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Review: The Burning Shadow by Jennifer L. Armentrout

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When Evelyn Dasher crossed paths with Luc, she was thrown headfirst into the world of the Lux—only to discover that she was already far more involved in their world than she ever suspected.

Because the Luxen aren’t the only ones with a hidden past. There’s a gap in Evie’s memory, lost months of her life and a lingering sense that something happened, something she can’t remember and nobody is willing to tell her. She needs to find out the truth about who she is—and who she was. But every answer she finds only brings up more questions.

Her search for the truth brings her ever closer to Luc, the Origin at the center of it all. He’s powerful, arrogant, inhumanly beautiful, extremely dangerous…and possibly in love with her. But even as Evie falls for him, she can’t help but wonder if his attraction is to her, or to the memory of a girl who no longer exists.

And all the while, a new threat looms: reports of a flu-like, fatal virus that the government insists is being spread by Luxen. A horrifying illness that changes whoever it touches, spreading panic across a country already at its breaking point.

#1 New York Times, USA Today, and internationally bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout returns to the world of the Lux with this steamy, shocking second installment of the Origin series that will leave readers reeling.

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MY REVIEW

“You’re real, Evie. It doesn’t matter who you used to be or who you thought you were. You are real, and I see you.”

The highly anticipated sequel to The Darkest Star is finally here and I don’t know about you guys, but I have been anxiously waiting to get this bad boy in my hands. The Burning Shadow picks up right where The Darkest Star left off and leaves no stone unturned. Evie is still trying to come to turns with who she is and why her memories are all messed up. However, with every answer Evie gets, she is left with a million more questions and this quest for the truth only stands to bring her closer to the one and only Luc. Luc is all that and a bag of chips with the arrogance to back it all up. And while Luc may think he’s in love with Evie, Evie herself can’t help but fall for Luc. The question of what is real and what isn’t has never been more critical to Evie. And if dealing with her own crisis isn’t enough, it seems there’s more on the horizon to worry about. A new threat looms and is spreading panic far and wide. Will Evie find out the answers she so desperately needs? Will Evie, Luc and the gang be able to stop the new threat from spreading??? There’s only one way to find out….

Overall, I found this book to be a really enjoyable read. I loved getting wrapped up in the Luxen/Origin world again and seeing familiar faces and meeting new ones. This book is filled with Jennifer Armentrout’s signature humor and swoon worthy romance. It checked off all of my boxes giving me a read that is filled with romance, sarcasm, mystery, intriugue, suspense and lots of twists and turns. Yes, that is one thing I love about JLA’s writing is that her twists always knock me off my feet and just leave me begging for more.

I will say that for me, the pacing for The Burning Shadow was a bit slower than I would have liked, but that being said, the slower pace did not take away from all the action this book had and once I got into the stories groove, I could not put it down. The Burning Shadow has a lot going on in the best possible way and I loved how the author left little breadcrumbs for readers to follow along the way.

The Burning Shadow is a terrific addition to The Origin Series. It kept me on my toes and left me with a ton of questions that I am just dying to have answered. I have no clue how this story is going to play out in the end, but I can definitley tell you that I will be waiting anxiously to see where this series will take us next!

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

Review: Love on Lexington Avenue (Central Park Pact #2) by Lauren Layne

From New York Times bestselling author Lauren Layne comes the second delightfully charming installment in the Central Park Pact series, following a young widow whose newfound cynicism about love is challenged by a sexy, rough-around-the-edges contractor. 

There’s never a bad time to fall in love in the city, right? Wrong. According to the recently-widowed Claire Hayes, it’s very, verywrong. In fact, after finding out her late husband was a liar and a cheat, Claire’s convinced there’s never a good time for romantic notions. Determined to rid her home of anything that reminds her of her philandering husband, Claire sets out to redesign her entire Upper East Side brownstone and make it her own. But when she meets gruff and often-cantankerous contractor Scott Turner and realizes not all men are scumbags, Claire must decide if she’s ready to risk her heart again.

Scott needs a change of pace from the corporate offices and swanky hotels he’s been building lately, and bluntly makes it clear to Claire that he only took on her house for that reason, adding that he has no patience for a pampered, damaged princess on his job site. But when long work days soon turn into even longer nights, their mutual wariness morphs into something more complicated—a grudging respect, and maybe even attraction…? Scott knows he’s not one to settle down, but then why can’t he bring himself to put the finishing touches on Claire’s house and move on to the next job?

Filled with laugh-out-loud scenes that blend perfectly with the touching friendships Layne brings to life on the page, this “hugely entertaining” (USA TODAY) novel is perfect for fans of Lauren Weisberger.

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MY REVIEW

Love on Lexington Avenue is the second book in the Central Park Pact Series and it follows the story of Claire and Scott. Now, if you remember from the first book, Claire is actually the widow of Brayden and it was Brayden’s death that brought this whole story into motion. When Brayden passed away, Claire might have lost her husband, but she gained two amazing friends and has discovered the woman she lost along the way.

When we meet up with Claire in Love on Lexington Aveune, Claire is ready for the next phase of her life. She’s tired of the status quo and is ready to make some colorful changes with her life. And what better way to start this change, then a home renovation. What Claire didn’t plan on was Scott…..Scott is looking for a change of pace from corporate renovation and despite his reservations, working with Claire might just be what the doctor ordered…..

Overall, I found this book to be a really fun and enjoyable read. I loved getting to know Claire and see how things with Brayden truley effected her. I loved that despite everything she had been through, she came out stronger than ever and formed an unbreakable friendship with two women that she should hate. I feel like Claire’s character came a long way since we first met her. She wasn’t just this meek and fraigle thing. She was strong and ready to take on the next phase of her life. She might not have been looking for love, but you know how the saying goes, it hits you when you least expect it.

Speaking of love, I really enjoyed Scott and Claire together. Of course they butted heads in the beginning, but the tension and chemsitry was there. Both Scott and Claire had their own baggage and weren’t ready to put their hearts on the line. Their romance had a nice slow burn to it. I enjoyed watching them try to figure things out and fight for their happily ever after.

Love on Lexington Avenue was a terrific read from beginning to end. I loved getting to catch up with Claire and the girls. I enjoyed getting swept up in all that was Scott and Claire. Claire’s story wasn’t just a romance, but it was also a journey of self discovery and letting go. This story has real, strong characters. It is sweet, yet swoon-worthy all at the same time and has just the right balance of steam and angst. In the end, Love on Lexington Avenue will leave you with a smile on your face and butterflies in your belly. This is the pefect book to spend your summer afternoon getting lost in. And I for one, can not wait to see what lies ahead for us with the next book in this series!

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

Review: The King (A Wicked Trilogy #3.6) by Jennifer L. Arementrout

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From #1 New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout comes the next installment in her Wicked series.

As Caden and Brighton’s attraction grows despite the odds stacked against a happily ever after, they must work together to stop an Ancient fae from releasing the Queen, who wants nothing more than to see Caden become the evil Prince once feared by fae and mortals alike.

**Every 1001 Dark Nights novella is a standalone story. For new readers, it’s an introduction to an author’s world. And for fans, it’s a bonus book in the author’s series. We hope you’ll enjoy each one as much as we do.**

MY REVIEW

“He kissed–God, he kissed like a man starving. He kissed as if he were going to devour me, and I wanted that. I needed it. It was all I could think about. Or maybe I wasn’t thinking at all. Instead, I was feeling. I was just letting myself feel.”

“Now, you’re seen, and you’re heard. You stand up for yourself. You’re living. They did take a lot from you, Brighton. Your mother. Your contentment. But it also seems like you gained a lot. Not from them, but from yourself.”

“You are my strength. My sun. You are my heart.”

Man, oh man, was it great to be back in this world again. The King picks up right where The Prince left off and there is never a dull moment. Yes, this book hits the ground running and just totally sucks you back in to The Wicked World. Now, don’t be fooled by the fact that this book is a novella because let me tell you, this little novella packs a punch. It will easily consume you and will leave you hanging on each and every word.

Since this book is a novella, I’m going to keep my review short and sweet and just say I LOVED this book!! I loved it. Within seconds of starting this story, everything from The Wicked Series came rushing back to me. I remembered why I originally fell in love with this series and all of the characters. The King is easily a novella that you can finish in just a few short hours.

The King is sexy and smartly written. The characters pull you into their story immediately. There is humor and angst. There is drama and moments that will leave you holding your breathe. There are moments where you’ll find yourself screaming at your kindle and ferociously flipping the pages to see how the story will play out. The King had it all and then some.

The King was a thrilling ride from beginning to end. From will they/won’t they moments, to lots of delicious tension & steam to danger around every turn…. I just couldn’t get enough. And with an ending I never saw coming, all I can say is when do we get our hands on the next book???!!

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

Throwback Thursday: All the Ugly and Wonderful Things by Bryn Greenwood

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“I liked learning things. How numbers worked together to explain the stars. How molecules made the world. All the ugly and wonderful things people had done in the last two thousand years.” 

“Most days I was impossible. Like a unicorn.” 

“You can look up keening in the dictionary, but you don’t know what it means until you hear somebody having their heart ripped out.” 

“Your family is real, but mine isn’t? Real people with real feelings, but my family isn’t real to you. You think. I’m a character. A story. Those women you talk about. Not real people to you. Stupid women. I’m real. I’m as real as you are. My family is real like your family.” 

“Sometimes waiting and being disappointed was good, to remind me he didn’t belong to me. Nothing belonged to me.” 

A beautiful and provocative love story between two unlikely people and the hard-won relationship that elevates them above the Midwestern meth lab backdrop of their lives.

As the daughter of a drug dealer, Wavy knows not to trust people, not even her own parents. It’s safer to keep her mouth shut and stay out of sight. Struggling to raise her little brother, Donal, eight-year-old Wavy is the only responsible adult around. Obsessed with the constellations, she finds peace in the starry night sky above the fields behind her house, until one night her star gazing causes an accident. After witnessing his motorcycle wreck, she forms an unusual friendship with one of her father’s thugs, Kellen, a tattooed ex-con with a heart of gold.

By the time Wavy is a teenager, her relationship with Kellen is the only tender thing in a brutal world of addicts and debauchery. When tragedy rips Wavy’s family apart, a well-meaning aunt steps in, and what is beautiful to Wavy looks ugly under the scrutiny of the outside world. A powerful novel you won’t soon forget, Bryn Greenwood’s All the Ugly and Wonderful Things challenges all we know and believe about love.

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Waiting for Wednesday: The Reckless Oath We Made by Bryn Greenwood

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Release Date: August 20th, 2019

A provocative love story between a tough Kansas woman on a crooked path to redemption and the unlikeliest of champions, from the New York Times bestselling author of All the Ugly and Wonderful Things.

Zee is nobody’s fairy tale princess. Almost six-foot, with a redhead’s temper and a shattered hip, she has a long list of worries: never-ending bills, her beautiful, gullible sister, her five-year-old nephew, her housebound mother, and her drug-dealing boss.

Zee may not be a princess, but Gentry is an actual knight, complete with sword, armor, and a code of honor. Two years ago the voices he hears called him to be Zee’s champion. Both shy and autistic, he’s barely spoken to her since, but he has kept watch, ready to come to her aid.

When an abduction tears Zee’s family apart, she turns to the last person she ever imagined–Gentry–and sets in motion a chain of events that will not only change both of their lives, but bind them to one another forever.

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Cover Reveal: This for That: The Edge of Retaliation by Bella Jewel

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Title: This for That: The Edge of Retaliation
Series: Edge of Retaliation #1
Author: Bella Jewel
Genre: Romance/Romantic Suspense
Cover Design: Ben Ellis, Tall Story Designs
Release Date: July 23, 2019
Blurb
What would you do, for revenge?
 
Dear Diary,
Oh, who am I kidding?
 
Dear Life, 
You’re cruel. You’re heartless. You’re sick. You’re really damned twisted.
Do you know that?
Nope…
Still doesn’t cut it. 
 
Dear Fate…yeah, that’s the one.
 
Dear Fate, 
What the actual hell?
What exactly did I do to deserve the life you paved for me?
Did I bother you so?
Was I awful?
Did I not pray enough?
You took my life into your hands, fate, and you twisted it. 
You turned it into a broken mess, and you made it ugly. 
You made me ugly. 
A life for a life. 
An eye for an eye.
That’s how it goes, right? 
Her life. Now mine. 
Someone is coming for me, but you already know that, don’t you fate?
Did you plan it?
Did you even try to tell them it wasn’t my fault?
That it was an accident? 
That I didn’t mean for it to happen? 
Or is this part of your sick and twisted plan?
I have one last question, fate, before you go…
Have you got a hero for me?
Because I’m going to need one.
Pre-order Links
AMAZON US / UK / CA / AU

Author Bio
Bella Jewel is a self published, USA Today bestselling author. She’s been publishing since 2013. Her first release was a contemporary romance, Hell’s Knights which topped the charts upon release. Since that time, she has published over five novels, gaining a bestseller status on numerous platforms. She lives in North Queensland and is currently studying editing and proofreading to further expand her career. Bella has been writing since she was just shy of fifteen years old. In Summer 2013 she was offered an ebook deal through Montlake Romance for her bestselling modern day pirate series, Enslaved By The Ocean. She plans to expand her writing career, planning many new releases for the future.
Author Links
WEBSITE
FACEBOOK
AMAZON
GOODREADS
TWITTER

Review: Storm and Fury by Jennifer Armentrout

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From the #1 New York Times, USA TODAY and internationally bestselling author of the fantastical Dark Elements and the Lux series comes a new novel set in a world of gargoyle protectors, rising demons and one girl with an explosive secret. 

Eighteen-year-old Trinity Marrow may be going blind, but she can see and communicate with ghosts and spirits. Her unique gift is part of a secret so dangerous that she’s been in hiding for years in an isolated compound fiercely guarded by Wardens—gargoyle shape-shifters who protect humankind from demons. If the demons discover the truth about Trinity, they’ll devour her, flesh and bone, to enhance their own powers.

When Wardens from another clan arrive with disturbing reports that something out there is killing both demons and Wardens, Trinity’s safe world implodes. Not the least because one of the outsiders is the most annoying and fascinating person she’s ever met. Zayne has secrets of his own that will upend her world yet again—but working together becomes imperative once demons breach the compound and Trinity’s secret comes to light. To save her family and maybe the world, she’ll have to put her trust in Zayne. But all bets are off as a supernatural war is unleashed…

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MY REVIEW

“A tiny, still-functioning part of my brain knew how bad being distracted by appearance was, but I was…I was stunned. Stunned straight into stupidity.”

” A sense of…familiarity swept over me, a feeling of rightness, of many moving pieces finally clicking into place.”

“I’d never really felt desire before, but it was burning me up from the inside. Want. Need. This was what I was missing when I’d kissed someone before. This was what yearning really felt like, and as I lifted my head off the mat, bringing our mouths so close that I could taste his breath on my lips, I thought I might drown in it…”

“I’m guessing the sky is full of stars?” “It is, but the only ones that matter are the ones you can see.”

After finally finishing The Dark Elements Series earlier this year, I was more than ready to get my hands on Zayne’s story. Because lets face it, whether you were Team Roth or Team Zayne, Zayne is one of those characters you just can’t help but fall in love with. He deserved more than anyone to find some happiness and I for one couldn’t wait for him to get his own story.

Storm and Fury follows the story of Trinity and Zayne. Trinity is no ordinary 18 year old. While she might be losing her vision, that doesn’t stop her from seeing spirits & ghosts and fighting off demons. There is more to Trinity than even Trinity knew, and in order to keep her safe, she has to remain hidden with the Wardens. Nothing good can come from Trinity’s secret being exposed, but fate has other plans and the world as Trinity knows it is about to get turned upside down….

Storm and Fury had a bit of a slow start for me, although I was kind of expecting that seeing as how this book was 500+ pages. But, once I got past all the slow parts and really dug into the story, I was hooked. I had a hard time putting this one down. Yes, some of the themes felt familiar from the Dark Elements Series, especially the special character needing to be kept hidden, but I couldn’t help but be intrigued by this new story-line. The world while familiar had some great new elements to build upon and some wonderful new characters. I liked Trinity instantly. She was nosy, but had a great uniqueness about her. I thought it was cool that she could talk to ghosts and spirits and couldn’t wait to see what other powers she possessed. But, I also like how human she still was. How at the end of the day, she just wanted to find someone of her own to love and adore. And then we have Zayne. Ugh! I could just gush about him all day. I thought it would be impossible to love his character more, but boy did this author prove me wrong. Everything about him was kicked up a notch and I just couldn’t get enough.

Overall, I think Storm and Fury is a great start to the Harbinger Series. It combines new elements with old ones. We are introduced to some interesting new characters and get to spend some time with some beloved old ones. I loved all of the supernatural/paranormal elements. I thought this story was familiar, yet all new at the same time. I loved the action and suspense. This story kept me on my toes and surprised the heck out of me quite a few times. It was swoon-worthy and steamy when it needed to be and gave us the signature JLA humor to take the edge off of those oh-so-stressful moments.

The spin-off I have been waiting for is finally here and I couldn’t be more excited to be back in this world again. I think this series is off to a great start and I can not wait to see where this series will go next.

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

Review: Waiting for Tom Hanks by Kerry Winfrey

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Can a romcom-obssessed romantic finally experience the meet-cute she always dreamed of or will reality never compare to fiction, in this charming debut adult novel from Kerry Winfrey.

Annie is twenty-seven years old, single, and obsessed with romantic comedies (she and her mother watched them religiously, before her mom died). Her dating life is limited by the expectations she’s formed from these movies. She is not as open to new experiences as she might be, because she’s waiting for her Tom Hanks–i.e., a guy she’ll find in the perfect, meet-cute romantic comedy way. When Annie does finally meet her perfect match, it’s not quite in the way she expected, and she’s forced to reckon with the walls she’s built around herself over the years.

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EXCERPT (Chapter 4)

I blink a few times, staring straight into Drew Danforth’s face. It’s like when you’re a kid and there’s a solar eclipse, and all the teachers are like, “Don’t look directly into the sun! You’ll destroy your retinas!” but there’s always that one kid (Johnny Berger, in our class) who can’t stop staring.

In this situation, I’m Johnny Berger. And I guess Drew Danforth is the sun.

“Are you okay?” he asks again, enunciating his words even more as if me understanding him is the problem. His brown eyes, I notice, are flecked with tiny bits of gold, which is something you can’t see when you watch him on TV. His hair is just as voluminous as it seems in pictures, but in person, I have the almost overwhelming urge to touch it, to reach out and pull on that one lock of hair that hangs over his forehead.

“She’s not responding.” He turns to Chloe. “Is something wrong?”

“She’s French,” Chloe says without missing a beat. “She only speaks French.”

“I’m not French,” I say, breaking my silence. Chloe and Drew’s heads swivel to look at me.

“I’m sorry about your coat,” I whisper, then I run toward Nick’s.

Chloe bursts in the door behind me, the bell jingling in her wake. “I’m not French?” she screeches. “Those are the first words you spoke to Drew Danforth? Really?”

“Well then, why did you tell him I was French?” I shout, ignoring the curious stares of everyone working on their laptops and the calming melody of whatever Nick put on to replace the Doobies.

“I don’t know!” She throws her hands in the air. “You weren’t talking, so I thought I’d give you an interesting backstory!”

I put my hands over my face. “This is ridiculous.”

“No,” Chloe says, grabbing me by the shoulders. “This is your meet-cute, and now you need to go back out there and find him and say something that isn’t a negation of your Frenchness or an apology for destroying his probably very expensive coat.”

“Meet what?”

Nick stares at us from behind the counter, a dishtowel in his hand.

“A meet-cute,” Chloe stands up straight, shoulders back, as if she’s delivering a Romantic Comedy 101 lecture to Nick and his patrons, “is the quirky, adorable, cute way the hero and heroine of a romantic comedy meet.”

Everyone stares at her blankly.

“Or hero and hero. Or heroine and heroine. Not to be heteronormative,” she clarifies.

“Like how me and Martha met at her wedding,” Gary says.

Chloe thinks about it. “I don’t know that I would necessarily call that one a meet-cute, but sure, Gary.”

“Did you just make that up?” Nick asks, arms crossed.

I shake my head. “No. It’s a thing.”

“Watch a romantic comedy, dude,” Tobin says.

Nick rolls his eyes.

“Anyway,” Chloe continues, “Annie straight up ran into Drew Danforth and spilled a cup of coffee all over his coat, which is, like, the cutest of meets.”

“That doesn’t sound very cute,” Nick says skeptically, rubbing the scruff on his chin. “Was it still hot?”

“Scalding,” I say, sinking into my chair and resting my head on the table.

“Sounds like a meet painful,” says Gary, and a few people laugh.

“Thanks,” I mutter. “I’m so glad you all find my embarrassment entertaining.”

“Annie!” Chloe sits down across from me as a customer walks in and the rest of the shop stops paying attention to us. “This isn’t embarrassing. This is merely a story I’ll tell in my toast at your wedding to Drew.”

I lift my head to look at her. “I hate to break this to you, but I don’t think he’s my Tom Hanks. I think he’s just a famous guy with a possible third-degree burn on his chest. And now my first day on set is going to be super awkward because I accidentally assaulted the lead actor with a beverage.”

Chloe’s about to say something, but then a song starts and she closes her mouth, looking up toward the speakers. “I swear to God, I told Nick not to play any more Bon Iver. It makes people look up their exes on Instagram, not buy coffee. I’m gonna go put on some Hall and Oates.”

As she walks away, I rest my head on the table again. As if it wasn’t embarrassing enough to have my uncle get me a job on set, now I have to deal with this.

MY REVIEW

If you are a fan of romantic comedies or obsessed with 90’s romantic comedies featuring Tom Hanks, than look no further, Waiting for Tom Hanks is the book that you’ve been waiting for.

Waiting for Tom Hanks follows the story of Annie and Drew. Annie wants what ever girl wants. She wants the perfect man that she just happens upon and they fall instantly in love. And the rest as they say is history…..Only that perfect guy doesn’t exist. This isn’t a movie, this is real life. And while Annie dreams of finding a man who is just like Tom Hanks, she needs to keep her eyes open or she might not see that Mr. Perfect is right under her nose….

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. I loved all the Tom Hanks movie references and the nods to You’ve Got Mail & Sleepless in Seattle. Both of those movies I’ve seen over a million times and still find myself swooning over. I adored Annie. I think she was a little clueless when it came to men and that she did have some rather unrealistic expectations, but you’ve got to give props to the girl for knowing what she wants and not being embarrassed about what she’s looking for.  And in Annie’s case, I love that her match was the total opposite of her. He was everything that she was looking for, just wrapped in a different package.

I have to say, I enjoyed Annie and Drew together. I love that Drew just got Annie. Drew was the kind of guy that didn’t show attraction or affection in the most traditional ways. He’s the grown up version of the boy at the playground who can’t help but pull a little girls hair. So, when it came to Annie, Drew’s flirting skills might not have always hit the mark, but I found it to be funny and when he really did pull out all of the stops, it made those moments that much sweeter.

Waiting for Tom Hanks was a cute and fun read. I loved the idea of the story and was drawn into Annie’s story instantly. I enjoyed watching Annie live out her own romantic comedy and couldn’t wait to see how it would all unfold. I really enjoyed all the almost moments and the tension between the characters. This story was easy to read and light on the drama. In the end, I was hooked on Annie and couldn’t help but root for her to find her happily ever after.

Waiting for Tom Hanks is a terrific debut novel and I’m excited to check out more from this author in the future.

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

Throwback Thursday: The One by John Marrs

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“What if it turns out our DNA doesn’t Match?” “Then we’ll be mindful that maybe we’ll need to put more effort into our relationship. Like John Lennon said, ‘All You Need Is Love.’” “Yes, but he also said, ‘I Am The Walrus,’ so let’s not hold too much credence to his pearls of wisdom.” 

“If you’ve got the opportunity to love someone as much as they love you, then grab it with both hands and hold on to it for dear life.” 

“Sometimes, the grass is not greener on the other side, and we should stay in the field where we belong. And sometimes we just need to take a gamble and hope for the best.” 

“Maybe when you took it back to basics, that’s what love really was: just being there for someone when the sun rises and sets.” 

How far would you go to find The One?

A simple DNA test is all it takes. Just a quick mouth swab and soon you’ll be matched with your perfect partner—the one you’re genetically made for.

That’s the promise made by Match Your DNA. A decade ago, the company announced that they had found the gene that pairs each of us with our soul mate. Since then, millions of people around the world have been matched. But the discovery has its downsides: test results have led to the breakup of countless relationships and upended the traditional ideas of dating, romance and love.

Now five very different people have received the notification that they’ve been “Matched.” They’re each about to meet their one true love. But “happily ever after” isn’t guaranteed for everyone. Because even soul mates have secrets. And some are more shocking than others…

A word-of-mouth hit in the United Kingdom, The One is a fascinating novel that shows how even the simplest discoveries can have complicated consequences.

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Review: Under the Northern Lights by S.C. Stephens

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From the number one New York Times bestselling author of the Thoughtless series comes a sweet, thoughtful romance set high in the Alaskan wilderness.

Mallory Reynolds is a driven woman fueled by her passion for photographing wild animals in remote locations. Every year she makes a trek deep into Alaska, but this time the unthinkable happens: she crash-lands after her plane stalls out in a storm. Injured, vulnerable, and threatened by the very creatures she loves, Mallory fears the worst—until she’s rescued by Michael Bradley, a mysterious mountain man living in self-imposed exile.

Mallory is grateful for Michael’s help but desperate to return home to let her family know she’s alive. Unfortunately, neither of them can leave Michael’s secluded cabin until spring. Mallory’s stuck with a stranger for months.

As Mallory recovers, a deep bond begins to form between the pair. Mallory is convinced that fate brought them together, but Michael is buried in his past, unable to move forward. Undaunted, Mallory tends to Michael’s heart as tenderly as he cared for her wounds—but will her love be enough to heal him?

MY REVIEW

Under the Northern Lights starts off with a bang and will keep you captivated from the very first page. Under the Northern Lights follows the story of Mallory and Michael. Mallory’s passion in life is her photography. She loves seeing nature and animals in their natural habitat. Every year she journeys deep into Alaska. Everything has always gone to plan until this last trip. The unexpected happens and causes her plane to crash. Mallory suddenly finds herself injured, alone and vulnerable to the Alaskan wilderness. Just as Mallory’s worst fears come to light, Michael enters the picture. This mysterious mountain man saves her life and gives her shelter until it’s safe for Mallory to return home. Mallory and Michael are stuck together and have to make the most of their situation. Fate put these Mallory and Michael together and soon an unforgettable bond forms. When Spring comes, will Mallory be able to return to the life she once knew or will she throw it all away for the mysterious mountain man, Michael??? There’s only one way to find out….

Under the Northern Lights is an extremely well written tale of survival and hope. From the moment I met Mallory, I was hooked. Her story gripped me instantly. I felt like I was experiencing her pain and despair right along with her. I was on pins and needles, wondering how her story was going to play out. It was exciting and intense and definitely had me burning through the pages. Michael was also a very intriguing character. I wanted to know why he lived in isolation? Why did he choose to stay in Alaska? How did he learn to survive all on his own? He was complicated and guarded and I for one couldn’t wait to see his walls crumble.

I loved the slow burn and friendship between Mallory and Michael. I loved the feeling of hope despite the intense circumstances. I loved the sense of survival and seeing what you can accomplish when you really put your mind to it. My only complaint was that I felt like the ending of the story was a bit rushed. I would have liked to have seen more from Mallory’s return home and how she was adjusting to life back in civilization. I would have also enjoyed getting Michael’s point of view during the time that they were separated. Don’t get me wrong, I’m thrilled with the way things turned out, I just wanted a little more from the last few chapters of the book.

Overall, Under the Northern Lights was an enjoyable read.

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