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Category Archives: 3 Stars

Review: The Memory of You by Jamie Beck

Stefanie Lockwood can repair anything, except her heart—that’s still recovering.

After a brutal assault leaves Steffi with puzzling memory lapses, she returns to her coastal Connecticut hometown to rebuild her life the best way she knows how: with her hands. But starting a remodeling business with one longtime friend puts her in the middle of a rift with another. Worse, being hired by her ex-boyfriend’s mother forces her to confront old regrets.

Public defender Ryan Quinn wasn’t shocked when his wife left him, but he was floored when she abandoned their daughter. With his finances up in the air, the newly single dad returns to his childhood home in Sanctuary Sound. The last person he expects, or wants, to see working on his family house is Steffi Lockwood—his first love who shattered his heart.

Although Steffi and Ryan are different people now, dormant feelings rekindle. But when Ryan’s concern for Steffi’s mental health prompts him to dig into her past for answers, will what he learns bring them together or tear them apart for good?

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My Review

“Some of us need to go far and wide before we find our way home.”

Man, this review is kinda a tough one. When I first came across this book, I couldn’t help but be intrigued by the synopsis. I mean it had the whole damaged heroine/second chance romance vibe going for it, so I had to give it a try….

The Memory of You follows the story of Steffi and Ryan and is told from dual points of view. When I started reading this book, I was definitely intrigued. Ryan and Steffi still had intense chemistry despite the years and pain between them. Neither Ryan or Steffi are the same as they used to be. Ryan hasn’t been able to forget the pain of losing Steffi when they were younger and now he is going through a separation and has other responsibilities to worry about. And Steffi….well, lets just say Steffi was very immature when she was with Ryan. She didn’t communicate well and really just devastated him. She never really got over Ryan and the feelings are clearly still there. Steffi also has a lot on her plate. She has a new business with her bestie and still reels from an attack she suffered years prior. This story had a lot going on, but I thought it had some good potential and was excited to see where it would go.

The Memory of You is one of those books that you love and hate at the same time. For the most part I really enjoyed this book. I loved the redevelopment of Ryan and Steffi’s relationship. They took things slow and tried to work on their issues. I enjoyed watching them find their way back to one another and learn to forgive & trust again. I also really enjoyed Ryan’s daughter Emmy. She so sweet and added a cuteness to the story that it really needed. Sure Emmy wasn’t always the perfect kid, but she was just what I would expect from a little girl who had her world turned upside down.

However, there were definitely some issues with this story. I love stubborn characters. I do. I know most people wouldn’t say that, but I do. But with Steffi, she was just way too over the top. I mean at times her stubbornness made me feel like she was a child. She just refused to listen to any logic and it made me annoyed with her. If she were a real person, I would have totally shook her and tried to knock some sense into her; that’s how crazy she made me. Also, I felt like she was really pushy with her friends and was the last person who should be doling out advice since she never listened to any of the advice that was given to her.

The next thing I need to address is the pacing and dialogue. While I appreciated the slow build and anticipation of Ryan & Steffi’s relationship, it was just too slow. I mean, it felt like things were just progressing at snail’s pace. Yes, I know there are reasons for some of the slowness, but there comes a point when enough is enough and the pacing has got to pick up. Please don’t get me wrong, when done right I totally LOVE a slow burn, but I need to feel like the story is moving/going somewhere. And that just could be me, but I felt it was worth mentioning. As far as the dialogue goes, again for the most part it was fine. However, there were some instances where it felt repetitive.

So, overall, I do think this will be a book that is a hit for some and a miss for others. For me, it was just ok. I didn’t love it, but I didn’t hate it either. I will say that The Memory of You does deal with some heavy subject matter and I do appreciate the way the author dealt with it. This story sends of strong message of healing and forgiveness. The characters are not perfect, but I think that made them more relateable. While this book wasn’t a total hit for me, I’m still glad that I checked it out and gave it a chance.

*I was provided an ARC copy of this book via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review*

Review: Touch The Sky by Kari Cole

Keep to yourself. Focus on the job. 

Sheriff Vaughn Ellis’s very existence as a rare double-shifter defies the natural order. It also makes it extremely difficult for him to get close to anyone. To trust anyone. It’s nothing Vaughn can’t handle, until a seductively sweet woman arrives in Black Robe, and suddenly he can’t think about anything but her.

The product of a witch/werewolf pairing, Hannah Cochran gets the odd-wolf-out thing. But when she uncovers a major threat to the lycanthrope world, she finds herself playing nice with the sexy sheriff. Abiding by the law isn’t usually Hannah’s style, but nothing catches her breath quite like the commanding attraction she feels toward Vaughn.

Working closely together only intensifies their fated connection, making it impossible to deny—or resist. Hannah fears that getting involved puts Vaughn in danger. But when she becomes the target, it’s Vaughn who’ll have to decide which rules he’s willing to break to save the woman he can’t live without.

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My Review

Touch the Sky is the second book in the Mated by Fate Series and can be read as a stand-alone novel. Touch the Sky follows the story of Hannah and Vaughn. Hannah has always been different. She is the product of a rare shifter paring. In order to take down the threat to the lycanthrope world, she’ll have to keep what she is a secret. That proves easier to be said that done. What Hannah wasn’t planning on was Vaughn. She can’t fight the pull she feels towards him and working together to solve the mystery only proves to make that fight harder. Will Hannah and Vaughn be able to stop the threat to their species? Will Hannah and Vaughn be able to resist the pull they feel towards one another?? There’s only one way to find out….

I thought this book was an ok read. I really liked the concept of this story and found it interesting and original. I loved the blending of the different paranormal species, seeing other shifters besides wolves and bears. I loved the idea of a werewolf/witch combination and couldn’t wait to see what that paring in Hannah would bring. Speaking of Hannah, I really enjoyed the push and pull between Hannah and Vaughn. They both tried pretty hard to fight it, but fate had other plans for the two of them and I enjoyed watching the two of them fall.

However, the pacing of this story just killed it for me. It started out pretty good in the beginning and I’ll be honest, I don’t mind a slower pace in the beginning of story since we’re setting the story up. But, I do like the pace to pick up after 30% of the story. In this case, it never picked up, which was disappointing because it made the story feel like it was dragging on and that I wasn’t making much progress with it. There was a few times where I wanted to just put this book down and walk away. However, I am not a quitter and I did finish this book. And I gotta tell you, I’m glad that I did. While this book wasn’t a 100% hit for me, I’m glad I got to see how the story played out and get some type of resolution.

Overall, I think Mated by Fate will be one of those books that you’re gonna either love or you’re gonna hate. And for me, it was just an ok read. This story-line is really interesting and the characters are very likable. I do think this series has some great potential, the pacing just needs to be improved. This is my first book by this author and while it wasn’t a 100% hit for me, I’d be open to checking out more from her in the future.

*I was provided an ARC copy of this book via the publisher & NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review*

Review: Hard Sell by Lauren Layne

He’s a Wall Street wolf. She’s been hired to tame him. From New York Times bestselling author Lauren Layne comes a wildly sexy novel of business and pleasure.

Twenty-eight and filthy rich, Matt Cannon is the youngest broker on Wall Street. He may be a “boy wonder,” but he’s every inch a man. Ask any woman—any night. But when Matt’s latest fling makes scandalous headlines, his clients get anxious, and his bosses at Wolfe Investments level an ultimatum: keep his assets zipped, get a “real” girlfriend, and clean up his act. Only one woman can help Matt with something this hard.

For PR genius Sabrina Cross, the best fixer in Manhattan, playing Matt’s steady is going to be a challenge, even if it’s just for show. They already have an explosive history, she can’t stand the cocky party boy, and worse—she can’t stop thinking about him. So who’ll dare to break her “no touching” rule first? Because when that happens, Matt and Sabrina’s game of let’s pretend will get so hot it could set both their reputations on fire.

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My Review

“I’ve been thinking the hardest part of this whole thing will be faking being in love when I don’t even believe in love. Now I know better. The hardest thing is going to be keeping my hands off the only woman I’ve ever wanted.”

Hard Sell is the second book in the 21 Wall Street Series and it follows the story of Matt and Sabrina. Matt is young and amazing at what he does. He’s on top of the world or so he thinks. When his wild night in Vegas makes headlines, he’s forced to do the one thing he’s never wanted to do. He needs a girlfriend and fast. If he can prove to his bosses that he’s changed and put the wild man to rest, his job will be saved…if not, it’s the ax for him….Sabrina is known as the fixer. There isn’t any situation that she can’t find a way out of. She is the very best. So, when Matt comes to her with his problem, she knows it will be a challenge, but she can’t possibly say no. With rules in place and their game faces on, will these two stick to the rules or will they cross the uncrossable line??? There’s only one way to find out….

I loved the idea of Hard Sell. I’m a sucker for fake relationships and an even bigger sucker for those enemies to lovers story-lines. And I thought Lauren Layne’s take on it was really interesting. I mean Matt and Sabrina couldn’t stand one another, yet at the same time, they were kinda sorta maybe friends??? Overall, I thought that Matt and Sabrina had some good chemistry. I loved seeing the two of them go off on each other and couldn’t wait to see the tension between the two of them explode. That being said, I would have loved to have seen some flashbacks of Matt and Sabrina. It’s clear to the reader that two of them have a past and I feel as though I would have understood these characters more if we had gotten to see some of that past. What happened to them? What led them to hooking up? When did the deep hate grow between them? I feel those issues were vital to the story and by not seeing the whole picture clearly, it left me feeling like something was missing.

Overall, I thought Hard Sell was an ok read. It’s not my favorite from this author, but I still found it to be an enjoyable and engaging read. I loved the friendships between Matt and his buddies. I loved the banter between Matt and Sabrina and loved the steamy moments between the two of them. The story-line itself was a fresh and fun take on the whole enemies to lovers/fake relationship troupe. I just felt like something was missing. Maybe I needed some more angst; some more drama. I’m not really sure. I think Hard Sell will be one of those books you either love or you hate. For me, I didn’t love it, but still had a good time reading it.

*I was provided an ARC copy of this book via the publisher & NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review*

Review: Her Outback Playboy by Annie Seaton

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Jenni McDougal’s family have worked hard to build their fishing and charter business in the remote coastal outback town of Second Chance Bay.

Jake Jones, her childhood sweetheart, was once the poor boy from the wrong side of town. When he blows into town after making his fortune and expects to pick up where they left off, Jenni fights every move he makes.

Jake knows that Jenni will always see him as a playboy, and can’t trust him, and his self confidence disappears when the town judges him on his past. Every time he tries to help her family business, she sees an ulterior motive.

If Jenni can’t trust him, what is there to keep Jake in Second Chance Bay?

But can he leave the woman he loves a second time? 

My Review

Told from dual points of view, Her Outback Playboy follows the story of Jake and Jenni. Jenni’s family worked hard to build a good life. Jenni continues to work hard between teaching and her hostess job. When Jake returns to town, he turns her entire world upside down. You see, Jake and Jenni were childhood sweethearts, but Jake was from the wrong side of town and a misunderstanding ended up tearing them apart. So, when he returns home a new and successful man, Jenni doesn’t know how to handle it. She can’t forget the wrongs of the past and fights Jake at every turn. Will Jenni and Jake have second chance at romance? There’s only one way to find out….

I’m just going to keep this review short and sweet. This is my first book by this author and I’m excited to see what she will write next. I thought Her Outback Playboy was a really cute second chance romance and that it had a ton of potential. I thought the characters were likable and easy to connect with. I loved the push and pull between Jake and Jenni. I was excited to see how their story was going to play out.

Her Outback Playboy was a quick and easy read for me. There were a few moments in the story that were a little bumpy towards the beginning and the pacing might have been off a time or two. However, I think the story had a lot of good potential and I enjoyed the overall story despite the issues I had in the beginning. Her Outback Playboy has a good mix of drama, romance and very light steam. I enjoyed watching Jake and Jenni’ s story play out and look forward to reading more from this author in the future.

*I was provided an ARC copy of this book, in exchange for an honest review*

Review: Deep Cover (Love Over Duty) by Scarlett Cole

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Ex-Navy SEAL Cabe Moss always comes when called to duty―at all costs. Even though the death of his fiancée nearly destroyed him, Cabe won’t let his past interfere with any work that has to get done. When his latest task pushes him to team up with FBI Agent Amy Murray, a fierce beauty with the undercover skills to match, Cabe must admit that, for the first time in years, he wants to do more than just complete their mission together…

Amy was born ready for this assignment, but working side-by-side with the the strong, silent, and frustratingly professional Cabe seems to be the biggest challenge of all. But when the sparks begin to fly―and the stakes rise to dangerous heights―the only thing Amy is left worrying about is how she can resist him. Their lives may be in danger, but their hearts hold the biggest risk of all…

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My Review

Deep Cover is the third book in The Love Over Duty Series and is an interconnected stand-alone novel. Deep Cover follows the story of Cabe and Amy. Cabe is the guy you can always count on when you need him. When called to duty, he’ll never let you down. When his fiancee passed away, it nearly destroyed him. He will face his biggest challenge to date when he gets paired up with FBI Agent Amy Murry. Even though Cabe may appear to be the strong, silent type, there is more to him than meets the eye. The stakes are high and sparks are flying all over the place. Will Amy be able to resist Cabe? Will they be able to keep things professional and solve the case?? There’s only one way to find out…..

Deep Cover is my first book by this author and overall I thought it was an ok read. I was really intrigued by the story-line and the characters. I wanted to know more, though I will admit, the first part of the story did move at a slower pace than I would like. Since the story is not told from the first person point of view, I will admit that I was distracted. With so many characters and the different pov type, I found it hard to concentrate on the story. 2nd & 3rd Person POV is something that I personally struggle with, but do try my best to overcome.

Anyways, I liked Amy and Cabe together. Amy was smart and witty. She challenged Cabe and made him want to have a life again. And Cabe was an alpha male with the biggest heart, even when he seemed closed off and wanting to keep things professional. Together, I thought these two meshed well and was looking forward to seeing how their story was going to play out.

Deep Cover is one of those stories that I think will be a hit for some and a miss for others. For me, I thought it was an ok read. I didn’t love it, but I didn’t hate it either. There was a few issues with the story that made it a little hard for me, but in the end, I’m glad I didn’t give up on Amy and Cabe’s story. I loved the danger and suspense that Deep Cover had to offer and appreciated the light drama associated with Amy and Cabe’s romance.

As I stated before, this is my first read by this author, and while it wasn’t a 100% hit for me, I’d still opening to checking out more from her in the future.

*I was provided an ARC copy of this book via the publisher & NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review*

Review: Heart of Glass (Fostering Love #3) by Nicole Jacquelyn

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The next standalone novel from Nicole Jacquelyn about love, friendship, and forgiveness.

Henry Harris was living his dream as a staff sergeant in the Marines. When he’s killed in action, his devastated family is in for one more shock: he had a daughter they never knew about.

Morgan Riley has been raising Etta on her own, and that’s always been fine by her – until Henry’s brother Trevor arrives on her doorstep, willing to do anything to help and make up for his brother’s mistakes. Their attraction feels wrong, but Morgan can’t seem to turn him away.

Trevor is suddenly in too deep. He has always wanted a family, but Etta and Morgan come with complications. Yet as Etta brings them closer together, Trevor begins to imagine giving Morgan and Etta the life his brother never could. But he wonders if Morgan will ever learn to trust another man with her heart, especially a man whose last name is Harris.

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My Review

Heart of Glass is the third book in The Fostering Love Series and follows the story of Morgan and Trevor. While this book is the third in its series, it can be read and enjoyed as a stand-alone novel. When I first picked up this book, I was floored by the prologue. I wanted to know more about Henry and the reason he stayed away from his daughter. To then find out he was killed in action….well, lets just say I was shocked. Then we meet Morgan, and we see that she’s struggling. She’s trying to do the best that she can with the cards life has dealt her, but it’s not easy. And when Trevor shows up, he is a complication that Morgan just doesn’t need. Trevor wants to right all the wrongs his brother committed, but truthfully, I think Morgan would be happy if he stayed away. As time goes on, Morgan and Trevor start develop feelings for one another. Feelings that seem so wrong, but just can’t be ignored….

Overall, I thought this book was an ok read. It was definitely a quick one and I was able to finish it in just a few short hours. When I first started reading this book, I was hooked right off the bat. I was intrigued by the story-line and wanted to know more. Morgan wasn’t the easiest character to love or connect with for me. But, I did appreciate her determination, strength and independence, even if she was stubborn most of the time. And Trevor…well, he was impossible to not fall in love with. He is a total family man–nothing is more important to him. He’s devoted, sweet, understanding and just totally perfect. Together, I thought these two made an interesting pair, especially with their history.

I also really enjoyed the family drama and dynamics. You could tell that Morgan loved Etta more than anything in the world and that there is nothing she wouldn’t do for her. You could also tell that she was very protective of her other family members and would try to help them out of any situation. And Trevor’s family, while they weren’t perfect, they meant well and you could tell just how much family meant to them.

I did have some issues with this series. As much as I enjoyed Trevor and Morgan together, I was left wanting more from them. Their situation was definitely one of insta-love and for me, it just didn’t work. For their type of story, I needed more emotion. I need more build up. I wanted to really see them fall and fight for each other. Don’t get me wrong, there was some romance and sexy good times, but for the most part, it was light on the romance. This story was definitely more family centered, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it just wasn’t what I was expecting to be the focus. My only other issue was the angst, or the lack there of. I really, really missed the angst. It was pretty much nonexistent and that is one of the things that I have come to know and love from this author.

Overall, I thought this book was an ok read. I liked the overall theme of family and how important it is to have them around/in your life. Heart of Glass is sweet story, but just left me wanting more. And while it’s not my favorite in this series, I’m still glad I checked it out.

*I was provided an ARC copy of this book, in exchange for an honest review*

Review: The Girl of His Dreams by Janet Nissenson

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He was convinced he’d be a bachelor for life. And then he met the girl of his dreams.

Jordan Reeves has fully embraced the carefree, uncomplicated bachelor life, figuring that the poor example he’d been provided by his parents of so-called marital bliss was reason enough to remain single. He’s more than content to date one woman after another and never even consider settling down, especially since the only female who’s ever seriously caught his attention belongs to another man.

But during a vacation in Hawaii, Jordan unexpectedly meets a woman who could very easily change his mind about the joys of bachelorhood. Aubrey Larson is young, gorgeous, fun-loving, and has a wicked sense of humor to match his own. She’s also a dead ringer for the woman Jordan’s had an admitted crush on for the past few years, enough to be mistaken for her twin.

Aubrey recognizes the handsome Doctor Reeves as a player of epic proportions the first time they meet, but even her usual disdain for that type of male can’t diminish the overwhelming attraction she feels for him. But as their relationship deepens, Aubrey has no idea that becoming involved with Jordan will lead to a startling discovery about her own past, and cause her to question his true feelings for her.


My Review

The Girl Of His Dreams is my first read by author Janet Nissenson. It appears to be a spin off of the Splendor Trilogy, but I do believe it can be read and enjoyed as a stand-alone novel.

I thought The Girl Of His Dreams was a fun and entertaining read. I thought Jordan was a really interesting character and loved getting inside of his head. He was your typical young doctor that had the world at his feet. He could have any woman he wanted, yet he couldn’t stop thinking about his married patient, Tessa. So, when he goes off to Maui for a vacation, he’s hoping not just for some fun in the sun, but also to get over his crush. All is going to plan until he meets Aubrey. He is immediately drawn to her and if he didn’t know better, she could be a dead ringer for Tessa. Aubrey is everything that Jordan could possibly want: young, beautiful, smart and most importantly, available. Has Jordan finally met the woman of his dreams?

Overall, I thought this book was an ok read. I enjoyed the pace and the story-line. I liked Jordan and Aubrey together. I thought they matched each other well and had great chemistry….they certainly burned up the pages together. I liked seeing these two interact and grow as a couple. Jordan certainly wasn’t perfect, but you could tell that his feelings for Aubrey were genuine and you couldn’t help but root for him to get his happily ever after.

*I was provided an ARC copy of this book, in exchange for an honest review*