Thursday, December 25, 2014

Secret Santo

Secret Santo by Carla Caruso

Goodreads Summary:
Holly Plume is a bookseller by day and a romance blogger by night, dishing out scathing reviews under her pseudonym, Sultry Scarlet. When she scores an invite to the publishing event of the year, Holly couldn't be more excited. Finally a chance to meet her favourite author, the mysterious thriller writer known only as AJ Ruffo.

When Holly literally falls into the arms of the mysterious and charming Santo Randolfi, she's sure it must be AJ. After all, Santo has tousled good looks, dark curls, luscious lips . . . He's exactly what she'd imagined. But when Santo reveals he's actually the author of a romance novel Holly recently slammed on her blog, keeping her online identity a secret becomes vital.

As Holly struggles to keep Santo from learning the truth, she realizes just how much she likes him. But when he discovers who she is, will their relationship be over before it's even begun?

My Review:
This is a cute Christmas novella. It is a fun, light-hearted read that I easily read in one sitting. Looking for a short but enjoyable break from the chaos of the holidays? This could be the right book for you.

I really enjoyed it, but there did not seem to be a ton of substance to it. I think this is the shortest novella that I have read in a while, so that has something to do with it I'm sure. I think it was smart on the authors part not to include many characters. Any more than the ones already included would have been overwhelming to the reader in such a short novella.

While this book was lacking in the substance, it was fully of cheese. There were parts of it that were very cheesy. I don't really have anything against that though. I love a good cheesy romance. Overall, this book was an enjoyable read.

4 stars

I received this book for free in return for an honest review.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Dashing Through the Snow

Dashing Through the Snow by Paige Rion

Goodreads Summary:
In the vein of a Hallmark movie, this holiday novelette will warm your heart and put you in the Christmas spirit...

Now with 10 bonus awesome Murphy's Bakery recipes inside!

Wynn Murphy has been in love with Zane Anders since the day she laid eyes on him. But just when she begins to hope their casual relationship might turn into something more, a misunderstanding pushes her away.

At first sight, charming and handsome, ad executive, Zane Anders has been secretly infatuated with bake shop cutie, Wynn Murphy. This Christmas, he's determined to tell her.

Join Wynn and Zane in this delightful holiday novelette as Zane goes dashing through the snow in an effort to capture Wynn's heart.

My Review:
This is a cute, Christmas novella that was fun to read. The first chapter felt like a whirlwind. There were a lot of characters introduced really quickly, and I had a hard time keeping up. It got better as the story progressed though.

This story was told with the chapters alternating points of view of both of the main characters. It was nice to be able to know how both of them felt, and what each one was thinking. This was a cute romantic story that I would recommend as a light Christmas read.

4 stars

I received this book for free in return for an honest review.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Mistletoe and Mr. Right

Mistletoe and Mr. Right by Lyla Payne

Goodreads Summary:
Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house, not a creature was stirring…but lust refused to settle in for a long winter's nap.
She might be all nestled, snug in her bed, by why, oh why, do visions of the wrong guy dance in her head?

Jessica, (not Jessie), figures that nothing could be better than a trip to the Emerald Isle for Christmas break. So she takes a flying leap and follows her boyfriend home for the holidays, not only sure that he will finally agree they're destined for each other, but also that Ireland will provide the perfect backdrop to the beginning of their happily-ever-after.

But it turns out his family--and his gorgeous ex-girlfriend--don't feel the same way, and even the family goat seems to be conspiring against her well-laid plans. The only person making the trip worthwhile is the very last one she should be thinking about, but Grady, the local farmhand, has a way of showing up when Jessica needs him most...and least.

USA Today bestselling author Lyla Payne wraps up the perfect holiday novella, ties it with a ribbon of romance, and tops it with a light dusting of snow. Perfect to curl up with under the tree. Just add hot cocoa!

My Review:
This is the perfect light, fluffy Christmas read. It is a novella, so it is short enough to read in a few hours. Which is exactly what I did. While it is not exactly the kind of suspenseful book that is hard to put down, it was just too cute to look away!

This novella was so beautiful written. All of the characters in the book were great, and I thought that we got to know them really well for it being such a short novella. Along with this, there were so many emotions that I as the reader felt while reading this book. There were sad moments, funny moments, and sweet moments. There were parts of this story that had me literally laughing out loud. I love it when a book can do that. At the same time, there were definitely some serious moments in this story that were necessary to get to the heart of the reader.

This book was so cute, and left me wanting more. There is a fun somewhat-predictable twist at the end that was engaging as well. I will warn you, however, that if you hate love triangles (or squares) this might not be the book for you. I didn't mind it because it wasn't drawn out like some love triangles. It was still a part of this book though. Despite this, the romance was great. It was so cute, and at times heart wrenching. There were definitely a lot of things that these characters had to work through.
All in all, a great read!

5 stars

I received this book for free in return for an honest review.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

The One (Selection #3)

The One (The Selection #3) by Kiera Cass

Read my review of The Selection here.
Read my review of The Elite here.

Goodreads Summary:
The Selection changed America Singer's life in ways she never could have imagined. Since she entered the competition to become the next princess of IllĂ©a, America has struggled with her feelings for her first love, Aspen—and her growing attraction to Prince Maxon. Now she's made her choice . . . and she's prepared to fight for the future she wants.

Find out who America will choose in The One, the enchanting, beautifully romantic third book in the Selection series!

My Review:
This series is probably one of my favorite series ever. Yes, there are parts of the book that are really annoying. Yes, the writing could be better. But I love these books and I love the storyline.

America drives me crazy sometimes, and in this book so did Maxon. They can't make up their minds! Yet somehow, despite that annoyance, I can't help but love them. They are great characters, and I found myself rooting for them the whole way through the book.

This book had more substance in that it included a lot more politics and things of that nature. I'm sure some people would love this in a book. I liked that it gave the plot a little bit more suspense, but overall I was not a fan. The other two books were pretty light reads, and I was expecting the same thing when I picked up the last book in the series.

There are many twists and turns in this book that definitely kept my interest. Overall, it is a great series that I would recommend reading.

4 stars

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Something Like Fate

Something Like Fate by Susane Colasanti

Goodreads Summary:
Lani and Erin are bonded for life. One thing that connects them is their fascination of fate. Lani wonders how much of our lives has already been decided and how much we can actually influence. Since the Unknown can unexpectedly change our lives forever, how much can we really control?

From the minute Lani meets Jason, she can't deny the intense connection they share. It feels like she's known him forever. She's not sure if he feels it, too. But it doesn't matter. Because Jason is Erin's boyfriend. Lani is determined to ignore her feelings for Jason, no matter how powerful they are, rather than risk hurting her best friend.

How long can Lani keep running from the boy who might be her destiny?

My Review:
All I Need was the first book I read by Susanne Colasanti, and this was only the second. I can't get enough! I am officially a fan! There were times when the characters in the book got annoying. However, it was so realistic. That's how most teenagers talk. I didn't realize how annoying I used to sound, but I'm sure I did. All this to say, Susanne really understands teenagers and how they interact with each other.

I loved this book. I don't believe in horoscopes and astrology and such, so sometimes that was a little excessive for me. It did fit into the book well though. I loved how Lani and Jason had so many little things in common. It was so cool getting to learn that as they figured it out. It was really sweet, and they truly were perfect for each other.

I liked that the conflict(s) towards the end of the book were very believable. Many times in books, I think the conflicts and drama can be blown way out of proportion. Most of the book will be about the drama, and that always drives me crazy. I think it was done really well in this book though. It wasn't excessive, yet still believable. I loved that the focus was on the romance.

The end of the book was a little disappointing to me. It was a little anti-climatic I thought. I would have liked a more romantic ending. Overall though, I really enjoyed this book.

4 stars

Monday, August 18, 2014

Being Sloane Jacobs

Being Sloane Jacobs by Lauren Morrill

Goodreads Summary:
Meet Sloane Emily Jacobs: a seriously stressed-out figure-skater from Washington, D.C., who choked during junior nationals and isn’t sure she’s ready for a comeback. What she does know is that she’d give anything to escape the mass of misery that is her life.

Now meet Sloane Devon Jacobs, a spunky ice hockey player from Philly who’s been suspended from her team for too many aggressive hip checks. Her punishment? Hockey camp, now, when she’s playing the worst she’s ever played. If she messes up? Her life will be over.

When the two Sloanes meet by chance in Montreal and decide to trade places for the summer, each girl thinks she’s the lucky one: no strangers to judge or laugh at Sloane Emily, no scouts expecting Sloane Devon to be a hero. But it didn’t occur to Sloane E. that while avoiding sequins and axels she might meet a hockey hottie—and Sloane D. never expected to run into a familiar (and very good-looking) face from home. It’s not long before the Sloanes discover that convincing people you’re someone else might be more difficult than being yourself.

My Review:
This book is a fun take on Parent Trap. Two girls are frustrated with their own lives, and so they decide to switch places. Things get complicated when you throw in unfamiliar territory, not to mention boys. This book really had it all. It was funny at times, yet deep and emotional at other times.

This book is written in a way that you get to hear the story from the perspective of both of the girls. This is important since they are at different places, yet their lives are intertwining. Writing books with more than one point of view can be difficult, but the author does a good job at making this flow seamlessly.

This book is cute and a a fun, light read. However, there are something that are just too unrealistic. This book doesn't perfectly fill in every hole in the story line, and it's a little cheesy at times. It was definitely a fun book to read though. This is my second book to read by Lauren Morrill and I am already a fan of hers. I would definitely recommend this book to any contemporary young adult lovers.

4 stars
I received this book for free in return for an honest review.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Just One Year

Just One Year by Gayle Foreman (Sequel to Just One Day- you can read my review of the first book here).

Goodreads Summary:
Just One Day. Just One Year. Just One Read.

Before you find out how their story ends, remember how it began....

When he opens his eyes, Willem doesn’t know where in the world he is—Prague or Dubrovnik or back in Amsterdam. All he knows is that he is once again alone, and that he needs to find a girl named Lulu. They shared one magical day in Paris, and something about that day—that girl—makes Willem wonder if they aren’t fated to be together. He travels all over the world, from Mexico to India, hoping to reconnect with her. But as months go by and Lulu remains elusive, Willem starts to question if the hand of fate is as strong as he’d thought. . . .

The romantic, emotional companion to Just One Day, this is a story of the choices we make and the accidents that happen—and the happiness we can find when the two intersect.

My Review:
I read Just One Day, and absolutely fell in love with it. It blew me away. So, naturally I was excited to read Willem's story. I was hoping that it would be even better than the first.

While I did really enjoy this book, it was a little disappointing. It was all about Willem and his journey to find LuLu. While parts of the book were interesting, other parts started to feel repetitive. So, I started to get bored. Despite all this, I found that I could not put the book down. I was turning pages so fast I was giving myself whiplash. All to find out when he would meet LuLu. I kept thinking it would be soon, but it's NOT UNTIL THE LAST PAGE. This book really is like the first one. It's not necessarily a sequel, it's just Willem's side of the story. I was interesting to see his side of some parts, but that's not what I wanted. I want to know what happens after they find each other again!!

4 stars

Monday, April 21, 2014

Paige Rewritten

Paige Rewritten by Erynn Mangum (#2 in the Paige Alder Series. You can read my review of Paige Torn here.)

Goodreads Summary:
Paige Alder is in a really good place. She’s dating nice guy Tyler. Her boss has offered her a raise. Her walk with God is strong. Life is great—and that’s when things start to change.

First, the youth pastor at church keeps asking Paige to work with him full-time. Then her sister shows up newly engaged and wanting to reconnect, even though they haven’t spoken in years. And now former boyfriend Luke has come back into her life. How is Paige supposed to know what the right decisions are?

This warm and humorous second book in the Paige Alder series will help young girls work through important issues, such as forgiving others and obeying God.

My Review:
I am a huge fan of Erynn Mangum. I have yet to read one of her books that I did not like. Her characters are so relatable and realistic. I can't get enough!
It had been a while since I had read the first book in this series, so it took me a little bit of time to refresh my memory. It quickly came back to me though.

This book was a great continuation of Paige story. I loved every minute of this book. While I think this series is moving a little slower than some of Erynn's other books, I am still enjoying it! Paige is getting better at learning to manage her busy life, but she still has a lot to learn! I love how all of the characters interact in this series. There are some really funny scenes in this book.

I recently got the third book in the mail, and I cannot wait to read it!

5 stars

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Paige Torn

Paige Torn by Erynn Mangum

Goodreads Summary:
Everyone knows they can count on Paige Alder. But between volunteering at church, putting in overtime at work, and helping her best friend plan an anniversary party, she's lucky to grab a cheese stick for dinner. Paige can't even remember the last time she had a few minutes to relax or dig into God's Word. Then she meets laid-back Tyler, an attractive, Jesus-loving guy. Will he be able to help Paige get her priorities on track?

My Review:
If y'all know me at all, you know that Erynn Mangum is one of my two all time favorite authors. I always feel like I should be best friends with the main characters in her books. I love the way she writes, and how real it feels as you are reading. This book was a little slow to start, but I quickly got into it and loved every minute.

I love all of Erynn's characters. They all have such great personalities. They are all funny too! I laugh out loud at least twice in all of Eynn's books. I don't know how she does it. I also love that the characters who fall in love in the end always start out as friends. I think that is so important. Relationships need to be built on a strong friendship.

I think I know what will happen in the next book, but I'm not sure. There was quite the cliffhanger for the next book. I am already dying to read it!!

5 stars