book blog · book review · books

Review: The Pledge

PledgeThe Pledge by Laura Ward and Christine Manzari
Release Date: July 27th, 2015
Genre: New Adult, Romance
Format: Ebook
Where You Can Find It: Amazon | Goodreads

**I received an advanced copy of this book from Xpresso Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.**

Synopsis:
Taren needs a do-over. She’s decided the best way to put the high school bullies behind her is to pledge a Taylor-Swift-lip-syncing, beer-guzzling, sorority. Sisterhood helps Taren find the acceptance she’s always craved, but not the love she needs.

Alec wants freedom. To escape his father’s iron fist and unrealistic expectations, he pledges a campus acrobatics club where he finds that drugs and alcohol aren’t the only ways to get high. His addiction to danger helps him gain his independence, but it comes at a heavy price.

When the two cross paths, Alec fears his undeniable attraction to the party girl just might threaten everything he’s worked so hard to earn. Taren hasn’t forgotten that Alec humiliated her back in high school, but she also can’t deny the chemistry they share.

Alec and Taren have nothing in common, but fate is bound and determined to bring them together. They know falling in love is a risk, and yet it’s too hard to ignore. When their worlds clash and they both end up suffering, will they fight to stay together? Or are some pledges too hard to keep?


Review
College is a place where one can start over and become an entirely new version of themselves separate from who they were in high school. That is exactly what Taren wanted to do when she began her freshman year and it seemed to be going wonderfully as she met new friends and was even persuaded to rush a sorority. Of course, that came to a bit of a screeching halt when she saw the one person from her past life she didn’t want to see, Alec Hart. Finding out the guy you had a crush on in high school who you thought was a good guy but who subsequently decided to embarrass you in front of the entire school when he rejected you goes to the same college as you is the last thing that Taren wanted. And on Alec’s end the feeling was entirely mutual due to the fact that he thought she was the reason the second half of his senior year of high school was ruined. Little did they know the chance encounters they had their freshman year would lead to so much more.
This was an absolutely adorable new adult romance that brought me back to college making me miss it even more than I do now especially since this is the kind of romance I wish I had the chance to experience when I was in college. Despite the ups and downs that Taren and Alec faced in the beginning of the novel it was totally worth it for what happened after they realized the other was not who they thought he/she was. The pacing of this novel and the unfolding of their romance was wonderful because not only were you let wondering when it was going to happen but you also got to see how each character developed as the story moves from their freshman year into their sophomore year of college.
My favorite aspect of Taren and Alec’s relationship was when it is compared to the red string of fate which is something that Alec is learning about in one of his classes. I loved this comparison because it brought depth to their relationship as well as allowed the reader to see how all relationships could be seen in this concept. It is even expanded to encompass the relationship that Taren builds with William as part of her sorority’s philanthropy project. This overall idea that you are connected to a person no matter what happens in life by this red string therefore meaning that at some point your lives will cross again was just a profound idea to me and having it woven into the story made me connect with the characters that much more.
Overall, there was an authenticity to the book in regards to the college life that was depicted that, when mixed with this, at some times, all-consuming romance just made this book so attention grabbing for me. Despite what happens along the way with Taren and Alec and the obstacles they must overcome both individually and as a couple, you can’t help but hope that regardless of the pledges they made to the other aspects of their college lives they are still able to uphold the pledge that they come to make with one another. This is such a sweet and adorably cute romance that allows you to continue to believe in the power that love holds when you find the one you are meant to be with even if it happens to coincide with the best 4 years of your life: college.

Unknown

 
blog tour · book blog · book review · books

Blog Tour: How to Lose a Bachelor

And we are back with this week’s blog tour!

I am so excited to be a part of the blog tour for How to Lose a Bachelor by Anna Banks because I really enjoyed her Syrena Legacy series and definitely wanted to see if I would love her adult romance too. As always, this blog tour is being hosted by Tasty Book Tours and you can check out the rest of the schedule for the blog tour here.

If you are looking for a hilariously adorable second chance romance that takes place during a “The Bachelor” style reality show, then you will not want to miss How to Lose a Bachelor by Anna Banks.


How to Lose a Bachelor
By: Anna Banks
Releasing Nov 9th, 2015
Entangled Bliss
HOW TO LOSE_CoverWhen Rochelle Ransom auditioned for the dating show Luring Love, she had big plans for winning the prize money to help her favorite charity–and if she won the hot bachelor’s heart, even better. But at the last minute she finds out the hot bachelor is her ex-boyfriend, Grant Drake. Desperate to keep her distance from him, she’ll do anything–and everything–to get voted off.

Years ago, Rochelle broke Grant’s heart, and he’s out for revenge. There’s no way he’ll vote her off.  After all, vengeance is a dish best served red-hot…and on live television.

When her hilarious antics to get kicked off the show escalate, Grant’s reminded why he fell in love with her the first time. Now he isn’t sure which might be more fun… Seeing how far Rochelle is willing to go to get away or how far he will to keep her forever

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25833031-how-to-lose-a-bachelor?ac=1
 Amazon | B&N | Kobo iTunes

7b492-author-banner
Anna_Tour

NYT Bestselling YA author of The Syrena Legacy series: OF POSEIDON (2012) OF TRITON (2013) OF NEPTUNE (2014). Repped by rockstar Lucy Carson of the Friedrich Agency. I live with my husband and daughter in the Florida Panhandle. I have a southern accent compared to New Yorkers, and I enjoy food cooked with real fat. I can’t walk in high heels, but I’m very good at holding still in them. If you put chocolate in front of me, you must not have wanted it in the first place.

Website
 | Facebook | Twitter | GoodReads

Giveaway
Author will be hosting a Tour Wide Giveaway for a chance to win a $100 Amazon Gift Card
Click the link below to enter into the giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Review-Banner

The number of times I have laughed out loud or smiled while reading this book should give you some kind of indication of just how much I enjoyed it. Having previously read the first book in Anna Bank’s Syrena Legacy (I will be finishing that series ASAP lol), I knew I was in for a treat and she did not disappoint me one bit. How to Lose a Bachelor is witty, hilarious, adorable, and just down right cute at times, making it a wonderfully quick read of the second chance romance between Rochelle and Grant. Plus add in the “The Bachelor” style reality show setting and you got your own little mini drama on the side which is always fun to watch, or in this case read about.
Rochelle Ransom is a no holds bar attorney who has worked her butt off to get herself on track to becoming partner in a few years. In addition to that, she spends what little time is left over from her job as a corporate attorney doing pro bono work for Helping Hands, a shelter that helps battered women get their lives back together as the trauma they have experienced. This is her real passion which is why she decides to go on Luring Love in the first place, not to find “true love” but to win and convince the bachelor to give her his share of the prize money to put towards getting Helping Hands a state of the art facility for the women at the shelter. It is also a matter that is near and dear to her heart seeing as she watched her father abuse her mother when she was younger before he was sent away to prison because of it. Rochelle, or Chelle which is Grant’s nickname for her, is feisty, determined, a little stubborn, but totally lovable. It was so much fun watching her pull her antics on Luring Love after she finds out Grant is the bachelor, doing whatever it takes to get revenge on him for how he broke her heart almost ten years earlier when they were dating back in college. It is even more entertaining to see that despite her efforts of revenge, Rochelle slowly starts to fall for Grant again causing you to root for their second chance romance as the novel progresses.
And then you have Grant Drake, who gets the shock of his life when he sees Rochelle as one of the contestants on Luring Love where he is the bachelor that all the girls are trying to win. Grant decided to become the bachelor with the help from his friend Chris who happens to be the host on the show in order to try and get over the woman he is still in love with even after he broke up with her in college. Of course, things do not necessarily go as planned seeing as the woman he is still in love with just so happens to be one of the contestants aka Rochelle. Still hurt from finding out that Rochelle was going to choose going to law school at Berkeley over being with him back in college, Grant also uses this opportunity to get some vengeance on her. Obviously, one can see that both of their plans will lead to something more than just revenge but hey, props to them for trying lol. Besides being the bachelor, Grant is also a tactical training consultant which means he provides training for people in ways to defend themselves in case they are attacked. It is definitely kismet that both he and Rochelle do work that revolve around helping people who have either been attacked or who want to be able to prevent themselves from being attacked again whether that is learning self-defense skills or turning towards a shelter to help them rebuild their life. I really admired how much Grant cared about this topic in his own way especially after he saw what it did to Rochelle when they were dating in college.
Given the circumstances and the motives of both Rochelle and Grant, one can only assume that things on the show did not go smoothly. As both try to get back at one another, they are also met with the feelings they had way back when for one each other which makes you hope that in some way they will reconcile and, in the end, get back together. The fire and passion between Rochelle and Grant is still there, made evident during one of the challenges on the show where the women had to come up with a booth at a charity event and try to raise the most money to go towards a cause that helps battered women. Rochelle’s idea of having an old-fashioned kissing booth pays off in more ways than one solidifying your hope for them to realize their love for one another is still there and, to therefore put aside their need for vengeance against one another.
If you love witty banter, crazy antics that come with the territory of being on a “The Bachelor” style reality show, and above all else a passionate as well as an adorably cute second chance romance, then look now further and pick up How to Lose a Bachelor by Anna Banks. You will not be disappointed, I promise you that!

Unknown-1


book review · books

Review: Back to Us

BtUBack to Us by Theresa Roman
Release Date: July 28th, 2015
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Format: Ebook
Where You Can Find It: Amazon | Goodreads

**I received an advanced copy of this book from Xpresso Book Tours in exchange for an honest review.**

Synopsis:  Abandoned by her parents at fourteen, Jessica knows what it means to struggle. She’s vowed that getting her degree is the only thing she has time for, until a summer internship brings Justin into her life.

But Justin has scars of his own. A tour of duty in Afghanistan has left him with wounds. A medical discharge from the Navy leaves Justin struggling to make sense of his new reality. Then he meets Jessica; but can the two of them leave their pain in the past and make a future together?

Fighting for want you want despite the hardships you have faced is definitely the over-arching theme in this novel. Both Jess and Justin have been hit hard by what life has decided to throw at them and yet they keep on going after what they want or doing what they are passionate about. You learn very early on just how strong and determined Jess had to be once her parents abandoned her and she was put in the system. She got into college where her focus now went to finishing and earning her degree in the hopes of becoming a teacher afterwards. That focus leads her to her internship at the community center where she crosses paths with Justin, the basketball coach, and in that moment her plan for the future shifts dramatically.
Though you do not realize the degree of hardships Justin has had to face until it is revealed in the novel which, was a complete shock to me and definitely brought an unexpected element to the story that I quickly embraced, he is also fighting to maintain the normalcy of his life after what has happened. Of course that normalcy is shattered once he and Jess meet and slowly start to get close to one another. His fears and insecurities of how he will be perceived by Jess when she finds out the extent of his injuries leads him to first fight against his feelings for her. That of course is a lost cause as the two become closer and closer, resulting in them accepting what has happened to each one another in their pasts as well as between them as the novel progresses. Never giving up the fight for one another after all the obstacles and issues that arise, Jess and Justin are finally able to be together, the “us” they were from the very beginning.
Stepping into Jess’s shoes and taking in the full extent of what happened to her when she was a teenager allows you to see just how strong she is. Her parents ABANDONED her when she was 14, they just left and went back to Croatia neglecting her and her brother Mike because they saw them as burdens. That and the fact that afterwards, Jess was put in the foster system where she lived in a group home until she moved into the dorms for college is unbelievable because despite that hardship Jess was still able to move forward into college where her focus was turned towards getting her degree. Her determination and fortitude is so admirable you couldn’t help but rally behind Jess hoping she would finally get what she wanted after all she has been through.
With the degree of struggles and obstacles that both Jess and Justin have faced it is not surprising to find that this novel is definitely full of emotions. Jess and Justin’s romance begins slowly and is adorable to read but their relationship is not immune to certain factors that lead to it hit a few bumps, some larger than others, along the way. *SPOILERS* Justin’s injuries and how he is a double amputee, having lost both his legs from below the knee due to an IED when he was in Afghanistan, definitely kicks things up a notch on the emotional scale. Not only did it completely surprise me but it also allowed me to look past Justin as someone who has a disability and see him how Jess saw him from the very beginning. By revealing the extent of his injuries a little later in the novel, you are able see him as this guy who is sincere and caring towards Jess and not as someone who lost his legs while overseas in Afghanistan. I really appreciated that reveal because it definitely allowed me to look past what has happened to Justin and focus more on his relationship with Jess.
Despite all this, there were a few things with this book that did not sit right with me. The pacing of the novel felt a little off to me especially when at times it seemed like things happened just a little too fast between Jess and Justin in regards to the unfolding of their relationship. Also, though I am glad of how Justin’s character turned out at the end of the novel, his issues and insecurities reared their ugly head a few too many times to the point that I found him to be a little annoying and just a tad too protective of Jess.

3-out-of-5-stars

blog tour · book blog · book review · books

Blog Tour: The Fading Dusk

It’s time for this week’s blog tour!

This blog tour is being hosted by Xpresso Book Tours and as always I would just like to say how thankful I am to have this opportunity to be host. Follow the rest of the tour here.

If you like young adult fantasy books with sassy female protagonists, murder, magic, and so much more then I definitely suggest you check out The Fading Dusk by Melissa Giorgio!


 The Fading Dusk by Melissa Giorgio
(Smoke and Mirrors, #1)
Publication date: July 19th 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
 Fading
In the gritty city of Dusk, seventeen-year-old Irina makes her living as the street magician Bantheir’s assistant. The job isn’t glamorous, but she loves the crowds, the shows, and most of all, the illusion of magic. But Irina’s world is shattered the night she is arrested and charged as Bantheir’s accomplice to murder—murder by magic.
Real magic, the kind that’s been forbidden since the old wars.
Irina finds the idea of flashy showman Bantheir using actual magic to kill someone laughable, but she’s the only one who sees how ridiculous the claim is. But how can she convince everyone Bantheir is innocent when they’ve already made up their minds? Desperate, Irina must decide who she can trust to help her win her freedom. Is the surly, handsome Captain Leonid telling the truth when he says he believes Irina is innocent, or is he just using her to get to Bantheir?
What about Aden, the sweet soldier and longtime fan of Irina’s who claims he’s on her side?
Irina said she wanted to know the truth, but when she stumbles across a dark secret that changes everything, will she be strong enough to survive?
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25954617-the-fading-dusk
Purchase:
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0125KV45W/ref=cm_sw_su_dp
B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-fading-dusk-melissa-giorgio/1122399040?ean=9781515150589

Author Spotlight

Melissa

Melissa Giorgio is a native New Yorker who graduated from Queens College with a degree in English. She’s always dreamed of being a writer and has been creating stories (mostly in her head) since she was a little girl. Also an avid reader, Melissa loves to devour thick YA novels. When not reading or writing, she enjoys watching animated films, listening to music by her favorite Japanese boy band, or exploring Manhattan. She is also the author of the Silver Moon Saga.

Author links:
https://melissagiorgio.wordpress.com/
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7133276.Melissa_Giorgio
https://www.facebook.com/melissagiorgiofan
https://twitter.com/melissa_giorgio

Giveaway

Tour Wide Giveaway:

One signed paperback of THE FADING DUSK and one signed paperback of THE SIGHT SEER

Enter into the giveaway by clicking below:
a Rafflecopter giveaway


 Review

What if you were told that the person you trust the most, the person who raised you after your mother died, is a cold blooded killer? Would you believe the person who told this horrible thing or would you deny it profusely vowing to prove their innocence to the authorities who believe they are guilty and will strike again?  This is the predicament that Irina finds herself in when she is detained and then imprisonedby the authorities who believe that her master, Bantheir, the street magician is murdering people. Things don’t look very good for her especially when a surly and very serious captain Leonid believes she may have some part in the murders leading them to butt heads with one another. It can be very hard to turn your back on the person you trust the most but Irina soon learns that her allies become the very people that imprisoned as the truth is revealed even though she does not like what she learns.
The characters are definitely an aspect of this novel that I liked because they each had their own personas that were not entirely set in stone and what I mean by that is you believed a character to be one thing and then later on you learn that they are something entirely different. This was refreshing because it added an element of surprise while I was reading and definitely kept me on my toes a little bit. Irina is a spitfire, which is fitting because of her fiery red hair, but from the moment she is captured, detained, and then later imprisoned she holds her ground and her convictions that they have the wrong man that their is no way Bantheir could have killed all those people. Despite being absolutely terrified of the captain and their methods of trying to get her to talk in the beginning, she still goes head to head with Captain Leonid which was very entertaining as it allowed for their relationship with one another develop. I think the only aspect of Irina that annoyed me a little bit was her insecurity towards her appearance and how she compared herself to other girls like Elyse and Coreen commenting on how her curly red hair and pale skin made her look awful in comparison to them. My only wish is that she was confident enough about those things that she didn’t need to be told she was remarkably beautiful by someone like Leonid later on in the story.
Irina and Leonid’s relationship was another aspect of the novel that I very much enjoyed because of how it progressed. There is just something so amusing and intriguing when a relationship between two people starts at a place where both individuals feel absolute animosity for one another and therefore bicker and butt heads any chance they get. When Irina and the reader first meet Leonid you think he is this stingy, by the book captain who doesn’t care how Irina is feeling when she is first brought in because he only wants to find out where Bantheir is so he can stop the killings. But as the story progresses you find out his true motives for wanting to find the killer and see him slowly start to care for Irina as the investigation reaches its climax. My assumptions for who Leonid was as a person changed and I couldn’t help but root for them throughout the rest of the story even if they did continue to get on each other’s nerves sometimes.
In addition to Irina and Leonid, I also loved Vernen, Leonid’s best friend, because he was just so lovable and caring towards Irina even during times of peril when she was frightened she would be imprisoned for the rest of her life per the councilor’s orders (Leonid’s superior). But, the one thing that I really enjoyed and appreciated is when it is revealed that Vernen is gay (spoilers, sorry!) because like I said earlier it was an aspect of his character I did not see coming and therefore I was very surprised. I had him pinned as the funny best friend to Leonid who provides some comic relief and becomes good friends with Irina but revealing that he is gay was just a wonderful addition to his character that made him even more lovable.
Overall, I liked this book. The characters were definitely the driving force for me because, how the story developed in regards to the murders and the magical element that was involved was a little slow for me. You get bits and pieces of it but they are still shrouded in an air of mystery which is good because it keeps you guessing but after a while I just wanted something to happened or be revealed so that that part of the story would move forward a little bit more especially since it is a fantasy novel. Despite that, I think that this novel is engaging, action packed, suspenseful, and very entertaining thanks to Irina and Leonid’s bickering. I am very much interested to see what will happen in the second book of this series.

Unknown


Intrigued by what you have read above? Want to experience the bickerings of Irina and Leonid for yourself? Wondering if they will stop the killer in time?

Then why not pick up The Fading Dusk by Melissa Giorgio? You know you want to lol.

blog tour · book blog · book review · books

Blog Tour: Seized by Love

And we are back with this week’s blog tour post!

I am so excited to be a part of Seized by Love‘s blog tour because it was so heartwarmingly cute that I could not stop smiling the entire time I was reading it. And… today is the release date for Seized by Love so we can also celebrate the book birthday for this amazing book!

The blog tour for Seized by Love by Melissa Foster is being hosted by Tasty Book Tours and as always I just wanted to say that I am so thankful to be given the opportunity to be a host.

If you want to feel the warm fuzzies and get caught up in a romance that is both so adorable and so genuine, then continue reading below (you won’t regret it!)


Seized By Love
Love In Bloom #29: The Ryders #1
By: Melissa Foster
Releasing October 28, 2015
World Literary Press
Seized_by-LoveYou fell in love with Blue Ryder and Lizzie Barber in Seaside Summers, now follow their journey to find true love in SEIZED BY LOVE, the first book in the Ryder series.

Lizzie Barber runs a successful flower shop by day and secretly hosts the Naked Baker webcast at night to help pay for her younger sister’s education. To keep friends and family from finding out about her sexy secret, she’s put her social life on hold until her sister’s education is paid off and she can stop filming the webcast.

Blue Ryder fell hard for Lizzie Barber when he met her a year ago, and he hasn’t been able to get her off his mind since. Everything about the feisty little brunette, from her tight bod to her seductive smile, cuts straight to his heart. Though Lizzie has turned down every invitation he’s extended—Blue is not about to give up trying.

Renovating Lizzie’s kitchen brings Blue further into Lizzie’s life, and the oven is not the only thing heating up. One night and one powerful kiss changes everything. But when Lizzie’s secret is revealed and the safe bubble she’s hidden in shatters, true love may not be enough to put the pieces back together.

THE RYDERS are the newest addition to the LOVE IN BLOOM series by New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning author Melissa Foster. This 5-book hot contemporary romance series features alpha male heroes and sexy, empowered women. They’re flawed, funny, passionate, and relatable to readers who enjoy new adult romance, contemporary romance, and women’s fiction.
Link to Follow Tour: http://www.tastybooktours.com/2015/09/seized-by-love-love-in-bloom-ryders-1.html

Goodreads Link:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23123675-seized-by-love
Goodreads Series Link:
https://www.goodreads.com/series/111661-love-in-bloom

Buy Links: Amazon | B & N | iTunes | Kobo

Author Spotlight

MelissaMelissa Foster is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning author. She writes contemporary romance, new adult, contemporary women’s fiction, suspense, and historical fiction with emotionally compelling characters that stay with you long after you turn the last page. Her books have been recommended by USA Today’s book blog, Hagerstown Magazine, The Patriot, and several other print venues. She is the founder of the World Literary Café and Fostering Success. When she’s not writing, Melissa helps authors navigate the publishing industry through her author training programs on Fostering Success. Melissa has been published in Calgary’s Child Magazine, the Huffington Post, and Women Business Owners magazine.

Melissa hosts an Aspiring Authors contest for children and has painted and donated several murals to The Hospital for Sick Children in Washington, DC. Melissa lives in Maryland with her family.

Visit Melissa on social media. Melissa enjoys discussing her books with book clubs and reader groups, and welcomes an invitation to your event.

 
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads


Giveaway
Melissa will be hosting a Tour Wide Giveaway for two winners to receive an ebook backlist romance (Winner’s Choice)

Click below to enter into the giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Review-Banner

This is the first book by Melissa Foster that I have ever read, which influenced my feelings a little when I was reading Seized by Love because it is part of this expansive series of hers, Love in Bloom, which has these mini-series within in it and that was a little daunting at first. But, all I can say is that I have the first book in this series, Sisters in Love, and I will definitely be reading that ASAP because I could not get enough of the world that was depicted in Seized by Love and if the characters in the other books in this series are just as amazing as the characters in this book then I can’t wait for more emotionally charged and overall epic romances.
While Lizzie and Blue’s romance was so engrossing and adorable and basically everything I would want when I find the person who I am meant to spend the rest of my life with, the setting of the book and how it took place on Cape Cod really hit home for me and heightened all my feelings and emotions up a notch. Cape Cod holds a special place in Lizzie’s heart because she grew up there and always wanted to open up her flower shop in Provincetown, or P-Town, and it also holds a special place in my heart because coincidentally my family is from Brewster and I have been spending my summers there since I was a baby. This connection just made my experience of reading this book so much more because I could completely picture what was going on and therefore invested so much into Lizzie and Blue relationship as they finally realize their feelings for each other after a year of knowing each other and decide to go for it.
Lizzie Barber could easily be compared to Wonder Woman because she does so much with her business at her flower shop and then with her second business, the webcast The Naked Baker, and then in between she has time to bring the left over flowers from her shop to unattended graves at the cemetery as well as drops off the treats she makes to the local homeless shelter. She is selfless, kind, unbelievably determined, and fiercely loyal to her family especially her sister Maddy whom she is supporting financially as she attends college. I was in awe of how much strength and generosity Lizzie had because it made her so personable and I admired her so much for what she was doing especially with her webcast since it was not something she wanted to continue doing but she did it anyway because of her sister. She very much inspires you through the work she does because regardless of how she feels about continuing to film her webcast she approaches it from a business standpoint and uses her knowledge to turn it into a profit that will help her sister. Intelligence, generosity, loyalty, and determination are all qualities that Lizzie embodies and it was such a joy to see them come to life throughout the book.
I can pretty much sum up Blue Ryder with one word: perfection. Now it may be bold to use that word but honestly he is perfection. The more I read, the more I thought “Could he get anymore perfect?” and the answer time after time was yes. While I am not completely sold on his name, Blue as a person, more specifically as a man, could put a lot of the male population to shame. His honesty and the affection he showed toward Lizzie made my heart flutter so many times I lost track. Some of his confessionals to Lizzie were just so sincere and genuine that I almost didn’t really believe him because I didn’t have the previous context that they had known each other already for a year. Once I was able to take that into consideration, the degree of separation I felt from not having read those previous memories between them quickly faded and I fell for Blue as hard as Lizzie did in the book. I dare someone to read this book and try not to fall in love with Blue because it is not possible. Men should take notes because Blue can absolutely show them how it is done.
Obviously not reading any of the previous books in the Love in Bloom series impacted my reading of Seized by Love a little but I honestly think that you are still able to gain enough context that by the middle of the book that does not even matter. The setting, the characters, and the romance which was both adorably heartwarming and wonderfully genuine will pull you in from the very beginning leaving you engrossed in Lizzie and Blue’s relationship as they tackle obstacles that arise overcoming them and discovering how powerful it is when you find the one you are meant to be with. They are seized by their love for one another and I guarantee you will be too as you witness how knowing each other for a year set them up for a love that will last them the rest of their lives.
                                                                                                                                      4/5 stars

blog tour · book blog · books

Blog Tour: The Beauty of Lies

Oh look… it is another blog tour. I hope everyone has enjoyed the consistent flow of them here on Reaffirming My Bookworm Status because they will not be stopping anytime soon lol. Today’s blog tour post is for The Beauty of Lies by Brinda Berry and the tour is being hosted by Xpresso Book tours.

Enjoy reading about next door neighbors falling in love? How about if there are secrets involved making things a little more complicated? Well then, The Beauty of Lies may just be exactly what you are looking for.


The Beauty of Lies by Brinda Berry
(Stand by Me, #1)
Publication date: October 6th 2015
Genres: New Adult, Romance

BeautyOfLiesSecrets are exposed, trust is betrayed and two people face the beauty of lies.

Leo Jensen has a secret–he is Mr. Expose, a blogger that reveals the truth about liars and frauds. It’s a way to make a living, and he’s had a motherlode of experience with liars. Cheaters. Women who live for drama and carry more hidden baggage than a Boeing 747. Even his twin sister can’t seem to admit the truth about her relationships, so finding an honest woman is about as likely as finding a unicorn in the middle of Nashville.

Harper Wade wishes life had a do-over button. She’d press that sucker and reset the last four years. Now, she has the chance to start fresh and make things right, but first she has to retrieve the damning evidence of her past from an annoying blogger. She’s doing all the things she knows she shouldn’t–breaking and entering, lying by omission, falling for the hot guy next door. Too bad he holds the key to her clean slate.

Purchase:
Amazon | B&N

Author Spotlight

BrindaBrinda Berry lives in the southern US with her family. Brinda is obsessed with cairn terriers, Kings of Leon, new technology and sandy beaches.  She’s also terribly fond of chocolate, coffee, and books that take her away from reality.

Author links:
http://www.brindaberry.com/
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5053831.Brinda_Berry
https://www.facebook.com/BrindaBerryAuthor
https://twitter.com/brinda_berry

Giveaway
Tour-wide Giveaway (open internationally):
$25 Amazon Gift Card

Click down below to enter into the giveaway:
a Rafflecopter giveaway


 Excerpt

Leo

I lay my hand flat on the table and tap with the beat of the music. I’m dying to play this stupid game. I can think of all kinds of things I’ll discover about Harper.
But my motives are childish and selfish. Temptation beats a drum while chanting that I give in. I inhale. “Let’s just play cards,” I say.
Dane uses two fingers to nudge the shot glass. “Drink up, buddy.”
“You don’t want to play?” Harper’s eyes glitter.
I raise one eyebrow. Then I make sure to look at Harper when I say my next words in case she needs an out. “I’ll play if everyone wants to.”
Josie looks to her left at Harper. “Here we go. Have you ever gotten arrested?” She raises her daiquiri to her lips. “Cheers,” she says and takes a huge drink.
Harper’s mouth drops into a cute little ‘O’ and she exhales. “Not me.”
Dane takes the shot glass and upends it.
I grin at him. “Man, this doesn’t bode well for you.”
Josie turns to Harper again. “This is going to be fun. Your turn to ask a question.”
“Have you ever cheated on a test?” Harper asks.
Dane rolls his eyes. “I cheat on every test.”
Harper drinks from her daiquiri. “This tastes pretty good.”
I don’t take a drink and grin while Dane and Josie take their penalty.
I’m up for a question. What do I want to know about Harper? Maybe a sure bet so she’ll have to drink. “Have you ever gossiped?”
We all take a drink. Harper’s grin warms my chest. Or maybe it’s the whiskey. Either way, I’m starting to feel mellow.
“My turn,” Dane says. He pours liquor in both our shot glasses.
At this rate, I’m going to be wasted long before the girls finish their little icy drinks. Shit.
“Have you ever wished you were with someone else while on a date?” Dane asks.
I grin. Dane is an asshole. I lift my shot glass and so do Dane and Josie. “So much for romance,” I say and drink the shot in one long pull.
We continue with a few inane questions that have us laughing because everything now qualifies as funny. Josie gets up from the table several times to make more daiquiris and brings one for Harper every time she refills her own.
It’s Harper’s turn and she stares at the table in concentration. No one rushes her. Finally, she raises her head. “Have you ever loved someone? I mean really, truly loved?”
The music still plays in the background, but there’s a sonic boom sound in my head and my entire body clenches in response to the question. I didn’t see that coming.
I take the shot in one gulp. The heat of the liquor burns my throat. The sensation is a welcome assault after that question.

Interested after reading the excerpt? Want to find out what secrets either Leo or Harper are hiding?

Well then, check out The Beauty of Lies to find out!

blog tour · book blog · books

Blog Tour: The Breathless Series

Once again, it is time for another blog tour and this time we are celebrating an entire series. It saddens me to say that due to getting terribly sick I am unable to provide you with my review of this entire series but that does not mean I can’t give it the recognition it deserves. This blog tour is being hosted by Tasty Book Tours and as always I would like to thank them for giving me the opportunity to be a part of this blog tour for what looks to be like a very enticing and entertaining love story.

The Breathless series by Lynn Montagano is a trilogy comprised of Catch My Breath, Unravel Me, and Effortless and it follows the romance of Lia Meyer as her relaxing getaway to Scotland is interrupted when she meets the ever so charming yet arrogant, Alastair Holden. Lia wants nothing more than to avoid Alastair as she is getting over a horrible break up but the attraction is there nonetheless and soon they begin to get closer to one another. It sounds like a love story you won’t want to miss and I definitely don’t plan to either especially since it takes place in Scotland of all places.

If you are intrigued as I am be sure to check down below for some goodies like a chance to enter into the giveaway that is being held.


 CATCH MY BREATH

Breathless #1

Lynn Montagano

Released April 17th, 2014

Lia Meyers’ plan for a relaxing Scottish vacation is short-lived when one uncharacteristic moment of clumsiness lands her in the arms of a dangerously attractive Englishman.
The perfect opportunity for a much needed holiday romance? Wrong! Lia’s still reeling from the mother of all bad breakups, and she really doesn’t have the patience for Alastair Holden – despite his effortless charm and sexy British accent.
Arrogant and totally inscrutable, he’s exactly the sort of guy she wants to avoid but can’t: the man behind the mystery proves just too tempting to resist.
Drawn to him, Lia is forced to battle with her own insecurities, and the closer they become, the more she recognizes her own weaknesses as she peels away his layers with every night they spend together.

Discovering the past Alastair is so desperate to conceal, Lia must decide if they can heal one another together or if their deepest fears will tear them apart.

BUY NOW
Amazon | B & N | Google Play | iTunes | Kobo

UNRAVEL ME
Breathless #2
Lynn Montagano
Released July 17th, 2014 
Lia’s meant to be on cloud nine: ever since she and Alastair finally confessed their love for one another, their relationship has never been so good.
Her British-born Adonis is all intent on sweeping her off her feet, showering her with gifts and affection more than worthy of the girlfriend of an international, millionaire businessman!
But their past seems to be intent on dragging the both of them down, and the hushed gossip of a dark secret begins to cause havoc to Lia’s life…
With an ocean separating her from her love, Lia can’t help but wonder if she can ever feel secure with a man who still plays everything so close to his chest, including her.
 
BUY NOW
Amazon | B& N | Google PlayiTunes | Kobo

EFFORTLESS
Breathless #3
Lynn Montagano
Released Feb 12th, 2015
Everythingin Lia Meyers’ life seems perfect. She’s made the move ‘across the pond’ to start a new life with the man of her dreams and is impressing her new bosses as the executive producer of a popular news magazine program.
Alastair Holden, the enigmatic Englishman who has Lia’s heart, puts her above all else, even at the expense of his billion-dollar worldwide media empire. Lia couldn’t be luckier, right?
But her lavish world of hearts and flowers soon turns upside down. Living under the white hot spotlight of the Holden family empire proves to be more complicated than she anticipated. She doesn’t know who to trust and questions the motives of her closest friends.
To make matters worse, Alastair begins to revert back to his closed off ways. When a life changing event thrusts him into chaos, Lia must decide if a diamond really is forever or if she should learn to cut her losses.
BUY NOW

Enter to Win a 
Signed Print Set of The Breathless Series

a Rafflecopter giveaway


A fresh, new voice in contemporary romance, Lynn is a former TV news writer who decided to take the plunge and write a novel. She’s thrilled that her debut series has been published by Harper Impulse. Catch My Breath, Unravel Me and Effortless were released to rave reviews.

Lynn grew up in a small town in Rhode Island before venturing out into the world. She’s lived everywhere from Los Angeles to Boston to Orlando. An avid traveler, Lynn’s been as far away as Australia and as close as Canada. Her favorite place to visit is London.

The small town girl is back on the east coast after a brief stint in Northern California. Lynn currently resides in Massachusetts, comfortably close to her beloved football team.
blog tour · book blog · book review · books

Blog Tour: Major Misconduct

Hope everyone has enjoyed “Blog Tour Central Week” (totally made this up but hey, why not) as much as I have. Today’s blog tour post is the last one for the week but don’t worry there will be more.

Here’s another sports romance only this time it is hockey that takes the center ice. Given my background with hockey because of my brother, I really enjoyed reading Major Misconduct by Kelly Jamieson. And as always, I want to thank Tasty Book Tours for allowing me to be a spot on this blog tour.

If you are a sucker for a sports romance that is cute, funny, and definitely brings the heat (if you catch my drift lol) then stay tuned!!


Major Misconduct
Aces Hockey #1
By: Kelly Jamieson
Releasing October 13, 2015
Loveswept

Major Misconduct_CoverIn Kelly Jamieson’s seductive new Chicago Aces romance—perfect for readers of Sawyer Bennett and Toni Aleo—a fun-loving free spirit tempts an uptight hockey star into opening himself up to love.

As the captain of the Chicago Aces, Marc Dupuis is all business. The apartment he shares with his teammate and best friend, Duncan, is a refuge from the pressures of fame. But when the sexiest woman he’s ever seen interrupts his early morning coffee wearing only a skimpy cami and matching panties, Marc can’t exactly say he minds. Their chemistry is off the charts. Unfortunately, this girl’s no random puck bunny. She’s Duncan’s little sister—and she’s moving in.

Lovey Armstrong could stare at Marc’s chiseled abs and listen to his French-Canadian accent all day. She just has no idea what’s going on inside his head: When he’s not charming her pants off, Marc makes a Zamboni machine seem warm and cuddly. Lovey knows the team’s bro code says no messing with sisters, but all these mixed messages are hard on a girl’s self-esteem—especially since she’s finally getting her new life together in Chicago. She decides he’s worth another shot . . . because if anyone can melt the ice around Marc’s heart, it’s Lovey.


Link to Follow Tour: http://www.tastybooktours.com/2015/08/major-misconduct-aces-hockey-1-by-kelly.html

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25014305-major-misconduct?ac=1
Goodreads Series Link: https://www.goodreads.com/series/148210-aces-hockey
 
Buy Links: Amazon | B & N | iTunes | Kobo

Author Spotlightkelly

Kelly Jamieson is the author of more than thirty contemporary romance novels. She’s a married mother of two who lives a very ordinary life outside of her imagination. She likes coffee (black), wine (mostly white), and shoes (high!). She also loves watching hockey.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Giveaway
Publisher will be hosting a Tour Wide Giveaway for a Select Loveswept Ebook Bundle

Click the link down below to enter into the giveaway:
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Review-Banner

Ever want to know what it would be like to live with a sexy, French hockey player? Well, if you pick up Major Misconduct you can live vicariously through Lovey, who comes face-to-face with one wearing nothing but a pair of boxers when they first meet (see excerpt). I know it is not the real thing, but I promise you will be very much entertained in this light-hearted, yet definitely still steamy sports romance.

Lovey Armstrong is a ray of sunshine and oozes effervescence throughout the entire book. She is known to have a killer smile and brightness to her, wanting to live life to the fullest and love every second of it. Because of that, you can’t help but smile yourself. Whether she is taking charge of her life by signing up for yoga class or cooking class to meet new people in Chicago or showing off her ambitious side of getting her new business and blog to take off so that her brother will believe she is making something of herself, Lovey is just simply lovable. By the end of the book, I guarantee you will have this new found energy to want to do more in you life based purely off of what Lovey does in order to make a new life for herself in Chicago.

Then, you have Marc Dupuis, the team captain of the Aces hockey team aka one very good looking, French hockey player. While Lovey captured my attention a little bit more, Marc still had his moments especially when you saw how dedicated and driven he was in regards to his career. Nicknamed “Captain Codger” by his teammates for not always partaking in all the fun that comes with the perks of being professional hockey players, Marc takes his role as team captain very seriously which I found to be so admirable and extremely sexy. Oh, and lets not forget the fact that he also runs a program that allows children who are sick to come to an Aces game and have a private meet and greet with him afterwards. Are you swooning yet? Because that definitely made my heart flutter a little bit. And of course, to top it all off he speaks French which just seals the deal in my opinion.

While the characters stole the show for me, especially Lovey and Marc’s romance, I will say that the only issue I had was the writing style. At times it flowed nicely and you were able to get caught up in the story, but at other times it felt very choppy to me which made it difficult to read. Luckily, the characters felt very animated to me so I was able to look past it most of the time but it was definitely an aspect that hindered my reading of the story.
All in all, Major Misconduct is a delightfully cute read that, at times, will leave you inspired to go out and live your life to the fullest as well as wish that you lived with a sexy and determined French hockey player like Marc.
Unknown-1

Excerpt-Banner

She’d never begrudged Duncan his success. She was proud of her brother. He’d worked hard his whole life to achieve what he had and he totally deserved it. But there had been times she’d wished she had some kind of super talent that would make everyone proud of her.
“You’re giving me the gears before I’m barely in the door. Not cool, Dunc.”
His lips quirked as if he was repressing another smile. He gestured to one of the brown leather couches. “Sit down.”
She sank into the couch and crossed her legs.
Duncan sat across from her. “You don’t quit a perfectly good job just because it’s not your dream job, Lovey. If you don’t like it, you look around for something else and then you quit.”
“Not if you’re moving to Chicago. I had to quit so I could move here. I’ll find something here, I’m sure.”
Duncan thought she was a flighty, impetuous screwup who’d quit a good job and moved to another state on a whim. And she wasn’t about to set him straight on that, because . . . it was true.
Well, to a certain extent it was true. But she didn’t want to tell him about her goals and dreams because . . . because she wasn’t entirely sure she could do this . . . and she didn’t want him saying “I told you so” if she failed.
She pushed down her misgivings and smiled at him. “I just need a place to stay for a while.”
“You can’t stay here.”
Her mouth dropped open. “What? Why not? You’ve got tons of room! Look at this place.” She sat up straight and swept an arm out. “Fifty billion square feet, probably ten bathrooms . . .”
“Two and a half,” he corrected. “And three bedrooms. And it’s only two thousand square feet. Not fifty billion,” he added in a muttered tone.
Only two thousand. As if one guy needs that much space.”
“I have a roommate,” he reminded her. “Two of the three bedrooms are occupied and the third has no furniture.”
She frowned and sank back into the couch. “Oh. Well. That doesn’t matter. I’ll just sleep on the floor until we can get me a bed.”
“We’re not getting you a bed.”
“Hey, Army, what time are we heading out?” a deep male voice interrupted them. “Oh. Hey.”
Lovey’s head snapped around at the unfamiliar voice and then her eyes went wide and her jaw dropped.
The guy standing across the room wore a pair of boxer shorts and nothing else. Sweet cheese-its, he was hot. Even more muscular than Duncan, he was about the same height. Short brown hair stood in messy spikes on top, and the same golden-brown stubble lay over his chiseled jaw and upper lip. His lips were thinnish but nicely shaped, his eyes a beautiful sky blue color she could see from here, framed with thick eyelashes.
Her gaze tracked over bulky shoulders and arms, a chest that was slabs of muscle and smooth golden skin, a freakin’ eight-pack of abs that literally made her want to drool, then down over the blue boxer shorts sitting low on lean hips, to his bare legs. She blinked at the size of his thighs and the delineation of the massive muscles bulging above his knees. His calves were also strong, covered with more dark gold hair. His long, sinewy bare feet stood on the bare wood floor.
She lifted her gaze back up to his face and smiled. “Hi.”
He blinked, his expression not changing. “Uh. Hi.” He glanced at Duncan. “Sorry, man, didn’t know you had someone here.” He took a step back.
“Dude, go put some clothes on. This is my little sister.”
The guy’s eyes flickered. “Oh. Shit. Be right back.”
“Wait!” Lovey rose and legged it across the carpet in her heels, hand outstretched. “I’m Lovey. It’s nice to meet you; you must be Duncan’s roommate. Marc, right?”
He took another step back but she kept going. He shoved a hand out, maybe to stop her. She grabbed it to shake it.
“Yeah. Marc.”
The faint inflection in the way he said it was . . . sexy. “You’re French.” Her smile broadened.
“Yeah.” He gave her a quick handshake, then released her hand and took two more steps away. “Marc Dupuis. I’ll, uh, be back.”
He disappeared down the hall and she admired the back view. Whoa. Wide at the shoulders, muscled back, deep grooves down the middle that disappeared into the low waistband of the boxers, which did not hide a very firm ass. She gave a sigh of pleasure.
“Lovey.”
She blinked and turned to look at her brother.
That’s why you can’t stay here. This is a bachelor home. You can’t live here with two guys.”
She frowned. “Why not?”
His eyebrows flew up. “We walk around half-dressed sometimes. We don’t want to have to be worried about covering up.”
She grinned. “Don’t worry on my account. You . . . phht.” She waved a hand and rolled her eyes. “He can walk around naked anytime he wants.”
“Jesus fuckin’ Christ.” Duncan rubbed his face. “We drink beer. We make a mess. Well, I do,” he amended. “We party. Lotta the other guys hang out here too.”
She shrugged. “It’s not as if I’m not used to your friends hanging out.” He’d played hockey all through high school—well, all his life, basically—and there’d always been a bunch of guys crowding up their Columbia County dairy farmhouse.
“We have girls over.” He gave her a meaningful look.
She laughed, flopping down on the couch again. “I should hope so.”
“You’re not going to be comfortable here.”
She looked around. “I think I could be very comfortable here.” She gave a nod. “This is a gorgeous place to live. Nice view too.” In the distance Lake Michigan was a haze of blue.
“Fuck,” Duncan muttered.
Marc reappeared, now fully dressed, sadly. Although with clothes on he still looked amazeballs hot. “Sorry about that. Didn’t know you were here, uh, Lovey.”
She beamed at him. “No problem. Duncan was more freaked-out than I was.”
Duncan rolled his eyes.
Lovey studied Marc in his clothes—low-rise faded jeans that had to be specially made to fit loosely over those massive thighs, and a long-sleeve black T-shirt. She let out another brief sigh.
He moved to perch on one of the stools at the big island, then stopped as he took in the mess in the kitchen. With a head shake, he began to clean up, tossing cold pizza into the trash, loading empty beer bottles into cartons. “This place is gross.”
Duncan shrugged and leaned back. “You knew that when you moved in. Don’t get all pissy. You don’t have to clean up.”
“I know, I know.” Marc stacked empty pizza boxes into a blue recycling box. “Just can’t stand the fucking mess.”
Duncan grinned. “That’s your problem.”
Lovey looked back and forth between them. Duncan was a slob, no doubt about it. Mom had pulled her hair out trying to teach him to clean up after himself. Apparently none of it had sunk in. Marc, on the other hand . . . seemed to have learned well. Or maybe he was a neat freak.
Nothing wrong with that. Not at all.
Especially when he looked that good while cleaning up.


Interested in hockey just a little bit more after reading this?

Well… why not fix that by picking up Major Misconduct?

blog tour · book blog · book review · books

Blog Tour: Crossing the Ice

Hope you haven’t gotten tired of seeing blog tours here on Reaffirming My Bookworm Status because I am loving them!

You know what else I LOVED? Crossing the Ice by Jennifer Comeaux, which is the book that today’s blog tour post is all about (if you couldn’t already tell). This blog tour is being hosted by Xpresso Book Tours and I am SO thankful to be a part of it.


Crossing the Ice by Jennifer Comeaux
(Ice #1)
Publication date: August 2nd 2014
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult

Synopsis:

CtIFalling hard never felt so good.

Pair skaters Courtney and Mark have one shot left at their Olympic dream. They vow not to let anything get in their way, especially not Josh and Stephanie, the wealthy and talented brother and sister team.

The heart doesn’t always listen to reason, though…

The more time Courtney spends with sweet, shy Josh, the harder she falls for him. But they are on opposite sides of the competition, and their futures are headed in opposite directions. Will their friendship blossom into more or are their paths too different to cross?

This is the first book in the ICE series. The series continues with book #2, LOSING THE ICE.
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22918519-crossing-the-ice
Purchase:
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00MDXMQIQ/ref=cm_sw_su_dp
B&N; http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/crossing-the-ice-jennifer-comeaux/1119993442?ean=9780990434214

Author Spotlight

Jennifer-Comeaux
Jennifer Comeaux is a tax accountant by day, writer by night. There aren’t any ice rinks near her home in south Louisiana, but she’s a diehard figure skating fan and loves to write stories of romance set in the world of competitive skating. One of her favorite pastimes is traveling to competitions, where she can experience all the glitz and drama that inspire her writing. Jennifer loves to hear from readers! Visit jennifercomeaux.blogspot.com for contact information and to learn more about her books.
Author Links
http://jennifercomeaux.blogspot.ca/
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5368434.Jennifer_Comeaux
https://www.facebook.com/jennifercomeauxauthor
https://twitter.com/LadyWave4
Giveaway
International Tour Wide Giveaway
$20 Amazon Gift Card
Click the link below to enter!!
 a Rafflecopter giveaway

Review
The fact that I flew through this book and could not seem to put it down definitely tells you how much I absolutely loved it. Crossing the Ice pulled at my heartstrings multiple times, not only because it was about ice skating which I grew up doing since my brother was a hockey player or, that it took place in Cape Cod which is where my family is from (aka childhood memory central) but because the romance between Courtney and Josh is one that I wish will happen to me when the time is right.
I am a sucker for the Cutting Edge movies so when I saw that this book revolves around professional ice skaters I was so excited to read this book. I will say though, that I was a little bit skeptical because Josh is described as being sweet and shy and I usually gravitate more towards the guys who are the alpha males, but boy did Josh change my mind about that. I can safely say that I will no longer rule out the “quiet, not-so-suave” guys if they are anything like Josh. He kind of stole the show for me not only because of his personality but because of how sweet and thoughtful he was towards Courtney. The things that boy did for Courtney to show her how much he was thinking about her and cared about her made me swoon at least 10 times. I have no shame in admitting that I was not even halfway through the book and already I wanted to push Courtney out of the way and take her place. Just finding out how long Josh had had feelings for Courtney and how much he thought about her did me in. It’s safe to say that the memory on that boy would put a lot of guys to shame.
Of course, Josh is not the only thing I adored about this book. Courtney also captured my attention due to the fact that she was so ambitious and determined to achieve her dream of making the Olympic team. She has been working towards this goal since she was 12 years old and her drive has not faltered even after her father lost his job and her parents had to move to Boston while she stayed on Cape Cod to train. And, not only does she train, but she also bartends at a local restaurant to pay for her skating lessons all while applying for college which gave her major points in my book.  Courtney’s heart is just as big as her dreams which was so wonderful to see especially when she was interacting with her trainers’ twins Quinn and Alex. But despite that, she also is not afraid to speak her mind which you definitely get to see when she goes toe-to-toe with Josh’s sister Stephanie. It’s hard not to fall for Courtney when she is not only strong, opinionated, and driven but also sweet, caring, and willing to show her vulnerability especially as things heat up with her and Josh.
All in all, this book felt like home to me. There were just so many elements, like it taking place on Cape Cod where I have been going all my life to see family and escape for vacation to the fact that it is about ice skating which reminds me of the countless times of being at a rink either to watch my brother play or to ice skate myself. It was so easy to give my heart to this book and especially to these characters because Courtney and Josh’s love story is one that every girl should have or wish for and one that I am hoping I get the chance to have in the future.
If you are looking for an extremely heartwarming as well as adorably cute romance then look no further. Crossing the Ice will make you swoon, laugh, smile, and hope for a love as endearing as Courtney and Josh’s.

images-2

blog tour · book blog · book review · books

Blog Tour: How Forever Feels

Ready for another one?

Today, I am so excited to be a part of the blog tour for How Forever Feels by Laura Drewry because today is its release day!! So join me in celebrating the release of this adorably heart-warming book!!


How Forever Feels
Friends First #4
By: Laura Drewry
Releasing October 13, 2015
Loveswept
How Forever Feels_CoverFrom USA Today bestselling author Laura Drewry comes a warm and witty new Friends First novel—perfect for readers of Jill Shalvis and Susan Mallery. How Forever Feels is a sweet tale about the one that got away . . . and the one that came back.

Maya McKay’s heart is as big as Jack Rhodes’s shoulders are broad. Their chemistry is out of control, but it could never work between them because Jack is more than just best friends with her cheating ex-husband—they’re like brothers. Maya, the sensitive, practical florist, has given up on love and is ready to settle for like. But now that Jack’s around again, he’s stirring up old feelings—and turning Maya’s fantasies into irresistible reality.

Jack blew his chance with Maya years ago when he stepped aside for his best friend, Will, and he’s still kicking himself about it. Maya was promised forever once before, and she got burned. But when Jack realizes that second chances aren’t going to fall out of the sky, he seizes the moment—and the woman he’s always loved—to show her how forever truly feels.


Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25238945-how-forever-feels
Goodreads Series Link: https://www.goodreads.com/series/143634-friends-first
 
Buy Links: Amazon | B & N | iTunes | Kobo

Link to Follow Tour: http://www.tastybooktours.com/2015/08/how-forever-feels-friends-first-4-by.html

Author Spotlight

LauraUSA Today Bestselling author, Laura Drewry had been scribbling things for years before she decided to seriously sit down and write. After spending eight years in the Canadian north, Laura now lives back home in southwestern British Columbia with her husband, three sons, a turtle named Sheldon, and an extremely energetic German shepherd. She loves old tattered books, good movies, country music, and the New York Yankees.

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads

Giveaway
Publisher will be hosting a Tour Wide Giveaway for a Select Loveswept Ebook Bundle
Interested? Well then, click the link below to enter:
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Review-Banner

I’m not sure how many times a person can use the word cute or adorable in the span of a review before it gets redundant or annoying but I guarantee that is what I would do if I could to describe this book. Luckily, I am going to try and use my expansive vocabulary so that no one is subject to the endless number of cute’s and adorable’s I had planned for this review. Despite it being cute/adorable, How Forever Feels is also one of those feel good romances where you just pour all your attention into the couple because you know despite all the obstacles that lay ahead of them, there is just no way they can’t not get together by the end of the book.
From the cover, which is absolutely adorable, to the title, this book had an all around air of sweetness to it. Yes, you are dealing with someone who caught her now ex-husband cheating on her and yes, that ex-husband also happens to be the best friend of the guy who has been pining for her since he met her which means cue the drama/obstacles. But despite all that, both Maya and Jack were just so lovable you couldn’t help but want to fast forward through all that conflict so that they could just be together the way they were obviously meant to be.
Jack Rhodes is a complete and utter teddy bear. All I wanted to do while I was reading this was hug him because he is so sweet and endearing. The way he is described as being this wide-shouldered, down-to-earth, goofy, doesn’t like attention brought to him kind of guy it was hard to not to let my heart melt when reading from his point of view. Especially since he experienced so much hardship and instability growing up before the Carson’s took him in. It was also incredibly refreshing to read about a male protagonist who wasn’t the alpha male, “I’m in charge” kind of guy which is what I usually gravitate towards. He has an authenticity about him because I could easily picture a guy like him existing in the real world and it is safe to say if I did meet him I would not hesitate to date him. But of course, he has eyes on someone else and who am I to step in when your dealing with someone’s forever as Maya puts it. Also, he has a dog which just makes him even more adorable than he already was.
And then there is Maya who is equally sweet and adorable. I loved the nickname that Jack gives Maya, Snip, because, and I hate to use this word, it was just so cute. Because of her height, he sees her a snippet of full-grown person, I mean, that is just so original. That one nickname tells you how close they were and the history they had before she found her husband cheating on her and Jack “sided” with Will aka Dickhead as Maya’s friends call him. You can’t help but feel for Maya after what Will did to her because it made her give up on finding her “forever” but slowly Jack restores that as you see the connection these two have. Yes, there is that conflict given the fact that Jack is Will’s best friend but even in the first few chapters I was like forget about that, these two have to get together. Maybe that is the hopeless romantic in me talking but I couldn’t help but fall for both Maya and Jack very early on in this book.
This second chance love story with its delightfully lovable characters will make anyone want to search for their “forever” if they haven’t found it already.

Unknown-1


Excerpt-Banner

Jack lifted his hands. “Hold on. In his defense, I think they were off at that point but were still . . . Anyway, when I saw Maya and her friend come in, I figured there was no way someone like her could possibly be single, so I kept waiting for some guy to show up. No one did, and I couldn’t just leave her sitting there, looking all kinds of pathetic in her grass skirt and plastic lei . . .”

Laughing, he dodged the elbow Maya jabbed at him. “So I grabbed a couple drinks and headed over.”

“Oh.” Jayne’s soft sigh floated across the table, followed immediately by Regan’s snort.
“Are you freakin’ kidding me?” she asked. “Maya picked Dickhead over you?”
“What?” Maya sputtered as she shook her head. “No!”
“I think you did,” Ellie said. “Sure sounds that way.”
“That’s not what he meant. Jack wasn’t hitting on me, he was—”
“Maya.”
“What?” Her tongue froze the second her gaze locked on Jack’s. “You were?”
His warm hazel eyes wide, Jack shrugged slightly and laughed over the rim of his bottle. “There’s only two reasons a guy buys a girl a drink, Snip: He’s either trying to pick her up or he’s trying to apologize.”
“Which one’s this?” Ellie asked, but both Maya and Jack ignored her.
“Oh my God, Jack.” Slapping her hands over her face, Maya couldn’t believe her cheeks could burn that hot and not burst into flames. “Then why did you wave Will over and introduce me to him?”
“I didn’t wave him over; I was trying to wave him off, but then you had to go and smile at him, and that was it. Big goofy dude like me didn’t stand a chance, so I took my sorry self and my stupid piña colada back to the limbo pole.”
“Wow.” Regan couldn’t seem to stop shaking her head. “Just when I thought Dickhead couldn’t be any more of a dickhead.”
It was all Maya could do to look at Jack now, and when she did, it was through a mortified wince.
“Don’t worry about it, Snip. It all seems to have worked out in the long run, right?” His quick wink and teasing grin made her laugh.
“Yeah,” she said, rolling her eyes. “Worked out great.”
“So.” Ellie sat back in her chair and crossed her arms. “He steals your girl and you stay friends with him? What the hell’s wrong with you?”
“She wasn’t exactly my girl.” Jack chuckled. “I think we’d been talking for . . . what . . . like ten minutes?”
Maya nodded. “Yeah, something like that.”
“Yeah, yeah, yeah. Whatever.” Leaning her elbows on the table, hands folded, Regan sighed dramatically. “Please tell us you’re not still friends with him.”
“Uh . . .” Jack tipped his head toward Maya and pretended to whisper. “Any chance I can lie my way out of this?”
“Doubt it. Ellie’s like a bloodhound about things like that.”
“Great.” Sitting straight up again, he inhaled deeply and nodded. “Then the answer to that would be ‘Yes, Will and I are still friends.’””
Shaking her head slowly, Ellie huffed out a long sigh.
“Jack, Jack, Jack,” she said. “That’s too bad.”
“We hate Dickhead,” Jayne said.
“Really?” He smirked. “I never would’ve guessed.”
Regan, Ellie, and Jayne nodded in unison, each one doing a horrible job of keeping a straight face as Regan explained what was
what.
“Staying friends with him means we’re going to have to hate you on principle, which is too bad, because you seem like a nice guy and I, for one, had such high hopes for you. Sorry.”
“No, of course. Completely understandable.” Always a good sport, he bobbed his head in solemn agreement. “But before you have me lynched, would it do my case any good if I was to . . . I don’t know, just spitballin’ here . . . maybe pick up the tab tonight?”
“Don’t listen to Regan.” Unable to hold her grin back any longer, Ellie gave Regan a gentle shove and leaned closer to Jack. “I knew I was going to like you, Jack. Now let’s see what we can do about racking up that tab a little while you tell us all your secrets.”
She flagged Shelley for another round.
A flash of panic skittered across his eyes as he lifted his bottle; it was a look Maya had seen before, the same one he got whenever anyone wanted to make him the focus of the conversation.
“Well, that shouldn’t take long,” he finally said. “Snip’ll tell you how boring I am.”
“Why do you call her ‘Snip’?”
Maya sighed over a smile. “Because he thinks I’m like a snippet of a full-grown person.”
“Well, come on,” he teased. “You’re what, four foot nothing—you’re like a hobbit.”
“I’m five two!” Maya sat up as straight as she could when everyone else at the table raised their eyebrows at her. “I am so!”
Still blowing her off, they all sat back a little so Shelley could clear the empty glasses and replace their empty peanut bowl.
“And Jack isn’t even a little bit boring,” Maya said. “He has degrees in both creative writing and media arts and he designs videogames.”
Halfway through what she was saying, Jack leaned back, looked behind her, around her, and then under the table.
“What are you looking for?”
“Pom-poms.” With an exaggerated eye roll, he turned back to the others. “I don’t design the games, I just write parts of the scripts for some of them; the rest of the team makes the games work.”

“Just?”
Jayne asked. “I’d guess the script is equally as important as everything else about the game.”
“Thank you, Jayne.” Maya stared pointedly at Jack as she spoke, as if that would somehow finally help to get it through his head. “I’ve tried telling him that about a hundred times.”

Want to fall in love with characters with hearts as wide as their shoulders?
Then go pick up How Forever Feels by Laura Drewry, it’s as simple as that.