Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday (179)

This is a meme hosted by Breaking the Spine where every Wednesday bloggers highlight a book that they are eagerly anticipating the release of!

By Charleigh Rose
Release Date: April 30, 2017
Remington Stringer has never been like most girls. She’s outspoken, brazen and wants nothing more than to escape the Nevadan hell hole that she calls home. 

On the brink of eighteen, with a deceased mother and a well-meaning, yet absent father, she is forced to fend for herself. The only person she’s ever had to depend on is her borderline obsessive stepbrother, Ryan. But, what used to be her anchor is quickly becoming a loose cannon. 

When Remi gets the opportunity to attend the best private school in the state during her senior year of high school, she jumps at the chance. Then she meets Mr. James. Ornery, aloof, and totally irresistible. 

Most girls would swoon in secrecy. 

Most girls would doodle his name with hearts in their notebook.

But Remi Stringer has never been like most girls.


The cover for this book was released yesterday and just look at it! The whole cover together (the front and the back are one larger picture) is so gorgeous. Looking at the synopsis, I am definitely intrigued. This sounds like our main character is a very independent, hard 18-year-old who has learned how to deal with the rough things in life. I'm interested to see who this Mr. James is and how their relationship is going to play out. It sounds like Remi takes charge and knows exactly what she wants. I can't wait to read this one! 

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Release Blitz + Review: Checkmate: This is Reckless by Kennedy Fox

Title: Checkmate: This is Effortless
Series: Checkmate Duet Series (Drew & Courtney, #2)
Author: Kennedy Fox
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Trope: Friends to Lovers
Photographer & Designer: Sara Eirew
Release Date: April 25, 2017

Introducing book 2 in the new Checkmate Duet Series from a secret duo of romance authors who teamed up under the USA Today Bestselling pseudonym, Kennedy Fox! This friends to lovers romance will have you swooning and laughing from the first to the last page! Are you ready to play the game?
Courtney Bishop is as sugary sweet as her famous blueberry muffins.
Southern belle at heart, Cali girl by choice.
She barged into my life and easily became my best friend.
All was great as roommates and just friends, but then I fell for the girl who could chop firewood, deliver baby calves, and bail hay without breaking a sweat.
She’s the perfect mixture of sugar and spice, and I love her.
Being more than friends and trying to build our future isn’t as easy as it sounds.
Moving forward and creating memories is all I want for us, but when the past continues to come back and haunt me, I’m not so sure she’ll stay for the ride.
Loving her is easy, but losing her will break me. Burning passion combined with an undeniable chemistry constantly pushes and pulls us together. In the end, I’ll prove we’re worth the fight, even when the game is far from over.
Checkmate, sweetheart.
*Recommend for ages 18+ due to sexual content and adult language.*
**This is book 2 in the Checkmate Duet Series–a friends to lovers romance. You must read book 1, Checkmate: This is Reckless first. Highly recommended to read the Checkmate Duet, This is War and This is Love first, but not necessary. This can read as a standalone duet.**

It's no secret that Kennedy Fox is my jam. I love their books and I am addicted to the romances the secret duo creates. They create couples that I fangirl over and neeeeeeed to be together. 

Courtney can't believe that Drew finally sees her as more than the friend she's been to him over the years. They've finally given into the attraction Drew has started to feel but that Courtney has felt all along. The only problem is that something (well, someone…) stands in their way and is determined to keep them apart. As they try to build a future together, they don't know if the threat that's constantly at their back will finally drive them apart. 

I've got to say, I loved watching Drew and Courtney fall in love with This is Reckless. Courtney was so fun with how much she pined after Drew while they were just friends and roommates. It was so entertaining how Drew was so confused with his emerging feelings and attraction for Courtney. Since they already got together in that book, though, this book was too…sunshine and rainbows and happiness. They were constantly telling each other how much they loved each other and using pet names and it was a little too much too fast for me. And the threat that was against them was something that I was already over in the previous books of this series. It seemed like the easy answer to use as a conflict that tested Courtney and Drew's relationship. 

While it was cute watching Drew and Courtney be in love and try to build a future, I wished we could still see that love build. I did enjoy how they built up the beginning of a relationship for Kayla and Logan, who are getting the next two books in this series. There is something about how Kennedy Fox introduces a couple that has you rooting for them to get together and has you reading until you finally see it happen. I still devoured this book and loved seeing Viola and Travis, it just wasn't as great reading about a couple that was already madly in love. 

Overall, this was still a good addition to the Checkmate series. We get some great heated moments with Courtney and Drew and they had me wishing for a deputy of my own. I still fell in love with these characters and am already dying to visit them again in Logan and Kayla's story. If you haven't yet, you must pick up this series! They're addicting and will make you want to watch some Harry Potter while devouring some delicious blueberry muffins.



Amazon US:
Amazon UK:
Amazon CA:
Amazon AU:
A secret duo of romance authors team up under the USA Today Bestselling pseudonym, Kennedy Fox who share a love of You’ve Got Mail and The Holiday. When they aren’t bonding over romantic comedies, they like to brainstorm new book ideas. One day, they decided to collaborate and have some fun creating new characters that’ll make your lady bits tingle and your heart melt. If you enjoy romance stories with sexy, tattooed alpha males and smart, independent women, then a Kennedy Fox book is for you!
Instagram: | @kennedyfoxbooks
Twitter: | @kennedyfoxbooks
Email: kennedyfoxbooks(at)gmail(dot)com

Monday, April 24, 2017

Book Review: Hollywood Dirt by Alessandra Torre

Hollywood Dirt
By Alessandra Torre
Release Date: September 7, 2015
Source: Christmas Gift
Cole Masten. Abandoned by his superstar wife, Hollywood’s Perfect Husband is now Hollywood’s Sexiest Bachelor: partying hard and screwing even harder. Watch out Los Angeles, there's a new bad boy in town.

Summer Jenkins. That’s me, a small town girl stuck in Quincy, Georgia. I cook some mean chicken and dumplins, can bluff a grown man out of his savings in poker, and was voted Most Friendly my senior year.

We were from different worlds. Our lives shouldn’t have collided. But then Cole Masten read a book about my small town. And six months later, his jet landed on our dusty airstrip, and he brought Hollywood with him.

From the start, I knew he was trouble. For our town. And for me.

Sometimes, opposites just aren’t meant to attract.

Ever since I saw that this book was being turned into a movie, I have been dying to read it. I know that Alessandra Torre writes a lot of romances but I had only read The Girl in 6E, which I loved. After my sister read this one and told me great things about it, I finally decided to pick it up. 

Cole Matsen is a god in Hollywood, but when his marriage falls apart, he feels like he's left with nothing but the movie he's put his heart and soul (and money) into. Escaping to the small town in Georgia where he's filming, he definitely doesn't expect to find a fiery southern belle to be the answer to the movie's problems. Summer Jenkins isn't a girl to back down in a fight, no matter how gorgeous the person she may be fighting with is. When the opportunity arises to work on the movie in town and earn herself some money that could finally get her out of town, Summer decides to take the offer. But that means spending more time with Cole Matsen and finding her hate for him turning into something more. 

Talk about a southern romance! I absolutely loved the southern town and atmosphere that Alessandra Torre created in this book. The dialogue and characters were so authentic that I felt like I really was in a small town in Georgia. I absolutely loved how southern Summer was, but how she wasn't so peachy. Instead, Summer was a headstrong girl who didn't fall all over Cole Matsen's feet when she met him. Summer and Cole were the perfect match to bicker and push each other and I loved the laugh out loud moments we got with them. 

Aside from the romance, I definitely loved how this book was about the making of a movie. I love books that have to do with the entertainment industry and it was so fun watching them try to complete the project that has become so important to Cole. It was cool seeing the changes that were made as a movie flows through its production and how much Summer was able to connect to the story they were filming. And talk about chemistry! Sparks definitely flew between Cole and Summer and I loved every minute of it. 

As my first regular romance from Alessandra Torre, I fell hard for everything. I loved the romance, the characters, the setting, and the storyline of this book. If you want a fun enemies to lovers romance that takes place on a southern town movie set, you have to pick this book up.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

Stacking the Shelves (240)

Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews where bloggers share what books they got throughout the week!

From Publisher

Three awesome books came in the mail for me! I got a finished copy of Pipe Dreams from Berkley and I have already read and loved it! I also got a hardback of The Chosen from Piatkus, so it's the UK cover! Lastly, Penguin Random House sent me And We're Off, which is a YA that has to do with traveling, so I can't wait to read it! Thanks to the publishers for sending me these wonderful books!

That's it for me! What did you all add to our shelves this week? 

Friday, April 21, 2017

Book Review: The Things About Love by Julie James

The Thing About Love 
By Julie James
Release Date: April 18, 2017
Source: Publisher
Two undercover FBI agents can hide who they are from everyone but each other in the latest novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Suddenly One Summer

FBI agents Jessica Harlow and John Shepherd have a past. The former lawyer and cocky Army ranger clashed during their training at Quantico, gladly going their separate ways after graduating from the Academy. Six years later, the last thing either of them expects is to run into each other again–assigned to work as partners in a high-profile undercover sting.

For both of them, being paired with a former rival couldn’t come at a worse time. Recently divorced from a Hollywood producer and looking for a fresh start, Jessica is eager to prove herself at her new field office. And John is just one case away from his dream assignment to the FBI’s elite Hostage Rescue Team. In order to nail a corrupt Florida politician, they’ll have to find a way to work as a team–a task that becomes even trickier when they’re forced to hole up at a romantic, beachfront resort as part of the investigation. Suddenly, the heat behind their nonstop sparring threatens to make the job a whole lot more complicated. . .

I absolutely love action romances, especially ones involving two people who work for some sort of agency like the FBI or the CIA. Seeing as this one was also going to be an enemies to lovers romance, I couldn't wait to dive in! 

From the moment FBI agents Jessica Harlowe and John Shepard met at Quantico, they've been competitors. Always trying to one up each other, John got on Jessica's nerves and John felt he needed to prove he could be better despite his state school Bachelor's degree. Six years later, the two are surprised when Jessica moves back to Chicago and they're paired together on an undercover assignment. Determined to be amicable, the two know they must get along in order to nail the Florida politician taking bribes. As they spend more and more time together and end up in a romantic hotel, it's easy to forget the fine line between love and hate…

From the beginning, this book was so adorable. I loved how, even six years laters, Jessica and John remembered how much they competed against each other at Quantico. What was interesting, though, was how each of them remember their time there completely differently. It was fun getting both of their perspectives of their time at Quantico sprinkled throughout their present assignment. We got to personally see how they grew to hate each other and how that shaped their feelings for one other now. 

While these two were FBI agents, their missions was quite…tame. I wanted so much more action but this one had to do with nailing a corrupt politician, so there wasn't exactly a need for intense action. I still enjoyed how Jessica and John worked undercover together and how they realized their misconceptions of each other as they got to know each other more. 

To me, this read more like a contemporary romance, which I still really enjoyed. John was reevaluating what he wanted out of his life and Jessica was fresh off of a divorce, which was definitely a huge life change. It was so fun watching them fall for each other and share the same insecurities over being agents in a relationship. Their jobs take so much of them and it's hard to share a life with someone when you have such a demanding occupation. 

Overall, this one was a cute FBI love story. I loved Jessica and John's relationship and their enemies to lovers journey. They were two people who really didn't want to fall for each other but ended up underestimating the power of a good undercover op

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Review Blitz: The Hot Shot by Kristen Callihan

the hot shot AN        

TheHotShot Amazon-2

First we were friends. Then we were roommates. Now I want more…

What can I say about Chess Copper? The woman is capable of bringing me to my knees. I know this about five minutes after getting naked for her.

No one is more surprised than me. The prickly photographer my team hired to shoot our annual charity calendar isn’t my usual type. She’s defense to my offense, a challenge at every turn. But when I’m with her, all the regrets and darkness goes away. She makes life fun.

I want to know Chess, be close to her. Which is a bad idea.

Chess is looking for a relationship. I’ve never given a woman more than one night. But when fate leaves Chess without a home, I step up and offer her mine. We’re roommates now. Friends without benefits. But it’s getting harder to keep our hands off each other. And the longer we live together the more I realize she’s becoming my everything.

Trick is… Now that I’ve made her believe I’m a bad bet, how do I convince her to give this player a true shot at forever?

DID YOU SEE THIS COVER!?! Seriously, I had to stop myself from drooling and when the book actually had the main character actually do a plank without clothes (don't worry, it was for a nude photo shoot for his job), I was one happy reader. I couldn't wait to meet Finn after seeing him on the cover and boy did I end up loving him!

Chess Copper has always kept her heart open to a relationship, but she's never found the right guy. When pretty boy quarterback Finn Mannus shows up on her doorstep with his teammates for a nude photo shoot, the two can't deny the strange feelings they have around each other, but they can't help but bicker. No matter how much they argue, though, Chess and Finn find themselves starting to become friends. Finn quickly can't picture his life without Chess, but he's been burned in the past and doesn't know if he can trust another woman while Chess doesn't know if Finn can settle down and truly give himself to someone else. 

From the start, I had a smile on my face while reading this book. I mean, our couple meets at a nude photo shoot. Chess, from the start, is a girl who can definitely hold her own with the boys and it was so fun watching her butt heads with Finn. They bickered like an old married couple and I loved how they developed a friendship after being intrigued by each other when they first met. It was so funny how thrown off Chess was by her attraction for Finn because they are both totally not each other's types. Their hesitance towards accepting their feelings for each other led them to being friends first, which made them actually getting together that much more satisfying. 

Since these two do become friends and spend time together and get to know each other, this one was more of a slow burn romance and it drove me CRAZY. But crazy in a good way! There were realistic obstacles in their relationship and I liked how Finn was so dedicated to his job as a professional football player and really didn't know how Chess would deal with that after past relationships have failed because of it. Chess was also trying to figure out how to balance a man and a career and it was refreshing for our main characters to try to decide how to balance what was good for themselves and what their hearts wanted. 

Overall, I absolutely loved this book. While I haven't read the other three in this series (this can be read as a standalone), I am not going to hesitate to pick up the rest. These characters are lovable, their banter is hilarious, and their romance is swoon-worthy. I couldn't have asked for more!

Grumbling, I toss on some black lounge pants and my oversized Tulane t-shirt and head to the drugstore.
My head throbs by the time I get there, and my insides are writhing. I rest my hand against my lower stomach and grab a basket before calling James to complain.
“I swear,” I tell him as I grab a bottle of painkillers. “It’s like this entire day has been cursed.”
He snickers. “Curse. Get it? Curse?”
I roll my eyes, even though he can’t see me. “Laugh it up. Meanwhile, it feels as if someone is playing Battleship in my uterus.”
“Poor Chessie bear. At least we know why you were in such a foul mood.”
A flush washes over my cheeks. “Yeah.” Lie. Lie. Lie. A tub of salted caramel gelato makes its way into the basket.
“Tell me you’re getting some gelato,” James says.
I smile. “Just grabbed it.”
“Salted caramel?”
“You know it.”
I find the feminine products aisle and search for my brand. “I’m going to go home, take a long bath with my gelato, and forget this fucking day.” Forget Finn. “And then I’m going to go on Amazon and buying a freaking year’s supply of tampons so I don’t have to make these kinds of emergency runs anymore.”
A low, deep chuckle rumbles from behind me, and all the tiny hairs lift on my arms.
“But you’ll still need your gelato,” a familiar—fuck me, seriously?—voice points out.
My insides swoop even as my cheeks burn.
“Who is that?” James asks in my ear.
I slowly turn on one heel. “The plague,” I say, glaring up at Finn Mannus’s smiling face.
“From asshat to plague.” Finn scrunches up his brow. “I’m not sure if that’s a step down or a tie.”
“Who is that?” James nearly yells now.
I don’t take my eyes off Finn. “I’ll call you back.”
James’s squawks of protest cut off as I hit the end button.
“Are you stalking me, Mannus?”
Finn a rests his hands low on his lean hips. “Having a healthy amount of conceit myself, I have to admire yours, but no, buttercup. My buddy Woodson lives a few blocks away. It’s poker night. I’m stocking up on beer.”
It’s only then I notice a twelve pack tucked under his other arm.
“And tampons?” I ask, with a pointed look around the aisle we’re standing in.
 “Not tonight,” he says easily. “Though we used to keep a pack of them back in college. Light flows were perfect for stopping up bloody noses.”
A snort escapes me. “Now there’s a visual.” Somehow, I’ve taken a step closer to him. He’s freshly showered, the golden brown strands of his hair still damp at his temples. And I wonder if he’s just come from the gym or practice. “So back in college you went and bought these tampons?”
“Nah,” he says with a cheeky smile. “I’d ask one of the girls hanging around to get me some.”
“Of course you did.” My nose wrinkles with annoyance.
“Give me a little credit, Chess. I’d buy them now if I had to.”
“Hmm…” I eye him, trying not to return his smile. If only because it’s more fun when he teases. “So why are you in this aisle now, if not for potential nosebleed needs?”
“That’s easy.” He steps closer, a warm wall of muscle and clean scent. “I heard your voice.”
For a second I just blink. “You recognized my voice?”
His gaze darts over my face as if he’s trying to get a read on why I’m gaping at him. “Not to be…ah…rude, but you’re loud when you talk on the phone.”
“Yeah, but… You recognized it.” We’d only just met. It occurs to me that I’d recognized his both times he’d snuck up on me. Then again, his voice is distinctive, flowing like hot honey when he’s relaxed or hammering down like iron to rock when he’s taking command of a situation.
A soft flush of pink tints the tips of his ears. If I wasn’t staring at him, I might have missed it. He shifts his weight. “Was I not supposed to?”
“No. Yes.” I shake my head and laugh. “I don’t know.”
He grins then. “You’re cute when you’re flustered.”
“I’m not flustered.” I am.


About the Author


Kristen Callihan is an author because there is nothing else she’d rather be. She is a three-time RITA nominee and winner of two RT Reviewer’s Choice awards. Her novels have garnered starred reviews from Publisher’s Weekly and the Library Journal, as well as being awarded top picks by many reviewers. Her debut book FIRELIGHT received RT Magazine’s Seal of Excellence, was named a best book of the year by Library Journal , best book of Spring 2012 by Publisher’s Weekly, and was named the best romance book of 2012 by ALA RUSA. When she is not writing, she is reading.

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