Source: Publisher

ARC Reviews: The Au Pair and I Owe You One

Posted February 14, 2019 / Book Reviews / 4 Comments
ARC Reviews: The Au Pair and I Owe You One

I’ve been requesting and reading an absurd about of books from Berkley / Berkley Romance lately. I can’t stop myself. EVERYTHING they put out has an adorable or intriguing premise, a cute cover, and/or a lot of buzz. I was initially interested in THE AU PAIR but held off on requesting it (somehow)… then I saw Cristina’s review. I don’t have a lot of success with mystery/thrillers in the sense that I don’t always rate them highly. I love reading them, but my expectations are always higher than reality. I’m going to include a snapshot of her review because it perfectly describes how I feel about this genre and my struggles/wishes: In today’s over saturated world of mediocre thrillers, it can be hard to find one that simultaneously manages to surprise me and that’s well written. So many thriller novels I actually find work better for me in a movie format, so I’m always on a hunt for a solidly written mystery/thriller that manages to create an unsettling, atmospheric world on the page. That’s exactly what I experienced with The Au Pair to my delight, and found myself completely immersed in a mystery that not only enveloped me in its setting, but actually had an ending that I didn’t foresee in advance. – The Au Pair review at Girl in the Pages I actually enjoyed a somewhat mysterious (more contemporary-ish, but you get the point) book earlier this year that was also set in England AND involved some kind of castle/huge house… so this […]

ARC Review: Just for Clicks

Posted February 7, 2019 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
ARC Review: Just for Clicks

Initial Excitement & Summary I was sold on the premise of this one right from the beginning because it’s weirdly something I think about a lot. Let me first say that people can make their own decisions and this is just MY opinion – but I can’t imagine sharing so much about my children online without their consent. I can see posting some pictures or talking about a few things, but having them reach a certain level of fame before they’re old enough to make their own decisions? That’s hard for me to figure out. One of my favorite YouTubers has said that she won’t feature her children on her channel until they’re old enough to understand and decide for themselves, which is probably what I’d do (aside from some pictures here and there). But I digress! The storyline fascinated me because it’s definitely going to be an area of contention going forward, as more and more people live SO much of their lives online. This book focused on twin daughters of a famous fashion blogger and how they were essentially pressured into creating their own vlog channel and following in their mother’s footsteps. Story & Characters I like that this story was both fluffy and young while also having some more serious topics involved. Claire is struggling with her identity because her life has been shaped by her mom’s blog. She’s famous because she’s a twin and is forced to participate in vlogs and Instagram posts all the time… […]

Blog Tour Review: That’s Not What I Heard

Posted January 28, 2019 / Book Reviews / 1 Comment
Blog Tour Review: That’s Not What I Heard

Review Stephanie Kate Strohm is one of those authors where I continued to add EVERY one of her releases to my TBR… and just let them sit there?? I’m not sure why because they ALL sounded like Lauren books. I finally read LOVE A LA MODE after requesting it from Netgalley and fell in absolute love with it. Her writing was wonderful and I knew I’d have to finally work my way through her backlist. THEN, I saw tour sign-ups for this new release and couldn’t resist. Phew, now that you’re up to speed… I have to admit that books where ONE misunderstanding is the entire plot (the kind where the MCs just need to have one single conversation to clear up the whole premise of the book) do not work for me usually. I tend to get frustrated because the whole thing can unravel if they just SPOKE to each other about the issue. HOWEVER, with this story, the experience was quite different for me. There were so many points of view, including everyone from teachers to students to the principal, which really made it awesome. I actually preferred all of those points of view over reading from Teddy and Kim’s perspectives. That was when I would be reminded that the two just needed to talk to each other to make everything better. The other people were more interesting as rumors were spread and the breakup somehow affected the entire school (including the faculty). My two favorite points of view […]

Review Round Up | Last Seen, The Proposal, and This Lie Will Kill You

Posted January 18, 2019 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 1 Comment
Review Round Up | Last Seen, The Proposal, and This Lie Will Kill You

In an effort to cut down on posts and burnout, my Review Roundups will feature 2-4 books I’ve read or listened to recently. Sometimes they’re newer releases and sometimes they’re all backlist titles. My ARC reviews usually get the solo treatment. Enjoy the mini reviews! I can’t believe this series is over… hopefully! The ending wasn’t exactly ambiguous but I suppose there’s always a chance Shepard continues the series multiple times a la Pretty Little Liars. Jokes aside, this was a REALLY strong end to this trilogy! The main issue I had throughout all of the books was that I was disconnected from the characters. I never warmed up to them or felt anything for them – didn’t care about the ships, was uninterested in any of their personal lives, etc. I’m not sure if, again, it’s because it was a mystery and I was on edge or not trusting anyone? But I just could never get on board with them. I think it’s an interesting twist when you know who the murderer/culprit is AND get to read from their point of view. Sometimes it can take a little bit of the fun out, but that was certainly not the case here. There were SO MANY twists and connections that were built throughout the whole trilogy that I never would have picked up on. Just because you knew the killer and what he was doing, definitely did not mean that you knew why he was doing it or how he picked his victims. […]

ARC Review: In Dog We Trust

Posted January 10, 2019 / Book Reviews / 1 Comment
ARC Review: In Dog We Trust

When I arrived at the end of the Black Dog Bay series, I was not ready to leave that perfect setting. I loved the town and its characters, plus all of the quirky breakup-themed businesses there. I started to come to terms with the fact that I wouldn’t get to visit there again because the final book came out in 2016 without any word of follow-ups. I was randomly browsing Netgalley one day and saw IN DOG WE TRUST. I was excited to see a new title by Beth Kendrick in general, but was even mooooore excited to see that we’d be returning to my beloved Black Dog Bay for the story. I knew I wouldn’t be able to wait on this one and had to read it immediately. The premise of the book, from the synopsis, is that Jocelyn is put in charge of some purebred Labradors after their owner passes away, and is suddenly working and living in a beachfront mansion, instead of cleaning up after tourists in her business with her mom. The late dog owner’s son shows up, looking for his inheritence, and a legal battle (of sorts) ensues. So… this wasn’t exactly what I was looking for in my unexpected return to Black Dog Bay, my literal favorite book setting of all time. First, the romance was…bizarre. Without getting too far into spoilers, Jocelyn and Liam were essentially in a legal battle throughout the book, which led to a weird version of the “hate to […]

ARC Review: The Similars

Posted January 4, 2019 / Book Reviews / 1 Comment
ARC Review: The Similars

Many thanks to Sourcebooks for sending over this free package of goodies and a finished copy of THE SIMILARS for me! Initial Excitement & Summary Clearly I was excited to read this one, because I decided to go for it back in early June! I was stuck in sort of a reading slump because I binge-read too many contemporaries in a row. Usually I need to mix in a few different genres throughout the month so I don’t fully burn out. I knew I needed something sci-fi or paranormal (because reading THE COMPLICATION at one point the previous month reset my burnout too). I loved the idea of clones coming to a school without a lot of explanation and learning why they were so special. It was set sort of in the near-future; everyone has fancy “phones” with digital assistants Storytelling, Setting, & Characters There’s actually a lot to unpack with this book and truthfully I’m not smart enough to do it! There were a lot of correlations to today’s society, where people who are “different” can be ostracized for all the wrong reasons. There are growing hate movements based on leadership today and a lot of that was reflected in this book through clone rights. It was fascinating but didn’t feel like a forced theme to make a bigger picture, if that makes sense? These messages didn’t take me out of the story at all. Hanover did a really great job of keeping me guessing and keeping me reading. […]

Holiday Reviews: Season of Wonder, Christmas on Mistletoe Lane, and It Started with Christmas

Posted December 24, 2018 / Book Reviews, Review Roundup / 0 Comments
Holiday Reviews: Season of Wonder, Christmas on Mistletoe Lane, and It Started with Christmas

Story ASK ME HOW PUMPED I AM FOR NEW HAVEN POINT BOOKS! (Very excited, obviously.) I love this town. I heard a few mixed things about this main character and the story as a whole, but I knew the small town Haven Point feels would make up for a lot. The lead, Diana, has two girls – one bratty teenager and one adorable six-year-old, and she moved everyone to Haven Point to hopefully run the town’s veterinary practice. She can’t resist her cop neighbor and he seemingly can’t resist her either, especially as he helps the aforementioned annoying teen daughter make up for some mistakes. This one was a bit repetitive with Dani’s internal dialogue, going back and forth all the time. She was an okay lead character but a little too hard to get to know. She was closed off to everyone, including the reader. Ruben was amazing though; the scenes with him and her kids were adorable. Mia was the cutest and Silver was a bratty teen that got better with time. I also think the big “reveal” about her ex-husband wasn’t as bad as expected? Maybe that’s terrible to say given the nature of it, but still – they built it up quite a bit. I definitely missed the cameos here too… not as many as I’d hoped because Dani refused to become a part of the town. I hope the next book, if there is one, features more of actual Haven Point and its residents. Wintry Setting […]

Blog Tour | Review & Author Interview: The Accidental Beauty Queen

Posted December 7, 2018 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Blog Tour | Review & Author Interview: The Accidental Beauty Queen

On Sale: December 4, 2018 Gallery Books | Trade Paperback Original Available for purchase here ISBN: 9781501197604 | $16.00 E-ISBN: 9781501197611 | $7.99 Audio-ISBN: 9781508283553 | $17.99 Review Once I learned that this author had written books and Hallmark movie adaptations, I was sold on this book. I also tend to love books that are billed as more “romantic comedies” as well, a la Sophie Kinsella. Another key point? The reference to Miss Congeniality. I’m so happy that this book lived up to my expectations! Charlotte and Ginny are twin sisters. The former is a children’s librarian and the latter is a beauty queen… until they have to secretly switch places. While Charlotte visits with Ginny in Florida for a pageant, Ginny suffers an allergic reaction that would otherwise derail her participation in the pageant. Much to Charlotte’s initial dismay, Ginny begs her to compete instead… and she agrees. It was interesting to see these two seemingly different sisters try to bond and essentially become the same person for a few days. It was even better to meet others in the competition and see how Charlotte’s biases toward them completely changed; she was able to see that her sister was right – they ARE about more than just outward appearances. The contestants are supportive and encouraging to each other, and there were a lot of sweet scenes along those lines. Of course, it wouldn’t be a rom-com without the romance element! It’s not exactly in the synopsis so I won’t spoil […]

ARC Review: The Reckoning of Noah Shaw

Posted November 29, 2018 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
ARC Review: The Reckoning of Noah Shaw

I’ll admit that some of my low rating is partially my fault since I remember about 10% of the previous book, but I feel disenchanted overall by this whole series/world. This book had a lot of filler (going back and explaining more things that had happened in previous books) and a decent amount of interesting plot points otherwise. I don’t even really know what else to say because this was just the epitome of a “shrug emoji” to me lol. I think that it’s hard to review this series without giving too much away because the synopses always include very vague information. Basically, this one relied heavily on Goose and Noah going around and trying to get to the bottom of everything. As I mentioned, the story went back and forth a little between “before” and “after” certain events took place. This is usually fine, but the majority of the book was somewhat confusing. I didn’t really understand what was happening, where the story was headed, and what was really happening with the characters. I think the vague-ish writing style (not sure how else to describe it) and moving around a lot didn’t do this book any favors. I previously loved Noah but I was disconnected from him (and truly everyone else) in this story. Also, word of warning that I don’t think is a major spoiler: don’t expect to see a whole lotta Mara in this book. The end was intriguing, like the first book in this companion series, […]

ARC Review: Love a la Mode

Posted November 21, 2018 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
ARC Review: Love a la Mode

I’ve had ALL of the books by this author on my TBR foreeeever now and am excited that I finally read one! Her books all sound like adorable, fluffy contemporary romances with often unique premises. My Netgalley request for this one was approved so I finally had no excuse to keep putting her words off! I loved Henry from the first chapter. He was instantly so adorable and goofy as he struggled to talk with Rosie for the first time. I was impressed from the beginning that Strohm was able to provide so much context into his family life and background within the first few pages of the book, without feeling like an unnatural info-dump. We learn right away that his dad is a chef with his own restaurant and his mom isn’t the biggest fan of him continuing down that path. The second chapter is from Rosie’s point of view, where we learned about her four brothers and love of baking. The two of them were awkward around each other (not in an unreasonable or annoying way, IMO), which added to their charm. The school itself was amazing and the setting was incredibly vivid! I felt like I was in a French boarding school, just like with Anna and the French Kiss (but these two books are quite different otherwise). Obviously this school was even more intriguing because the kids were all aspiring chefs and OH MAN AM I HUNGRY AFTER THIS BOOK! Be prepared for that, folks. I […]