Friday, March 31, 2017

Beastly Lights by Theresa Jane

Beastly Lights  by Theresa Jane
Release Date -  March 29, 2017
Publisher Website - Inkitt
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages -  551 pages
My Rating - 3/5
**received for an honest review**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
Gambled away by her brother, Freya is now bound to the music world's resident bad boy Liam Henderson as his live-in maid.

Freya Coleman is a struggling artist who can hardly get by. With a past she would rather not revisit and a future that didn't extend past her next cup of coffee, something had to change. Freya just didn't know how much.

Liam Henderson lives in the spotlight. His wild nights and latest conquests make every woman want him, and every man want to be him. The rockstar has a carefully constructed persona to keep everyone out. That is, until a drunken night gets out of hand and he finds himself with the winning hand in a poker game, and the prize is a feisty redhead. A prize who just might break down the walls he has been so desperately hiding behind.

Thrown together, these two are a disaster waiting to happen. A disaster the world is eager to watch and comment on until their fingers drop off. What starts off as a fake relationship to improve Liam’s image, blossoms into so much more, and Freya is swept up into the world of bright lights and illusions. Everyone has an opinion when the lights are shining on their beloved rock god Liam Henderson, and they are eagerly waiting to tear down anyone who is bathed in the famous glow.

Can happily ever after exist when the whole world is watching?
I have been on a romance/new adult kick recently and was pitched this novel that immediately piqued my interest. I had high hopes for this novel but ended up feeling mixed about it once I had finished reading.

The novel starts out feeling very 'Beauty and the Beast' inspired. Freya's brother gets her a job by gambling her cleaning services away to one of the world's most popular rock stars. Freya is not happy with the situation (understandably) and is even more outrage to discover that she is to live with him. I was initially drawn to this story because of the 'Beauty and the Beast' potential of the story. It did start off rather interesting and had me hooked into the story but it didn't quite offer me the redemption arc I was hoping for by the end of the novel.

Freya as a character is great. She's your typical romance novel heroine who has been through some rough things in her past, and is closed off as a result. She is broken, and distrustful but still retains her kindness She is loyal to a default. She speaks her mind and that is what saved this novel for me. She is treated horribly at times, and yet she pushes back against it. It made a small difference to me, as plenty of the elements within the romance were problematic to me.

Liam comes with his own set of problems. He has a reputation of being wild, and someone who likes to party. His behaviour, obviously, hides a history of hurt that turned him into who he is. I have mentioned before my dislike of typical Alpha Males and Liam is one through and through. He dictates what Freya can and cannot do. He makes decisions for her without consulting her and without taking her wants into consideration. He disregards her feelings a lot of the time, and actively goes against what she is telling him she wants and needs. It was infuriating to see these actions have little to no consequences. Freya forgave him repeatedly even when his treatment of her was pretty horrible. This is the major issue I had with the novel as the payoff of all of this isn't really there. The character development and change that Liam goes through happens mostly off the page. We are TOLD he has changed, instead of SHOWN. We aren't given time to  feel that change, so the novel just leaves you with the feeling that Liam is forgiven far too easily.

The middle of the novel felt a little repetitive with Liam messing up, sort of apologizing and promising not to do it again. It is something that could have been tightened up in editing and would have helped make a more cohesive story. It feels like Freya and Liam are having the same fight over and over, and that takes the reader out of the story. At times this felt like multiple story ideas that just did not connect together seamlessly. The copy I read was an ARC so some of these issues could have been fixed before the final release of the novel.

I did appreciate all of the secondary characters. Liam's friends were fantastic and provided some much needed humour. His fellow band members added a lot to the story as well. There was a lot of thought put into their various roles and how they would push the story forward which ended up helping the movel. Freya makes friends with these people, and we get a glimpse that Liam may not be totally horrible through a lot of these characters so they were vital to the story and the reader's enjoyment. I particularly enjoyed Davis, the young boy who is not afraid to sass Liam and calls out a lot of really awful behaviour. Davis was completely charming and won over not just Freya but me as well.

Beastly Lights ended up being a mixed novel for me. Things I enjoyed and things I wished were done in a different way. I predict many will be mixed on this simply because of the premise and the execution of that premise..

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Another Postcard Cover Reveal


Brooklyn Hawk is an enigma. Highly sought after for her incredible voice, her talent shines bright in the studio. But a dark past and a secret she holds close to her heart keep her from permanently stepping into the limelight. Until her favorite band offers her the chance to chase her dreams. As the lead singer for rock sensation Stone Butterfly, Levi Matthews is wary of bringing in new talent. But he has heard just how amazing Brooklyn is and when the need for another singer arises, he’s confident that she is the perfect addition. However, he doesn’t count on laying his heart at her feet. But the world of music can be as dangerous as it is thrilling. Joining Stone Butterfly on tour was hard enough for Brooklyn, but when she finally succumbs to Levi’s charms, the rock ‘n’ roll life turns deadly. Will Levi and Brooklyn keep their voices and their hearts entwined? Or will the music prove too hard to survive?


I’m a love of all things books, a hopeless romantic, and have always had a passion for writing. Between being a sappy romantic, my love of an HEA, my crazy imagination, and ok, let’s be real, my dirty mind, I fell easily into writing romance. I’m a huge baseball fan and yet, a complete girly, girl. I’m an obsessive reader and have a slight (hahaha! Slight? Yeah, right) addiction to signed books. I’m married to my very own book boyfriend, an alpha male with a sexy, sweet side. He is the best inspiration, my biggest supporter, and the love of my life. He is also incredibly patient and understanding about the fact that he has to fight the voices in my head for attention. I hope you enjoy reading my books as much as I enjoyed writing them!



Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Waiting On Wednesday .... Hunting Prince Dracula

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pick is Hunting Prince Dracula by Kerri Maniscalco

Here is the Goodreads synopsis 
In this hotly anticipated sequel to the haunting #1 bestseller Stalking Jack the Ripper, bizarre murders are discovered in the castle of Prince Vlad the Impaler, otherwise known as Dracula. Could it be a copycat killer...or has the depraved prince been brought back to life?

Following the grief and horror of her discovery of Jack the Ripper's true identity, Audrey Rose Wadsworth has no choice but to flee London and its memories. Together with the arrogant yet charming Thomas Cresswell, she journeys to the dark heart of Romania, home to one of Europe's best schools of forensic medicine...and to another notorious killer, Vlad the Impaler, whose thirst for blood became legend.

But her life's dream is soon tainted by blood-soaked discoveries in the halls of the school's forbidding castle, and Audrey Rose is compelled to investigate the strangely familiar murders. What she finds brings all her terrifying fears to life once again.
I really liked the first novel in this series (Stalking Jack The Ripper) and was so happy when I discovered that the second novel will focus on a Dracula like murderer. The fact that I am going to get to read more banter between Audrey Rose and Thomas is just icing on the already awesome sounding cake.

If you haven't read the first book in this series, I urge you to do so while you wait for this to be released this autumn. It is going to be a long wait, but totally worth it.

Expected release date - September 19, 2017

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Royally Matched by Emma Chase

Royally Matched by Emma Chase
Release Date -  February 21, 2017
Publisher Website - Everafter Romance
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages -  276 pages
My Rating - 4/5
**borrowed for review**


Here is the Goodreads synopsis
Some men are born responsible, some men have responsibility thrust upon them. Henry Charles Albert Edgar Pembrook, Prince of Wessco, just got the motherlode of all responsibility dumped in his regal lap.

He’s not handling it well.

Hoping to force her grandson to rise to the occasion, Queen Lenora goes on a much-needed safari holiday—and when the Queen’s away, the Prince will play. After a chance meeting with an American television producer, Henry finally makes a decision all on his own:

Welcome to Matched: Royal Edition.

A reality TV dating game show featuring twenty of the world's most beautiful blue bloods gathered in the same castle. Only one will win the diamond tiara, only one will capture the handsome prince’s heart.

While Henry revels in the sexy, raunchy antics of the contestants as they fight, literally, for his affection, it’s the quiet, bespectacled girl in the corner—with the voice of an angel and a body that would tempt a saint—who catches his eye.

The more Henry gets to know Sarah Mirabelle Zinnia Von Titebottum, the more enamored he becomes of her simple beauty, her strength, her kind spirit…and her naughty sense of humor.

But Rome wasn’t built in a day—and irresponsible royals aren’t reformed overnight.

As he endeavors to right his wrongs, old words take on whole new meanings for the dashing Prince. Words like, Duty, Honor and most of all—Love.
A misbehaving Prince, a reality television show, and some royal drama. What more could you want? These all combine to create an enjoyable and romantic read that perfectly continues Emma Chase's Royally series.

Henry is the scandalous member of the Pembrook royal family. He immediately brings to mind another Prince whose first name starts with an H. His charm, whit, and extroverted nature only increase his appeal. His journey in this novel from the prince of parties, to an actual prince charming is the heart of this novel. His character development is such a large part of the plot of this novel, and every part of it feels earned.

Sarah's love of books is the first charming thing you learn about her but there are plenty of other reasons to love this novel's leading lady. She comes complete with gripping backstory that instantly makes you root for her. Her character was quite different than I was expecting and that is in large part due to the story arc she is given and the impact her past has on her character. The impact of past events on a character is sometimes tricky to realize within the text with it feeling like it is being told instead of shown. This novel accomplishes it and the author makes it look easy. It is simply part of who the character is and she is formed by what has happened to her. It makes her seem even more real, and adds a little something extra to her character.

Henry's duty to his country and the people of his country as the future King is not forgotten in the romance of this novel. His duty comes first, as it should. I appreciated that both Henry and Sarah realize this as their relationship develops and it is not something that comes between them. They each want to be what is best for the country and its people. Sarah realizes that if she is to be with Henry she has to be a good Queen and Henry eventually realizes he wants nothing more than to be a good King. It just reinforced their love story in a way that I absolutely loved. Their love story is also one that begins as friendship. It naturally, and slowly, evolves into something more. This may mean less sexy scenes, but it pays off in the form of more realistic feeling relationship between the characters.

The only, slight, misstep for me was the reality television show aspect of the story. I didn't feel it fully wove seamlessly into the rest of the plot. It was certainly used to further the plot and create drama, but it didn't feel vital to Henry's story or progression. It fits who is character is, but his growth rapidly makes it feel out of place, and lasts perhaps just a little too long. It is not major, and certainly not distracting for the overall story, just something that tipped the first novel a little ahead of this one.

I may have preferred the first novel in this series, but Henry's story was still a delight to read. It really is a personal preference between the two brothers that probably cinches it. If you're looking for a fun, sexy, and sweet read featuring a swoon inducing prince, I recommend not just this book, but this series.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

New To My Book Closet

It's that time of the week again. Time to show you what bookish goodies made their way into my home and book closet (to be saved from the evil book eating cat monster named Aria). This is inspired by the various "mailbox" posts out there (eg. In My Mailbox by The Story Siren, and Stacking the Shelves by Tynga's Reviews)

Only a small mailbox post, but one I am very, very excited about.

I have been on a New Adult/Romance kick recently and I cannot wait to read this one!

Dating You / Hating You by Christina Lauren (goodreads)

A huge thank you to Simon and Schuster Canada for this review copy! Expect a review on the blog soon!

Happy Weekend and Happy Reading!

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Weekly Obsessions

The awesome Kelly at KellyVision started posting a weekly post highlighting whatever she happened to be obsessed with that week. I LOVE this idea, so much in fact that I will be doing it myself every Saturday.


The Names They Gave Us Pre-order Goodies

I love buttons and am always excited to get bookish buttons as a pre-order perk. Bloomsbury is offering up a pre-order incentive for Emery Lord's newest book. I have read The Names They Gave Us and can verify that these buttons are 100 percent perfect for the upcoming novel.

Be sure to visit the Bloomsbury site for this pre-order incentive to get more details and snag your own set of buttons. I have already claimed my own set and cannot wait for it to arrive.


Spiderman: Homecoming poster

I love everything about this poster. Everything. The obviously self made Spidey suit. The earphones. The Avengers building in the background. All of it.

I have high hopes for this movie, and this poster makes me VERY hopeful. They are going for a very youthful Peter Parker in this movie. A Peter Parker who is actually a teenger and that is evident in every single aspect of this poster.

What are you obsessed with this week?

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Royally Screwed by Emma Chase

Royally Screwed by Emma Chase
Release Date -  October 18, 2016
Publisher Website - Everafter Romance
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages -  276 pages
My Rating - 5/5
**borrowed for review**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
Nicholas Arthur Frederick Edward Pembrook, Crowned Prince of Wessco, aka His Royal Hotness, is wickedly charming, devastatingly handsome, and unabashedly arrogant; hard not to be when people are constantly bowing down to you.

Then, one snowy night in Manhattan, the prince meets a dark haired beauty who doesn't bow down. Instead, she throws a pie in his face.

Nicholas wants to find out if she tastes as good as her pie, and this heir apparent is used to getting what he wants.

Dating a prince isn't what waitress Olivia Hammond ever imagined it would be.

There's a disapproving queen, a wildly inappropriate spare heir, relentless paparazzi, and brutal public scrutiny. While they've traded in horse drawn carriages for Rolls Royces, and haven't chopped anyone's head off lately, the royals are far from accepting of this commoner.

But to Olivia, Nicholas is worth it.

Nicholas grew up with the whole world watching, and now Marriage Watch is in full force. In the end, Nicholas has to decide who he is and, more importantly, who he wants to be: a King... or the man who gets to love Olivia forever. 
The daydream of becoming a princess by marrying a prince that many young girls have gets a sexy overhaul in Royally Screwed. It offers a fun, sexy, and drama filled take on a prince falling for a 'commoner' and was an entirely delightful reading experience.

Nicholas is my favourite kind of 'alpha male' character archetype. He is protective without being overbearing about it. He is witty without being annoying, and uses just the right amount of sexual innuendo. All of this and there isn't a growl or possessive declaration to be seen. I normally am not a fan of characters who are 'alpha male' but I am in this particular case.

Olivia is smart, capable, and sacrificing. She is fiercely loyal to her family and has willingly put some aspects of her life on hold to help out her family. A lot of this story is her finding out what she might want, and to allow others to help out with things. She is a take charge kind of girl, and that means she would rather do things on her own. It was nice that she had things outside of Nicholas and the romance story going on.

The romance is the perfect blend of sexy and sweet. The sexy scenes are blush worthy and the sweet gestures are plentiful. The romance is, obviously, the focus but is balanced with outside storylines to create a richer, more enjoyable read. This is classic rom-com in book format though, complete with the necessary drama that the couple must work through in order to achieve their happily ever after.

The side characters are equally great. I loved Franny, the wife of Nicholas' friend Simon. She's more shrewd and calculating than Olivia is, but she is exactly the kind of person you want on your side. .Ellie, Olivia's younger sister, is all kind of hilarious and sweet. She cares about her older sister and wants what is best for her. There are plenty of other characters that help bring this story alive, and they each leave you hoping you'll see them in future novels.

Speaking of side characters, I could not complete this review without mentioning Henry. Henry is Nicholas' brother (also known as the 'wildly inappropriate spare' from the synopsis above) and the more wild of the two. His scandalous behaviour will bring to mind another Prince whose name also starts with an H. I wanted much more of Henry by the end of the novel. He is immediately loveable and his antics are anything but dull.

There are companion novels, but based on the events of this first book, they should be read in order. They would, probably, make sense read out of order but the events of this book highly impact the second in a way that is pretty spoilery.

If you're looking for some good spring/summer romance recommendations I highly recommend this one. You'll fall for Nicholas and Olivia's love story and definitely want to pick up the next novel in this companion style series. If you enjoyed The Prince and Me, and The Princess Diaries and would love something that puts a sexy twist to them, I think you'll love this book as much as I do.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Waiting On Wednesday .... Midnight At The Electric

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pick is Midnight At The Electric by Jodi Lynn Anderson

Here is the Goodreads synopsis 
Kansas, 2065 Adri has been handpicked to live on Mars. But weeks before Launch, she discovers the journal of a girl who lived in her house over a hundred years ago, and is immediately drawn into the mystery surrounding her fate. While Adri knows she must focus on the mission ahead, she becomes captivated by a life that’s been lost in time…and how it might be inextricably tied to her own. 

Oklahoma, 1934 Amidst the fear and uncertainty of the Dust Bowl, Catherine longs for the immortality promised by a professor at a traveling show called The Electric. But as her family’s situation becomes more dire -- and the suffocating dust threatens her sister’s life -- Catherine must find the courage to sacrifice everything she loves in order to save the one person she loves most. 

England, 1919 In the recovery following World War One, Lenore tries to come to terms with her grief for her brother, a fallen British soldier, and plans to sail to America in pursuit of a childhood friend. But even if she makes it that far, will her friend be the person she remembers, and the one who can bring her back to herself? 

While their stories spans thousands of miles and multiple generations, Lenore, Catherine, and Adri’s fates are entwined in ways both heartbreaking and hopeful. 
I was surprised to discover that I had not included this as a Waiting On Wednesday pick. Jodi Lynn Anderson is one of my most favourite writers and I am so excited that she has a new young adult novel coming out.

This comes out this summer so it is not even that long of a wait, and I am eager to devour my ARC as soon as I have a break in my reading schedule.

Expected release date - June 13, 2017

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

The Wicked Ever After Series by Nazarea Andrews

The Wicked Ever After Series by Nazarea Andrews
Release Date -  Feb 13, 2017 / Feb 20, 2017 / Feb 27, 2017
Publisher Website - self published
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages -  156 pages / 150 pages  / 142 pages 

**Adult Novel**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis for Wicked Charming
He’s at the top of the world.
He’s rich, sought after, and in control.
And he’s bored.
A string of one-night stands have left Samul Charming increasingly dissatisfied. When his mother pushes him to settle down, his best friends come up with a brilliant plan:
Audition the submissive at The Kingdom.
The problem is, Charm knows who he wants: the only girl to challenge him, while submitting as naturally as breathing.
But he can’t have her.
With the entire club watching and his parents expecting him to settle down, Charm decides to settle.
But love in the Kingdom is never simple and it is never painless.
And Charm is about to be reminded of that.

Fairytale retellings are one of my weaknesses. I will pretty much read any fairytale retelling that catches my eye and was immediately intrigued by the premise behind this series - fairytales retold with an erotic twist, and set against a BDSM club backdrop. I was not disappointed as the entire series was an intriguing, and sexy, read.

Wicked Charming, for me, was the least developed of the trio of novellas. I felt this one could have been longer so we could have spent more time with the characters. Charming was the most cold and distant of the guys. This fits with his personality and demeanor but left me feeling disconnected.

The friendship bond between for four guys really works and only continues to grow and expand with each novellas. These really should be read back to back as it gives a greater appreciation for the complexity of these friendships and what they have been through together. The story itself is also richer when looked at as a whole instead of in parts.

The Cinderella moments in this were perfectly blended into this story and worked rather well within this modern, and erotic, twist. I liked the replacement for the glass slipper moment, and the royal ball was transformed into an audition and does so quite easily.

All in all this was a great introduction to the world and the characters which sets up the next two novellas perfectly.

Here is the Goodreads synopsis for Wicked Beast
James “Beast” Lutz isn’t like his friends.
He doesn’t crave control the way Charm and Mal do, and he doesn’t play the games Wolf thrives on.
He lives on his knees, all of his strength bent to the will of his Domme.
He’s never regretted that, until now.
Now, when he’s trapped in an arrangement serving a Domme who can’t keep a sub.
Now, when he’s not sure how to trust a woman wrapped in mystery and less sure he wants to.
But the more he gets to know the Domme everyone knows as Beauty, the more Beast realizes everything he thought he knew was wrong.
Rating: 5/5

Wicked Beast was my personal favourite of the three novellas. Beast is much more open when compared to Charming and an easier character to connect with. His submissive nature comes through along with his willingness to please and unwavering loyalty. I think I liked and appreciated him the most out of the guys.

This novel explores the dom/submissive roles a little deeper than the other stories and earns bonus points for having a large portion of the story stress the importance of trust and after care in these types of relationships. That is not something that is always found in these types of stories and it was refreshing to see it handled this way.

This novella twists the typical Beauty and the Beast roles with ease. Beauty wears masks in more ways than one and is cold and abrasive. She acts 'beastly' and it was interesting to see this done so well. This novella proves it is possible to cleverly gender swap fairytales and I want more of them in the future.

All of this combined made for a great twist to the Beauty and the Beast tale. It was easily the one I wanted more from simply because I was sad to have finished it. I wanted more time with Beast, his Beauty and their story.

Here is the Goodreads synopsis for Wicked Wolf
Charles "Wolf" Blackwood likes the game. He likes chasing a new girl every week, loves seducing them and earning their trust. He doesn’t like to keep them.
But Scarlet is different--she always has been.
The chase has never been quite as intoxicating as it is with her, the feisty sub with an innocent streak a mile wide. He wants to keep her, but Scarlet already has a Dom, and Hunter has no intentions of giving her up.
But Wolf is in for a surprise when he realize Scarlet doesn’t want one of them.
She’s playing to keep them both. 
Rating: 4/5

Wolf's story may, surprisingly, be the most romantic of the three. This novella shows three people falling in love with each other and you fully believe it. The author does a great job of setting up the backstory to ensure you are invested immediately in the connections between these characters. You want the three of them to be together as a result.

Wolf is a perfect balance to Charming and Beast. He also happens to be the 'switch' of the groue (someone who moves between being a dominate and a submissive). This feels evident in his personality and the way he relates to those around him.

This particular novella could have used more tine to flesh out Scarlet's business storyline. That felt like it wrapped up too easily but I predict many will be fine with that because the real draw of these books is the sexy scenes which are well done in all three novellas.

A series of novellas that has sex, romance, male friendships and much more within its pages. I was left wanting more of this world and these characters and was thrilled to discover that Mal (the fourth member of the group) is getting his own story in 2018. I am excited to get my hands on this Sleeping Beauty inspired tale and unravel the most mysterious of the guys who call the Kingdom their playground.

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Weekly Obsessions

The awesome Kelly at KellyVision started posting a weekly post highlighting whatever she happened to be obsessed with that week. I LOVE this idea, so much in fact that I will be doing it myself every Saturday.

A small Weekly Obsessions but one filled with some pretty amazing things!


Hunting Prince Dracula cover (goodreads)

Stalking Jack The Ripper was one of my favourite reading experiences of last year. I was very excited when it was announced that the next book would revolve around Dracula.

The cover was just released and I love it! So much!

The stake in her hands! OMG! It is perfect. I love the white outfit against the dark background. I am hoping this will be at  Book Expo America this year because I need to read it ASAP!


Beauty and the Beast (live action)

I went to see this movie Thursday night and was completely charmed. I already want to see it again. The movie is very similar to the classic animated version and I predict anyone who LOVED the original will not be disappointed by this remake. I thought Emma Watson was a perfect Belle. Dan Stevens is wonderful as Beast (and he has an incredible singing voice). Luke Evans was charmingly evil as Gaston. Josh Gad was wonderful as LeFou. The entire cast was great and I loved the new songs they added to the movie with Evermore being a personal favourite.

Have you see the Beauty and the Beast remake yet? If so, let me know what you think in the comments.

Red Nose Day .... Actually

I was excited when it was announced that Love Actually was going to have a reunion of sorts for Red Nose Day! They recently released a trailer for the event and it is, as expected, perfect.

This teaser, of course, is a callback to Andrew Lincoln's iconic scene in the original. I wonder if Mark will be outside Juliet's house with more poster boards in this follow up. 


Book Expo America

I received notification that my press pass application was approved for BEA this year which means I'll be traveling to New York City in May for the annual event again this year! I am so excited to see everyone, meet some authors, and basically fangirl over books in general. It is one big bookish party and I am so excited to be a part of it again this year.

What are you obsessed with this week?

Friday, March 17, 2017

The Mistake by Elle Kennedy

The Mistake by Elle Kennedy
Release Date -  May 6, 2015
Publisher Website - CreateSpace Independant Publishing
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages -  296 pages
My Rating - 4/5
**borrowed for review**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
He’s a player in more ways than one…

College junior John Logan can get any girl he wants. For this hockey star, life is a parade of parties and hook-ups, but behind his killer grins and easygoing charm, he hides growing despair about the dead-end road he’ll be forced to walk after graduation. A sexy encounter with freshman Grace Ivers is just the distraction he needs, but when a thoughtless mistake pushes her away, Logan plans to spend his final year proving to her that he’s worth a second chance.

Now he’s going to need to up his game…

After a less than stellar freshman year, Grace is back at Briar University, older, wiser, and so over the arrogant hockey player she nearly handed her V-card to. She’s not a charity case, and she’s not the quiet butterfly she was when they first hooked up. If Logan expects her to roll over and beg like all his other puck bunnies, he can think again. He wants her back? He’ll have to work for it. This time around, she’ll be the one in the driver’s seat…and she plans on driving him wild. 
After finishing The Deal I knew I wanted to continue the Off Campus series. The Deal left me with high expectations for The Mistake and, luckily, they were met. Even though I still think The Deal is my favourite from the series (so far at least), The Mistake offers a read that is a wonderful blend of funny and romantic and fully enjoyable.

Companion novels are one of my favourite formats for series. It allows that feeling of returning to favourite characters while leaving the ones from the previous books to be happy in the background. We have already met the guys that each of the subsequent books will focus on and that means we already have some kind of connection to them. It makes falling to the story easier and Elle Kennedy takes full advantage of this fact. She uses each book to set up the next by giving us a glimpse of the guy who will be the focus of the next book, while still letting the main guy have his moment.

John Logan is someone not looking for commitment. He is going to be tied down to the family business soon enough and that is more than enough of a commitment for him. He meets Grace and that all changes. Their romance is fun. There isn't any other way to describe it. There are funny, lighter moments like the list of 'romantic gestures' John must complete to win a date with Grace. There are also deeper moments as each of the begins to open up and share things about themselves.

The comradery that exists between the group of hockey players who are the focus of this series is, once again, heavily featured. The bond that exists between these guys feels so natural. Their banter is amazing, and they way the tease each other feels incredibly authentic. It really feels like you're getting a glimpse at what male friendship is like (even if I cannot vouch for how accurate it is).

Grace and John both have storylines outside of their relationship that added an extra layer to this novel. I liked that they had things outside of each other that were important to the plot and helped progress things. I think a book is stronger when the relationship isn't the sole focus and that is the case here. I felt like we go to know John and Grace because of what these 'side plots' showed us of their character. It was important to like the individually so that we would want them to be together.

This series is fun, sexy and  filled with some great humourous moments. If you're looking for a New Adult novel that blends great characters with romance this is the series for you. It's impossible not to love this group of hockey players and the ladies who win their hearts.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Waiting On Wednesday ..... This Darkness Mine

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pick is This Darkness Mine by Mindy McGinnis

Here is the Goodreads synopsis 
Sasha Stone knows her place—first-chair clarinet, top of her class, and at the side of her oxford-wearing boyfriend. She’s worked her entire life to ensure that her path to Oberlin Conservatory as a star musician is perfectly paved.

But suddenly there’s a fork in the road, in the shape of Isaac Harver. Her body shifts toward him when he walks by, her skin misses his touch even though she’s never known it, and she relishes the smell of him—smoke, beer, and trouble—all the things she’s avoided to get where she is. Even worse, every time he’s near Sasha, her heart stops, literally. Why does he know her so well—too well—and she doesn’t know him at all?

Sasha discovers that her by-the-book life began by ending another’s: the twin sister she absorbed in the womb. But that doesn’t explain the gaps of missing time in her practice schedule or the memories she has of things she certainly never did with Isaac. As Sasha loses her much-cherished control, her life—and heart—become more entangled with Isaac. Armed with the knowledge that her heart might not be hers alone, Sasha must decide what she’s willing to do—and who she’s willing to hurt—to take it back.

Edgar Award–winning author Mindy McGinnis delivers a dark and gripping psychological thriller about a girl at war with herself, and what it really means to be good or bad.
I am a huge fan of Mindy McGinnis' writing and completely loved The Female Of The Species. This sounds like another dark and twisty read from her and I cannot wait. This has been teased as a 'split-personality love triangle' which intrigues me. It also brings up some pretty big issues that I have no doubt will be handled by Mindy with great care.

This is a autumn release so there is quite a wait for this to be in bookstores, but I predict it will be more than worth the wait.

Expected release date - October 10, 2017

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Seven Days Of You by Cecilia Vinesse

Seven Days Of You by Cecilia Vinesse
Release Date -  March 7, 2017
Publisher Website - Hachette/Little Brown
Publisher Social Media - Twitter
Pages -  336 pages
My Rating - 4/5
**received from the publisher for an honest review**

Here is the Goodreads synopsis
Sophia has seven days left in Tokyo before she moves back to the States. Seven days to say good-bye to the electric city, her wild best friend, and the boy she’s harbored a semi-secret crush on for years. Seven perfect days…until Jamie Foster-Collins moves back to Japan and ruins everything.

Jamie and Sophia have a history of heartbreak, and the last thing Sophia wants is for him to steal her leaving thunder with his stupid arriving thunder. Yet as the week counts down, the relationships she thought were stable begin to explode around her. And Jamie is the one who helps her pick up the pieces. Sophia is forced to admit she may have misjudged Jamie, but can their seven short days of Tokyo adventures end in anything but good-bye?
Seven Days Of You is pitched as Anna and the French Kiss meets Before Sunrise which immediately meant I had to read it. I was expecting something cute and sweet with a little drama mixed in and I was not disappointed. This romance set against the backdrop of Tokyo manages to be both familiar and fresh.

Sophia is a hard character to describe. She has most likely been referred to as reading 'younger than her years' by others who have read this book. I felt she read as a sheltered teenager. She read as someone unused to stepping outside their comfort zone. She was resistant to change, and felt anxious with a sense of stability. She may have read younger than her years, but it feels right for her character. She is growing, and changing during the events of the novel. A large part of this story is her finding herself, and finding out what home really means to her. It is Sophia's journey that is the focus and the character growth is there by the end of the novel.

The setting of this book could, sadly, almost be anywhere. This was the only draw back for me of the story. I left the book with a vague impression of Tokyo, but I wanted something more. I wanted to feel immersed in the setting, particularly because it was different that the typical contemporary settings. The where in this novel was not important to the overall story. This is a story of a girl feeling anchored as a result of moving around a lot. She never really felt like she belonged until her family settled in Tokyo and she always knew it had an end date. Sophia's journey was not dependent on the novel taking place in Tokyo as it really could have been any city, and that meant the setting didn't shine as brightly. There are some things about the setting that will inspire some travel lust, and the descriptions of the snack food in Tokyo will ignite serious cravings and for those elements I am thankful.

The romance is one that starts when the two characters already have an established connection. They were friends first. This makes the quick nature of their romance feel more authentic and real. There is a backstory and history that these characters share and that comes through on the page. It's not something that is just told to the reader, but shown. The overall feel is one that is pretty realistic considering the idea is pure rom com fantasy.

The side characters (which include Sophia's friends and family) are all equally important to the story. I appreciated the time taken to expand upon all of Sophia's relationships and how they relate to what she is going through during this one week. Her friendships stand as a marker of those she is leaving  behind, and her past family issues are a large part of why she feels so unsettled. All of the relationships make Sophia who she is, and it was nice to see that reflected in the writing. There are plenty of subplots outside of the romance, and I appreciated each of them and the fact that time was given to flesh them out within the plot.

An undeniably cute story of a girl finding out that home can sometimes be a person (or people) and not a place. It's a story of making the moments you have count and ensuring you make the most of the time you do have. I think young adult contemporary fans will enjoy it for the cute fluffy read that it is and recommend it for a lighter read after something especially dark and heavy.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Weekly Obsessions

The awesome Kelly at KellyVision started posting a weekly post highlighting whatever she happened to be obsessed with that week. I LOVE this idea, so much in fact that I will be doing it myself every Saturday.

A small Weekly Obsessions but one filled with some pretty amazing things!


Cover Of A Line In The Dark By Malinda Lo (goodreads)

The darkness of this cover compliments the darkness hinted at in the synopsis perfectly. There is something vivid and striking about this cover. It stands out and makes you want to take a closer look.

The title almost looks like it is carved into the skin in a way (or like veins). This novel sounds incredible as well so the pretty cover is a bonus.

Third Book In The Me Before You Series 

It was announced this week that Jojo Moyes will be releasing another book about Louisa Clark to make the Me Before You series a trilogy. I had mixed views about After You, and I have mixed opinions about another book about Lou but I will totally read it. I adore Lou and want to continue her story even if it crushes my heart with the looming absence of what made these books special (ie the bond between Will and Lou).


Beauty And The Beast

IT IS SO SOON!! I am going this upcoming Thursday and I already have tickets. I am beyond excited and hope it is as good as I anticipate it being. They released the official soundtrack yesterday and I spent most of the day listening to the songs on repeat!

Mr Robot Season Three Announcement

Mr Robot is moving from its usual summer time slot for season three. It will instead have an Oct premiere date which basically ensures Oct is going to be an epic month for television. As part of the announcement they revealed that BD Wong will be promoted to series regular which is very exciting. I, however, just want more Tyrell Wellick in my life (and on my TV screen) so I am curious about Martin Wallström's presence in the third season. It is going to be a really long wait, but something tells me it will be more than worth it.

What are you obsessed with this week?

Friday, March 10, 2017

The Great Pursuit by Wendy Higgins

The Great Pursuit by Wendy Higgins
Release Date - March 7, 2017
Publisher Website - Harper Collins
Publisher Social Media - Twitter/Facebook/SavvyReader/Frenzy
Pages -  512 pages
My Rating - 3/5
**received for an honest review from publisher**


Here is the Goodreads synopsis
In The Great Pursuit, the dramatic sequel to the New York Times bestselling The Great Hunt, Wendy Higgins delivers another thrilling fantasy filled with dangerous enemies, political intrigue, searing romance, and a princess who is willing to do everything to protect her kingdom.

One hunt has ended, but the pursuit for love and justice continues.

The kingdom of Lochlanach has traded the great beast that once terrorized the realm of Eurona for something far more dangerous: the ire of powerful Lashed woman Rosaria Rocato. Rosaria demands that Eurona overturn the laws prohibiting magic, or an innocent will be killed each day.

Despite the king’s resistance, Princess Aerity believes they must make peace with the Lashed, and though she’s accepted a betrothal to the man who took down the beast, she cannot help thinking about Paxton, the Lashed man who stole her heart and disappeared.

Aerity soon discovers that Paxton has joined Rosaria’s army in the war against her family. Though her feelings for him are still strong, her duty to her kingdom and her family is stronger—especially when her parents are kidnapped and she has to step up to the throne and once again put aside what’s best for her in order to do what’s best for her people. Paxton and Princess Aerity must fight to see what is more powerful: their love or the impending war between the magical Lashed and the non-magic humans.
I was lukewarm about the first book in this series, but was curious enough to check out the final book in this duology. I enjoyed the second book more than the first in this series, but still felt something lacking from the series overall.

Aerity had a more central role in this novel. She wasn't just something to be won. Her character had more urgency and was making her own choices. It really helped bring something to her character that was missing from the first installment. The female characters in general benefited from more character development. It was one of the elements I appreciated most in this sequel.

Also missing from the first novel was a true villain to balance the protagonists. Rosaria comes into the story only briefly in the first novel and is not used nearly as much as she should have been. The creature was the primary focus and the shift in this novel to a true villain was welcome. If she had been developed more it would have been even better. She could have been a formidable foe for Aerity and it could have been interesting to see the two go toe to toe.

The story is immensely readable. I found myself flying through the 500+ page count of this one rather quickly. The story itself also has some great moments. I appreciated the clever way some of the romances worked out and how the author wrapped up the story itself. It is an ending that will please a majority of the readers.

This series felt like it was attempting to pack too much into a duology. It leaves everything feeling underdeveloped in a way that hinders the story. The expansion of the villains motivations, a slower burn with some of the romances, and a deeper look into the mythology of the magic used in the novel could have made this into an enjoyable fantasy series.

I believe that this will appeal to fans of Wendy Higgin's previous novels. There are certainly some delightful elements within these pages, but not quite enough to make me fully love this novel. I wanted more from the characters, the plot, and pretty much every other aspect. It is a fast, charming read however, and one that I anticipate others will enjoy much more than I did.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

King's Cage by Victoria Aveyard

King's Cage by Victoria Aveyard
Release Date - February 7, 2017
Publisher Website - Harper Collins
Publisher Social Media - Twitter/Facebook/SavvyReader/Frenzy
Pages -  528 pages
My Rating - 5/5


Here is the Goodreads synopsis
In this breathless third installment to Victoria Aveyard’s bestselling Red Queen series, allegiances are tested on every side. And when the Lightning Girl's spark is gone, who will light the way for the rebellion?

Mare Barrow is a prisoner, powerless without her lightning, tormented by her lethal mistakes. She lives at the mercy of a boy she once loved, a boy made of lies and betrayal. Now a king, Maven Calore continues weaving his dead mother's web in an attempt to maintain control over his country—and his prisoner.

As Mare bears the weight of Silent Stone in the palace, her once-ragtag band of newbloods and Reds continue organizing, training, and expanding. They prepare for war, no longer able to linger in the shadows. And Cal, the exiled prince with his own claim on Mare's heart, will stop at nothing to bring her back.

When blood turns on blood, and ability on ability, there may be no one left to put out the fire—leaving Norta as Mare knows it to burn all the way down. 
Three books into a series it can be hard to find something new to say about the world, the characters, and the plot. This is especially true if you are attempting to avoid spoilers. Victoria Aveyard makes this task easy by having her third installment expand the world, the characters, and the plot in ways that are completely unexpected. King's Cage takes the novel even further down the path to war, and blazes a scorching trail on its way there.

Three books into the series and it is clear that Victoria Aveyard knows her characters. She knows what makes them tick, and is able to make you understand their choices (even if you don't agree with them). The story is propelled forward in a way that shows she trusts us to be as comfortable with these characters and this world as she is. It makes the story progress in a realistic way and in a way that is very reminiscent of television show seasons or movie sequels.

Maven continues to be the worst in this installment. After taking Mare captive and literally putting her on a leash, there wasn't much further he could fall. This broken prince is a product of his upbringing and that has created a cold, calculating young man who is obsessed with Mare. I find Maven fascinating because he is unapologetic about his actions. He reminds me a lot of the characters in Game of Thrones. He's morally grey, and the scariest part is that he thinks he is justified in his actions. He believes he is doing the right thing. I want to know more of what makes him tick, and this novel does shine a light on the darker workings of Maven's mind.

 Mare's head space for most of this novel is not the greatest (understandably) but I admire her resilience and her determination. She has this inner strength that is readily apparent in this part of her journey. She may be selfish, a little whiny at times, but she does have strong convictions and doesn't give in easily. There are choices she has to make in this installment that change the direction of her journey and these decisions change her as a character. I find she has grown so much in this novel and is vastly changed from the young woman we meet in Red Queen.

Cal, the fire Prince who finds himself a tool in the rebellion is steadfastly Cal in this novel. He has a good heart, and that is going to be tested going forward. He may be the character who has to make the bigger sacrifices for the great good going forward. I hope that Victoria continues to explore how much power entices the young prince and how much he actually wants to rule. This element of  power corrupts, especially when it comes to someone as inherently good as Cal, would be fascinating and it is something that has only been teased so far.

 The connection between Mare and Cal is felt even when they are not together. There were plenty of moments where Mare thinking or talking about Cal left me swooning. They really are each others rock in this storm and hopefully they find a happily ever after that works for them at the end of this series. I am not hopeful, as I expect Victoria to be as brutal as possible even while delivering an ending that is not entirely bleak. This novel sets up a perhaps bittersweet finale for everyone involved, and I trust that all of them romances being built will be no exception.

There are many huge moves and strikes within this novel. If the other novels were setting up the chessboard, this novel was the game. Each move plotted and deliberated for maximum impact. This is a war and each side is prepared to win. There are many different sides to this fight, and each have their own agenda. Loyalties are tested even more in this novel and Victoria Aveyard handles this part of the novel masterfully. We understand each of the characters more by the end of this novel, and because of that the decisions being made are felt all the more.

Once again we're left on the edge waiting for the next novel. Victoria Aveyard is the queen of crushing, heart-ripping endings and this is no exception. King's Cage takes Mare's story to a much grander scale, and one that I expect will have dire consequences in the last novel. There are so many questions to be answered with who will ultimately be sitting on the throne in the end just one of them.

Victoria Aveyard's series continues to impress and expand the world she built in Red Queen. This breathtaking, pulse pounding installment sets up an epic conclusion where it feels like nobody is safe and rebellion may have a higher price than expected.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

International Woman's Day

It is International Woman's Day today and I thought I would celebrate by sharing a few of my favourite female characters from TV, movies, and books! They tend to not get as much love and today felt like a perfect day to spotlight them!

This is by no means an exhaustive list, and not in any order. I am just going to highlight just a small portion of the awesome ladies in our entertainment. These are ones that resonated with me for various reasons.

1. Amy Dunne from Gone Girl

This character is, hands down, one of my favourites. Both the book and movie version are both equally amazing. I adore Gillian Flynn for creating Amy in all her messed up glory.

She really is unique in terms of female characters and one that gives me hope for a wide range of representation in the future.

2. Eleven from Stranger Things

Though she is young, Eleven more than earned her spot on this list. She's a perfect blend of fierce and vulnerable. She is the type of character that remains with you long after you've finished your binge watch.

I love how loyal she is, and how imperfect she is allowed to be at a young age. 

3. Jessica Jones from Jessica Jones

Jessica Jones remains my favourite of the Netflix Marvel offerings. She's broken, damaged, but not a victim. She takes back her strength and it is inspiring to watch.

The show itself is feminist and actually discusses consent in a real way that I've found missing from shows like this. Jessica may not want to be a hero, but she is one to me.

5. Mare Barrow from the Red Queen series

People have called her a 'whiny Pikachu' which may be accurate, but I, once again, appreciate that she is a female character allowed to be imperfect. She makes mistakes, she is selfish sometimes. She is also resilient, and a survivor. All of the ladies I've included are complex, and Mare definitely fits.

4. Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice

I may relate more to Jane, but I have always admired Elizabeth. She shares my love of reading and the conviction of making her own path and choices.

She is someone who carved her own path regardless of what her family (or others) may have wanted for her and grew as a person as a result. 

5. Liv Moore from iZombie

Liv is compassionate person driven to atone for the monster she feels she has become. She may be tiny and adorable, but she is also entirely capable of kicking ass. She is a mix of soft and strong that shows that women are capable of caring about injustice and lipstick and be educated about both. 

Liv is a character retains her convictions and that is admirable. 

7. Starr Carter from The Hate U Give

Starr is, like many of the above characters, allowed to be many things at once. Her character is multi dimensional and complex. She is given all of these characteristics while being allowed to be a teen. Her age is something that comes through and is something that makes her a great character for teens to see themselves in. She's apologetically  given all of these emotions, from anger, happiness, fear, love, and everything in between. She's amazing and hopefully an indicator of more diverse female characters to come.

8. Vanessa Ives from Penny Dreadful 

My list would not be complete without Vanessa Ives. Her strength in resisting the darkness threatening to consume her is admirable. Her steadfast devotion to her beliefs is also admirable. I appreciate her desire to do what she wants when she wants to without apology.

She is vulnerable, broken, fierce, and entirely captivating. I want more characters like her in so many ways.

Let me know in the comments which ladies from books, TV, and movies you would include in your own list! I would love to discover more amazing female characters.

Tuesday, March 7, 2017

The Song Rising by Samantha Shannon

The Song Rising by Samantha Shannon
Release Date -  March 7, 2012
Publisher Website - Raincoast / Bloomsbury
Publisher Social Media - Twitter / Twitter
Pages -  384 pages
My Rating - 5/5
**received for honest review from publisher**


Here is the Goodreads synopsis
The hotly anticipated third book in the bestselling Bone Season series – a ground-breaking, dystopian fantasy of extraordinary imagination

Following a bloody battle against foes on every side, Paige Mahoney has risen to the dangerous position of Underqueen, ruling over London's criminal population.

But, having turned her back on Jaxon Hall and with vengeful enemies still at large, the task of stabilising the fractured underworld has never seemed so challenging.

Little does Paige know that her reign may be cut short by the introduction of Senshield, a deadly technology that spells doom for the clairvoyant community and the world as they know it…
When the release date for The Song Rising was announced I know plenty of fans bemoaned the wait for the next chapter in Paige's story. It was agonizing, but Samantha Shannon has delivered a novel that was not only worth the wait, but surpassed any and all expectations that I had.

Each new novel in this series leads Paige to some place unexpected. These novels do not feel predictable, and often pace events much quicker than I would have guessed for a longer series. Plot points are not dragged out and that leaves the novel feeling tightly plotted. This novel, especially, showcases why this series is going to be a larger one with pushing everyone, including the reader, outside the comfort zones we've come to love. I delight in the fact that I cannot predict what will happen in this series. It allows me to experience the magic of Paige's journey as she does, and makes the emotions I feel while reading resonate all the more.

Paige is such a wonderful character. She's nuanced, and complex. I feel like after three novels we really know who she is and why she makes the choices she does. The introduction of her becoming Underqueen and walking away Jaxon sets the stage for her to continue to grow. She's quickly becoming one of my favourite female protagonists. I admire her determination, loyalty and the fact that she sometimes makes the wrong decisions (even if she is making them for the right reasons). She is a force and I cannot wait to see how she progresses in the future novels.

It is easy to get attached to all these characters, particularly the other members of the Seven Seals, as the story progresses. How attached I have grown to all these characters really sneaked up on my during this novel. That emotional attachment has been firmly cemented because Samantha has taken her time and allowed these characters to earn their spot in our heats.

I cannot discuss the major plot points without giving away too many spoilers, but this novel is a thrill ride from start to finish. It grabs your entire attention from the beginning and doesn't let up until the final page. The entire novel is well plotted with things being revealed at just the right time. The set up of the early chapters is well worth the pay off towards the end. This feels like the book that major shifts Paige's story and opens our view to a much larger, and more complex world.

The ending packs an emotional punch as we shit Paige's story once again. This novel opens up so many exciting possibilities and ensures that waiting for the forth is going to be exquisite torture. The ending was bittersweet for me, as I anticipate it will be for a lot of readers, filled with both tears and excitement. This kind of hook is something Samantha does incredibly well and has ensured I will be a life long fan.

An action packed series that only continues to impress with each passing installment. Paige's journey continues to surprise and delight as her world widens, and the connections deepen. This Song Rising will please fans of the series immensely and have you itching to get your hands on the forth installment of this breathtaking series. 

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