Posted in Jamie McGuire, Suspense

Red Hill – Jamie McGuire

17457124Synopsis

When the world ends, can love survive?

For Scarlet, raising her two daughters alone makes fighting for tomorrow an everyday battle. Nathan has a wife, but can’t remember what it’s like to be in love; only his young daughter Zoe makes coming home worthwhile. Miranda’s biggest concern is whether her new VW Bug is big enough to carry her sister and their boyfriends on a weekend escape from college finals.

When reports of a widespread, deadly “outbreak” begin to surface, these ordinary people face extraordinary circumstances and suddenly their fates are intertwined. Recognizing they can’t outrun the danger, Scarlet, Nathan, and Miranda desperately seek shelter at the same secluded ranch, Red Hill. Emotions run high while old and new relationships are tested in the face of a terrifying enemy—an enemy who no longer remembers what it’s like to be human.

Set against the backdrop of a brilliantly realized apocalyptic world, love somehow finds a way to survive. But what happens when the one you’d die for becomes the one who could destroy you?

4 out of 5 stars

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My Review

For someone who doesn’t like anything Zombie related – books, TV shows, films…I surprised myself by actually wanting to read Red Hill and see just how disturbed I could be by reading a Zombie book.

I began reading this one morning on the way to work, and to be honest, I wasnt so far in when I began to feel really faint – Told you I wasnt good with zombies and gore and anything hospital related. So I stopped and told myself I would wait until I was home, but all throughout the day it was all I could think about, so on my lunch I read a bit more until I was sneaking bits between doing my work for the rest of the day.

Jamie took a big risk switching genres but it definitely paid off. I was hooked, despite my emotions all over the place and I even dreamt about Zombies coming after me when I put it down for the night. Although this book is about Zombies, it really is more about the people doing whatever they can to survive this apocalypse, to make it to safety, to make it to the ones that they love – and each character are entwined in one way or another – they just don’t know it yet.

Behind the backdrop of a now apocalyptic world, it is a fight for survival, a fight to stay alive and not get caught by the ‘Teds’ – which Zoe calls them. We see the fear of the three groups we follow, the fight to make it to Red Hill – to the safe haven where it’s far into the countryside that they are save and away from the Teds, despite a few rolling across the fields and the stretch of road.

We meet all the characters the day of the breakout, we watch them panic and set off to find loved ones so they can get to safety. We meet Scarlet first, she was working in the hospital when it broke out and as her children are with their father that weekend, she is determined to get to them, to get them to Red Hill and safe. We watch her kick into survival mode, doing whatever she can to get to her children. I’m not a mother but I can completely understand her panic over getting to her children. I can just imagine not being there to console them, keep them from harms way and it tore a new one in my heart over how she just wanted them with her NOW! We watch her going it alone, we witness the heartbreak when she gets to her ex-husbands house and they arent there. She writes where she is going, knowing them with know where it is and she sets off, in the hope that they will return to the house and make their way to her. Hope is all she has left and throghout the book we see her everyday waiting to see her children walking over the hill to the house. Never once does she let go of that hope and as the reader, I was with her, wishing for her children to be alive and safely making there way to her.

Scarlet really is a badass too! She can shoot a gun, she can get close enough to crack their skulls and she truly is amazing in my eyes. Despite wanting her children, she has the strength to make it through the apocalypse. She really was a tough chick.

Nathan and his daughter Zoe got to me a lot. He;s in a loveless marriage and the only person he looks forward to seeing is Zoe. When he finds out about the breakout, he races to Zoe, and races to his brother-in-laws as Skeeter has the guns and the strength to make it though the invasion. We watch Nathan’s determination to keep Zoe safe and from harms way throughout the book. He is one tough cookie but he is a softy underneath. He never lies to Zoe or promises anything he cant keep and I liked that about him. They are facing a brand new life of always being so close to death and to tell her it will be fine would be a complete lie.

Miranda, her sister Ashley and their boyfriends Bryce and Cooper are on their way to her Dad’s house – the same place which Scarlet is cooped up in as she worked with their father. They are shit scared, especially Ashley, but Miranda has to stay focused and get through the hysteria of humans and zombies running past her car. She has to get to the house and hug her dad and know they are safe away in the countryside. Miranda was a tough character, she had definitely set in survival mode and Ashley really hadnt. She was petrified and did annoy me at times. She needed to be consoled all the time, reassured all the time. You dont have time to act like a scary cat, you just need to get your shit together and fight to survive. Saying that, her and Cooper were really cute together and you could see how much they loved each other; they could sense each other even if they weren’t facing one another.

When Miranda picks up a guy, Joey…oh I loved him so much and Miranda started to fall for him too – when they made it to the house. Joey lost his girlfriend to the virus, has only just got back form Afghanistan but he was hard, he know just want needed to be done to get to the house, to get running water…he knew what to do. Underneath his hard ass, he was sweet and really liked Miranda too.

They all witness deaths, they all see and kill Zombies – apart from the kids, and they all grieve in their own way. Too many of my favourite characters died and I think the worst death was the one we didnt read about, but just told about because, oh holy hell, he was definitely my favourite 😦

We do see the growing attraction between Nathan and Scarlet. We see them start as friends, Nathan being there for Scarlet, we watch them care about each other, fall in love and find happiness during the dark times. They dont meet until late in the book, but it would see easy to just bond over going through the same things and they were really sweet together, although the romance doesnt play a huge part of the book, it was nice to have something.

Throughout the book it got me thinking about what I would do if our world became overrun by Zombies…to be honest I had visions of my flatmate being bitten, me hiding in my room, door locked and sat against it while she tried to get in…and then I couldn’t sleep. I really would hope I would go into survival mode and do something, but knowing my luck I’d be bitten and turn into one. You really do think about what you would do, where you would run to to hide, who you would want to get to throughout the book. The fears of who you would lose, who you would see turn and that freaks me out just a bit. I’m not good at the whole thinking this could happen…lets just hope it never does.

If you are like me and have never touched a zombie book, seriously, pick this one up. It’s not just about Zombies, its about the fight to stay alive, to be with the ones you love and doing whatever you can to get to them whilst staying alive. Thee is romance, but its not heavily based at all, and despite being a lover of all things romance, it didn’t actually bother me at all….i was more concerned over who was going to die and who was going to live.

Give it a go…you may even want to read more Zombie books…

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Posted in New Adult, Suspense

Breathe Into Me – Amanda Stone

16222687Synopsis Eighteen year-old Kelsey Rien is more than ready to leave her past behind her. Wanting nothing more than to walk into a room without everyone knowing the horrific details of an event that changed her life six years ago, she vows to concentrate on school and make something of herself. But then she meets Kane Riley – the local bad boy. Kane’s reputation is far from perfect, but is there more to him than what everyone else sees? Kelsey soon learns that you can’t run from your past, no matter how hard you try. When her nightmares find her once again, Kelsey must find the courage to face the demons that have been haunting her and save the people she loves most. 4 / 5 Stars add-to-goodreads-button3 ——————————————————–
My Review

Six years ago, something horrific happened in Kelsey Rien’s life. It changed her world upside down and changed who she was. As it would anyone who went through what she did.

For those six years, she has wanted nothing more than to just walk into a room and not have people know her history. Now eighteen, she and her best friend Jesse leave their small town behind and leave for college, away to a state where no one knows her and she can try to leave the past behind.

She never expected to meet Kane Riley, the resident bad boy. His reputation is anything but perfect yet there is more to him that meets the eye that has Kelsey intrigued by him. He’s nothing like his bad boy persona, yet everything still thinks he is. Has Kane really changed? He has some demons he’s fighting too.

Still battling her demons and her nightmares, Kelsey realizes she can’t run from the past, but opening up to Kane is the first step. But when her demon’s come to haunt her, she must face up to them and save the people she loves the most.

I had been waiting months for Breathe Into Me to be released. When I saw the cover on Goodreads it was an instant add to my TBR list and bad boys and tattoos and piercings always get my vote. The synopsis made me want to read it too. I like a bit of mystery wrapped up in books, so I really wanted to know what Kelsey’s past was so I had some theories.

I read this book over two days – mainly because I had to go to inductions for my new job, but I really did not want to put it down. I was hooked with the plot, with the characters and just with the book in general. Amanda Stone developed the story nicely, along with the characters, which you see journey throughout the book into better versions of themselves – due to being in love and growing up over the weeks. She has me laughing, smiling, crying and kindle throwing (throughout certain events throughout the book which frustrated me and of course, had me panicking over what was going to happen).

Although there are many books with the same storyline, it was a cute read with college characters falling in love, dealing with heartbreak with a terrible past added into the mix, but overall, I really did enjoy the book!

We first meet Kelsey when she is moving into her college dorm with her best friend Jessie. It’s a chance at a fresh start away from her past. We don’t find out until a few chapters in but there are hints about what happened to her those six years ago that changed her from the out-going little girl she was to a shy and reserved teenager. She has gone through so much. She feel guilty and although it wasn’t her fault, she harbours this guilt always.

One trip to get some lunch and everything changes. She catches eyes with a pair of grey eyes and from then she can’t stop thinking of them. It helps that the guy is friends with the guy her best friend is seeing later that night.

After that night, Kane and Kelsey become friends. They spend every day together, hanging out, doing work, generally becoming best friends until one night when it all changes. Kane has never seen Kelsey in anything dressy so when the four of them head to the club he works out, he’s stunned. Kelsey is simply stunning and Kane can’t hold back his feelings for her anymore. She’s consumed his every thought and he wants her.

Things are going great for Kane and Kelsey. They have both bared their souls to each other, they love one another greatly and spend all their time together until one night, everything goes wrong and Kelsey gets her heart broken even when it wasn’t Kane’s fault.

Battling heartbreak, even more drama occurs for Kelsey and when it’s a battle of life or death for her and her loved ones, she will do whatever she can to make sure they live.

Kelsey was a delicate character in the beginning. You could see the guilt pouring off her, for what, we did not know yet. She was shy to an extent; she didn’t like ‘putting herself’ out there even though she wanted to be the girl she used to be. You really do feel sorry for Kelsey. Her past has overtaken her life – throwing nightmares at her during the night at times, so she relives that one moment that changed her.

But throughout the book, we see her change; her friendship with Jessie and her friendship with Kane are both factors of this change. We see her turn back into the girl she was, the strong, playful, loving girl. We see her open up her past to Kane which took courage and trust. We see her think of the ‘best’ parts of her past which in turns makes her get a tattoo in memory of that one memory she tells us about. (Hint, it’s on the book cover)

I applaud Kelsey for the journey she took throughout this book. She learned to trust, learned to open up and learned to love and be loved. Although she still harboured the guilt, in time she began to realize that none of what happened was her fault. She has a strength to her that took over her in the end and although that was the past that made me panicky, I am glad that she let go of her past for good and did what she did. So kudos Kelsey.

Now Kane. Before he met Kelsey he had a rep. Love ‘em and leave ‘em rep. But this was his way of dealing with the guilt he had racked up inside of him too. Then one day he just flipped and decided he didn’t want to be that way anymore. Didn’t want to drink, do drug or sleep with numerous women whom he didn’t give a rat’s ass about.

He really didn’t have a bad boy rep if I’m being honest. He was the sweetest guy around. He changed himself for the better, even if he was protective around Kelsey; it was due to never feeling this way before. All these feelings he had, they were new to him and it was pretty lush to watch him fall in love with Kelsey. To want to be the one for her. He’s had his struggles too, he has guilt over his past too, but he bears his past to Kelsey too and in turn, they learn to trust and try to not let their demon’s get to them.

I love that Kelsey and Kane both let one another in. Their relationship was cute and I loved the trust and love they had for one another. It was instant, their attraction was undeniable and it was just perfect for them to be with each other. It was sweet and the things Kane told Kelsey, I just wanted to sweep him up into a hug and keep him for myself, plus I wanted to kiss his lips! Pierced lip is hot…I should know, I used to have my lip pierced 😉

I have to say, my favourite part was when they first had sex. I know, I know, but it was like the perfect scene. It was the perfect time for them to consummate their relationship (HAHA) and it was all Kelsey’s doing, Kane didn’t pressure her or anything and he was so careful and loving with her that he made it that much special for her. I was smiling like an idiot over that scene. I just loved the connection they had and the love for one another for them to take it to the next level.

Although there are quite a few questions that I would love to have answered, I am still giving this book 4 stars. I did enjoy it and I love a tattooed boy, as you should all know by now. If you are looking for a cute college romance, with broken characters with a past that they eventually try to get over together, then Breath Into Me is the book for you.

Mentioned above, I love the bald, tattooed drummer that is Jesse. Growing up with a drunk of a father who used to beat him until Jesse was old enough to fight back, protecting Emmie along with his band mates was the only thing that mattered. Making sure she was safe, especially when the band became famous. Nothing mattered more than Emmie.

Jesse really is a brilliant character. He loves unconditionally, hes strong yet he’s gentle, hes confident and cocky but he never really uses his famous status, more content on being grounded and just basking in the love that all this band mates and Emmie share together.

As everyone in the band, he has a past. He’s never really had anyone who he has felt ‘more’ with apart from Emmie, but he’s just her best friend, so when he hears and meets Layla for the first time, its like a shock to the system. He can’t get this girl out of his head. He just needs her, needs to be with her and have her. It was so nice to see Jesse this way; to find someone who he wants to be with, to pursue romantically because he and Layla had this sizzling chemistry right from the start. As much as she told herself to stay away, she couldn’t, and Jesse was adamant on having her. Their pull just overtook them both and they just had to be together.

I loved how he (and the group) took Layla’s sisters under their wings, treating them with care and love. It was perfect to see this band, who love music and don’t care for the famous status to embrace three new characters into their dynamic and love them unconditionally too.

Jesse really would do anything to make Layla happy – even when they had a tipping point during parts of the book – but in the end, Jesse loved Layla with everything. You will find out just how much throughout the book ;).

Posted in Romance, Suspense

The Rock Star Next Door – Lily Silver

16009748Synopsis

Sometimes love conquers time…

From the first moment he saw her, Lex recognizes Jessie. He knows they were lovers in a past life and their souls are destined for a reunion. Can he convince her they belong together?

Jessica Kelly has reached the pinnacle of success with her hot new rock band. She and her friends have rented a house in Malibu. Living next door is the notorious rock legend. When Lex takes a personal and passionate interest in Jessie, can she afford to lose her heart to The Rock Star Next Door?

Lex learns someone is stalking Jessie. She refuses to let him help her and hides the identity of her tormentor. Will their tragic past be repeated, separating them for another lifetime? Can Lex prevent Jessie from being taken from him again by a malicious and violent force reaching across time to destroy them?

My rating: 2.5/3 out of 5
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My Review

“Lex recognized her. He knew Jessica Kelly was his soul mate and their spirits were destined for a reunion.”

From the moment he saw her, Lex knew she was the one. The one he had been looking for. The one who got away. The lover of his past life. His soul mate. He had finally found her and she was living next door. He just had to try and convince her somehow that they were meant to be together.

Jessica Kelly had reached new heights with the success of their band Heartless. She and her band mates/friends rented a house in Malibu to finish up their third album and finding out that rock legend Lex is living next door and has taken an interest in Jessie? Well shes stunned. She’s followed and fancied him since forever but can she really take a chance on him and give him her heart?

When Jessie starts to be tormented by someone from her past, Lex will do whatever it takes to stop the stalker. But Jessie refuses his help and hides the true identity of the tormenter not wanting Lex to know the secrets of her past.

 But down the line, it seems that history is coming closer to repeating itself and Lex can’t lose Jessie again, he can’t be separated for another lifetime. Can Lex prevent history repeating itself when they are both confronted by a malicious and violent force willing to destroy them again?

I have to start by saying, The Rock star Next Door started off a little slow and then the main characters, Jessie and Lex, started to annoy the heck out of me until the end, where I finally applauded them for getting this shizz together. Took them long enough after all the drama that occurred throughout the book. Seriously, every page something was happening. As much as I wanted to put the book down, I wanted to find out if they really were past life lovers and what happened to them both.

It really is a book about mental illness and how it affects those around that person. It’s about finding your soul mate after years of searching. It’s also about the struggles to overcome being manipulated for so long and the journey to finally freeing yourself.

Jack and Jessie have had a bad childhood. Their mother, a sufferer of mental illness, would emotionally and sometimes physically abuse them and their father was hardly ever there, working as a truck driver five out of seven days a week. It came to a point where they just couldn’t cope anymore so when they were sixteen where they ran away from home and never looked back.

During the years they ran away, they did and tried everything to make some money and eventually their hard work paid off, as they were signed to a record label. Now their band Heartless are getting bigger day by day, they are happy with where their success is taking them, but there’s still a big matter in their life…their mother, who still haunts them even when she is 2000 miles away.

I could see why Jessie was so scared and petrified of life, why she was so uptight to make sure the band did everything correct, that her motherly instinct kicked in with the band and her brother because they had worked hard for the success they had and she was frightened it would be taken away. Also deep down she was also still harbouring her childhood fears of her mother’s manipulation, and although she didn’t want it remember that period of her life, it still affected not just her, but her brother, Jack, too. She panicked over her relationship with Lex, how fast they were moving, how much, in a way, he reminds her of mother, even though she knew he didn’t mean to come across that way.

You see throughout the book just how much her mother has destroyed her, made me fear. There were times when I wanted to shake her and tell her to listen to her brother, that he was right in what he was saying, but she just discarded it and went with what she wanted to do, which in turn, was making her stressed and ill and even more scared.

Jack was also scared from his childhood, and although he took drugs when it got him upset/angry/stressed, he seemed to know exactly what to do to deal with his mother’s phone calls and manipulation, even when they hadn’t spoken/seen her for eight years, she still affected them.

From the moment he saw Jessie, Lex knew she was the one who was cruelly taken from him in their past life. He believed in reincarnation and knew Jessie was his one many years ago. Now he had found her, he couldn’t let her go, but because of this, and his persistence in wanting to marry her asap, he was slowly pushing her away, scaring her due to everything in her life and past. I did feel for Lex, because he loved her but yes, he was too full on with everything surrounding Jessie so when he had pushed her too far, I didn’t scowled her, because I knew she couldn’t handle it anymore.

I knew he just wanted her forever now he had found her, but even when they weren’t together and he was giving her space, he was still there for her, even when he didn’t truly know what was causing her to freak out all the time. I really did love his love for her and his caring side. I just wished Jessie would see it too, but then I suppose she had other things on her mind, such as her brother and her mother.

Now, their past life stuff. Lex knew the moment he laid eyes on Jessie that they were past life lovers and that he had finally find the one he had been searching for, for over 900 years. I think that is why he was so happy to have found her that he wanted to marry her right there and then. That it took two dates for him to confess that she would be the women he would marry to the paps. I could kind of understand the need to the rush, he had found his past love in this lifetime and he didn’t want to waste any time without her. But the thing was, Jessie didn’t know or remember anything about a past life.

But at 57% things seemed to look up and become interesting. Jessie had this dream where she was a maid and Lex was a singer and they were to run away and get married in Paris. Was this her past life as Lex mentioned?

I think this was what kept me going…I wanted to know more about this past life and what happened to her, as Lex mentioned, something bad did. Throughout the second half, we were shown snippets of Jessie’s dreams, about the past life and what went on 900 years ago and how it all connected to her present life.

I did gasp at the part near the end where Lex was stunned and frightened as one scene was happening word for word and he knew what was going to happen next – hence history repeating. For thank the lord it did not repeat and everything ended up okay…as okay as it could be.

I did like the reincarnation concept of the book. Lovers in a past life who didn’t have a chance to be together, finding each other in their ‘new’ life and now having the chance to live the life they didn’t get to have. It was a nice touch. But I didn’t like all the drama that surrounded this book. There was too much and I don’t know how I managed to get through it because it wasn’t holding my attention. I was more interested in knowing more about the dreams and their past life.

Would I recommend this book? I’m not sure. Perhaps for the ‘reincarnation’ aspect, but not the drama.

Would I read it again? No, probably not.

Posted in Jessica Sorensen, New Adult, Romance, Suspense

The Coincidence of Callie and Kayden (The Coincidence #1) – Jessica Sorensen

16113791Synopsis

There are those who don’t get luck handed to them on a shiny platter, who end up in the wrong place at the wrong time, who don’t get saved.

Luck was not on Callie’s side the day of her twelfth birthday when everything was stolen from her. After it’s all over, she locks up her feelings and vows never to tell anyone what happened. Six years later her painful past consumes her life and most days it’s a struggle just to breathe.

For as long as Kayden can remember, suffering in silence was the only way to survive life. As long as he did what he was told, everything was okay. One night, after making a terrible mistake, it seems like his life might be over. Luck was on his side, though, when Callie coincidentally is in the right place at the right time and saves him.

Now he can’t stop thinking about the girl he saw at school, but never really knew. When he ends up at the same college as Callie, he does everything he can to try to get to know her. But Callie is reserved and closed off. The more he tries to be part of her life, the more he realizes Callie might need to be saved.

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My Review

At age twelve, everything in Callie’s life changed. It changed her so much that she hacked off her hair, turned into a recluse and locked up everything that happened to her up. Never telling anyone about it. Six years later, it still consumes her every thought and she cannot wait to leave the small town to start college. It may not be a fresh start, but it sure as hell gets her away.

Kayden has suffered in silence from a young age. He vowed it was the only way to get through the pain when it happened. One night after making a mistake, it seems that his life may just be on the edge until he’s saved. Callie is coincidently at the right place, at the right time and saves him.

Four months after and Kayden can’t stop thinking about the girl who saved his life. But luck is on his side again when Callie is at the same college that he is and he will do whatever it takes to get to know her and owe her for that night. But Callie is closed off and doesn’t want to be owed. “I just did what anyone would have done.” But he knows that’s not true, people would have walked away. The more he tries to get to know her, the more is feels its Callie that needs to be saved.

Jessica Sorensen has done it again. First with The Secret of Ella and Micha and now with The Coincidence of Callie and Kayden. She makes me fall in love and feel all kinds of emotions throughout the books and I just can’t get enough. I always ask myself why I take so long to read such amazing book and I literally can’t answer. Well, I can and it’s because sometimes I’m scared. Scared to read it and then have it break my heart. Yes, I know it’s just a book, but no, it’s much more than that to me. I get hooked, captivated and I can’t get it out of my head until I finish it. And even after, I still think about it.

That’s exactly what happened with The Coincidence of Callie and Kayden. I was scared to read it, but I took a chance and I am so freaking glad I did! Despite the ending (WTFFFF), I couldn’t put the book down. Ms. Sorensen keeps me wanting more, keeps me turning every page until I am right at the end and begging for more. Begging for The Redemption of Callie and Kayden to be out now and in my hands where I can read it and find out what happens next. But alas, I have to wait until August. Counting down the day? YES I bloody well am.

Callie has been ‘broken’ since her twelve birthday when something horrific happened to her at the hands of her brother’s best friend. Before that incident she was happy and after, she died a little. She cut her long hair short, started wearing baggy clothes to try and make herself ugly and became a loner. She didn’t want attention on her and she certainly didn’t want any boys around her. She didn’t trust them.

Kayden has been dealing with pain since a young age. He has scars both inside and outside his body and going away to college is his chance to try and forget about his past, about his home. It’s his chance to try and start again, away from all the pain. He still owes his life to the girl who saved him all those months ago and when he finds out that shes at his college and is the girl he accidentally fell on top of, well, he’s going to stop at nothing to get to know her and thank for. Thank her for stopping it.

Callie and Kayden have actually known each other since they were kids but not really enough to call one another a friend, despite the fact that Callie’s dad was Kayden’s football coach for years. But one night, Callie was just coincidentally at the right place at the right time and saved Kayden’s life. Something he will never forget.

Four months later, Kayden arrives at college with his best friend Luke in tow. Callie has already been at college for four months, deciding to get away from home early and she’s found solace in Seth – her new best friend who also has secrets of his own. She’s still afraid of everyone, apart from Seth, so when Kayden wants to spend time with her, Seth calls her out and makes her pick things off the list to do. It results in her hanging out more with Kayden, Luke and of course, Seth and they build a close friendship unit, something Callie would never have thought she would be involved in.

She takes baby steps each day, with the help of the list, but shes beginning to trust Kayden, just not enough to tell him her secret, just yet.

Kayden has dealt with pain all his life and he knows Callie is hurting. From what? That he doesn’t know, but he wants to help her. He has learnt to cancel out feelings and emotions but around Callie, she makes him feel, which scares the hell out of him. He doesn’t want to be feeling but he can’t stay away from Callie. He’s protective of her, he dreams about her and as much as he wants to stay away, he just can’t.

The more time they spend together, the more you can see that Callie is slowly trusting him and Kayden begins to feel worthy of being with Callie. Together they are learning to heal from their pasts with the help and love of one another. It’s a tough journey as they have been hurt pretty badly, but just being together is building them back up.

It truly is a beautiful story. It’s powerful and breathtaking and I felt so many emotions whilst reading. The journey that Callie takes is one that I respect. I was proud of her for taking each day at a time and owning that list that she and Seth made. She powered through them like a trooper and I loved seeing her become happy – at least for a while when she wasn’t thinking about the past – and just living for the moment.

I loved how at the top of each chapter it had something from ‘The List’ that Callie had to do. It was a great way for her to try and regain something back in her life and it was a great way to help her along with her journey into at least trying to get over what happened when she was twelve.

Seth was a fantastic best friend to Callie. He was there for her completely. It was mad to think that they had only known each other a few months, but in that short time they had both confessed their deepest darkest secret to each other and that, in itself, made them close and made them determined to help each other through everything. It was a perfect friendship and I loved how Seth pushed Callie to her limit with the list, knowing she could do it and to not be scared to do things on the list as eventually it was breaking her barriers down and she was ‘getting’ better because of the list. It was an awesome idea.

One of my favourite scenes is actually linked to the book cover. When Callie runs into the rain and just spins around. It was like she just forgot everything for that moment and focused on the rain and how free she felt. When Kayden joined her, it was like there was no one else. At that moment it was just her and Kayden, no one else in the world. It was perfect. They are perfect and my heart was racing in the scene for those two where they had such a raw passion for one another.

Oh god, that cliff-hanger! After I clicked the next page hoping it would be okay, I realized it was the end. I cried. Yes tears ran down my face because Jessica Sorensen, that was evil! LOL. I seriously need The Redemption of Callie and Kayden now! I don’t want to wait until August because I’m not sure my heart can take it. I neeeed to know what happens next.

Sigh, I’ll just have to be patient and count down the days till it’s out.

The Coincidence of Callie and Kayden is a book not to be missed out. It’s about coincidences, trust, love, abuse, friendship and of course, being saved. It touches upon emotional, physical and sexual abuse, which is not taken lightly at all and both Callie and Kayden are whittled down to the core but surviving somehow. Ms Sorensen writes about the topic beautifully, and despite everything that happen to them, they are still getting along, day by day, trying not to let it affect them too much. They are broken by it, but together, they find a way to forget for a while and just be as two people.

I can’t say how much I enjoyed this book enough. I’m just still thinking about the ending and how I have months until the second book to see how it all ends.

If you’re like me and HATE starting series that have major cliff-hangers (I didn’t know this one did) then I would say wait until august to read this book but if not, then bloody well get your copy and read it now! You won’t be disappointed and you will fall in love with Callie, Kayden, Seth and Luke. Guaranteed.

Posted in Family, Romance, Suspense

Too Close – Elizabeth Krall

17379064Synopsis

What rules would you break for the one you love? What lies would you tell?

Three weeks before their wedding day, Nicola and Greg discover that they may have the same mother.
They met when Greg joined the San Francisco newspaper where Nicola is the travel editor. After six months, eager to start a life together and raise a family, they decide to marry.
When Nicola finally meets his family in Seattle, and mentions the circumstances of her adoption, Greg’s horrified mother is forced to reveal the shameful secret she has kept for 36 years.
As they struggle to deal with her revelation, their relationship is challenged and strained. If his mother’s suspicions are true, they will be forced into a devastating choice: break all of society’s rules and fight for their love, or break their hearts and give each other up.
It will be the greatest test their newfound love has faced – and their love may not survive.

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My Review

What would you do if the love of your life could somehow be related to you?

Nicola and Greg meet at work. Nicola, after being burnt by her ex-boyfriend, who was also a colleague, has sworn off dating colleagues since then. But then she meets Greg and he proves to her that he would never hurt her and bit by bit he breaks down that wall and they end up falling fast for one another, becoming engaged after just six months.

Three weeks before the wedding and a trip to meet Greg’s family in Seattle, Nicola mentions her circumstances of being adopted after showing a family photo to Greg’s mother. In turn, Greg’s mother Mona is forced to confess and reveal a shameful moment that happened to her 36 years ago; a secret she has kept hidden from everyone. She had a baby and left it, just like the story Nicola told them.

After the revelation, Greg and Nicola’s relationship changes. They both struggle with the fact they could be half-brother and sister, but they try to put it at the back of their mind until the DNA results come back. But it’s harder to forget this situation and it challenges them both. What will happen if they are related? Will they break up and never see each other again or will they break society’s rules and run away together, some place where no one will ever know their secret?

Their love is being tested to the limit and will all these ‘what ifs’ in the way, will their love survive this terrible ordeal?

I came across Too Close on accident really. I was just looking for some books to download on Amazon and this book sprang to my attention. Clicking on it to see what it was about, I knew I had to read it. I had never read a book about a couple maybe being related but from the start I was completely hooked. I wanted to know how the realization that they could be related came to light and how it was dealt with as really, it is such a delicate and emotional issue to deal with but I felt Ms. Krall wrote this book spectacularly. She dealt with the issue in a seriousness matter but also in a way to kind of bring a light release to the issue.

She had me feeling every emotion all the characters’ felt, especially Greg, Nicola, Mona – Greg’s mother and Gwen – Nicola’s adoptive mother. I could see everyone’s side during the waiting for the results, especially both Greg and Nicola’s constant arguments over the whole ‘sibling’ thing because they both had very different views on what to do over it. I was on edge until the DNA results were shown because I just had to know the outcome. I had come to love Greg and Nicola and I hated that it could be over before it truly began for them. I love it when books evoke a whole load of emotions from me because you know it’s a great book when that happens!

As the synopsis mentions, Greg and Nicola meet at a bar one night where everyone from work goes to on a Friday. They seem to really get on and there is an obvious attraction for both of them but Max, a work colleague, tells Greg that Nicola doesn’t go out with work colleagues since her ex-boyfriend cheated on her throughout their relationship with her boss. Greg is determined to make her change her mind about her rule and starts off little, asking her out just as friends. Nicola knows this isn’t true, that it is a date, but somehow she doesn’t seem to care. She likes Greg and after a few more dates, it seems the rule is broken.

They fall for each other fast. Spending nearly every day together and one night, after being together for 6 months, they talk about children and getting married, which leads to them becoming engaged. Although it seems rushed, you can really see the chemistry and the love the both of them have for one another and when you know you’ve found the one, why would you wait? Love has no time limit.

Nicola’s parents and siblings really like Greg, so when it’s her turn to meet Greg’s parents, three weeks before the wedding, shes really nervous. She gets on well with his parents and his sister but when she tells the story of her adoption that is when everything goes pear shaped and secrets from Mona’s past  are about to come to the surface and are set to test their relationship and love for one another. Could Greg and Nicola really be brother and sister?

It was so heartbreaking to think that they could be half-brother and sister. It tore my heart apart that Nicola and Greg loved each other so when this revitalisation came to light, it was so hard to watch them both struggle over what to do about that information and how to handle it. Greg seemed to adjust to it, trying to push it to the back of his mind. This was HIS Nicola, and no way could they be related, it just couldn’t be. But Nicola had a hard time dealing with it. She had never wanted to meet her real mother and knowing that the love of her life could be her brother and knowing Mona could be her mother just didn’t feel right to her at all. It was all she could think about.

Greg tried so hard to get her to forget that they could be related. He’d tell her that it’s ‘just me, it’s just us’ and he would do anything for her. For them to spend two weeks not knowing what the results of the DNA test would be was completely harrowing and gripping to read.

Greg has strong religious beliefs and so he knows that incest is a sin. Whereas Nicola isn’t religious and she wants to fight for their relationship if they are related. They fight a lot over this; religion being a main factor over the fights. I also though Greg was being hypercritical over the whole incest fight they had. It seemed he was okay being with Nicola knowing they could be related the past two weeks but when she tells him that there could be a way they could stay together if the results came back positive, he just went off the rails about how incest is a sin.

To love someone so much and find out you may be related, it’s got to be heartbreaking and emotional and such a tough situation to go through. I really understood the way they were acting; biting at one another with their ‘what if’s’ but also needing to be with one another, to support each other throughout the turmoil until they got the results back. I could never imagine myself in this situation, let alone think about what I would do if I was in this position.

I could really feel the emotions pouring from Nicola and Greg. To be put in this position, then having to wait for the results would cause havoc and uncertainty for anyone who goes through results like this or any other results.

You really do root for them not to be brother and sister though, because they truly are meant to be. They have both been badly hurt in the past and to finally meet and fall in love in such a short amount of time seemed like the right thing for them. They loved each other dearly and it’s clear to see they would do anything for one another. Greg fought from the start to breaking down Nicola’s barriers and thank god he was the one to break her rule. It was clear there was an instant attraction between them that going fast was just something that happened and it felt right.

I really don’t want to tell you what happened at the end with the results and I don’t want to write about the end and whether I enjoyed it or not because that would spoil the outcome. Let’s just say I cried at the results and leave it like that.

There are a few scenes I loved reading but I have to say the ‘bondage’ scene at the hotel. That made me completely giggle when I read it because they are both just so comfortable together, they both kind of take the piss out of BDSM, with Greg telling Nicola she would be a rubbish sex slave. I could definitely imagine that scene playing out in my mind, at how at ease they were together and how they could just laugh at the toys in the box that Greg’s sister sent them. It was nice that they could just forget about the situation they were in, even if it was just for a couple of hours. Where they could just be together and not worry about anything.

Gosh, you really do go through the emotions reading Too Close but I am so glad I found this book and got the chance to read it. It was great to see how this situation affected the families and friends they both had and their input and advice into their situation. Each character had something different to input and I loved the friends that Greg and Nicola had, they were with them from the start, supporting them.

Elizabeth Krall has written an amazing book in Too Close and I insist that you all read it!! It is different from other books I read, as I have yet to read a book like this, but boy am I glad. It’s a page turner. It’s about love, a struggle, a journey but most of all fighting for love. I definitely recommend this book to you all!

 

 

 

Posted in Romance, Suspense

Charlie and Pearl – Tammy Robinson

17290659Synopsis

Slightly chubby, acne dotted Charlie lives in a quaint New Zealand coastal town where nothing much ever changes, which is good because he wouldn’t be very happy if it did. He still lives with his mum and works in a bookshop with Pete, an old guy who hides the sugar in the toilet and is often seen running down Main Street with a metal bowl for a helmet on his head, as he thinks the country is at war.

It may not seem like a terribly exciting life for your average early twenties bloke, but Charlie’s content, until the day Pearl blows into the bay with a secret to forget and an intense desire for solitude. Charlie’s not having any of that though, and sets about to win her heart with a persistence and determination his ex-teachers thought him totally incapable of.

Will Charlie win his girl?

Will they get their Disney Happy Ever After?

Or will Pearl’s secret come back to haunt them and bring tragedy to all.

Charlie and Pearl is story of unconventional love; of finding that spare part you never knew you were missing, and of what happens when love is simply not enough.

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My Review

24 year old Pearl has been through some traumatic experiences as of late and so by residing at her Gran’s beach house for a while, she gets to relax and try to get away from everything back in the city.

24 year old Charlie has lived in the quaint New Zealand coastal town all his life. He lives with his mum, has worked at a bookshop since he was 13 and has a close relationship with the owner – Pete – whose health is slowly deterring and Charlie looks out for him.

He’s content with his life – albeit it’s a little quiet but he makes what it is of it, until Pearl arrives and he’s instantly attracted to her, but Pearl isn’t looking for a relationship. Charlie sets out to win her over with such determination that it would be hard to constantly turn him away.

Although Charlie does get his girl, Pearls secret has come out in the open and is destined to hurt everyone. Will Charlie stick with her through thick and thin? Will they get their happily ever after?

I’m really glad that Tammy emailed me asking me if I wanted to read and review Charlie and Pearl. Although its only 120 pages long, so a short read, so much happens in the short time you are reading it. There are twists and turns and a whole lot of love included throughout the story.

Set in New Zealand, Tammy supplies so much imagery that you will feel you are at the beach town along with Charlie and Pearl – it made me want to be there and experience the town as it seemed heavenly and just what you would need to go and relax somewhere for a while.

Charlie is a sweet guy. He’s easy going, has a big heart and he’s content with his life. When he first sets his sight on Pearl, it was pretty much love at first sight. He then does whatever he can to try and win her over, even when Pearl just wants to stay friends; it would be hard not to enjoy the attention and admiration that Charlie was pouring. Pearl flicked a switch in Charlie and it seemed that they were meant to meet and relish in life together and Charlie never seemed happier than when he was around Pearl. Until the dreaded secret came out and everything changed, apart from Charlie’s feelings for Pearl – nothing could stop his love for her.

Pearl is a soft soul but she comes with some heavy baggage too. She’s had some heartbreaking news – which you find out near the start – to which she has come to the beach house for a while to get away from the city and to try and forget what has happened. BUT that is not her secret, oh no, you find that out near the end. MAJOR PLOT TWIST. She’s not looking for a relationship, but even she can’t turn away from the attention that Charlie is giving her and she eventually falls for his persistent. Pearl just wants to live life to the fullest and experience everything it has to offer which is why both her and Charlie fitted perfectly together.

The book is written in alternative POV’s and you got an insight into how each other were feeling throughout the book about one another and themselves and the events unfolding around them. Tammy made the characters come to life and you really feel attached to both of them that when everything unfolds you feel the heartbreak and the emotions from both Charlie and Pearl.

The story is both comical and emotional but that is what made it a great book to read. It makes you treasure all that you have and can do in life as well as finding the person that lights up your life, no matter how much you didn’t want to. It’s about two young adults trying to figure out their way in the world and how they both fit together right up until the end where everything changes.

The end! Oh the end. Now THAT I was not expecting at all! When you seem to think something is going to happen, it takes another twist and goes the other way. Yes I cried because, as I’ve said you become attached to the characters and the pain pouring from both of them is heartbreaking and you just want to hug them both and tell them that it will be okay, even when it’s not.

This is a great debut book from Tammy Robinson, and everyone should get their copy and read it! It is a short read, but it’s packed with EVERYTHING! Love, drama, secrets; there is something for everyone. It beautifully written and I shall be awaiting the next book from Tammy now.

Definitely recommend Charlie and Pearl.

Posted in Colleen Hoover, New Adult, Romance, Suspense

Hopeless – Colleen Hoover

15717943Synopsis

Sometimes discovering the truth can leave you more hopeless than believing the lies…

That’s what seventeen-year-old Sky realizes after she meets Dean Holder. A guy with a reputation that rivals her own and an uncanny ability to invoke feelings in her she’s never had before. He terrifies her and captivates her all in the span of just one encounter, and something about the way he makes her feel sparks buried memories from a past that she wishes could just stay buried.

Sky struggles to keep him at a distance knowing he’s nothing but trouble, but Holder insists on learning everything about her. After finally caving to his unwavering pursuit, Sky soon finds that Holder isn’t at all who he’s been claiming to be. When the secrets he’s been keeping are finally revealed, every single facet of Sky’s life will change forever.

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My Review

Seventeen year old Sky has been homeschooled all of her life. She doesn’t have a TV, internet or a phone but it doesn’t seem to faze her, until she begs to go to public school for her senior year.

Everything changes for her after school when she goes to get her secret hit of sugar from the supermarket. That is when she meets Dean Holder who has a reputation bigger than her but also stuns her into silence as with just one look he causes her body to feel things she’s never felt before.

Although he scares her, she’s captivated by him and the more time they spend together, the more he seems to bring out so many emotions but then he also brings out memories that she seems to have forgotten to the service. Ones that she has seemed to forgotten for a reason.

Holder is harbouring a secret and although he wants to stay away from Sky, he can’t. He needs to know everything about her but this secret he has will break Sky but when it’s finally revealed, it changes everything in Sky’s life forever. Thankfully Holder is there to catch Sky throughout it all.

Sky never knew why she didn’t feel attracted to any guy she made out with. She just went along with live thinking she’d never feel attracted or feel lust with anyone, but one look at Holder in the supermarket she was stunned. He was the first guy EVER to make her feel these things and he literally made her heart skip a beat which confused the hell out of her as she has NEVER felt anything for any guy before! Although she had been home schooled, she seemingly has a reputation around the town they live in. She and her best friend Six know the truth but Sky plays along with everyone’s opinions on her when she goes to school.

You can see she’s strong, sarcastic and bluntly honest girl who can definitely hold her own against Holder when they argue. But she’s also a girl who has started to feel new emotions that are foreign to her but she acts questions and Holder answers her as honestly as he can. They are the perfect match for each other and although they got together fairly quickly, it seemed to right for them to do that and I love that they didn’t hold back.

The first time Dean Holder is introduced, he’s smoking hot and a little intense. He blows hot and cold the first few times he is around Sky, which only makes her assumption about him being intense all that more truthful. With her attraction to him, she gets pissed off numerous times over his ‘tantrums’ he seems to pull every so often until there is a period where he stays away from her. But Holder is harbouring a secret that he cannot and will not tell Sky as it will break her but staying away from her is something he cannot do. He needs to be with her and needs to know everything about her. There’s just something about her he can’t pinpoint…

I loved Holder from the beginning. You get to understand why he acted the way he did further along in the book and why he just couldn’t stay away from Sky. He’s been on a mission for the past few years and he was beginning to give up until he found Sky. He’s also very attracted to her and even though they hadn’t known each other long, their chemistry and their charge just kept pulling them together. In the short time, they seem to become everything to each other and to me, it didn’t seem all that strange that they were falling in love quickly, especially when they secret comes out.

Everything that came out of Holder’s mouth was just perfect. He seemed to know what to say in the darkest of moments and also in the lightest. He’s not like any boy I’ve ever known and it was such a relief to read about a guy who felt so many emotions and had me hanging on his every word. He just knew what to do and say to make Sky and himself try to forget everything that was going on and he would do anything for her. Just you read and find out yourself!

There is one scene, okay quite a few, but this one, I KNOW everyone has probably written about it in their review and I’m just another person who will too. The scene where it was the best first kiss, that wasn’t a first kiss. HA you will have to read the book to see what I mean. I was getting so flustered over that scene and it makes it much more intense and sexually charged that my heart was pounding so fast in my chest, it felt like I was experiencing this too – that sounds pretty weird I know, but holy moly, that scene!!

Also the scene where I felt all panicky like Sky was a scene near the end where she’s in the shower. I felt all her emotions and my heart was beating with how much I would be like her if that had happened to me. I kept running a hand through my hair while reading that scene.

I really liked reading all the flashbacks. They are an important part in the story and you see how they integrate into Sky’s life and how they mould her into the person she is today. Since her adoption at 6 years old, she has seemingly forgotten everything about her childhood but slowly she starts to remember things she has pushed away from memory and the dreams are just the click into remembering everything before the adoption. She has never emotionally or physically been attracted to any guy until Holder enters her life and down the line you will see why that is…The flashbacks are essential to the plot.

I had many different theories about the secret, some which I were hoping were not true – I have to say, some of them were – but when the BIG secret was revealed , HOLY SHIT, that secret hadn’t even crossed my mind. That was a complete shocker to me and I’m glad I didn’t figure it out because I sat up in bed, mouth open, rereading that sentence. I don’t think anyone saw that coming!

The ending was a flashback and it kind of pulls the whole story together and makes you think back over the whole book, putting the final finishing thoughts to it as a whole. It took me a while to sleep after I read it as tears were continually falling down my face and I couldn’t stop them. Hopeless is now one of my favourite books and I don’t know why it took so long for me to read it.

Colleen Hoover has made me fall in love with her! Her writing style was refreshing, the book had me hooked from the very beginning and I was captivated until the very end, needing to know what was going to happen next to Sky and Holder. From the Sky and the stars to the pinky holding, it all made complete sense to me as to why they felt so familiar and this book is definitely real. It will drag your emotions out and make you feel things for the characters involved; you will feel connected to them.

A book with so much depth, so many emotions, so much love, and one big secret is definitely a book that needs to be read. Seriously, if you haven’t read the amazing Hopeless, download your copy now and understand why this book is now one of my favourites.

Posted in Erotica, Romance, Suspense

Lexi, Baby (This Can’t Be Happening #1) by Lynda LeeAnne

16124537Synopsis

Alexis Sky Martine thinks of herself as the average girl-next-door that does what she has to do to get by, have fun and enjoy life.
She is madly in love with her sexy, drop-your-panties-at-first-sight, hottie boyfriend who is equally in love with her; more like downright obsessed. He treats her like she is his heart; like he needs her to exist; like he would do anything in his power to make her happy.
Lexi knows Landyn James loves her just as much as she loves him, if not more. Deep down, she also knows high school sweethearts aren’t expected to last, but their relationship is different. They are soul mates. Their connection is unbreakable.

What could possibly go wrong when you have love like that…?
Everything.
What will the future hold…?
Only time will tell.

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My Review

Lexi and Landyn are high school sweethearts. They are totally and utterly in love with one another. Or in Landyn’s case, he’s utterly in love and highly possessive of Lexi. He treats her like she’s the air he needs to breath and he would do anything in his power to make sure she is happy.

But one night at their last high school party before college, the night takes a turn for the worst and Lexi is left downright heartbroken at what has just happened and what she has just heard that she is left with a shattered heart and her trust for men tarnished. She moves away with her best friend for college but her life will never be the same again. Little does she know that years down the line, the stars have led her towards a path she never thought she would come across again…

I’ve been singing this since I finished the book – “Holy shit, holy shit, he is so possessive, he is so possessive, it’s so hot, it’s so hot.” If me singing this does not reiterate how AMAZING this book is, then I’m just a mental case! Grab your copy right now and start reading it because it had me captivated from the first to the last page. It took me – oh like 2 hours to finish it and this is the second book I have read today.

The synopsis is only a glimpse of what this book is about. There is so much in the plot that you will not want to put this book down for anything. I didn’t even put it down to pee that’s how good it was – and I know, too much information. Lexi and Landyn are deliriously in love with one another, but one stupid mistake from Landyn breaks everything they have built together, down. Lexi leaves him and tries to get over him and her heartbreak but 6 years later, and Landyn is back in her life and turning it upside down once again.

Landyn. DAMN BOY! From the first description I was sucker-punched by your beauty and how attractive and utterly smoking you sounded. But when everything blew up at the party, holy moly you asswipe, why did you do it? I really tried to hate you for the pain you caused Lexi, but it was too hard. I saw the pain and anguish in your face, and although I don’t condone what you did, I felt so sorry for you. You really loved Lexi and knew what you did was stupid and wrong but I knew that no matter what, you’d never give up trying to win her back, even if it took years.

Fast forward 6 years later and HELLO LANDYN! It’s good to see you old chum. You’re still as possessive and sexy and dominating as you were at 18. Jump in my bed and abuse my body please? He was such an Alpha male it was literally a turn-on. He always said what he was thinking, even if it was blunt and he was never afraid to express his feelings, regardless of who was about, he would shout his feelings to the world which is what you definitely want in a guy – someone who isn’t afraid to express their emotions!

Sweet baby Jesus, the sex was steammmmmming! Holy hell, I need some dominating sex right now because all I can think about are how great Lexi and Landyn are together. I like dominating and possessiveness when the sex isn’t BSDM – Which thankfully, no BSDM was included in this book. You could see how in love Landyn was with Lexi. His love for her consumed him and he still loved her after all the years they were apart. She was a part of him that he just could never see being without – like a jigsaw puzzle. Even if he never found her again, it was like no other girl would be able to match up to Lexi that much you could see. I would really like him to say “Zoe Baby” to me, because every time he said that to Lexi, my heart skipped a bit over the endearment.

Lexi was left severely heartbroken when she heard what Landyn had done. She loved him with all her heart and really thought they were going to be together forever. Even with her heart shattered, she and her best friend Trish moved away to college but that’s when everything in her life changed. I don’t want to tell you what happened but Lexi has to grow up pretty darn fast and in a way, that’s okay with her. She has Trish to lean on for support through it all, even if it should have been Landyn. She’s learnt to grow a thick skin and she is fiercely independent and protective of her little family. She still thinks about that night 6 years ago but she’s still trying to get over it with the help of Ryan – her boyfriend. Although it seems like she loves him, I suppose there will always be a little reminder in her head that he isn’t Landyn – no matter how much she wants to forget, he was her first love and her only love. Lexi doesn’t take any crap off anyone too, especially Ryan and Landyn and she will definitely knows what and who she wants. I’m just glad she knew her mind when Landyn came back, even if she should have told him the news 6 years ago!

Oh swoon, I loved Trish. She was mouthy, independent, and ballsy and would protect Lexi from absolutely anyone. She wasn’t afraid to tell it how it is or try to kick some butt! But underneath her bravado is someone who keeps up appearances. You find out some information that makes you want to give her a massive hug.

HELLLLLLLO Adam you sexy beast. He was exactly like Landyn and I loved him too! He was sexy, flirty and a police officer who wanted to keep Lexi safe – not from Landyn I may add! But also underneath his bravado he has also been burnt by the love of his life and I’m just hoping that he gets a book so we can find out even more about his life.

Ryan. I never liked him from the get go. Sure enough he helped Lexi out the first time they met with a handsy customer but he seemed a little too weird for my liking. Work consumed him and although he loved Lexi he has a messed-up way of showing it. What he did was not excusable and to use verbal and physical abuse is not okay in any circumstances. I’m just glad that Lexi can hold her own and fight back and I’m glad that she had Trish around when shit hit the fan.

This book has everything in it. From drama, cuteness, sex, laughter, consuming love, possessiveness and friendship. It does deal with serious issues such as verbal and physical abuse, albeit the verbal is over a few chapters and there is one scene where it is physical, but still, it is handled carefully and sensitively by Lynda, and it added into Lexi’s character who took no shit from anybody. The ending is left on a cliff hanger, but a cliff-hanger for Trish – who the second book will be about. GIVE IT TO ME NOW! I need more of these characters in my life!

Posted in Family, Suspense

The Seeds of a Daisy – Alison Caiola

17194127Synopsis

From the outside looking in, Lily Lockwood, popular star of the hit TV show St. Joe’s, has it all. Recently nominated for an Emmy, her star is definitely on the rise. She shares her gorgeous Malibu beachfront home with her even more gorgeous actor boyfriend. Perfect, right? Not so much! Within a matter of just a few days, it all falls apart. The wind is knocked out of her when she finds out that her boyfriend, on location shooting a western, is riding horses all day and his curvy co-star all night. Before Lily can catch her breath, she gets word that her mother, best-selling author Daisy Lockwood, is in intensive care after a near-fatal accident. Lily flies across the country to be by her side. The girl, who has a hard time deciding if her Chai Latte should be Grande or Venti, is now faced with making crucial life and death decisions. While rifling through Daisy’s papers, she comes across shocking information about her mother that threatens to shake her very foundation. Lily embarks on a journey of self-discovery and closure as she seeks to unlock the mysteries of her mother’s past.

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My Review

Lily Lockwood seems to have it all. She’s a famous actress on a TV show called St. Joes, she’s got the perfect boyfriend, her mother is her best friend and she’s just become nominated for an Emmy. All seems completely perfect to her. BUT within a few days everything turns upside down. Her boyfriend is cheating on her with his busty co-star and her mother, best-selling author Daisy Lockwood has been in a fatal car accident and is in a coma. Everything has fallen apart and now Lily has the crucial decision over what to do. While trying to sort out Daisy’s papers for the hospital, she discovers things about her mother’s past that she never knew of and it takes her on a journey of self-discovery and closure as she starts to unlock the secrets of her mother’s past.

The story starts off with Lily at her mother’s hospital bed, sobbing and asking her to wake up. As she waits for the doctors to tell her the news of her mother’s condition, Lily begins to reflect on her life and relationship with her mother, who brought her up single-handedly and supported and helped her into the Hollywood world – always being there for Lily throughout everything in her life. As the days pass by, and with tests and operations being done on her mother, Daisy’s close friends come to be with her and Lily to await the news of Daisy’s condition and to support Lily.

I really felt for Lily, because Daisy, although her mother is her best friend and the only person that she can lean on, and for her to be in a coma – it was so sad to read as she just wanted her to be okay and wake up. My mum is one of my best friends too and I would be completely lost without her if anything happened to her, which I’m sure everyone can relate to as well, so yes, I definitely felt for Lily having to go through this. As much as she’s a famous TV star, she’s still a scared, vulnerable little girl inside; scared about what is happening to her mum.

Although this book is focused on Lily and her self-discovery, it’s all centered on Daisy, You never get to read Daisy speaking in the present, but you do in the flashbacks and stories that Lily thinks about throughout the book. You do get a feel that you know Daisy as her voice is pretty strong and even if she is in a coma, I did fell like I knew her, regardless of her not speaking. You also get to know more about Daisy in her diary entries, which Lily finds and reads. They give Lily and the reader an insight into Daisy’s childhood – one that she has never told Lily. You find out many a secret about Daisy and there’s a huge shock of a secret which I was not expecting at all!

It was great to see the supporting characters coming to the hospital to visit Daisy and support Lily throughout the ordeal of the accident. The friends were completely special to read about and definitely felt like a small family to Lily and Daisy to me. Her Auntie D, who is childhood friends with Daisy, was such an amazing character to read. She was there for Lily when she was younger and is still there for Lily years later. Her and Daisy have been through a lot in their past and they are still best friends to this day. It was brilliant to see so much support and love coming from Donna, even when she was hurting because her best friend was in a coma. You can see that Donna will always be there for lily, no matter what happens.

Alison’s writing style comes to life. You can see she has really researched all the hospital scenes and the jargon used in this book. She writes about a colourful and lovely mother-daughter relationship that you just want for yourself and it’s the bond of the two that really gels this book together. It’s the heart of the book. It seems exceptionally realistic, especially the hospital scenes as you could really feel yourself acting the way Lily was with the Doctors (Who was a bit of an arsehole) and just wanting to know what was happening with her mother. I felt every single emotion she conveyed and this book actually got me thinking about if I was in Lily’s position. The story really did make Lily stronger, in a way, and really make her see life as being precious. It’s a great book to read and I would definitely recommend it as it was difficult to put down once I started it!

Posted in Romance, Suspense

Poughkeepsie – Debra Anastasia

13038680Synopsis

He counts her smiles every day and night at the train station. And morning and evening, the beautiful commuter acknowledges him—just like she does everyone else on the platform. But Blake Hartt is not like the others . . . he’s homeless. Memories of a broken childhood have robbed him of peace and twisted delusions into his soul. He stays secluded from the sun, sure the world would run from him in the harsh light of day.

Each day, Livia McHugh smiles politely and acknowledges her fellow commuters as she waits for the train to the city. She dismisses this kindness as nothing special, just like her. She’s the same as a million other girls—certainly no one to be cherished. But special or not, she smiles every day, never imagining that someone would rely on the simple gesture as if it were air to breathe.

When the moment comes that Livia must do more than smile, without hesitation she steps into the fray to defend the homeless man. And she’s surprised to discover an inexplicable connection with her new friend. After danger subsides, their smiles become conversation. Their words usher in a friendship, which awakens something in each of them. But it’s not long before their bond must prove its strength. Entanglements from the past challenge both their love and their lives.

Blake’s heart beats for Livia’s, even if her hands have to keep its rhythm. Love is patient. Love is kind. Love never fails. Love never fails, right?

In an interwoven tale of unlikely loves and relationships forged by fire, Debra Anastasia takes readers into the darkest corners of human existence, only to show them the radiant power of pure adoration and true sacrifice. Complicated families and confused souls find their way to light in this novel, which manages to be racy, profane, funny, and reverent all at once.

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My Review

“No one has really seen me in years… But when you saw me for the first time, you actually saw me. You saw me, and then you smiled like I was just the same as everyone else on that platform.”

Blake Hartt spends his days sitting at Poughkeepsie train station waiting to see the girl who has him captivated, waiting to count her smiles towards him. Blake Hartt is homeless, but seeing the girl day in, day out makes his days so much better. Livia always sees him sitting there, in the shadows, never asking for any handouts. She sees him, for him. It’s not until some bullies were picking on him that she stands up for him and that is when Blake and Livia finally meet. She finally gets to see his green eyes up close after nicknaming him for so long.

After that initial meeting, Livia spends more time with Blake before her morning train and after her night train. She has a boyfriend, but she’s been trying to dump him for a long time and when things seem to progress with Blake, she knows she definitely cannot continue the relationship with Chris. Her heart is calling out to Blake. When she finally finishes with Chris, he doesn’t accept it. He won’t be the laughing stock of Poughkeepsie and he feels he’s been shamed by Livia for choosing the homeless guy over him. He decides he’s going to do everything he can to get rid of Blake and get Livia back, thus starting his plan to win her back, even though Livia wants nothing to do with him. This starts part of the story, but you’re going to have to read this book to find out what happens.

Blake was a beautiful soul to read. Albeit, he was homeless and afraid of the sun as he seemed to think it changed his appearance. But he was gorgeous; he never asked for anything and would never accept handouts until he felt he deserved it. He was tormented about his past, but he was charming, chivalrous and well spoken beyond any means. Growing up in foster care, he knew how to look after himself after living on the streets for so long, yet he was a gentle soul. He absolutely worshiped Livia, grateful for every moment they spend together.

He has two ‘brothers’ whom he met at his foster home and they were everything to him. They all had matching tattoos and looked out for one another. Beckett is the naughty brother. His business is anything but legal and being the first out to grow out of the system, he felt it was up to him look after his brothers so trying to gain respect in the community was something he had to do so when Blake and Cole came out of the system, he could protect them and make sure he gave them everything he could. Although what he does is illegal on so many levels, the love he has is fierce and he will do anything, even die for the two of them. Cole is also a tormented soul. He lives in the church and is trying to become something better of himself. His past, as you will read, is horrific and he had been brought up afraid of love as he thinks love is pain. But then comes along Kyle, Livia’s sister, and everything changes for him. He’s found his purpose and he’s found love and those two were a treasure to one another.

The three of them each carry heavy baggage, but together they have come a long way since their childhood and foster care and although they aren’t blood related, they couldn’t be closer or more bonded in any other way.

Livia was a strong, independent, level headed young woman. She didn’t care that commuters would talk about her when she was with Blake, she only cared about him. She was kind, caring, full of love, but she could be tough and wouldn’t hide from dangerous situations, as you will find out when you read this book. I loved how much she felt for Blake. She didn’t care that he was homeless, she saw him, for him. She didn’t care that he had no money, she just knew that she wanted to be with him, homeless or not. She loved him and made sure to help him through his childhood issues, without being judgmental and she was there every step of the way .The love they had for each other poured from their core and with everything thrown at them, it only made they stronger.

Kyle, Livia’s sister also had a tormented soul. She felt it was her fault her mother had left when she was born so she set out to punish herself over it. It’s not until she finds Cole and he tells her she has to be her, that she stops hurting herself over her mother’s departure and she finds solace with Cole. Their journey isn’t one without harm but their love for one another is strong to fight anything. Kyle becomes the woman she was meant to be when she found Cole and Cole became the man he was meant to be with Kyle. A match made in heaven…literally.

I have to say, I completely fell in love with Beckett and Kyle. They seemed like people who I’d love to be my best friends. They had potty mouths that kept making me laugh at the things were they saying and to be honest with you, I can have a potty mouth too, so I would definitely be joining in with the banter those two dished out to everyone. I also loved that they were fiercely protective of their loved ones. You hurt their family and friends and you were a goner. Family was immensely important to them and I really enjoyed how much everyone protected one another, especially when everything blew up with Beckett’s business drama and with Chris’ revenge. The two dramas interact and all hell is blown up that you become engrossed over what is happening. I literally could not put the book down.

I could never say that the characters outside of Blake and Livia were secondary, because you see everyone’s story and it combines into the book. You see everyone’s past and why they are involved the way they are, and how it formed them into the person they are today. All the stories are really heartbreaking.

The ending to me was one of perfection. Blake and Livia got their happy ending after everything that had happened in the book and you could tell that they really were made to be together; they were soul mates. This book has a little bit of everything wrapped into it. It has romance, banter, murders, kidnapping, jealousy, revenge, love, steamy moments, friendship, bonds, midnight mass but most of it, it’s about finding love and protecting those you love. It truly is a beautiful book to read and you would be mad not to give it a read.

It really did captivate me and I cannot wait for book two, where we get to read about Beckett.