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Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Live and Learn by Mary Calmes

This one was SHORT! Yet it actually DID have a romantic story and even a lesson to be learned.
Robert Owens is frustrated, he is at a club with his friends and boyfriend Teague Powers and while trying to be a "cool guy" he drives Teague to dance with Hunter, a guy Teague has known for years and spend many nights with.. Truth is he is NOT okay with it at all.. But Teague isn't as oblivious as Rob thinks..

Where You Lead by Mary Calmes

Though short this was actually a sweet short novella. Our MCs are already a formed couple their issue is more than the usual "taking a step up" in their relationship since Carver needs to return home to his sleepy little town of Colt after his mother suffered a stroke and needs help taking care of. Question is, what would Pete do? Stay in Chicago or follow the love of his life home. 

Monday, September 11, 2017

Temporary by Sarina Bowen & Sarah Mayberry

Beautiful! SO SO beautiful! Sarina and Sarah were perfect together as were the two MCs - Callan and Grace. The story that brought these two together was so touching. Callan lost his uncle, the one constant in his life who made him the person he is today, but his mother is determined to delete all his doing by getting rid of everything he owned and everything he stood for by disposing of his belongings. She uses Grace, a temp at the New York offices to do that job. Yet even though Jack wasn't alive anymore he WAS alive throughout Callan's memories and through his house who is the main setting of the book. I felt connected to Jack even though he wasn't even there. I shed a tear at his eulogy and was heart broken for him many times. I feel as though I WISH I actually "met" him and I have a feeling Grace feels exactly the same. 

Play On (Glasgow Lads, #0.5) by Avery Cockburn

Something didn't work for me in this one. It might be the Scottish jargon I was unfamiliar with, which "helped" with me not really getting the two MCs. There's an undercurrent of events that happened in Duncan's soccer team and though it was explained I couldn't care for the team because I didn't know them and Duncan was just sulking around about it. Brodie seemed too fragile for my liking and mostly too defensive. I didn't like that things was explained LATER rather than NOW, on too many accounts. What happened between the two of them (still not sure at 35%), what happened with the team, what's the issue with a LGBT soccer team and what does it mean? What happened to Brodie to make him hate athletes. I would have loved for ONE straight answer throughout this short novella. 

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Living Out Loud by Christina Lee & Nyrae Dawn

Beautiful and heart breaking at the same time, but also SEXY as hell! I loved both Ben and Xavier. They had a difficult childhood that made them into who they are today, but while Xavier is mostly content with his life, Ben has a lot of exploring to do - in the sexual sense, but also personally, learning to not only accept who he is, but to look for the things he loves and enjoys in the new life he is building himself now that he is free from his past' shackles.

Though this book is not a part of the "Free Fall" series, it's still connected. First because we've met Ben in the last installment "Paint the Stars" (he and Ezra were a couple in college), but also because there are mentions of other characters from the series. 

It can be read as a stand alone no worries. 


Sariel by Mary Calmes

I was quite surprised with the actual story Mary managed to build in only 28 pages! It has a lot of sexual interactions (considering it's length) but there is also a really nice idea behind it. Though it does contain "insta-crash/love/commitment".

When Jacob Gray is offered to go to Italy with the new company he just started to work with he is excited! But as the boss takes JUST him with a few associates on a car ride he starts to get anxious and rightly so... They are planning to rape torture and kill him.. Yet he gets offered to suffer those OR be given to "The Beast". Jacob does the "unthinkable" and decides to go with the unknown beast only to find he isn't actually a beast at all..

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Circle (Roads #3) by Garrett Leigh

This book wasn't just Ash and Pete coming full circle, it me as well. "Slide", the first book in this series was the first I've read by Garrett. It's been 2½ years and I've completed all of her published work and became addicted on the way. Pete and Ash's story was soul crashing but it was also gentle, loving and endearing even though they are both not the romantic kind. This book brings us and them a true feeling of HEA even though they have to go through a new journey before they get there. 

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Chevalier (Romanus #2) by Mary Calmes

I enjoyed this novella, like the first part "Romanus" [which you HAVE to read in order to understand the dynamics and basic world building] it was fast paced with a lot of things happening and a lot of information revealed about the Gargoyle species. This one starts a year after the perilous one with Mason and Luc an established couple. Mason still tries to hold Luc back, not because he doesn't want him, rather because of his past experiences with men he dated. Yet in his heart he knows that Luc is the only guy (or rather Gargoyle hehe) for him. It's admitting it, saying it out loud which terrifies him. 

Monday, September 4, 2017

Romanus (Romanus #1) by Mary Calmes

A very detailed short novella. I"m really happy this is part one, with part two "Chevalier" concluding the story because it would really be a shame not to get more of this very detailed world. I've read many reviews describing this one as "confusing" but I think if you are used to reading Paranormal Romance novels you'll get this one - no problem! It's actually quite amazing HOW MUCH we get of the world building in such a short story which naturally also includes romance, though be advised it's almost an "insta-love" or rather "insta-lust" (which is quite common in PNR). 

Friday, September 1, 2017

September 2017 Reading List

August flew by and I can't remember anything THAT remarkable besides a "new road" I'll be starting  soon but it was kind of bitter sweet the way everything went so I'm excited and cautious at the same time.  I AM excited I'll be going on vacation in two months! It's going to be a new and exciting experience for me and I really can't wait. There's something a bit annoying about planning a holiday for further away and not for RIGHT NOW, or I don't know, next week. Yeah, I'm not a very patient person hehe

I have a new addiction that's worth mentioning! Duolingo. It's been a while since I started learning German and I've missed it but I don't have the time or money to invest in it right now or the foreseeable future.. So when a friend of mine mentioned it on her blog I HAD to give it a go and it's SO MUCH FUN! You can invest as little as 5-10 minutes a day and it's totally free. I HIGHLY recommend you try it out. There are many options for languages. 


This month there are 4 new exciting releases - Ruthie Knox is FINALLY releasing the 3rd in the "New York" series, Garrett Leigh is releasing a new and final (?) book in the Roads series, which is the series that made me fall for her writing so I'm excited about that. Christina Lee and Nyrae Dawn are releasing a new book together - YAY! I don't think it's a part of the "Free Fall" series, but I think it's somehow connected to their previous releases, last but not least a new collaboration between Sarina Bowen which I already LOVE to pieces with a new to me author Sarah Mayberry. I'll be reading ALL of these as soon as I get my hands on them! Besides that, more of Mary Calmes and Amy Lane is always a good thing. I also have a contemporary romance I planned for last month and didn't work out by Kim Fielding, haven't read anything by her and I'm not even sure how I came to add this one, also since I had to change it up a little bit (because I didn't connect to the Scottish NA I had planned) I added AGAIN a novel by Liv Rancourt which I had on my list FOREVER and last but not lease an Historical! It's been a while really, though I promised myself to read more of those..  


Have a Wonderful Autumn everyone! 



____________________________________________
Statistics (will be filled at the end of the month)
Total Books: 
Total Pages: 
Pages per day: 
Click for more Recap & Goals of previous months


♥ Contemporary Romance / New Adult / Historical Romance 
♥ Paranormal Romance 
 

    Still by Mary Calmes

    Beautiful heart warming story. I think mostly we read about romance novels which start at the beginning - introduction, relationship buildup up to a sort of HFN we feel will be a HEA. This one is different. We start at the breaking point, 17 years after Sivan Cruz and Walter Wainwright met, now a married couple with two grown kids finding life and romance isn't where they want them to be. 

    Thursday, August 31, 2017

    Heart of the Race by Mary Calmes

    This short novella was absolutely BEAUTIFUL. It was getting a WHOLE story in a rather short novella, it's not something that works out usually but somehow in this one it totally did. I LOVED both MCs (though we only get Brian's POV) and was excited to see how their love story unfold. 

    Brian Christie is adopted by Varro Dacien's family making the two of them best friends. As they get older things change for Brian when he realizes he is falling for Varro and since he can't bear to admit his feeling to him when it's finally time to spread his winds and go to college he starts putting distance (physical and emotional) between him and Varro. He can barely see him let alone touch him in an innocent hug and so he rather stay away even when Varro's life gets more and more dangerous and Brian gets frustrated with the whole thing. Varro says he needs him but Brian needs so much more from him. 

    Wednesday, August 30, 2017

    Winter Ball (Winter Ball #1) [Skipper & Richie] by Amy Lane

    I liked both Skipper and Richie and they surely deserved to find their HEA with each other, but somehow I wish this story would have been MORE than it actually was. The side characters (besides Clay) were very flat and predictable and the sex, IMO, took too much space in the book/romance. 

    Skipper and Richie have been best friends for the past 6 years but they were mostly soccer buddies to be truthfully. For Skipper (our sole POV) he's actually the only real friend he has, though he does tighten his friendship with his work pal Clay throughout the book. He doesn't have a family so for him, the interaction of the team is the best he can have. He yearns for a true relationship but these never worked out before no matter how much he wanted them to work. 

    Sunday, August 27, 2017

    Racing for the Sun by Amy Lane

    I really don't know how to start this review.. I wanted this book to be so much more than it turned out to be. I liked the two MCs in the beginning but as the book progressed I was sick of all the angst and how much Sonny was childish and immature but mostly that he was SO damaged I don't think he will EVER be "fine". He will always be a responsibility for Ace because he NEEDS to be taken care of. For me it's a HORRIBLE place for a relationship in which it almost feels like a parent-kid dynamic. 

    Sonny and Ace mate at the military. Ace was Sonny's superior. Right from the start he got the feeling Sonny is the kind of guy someone should keep an eye on and that he did. They were kind of "friends" while in the service, and yet there was always the fact Ace was higher ranking. Somewhere along the way, Sonny admits to Ace his big dream of building race cars and makes Ace promise they'll share it with Ace riding the car Sonny builds. I'm not sure if neither of them meant it, talking on the desert in Afghanistan. It's not a place to dream.. it's a place not everyone survives. 

    Wednesday, August 16, 2017

    Red Fish, Dead Fish (Fish Out of Water #2) by Amy Lane

    A second action packed novel of Ellery and Jackson - what a treat! Yeah it was full of angst and a guy (Jackson) who can't for the life (and almost death) of him stay out of trouble, harm's way or even sickness. Jackson is the kind of guy everyone falls for, it's just so easy, he is so sweet and caring. He is just a great guy, what's not to love? and yet, the one who steals my heart is Ellery, maybe because it's so difficult for him. He cares for Jackson so much, he wants him to be happy and well, and he is willing to do everything for him. He accept Jackson as he is, he doesn't try to change him, though he does his best to stir him into a less harmful life (works reasonably well, but somehow only in those small instances). 

    Before I get to my summary I have a few things to say - First, if you haven't read the first one - "Fish out of Water" - do yourself a favor and read it. It's AWESOME. Action packed, full of angst with a stray cat who doesn't know how to be domesticated (and I'm not talking about Billy Bob the ACTUAL cat). It's funny, it's endearing, it's sad and very dangerous to too many of our favorite characters. It's also quite necessary if you want to understand half of what's happening in this one.. 

    Saturday, August 12, 2017

    Marriage Can Be Murder (Dr Benjamin Bones Mysteries, #1) by Emma Jameson

    Took me long enough to read this book. It's not my "go-to" genre, so I guess it has a lot to do with this fact. I"m not "used" to reading Mysteries, especially not Historical ones. I enjoyed it. Both MC - Dr Ben Bones and Lady Juliet Linton were smart and entertaining. I really wished for something to happen between them but it only shows how many romance novels I've been reading, trying to "hook up" any couple I can find :) I gotta say the Mystery was much more complex than I thought would be. But I wish we had more clues along the way before the "big reveal".

    Tuesday, August 1, 2017

    August 2017 Reading List

    The hottest month of the year started.. Not sure how I feel about it. I'm telling myself, it's just one month and then breeze and actual AIR (without water in it) would return into our lives. I can't do anything in this humidity and neither can the "girls" (dogs). So I'm basically home whenever possible with air conditioning managing my life. I can only hope it also mean more time to read, but I'm not actually sure about that because I have an upcoming exam which I haven't a clue WHEN would actually take place.. I'll mention it once it's relevant :) 

    Last month I got my new Kindle Voyage, it's amazing once everything was on it and I started reading how quickly I got used to it. It's GREAT. I love the new features - the quality of the display, the buttons on the side, also the fact it FEELS quicker though I think I've read it's suppose to be the same as my 4 years old Kindle Paperwhite. 


    This month have been a total FAIL in what I had in mind and what I actually managed to read 6 (!) books.. The first in the Mystery series by Emma Jameson and the other ones are by Amy Lane and Mary Calmes. 



    ____________________________________________
    Statistics (will be filled at the end of the month)
    Total Books: 6
    Total Pages: 1313
    Pages per day: ~42
    Click for more Recap & Goals of previous months


    ♥ Romantic Suspense / Mystery 
     
    ♥ Contemporary Romance 
        

      Monday, July 31, 2017

      Just Desserts by Mary Calmes

      Though this was quite short it almost felt like a full length novel. I enjoyed the romantic build up, in a way it was slow and fast all at the same time. Boone and Scott have been best friends for two years now, but though they share their lives almost like a couple they both keep it totally platonic.  Boone, as our sole POV, is just realizing he wants to give them a shot as a couple, but he is terrified to lose Scott if they either don't want the same thing or they don't work out, not to mention, Scott has JUST started dating a doctor, so does he even have a chance to express his feelings? That's all up for the special dessert Scott has in mind..

      Control by Mary Calmes & Cardeno C.

      I'm sorry but this book isn't working for me and I don't wish to continue on. I usually give books a greater chance (than 15%..) before I decide to DNF them, but I don't like one of the MC, his whole behavior makes his interaction with everyone quite tedious. 

      Vytautas "Vy" Alenknos is an alpha male and a pack leader, (of Hawk shifters) doesn't matter that he isn't a huge guy.. that's who he is. When finally meeting his mate (and being thrown by the fact it's a guy - he thought that would be impossible..) he is no other than a BEAR shifter.

      Saturday, July 29, 2017

      Black & Blue (Lord and Lady Hetheridge #4) by Emma Jameson

      I LOVED this one, it's my favorite of the 4 installments! As usual we got our three POVs - Tony, Kate and Paul, but what made this one even better is getting to see more of two hilarious women - Sharada Bhar (Paul's mother) and Mrs. Snell (Tony's secretary). I do hope we'll get more of them in the next installment(s ?). Maybe because this one is shorter than the previous ones, it felt more fast paced and yet we got enough of twists and turns on who our killer is. There's a big change in this one, I was worried about how it would be and how it will influence the whole dynamics of the series, but I have a feeling it would only make it better in the next one(s ?). 

      Thursday, July 27, 2017

      Nothing Ventured by Jay Northcote

      LOVED this one! What a sweet endearing story! I had this one on my list for WAY too long, but as I had to reschedule so many books, this one got postponed as well, but I"m telling you now, I"m going to visit Jay's page on GR and add MORE! 

      Matt and Aiden meet through Matt's cousin Liv, she arranged a group to participate in "Mad Mucker" (lets call it a "crazy race", shall we?). Aiden isn't enthusiastic about it, until he gets assigned to train with the gorgeous Matt. Though he didn't anticipate it, he enjoys his time with Matt, he might be a "drill Sargent", yet Aiden is getting better, and his body is looking far better as well. But that's not the only reason...

      Tuesday, July 25, 2017

      Something Blue (Lord and Lady Hetheridge #3) by Emma Jameson

      Another great installment in the series. Loved how well it flows, how witty it is, and in general easy to read. Though it's not THAT easy for me, because some of the British nuances are lost on me.. Though it doesn't discourage me anymore :) I just take it as it is. 

      Like the previous one, we got 3 POVs, Tony, Kate and Paul (Bahr). Paul's POV adds another layer to the crime solving, and since Tony and Kate's romance takes a very small part, it really doesn't interfere with anything really, it's just perfectly balanced. I really hope Paul will get his own HEA - he SO deserves it!

      Sunday, July 23, 2017

      You Never Know by Mary Calmes

      This one started out GREAT, but somewhere along the way Mary lost me. There was a strange mix between "Telling" and "Showing". I could FEEL the small town through Hagen's eyes, I could understand all the issues he dealt with and yet something was missing. I didn't like Mitch, he didn't redeem himself IMO, he was just very persistent on the fact he wanted Hagen back but it wasn't enough for me. 

      Hagen Wylie went through a lot in life. After his boyfriend Mitch Thayer dumps him to play Pro Football, he decided to join the army. After years in the service he returns back to his small town with PTSD and Panic attacks due to him being captured and tortured. With his supportive parents he joins a neighbor and a friend in a construction business and soon after they become partners. Sadly, he loses his parents shortly after that. Yeah he had a lot of sad in his life.. But now, a few years later he is ready to make the next big step which is to find his life partner. Ash, his "friend with benefits", can't truly offer him more so what's the point in continuing that? and now that Mitch Thayer, the one and only, is back in town with his two small kids, he is getting confused. Mitch wants him back and is willing to convince Hagen that their future was written in the stars, but the big question is - Can Hagen TRUST Mitch enough to make a future with him and his kids?

      Friday, July 21, 2017

      House of Cards (Porthkennack #4) [Brix & Calum] by Garrett Leigh

      Beautiful heart breaking story. Exactly what I expected from Garrett, and as usual she never fails me with a soul crushing yet endearing love story. Calum and Birx deserved better in life, but at least now, they are able to be there for one another and build a future together, one they can look forward to. They both been betrayed in the most devastating way, Brix had a few years to try and mend his pieces, but there are still parts of him that are broken. Calum is at his worst, can't believe his good luck when Brix offers him a home and a job when everything else in his life is in ruins. 

      Wednesday, July 12, 2017

      Judgment by Mary Calmes

      I'm not a big fan of Science Fiction, it's not the genre's fault - it's mine. I somehow lack the necessary imagination to understand what THE HELL is going on. Funny enough it works WONDERFULLY for me in any Fantasy world (NOT set in the future). Yet I've read one adorable story from "Time in Eternity" Anthology (Do Over by Amy Lane) and so when I saw the same cover on this one, I had to give it a go. 

      First off, I'll say that I DID understand what the hell was going on, I thought that in this aspect the setting was well explained, surely for a 50 page novella. We got a little glimpse into Jeritt and Frost's relationship, how it started and how involved they are now, years later, also as working partners. The beginning of their relationship was a bit rushed, I didn't get why it has to be this way.. It was a little too OTT for me. 

      Sunday, July 9, 2017

      Manny Get Your Guy (The Mannies #2) [Taylor & Brandon] by Amy Lane

      I don't really know what to say, somehow though I rooted for these two I had a hard time with the way the relationship progressed. Taylor and Brandon started hating each other on sight, though both felt the desire under the surface, in a day flat, when Brandon realizes he's being a douche he more than apologizes, he grabs Taylor for the taking and he won't take no for an answer.

      We've met most of the characters in this one in the previous installment. Taylor was Nica's best friend, the one she wanted so much more with but realized too late that though they ARE best friends, they could never be more because Taylor is absolutely and totally gay. Heart broken she falls into Jacob's arms and now, 10 years later they are about to have their 5th kid. That's A LOT - even they realize it so they ask for Taylor's help in being the Manny - like Tino, Nica's brother was to Channing. Don't worry we meet these two as well as Sammy.

      Saturday, July 8, 2017

      Hello Forever (Hello Goodbye, #2) [Axel & Cax] by Sarina Bowen

      WOW, what an emotional ride! This book held me at the edge of my emotional capacity. I was in tears or near tear SO MANY TIMES. My heart ached for Cax and his horrible life situation but it also aches for Axel who would do right about anything for Cax, including breaking their very precious renewed relationship when it's the last thing he wanted to do. I was at awe with both of them. They care for one another SO MUCH and they deserved, god how much they deserved to be happy. Truly happy. At the end they did. But I was heart broken most of the book, not knowing HOW it could work out. Sarina nailed it (as usual). It was crushing but it turned for the best at the end. 

      Sunday, July 2, 2017

      Ice Around the Edges by Mary Calmes

      While the idea behind this short novella was nice, the banter between the two characters made me feel a bit disconnected. It's a sort of a (HUGE) misunderstanding that let these two break up 10 years ago. Now Dixon is back in Evan life after he heard he got shot. He hurries back to his side not accepting ANY no for an answer for them getting back, first of, spending the holidays together. 

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