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Blog Tour & Book Review – Books, Blogs & Reality by Ryan Ringbloom

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Books, Blogs, & Reality

by Ryan


Publication Date: October 24, 2014

Genres: Contemporary, Humor, New Adult, Romance

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Life can suck…

When reality becomes overwhelming, seeking comfort in fictional fantasies keeps hope alive. And while

this escape may be a little delusional, it’s also therapeutic.

Sharing secrets is daunting, but virtual friends don’t often judge and they are always ready to share a

glass of wine…or three…while typing out life’s latest endeavors.

Brooke believes obstacles only add to romance, not detract. Rachael longs for a more intense

relationship, or so she thinks. Lizzie misses the excitement in her life, but sometimes new situations find

you when you’re not even looking. And Jess believes a tiger can change his stripes. It can’t.

Bound by a shared passion for blogging about happily ever afters, these four young women use

keyboard therapy to work through their expectations, anxieties, and inadequacies, all with the hopes of

achieving the perfection found in romance novels.

Completely blinded by what they think life should be, they navigate their unique paths in search of what

they envision is right. But when reality taunts them with persistent curve balls, will they be strong

enough to choose wisely? Or will their happy endings escape them?

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About the Author

Ryan Ringbloom

Ryan Ringbloom is a YA/NA author who lives for anything Romance. The

passion, love, angst, awkwardness… she loves all of it. When Ryan needs a break from reality she sneaks

off to read a romantic story or write one of her own. Drinking coffee, reading Tweets and hugs from her

five year old are the best part of her day.

Feel free to contact her, she would love it!

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This story is everything I love in a good romance/chick-lit read. When I sit down to read this type of genre I need to not want to put it down, and this book absolutely had me enthralled from the start. In fact, I started and finished it in just one sitting!

In this story we follow 4 women, all book junkies & bloggers and all part of a tight online friendship foursome. I love how the author captured the intricacies of online relationships. How we can spill some of our most intimate and mundane thoughts and life events to these people we have never met, yet still feel a connection with.

The book was very cleverly broken down so we get a good sense of each woman’s character. They all are clearly very different… different lives & different personalities. The back and forth between the four of them in cyberspace was SO entertaining. It had me giggling a lot of the time! I really enjoyed how their online catch-up were interspaced between what was really going on in each of their lives, things aren’t always so rosy in the real world that’s for sure!

There was a lesson to be learnt for each of the ladies in this book. While sometimes I found myself (good-naturedly) eye-rolling them, I quickly realized I had a soft spot for each one of them as I watched them navigate their romantic issues and dish out advice to each other. I could never pick a favourite, and that for me really proves the amazing job that this author has done in MAKING me love all of her characters. Not an easy feat at all!

This book has everything you need for an entertaining read. I love that I read a book that has variety, that had me laughing pretty much the whole way and that managed to wrap up the storylines so I felt content, something that is definitely not always a sure thing. It was a nice quick read and definitely one of the better books of this genre that I’ve read this year. Definitely a highly recommend for a weekend where you want to sip a hot chocolate and play voyeur…

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Loves & Loathes – 14 December

Love love love…

1. I had my laser eye surgery as planned this week and already I feel like a whole new person who can SEE! I’m easing myself back into reading marathons but I’m betting it wont be long until I’m back to normal! Yay! – C

2. I can finally share with everyone that I’m going to Austin Book Fest in March!!! I am so excited!!!- A

3. The first full Insurgent trailer released on Friday!! I know I was a little skeptical about this movie when the first teaser trailer was released, but my faith has been restored! The trailer looks amazing and I’m super excited to watch the movie! March is shaping up to be a good month for me!– A

4. Australia went through something pretty horrendous yesterday – a hostage situation that resulted in loss of life in Sydney. But out of the tragedy and horror something amazing occured; #illridewithyou. ‘#illridewithyou’, is a Twitter hashtag created yesterday after a Sydney women, Rachael Jacobs, posted on on Facebook about an encounter that she has with a Muslim woman earlier that day. The story goes that the Muslim woman was on a train and started to remove her hijab because she was afraid of the backlash that would be headed her way after the events in Sydney. Rachael Jacobs saw this and told the women to put her hijab back on and that she would walk with her. This action sparked the #illridewithyou hashtag, which has now gone viral all over the world with hundreds of thousands of people spreading messages of love and solidarity. What a powerful way to deal with hate and racism. I love it and I am so incredibly proud of our Australian neighbours right now. – K

5. We have had the BEST time with our week of Christmas giveaways! We love you guys for joining in and helping us spread the Christmas cheer!


1. I’ve left my Christmas shopping til the last minute. Oops. – K

2. I tried listening to an audio book for the first time thanks to my eyes being out of action and WHY do I keep falling asleep?! I’m pretty sure that’s not a normal reaction to listening to a book?! – C

3.  We had my hubby’s Christmas party last night and it was at a dinner theater, kids were welcome (no sitter). Even though kids were welcome, it wasn’t really a kid friendly atmosphere. The area we were seated at was super cramped, the kids were restless and the food was sub-par.  We lasted an hour and a half. – A

4. It’s so busy at the moment! I love all things Christmas but the mad rush of everything in the two weeks leading up to it can be so stressful and overwhelming! Argh! – C

5. Racists, bigots, homophobes. Don’t spread your dangerous and disturbing opinions anywhere near me or my Facebook news feed. I’ll unfriend your ass so fast. In real life AND on Facebook. – K



Here we are people! A full list of all of our lucky winners! Keep tuned for more of our blog giveaways in the new year!


DAY ONE – Reine Williams

  • Pineapple Lumps & Tim Tams (New Zealand goodies!)


DAY TWO – Lori Christensen

  • Havoc E-book by Autumn Grey


DAY THREE – Lupita Saavedra

  • The Chronicles of Izzy series by Michelle Graves (E-books)


DAY FOUR – Christina Lynne

  • Puddle Jumping (Paperback) by Amber L. Johnson


DAY FIVE – Keyshla Yari Carrrasquillo

  • Ten Below Zero by Whitney Barbetti & Where We Belong by K. L. Grayson (E-books)


DAY SIX – Cheryl Hickford

  • Neanderthal Seeks Human & Neanderthal Marries Human from the Knitting in the City Series E-books by Penny Reid


DAY SEVEN – Banda Patty

  • The Out of Line Boxed Set (E-Books) by Jen McLaughlin & $10 Amazon Voucher
  • An Imaginary House by the Sea E-book by Cecily Gates & your choice of E-book up to the value of $10
  • The Law of Moses E-book by Amy Harmon

Christmas Giveaway Week – DAY SEVEN! (THE FINAL DAY!!!)

Amy – It has been so much fun doing these giveaways all week long! For my final giveaway, I’m going to be gifting one lucky winner The Out of Line Series E-Book Box Set by Jen McLaughlin as well as a $10 Amazon gift card! The Out of Line series is one of my favorite series’. As you probably know by now, I am a big fan of angst and romance! Jen McLaughlin more than delivers with this series. I hope you will enjoy it as much as I have!

Charmaine – We have had the best time this week feeling like the book blogger versions of Santa! Thank you SO much to everyone who has participated in our week of giveaways. We love you all so much for being a part of our blog! For my final prize I am giving away a book I very recently have read, An Imaginary House by the Sea by Cecily Gates. I loved this book, it gripped my heart and turned my emotions inside out. To go with this I am also throwing in an E-book of your choice that you are dying to read over the holidays! (Value up to $10)  

Kristal – Woohoo! Our final day of our Christmas Giveaway has arrived. A ‘grand finale’ if you will…x ! Aaaaanyway, for my final prize I wanted to contribute a book that I recently read and LOVED so I went with The Law of Moses by Amy Harmon. This is a beautiful story about love and gratitude that transcends genre boundaries and will have you thinking outside of the box. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! (have tissues handy).

So to sum up, one lucky winner will be receiving ALL of the above prizes. Score! Thank you so much for following our blog this year! It’s been a blast xx 

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Christmas Giveaway Week – DAY SIX!

Neanderthal Seeks Human & Neanderthal Marries Human E-Books by Penny Reid

This year I have come across SO MANY amazing books and authors. My Kindle library is growing on a daily basis and I spend way too much time thinking and discussing all things books, but I have some firm favourites in there… So when it came to picking some goodies to giveaway for our Christmas Giveaway Week I knew I had to giveaway something from Penny Reid.

This year for me has been the year all about Penny. I am absolutely and utterly obsessed with her writing. My name is Charmaine and I am officially a fan-girl. So, I want to spread my love of all things Smart-Romance with all of you and give you the chance to get the very first two books in her ah-mazing Knitting in the City series. This is where it all started for me and I’m hoping it will be the same for you… because there are some heart exploding, jelly leg creating, mega swoon-worthy stories (and men) to be had.

Click on the Rafflecopter and enter now! This comp is only live for ONE DAY!!!


There are three things you need to know about Janie Morris: 1) She is incapable of engaging in a conversation without volunteering TMTI (Too Much Trivial Information), especially when she is unnerved, 2) No one unnerves her more than Quinn Sullivan, and 3) She doesn’t know how to knit.

After losing her boyfriend, apartment, and job in the same day, Janie Morris can’t help wondering what new torment fate has in store. To her utter mortification, Quinn Sullivan- aka Sir McHotpants- witnesses it all then keeps turning up like a pair of shoes you lust after but can’t afford. The last thing she expects is for Quinn- the focus of her slightly, albeit harmless, stalkerish tendencies- to make her an offer she can’t refuse.


There are three things you should know about Quinn Sullivan: 1) He is madly in love with Janie Morris, 2) He’s not above playing dirty to get what (or who) he wants, and 3) He doesn’t know how to knit.

After just five months of dating Janie, Quinn—former Wendell and unapologetic autocrat—is ready to propose marriage. In fact, he’s more than ready. If it were up to Quinn, he would efficiently propose, marry, and beget Janie with child all in the same day—thereby avoiding the drama and angst that accompanies the four stages of pre-matrimony: engagement, meeting the parents, bachelor/bachelorette party, and overblown, superfluous wedding day traditions. But Janie, much to Quinn’s dismay, tosses a wrench in his efficacious endeavors and challenges him to prove his devotion by going through the matrimonial motions, no matter how minute and mundane.

Will Quinn last until the wedding day? Or will he yield to his tyrant impulses?

Regardless, one thing is for certain, Quinn Sullivan will have to learn to expect the Spanish Inquisition (i.e. the unexpected) if he plans to have and keep Janie Morris as his wife.

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Christmas Giveaway Week – DAY FIVE!

Ten Below Zero by Whitney Barbetti and Where We Belong by K.L. Grayson (E-Books)

For today’s giveaway, I’m highlighting two awesome indie authors that I was introduced to by another amazing author friend of mine, Lex Martin. Both of these ladies have written books that have touched my life in one way or another and their books have quickly made my top book list! These book remind me of the very reason I love to read!

The first book is Ten Below Zero by Whitney Barbetti


“In here,” he said, pushing on the skin above my heart, “you’re ten below zero. And you’re closer to death than I am.”

My name is Parker. My body is marked with scars from an attack I don’t remember. I don’t want to remember. I choose to live my life by observation, not through experience. While people are laughing and kissing and connecting, I’m in the corner. Watching them live. I’m indifferent to everything, everyone. The only emotion I feel with any kind of depth is annoyance, and I feel it often.

A text message sent to the wrong number proves to be my undoing.

His name is Everett, but I call him rude. He’s pushy, he’s arrogant, he crowds my personal space, and worst of all: he makes me feel.

He chooses to wear all black, all the time, as if he’s waiting to attend a funeral. Probably because he is.

Everett is dying. And he’s spending his final days living, truly living. In doing so, he’s forcing me to feel, to heal. To come face to face with the demons I suppressed in my memory.

He hurts me, he fulfills me, he completes me. And still, he’s dying.

This book took me not only on an incredible journey, but also a roller coaster ride of emotions. It makes you see the beauty in things and that fight for life and love. It is beautifully written and captivating. There aren’t enough words to show how amazing this book was for me. This book will make you laugh, you will cry-maybe even ugly cry- and fall in love. This isn’t just your typical romance. It is so much more……

The second book is Where We Belong by K.L. Grayson


Regret . . . she’s a snarky little bitch.

I’ve tried several times to regret the events that took place on June 5, 2008, but for the life of me, I can’t. I’d never regret the pain, the suffering, or the heartache because it ultimately led me to the place I am now. And I can’t regret the place I am now. What I still can’t figure out is this: how is it possible that the single worst day of my life inadvertently became the very best day?

Five years ago my life was irrevocably changed.

Seventeen minutes was all it took—
to lose my best friend…
to lose the love of my life…

Seventeen minutes was all it took for the seeds of hope—the seeds of my future—to be planted in the worst possible way.

My name is Harley Thompson, and this is my story.

Where We Belong had me hooked from the beginning. I thought to myself, “Oh my god! This book is going to break me”. There was so much angst and heartbreak, just in the prologue. And if you know me, you know I’m a big fan of well written angst. I knew from that moment that I wasn’t going to be able to put this book down. This book will take you on a roller-coaster ride of emotions and has the perfect balance of angst and romance. This is one of those books that once you start it, you won’t want to put it down. Where We Belong is a fantastic debut novel and I can’t wait to read more from this author!

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Christmas Giveaway Week – DAY FOUR!

Puddle Jumping by Amber L. Johnson (paperback) & $10 Amazon gift card

Puddle Jumping is one of our favourite reads this year. It’s just a freakin’ beautiful story from start to finish and when you love a story that much there’s nothing quite like owning a paperback copy of it! So today’s Christmas giveaway is a paperback copy of Puddle Jumping, because we’re hoping you will fall in love with this story like we did and want to keep it forever and ever. There’s also a $10 gift-card included in this giveaway because – more book money!! Good Luck!!

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Christmas Giveaway Week – DAY THREE!

The complete series of The Chronicles of Izzy by Michelle Graves (E-Books)

As soon as we discussed our Christmas giveaway plans I knew that The Chronicles of Izzy series would have to be involved. This series is one of my FAVOURITE finds of the year. It’s paranormal romance at its best and I absolutely devoured the whole series. Even if you aren’t usually a reader of this genre I truly believe you will love these books as much as I did.

So what have you got to lose! Enter todays competition and you could have this series of E-Books ready for your holiday reading pleasure. Amazing!!!

Check out my review of the first instalment, See How She Runs HERE

Check out Michelle Graves Goodreads page with links to all of her books HERE

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Book Review – An Imaginary House by the Sea (Bridgeport #1) by Cecily Gates

Kindly received from author in return for an honest review

“Love is a messy thing. That hopelessly devoted, deep-in-your-bones kind of love we used to dream about when we were kids—it turns out that it’s hard. It aches. It takes time. Like a house that weathers the ages, it must be built, brick by brick.”

Snarky and ambitious Dawn Campbell almost had it all: a job producing lavish celebrity events, a hip downtown apartment, and a studmuffin of a boyfriend. But after losing all three in one fell swoop, Dawn finds herself resorting to the unimaginable: returning home to Bridgeport, an oceanside town where the air smells sweet but not much happens.

When a chance encounter brings her into the sturdy arms of John Brown, her childhood best friend, old feelings come rushing back. As the sparks fly, life finally starts to look up for Dawn…until she meets his wife.

Marguerite Brown has everything that Dawn doesn’t: a killer fashion sense, a breathtaking beauty, and a French accent—oh, and the kind of temperament that makes great white sharks seem docile in comparison. Determined to release John from an unhappy marriage, Dawn turns on the charm and makes a plan to finally win back her one-that-got-away.

But after Dawn stumbles upon a secret that, up until now, Marguerite has meticulously kept hidden, the two women are thrust into an unexpected friendship. An Imaginary House by the Sea follows Dawn’s journey towards self-rediscovery, finding purpose, and building a more complex, steadfast kind of love than she could have ever imagined.


I have to admit. Dawn and I definitely did not see eye to eye in a lot of instances in this story. She came into the story shallow and self-absorbed, maybe a little wishy-washy. As many times as I was impressed with her snarky remarks and self-preservation skills, I was also shaking my head and eye rolling her. However, that’s how she came into the story. Part way through the book I found myself seeing more and more glimpses of a different Dawn. By the end of the book I had decided that actually, I really loved Dawn, she had grown into someone I really connected with, someone who I fervently wanted everything good for and I ended up really respecting this woman who was brave enough to take stock of her shortcomings and make a change.

At the heart of this book is the development and growth of a woman who was lost in life without even knowing it, she thought she had everything she ever wanted. This is not a story where a boy comes along and suddenly everything is complete and perfect, this is no fairy-tale. It is a story full of heart and heartbreak. This book had me in tears more than once. It had my heart and my mind tied up in knots. I felt torn between what I wanted for the characters and it reminded me that the universe is completely and utterly unfair… And apparently it has no sense of timing either.

One part that I absolutely LOVED in this book, which sometimes can be more a miss than a hit, was the use of flashbacks. You can’t tell a story like this without delving into the past and I loved how we watched Dawn and John together as awkward teenagers, stolen moments that were peppered into the current day story-telling at just the right time. These flashbacks really added depth to their chemistry and connection, highlighting all of the change between them, yet at the same time affirming everything that had stayed the same.

I loved that I read a book where I connected to the supporting characters in the way I did here. John’s wife Marguerite definitely deserves a special mention. Her story really made the book for me. It was carefully and beautifully written, approached in a way that showed there was so much more to this character than her situation and it was thanks to this, that my heart was split in so many different directions.

This is one of those books that will have you questioning your perceptions of people and possibly even that blurry line between what is right in the perfect world vs. what happens in the reality of the world. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve spoken about the emotional toll this book takes but there is a lot to celebrate and be positive within it as well. Happily ever afters are so much sweeter after an emotional roller coaster aren’t they! So no, it’s not a doom and gloom read, but I love books that make me feel and this definitely had me feeling every emotion possible. This is absolutely a book that is well worth reading and I’m looking forward to following the series on.


  photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin ccphoto credit: Nick Kenrick.. via photopin cc

Christmas Giveaway Week – DAY TWO!

Havoc E-Book by Autumn Grey & Hollie Lane E-Book by JB Morgan

It’s day 2 of our special holiday giveaway and today, I’m giving away two amazing books! Not only are these books the authors’ debut novels but they are both extremely talented and definitely ladies to keep your eye out for………

The first book is Havoc by Autumn Grey 


Selene Michaels is determined to never let anyone make her feel inferior again. After a painful divorce, she finds herself in Paris on a working holiday, hopeful that this will be the opportunity she has been waiting for. She intends to have fun and maybe find someone to flirt with; someone who will show her a good time, treat her right, and awaken her to all she has been missing. What she does not expect to find is Remington St. Germain and his adorable son, Adrien. Remington is intense, devastatingly hot and a Prince Charming on the outside, but a dirty talking, insatiable devil behind closed doors—the opposite of the man she has been hoping for—and not the type to give up on something that he wants. Selene soon realizes that life with Remington is not only interesting, but adventurous. It’s dangerous, and she’s about to find out how dangerous. . . if she is brave enough to take a chance.

***Havoc is the first installment of a three-part serial, each approximately 36000 words. (110 pages)

Now, I am a big fan of serial series and this one does not disappoint. I fell in love with the characters instantly and couldn’t wait to know more about them. This book is sexy and full of mystery and intrigue. It will definitely leave you wanting to get your hands on the next edition!

This second book is Holly Lane by J.B. Morgan 


Hollie + Layne= One trip. One week. One chance meeting that they’ll never forget. Two hearts. Two different places. And One event that could change it all.

This Christmas, take a stroll down Holly Lane where you’ll find Hollie Reed’s story of memories, friendships, a town full of holiday joy and the power of love.

New Adult, Holiday Romance

Note: This is not a heavy book. It’s light, has swoony romance, filled with humor and great friendships with some holiday magic thrown in.

Holly Lane is a sweet, refreshing light NA story. Perfect for the holidays. It’s an amazing story of friendships,  and first love. The characters were easy to connect with and it was impossible to not fall in love with them. This book made me laugh, cry and swoon!

*Quick Note: This book is still in the final stages of editing and will be gifted to the winner via the author around Dec. 15th!*


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