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Publisher: Intermix

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Review: His Royal Favorite by Lilah Pace

Posted by Irish in 4 Stars, Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: His Royal Favorite by Lilah PaceHis Royal Favorite by Lilah Pace
Series: His Royal Secret, Book 2
Also in this series: His Royal Secret
Published by Intermix on 16 August 2016
Genres: Adult, Dating & Sex, Family, GLBT, Love & Romance, Royalty, Emotions & Feelings, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues, Contemporary Romance
Pages: 245
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars
Also by this author: His Royal Secret

Place(s) Traveled To: Jomo Kenyatta, Kenya // London, England

First Line(s): “Fiona, it’s Ben.” Thank God he’d gotten her machine.

HIS ROYAL FAVORITE is the direct sequel to Lilah Pace’s HIS ROYAL SECRET (my review.) I’m usually wary of direct sequels as I hate to have manufactured drama break up a couples hard won happily ever after just to bring them back together again. But I also found that I couldn’t resist the temptation that HIS ROYAL FAVORITE presented so I found myself not only picking it up but then staying up into the wee hours of the morning just to finish it. I was hooked on this story from the very first page and I just loved the progression of Ben and James’s story. I also loved how HIS ROYAL FAVORITE showed a real relationship at work as that is something that is usually missing in romance novels.

HIS ROYAL FAVORITE deals with the very real aftershocks of James coming out of the closet and Ben has to decide if a public life is a life that he can accept. There are struggles for them both as they deal with their new relationship, family, and the onslaught of public opinion. New relationships can be hard enough but they become exponentially harder when they are lived in the public eye. Especially when you don’t know who is a true friend and who might sell your secrets just for a little cash and 15 minutes of fame. My heart totally ached throughout this book because it was just so real and I hated some of the things that Ben and James had to deal with.

his-royal-favorite-quote

But what I loved most about HIS ROYAL FAVORITE is that there was no pointless breakup!! And while there was angst it wasn’t unnecessary or over done and everything just really worked for the story. I truly hated for HIS ROYAL FAVORITE to come to an end because it just hit all the right notes for me. HIS ROYAL FAVORITE isn’t a perfect book but it was compelling and held my attention. It had me cheering on this couple wanting them to overcome the obstacles in front of them and come out stronger on the other side. For me, HIS ROYAL FAVORITE was a total page turner and I couldn’t stop reading until I hit the final page.

HIS ROYAL FAVORITE will take you on an emotional roller coaster but at the end of the ride you’ll heave a happy say and want to make the journey all over again. I loved this story and I can’t say it enough how much I loved seeing a couple be a couple. I always feel a little cheated when it takes an entire book to get a couple to get together just to have it end before we experience their HEA. In HIS ROYAL FAVORITE, Pace gives that extra look into this world and I am so happy that she did. This series was just so sweet and lovely and its perfect for all fans of a good love story. Doubly good if you like books with a royal twist (and seriously who doesn’t like to read about a literal prince charming?) If you trust me at all then you’ll want to have this series on your radar.

Seriously friends….go buy it now!

irishdarkblue IR - His Royal Secret

 

Add All Note Long by Annabeth Albert to Goodreads. (Review coming soon)

Add Us by Sarina Bowen to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

four-stars
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Thursday, July 21, 2016

Review: His Royal Secret by Lilah Pace

Posted by Irish in 3.5 Stars, Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: His Royal Secret by Lilah PaceHis Royal Secret by Lilah Pace
Series: His Royal Secret,
Also in this series: His Royal Favorite
Published by Intermix on 19 July 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Family, GLBT, Love & Romance, Royalty, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues
Pages: 185
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-half-stars
Also by this author: His Royal Favorite

Place(s) Traveled To: Jomo Kenyatta, Kenya // Cape Town, South Africa // London, England // Gurness Holm, Scotland (2012)

First Line(s): James’s private landline rang.

When I first heard about HIS ROYAL SECRET by Lilah Pace I thought it was going to be such a me book and so eagerly accepted it for review. Before I picked up HIS ROYAL SECRET I decided to read another book by her, ASKING FOR IT and I was worried as I just couldn’t finish that book. I was wary when I finally picked up HIS ROYAL SECRET but I shouldn’t have been because it was everything that I was hoping it would be. HIS ROYAL SECRET is a short book (185 pgs per Goodreads) and so should have been a quick read but for whatever reason it took me far longer to finish than it should have. And its not for lack of reading because once I started I had a hard time putting this one down.

I am a sucker for royalty stories and secret romances and HIS ROYAL SECRET had both of those tropes in spades. James and Ben have such an intense connection that I was cheering them on throughout the book wanting them to get they HEA that they both so deeply deserved. HIS ROYAL SECRET is also filled with complex and wonderful secondary characters and my main complaint with them was that they weren’t featured enough! I would have loved to see more of the Queen, of Cass, of Indigo, of Roberto, of….well you get the picture. But I also loved all the warm moments between James and Ben and watching them get closer as they carried on their secret romance out of the public eye.

His Royal Secret Quote

HIS ROYAL SECRET had a few ups and downs and it dragged a little in the middle but over all this was a book that kept me invested. I stayed up well well well past my bedtime on a work night in order to finish it. I also liked that HIS ROYAL SECRET has an ending which I wasn’t expecting since there is a direct sequel, HIS ROYAL FAVORITE (Goodreads), so I feared a crazy dramatic cliff hanger that would tear my poor heart in two! So if you decide to not read HIS ROYAL FAVORITE I think you’ll be happy but at the same time I was so glad to have a copy of it because I desperately wanted more of these characters.

This is a book that lived up to my expectations and I know that its one that I plan on recommending to many and one that I will also reread. James and Ben were real and vivid characters and their whole story was plausible. I loved the royal backdrop that this one had and the added complications it gave to James and Ben’s romance. I loved how these two dealt with those pressures, among other issues, and worked together to overcome them. I adored that HIS ROYAL SECRET didn’t have any pointless breakups or unnecessary angst. It was a wonderful heartachy read and I think that you should all rush over to your favorite e-reatailer and pick this one up today!! Go on….go! You won’t regret it.

irishdarkblue

IR - His Royal Secret

 

Add All Note Long by Annabeth Albert to Goodreads. (Review coming soon)

Add Us by Sarina Bowen to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

three-half-stars
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Thursday, April 7, 2016

Review: Out of Frame by Megan Erickson

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Out of Frame by Megan EricksonOut of Frame by Megan Erickson
Series: In Focus,
Also in this series: Trust the Focus, Focus On Me
Published by Intermix on 15 March 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Friendship, Love & Romance, Movie Stars, New Adult, People & Places, People of Color, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues
Pages: 202
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: Trust the Focus, Focus On Me, Make it Count, Changing His Game, Playing for Her Heart, Tied to Trouble, Strong Signal, Fast Connection, Leveling the Field

Place(s) Traveled To: Plymouth, North Carolina // Atlantic Ocean // Fort Lauderdale, Florida

First Line(s): I wanted to pretend I was Kate Winslet, gazing at the large cruise ship from under the wide brim of my black-and-white hat.

OUT OF FRAME by Megan Erickson is the newest book in her In Focus series which feature new adult LGBT characters. The main character in OUT OF FRAME, Quinn, is BFFs with Colin Hartman’s sister and you may remember him from FOCUS ON ME (my review). I like how Erickson’s books, at least with this series, all have characters that are loosely connected but that the story can be read as a standalone if the reader wants to do so. Another thing I like about Erickson’s In Focus series is that they have all been road trip books and while OUT OF FRAME is set on a cruise ship it still fits that bill. And you know how I love my road trip books. OUT OF FRAME was an anticipated title for me this year so I may have rushed through what I was reading and pushed my TBR pile aside to get to it. But while I liked OUT OF FRAME, I didn’t love it as much as the previous books.

For me, the romance just progressed too slowly. Quinn and JR have just a limited time together while on this cruise ship so while I’m glad that Erickson didn’t rush them into anything it just left me unsatisfied. There really wasn’t time in this story for a relationship between Quinn and JR to be realistic and there wasn’t a ton of character development. All in all Quinn and JR may have had 2 days to be together with the rest of the short cruise feeling each other out and getting to know who they were. Quinn may have though he knew JR as JR was on a reality show but that isn’t really who he is. So I just didn’t buy that they fell in love that quickly which left me a little disappointed in the ending. I get that love at first sight can happen but this one just left me feeling a bit meh.

Out of Frame Quote

I also found the secondary characters in OUT OF FRAME to be a distraction. Not in a bad way but they often seemed more lively, fun and interesting than the two main characters. I wanted to know more about all of JR’s cast mates and more about Jess as well. While I did like how these secondary cast members fleshed out the story and brought it to life I shouldn’t want to know more about them than I do the main characters. I guess that Quinn and JR were just a little two-dimensional for me and they fell a bit flat that I was so easily distracted away from their story.

OUT OF FRAME isn’t a bad book but it is defiantly not my favorite in the series nor is it my favorite new adult or LGBT read. Its a good book to read to while away a few hours and perfect to bring with you to the beach. Its an uncomplicated story with a happily ever after and sometimes thats really all you need in a book. I am also glad that I read it as I did get to meet Liam who I adored and who will be getting his own book this fall with OVEREXPOSED which promises to be a bit of an emotional read.

irishdarkblue

IR - Out of Frame

Add There You Stand by Christina Lee to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

Add Out of Play by Nyrae Dawn and Jolene Perry to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

three-stars
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Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Mini Review: Yours All Along by Roni Loren

Posted by Irish in 3.5 Stars, Adult, Review0 Comments

Mini Review: Yours All Along by Roni LorenYours All Along by Roni Loren
Series: Loving on the Edge,
Also in this series: Call on Me
Published by Intermix on 16 June 2015
Genres: Adult, Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Friends to Lovers, GLBT, Love & Romance, Short Story / Novella, Sports & Athletics
Pages: 135
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-half-stars
Also by this author: Call on Me

Place(s) Traveled To: Dallas, Texas // San Francisco, California // Houston, Texas

First Line(s): If Hunter had to eat one more bite of cake, he was going to fucking lose it.

YOURS ALL ALONG is a novella by Roni Loren and a prequel of sorts to her full length story CALL ON ME (me review) and features Hunter and Devon. Hunter is about to get married but before he does his fiance sends him off to reconnect with his old college roommate and former best friend, Devon. Devon is openly gay and we quickly learn that he and Hunter had a secret relationship back in the day. YOURS ALL ALONG initially takes place in the present, though a few years before the events of CALL ON ME. Much of the novella is spent in the past, establishing the relationship of Hunter and Devon and while I loved reading how they became a couple I think that too much time was spent in the college years and not enough spent in the now and their re-connection.

There were a few things that I felt were rushed and a bit unresolved and if more time was spent in the now with Devon and Hunter as adults then those things could have been handled differently. I also think that Hunter could have handled things better with his fiance when he came to realize that he still had strong feelings for Devon. Overall though, I really enjoyed the story of Hunter and Devon for they made my heart ache for all that they’d gone through. YOURS ALL ALONG is a quick read and I look forward to exploring more stories from Roni Loren in the future.

 

irishdarkblue

Yours All Along Quote
three-half-stars
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Monday, June 22, 2015

Review: Focus on Me by Megan Erickson

Posted by Irish in 4 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Focus on Me by Megan EricksonFocus On Me by Megan Erickson
Series: In Focus, Book 2
Also in this series: Trust the Focus, Out of Frame
Published by Intermix on 21 July 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Friendship, GLBT, Love & Romance, New Adult, Road Trip, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues, Young Adult
Pages: 222
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Goodreads
four-stars
Also by this author: Trust the Focus, Make it Count, Changing His Game, Playing for Her Heart, Tied to Trouble, Out of Frame, Strong Signal, Fast Connection, Leveling the Field

Place(s) Traveled To: Las Vegas, Nevada // Grand Canyon, Arizona // Unknown, Louisiana // Unknown, New Mexico // Unknown, North Carolina

First Line(s): Riley Sorenson, Is that your real name?

Focus on Me by Megan Erickson is the second book in her In Focus series and like with most contemporary romances this is more of a companion book than a direct sequel. The first book, Trust the Focus (my review), tells the story of Landry who had invented a boyfriend and the picture he used for that subterfudge was Riley who is one of the main characters in this book. Like Trust the FocusFocus on Me is a road trip book but unlike the first one Colin and Riley are just meeting at the start of the trip. There is something about Riley that Colin is drawn to and so he offers him a ride when he sees that he’s in need. Along the way they form a bond and overall this was a very raw and powerful story.

Focus on Me was a book that I didn’t mean to start when I did. I was just going to check out the opener and then before I knew it I was turning the final page and it was way past my bedtime. The loss of sleep was worth it though because this was such a wonderful heartachy story and I just could not put it down. Focus on Me is a different book than Trust the Focus, its more serious and raw but I think that those elements only add to the story. I was totally invested in Colin and Riley and I couldn’t wait to see how it would all end. Erickson takes the reader on an emotional journey through many ups and downs but its so worth the ride.

Trust the Focus Quote

Focus on Me is told primarily through Colin’s eyes but there are these short glimpses via emails into Riley’s brain and I just loved how Megan Erickson told this story. Though I would have loved to see more from Riley’s POV I did like what we got and thought that it only added to the tensions of the story. Focus on Me is a quick and powerful read and I am so glad that I read it. Even if it left me sitting a pile of my own tears and emotions. My heart, oh how this book hurt my heart!!

At its core, Focus on Me, is a good romance and a good story of friendship. I liked how Erickson wove in the characters from Trust the Focus with just enough info that you don’t need to have read the first book to enjoy this one. I like how Focus on Me wasn’t all light-hearted and fluffy and that it had some serious undertones. I liked that the drama was real and not some manufactured angst because the characters refused to talk to each other and make assumptions about the other person. This story felt real and the so the feelings you feel as you read it are like you are the one living the story. I’m a big fan of this book and I recommend it to all.

 

 

irishdarkblue

IR - Focus on Me

Add With This Heart by RS Grey to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

Add Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

 

four-stars
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Sunday, April 19, 2015

Review: There You Stand by Christina Lee

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: There You Stand by Christina LeeThere You Stand by Christina Lee
Series: Between Breaths,
Also in this series: All of You, Before You Break, Whisper to Me, Promise Me This
Published by Intermix on 21 April 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, GLBT, Love & Romance, New Adult, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance
Pages: 250
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: All of You, Before You Break, Whisper to Me, Promise Me This

Place(s) Traveled To: Unnamed, Tennessee

First Line(s): I swallowed past the lump in my throat and leaned over to pat Chopper, the dog I’d inherited from Joe, my latest asshole boyfriend.

Over the last year or so I’ve noticed a bit of a trend in long term series, in that there will be at least one book featuring and LGBT couple or one involving BDSM. Christina Lee already did a light BDSM story with Promise Me This (my review) and now she’s trying her hand at an M/M romance with There You Stand. There You Stand is billed as part of Lee’s Between Breaths series but for me, this one doesn’t really connect very well to the other books in the series. There isn’t a lot of overlap between the other books and so this one is more easily able to be read as a standalone novel. The story revolves around tattoo artist Cory and a new guy in town the quiet and ofttimes shy Jude. Cory is out and proud and while he likes Jude he can’t get a good feel for him as he barely talks to those around him. The two become closer when Jude approaches Cory for a tattoo and they slowly become friends.

I liked the chemistry between Jude and Cory and thought that the romance was sweet and even a little heart achy. It contained so many elements that I love and this one was quickly working its way to becoming a favorite read. But then the narrative changed and there was this whole other crazy story element added to the story. Jude’s backstory is a bit convoluted and over the top and it just became a bit of a distraction for me. I know I rolled my eyes more than once and I just found it hard to believe. To me, this aspect of the storyline really came out of no where and didn’t add much to the story except for unnecessary drama. Its this story line that also really sets it apart from the other Between Breaths books.

There You Stand Quote

I did enjoy There You Stand and its a book that I will probably recommend to some of my friends there were just elements about it I didn’t really care for. I wish that it had stayed with a romance focus and avoid that unnecessary drama or that random motorcycle club. It was just odd and didn’t really seem to fit and all the cryptic references leading up to the big reveal just annoyed me. I’ve never been a fan of cryptic comments and foreshadowing of things to come. Well, maybe once or twice is fine been when its brought up time and again it just grates on my nerves and I find myself yelling at the characters to just spit it out already!

There You Stand is a quick read and I read it in a day. I was engaged enough with Jude and Cory’s romance that I kept turning the pages looking to see how they’d reach their happily ever after. I loved the early moments between these two when they were both learning how to open up and trust the other. And I loved their game of Truth. It was just a simple and yet often emotional way to get across so much information without having to say too much. Seriously, without that motorcycle club aspect I probably would have ended up rating this one much higher and if I ever do decide on a re-read then I’ll probably just skim through reading those bits that I loved best and trying to ignore some of the other aspects of the story that I found distracting or just so-so. All in all though, if you are a fan of Christina Lee then you should give this one a shot as she does know how to write a good love story.

irishdarkblue

IR - There You Stand

Add Understatement of the Year by Sarina Bowen to Goodreads. (Click here to read my review.)

Add Breakable by Tammara Webber to Goodreads. (Click here to read my review.)

three-stars
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Saturday, March 21, 2015

Review: Trust the Focus by Megan Erickson

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Trust the Focus by Megan EricksonTrust the Focus by Megan Erickson
Series: In Focus,
Also in this series: Focus On Me, Out of Frame
Published by Intermix on 17 March 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Friends to Lovers, Friendship, GLBT, Love & Romance, New Adult, People & Places, Road Trip, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues
Pages: 219
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble|Buy on Book Depository
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: Focus On Me, Make it Count, Changing His Game, Playing for Her Heart, Tied to Trouble, Out of Frame, Strong Signal, Fast Connection, Leveling the Field

Place(s) Traveled To: Redding, California // Pike’s Peak, Colorado // Unnamed, Idaho // Chicago, Illinois // Nashville, Indiana // Lewis, Kansas // Cape Elizabeth, Maine // Jefferson City, Missouri // Unnamed, New Hampshire // Unnamed, Oregon // Unnamed, Pennsylvania // Toutle, Washington // Buffalo County, Wisconsin // Moorcroft, Wyoming

First Line(s): More than a thousand graduation caps flew into the air behind me, but I was already walking down the aisle between the concrete bleachers.

 

I wasn’t sure what to expect from Megan Erikson’s Trust the Focus when I requested the title for review but I did know that it included two of my favorite book tropes: the road trip and a friends to lovers romance. Trust the Focus starts off with Justin and Landon graduating college and embarking on a cross country road trip taken in memory of Justin’s dad who had passed away. They plan to visit some of the places that Justin’s dad photographed and re-rake the pictures with the his ashes in them. Along the way Justin has decided to confront the feelings that he’s always had for his best friend, the openly gay Landry.

There are many ups and downs throughout this story and it made my heart ache on numerous occasions. There were also times when I wanted to reach into the pages and shake these characters as they weren’t doing the things that I wanted them to do when I wanted. In other words, I was invested in this story from the start all the way until the end. I cared what happened to Justin and Landry and really wanted them to find their happily ever after. Where this book would lose me was when it got a bit preachy with other characters coming onto the page seemingly just to validate Justin and Landry as a couple. It was almost always the same phrasing and just made me sigh a bit as it just seemed a bit much.

 

Trust the Focus Quote

 

Trust the Focus isn’t a deep story but it was a fun, quick read and just what I needed at the time. Its a book that would make a great pallet cleanser between heavy reads as you just just lose yourself in the story without having to think too much. Landry and Justin are realistic characters and readers will cheer for them to find their happily ever after. Best of all there is no pointless breakup. Yes there is conflict and tension because no romance is without that but its all realistic in its execution and it will make your heart ache.

While there were parts of Trust the Focus that frustrated me I did enjoy it and I couldn’t stop reading when I started. In fact, this was a book that I didn’t mean to read at all. I’d accidentally deleted my current read off my kindle and then accidentally opened this one when I was trying to move another book into a folder. Then before I fully realized what was happening I was staying up way past my bed time hurriedly flipping through the pages as I raced to the end of the story. Thrust the Focus was my first book by Megan Erikson but it won’t be my last as I enjoyed her writing and the characters that she created.

irishdarkblue

IR - Trust the Focus

 

Add There You Stand by Christina Lee to Goodreads. (Review to come.)

Add The Understatement of the Year by Sarina Bowen to Goodreads. (Click here for my review.)

three-stars
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Monday, November 10, 2014

Review: Promise Me This by Christina Lee

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Promise Me This by Christina LeePromise Me This by Christina Lee
Series: Between Breaths,
Also in this series: All of You, Before You Break, Whisper to Me, There You Stand
Published by Intermix on 07 October 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Erotica, Friends to Lovers, Friendship, Love & Romance, New Adult, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues
Pages: 246
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: All of You, Before You Break, Whisper to Me, There You Stand

First Line(s): I backed the brunette against the wall, my lips at her neck.

Place(s) Traveled To: Unknown, Tennessee // Bridgeway, Tennessee

Promise Me This is the latest installment in Christina Lee’s Between Breaths seies and involves Nate and Jessie two characters that we’ve seen in previous books. Nate is a bit of a playboy and Jessie is a girl who acts tougher than she is. Nate is also playing a role as he is afraid of letting people get too close. He’s afraid of following his desires and ending up a man like his father. But as you read the book you see that Nate is just a big old mashmellow with daddy issues. For, his dad is physically abusive to his mom and when he was younger to him and his brother. Nate thinks he might turn out like him as he likes things a bit rougher in the bedroom and he’s afraid of going too far. Luckily for him he meets Jessie and she helps him work through his issues just as he helps her deal with hers.

Nate and Jessie are a good match for each and throughout Promise Me This I was cheering for them to get together. Although I did roll my eyes a bit at the BDSM aspects of the story as it was very light and just seemed to be tossed in as an after thought. Its a trend that I’ve been seeing crop in series these days where at least one book involves characters who engage in the life style, which is fine, but it doesn’t always fit with the story or the characters. These BDSM books are what I call BDSM light as they are shadows in comparison to other BDSM books I’ve read and just seem to be in the story because its part of a trend. This of course is just my opinion and could be a good intro for those who want to read more erotica but aren’t ready for Tiffany Reiz, Sylvia Day or similar authors.

Promise Me This was a quick read and once I settled down into it I read it in just a few hours. Its filled with all the usual cliches but it wasn’t a bad story just a tad bit unoriginal. I enjoyed Nate and Jessie’s romantic journey and there were parts of the story I could have done without but I enjoyed seeing characters from the previous books and I do look forward to any other books in this series that Christina Lee might write. Its not a heart achy book but Promise Me This is a great in between type read for when you are transitioning between genres or coming off a really good read.

 

irishdarkblue

 

Promise-Me-This Quote
three-stars
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Friday, September 5, 2014

Review: Shatter by Erin McCarthy

Posted by Irish in 4 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Shatter by Erin McCarthyShatter by Erin McCarthy
Series: True Believers,
Also in this series: True, Sweet, Believe
Published by Intermix on 02 September 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Family, Girls & Women, Health & Daily Living, Love & Romance, New Adult, Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Social Issues
Pages: 304
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars
Also by this author: True, Sweet, Believe, You Make Me

Place(s) Traveled To: Cincinnati, Ohio

First Line(s): I hated living alone. I was never meant to live alone.

Shatter by Erin McCarthy is the fourth and final book in her True Believers story and involves Kylie, the girl who had a boyfriend for most of the series and then suddenly did not for reasons that you learn in Believe as well as in this story. Kylie is really struggling at the start of this story as there has been so much change in her life and she’s trying to cope with it all as well as deal with her normal course load. Kylie is also the bubbly, friendly girl in the group and as you read the series you see characters describe her as not smart. You even get that from various characters in this story as well, that she’s the pretty girl or the hot one and so that makes up for her lack of a brain. But I find that misleading of who Kylie is for while she may not always grasp Chemistry equations she is smart in other ways. She’s also funny and sweet and your heart just breaks for her at the start of the story as you only want her to be happy. Enter in Darwin (aka Jonathan) her new science tutor and all around sexy geek genius. The two have a spark and get carried away one night and end up with an unplanned pregnancy and that’s where this story really starts to take off.

Kylie and Jonathan are both at a loss as to what to do but try to make the best of things. They are two opposite people and yet they mesh really well. I love how they compliment each other and really felt their relationship was real. Though as with most stories the two characters do some stupid things, make assumptions and there is so much that could have been resolved if they just communicated with each other. There were a few times in which I wanted to shake them but overall I loved their story arc. I also liked how we got to see the characters from the previous books as I missed their stories when I hit the final pages of their books. So I love when a companion series actively incorporates previous characters.

The plot of Shatter was a bit predictable at times but it still managed to make my heart ache. I also found that there were times when the story seemed to drag but overall this was a story that I couldn’t stop reading once it hit my ereader and I read it in a single day. I also could have done without the epilogue and when I do reread these books you can be sure that I will be skipping over those last few pages. It was just too sickeningly sweet and everything just ended up a but too perfect that it broke the realism of the story. This is part of why I am not a fan of epilogues as I think they just try to do too much and be too perfect in its ending that it just loses something for me. Epilogue aside, Shatter, was one of my favorites in this series. It was genuine and touching and a book that I recommend to all looking for a good heart-warming story. A must for all Erin McCarthy fans as well.

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irishdarkblue

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Shatter Quote

four-stars
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Monday, May 19, 2014

Review: Before You Break by Christina Lee

Posted by Irish in 3 Stars, New Adult, Review0 Comments

Review: Before You Break by Christina LeeBefore You Break by Christina Lee
Series: Between Breaths, Book 2
Also in this series: All of You, Whisper to Me, Promise Me This, There You Stand
Published by Intermix on 18 February 2014
Genres: Contemporary Romance, Dating & Sex, Emotions & Feelings, Friendship, Love & Romance, New Adult, Social Issues, Sports & Athletics, Suicide
Pages: 304
Format: eARC
Source: Netgalley
Buy on Amazon|Buy on Audible|Buy on Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-stars
Also by this author: All of You, Whisper to Me, Promise Me This, There You Stand

Place(s) Traveled To: Unknown, Tennessee

First Line(s): “Daddy, please. I…I need to see Christopher,” I sobbed. “I need to be with him.”

Before You Break by Christina Lee wasn’t a book that I meant to read at this time. I have a list for the month and I had every intention on sticking with the list so I’m not sure what lead me to picking this one up. All I know is that once I started I didn’t want to put it down. Its not the greatest story ever told but it was engrossing enough that I read it in just a few hours. I liked the character of Quinn and wanted to know more of his story although the female lead, Ella, did annoy me at times. She was a bit of a mary sue and didn’t have much of a backbone at times. She often let her boyfriend walk all over her and just made me sigh heavy sighs when reading her POV.

I also wasn’t a fan of how she and her friends would communicate with each other. Well, most of their chatter I was fine with but I didn’t understand the need for the insults used as endearments that they used (i.e…Love you bitch). It just never seemed like a smooth conversation and always seemed so awkward and forced so I always tried to block them out when they appeared in the text. Other than that it was nice to see Ella living a life outside of the male lead of the story. Although initially this one seemed like it might be a cheating story and so it did take away my enjoyment even if Ella and Quinn did have a lot of on chemistry on the page.

I liked the character of Quinn and how complex he was. For once, in a new adult story, the male lead was dealing with some very real demons but unlike most he did seek some help by calling into the schools suicide hotline. And even though he was going through some tough things he didn’t use that as an excuse to be a complete and total dickhead to those around him. Quinn was a genuinely nice guy and he had real feelings for Ella and I was glad when she started to return them. Because as a couple they did work together and I was invested in their HEA.

Before You Break is a quick read and I enjoyed it. I like the story and the characters more than All of You. While this may not be a story that I re-read I don’t feel like my time was wasted. By the end of the book I liked Ella more than in the beginning and I look forward to see her and Quinn again in the next story, Whisper to Me, which involves Ella and Avery’s friend Rachel. Now there’s a character that I am interested in learning more about.

irishdarkblue

three-stars
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