Archive | March, 2014

Be With Me Review

27 Mar

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Teresa Hamilton is having a rough year—she’s in love with her big brother’s best friend, but he hasn’t spoken to her since they shared a truly amazing, mind-blowing, change-your-life kiss. She got out of a terrible relationship. And now an injury is threatening to end her dance career for good. It’s time for Plan B – college. And maybe a chance to convince Jase that what they have together is real.

Jase Winstead has a huge secret that he’s not telling anyone. Especially not his best friend’s incredibly beautiful sister. Even though he and Teresa shared the hottest kiss of his life, he knows that his responsibilities must take priority. He certainly doesn’t have time for a relationship. But it doesn’t help that all he can think about kissing the one girl who could ruin everything for him.

As they’re thrown together more and more, Jase and Tess can’t keep denying their feelings for each other. But a familiar danger looms and tragedy strikes. As the campus recovers, the star-crossed couple must decide what they’re willing to risk to be together, and what they’re willing to lose if they’re not…

I read the book because I wanted some more Cam and Avery.

Come on! Don’t tell me I’m the only one! Those two are just so… AMAZING! At least I’m able to admit it… even though I do feel slightly guilty for it. Just slightly. 😀 It’s okay, though, because J. Lynn knows exactly why we read these books. She included a few very cute Cam and Avery moments in here that just melted my heart and one of them just about gave me a heart attack – in a good way. You will never ever ever guess what it was!

But that’s not why we’ve all gathered here today. Nope, we are here to discuss Be With Me, which is Jase and Tess. If I recall correctly, I think Jennifer L. Armentrout actually said that Jase superseded Cam’s spot as her favorite book boyfriend she has ever written about. I was so excited! I couldn’t fathom that there was someone out there that could be HOTTER than Cam. I mean – what?! Impossible right? RIGHT?

Right.

I’m sorry, J. Lynn, I’m calling this one. Jase was hot and absolutely mouth watering and all that stuff, but he doesn’t have a turtle, and he doesn’t bake cookies. Plus, Cam is a bigger alpha male than Jase is, which totally wins brownie points from me.

That is not to say that I didn’t enjoy this book! Nope! I absolutely devoured it!

There is just so much that happens in this book, it’s really hard to tell you why I loved it plot-wise. We really see a growth in Tess’ character, as well as Jase’s. There are a lot of issues they both have to deal with and grow through, and these issues are keeping them both apart. How can you be with someone when, on some days, you can’t even stand being with yourself? This was definitely a deeper book than Wait for You was, but for the purpose of how this book was written, it worked very well! This made both of the books distinct, which I like! Because, guys, there’s nothing worse than reading a book that has a sequel, expecting the sequel to be amazing, and then realizing that it’s basically the same story rewritten. It’s true. I know a few books like that. I’m sure you do, too.

The personality of this book and both of the characters is also very different. This is what makes it very hard to compare this book to Wait for You – because you can’t! It’s like comparing Christmas with your birthday. You get presents on both, but you can’t call one better than the other. They are just too different! But you CAN pick favorites. Just saying.

But I will say this – Jennifer, if you could PLEASE open up a school to teach boys to be as mouth-watering as your characters, I will highly support, stand-by and FUND the project! Because not only do I have Cam in my boy-dreams, now I also have Jase?! This does not bode well for me! I will have a heart attack in my sleep!

Jase is for all you girls who are into country-men. He lives on a farm, which means he rides horses and lifts heavy objects and rides in trucks and all that manly-man stuff that makes him built and tanned. Mmm. Yummy tan. And he’s also very alpha. I said Cam was more alpha, but that doesn’t stop Jase from being completely overbearing and in charge and just… so hot! And when him and Cam face off against each other… I think I swooned a few times. Way too much testosterone in the air! I would have fainted if I were there for real.

He’s the type to see a girl in trouble, swoop her up over his shoulder and take her to his man cave to protect her. He will stand outside your window with a stereo over his head playing your favorite song until you come out. He will go out of his way to get you your favorite cupcakes every day, just to see a smile on your face. He’s basically the kind of guy that makes the real guys in life seem very disappointing, because no matter what they do, they cannot possibly be perfect like Jase is. Buuut – he’s got a secret! And boy, that WAS a secret! I mean, I was so not expecting Jase to… and then he was, so I was like WHAT?! But it’s okay cuz he’s just very *sigh*! Yes, that is me censoring myself. It’s hard! You read the book and try to work around it!

Tess is just infuriatingly awesome! She’s completely bull-headed and clever and just as manipulative as Cam can be. She’s dealing with her own issues, and sometimes makes some stupid choices that provide a lot of entertainment for those of us who enjoy the embarrassment of others. But she’s also very likeable and fun and someone who you would love to hang out with. She is constantly thinking of others, and even though she’s not the strong heroin you want her to be in the beginning, she does get there eventually.

The ending caught me completely off guard! I think that Jennifer Armentrout lulls you into this false sense of security in the book, where you’re seeing a sort of pattern form so you know what to expect next. And then BAM! A whole lot of stuff happens at once, starting with the stuff that goes down with her roommate and then going onwards to the end. The last half of the book was just chaos and beating hearts and me possibly being scared off of living on residence at a college/university EVER. The book took a completely surprising turn and played off it so well! It completely set the first book apart!

This is what redeemed this book for me.

Because, now that I have told you about how much I loved this book, there is a small confession here. I actually did not like it as much as I liked the first book. It was amazing! Totally worth reading and awesome in its own right! But I think I was reading this with the expectation of it being completely like Wait for You, but it wasn’t! It was a different feel and situation and had its own crazy bouts of awesomeness! You cannot possibly compare these two books because they re so distinct, so the only thing to do is to treat them as completely different books that have nothing to do with each other. And Cam – the reason I fell in love with Wait for You – is not Jase!

I think that now that I realized this, if I reread it I would enjoy this book a lot more. Because, honestly, it is one of the better books I have ever read. If I hadn’t read Wait for You first, I would probably think that this book is my favorite EVER! But I did read Wait for You first, and so I’m sorry but… Cam wins.

4.8 Stars! So close to being as awesome as Cam, but not quite there.

Now if you excuse me… I’m gonna reread it. 😀 Cuz even though it’s not as awesome as Cam is… it’s still pretty darn awesome!

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Sharing You Cover Reveal!

26 Mar

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No Regrets Box Set Release Day Launch + GIVEAWAY!

25 Mar

Lauren Blakely’s No Regrets Box Set is live today, and we have all the details for you! There’s a fantastic giveaway, and…A SURPRISE ANNOUNCEMENT from Lauren! Check it all out below and then enter the giveaway!

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<– The Thrill of It Review     

   Every Second With You Review–>

 The No Regrets Box Set is just $.99 RIGHT NOW! But don’t wait!

This price is for a limited time only!

Amazon * Barnes and Noble * iTunes

AmazonNoregretscoverAbout The No Regrets Box Set:

This ebook contains the following books:
• The Thrill of It
• The Start of Us
• Every Second With You

The Thrill of It – A new adult story of Love. Sex. Addiction. Blackmail. And Power…
When Harley and Trey meet again in love addiction recovery, they must confront all their temptations, as well as her damaged, broken past and his dark family secrets, before they face the question — how do you love with no regrets when regret is all you know?

-The Start of Us – A new adult story of First Times. Last Times. Connections. And No Regrets… When Harley first meets Trey, she only wants a tattoo. What she gets is the most intense connection she’s ever had. Trey can’t forget her either and doesn’t want to let her go. How can one night be the start of something when tomorrow it has to end?

– Every Second With You – A new adult story of Sex. Love. Addiction. Heartache. Pain. And Hope.
Harley and Trey face new challenges that will make battling blackmail, sex addiction, and a virgin call girl past look easy…

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Enter the Giveaway Here!

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The Surprise Announcement from Lauren!!!

Surprise! The Caught Up in Love series is continuing! Bryan – as in Kat and Bryan – has a younger sister and she goes to college in Los Angeles. She has something in common with Kat – Jess also is a huge fan of the movies and she’s putting herself through college as a celebrity photographer. I’m so excited to bring you more of these characters and introduce readers to the “west coast” side of the Caught Up in Love cast of characters and friends. Kat & Bryan will both appear in this story and you’ll also get to meet Matthew Harrigan’s brother who lives in LA (you know this if you read Far Too Tempting). Here’s the storyline and the book releases in August.Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000038_00060]

About STARS IN THEIR EYES:

Celebrity photographer-in-training Jess Leighton desperately needs to crash the wedding of the year. Snapping just one pic of the A-list Hollywood couple tying the knot will pay her way through school, but with security tighter than the bride-to-be’s corset, she’ll  need more than her camera and smarts – she’ll need help from her biggest rival, William Harrigan. Hot, motorcycle-riding Will is the last person Jess trusts, but he’s her only ticket in. Good-looking, charming, and
British, he’s a triple threat. And he’s got that sexy accent to boot. Soon, sparks are flying off-screen and in front of the cameras as they devise a plan to sneak into the ceremony. But when Jess’ new celebrity client raises the stakes with a photo shoot of the maid-of-honor, she wonders if she’s in over her head. Blackmail, botox, and the worst Breakfast Club remake in the world? It’s all in a whirlwind week’s work in Hollywood. The audience loves a happy ending, but in a town where everyone’s acting and no one’s playing on the same team, can Jess find her own ever after in time?

Stars in Their Eyes Jacket

**STARS IN THEIR EYES is part of the New York Times & USA Today Bestselling CAUGHT UP IN LOVE series. It follows the sister of the hero in Caught Up In Us and can be read as a standalone, though you will likely enjoy the other books in the series.**

Cover design by Helen Williams/All Booked Out

Pre-Order the Title at iTunes right now and add it to your Goodreads TBR!

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LaurenBlakelybluedressheadshotAbout Lauren Blakely:

Lauren Blakely writes sexy contemporary romance novels with heat, heart, and humor, and her books have appeared on the New York Times, USA Today, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and iBooks bestseller lists. Like the heroine in FAR TOO TEMPTING, she thinks life should be filled with family, laughter, and the kind of love that love songs promise. Lauren lives in California with her husband, children, and dogs. Her novels include Caught Up In UsPretending He’s MinePlaying With Her Heart, and Trophy Husband. She also writes for young adults under the name Daisy Whitney.

Links:

Website

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THE THRILL OF IT Goodreads

THE START OF US Goodreads

EVERY SECOND WITH YOU Goodreads

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Divergent Review

24 Mar

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In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue–Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is–she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are–and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she’s chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she’s kept hidden from everyone because she’s been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, Tris also learns that her secret might help her save the ones she loves . . . or it might destroy her.

Holy bad boy! Veronica Roth, may I just ask, what do you think you are doing?! You can’t just waltz into my life, give me the most AMAZING storyline EVER, and expect me to REVIEW it! Well, actually, you don’t expect me to review it. I’m just going to do it cuz it’s what I do. But I don’t think I can formulate anything into words right now.

I know, I know. It was published in, like, 2011. I am most definitely that person that has a mountain of books from 6 years ago that I haven’t gotten to. It’s a crime. But for now, I figured that since the movie was about to come out, I’d better get on it. Maybe read the book, watch the movie, to a compare-and-contrast blog-type thing.

But I was NOT expecting this book to be so… so… captivating! And real! I know people have heard this, but I’m talking… BEYOND Hunger Games! Now don’t shoot me, I am very very picky with my books. I probably only have three favorite books/series out of the thousands that I have read, Hunger Games being one of them. But guys. Seriously, just for a moment, imagine a book that is better than Hunger Games. I know. You can’t. Which is why if you haven’t read this book yet, you have not lived.

For the most part, the very beginning of this book is slightly confusing. We meet Beatrice, a girl from the Abnegation faction, who struggles living with her faction’s primary value – selflessness. And when I say selflessness, I don’t just mean giving food to the hungry, or volunteering to help do a chore no one usually wants to do in order to be helpful and selfless. Oh, no. By selfless, I mean living a life where you try to forget your own existence, and focus your whole life into being completely and utterly selfless in every way. You don’t look at yourself in the mirror, or wear your hair/clothes a different way from anyone else in your faction. If you’re starving but someone asks you for food, your first instinct should be to give the last piece of bread to them. If you’re caught running, it is punishable because you’re doing it for fun, which is focusing on yourself, which isn’t selfless. Yes! Seriously! This is intense, folks! These people don’t kid around!

Anyway, the beginning is all about getting the reader acquainted with all the personalities of the five factions. It’s a little hard to follow, because the factions have such unique names. Honestly, I didn’t know what the words meant until I read this book. I mean – Candor? Erudite? The only one I really knew was Dauntless! Maybe I should open a dictionary up more often. I don’t know if it’s just me. But once you get the hang of what these factions are all about, the rest of the story is intense!

I wouldn’t be able to survive in this world, guys. I think it’s just way too intense for me. I wouldn’t be able to completely change the way my brain has been hardwired in, like, 2 weeks!

Once you have reached age 16, you get to do an aptitude test to measure which faction you would belong to. The problem is, choosing a faction different from your own COMPLETELY alienates you from your own faction. You never get to see your family again, or practice your old values and routines. Our brave heroin, Beatrice… happens to choose Dauntless.

Hold up, folks! A selfless girl choosing dauntless over her own faction? What? Unheard of! Completely scandalous!

And on top of that, she now has to go through the Dauntless Initiation. If she doesn’t get into the top 10 with her scoring, she will become factionless. Which is equivalent to becoming homeless. Problem is, she is fighting for her scores against kids that have been in Dauntless their whole life!

AND she has a secret! Because something went wrong when she took her aptitude test.

DUN DUN DUUUN!

Anyway, it’s just so intense! Reading the whole initiation process is just bewildering and exhilarating! I loved the ideas and the issues that go on within this book. And not only that, I love the struggles that Beatrice faces throughout the book. They make her so real and human, that you can’t help but be drawn into the story and begin believing in this impossible world.

And guys. Guys! Four is the hottest fighter-guy EVER! Basically, there’s always a love interest. We all expect it. But who can expect him to be so… kick-*ss!?

“Four flips the gun in this hand, presses the barrel to Peter’s forehead, and clicks a bullet into place. Peter freezes with his lips parted, the yawn dead in his mouth. “Wake. Up,” Four snaps. “You are holding a loaded gun, you idiot. Act like it.”

Come on! I was trying so hard not to SQUEAL every single time they mentioned him. He’s absolutely bad-boy meets calculating dare-devil extraordinaire! One look and you will absolutely do whatever he says. And just to give you guys a little more incentive to read this book, guess who plays Four in the movie?

Guess! Guess! Guess!

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THEO JAMES.

AHH!!

Oh. My. God.

If you guys haven’t seen the trailer – I can’t. I just can’t! He’s just SO HOT! I’m seriously thinking that he is WAY too hot to be allowed on screen for anyone under 18. No. Just… *sigh* Look at the muscle bulging out of his arm. Just look at it!

Besides that, the writing is amazing! It’s so clear, smart, and detailed, and very well researched. The plot flows smoothly and explains everything very well. It’s a very fast read once you get into it, which is surprising because the story has so much information and detail and stuff crammed into it. It’s a whole new world, where everything as we know it doesn’t exist. And even though this book is, like, 487 pages long, you get through it in a day! Literally! I just sat down, expecting to read it for a few hours at most. Thought that maybe it would take me a week to finish the whole thing – no big deal.

No.

ONE. DAY.

It was so good that I couldn’t even put it down! It was like air! I couldn’t survive without it!

And the situations that go on in there, man! Every page there’s something there that completely gets you off guard and you just don’t know what to do so you’re forced to sit there and FREAK OUT! But you keep reading, anyway, because you’re such a masochist, and the next thing you know you’re crying in a corner and asking what you ever did to deserve going through such emotional turmoil.

My favorite quote from the book was near the end:

“Human beings as a whole cannot be good for long before the bad creeps back in and poisons us again.”

I feel like this is true. This book is depicting a world that is supposedly Utopian. Everything should be perfect now that society is organized the best way it can be, right? But it’s not true. Even in this book, you realize that politics and human malice are two things that will never go away, will never be clean. Which means that there will always be bad out there.

And the ending! Oh, God. GUYS! BRING TISSUES! AND HITTING STICKS! AND STRESS BALLS! Whatever it takes!! Because I GUARANTEE that anyone with a soul will just… explode from its sheer epicness.

See! I can’t even formulate coherent thought it was so good! This whole review is just me rambling and it’s – oooh!! I just gotta watch the movie now. I have to. And read the next book.

Yes.

I can’t tell you how many stars it got – it broke the star scale. I need to buy a new one now because mine is just… EXPLODED!

But seriously, though, it’s beyond 5 stars. It’s just… infinity. Go. Read it. Read it now! Don’t watch the movie first – READ IT!

 

 

 

Boomerang Cover Reveal!

19 Mar

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On-sale 7/15/14; ISBN: 9780062331069;William Morrow Paperbacks; Pages: 304; $13.99

Seconds Before Sunrise ARC Review!

7 Mar

Seconds Before Sunrise

Two nightmares. One memory.

“Chaos within destiny. It was the definition of our love.”

Eric has weeks before his final battle when he’s in an accident. Forced to face his human side, he knows he can’t survive if he fights alone. But he doesn’t want to surrender, even if he becomes the sacrifice for war.

Jessica’s memory isn’t the only thing she’s lost. Her desire to find her parents is gone and so is her confidence. But when fate leaves nightmares behind, she decides to find the boy she sees in them, even if it risks her sanity.

** Review Copy kindly provided for honest review by author**

  Minutes Before Sunset Review! –>

Shannon A. Thompson has done it again!

I have to admit, the reason it took me a little longer that I thought it would to release this review is because I had to reread the first book (Minutes Before Sunset) before I started reading this book.  I wanted the story fresh in my mind. But no worries, kiddies! Here it is!

Shannon A. Thompson was very kind to ask me to review the second installment of The Timely Death Trilogy, and I was more than happy to pounce on the opportunity.

This book was a lot better than the first one, in my opinion (and the first book was amazing to begin with, so this says a lot!). You can definitely see the progression the author has taken with her writing, and with the maturity came a better story that anyone would even hope for!

What I love about this series is that it is so outside-the-box. The concepts are fresh and inspiring, connecting with the reader smoothly and allowing for a new perspective of magic, life, and archetypes. I was taken away by this new world Shannon A. Thomson created, and even when I put the book down, this world haunted my thoughts. It was addicting and ironic, haunting and mystical, hilarious and sophisticated. I cannot praise this author more for providing an unfamiliar perspective to YA fiction, and exploring new ideas that are clearly distinct and unique to her personality. The story each author writes, I feel, is a reflection of the type of person they are in their head, and clearly Thompson is a rare gift to the YA fiction writing community.

Thomson found a wonderful balance between Eric and Jessica’s points of view in the story, and integrated the two worlds beautifully in the end. Every time their worlds collided, my heart skipped and I couldn’t read through it fast enough. These two characters were very addictive on their own, and when they were together they were wildfire, hot and uncontrollable. Their worlds didn’t just collide, they clashed into each other. But there were also the soft spots that curled your toes and ended too soon. In human speech: the sexual tension was intense! Just the way I like it, of course. There’s a never-ending need for writers now to just get their characters together. There’s no need, of course, because everything that’s good is worth waiting for, a secret that Thompson is clearly familiar with.

I also liked that the romance wasn’t the controlling factor of the story. The story was the meal, and the romance was one of the few spices sprinkled on top to give it a kick, which is the way it should be. I have great respect for an author who is able to let their characters be individuals, and not let their romantic-interests dictate how they act, what they do, who they are, etc. When two individual characters with distinct personalities apart from their love-interest are pulled together, the sparks fly so much more intensely, which is quite a beautiful sight, if you can imagine.

As for the story – intense! Like, holy smokes, I honestly couldn’t guess  what would happen at any point in the story. It was all a complete mystery, which is what kept me reading. It was nice to read a book where I couldn’t guess the outcome at any point. Even the ending – I did not see that coming! And now, I honestly cannot wait to get my hands on the third installment! I want to see how the story progresses, what happens with the Dark and the Light, how the situation between Eric and Jessica plays out in the third book. I have so many questions!

Oh, and you will definitely never guess what’s in that black box that Eric’s father gives him. I honestly did not see that coming at all. But I’m so happy it happened! Epp!

Overall, I was thoroughly impressed with this story. The first book earned my dedication to the series, this book earned my admiration for the story. Congratulations, Shannon A. Thompson! This book is entirely too unique to not be a hit with the readers!

4.5 stars!

Release Date: March 27, 2014!

Buy it here: http://www.amazon.com/Seconds-Before-Sunrise-Shannon-Thompson/dp/1940820030/

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