considered himself a player, and yet he appeared to be a little bit too desperate when pursuing Naila, he spent a lifetime resolutely carving out his own career away from his legacy, and then seemed to have an epiphany and everything changed, and most disconcerting of all – he had grown up in his father’s world and yet he had a casual approach to the potential threats surrounding him and demonstrated anxiety and fear when faced by an aggressive Naila… none of this seemed realistic.. the subsidiary characters were a motley crew of the good, the bad and the ugly…. of all of them Bear was my favourite, a bodyguard cum second father to Tommy… he was a tough guy with a big heart and sense of humour..

The story is told from multiple points of view, which provided useful insights into all the characters motives and feelings. However the switch between perspectives happened on a paragraph by paragraph basis, and , at times, I found this confusing and disconcerting as it disrupted the flow of the writing…

Although there were niggles… this was still a book worthy of reading, and there never was a moment when I was tempted to abandon it before reaching the conclusion… the main characters, whilst not my favourites, caught my attention sufficiently for me to want to see where their futures were heading…. and when I reached the end, and an unexpected cliffhanger, I found myself emotionally invested enough to want to read the next instalment…

~Sheena

Reviews

[Review] In Too Deep by J. Kenner

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Hannah Donovan is not my type.

Intellectual and career-focused, she’s a lawyer, and an intimidatingly beautiful one, at that. I’d rather pump iron than open a book, and the only reason I’d go to court would be for a traffic ticket.

She’s the most gorgeous woman I’ve ever seen. So how can I turn down her plea that I pretend to be her fiancé for one weekend?

But I never expected our pretend kisses to feel so real … or for it to lead to a wild night in bed that will forever stand out as the highlight of my sex life.

Our performance convinces everyone, but it was never meant to be more than a fantasy. A short term gig before reality sets back in.

I can’t imagine ever being good enough for her, but I’m hooked. And now I’m determined to do whatever it takes to make this fake engagement real.

Each novel in the series is a STANDALONE romance with a guaranteed HEA!

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Review

Hannah and Matthew’s story is one for the books.

When Matthew agrees to be Hannah’s fiancee for a weekend, to impress her parents so she can get her inheritance, he never imagines what it would lead to. Unfortunately, her parents see through the ploy which leaves Hannah questioning what is more important to her – true love or her career, because she’s certain she cannot have both.

One of my favourites from this series so far! Matthew and Hannah had a friendship turned romance which is what I personally love to read, though I wish we got to see more of The Fix (I think we went into the bar twice?) or at least had more emphasis on the contest.

~Alex

Reviews

[Review] Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

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From the author of the New York Times bestseller Eleanor & ParkA coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love. 

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan…

But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving. Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words… And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this? Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?

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Review

From the first page, you cannot help but fall in love with this story.

Cath and Levi, Cath and Simon, Cath and Reagan ; it all makes for a wonderfully comforting read to anyone who has ever fallen in love with a fandom and it took over their life (which sounds like an exaggeration but who are you kidding?) From Cath’s writing to her anxiety with college and her home life, there are so many passages and events throughout the story that hit you right in the feels.
It is a story I will be coming back to for years.

Also thankful I’m not the only one who does emergency dance parties, but my playlist is very different 😉

~Alex