Posted in New Adult

Choose Us – Caylie Marcoe

Final Cover Round 2Synopsis

Riley Logan and Travis Grayson have been best friends for the last fifteen years. She would do anything for him, go anywhere for him…and she has, countless times. Except now. Now he’s asking for too much. Their friendship has reached a breaking point and she doesn’t know how to go back. But as Travis’ personal assistant, Riley spends her every waking moment by his side. 

When a fractured ankle puts Travis’ BMX career on hold he’s given more downtime than he knows what to do with. Always one for excitement, he agrees to become the bachelor on a televised dating show, but only if Riley goes in undercover to help weed through the girls. 

What was supposed to be eight weeks of freedom has turned into eight weeks of hell surrounded by desperate girls all vying for Travis’ attention. He promised her the show would be smooth sailing. He promised he would listen to her advice on which girls should be eliminated. But now he’s breaking those promises and getting way too close to the girl Riley despises the most. 

She shouldn’t care. Except she does. Much to her surprise there is one girl she wants Travis to choose…

Her. 

Will she get what she wants, or will Riley lose her best friend along with getting her heart broken on national television?

4.5 out of 5 stars

36244-addtogoodreads

 

——————————————————————————–

My Review

I stumbled across Choose Us whilst browsing Amazon for new books to download. Spotting the hand holding cover, I had to know what the book was about. A famous BMX’er, his best friend as his PA, a Bachelor type reality dating show and a lot of confusion, jealousy and love mixed all together. Yupp, I had to get this book into my life asap.

It’s safe to say I literally devoured this book, from front to back. I started it on my journey to work and by the time night fell, I was crying, smiling and in love with everything Travis and Riley. Caylie has a writing style that wins you over. You cant stop reading no matter what (I was on edge all throughout work wanting to get back to Travis and Riley) and I had so many emotions, feeling what Riley was feeling, my heart twinging and breaking and sighing at every page.

You will hang on to every page, especially when there are girls competing and fighting for Travis’ attention, none of them knowing that Riley is undercover and reporting back to Travis about them. Friends to lover stories are always my favourite, mainly because of the deep connection they characters have and Travis and Riley are no different.

Choose Us is about Travis and Riley. They have been best friends r 15 years and spend every day together – Riley being Travis’ PA. When an injury forces Travis to rest for 8 weeks, he gets a proposition for be on a dating show. He has one condition to agreeing though, that Riley is one of the girls and reports back to him on the girls. Riley is pissed but she agrees after some hard work.

But as the show goes on and the girls are dwindling, there is one girl who is just out to get Travis for his status and that doesnt go down well at all with Riley. Travis isn’t listening to her and her feelings for him are coming on strong. Now she wants him to pick her but what does Travis do?

Will this cause 15 years of friendship down the drain along with a broken heart of national TV or will Travis pick Riley after all?

I truly loved Riley. She is the type of girl who doesnt have many girl friends but that doesnt seem to bother her. She has Travis and that is enough for her. She’s not the girly type either, but as long as she has her coffee in the morning she can deal with anything. Riley can banter, she can keep up with Travis and she always there for him throughout everything. Not just as his PA but his best friend too. So when he’s injured and his only condition for going on the dating show is if Riley gets to be one of the girls, I could understand her fear, her anguish over being surround by girls wanting Travis’ attention. In one way, she doesnt have any girl friends and isn’t good being friends with girls and secondly, deep down, unconsciously, she was afraid that A) she might loose him to a girl from the show and B) Fall in love with him and C) the girls would find out who she really was.

I enjoyed watching all these feelings rush over Riley though. From actually seeing herself as a ‘girl’ for the first time, feeling like she actually is a beautiful girl and dressing like one too. I liked her friendship with Taylor, one of the girls on the dating show and I liked how close they became. It wasn’t like a competition for them. It didn’t matter who ‘got’ Travis, they actually formed a fully-fledge friendship and I love that Riley had a girlfriend like Taylor. But most of all, seeing Riley’s feelings for Travis creep up on her. Really seeing him for the first time gave her confused feelings for him and I know just how she feels feeling her for best friend. But mix in the other girls, the confusion over what was happening between them and jealousy she felt when he went on one-on-one dates, its enough to push anyone over the edge especially after her birthday in the house and what came after that.

You slowly saw Riley fall for Travis, watched her actually begin to fight in the dating show, fight for Travis even through the pain of carrying on the show and him going off on ‘dates’ still. I felt the uneasiness, the pain of witnessing and hearing about the dates, the fear of losing and loving her best friend and then the heartbreak – god that sucked me right up. How she came undone and the pain shot through my heart whilst I was reading about her walking away. God, I even felt the awkwardness and the heartbreak at the end too, but yano what, I also felt the lightness and the love and the cage being ripped from Riley (and my heart) and I felt the radiating love that both Travis and Riley have for one another.

I told Caylie on Twitter that I want my own Travis. I really really do. There is just something about him that draws you right in and he wont let you go. Travis is sweet and caring and is boisterous – well he is a BMX’er, and he adores his best friend Riley, whom he will do whatever for. When an injury stops him for a few weeks, he becomes the main focus on a reality TV show, along with the help of Riley. He wants her to wig out the bad nuts so he gets the best girl in the end. You know everyone will end up loving him, he’s cheeky and flirty and smirky all wrapped into one and you know you will love him too.

He’s considerate and you know that, like Riley, deep down he has got to have thought about them as more than friends, so to me, it was no surprise when something happened. You watch their relationship change, you see Travis start to confuse himself over Riley, despite her being the one for him and then you watch their banter slow down, watch the drama unfold between them and it hurts to see Travis still go on dates. But fair play to him, he never backs out of contracts and although I wanted him to, I understood why he didn’t, even if it did end up hurting Riley and him and breaking both their hearts.

At times you will want to wring his bloody neck. You will shake your head at him for not listening to Riley, to not believing her when she told him about a certain young lady and shout at him for how he handled everything. But you will cry at the ending, at how much you want them to be together, at how much you need Travis to explain his action and you know, know you will forgive him because what he tells Riley? I wanted to jump into the book and hug him tight and make him say the words to me.

I truly loved reading Choose Us. It’s so refreshing from other books I have read recently. It sucked me in, had me feeling every emotion and I felt connected to Riley and her growing feelings for her best friend but most of all? This is a book I need to buy in paperback and have it on my bookshelf.

Posted in New Adult, Samantha Young

Until Fountain Bridge (#1.5) – Samantha Young

17665083Synopsis

Ellie Carmichael had a crush on Adam Sutherland, her brother, Braden’s, best friend, for years, and although Adam treated her with proprietary concern he made it clear he thought of her only as a little sister.

Over the years, as Ellie’s crush develops into love, her romantic idealism makes it difficult for her to move on. To make matters worse, as she’s gotten older, Adam’s attitude has changed toward her. His affection for her is now joined by attraction, but his loyalty to Braden, and his fear of losing the only family he has, stops him from claiming Ellie the way she wishes he would.

But one night his attraction is put to the test, and as much as Adam would like things to remain the same everything changes between them in a simple brush of the lips.

Soon lust, love, jealousy and heartbreak combine to force change upon their relationship… and Adam discovers the hard way that life is too damn short to spend it on regret.

5 /5 stars

add-to-goodreads-button3

 

————————————————————————

My Review

“I want every piece of you. Even the stuff I missed without even knowing I was missing it.”

Ellie has been writing diaries since she was a kid. Shes documented everything throughout her life up until a couple of months ago. Ellie now lives with Adam, the love of her life since she was a child, and he finds her surrounded by her diaries one day.

Intrigued by them and wanting to know her versions of events between them over the years, he starts to read them with her and so this starts the beginning of their ‘relationship’ to the point in which they are at now. The diaries conveyed a lot of jealousy, heartbreaks and hidden attraction until a few pivotal points in their friendship happen changing it up.

Join Ellie and Adam throughout their history, to their present, where they are happy and in love. Life is definitely too short for regrets.

Even since I read On Dublin Street, Ellie just took over me. She was, is, an amazing character to read. She’s caring, loyal, a romantic; tries to see the good in people but she’s also got a spark in her which Adam seems to set off a lot. It makes her feisty, but causes her heartbreak every time.

So when Samantha Young mentioned how she had written a novella about Adam and Ellie which was a freebie for all of those who had pre-ordered Down London Road, I knew I had to email her and get my copy, because I wanted to know about their story. As we know, Ellie has been in love with Adam since a young age. But when did Adam realize he had feelings for her? It fills in the blanks for all the questions we had during On Dublin Street for these two.

As mentioned, Ellie has moved in with Adam and is sorting out boxes that she should have unpacked weeks ago. There she stumbles upon what she is looking for – her old diaries. Adam comes up to see what she is doing and that is how this novella starts. Adam wants to read them and know how much he affected Ellie when they were growing up. With Adam being seven years older, we follow Ellie’s journey of growing up, harbouring these feelings for her brother’s best friend, going through Adam’s over-protectiveness, being angered by Adam’s brotherly ways, to turning into an adult, dating, having her heart broken by boyfriends, being confused over Adam. You name it, Ellie documented every little detail and feeling in her diaries over the years.

Although many of us love Adam, he was a bit of an idiot throughout the diary entries, but alas, he didn’t actually know Ellie’s feelings and when he realized his feelings for her, he wanted her but couldn’t have her because he thought it would affect his friendship with Braden. When you read the novella, you will understand the pain and heartbreak that Ellie encountered time and time again by Adam. Sometimes not on purpose as he didn’t know that he was doing it, but others – he did. And these were the parts I literally wanted to sob for Ellie. (I couldn’t as I read this in the library.)

It was a great yet heartbreaking read. It was heartbreaking to see Ellie go through all the pain of loving Adam since her childhood but great to read the history of their story.  I loved the journey of Ellie growing up, trying to forget her feelings for Adam by dating other guys but none of them seemed to match up to him. She never felt that spark when she kissed them but then everything changes when they brush lips one night. That was it then. She was in love.

I also liked how we got to see Adam’s side to what he was reading after every entry. You could feel his emotions once he read them, see the guilt, the pain, the anguish of how he was making Ellie feel, even if he didn’t know it. My heart really did go out to him because of it because he spent years being in love with her too, but didn’t do anything. You do seem him man-up though, as we also see in On Dublin Street, but we see exactly what happens in the bedroom.

I have to say, I sat in a quiet area of the library, only one person hidden behind the book cases. I had my Ipod in and normally when I read, the music doesn’t go in until I really listen to it and during some pivotal points in the book, two songs came on that just described those scenes brilliantly. So brilliantly that I wanted to burst into tears there and then, but I had to hold my tears back.

The first song is: Kelly Clarkson – My Life Would Suck Without you.
Not evening joking, this came on when it was Ellie’s illness scene. I am not going to spoil what happens but it kicks someone’s butt into gear. I sat listening to the lyrics, reading the words on my kindle, wanting to sob my little heart out. It truly was a fitting song to what was happening and what had happened previously.

And the next song was The Fray – Look After You.
This came on during the last diary entry where they talk about their future and then into the present, where it ends their journey to where they are at now. I am in love with this song so much, and it fits Ellie and Adam’s love perfectly. It fitted those scenes perfectly and it made my heart ache in a good way over the lyrics and reading what the two of them were talking about. I would highly recommend listening to this song during the last entry.

I command Samantha Young for this amazing novella. I am so happy to have read about Ellie and Adam’s history, to understand their relationship more, to how it all started to where they are at now. For those who haven’t had the chance to receive this freebie by pre-ordering Down London Road, you are missing out. But you won’t be missing out for long, as you will be able to buy this novella in June.

If you loved On Dublin Street, then you really need to read this. You will love Ellie and Adam even more than you probably do. (Then when Down London Road is out – which is amazing btw – you will see even more of these two!)

 

Posted in Erotica, New Adult, Romance, Serenity Woods

ARC: Six Naughty Nights – Serenity Woods

17256088Synopsis

Six nights to remember, six days to forgive…

Esther is grateful for the strong arms that saved her and her young son from an earthquake. But she wishes their rescuer was someone else. Anyone other than the man who left her pregnant after a holiday fling.

Toby’s carpentry skills take him wherever there’s work, and right now that work is definitely cut out for him. He has to get over the shock that the little boy in his arms is his own son—and convince Esther that he’s always regretted walking away from her.

Esther can’t bring herself to deny Toby his right to get to know Charlie. Besides, with her own home flattened, she has nowhere to go but with him to his apartment…where she discovers a sexy role-playing card game tucked in his suitcase.

When Toby invites her to accompany him to the Northland to attend his best friend’s wedding, the opportunity to explore their still-simmering attraction is too tempting to resist. As the steamy scenarios heat up, they start to realize this is more than a game. But Esther’s hiding a secret that could cause as much devastation as the earthquake…

Pre-order now
396 pages

Amazon UK – £3.04
Amazon US – $4.54

Out 26th March 2013

—————————————————————

My Review

Three years ago, Toby and Esther spent two glorious weeks together in Fiji, where fun and sex were the main course. When the two weeks were up Toby walked away from her, leaving her heartbroken and a few weeks down the line, pregnant.

Now three years later, and in the company of a little boy, Charlie, he and Esther are saved in the midst of an earthquake by no other than Charlie’s dad, Toby, who just so happened to be at the same place, at the right or maybe wrong time.

Toby goes wherever his carpentry skills take him and now he’s in Christchurch. Rescuing the girl who he has always regretted walking away from, it’s a shock to know that the little boy in his arms that he just saved is his own.

Esther doesn’t deny that Charlie is his, nor can’t she bring herself to deny him his right to get to know his little boy. Besides, since her apartment was flattened by the earthquake and with nowhere to go, Toby offers his apartment to Charlie and Esther, which is where she discovers a sexy role-playing card game tucked in his suitcase.

Toby is leaving Christchurch for a few days to attend his best friend’s wedding and he invites Esther and Charlie along with him back to Northland, so he can get to know his son, but also there’s an opportunity to explore their still-sizzling attraction to one another, which is just too tempting to resist.

But as the scenarios heat up, they both start to realize that this is more than just a game. Old feelings are starting to rehash but Esther is hiding a secret that could cause devastation if found out and she doesn’t know whether to spill it or not. It could ruin everything.

I’d firstly like to thanks Serenity Woods for sending me an ARC copy of Six Naughty Nights. You all should know my love for Seven Sexy Sins by now and when Serenity started following me on Twitter, well, I went all fangirl on her and she offered to send me a copy of this sexy book! So here I am, reviewing Six Naughty Nights – the next book in the Love in Reverse series – which was pretty much too hard to put down. Although it did come to a time where I needed sleep and reluctantly had to stop at the next chapter.

For those who have read Seven Sexy Sins, you will know that Toby is a character in that book. The flirty one, the one who everyone teases and it didn’t seem to bother him at all. He’s still the cheeky chap he was in SSS, but we get to see much more of him and his personality. I can’t tell you how many times I laughed at the things that came out of his mouth. He was hilarious.

I love how easy he seemed to slip into the role of being a father, even when he was freaking out about it. He was a natural with Charlie and my heart ached over how much he fell in love with Charlie and how he treated and cared for him even when he had known him for a few hours. It was like he was born to be affectionate and have his own kid to love. He was very family orientated.

Throughout the book, you really see the true Toby appear. Not only is he the cheeky, flirty guy, but he’s sensitive and has insecurities of his own that he has buried deep down because he doesn’t want anyone to know that they do sting when he’s teased. He always tries to get the approval of his friends and family and it pains Esther to see him being treated this way.  He’s insecure over his family because he’s the ‘least educated’ one as his two brothers are Lawyers and Doctors.

Despite his insecurities, Toby had a big heart full of love, and he and Charlie were just so cute together. As I’ve mentioned, Toby was a natural; no awkward talking between the two of them and their conversations just flowed, despite Charlie being just over two years old. And for a two year old, he came out with some goddamn funny lines. I just wanted to cuddle him up and have him talk that way with me. He was the most adorable little kid about and you really could tell he was Toby’s son. I also loved how Toby didn’t treat him as a kid as such; he didn’t talk down to him. That way, he and Charlie bantered was hilarious but they also had so many sweet scenes together and the way Charlie just accepted that Toby was his dad, and started calling him ‘Daddy’ brought a tear to my eye.

“You’ve got a big willy.” Charlie observed. “It’s bigger than mine” He studied his own offering.
“Size isn’t everything, dude, or so they’d have you believe.”

I can’t tell you how much I howled reading this conversation.

Esther is a strong, independent woman, but she also has insecurities. Ever since Toby walked away from her after their two weeks in Fiji, she was heartbroken, distrustful and left pregnant. Since then it’s just been her and Charlie against the world. She doesn’t have any family and doesn’t like anyone helping her, rather doing it herself. After Toby’s attempts of getting in contact with her, she ignores them, wanting to punish him for how he left her. She knew how to contact him but she didn’t want to, she didn’t want him back in her life, even if Charlie did deserve to know his dad and Toby deserved to know he had a son. So when she sees Toby in the supermarket as an earthquake hits, and he gets them to safety, she doesn’t deny that Charlie is his when she’s asked.

I loved that Ms. Woods didn’t make Esther withhold the information to Toby. Many books draw that out and after a while you want to scream at them, but Esther was honest and because of that, they could get past one obstacle about their past and power through the rest.

Esther and Toby’s attraction was still pure. It was still as hot as it was three years ago but right now, Esther doesn’t want her feelings to return. She wants them to stay hidden away and not get heartbroken again by Toby. She wants to resist him but she can’t. So when they propose to play the role-playing game while they are in Northland, they try to do the same as Rusty and Faith – keep it physical and not let any emotions get in the way. Oh, why didn’t they listen to Rusty? They have too much history to keep old feelings away and sex is never just physical (for some people), emotions truly do get in the way. The more time they spend together, and the more they play the games, love is inevitably going to get in the way.

Now on to the games. I FREAKING LOVED THEM! Is this game real? I think I’d like to buy it because holy hell, Toby and Esther role-playing…I needed cold water thrown over me everytime they has sex because I was burning up. I loved how dominant Toby was in the bedroom and although Esther hated being the ‘sub’ because of how independent she was, it did turn her on to be dominated. Although she was always insecure about her body every time she was naked, Toby loved every part of her and that made her come out of her shell and play along. She was brilliant and being pushed to her limits playing someone else. Every sex scene was intense and steamy but I reallllllly like the sex scene where he tied her up. It was intense and made her vulnerable but it was also a pivotal point in their ‘relationship.’

Throughout everything that happens with Toby and Esther and when her secret does come out, I felt so sorry for both of them. They loved one another but Esther was determined it wouldn’t work and the secret hurt Toby, but he kind of understood somewhere deep down, why she did it. But the ending! Oh the ending. It was just amazing and I was cheering that everything, truly, would be okay for them both.

I absolutely enjoyed Six Naughty Nights. Serenity Woods’ books always draw me in and there is always an amazing storyline wrapped into the book, where it’s not just about sex, it’s about a connection and their journey together and alone. She makes me care about all the characters and makes my emotions go all over the place, much like her characters. I will always come back for more with Serenity Woods and I am so glad that I got to receive an ARC of this book from her, because I will definitely be recommending this to everyone and saying how great it is.

PS. Much like Rusty, Toby is definitely a new book boyfriend and I really couldn’t decide who I love best. It wouldn’t be fair 😉

Posted in Romance, YA

ARC: Hooked (Hooked #1) – Liz Fichera

12369649Synopsis

When Native American Fredricka ‘Fred’ Oday is invited to become the only girl on the school’s golf team, she can’t say no. This is an opportunity to shine, win a scholarship and go to university, something no one in her family has done.

But Fred’s presence on the team isn’t exactly welcome — especially not to rich golden boy Ryan Berenger, whose best friend was kicked off the team to make a spot for Fred.

But there’s no denying that things are happening between the girl with the killer swing and the boy with the killer smile…

GET HOOKED ON A GIRL NAMED FRED.

——————————————————————————————————————————————————————-

My Review

All Fred Oday wants to do is play golf. It gets her away from her house and into a zone for a few hours. When she’s spotted by her high school coach for the golf team and he offers her a place, she accepts. Little does she know, someone is going to get kicked off for her to take his place and that someone is Seth, Ryan’s best friend.

Ryan Berenger isn’t happy at all that his friend got kicked off the team in favour for a girl, but the more he sees Fred play golf and the more time they spend together, it’s clear that she’s more than amazing at golf and there’s no denying that something is happening between them, something neither of them saw coming.

I really enjoyed reading this book. Writing about two characters from completely different sides of the woods yet they have many things in common from their dysfunctional families to their love of Golf. I never thought I’d ever read a YA about golf, especially a girl being consumed by the sport but I really loved reading about the sport, as I’m not a massive golf fan at all, but Liz made it seem so interesting that I couldn’t put the book down. The alternating POV’s truly made the story come alive as well, getting an insight into both Ryan and Fred’s thoughts and feelings about one another; their voices were prominent and I felt connected to both of the characters. I also loved the Indian culture in this book. In a way, this book reminded me of Shut Up and Kiss Me by Christie Craig with the Indian culture and it made me really interested in learning more about the culture.

Fredricka – or Fred as she’d rather be called is from the Rez, the Indian community where they are all a close knit family. She practices golf every day as it’s a way out from being at home where her mum drinks all the time. She’s never had any golfing lessons, she self-taught herself but anyone who watches her can see she is amazing, and that’s actually what Coach says about her. So much so, he offers her a place on the golf team – but little does she know that someone has to be kicked off in order for her to have a place. As much as being petrified that she’s the only girl on the team, all she wants to do is play golf, and that’s exactly what she does.

I found her to be a strong girl, especially when comments were being passed about her but she held her ground and tried not to let them get to her. She was also confused over liking Ryan but in a way, it seemed to be her destiny to be with him. That’s how I thought about it anyway. Being the only girl on the team especially with her being from a different culture to them, the boys just didn’t know how to act or what to say, but it seemed once they got used to her and began winning they began to see her as a teammate and not the ‘Indian girl’ on a boys golf team. I loved watching her overcome all the obstacles that were placed in her way until she finally found herself, her true self and it genuinely made me happy that everything was coming into place.

Ryan is the popular kid at school. He’s the top golfer on the team and goes to all the parties. When his friend Seth, is kicked off the golf team in favour of Fred, Seth isn’t happy at all, and plans his revenge to get her kicked off. You can instantly see that although Ryan isn’t happy that a girl is on team and replaced Seth, he isn’t happy about being involved in the revenge at all. Throughout the book you see Ryan grow up and become into himself. You can see he’s conflicted about Fred. He’s gone from never seeing her around to seeing her everywhere he goes and he’s confused over his feelings for her. Getting to know her, it’s obvious that he really likes her but people keep messing with his head and getting in the way of them being together properly.

I loved his chapters when Seth was being batshit crazy over Fred and Ryan was there to beat him down – it showed his true feelings for Fred and I just loved him for that. He’s not without his douchery, but he does condone himself and tries to fix everything he’s done wrong. It really does make him think about himself and how he doesn’t want to be like everyone else – at least that is what I got from his character. Whether you feel that too, well, you’ll have to read it and analyse him yourself.

Their journey is not without struggles but throughout their diversions – when they are apart – it seems that neither of them can catch a break. Revenge from Seth was delivered plenty of times, Gwyneth completely got on my nerves with her lying and jealousy and everything that should have been an easy road for Ryan and Fred was just blown up because of the drama caused by people who were happy at all about an ‘Indian chick’ changing everything. But I did like the ending, as I do with many books. Everything seemed to work out perfectly, even if everything wasn’t completely worked out – Seth – but they overcame everything thrown at them, and I was grateful that Liz let them catch a break.

This book is more than just a romance, sporty book – it’s about fighting for your dream, no matter how hard it may be and also overcoming your stereotype – changing people’s perceptions of you. As a Native American, Fred is used to all sorts of comments thrown her way but she tries to be strong and ignore them, never forgetting her roots and never being embarrassed about them. She is proud of where she’s from and who she is. It was great to see a character embracing her culture and never forgetting it. It shows how wrong it is to discriminate against other people when you don’t even know them.

This book is out on the 1st February and I would like to thank NetGalley for providing me with an ARC copy of this book. I’m going to be super cheesy now but it definitely had me ‘Hooked’ right until the end. Make sure to grab your copy when it comes out. As I’ve said, I’m not a fan of golf but added with the drama and romance, the Indian blessings and prayers and you’ve got yourself a great book!

Posted in YA

Reasons I Fell for the Funny Fat Friend – Becca Ann

17157374Synopsis

It’s stupid to fall for your brother’s ex. It’s even worse to enlist another’s help to win the ex over. But Brody is desperate and Hayley, his partner in American Sign Language, is more than willing to lend him a few tips.

She’s the school’s matchmaker,’ and with her bizarre and positive personality, Brody finds her easy to talk to, even about the most awkward situations. Hayley’s tips seem to be working, but as Brody learns more about his matchmaker, he starts finding reasons to spend time with her, and not the girl he thought he was in love with.

But Hayley isn’t ready to fall for anyone. Labeled the “Funny Fat Friend” within her group, her self image makes it impossible for Brody to share his feelings without Hayley shrugging it off as a joke.

Convincing her Brody can, and did, fall for the “Funny Fat Friend” turns out to be harder than simply falling in love.

————————————————————————————————————————————————————

My Review

Brody and Hayley are partners in their American Sign Language class and although they hardly know one another, they seem to get on pretty well. Brody’s brother’s ex-girlfriend is also in the class, and when Hayley lends him a hand in trying to win Quynn over, he wants to spend his time with Hayley- not trying to win Quynn over.

He and Hayley spend a lot of time together, she’s easy to talk to, makes an awkward situation not so awkward and she has the best personality ever…but she isn’t ready to let go and love someone. She’s labelled the FFF “Fat Funny Friend” and she has no confidence in herself at all. Can Brody convince her that he really has no feelings for Quynn and that he wants her?

I loved both Hayley and Brody. They were great characters, with prominent voices that made me feel closer to both of them when they were going through turmoil throughout the story. Their banter and conversations were so funny and it felt exactly like how two friends should act together – they were having fun and slowly learning more about each other and becoming best friends fast – with the added feelings they had for one another down the line.

Hayley hasn’t had much luck on the boy’s side. She’s been labelled the Fat Funny Friend and in the past when she’s thought guys liked her, they have just used her to get closer to her friends. It doesn’t help when your mum wants you to change yourself too, hence having no confidence in her appearance at all. She has a bubbly and bizarre personality that no one can ignore and as a reader, you become engrossed in her personality and I really saw some of myself in Hayley. I think her personality stems from being labelled the FFF and being used but even if I’m wrong, there is no way those guys who used her could have done that, she was a gem and a sweetheart and I would love her to be my best friend and I would totally hook her up! But I’m glad she had Brody, he saw her, for her and liked her, regardless of her appearance. He fell hook, line and sinker for her and getting her to believe took a while, but I could understand why and when you read it, you will to.

Brody – albeit wanted to be with Quynn at the beginning – had me loving him from the start. When he and Hayley began to constantly hang out and when he realized that he didn’t want Quynn anymore and it was Hayley he wanted, ohh how I wanted to fist-pump him. He was there for Hayley through everything she went through and although it was hard for her to open up to him, he waited until she was ready to tell him what was up.  I enjoyed how it was in Brody’s POV. I hardly ever read books where it’s in the guys POV but with this book, I loved it! It was refreshing to see/read how Brody dealt with his feelings for Hayley and her insecurities instead of it being in her POV throughout the book, never understanding Brody’s feelings for her, but his voice shone through and you could tell how much he liked Hayley and how much he wanted her to know that he didn’t care if she was fat, he thought she was the most beautiful girl ever and he just wanted her to believe him and be with him too!

Although at times he bugged me over his dilemmas between Hayley and Quynn. I understand that he wanted to get with Quynn, his brothers ex at the beginning, but the more time he spent with Hayley, the more he wants to spend time with her and he’s all cocked up over both of them, even though Hayley seems to dominantly wins every time. I could really see her hesitations when Brody tries to convince her he really does like her – as she’s been helping him try to get Quynn. I really did want to slap him at times but I suppose, when you’ve been crushing on one person for a while then another comes along and completely steals your thoughts then it’s going to be confusing, I’m just glad he sorted his feelings out and you could see they were genuine.

The ending was super great! He FINALLY manned up – you will see why I say this – and everything worked out perfectly for them. They are the most amazing and funny couple I have read and they definitely deserve to have one another because their chemistry is fantastic, their banter is off the scale and they truly do love one another. AWESOMESAUCE!

If you’re looking for a funny, fluffy and cute story, then Reasons I Fell for the Funny Fat Friend is definitely the one for you.

Posted in Romance

ARC: A Passionate Love Affair with a Total Stranger – Lucy Robinson

16148167Synopsis

A Passionate Love Affair with a Total Stranger by Lucy Robinson, author of The Greatest Love Story of All Time, is a hilariously funny and gorgeously romantic story about falling in love when you least expect it. Charley Lambert has put considerable effort into achieving a perfect life. She has The Job. The Wardrobe. And The Flat. Her womanising, junk food-loving housemate Sam lowers the tone a bit but that aside, things are peachy. Then she breaks her leg in three places, watches her unrequited love propose to someone else and – worst of all – is forced to hand over her job to her nasty deputy while she recovers. Workaholic Charley fears that she will soon go mad. Desperate for something to do, she discovers her talent for helping the lovelorn online. And then William arrives in her inbox. Within hours of his first email, her world starts to change. Helpless, she watches herself fall in love with this man and begins to realise that she’s not who she thought she was. But will she be brave enough to turn her back on her old life – all for a total stranger?

——————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

My Review
To sum up Charley Lambert in one word, it would be ‘Workaholic.’ Whether it’s her job, or her extra-curricular activities, she never stops and hardly ever sleeps, that’s how busy her life is. You can see how much she wants her life to be perfect for her and she seems okay with being so busy she never really has time for anything else. Her diary is completely filled up.

But when she ends up breaking her leg in three places after an accident and has to give up her job for a few months while she heals, added in the fact that the guy she’s had a major crush on for seven years – Her boss John – has just got engaged, she feels her life is crashing down before her and she will go mad having to ‘relax’ and not keep busy.

After matchmaking many of her friends up and reading an article her best friend Hailey gave her about Ghost-writers on dating sites in America, she decides to start her own site up in the UK. Little does she know how much it was going to change her own life.

Oh GOD! I’m so glad I received an ARC copy of this book because sweet Jesus, when it’s out at the end of this month, you all need to go and buy yourself a copy! This is the first book I have read by Lucy Robinson (and her second book) and I LOVED her writing style. It sucked me in and this book is so SO funny, the swearing adds to the magic of the story and the twists and shocks throughout had be turning the pages at high speed making the plot exciting for the reader. I loved that it’s a story about internet dating because I know people who have set up a profile and I know it must be a bit difficult to convey yourself in messages to the person you’re speaking to. Ghost-writing must be such a fun job to do!

As I’ve said, Charley is a workaholic. She never stops but once she’s had her accident, it’s like her whole world has fallen apart. But starting up the dating website, it seems that she has a knack for helping people find their ‘soul mate.’ I don’t want to give away spoilers, but throughout her emails, they seem to make her think about her own life and whether she is satisfied with the way her life is going. She’s work-focused but now she’s completely frazzled over what to do, whether her work is important to her now and her relationship. It is a journey for Charley and one that ends fantastically for her.

I absolutely loved the secondary characters. Sam, Hailey and Granny Helen especially. They all stole my heart and had me laughing at their actions and comments throughout the book. I felt more drawn towards Hailey, but that’s maybe because I see a bit of myself in her, so I definitely liked reading about her and all her swearing! I could picture me and my best friend being exactly like her and Charley. She tells its straight when Charley because a bit obsessed with her dating site and I think everyone has been there, both in Charley and Hailey’s shoes, which made me relate to her. I especially loved all the swearing! Oh gosh, such a potty mouth.

Sam I adored with all my heart! Although a womanizer in some ways, he was especially caring and sweet to Charley when she broke her leg and after, when they began First Date Aid and became business partners. I loved that they had known each other since university and lived together but recently they have things come out, for both of them which neither knew about one another. I loved that! They seemed to bring out something in each other and make them think about their own life. I was completely rooting for them to get together because they actually seemed so right together. It was a journey for these two as well, but one that was well deserved in the end!

Seriously, pre-order this book right now! It will have you laughing, gushing, gasping and shouting at your book over several of the scenes – in a good way, especially near the end. It’s a great chick-lit and I’m so glad I got to read an ARC copy of it! I finished it curled up in bed, watching the snow fall down today and it made me heart go all gooey when it came to the end. I will definitely be reading more books by Lucy Robinson, starting with her first book “The Greatest Love Story of All Time”

Posted in J. Sterling, Romance

MY BIRTHDAY BOOK: Chance Encounters – J. Sterling

13411524Synopsis

Caroline Weber was a normal girl who thought she had her life figured out. After graduating from college in New York, she moved to San Francisco with her boyfriend, Clay. Everything in her life felt perfect. There wasn’t anything she would change…

…until she met Jackson Parks.

Is it possible that a chance meeting with a stranger can make you question EVERYTHING you thought you wanted? Caroline tries to carry on with her life as if nothing has changed…but the truth is, nothing can ever be the same.

Chance Encounters is an emotional love story about trusting and following your heart, even when it’s leading you down a difficult path.

Sometimes other hearts have to break in order to keep yours intact.

—————————————————————————————————————————————————————

My Review

Caroline Weber has been with her boyfriend Clay for many years. They moved from New York to San Francisco together after graduating college. After a tragic accident in New York, Caroline goes back to New York but on the return plane, everything she thought was perfect in her life suddenly changes when a stranger sits in the seat besides her.

His name? Jackson Parks and during the flight, he seems to be making Caroline question everything and the attraction between them is anything but. Once landed in San Fran, Caroline tries her best to continue with her life, but the truth is, everything has changed and she can’t go back to how life was before. It can never be the same.

Caroline did have a good heart, albeit, it was a heart used to doing ‘boring’ things – in the words of Bailey, her best friend. When she met Jax on the plane, she was instantly attracted to him and it was a kind of love/lust at first sight. You could see her inner dilemmas over both Clay and Jackson and she really didn’t want to hurt anyone, especially Clay, but loving two people, someone was bound to have their heart broken and she just didn’t know what to do. I’ve heard this saying and said this saying a few times in my 22 years and its “If you love two men, pick the second one, because if you really loved the first, you wouldn’t have fallen for the second.” And this is totally true to Chance Encounters. If she truly loved Clay with all her heart, she wouldn’t have felt such strong feelings for Jax and she wouldn’t be talking to him every single day and would have told Clay about it, not kept it a secret.

I did, at times, feel so infuriated with Caroline, much because of the things she said at the start of the book about life and then she just contradicts herself and does the complete opposite of what she said she wouldn’t do. In a way, I suppose she never expected anything of this scale to occur and for her to think over what she should do – stay in the comfortable relationship and marry Clay or give up everything and go head first into a relationship with Jackson and find everything she didn’t know she was looking for?

I know the talking to Jax behind Clays back is completely wrong, but would it be considered cheating? It’s a hard thing to determine and I’ll leave it up to you to decide.

Oh Jackson. Jackson, Jackson, Jackson. You fell for an unavailable girl, and by God, you fell for her hard. I loved Jax from the start. He was playful, charismatic and has never loved a woman as much as he loved Caroline. Hell, he’s never loved a woman, especially one who has a boyfriend and he has standards – he would never split up a relationship and be a homewrecker. As much as there was a voice saying he should stay away, there was too much of an electric pull between the two, and they both felt it. It was pretty easy to see why Caroline developed feelings so quickly for Jax, he was the type of guy who would always be there and say the right things. I completely fell for him too and I was rooting for Caroline to make the right decision regarding Jax and pick him, because the things he would say and do in this book would make my heart swell. It was hard to see him love her so much yet be caused pain over Caroline’s actions – although she didn’t mean to.

Bailey, Caroline’s best friend was the greatest friend EVER! She was there for Caroline through thick and thin, trying to help her through her battles with both Jax and Clay. Her advice and support was magical and she never once judged Caroline was her actions. Their friendship is something special and Bailey really did crack me up laughing at times. That is what you want in a great friendship!  Jackson’s best friend, Alex was much the same as Bailey was to Caroline. They were both so loyal to Caroline and Jax and would do anything to try and make them happy. I’m so glad they both had amazing friends to help them through the situation.

And finally Clay. He was such a sweetheart, although he worked late nearly every night, but it never seemed to bother Caroline. He knew something was up when she returned from New York and he just wanted everything to go back to the way it was before she left. He genuinely loved Caroline and would do anything for her. The birthday date he set up was magical and I would love to have that date myself. I could understand his anger towards Caroline when she told him about Jackson. It would hurt and sting like hell to know your girlfriend has been speaking to another guy behind your back and fallen in love but then I think, if he hadn’t worked so late all the time, maybe it wouldn’t have happened? But because Clay was such a nice and lovely guy, in time he was able to forgive Caroline for what she had done and he went to live his own life after her.

It is a beautiful book to read and the way it was written is totally respectful towards what the book is about. I felt the emotions of all the characters and it was easy to fall into becoming attached to each character as they were easy to associate with and care for. It is definitely a page turner and I couldn’t put it down at all, I needed to know what was going to happen.

Give this book a read, it will not disappoint.

Posted in Kaite Kavinsky

Middle Ground – Katie Kacvinsky (Book 2)

12393223Synopsis

For four weeks Maddie has been living in Los Angeles, trying to be good. But no matter how hard she tries, something inside her won’t be sated. She can’t live a life of half-truths and false pretenses. So one night, she says how she really feels.

That’s all it takes. One night. One bad decision, and Maddie is thrown into a detention center where she’s forced to undergo secretive treatment meant to squash her rebellious streak. The powers that be call it rehabilitation. Maddie calls it torture.

Alone, Maddie will not survive. But if she can find something to hold on to – an image of Justin, their love – maybe she can fight. And if she’s really lucky, maybe she’ll even win.

———————————————————————————————————————————————————————

My Review

This is book two in the Awaken series. If you have yet to read Awaken I encourage you to do so. The sequel to the book did not disappoint at all!

Middle Ground picks up where Awaken finishes. Maddie is now living in LA with her brother. If you read Awaken, you will know that Maddie is now a part of the rebels and because of something that happened in the first book, right now she should be in a Detention Centre, but her father, who designed and made the DS (Digital school), used his power to make it look like she was. He sent her to live with her brother and to make sure she didn’t get into anymore trouble. But come on, its Maddie!

While living in LA, Maddie, albeit is happy, also misses her boyfriend Justin who is working at intercepting other kids who are on their way to the Detention centres and inviting them to join their cause. The cause is trying to get rid of the DS for good. They believe that people should have the right to go to school, interact face to face without everything being digitalized. But DS keeps kids safe; there is hardly any crimes and everyone who helps run this programme will do whatever it takes to make sure nothing happens to it.

But when Maddie and her friends go to a virtual nightclub, Maddie decides to test the people there and causes trouble in the club. But this incident is her last because before long, the feds are a-knocking and hauling her to the detention centre for rehabilitation into the DS world. Always being rescued by Justin and their friends, this time there is nothing they can do, and no way to get her out.

What goes on behind closed doors is something that no one will ever see or witness apart from the people inside. It is horrific. Maddie figures out that they are brainwashing the ‘patients’ to make them too scared to face the outside world so they will become dependent on the technology once more, and also Maddie is becoming scared too, her only ‘forbidden’ friend in the center is Gabe, who is a member of staff and has never touched a computer in his life. He helps Maddie through everything but it’s down to Maddie to live through the torment she is suffering and find a way out…her only hope of holding on is the love she has for Justin.

I absolutely fell in love with the second instalment. I have to say that Katie’s writing has definitely gotten stronger (I mean no offence at all to this) and I loved how her style kept me captivated and wanting to keep reading right till the very end. The book is descriptive and it definitely gave me vision of what the detention centre was like and how much horror was behind those walls, hidden away from the outside world. The characters are developed so much that you begin to feel every little emotion they felt, especially Justin and Maddie. It was hard not to fall ever deeper in love with these two. Maddie is utterly besotted with Justin, her love for him is overwhelming, and it’s something that got her through her time in the center.

You could easily see that Justin was in love with Maddie too, and it aggravated me that he didn’t say it back to her, because it was completely obvious. But he would do anything to be with her and get her out of the center and back with him, where she belongs. When they are reunited each time they see each other, I just kept wishing she would run away and go with him, but Maddie was a tough thing and stay at the center, helping her friends to understand and discover exactly what was happening to the kids, along with the help of new recruit, Gabe, who fitted nicely into their little group.

The ending completely set it up for the next book. Albeit, it wasn’t a cliff-hanger but it does leave you wondering what Maddie is going to do. Cannot wait to the last book in this installment!

Again, much the same of my review about Awaken, it truly makes you think about a world where technology completely enters the world, where hardly any face-to-face interactions happen outside the house and you do everything on a computer. Yes, it may be ‘safer’ and crime free but you will always get people wondering about life outside a computer, much like the kids who are in the detention centers and of course, the rebels. Would you like to be confined to a computer world for the rest of your life without really any human contact? I know what my answer would be. A definite HELL NO.

 

Posted in M. Leighton, New Adult

Down To You – M. Leighton

16001893Synopsis

The scorching tale of one girl, two brothers and a love triangle…that’s not. Olivia Townsend is nothing special. She’s just a girl working her way through college so she can return home to help her father run his business. She’s determined not to be the second woman in his life to abandon him, even if it means putting her own life on hold. To Olivia, it’s clear what she must do. Plain and simple. Black and white. But clear becomes complicated when she meets Cash and Nash Davenport. They’re brothers. Twins.

Cash is everything she’s always wanted in a guy. He’s a dangerous, sexy bad boy who wants her in his bed at any cost. He turns her insides to mush and, with just one kiss, makes her forget why he’s no good for her. Nash is everything she’s ever needed in a guy. He’s successful, responsible and intensely passionate. But he’s taken. Very taken, by none other than Marissa, Liv’s rich, beautiful cousin. That doesn’t stop Olivia from melting every time he looks at her, though. With just one touch, he makes her forget why they can never be together.

Black and white turns to shades of gray when Olivia discovers the boys are hiding something, something that should make her run as far and as fast as she can. But it’s too late to run. Olivia’s already involved. And in love. With both of them. Both brothers make her heart tremble. Both brothers set her body on fire. She wants them both. And they want her. How will she ever choose between them?

——————————————————————————————————————————————————————–

My Review

Olivia Townsend is nothing special. She’s just a girl in college trying to get through it so she can return home and help her father out on the farm and run his business for him. Living an hour away, she’s determined not to be the second woman in his life to abandon him so she’s going to get through college and move back home; even if it means putting her own life on hold to be with him.

But then she meets Cash and Nash Davenport. Sexy twins but completely different to each other. Cash is the bad boy and everything she wants in a guy, whereas Nash is successful and everything she needs in a guy. Only problem is he’s taken. But staying away from both of them is proving hard and thus starts a love triangle…that’s not really a triangle. But you’ll have to read to find out what that means.

Olivia is a shy, insecure girl but with the boys, they bring out her feisty and confident side. After Nash and Cash meet her, they are instantly attracted to her. They think she is gorgeous, funny, witty and smart but she doesn’t understand why they think that. She’s instantly attracted to both of them, but she has to decide which one she wants…both of them make her insides crumple every time they spent time together, so I know picking would have been so hard to do.

Cash. Swooon. What can I say about him? Well he’s a club owner, he’s successful, goes after what he wants, a bad boy (which I loveeee), and has tattoos. The first time he sees Olivia, he knows he wants her for himself, it’s just trying to make her see he isn’t like all the other bad boys she’s dated, he’s different – hence the secret he’s been keeping most of his life.

Oh Nash! I’m sorry but Cash stole my heart. Albeit, you were career driven, ambitious, taken by Olivia’s cousin and everything Olivia wanted in a man, but it just wasn’t enough. But where does Nash come in to the secret?

I completely loved Down To You. Everyone had been raving about it for weeks and although I had it on my Kindle, I had yet to read it. But I am so glad I did. I was captivated by the book and it took me about 3ish hours to read; that’s how involved I became. There are three POV’s in the book, from Olivia and the boys, and it worked amazingly well. It gave in insight into their feelings about the situations and about Olivia and how they felt about her. The POVs worked also; because of the twist at the end…well I didn’t see that coming at all.

There was so much chemistry between the boys and Olivia, but I must admit, Cash stole my heart. I felt he and Olivia were much more suited. They were just drawn together no matter how much Olivia didn’t want to be a badboy’s girlfriend again, she just couldn’t stop the attraction to him and Cash was the same. He wanted and needed Olivia for himself and to prove he wasn’t like all the other men she’s dated. He wouldn’t want to crush her heart or cause her pain.

When the secret came out, I wasn’t all that surprised by Olivia’s reaction. There are two parts to this secret, and the first part surprised me. It showed a more sad time of Cash’s past and to be honest, I felt for him having to go through it and do it for his family. It proved that Cash was like Nash. He was educated, he was sensitive and he was head over heels for Olivia. But those long days that Olivia ignored him, you could see he was in so much pain that he needed to get her back. And that’s exactly what he did.

I just can’t wait to Up To You to be released now. The ending was a pure shocker and I definitely need to know what is going to happen to Cash and Olivia! The teasers on M. Leighton’s website are totally not enough, I need more! And that club scene in the teaser. HOLY HELL GIVE ME THE BOOK NOW.  I can’t wait until January!

Posted in Paige Toon, Romance

Lucy In The Sky – Paige Toon

Synopsis

Settling down for a 24-hour flight to Australia, Lucy finds a text message on her phone from a woman claiming to have slept with her boyfriend, James, four times in the past month. Trapped above the Pacific, she questions everything about their relationship, but when she finally calls him, James reassures her that it was only his friend playing a joke. James is gorgeous and successful and Lucy adores him, yet at her best friend Molly’s wedding in Sydney, she finds herself having doubts and is keeping an eye on Molly’s brother-in-law Nathan. Nathan is a happy-go-lucky surfer boy with no prospects, no place to live, and an almost-girlfriend in tow. Suddenly, Lucy finds herself caught between two distant continents and two very different men.

——————————————————————————————————————————————————–

My Review

Paige Toon is another of my favourite author’s and her books do not disappoint, especially this one.

Lucy is off to Australia for her two best friend’s wedding – she hasn’t seen them in years and shes excited to go back to the country she spent most of her childhood living.

Once seated on the plane, she receives a text message from someone claiming to have been sleeping with her boyfriend James for the past month. With nowhere to go, seeing as shes stuck on the plane, the message stays stuck in her mind and she begins to question everything about their relationship.

When she does call James, he reassures her that it was a friend playing a joke and he would get to the bottom of it.

Finally landing in Sydney, she is so excited to see her childhood friends Sam and Molly, whom have obviously grown up during the years they have all been apart.

Lucy used to have the biggest crush on Sam when she was younger, but enter Sam’s younger Nathan – who was a young teenager the last time Lucy saw him and she feels an attraction to him.

Laid-back and always traveling – surfer Nathan and Lucy begin to spend a lot of time together – Him teaching her Surfing and both messing around together, getting drunk, joking around etc.

This causes Lucy to think about her relationship with James, especially as she misses Australia and feels sparks with Nathan.

Of course, her two weeks are up and its back to London, back to her job and back to James. She does stay in contact with Nathan, calling and texting each other and when he gets a temp building job in London, its Lucy who picks him up, shows him around London, much to James’ dismay and jealousy.

I loved Lucy and Nathan together – I was wishing for them to get together and for Lucy to dump James’ ass.

As a typical chick-lit, there is drama and feelings and not knowing what to do with them – which is why I love books like this. The ending – as most of Paige Toon’s books end, had me a bit confused, but I think I know who she ended up with – at least I bloody hope it’s the person I wanted her to get with.