The Songbird’s Call – Rachael Herron – 4 stars

August 29, 2016 Read in 2016, Sent 0

I received this book for free from the Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Songbird’s Call – Rachael Herron – 4 starsThe Songbird's Call Published by HGA Publishing on August 29, 2016
Pages: 271
Source: the Author
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four-stars

From international bestseller Rachael Herron, comes a book too delightful to put down:

Once Adele, Molly and Lana were The Darling Songbirds, a world-famous country band. Now they're just three sisters who barely speak. But that's about to change.

Middle sister Molly arrives in town, and is immediately drawn to the neglected little café where she worked as a teenager. Could she dare to bring it back to life? As lead singer, Molly had always been the voice of the band. But caught between controlling big sister Adele and demanding baby sister Lana, she never felt heard. If she's going to reopen the café, she'll do it on her own terms, no more being bossed.

So the last person she should fall for is the handsome Sheriff Colin McMurty - the man whose job it is to tell people exactly what to do.

When we finished the last book the surprise of Molly’s arrival set us up for this story of the second sister.  She’s at a crossroads in her own life where she needs to figure out what steps to take next and to heal a bit from the mess her life has been.  She’s shocked to see how bad of shape the property is in but even more surprised about her reaction to Colin.  You’ll like her spirit as she really does love her sisters even as they drive her crazy but mainly because she’s a fighter who is finally realizing where she belongs.  I loved how she was willing to put in the work, defend herself and then own when she does make a mistake.  She’s strong, soft, caring, and basically someone that you would love to know as she is very loyal to those around her.  I loved how she didn’t take things for granted and that when things came to a head she owned her actions.  She’s smart and what she makes out of a horrible situation is something to be incredibly proud of.

Colin has his own issues and seeing him finally get to act on his old crush was fun.  I appreciated all that he was willing to do in the name of protecting his family but I did get pissed at him for not understanding the position he put Molly in and assuming that he KNEW best when it came to handling the situation.  He’s such a good man that watching his struggle to realize that he wasn’t his father was a bit disconcerting but his effort to make Molly his was amazing.  I might’ve teared up a little because it took a lot for him to make the gesture he did.  I also enjoyed his controlling behaviors once I understood where they came from and how he worked hard to keep that need at bay.  He wants to be everything his father wasn’t which causes a lot of tension that isn’t needed.

I cannot wait for this trilogy to conclude as I want to see what Lana has been up to and see how they will all come together again.  Molly and Adele have come to a truce but will this last sister be able to reconcile?

Thanks again to Nat for bringing this author and title to my attention.  I now need to go to her backlist and read more…  LOL

four-stars

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The Darling Songbirds – Rachael Herron – 3.5 stars

August 22, 2016 Read in 2016, Sent 1

I received this book for free from the Author in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

The Darling Songbirds by Rachael Herron
Published by HGA Publishing on March 1st 2016
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary, General
Pages: 375
Source: the Author
Buy on Amazon
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three-half-stars

From international bestseller Rachael Herron, comes a book too delightful to put down:

The saloon had always looked old-fashioned, but now it resembled a set in a ghost town. The problem was that Adele wasn't in an old western, or a ghost town. Darling Bay was the sleepy gold-rush town her great-grandfather had given his name to.

The town she'd left for good a long time ago.

The building is a ruin, the business is broke and customers are scarce. Add into the mix Nate Houston - the handsome, guitar-playing bartender who had always believed he would be the next owner - and Adele has one potent cocktail on her hands.

Can a rundown saloon in a sleepy town finally offer Adele a way into love?

Relationships are at the heart of women's fiction, and Herron could teach a master class on creating them. Chicklit Central

This heartwarming, hilarious, and red-hot contemporary romance will leave you wishing for a marina view of your very own. From sisters to second chances, this small-town romance will make you laugh and cry. Herron's characters are grounded and relatable, but her twists and turns leave you satisfied as a reader. For a good time, pack this beach read on your vacation! You'll love this book.

Rachael Herron seamlessly blends romance, friendship, and laughter. Barbara Bretton, USA Today Bestselling Author

A FULL-LENGTH STANDALONE, a great entry into the world of Rachael Herron's sexy and hilarious books.

Occasionally I get review requests from fellow bloggers who also work as author’s assistants, these have consistently been good finds and this trend has continued with a “new-to-me” author.  This particular title is the first one in a new series about a trio of sisters who rose to fame as singers until everything changed when tragedy struck.  The trio split up and now don’t even really talk to one another or see each other.  The bitterness and issues are not ones that will be easily overcome because they have roots in the fundamental differences between the personalities so it will take effort to get past the past.

Adele has always been the fixer, the people pleaser and the one who makes sure everything goes correctly.  She’s now at a point in her life where everything seems to be working against her but she’s determined to get the bar/hotel/cafe that her uncle left to the sisters sold and start rebuilding her life away from painful memories.  She’s not expecting the place to be in ruins nor the man who runs the bar.  As she starts to clean up the bar and work on her uncle’s apartment, she realizes that perhaps this is where she needs to be for the life she deserves to have.  I loved how she started to open up as she finally embraced the town and Nate.  I enjoyed seeing her fall for a man who has his own secrets but mainly the fact that she owned her mistakes without any fake apologies or excuses.  She’s finally realized what part she played in driving the sisters apart and is working on the personality trait that brought it about.  The estrangement isn’t entirely hers to fix or take blame for but she does make the gesture to repair the rift.

Nate was someone that I quite enjoyed.  He’s not a man to run away from a problem but is a man who has his own demons to slay.  I enjoyed his stubborn streak but also loved the fact that he does so much for so many.  He wants to make a go of the property and attempted to buy it from her uncle so harbors a bit of resentment for the woman he believes is stealing what should be his.  He thinks she’s callous and unfeeling because none of the sisters showed up for their uncle’s funeral but in reality the memories were to painful along with her being off the grid when he passed.  Nate has some major issues he has to work thru and his attraction to Adele isn’t something he ever planned.  He made me laugh, sniffle and then happy as he works thru his issues and in to a life that really is perfect for him.  A good man with a heart of gold describes him well and his naughty side would make me quite happy..  *grin*

So take a chance and start this series..  book 2 releases next week so keep an eye on this page for my review of book 2.

three-half-stars

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Shift – Sidney Bristol – 3 stars

August 19, 2016 NetGalley, Read in 2016 1

I received this book for free from NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Shift – Sidney Bristol – 3 starsShift by Sidney Bristol
Published by Kensington on July 26th 2016
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Suspense, Contemporary, Action & Adventure
Pages: 320
Source: NetGalley.com
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three-stars

Nothing shines like classic cars under the Miami heat. With engines revving hot and emotions running high, sparks are sure to fly . . .

Tori Chazov isn't exactly the girl next door. For one, if the neighbors found out she's an FBI asset and the daughter of a KGB defector, she'd have to grab her go bag and run. Then there's her day job: making magic happen under the hood of big beautiful muscle cars. She's more likely to be wearing engine grease than mascara, and most guys don't fantasize about their mechanics.

But then most girls don't fantasize about FBI tech geniuses, either, and Tori has it bad for Emery Martin. Emery has a past. She can see it in the way he keeps his body honed like a weapon, in the mysterious scars under his snap-button shirts. She can see it in the way his eyes follow her around the room, even though he never says a word.

He's going to have to start talking now, though. A vicious Russian hit squad is on the way to Miami to take Tori out for good. And without Emery's help, she might not make her last great escape . .

This wasn’t a perfect book but I did enjoy the main characters and find myself wanting to read the next one in the series.  I am going to have to chat with someone that I know that read and DNFd book one to see what that one holds but I would like to see what Gabriel has in store.  If you haven’t read book one I think you will be ok as I wasn’t completely aware of that being out (yeah I know I’m a mess).

Emery is basically a master hacker, information gatherer and overall super-agent even though he isn’t really an agent or maybe he is or …  yeah his exact ties to the FBI aren’t fully clear but he’s the assumed brainiac/geek/nerd but what he actually is well…  let’s just say I’d love to be in Tori’s shoes when his attention is fully focused on her.  He’s got his secrets (which I wanted to know more about dammit) and past which impacts his choices in life.  He’s convinced that Tori isn’t in to him but he’s been in to her for quite a while now and when circumstances push them together he takes advantage of them.  I liked his devotion to her and keeping her safe but the fact that he doesn’t try to fully cocoon her made me happy.  He’s also quite controlling in the sex scenes we get but it is a good kind of controlling even though I sort of wish we’d gotten more glimpses of this but the story arc kept them busy outside sexy times.  I look forward to seeing him a bit more in Gabriel’s story but know we probably won’t get much more of his backstory.

Tori was a fun character in a lot of ways.  She’s initially having conversations in her head with her dream version of Emery but admits that this is nothing compared to what she wants from real Emery when she finally spends time with him.  She’s had a crush on who she thought he was but the real him just completely does it for her.  She’s loyal to her twin sister, Roni, and her father but there’s a part of her who wonders if she’ll find someone that can accept who she is.  Her history was interesting as well so perhaps we’ll get more of this when/if Roni’s book comes out.  I liked how uncertain she was about being sexy for Emery but also enjoyed that she didn’t completely obsess over it.  She’s who she is and luckily for her he’s completely in to who she is so while she might want to have the more girly trappings the fact she doesn’t have to really does it for her.

Overall a good, fast read but I do wish we had a bit more time to completely know both of them.

three-stars

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Musings for August 18, 2016

August 18, 2016 Musings 1

I am going to start doing more of these musings posts here so please get used to seeing them..  I may ramble *ok ok I WILL ramble* but I hope that some of them might prove interesting or provide some form of entertainment.

As many of you know I just recently finished my Associate’s Degree and am about to start my Bachelor’s program, I will whine and complain and fuss about this but overall this is a good thing for me to get under my belt so just bear with me as I mutter.  The program I am taking is offered by Bellevue University and is called a Cohort program which basically means an accelerated program where I take one class every 6 weeks or so with everything *and I mean everything* scheduled in one fell swoop.  What this means is I know what class I am taking for the ENTIRETY of the program and have an END DATE!!!  So my classes start on my 46th birthday (Sept 12) and will be done on March 12, 2018.  I also get to have the same instructor and classmates for the entire program so we will work together to complete our degrees in Business Analysis and Management (BS) using the online format.  I’m sort of looking forward to seeing who is in my group and where they all are as Bellevue University tends to have a lot of military participation.  If you are comfortable with writing papers in the APA format please let me know as I will probably need help making sure I get things correct.

Now on to more entertaining things…

I hope you have enjoyed the fact that I have more reviews going up…  I know I love to read and being able to get back in to the groove again is proving to be refreshing for my mind and soul.  I have quite a few titles that are scheduled for later in October and November so be on the lookout for those….  I also have some that I’ve read that come out later this month and next month so I hope you enjoy learning about them as we get closer to the release.  I’ll tease some of them on my Twitter feed so 😉  I’m curious though…

Are there any titles you are looking forward to over the next couple of months?  Any authors you really want to see?  Is there anything you’d like to see me do with my reviews or the site in general?

I appreciate anything you wish to offer and hope that this idea of posting regular musings or just off-the-cuff posts will be something you’d like to see.

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His Royal Favorite – Lilah Pace – 5 stars

August 17, 2016 NetGalley, Read in 2016 1

I received this book for free from NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

His Royal Favorite – Lilah Pace – 5 starsHis Royal Favorite by Lilah Pace
Published by Penguin on August 16th 2016
Genres: Fiction, Romance, LGBT, Gay, Contemporary
Pages: 182
Source: NetGalley.com
Buy on Amazon
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five-stars

The conclusion of Lilah Pace’s racy, romantic male/male duology following His Royal Secret...

James, Prince of Wales, is making history. He's decided to come out to his subjects—and the world. However, telling the truth means exposing his relationship with lone-wolf reporter Benjamin Dahan. Although Ben never wanted commitment, the unexpected depth of his feelings leads him to join James in the media's harsh spotlight.

When the news story explodes across the globe, Ben can endure the mockery and dirty jokes. But after his tragic past is cruelly revealed, his life begins to implode. Can even his love for James be worth this?

James has it no easier. His revelation divides the country and sparks turmoil within the royal family. He must struggle to defend not only himself and Ben, but also his younger sister, who hovers on the brink of a breakdown that could endanger her life.

Is Ben strong enough to survive the onslaught and stand by James' side? And will James have to make a choice between Ben and the crown?

I was so happy to get my hands on this one as I quite thoroughly enjoyed part one of this story.

At the end of part one we were left with the idea that our boys might’ve hit the limit of their relationship but we all knew that these two could not be kept apart.  Ben is willing to step up to the plate and be there for James even as it threatens to tear him apart.  He’s got his own reasons for not wanting to be in the limelight and his need to be seen as his own person causes him to make mistakes which threaten his happiness with James.  I loved how he was with the family and especially adored the way he figured out how to work with the Queen.  He sees the real truths that are hidden behind the polite masks and stands up for what is right even as it may hurt those he loves.

James was such a sweetheart in this as he tries to do the right thing for everyone even if it means giving up something that is the only real thing he has ever had for himself.  His battles with his uncle to do the right thing, his battles with the Queen…  his battles with everything around him in order to get his sister what she really needs… and the biggest battles…  the ones with himself as he struggles to finally be happy.  I loved seeing him try his damndest to get Ben to feel at home in this new life but I also enjoyed seeing him realize that it wasn’t something he could fix.  He didn’t try to force something that wasn’t there which made him very approachable.  He was scared of what would happen to his sister and what would happen to Ben but he still didn’t try to make it be completely about his wants or needs.

The treatment that his sister’s storyline gets is important on many levels but the main thing I took from it is…  Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness nor should it be avoided..  Mental illness is something that is not shameful..  it isn’t something that can be healed overnight and just by acknowledging that there is an issue that needs help is an immense source of strength.  One should seek assistance even if you are afraid.  Light is available at the end of the tunnel and often the illness LIES to keep you in the dark.

You will enjoy seeing what happens to everyone at the conclusion of this story and I came away from it quite happy.

five-stars

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Willing Victim: Remastered – Cara McKenna – 4 stars

August 16, 2016 Purchased, Read in 2016 1

Willing Victim: Remastered – Cara McKenna – 4 starsWilling Victim: Remastered by Cara McKenna
on July 8, 2016
Pages: 146
Source: Purchased
Buy on Amazon
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four-stars

A re-release of the 2010 fan favorite, with light revisions and an expanded ending.

For the past couple years Laurel's been coasting, hiding in the backseat while her life drifts off course. Then one summer afternoon a tall, built bruiser named Flynn strides in and steers her straight into an infatuation she never saw coming.

Flynn introduces Laurel to things she’s never imagined before—to the violent but exciting realm of the underground boxing circuit, to rough sex and even rougher role-playing, and to an attraction she craves even as it intimidates her. As Flynn invites her deeper into his world and his life, Laurel has to make a choice—let fear keep her holed up where it’s safe, or take a chance and fight for the man who makes her feel more alive than she’d dreamed possible.

This was a very quick read for me but I enjoyed getting to know Flynn and Laurel as they unexpectedly found something that gave them everything they never hoped to find.

Laurel is at loose ends at this point in her life but seems to be content with this even as she feels restless in her skin.  She isn’t sure what she wants or needs but when she follows the man who stepped in to help when she didn’t… well…  she finds out that perhaps this masterful, dominating man is exactly what she needs.  She’s intrigued as she is invited to watch what he likes to do to the women who he shares his bed with but is in some respects frightened by her strong need to be in that place with him.  She comes out of her shell with his guidance and it causes her to want more than what she thinks he is willing to offer her.  This relationship that they build also makes her realize that she needs to decide what she really wants for her life and to quit being scared of what may come.  I liked seeing her start to own herself and even though she still has work to do you can see that she really is on the right path.

Flynn… *fans self while looking around for an ice bath* … yeah this man so does it for me.  He isn’t looking for anything other than a good time but as he spends more time with Laurel you get the feeling that he’s really not just in it for the fun they have in the bedroom.  He’s definitely a man who knows what he likes but he’s also a man who wants to make sure that his partner gets what she needs as well.  I liked getting to see how he balanced his domineering side with the softer side.  He’s a man that knows what he wants when he sees it but is also one that is willing to see where things go.  He isn’t going to stifle the core of the person he’s with and we see that towards the end of the story.

I quite enjoyed this quick read and still have more from Cara to go back and check out.

four-stars

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Burn Down the Night – Molly O’Keefe – 4.5 stars

August 15, 2016 NetGalley, Read in 2016 1

I received this book for free from NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Burn Down the Night – Molly O’Keefe – 4.5 starsBurn Down the Night Published by Loveswept on August 9, 2016
Pages: 334
Source: NetGalley.com
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four-half-stars

A battle for control turns explosive as a beautiful con woman takes a bad-boy biker hostage in this edgy, seductive novel set in the world of Everything I Left Unsaid (“Toe-curlingly sensual.”—Katy Evans) and The Truth About Him (“Absolutely one-click worthy”—J. Kenner).

The only thing that matters to me is rescuing my sister from the drug-cooking cult that once enslaved us both. I’ve run cons my whole life, and I’ll use my body to get whatever I need. Max Daniels is the last connection I have to that world, the one person reckless enough to get involved. Besides, now that his brothers have turned on him, he needs me too.

The deal was supposed to be simple: a place to hide in exchange for rescuing my sister. Now he’s my prisoner. Totally at my mercy. But I’m the one captivated. Enthralled. Doing everything he asks of me until I’m not sure who’s in control.

We both crave the heat. The more it hurts, the better. But what if Max wants a different life now, to leave the game . . . to love me? I thought I knew better than to get burned. Now I’m in too deep to pull away. And the crazy thing is . . . I don’t want to.

Thank you to those who were posting their thoughts on this book – Bree in particular – because they made me go grab this from NetGalley.  I am glad I went ahead and gave this a chance even though I haven’t read the others in the series because…

HOLY CRAP WAS THIS ONE HOT…  AND … ANGSTY … AND … ALL THE FEELS

This book starts out with a few bangs as the heroine cuts loose with a couple of well-planned explosions but you immediately know that she really doesn’t want anyone to be hurt, she’s just desperate.  This desperation to rescue the only thing that matters to her, her sister, makes her do things she really doesn’t want to do but her guilt and love drive her to take the measures needed.  Olivia was such a lost soul that I felt for her as she struggled to do the right thing and finally let someone actually help her.  She’s had a hard lot in life which has made her extremely guarded and unable to process when someone actually does something nice for her.  She shies away like an abused animal from affection even as she craves it.  I loved seeing her finally open up to others even as she fought to get Max to do some of the same.  There is a purity of spirit in her that, even though she tries to bury it, shines thru in her actions and concern for others.

Max is like Olivia in many ways…  He’s convinced that he deserves nothing good, he’s worthless, family is better off without him…  I could go on but as you’ll see he’s really a good man at his core who made decisions that weren’t the best.  He was born in to a MC life but tried to escape it until his brother was drawn in which led him to come back.  He wants the best for his brother and will do what it takes to keep Dylan free from the hell that is MC.  I loved seeing how devoted he was to making sure that his brother wasn’t tainted by association with him as it showed his heart was in the right place.  He isn’t expecting to find someone that he wants to connect with but the chemistry between he and Olivia cannot be denied.  They both don’t expect to have anything good in their lives nor do they think they deserve it but somehow this pair of damaged souls manage to heal one another.  They aren’t perfect but they fit one another completely.

You can’t help but be drawn in to the story between these two strong characters so don’t bother fighting it.  I didn’t feel like I was lost even though this isn’t the first story so dive on in.  I will be going back and reading about Dylan and Annie though so….

 

four-half-stars

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Dirty For Me – Jackie Ashenden – 4.5 stars

August 8, 2016 Kensington, NetGalley, Read in 2016 1

I received this book for free from NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Dirty For Me – Jackie Ashenden – 4.5 starsDirty For Me by Jackie Ashenden
Published by Kensington on July 26th 2016
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary, Erotica, General, Action & Adventure
Pages: 300
Source: NetGalley.com
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four-half-stars

Ezekiel "Zee" Chase has a complicated past. Born into a family whose wealth grew from the seedy world of big-time crime, he ran away as a teenager and made a home for himself on the streets of Detroit. By day, the mechanic works at a local garage. But by night, he throws down with the best of them in Detroit's gritty underground fighting scene. With all those muscles, he's never had trouble with women--until he meets one who challenges him to the greatest fight of his life. . .

Tamara Eliot is a hardworking corporate high-flyer who appreciates the finer things in life, from her expensive perfume to her designer handbags. More than anything, though, she likes to be in control--and when Zee explodes into her life, she feels anything but. He's the definition of a bad boy: brash, fiery, and of course, irresistibly hot. And there's a darkness about him that keeps her coming back for more. As Zee takes Tamara deeper into a world she never knew existed, she just might prove to be the one opponent he won't be able to dominate--at least not without some pleasurable convincing .

I am trying to figure out how to review this one without it becoming a fan girl letter to Jackie…

This book sets up what should be a very intense set of stories about a group of close friends who made a family out of not so great circumstances.  This first book is about Zee who is keeping a pretty big secret from his friends and is driven by a memory of what might have been.  He’s convinced that he’s only good for a no-strings fling but finds himself oddly attracted to a woman who he feels is too good for him. I liked seeing him realize who he really was, what he really wanted and even better…  that he wasn’t his father.

The woman who makes him wake up has spent the last few years being the perfect daughter.  She’s taking atonement to a whole new level by suppressing her entire personality, dreams and self in order to make up something she shouldn’t have to for parents who don’t deserve her.  She meets Zee when she accompanies a co-worker to a gym in a not so great side of town.  Sparks fly between them that are undeniable but Tamara is determined to make her parents proud by working hard, marrying the man they picked and, in general, not allowing herself to be anything other than a rich princess.  Zee is supposed to only be a fling that doesn’t mean anything during the last bit of freedom that she has.

What we get with the two of them is amazingly hot sex but a sense that these two can heal one another.  They can push each other to fully embrace who they are without shame, without judgement and without the burdens of the past.  They really will grab at you but …. I have a feeling as much as I enjoyed them….  The next two pairs will put their scorching story to shame with the small glimpses we saw in this one.  I cannot wait for the next book and look forward to seeing how the rest of the gang find their happy endings…  😉

four-half-stars

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A Promise of Fire – Amanda Bouchet – 4.5 stars

August 1, 2016 Read in 2016, Snagged at Con, Sourcebooks 1

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

A Promise of Fire – Amanda Bouchet – 4.5 starsA Promise of Fire by Amanda Bouchet
on August 1st 2016
Genres: Fiction, Fantasy, Epic, Romance, Paranormal
Pages: 448
Source: the publisher
Buy on Amazon
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four-half-stars

Catalia "Cat" Fisa is a powerful clairvoyant known as the Kingmaker. This smart-mouthed soothsayer has no interest in her powers and would much rather fly under the radar, far from the clutches of her homicidal mother. But when an ambitious warlord captures her, she may not have a choice…

Griffin is intent on bringing peace to his newly conquered realm in the magic-deprived south. When he discovers Cat is the Kingmaker, he abducts her. But Cat will do everything in her power to avoid her dangerous destiny and battle her captor at every turn. Although up for the battle, Griffin would prefer for Cat to help his people willingly, and he's ready to do whatever it takes to coax her…even if that means falling in love with her.

There is only 1 problem when you get an ARC in May for a title that doesn’t release until August…

YOU WANT THE NEXT STORY NOW NOW NOW!!!!

Many of you know that I started reading romance only a few short years ago (*cough* 5ish *cough*) but until then my reading was almost always Sci-Fi/Fantasy or mysteries….  This story made me happy because it weaves some romance in to an interesting High Fantasy world which made my internal younger self so happy.

We have a world ruled by people who wield magic except for in the forgotten kingdom that just experienced something noone thought could ever happen….  They have a warlord without magic who managed to overthrow the tyrants and put his sister in charge of the realm.  This is something that is amazing to the people but as we get in to the story we just really don’t understand how unusual this is and how much of a change this could mean for the people in this entire world.  This is a world of the Gods where dragons exist and power is corrupting.

I found the idea of someone who was more than what she appeared to be fascinating but mainly I was intrigued by trying to figure out exactly who she really is.  Cat is part of a huge puzzle that I just want to solve but enjoy finding out the bits and pieces that the author teases us with as the story unfolds.  She’s powerful, extremely sarcastic and very slow to trust people around her but the thing that drew me to her was the fact that you know she’s so severely hurt that all she really wants is to be loved, cared for and have something she never got growing up…. unconditional acceptance.  She made me laugh at times with her speak/act first then stumble as she realizes she’s not completely in her element around these people.  I also appreciated the sheer honesty (other than her feelings for Griffin) with everyone around her.

Griffin was absolutely mesmerizing to me as you could see that he wanted her from the get-go and not just for her unique power.  He’s an ass at times but as you get to know him it makes sense why he is acting that way but at the same time you want to strangle him as he tries to keep her safe by stifling her.  I enjoyed seeing him struggle with his alternating need to hurt her for her stubbornness and kiss the fight out of her because of his attraction.  He’s also hard to read in some respects as you aren’t certain if he really sees her or her power and what she can give him.  I liked that when he was wrong he admitted it but I also appreciated how he honestly was trying to do what was best.  He’s going to be fun to watch in the future stories and I cannot wait to see what happens as he finds out more about his Cat.

The other people in the story also fascinated me as well as the weaving in of the Gods such as Poseidon and Zeus but seeing things in a different way in this new world.  I enjoyed learning about the kingdoms but mainly am going to enjoy seeing how the world resets itself in this time of change.  I also look forward to seeing more of the Betas and seeing them find their partners or even just getting to know more about them and Griffin’s family.

Now…

When do I get to read book 2?????  Huh…  huh… huh…

four-half-stars

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Rock Wedding – Nalini Singh – 5 stars

July 28, 2016 NetGalley, Read in 2016 1

I received this book for free from NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Rock Wedding – Nalini Singh – 5 starsRock Wedding on July 19, 2016
Source: NetGalley.com
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five-stars

New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh continues her Rock Kiss series with a hot, sweet, emotional contemporary romance about love and forgiveness…

After a lifetime of longing for a real family, Sarah Smith thought she’d finally found her home with rock star Abe Bellamy, even if she knew Abe didn’t love her the way she loved him. But their brief relationship, filled with tragedy and heartache, nearly destroyed her. Alone, emotions in turmoil, and already shaky self-esteem shattered, Sarah struggles to pick up the pieces in the wake of their divorce.

Abe knows he’s to blame for the end of his marriage. Caught in a web of painful memories, he pushed away the best thing in his life – the sexy, smart woman he adores – breaking them both in the process. Then fate throws him a second chance to get things right, to prove to Sarah that she means everything to him. Abe desperately wants that second chance at love...even if he knows he doesn’t deserve it.

But can he convince Sarah – now strong and independent without him – to risk her wounded heart one more time?

I honestly don’t know where to start with this one…  I really don’t.  Nalini is a masterful wordsmith that wrings the emotions out of the smallest things.  She made me cry repeatedly in this book and yet all I wanted to do was read more..  cry more..  blubber more…

Abe and Sarah were amazing to follow as we saw a woman in love with a man who was at a point in his life where nothing mattered.  He was so wrapped up in his own pain and journey that he didn’t see (didn’t want to see) the path of destruction he was creating.  Sarah isn’t perfect in this story but as you get to know her you see what caused her to be the way she was and how much sheer strength she has.  I felt for her as some of her story called out to me as she navigated breaking free from her past to finally stand on her own two feet.  She develops such an amazing backbone that you cheer for her as she finally sees that she matters and has friends.  While I did get upset at her for taking so long to finally trust Abe again, I got it…  I really did get it.  She was trying to protect herself from the only person who could (and did) truly hurt her.  You’ll love watching her admit her own failings while not excusing his part in encouraging her to withdraw even farther in to her inner demons.  I loved her acceptance of him even as she struggled to protect her heart.

Abe…. my dear, dear man… He’s someone that loves so deeply that he cannot bear when something happens to take the object of his love away from him, he self destructs.  I loved how he owned up to his mistakes.  He didn’t make excuses.  He didn’t expect that she forgive him.  He desperately wanted her to let him in but knew it was something she had to do.  He couldn’t make her but he hoped beyond hope that he would be able to win her back.  I loved how supportive he was of her independence in so many ways.  His first big present to her made me melt as it showed how much he paid attention to her.  He also shows her his demons without any embellishment or shame which honestly made me cry.  He really made such huge strides in his life that I finished the book smiling from ear-to-ear as we got to see what happens when two people really do the work to make something beautiful out of the wreckage.

The glimpses of the other couples was fun but the focus really was on two people who were just meant to be.  They both weren’t perfect but no one is.

So thanks Nalini for making me cry while on my lunch at work, I really did love these two.

five-stars

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