Monday, June 30, 2014

Review: "Sekret" by Lindsay Smith

An empty mind is a safe mind. Yulia knows she must hide her thoughts and control her emotions to survive in Communist Russia. But if she sometimes manipulates the black market traders by reading their thoughts when she touches their skin, so what? Anything to help her survive. Russia's powerful spy agency, the KGB, is recruiting young people with mind-reading capabilities for their psychic espionage program. Their mission: protect the Soviet space program from American CIA spies. Why shouldn't the KGB use any means necessary to make the young psychic cooperate? Anything to beat the American capitalist scum to the moon. Yulia is a survivor. She won't be controlled by the KGB, who want to harness her abilities for the State with no regard for her own hopes and dreams. She won't let handsome Sergei plan her life as a member of elite Soviet society, or allow brooding Valentin to consume her with his dangerous mind and even more dangerous ideas. And she certainly won't become the next victim of the powerful American spy who can scrub a brain raw—and seems to be targeting Yulia.
Thank you to Netgalley and Macmillan Children's Publishing Group for allowing me to read and review an ARC of this book.

Definitely one of the more unique books I've read in a while.  I think my favourite thing about "Sekret" is actually the setting.  Russia right in the middle of the Cold War?  Can't be beat for suspense and intrigue.

Straight out of the gate, we can tell that Yulia is special.  She tries to hide her psychic abilities, but the KGB eventually finds her and "recruits" her into their program.  Here she meets six other teenagers, all with varying psychic abilities, and is trained to use her power.  All sorts of things happen, and I won't go into detail about them, but just know that the plot is fairly well-paced and it's difficult for Yulia to know who to trust, adding to the suspense.

Yulia herself is likable enough, but I didn't really connect with her.  Perhaps it's because she had to try and keep a lot of her thoughts and feelings "sekret" (sorry, I had to!).  I think the author did a great job with the villains, though - they were just normal people (with psychic powers) who believed so strongly in what they were doing that they didn't mind if others were hurt in the crossfire.  Collateral damage and all that.  Villains just seem more creepy to me when they're portrayed as such.

There were a few times, like during the team's missions, where I got kind of lost and had trouble following the action.  But, for the most part, "Sekret" is a fast-paced, intriguing read.

My rating:

Review: "Best Kind of Broken" by Chelsea Fine

Pixie and Levi haven't spoken in nearly a year when they find themselves working―and living―at the same inn in the middle of nowhere. Once upon a time, they were childhood friends. But that was before everything went to hell. And now things are... awkward. All they want to do is avoid each other, and their past, for as long as possible. But now that they're forced to share a bathroom, and therefore a shower, keeping their distance from one another becomes less difficult than keeping their hands off each other. Welcome to the hallway of awkward tension and sexual frustration, folks. Get comfy. It’s going to be a long summer.

Thank you to Netgalley and Forever (Grand Central Publishing) for allowing me to read and review an ARC of this book.

I think I was expecting more from this book because it ended up feeling very mediocre to me.  Either that, or I've just been reading too many of the same type of book lately and I've hit a bit of a slump.

In "Best Kind of Broken", we have Pixie and Levi, and they're both quite likable.  We get the sense early on that they have some history between them, and I liked how that history unfolded in flashbacks from both characters.  We also know that something happened almost a year ago that drove a wedge between them, and they haven't spoken to each other since.  That is, until they both end up working and living at Pixie's aunt's Inn.  I enjoyed the immature back and forth between Pixie and Levi at the beginning of the book.  Things started off at a good pace, and I was really interested in finding out what the big event was that had torn these two apart.

I think where things started to fizzle was when all was revealed.  I started to get bored of Pixie and Levi constantly blaming themselves for what had happened.  I also got tired of many of their interactions leading to...nothing!  That was so frustrating!  Anyway, when all is said and done, I liked some aspects of this book but not others, leading to a rating smack dab in the middle.

My rating: 2.5 stars

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

K.A. Tucker's FIVE WAYS TO FALL Release Day Launch

FWTF RDL Banner 3

We are thrilled to celebrate the Release Day Launch of K.A. Tucker's FIVE WAYS TO FALL!! FIVE WAYS TO FALL is the fourth novel in her Ten Tiny Breaths Series, published by Atria Books an imprint of Simon & Schuster.

  FWTF final cover About FIVE WAYS TO FALL: Purple-haired, sharp-tongued Reese MacKay knows all about making the wrong choice; she’s made plenty of them in her twenty-odd-years. So when her impulsive, short-lived marriage ends in heartbreak, she decides it’s time for a change. She moves to Miami with the intention of hitting reset on her irresponsible life, and she does quite well…aside from an epically humiliating one-night stand in Cancun with a hot blond bouncer named Ben. Thank God she can get on a plane and leave that mistake behind her. Football scholarship and frat parties with hot chicks? Part of charmer Ben Morris’s plan. Blown knee that kills any hope of a professional football career? So not part of the plan. Luckily Ben has brains to go with his knockout looks and magnetism. After three long years of balancing law school with his job as a bouncer at Penny’s Palace, he’s ready to lead a more mature life—until his first day of work, when he finds himself in the office of that crazy, hot chick he met in Cancun. The one he hasn’t stopped thinking about. If Ben truly were a smart guy, he’d stay clear of Reese. She’s the boss’s stepdaughter and it’s been made very clear that office romances are grounds for dismissal. Plus, rumor has it she’s trouble. The only problem is, he likes trouble, especially when it’s so good-looking…  

Atria Books ** IndieBound B&N ** Amazon ** iBookstore ** BAM ** Bookish ** Other

FWTF Ben EXCERPT: Ben I love the angry ones. Of course, anyone who knows me would argue that I love any and all women, and I can’t exactly disagree. But I love the angry ones the most. They’re a challenge to be conquered, the reason for their fury usually fitting neatly into three buckets: insecure, scorned, hormonal. And this chick gazing up at me with fire in her caramel eyes? I’m betting on bucket number two. “My, what an awfully bright red shirt you have on,” she pushes out between gritted teeth, as if she’s trying to be polite but can’t hide her disdain. I didn’t know what I was walking into when the punk-rock chick with the crazy-ass muscular body waved us over, but her friend with the purple hair and her back to me had me intrigued. Now that I’m getting a good look at her face, I know who I’m spending my last night with in CancĂșn. She’s not what some would call traditionally “pretty.” Her eyes are slightly too big and far apart, her nose is slightly too long and slender, and her lips—though nice and wide—are on the thin side. Yet something about all of that put together makes her sexy as hell. Maybe it’s the little nose ring. Or maybe it’s the way her decent-sized tits are pressing up against me, her low V-neck tank top—a casual shirt, telling me she’s not trying to pick anyone up—giving me a fine view of her cleavage. Whatever it is, my dick is certainly pleased. “You like it?” I ask. An irritated glare flickers to the material. “No.” I can’t help but chuckle at her candor. “Will you at least give me a head start before you gore me?” Those thin lip curls into a condescending smirk. “Bulls don’t see color. That’s a myth.” The only thing I love more than an angry girl is a smart, angry girl. This is going to be fun. “Well, how about I solve the problem for you.” I take a step back from her and swiftly yank my shirt off, exposing six days of suntanned skin and an upper body that I know looks damn appealing because I work my ass off to keep it that way. The random catcalls from the tables around confirm it. And then I simply stand there and grin like the cocky ass that I am as Angry Girl can’t keep her eyes from scanning the muscles I’ve honed since my college football days, her lips parting ever so subtly. I see the shift in her, the moment where she realizes that, though she’d prefer to castrate the entire male species right now, she can’t ignore her attraction to me. At least, that’s what I want to see.   FWTF Reese  
Don’t forget the rest of the Ten Tiny Breaths Series…

...and you can Preorder…


Author PhotoABOUT K.A. TUCKER: Born in small-town Ontario, Kathleen published her first book at the age of six with the help of her elementary school librarian and a box of crayons. She is a voracious reader and the farthest thing from a genre-snob, loving everything from High Fantasy to Chick Lit. Kathleen currently resides in a quaint small town outside of Toronto with her husband, two beautiful girls, and an exhausting brood of four-legged creatures.      

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Sunday, June 22, 2014

Review: "Song of the Fireflies" by J.A. Redmerski

New York Times bestselling author J.A. Redmerski brings us a stunning and heart-wrenching new novel about a couple who find each other in their darkest moment. Since they were kids, Elias Kline and Brayelle Bates have been inseparable. When Bray moves to South Carolina, separating the two for the first time, they both at last realize that their innocent childhood friendship has developed into something much more. So when Bray finally returns to Georgia—and to Elias—things between them couldn’t be more perfect…until one fateful night changes everything. Desperate not to go to prison for a terrible accident, Elias and Bray decide to run. As they try to make the most of their freedom, the two find themselves relying on a rebellious group of people who tempt the duo into a wild and daring new life. But they can’t run from their troubles forever. As the consequences of their past catch up to them, the couple must finally face reality. Even if they can make it through the unimaginable, Elias knows the truth about Bray’s painful history, and in the end he may not be able to save Bray from herself…
My thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for providing an ARC for my reading and reviewing pleasure.

This book ended up being just okay for me.  I didn't hate it, but I didn't love it either.  My feelings lie somewhere in the "meh" zone.  It seemed to drag in a lot of areas, and there was one item/piece to the plot that just seemed to be thrown in there and wasn't elaborated on and thus didn't make any sense.  I don't think I can say more on that without spoilers, so if you want to know more of my thoughts on this, feel free to check out my Goodreads review here, complete with hidden spoilers.  

I didn't exactly warm up to Bray, even though I could most often understand her motivations.  There were many times I wished she would just listen to Elias, but then there would have been even less of a plot.  For the most part, I enjoyed Elias.  There were a couple things he did that kind of rubbed me the wrong way, but not enough to make me dislike him.  

There is a tie in with J.A. Redmerski's series, The Edge of Never.  The two main characters, Andrew and Cameron, make an appearance here, and a scene from "The Edge of Always" is told from Elias and Bray's point of view.  I remember reading this scene in "The Edge of Always" and thinking it didn't add a whole lot to the plot of that book.  I was hoping that by reading the scene from another point of view, things would make a bit more sense, but the whole situation was just bizarre!

So, yeah, wish I could say more, but there's not much more I can think up for "Song of the Fireflies".  That's just how ambivalent I am.

My rating:  2.5 stars

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Review: "Harder" by Robin York

In Robin York’s provocative new novel, two young ex-lovers find themselves together again in the shadow of tragedy—and an intense, undeniable attraction. 

Caroline still dreams about West. His warm skin, his taut muscles, his hand sliding down her stomach. Then she wakes up and she’s back to reality: West is gone. And before he left, he broke her heart.
Then, out of the blue, West calls in crisis. A tragedy has hit his family—a family that’s already a fractured mess. Caroline knows what she has to do. Without discussion, without stopping to think, she’s on a plane, flying to his side to support him in any way he needs.
They’re together again, but things are totally different. West looks edgy, angry at the world. Caroline doesn’t fit in. She should be back in Iowa, finalizing her civil suit against the ex-boyfriend who posted their explicit pictures on a revenge porn website. But here she is. Deeply into West, wrapped up in him, in love with him. Still
They fought the odds once. Losing each other was hard. But finding their way back to each other couldn’t be harder.

ARC provided by Netgalley in exchange for review.

Soooooo good! Oh my gosh, I read this book so "hard" for the first couple of days, and then I had to put aside for a bit - I was so scared for it to end! After how "Deeper" ended and what West did in the beginning of this book, I didn't trust that things would end okay and I honestly didn't think I could handle it! But, eventually I was able to keep calm and carry on, and I'm so glad I persevered because Robin York knows exactly how to write what's needed, even if it can be painful at times.

I love how we get to see more of West in "Harder". His life back in Oregon is truly heartbreaking, but seeing this helps us to understand the crappy things he does. Sometimes, I wanted to slap that guy upside the head, while at the same time give him a warm mama hug. That's when you know you've got a memorable character, when they make you feel all these feelings!

Caroline is still the strong, resilient, brave person she was in "Deeper", and once again we get to see just how forgiving she can be. Although she's still dealing with the lawsuit against her ex, her issues seem to take a bit of a backseat to West's this time around. He's just got so much to deal with, but Caroline is there every step of the way. 

I love this series! I'm so glad I read it, and I can't wait to see what Robin York comes up with next!

My rating:

Monday, June 16, 2014

Ann Aguirre's 2B Trilogy Series - Cover Reveal!!!

We are over the moon about the cover reveal for Ann Aguirre's 2B Trilogy Series!!! Published by Harlequin HQN, the 2B Trilogy Series is a New Adult Contemporary Romance series made up of 3 titles. I WANT IT THAT WAY is the first full-length novel in the 2B Trilogy and is set to be released August 26th. Book 2, AS LONG AS YOU LOVE ME, is releasing on September 30th, and THE SHAPE OF MY HEART is scheduled to be released on November 25th. You DO NOT want to miss this series, you guys!

  I Want It That Way About I WANT IT THAT WAY: Nadia Conrad has big dreams, and she’s determined to make them come true. But between maintaining her college scholarship and working at the local day care to support herself, dating’s the last thing on her mind. Then she moves into a new apartment and meets the taciturn yet irresistible guy in 1B…. Daniel Tyler has grown up too fast. Becoming a single dad at twenty turned his life upside down—and brought him heartache he can’t risk again. Now, as he raises his four-year-old son while balancing a full-time construction management job and night classes, the last thing he wants is noisy students living in the apartment upstairs. But one night, Nadia’s and Ty’s paths cross, and soon they can’t stay away from each other. The timing is all wrong—but love happens when it happens. And you can’t know what you truly need until you stand to lose it. "A tender, sweet, and sexy story about how life—and falling in love—can never be planned." —Jennifer L. Armentrout, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Wait for You
IWITW Full Cover

I WANT IT THAT WAY on Goodreads
  As Long As You Love Me About AS LONG AS YOU LOVE ME: Most people dream about getting out of Sharon, Nebraska, but after three years away, Lauren Barrett is coming home. She has her reasons—missing her family, losing her college scholarship. But then there’s the reason Lauren can’t admit to anyone: Rob Conrad, her best friend’s older brother. Football prowess and jaw-dropping good looks made Rob a star in high school. Out in the real world, his job and his relationships are going nowhere. He’s the guy who women love and leave, not the one who makes them think of forever—until Lauren comes back to town, bringing old feelings and new dreams with her. Because the only thing more important than figuring out where you truly belong is finding the person you were meant to be with. "I loved everything about this book… I just have two words: more please!" New York Times bestselling author Cora Carmack on I Want It That Way
ALAYLM Full Cover

  About THE SHAPE OF MY HEART: Some people wait decades to meet their soul mate. Courtney Kaufman suspects she met hers in high school—only to lose him at seventeen. Since then, Courtney’s social life has been a series of meaningless encounters, though she's made a few close friends along the way. Especially her roommate, Max Cooper, who oozes damaged bad-boy vibes from every pore. Max knows about feeling lost—he’s been on his own since he was sixteen. Now it’s time to find out if he can ever go home again, and Courtney’s the only one he trusts to go with him. But the trip to Providence could change everything…. It started out so simple. One misfit helping another. Now Max will do anything to show Courtney that for every heart that’s ever been broken, there’s another that can make it complete. "New Adult storytelling with an elegant and refined voice that is entirely unique in the genre." New York Times bestselling author Jay Crownover on I Want It That Way Amazon | B&N | BAM | Indiebound | Vroman’s | Book Depository | Powell’s

TSOMH Full Cover

Author PhotoAbout ANN AGUIRRE:
Ann Aguirre is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling author and RITA winner with a degree in English Literature; before she began writing full time, she was a clown, a clerk, a voice actress, and a savior of stray kittens, not necessarily in that order. She grew up in a yellow house across from a cornfield, but now she lives in sunny Mexico with her husband, children, and various pets. Ann likes books, emo music, action movies, and she writes all kinds of genre fiction for adults and teens, published with Harlequin, Macmillan, and Penguin, among others.    

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Review: "S.E.C.R.E.T. Revealed" by L. Marie Adeline

SECRET Revealed bares all--the final book in the hot bestselling series. The only thing that Cassie Robichaud has ever really wanted is Will Foret, the love of her life. But when Will discovers that Cassie is part of S.E.C.R.E.T., an underground group devoted to helping women experience their deepest sexual fantasies, Will breaks it off. Heartbroken, Cassie dries her tears and devotes herself to helping the latest S.E.C.R.E.T. recruit, Solange Faraday. Cassie also reignites her relationship with sexy bad-boy Jesse, even if he can never love her as deeply as Will did. Meanwhile, beautiful, brilliant Solange, a local news anchor and divorced mom, has a great career but a wilting love life. She rekindles long-lost passions, going deeper and hotter than any other S.E.C.R.E.T. candidate before her. Will she find what her heart most desires? And when Will realizes he's made a tragic mistake, will Cassie be able to forgive him? In the end, as both women blossom as sexual beings, they also discover that ecstasy and true love are closer than they ever imagined. SECRET Revealed is the explosive, sensual and sexually-charged finale to the bestselling S.E.C.R.E.T. trilogy.
My thanks to Netgalley and Crown Publishing for allowing me to read and review an ARC of this book.

I really like this series!  I know the whole premise is a bit far fetched, but if you can suspend your disbelief a bit and just go with it, you'll probably really enjoy it too.

We've already met Cassie Robichaud in the first two books of the series, but now her story continues from where she and Will had a falling out.  Now she's stuck opening a restaurant with him, knowing he's the man of her dreams and that she can't be with him.  Brutal!  So she casually hooks back up with Jesse, another recurring character, and honestly, I couldn't understand why Cassie would be pining over Will when she could have Jesse - yum!  But that's just my opinion.

Solange Faraday is the other narrator of this story, and although I liked her, I couldn't really relate to her on any level - she's just so different from me!  That's not to say I didn't enjoy observing her foray into the world of S.E.C.R.E.T., because I definitely did!  Solange is deemed to be S.E.C.R.E.T.'s last client, so the organization pulls out all the stops - there are plenty of steamy fantasies acted out, sometimes starring Solange and other times with members of the organization in preparation/training for Solange's fantasies.  Eventually, some jealousy comes into play, and I really loved that aspect of the story.

My one complaint is the ending.  Don't worry, I won't give anything away.  It's just that I didn't buy into one of the character's actions - it resolved everything a little too neatly and quickly.

My rating: 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Blog Tour - "Falling For The Groomsman" Guest Post

Hey everyone, for my stop on the blog tour for "Falling For The Groomsman", I'm doing a guest post, yay!

Wedding Dares

Hello, I’m Diane Alberts, otherwise known as Jen McLaughlin, and I had a new book called FALLING FOR THE GROOMSMAN come out on June 9th! It’s part of the Wedding Dare series with Laura Kaye, Tessa Bailey, Katee Robert, and Samanthe Beck. All of our books (except Laura’s, which is a prequel) take place at the same time, at the same wedding.

In my book, Tyler and Christine have a bit of history. They slept together over eight years ago…and then never spoke again. Like, ever. Quite the backstory, huh? I had so much fun with it!

But, anyway…the heroines in all four Wedding Dare novels make a dare. They each “claim” a groomsman, even though they don’t all make an official announcement about it, and then they set about seducing the men. The best part about this dare? The men are clueless. Absolutely, one hundred percent, clueless!

I’ll give you ONE guess who my heroine, Christine, picks. ;)

Have you ever made a dare and actually followed through with it? I’d love to hear all about it!


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Friday, June 13, 2014

Review: "The Opposite of Maybe" by Maddie Dawson

A heartfelt, funny, and all-together human novel about the best mistakes a person can make. Jonathan and Rosie have been together so long they finish each other’s sentences—so when he (finally) proposes and asks her to move across the country with him, everyone is happily surprised. But when things suddenly unravel, Rosie sends Jonathan packing and moves back home with Soapie, the irascible, opinionated grandmother who raised her. Only now she has to figure out how to fire Soapie’s very unsuitable caregiver, a gardener named Tony who lets her drink martinis, smoke, and cheat at Scrabble. It’s a temporary break, of course—until Rosie realizes she’s accidentally pregnant at 44, completely unequipped for motherhood, and worse, may be falling in love with the sentimental, troubled Tony, whose life is even more muddled than hers. It’s not until Rosie learns the truth about her mother’s tragic story that she wonders if sometimes you have to let go of your fears, trusting that the big-hearted, messy life that awaits you may just be the one you were meant to live.
Thank you to Netgalley and Crown Publishing for allowing me to read and review an ARC of this book.

This book was just so cute to read.  Rosie thinks her life is going along just hunky dory, when suddenly, it's just not.  Poor Rosie, she's quite lovable, she's got a big heart, but I also found myself frustrated with her wishy-washiness.  She had a really tough time making any sort of decision and preferred instead to let her live-in boyfriend of 15 years do as he pleased and drag her along with him.  It was pretty easy to see that his tea cup collection meant more to him than his relationship with Rosie.

When Rosie meets Tony, it's definitely not  love at first sight.  I really enjoyed watching their friendship develop and gradually build into something more.  And Tony himself is pretty fabulous - he added some much appreciated swoon and comic relief to the story.  Then there's Rosie's grandmother, Soapie - she's a real hoot!  Most of the people I work with are seniors, so I can definitely understand her outlook on life.

I want to say that "The Opposite of Maybe" was lighthearted, but that wouldn't be accurate, as there are some difficult issues presented.  Maybe "hopeful" is a better descriptor.  Whatever, this book will certainly appeal to lovers of chick-lit.

My rating: 

Monday, June 9, 2014

Release Day Blitz and Giveaway!

Falling for the Groomsman by Diane Alberts
June 9, 2014


A sexy category romance from Entangled’s Brazen imprint…

She’s the one that got away. He’s the one she can’t forget.

Photojournalist Christine Forsythe is ready to tackle her naughty little to-do list, and who better to tap for the job than a hot groomsman? But when she crashes into her best friend’s older brother, Christine realizes her list needs updating. And fast. Tyler Dresco took her virginity during the best night of her life, then bolted. Now that they’re trapped together at a destination wedding, she’s going to get her revenge.

Tyler has never forgiven himself for how completely he lost control all those years ago. Being in Christine’s arms had felt right…until he realized what he’d taken from her in the hallway of a cheap motel. And oh, how she’s making him pay for it now. The insatiable heat between them has only grown stronger, but every time things heat up, Christine walks away.

With every encounter, things go a little bit further until Christine’s caught in her own trap of seduction. And before their time’s up, Tyler’s not the only one wanting more…

Grab the rest of the Wedding Dare series!

• Dare to Resist by New York Times bestselling author Laura Kaye
• Baiting the Maid of Honor by New York Times bestselling author Tessa Bailey
• Seducing the Bridesmaid by New York Times bestselling author Katee Robert
* Best Man with Benefits by USA TODAY bestselling author Samanthe Beck

Buy Links

Amazon -
B&N -

Author Information

Diane Alberts is a multi-published, bestselling contemporary romance author with Entangled Publishing. She also writes New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling new adult books under the name Jen McLaughlin. She's hit the Top 100 lists on Amazon and Barnes and Noble numerous times with numerous titles. She was mentioned in Forbes alongside E. L. James as one of the breakout independent authors to dominate the bestselling lists. Diane is represented by Louise Fury at The Bent Agency.
Diane has always been a dreamer with a vivid imagination, but it wasn't until 2011 that she put her pen where her brain was, and became a published author. Since receiving her first contract offer, she has yet to stop writing. Though she lives in the mountains, she really wishes she was surrounded by a hot, sunny beach with crystal clear water. She lives in Northeast Pennsylvania with her four kids, a husband, a schnauzer mutt, and a cat. Her goal is to write so many fantastic stories that even a non-romance reader will know her name.

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Sunday, June 8, 2014

Review: "Deeper We Fall" by Chelsea M. Cameron

Two years after her best friend was involved in a car accident that caused a traumatic brain injury, Lottie Anders is ready to start her freshman year of college. Ready to move on. Ready to start forgetting the night that ripped her life apart. Her plans come to a screeching halt when not one, but both brothers responsible for the accident end up back in her life again. Zack is cruel, selfish and constantly rubbing what happened to her friend in Lottie's face. Zan is different. He listens to her awkward ramblings. He loves To Kill a Mockingbird as much as she does, and his dark eyes are irresistible. His words are few and far between, but when he does speak, she can't help but listen. The trouble is, Zan was the driver in the accident, and now Lottie's discovered he lied to her about what happened that night. Now she must decide if trusting him again will lead to real forgiveness, or deeper heartache.
Thank you to Netgalley and All Night Reads for allowing me to read and review an ARC of this book!

Just the book I needed right now.  Something quick and easy to read.  Not too heavy, but not too fluffy or frivolous.  Like Goldilocks would say, juuuuuust right!

We've got alternating points of view here between Lottie and Zan.  Lottie's a bit of a spitfire, and I really liked her for the most part, but I did feel that she wasn't forgiving enough of Zack and Zan in regards to the accident they had with her best friend.  All three people in that vehicle made a conscious decision to get in that vehicle, so laying blame doesn't really solve anything.  Lottie spent a lot of time and energy beating herself up over the whole thing, too, which got a little frustrating for me at times.

Zan was an interesting male lead.  Definitely the shy, silent type, it was almost funny to see his early interactions with Lottie because he got so tongue-tied.  I think the author did a great job of creating that slow burn between these two characters.

The real surprise here was in the supporting cast of characters.  Cameron develops a wonderful family of misfits what with Lottie's twin brother, his gay friend, Lottie's new roommate, and her work friend thrown in with Zan and his buddy.  I'm excited to read more of this series to see where these characters end up!

My rating: 3.5 stars

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Review: "The Summer I Found You" by Jolene Perry

All they have in common is that they're less than perfect. And all they're looking for is the perfect distraction. Kate's dream boyfriend has just broken up with her and she's still reeling from her diagnosis of type 1 diabetes. Aidan planned on being a lifer in the army and went to Afghanistan straight out of high school. Now he's a disabled young veteran struggling to embrace his new life. When Kate and Aidan find each other neither one wants to get attached. But could they be right for each other after all?

Thank you to Netgalley and Albert Whitman Teen for allowing me to read and review an ARC of this book.

I really enjoyed this book!  It captured my attention right from the get-go, and held it the whole way through.  I didn't feel the need to switch over to other books part way through, which is amazing considering I usually have 4 or 5 books going at once!

The book is told in an alternating point of view style, which really allows the reader to get inside the heads of both main characters.  I have to confess, I enjoyed Aidan's point of view more than Kate's.  Kate is newly diagnosed with type 1 diabetes, but she's constantly trying to ignore it and cover it up.  She just seemed really immature about it, but then I grew up watching my dad giving himself needles and checking his blood sugar levels daily, so diabetes never seemed like something to be ashamed or embarrassed about.  Kate is both ashamed and embarrassed, but who am I to say that this is wrong?  Maybe I would feel the same in her shoes.

Aidan, on the other hand, is missing a limb.  His right arm, to be precise, and Perry does a fantastic job of making the reader see exactly how difficult it would be to live with this disability.  Aidan and Kate have an instant connection - Kate is constantly putting her foot in her mouth, but Aidan appreciates her honesty and the fact that she doesn't tippy-toe around his disability.  Both these characters go through some major growth, which is so satisfying to see.  I'll certainly be seeking out more books by this author.

My rating: