Monday, June 22, 2015

Stay: A Novel by Victor Gischler (***)

Stay: A NovelVictor Gischler's STAY, in which a stay-at-home dad with a secret past is forced to take pre-emptive action when his family is threatened by a crime lord, with TV rights sold. 

David Sparrow is an awesome stay-at-home dad. He gets his kids ready for school while his wife, Amy, commutes to New York City, where she is an Assistant District Attorney. She just inherited a major case: prosecuting crime lord Dante Payne. Meanwhile, David is content chatting with the moms at school drop-off, and doing housework.

One night, David is awoken by a sound downstairs, and discovers a man in Amy's office, going through her work documents. Instinctively, David confronts the man and a fight begins. But not a fight between a stay-at-home dad and a common burglar. No, this is a fight out of a Bourne movie and it is intense. David wins, but barely. He tries to explain to the cops that this guy was no ordinary burglar but they mostly ignore him, especially when they find out what he does for a "living."

We now discover that David is a former Solo Ops officer, a soldier who was routinely dropped in war zones with a specific mission. If he was caught, the US government would disavow all knowledge of him. David was honorably discharged after too many missions and was excited for a quiet, normal life.

However, with Dante Payne now targeting Amy and her family, David decides to reactivate himself and take the fight to the vicious criminal lord. And Dante Payne has no idea who he's just crossed.


This book was pretty good. It was non stop action from about chapter 2 or so on. The only thing missing was better characterization. The characters felt flat to real depth to them, but it was a fun, quick read. It focused mainly on David and what he did to protect his family. There was no real heart stopping moments...the characters just did not evoke that type of emotion for me, but it was fast paced, well written and worth a quick read.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Blue by H.J. Bellus (**)

BlueBlue Williams shines no matter the circumstance.
-Prettiest in her hometown
-Most talented cheerleader on her high school squad
-Valedictorian of the senior class
-Prom queen and runner up for Miss Teen Colorado
And the list goes on…

That’s until college, when she finds out nobody recognizes her, and if they do they couldn’t care less. Blending in is something Blue has longed for her entire life. Living in a dorm with a set of new friends is just what she needed to escape her stale life back home. For the first time, she’s seen for her talent and not her name or looks.

Cheer is her number one priority, considering a full-ride scholarship landed her at a prestigious university, and she intends to take advantage of it. A true beauty inside and out, Blue’s heart has always pumped competitive blood.

Until one night changes her forever…the beauty is gone, and all she has left are nasty, ugly memories. The man who saved her has a story of his own, with ninety percent of his body scarred.

What happens when the Beauty falls for the Beast?


Ok...I really liked this book initially. It was funny and the chemistry between Blue and Tuck was good. But about halfway through it almost felt like it was a different writer taking over. The whole tone changed and it went from fun/sexy to nothing but crude talk and sex. 

SPOILER INFO: (Don't read if you don't want to know what happens):

Blue also started to drive me crazy at the halfway mark. She was attacked (not raped), but attacked and would not report it, talk about it etc. She was scared and getting threats but would tell no one about it. It was stupid and childish the way she was behaving. I never did understand her reasoning behind her behavior and kept wanting to tell her she was an idiot. I almost stopped reading it, but the beginning was so good I kept thinking maybe it would get better never did.

I don't really recommend this was frustrating reading about someone who was supposed to be intelligent doing such idiotic hiding all the threats from Tuck and her parents. And the fact that the whole second attack happened and why was never really reasonably explained. It made no sense to me. The ending was abrupt..he found her, saved her and then we are into an epilogue. It was weird. 

Unlikely Allies by C.C. Koen (**)

Unlikely AlliesWhat happens when a single mom’s four-year-old daughter falls in love with Mr. Right and she doesn’t?

Maggie Tyson’s rule: no bad boys. Her incarcerated ex-husband broke her of that attraction. Needing to escape his threats and the scrutiny of the people in her hometown, Maggie relocates to New York City. Determined to not make the same mistakes, she has a mile-long list of dos and don’ts. Unfortunately, her daughter, Cecily, doesn’t like to follow them. When Cecily wanders away from her and right into Rick Stone’s office, Maggie knows he’s the exact type she’s been trying to avoid. Can she resist him or will she succumb to his willful charm?

Rick Stone’s rule: bed them don’t wed them. Running a multibillion dollar business doesn’t leave him with much time to do anything else, particularly with an overbearing grandfather breathing down his neck. But when a man works hard, he needs to play even harder. Voted America’s most eligible bachelor, Rick doesn’t have any problems getting women into his bed—except one.
Two auburn beauties stumble into his life.
One will break his heart.
The other—heal it.
Will he love or leave them?


This book was ok..I read the whole thing, but it seemed more of a story about his relationship with her little girl. they spent almost no time together and barely spoke through half the book. That's not much of a romance if you ask me. All the good interactions were between him and the little girl, not her mother. Not sure how they can say they love each other. Even the sexual tension didn't seem all that tense. The writing was a bit choppy in would go from one scene to another without any pause and was a bit confusing at times. 

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Vicious Cycle (Vicious Cycle #1) by Katie Ashley

Vicious Cycle (Vicious Cycle, #1)New York Times bestselling author Katie Ashley revs up the danger and sexual tension in her brand-new Vicious Cycle romance series.

Deacon Malloy’s life is dedicated to the Hell’s Raiders motorcycle club. Tough, hard, and fast with his fists, he serves the group as sergeant at arms. But his devil-may-care approach to life is thrown for a loop when the five-year-old daughter he never knew existed lands on the club steps.

Alexandra Evans is devoted to all her students—but there’s always been something about Willow Malloy that tugs at her heart. There’s an aura of sadness about her, a girl in need of all the love Alexandra can give. When Willow stops coming to school, Alexandra’s search leads to a clubhouse full of bikers…and a father hell-bent on keeping his daughter always within sight.

The moment Deacon sees Alexandra, he has to have her in his bed—and he’s never met a woman yet who couldn’t be persuaded. No matter how attracted she is to Deacon, Alexandra refuses to be just another conquest. But it’s Deacon himself who could be seduced—into a brighter future for himself, his daughter, and the woman he’s falling for against all odds.


This story was ok. I am getting tired of the MC themed books though. Most of them try to be dark, but they come off as just not quite there. This one was a bit darker than most I have read, the MC was full of criminals and bad asses, and it did describe some of what the MC was into..such as running guns/drugs etc. But I have a hard time getting into these stories. I don't much agree with a criminal lifestyle and don't particularly like reading about them either. 

The characters were ok, nothing to write home about, but it was an enjoyable enough book. Bit cliche, but aren't all romances for the most part? 

King (King #1) by T.M. Frazier

King (King, #1)Homeless. Hungry. Desperate.

Doe has no memories of who she is or where she comes from.

A notorious career criminal just released from prison, King is someone you don’t want to cross unless you’re prepared to pay him back in blood, sweat, pu$$y or a combination of all three.

King’s future hangs in the balance. Doe’s is written in her past. When they come crashing together, they will have to learn that sometimes in order to hold on, you have to first let go.

Warning: This book contains graphic violence, consensual and nonconsensual sex, drug use, abuse, and other taboo subjects and adult subject matter. Although originally slated to be a standalone, KING is now a two part series

REVIEW: ****

Loved this book. Can't wait for the next one to come out in August. I usually do not go for dark romances..the drugs/crimes etc. don't really turn me on all that much, but this book had so much hype and good reviews that I really wanted to try it out and I am glad I did.

The characters were wonderful..even the side characters. They were totally flawed, rough around the edges and bad...really bad, but the love story was wonderful. At first I did not like King at all..he was a total asshole to Doe and treated her badly, but I came to love him by the end of the story. I just wish it were not a cliffhanger ending. Oh well.

The writing was excellent, the story tight and well flowing. Recommend to anyone who likes a really good "dark romance". If you want something light and fluffy stay away from this one.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Star Runners (Star Runners #1) by L.E. Thomas

Star Runners"I wish I could tell you how cool this is."
With those words uttered by his best friend during an online chat, Austin Stone, a high school senior, forces himself to accept the fact his friends are leaving him behind.
With average grades, less than stellar play in baseball, and a single mother struggling to make ends meet, it looks as if Austin’s only way to continue his education would be through some kind of miracle.
His only escape is playing an online space simulation, Star Runners. It seems to be the only environment in which he excels. However, being a champion Trident Starfighter isn’t something you want to brag about in public nor will it help earn a scholarship.
But as soon as Austin is about to give up on college he reaches the top of the elite server. He receives an invitation from a school shrouded in secrecy promising to unlock his hidden potential. With no other options, Austin takes the offer.
What Austin doesn’t realize is that his dream of going to college has just opened up the cosmos and will challenge everything Austin thinks he knows about himself and the universe.

This was so boring and slow I barely made it halfway through. I was listening to this one from and wow I just could not push myself through it any longer. It took over half of the book for him to even be accepted at this school...that's about as far as I got. The story was repetitive up to this point and nothing exciting happened at all. Absolute snore fest.  Sorry I wasted my money on this one...Do Not Recommend it. 

Maybe if I had managed to get further with the book it would have been better...I know there were a lot of good reviews for this on Goodreads, which is why I gave it a shot. I just couldn't bring myself to go any further though. 

Chance For Love (Colorado Blues #1) by Ann B. Harrison

Chance For Love (Colorado Blues)Callie cant resist the advert for a ranch manager in Colorado. Only thing is, it also stipulates marriage. Down on her luck with more debt than she can manage after the death of her parents in a vehicle accident, she takes the plunge and commits. 
Chance is sick of the high life he's led for years as a top rodeo rider. The glitz and glamour aren't what he wants. After an accident leaves him unable to return to the circuit, he decides now is the time to do what his heart has been yearning for - marry a down to earth country girl and raise bulls on his ranch, with the hope of bringing his brothers back together. Little did he know that an advert would bring him a sassy talking Australian bride to turn his world up side down.


I liked this book quite a bit, I just wish it had been longer. The characters were great, but the story was a bit did not really have a lot of meat to it. It kind of skimmed over a lot of things and felt sort of abridged at times. It was only about 120 pages on my Nook so more like a novella than a novel.  And the Love angle was way too fast for my liking. I would really have liked this to have been a full length novel with the love coming/building over time a bit. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Caitlin's Hero (League of Love #1) by Donna Gallagher

Caitlin's Hero (League of Love, #1)Book one in the League of Love Series

Falling for him is easy. Dealing with his high-profile life—a life deemed public property by his fans and the press, plus an ex-wife out for blood—now, that’s the hard part.

Twenty-year-old Caitlin Walters was living a normal life. She attended university, socialised a little and had a good relationship with her mother and stepfather. But when her parents are tragically killed in a car accident, Caitlin’s life is forced to change. The once carefree girl becomes sole guardian of her stepbrother. Giving up her university course to support and raise eleven-year-old Riley, Caitlin struggles to deal with her new responsibilities.

Her job, singing at a local Italian restaurant, brings Caitlin some peace. On stage, she leaves her life and its troubles behind. Feeling comfortable and sensuous, she is like a siren calling out to lost souls. It’s on one of these nights that Caitlin begins a romance with Australian Rugby League captain, Brodie James. Brodie, not content with his so-called perfect life and struggling with commitment issues following a disastrous marriage, falls hard for Caitlin.

The relationship does not run smoothly for the self-sacrificing Caitlin, as she learns how to deal with Brodie’s nasty, jealous ex-wife, a muck-raking reporter and intrusive but well-meaning rugby fans. Along the way she makes new friends, and awakens the untapped sensual desires of the woman inside.


Did not like the way this was written at all. Almost no dialogue between the characters. The entire story was based on what they thought. And the Heroine drove me nuts with her "poor little me" attitude and the wimpy way she behaved. No one at the age of 20 is that naive and stupid in today's world. She may be a virgin, but no woman today grows up not knowing anything about sex or guys. Just ridiculous concept if you ask me. And all the lovey dovey from the neighbors and the Heros parents who did not even know this girl. Like she was a little kid who needed protection and coddling, not a grown woman. She never managed to stand up for herself just accepted what she was told and went along with everyone. Absolutely drove me crazy. 

Phenomenal X (Hard Knocks #1) by Michelle A. Valentine

Phenomenal X (Hard Knocks, #1)Good Girl. Notorious Bad-Boy. One Phenomenal Love.

From the mean streets of Detroit rises the newest superstar of professional wrestling, Xavier Cold, better known as Phenomenal X. His muscular physique makes men cower before him and women lose their minds with desire.

Anna Cortez is fresh out of college and naive to the harsh realities of the real world. Tired of living under the thumb of her conservative family, she defies them when she accepts a job as the assistant to wrestling’s most notorious bad-boy. Phenomenal X has an animalistic nature that even good girl Anna finds hard to resist.

One night forced to share a bed in a sold-out hotel, lines blur between them and they quickly learn that one lustful night changes everything and neither one of them will ever be the same.


This was an ok book. I liked the characters overall, but I just couldn't get my head around the heroine. She seemed strong in some places, but weak in others...kind of wishy washy. I could not really understand her reasoning behind following him as a "companion" on his tour. She just seemed to go along for no real reason and had no real purpose in her life. I prefer a character with a purpose or plan. 

The worst part of this book is that it ends on a cliffhanger. I hate that with a passion and if I had known I would not have picked this one up. Not sure when the next book comes out, but I have a tough time picking up a story months later without re-reading the first one. Not sure I want to read this one again so I most likely won't read the second book at all. 

They need to put disclaimers in the descriptions stating it has a cliffhanger. It would help so much!

Satisfaction (Brothers Ink #1) by Sarah Mayberry

Satisfaction (Brothers Ink, #1)Maggie Hendricks loves her life. She’s got a great job, amazing friends. Everything is perfect - except for one smallish problem. Maggie can’t quite get there, sexually speaking. It’s just never happened for her. And while she tells herself she’s fine with that, she can’t help feeling as though she’s missing out. 

When her friend shares the intimate details of an encounter with an extremely talented lover, Maggie makes a desperate pact with herself. She will seduce this man - or allow him to seduce her - and if he can’t get her there...well, then she’ll hand herself over to medical science. A simple enough plan. What could possible go wrong? 

Within minutes of meeting Rafel Oliveira, Maggie knows the answer to that one: plenty. But Rafel turns out to be far more than simply talented in the bedroom. As he takes her on a journey toward the ultimate pleasure, Maggie finds herself craving a lot more than his beautiful body. The question is, is Rafel’s heart available for the taking?


Really liked this one. I have to say though that the initial meeting between the two was funny but very embarrassing. It was an awkward meeting to say the least, but I loved the characters and the fact that the heroine would put herself out there like that and not wimp out. She had a backbone, which I really like in a female character.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Revelry (Taint #1) by Carmen Jenner

Revelry (Taint, #1)Cooper Ryan is living the dream. Between the parties with rock royalty, booze, groupies and performing to crowds of thousands with his band Taint, life seems pretty sweet. There’s just one thing missing: the feisty little red-head that took his baby and ran off with his heart. Throwing himself into music is the only thing keeping him sane.

Until a run-in with a nonplussed, package-wielding PA throws everything off balance.

Ali Jones is having a craptastic life. Her grandmother died, leaving her homeless, penniless, and alone, and her boyfriend left her for a tramp who takes her clothes off for money. That’s why when she lands her dream job at a record company it seems like it’s too good to be true.

Because it is.

Slapped with an ultimatum, Ali must decide if facing the horror of the unemployment line is a fate worse than going on the road with four rowdy rockers hell-bent on making her life misery.

He’s adored by millions.
She’s not even loved by her cat.

Can they ignore their hatred long enough to survive the tour from hell? Or will their chemistry force everything to come crashing down around them?


I didn't really like this one much. I thought both main characters were idiots who did not show much in the way of improvement over the course of the book. 

I don't really like to read books that include drug use as if its no big deal...I don't mind the mention of using drugs etc as a hard rule...sometimes its integral to a story..what I don't like is that everyone accepts it as ok and something to do on a regular basis. Rock stars or not, its not okay to use drugs of any kind..especially for a young adult/new adult  book to play it off as no big deal and everyone does it. Not a message I want sent to my kids..its a serious issue and having it in a story is ok if you are telling them its not really ok to do this, that you should strive to NOT do drugs etc. Anyway to get off my soap box here...I don't much like it and it did not add anything to this story to make it better. 

The romance was not really a wow factor and was ho-hum at best. Yes there was sexual tension...but you can get that with a stranger in a bar or grocery store. It was not really one I would read again and I most likely won't read the rest in this series. Not worth my money. 

Everything You Are by Evelyn Lyes

Everything You AreSometimes a reckless moment of passion changes everything. 

Ian Thornton has it all; wealth, looks, a brilliantly successful career – and any woman he wants. Until a demure Jane walks into his life as his new assistant. Even though trouble is brewing at Thornton Enterprises, throwing his life into chaos – and even though his type is confident buxom blondes – he finds himself unable to stop thinking and lusting about his new assistant. 

When sensible Jane Bennet accepts the job offer from Thornton Enterprises, she doesn't expect to be working for the owner's son, a man who looks like a Viking god, and acts like one. But despite Ian being irritatingly arrogant and entitled, she's drawn to him, so much that she ends up in his bed. It's an encounter Ian doesn't even remember and one Jane won't ever forget. A month later, she discovers she's pregnant. 

Thornton's business troubles lead to lethal consequences and pose a frightening danger to their unborn child. Like it or not – and she doesn't – Jane must look to her arrogant boss to protect her and their unborn baby


Average romance. It was a decent read, but did not really have much affect on me. Its been a few days since I read this one and I had to look it up again to remind me what it was about. So not much impact, but entertaining enough for me to actually read the whole thing.