Format: Audiobook

Series Review: Blue Heron

Posted July 18, 2017 / Book Reviews / 5 Comments
Series Review: Blue Heron

I’m clearly a sucker for companion series set in small towns with unique characters and charm. I adored the Black Dog Bay series and listened to all of them, one after another. This series I took my time with a little more (just because my podcast addiction is still going strong), but it was a worthy series binge! This time, the books are set in Manningsport, New York. The main characters are all generally surrounding the family that owns the Blue Heron Vineyard. Many of the stories also star those family members and their love stories. This was also another audio binge with the narrator Amy Rubinate. Quick summary: When Faith is ditched at the alter because her fiancee is gay, she moves to San Francisco to break away and start over. She returns home to find that the “best man,” Levi, is now the town sheriff and just as difficult as he was when they were teens. Heroine: Faith was a really good character! She got herself into some funny situations and tried really hard to please everyone. She dealt with a lot of guilt over her mother’s death and struggled to move on years later. I liked watching her realize she needed to be home and get over her ex. Romance: This was truly the slowest burn romance I’ve ever read. I looooved the banter and major hate-to-love feels. Levi was so grouchy because Faith was always chipper and positive. They balanced each other out and really felt strongly for each […]

Bite-Sized Reviews: The Last of August & Lucky in Love

Posted July 10, 2017 / Bite-Sized Reviews, Book Reviews / 10 Comments
Bite-Sized Reviews: The Last of August & Lucky in Love

I know I have full reviews and I have mini review round-ups, but there are some books that could be reviewed in just a few sentences. This is mini round-up I’ll have sometimes for books that really don’t need much more than my small Goodreads review and progress updates say. First up, we have the sequel to A Study in Charlotte. I enjoyed the first book but it wasn’t a favorite. I felt really disconnected from the characters and those issues definitely continued in book two. I’m still intrigued by the “retelling” of Sherlock Holmes vibes, so I will probably read the next book. Next, the newest Kasie West book! She’s clearly in my top three favorite authors. I always love her stories and have not rated one less than four stars. This wasn’t my favorite by her, but it was a solid story about winning the lottery and finding your own way.

Series Review: Black Dog Bay

Posted April 13, 2017 / Book Reviews / 3 Comments
Series Review: Black Dog Bay

I really enjoyed the first and only Beth Kendrick novel that I previously read – Second Time Around. I’m always interested in charming bed and breakfasts, seaside towns, friends reuniting, etc. That book and this series hit on most of those elements. I was randomly looking for a new audiobook before going skiing and came across this whole series on Hoopla. I decided it’d be the perfect light audio series to binge. The books in the series are companions to each other and set in the same coastal Delaware town of “Black Dog Bay.” It’s known as a destination for people dealing with heartbreak; there are places called the Whinery, Better Off Bed-and-Breakfast, and Eat Your Heart Out Bakery.   Quick summary: After dealing with a personal plane-related tragedy and a little bit of heartbreak, Summer heads to Black Dog Bay. It’s a town known for being perfect for people who just got out of relationships. She enters into arrangements with the hot mayor of the town as well as the crotchety old lady who essentially owns half of the town. Heroine: Summer was immediately an intriguing character. She had this past she kept alluding to that made her unwilling to find love again, so I was concerned this would annoy me later on. I liked that she was spunky and did whatever she wanted. Once she set her mind to something, she refused to give up. Romance: So, along those same lines, this definitely included her attraction to the off-limits town mayor, […]

Review Round Up | Dark Star, A Little Something Different, Wires & Nerve, and Bounce

Posted March 20, 2017 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Review Round Up | Dark Star, A Little Something Different, Wires & Nerve, and Bounce

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 backlist books I’ve read or listened to recently. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! I needed an Urban Fantasy for my Bookish Bingo card and Morgan recommended DARK STAR. I wasn’t sure how the book would work for me because the last demon-y book I read was very meh and I never continued with the series. I was pleasantly surprised by DARK STAR and enjoyed it more (despite the same rating lol)! I liked Audrey and pretty much all of the rest of the characters in this one. It was fun to see secrets be revealed from start to finish. Her mom, her friends, the other people with ~powers~ … they were all really interesting characters that I hope to learn more about going forward. There even was a BIT of romance near the end. It sucks because I honestly can’t think of much more to talk about? The book flew by, as I combined some audio hours with reading the ebook for the ending. I liked it enough but there’s not much to discuss. I can tell that there’s still SO much more left to cover in the upcoming books, without feeling like they’re stretching the story too much. The ending was closed enough to not feel like a cliffhanger but open enough to get that feeling of more coming soon. This is absolutely one of those books where the concept […]

Review Roundup | PS I Like You, The Forgetting, Kiss Cam, and Reunion

Posted March 8, 2017 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 6 Comments
Review Roundup | PS I Like You, The Forgetting, Kiss Cam, and Reunion

Before the regularly scheduled programming… Happy International Women’s Day! In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 backlist books I’ve read or listened to recently. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! I think you’re aware of the fact that I tend to hoard my favorite authors’ books so I always have at least one to read when I REALLY need it. Kasie West is one of those authors. Sometimes I just need to read her words because I know she won’t let me down. For PS I LIKE YOU, my sister had been hounding me to read it and lent me her copy. I went ahead and got the audiobook from Hoopla to crank it out and MAN do I love Kasie West still. I read it just as BY YOUR SIDE was coming out and I was borrowing LUCKY IN LOVE from a friend. So, it was safe to read this one finally ? The story was cute, albeit incredibly predictable. I don’t mind the formulaic nature of many YA books because it’s comforting to get that HEA at the end. I knew who the secret pen pal was literally within the first chapter or two of the book and the rest of the story was equally predictable from there. I know my romance tolerance is lower than usual, so I tried to not let it sway my opinion of this fluffy book by a favorite author. There was […]

Reviews: Ice Like Fire and Frost Like Night

Posted February 20, 2017 / Book Reviews / 3 Comments
Reviews: Ice Like Fire and Frost Like Night

I enjoyed Snow Like Ashes but I didn’t see the series becoming a new favorite or anything. I’m pretty hard to please with fantasy books, generally speaking, and listening to an audiobook and often zoning out on what was happening definitely didn’t help my case. Regardless, my book club continued on the series after we all liked the first book in our December meeting. This book follows Meira – with a handful of chapters from Mather’s perspective – as she travels to various kingdoms to find some magical keys and shit like that. I was really hopeful that the world would expand in this book and she would travel to other places, so that was a huge win for me. It was interesting to see what the other kingdoms were like, what they valued (fun, learning, etc.), and how their leaders were. I enjoyed the few chapters from Mather’s POV because it provided some insight as to what was happening back in Winter while Meira was on her journey with Theron. I absolutely grew to love Mather more and I really hope she doesn’t end up with Theron. ? My ship selection was on the fence after book one, so I’m glad I have a clear guy that I prefer now. Overall, this book was slightly more interesting than the first just because we met other rulers and saw other kingdoms. In terms of actual plot? I’m not sure. Both were slightly boring at times and to be completely honest I […]

Review Roundup | Take the Key and Lock Her Up, One Paris Summer, and Hope Was Here

Posted February 2, 2017 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 7 Comments
Review Roundup | Take the Key and Lock Her Up, One Paris Summer, and Hope Was Here

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-3 backlist books I’ve read or listened to recently. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! I’m a big Ally Carter fan… You can tell from all the books listed above that I’ve read by her. While the Gallagher Girls series is one of my favorites, Embassy Row didn’t really disappoint until this final book. Many people were annoyed with Grace before but I kind of liked her closed-off ferocity. She had been through SO much; I really understood why she was so hardened to the world and how she didn’t trust easily. That was a non-issue for me in the first two books, but really took a turn in TAKE THE KEY AND LOCK HER UP. I will admit that SO much of this had to do with the audiobook narrator. She over-acted and over-exaggerated her reactions to everything, so Grace was even more whiny, irritating, and hardheaded. The story itself was lacking in some areas, but my issues with Grace really distracted me from anything else going on. She jumped headfirst into really stupid things… and then didn’t understand why certain people would be mad at her for them.  Seriously, such a moron! Her selfishness in this book astounded me. I don’t know why it surprised me so much, but it did. I thought the first half of the book dragged on a little bit because they were essentially on the […]

Reviews: Monstrous Beauty and Snow Like Ashes

Posted January 5, 2017 / Book Reviews / 8 Comments
Reviews: Monstrous Beauty and Snow Like Ashes

This book was a very spur-of-the-moment choice! I needed a book to fit the “sea creatures” square on my fall bingo card, and Carrie recommended this one to me. I found it on Hoopla and started right away before Thanksgiving. I found myself drawn to it, turning the audio back on in the office while I worked (since I was alone that week). I rarely read blind recs like this because I’m more likely to add them to my TBR and maybe read them eventually, but I’m SO glad I listened to Carrie and went for it. The story was very interesting, as it alternated back and forth across time. I’ve read maybe one book about mermaids and am definitely thinking I should get going on a few more now. The audiobook narrator was SUPERB with all of her accents and the ability to sound like both time periods she was narrating. She was seriously a difference-maker for this book. I predicted a few elements throughout, but was overall very impressed with how the author wove together the story and both timelines. There were mermaids and ghosts and all sorts of things I didn’t see coming! I don’t want to give too much away about the plot itself, but I thought there was a good mix of action throughout. I was always eager to see what was happening in the other timeline, which kept me enthralled most of the time. It’s really hard for an audiobook to consistently keep my […]

Reviews: This Is Your Afterlife and The Burning Sky

Posted December 28, 2016 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
Reviews: This Is Your Afterlife and The Burning Sky

I had no idea this book was less than 200 pages when I started reading, so that was actually a pleasant surprise! I was on a roll reading at the time and was damn happy to keep the reading going. I ended up finishing it up within two sittings on the same day. It was really fun and easy to read! When I added it to my Must Read in 2016 Challenge TBR, I think I completely forgot what the premise was and mixed it up with The Catastrophic History of You and Me (seriously look at the covers and you can see why I made this mistake!). So, needless to say, the book wasn’t what I expected when I started reading. This wasn’t a bad thing! I really enjoyed the premise. Reading about spirits, communicating with the dead, tarot cards, and seances was REALLY interesting. I don’t have a lot of experience with this outside of witch-related books. The characters were pretty fantastic in my opinion. I liked Keira a lot and Jimmy was excellent too. Dan was okay and the romance aspect was fine. I always root for best-friends-to-more and in this case it was ex-best-friends-to-more… so that’s fun! I could have totally read about them in a longer story and/or sequel. I am apparently getting much better at predicting whodunnit in YA mysteries. I knew who the killer was within the first half of the book. I did dampen my enjoyment a little bit because I was hoping […]

Holiday Mini Reviews: Winter Storms and What Light

Posted December 24, 2016 / Book Reviews / 1 Comment
Holiday Mini Reviews: Winter Storms and What Light

Story Winter Street swept me away pretty quickly for some reason. I was instantly intrigued by the Quinn family and wanted to get to know all of them. Once I finished with the bit of a cliffhanger, I moved on fairly quickly to Winter Stroll. The characters, over the course of the year between stories, regressed so much. They went back on decisions they already made and then made stupid ones. I didn’t like it nearly as much, but you know I was ready for the final book in the WINTER trilogy to arrive at the library. It unexpectedly did last week, so I was quick to hop right into it to finish it off. This book was definitely worse than the first one but better than the second one. I was incredibly annoyed by Ava mostly, with her love triangle that turned into a square. (Yep.)  I thought she became much snootier and more guarded than necessary. I think her character “developed” in the wrong direction. The other characters were their usual selves and I didn’t mind them as much. I love where the story went for Kevin and Isabelle, Margaret and Drake, and somewhat for Patrick and Jennifer. The ending was very abrupt and I kind of hated it. I think things were left too open-ended for my liking.  So, there was some good closure with a few characters but not all of them. Wintery Setting and Holiday Feels This story was interesting because it started in the spring […]