Book Review: Never Google Heartbreak by Emma Garcia

Guest Review and Commentary by Eva Pugzlyte

book review never google heartbreak emma garciaVivienne Summers got dumped by her fiancé, Rob, thrice, yet she prefers to look at it as being “on a break” and is certain he will return to her with the wedding ring and she can finally start living the perfect life as Rob’s wife. Clearly Viv doesn’t make the same mistake twice. She makes it thrice, just to be sure. As much as I wanted to shake her – because, Hello! Girl, you are you blind or stupid or both? This guy is clearly no good and you deserve so much better than this! – I couldn’t help but feel an embarrassing solidarity with her, because even though I’ve never even been close to the altar, I’ve been there. My girlfriends have been there and most likely youve been there, too. Oh you’re a “strong independent woman who don’t need no man”? You’ve so been there and don’t even try to deny it.

So there is Viv, in her crappy “temporary” (whatever you want to tell yourself) apartment, so deep in denial that it’s about to cross the core–mantle boundary of the planet. After all he just needs time to realise he can’t live without her and then he’ll be back. In fact she will show up at their mutual friends’ wedding looking fabulous and show him what he’s missing. (Oh boy…) And then he calls and tells her he’ll be with someone and for a moment I was really sure she had seen him for the bastard he is (even if we’re only on page 55 of 339), but instead she decides to bring a date, too (I can’t watch this…).

Enter Max Kelly, a six-foot-two, scruffy, dark curly-haired, poetry writing, motorbike riding, guitar playing, Irish painter, who happens to be Vivienne’s best friend. (Viv, is he single? Why is he single? Can I have his number? Oh my God, what happened to your hair?!) Five minutes  with Max and it’s already plainly obvious he’s in love with her and mercilessly friend-zoned. (Oh please. Yeah sure, Viv, he’s not friend-zoned. And Guantanamo Bay is an all-inclusive holiday resort.)

Let’s skip to the wedding and Rob’s someone, an urban goddess shrouded in class and sophistication. (I understand you need a drink, Viv, but I really don’t think that’s a good idea. Oh that’s definitely a bad idea… Max, do something!)

The next several chapters are spent anaesthetising the previous chapters with vodka, champagne or a near lethal combination of both, breaking every glass in the flat and crying herself in to a stupor, achingly familiar to that time I spent a Saturday in bed with a bottle of wine and half a rainforest worth of tissues bemoaning a guy who dumped me via text message (Wait. What? I admit nothing.) In my mind I unconsciously start singing All by myself…

In the meantime she starts a website about heartbreak (because there seem to be a lot of brokenhearted people on the internet), while trying to keep her own head as well as that of her dim-witted assistant above water as they both are at danger of losing their jobs. And worst of all everyone around her seems to find sex or love or even worse…both. Even her nana! Is there anything worse than lovesick people all around you when you feel like your heart has been dug out of your chest cavity with a spoon? And then she picks up her last stuff at her ex’s house, her ex-house, which has been re-decorated by his now fiancée and she’s fighting with her best girlfriend (Here, Viv, you definitely need this drink more than I do.) and the hurt is so great she would do anything, anything, to not feel it even if it’s for a span of 30 seconds and Max is there like a gorgeous, rogue,Irish morphine patch and she surrenders to it (I don’t blame you, Viv. I resent you slightly, but I don’t blame you) and for a little while she can breathe again, but then Rob returns from their “break” and he’s on one knee and he’s holding a diamond ring, her diamond ring (Don’t you even think about it, Viv! Do you hear me?!) and it’s all she ever thought she wanted, but why does it feel so out of place in her flat and her life all of a sudden? And where is Max?

A girlfriend gave me this book saying she loved it because it felt so familiar (She has definitely been there). I took it with a smile, yet expecting it to be the thirteenth chick-flick in a baker’s dozen and I ended up pleasantly surprised, because Viv isn’t perfect (Sorry, Viv, I love you but you’re a mess). Viv is you. She is your best friend. She is your colleague. She’s the random girl you’re sharing an elevator with. You laugh with her, you cry with her, you root for her, you scold her. You have imaginary arguments with her in your head and then you make up with her. She’s the voice in your head. She is the worst of you  and the best. She’s iconic. And that’s what makes this book so enjoyable.

Oh and Max is a sweater made out of sexy boyfriend material. (Yes, he’s yours, Viv. Let a girl dream… Get another bottle of wine, will you? Night’s young.)

Book Review never google heartbreak by emma garcia

About the Author

Emma Garcia has completed an MA in Creative Writing at Roehampton University and has published three children’s books (Boxer books). NEVER GOOGLE HEARTBREAK is her first adult novel loosely based around her own experiences of being in her thirties and single in London, of being dumped, getting over it, falling in love and getting married. She has worked as a waitress, technical assistant, chambermaid, sandwich designer, product manager, illustrator and teacher, and spent a long time travelling and working in Asia.

She lives in Yorkshire with her husband and three children, and is currently working on the second book in the series, OMG BABY.

About the Book

Top tips to get over a broken heart
Don’t embarrass yourself in front of your ex
Avoid sleeping with your best friend
No drunken dialling!
… And never, ever Google heartbreak

After her ex-fiancé Rob breaks off their engagement for the third time, Viv knows she needs help to get over it. And, as she searches through tales of heartbreak online, inspiration strikes – she needs to set up her own website! A one-stop shop for the broken-hearted.

However, the advice she begins getting on it doesn’t seem to be helping her win Rob back. On the contrary, it seems to be pointing her in the direction of her best friend and partner-in-crime Max.

But where is Max when Viv needs him most? Will Rob ever see the error of his ways?
And, ultimately, is there a search engine powerful enough to stop us getting our hearts broken… or to stop us breaking anyone else’s?

About the Reviewer

Thinker. Dreamer. Independent. Observer. Night owl. Frank. Stubborn. Easygoing on the surface, but shy underneath. Prone to sarcastic remarks. Ticklish. Lover of arts. Foodie. Would never exchange the feel of paper under her fingertips for an e-reader. Often talks in references. Could eat her weight in licorice. Secretly suspects her house is trying to kill her and shall deny every accusation of klutzery on her behalf. Is known to on occasion name inanimate objects and oftentimes can’t decide whether she loves something because it’s beautiful, or whether it’s beautiful because she loves it.


Book Review: Sweet Sacrifices by Gloria Davidson Marlow

Guest Review by Kerry A. Hartjen

Sweet Sacrifices Is a Sweet Read

Sweet Sacrifices by Gloria Davidson MarlowDon’t you just love it when a book surprises you?

Sometimes the surprises begin with the first line, but sadly, they end there as well. Other times, the surprises just keep coming from cover to cover, and keep the reader guessing what will happen next.

Gloria Davidson Marlow’s “Sweet Sacrifices” belongs, I am happy to say, in the second group. A tale of love requited and unrequited, of mysteries and intrigues, and of layers and layers of family secrets, it kept me not only interested but entertained throughout.

“Sweet Sacrifices” is, at its core, the story of a poor, beautiful young teacher who falls in love with a handsome stranger, believes that she has married him, becomes pregnant, is betrayed by him, and is then coerced into marrying his brother in order to insure that her infant son has a better life, and a better father, than she did.

Oh — and it also turns out the man she thought she had married, as well as his entire family — are enormously rich. And loaded with family skeletons in a variety of closets.

Admittedly, that is a gross oversimplification of the story. But should you decide to read this book (and I really think you should, especially if you like romantic suspense novels), I don’t want to give away too much of the plot.

Ms. Marlow has populated her novel with a cast of characters that seem to grow in depth and believability the more we get to know them. There are heroes and there are villains, of course. But the author rises above the mundane and predictable by giving her characters multi-dimensional personalities. She elevates them from the world of the cardboard stereotypes that populate the books of many less talented writers, into the realm of believable, individual people.

Another pleasant surprise for me was that “Sweet Sacrifices” has an almost gothic feel to it. There is a sense of oppression, of captivity and isolation that is so much a part of gothic literature. There is also the hint, and even the reality, of madness. Things are not as they appear. People may — or may not be — who or what they seem to be. Danger and betrayal lie around every corner, and the danger keeps growing.

That is another thing I enjoyed about this book: the way that the story kept developing, and how just when I thought I had it figured out, the author would throw in a clever twist, some new bit of information that spun the plot in an unforeseen direction. And her plot twists are not just random devices tossed in as a gimmick to hold the reader’s interest. Once they have been revealed, they make perfect sense and fit seamlessly into the storyline.

I love it when a book comes along and surprises me. When it leads me on a winding path filled with growing suspense and increasing tension from page to page, and pays off with dividends in the end, I love it even more.

“Sweet Sacrifices” did all that, and did it very well.

***

“Sweet Sacrifices” is available directly from the publisher at:

www.TheWildRosePress.com

Sweet Sacrifice by Gloria Davidson Marlow

About the Author

Gloria Davidson Marlow is the author of several romantic suspense novels. She resides in Northeast Florida with her husband, works as a paralegal at a local law firm, and spends as much time as possible with her three grandsons. Visit her blog or her website to learn more. You can also follow her on Twitter.

About the Reviewer

Kerry Hartjen is a former magician/clown/actor and an award-winning writer. He is a supporting member of the Horror Writers Association, a former member of the Dramatists Guild of America, West, and a graduate of The Hollywood Scriptwriting Institute. His poem “Homecoming” has just been published in the fourth issue of the online literary journal, HelloHorror.com. Kerry currently lives on a small island midway between Seattle, WA, Vancouver, B.C., and Victoria, B.C. with his wife and their cat, Max. His blog can be found at: www.raviolithewriter.com .


Book Review: Undone Rebel by Lila Dubois

Guest Review by Heidi LaVista

book review undone rebel by lila duboisAfter the gushing about geek heroes last week, I begged them to let me review Undone Rebel, the first in the Undone Lovers series by Lila Dubois. Like J and M, I’m a big fan of the shy guys, especially when they drop that shyness in the bedroom. Undone Rebel has such a hero, as well as a heroine I couldn’t help but love.

Ms. Dubois begins beautifully, giving us a very clear picture of Addie, the pin-up girl with a solid backbone and a heart of gold. Upon meeting her, we see the future conflict clearly. How could someone with such a strong will naturally submit? Still, in spite of this fiery nature, she agrees to model for erotic photography, where she’ll play the part of a submissive to three separate Doms with three distinct styles.

And then we meet Lane. Upon first impression, he’s strong, capable, and smokin’ hot. Ms. Dubois also created such lovely tension here, showing us two decidedly strong characters with immense amounts of sexual chemistry. Because her introduction to Addie is so well done, we already care for them and hope for some kind of future before she can even meet the second Dom.

In a twist that really threw me for a loop and cemented my regard for the book, we discover Lane is a computer geek with a history of trouble with girls. His Dominant nature developed as he learned to interact with women. AND I BELIEVED IT. I believed every single word. Adorable and so hot.

Were there a few issues here and there with sentence structure and other stuff my editor mind itched to fix? Yeah. In the end, these didn’t matter. I was invested in the characters, the story, and the outcome too much to really see the blemishes. I felt the author avoided many of the pitfalls of erotic romance, gave us character development, a fun and relatively believable plot, some pretty smokin’ sex, and a hero that I’d fall for over and over and over again.

Book Review Undone Rebel by Lila Dubois

About the Book

When amateur fetish model and rockabilly princess Adelita “Addie” Sanchez is asked to model for an instructional BDSM book, she turns the offer down—she’s not a porn star. Then she meets the three male Dominants behind the project, including Lane Therres, who convinces her the book is more art than porn, and she’ll be safe in his hands.

The rules of the photo sessions are clear—there’s no sex, and Addie can call a halt to anything she’s uncomfortable with. But self-reliant, strong-willed Addie doesn’t count on liking what the powerful Doms do to her body with their ropes, chains and toys. Enjoying Emory’s touch after falling for Lane, Addie turns away from both men, scared of what they’re making her feel. She’s worried that a relationship built on a BDSM contract can never be anything but whips and chains.

Lane will exchange Dom leather for shining armor to prove to his rockabilly princess that even the most gallant knights sometimes prefer dungeons.

About the Author

Lila is a multi-published, bestselling author of erotic, paranormal and fantasy romance. Having spent extensive time in France, Egypt, Turkey, Ireland and England, Lila speaks five languages, none of them—including English—fluently. Follow her on Goodreads or her website.

About the Reviewer

Heidi LaVista loves to combine words and song, reads more than a lot, and dabbles in writing stuff sometimes. Loves editing, stuffed animals (not clowns), cute guys, cats and dogs, and chocolate-covered pretzels.


Book Review: Undone Rebel by Lila Dubois

Guest Review by Heidi LaVista

book review undone rebel by lila duboisAfter the gushing about geek heroes last week, I begged them to let me review Undone Rebel, the first in the Undone Lovers series by Lila Dubois. Like J and M, I’m a big fan of the shy guys, especially when they drop that shyness in the bedroom. Undone Rebel has such a hero, as well as a heroine I couldn’t help but love.

Ms. Dubois begins beautifully, giving us a very clear picture of Addie, the pin-up girl with a solid backbone and a heart of gold. Upon meeting her, we see the future conflict clearly. How could someone with such a strong will naturally submit? Still, in spite of this fiery nature, she agrees to model for erotic photography, where she’ll play the part of a submissive to three separate Doms with three distinct styles.

And then we meet Lane. Upon first impression, he’s strong, capable, and smokin’ hot. Ms. Dubois also created such lovely tension here, showing us two decidedly strong characters with immense amounts of sexual chemistry. Because her introduction to Addie is so well done, we already care for them and hope for some kind of future before she can even meet the second Dom.

In a twist that really threw me for a loop and cemented my regard for the book, we discover Lane is a computer geek with a history of trouble with girls. His Dominant nature developed as he learned to interact with women. AND I BELIEVED IT. I believed every single word. Adorable and so hot.

Were there a few issues here and there with sentence structure and other stuff my editor mind itched to fix? Yeah. In the end, these didn’t matter. I was invested in the characters, the story, and the outcome too much to really see the blemishes. I felt the author avoided many of the pitfalls of erotic romance, gave us character development, a fun and relatively believable plot, some pretty smokin’ sex, and a hero that I’d fall for over and over and over again.

Book Review Undone Rebel by Lila Dubois

About the Book

When amateur fetish model and rockabilly princess Adelita “Addie” Sanchez is asked to model for an instructional BDSM book, she turns the offer down—she’s not a porn star. Then she meets the three male Dominants behind the project, including Lane Therres, who convinces her the book is more art than porn, and she’ll be safe in his hands.

The rules of the photo sessions are clear—there’s no sex, and Addie can call a halt to anything she’s uncomfortable with. But self-reliant, strong-willed Addie doesn’t count on liking what the powerful Doms do to her body with their ropes, chains and toys. Enjoying Emory’s touch after falling for Lane, Addie turns away from both men, scared of what they’re making her feel. She’s worried that a relationship built on a BDSM contract can never be anything but whips and chains.

Lane will exchange Dom leather for shining armor to prove to his rockabilly princess that even the most gallant knights sometimes prefer dungeons.

About the Author

Lila is a multi-published, bestselling author of erotic, paranormal and fantasy romance. Having spent extensive time in France, Egypt, Turkey, Ireland and England, Lila speaks five languages, none of them—including English—fluently. Follow her on Goodreads or her website.

About the Reviewer

Heidi LaVista loves to combine words and song, reads more than a lot, and dabbles in writing stuff sometimes. Loves editing, stuffed animals (not clowns), cute guys, cats and dogs, and chocolate-covered pretzels.


Book Review: Lawless Love by Andrea Downing

Guest Review by Heidi LaVista

book review Lawless Love by Andrea DowningWhile tracking a suspect in the murder of a local ranch owner, US Marshal Dylan Kane encounters Lacey Everhart twice in the course of one afternoon. First bathing in the river, and then as the proprietress of the town’s only lodging house. When her younger brother, who matches the description of his suspect, returns home, Marshal Kane’s long-held beliefs of right and wrong, black and white, are challenged in the interactions that follow.

Lawless Love is an enjoyable historical short story. Andrea Downing’s imagery is great, as are the historical aspects. I did have some trouble with the phonetic use of dialog, which was abundant and somewhat inconsistent. The words and pronunciations are most likely accurate for the time and setting, but spelling them out distracted me nonetheless.

Also distracting are a couple of my personal pet peeves, which won’t bother most readers, but I have to mention. I. Don’t. Like. This. Effect. At. All. Yeah, that. The story does require some suspension of disbelief, suffering from the insta-lust and love often seen in novellas. I had a hard time believing Lacey would think about kissing a man she was rightly furious with for spying while she bathed in the nude. I also didn’t get much of a chance to experience what the hero and heroine saw in each other to make them fall so hard into love—or even lust—so quickly despite their beliefs and values of the time period.

I do have a couple of sentences that show the great potential for Ms. Downing’s imagery, but mix with passive phrasing:

“As night whispered about him and he watched the curtains billow before they were sucked out into the silver light of the moon, Dylan lay imagining what it would be like to hold Lacey in that nocturnal quiet.”

Loved the imagery, but the passive phrases and words not so much.

“Outside, a ball of tumbleweed spun by as branches tried to meet the earth and the gate crashed open and shut.”

Same thing. Loved the imagery, would have liked to see it more active, but that’s just me being picky. And then the repeated line a few pages later:

“Out the window, the front gate crashed and slammed on its hinges as tumbleweed bowled by.”

Essentially the same thing, but with active rephrasing. Blend the two sentences together, and I think we’d have something very nice indeed.

Overall, Lawless Love entertained, and I’m interested to read the author’s other works. I love the potential of her talent and would like to see the results of a little stronger editing in the more technical areas.

book review lawless love by andrea downing

About the Book

Lacey Everhart has carved out a tough existence in the wilds of 1880s Wyoming, working hard to build a secure life for herself and her younger brother, Luke. She will stop at nothing to protect what’s hers and keep them safe. Even if it means keeping a secret that could destroy their lives.

Marshal Dylan J. Kane is a man who considers everything as black and white, right or wrong.  He’s never seen life any other way until he sets eyes on Lacey. Suddenly the straight and narrow that he’s followed has a few twists and turns. Loving Lacey offers the home life for which he hankers…but can he really love a woman who seems to be plain lawless?

About the Author

Andrea Downing likes to say that, when she decided to leave New York, the city of her birth, she made a wrong turn and went east instead of west.   She ended up spending most of her life in the UK where she received an M.A. from the University of Keele in Staffordshire.  She married and raised a beautiful daughter and  stayed on to teach and write, living in the Derbyshire Peak District, the English Lake District, Wales and the Chiltern Hills before finally moving into London. During this time, family vacations were often on guest ranches in the American West, where she and her daughter have clocked up some 17 ranches to date. In addition, she has traveled widely throughout Europe, South America, and Africa, living briefly in Nigeria. In 2008 she returned to the city of her birth, NYC, but frequently exchanges the canyons of city streets for the wide open spaces of the West.  Her love of horses, ranches, rodeo and just about anything else western is reflected in her writing.  Loveland, a western historical romance published by The Wild Rose Press, was her first book and is a finalist for the RONE Award of Best American Historical.  Lawless Love, a story, comes out as part of The Wild Rose Press Lawmen and Outlaws’ series on Sept. 4.  Andrea is a member of Romance Writers of America and Women Writing the West.

Follow Andrea on her blog, Twitter, Facebook, and purchase Lawless Love on Amazon

About the Reviewer

Heidi LaVista loves to combine words and song, reads more than a lot, and dabbles in writing stuff sometimes. Loves editing, stuffed animals (not clowns), cute guys, cats and dogs, and chocolate-covered pretzels.


Book Review: Hunger Moon by Melissa Snark

Guest Review by Lisa Lester

book review hunger moon by melissa snarkWerewolf Victoria Storm knows all about duty.  Alpha to a dwindling pack decimated by war with the Barrett family, and with new pups on the way, she must find safe harbor away from the pursuing human hunters that have sworn to wipe her pack from the face of the Earth. After praying to her goddess Freya for guidance, Victoria is led to Sierra Pines, California to find an Alpha to protect and shelter her pack.  Arik Koenig, a powerful alpha male with a murky past, promises to be the protector her pack so desperately needs, and agrees to be Victoria’s mate.  Yet nothing is ever easy, and Victoria soon finds that the wickedly handsome Arik comes with his own baggage; his murdered wife’s spirit cries out to Victoria to protect her son, Logan, who has been rumored to be his mother’s killer.  Can she trust the attraction she feels with Arik, despite the rising contention between father and son?  Or will the mystery of his wife’s death lead to the destruction of her pack?  She has to find the answers, and fast, to keep herself and her pack safe.

This book was literally a page turner for me.  This was one of those books where I would look at the clock, groan aloud at how late it was, and move on to the next chapter, until I finished it in one sitting.  Melissa’s concise writing style keeps up a good pace without slowing down, and the characters are alive and seem to leap off the page.  I also loved the inclusion of Norse mythology into the story; the world and mythos building here is just enough to be immersive without bogging down in the details.  Another aspect of the book I liked was that even in their human forms, the shifters in this world still have characteristics of their animal counterparts, such as showing submissiveness to a dominant pack leader.  I particularly enjoyed the snappy dialogue between Victoria and Logan, as well as the sparks that fly between her and Arik.  Let me tell you, parts of those interactions were definitely hot! While I missed the first book in the series, that is definitely a mistake I will have to rectify.  I’m intrigued to see where Melissa takes Victoria and her pack, and to learn more about the role she plays as a Valkyrie and the dynamic between her and her goddess Freya.  A definite must read for anyone who enjoys urban fantasy.

Book Review Hunger Moon by Melissa Snark

 

About the Book

Valkyrie Victoria Storm desires nothing more than to provide her wolf pack with a safe haven, but her position as priestess to the Goddess Freya also brings with it certain… obligations. Not to mention complications.

War with the Barrett family resulted in the deaths of her parents and most of her pack. Now, hunters are hot on the trail of the remaining pack members. Sawyer Barrett, a human hunter hell bent on revenge, is convinced that Victoria murdered his brother. He will stop at nothing to see her dead.

Victoria must defend the survivors and somehow lead them to safety.  Months on the run has weakened the pack, and there are newborn pups to protect, making swift travel impossible.  Ahead, the promise of refuge beckons.

Their best chance for survival lies in Sierra Pines, California: Arik Koenig, a powerful, dominant male wolf. He promises to protect and provide for the pack, something Victoria knows the pack needs for survival. His mysterious past is riddled with violence and death, including the slaughter of his entire family twenty years before. His wife died under mysterious circumstances and his son, Logan, is rumored to be her killer.

What is truth? Who can she trust? The desperate spirit of Arik’s murdered wife calls out for help, and Logan begs for assistance in clearing his name. Victoria must solve a murder that has pitted father against son, rooted in a mystery reaching back two decades. Her quest starts her on a journey from the human world to Odin’s Valhalla and back again.

Victoria will find salvation or face destruction beneath the Hunger Moon…

About the Author

A friend asked me once how I chose my pen name. I told her the following: “Melissa, because when people mix up my first name, it’s the most common goof up. Snark, because it amuses me. A) I love the word ‘snarky’ and B) I love Lewis Carroll.”

As an individual, I’m sarcastic, stubborn and blunt to a fault. I have a strange sense of humor and I like to laugh (usually at my husband or children), but also at myself. I’m not particularly extroverted, although I do enjoy time with my family and close friends a great deal.

At the moment, I’m a stay at home mom who writes in my spare time. I’ve got a B.S. from Arizona State University in Business, and I’ve worked a variety of different jobs, including as a medical device documentation specialist, a technical writer, and an auto liability adjuster.

I live in the San Francisco East Bay of Northern California with my husband, three kids, and three cats. My hobbies include roleplaying, cooking and reading.

Follow Melissa on her blog, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Amazon, and her website. She also invites readers to email.

About the Reviewer

Lisa Lester lives in a humongous house with three cats, three dogs, two dudes (one of which she’s married to, the other one is a refugee from New Jersey) and a partridge in a pear tree…okay, just kidding about the pear tree.  And the partridge too. When she’s not working for the Man. she’s reading or killing stuff on World of Warcraft. She also enjoys nerdy things like Star Wars, crocheting, and pretty much any kind of music.

 


Book Review: This Girl by Colleen Hoover

Guest Review by Michelle Schaffer

Book Review This Girl by Colleen HooverFirst, let me say that the Slammed series is what made me love self-published authors. I came across Slammed when it popped up on my recommended reading list. I read it in one sitting and bought the second book before finishing the first. When I found out that This Girl was coming out, and it was a look back on the first book from Will’s point of view, I was counting the days and pre-ordered it the first day it was available. To say I had high expectations is an understatement, and I was a little anxious it wouldn’t live up to them. This Girl not only lived up to those expectations, it went beyond anything I could imagine.

This Girl is a look back on the beginning of Will and Layken’s (Lake) story and other parts in Will’s life that impacted them, all from Will’s perspective. It picks up immediately where Point of Retreat leaves off. Lake wants to understand what was in Will’s head when they met and everything that happened before today. “I have your future, now I want to know your past” as Lake says it. Will is hesitant to relive some very painful memories and open up on some things that Lake is unaware, but he concedes and begins to tell his side of the story. It flashes back to different stories of the past and brings you to the present to see the consequences.  As he explains his POV, it gives you the complete picture. It allows you to crawl in the mind of Will, to understand the what, when, why and how. When you read a book from one point of view, you make many assumptions as to why a story goes in one direction versus another; you wonder what is happening to the other side of the story. This Girl answers all those questions and in some of the most unexpected ways. It is written beautifully & executed perfectly. I had my doubts that it could work so well, I should know better to doubt Colleen, she is brilliant. I wanted so much to read Slammed and Point of Retreat again before reading This Girl, but I was impatient. Yet reading this took me back to some of my most favorite parts of their story, and some of the more painful parts. This book made me love Lake and Will even more. The book ends with a beautiful epilogue that made me laugh and cry.

Reading This Girl is bittersweet for me. I loved reading it, couldn’t put it down, and yet never wanted it to end. I am sad to see this brilliant series come to an end. I adored each character, each story line, and each butterflying word. (Yes, I meant to put butterflying and when you read the first book you will understand why)  If you have not read this series, you need to. This is not a standalone book, to understand the story you need to start from the beginning. The story is beautiful, heartbreaking, sad, joyous, and every emotion in between. And this book…THIS book, completed the story. I look forward to reading these books again & again for many years to come.

Book Review This Girl by Colleen Hoover

About the Book

There are two sides to every love story. Now hear Will’s.

Colleen Hoover’s New York Times bestselling Slammed series has brought countless readers to their knees with a whirlwind of love, passion, and heartache. Layken and Will’s love has managed to withstand the toughest of circumstances and the young lovers, now married, are beginning to feel safe and secure in their union. As much as Layken relishes their new life together, she finds herself wanting to know everything there is to know about her husband, even though Will makes it clear he prefers to keep the painful memories of the past where they belong. Still, he can’t resist his wife’s pleas and so he begins to untangle his side of the story, revealing for the first time his most intimate feelings and thoughts, retelling both the good and bad moments, and sharing a few shocking confessions of his own from the time when they first met.

In This Girl, Will tells the story of their complicated relationship from his point of view. Their future rests on how well they deal with the past in this final installment of the beloved Slammed series.

About the Author

I love music. LOVE music. Namely The Avett Brothers, Lumineers, Pink, Eminem. I have eclectic taste? If you have any recommendations, send them my way!

I’m addicted to diet pepsi and could tell you in a taste-test which restaurant it came from. It’s a serious addiction, I tell you.

I get stoked whenever I get a message from goodreads saying I have a new friend request…so request me, dangit!

If you want to know when I have new books out or just want to be inundated by random, pointless blog posts, follow me at www.colleenhoover.com

Avoid my Twitter at all cost. It’s propaganda.

About the Reviewer

Michelle is a lover of books, all shapes and sizes, but a big sucker for a great romance and the search for a new fictional boyfriend! When not taking care of three demanding persons in her home, one being the man she married and the other two co-created with her husband, she works full time in a job that pays the bills. She dreams of down time to lose herself in another book since she has more books on her TBR list than she does food in her refrigerator.


Book Review: I’ve Got Your Number by Sophie Kinsella

Guest Review by Tiff Nichols

Book review I've Got Your NumberEvery once in a while, a gal needs something light to read—a good, funny romance with endearing characters, hilarity, and hijinks. When I find myself pining for a fun read that really pulls me in, I turn to one of my favorite authors of romantic comedies, Sophie Kinsella. You might recognize her as the author of the popular Shopaholic series, but Kinsella has written quite a few hilarious standalone novels as well. The one I read most recently is I’ve Got Your Number.

Sophie Kinsella is a champ at creating lovable characters, and she doesn’t disappoint here. I adored Poppy Wyatt from the first chapter. She’s a bright, caring, and witty physiotherapist in London who is all set to marry Magnus Tavish, the man of her (and many other girls’) dreams. Like most of Kinsella’s female leads, Poppy finds herself the heroine in a comedy of errors.

During an afternoon tea with her girlfriends, Poppy manages to lose both her heirloom engagement ring and her cell phone in quick succession. As luck would have it, she finds a discarded phone in a trash bin. Poppy grabs the phone in a panic and gives the number to the hotel’s employees, who have promised to keep an eye out for her ring.

The hijinks begin immediately. Turns out the phone belonged to successful businessman Sam Roxton, whose personal assistant chucked the phone into the trash after abruptly quitting her job. Poppy convinces Sam to let her keep the phone until the hotel calls to tell her they’ve found her engagement ring. She soon finds herself immersed in Sam’s electronic life—both business and personal. Sam, of course, is none too happy about her snooping, but Poppy, with her wit, common sense, and desire to help in every situation, eventually becomes invaluable to Sam.

It was fun to watch the unconventional alliance develop between Poppy and Sam. They go from complete strangers, a bit annoyed at one another and reluctantly sharing a cell phone, to acquaintances who give each other advice via text and phone conversations.

The story is fun, the characters are endearing, and the laughs are abundant. There’s enough mystery on all fronts to keep you guessing throughout. Also, there are footnotes, a clever nod to Poppy’s distinguished and scholarly in-laws-to-be. (“Magnus says footnotes are for things which aren’t your main concern but nevertheless hold some interest for you. So. This is my footnote about footnotes.”) They’re filled with fun little tidbits that are intended as asides to the reader, e.g. “What kind of movie starts with a mother fish and all her little glowy eggs being eaten by a shark, FFS? It’s supposed to be for children.”

If you’re looking for a serious read that you can really think about, a protagonist who will be a role model for the ages, or something to satisfy your feminist side, this is one of the last books I’d recommend. But if you’re like me and enjoy the occasional jaunt to the land of “chick lit,” then I highly recommend I’ve Got Your Number. I give the book five monkeys, because anything that makes me stay up all night giggling and reading is worth it.

Book Review I've Got Your Number

About the Book

Poppy Wyatt has never felt luckier. She is about to marry her ideal man, Magnus Tavish, but in one afternoon her “happily ever after” begins to fall apart. Not only has she lost her engagement ring in a hotel fire drill, but in the panic that follows, het phone is stolen. As she paces shakily around the lobby, she spots an abandoned phone in a trash can. Finders keepers! Now she can leave a number for the hotel to contact her when they find her ring. Perfect!

Well, perfect except that the phone’s owner, businessman Sam Roxton, doesn’t agree. He wants his phone back and doesn’t appreciate Poppy reading his messages and wading into his personal life.

What ensues is a hilarious and unpredictable turn of events as Poppy and Sam increasingly upend each other’s lives through emails and text messages. As Poppy juggles wedding preparations, mysterious phone calls, and hiding her left hand from Magnus and his parents, she soon realizes that she is in for the biggest surprise of her life.

About the Author

Sophie Kinsella is the author of the bestselling Shopaholic series, as well as Twenties Girl, Remember Me?, The Undomestic Goddess, and Can You Keep a Secret? She lives with her husband and children in London, UK.

About the Reviewer

Tiffany Nichols is a writer, editor, and avid reader who lives in Charleston, South Carolina, with her husband and two dogs.  She enjoys music, crocheting, craft beers, and not sharing her cell phone with strangers. You can find her at WriteEditRepeat.com.


Book Review: Amity of the Angelmen

Guest Review by Rachael Clipson

book review amity of the angel menAmity of the Angelmen by T. C. Slonaker is a book that keeps you on your toes.  It is a great book for those who just want a good read or for those struggling with their faith. I often found myself wondering if the story could actually happen or not. What if your best friend was half angel??

Amity, the main character,  has had a great life as the preacher’s daughter until she finds out some interesting news. It turns out she is God’s messenger.  She asks many of the same questions that I would ask if in that position. I found myself taking a walk in her shoes. I often thought, what if God is telling me to do that? She is a strong character, but has times where she is like any other teenager and can’t find hope in her situation. She has a great friend though that helps her find hope for her mission.

Mackenzie is a very young man trying to find his place in God’s plan. He happens to find himself in the middle of Amity’s mess when Mrs. Sheridan drags him to rid Her house of evil. He becomes Amity’s best friend and protector. He seems to be the only person she can turn to. But with Mackenzie becoming a priest he can’t have close secular relationships. Where will this leave him and Amity?

T. C. Slonaker has written a wonderful Christian mystery that leaves you begging for more! It makes you realize that God has a plan for you even if you don’t know what it is yet.
Book Review Amity of the Angelmen

About the Book

Amity David is not human, as the seventeen-year-old pastor’s daughter had thought she was. Her life has now been upturned and possibly set aright with the help of Mackenzie Abel, a young priest as conflicted about his calling as Amity is about hers. Blindly searching for answers together that will serve God’s intent, the two also struggle against feelings they have developed for one another. Can Amity trust the alleged angel who told her she is descended from a demon? Part of her hopes not because, if true, it means she is being called to help free others like her from the ties of her evil heritage through war. What happens when a being created out of evil, is called to fight on the side of good? And what if this evil being thinks she is a good person, only to find she is not even a person at all?

About the Author

Tracy enjoys her life as a wife and mother of three in just outside Reading, PA. She still has a soft spot for kids and an eagerness to use her degrees in Elementary Education by using them as Director of Christian Education at her non-denominational Christian church. She has also learned to love running, and has not given up her childhood fondness of sports (playing softball and watching football). She gives thanks to the Lord for all His good gifts. Visit her website, follow her on Twitter and Facebook, and connect with her on Goodreads. You can find her book for purchase on AmazonBarnes and Noble, or the Martin Sisters Publishing website.

About the Reviewer

Rachael lives in a very small town in East Tennessee, where she attends Roane State Community College, majoring in Elementary Education. She loves to read whenever she gets the chance. You can follow her on Twitter @Rachy355.


Book Review: Vigilant by Angel Lawson

Guest Review by Michelle Schaffer

Book review for Vigilant by Angel LawsonThe Vigilant was a very interesting story. The story never lagged, it was full of twists. I enjoyed the characters, especially the main character. This is a book that I would purchase and would read again. I very much enjoyed this book and I like how the author developed the story.

The story focuses on the life of Ari Grant, a caseworker for troubled youths. Ari is caught in an armed robbery and rescued by the Vigilante as the book begins. The Vigilante is known around Glory City to come to the rescue during time of need. Ari receives the benefit of the Vigilante more than once, at just the right time. We follow Ari’s life as she struggles to help the kids assigned to her, struggling what to do for them to overcome a city that seemed to have given up on them. All the while suffering personal turmoil due to the livelihood, in which the Vigilante steps in. The plot twists and turns, in unexpected ways. I had part of the story figured out early on while waiting for our main character to figure it out. Though there were a few turns in the story that were completely unexpected. It is well developed and easy to follow.

I really adored the superhero line of the story in which someone is watching over everyone, waiting in the wings at a time of need. But what I relished was the development of the main character Ari. I was captivated with the writing, watching Ari survive what life gives her, how she copes with life with her tattoo habits and late night clubbing and the relationships she fosters in her life especially with her roommate Oliver. I simply love her. She isn’t perfect, far from it. The best compliment I can give is she is real and written so beautifully.

My hesitation on giving this book five monkey review is the editing. I would be completely engrossed in the story, anxiously reading the next development, just to be pulled out by an editing error. The book has some errors, not on every page, just enough to frustrate me. One error being the wrong character name in which I went back and reread several pages to ensure I wasn’t mistaken. However these errors shouldn’t hinder you from reading this book, it is worth it! The story closes leaving the door open for more opportunities to continue the story, but not leaving unanswered questions. I sincerely hope the author continues the story, I know I would read a sequel!

Book Review Vigilant by Angel Lawson

 

About the Book

Ari Grant spends her days helping the troubled youth of Glory City, and her nights trying to feel something other than the cold numbness that has settled in her bones. For years, she satisfies this urge with trips to the tattoo parlor or late night clubbing, but everything changes when she becomes a victim of an armed robbery.

She manages to escape notice from the gunman, a former client, but only because she’s saved by Glory City’s own Vigilante. A hooded man who has impeccable timing when it comes to those in need.

It seems Ari isn’t the only one trying to save lost souls or looking for a life outside their job. She’s caught the attention of Nick Sanders, a handsome attorney at juvenile court. Solid and steady, he seems the perfect fit, but Ari has developed an obsession with Davis, the mysterious and sexy director of a local fight club that rehabilitates delinquent boys.

Each of these men fight for the less fortunate, but not everyone has altruistic motives. When Ari’s female clients begin to disappear, she can’t figure out who to trust. Soon enough it becomes obvious that while Ari watches over the kids of Glory City, someone else has taken to watching over her.

About the Author

Angel Lawson lives in Atlanta with 2 mini-superheroes, one big-superhero wannabe and a growing herd of pets. She spend her days creating art out of words, glue and glitter while chasing away zombies, serial killers and ghosts at night. She is the author of FanGirl, The Wraith Series and an adult romance, Serial Summer. The third book in the Wraith series will be released in December 2013. Follow Angel Lawson on her WebsiteTwitter, and Facebook.

About the Reviewer

Michelle is a lover of books, all shapes and sizes, but a big sucker for a great romance and the search for a new fictional boyfriend! When not taking care of three demanding persons in her home, one being the man she married and the other two co-created with her husband, she works full time in a job that pays the bills. She dreams of down time to lose herself in another book since she has more books on her TBR list than she does food in her refrigerator.