Friday, 22 December 2017

Renegade Cowboy by Sara Richardson

REVIEWED BY
Tina Shobe



Renegade Cowboy (Rocky Mountain Riders, #3)Renegade Cowboy by Sara Richardson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Renegade Cowboy is the 3rd book in the Rocky Mountain Riders series but can easily be stand alone.

After his best friend, Cash Greer, was killed in an accident practicing for the rodeo Levi Cortez leaves town and goes on with his life. He's back in town atoning for his past. When he left town he left his second family, the Greer's behind including Cash's sister, Cassidy.

Cassidy life pretty much ended after her brother's death. Her mom, Lula since then has struggled with depression and alcoholism. Her father left after losing not only his son but his wife. Cassidy's whole life is now dealing with taking care of her mother and working to support them both. She is determined to have a life of her own and achieve her own dreams. But first she's trying everything she can to get her mom on track.

Levi is now just a determined as Cassidy for them to have a future together. They have a few things going against them; Levi having a high risk career with the rodeo and Cassidy's responsibility of her mom. Cassidy is the adult child of an alcoholic. She has been the 'parental' figure in their family for years.

This story hit pretty close to home with me. Having been married in the past to an alcoholic I could relate to everything Cassidy is going through. I had to battle through some old memories and feelings while reading this book. That got a little tough. The author did a good job covering the reality of life of the alcoholic and how it affects those around them.

Levi became my hero when he did everything he could to help Cassidy work on achieving her dreams even when that meant putting his ultimate dream on the back burner.



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Traitorous Toys by Mildred Abbott


REVIEWED BY
Tina Shobe


Traitorous Toys (Cozy Corgi Mysteries #2)Traitorous Toys by Mildred Abbott
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Traitorous Toys is book 2 in the Cozy Corgi Mysteries. This is the first book I have read in the series and had no problem following along.

I read the book because the cute corgi on the cover and I'm really glad it got my interest.

The author has a great way of writing that had me following along as Fred (Winifred) went from place to place subtly investigating the murder of Declan with her corgi sidekick, Watson. Love all the twists that the story was taking as the story went along. I will just say that even though Declan was an extremely good looking man the world was not sad to see him go.

If a book has me hooked to the very end trying to figure out who done it and why I know it's a good one. This one is a very good. I kept changing my mind on who it was and yes, I was pretty surprised on who it was. I honestly thought the killer was going to kill Fred.

I also like the fact that even though I'm finished with the book I can't help thinking about some things. Like is Fred making a mistake letting her friend Katie open up a bakery in the top floor of her bookshop. They haven't been friends long and Fred has already been burned by her last business partner. I'm also concerned about Sergeant Branson Wexler....where does he go when he 'unreachable'. Is he a bad cop, is he secretly married... I can't wait to read the next book in the series to see if some of these questions are answered. Also hope I get a little more insight into Leo.


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Thursday, 21 December 2017

Truth or Dare by Non Pratt

REVIEWED BY
Micky Barnard 


Truth or DareTruth or Dare by Non Pratt
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

4.5 stars

TRUTH OR DARE has knocked my figurative socks off. I got a signed copy in my illumicrate and got round to reading it just now. The cover is interesting, the blurb too but the characters and context are so much more.

Sef and Claire are an unlikely friendship, drawn to partner in a project of their own making over Kam, Sef’s brother with a traumatic brain injury. Kam is present but subtly in the background of this story, however Kam’s experiences, the reality of his abilities/disabilities afterwards and the effect of his injury on the family, especially Sef, pack an emotional punch. There’s actually not a whole lot of Kam, mostly Sef and Claire who are awkwardly wonderful.

The realistic narrative of the gawky and graceless growing friendship between Sef and Claire is fun to read and I found myself invested in their bond, their aim and wanting more for them. There is chemistry and flirting that had subtle, believable feels. The side characters of Seren, Rich and Amir were fabulous and rich.

What is super special about this book is you read half way from Claire’s POV, reaching a painfully WHAAAAT moment, then turn over and read from opposite end of the book for Sef’s POV. Initially, Sef’s POV was less appealing but it built and built to brimming emotions.

This might be a lesser known book but it really deserves more recognition as it is the kind of YA that sings to my book soul and the fact that it felt so familiarly British was another score. Highly recommended to all my YA loving friends. I’ll definitely be reading more from Non Pratt.

Reviewed for Jo&IsaLoveBooks Blog.

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Cruel Candy by Mildred Abbott


REVIEWED BY 
Joanne Swinney


Cruel Candy (Cozy Corgi Mysteries #1)Cruel Candy by Mildred Abbott
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Eat your heart out Jessica Fletcher. Remember Murder She Wrote? God, I loved that show. It’s a murder mystery what’s not to love.

Cozy Corgi Mysteries was everything I was hoping for. It had flair bringing the characters in this story to life.

Newly resident of the quaint little town Estes Park, Fred is planning on opening up a bookstore. Not just any old bookstore, she has big plans for her Cozy Corgi Mysteries. Her side kick and companion, Watson is actually a Corgi. Yep, he’s a dog and Fred’s a woman. Confused? Read on.

Fred short for Winifred has left her old life behind. We learn throughout the story about exactly what kind of life she left behind. It’s about what you’d expect for a thirty something woman. I don’t think it’s possible to get to that age without having some history behind you.

It soon becomes clear that Fred is an attractive, intelligent woman who spikes the interest of Sergeant Wexler. She is by no means a wallflower, but by God, I thought I was going to combust if she didn’t grab that sexy man and snog the face off of him. Obviously being reserved is a talent I haven’t yet mastered.

Fred and Watson find themselves with a mystery that they would like to solve. Fred’s stepdad is under suspicion for a heinous crime. It’s not too long into the story where we learn Fred is more than just an beautiful, intelligent book Corgi loving woman. She has a case to solve and no one is telling her she can’t investigate. With Watson by her side anything is possible.

This book was such an interesting and fun read, I am looking forward to more from Cosy Corgi Mysteries.

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Saturday, 16 December 2017

Team Player by L.J. Shen

REVIEWED BY
Monique Cashmere



Team PlayerTeam Player by L.J. Shen
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Team Player is a collaboration of authors writing a novella all relating to a sport. My favourite is hockey! Love those guys on the ice! This is a hard book to rate because some I absolutely loved, and some were ok. So I am going to concentrate on two of my favs and give a 5 star rating for those.

Back in the Game by Meghan Quinn.
This was such a fun, sweet and adorable story. I loved the quirkiness and the awkwardness of Calder who was dating again after a long hiatus and was so nervous when he bumped into Rachel. He shouldn't have been, as she was just as smitten with him. What made him more delectable? That he was a single dad to a five year old who he would do anything for, even be a fairy! He is one character I hope we get to hear more about.

The End Zone by LJ Shen.
You never know what you have until it might slip away from your fingers, right? Well this could have been the case for Sage, if he didn't man up and admit his feelings for his long time best friend Jolie. Sage is the QB on the college football team, and when a team mate keeps asking him for her phone number, it is a wake up call that if he doesn't do something drastic, then he will loose her forever. JoJo has been in love with Sage since they were 10, just a different kind of love in the beginning to what she feels for him now. But she is terrified that if she lets it slip to him, their friendship will be lost forever.

I was very excited to be given an arc to read this anthology. I am a huge lover of sports romances and I was pleasantly surprised I enjoyed most of these stories. It can sometimes be overwhelming when hit with a lot of novellas at once, but these all flowed on quite well. Some were new authors to me that I will seek out their other works. And a few were tried and tested authors I knew I was going to take pleasure in reading their tale. Whether you read them all at once, or read one in between other books, you are sure to find a few in here to keep your sports addiction happy.

*Received an arc in exchange for an honest review.
**Reviewed by Monique for JoandIsaLoveBooksBlog.

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Redemption by Stephanie St. Klaire

REVIEWED BY
Tina Shobe



Redemption (McKenzie Ridge #5)Redemption by Stephanie St. Klaire
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Redemption is book 5 in the McKenzie Ridge Series. This is a series that I highly recommend that you read the books in order not only because it's a great series but that you'll get better appreciation of the series, the characters within the series as a whole.

We have seen a glimpses of Blake and Jessie through out the series. Slow build up. You always got the impression that there was something underlying between. That famous Love/Hate relationship.

Jessie becomes a fire fighter to overcome her fears of her past. It's a past that when you read about it will bring tears to your eyes and compassion to your soul. It made me feel deeply. Jessie is the type of person that has an abrasive personality and is hard to like at first. Little glimpses of her true self shine through throughout the book.

One person that sees through her abrasiveness is the very hot police chief Blake. He has a way of seeing the true character of a person. He's supporting Jessie without her even being aware of it.

Jessie's past comes back to haunt her present and endangers those around her. Blake and Jessie work together to uncover what is going on.

The town of McKenzie Ridge once again proves that not only are they friends they are family. A family that works together to protect their own.

I love how we get to catch up with all the other characters from the previous books in the series. It made me feel like I was one of the actual characters watching their lives unfold around me.

I love the banter between the characters. It adds a more realistic edge to the story. The build up of intrigue is great. It had me gripping the edges of my kindle because I was so caught up in the story.

This series is one of those rare ones....it just gets better with each book. I'm sad that the series is over but know without a doubt we will read other great books by Stephanie St. Klaire.


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What the Hail by Lani Lynn Vale

REVIEWED BY 
Tina Shobe



What the Hail (Hail Raisers #4)What the Hail by Lani Lynn Vale
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Lark finds help through an organization to leave her abusive husband and assume another identity. An assumed life that already has turmoil broiling in it. You can't help but feel for Lark she just can't seem to get a break. Then to top it all off her car gets towed for payments being in arrears. The tow truck driver is none other than super hot Baylor Hail. He does his job but can't get Lark out of his thoughts.

I love these two. Their bantering is beyond description. It just made it more realistic and pulled me in that much more into the story. I love the twists of humor too. There were several times I laughed out loud.

Lark is proving what a strong tough young lady she is. She's determined to get live life on her terms. Baylor is just as determined to help her and when push comes to shove to knock down all those stumbling blocks in her way.

When Lark's past finds her these two are in a fight for their lives.

I love the glimpses we get of Rafe. I think he's a very intriguing not only as another champion for Lark. I hope we get to know him better in future books.

This book is very well written and has everything that I could crave in a book. Great characters, humor, intrigue, suspense, 'hotness', great dialague between the characters...

What the Hail is Book 4 in The Hail Raisers Series. It can be a stand alone. In fact this is the first book in the series I have read. The first book I have read by this author. The only thing I can say now is that I'm throughly addicted to this series and now consider any book written by Lani Lynn Vale a 'must' read.


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Friday, 15 December 2017

The V Card by Lauren Blakely and Lili Valente

REVIEWED BY
Jess 



The V CardThe V Card by Lauren Blakely
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I truly love waking up to find a Lauren Blakely book on my kindle. I always know I am in for a fun ride and a lot of laughs! THE V CARD by Blakely and Lili Valente had me so worked up, I didn't know what to do with myself!

Graham is PERFECT. really. perfect. I don't know many male characters I can say that about-but he truly is. Funny, smart, thoughtful, handsome and all he wants to do is take care of his dead best friend's sister. In more ways than one. When she comes to him with a proposition that no one, not even him would expect, all cards for his Sex-batical are off the table, or on the floor, or...you know what I mean!

CJ just wants to get laid. I mean, throw out the V card, have coitus, make love, have sex...ALL OF IT. The only person she trusts not to break her heart, but break her hymen instead, is Graham. At 25, rounding on 26, she has had enough of the single life and of her battery operated friends and feels its time for the bone zone to occur. Enter delicious Graham. The man she has dreamed about for years. The ying to her yang, the man she has always had feelings for. When he agrees to the deal; 7 days of him teaching her how to be sexual goddess and for her to enjoy being the hands on student, she feels like she has won the lottery!

Swoon worthy, lush and sexy-I loved every page! Blakley and Valente make a great team! The writing was witty, funny and cute-and most of all, I was filled with joy with the way these two made this arrangement work! Another hit for one of my favourite authors!

A quick, light, lovely read!

ARC received in exchange for an honest review
*Reviewd by Jess for JoAndIsaLoveBooks Blog*

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The Marriage Pact by Michelle Richmond

REVIEWED BY
Micky Barnard 


The Marriage PactThe Marriage Pact by Michelle Richmond
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Wow. I’m a ball of knotted up feelings mixed with adrenaline right now. THE MARRIAGE PACT started as an innocuous, gentle introduction to a newly married couple and turned into a twisted, dark ride. If I could sum it up, I’d describe it as ‘big brother’s stepford wife body snatching cult’ and I mean 1984-esque big brother, not the reality show. I don’t read a lot of suspense these days and this one just compelled me from start to finish, through the good, the bad, the believable and slightly stretched.

Jake and Alice are an opposites attract kind of couple but a match that seems to work. As very newly-weds they’re invited to join The Pact. Alarm bells should have been ringing at 100 decibels but no, Jake and Alice signed up. There was an innocence about their walk into married life, believing the easy road but it was oh, so different. What ensued took my breath away as I got deeper and deeper. I read going to sleep but found myself pumped full of adrenaline and unsettled. The twisty dark nature was unexpected and not in my normal taste, but I couldn’t look away.

It isn’t a perfect read, there are occasional moments of ‘as if’ and the end could have been stronger but I know I am not going to forget this book in a hurry. I enjoyed it, my skin crawled with discomfort and unease, but I enjoyed it. The characters connected with one another and to me, the writing was like a magnet. The storyline was out of the box and I am definitely wanting to try this author again.

So, if you fancy the unusual, you like the bizarre, suspense and married couples, I give you THE MARRIAGE PACT.

A copy of this book was provided by the publisher through netgalley in return for a honest review.

Reviewed for Jo&IsaLoveBooks Blog.

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The V Card by Lauren Blakely and Lili Valente

REVIEWED BY
Monique Cashmere


The V CardThe V Card by Lauren Blakely
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I would love to get inside either one of these two awesome authors minds to see what makes them tick. They have an amazing ability to think like a man, and write in his POV so brilliantly, it’s uncanny. They also pull off writing a females POV and not only make her sweet and adorable, but also sexy and powerful. This friends to romance novel was exactly the perfect remedy to my funk, I am smiling once again.

This is a fast paced rom-com with a little bit of angsty thrown in to make it a well rounded book. It was totally believable and I fell right into the story and came out the other side extremely happy. It flowed exceedingly well, and it makes me wonder who wrote what character, or what chapters.

When you make a promise to look after your dead best friends little sister, I don’t think Graham had sex ed on his list of things to easy her anguish of losing her brother. But CJ needed a teacher to show her how to bring all her dirty thoughts forward and make her fantasies come true. Which makes for a fun and steamy read for us. I loved how the characters were both successful but also vulnerable, then found the strength again to go after what they truly treasured. Each having equal power and wanting to please each other is absol-fucking-lutely sexy! Couldn’t recommend this book any higher.


*arc received in exchange for an honest review.
** Reviewed by Monique for JoandIsaLoveBooksBlog.

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The V Card by Lauren Blakely & Lili Valente

REVIEWED BY 
Melinda Lazar 



The V CardThe V Card by Lauren Blakely
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The V Card by Lili Valente and Lauren Blakely

This book was such a lovely friends to lovers romance! First we have CJ, a gorgeous, successful woman who, through circumstance, is still holding on to that dratted V card. And who better to help her punch that card but her sinfully sexy, trustworthy, knows exactly what he's doing, friend Graham? No one, that's who. So they approach this as a student-teacher masterclass in seduction and omg was it hot or what?! Spoiler: it was, indeed, hot af.

I used the word lovely earlier and I think it can carry lukewarm connotations but in this instance, I mean it in the best way possible. This started as a 'you scratch my back and I'll scratch your itch and I'll teach you all I know' situation but developed into something really sweet but sexy and dirty at the same time. I loved Graham's approach to helping CJ get rid of her V card. It was so insanely sexy and slow and torturous that a lesser woman (perhaps me) would have thrown herself at him from the word go. I loved the nod to his late best friend although that situation made my heart ache just a little. CJ herself was such a warm and wonderful character. She knew what she wanted and to get that, she needed the best which was Graham. I loved that once she got the nod, she was all-in. No fake shyness, no prissy missy. Perfect.

I love both of these authors individual writing styles but I'm usually apprehensive about collaborations. I thought The V Card was written flawlessly and seamlessly. In short, it was a perfect friends to lovers RomCom from two crazy talented women and I'd love to see more from them!

*arc received in exchange for honest review.

**Reviewed by Melinda for Joandisalovebooks Blog.

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Ford by Samantha Chase


REVIEWED BY 
Tina Shobe 



Ford (7 Brides for 7 Soldiers #7)Ford by Samantha Chase
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Ford is book 7 in the 7 Brides for 7 Soldier Series. Each book in the series has been written by a different author. What I find so amazing is that you would never know that. Each book links with the other books seamlessly. This can be a stand alone but I do think you'll get a better appreciation for the series as a whole if you read the books in order.

Ford has no intentions of ever living in Eagle Ridge again. Having grown up there he knows that there is no such thing as privacy. Everyone knows everything about everyone. He's a very private person. He has come back in town temporarily repairing his grandmother's house after a tree fell on it and she is in the hospital from injuries she sustained.

Callie also grew up in Eagle Ridge but has no intentions of leaving. Her mother cleaned Ford's Grandmother's house while she was growing up as well as working a couple other jobs. She's always had a crush on Ford from a distance. She is now a kindergarten teacher living in the little cottage that is on his Grandmother's property.

What I really like about this series is that each book is a continuation of these 7 soldiers lives. We get to follow along as they live their lives. Almost like we're one of the towns people.

Due to their close proximity Callie and Ford form a friendship that builds into something more intense. Ford has made it very clear that there is no future for them and Callie is a strong enough lady that she doesn't attempt to attach any strings.

As Ford friend's like to point out to him 'for someone who never wanted to come back to Eagle Ridge you sure are here a lot'. Which is true, he doesn't miss many gatherings or celebrations.

I really love that we got to revisit with Ford as he grew up learning his construction trade from his grandfather. His grandfather taught him valuables lessons while teaching him a love for the wood.

To me Ford building Callie a dollhouse that his grandfather designed when she was 10 and for her to still have it now was their lives coming full circle. What was meant to be.

What I really love about how Samantha writes is that there always seems to be an extra warmth to her books.

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Thursday, 14 December 2017

Never To Be Told by Jennifer Lynch

REVIEWED BY 
Becky Cox 



Never To Be ToldNever To Be Told by Jennifer Lynch
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Never to Be Told is my first Jennifer Lynch book. Angela is a divorced woman navigating life as a single mother. She entered a short relationship with the Head of the school where she is a teacher. Gareth filled a spot physically but not so much emotionally.

Angela takes a vacation to Turkey to visit her college/university friend Jean and is amazed at Jean's life and yes, she is a little jealous. She meets a friend of Jean's, Jack, and he shows her a wonderful time and she can't wait to return.

Never To Be Told has a clever plot with several twist. It is a romance with a mystery/thriller vibe to it. I will preface my next statements with the fact that I was provided an ARC and was apparently not sent the final version. I dismissed the poor formatting as they happens sometimes with ARCs. The story and character dialogue were tedious and confusing at times, touching on ten thoughts in a single statement. I felt like most of the book Angela had ADD, her inner thoughts and conversations flitting around different subjects. Most of the main characters were not likable to me for various reasons. I liked Jean and Jack the most and felt like I could relate to them.

I got the impression from the ending that there could possibly be a second book. I do not know if that is true or not. Never To Be Told has an HEA. There is a pretty big twist at the end and the mystery part was cleverly thought out.

I received an ARC for an honest review.

Reviewed by Becky for JoandIsaLoveBooks



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Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Torrid Little Affair by Kendall Ryan

REVIEWED BY
Jess 



Torrid Little Affair (Forbidden Desires, #3)Torrid Little Affair by Kendall Ryan
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

3.5 Stars

Having never read anything by Kendall Ryan, I wasn't too sure what I was getting myself into with TORRID LITTLE AFFAIR, but I did enjoy where the story took me. Not only is this book full off hope and second chances, it's also about acceptance of yourself and the life you live. A message we could all learn a little from.

Cooper has been burned. Burned hard. Loving someone who doesn't love you back can be a bitter pill to swallow. Running an escort business with your brothers and being surrounded by women all the time can either get you in the mood for lust...or love. With lust off the table, and only wanting love, but not getting any back in return, Cooper takes some time to drown in his sorrows away from the woman who broke his heart and leaves Boston to regroup. But when a call from his brother brings him back home after and extended vacation down in Florida with the promise of a surprise in female format, lust is the only thing on Copper's mind-LOVE is off the table. Until...

Corrine has had a pretty rough life. A deranged childhood, a massive blow in her late teens and an issue with sexual relationships puts her in a rather precarious position when she is propositioned to have a no-strings attached affair with her boss, Cooper. Coming on too strong should have sent her running for the hills, but his sweet nature and "no rush" attitude set her at ease and one thing led to another.

The problem: Secrets. Not on Coopers part, but on Corrine's. What I loved most about Coop was his honesty. His wonderful ability to make sure there was never any pressure on Corrine. He did everything he could to make the "relationship" comfortable for her. Aside from his initial reaction to her, which was kind of horrid, but he didn't know any better (HELLO, BROKEN TELEPHONE), I simply adored Cooper and his patience. Even when he found out all of Corrine's secrets, he never judged or hated on the situation. He picked himself up and dusted himself off, and got down to business trying to make everything right, the best he knew how.

I had a few hang ups with Corrine. She seemed a bit juvenile to me at times, but I couldn't figure it out if it had to do with her upbringing, or her a passiveness that I couldn't get on board with. I admired her for what she did to cherish someone special in her life, but she forgot to take care of herself in so many ways that is almost made her child like. Until she figured out how to let loose and go with the flow, I was both in awe of her and irritated. (If that's even possible!)

I will say that this book is a quick, easy, fast paced read, with not a lot of depth. There are some very intense themes going on, but the ones with real potential were sort of lost in all the surface level business. There were some minor issues with continuity that stood out for me, and I always hone in on those and they get stuck in my head!

I did jump into this series during book three, and even though this can be read as a standalone, I would recommend reading book 1 and 2 first. I think they may help with the character development as I feel that was lacking during this book-because it probably already happened!

I was intrigued and wanted to know where these two ended up. I was happy with the end game, but a little iffy on how they got there. I do love Cooper though-such a stand up, honest and caring man. Corrine is lucky to have him.

Received ARC in exchange for an honest review

*Reviewed by Jess for JoAndIsaLoveBooks Blog*

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Man Hands by Sarina Bowen

REVIEWED BY 
Melinda Lazar 


Man Hands (Man Hands, #1)Man Hands by Sarina Bowen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Man Hands by Sarina Bowen and Tanya Eby

Oh Lordy, I think this book was just what I needed to read right now! From the first line of the book where I spat out my precious coffee to the very last page, it was packed with humor, heat, and innuendo. Add in the insanely likable characters and I was sold!

We have the recently divorced Brynn who, as her friends like to tell it, needs to get laid and television personality Tom, who wields his hammer as he sees fit. Mind out of the gutter people! He has his own home renovation show!

Brynn and Tom meet when she's dared by her friends to kiss the first man she sees while at a party and oh my, what a kiss it was! Unfortunately, the whole 'encounter' was captured and displayed all over the media and as a result, Tom and Brynn are forced to have a fake engagement that'll benefit them both.

Fun, fun, fun. That's what this book was about. I laughed a lot! Got to really enjoy the characters - even side characters - and cannot wait for the next book. I've read and loved most of Bowen's books and while Eby is new to me, I look forward to reading more of her work.

*arc received in exchange for honest review.

**Reviewed by Melinda for Joandisalovebooks Blog.

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Amid the Winter Snow by Grace Draven

REVIEWED BY 
Micky Barnard 


Amid the Winter SnowAmid the Winter Snow by Grace Draven
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

4 stars overall

In the Darkest Midnight - Grace Draven 4.5 stars

Grace Draven delivered on a novella with the fullest sense of story, characterisation and completion. It had a seasonal feel in terms of some key moments in the story, though of course not traditional Christmas. This is a story told over more than a decade that is set in a world tenuously connected to Bast Haradis with a cameo from a character from Radiance and Eidolon. Jahna was a wonderful character, with that departure from traditional beauty that Grace Draven is so good at. Her admiration for Radimar is something to behold, young crush at first and over time their connection was beautiful. The world and the characters pulled me in so completely, the writing slipped into my imagination with ease. This winter anthology started off in the best way possible.

The Chosen - Thea Harrison 4 stars

This is my first read by Thea Harrison and I can say I’m infected in the best way by the story and characters that she weaved. This magical story of war, confrontation, leadership, desire and connection was superb. Wulf was both a bad and good man wrapped up in one, formidable and yet honourable. Lily was the chosen one, leader of her people at the abbey. She was a very interesting character to get to know and I loved their chemistry together. I would have to say that I came to this anthology for Grace Draven and found Thea Harrison of a similar style, so I’ll be checking out her work.

The Storm - Elizabeth Hunter 2.5 stars

My least favourite of the anthology, partly because angel stories aren’t really my bag (despite the subtlety of the context) and partly because I just didn’t gel with the storyline. I think this is because it is a novella from a wider series and I lacked knowledge of the world building necessary to appreciate it fully.

The Snows of Windoven - Jeffe Kennedy 3.5 stars

Whilst this book is a novella from a series I’ve not read, I did not feel disadvantaged. It was cleverly written so I could understand everything I needed for the purposes of this story and it’s world. The focus was a relationship of some longevity, a queen and consort and their battle to keep or lose what they had. It was sensual and riveting with a fantasy world that piqued my interest.

A copy of this anthology was provided by the publisher through netgalley in return for a honest review.

Reviewed for Jo&IsaLoveBooks Blog.


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Tales from Cushman Row by Suanne Laqueur

REVIEWED BY 
Micky Barnard



Tales from Cushman Row (Venery)Tales from Cushman Row by Suanne Laqueur
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

4.5 stars

I would never typically pick up a book of extras following on from a series or book I enjoyed, but rarely have I connected with books like I have with AN EXALTATION OF LARKS and A CHARM OF FINCHES. So, I had to delve into TALES FROM CUSHMAN ROW.

What’s inside is a flow of connected elements that builds to a crescendo and ending; I really didn’t expect that. In fact, Suanne says at the beginning, they’re disconnected bits but I think she does herself a disservice because the flow was full of ease from chapter to chapter, connection to connection.

The focus is Stef and Jav in the main, but not wholly them, many of the characters from larks and finches make it in these tales, you see Ari, Geno, Alex and more. Those extras from other characters were frankly like water to a dry desert and I gulped the words down. I laughed quite a lot at the banter and I’ve come out of it feeling like I know Stef and Jav so much better, when I thought I knew them well already.

Along with the witty banter between this couple, there’s plenty of heat and heart. The words and feelings from the heart just gut me when it comes to these two.

“I feel like me. I feel like I finally met someone who literally speaks my language.”

“I want for nothing right now. Don’t let it end. I waited so long. Now just let the rest of my life be this.”


How this collection of tales ended was simply superb. I was teary and fulfilled. I’m also sad these characters are seemingly at an end. Should Suanne decide to write more, I’ll be the one camping outside, at the front of the queue for more. To have been able to read these three books in one year has meant so much to my literary soul; I feel full up. I leave you with this snapshot of settled life.

“You look good,” Stef said. “Thank you.” “You wearing underwear?” “Yes, dear.”



A copy of this book was provided by the author in return for a honest review.

Reviewed for Jo&IsaLoveBooks Blog.

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Sunday, 10 December 2017

Moonlight Over Manhattan by Sarah Morgan

REVIEWED BY
Tina Shobe 


Moonlight Over ManhattanMoonlight Over Manhattan by Sarah Morgan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Moonlight over Manhattan is Book 6 in the From Manhattan with Love Series but is easily a stand alone.

There is so much I loved about this book. This is the first book that I can remember that I actually woke up in the middle of the night thinking about. I had to grab that book and finished it as I knew there was no way I was going back to sleep.

There were several really good quotes. My favorite is when Harriet is referring to hot chocolate as 'hug in a mug'.

The banter Harriet and Ethan (aka Dr. Hot) have is what I think pulled me into the book. It was so realistic. Like I was there watching it unfold. I could visibly see when Harriet took a deep breath to get control of her stuttering. I also could feel Ethan's shame when he realized that because of his attitude it caused Harriet's reaction.

Ethan thinks that Harriet is a solution to a problem he has fulfilling his promise to his sister to take care of her dog but she turns out to be so much more.

I love that Harriet has no qualms about standing up for herself and putting Ethan in his place. She's so much stronger than she gives herself credit for.

Harriet's on a mission (Challenge Harriet) to do one thing every day that scares her.

Throughout the book we actually see Harriet gradually become more and more confident. We also see Ethan become more attached ('in clue') to others around him. I could see with his profession it became a necessity to be 'detached'.

I enjoyed the secondary characters, Ethan's sister Debra (aka secret matchmaker), Susan, a colleague (doctor) of Ethan's, and Fliss (Harriet's twin sister).

The author did a very good job of writing that had me connecting to this story throughout the book. I really enjoyed reading this book and have already bought the audio version because I know I'll be able to listen to it again before having the time to re-read it.

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So Over You by Kate Meader

REVIEWED BY 
Micky Barnard 



So Over You (Chicago Rebels, #2)So Over You by Kate Meader
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

SO OVER YOU has unexpectedly become my favourite so far of the series. I wasn’t expecting to find Isobel such an interesting character. She seemed mousey but driven and a bit uninteresting in book one, however when the layers were peeled back, she had a lot going on, past and present.

Vadim was one heck of a character. Initially, I felt very little, by the end this Russian hockey player had totally won me over and I was cheering his side. Vadim was a slice of arrogant, part unconditional regard and a big ball of frustration, it made for fun and occasionally angsty reading. What I loved was Vadim and Isobel’s second chance element to their story, they had chemistry and emotion going on. The glimpses of Harper and Remy were welcome too.

This book started off slow for me and that has pulled the rating down a little but if you experience the same, please stick with it because it is definitely a grower and ultimately very worth it.

I cannot wait for book three. That little insight midway and the end absolutely have me in desperation for book three. I am delighted at discovering Kate Meader thanks to a buddy.

A copy of this book was provided by the author through netgalley, in return for a honest review.

Reviewed for Jo&IsaLoveBooks Blog.

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Big Man by Penny Wylder


REVIEWED BY
Tina Shobe

Big ManBig Man by Penny Wylder
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Sasha Bluebell returns to her hometown on a mission to sell her mom's property that she inherited after her passing. She did plan on the complication of Grant Werther, whom unknown to her also inherited a portion.

Neither one of them thinks the other one recognizes/remembers the other. Prior to the drama of high school the two of them grew up together and were once pretty close friends.

I was confused on first trying to determine if the reason Sasha left town and had previously not returned was because her mom and her had a falling out or if something traumatic happened to her. Then I was confused on why the towns people were treating her the way they were. I think my confusion actually pulled me more into the story. It intrigued me as I was determined to figure out what happened in her past.

As far as Grant goes he grew up into a fine big man. Seriously is there anything hotter than watching a bare chested buff man chopping wood. I could actually visualize sweat running down his chest. He is definitely a small town guy. He doesn't need much to make him content.

They first came across as having nothing in common. 'City Girl' and 'Country Boy'. He thinks that small town life hold no attraction to Sasha. Sasha is determined there is more to her that being a big city girl.

These two have interesting dynamics. Like a love, hate relationship. There is underlying heat that slowly ignite as we read along and is at the point of being combustible when they give in to the chemistry.

As they work on the house and property that they have to figure out if the end result will be if they will have the same goal or will go their separate ways.


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Only for You by Melissa Foster

REVIEWED BY 
Tina Shobe 


Only for You (Sugar Lake #2)Only for You by Melissa Foster
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Only for You is book 2 in the Sugar Lake Book but is can easily be a stand alone.

Bodhi Booker is renovating a home for his mom who's moving to Sugar Lake in the very near future. Her new home is next door to young widow Bridgette Dalton and her cute little boy, Louie.

Reading along while Bodhi and Bridgette fight their intense attraction had me reminiscing all those old awkward moments when I first met my husband; being tongue tied, caught staring, blushing at inappropriate times....

I completely understood their stance on not wanting to have a relationship. Bodhi isn't going to be in town long and with his job he doesn't want to risk putting someone through what he and his mom experienced when his father passed. Having already experienced loss it's not a journey that Bridgette wants to open herself up to plus she now has to think of Louie.

I absolutely love the moments that Bodhi is showing/teaching Louie how to do things around the house. Being a male role model for him. It just made my heart melt.

The secondary characters in this book add a lot of humor that for me, made me connect more with the story. Made it more realistic.

This was a wonderful fun read that I thoroughly enjoyed.

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Behind the Bars by Brittainy C. Cherry

REVIEWED BY
Monique Cashmere



Behind the BarsBehind the Bars by Brittainy C. Cherry
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

There is something about a Brittainy C. Cherry book that just draws you in. I’m sure it is due to the richness of her characters and the powerful storylines. This novel is full of that. The journey that you will be lead on is full of angst and heartache. It is a touching tale of friendships, family bonds, passion and sorrow.

It is told in dual POV by Elliott and Jasmine. Their story starts in high school where they form an unlikely alliance with a promise of more. Circumstances change the course of direction for them, and it is six years before they connect again. They have both changed, and maybe not for the better. Until they each find their truths, they can not fully reach their HEA.

Even though I enjoyed this read, I can’t say it’s my favourite. For me, it was too angsty, and that might surprise some, as I like my angsty books. Whether it was my mood or circumstances I’m not sure but it didn’t quite feel like a winner for me. It didn’t flow collectedly as I am used to from this author. I like a little more humor to lighten it up and not be fully sad. I also love romance in my reading choices, but this one seemed excessive and slightly over the top and unauthentic. I may be in the minority with these thoughts and it won’t by any means stop me from reading more works from Ms Cherry.

*I received a copy for an honest review.
*Reviewed by Monique for JoandIsaLoveBooksBlog.

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Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Up for Heir by Ruth Cardello

REVIEWED BY 

Becky Cox 


Up for Heir (Westerly Billionaire #2)Up for Heir by Ruth Cardello
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5 Stars

Westerly Billionaire #2 is a sweet fast second chance romance.

Up for Heir is the second installment in the Westerly Billionaire series and focuses on Spencer, a self made tech success. He partnered with his long time friend Jordan and they developed amazing technology.

Spencer goes through quite an emotional growth throughout the story and I grew to like him more every chapter.

Hailey is a sweet girl trying to survive the best she can. I liked her as a heroine. My problem was her inner dialogue was excessive and distracting for me.

I kind of love Delinda (Grandmother Westerly) and her pushy, nosy self. I imagine she will be meddling in her family's life in future books as well. She was quite entertaining.

I received a copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Reviewed by Becky for JoandIsaLoveBooks


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AMAZON UK

AMAZON

Love on the Edge of Time by Julie A. Richman

REVIEWED BY
Ann Meemken



Love on the Edge of TimeLove on the Edge of Time by Julie A. Richman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

They met at the psychiatrist office. Jesse and Kylie are in need of a positive life change. They must face their demons of the past in order to do that.

At first this story was a bit confusing for me and than all of sudden it made total sense. This story is unique in the fact that it shares the past and the present time. I enjoyed the bond that formed between Jesse and Kylie. The ending was a bit surprising. I wished it would have ended different but it seemed fitting for this story.

**I received a copy for an honest review**
**Reviewed for JoandIsaLoveBooksBlog**



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AMAZON

AMAZON CA

Dearest Stalker Pt2 by Lane Parker

REVIEWED BY  Isa Jones Dearest Stalker: Part 2 by Lane Parker My rating: 5 of 5 stars The story continues and pretty much pick...