Showing posts with label < Three Stars. Show all posts
Showing posts with label < Three Stars. Show all posts

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.22

April 16, 2024

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

Let me know if you've read any of these or plan to. I'd love to know your thoughts :)

Cut & Blow: Book Two by Ashleigh Giannoccaro

Tangled up in a dangerous love affair, Chelsey can’t seem to catch a break. Alone and afraid, with everything on the line she’s going to have to make some grown up decisions.
Sal has a second chance to get it all right with Chelsey. His do over to fix the mistakes of his past. Will his family approve? She’s very young, but he’s determined to do the right thing, even if it’s for all the wrong reasons.
There’s a Rat amongst the pigeons and no one has smelled him coming. Revenge is such a dirty business, but someone has to do it. When the person you hate the most in the world, has the one thing you want more — you take it.

My Rating -

With how much I couldn't resist the mess of book one, I thought I'd give the next book a try. However, this one didn't work as well for me. Chels was worse than a mess and I didn't care enough about her much older man relationship. There wasn't anything hot or attractive about it. Throw in his son and I still didn't care. Ewww.

Security Breach by Evan Grace

It was only one night. One night, and I was sure I’d never see her again.
Fast forward six months and I’m staring into those same eyes. Only this time Delilah is my boss’s daughter. But the real kicker…she’s very much pregnant.
Now my only goal is to stand by her, protect her, and make sure my new family is taken care of.
But there’s a certain danger lurking in the shadows, threatening everything I hold dear.
I won’t rest until my family is safe. I won’t stop until I’ve annihilated every threat.
Delilah is mine. The child she’s carrying is mine…and I’ll be damned if anyone takes them away from me.

My Rating -

It read very stilted.

He said... She said... I did this... And then...

No chemistry. No connection. Great premise though.

Sex Material by Victoria Ashley

Sex Material…
It’s what I’m known around town for.
A rock-hard body, covered in tattoos with a sizeable bulge that women spend their nights fantasizing about.
Women track me down, needing someone that will take them rough without holding back.
They find me because they need a distraction from reality. They need something to get their mind off of the boyfriend who screwed them over or the job promotion they got passed over on at work.
Sometimes it’s just because they need someone reckless in the bedroom before settling down with the right one.
‘Cause I’m not that guy.
Nowhere close.
I’m not the suit wearing, flower-buying guy you take home to meet the parents. I’m not the guy who will make you feel all warm and fuzzy inside.
Not anymore.
I was boyfriend material once. Would’ve even made a good husband. Until one night changed everything.
These women come to me because they need an escape to cope with the real world, but none of them know I need it more than them. I need something to make me feel alive. Something to get my heart beating again.
Then Cami shows up in my hometown, broken-hearted and pissed off at the world, needing an escape from her cheating ex.
She’s the only one that doesn’t want to use my body. In fact, she wants nothing to do with it and has no problems telling me so.
She’s interested in one thing only from me—to move into my rental property. But the problem with that is the more we fight, the deeper she buries herself in my soul.
Sex material is what I’m good at, but for the first time, it may not be enough.

My Rating -

That cover... YUM!

It was easy to picture that delicious man as Jensen.

And that's where my good thoughts end.

Jensen was a mess. Cami was a mess.

ANDDDDD... he has a descriptive sex scene in the beginning with some other woman.

Now I get that I'm supposed to be all about him and his growing feelings for Cami because he hasn't kissed a woman in years (bones them no problem tho) and he kisses her. He even loves kissing her.

But when his sex scene with another woman, which did happen before he met Cami so let's give him some points for that, is hotter than anything he shared with THE HEROINE OF THE STORY, overshadowing what they share like a muhfuqqa and making their 'sexy scenes' seem like straight out of a Sweet Valley High book...

I'm gonna have to pass.

That is all.

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.21

March 12, 2024

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

Let me know if you've read any of these or plan to. I'd love to know your thoughts :)

Finding Gray by K.L. Kreig

Contemporary, dual pov

Cocksure. Suave. Untouchable.

Gray Colloway is the very definition of these. He’s also sweet, drop dead gorgeous, and relentless in his pursuit of me. But I don’t let people in my inner bubble. That only leads to heartbreak. After I turn down his initial proposition for a date, he shows up where I work day after day until he finally wears me down and I give. I want to let him in. I do, but will Gray be able to truly break down barriers it took others a lifetime to shape?

Livia Kingsley is the entire sexy package. Outside of swimming curves and that angel’s face, she’s smart as hell, witty, and all fucking mine. I knew it the moment I laid eyes on her. Her resistance to give me a chance is cute and weak. And straight up futile. The harder she pushes me away, the harder I push back. But she gives in and our chemistry is off the charts hot, just as I knew it would be. And three years later when she agrees to be my wife, I am the happiest man alive.

Until she ruins me.

My Rating -

As always, the writing was perfect because it's K.L. KREIG!!


While I adored Gray, I kept finding fault with Livia. From the first moment of this novella, I didn't like her and I think their story would be better served if I dropped this and just started with Forsaking Gray instead. I don't want to go into the story hating the girl (although I pretty much already do). So I'm going to take a step back, make something else wash this gross taste out of my brain (thanks for that, Livia) and continue on with this series another day.

Pearl White by Lindsay Marie Miller


It’s senior year at Maple Creek High. And Savannah is swarming with gossip about who killed the star quarterback.

Last summer, Addie Smith thought she’d witnessed her last murder. But when a letter arrives from France, she must revisit the past.

A French count invites Tom and Addie to spend Christmas with him in Paris. Hesitant at first, the young love birds fly to the romance capital of the world. But the count is haunted by a woman from his past.

A woman who spoke of an emerald necklace…

My Rating -

Honestly, this book has elements that I quite enjoy. It's got a touch of romance, a mystery, some thrilling and suspenseful parts, and it's young adult. Surely a recipe of enjoyment. Unfortunately, it was barely okay for me. I skimmed and skimmed and still don't know what I was 'reading'. I think it was one of those "it's not you, it's me" situations. I just couldn't get into it.

Goodnight, Nic by Marley Jacobs

Twenty-four-year-old Nicole Fletcher is having a rough summer. The woman who raised her is dying and there’s nothing she can do about it. Nothing but find solace in the forbidden fantasies starring her best friend’s younger brother. Nic knows there are some lines you can never cross – but when it comes to “little” Landon Pike, she kind of already has. She tries to stay away but when your world is falling apart, you can’t help but fall right along with it. Good thing Landon refuses to let her fall alone.

My Rating -

With the way I feel about this heroine, and the fact that the entire book is told from her POV, I think it's better that I quit now. I can't get over how self-absorbed she is, how she treats people, how she just doesn't seem to care. I'm sure this will change at some point later in the story, but with the way she's treating the male lead, after he's so freaking amazing... I can't get down with that.

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.20

January 16, 2024

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

Let me know if you've read any of these or plan to. I'd love to know your thoughts :)

The Last Phone Booth in Manhattan by Beth Merlin

Women's Fiction

Avery Lawrence thought she had it all—a charming fiancé, a Broadway-themed star-studded engagement, and a picture-perfect life. But when her fraudster of a fiancé’s true identity is exposed and he’s hauled away in handcuffs, Avery’s world comes crashing down faster than the chandelier in Phantom of the Opera. Left stranded on Christmas Day outside the federal prison without her cell phone or wallet, Avery stumbles out of the cold and into the last phone booth in Manhattan. With nothing left to lose, Avery is directed by a mysterious voice on the line to the doorstep of the college boyfriend she thought she’d moved on from over six years ago.

When a second encounter with the phone booth leads Avery to a life-changing audition for Marley Is Dead, a new musical based on Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, Avery is blown away by the striking similarities between the show and her own life. Convinced the phone booth is somehow responsible for reuniting her with “the one that got away” and reigniting her acting career, maybe she will finally have the chance to rewrite her future. But as she grapples with the ghosts of her past and the uncertainty of her present, Avery must decide whether to follow her heart or pursue her dream.

My Rating: — Why is this categorized as a romance?


Luckily, I got this as a free book from Prime or I'd be pissed!!

It's about a woman named Avery finding herself, rediscovering her past with a man named Gabe, and getting closure so she can move forward.

Honestly, if I'd known what it was about, I'd probably still read it. I just wouldn't have gone in with these expectations of a love story.

What a downer :(

Bad Boys After Dark: Carson by Melissa Foster

Contemporary Second Chance Romance

As the founder of a multimillion-dollar international security business, Carson Bad exposes secrets for a living. He knows better than to forge relationships built on them. But for years he did just that with his best friend, and secret lover, Tawny Bishop. She brought a sense of calm and understanding to his life—in and out of the bedroom. Until one fateful night when a knock at the door changed everything.

Tawny is no longer a naive college student. She’s a sought-after perfumer living in Paris. She has plenty of resources at her fingertips, and lots of lonely nights to think about the only man she’s ever loved—the one she ran away from all those years ago. She needs to move forward with her life, but how can she when Carson still owns her heart?

Maybe showing up in the middle of the night unannounced isn’t the best route to unraveling the past and figuring out her future, but Tawny has played it safe for ten long years, and it's only made her long for the man she never should have walked away from. Now she's back in Carson’s life, and he’s determined not to make the same mistake twice. If only he knew what that mistake was…

My Rating: — I really wanted to like this one because I really like this author.
But it was hard to deal with the heroine.
She and the hero, Carson, were college besties... and something more.
She left him.
She married another man (poor Keith) when her heart still belonged to Carson. Married him, made him feel second class, had him begging to be with her again after their divorce, etc.
It's been ten years and she's looking for something from Carson.
And he just accepts her back into his life because he's such a great guy.
But I didn't like her.
I didn't trust her.
So no. I didn't care for a happy ending for her.
Carson deserved better.

The First Taste by Jessica Hawkins

Contemporary One Night Stand Romance

Andrew Beckwith has already devoted his life to one girl—and as far as he’s concerned, she’s all he needs. The rough-around-the-edges bad boy left his reckless ways behind six years ago when his daughter Bell was born. To the female population’s dismay, he’s unapologetically single. When Bell’s mother walked out on them years ago, he vowed never to let another woman close enough to hurt them again.

Amelia Van Ecken isn’t just another woman. She’s an independent, smart, and savvy businesswoman who doesn’t have time for sex, much less love. In the midst of a drawn-out, bitter divorce, all she wants is to bury herself in work. But when sharp-tongued Amelia and stubborn Andrew cross paths, sparks fly—and burn. Two things are obvious in an instant: they want each other, and they’re from different worlds. It’s the perfect formula for an off-the-charts one-night stand. After all, it’s not as if opposites ever attract.

My Rating: — I’m a sucker for a story about a single parent. I’m not sure if it’s because I enjoy the parallels I can draw between fiction and reality, being a single parent myself. I just enjoy watching the way these characters, who give so much of themselves to their child(ren), trying to navigate a world in which they are people separate from said child(ren). Who says having kids and raising them alone means you stop being an individual with wants and needs?

Andrew was content to live the life of a bachelor raising his daughter. And honestly, I couldn’t blame him. After Bell’s mother abandoned them, he became everything to make sure his little girl wanted for nothing. Both suffering from abandonment issues, he doesn’t want to try for anything permanent again. He’s all about having some fun and when he meets Amelia, it seems she’s all about the same thing. Coming out of bad divorce, she doesn’t think she has what it takes to give herself over again.

Sounds like a good story right? And it would be for many people. I’m just not one of them. I actually enjoyed both characters… separately. When they were together… not so much. I couldn’t feel their chemistry and I couldn’t connect with the idea of them evolving into anything serious. They didn’t work well for me and the more I tried to convince myself to give them a chance, the harder it was. So I had to just let this story go.

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.19

January 09, 2024

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

Let me know if you've read any of these or plan to. I'd love to know your thoughts :)

Becoming Us by Amy Daws

New Adult Contemporary Friends to Lovers Romance

The dreaded friend-zone...

The last place Finley ever want to be with college basketball God, Jake LaShae. She is losing her mind trying to figure out what this guy wants from her. Between their late night phone calls, cuddle sessions and him showing up at parties, causing a scene, his mixed signals are giving her whip lash.

When a mind-blowing betrayal knocks the wind out of Finley and she thinks she can’t feel any lower, Brody stumbles into her path—barefoot and charmingly sexy.

This boy next door is a breath of fresh air. And he’s not shooting her any mixed signals.

But even he has a past. A past that makes him anything but perfect.

When Finley begins to think she’s found the one in Brody, will Jake try to make one final play and ruin the game for everyone?

My Rating: ★ — So... I hate Finley. Hate her so much that I couldn't find it in me to give this book a real chance.

She was almost everything I can't stand in a protagonist.

And she was the one narrating this story.


Dangerous Love: an Anthology

A Paranormal Romance collection

Blood's Fury by C.M. Owens
Eternal Vows by Chrissy Peebles
Awakened by Brenda K. Davies
Finding Forever by Melisa Hamling
Rae of Hope by W.J. May

My Rating: ★ — So mainly I picked up this collection for a list of reasons...

1. It was free. Can't argue with the price.
2. It had Brenda K. Davies in it and I really enjoyed her Road to Hell series.
3. It also had C.M. Owens contributing and although I've never read anything from her, I've heard great things and thought this would be my chance to give her a shot.

So what happened?

The first book was by Owens and it was so ridiculous that I couldn't even finish it. I'm not a fan of single perspective stories. They try my patience because not every author can give me what I need from one view. The other main character may fall flat. Side characters may seem irritating and one-dimensional. And what if I don't like the voice I'm reading from? I'm just stuck with this person for a bunch of pages until the end?

That's what happened. I couldn't stand the heroine and she lacked the ingenuity to properly capture the nuances of the other characters. And there were so many other seemingly interesting characters to be found. Unfortunately, that could all be down to my imagination because the words just weren't there.

The writing was annoying. The heroine was annoying. And so the entire book became annoying. I didn't finish it and have no plans to do so in the future.

The End.

Waking the Dragon by Juliette Cross

Paranormal Romance

The Gladium Province is on the verge of civil unrest as humans and Morgons, the dragon-hybrid race, clash once more. But amid disorder can also arise passion.

When the bodies of three human women are discovered in Morgon territory—with the DNA of several Morgon men on the victims—it’s just a matter of time before civil unrest hits the Province. But for ambitious reporter Moira Cade, it’s more than just a story, and it may mean risking her own life.

Descending into the dark underworld of Morgon society, Moira is paired with Kol Moonring, Captain of the Morgon Guard, for her protection. Fiercely independent, Moira bristles at his dominance, and defies his will at every turn. Yet resistance proves futile when passion flares between them, awakening powerful emotions within both, body and soul. But as the killings continue, can their fiery newfound bond survive an even greater evil—one that threatens all of humanity, Morgonkind, and Moira’s very soul?

My Rating: ★ — I freaking love Juliette Cross. She's written some my favorite books EVER!
This just wasn't one of them.
It's the single POV. I really hate those.
It's the manufactured tension between the heroine and the hero that didn't feel real to me.

It's just one book. That didn't work for me. I'm not gonna love everything, right?
I'll still be reading everything from this author.

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.18

December 19, 2023

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

Let me know if you've read any of these or plan to. I'd love to know your thoughts :)

Forever Kind of Guy by Khelsey Jackson

Gretchen Elliot wasn’t looking for love, she’d had enough of ‘love’ to last her a life time. All she wanted was a little fun and a good time, and she’d found it in one passionate night with Claus. Now with her divorce about to be final, Gretchen can’t help but think back to that amazing night with that amazing man. Too bad they’d promised never to contact each other again.

Stefan Romano never imagined that he would meet the woman who’d been haunting his dreams again, let alone arrest her for car theft. Now he can’t wait to get her beneath the sheets again. He just hopes he can keep her there this time, while fooling himself into believing he’s not a forever kind of guy.

Can two people not looking for love, avoid falling for each other and keep things on a no strings attached level? Gretchen and Stefan believe they can…

My Rating: ★★ — I read this book based on the sexy beast on the cover. Yes, I'm a bit of a cover whore. If you don't want a bite out of him then something's wrong with you lol. Unfortunately the story didn't live up to his hotness. Yes there were grammatical, spelling and punctuation errors but that wasn't my problem. The story was so fast and there was absolutely no conflict resolution that I couldn't connect with the story or the characters. There was some meat there but it needed to cook longer.

contemporary romance

Obsessed with Him Boxed Set by Hannah Ford


I wanted to screw her from the moment I saw her.
I wanted to take her curvy body and full lips, wanted to pull her hair and bend her over and take what was mine.
I didn’t mind helping a damsel in distress, but she was going to have to give me something in return.
I didn’t want to shatter her heart. But she was just too damn tempting, with her soft skin, her long blond hair, her tight little…
She claims she hates me, but her body tells a different story.
I’ll just have to show her how good a bad boy can be.


I hated him from the moment I saw him.
I hated his dark brooding eyes, his smartass mouth, and that cocky grin that always made it seem like he was in on some private joke I knew nothing about.
I hated his need to control me, his bossy attitude, his dominating stare, the way he could make women drop their panties just by looking at them.
But I was in deep trouble.
I had no family, no money, no one to save me.
So when he offered me a job and a place to stay, I had no choice but to say yes.
Now I’m around him all the time, and I can’t stop thinking about his rough hands on my bare skin, his kiss on my lips, my neck, my…
I’m too smart to think I’m the one who can convince him to change. Guys like him never change.
I know he’s going to break my heart into a million pieces. The problem is, I’m powerless to stop it.

My Rating: ★★ — I honestly thought I would like this series more because I have enjoyed other books by Hannah Ford, but I didn't. I couldn't connect with either Colt or Olivia. I tried and tried but it proved to be an impossible task. There was a lot of potential for a brilliant story, but it seemed pretty rushed to me. Olivia was a cutter but aside from her slicing and dicing herself, then using sex with Colt as a substitute, there wasn't much else to that part. To be honest, she wasn't a likeable character. She was a fan of biting the hand that feeds you and looking a gift horse in the mouth. Colt was forced to be involved with drugs and prostitution but other than a few track marks and an interrupted fellatio session, nothing else was really mentioned. The one action scene wasn't even intense. I'm sorry, but I was disappointed in this series and found it a lackluster product of Ms. Ford's great skill.

contemporary romance

His Naughty Maid by L.M. Roberts

Axel Hart is the big time CEO/Founder of Hart's Inc. He’s in the business to get people off. Literally. He owns one of the top sex toy companies in the world. He’s all of six foot and he puts the HO in Hottie. He's labeled as a wham, bam, thank ya ma'am kind of guy. Most would call him Mr. Ice, or my favorite Mr. Iron Buns. He has all the money in the world, yet no one to share it with. At the moment he's branching out with his new line, "Get Down and Dirty with Axel." Needing a spokesperson/model to head his line up, he is then informed of a stripper in the Miami area, Kandy Kane.

When Kandace Kross comes to work at his home in the outskirts of Miami as a house maid, he can’t help but be drawn to her. There's just something about her he can’t peg, she has a certain quality that begins to melt his icy heart. Looks however can be deceiving. She isn't just any girl, she is the Kandy Kane. One of the best Stripper's in Miami and she works at Club Inferno. She likes to keep her facade Kandy Kane a secret, reasons unknown. No one can put two and two together when it comes to Kandace and Kandy. She keeps both lives completely separate and for good reason.

Going through trials at work to get to see Kandy Kane, Axel decides to have a little fun with Kandace in the process. Which could only lead to one thing, and who knows how far their willing to go to get what they want.

My Rating: ★★ — This book had a lot of potential but...

I got sucked in by the blurb and the book did not meet my expectations. At all.

Editing was all over the place. Contradictory facts. Zigzag of plot. Bits and pieces of steam. I think the author had a great idea for the story but lacked follow thru. In my humble opinion.

contemporary romance

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.17

December 05, 2023

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

Let me know if you've read any of these or plan to. I'd love to know your thoughts :)

Forbidden to Touch by J.C. Harroway

Within thirty seconds of meeting Reid Faulkner again, I’m reminded of exactly why I had a crush on him for so many years. That confidence, that effortless control, that thigh-clenching hotness… Only, this time I’m not little Blair Cameron, sexually frustrated teenager. No, now I am an adult woman reliving every filthy fantasy I’ve ever had about him…

His dark, sexy stare is filled with naughty promises. Promises of sex. Great sex.

But I’m here to work for him. I have a contract, and I won’t let any man—no matter how delicious—underestimate me again. So I am proposing a second contract. An unofficial one, where we explore my every desire. It’s the perfect no-strings arrangement—all sex, no emotions. The only problem is that I made a concession: to play by his rules.

Now we’ve crossed that line and tasted the forbidden. It started with only a touch. But will a man who controls everything protect his heart at all costs…even if it means breaking mine?

My Rating: ★ — I don't think I was in the right head space to attempt this one. I wasn't able to connect with either of the characters or the plot. Maybe I'll try again some day because I've loved other books from this author.

dual pov, contemporary romance

His Dark Game by CD Reiss

That’s all Adam Steinbeck demands of his wife.
Thirty days in a remote cottage, doing everything he commands. After that, he’ll sign her divorce papers and give her complete ownership of their company.
That’s how long he has to rediscover the man he once was. The Dominant Master he hid when he fell in love with her five years before.
She wants the business they built badly enough to go to the cottage for a month. Cut off ties to the world and do his bidding. She can submit to him with her body, but her heart will never yield.
She thinks this is his pathetic attempt to repair their marriage.
She’s wrong.

My Rating: ★ — I'm taking a break from this book. After seeing so many of my fellow readers rate this duet so highly, I thought for sure it would be something I'd love. And it's CD Reiss! Her writing is always incredible. But... I was bored. I don't even know why but I found I didn't care about the characters, their falling apart marriage, their history or their future, their nothing. How could this be???

Ah well, I look forward to reading more from the author. One story that wasn't for me won't stop me from being a huge fan of hers.

dual pov, contemporary romance

Perfect Sense by Amanda Cowen

He's gorgeous.

He's reckless.

And he's every woman's dirty fantasy in the state of California.., except one... Quinn Ashby.

Recent graduate of Penn and top of her class, Quinn is whip smart, ambitious and interning as the new marketing coordinator for the Bexley Bruisers American Hockey League team. The last thing she needs is to waste her time on guys…especially one as lethal to her focus as Cash Brooks.

But once the bad boy hockey star tempts her into his world, threatening her professional future, she’s forced to decide whether to let him into her heart…or to leave him behind forever.

My Rating: ★★1/2 — The book was full of drama, which at least helped to keep things interesting.

I couldn't connect with either of the main characters. Quinn was supposed to be depicted as a good girl, a daddy-pleaser, but to me, she came off as weak, judgmental and condescending. Cash was what the stereotypical star athlete would be. Narcissistic, arrogant, inconsiderate, alpha, and promiscuous.

The two of them together made no sense. How they even hooked up is still a mystery to me. How does one give oneself to a guy who constantly flaunts his conquests, much less fall in love with hiim??? I was baffled while reading this entire story.

The book's ending was left unfinished in anticipation of the second book of the series, Perfect Love, which is slated to come out in 2017. I'll be reading that because I just have to know how the author is going to redeem her characters.

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.16

November 14, 2023

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

Let me know if you've read any of these or plan to. I'd love to know your thoughts :)

The Billionaire's Trust (Covington Billionaires #1) by Erin Swann


The women in my life are all temporary. Things are simple. Charm her, enjoy her, discard her, and repeat. Once she hears my family name her focus is on the size of my wallet and she can't be trusted.
Until Lauren shows up at my doorstep one night and I am suddenly in charge of the family company. I need to save the family legacy and ten thousand jobs. I can't do it without her. She's beautiful, sassy, brilliant, and brutally honest. She can't stand me.
I need her. In my bed, in my life, as my wife. Everything's going according to plan . . . Until, she disappears.


I fell for him as soon as I saw him last week, all of him, the full package.
Until, he sent me back to his condo to get rid of the girl--the naked one in his bed. He didn't even know her name.
Today he's the new CEO, and he's screwing up. Royally. I told him what I thought of him.
Now, he won't take no for an answer. When he makes a fairy tale proposal in front of hundreds, I can't say no. Together we have a plan to save the company.
But he's keeping secrets, and I uncover the worst one.

My Rating: ★ — I tried.
I really did.
But I vowed to myself that I will no longer torture my mind with stories that don't appeal to me.
No more pushing through, gritting my teeth to the end.
If I don't like it by the middle, it's time to give up.
But I tried.
I want to make that clear.
However, as much as I enjoyed the hero... the author did an incredible job with his character... the heroine belonged in the crapper. She suffered from foot-in-mouth syndrome and did nothing to fix that. She made insane assumptions, expected fidelity and 100% disclosure from someone she wasn't even dating. Yeah, it was clear he was interested, but they weren't together. What he does or doesn't do isn't your business and you have no right to be mad at him for it. On top of that, her attitude was atrocious. To Her Damn Boss! Hated this chick SO MUCH!! Her apologies for her misconceptions and her bias were lackluster and if it were me, if I were the hero, she wouldn't be getting not one more iota of my attention. As the reader, I can say 'good day'.

So I'm done.

The Billionaire's Whim boxset by Bella Forbes

Twenty-three year old Lillian Jones can’t seem to stay employed; she always lets her temper get the better of her. Her life is a mess; her debts are piling up, she’s about to be evicted, and she’s desperate for a job. Then she gets one last a job as a personal assistant for sexy billionaire Trent Blackwell. Her independent spirit recoils at the idea of working for such a demanding, controlling man, but something inside of her melts at his command. She promises herself that she’ll do everything she can to hold on to this job, no matter what. After his father’s death, Trent Blackwell finds himself in charge of Blackwell Enterprises at the age of 32. A man of confidence, he gets what he wants, when he wants it. And the second Lillian told him off during her interview, he knew he wanted her. He’s determined to take her in hand and teach her some respect, and he knows that’s what she secretly craves. As he brings her to a new level of sexuality, they dive into a world of temptation, desire, and broken boundaries. But a scheming ex and some suspicious activity within the company mean that Trent and Lillian will need to work together if they are to save the company, as well as their lives.

My Rating: ★★1/5 — Although I didn't love this series, I didn't hate it either. It only had a few errors and it was written very well. I liked both Lillian and Trent, just not together. The idea that this was a "love" story or romance is absurd. It would be more believable if the first sex scene didn't involve the H and his ex, Melanie. That scene was hot. Anything that came after that was a joke. He was more passionate, more lustful, more taken, and more out of control in that scene than any other. Dude performed cunnilingus on Melanie and said she was delicious. I never read anywhere in this book anything close to that in his feelings towards Lillian. The author then tried to save the story by making Trent think of Lillian while he was with Melanie, but unfortunately that didn't work. Because before he thought of Lillian he was passionate, even loving and tender, but then he turned cruel and animalistic. Punishing. Wth?! Then when it's done he regrets the act. PLEASE!! Sorry, I just don't believe it. And that's why I couldn't rate this any higher. He treated Lillian like garbage. Absolute filth. And I'm supposed to believe in their love?! Heck no. Not happening. And the ending was ridiculous. The story wasn't saved at all!!

Stalked by Love by Eva Winters

A Deadly Obsession

Her ~ Scorned by the one person who was supposed to love me, my mother, I made up my mind long ago that love was for the weak and it was just something I didn’t need nor desire. But, in time, what was in my mind was soon overridden by the desires of my heart.

One phone call changed everything. . .

Now, I crave a man I’ve never met. He was only meant to be, part of my job, just another voice over the phone. Could it be this voice belongs to the man I need? But, is there a difference between falling in love with him and learning to trust him?

I wonder?

Him ~ Some say I’m a wounded soul and maybe I am. Yet I want her like I’ve never wanted another. Now I’m questioning my own motives as the lines begin to blur.

It was a job. Falling for her wasn’t supposed to be a part of the plan, but once desire took hold, it refused to allow me to walk away. I had to have her. I had to protect her, even if that meant I had to become someone I didn’t want to be.

Someone has their eye on her. Someone seems drawn to her like a moth to a flame. I will stop at nothing to keep her safe from them, from harm, but at what cost? When desire turns to fixation, then, obsession. Is it possible for the cause of her problems, to also be the solution?

My Rating: ★ — I don't know if it's the story or my mindset, but I can't get into the plot. None of the characters or the baseless plot they're involved in are keeping my interest. Nothing makes sense and I'm not going to continue hurting my brain trying to figure this ish out.

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.15

October 04, 2023

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

Born to be Bound by Addison Cain

Born to be Bound by Addison Cain

BLURB - Every bit as ruthless as his reputation suggests…

Shepherd ravages both Claire and her conquered city, refusing to let either slip through his fingers. He steals Claire's innocence and future by forcing a pair-bond on the rare, unwilling Omega female. Violent, calculating, and incapable of remorse, he demands his new mate's adoration. Her attention. Her body.

My Rating: ★ — You know those stories that are going so well, you're so absorbed you can't stop to do anything you must do to sustain your lifestyle... like work or clean or feed your kids... You just have to keep reading to figure out what's next?

This was one of those kinds of reads. It wasn't romantic but it was hella explicit and dirty and all shades of wrong. The idea of consent was a pipe dream, there was power exchange, there was a war-torn society, there were all shades of darkness.

And then the so-called hero did something that turned a 4 or 5-star read into something you can't even stomach continuing to read. He completely ruined the story with one action [cheating] and I don't even care what his reasons were. He did it and my time with this story is over. Will I read the rest of the series? Ummmmmmm no because I won't even bother finishing this one.

The Best Years by Elena Monroe

The Best Years by Elena Monroe

College. My one chance to escape. And I ran as far and fast as I could.
Straight into the arms of something more dangerous.
He thinks I’m a good girl. But he doesn’t know what I’m running from.
He thinks I should stay away from him. But I can’t.
I like his cruel words. And his intoxicating smile.
He’s a temptation I can’t resist.
Am I a sinner or saint?

College. Second year.
There are bad decisions at every turn.
Including the new freshman, Layla.
Temptations I can’t fight. Shackles I can’t escape.
I’m only comfortable with the cruelty that slips from my lips.
Her innocent charm isn’t going to polish away my bad reputation.
This wasn’t going to end well.

We all have secrets. What’s your sin?

My Rating: ★ — It's probably the case of "it's me, not you". I wasn't able to get past the way it was written or the discrepancies that were apparent from the start. I didn't like any of the characters and couldn't care less about what was happening in their lives.

Swallow Me Whole by Gemma James

Swallow Me Whole by Gemma James

Sadie Sawyer wants to learn how to blow a guy.

She’s my sister’s best friend.
The girl I’ve known since grade school.
The girl I’ve always considered off-limits.

She’s the girl that crawled under a table in a bar one night and changed everything between us. Now the brain in my pants is more than willing to step up. The rules are simple.

No kissing.
No screwing.
No falling in love.

But the more I let her use my body in the name of experimentation, the more I know being friends isn’t enough. Is it too much to want it all with her?

The taste of her lips.
The sweetness of her innocence.
The chance to earn her love.

I might have a real shot with her…if her douchebag ex and my past don’t ruin everything.

My Rating: ★ — What. The. Ever. Loving. HECK!!

The title and blurb suggested a dirty little friends to lovers romance I would fall in huge love with. I've read from Gemma James before and each time was a blast. I figured this would be too. And... nope. The heroine was a complete waste of time and I couldn't continue to torture myself with her story.

I'm almost twenty-three-fucking-years old -- the same as Ash and Mandy, who are light-years ahead of me when it comes to sex. But me? I must be the last virgin from our graduating class. How pathetic is that?

Wanna know what's pathetic?
- Thinking there's an age limit on losing your virginity
- Finding your boyfriend getting a bj from someone else (because you never gave him one -- boo hoo) and going out, getting drunk, and giving a bj to one of your best friends for kicks
- Being consumed with the idea of sexuality vs. worth instead of finding some confidence in yourself so people don't walk all over you

I had so many issues with this book. Will I still try Gemma James again? Probably. Hating one story can't erase the pleasure I found in others.

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.14

August 23, 2023

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

Breakdown by Aly Zigada

My Rating - ★

BLURB - An unforgettably searing and unapologetically honest romance about enemies, lovers, and the music that binds them.

Atticus Creed saved my life. His voice talked me down. His lyrics stripped me bare. His tattoos against my hidden scars made me feel beautiful. In turn, I wrecked him with a love that exposed his soul and lies that called to his vilest demons.

We were innocent then.

I’m not a broken girl anymore. Now I’m the woman who reigns over the corrupt record label he abandoned, and he’s a tortured musician who wants retribution as viciously as I want another taste of his lips. Inevitably, he will crash in my arms, and I will burn in his.

Depravity is all we know. It’s in the air we breathe, it’s in our sweat, it’s the music we make.

That cover? Instant horny vibes.
The blurb? Color me intrigued.
The abundance of 5-star reviews? Reading this should be a no-brainer.

And yet...
I didn't like it. I couldn't get past Imogen's character. She obliterated any hope I had within the first chapter. Rather than continue to read and fall even further into feelings of disgust and hate, I'll pass the gauntlet to someone else. I'm thrilled that others read and loved this book. I have a feeling it's more of a 'me' thing instead of anything against the story.

To anyone interested in reading this book... Enjoy and best wishes! 🖤🖤

Boy Toy Auction by C.A. Harms

My Rating - ★

What was meant to be a fun evening to benefit charity, suddenly became so much more…

They were both volunteered into attending the Boy Toy Auction.
One as a contestant.
One as an attendee.

Emerson lost an internal battle the moment Nicholas stepped onto the stage.

As soon as he started moving his hips to the rhythm of the music, she was captivated. Suddenly, the timid girl became a warrior as she fought to have the highest bid.

There was no way she was leaving without him at her side.

From the moment Nic saw her, Emerson became his focal point.
The beautiful woman in the silver dress.
The one that held his stare.
He needed her to win.
He needed her.

He’d make sure this was the best money she’d ever spend.
Or the worst…depends on how you look at it.

Because sometimes, it doesn’t matter what you want, life has a way of throwing you a curve ball that you aren’t prepared for…

Emerson was way too much of a doormat... for her dad of all people... for me to continue. Nicholas was amazing. He was patient and understanding and loving and hot and sweet and sexy and... and... and Emerson kept pushing him away because he deserved better. You're damn right he did!

Fighting Destiny by Amelia Hutchins

My Rating - ★

Have you ever heard of the old Celtic legends of the Fae—beautiful, magical, and deadly creatures that have a love of messing with humans just for kicks and giggles?

Welcome to my world.

What started out as a strange assignment, led to one of the most gruesome murder mysteries of our times. My friends and I are set and determined to find out who is killing off Fae and Witches alike.

Couple of problems in the way – I hate the Fae and the Prince of the Dark Fae is bound and determined that I work for him. He’s a rude, overbearing egotistical ass with a compulsive need to possess, dominate and control me. Oh—did I mention that he is absolutely sex-on-a-stick gorgeous and he makes me feel things that I never ever wanted to feel for a Fae... every time he touches me or looks at me with those dangerous golden eyes he seems to pull me further in under his spell, despite my better judgment.

My friends and I can’t trust anyone and nothing is as it seems on the surface—not even me.

Damn. I really wanted to like this one. It seemed to be right up my alley, but I couldn't get into it. I didn't care for the heroine or her voice and it sort of lost me from there. I've heard great things about this story and it's been recommended time and time again, so I'm chalking it up to it being a 'me' problem rather than a problem with the book.

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.13

June 28, 2023

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

The Disappearance of Catherine Brodie by Grace Harper

My Rating - ★
Genre - Contemporary New Adult Romance

BLURB - Catherine Brodie has a happy life in Brighton, she has friends, a secret boyfriend and almost at the end of her law degree. However, everything changes when she reaches her twentieth birthday. She tells a white lie to get out of a family dinner to celebrate her birthday and sneaks off to a party. The repercussions upend her secure and stable life. Two weeks later, she attends the funeral of her brother and parents. Each birthday following sends Catherine into turmoil with more heartache and misery. There are those that wish her harm. Alexander Devlin was there the night of her birthday and by coincidence, he crosses paths with her every year. Catherine dismisses the coincidence, but her best friend Tara Adkins is convinced fate is throwing them together. The first novel of a new quartet that tells the story of Catherine Brodie and her struggle to come to terms with what she did that had far-reaching consequences. It is an epic tale of love, passion, and revenge. Devastated with her loss, Catherine carves out a new life and starting her own business. The group of friends she picks up along the way helps her hide from those who wish her harm. It doesn't take long for her harasser to find her and make her life a misery once more. The question is, will Alexander Devlin be there in time to save her?

Where do I even start?
The heroine was a mess. She was 20, living at home, and I'm guessing the story was supposed to have this 'coming of age' feel about it, but I didn't get any of that. All I got was an immature person who tried to act grown up and kept reverting to childhood. It was weird and I couldn't, in good conscience, continue. Nothing about this book appealed to me and I'm still a little upset by the many times it was recommended to me! It was so bad (for me) that I couldn't even give the hero or the romance a chance.

His Virgin by Vivian Wood

My Rating - ★
Genre - Contemporary Romance

BLURB - Whatever she wants, I want it ten times harder.
My name is Elijah Scott, and I’m going to be your next president. I’m a rich, ripped, and ready to conquer the campaign trail. When it comes to women, I’m not looking for anything serious. Not now, not ever.
Until I see Meredith.
The sweet little blonde with curves in all the right places. One look into those beautiful blue eyes, and I can’t help imagining how her hips would fit just right in my hands.
I’ll never forget the secret she whispers in my ear: she’s never been with anyone before. She’s a temptation I can’t resist.
She’s fresh out of college, just twenty-two years old and on the campaign trail with me… as a reporter. One leak exposed by Meredith, and my entire future goes up in flames.
As my secrets pile up, I can’t stop fantasizing about Meredith. She’s dangerous, a risk I can’t afford… but her taste, her voice moaning my name over and over… I can’t stop. Worse, I don’t want to watch her walk away.

You'd read that blurb and think hot and sexy too, right? Wrong!
Not hot. Not sexy. Not good. Not worth it.
Which sounds bad, but honest.
It was recommended on both Goodreads and Amazon, so I thought I'd try it.
My bad.

Nero by Sarah Brianne

My Rating - ★
Genre - Contemporary Mafia Romance

BLURB - Nero is the king of Legacy Prep, living a life of power.
Elle is the school’s punching bag, living a life of fear.
The only good girls Nero knows jump in his bed when he tells them to.
The closest Elle has come to a bad boy like him is in the cafeteria line.
The mob boss gave him orders to find out what she knows.
Her mouth is sealed.

Hey! Everyone who told me that because I love mafia romance, I'll love this series...

I can't unread what I've seen.

Why did this chick, Elle, do nothing to hold my attention?
She was completely flat. Aside from being bullied and protecting her friend from being bullied more, she didn't exist. She had no personality, no character, no depth. And you expect me to punish myself with more of this?

It was bad enough that this story is set in high school. It was even worse that the trope was so familiar to me (like I haven't read tons of stories with the EXACT same set up). But the fact that Elle was the primary storyteller...

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.12

June 13, 2023

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

Vow of Revenge by P. Rayne

My Rating - ★
Genre/Trope - New Adult Contemporary Romance / arranged marriage
POV - Dual
Length - 358 pages

BLURB: Nothing ruins a perfect day like your dead fiancé showing up in the middle of your first class.

Mirabella La Rosa
When my father arranged for me to marry the next in line to lead the Costa crime family, I swore I’d do anything to escape that fate. I have way more to offer my family than being some man’s arm candy, producing heirs, and making appearances at weddings and baptisms.
Marcelo Costa might be my fiancé, but he’ll never be my husband.
Somehow, I get lucky because he and his father are killed in a car bombing. Not only do I not have to go from being a mafia princess to a mafia wife, but now I can attend college at the Sicuro Academy—an affluent private college created for mafia children like me.
I’m so excited. I’ve moved into my dorm room with my best friend, put on the uniform and am ready to learn. But all my plans come to a screeching halt when he shows up on campus alive and well, seeking revenge on those that crossed him.

Marcelo Costa
The look of shock on my fiancée’s face when I walk into the classroom at the Sicuro Academy gives me more pleasure than it should.
Mirabella made it clear she didn’t want to marry me, and she’s a problem to be dealt with for sure. But now, she’s the smaller of my two problems.
The only reason I’m at the Sicuro Academy is because my investigation into the bomb that killed my father and almost took me out has led me here.
So I’ll allow Mirabella to stay at the academy while I track down my father’s murderer, but once I’ve brought that person to my own particular brand of justice I’ll remove her from campus and make her my wife.
And no amount of pleading on her part will change my mind.

I’m sorry Jess, but I quickly realized that this book isn’t for me. I loved the reviews I found for this book and grabbed it up real quick, but nah. It ain’t for me. The characters are too young, too entitled, too too too too much.

The Selkie Wife by Andie Beckham

My Rating - ★★
Genre/Trope - Paranormal Romance / instalove
POV - Dual
Length - 121 pages

BLURB: From the deep, she's scented him: her perfect match.

On his bleakest night, Arran, a lighthouse keeper's son, encounters a beautiful stranger with a mysterious, glossy coat. Struck by her alluring magic and feral kinship with the ocean, Arran's trepidatiously-balanced life quickly descends into dreamy, passionate chaos.

One thing haunts him: he can't let his violent father find her.

As Arran's heart drifts toward the Selkie like a beacon, he learns the wild seal woman has plans of her own. Her startling proposition to give him a child is only the beginning. The selkie's powerful allure unlocks Arran's secret that could change everything.

I’m still unsure how I feel about this story. While I liked the concept of the selkie female finding her mate on land, I found it hard to engage with this book because of the writing style. I’m not a fan of reading in the present tense, so it kept throwing me off. However, I enjoyed the way this author captured these characters. Rose’s speech patterns and mannerisms were super cute and Arran’s naivete and vulnerability made him incredibly endearing.

Contempt by A. Zavarelli

My Rating - ★★
Genre/Trope - Contemporary Romance / amnesia + second chance
POV - Dual
Length - 554 pages

BLURB: Before the world knew me as a rock god, I was just the angry boy who stole her heart.

She was a good girl.

The forbidden fruit I wasn’t meant to taste.

Our stars were crossed, and fate had doomed us from the start.

She was promised to someone else.

I had her secret smiles.

Moments stolen in dark corners.

But I couldn’t have her future.

Destiny tore us apart, and all that remained was the ghost of her memory.

When she died, I did too.

But when I catch a glimpse of her five years later, alive and well, that love turns to hate as the bitter truth emerges.

She left me.

She lied.

And now, I’m going to make her pay.

I love the concept of this book. I can get behind a good amnesia/revenge plot. But I couldn’t really get behind the way this story was told. There were too many flashbacks and not enough answers. Even in the end, I’m still wondering why it was told this way. It didn’t make it more mysterious. It made it more annoying. Every time there was a flashback, I got irritated. Why? Because just when I thought the glimpse into the past would give me SOME FREAKING ANSWERS, I got nothing. What was the point???

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.11

April 18, 2023

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

He Wants It All by Marilena Barbagallo ~ DNF

Genre - Contemporary Romance / enemies to lovers
POV - Dual
Length - 399 pages

Krum Botev has never had anything in life apart from himself. He knows only what he has been taught. Hard, selfish, insensitive, but faithful to the Father, the one who raised and educated him according to the values of the secret society he is part of. No one has ever succeeded in knocking down his armor. No one can touch him outside or inside; no-one except her, who is part of that past Krum cannot forget. Ambra Livori, a beautiful and wealthy heiress, has always had everything. But nightmares don’t give her a break. They go on showing her the man who ruined her life when she was only sixteen. The memory of him, over time, has become a perverse feeling she cannot tolerate. Just when Ambra decides to learn how to control her emotions, she receives a strange call. Her origins will be questioned and the past will become a terrible present from which she won’t be able to escape. Fighting for herself will be the only solution. What links Ambra and Krum? But most of all, can two different souls be able to touch each other outside and inside? A secret organization, an uncontrollable passion, a man and a woman destined to clash.

Honestly, the writing was a bit all over the place and I think that's because this was translated from Italian. I really wish I could read it in the original language. I believe a lot of what the author was trying to convey was lost in translation. The concept of this story is so intriguing that I wish I could have continued.

Hammered by Jasinda Wilder ~ DNF

Genre - Contemporary Romance / a bit of forced proximity
POV - Heroine 1st person
Length - 342 pages

Dad Bod Contracting—for ALL your domestic contracting needs. Have a leaky faucet or clogged disposal? Need a new patio with intricate brickpaving designs? Want your garage transformed into a yoga studio? Dad Bod Contracting has you COVERED. Our clean, well-mannered, and friendly professionals pride themselves on attention to detail. Every job comes with a 100% customer SATISFACTION guarantee. No job is too small. Hand us your “honey-do” list and we’ll get it done, and we’ll look good doing it! A good job well done is one phone call away, so call Dad Bod Contracting today! It started with a window that was jammed shut. Pretty simple, right? All I wanted was to open the windows while I tidied the house. I’d been after my no-good husband to do it for months, but he never did. And then he shacked up with his secretary, leaving me with a pile of bills, husband-free for the first time in ten years, and with a house that was falling apart. The ad popped up on the side of my social media feed—a local contracting agency willing to do pretty much anything. Since I don’t really know a screwdriver from a ratchet, I gave them a call. And let me tell you, the ad was NOT lying. Jesse O’Neill can do it ALL…and looks amazing doing it. He fixed my window, so I called him back to fix the sagging, splintery front steps. Which led to him fixing my kitchen sink. And then he recarpeted my stairs. And then fixed the squeak in my bed. He was supposed to fix my house, not my rusty, sputtering libido. And certainly not my broken heart.

You know those books you REALLY wanna like? Hammered was one of those books. It should have checked many of my boxes, but it somehow failed to do that. It could have been the fact that it was told from only Imogen's perspective (and you know how I hate that). I was more interested in the side characters than the ones this story was about. I even liked the little I got to know of Jesse (the MMC). It just fell flat, I'm afraid. It's too bad because I know that a lot of people enjoyed the heck out of this story. I've really liked other books by this author so I'll be giving her another try.

Balls in Play Box Set by Kate Stewart ~ DNF

Genre - Contemporary Romance / sports
POV - Dual 1st person
Length - 273 pages (for Anything but Minor)

“She’s a nerd.”
“Okay, she’s a flight instructor.”
“He’s a ballplayer.”
“The best that ever was.”
“Technically, you aren’t according to MLB stats.”
“See? Total nerd. She also has no filter.”
“He’s no southern gentlemen.”
“I had one last season to prove my worth.”
“I’d never seen a game.”
“He told me he was a player.”
“She told me she was a lesbian.”
“But you fell in love with me anyway.”
“Yeah, baby, I totally did.”

I know it's a "me" problem. I've seen so many 4-and-5-star reviews for this series and I couldn't even get through book one with ease. I was infinitely bored and the heroine, Alice, annoyed me. I can't even pinpoint why she irked me, but aggravate me she did. So I'm one of the few that didn't love this supposedly laugh-out-loud novel.

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt. 10

February 12, 2023

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you.

Tap by Georgia Cates ~ 2 stars

Genre - Contemporary Romance / brother's best friend
POV - Dual 1st person

Craft beer and the sexy men who brew it.
A faceless name. That’s all she was when I agreed to play a part in deceiving her. But then the unplanned happened.
We met. And all I wanted from her was a dirty weekend... until that wasn’t enough and I longed for so much more.
Lawrence Thorn suddenly means the world to me. And that’s a problem. She’s my business partner’s sister. Forbidden fruit. Pursuing her can mean trouble for me at Lovibond Brewery. But I don’t care.
I yearn for her skin against mine. I crave her smell on my body. I want to make her laugh and then hear her moan my name. And she does for a brief moment in time.
But Lawrence wants more than I’m able to give. And it’s a damn shame because there’s no one on earth I want more than her.
An epic love.
A miserable ending.
Unless it’s not.

It wasn’t the most interesting story, but I was still reading.
I felt like Lawrence was supposed to be super likable with her hippy-ish ways.. She’s vegan people. So tired of it. Anyway, I didn’t really feel her. Nickname Lawry should have given me a clue, right?
Lucas was also hard to like. I just didn’t like any of the characters in this book.
However, I absolutely loved the epilogue. Both stars go to that ending. It almost made everything I read in this story worthwhile.

A Dark Kiss of Rapture by Sylvia Day ~ 2.5 stars

Genre - Paranormal Romance / forbidden
POV - Dual 3rd person

Of all the Fallen, Raze’s hungers are some of the darkest and most insatiable. His brazen seductions cost him his wings, leaving him soulless and immortal, the most dangerous of seducers. He has roamed the earth for eons, hunting the rogues of his kind and protecting the humans who provide him with blood and sex. He is content with his life and the transient pleasures that flow through it... until one night and one woman change everything.

Kimberly McAdams is smart, beautiful, and wealthy. She can have any man she wants, but the moment she sets eyes on the lethally stunning Raze she knows he’s the man she needs. As one searingly erotic night burns into something deeper and far more vital than either of them expected, an adversary from Raze’s past sees a chance for revenge. Twisted by hatred, she will take from Raze what was taken from her—the precious gift of love.

The absolute seduction of this story played me for a fool. What was up with the fade to black sex???
Kimberly was hard to understand. She came from a family of cops so understood the need for someone in law enforcement to keep secrets, but she’s supposedly wealthy. Where did the money come from?
Raze and his fellow fallen were interesting, however, it felt like I was dropped in the middle of a story when it came to their origins and connection.

Sol by Leslie McAdam ~ 2 stars

Genre - Contemporary Romance / brother's best friend
POV - Dual 1st person

I kissed her, then I left her. My best friend’s sister. The only girl I ever loved.
And that kiss? Gave new meaning to the words, “pinball machine.”
But the army called. No matter what, I am a man of honor. I’ll always do my duty. Even at great personal cost.
Now, four years later, I’m back. A little older. A little wiser. And unfortunately, the bearer of horrifically tragic news.
There’s no one else to do it.
I’ll go to the ends of the earth to find her.
But I don’t know what will happen after I hand her that letter.

Dani was delusional, self-centered, and way too cavalier about life. I didn’t like how she expected everyone to conform to her beliefs about life, especially when she was so vehemently opposed to conformity.
Trent was this great guy who blinded himself to obvious things. He allowed Dani to walk all over him and it was pitiful. Here was this big, strong man who allowed himself to be swallowed up by Dani and her bullshit.
A painfully boring read with bits of color.

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.9

January 22, 2023

Hello hello! I'm back with some more books that didn't really work for me, but might be winners for you. These all rated pretty well on Goodreads and Amazon, so I think, once again, that this is a ME problem more than anything wrong with the actual books.

Dec the Holls by Jasinda Wilder Cuff Me by London Hale

Genre - Contemporary Novella
Release - December 19, 2014
Genre - Contemporary Novella
Release - July 11, 2017

A week before Christmas, and all through office not a soul is stirring, not even a mouse. Holly is working overtime, cold and lonely and broke. Across the hall, Declan is lonely too, and thinking this Christmas is going to be a joke. Then one blustery night Holly’s car won’t start and Declan is there to help with a little love in his heart. From the moment Lola moved into my apartment building, I’ve wanted her. She’s too sweet and seemingly innocent, but it doesn’t stop me from lusting after her. There’s something about the hours she keeps, though. Something about the life she leads that has warning bells going off in my cop brain. Yet I can’t stay away. Not when she needs my help. Not when she needs me. Even if being with her could cost me my future.

My Rating - 2 stars

I found that I didn’t care for this book. The story didn’t really have a chance to grab me and I was really hoping it would. I could see myself probably liking both Dec and Holly if given more time.
My Rating - 2 stars

I’ve actually really enjoyed other books from this author… just not this one. The heroine, who believed that the only job she was qualified for was as an escort… she really tried my nerves. From there, I just didn’t care whether or not she got a happily ever after with the hero. Honestly, I didn’t even know why he liked her so much.

Pitch Black by Elise Noble When Gargoyles Rise by Ashley C. Harris

Genre - Suspense/Mystery
Release - December 1, 2015
Genre - YA Paranormal Romance
Release - September 5, 2017

After the owner of a security company is murdered, his sharp-edged wife goes on the run. Forced to abandon everything she holds dear - her home, her friends, her job in special ops - she builds a new life for herself in England. As Ashlyn Hale, she meets Luke, a handsome local who makes her realise just how lonely she is.

Yet, even in the sleepy village of Lower Foxford, the dark side of life dogs Diamond’s trail when the unthinkable strikes. Forced out of hiding, she races against time to save those she cares about. But is it too little, too late?
When Rose was born in the year 1544, she and the other gargoyles were a beautiful race of humans with dragon's wings. Created by magic, the gargoyles were able to do and take whatever they wanted... Until the vampires came, and with them, they brought a curse.

Almost five hundred years later, Rose awakens from stone in Washington DC, to a world that's very much changed. The kingdom of the gargoyles is no more; instead, the same group of blood suckers that cursed Rose's family now rule a hierarchy of shades and shadows.

Desperate to awaken her loved ones and break the spell, Rose learns she must convince Sean Noble, a human, to fall in love with her. Something that should have been easy... if he and Rose weren't only seventeen, and required to attend school.

Sean and his high school girlfriend dislike Rose as much as they do homework. And to make things worse, the handsome vampire prince, Adamus, who betrayed Rose in the year 1556, he and his bad boy brother have surfaced...

Rose, before graduation, must find a way to keep her identity secret from Adamus, not let him get too close, and trick Sean into falling in love. Easy if you have wings, right? Not so much.

My Rating - DNF

The story sounds intriguing, but I’m not a fan of single perspectives and I could feel myself getting bored with just the one voice.
My Rating - DNF

I just can’t. No.

Beast by Measha Stone Passion & Venom by Shanora Williams

Genre - Contemporary Romance Retelling
Release - February 27, 2018
Genre - Dark Romance
Release - September 12, 2016

Wouldn't you give up everything for the one you love?

When Ellie's father is taken by a group of thugs planning to take his life in exchange for his debts, it’s no surprise she goes running straight into the beast’s lair. After all, Ellie Stevens has been her father’s keeper for as long as she can remember.

However, Ashland Titon isn’t a man of mercy. If you owe, you pay. End of story. His unrelenting control has built his empire, and he’s not going to give over that power now. But when Ellie charges into his life with her demands and possibilities of sweet surrender, her offer proves too tempting to pass up.

Yet there’s more at play here than just working off a debt. There are secrets buried in the shadows, and dangerous desires to be explored. While the two of them dance to an erotic beat, outside forces threaten Ashland's empire and Ellie must decide where her heart truly lies - and what she's truly willing to risk for love.
Imagine this:
Your husband is murdered on your wedding day.
Your gown is soiled in his blood.
You are taken hostage...
Treated like a caged animal.
The man behind your husband's murder is revealed.
His name is Draco Molina.
Draco has power. Respect. Wealth.
He is a savage beast of a man - dominant in every way.
Soon after, he makes you an offer that you can't refuse.
All you have do is submit to him, and in return you won't be punished.
He will reward you handsomely.
But if you disobey, you must be prepared to face the consequences.
What do you do when the most wanted man in the world . . . wants you?

My Rating - DNF

The heroine fell into every bad trap a heroine could fall into. And while I like retellings and can see why she was prone to pitfalls, I found it hard to care.
My Rating - DNF

I was set to love this story. I was warned that it got really dark and from what I’ve read, it was heading there. Gia’s husband is murdered right in front of her on their wedding day. And then she’s kidnapped, beaten and humiliated. So far, so good. Then Gia’s thoughts about her fellow captive, whose arms have been amputated via torture, made her an unsympathetic heroine and I struggled to continue.

Yes, he has been helpful at times, but he is a complete jackass. It’s no wonder he’s here–or why those men did that to him. He has a smart mouth. I’m sure he doesn’t control anything he says.

I still tried, but then I read this:

Those thin, dark brown eyes are…

How are the eyes thin? And then this type of phrasing kept happening and I gave up.

Books That Didn't Make the Cut Pt.8

January 07, 2023

I'm back with three more books that just didn't work for me, but might be right up your alley. If you've read any of these or plan to, please think about letting me know what you thought in the comments below!

Queen of Diamonds by Natalie Bennett

Genre - Mafia Romance

His enemy. His partner. His whore.
His mind games. Her morals.

The road to hell...
Well, there is no road to hell.
I already live there.

I was forced to partake in a rigged game of seduction, manipulation, and murder.

Mateo Remmington is my formidable opponent.

He makes the devil look like a saint.

He’s immoral.
He's ruthless.
He's a goddamn king.

King of a clandestine empire who sits on a throne covered in innocents’ blood.

I’ve become his obsession.
He’s becoming my deadly addiction.

And if I make one wrong move he’ll end my life.

My Review: DNF

I couldn't get into this story. I wasn't sure if it was supposed to be dark or mysterious or whatever. I was lost before the story even really started. And now I'm sad because I have the entire series SIGNED on my bookshelves. I wish I could have dived in and loved it.

Ghosted by J.M. Darhower

Genre - Contemporary Second Chance Romance

He's a troubled young actor, Hollywood's newest heartthrob, struggling with fame as the star of the latest superhero franchise. Through scandal after scandal, addiction on top of addiction, a flurry of paparazzi hunt him as he fights to conquer his demons.

She's a single mother, assistant manager at a grocery store, existing in monotony with her five-year-old daughter. Every day when she goes to work, lurid tabloids surround her, the face of a notorious bad boy haunting her from their covers.

A man and a woman, living vastly different lives, but that wasn't always the case. Once, they were just a boy and a girl who bonded over comic books and fell in love unexpectedly.

When Kennedy Garfield met Jonathan Cunningham back in high school, she knew he had all the makings of a tragic hero. With stars in his eyes, and her heart on her sleeve, the pair ran away together to follow their dreams.

But dreams, sometimes, turn into nightmares.

Now, years later, the only thing they share is a daughter—one who has no idea her father plays her favorite superhero. But Jonathan is desperate to make amends, and at the top of his list is the woman who gave up everything for him and the little girl he hasn't yet met.

My Review: DNF

The heroine was so wrong. And while I couldn't really connect with Jonathan, the ways in which Kennedy had him jumping through hoops so he could connect with the daughter he didn't know he had... wrong! The secret baby trope is so hard to do well and this one didn't work for me.

Down On Me by J. Kenner

Genre - Contemporary Friends-to-Lovers Romance

Tight muscles. Vibrant Ink.
Meet Mr. January. Winter’s never looked so hot…

Certified bachelor Reece Walker wants two things — to save the local bar he manages and to get Jenna Montgomery into his bed.

He has a few ideas for the bar. But Jenna... well, he’s going to have to rely on cold showers, because she’s been his best friend for years, and that’s a line he just can’t cross.

Until one wild kiss on a dark night changes everything. Now Reece is certain Jenna’s meant to be his.

And with long nights in bed, sensual caresses, and deep, lingering kisses, he sets out to thoroughly convince her that friends can be lovers, too.

My Review: 2 stars

Overall, this was a decent story. I loved the friendship that Reece, Jenna and Brent shared. Best friends for life, they knew everything there was to know about each other and supported each other in all things. And that's where my problem lies. Jenna knew Reece. She knew his hangups. So why... why when they FINALLY get together... why did she try to change him? And not only change him, but give him an ultimatum to try to force him to change?

I stopped liking Jenna after that. All of her thoughts on how to sway Reece to her side made me physically ill. If you love someone, love them. No conditions. No doubts.