Sunday, August 31, 2014

Book Review: A Little Something Different by Sandy Hall

A Little Something Different
By Sandy Hall
Release Date: August 26, 2014
Source: Publisher
Summary: The creative writing teacher, the delivery guy, the local Starbucks baristas, his best friend, her roommate, and the squirrel in the park all have one thing in common—they believe that Gabe and Lea should get together. Lea and Gabe are in the same creative writing class. They get the same pop culture references, order the same Chinese food, and hang out in the same places. Unfortunately, Lea is reserved, Gabe has issues, and despite their initial mutual crush, it looks like they are never going to work things out.  But somehow even when nothing is going on, somethingis happening between them, and everyone can see it. Their creative writing teacher pushes them together. The baristas at Starbucks watch their relationship like a TV show. Their bus driver tells his wife about them. The waitress at the diner automatically seats them together. Even the squirrel who lives on the college green believes in their relationship. 

Surely Gabe and Lea will figure out that they are ment to be together.

Review: I'm a sucker for a good romance, so when I read the summary for A Little Something Different, I knew it was a book I had to read. I was intrigued that the entire romance was told through perspectives other than the main couple. I couldn't wait to literally watch Gabe and Lea fall for each other…

As soon as they meet each other, Gabe and Lea see something in each other they can't seem to shake. And everyone else seems to see it too. From their creative writing teacher to the bus driver, everyone can see the chemistry Gabe and Lea have with each other. Too bad relationships just aren't that easy. Gabe has a secret that has left him shy and scared to do something about his feelings for Lea and Lea is too confused by Gabe's mixed signals to take their relationship to the next step. But if everyone sees that they're meant to be, surely they will too…

First off, I just have to say how darn cute this book was. While it wasn't the most complex novel there is, I loved watching Gabe and Lea develop a relationship through the eyes of everyone around them. This book is like a people watcher's heaven; you get to watch from the outside as Gabe and Lea skirt around each other because they're so unsure of how the other feels. We get to hear both of their insecurities and uncertainties as they confide in their best friends, whose perspectives we are able to see.  What I love about that, also, is the fact that we really get to know not only Gabe and Lea, but everyone else in their lives too. I loved how Gabe's friends got to know Lea's friends and how secondary relationships started to form through that as well. While I wasn't a fan of the passages from the perspectives of the bench and the squirrel because it made the story seem a bit too juvenile, I thought the mix of the other perspectives was charming and perfect for Gabe and Lea's romance. 

A Little Something Different was definitely a simple and quick read, but sometimes that's just what you need. Lea and Gabe aren't that couple that have a super intense attraction and instantly get together. No, they awkwardly work at it for almost a year, but watching them fall for each other is just too cute not to love. I really enjoyed how they were encouraged by their teacher in creative writing class, a sweet waitress at the dinner, and even the baristas at Starbucks. So much goes into a relationship and A Little Something Different explores the world around a relationship and how sweet falling in love can really be.

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Stacking the Shelves (114)

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

From Library

I know I really shouldn't go to the library because I have so many books at home that I have to read. But when I saw Meet Me at the Cupcake Cafe, I just couldn't pass it up! Not only is the cover adorable, but it has to do with cupcakes. As a baker, I love all novels that have to do with food. I can't wait to dig into this one!

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

Friday, August 29, 2014

Book Review/Giveaway: Blackfin Sky by Kat Ellis

Blackfin Sky
By Kat Ellis
Release Date: September 2, 2014
Source: Publisher
Summary: When Sky falls from Blackfin Pier and drowns on her sixteenth birthday, the whole town goes into mourning – until she shows up three months later like nothing happened.

Unravelling the mystery of those missing months takes Sky to the burned-out circus in the woods, where whispers of murder and kidnapping begin to reveal the town’s secrets. But Sky’s not the only one digging up the past – the old mime from the circus knows what happened to her, and he has more than one reason for keeping quiet about it.

Review: Right off the bat, I knew that Blackfin Sky was going to be a creepy book that held a lot of secrets. I was pleasantly surprised how much the story really drew me in and kept my attention until the very end with all of the secrecy and lies. 

On Sky's 16th birthday, she falls off the Blackfin pier and dies. Too bad she doesn't remember dying. Three months after her "death," Sky walks back into her high school as if it's another day, and to her it is. But when she learns that people have thought she's been dead, especially after they buried her and held a funeral, Sky has no idea what happened to her. Sky digs deeper into the town she's been living in for the past 16 years and discovers secrets behind the forbidden woods that could reveal the town's real history and uncover what really happened to Sky after she died. 

At the very beginning of the novel, Sky discovers that she's supposedly been dead for the past three months, even though she remembers those three months as her just living her ordinary life in Blackfin. That being said, the town Sky lives in is definitely one of those creepy towns that you know holds a ton of secrets. The only problem is, we have no idea what those secrets are and neither does Sky. Sky starts to realize that things have always been strange in Blackfin, she's just never noticed it before. Things definitely get scary as Sky uncovers the burnt down circus in the woods and meets even more mysterious people that know more about her than she even knew herself. Trying to keep all of the facts and secrets about Sky and Blackfin straight became confusing at times because there was so much history to the town, but once everything fell together at the end, the story and characters were much easier to understand. 

As always, I loved the romance we got in the novel. As great and adorable as the romance was, though, I wanted more from Sky's relationships with her "best friends" in the novel. Sure, Sky has a huge crush on her best friend's brother, but we didn't really get to see her relationship with her best friend that much. I mean, if I was going through as much as Sky was, I would definitely call my best friends for help, not some random guy I had just met or people who really freak me out, which is what Sky ended up doing. Cam wasn't really present throughout the novel and I wish we could see their close relationship balanced with Sky's relationship with Sean. We did get more of Sky and Bo's relationship, but I think there could have been a lot more best friend moments than we got. 

In the end, Blackfin Sky was a creepy story about a strange town with even stranger people. I really enjoyed Sky's character and how real she was with everything going on around her. The mystery behind who Sky really was and what was happening in the small town of Blackfin provided an intriguing story that brought in some pretty unique characters.

One lucky winner will receive a copy of Blackfin Sky by Kat Ellis! Just fill out the rafflecopter below! Ends 9/5 ***US ONLY***

Follow My Book Blog (150)

This is a meme hosted every Friday by Parajunkee, where book bloggers answer a question each week and check out how others answered it. It's a cool way for bloggers and viewers to connect and learn more about each other!

Question: Tell us about a book character you'd trade places with

Answer: Anna from Time Between Us

So I know the whole thing with not being able to control time travel kind of sucked in regards to Anna's relationship with Bennett in this book, but Bennett's ability to time travel is so cool. Not only can he travel in time, but he can basically teleport himself anywhere he wants. And take Anna with him. I want my own time traveling boyfriend! Well, you know, when the time traveling isn't snapping him back to his own time. Also, I love how into concerts Bennett was and how he kept all of his tickets in a bowl in his room. I actually started my own jar of movies tickets after hearing the ticket bowl idea from this book. I would totally love to time travel with Bennett to different concerts by different bands all over the world. Overall, having a time traveling boyfriend would be awesome. 

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Waiting On Wednesday (158)

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

Oh Yeah, Audrey!
By Tucker Shaw
Release Date: October 14, 2014
Summary: It’s 5:00 a.m. on Fifth Avenue, and 16-year-old Gemma Beasley is standing in front of Tiffany & Co. wearing the perfect black dress with her coffee in hand—just like Holly Golightly. As the cofounder of a successful Tumblr blog—Oh Yeah Audrey!—devoted to all things Audrey Hepburn, Gemma has traveled to New York in order to meet up with her fellow bloggers for the first time. She has meticulously planned out a 24-hour adventure in homage to Breakfast at Tiffany’s; however, her plans are derailed when a glamorous boy sweeps in and offers her the New York experience she’s always dreamed of. Gemma soon learns who her true friends are and that, sometimes, no matter where you go, you just end up finding yourself. Filled with hip and sparkling prose, Oh Yeah, Audrey! is as much a story of friendship as it is a love letter to New York, Audrey Hepburn, and the character she made famous: Holly Golightly.


I am obsessed with Audrey Hepburn. I've seen almost all of her movies and have a picture of her as Holly Golightly hung up in my room. So when I saw the cover of this book, I about had a heart attack because I was so excited. A YA book about a girl as obsessed with Audrey as I am? I could only imagine being swept off my feet by a gorgeous guy while attempting to go on a 24-hour Audrey adventure. This book sounds so fun and whimsical. Seriously, it's like this book was made for me. I can't wait to finally read it! 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Launch Day Blitz/Giveaway: Breathe by Kristen Ashley

Breathe (Colorado Mountain #4)
By Kristen Ashley
Release Date: August 26, 2014
Summary: There's nothing like the first time . . .

In Carnal, Colorado, Faye Goodknight is the town's quiet, shy librarian. She may also be Carnal's last remaining virgin. For years, Faye has had a crush on Chace Keaton, but the gorgeous cop has always been unattainable. She's resigned to live contentedly with only her books for company-until Faye suddenly meets Chace alone in the woods...

Chace doesn't think he's the good guy everyone believes him to be. He's made a lot of choices he regrets, including denying his feelings for Faye. Through his choices, he's come to believe the pretty librarian is too good for him, but after their time in the woods, Chace realizes that she may be his last chance for redemption. Soon, their long simmering desires grow to a burning passion. Yet always casting a shadow over their happiness is Chace's dark past

“Are you okay?” she asked quietly.
Chace rounded the side of the counter.
Cute, tight skirt that skimmed her hips, cupped her ass and hit her knees. Her low-​heeled, brown boots. A scoop-​necked tee under a cardigan. Skin displayed above the neckline of the tee highlighting an unusual and attractive three-​tiered necklace. Auburn hair falling in sheets over her shoulders and down her chest, a hank of it at the top, right of her forehead pulled to the side in a cute bobby pin. Makeup subtle and appealing.
She looked like a librarian who had good taste in clothes and a light but expert hand with makeup. Her own style, a style that did nothing to emphasize the obviously attractive features of her face or frame and because of that, they contradictorily accentuated them. It was a style that worked for her in a huge way.
And it had been working for Chace the same way for a long fucking time.
“Chace,” she said, still talking quietly, “did something—?”
She stopped talking abruptly when it became clear to her that he wasn’t going to stop coming at her.
She took a step back.
Too late.
He was on her, he rounded her waist with an arm and twisted them so he was moving her backward toward the door she’d come out.
“Oh God,” she whispered, hands coming up to rest light on his chest, eyes wide and staring in his. “Is the boy okay?”
He didn’t answer.
He moved her through the door, reached out a hand, grabbed it, slammed it, turned her sharply then moved in so she was pressed to it.
“What are you—?”
She stopped talking abruptly this time because he tightened his arm around her waist and yanked it up, yanking her into his body. His other hand drove into her silken hair at the back of her head. Then his fingers cupped her head and tipped it to the side. He slanted his head to the other side and slammed his mouth down on hers.
She made a noise of surprise, her body tense against his and he thrust his tongue between her lips. Without a choice, they opened, another noise of surprise filled his mouth but he ignored that one too, carried on with what he was doing and took her mouth.
She tasted like bubblemint again. This time he knew why since his tongue encountered the gum.
Sweet, fresh, clean. Fucking clean. Beautiful.
God, nothing more beautiful.
He deepened an already deep kiss, needing it, and she gave it to him. The tension flowed from her body, it melted into his, her hands slid up his chest, one curving around the back of his neck, fingers going into his hair. The other one slid around his shoulders and held on tight.
Then she gave more, pressing deeper, her tongue timidly sparring with his, her fingers flexing into his scalp, her arm holding tighter. He took it, pulling her close even as he pressed her back into the door, forcing her soft curves to mold to his frame.
When he felt it start to take over, when he knew he’d lose control if he didn’t stop, he stopped.
Tearing his mouth from hers, he tipped his head to rest his forehead on hers, his eyes opening to see, up close, hers drifting open in a cute, sexy flutter and he whispered,
She blinked slowly. No, languidly. Like she was shaking off a dream she didn’t want to let go.
Then she whispered back, “I’m addicted to it.”
Chace couldn’t bury the groan that escaped his throat as he slid his cheek down hers and buried his face in her neck. Her perfume was flowery but there was a hint of vanilla mellowing it. Sweet and fresh.
And clean.
The woman in his arms was addicted to gum. Not crack. Not kinky sex. Not booze. Not shopping. Not nagging a man or controlling him.
Fucking gum.
            He smiled against her neck.

B&N // BAM! // IndieBound // iTunes // Amazon

About the Author
Kristen Ashley grew up in Brownsburg, Indiana, and has lived in Denver, Colorado, and the West Country of England. Thus she has been blessed to have friends and family around the globe. Her posse is loopy (to say the least) but loopy is good when you want to write. Kristen was raised in a house with a large and multigenerational family. They lived on a very small farm in a small town in the heartland, and Kristen grew up listening to the strains of Glenn Miller, The Everly Brothers, REO Speedwagon, and Whitesnake. Needless to say, growing up in a house full of music and love was a good way to grow up.  And as she keeps growing up, it keeps getting better.

Tour Giveaway
One winner gets a copy of BREATHE with a signed bookplate plus an OPI nail polish set. Five winners get a copy of the book with signed bookplate. This giveaway runs through September 23 and is open to US/Canada only.

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Really Want to Read But Don't Own Yet

This is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where each week bloggers share a list of books for the prompt given. So hopefully I'll have a new list to share with you all each week!

This Week's Topic: Top Ten Books I Really Want to Read But Don't Own Yet

Okay, so I feel like the topics have been a bit redundant the past three weeks for Top Ten Tuesday. Two weeks ago, I listed the top ten books I'm not sure I want to read because of the hype. Then, last week I listed the top ten books people have been telling me I must read. And now I have to list the top ten books I really want to read. With such similar topics, I feel like my choices are a bit redundant, so sorry if I've been listing a few of the same books these past couple of weeks. But here is a list of books I'm dying to read and come so close to buying, but haven't actually given into yet. 

1. White Hot Kiss by Jennifer L Armentrout
2. Of Poseidon by Anna Banks
3. Me Before You by Jojo Moyes

4. Through to You by Lauren Barnholdt
5. Attachments by Rainbow Rowell 
6. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

7. How to Meet Boys by Catherine Clark
8. You Had Me At Hello by Mhairi McFarlane 
9. Biggest Flirts by Jennifer Echols

10. Wait for You by Jennifer L Armentrout

Monday, August 25, 2014

Weekly Roundup [8/19-8/25]

Happy first day of school! Today marks my last first day of school as a college student. That's right, it's senior year! How am I a senior already? It feels like just yesterday I was moving into my freshman dorm and going to those oh-so-fun freshman events. I've got to say, I don't miss it! Focusing on senior year, though, I am super excited for my classes starting this week. My very first class is Contemporary Fiction, which should be a lot of fun. I also have a class on writing narrative nonfiction, an educational leadership class, my intro to film studies class (which should be super easy since I have already finished all of the other film studies requirements), and a professional writing class! I'm only taking 15 credit hours this semester, which is the least I've taken out of all of my semesters, so it should feel pretty nice. And no Friday classes for me! Woo hoo! Well, wish me luck on my first day of classes!

Book Reviews
What a Duke Dares by Anna Campbell 
Gilded Lily by Delphine Dryden


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Book Review: Gilded Lily by Delphine Dryden

Gilded Lily 
By Delphine Dryden 
Release Date: July 1, 2014
Source: Publisher
Summary: Frederique Murcheson’s introduction into society hasn’t gone smoothly—some would even call it a disaster. Only Freddie considers her debut a success. Her scheme to become a makesmith has gone off flawlessly. The only thing that could upset her plans now would be if someone discovered that brilliant tinker Fred Merchant is, in fact, a lady in disguise.

Wooing a spoiled heiress is not exactly Barnabas Smith-Grenville’s idea of high espionage. However, considering his brother disappeared on the job, supposedly into the most iniquitous of opium dens, he cannot expect much better. At least the assignment will afford him time to search for his brother, whom he suspects is in spy-related trouble rather than a drug-addled haze.

But when Freddie proves to be both irresistible and the key to the answers he seeks, Barnabas finds himself not only entwined in a scandalous mystery involving lethal submersibles and deranged dirigibles, but also in a dangerous game of the heart…

Review: Steampunk is always a fun genre, but I never seem to read it as often as I’d like to. So every time a new Delphine Dryden novel comes out, I can’t wait to get my hands it and lose myself in the world of exciting danger and steamy romance. 

Frederique Murcheson is different from your typical lady in society. While everyone thinks she’s a failure in society, Freddie loves being single so that she can live a double life as a tinker named Fred Merchant. But her father isn’t too happy with his daughter, so he hires Lord Barnabas Smith-Grenville to pretend to court Freddie in order to spy on her. Barnabas thinks watching Freddie will be no problem, and will give him the time to look into where his brother has disappeared. But Freddie isn’t the flighty heiress Barnabas thinks she is and he finds himself falling for her fearless attitude and impeccable skills with machinery. 

After the ending of Scarlet Devices, I was dying to see what would happen next in the world of steam and seduction. Right away, I loved Freddie's character. In a society where women have such strict roles, Freddie doesn't let that stop her from doing what she loves with her life, which is working with machines. And in a steampunk novel, Freddie has a ton of machinery in her hands. Throughout the novel, she runs across some pretty cool machinery that actually lead to huge, dangerous secrets that include her father and opium smugglers. While the story did revolve around Freddie and Barnabas's relationship, I loved the intrigue, mystery, and danger behind the submersibles that instantly captivated and intrigued the tinker inside of Freddie. 

The entire steampunk world of this novel was fascinating, but I truly loved the characters that Delphine Dryden created. When we first meet Barnabas, he's described as perfectly ordinary, just the person to spy on Freddie without seeming suspicious. But as Freddie spends more time with Barnabas, she sees him as beautiful and far more intriguing than her father pegged him to be. Freddie truly keeps Barnabas on his toes and ends up helping him solving his own mystery involving his missing brother. The only problem I had with this novel was the chemistry between Barnabas and Freddie. When they first get together, I felt like it was kind of out of nowhere and I wish there was more chemistry and intensity to their relationship than what we got. Other than that, though, I really enjoyed their story. 

With mystery, machines, and romance, you can't go wrong with Gilded Lily. The mystery and danger behind the strange creatures destroying ships and what exactly Freddie's father was doing with his business make it hard to put this book down. I'm definitely looking forward to what Delphine Dryden has in store for us next! 

Friday, August 22, 2014

Stacking the Shelves (113)

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

From Publisher

Just one book for me this week, but it looks so good! I love the colors on the cover and it sounds like it's going to be a juicy read!

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

Follow My Book Blog Friday (149)

This is a meme hosted every Friday by Parajunkee, where book bloggers answer a question each week and check out how others answered it. It's a cool way for bloggers and viewers to connect and learn more about each other!

Question: What book/series do you think would make a better tv show than movie? 


I think it would have been really cool if The Hunger Games trilogy were a TV show instead of a movie. I think the movies are great, but could you imagine all of the cliffhangers the show would have?? 

Also, how has The Mediator not been a show yet? Honestly, these books are awesome and I think that the show would be so addicting. I know it's basically a teen ghost whisperer, but it would be great to see the characters of this series come to life for an entire show. 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Blog Tour/Giveaway: What a Duke Dares by Anna Campbell

What a Duke Dares (Sons of Sins #3)
By Anna Campbell
Release Date: August 26, 2014
Source: Netgalley
Summary: What woman in her right mind would say no to marrying the dashing Duke of Sedgemoor? Miss Penelope Thorne, that's who. She's known Camden Rothermere since they were children-and she also knows she'd bring nothing but scandal to his name.

Cam can hardly believe Penelope turned down his proposal. But if she wants to run off to the Continent and set the rumor mill ablaze, he can't stop her. Then her brother's dying request sends him to bring home the one woman he thought he'd finally gotten over.

The only way they'll both get back to London without their reputations in tatters is to pretend they're married during the journey. That means kissing like they mean it and even sharing a bed-until it becomes hard to tell where the game ends and true desire begins . . .

Review: As much as I love and read historical romances, I've never picked up a book by Anna Campbell. But when I saw the gorgeous cover of What a Duke Dares and read the summary, I knew I had to pick this one up. 

When Miss Penelope Thorne denies the proposal of her childhood friend and Duke of Sedgemoor Camden Rothermere, Cam is astonished by the rejection. Nine years later, Cam still feels the sting of her rejection as Pen spends that time running around the Continent with a blazing trail of scandalous rumors in her wake. So when Pen's brother Peter's dying wish is for Cam to locate Pen and bring her back to London safely, Cam finds himself immersed into Pen's world again. In order to escort her to London, though, Cam and Pen must pretend they are married to avoid scandal. Pen has always had feelings for Cam, but can she let him have her when she know he could never love her? 

Right from the start, Pen and Cam have quite the interesting relationship. Pen is completely in love with Cam, but knows that he has given up on love long ago and could never love her. Even though she'd love nothing more than to marry him, she can't put herself into a loveless marriage. So right away, there is some intense conflicting emotions in Pen and Cam's relationship. Then, when they have to pretend to be married, Pen shuts herself off from Cam in order to act like the perfect wife she thinks he wants. Of course, Cam is a clueless man who has no idea why Pen acts so stiff and strange as his wife, when she was so headstrong and endearing before they "married." Just because Pen loves Cam doesn't mean that their pretend relationship is going to be absolutely perfect and Cam will fall in love with her instantly. No, Cam and Pen have to face the real journey of forming a relationship that isn't based on love. That doesn't mean, though, that they can't work towards something more…

Not only was the relationship between Cam and Pen very realistic for the historical time period, but I loved the added side story of Harry, Pen's brother, and Sophia. Harry is known for his rakish ways, but when he falls for Sophia, he can't think of anything else except for marrying the love of his life. During that time, though, people didn't marry for love, and Sophia is already promised to a rich man who would provide great connections for her family. Harry has to find a way to win Sophia, which means enlisting the help of Pen when she's back in England. The various romances in this book prove how love isn't enough on it's own for a relationship. While the constant miscommunication, or complete lack of communication, about their feelings for each other in Pen and Cam's relationship became a bit redundant as the story continued, I really enjoyed their struggle to enjoy marriage to each other without fully accepting their love for each other; they really have to work out how they truly feel before they can be happy. 

As my first Anna Campbell novel, I loved the characters and story she created in What a Duke Dares. The primary and secondary romance story ones were enjoyable and created a much more dynamic novel. Pen was definitely a relatable main character with her confident exterior while feeling vulnerable and alone on the inside. I can't wait to catch Anna's other novels and read about even more intriguing and realistically historical romance novels.

Amazon // B&N // BAM! // iBooks // Goodreads

About the Author
Always a voracious reader, Anna Campbell decided when she was a child that she wanted to be a writer. Once she discovered the wonderful world of romance novels, she knew exactly what she wanted to write. Anna has won numerous awards for her Avon historical romances including Romantic Times Reviewers Choice, the Booksellers Best, the Golden Quill, the Heart of Excellence, the Aspen Gold and the Australian Romance Readers Association's most popular historical romance (twice). Her books have twice been nominated for Romance Writers of America's prestigious RITA Award and twice for Australia's Romantic Book of the Year.

When she's not writing passionate, intense stories featuring gorgeous Regency heroes and the women who are their destiny, Anna loves to travel, especially in the United Kingdom, and listen to all kinds of music. She lives near the sea on the east coast of Australia, where she's losing her battle with an overgrown subtropical garden.

Tour Giveaway
Five lucky winners will receive a copy of What a Duke Dares by Anna Campbell. Just fill out the rafflecopter below! ***US only***
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