Showing posts with label New Beginnings. Show all posts
Showing posts with label New Beginnings. Show all posts

Review // Tragic, Manic & Panic by JA Huss

February 17, 2023

Rook & Ronin by JA Huss

She's a blackbird sitting in a tree staring out at the world, daring the wind to come and knock her off the swaying bough.

────── ♔ ──────

Tragic by JA Huss

Tragic by JA Huss

Rook & Ronin #1
Genre - New Adult Contemporary Romance
POV - Dual 1st person
Heat - 3 out of 5
Format - ebook
Length - 280 pages

Rook Walsh is TRAGIC

Because life so far – just sucks. Some girls get parents. Rook got the foster care system. Some girls get Prince Charming. Rook got an abusive frog. Some girls get lucky…

Rook got a second chance.

And she took it. Because when fate throws you a bone – you grab it with both hands and run.

Antoine Chaput knows the minute he spies Rook in his photography studio that she’s got The Look. The dark and desperate look he must have to land the exclusive TRAGIC media contract.

Rook is paired up with top model, Ronin, and he’s everything her abusive ex-boyfriend wasn’t. Patient, gentle, happy, attentive, and sexy! He knows exactly what to do to make Rook blush for Antoine’s camera.

Rook’s luck changes in an instant and suddenly she’s the darling of the modeling world. It’s a dream job to go with a dream guy and all she has to do is look pretty and follow directions. But there’s always a price to pay – and Rook is about to get the bill.

MY REVIEW ~ 4 stars
In Tragic we meet Rook and Ronin. Rook’s a damaged girl who is more bent than broken. Running from a tragic past, she finds new hope and new beginnings with a new family. Elise is the mama bear who recognizes Rook’s pain and takes her in under her wing. Antoine is the papa bear who recognizes Rook’s beauty and offers her a chance to come out of her shell. And Ronin… well he’s the guy who’s all heart. The guy who gets her to try again. The guy who makes her feel warm, and good, and safe. The guy who makes her smile.

Based on first impressions, I decided to hold judgment on Rook. I felt like there was a lot more to her than had been revealed already. So when I get that story, I'll have my say. So far, it's Ronin who's making me keep reading. He's just so darned sweet!

Manic by JA Huss

Manic by JA Huss

Rook & Ronin #2
Genre - New Adult Contemporary Romance
POV - Dual 1st person
Heat - 3 out of 5
Format - ebook
Length - 300 pages

TRAGIC is over and Rook is ready for the future—Spencer Shrike and the STURGIS contract!

It’s three months of body art modeling! That means three months of Spencer Shrike’s paintbrush all over her body, three months in front of Antoine’s camera, and three months of twenty-four-hour filming for Spencer’s Biker Channel reality show.

Wait a minute… what reality show? Maybe she should’ve read that STURGIS contract a little closer? ;)

Sure, Rook’s bank account is overflowing, but Ronin is angry, Clare is trying to escape rehab, Antoine is a worried mess, and Elise is just trying to hold everyone together. Rook’s new family is about to fall apart before she even gets the chance to enjoy it.

Add in a mysterious man from her past, a road trip to the famous Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, and a final show in front of the entire world where all her goods are on display, and you’ve got Manic.

MY REVIEW ~ 4 stars
Manic is where all the magic happens. Spencer and Ford are both Ronin’s worst enemies… and his best friends. While Spencer is a master at body art, capturing Rook in such stunning and beautiful masterpieces, Ford is the man behind the camera. He captures all of Rook’s vulnerabilities and her strengths. And Ronin… he’s the magic, baby. He makes everything alright. And while I could have done without the back and forth between Rook and Ronin in this book, her constant doubts and push and pull, I guess it was necessary. She’s young, and despite how the author tries to capture her in ways to make her appear older, with the experience of a more mature individual, she’s still very young. Anyway, everyone helps Rook confront her recent past and it was wrapped up pretty quickly. I’m wondering if there will be any fallout in the book to come.

Panic by JA Huss

Panic by JA Huss

Rook & Ronin #3
Genre - New Adult Contemporary Romance
POV - Dual 1st person (primarily)
Heat - 3 out of 5
Format - ebook
Length - 312 pages

Rook is chasing her dream—film school and a chance at a life beyond the one she ran from six months ago. But before she can become the girl she wants to be, she must deal with the girl she left behind.

Ronin is also chasing his dream—a family of his own and a life away from erotic modeling. And he too, has a past he’s trying to forget. A past that makes Rook question everything about their life together.

Lies, secrets, and shocking truths will rock the foundation Rook and Ronin have built. Can they put the past behind them and move forward together? Or is this just another too good to be true relationship that will crash and burn in the end?

MY REVIEW ~ 4 stars
While I was really sick of Rook's back and forth, push and pull, immature thoughts, and just about everything else about her, by the end, I was her friend. She finally stood up for herself and for her person. Ronin finally got the woman he deserved. I only wish there was more to the story. The end felt very unfinished, but knowing there are other books (spinoffs), I'm looking forward to getting some closure.

I love Spencer and wouldn't mind reading more about him and Ford... that man's mind... I wouldn't pass up an opportunity to get a peek inside.

Review // Pure Requiem by Aja James

September 02, 2021

Pure Requiem by Aja James

It’s time I take ownership of my space in the world.
I don’t expect it to be significant; I know I’m not anything special.
But I’m alive.
I exist.
I want to like the real me.
I want others to like me too.
I want my tiny allotment of real estate in the universe to matter.

────── ♔ ──────

Pure Requiem by Aja James

Pure Requiem by Aja James

Pure/Dark Ones #15
Release - November 5, 2020
Genre - Paranormal Romance
Dual POV - 1st person / Ere & Tal
Heat Level - 5 out of 5 / the scenes between Tal and Ishtar were scorchers!
Format/Source - ebook purchased from Amazon
Page Count - 240
Publisher - Indie

Who he was…

The Creature was not always an “it,” a monster and tool for Medusa’s use. Once upon a time, he was a boy, and then a man. He had a name—Erebu. Twice, he sacrificed himself for love. Twice he died and was revived by his Mistress. In the process, he lost his soul and buried the painful memories where no one could find them, least of all him.

Who he is…

Now one of Medusa’s most brilliant henchmen, captured by the Pure Ones yet treated like a friend rather than a foe, the Creature is reminded of the soul he lost, the memories he’d forgotten, and the dream he used to hope for. But first, he must confront the past.

Who he is meant to be…

The Creature realizes that he matters, he has will, even if he is not completely free; that without darkness there is no light, and that darkness can be beautiful too.

When his newfound friends—his family—are threatened, will the Creature find the strength to fight for love? Will he make the right choice and change the course of Destiny?

Purchase Links

Amazon CA * Amazon US
(free to read with Kindle Unlimited)

My Two Cents

If I haven't said it yet, I'll say it now... I love Erebu!

How is this possible?

How did the author make this person into a redeemable hero? Or would he be an anti-hero?

I don't know how it was done. And I don't even care. I LOVE HIM!!

And to top it all off, I got not only Ere... but Pure Requiem gave me more of my beloved Tal!

The following are my thoughts, feelings, and questions about this read. If you don't want to be spoiled, stop here!

1. The Creature, who will now be named Ere (because I refuse to ever call him 'it' again) was as sarcastic, adorable, vulnerable, and particularly loquacious as ever.

2. I found it entirely too sweet when Ere impersonated Inanna to spend time with Tal. How cute was it that Tal knew all along that it was him? And how nice was it that he was so honest with his father, even in disguise?

“There’s a certain symmetry as well as randomness in the lines. It’s actually quite…beautiful, despite the ugliness that created them. When I look at you, I see colors, and the world pales to gray. You’re a work of art, papa.”


And then I saw it: a corner of his mouth slowly curved up in that gorgeous, heart-palpitating squirk. Holy gods, how I love this heroic male with all my twisted, black heart!

3. I love Ere's connection to Benji. I live for every moment of their time together, their banter, their love, and their light.

There he goes with his obsession with cuckoos again. I suppose I aided and abetted this unhealthy fixation with the grim fairytales I’ve been telling him. He’s determined to prove to me how cuckoos are actually beautiful and love-worthy, how the ugliest of them all is destined to mate with a magical golden phoenix of all things. One can never account for a boy’s wayward imagination.

Is Benji seeing the future? The phoenix... that would be The Eagle King right? Is he to be Ere's promise of happiness?

4. How sweet was it when Ere finally saw his true self for the first time?

Huh. I guess I’m genetically blessed with a big, fat ass. Despite the beef jerky imitation that describes the rest of me (except the obscenely plump meat hanging between my legs), my backside doesn’t appear to have gone on the same diet.

5. Why do I want Ere to write me some letters? I'm in love with his love for Dalair. I love how his letters were sweet, vulnerable and honest. I am begging for these two 'brothers' to reunite and find their love and friendship again.

6. How hot was that first scene between Tal and Ishtar? Initially he was tense and reluctant and still averse to her touch. Then he became dominant and exchanged the power with his mate. Is this what he needed to finally overcome the hurdle to their passion? Will they be okay now? And when the heck will he get back his sight???

7. Am I the only one who melted into a sticky puddle over Ere's love and admiration for his parents? I'm a gushy mess!

I stand in front of the bathroom mirror admiring the gorgeousness that sprouts from my scalp. I think it’s my best feature. After all, I got it from Ishtar Anshar, Heaven’s Brightest Star. I cock my head a little in consideration. On second thought, maybe I like my eyes best. Because they’re from Tal-Telal, the General of the Pure Ones. Everything else about my body is probably my own, so I don’t like that as much. But the features that are from…them I absolutely adore.

8. I'm still wondering about the futures of Rhys, Ana, and Adam Morgan. Will there be happy endings for them? I always thought Ana and Adam would hook up.

9. Will I ever get the back stories for Tristan and Ayelet? I want to know who they really are and how they ended up mated.

10. The reconciliation of Ere and Liv almost made me teary-eyed. I know this is fiction, but what are the chances that she was the same girl who gave him a broken heart. They were kids together. She knew him before he ever became The Creature. How cool is it... how far he's come to be able to forgive her?!

11. I would love for someone to tell me why Ishtar is still being referred to as a Dark One when we know that her true father was a Pure One. Doesn't that mean she is half and half? Doesn't that make Inanna and Ere 3/4 Pure and 1/4 Dark?

What I know is this... Ere is still a rascal, but he is definitely redeemed. He's becoming the hero he was always meant to be. After an epic battle scene, it seems he's ready to make a huge sacrifice for his family and friends. Now here I am, ready to start Pure Destiny, and all I can think of, besides my love for these characters, is 🎵 Ding Dong the Witch is Dead 🎵 One down... one to go!

Check out the previous books:

Quick Peek

“He is so beautiful, my love,” she whispers, the salt from her hot tears blending with the light sprinkle of water from the showerhead as it all trickles down my skin, leaving me raw.

“Benji described him accurately—eyes like yours, hair like mine, tall and much too thin. But you wouldn’t believe how his beauty eclipses the gods of old unless you beheld it for yourself.”

I clench my fist against the small of her back and hug her tighter.

I cannot see my son. I do not know if I ever shall. At least I have the memory of Inanna to sustain me. At least I had my daughter for two decades before we were separated. But I have never seen Erebu. My blind eyes throb with visceral pain at the loss.

“I will tell you all about it,” Ishtar adds softly, as if sensing my torment. “Our son truly cannot be described as anything but beautiful. He is all male, but there is a feline, delicate grace about him. I do not think it’s because of his thinness. It’s his inherent gentleness and playfulness. He might display his prickly, irreverent wit to the world, but he’s terribly sensitive inside. And gravely hurt.”

She sniffs, and I take a deep breath, both of us gathering ourselves out of sorrow, focusing on joy.

And hope. Always hope.

“Often, he makes scornful, self-deprecating comments,” she continues in that soothing, low voice, “partly to fend off harsher words from others that he seems to expect as his due, and partly because he truly believes them himself. He has so much light within him that it shines through whenever he looks upon Benji. Yet, so much darkness as well, focused inward. And because of this, not in spite of it, he is exquisitely, painfully beautiful. Endlessly fascinating, multi-faceted like the kaleidoscopic fragments of light filtered through the most perfect diamond.”

About the Author

Aja James just completed the Pure/ Dark Ones paranormal-fantasy romance series in 2020. If you want your heart battered, bruised, shattered and skewered, then put back together in the most glorious ways, check out the series below. Every couple gets an HEA, but they fight like hell for it on the way.

Aja is now working on her new series, Dragon Tails, because dragons are her favorite shifters of all!

Visit for more information!

Review // No Rep by Lani Lynn Vale

July 27, 2021

No Rep by Lani Lynn Vale

"I don't feel pity for you... I feel anger for you. Passion for you. Need. Desire. Want. I'm pissed you didn't tell me. Sad that I don't get to see you every day. Mad that you keep ditching me because you think that's what I want. But I most definitely don't feel any damn pity for you. Not when you've persevered. When you've turned into this person that overcame a huge obstacle and made you into the woman that I see today."

No Rep by Lani Lynn Vale

No Rep by Lani Lynn Vale

Standalone - Madd CrossFit #1
Release - July 27, 2021
Genre - Romantic Suspense
Dual POV - 1st person
Heat Level - 4 out of 5 / several scenes
Format/Source - eARC provided by the author
Page Count - 208
Publisher - Indie

Buy it here: Amazon

Taos was tired.
Tired of everything that came with living. Not to the point where he was suicidal or anything, but tired enough that he just didn’t give a crap anymore.
He’d seen all the ugliness this world had to offer due to his job as a police officer for way too many damn years of his less than stellar life. After finding a way to sustain his spending habits that didn’t include having criminals point guns at his face, he quits without a backward glance.
Only, he just can’t step away from old habits.
Old habits that have to do with a beautiful young woman that makes his heart feel like it isn’t nearly as broken as it is.
Fran has experienced more than her fair share of crap. After an attack that nearly took her life, she stays hidden in her house, fearful that stepping out of her comfort zone will be the final nail in her coffin.
Then her sister forces her to face her fears, and she joins Madd CrossFit.
There, she meets the man that saved her life a year ago, and realizes rather quickly that he doesn’t even realize who he is to her.
He’s everything she ever thought a man should be and wants nothing to do with her.
Maybe she’ll have to give him a reason to look her way.
And damned if she doesn’t find a way to do it.
She didn’t plan on nearly getting killed for that to happen, though.
At least not again.

No Rep by Lani Lynn Vale
No Rep was written in such a refreshing way that I was honestly surprised by the tone this story took. As a long time LLV fan, I. Was. Shook!

While there were plenty of familiar things, such as the light and fun vibe typically found in an LLV novel, it was a touch more serious. And it had to be. Fran survived a serial killer and Taos hunted them. Makes sense. On top of that, there was no rush for the intimacy that was growing between the main characters. It wasn't a slow build, but it did grow organically.

Am I a fool for hoping that one day the author ages up baby Vlad to give him his own story? Man, that baby was sooooo cute!

I have digressed...

Fran almost fell victim to a serial killer. Taos was the cop who rescued her. She disappeared from life due to fear until her sister tried to inject some hope inside of her. That's where Taos' crossfit gym came in. Fran came out of her shell and she blossomed. Was it being around other people? Testing and building her strength? Or was it all due to Taos?

I'm going with a huge helping of Taos!

I enjoyed the suspenseful elements of this story. I couldn't figure out who the new serial killer was and it was exciting to see how everything would unfold. I loved what eventually grew between Fran and Taos and the way their happily ever after developed. I also appreciated meeting all of the side characters and I'm looking forward to reading their own stories. Jerk It, the story of Murphy and Mavis, is next!

No Rep by Lani Lynn Vale

My Notes

It didn't make sense that Fran would avoid Taos after he learned of how they originally knew each other. It was already established that she was into him and that they were building something together. I didn't get the purpose of her hiding anything from him or pushing him away because she was worried about how he would treat her. It was beyond obvious that something had happened to her, and that she lived with fear as a constant companion, even without knowing the details. So why would he treat her differently after knowing the specifics?

I was confused by the whole 'Taos has a biological brother named Greer that Fran is determined to find' storyline. I understand that he was adopted out and that despite Taos being a cop, he couldn't be found. Then by the end of the story (eight years later), Fran and her grandmother have found him. And.... nothing. She didn't even tell the man that she found his long-lost brother! Where would these details be found? Is there another book that will make this clearer?

No Rep by Lani Lynn Vale
Lani Lynn Vale is married to the love of her life that she met in high school. She fell in love with him because he was wearing baseball pants. Ten years later they have three perfectly crazy children and a cat named Demon who likes to wake her up at ungodly times in the night. They live in the greatest state in the world, Texas. She writes contemporary and romantic suspense, and has a love for all things romance. You can find Lani in front of her computer writing away in her fictional characters world...that is until her husband and kids demand sustenance in the form of food and drink.

Visit for more information!

The Brave Line by Kate Stewart // Review

May 07, 2021

The Brave Line by Kate Stewart review image

You can begin again anywhere you want to in life, but you can't recreate your past or the way it shaped you.

The Brave Line by Kate Stewart cover

The Brave Line by Kate Stewart

Release - March 31, 2017
Genre - Contemporary Romance
Dual POV - 1st person
Heat Level - 4 out of 5
Format/Source - Amazon Kindle purchase
Length - 290 pages
Publisher - KLS Press

She is a five foot seven long list of things he can’t have.

He is a determined cop, desperate to keep his heart sealed behind his badge.

Michelle is a survivor. With a fresh perspective on life, she trades her tragic past in California for the coastal waters of Charleston. Fueled by a new career as a dispatcher, she’s determined not to let her scars weigh her down. She apologizes for nothing, especially her insatiable need for a certain police officer.

Rowdy is a newly minted sergeant dedicated to his job, but the life of a Charleston police officer has never been more dangerous. With his need to take order of a city spiraling out of control, the last thing he wants is an entanglement with a mouthy dispatcher. But, there’s just one problem. He can’t get enough of her.

As the heat rises between the unlikely pair, so does the tension.

Three months of summer was all it took to shake their foundations, rattle their walls, and bring them crashing down.

It was lust.

It was love.

It was real.

And it would have been perfect . . . if it wasn't already over.

You can find your copy of The Brave Line on Amazon
It's FREE to read with Kindle Unlimited

The Brave Line by Kate Stewart quote teaser

The Brave Line by Kate Stewart Review
For me, this story was not just about facing one's fears, but embracing them. Becoming fearless. Michelle seemed to have that down pat (kinda sorta) and Rowdy spent this entire book playing catch up. I enjoyed the angst, the push and pull, the combustion that existed when these two came together. Slow build + slow burn = I slowly loved it.

While Rowdy's fears weirdly aggravated me, I understood them. He had lost someone close to him. He was still dealing with that loss and didn't want to put anyone through the pain he was going through. It was an honorable motive. It was also dumb. He was hurting himself and Michelle more than anything else. It took him a long while to finally see how wrong he was, but when he did... Damn! The author did a beautiful job of busting this man's heart wide open!!
USA Today bestselling author and Texas native, Kate Stewart, lives in North Carolina with her husband, Nick, and her naughty beagle, Sadie. She pens messy, sexy, angst-filled contemporary romance, as well as romantic comedy and erotic suspense. Kate's title Drive was named one of the best romances of 2017 by The New York Daily News and Huffington Post. Drive was also a finalist in the Goodread's Choice awards for best contemporary romance for 2017. Her works have also been featured in USA TODAY and BuzzFeed, and translated into five languages.

Kate is a lover of all things '80s and '90s, especially John Hughes films and rap. She dabbles a little in photography, can knit a simple stitch scarf for necessity, and on occasion, does very well at whiskey.

Visit for more information about Kate Stewart

Afraid to Fall by Ari Reavis

September 26, 2020

"Just don't be afraid to fall, Layla."

King's Redemption by Grace Risata

August 27, 2020

As long as Nora keeps on fighting, stands her ground without caving in, and refuses to wallow, she'll be just fine.


July 29, 2019

Release - July 4, 2018
Genre - Historical Romance
Heroine POV - 1st person
Heat - none
Format/Source - copy provided by the author

Goodreads | Amazon


June 09, 2019

Broken by Desire by Dani Rene
Cassandra Winters has been left broken for two long years, living with her pain. When a second chance presents itself, she picks up and heads to California where she meets the elusive Lucien Verán. He’s sexy, domineering, and nothing more than a playboy wanting one night with Cassie. His past is lined with a dark secret that will eventually break him and her.

When they finally give in to desire, the truth unfurls itself in a vicious attack that leave both broken and alone.

Happiness is something they need to fight for. Can they find forever in the web of deceit?

*This story is for mature audiences only. Contains explicit scenes intended for adults 18+

Goodreads | Amazon


June 08, 2019

Having it all isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.

When Sarah Sullivan’s perfect life blows up in front of her, she finds herself crawling back to the one place she never saw herself returning: Home.

At thirty-one, Sarah had it all. Perfect job, perfect boyfriend, perfect life. When all that is taken away from her, she is left heartbroken and angry and desperate enough to let her life swallow her whole…for a while.

Fending off love and the pursuit of happiness completely, Sarah vows to pick up the pieces of her shattered life. She creates a list of goals for herself—starting with a much needed shower—and constructs a plan to dig herself out of her rut. What she doesn’t plan for is meeting the arrogant new employee her parents have hired to work on an addition to their home. Enter Jack Calloway, the handsome, charming, lickable foreman with an insatiable effect on Sarah’s girly parts.

Jack accepts the job, but gets more than he bargained for. Unable to ignore his racing hormones—and calm his temper—over the obnoxious woman who clouds his judgment, Jack pulls her in and steals her heart until she finally surrenders. But is he up for the challenge of picking up the pieces of Sarah’s broken heart? Can he carry her out of her rut?

Review: 667 Ways to F*ck Up My Life by Lucy Woodhull

January 01, 2017

667 Ways to F*ck Up My Life by Lucy Woodhull
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Release: August 16, 2016
Length: 250 pages

Sometimes, there’s nowhere to go but f*ck up…

If you love Broad City and Bridget Jones, you’ll adore Dagmar Kostopoulos…and her colossal fuck-ups.

Twenty-something Dag has always been the ‘perfect’ woman. Responsible, honest to a fault, hard-working. Even her bras are no-nonsense. And for what? Her boyfriend dumps her for being boring, and her boss fires her for not sucking on his nether regions to get promoted. What’s a perfectionist overachiever to do? A complete one-eighty.

To heck with rules—Dag orchestrates a spectacular fall from grace by ruining her life exactly six-hundred-sixty-six times, and finally has a little naughty fun. Some scandalous Spandex and a few bar lies later, tame little Dagmar becomes Giselle, ballsy siren.

The wild thing is…it works! Dag gets a better job and meets the sexiest man she’s ever known. Well, Giselle meets him. Dagmar doesn’t exist. Except that she does, and her escapades just became a ticking time bomb, one that might blow her heart to smithereens.

Join Dag for her irresistible and hilarious fuck-ups, because every good girl needs to inject a little bad girl sizzle into her veins.

Goodreads | Amazon