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Would Liked to Have Enjoyed Masquerading More

Masquerading with the Billionaire by Alexia Adams

Contemporary Romance

 

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

 

Overall Rating: 3 (sXe)

 

Quick & Dirty summary: Jewelry designer Remington Wolfe knows that he has a leak in his company and with the biggest design competition coming up, he needs to call in a plumber (so to speak). Kat Smith is one of the best cyber-security experts out there, but she also has her share of secrets. When the chemistry between Remington and Kat heats up, they may catch a traitor, but loose their chance at love in the process.

 

I’m going to write this review a little differently than I’d normally write. Instead of narrative form, here are some quick bullet points about my thoughts on the book.

 

Things I enjoyed:

  1. The overall plot is interesting and I enjoyed the general series of events.
  2. I like the Russian culture/trip to Russia as a unique element to the story.
  3. I enjoy that Remington is a jewelry designer and Kat is a hacker. The switching of expected professions due to gender constructs is fun.

 

Things I did not enjoy:

  1. The writing is difficult to follow due to a lack of transitional phrases and sentences. This made the narrative seem stilted and I had a hard time understanding what was going on and why it was happening. Usually I only mention writing issues if it impedes my understanding of the story and in this case it did.
  2. It was difficult to always know whose point of view I was reading as there were no line breaks or other formatting indicators to help me know when the shift happened. In alternating first person narratives this can be difficult in ebook format, especially ARCs, but again it was to such a degree that I had a difficult time following the story.
  3. Secondary characters were not well developed even though they played an important role in the plot. Margaret-Mary is a good example. I would have enjoyed more time flushing Margaret-Mary and Harry.

 

Is it worth buying? (Kindle $2.99)

I’d pass on buying this novel. If you’re not as much of a stickler about grammar and what-not, you should give it a go, but I’d borrow it from the library or a friend if possible.

 

Something else you might enjoy:

Try His Undercover Princess by Avery Flynn. It’s got a bit of that mystery/suspense feel, but the writing is a bit stronger in my opinion. You can find my review of Flynn’s book here.

Enjoy Her Scottish Mistake

A Perfect Escape Novel by Michele De Winton

Contemporary Romance

Her Scottish Mistake

I read a complimentary copy of this book and voluntarily chose to review it.

her scottish mistake

Overall Rating: 3.25 (sXe)

Quick & Dirty summary: Janie Milan can’t believe she’s finally in Thailand. It’s a littler earlier than she expected, but she’s been waiting her whole life to get off the beet farm and into the world. When she meets Blaine Galloway, Janie’s first impression is that the hot Scotsman is out of her league. But when Blaine, aka Bevan, goes from seemingly 75% interested in her to 100% interested in her, she knows she has the chance of a lifetime to have a romantic fling on an island resort. When things get a little too real for the vacationing couple, their true characters are revealed.

I like Janie and Blaine together. Blaine makes Janie feel good about herself, gives her confidence and seems to delight in her enthusiasm at seeing the world. Conversely, Janie is excited to have a handsome man treat her like she’s special and Blaine does everything in his limited power to protect Janie, which I find sweet. Really, though, Janie is the one who won me over the most. I like who she is by the end of the novel and I think I’d want to be friends with her if she were a real life person.

For me, there are two primary issues with the novel that prevented me from enjoying it more. The first is that Blaine’s perspective felt distant and emotionless. While I see the appeal of Janie as a character, Blaine’s observations of her didn’t quite synch up with my reading of the scenes. He says that she makes him feel like a better version of himself, which is great, but I’m not sure why he feels like that. It didn’t make sense based on the events of the book.

Second, the pacing of the novel is a bit off for me. It lagged from about 40%-60%. At the beginning I really enjoyed the book and got into it. But then it seemed like it was on a loop, without anything really happening. Once I got past the 60/65% mark, it picked back up again and I was glad I stuck with it because I enjoyed the end.

Is it worth buying? (Kindle $2.99)

I don’t necessarily think it’s worth buying, but I do think it’s worth reading, especially if you enjoy dreaming about or traveling to places like Thailand. The descriptions were great and I was happy to see Thailand the destination, since it seems generally overlooked in the romance genre as a place to go.

Something else you might enjoy:

Try Grin and Beard It by Penny Reid. It is a hilarious book and has some similarities with this one. A famous actress meets a country man, they trade some jokes and some smoldering looks. They don’t go to Thailand though. It’s pretty awesome. You can read my review of the book here.

Her Scottish Mistake

by Michele de Winton
Publication Date: April 10, 2017
Genres: Adult, Entangled: Lovestruck, Contemporary, Romance

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SYNOPSIS:

Aspiring blogger Janie Milan is finally on her dream trip to Thailand. But when an unfortunate piña colada incident lands her in the path of a hot Scotsman, Janie finds herself dying to find out what’s under his kilt. Only the frustratingly sexy man isn’t who he’s pretending to be…

After cutting a deal to keep his brother safe, Scottish heartthrob Blaine Galloway is hiding from the press. But his secret identity starts to slip the second he meets small-town blogger, Janie. Now the press is hot on their heels and Blaine’s life is tumbling into a tabloid-sponsored hell. Coincidence? He’s not so sure.

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ABOUT MICHELE DE WINTON

It’s no wonder that Michele’s first romance has a little sparkle of the stage tucked into its pages as she was a performer long before she got adicted to the page. Being a writer was not what she was supposed to be when she ‘grew up’ but then neither was a dancer. Her poor parents. They thought that when she toddled off to law school they’d bred a responsible, useful adult and instead they got a performer and word junkie.
She now writes full time in a studio surrounded by the whisper of wind in the trees and only intermittent interruptions from her young son, husband and hunger pangs. She’s based in New Zealand (land of beaches and hobbits) loves chocolate, yoga, sunshine, her boys and happy endings.

You can get in touch through facebook or twitter or through her website and blog http://www.micheledewinton.com

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Oliver Release Blitz

Title: Oliver
Series: This Is Our Life #3
Author: F.G. Adams
Genre: Contemporary Romance
 Release Date: April 6, 2017

Blurb

Soulmates destined to collide.

Six years after surviving a tragic loss, a photograph of a young woman turns Oliver Bishop’s world upside down. He’s on a mission, tracking her from state to state. Each stop bringing him closer to finding her. Will his search find the ghost vixen, or will the madman stalking her get to her first?

After fourteen years of running from a nightmare, Fallyn Blackwood barely escaped her stalker’s clutches in Washington. When a sexy stranger walks into Ray’s Diner, her entire world shifts on its axis. Scared and determined, she finds herself fighting his protective nature—and her desire. The problem is, she’s not looking to be saved.

He’s come too far to back down. He found her, and he won’t let go. Freedom from the past is within his grasp, and he’ll fight for her love.



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Author Bio

F.G. Adams
writes contemporary and paranormal romance about sexy alpha heroes and
feisty-mouthed heroines. The wonder twins forming F.G. enjoy a healthy
obsession of reading that started at a young age. Their books reflect an avid
imagination that was cultivated by their grandmother who taught them the mind
has no limits and to use both hands when reaching for the stars. Partners in
writing, they both thrive on creating unique storylines for you, the reader to
enjoy.

When not writing, you can find them on a beach with their significant other
enjoying the waves or riding a Harley on a country road somewhere in the USA.


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Hard Ball Review & Giveaway

Hard Ball by Heather Stone

Contemporary Romance/Sports Romance

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

 

Overall Rating: 3.5 (sXe)

Quick & Dirty summary: Cole Callahan is your typical baseball player, emphasis on player. He’s arrogant, hot, and talented, but to Mackenzie, Cole’s childhood friend, he’s just Cole. More than anyone else in the world Makenzie knows that Cole is a good guy, despite his escapades in the bedroom and in the tabloids, so when Cole is injured during the season, she’s willing to do just about anything to help him. Cole is itching to get back on the pitcher’s mound, but he’s distracted by a new attraction to Makenzie. Can friends really become lovers?

For me, this book is a simple friends to lovers story. A happily ever after and some steamy sex scenes make it a reliable romance novel for those who enjoy a somewhat drama-free love story. While there are major events in the novel, it isn’t angsty, if that makes sense.

I would have given the book a higher rating, but the characters fell a little flat for me. While I have no problem with the writing and dialogue, there wasn’t enough there for me to get emotionally invested. That being said, I enjoyed the book. It was fun to read and I was pleased that MaKenzie and Cole were likeable people.

Is it worth buying? (Kindle $0.99 for a limited time)

If you need a quick pick-me-up, feel-good story, then you should read this one.

Something else you might enjoy:

I’m not sure why, but the story makes me think of Alexa Riley, if Alexa Riley had any sports novels. It’s probably because of the epilogue. If you’d like something a little more erotic, but not sports or friends-to-lovers, try Snow & Mistletoe. It’s very sweet!

 

 

 

Title: Hard Ball
Author: Heather Stone
Genre: Adult Contemporary/Sports Romance
Release Date: April 3, 2017

 

Blurb
Arrogant.
Womanizer.
Sexy as hell.
These are all words that have been used to describe my best friend. They might be true, but to me, he’s just Cole Calloway. The one person who has always been there. Now it’s my turn to reciprocate. Coming off an injury, Cole needs me. I won’t let him down.
It’s easy to fall back into old habits with friends, but with Cole something is different. He’s different with me. The touches are gentler. His eyes linger on me. There’s something there that wasn’t before. My heart flutters just a little too much every time I look at him. What’s the worst that could happen if I stopped overthinking and just let go?
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 Author Bio

Midwest born and raised, Heather Stone has lived her life in the clouds. Constantly daydreaming and concocting stories in her head, she finally decided to give writing a shot. Heather is a wife to her price charming and mother of two.

 

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Book Review & $25 Amazon GC Giveaway for Sweet Spot

Sweet Spot by Stella Rhys

Contemporary Romance

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Overall Rating: 3.5 (sXe)

Quick & Dirty summary: Lia is all about work. She’s not afraid to put her nose to the grindstone and for the last two and a half years she’s lived and breathed her new truffle company. Lia’s thrown a little off her game, though, when she meets her landlord’s brother for the first time… naked except for a towel, dripping wet, and locked out of her apartment. It doesn’t help that Lukas is a total jerk. While Lukas knows a beautiful woman when he sees one, he’s a little less sure of how to get Lia to change her opinion of him.

At first I didn’t like this book. Lukas and Lia were weird together. Lukas especially seemed like a total dick bag and I wasn’t sure why I should root for him as the hero. But after a while, much like Lia, my feelings towards Lukas thawed a little. His approach to Lia’s workaholic tendencies is different from other alphas in other books and I found that really refreshing.

I would have given this book a better review except that there are a lot of grammatical mistakes. It wasn’t enough to confuse me, but it was distracting. There are a lot of little mistakes like the wrong word in a sentence, or an extra word in a sentence that shouldn’t have been there at all and it happens pretty consistently throughout the book. So if you’re a stickler for mistakes, prepare yourself before beginning.

But overall, I loved Lia and Lukas, especially by the end of the novel. Lukas has a great backstory that makes him a much more sympathetic character. And Lia’s backstory is pretty much out there from the beginning, but it’s another one that adds some depth to her character. I don’t think there was a point in the novel where I wished for it to be over, so the pacing of the novel is good. And, the sex scenes are super duper hot! I mean smokin’! So you have that to look forward to as well.

Is it worth buying? (Kindle $2.99)

Yes, although it’s free with Kindle Unlimited. My yes isn’t a resounding yes because of the typos in the book, so if you can borrow it, I’d suggest doing that. But it’s a really fun read and worth the three bucks if you can ignore the occasionally error. Right now it’s on sale for $0.99 so get it while you can if the plot seems interesting to you!

Something else you might enjoy:

I’ve recommended this book before, but it’s especially applicable here. Try Wallbanger by Alice Clayton. It’s also about neighbors who get off on the wrong foot.

Title: Sweet Spot
Author: Stella Rhys
Genre: Romantic Comedy/Contemporary Romance
Release Date: March 30, 2017
Blurb

Our first meeting as neighbors was screwed from the start.He was hot. I was naked. And we had no chance in hell at ever being platonic. 

I’ll be the first to admit that I live at extremes. After going ten years locked in what felt like a dysfunctional marriage, I’m now decidedly boy-free. In nearly three years I’ve had no boyfriends, no flings, no dates and no sex. For the sake of my dream career, the sacrifice has been easy.

At least it was.

Until Lukas came along.

He’s rude, gorgeous, arrogant – a stone-carved wall of muscle and distraction. He’s everything I know to avoid but there’s no avoiding your next-door neighbor. Oh yeah. The man now lives three steps from me and to make matters worse, he crashed into my life while I was soaked in the tub. Mortifying to say the least and it went something like this: I ran out exposed. He looked. He laughed.

And then I locked myself out. 

In short, Lukas Hendricks was smirking, swaggering trouble from the start. And me?


I was – for the first time in years – about to be screwed.

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Stella Rhys is an author of contemporary romance and can’t help but write it hot, steamy and borderline filthy (just kidding, it’s flat-out filthy). Writing aside, she lives for coffee, the Yankees and cooking recipes way out of her league. She was born and raised in New York and now lives there with her husband and charmingly entitled fur baby.
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Release Boost for His Lucky Charm

Title: His Lucky Charm
Author: Frankie Love
Genre: Adult Contemporary
Release Date: March 9, 2017

Blurb

“Clover is my pot of gold and I want to be her rainbow.”

People call me The Lucky Irishman.

Things always seem to go my way.
After a night of drinking with my brother, we make a bet. A bet that favors me.
He doesn’t seem to think I can stay with one woman for an entire week.
Just because I never have, doesn’t mean I can’t.
We raise the stakes. If I win, I get the land he owns in the Wicklow Mountains.
And that land is all I’ve ever wanted.

Until Clover walks into my life.

She’s here in Ireland chasing rainbows, trying to turn her luck around.
It doesn’t take long to see that this girl isn’t the end of me—she’s the beginning.
But while I have the luck of the Irish, Clover doesn’t. And getting her to open up to me is no easy task.
When she finds out the real reason I brought her to my place in the woods I know she’s going to run.
I need to find the rainbow she’s chasing before my luck runs out.

Dear Reader,

It’s your lucky day! This Irish mountain man is the complete package. Emphasis on package. This is a filthy-sweet romp in the woods that will have you looking for leprechauns and rainbows. Get ready, baby cakes, you’re about to get shamrocked.
xo, frankie
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Author Bio

Frankie Love writes sexy stories about bad boys and mountain men.

❤Get ready to fall in love … you deserve it!❤
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The Tiny Threads of Marriage

Snapdragon Series by Jami Denise

Contemporary Romance

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Tiny Threads (Book 1)

tiny-threads

Overall Rating: 3.5 (sXe)

Quick & Dirty summary: Jenna and Royal Grainger are the couple no one and everyone thought would be together forever. Having met as teenagers, married before they graduated high school, and together for 20 years, they have the fairy tale romance of high school love. However, lately, Jenna can’t help but feel like her dream come true is disappearing slowly. Royal is distant and moody, unapproachable and putting his work before his family. All Jenna has ever wanted was Royal and she is willing to fight for her family and her marriage, but will Royal fight for her back?

It took a long time for me to decide that I like this book. It wasn’t because the beginning was slow; on the contrary, there is a lot of action throughout this novel. And it wasn’t because the writing was weak; although there are some editing issues, it was nothing major that infringed on my understanding and enjoyment of the storyline.

Instead, the first person narration took away much of the demonstration of characteristics and actions—telling rather than showing. Despite feeling this way, I cried when the climax of the novel happened. Obviously, I was much more invested in the characters and story than I recognized. Part of it is because the struggle to maintain a marriage after years of being together resonates with me. Part of it is because the drama is so intense. But mostly I think it’s because I could honestly feel how much Jenna and Royal love each other. Sure, neither one of them is perfect, but no one is and no marriage is immune to problems. It was wonderful to see the two of them love each other so fiercely and totally.

There are some pretty intense sex scenes in this novel, so be prepared for some married sex. But also be prepared for the reality of married sex life where weeks can go by with nothing going on. I did really appreciate, though, the way physical touch and comfort is depicted as such a vital part of staying connected with a partner. I think it’s a very honest portrayal of marriage and the connection between the emotional and the physical is prominent in this novel.

Is it worth buying? (Kindle $2.99)

If you enjoy dramatic novels with lots of supporting characters and a mature love, then this is a good novel and worth the price. Some people enjoy the moment of falling in love, and some people enjoy the process of fighting for love—if you like the latter rather than the former, then I’d suggest this book.

Something else you might enjoy:

Every Wrong Reason by Rachel Higginson is also about a married couple experiencing difficulties so if that’s a storyline that intrigues you the way it intrigues me, you might enjoy it. You can read my review of the novel here.