Review: Wicked Beginnings (Wicked Bay #1) by L.A. Cotton

Wicked BeginningsTitle: Wicked Beginnings
Author: L.A. Cotton
Series: Wicked Bay #1
Rating: 5 stars
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
The first book in a brand new YA/NA crossover series from l. a. cotton

When seventeen-year-old Eloise Stone finds herself half way across the world, moving into her Uncle’s pool house, she expects things to be … awkward. She doesn’t expect to come face-to-face with the boy from last summer. The boy that made her feel things she’d never felt before. But a year is a long time, and Lo isn’t the same girl she was then. Besides, they’re family now.

It’s weird.

Maverick Prince acts as if he doesn’t remember her, treating Lo like nothing more than an annoying younger sister, and not in a ‘he cares’ way, just in a ‘he’s an arsehole’ way. One thing‘s for sure, he isn’t just dangerous for her sanity—he’s hazardous for her heart.

Lo thought moving to Wicked Bay was the worst of her problems, but as life begins to unravel around her, she’s going to find out it’s only the beginning…

My Review:
Wicked Beginnings is the first book I’ve read by L.A. Cotton, but it most definitely won’t be the last. This book was an addictive read from the very first page and I devoured it in record time. It contains everything I love in a novel – a plucky heroine we can root for, hot, rich bad boys in abundance, swoon-worthy, angsty romance, witty dialogue, and high-school drama in spades.

Maverick, oh Maverick (furiously fanning face in a feeble attempt to cool down) how my heart beats wildly for you! He is the quintessential misunderstood bad boy constantly denying his feelings, and we’re left wondering why. The push-and pull nature of Lo and Maverick’s relationship was delicious, and the sexual chemistry sizzled across the pages of my Kindle.

The side characters were great too, and I especially liked Kyle and the youngest sister. Character development was great, the pacing was consistent and it flowed smoothly, and the writing was superb. While we are still left with many questions at the end, I don’t consider it a cliffhanger ending. That said, I’m dying for the next installment because I’m in bad need of another Maverick Prince fix.

Highly recommended if you are a fan of angsty, dramatic YA/NA crossover romance.

Release Day The Kyler Collection


I am happy to announce that today is the release day for The Kyler Collection! The Kyler Collection combines the first three books in the Kennedy Boys series in one collectors box set. And the best part? It’s only 99c for a very limited time! I know a lot of my readers borrow the books in this series from Kindle Unlimited, so I wanted to give you an opportunity to buy some of the books so you have access to them permanently. You can purchase your copy exclusively from Amazon!

Keeping KylerThe Kyler Collection(The Kennedy Boys #1-3)
by Siobhan Davis

This box set includes the first three books in the highly-addictive Kennedy Boys series from USA Today bestselling author, Siobhán Davis, and is over 1,000 pages of heart-stopping drama, intriguing twists and turns, and angsty romance. Complete trilogy that ends with an HEA and no cliffhanger.

Two fractured hearts and a forbidden love they can’t deny.

You shouldn’t want what you can’t have…

Faye Donovan has lost everything. After her parent’s tragic death, she’s whisked away from her home in Ireland when an unknown uncle surfaces as her new guardian.

Dropped smack-dab into the All-American dream, Faye should feel grateful. Except living with her wealthy uncle, his fashion-empire-owning wife, and their seven screwed-up sons is quickly turning into a nightmare—especially when certain inappropriate feelings arise.

Kyler Kennedy makes her head hurt and her heart race, but he’s her cousin.

He’s off limits.

And he’s not exactly welcoming—Kyler is ignorant, moody, and downright cruel at times—but Faye sees behind the mask he wears, recognizing a kindred spirit.

Kyler has sworn off girls, yet Faye gets under his skin. The more he pushes her away, the more he’s drawn to her, but acting on those feelings risks a crap-ton of prejudice, and any whiff of scandal could damage the precious Kennedy brand.

Concealing their feelings seems like the only choice.

But when everyone has something to hide, a secret is a very dangerous thing.
But when you play with fire, you risk getting burned.

Main Links:

Review: Logan (Preston Brothers #2) by Jay McLean

Title: Logan
Author: Jay McLean
Series: Preston Brothers #2
Rating: 5 stars
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
As a kid, Logan Preston was a brat.
Through his teens, he became the bad boy.
Now, at nineteen, no one knows what the hell to expect.

High school dropout, Logan Preston is a
good-for-nothing stoner.
A black sheep.
A disappointment.
The worst Preston Punk of the lot.
At least that’s how everyone in his small town
makes him feel.
But Logan Preston has secrets.
Secrets so dark and so deep below the surface that the only way he can fight them is to stay high, high, high.
He wears cockiness as a mask.
Arrogance as his armor.
Until one girl, one night, asks one life-changing question:
What’s beneath the bravado, Logan Preston?

My Review:
Wow, what an incredibly moving, incredibly powerful story and one that is virtually impossible to put down. I stayed up until the early hours of the morning the last two nights reading this book and it was so hard to put down. I felt the full gamut of emotions with Logan, and I laughed, cried, felt heartbroken, disappointed, and was thoroughly destroyed when the full extent of what had happened to him became obvious. And poor Aubrey – her heartache was mine too, and I was right there on the kitchen floor with her, devastated and ruined.

Every time I pick up one of Jay’s books I think “this is her best yet” and this book is no exception. This is raw, gritty, and very real and I think the writing, pacing, character and plot development are exquisite. The scenes toward the end were Logan totally loses it were so hard to read but so gripping – my heart was in my mouth and I was equally sad and horrified and screaming at him to just stop.

It’s been a long while since I’ve wanted to reread a book again the minute I finished it, but that’s what I’m feeling with this one, because I want to go back and savor the sublime execution of the story.

It’s not all heavy though and it’s peppered with Jay’s signature witty style and the banter between our couple is very funny, especially Aubrey’s take on dirty talk, lol. The romance and sexy times are also incredible and I love the bond and the chemistry between our pair and I believed in them as a couple, and was completely rooting for them.

I have the worst book hangover now and I know I’ll definitely have to reread it straight away because I’m not ready to let go yet.

I adored the More Than series, and loved Lucas, but this book tops them all, and now these Preston Punks are up there with my favorites. I’m hoping the next book is about Leo and Melissa and that we don’t have to wait too long because I need another Preston fix pronto!

Thanks for another incredible read, Jay.

Cover Reveal: Making it Complicated by Clarisse David

Today is the cover reveal for Making it Complicated by Clarisse David. This cover reveal is organized by Lola’s Blog Tours. The cover designer is Daniel Tinagan.

Making it ComplicatedMaking it Complicated (I Heart Iloilo #2)
By Clarisse David
Genre: Romance
Age category: Young Adult, New Adult
Release Date: October 16, 2017

Blurb:
No promises. No expectations. Just one night on a paradise island that could mean everything.

Nineteen-year-old Cam has a metric ton of emotional baggage and is in no mood to unload them on anyone. After her parents’ marriage imploded, stress-free is the only way she wants her life to be. And what could be more freeing than spending the summer on Boracay? Absolutely nothing… until she bumps heads with Hunter, the hot drummer who screams incoming heartbreak from a mile away.

Hunter has grand plans, none of which include angry-at-the-world Cam, best friend to the girl he always thought he’d end up with. He likes his life steady, thank you very much. But steady has now become synonymous with boring. His grand plans don’t seem so grand anymore. So when Cam comes home to Iloilo City and reaches out to him, he surprises himself when the one answer he can think of is… yes. Definitely yes.

Sometimes, complications are the only things that make sense.

You can find Making it Complicated on Goodreads

You can pre-order Making it Complicated here on Amazon

Making it Complicated full wrap

The first book in this series is only $0.99!

Keeping the Distance

No bets. No fake relationships. Just a very real one that has to be kept under wraps.

Buy Keeping the Distance here for only $0.99 on Amazon

Clarisse DavidAbout the Author:
Clarisse David is a Young Adult and New Adult author from the land of epic heat waves a.k.a. the Philippines. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Literature and cannot survive without red lipstick and books. When not hanging out on Twitter, she can be found working on her latest writing project.

You can find her on Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook. You can also send her an email at clarissedavidwrites[@]yahoo[.]com.

You can find and contact Clarisse here:
Website
Facebook
Twitter
Goodreads
Instagram
Pinterest
Newsletter

Giveaway
There is a cover reveal wide giveaway for the cover reveal of Making it Complicated. Five winners will each win an e-copy of Making it Complicated by Clarisse David. Open International.

For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway


banner Lola's Blog Tours

Book Blitz: Ugly Beautiful Girl by Tracy Krimmer

Ugly Beautiful Girl banner
This is my stop during the book blitz for Ugly Beautiful Girl by Tracy Krimmer. This book blitz is organized by Lola’s Blog Tours. The book blitz runs from 27 September till 3 October. See the tour schedule here.

Ugly Beautiful GirlUgly Beautiful Girl
By Tracy Krimmer
Genre: Coming of Age/ Contemporary Romance
Age category: New Adult
Release Date: September 27, 2017

Blurb:
Nerd. Weird. Ugly. That’s me. And I don’t want it to be anymore.

Now is my time to make my mark on the world. My college roommate doesn’t make it easy. Neither does her brother, Jesse, but for completely different reasons. He makes me feel things I’ve never felt before.

Wanted. Important. Beautiful.

But we can’t be together because it isn’t real. Someone like him could never fall for someone like me. We aren’t meant to fit together.

Even if I fall apart without him.

You can find Ugly Beautiful Girl on Goodreads

You can buy Ugly Beautiful Girl here on Amazon
Ugly Beautiful Girl is available on Kindle Unlimited

Excerpt:
“Five more minutes, okay, Mom?” I roll to the side. My knee hits the floor first, my hip slams into the ground, and my shoulder crashes onto the floor. I rub my shoulder. That hurt, but thankfully I don’t think I broke anything. What the hell is happening?
“I’m not your mommy, and you’re in my bed.”
I open my eyes and adjust my sight. Standing before me is a tall girl, her blonde curls in a perfect symmetry around her head, falling well beneath her shoulders. She has on more makeup than I probably even own. I have one lipstick and an eyeliner. This girl is an entire makeup aisle.
“I’m sorry. I’m Violet,” I say as I realize who this woman is. “You must be my roommate.” I stand and wipe my dark hair out of my face. Some of it sticks to my cheeks, and I realize I’ve been drooling.
“Well, Violet, my name is Olivia, and the right side of the room is mine, so I suggest you move your stuff before I move it for you. If I end up doing it, chances are it’ll all end up on the grass outside.”
Great. When I imagined my college roommate, I hoped for someone I could become friends with, we’d stay up late together, go to the best parties (once I convinced myself to attend one), and maybe we’d even have some of the same classes.
So much for that.
“Okay… When I got here the room was empty. No one had moved in yet.”
“Yeah, well, I’m here now. And the right side of the room is mine. So move it or lose it.”
I stand there, trying to process what is happening as she goes into the hallway and returns with a bag and two men behind her. “This girl is Lily, or Hydrangea, or Daisy. Whatever. She’s named after a flower. It’s not important. This area is mine so shove her stuff to the other side and put mine down.”
“Sure thing, Liv.” The dark-haired boy slams a clearly over packed suitcase onto the ground.
“Hey! Be careful with that, Alex.”
“Sorry.” The boy named Alex leaves the room for a moment and comes back in pulling a cart full of boxes.
“Hey, my name is Jesse.” The other boy, with blonde hair meeting his shoulders, a jawline stronger than steel, and eyes as green as the lushest grass, reaches his hand out for me. “The devil over here is my sister. I didn’t catch your actual name.”
Olivia glares at her brother, her face turning a hundred shades of red. She ignores him, and I step in.
“My name is Violet. Don’t call your sister the devil.”
“He can call me whatever he wants. He knows he’s an asshole.” Shock catches in my throat as I witness this banter between siblings. I’ll never experience this, not until much later in life, but I certainly hope Rose and I don’t call each other names like this, even in fun.
Based on Olivia’s face, I’m not so sure this is all in fun.
“Olivia can believe what she wants. Let me give you some advice, Violet. My sister will act like she’s the boss, but you put her in her place. She’s harmless, despite what she may have you think. Right, Alex?”
Alex stops mid-box drop and glances up at Jesse. He raises his eyebrows and practically takes a chunk out of his lip. “Um…”
“Alex! You’re supposed to be my boyfriend. Defend me. Tell my brother off!” She slaps Alex on the arm, and the box drops on his foot.
“Ow!”
“Oh, please. That box has purses in it. It’s not like it’s full of books.” She rolls her eyes and smiles.
“That’s right, Alex. We both know Olivia doesn’t read books.”
“Okay, get out.” She points to the door, her face so red now I can almost feel the heat radiating off her. “Now! I’ll take care of this myself.”
Jesse smirks, nodding his head as he walks toward the door. He stops for a moment before looking back at me. “Remember what I said. Don’t let her get away with anything.”
Olivia picks her pillow up and throws it at Jesse, who ducks, sending the pillow catapulting into the hallway. “Out!” The two walk toward the door and she stops Alex. “Call me later.” She kisses him before slamming the door in their faces.
Sigh. This should be fun.

Tracy KrimmerAbout the Author:
Tracy’s love of writing began at nine years old. She wrote stories about aliens at school, machines that did homework for you, and penguins. Now she pens books and short stories about romance. She loves to read a great book, whether it be romance or science fiction, or any genre in between, or pop popcorn and catch up on her favorite TV shows or movies. She’s been known to crush a candy or two as well. Her loves include fitness, reading, coffee, dogs, and naps (not in that order), and her dislikes are blue cheese, cold weather, and burpees.

You can find and contact Tracy here:
Website
Twitter
Facebook
Goodreads
Amazon
Bookbub
Instagram
Newsletter

Giveaway
There is a tour wide giveaway for the book blitz of Ugly Beautiful Girl. One winner will win a $10 Amazon Gift card.

For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

banner Lola's Blog Tours

Cover Reveal: Brave by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Today is is the cover reveal for the third book in Jennifer L. Armentrout’s series A Wicked sage: Brave! I can’t wait to read this book. Let me know what you think of this cover or the first two books if you read them!

There’s also a giveaway that you can enter and information about a virtual signing!

Title: Brave
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Series: A Wicked Saga #3
Genres: Paranormal
Release Date: December 11th, 2017
Links:

Blurb:
Ivy Morgan hasn’t been feeling like herself lately. Not like anyone can blame her. After all, being held captive by a psychotic fae prince hell-bent on permanently opening the gates to the Otherworld is bound to leave some mental scars.

It’s more than that, though. Something dark and insidious is spreading throughout Ivy, more powerful than she could ever imagine… and it’s coming between her and the man she’s fallen deeply in love with, elite Order member Ren Owens.

Ren would do anything to keep Ivy safe. Anything. But when he makes a life altering choice for her, the fallout of his act has far reaching consequences that threaten to tear their lives apart.
If Ivy is going to have any hope of surviving this, she must put aside the hurt and betrayal she feels, and work with not only those she loves, but with an enemy she would rather kill than ever trust. War is coming, and it soon becomes clear that what Ivy and Ren thought they knew about the Order, themselves, and even their enemies, has been nothing but a cluster of dangerous, deadly lies. Ivy knows she must be more than just brave to save those she loves–and, ultimately, to save herself.

Because behind every evil fae Prince, there’s a Queen…

To celebrate the upcoming release of BRAVE (book 3 in the Wicked Saga), Jennifer is offering an exclusive virtual signing! Through this virtual signing, you will be able to order SIGNED & PERSONALIZED copies of WICKED, TORN, and BRAVE! And best of all — This is OPEN INTERNATIONALLY! More details about the virtual signing can be found here.

About the Author:
# 1 NEW YORK TIMES Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. She spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki.

Links:

GIVEAWAY
There is a giveaway to celebrate the cover reveal for Brave.
· PRIZE: SURPRISE SIGNED PRIZE PACK (containing multiple signed books & swag)
· OPEN INTERNATIONAL
· ENDS 10/2/17

For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Review: If There’s No Tomorrow by Jennifer L. Armentrout

Happy release day to If There’s No Tomorrow by Jennifer L. Armentrout! Scroll down to read my review for this book, see some teasers, enter the giveaway and check out the trailer!

Title: If There’s No Tomorrow
Author: Jennifer L. Armentrout
Series: standalone
Rating: 5 stars
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
Lena Wise is always looking forward to tomorrow, especially at the start of her senior year. She’s ready to pack in as much friend time as possible, to finish college applications and to maybe let her childhood best friend Sebastian know how she really feels about him. For Lena, the upcoming year is going to be epic—one of opportunities and chances.

Until one choice, one moment, destroys everything.

Now Lena isn’t looking forward to tomorrow. Not when friend time may never be the same. Not when college applications feel all but impossible. Not when Sebastian might never forgive her for what happened.

For what she let happen.

With the guilt growing each day, Lena knows that her only hope is to move on. But how can she move on when her and her friends’ entire existences have been redefined? How can she move on when tomorrow isn’t even guaranteed?

My Review:
A beautifully written coming-of-age story that packs a powerful punch. Emotional, insightful, and ultimately uplifting in the end, this book captured my attention from the instant I picked it up and I barely put it down until I finished it.

I am a massive JLA fan and I’ve made no secret of the fact that I think her YA paranormal series is her best work, but after reading TPWF and ITNT, I have to say that her YA contemporary romances are now vying for that prime position.

Even though this is a complete standalone and it’s in no way connected with TPWF, it stirs the same emotions, the same intensity, and the same addictiveness. At least, it did for me.

I read this book in less than twenty-four hours but that is nothing new for me with a JLA book.

Lena was a fantastic MC – a genuinely nice, sweet girl who made a bad decision and was slowly allowing it to chip away at her self-esteem and her self-worth. Her whole world tilted on its axis overnight and she was drowning in a sea of guilt and self-loathing. Sebastien, her BFF and longtime secret crush, was her rock, and he tried everything to get her to open up, but she was terrified of telling him the truth.

Sebastien was a swoony leading man and I loved the delicious push and pull nature of their relationship as they both held back from making the first move. Their connection was beautiful and it jumped off the pages of my Kindle. All the little touches and gestures and actions were gorgeous and I was totally rooting for them.

When the big event occurred it came out of nowhere and took me by complete surprise. Gosh, my heart was in my mouth and I was devastated at the fallout. I couldn’t believe it and I read on with a definite tightness in my chest. Jennifer perfectly demonstrated the whole gamut of emotions one would feel in such a situation and it was expertly written. She didn’t shy away from tackling the complex aspects of the tragedy, and it was real, raw, vulnerable, and so gritty and powerful. It made me stop and think about choices and consequences and responsibility. The message was very well delivered.

In the end, we get our HEA and I was so happy. It’s taken me a few days to write this review because I’m still processing it all. For me, that is always the sign of a great book.

If you enjoy emotional romances with a powerful message and books that really make you delve deep and think, then this is the perfect read for you.

Another showstopper, Ms. Armentrout. Thank you so much for another fantastic read, and for the advance complimentary copy which I’m always very grateful to receive.

I voluntarily reviewed an ARC of this book.

Trailer

https://jenniferlarmentrout.com/About the Author:
# 1 NEW YORK TIMES Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. She spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki.

Links:

Giveaway
• PRIZE: SURPRISE SIGNED PRIZE PACK (containing multiple signed books & swag)
• OPEN INTERNATIONAL
• ENDS 9/14

For a chance to win, enter the rafflecopter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Review Blog Tour: Hate to Love You by Tijan


Today is my stop during the blog tour for Hate to Love You by Tijan. In case you didn’t read my review on release day here’s another look at it :). Let me know in the comments if you’ve read this book!

Title: Hate to Love You
Author: Tijan
Series: standalone
Rating: 3.5 stars
Release date: August 28th
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
Rule #1: No hot guys.
It might sound ridiculous. I get it. It kind of is, but college was supposed to be my sanctuary. It was my place to start over. The rumors, the whispers, and the jealousy I endured through high school would all be gone.
No one would know me at college.

Rule #2: No drama.
I’d major in pre-law. I’d make a few loyal friends. Everything would be easy breezy. No one was going to use me or hurt me. I wouldn’t let them.

Rule #3: New year. New place. New me.
Right?
Wrong.
And all because of Shay Coleman.

Football captain and quarterback, he was the big guy on campus. The cocky guy in my political science class with a smirk. I hated him on sight . . .

. . . and he was about to break all my rules.

My Review:
Standalone new adult college romance.

Kennedy Clarke paid the price for her brother’s popularity in high school, so when she starts college she’s determined to blend into the shadows and avoid the glare of her brother’s spotlight. Except that’s easier said than done.

Kennedy unwittingly draws the attention of the star quarterback and all-round Mr. Popular, Shay Coleman. Determined to avoid him, despite an obvious attraction, she tries her best to deflect his flirting, but these two have electric chemistry, and it isn’t long before they are tangling between the sheets and all of Kennedy’s good intentions are flying out the window.

Then stuff starts happening on campus, and when Kennedy steps in to defend another girl she draws even more unwanted attention to herself.

The drama and angst are upped as Kennedy battles to stay true to herself and stick to her goals. But her heart is ruling her head, and Shay isn’t anything like she expected. Soon, she finds herself falling head over heels for the type of guy she swore to avoid.

I felt Kennedy’s pain and her desire to keep her focus, but no one could resist Shay’s allure. Without a shadow of a doubt, Shay is the shining star of this show. While he was presented as this cocky, player-type, the reality is quite different. He was such a nice guy, and so supportive and loyal to Kennedy, and I was in love with him from the very start. Kennedy’s inner monologue grated on my nerves at times, even if I could understand where it was coming from.

This was a very good read, but predictable and lacking a little. Maybe, it’s because I’m greedy and I wanted more – more angst, more drama, more tension, just more. I was expecting an enemies-to-lovers story but Kennedy and Shay only hated each other for about five seconds, and that was a tad disappointing for me. Perhaps, I didn’t enjoy this as much because I’ve just re-read the Jaded series and, man, was it an even better angst-filled-emotional-heartjerker the second time around.

If you are a die-hard Tijan fan you are going to love this. If you are new to this author, I suggest starting with the Fallen Crest, Broken and Screwed, and Jaded, series’ first. All are absolutely superb and the very best this author has to offer, in my opinion.

Actual rating 3.5 stars. Massive thanks to the author and Social Butterfly PR for providing an ARC which I am voluntarily reviewing.


About the Author:
I didn’t begin writing until after undergraduate college. There’d been storylines and characters in my head all my life, but it came to a boiling point one day and I HAD to get them out of me. So the computer was booted up and I FINALLY felt it click. Writing is what I needed to do. After that, I had to teach myself how to write. I can’t blame my teachers for not teaching me all those years in school. It was my fault. I was one of the students that was wishing I was anywhere but at school! So after that day, it took me lots of work until I was able to put together something that resembled a novel. I’m hoping I got it right since someone must be reading this profile! And I hope you keep enjoying my future stories.

Links:

About the Author:
I didn’t begin writing until after undergraduate college. There’d been storylines and characters in my head all my life, but it came to a boiling point one day and I HAD to get them out of me. So the computer was booted up and I FINALLY felt it click. Writing is what I needed to do. After that, I had to teach myself how to write. I can’t blame my teachers for not teaching me all those years in school. It was my fault. I was one of the students that was wishing I was anywhere but at school! So after that day, it took me lots of work until I was able to put together something that resembled a novel. I’m hoping I got it right since someone must be reading this profile! And I hope you keep enjoying my future stories.

Links:

Blog Tour: Tell Me That You’re Mine (Tell Me #3) by Victoria De La O


Today is my stop during the blog tour for Tell Me That You’re Mine (Tell Me #3) by Victoria De La O! I share my review of this book, some teasers, an excerpt and there’s a tour wide giveaway!

Title: Tell Me That You’re Mine
Author: Victoria De La O
Series: Tell Me #3
Rating: 5 stars
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
Ryan McCallister is ready to come home and put the heartbreak of his first love behind him. But when he returns after teaching abroad, the home he once knew isn’t quite ready for him. The woman Ryan once loved is living with his brother; his friends have moved on; and his new landlady, Eva Romero, seems determined not to like him.

But Ryan likes Eva. A lot.

It doesn’t matter that Eva has a six-year-old son and a troubled ex-husband; when Ryan’s with her, everything makes sense. Eva isn’t convinced she’s ready to take another chance on love, but Ryan’s determined to show her he’s worth the risk.

My Review:
A heart-warming, sweet, emotionally-charged romance about second chances and self-worth and how you should never give up on the person who rocks your world, no matter how difficult the circumstances. Tell Me That You’re Mine is an addictive page-turner that you won’t be able to put down.

Swoon over Ryan, empathise with Eva, and go gag-gag for little Diego.

It feels like I’ve been waiting for this book forever, when it hasn’t actually been too long. I fell in love with this series with book one, Tell Me How This Ends, and the complicated love triangle between brothers Jude and Ryan and the lovely Lizzie. If you haven’t read that book yet, stop reading this review and go grab a copy NOW! You won’t be disappointed. It is one of the best books I have ever read, and it still occupies a very special place in my heart. It was as if Victoria took everything I love in a book and wrote it just for me.

So, heading into Ryan’s story, I was excited but also a little nervous, wondering if I had built it up too much in my head and praying it lived up to my expectations. Thankfully, it did that, and more!

I was already in love with sweet, shy Ryan and hoping for his HEA because he so deserved it. It was awkward and tense when he first lands back on American soil, and I was cringing as I was reading because it felt so real. Lizzie is just an awesome human being. Seriously, she was so considerate of both their feelings and she always knew the right thing to say.

We had already been introduced to Eva and her adorable son, Diego, in book two. Eva has had it tough but she’s strong-willed and self-sacrificing and determined to give her son the best start in life. I could relate to her and how she fought against her feelings for Ryan because she didn’t want to drag him into her mess and she was worried over how Diego would react.

Perhaps I’m mean-spirited, but I found it very difficult to muster any sympathy for her ex. He had a mental health illness so I should have been more charitable but I just wanted him to drop off the face of the earth and leave our couple alone. I understood how hard it was for Eva to completely cut all ties with him, but my heart ached for Ryan. He needed to be someone’s number one and I was hurting when he was hurting but so proud of him for putting himself first and doing the right thing.

His father is a shit. What an ass. I loved how Ryan spoke his mind and got it off his chest. I just wish that we saw the part where he told Jude about that.

All works out great in the end, and I cried tears of joy at the epilogue – it was so beautiful.

Victoria is a fantastic writer and the words seem to flow effortlessly across the page. It is lyrical and descriptive without bogging the reader down in unnecessary detail and it never disturbs the consistent pace. What I love most though is her ability to make her characters come alive. And I get all the feels reading her books. While this wasn’t as angsty as the first book, it is definitely emotional and it will tie your insides into knots at times (in a good way.)

Anyway, I’ll end the embarrassing gushing right now before I ramble on too much. Just know this is a great book, and a great series, and you need to start with the first book to really enjoy the experience.

Another show stopper, Victoria. Please keep them coming!

Thanks to the publisher and Barclay PR for supplying an ARC of this book. I am voluntarily reviewing same.

Excerpt:
It’s feels like an eternity since I’ve been home. In reality, it’s only been a year.
My slow walk to the house is surreal. The lawn is as pristine as ever, each blade of grass shorn the same height by Jude’s meticulous mowing. The red geraniums I planted years ago are thriving. And the dent in the porch rail, caused by my foot accidentally connecting with the wood, is still visible. But I don’t remember the house being this uninspiring shade of blue, or the crack on the front stoop being this wide. This house, this city, used to be my whole world. It seemed a lot bigger then.
Discordance skitters over my spine: what should be familiar is foreign, relief mingles with anxiety. Time snaps and contracts as I knock on the front door, and suddenly it seems like an hour since I left. A nanosecond.
The door swings open, and the reason for my hasty departure is staring at me. She’s as pretty as I remember—maybe more, damn her. Green eyes that used to flutter when I kissed her, full lips that whispered confidences in my ear.
Now, her face is frozen in a hostess’ smile. Her fingers worry the bottom button of her pink cardigan and the threads begin to loosen. She doesn’t know what to do because she wasn’t expecting me. I guess it wasn’t nice showing up a day early.
“Ryan. You’re home.”
Home. Does she mean mine or hers?
I had almost forgotten what Lizzie’s voice sounded like, but its husky depth brings the memories of the six months we spent loving each other rushing back.
Well, I had been loving her. She’d been falling in love with my brother.
I wait for my heart to ache, but there’s only a small twinge. That’s a surprise. In my mind, this was all so much more dramatic and intense. Hard stares and pinched lips. A little social awkwardness seems so mundane by comparison.
And then the door swings open wider and Jude is there. My pulse stops—doesn’t slow, just ceases to exist for a second. Leave it to him to bring the fireworks.
Like the house, Jude seems smaller than I remember. Or maybe that’s because he has gone expressionless, his discomfort hard-crashing him. His hands dig into his pockets, searching for an anchor, pulling his shoulders into a hunch. It takes a lot to knock Jude off his game. Glad to see I can still have that effect on him.
When he opens his mouth, no sound comes out. It’s unusual for me to have to step up and be the better man when I’m around my big brother. But today is that day.

About the Author:
Victoria De La O is the award-winning and RITA®-nominated author of the Tell Me romance trilogy, including Tell Me How This Ends. A native of California’s Silicon Valley, she spends time hanging out with her family, arguing about films, and practicing Wonder Woman spins, She loves talking to readers, so find her at www.victoriadelao.com.

Links:

Giveaway
Victoria De La O is offering one (1) lucky Grand-Prize winner a $25 Amazon Gift Card and three (3) Runner-Up winners an eCopy of Tell Me How This Ends, book #1 in Victoria’s Tell Me series! To enter, simply fill out the Rafflecopter below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Blog Tour: Hate to Love You by Tijan


Today is my stop during the blog tour for Hate to Love You by Tijan. I share my review of the book with you.

Title: Hate to Love You
Author: Tijan
Series: standalone
Rating: 3.5 stars
Release date: August 28th
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Links:

Blurb:
Rule #1: No hot guys.
It might sound ridiculous. I get it. It kind of is, but college was supposed to be my sanctuary. It was my place to start over. The rumors, the whispers, and the jealousy I endured through high school would all be gone.
No one would know me at college.

Rule #2: No drama.
I’d major in pre-law. I’d make a few loyal friends. Everything would be easy breezy. No one was going to use me or hurt me. I wouldn’t let them.

Rule #3: New year. New place. New me.
Right?
Wrong.
And all because of Shay Coleman.

Football captain and quarterback, he was the big guy on campus. The cocky guy in my political science class with a smirk. I hated him on sight . . .

. . . and he was about to break all my rules.

My Review:
Standalone new adult college romance.

Kennedy Clarke paid the price for her brother’s popularity in high school, so when she starts college she’s determined to blend into the shadows and avoid the glare of her brother’s spotlight. Except that’s easier said than done.

Kennedy unwittingly draws the attention of the star quarterback and all-round Mr. Popular, Shay Coleman. Determined to avoid him, despite an obvious attraction, she tries her best to deflect his flirting, but these two have electric chemistry, and it isn’t long before they are tangling between the sheets and all of Kennedy’s good intentions are flying out the window.

Then stuff starts happening on campus, and when Kennedy steps in to defend another girl she draws even more unwanted attention to herself.

The drama and angst are upped as Kennedy battles to stay true to herself and stick to her goals. But her heart is ruling her head, and Shay isn’t anything like she expected. Soon, she finds herself falling head over heels for the type of guy she swore to avoid.

I felt Kennedy’s pain and her desire to keep her focus, but no one could resist Shay’s allure. Without a shadow of a doubt, Shay is the shining star of this show. While he was presented as this cocky, player-type, the reality is quite different. He was such a nice guy, and so supportive and loyal to Kennedy, and I was in love with him from the very start. Kennedy’s inner monologue grated on my nerves at times, even if I could understand where it was coming from.

This was a very good read, but predictable and lacking a little. Maybe, it’s because I’m greedy and I wanted more – more angst, more drama, more tension, just more. I was expecting an enemies-to-lovers story but Kennedy and Shay only hated each other for about five seconds, and that was a tad disappointing for me. Perhaps, I didn’t enjoy this as much because I’ve just re-read the Jaded series and, man, was it an even better angst-filled-emotional-heartjerker the second time around.

If you are a die-hard Tijan fan you are going to love this. If you are new to this author, I suggest starting with the Fallen Crest, Broken and Screwed, and Jaded, series’ first. All are absolutely superb and the very best this author has to offer, in my opinion.

Actual rating 3.5 stars. Massive thanks to the author and Social Butterfly PR for providing an ARC which I am voluntarily reviewing.


About the Author:
I didn’t begin writing until after undergraduate college. There’d been storylines and characters in my head all my life, but it came to a boiling point one day and I HAD to get them out of me. So the computer was booted up and I FINALLY felt it click. Writing is what I needed to do. After that, I had to teach myself how to write. I can’t blame my teachers for not teaching me all those years in school. It was my fault. I was one of the students that was wishing I was anywhere but at school! So after that day, it took me lots of work until I was able to put together something that resembled a novel. I’m hoping I got it right since someone must be reading this profile! And I hope you keep enjoying my future stories.

Links:

About the Author:
I didn’t begin writing until after undergraduate college. There’d been storylines and characters in my head all my life, but it came to a boiling point one day and I HAD to get them out of me. So the computer was booted up and I FINALLY felt it click. Writing is what I needed to do. After that, I had to teach myself how to write. I can’t blame my teachers for not teaching me all those years in school. It was my fault. I was one of the students that was wishing I was anywhere but at school! So after that day, it took me lots of work until I was able to put together something that resembled a novel. I’m hoping I got it right since someone must be reading this profile! And I hope you keep enjoying my future stories.

Links: