Thursday, January 30, 2014

Wallbanger by Alice Clayton

"The first night after Caroline moves into her fantastic new San Francisco apartment, she realizes she's gaining an intimate knowledge of her new neighbor's nocturnal adventures. Thanks to paper-thin walls and the guy's athletic prowess, she can hear not just his bed banging against the wall but the ecstatic response of what seems (as loud night after loud night goes by) like an endless parade of women. And since Caroline is currently on a self-imposed dating hiatus, and her neighbor is clearly lethally attractive to women, she finds her fantasies keep her awake even longer than the noise. So when the wallbanging threatens to literally bounce her out of bed, Caroline, clad in sexual frustration and a pink baby-doll nightie, confronts Simon Parker, her heard-but-never-seen neighbor. The tension between them is as thick as the walls are thin, and the results just as mixed. Suddenly, Caroline is finding she may have discovered a whole new definition of neighborly...

In a delicious mix of silly and steamy, Alice Clayton dishes out a hot and hilarious tale of exasperation at first sight..." (Description from

As it seems to be, when a new book goes through cataloging and processing at the library and the ladies notice that it might be a "sexy" book, they tend to place a hold on it for me or suggest I place a hold on it myself. The former happened with Wallbanger. I was in work and checked my box to discover I had a hold on it. The cover seemed interesting enough along with a concept. Who hasn't had noisy neighbors in the past? I lived in a building from the 1920's. We could hear everything. So, this book had some appeal to pick it up and read.

And sticking with my "No bad book reviews" because honestly there's too many books to read to spend my time on bad bear with me for a few sentences. When I first started reading it, I couldn't get into Caroline's voice. She was talking to her cat and her O (you'll know what I mean when you read). While interesting and kinda funny, I couldn't get it to it. The cat Clive is what kept me reading. At about chapter 4 I started to understand and like Caroline's voice and really enjoyed the book. So much so, I might have sneaked off to read while my husband and daughter practiced violin. Shhh, don't tell. Ha. Ha.

Now, saying that there was a ton of things I liked about this book. I liked the normal, healthy relationships Caroline had with her friends. But I also liked how she was confident in herself and being alone. How many books have we read that is all, "Why me? Why am I so alone." It was enjoyable reading a character who was her own person and then watching her relationship develop with the Wallbanger. It was also nice seeing a woman who doesn't want the picket fence and being OK with that. Oh, and her descriptions of Wallbanger's activities? Laugh out loud funny.

What I also liked about the book was how Simon (Wallbanger) and Caroline's relationship developed naturally. They didn't meet and fall in love right away. We got to see them develop a friendship to relationship. It was great seeing character's in a book "take things slow" and discover each other. So, some sexy times at the end of the book but really, nothing like the cover would imply.

Finally, the last page and half where from Clive's POV. LOVED that and how it ended. The Feeder and Tall One. Just great descriptions from how a cat might think. I also discovered that this book is going to be a series with book two following Simon and Caroline. I'm excited to see what happens next!



      Wallbanger (Cocktail, #1)



Monday, January 27, 2014

Independent Study by Joelle Charbonneau

"In the series debut The Testing, sixteen-year-old Cia Vale was chosen by the United Commonwealth government as one of the best and brightest graduates of all the colonies . . . a promising leader in the effort to revitalize postwar civilization. In Independent Study, Cia is a freshman at the University in Tosu City with her hometown sweetheart, Tomas—and though the government has tried to erase her memory of the brutal horrors of The Testing, Cia remembers. Her attempts to expose the ugly truth behind the government’s murderous programs put her—and her loved ones—in a world of danger. But the future of the Commonwealth depends on her." (Description from

I first picked up The Testing after the book buyer of our local library recommended it to me since I was such a fan of the Hunger Games. While these kids aren't picked from a bowl of names and sent to a battle of death in the middle of no-where, there is a similar setup to the books. The world as we know it has ended and the society they now live in after is what they call the 7 wars. These aren't your typical wars. First was the usual, bombs and mad men destroying everything around them. But then the earth starts fighting back and you get the rest of the wars that were raged on human society. The story is crazy fast paced and filled with non-stop action. Life and death are in a constant balance. There's a little love story in there as well and at the end, memories are wiped.

So, that was the Testing. This review is on Independent Study, the second in the series. While the book did feel like a middle book. I know that's a pretty general statement to make. It's like the hump in the week. You get more back story and the story is pushed further to set up the final in the series. Sometimes, I feel publishers make it a three book series for no reason when it could have been just two. And that was my feeling for pretty much 70% of this book. I think my thinking for the first part was, "Man, can't you give Cia just a little break AND we need more Tomas!" Then the last 30% happened and I was like, " you didn't!"

What I really loved about the book was Cia's effort to work with others and her general smarts. That trust of her own instincts and to keep her values in mind when making decisions. In YA and even Fiction, you don't see enough female characters trusting their natural instinct enough. I loved how Cia did and it was almost always right. At one point she thinks, "I was raised to treasure life." That thinking is reflected throughout the book and you could really feel her values shine through with that.

The ending was not what I expected at all. It was a from left field moment. I'm very interested to see how they move forward what happened in the end with the third book. So as I say from other reviews, don't skip ahead to the last 20% of the book. You absolutely don't want to ruin the curve ball we're sent!

Finally, I did feel like needed I needed a glossary of who's who from The Testing. So, I would recommend re-reading book one before diving into Independent Study. If you haven't read The Testing, it's a must to read book one first.

I would recommend this book to those who love a good YA and the world has ended and started anew story. I would hate to compare it to the Hunger Games but if you were a fan of that book, you'll most likely like The Testing as well.

This is a I would give to my little girl when she gets older to say, "see how you can be smart, pretty, and awesome all at the same time." And of course followed with, "science and math are super cool. Life saving too by this books reference."

Make sure to stop by your local library to get your copy of The Testing and Independent Study. Both books are available at the usual stops and independent bookstores as well.

Happy Reading!



      Independent Study (The Testing, #2)



Sunday, January 26, 2014

Rule by Jay Crownover

"Opposites in every way . . . except the one that matters

Shaw Landon loved Rule Archer from the moment she laid eyes on him. Rule is everything a straight-A pre-med student like Shaw shouldn’t want—and the only person she’s never tried to please. She isn’t afraid of his scary piercings and tattoos or his wild attitude. Though she knows that Rule is wrong for her, her heart just won’t listen.

To a rebel like Rule Archer, Shaw Landon is a stuck-up, perfect princess—and his dead twin brother’s girl. She lives by other people’s rules; he makes his own. He doesn’t have time for a good girl like Shaw—even if she’s the only one who can see the person he truly is.

But a short skirt, too many birthday cocktails, and spilled secrets lead to a night neither can forget. Now, Shaw and Rule have to figure out how a girl like her and a guy like him are supposed to be together without destroying their love . . . or each other." (Description from

When friends ask about what book to read next and I know that they love their bad boy romances, I recommend this by saying, "Hot bad boy with tattoos and interesting piercings." But the story goes farther than the bad boy, tattoo guy becoming reformed for smart girl.

The heart of this story is a family broken in so many different ways. From loss, from hurt, from lies and Shaw is the glue that holds them together. When she makes a stand for Rule, you see how they fall apart and how they are slowly put back together. It's also a love story, a beautiful, twisted one that was enjoyable to read and watch grow, mistakes and all. When Rule did get his act together it was amazing to watch how protective he was of Shaw and what he was willing to do for her.

I found Jay Crownover on Amazon when she was an Indie author and before the NY Best Seller happened. I have loved reading Crownover the last three stories that she has written about her Marked Men. There's no formula to it that you sometimes find in books. Love meet, gets together fights and then ends up together. Yes, the books offer the HEA that I want at the end of the story but from start to finish, each story is of its own. I also love being able to read and see more of the characters I have become invested in. 

Rule is the first book in the Marked Men series. Jet is next which features Ayden (Shaw's friend) and Jet (Rule's friend. Then Rome (Rule's brother) is the third book which I'm currently reading and LOVING! The fourth book will be about Nash....can't wait for that one. I plan to review Rome once I'm done reading it!

Our library has all three books so make sure to check your local library for a copy. You can also find Crownover through Amazon, B&N, and read more about her and her books on

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

What's on My Reading Shelf

With a sick little girl at home, it seems like my shelf is piling up. Here’s what's waiting for me:
    • The Wicked Wallflower by Maya Rodale
    • The Art of Seducing a Naked Werewolf by Molly Harper
    • This Man by Jodi Ellen Malpas
    • Independent Study by Joelle Charbonneau 
    • QB1 by Mike Lupica (Junior Fiction)
    • Erased by Jennifer Rush
    • Rome by Jay Crownover
    All books are from our local library.

    I’m reading Independent Study but had to put it down. It was one of those books that I could have sat on the couch and not done anything else until I finished it. Cold season too priority over it so I reread other less addicting books. I hope to finish this one soon!

    Upcoming reviews will be on Consumed" by Emily Snow and "Rule" by Jay Crownover.

    If you see a book on my to read shelf and then no review a few things might have happened.
    1. I might have decided to read it. I know I have to be in a certain mood for different books.
    2. Another book I was excited about became available at the library and all other books were place hold to read which will then mean...
    3. The book was due back to the library  and I'm back on hold for it.
    4. Sometimes not matter what, I can't get into a book or just don't like it. However, I don't want to use this space to complain about my disappointment in a book. Where's the fun in that?

    Happy reading!

    Tuesday, January 21, 2014

    Real by Katy Evans

    "A fallen boxer.
    A woman with a broken dream.
    A competition…

    He even makes me forget my name. One night was all it took, and I forgot everything and anything except the sexy fighter in the ring who sets my mind ablaze and my body on fire with wanting…

    Remington Tate is the strongest, most confusing man I’ve ever met in my life.

    He’s the star of the dangerous underground fighting circuit, and I’m drawn to him as I’ve never been drawn to anything in my life. I forget who I am, what I want, with just one look from him. When he’s near, I need to remind myself that I am strong–but he is stronger. And now it’s my job to keep his body working like a perfect machine, his taut muscles primed and ready to break the bones of his next opponents . . .

    But the one he’s most threatening to, now, is me.

    I want him. I want him without fear. Without reservations.

    If only I knew for sure what it is that he wants from me?" (Description from

    Honestly, who doesn't like a good book about a sexy boxer? Ok, maybe a few of you. Even so, I would still give this book a try. When I first rated it on, all I could say was, "WOW!" The book blew me away that much.

    Yes the book has sexy and a troubled boxer and a bad guys you just want to punch yourself. In trying to keep this spoiler free I'll say that the book also gives a deeper look into a condition people rarely talk about.  I loved how it was dealt with in and talked about. You won't find out about this until mid-way through the book so keep in mind there's a reason for everything up till that point.

    The tension between Brooke and Remy is amazing as well. How they communicate through music and express themselves is one of the things I truly loved about the couple. The music references were amazing and brought me back to my college days.

    I would file this book under New Adult with a side of the erotic fiction. I know a few friends would choose this book based on the "abs" cover. I would also say there is a great story to this book and not just sexy times.

    Real is the first book in a three book series with the third one told from Remy's POV. Make sure to check your local library to see if they have a copy to read!

    Saturday, January 18, 2014

    New Adult Book Group Time

    Our local library is hosting a New Adult Book Group on the first Tuesday of each month and I get to lead the group. I'm very excited about this new book group. While I like fiction and will sometimes even read the 'serious' fiction, I enjoy reading NA most (which has has a 'serious' section to it).

    For our first book, we're reading Easy by Tammara Webber. I view Webber as one of the first to really breakout of the self-publishing and make a mark for NA books. I felt this was the best one to start with for our first group.

    Here's a picture of the book:
    "Rescued by a stranger.
    Haunted by a secret
    Sometimes, love isn’t easy…

    He watched her, but never knew her. Until thanks to a chance encounter, he became her savior…

    The attraction between them was undeniable. Yet the past he’d worked so hard to overcome, and the future she’d put so much faith in, threatened to tear them apart.

    Only together could they fight the pain and guilt, face the truth—and find the unexpected power of love.

    A groundbreaking novel in the New Adult genre, Easy faces one girl's struggle to regain the trust she's lost, find the inner strength to fight back against an attacker, and accept the peace she finds in the arms of a secretive boy." (Description from

    Honestly, Easy, is one of those books that everyone should read. I have a Kindle copy and then bought a hard copy to keep for when my own daughter is old enough. I even plan to place post-it's in it to make certain points. Like....

    1. If any boys tried what Buck tries. Don't be afraid. Go to the police right away!

    2. If a friend tells you something like this has happened, help them get help. Let them know it's not their fault.

    3. Sign up for self defense classes. No matter what, I feel every young girl going off to high school and college should have the basic knowledge on how to defend herself.

    4. No means no. Even when you are no longer a virgin.

    5. That whole, "I''m so frustrated I can't make-out any longer unless we go further" is BS. Totally BS! Look to how Lucas handles this. That's how it should be done.

    6. Don't go borrowing trouble by Googling a person. Good lord! Let them tell you.

    7. Be your own person inside and outside of the relationship.

    8. Bass playing is totally fine with me (I play and hope my kid plays one day).

    9. Girl power means sticking together. Girls before bros and all that!

    10. Breakup or not, don't let it stop you from living your life. Not from going to class or otherwise. See number 7 for reference. 

    What does the above list have to do with the story? A lot of the story revolves on the scene set in the first few pages. It takes time for it to unfold and for Jacqueline to talk with her roommate and even Lucas. But from that first scene, everything feels true to how one might handle themselves. Lucas is what one would call a "book" boyfriends. Tattoo bad boy with a heart of gold for Jacqueline. Oh and he's an artist.

    Check your local library for a copy of this great book. It's also available at most books stores and even places like Target.




    Friday, January 17, 2014

    From the Reading Vault

    Beautiful Bastard
    by Christina Lauren

    "An ambitious intern. A perfectionist executive. And a whole lot of name calling.

    Whip-smart, hardworking, and on her way to an MBA, Chloe Mills has only one problem: her boss, Bennett Ryan. He's exacting, blunt, inconsiderate--and completely irresistible. A Beautiful Bastard.

    Bennett has returned to Chicago from France to take a vital role in his family's massive media business. He never expected that the assistant who'd been helping him from abroad was the gorgeous, innocently provocative--completely infuriating--creature he now has to see every day. Despite the rumors, he's never been one for a workplace hookup. But Chloe's so tempting he's willing to bend the rules--or outright smash them--if it means he can have her. All over the office.

    As their appetites for one another increase to a breaking point, Bennett and Chloe must decide exactly what they're willing to lose in order to win each other.

    Originally only available online as The Office by tby789--and garnering over 2 million reads on fanfiction sites--Beautiful Bastard has been extensively updated for re-release." (Description from

    First a warning, this is an
    --> extremely HOT and sexy book. Not 50 Shades sexy but close. That being said, this was one of my favorite books of 2013.  I first discovered this on with a "if you like this, try that" offer. I clicked the preview and feel in LOVE with the book almost immediately. After seeing the love it was getting online from Goodreads and Amazon I went to work and begged the book buyer to carry the series. Lots of begging and groveling might have happened but it was worth it. The book series has not been on our shelves since we got them.

    Chloe is one of the strongest female characters I've read in a long time. She is fierce. So fierce she's the only one that can handle Bennett.  Bennett is fierce in his own way as well. At first their oil and vinegar and slowly discover they have more in common that they first thought. 

    The book offers dual POVs (point of views) which gives you a look into what each is thinking. They both give you laugh out loud moments. I'm afraid to say more without giving the whole thing away.

    In the series you have three books and three novellas. First it's Chloe and Bennett and then you see their friends find love in following books. Unlike some books where there is a formula and it's the same way to fall in love each time, that's not true here. Each couple is unique to each other and the situations they face. 

    So, if you like sexy books with strong characters, I would recommend this one without hesitation. Give it a try, even if you want to whisper the title. Which I have been known to do. I do own this series but check with your local library to see if they have a copy you can reserve. I say reserve because it still seems to be a popular one that doesn't sit on the shelf long.

          Beautiful Bastard (Beautiful Bastard, #1)



    Thursday, January 16, 2014

    Brazen (Otherworld Stories #13.1)

    by Kelley Armstrong (Goodreads Author), Angilram (Illustrator)

    "Nick Sorrentino knows everyone in the supernatural world considers him the Pack’s playboy, the pretty but not very useful werewolf whose only reputation involves his amorous exploits.

    Usually, Nick couldn’t care less what anyone outside the Pack thinks of him. But when it affects his hunt for Malcolm Danvers, a psychotic bogeyman from the Pack’s past, it matters.

    Necessity forces Nick to team up with mercenary half-demon Vanessa Callas to run Malcolm to ground in Detroit. Together, they discover Malcolm is more deadly than ever. And he wants to play.

    It’s time for Nick to prove he’s not just a lover." (Description from

    Armstrong has always been on of my favorite author's. This is a paranormal/fantasy series that first features werewolves and then moves to witches, demons, and all sorts of other interesting characters. Armstrong has also done an amazing job of providing little stories and back stories of her favorite characters. The final book in the series came out in 2012, simply titled Thirteen.

    So, whenever she writes a new short story to go along with the 13 books, fans go crazy. Including myself. I might have been in the backroom at the library, watching the Brazen book like a hawk, waiting for it to go through processing. Maybe. Ha. Ha.

    This new story features Nick, werewolf omega of the North America pack. We learn about Nick and his father through all of the books and short stories. He's a ladies man, has no real interest in leading the pack, and loves his wolf pack 100%. What we see in this book is a maturing of Nick. He's no longer coasting along and enjoying wine and women. He's now responsible for two new pack members and looking for what can be considered the pack's boogieman.

    I loved seeing the transformed Nick. Vanessa was great as well but I haven't made it past books five yet so I really don't have much knowledge of her to know if she was in the series before or is new. I do like that she's a strong woman and willing to admit when she makes a mistake.

    I would recommend this book for Armstrong fans. If you are interested in paranormal/fantasy stories with some 'sexy' then I would suggest giving this series a try. Not all stories are based on the werewolf pack but you get to see them every now and then.

    The first book in this wonderful series is called Bitten by Kelley Armstrong. I would recommend starting there to understand all of the characters mentioned in this book.



          Brazen (Otherworld Stories #13.1)



    Wednesday, January 15, 2014

    The Disney Princess Cookbook

    by Walt Disney Company, Tony Fejeran (Design)

    "From Rapunzel's Frying Pan Eggs to Ariel's Sea Turtle Cupcakes, this beautiful cookbook is filled with delicious recipes inspired by the Princesses' many adventures. With simple step-by-step instructions, mouth-watering photos of each dish, and helpful tips from the Princesses themselves, this cookbook makes it easy to whip up some kitchen magic." (Description from

    I seem to have a love/hate relationship with children's cookbooks. I love the idea and concept of them but find that I hate the recipes. Mostly, because they're dull or not written correctly, missing items for the end product to turn out right. So as another library staff person pointed out this new book, because it had princesses on it, I was a little nervous. Disney had a name to live up to, so, truly their cookbook couldn't be bad. I kept chanting this mantra to myself while checking it out secretly hoping I wasn't wrong.

    Thank goodness I wasn't wrong. The cookbook was amazing. Great recipes that actually worked, full illustrations of the princesses for my daughter to look over, and recipes we were all excited to try.

    I wish we had more time to try all of the recipes but we didn't. I can recommend the pancake recipee (my husband loved this one) and the chicken noodle soup. We had super success with both.

    If you have a little princess at home or even if you want to try new recipes, I would recommend checking your local library for this cookbook. We plan on checking it out again to try making the french bread and baked french toast!



          The Disney Princess Cookbook



    Monday, January 13, 2014

    Perfect Lies by Kiersten White

    "The sisters have been manipulated and controlled by the Keane Foundation for years, trapped in a never ending battle for survival. Now they have found allies who can help them truly escape. After faking her own death, Annie has joined a group that is plotting to destroy the Foundation. And Fia is working with James Keane to bring his father down from the inside.

    But Annie's visions of the future can't show her who to trust in the present. And though James is Fia's first love, Fia knows he's hiding something. The sisters can rely only on each other - but that may not be enough to save them." (Description from

    Perfect Lies is book 2 in the Mind Games series. Starting right where we left off in Mind Games, Perfect Lies is a fast paced book that happens over hours and months described from two POV (point of views). This is something I love about White's writing in this series... the out of sequence dating. It gives you perspective in a whole new light. What I also love about this book is that it gives you a one/two line that you think is a throw away. Not something to the bigger picture but something to help describe Fia's day more. And then you discover at the end that one line ties the whole book together. It totally blew my mind! I had the, "Noooooo, I can't believe it!" moment at the end of the book. It was amazing and reminded me of those Harry Potter moments when you couldn't believe that little fact was so important later on.

    My new favorite character in the series is referred to as Pixie. Her best line was (but not a direct quote), "What they forget is that we have the power to make our fate." You'll see at the end how this line ties in as well and it best describes the story. The girls do have the power to make their own fate.

    I feel this is a must read for 2014 in YA. If this is a new series to you, start first with Mind Games. Perfect Lies is due out February 18, 2014.

    Sunday, January 12, 2014

    How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf by Molly Harper

    "Even in Grundy, Alaska, it’s unusual to find a naked guy with a bear trap clamped to his ankle on your porch. But when said guy turns into a wolf, recent southern transplant Mo Wenstein has no difficulty identifying the problem. Her surly neighbor Cooper Graham—who has been openly critical of Mo’s ability to adapt to life in Alaska—has trouble of his own. Werewolf trouble.

    For Cooper, an Alpha in self-imposed exile from his dysfunctional pack, it’s love at first sniff when it comes to Mo. But Cooper has an even more pressing concern on his mind. Several people around Grundy have been the victims of wolf attacks, and since Cooper has no memory of what he gets up to while in werewolf form, he’s worried that he might be the violent canine in question.

    If a wolf cries wolf, it makes sense to listen, yet Mo is convinced that Cooper is not the culprit. Except if he’s not responsible, then who is? And when a werewolf falls head over haunches in love with you, what are you supposed to do anyway? The rules of dating just got a whole lot more complicated. . . ." (Description from

    As mentioned in a previous, I love books that have football in it. I also harbor a second love in topics when it comes to books: werewolves. What can I say? I just love the lore author's come up with for werewolves. Maybe it started with the Twilight books but I suspect it truly started with Clay in "Bitten" by Kelley Armstrong.

    Library Reads ( featured Molly Harper's "How to Run with a Naked  Werewolf". This, among libraries and librarians, is considered a very big deal. Library Reads is a great resource for readers and book buyers to see what the trends are. Typically, you'll see more 'serious' fiction on the list. Sure romance makes a good showing but this was the first I noticed a fantasy book at the top. As you can imagine, that caught my attention right away.

    "How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf" is the first in the series (listed above) by Molly Harper. I found this to be a fun, great read. Mo is running from over protective parents to start her life in a new place. (As a side note, Mo's interactions with her parents had me laughing out loud.) So, why not choose Alaska?! Mo was a Mississippi transplant. From there her adventure begins and it truly is an adventure.

    I live in Minnesota and at times is actually colder than Alaska. This past week we actually hit -50 after windchill. So, I was truly impressed on how Harper got what the cold is like and how the Northerner's deal with it. Harper was able to express the crazy winter's we have in a very funny way that rang true to what I live in.

    I truly had fun reading this book and loved the characters from how they interacted with each other to the personal development of Mo and Cooper. Oh and the conclusion of the mystery that was happening in the book. Just amazing. I didn't guess that it was who it was causing the 'trouble'. So, if you tend to skip ahead for a sneak peek, I wouldn't. Just so you can be surprised too!,

    My husband looked at the cover one night while I was reading the book and ask where the naked werewolf was on the book. That's a tough one to explain and had me laughing. Really, doesn't he know that cloths don't 'pop' in and out like magic. Ok, maybe he didn't know that folk lore. We do see a naked werewolf early on, page 80 I think. However, this book isn't overly sexy. Which I know can be a question factor with the title and might scare some people off.

    I look forward to reading the next book in this series, "The Art of Seducing a Naked Werewolf". Just as luck would have it, I spied it in our back area at the library getting ready to be cataloged!

    Thursday, January 9, 2014

    Edenbrooke by Julianne Donaldson

    "Marianne Daventry will do anything to escape the boredom of Bath and the amorous attentions of an unwanted suitor. So when an invitation arrives from her twin sister, Cecily, to join her at a sprawling country estate, she jumps at the chance. Thinking she'll be able to relax and enjoy her beloved English countryside while her sister snags the handsome heir of Edenbrooke, Marianne finds that even the best laid plans can go awry. From a terrifying run-in with a highwayman to a seemingly harmless flirtation, Marianne finds herself embroiled in an unexpected adventure filled with enough romance and intrigue to keep her mind racing. Will Marianne be able to rein in her traitorous heart, or will a mysterious stranger sweep her off her feet? Fate had something other than a relaxing summer in mind when it sent Marianne to Edenbrooke." (Description from

    I found this book by luck. Twice a day the library pulls holds from users who placed them online. As I was making my way down the "D" section in fiction I pulled this book for a user's hold. I looked at the covered and thought, "hmm, this feels like a Jane Austin type book". Then I read the back and got excited about reading a history romance book. So, as I usually do, I placed a hold on the book myself and waited the next few weeks to come through. 

    When I finally got the book. I had just finished "Fallen Crest Public" by Tijan and was reeling from the ending. It was a great ending and had me thinking all sorts of crazy things. So, I needed a book to help calm my racing thoughts. I was right to turn to "Edenbrooke".

    Donaldson wrote such a wonderful, classic romance. I just loved reading it and watching Marianne develop as a character. But more importantly, I loved how strong she was in self. Sure, she questioned herself and wondered at times about many things. But she knew who she was as a person and was loyal to a fault. Sir Phillip was also a classic book boyfriend. Handsome, attentive, and interesting.

    I would recommend this to those who love a good romance or historic fiction.
    Another week and more books to read. Here’s what's waiting for me:
    • No Good Duke Goes Unpunished
    • This is What Happy Looks Like
    • Heartbeat (arc)
    • Simple Perfection by Abbi Glines
    • Brazen by Kelley Armstrong
    • Time After Time by Tamara Ireland Stone
    • Everneath bu Brodi Ashton
    All books are from our local library.

    I’m currently re-reading the Beautiful Bastard series. What can I sat, I love sexy Bennett.

    Upcoming reviews will be on "Edenbrooke" by Julianne Donaldson, "How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf" by Molly Harper, and "Consumed" by Emily Snow. I'm also going to add an "archive" book review to my posts. Some books are so good that you read them again and again and again. Just like "Beautiful Bastard by Christine Lauren. Other books were great but I never really posted about them online (on Goodreads) or in person since they're more Indie published and not easily accessed at the library books. I'm looking forward to digging through my Kindle archives to bring them to the light of day here.

    Wednesday, January 8, 2014

    Books, books, books

    Into the Still Blue by Veronica Rossi
     "The earth-shattering conclusion to Veronica Rossi's "masterpiece" Under the Never Sky trilogy and sequel to the New York Times bestselling Through the Ever Night (

    Their love and their leadership have been tested. Now it's time for Perry and Aria to unite the Dwellers and the Outsiders in one last desperate attempt to bring balance to their world.

    The race to the Still Blue has reached a stalemate. Aria and Perry are determined to find this last safe-haven from the Aether storms before Sable and Hess do-and they are just as determined to stay together." (Description from

    So, you might not know that I have a 4-year old. So, I'm a full-time mom and a part-time library aide. It's great because I get out of the house and E gets to have fun at daycare. Also, doubly great is that I get to talk about books and see what's coming through the system. I discovered this series just that way. I saw the book come through and thoughts, wow, that sounds like a good book.

    From start to the final page the books have been just amazing. I feel that a lot of series try and fail to do what the Still Blue did. Rossi wrote an entire series on the human condition showing real emotions on friendship, life, death and love. Not just pushing the story ahead for the sake or pairing/killing people for shock value. 

    The book make you question what you would do if faced with making decisions that effect 100's of others. How would you be if faced with saving yourself or saving an entire group of people? How would you react after losing a loved one and move on for the sake of your survival? 

    I just loved the feeling, emotions and thoughts this book and this series brought out in me. Too many times YA is put down because it's for Young Adults. Or just for girls or too dark. Clearly, they're not reading the right books and right series. In darkness you can find light and the understanding of the true human condition. 

    This book is the third book in the series. I would recommend starting with book one, Under the Never Sky. Rossi also has offered novelas set between the books. Into the Still Blue will be available on January 28, 2014. I was lucky enough to read an ARC (advance reader copy).

     The Naturals by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

    "Seventeen-year-old Cassie is a natural at reading people. Piecing together the tiniest details, she can tell you who you are and what you want. But it’s not a skill that she’s ever taken seriously. That is, until the FBI come knocking: they’ve begun a classified program that uses exceptional teenagers to crack infamous cold cases, and they need Cassie.

    What Cassie doesn’t realize is that there’s more at risk than a few unsolved homicides— especially when she’s sent to live with a group of teens whose gifts are as unusual as her own.

    Sarcastic, privileged Michael has a knack for reading emotions, which he uses to get inside Cassie’s head—and under her skin. Brooding Dean shares Cassie’s gift for profiling, but keeps her at arm’s length.

    Soon, it becomes clear that no one in the Naturals program is what they seem. And when a new killer strikes, danger looms closer than Cassie could ever have imagined. Caught in a lethal game of cat and mouse with a killer, the Naturals are going to have to use all of their gifts just to survive." (Description from

    I would describe this book as psychological thriller mixed with a dash of supernatural in a YA setting. It was one of the best books I have read in 2013. I couldn't put it down and it kept me guessing. If you're prone to flip ahead for a snippet here or there...DON'T. You don't want to ruin the ending and how you get there.

    I just learned that this will be a new series. I'm looking forward to see where Barnes next take the characters.

    Tuesday, January 7, 2014

    Welcome to the new format

    Welcome to my new blog spot on books I read and the many conversations that happen at my home about books. Once again, if you found me on Tumblr and made the switch over, I'm sorry for any confusion with switching formats. I just wanted to make sure I had the most user friendly blog possible. Hopefully, I made the right choice.

    Below you can view posts that I made on Tumblr.

    Happy reading!

    Fallen Crest Public by Tijan

    "Sam’s first day at Fallen Crest Public doesn’t go well. Some girls want to be her. Some girls want to destroy her. And some just don’t like her. All in all, despite being protected by Mason and Logan, it’s still only the strong survive. Sam will not only have to survive, she needs to learn how to conquer too, but there’s another battle growing. Things are about to come to a disastrous end between the towns, Roussou and Fallen Crest. Sam’s other main dilemma? Keeping Mason and Logan from getting arrested or hospitalized." (Description from

    What can I say? Put a book in front of me with some kind of football in it and I’m going to read it. I actually think that’s how I first found the series. Football + High School in search.
    Needless to say, I’m a huge fan of Tijan. I started first with Fallen Crest High and LOVED it from the start. Sam is a strong female lead and I do mean strong. Life can and does get to her but she doesn’t let it show to the outside world. I love the “let the world be damned” attitude. I want more books like that. Not girls fretting over not dressing right or will I get the boy.

    I’m afraid to go into any description on book three for fear I’ll give everything away. But here are a couple of thoughts…
    1. You’ll have two POV’s (point of views) in this book. Sam and Mason give you viewpoints as the story develops. I fell in love with Mason in this book. I always loved him as a character and partner for Sam but his POV just wowed me. Especially the statement he made to David. You’ll know which one when you read it!

    2. I feel this books gives a very real viewpoint of what bullying is like in 2014. I feel every parents should read it just for that. It blew my mind what happened. Mean girls were beyond my knowledge of how far someone could and would go. This is coming from someone who experience bullying. It also shows you how administration can have their hands tied when it comes to mean girls. 

    3. I loved the fearsome threesome. I loved that they’re not considered a traditional family but stick together and by each other. Moving house to house and place to place as a unit. Each trying to protect the other.  

    4. Finally, I loved how Tijan doesn’t create drama to create drama. She doesn’t throw something in to move the story forward. How many times have you read someone getting in a silly situation and a misunderstanding happens. Then you spend chapters and chapters banging you head against the wall while shaking your fist. Seriously?! Not so here. Drama happens but communication happens as well. 

    Oh and did I forget to mention the sexy? There is some sexy to the book. Not 50 Shades sexy or even Beautiful Bastard but still there was some nice sexy to it. 

    This is the third book in the series. If you haven’t read Tijan yet. Start first with Fallen Crest High. We have the series at our local library (New Ulm Public Library).

    As a side note, I wanted to mention that I decided not to post book reviews of books that I don’t like. Honestly, if I don’t like a book, I stop reading it. Life’s too short to waste on a book that I don’t want to or can’t read. I also don’t want to come off as a mean girl while reviewing something I didn’t like. Just because one book isn’t my cup of tea doesn’t mean someone else wouldn’t love it. So with that in mind, know that if I’m raving about a book here, I’m also raving about it at work as well.

    Sizzle by Jule Garwood

    "Lyra Prescott, a Los Angeles film student, is closing in on graduation and dives into work on her final filmmaking assignment: a documentary transformed by a twist of fate into a real-life horror film. While working on her project, a rash of mysterious incidents convince Lyra that she’s trapped in a sinister scenario headed for a violent ending. Running scared, she turns to her best friend, Sidney Buchanan, whose connections bring devilishly handsome FBI agent Sam Kincaid into Lyra’s life. As the noose of intrigue tightens, the passion between Lyra and Sam escalates with dangerous intensity. With the rugged FBI agent beside her, Lyra must learn to let down her defenses and follow her heart—even if that leads to deadly peril." Description from

    Sizzle is a part of the Buchanan-Renard series by Jullie Garwood. Garwood is the author I go to when I’m in a book low or book hangover. You know what I’m talking about. The “what on earth am I going to read after that” or the “every book I read feels the same” low. I’m a bit ashamed to admit that I have read these book out of order. I started with Hotshot (2013) and then moved from there. Each book is a little sexy with mystery and suspense but in the best possible way. If you read them in order, you’ll get to see how characters are doing from previous books. My out-of-order reading has made things a little fun and confusing. Fun because I’m realize I get to see how certain characters met and developed relationships.

    So, Sizzle starts right where the description says. Sam is giving a lecture series and Lyra is at film school. From there is develops in twists and turns. To be honest, I though Garwood was going to take it in one directions but pulled the rug from me. I love when that happens. You think you have the plot down and know who’s causing the trouble and in the end are wrong. I love the surprise of not guessing right.

    If you haven’t tried Garwood yet, I would invite you to do so. She’s a great writer for the fiction world. I know she’s popular among maybe readers of different genre’s. And, hey, hot FBI guys. Where can you go wrong?

    You can view Garwood’s book order at this great site: Fantastic Fiction. That is if you wanted to read her in order.

    Happy reading!

    What’s on my shelf to read

    Here we go, lots of books and little time. Here’s what I have waiting to read:
    • Simple Perfection by Abbi Glines
    • Brazen by Kelley Armstrong
    • Time After Time by Tamara Ireland Stone
    • Everneath bu Brodi Ashton
    All books are from our local library.

    I’m currently reading “How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf” by Molly Harper. Ms. Harper received outstanding reviews on Library Reads for her third book in this series. As you might have guessed, I discovered this series at the library! So I decided to start with book one and work my way through. So far, so good! I’m really loving it. Which means, off to read and less time to sleep.

    I hope to post reviews on “Sizzle” by Julie Garwood, “Fallen Crest Public” by Tijan, and “Into the Still Blue” by Veronica Rossi in the next few days.

    Happy Reading!

    A new year, a new attempt at this blog thing

    It seems like almost two years ago I tried setting up a book blog after talking with fellow readers. And then it fell to the side with other less important things since I had a very busy job and a wonderful kid. My little girl, E, is a whirl wind in her own right and we started the “1000 Books Before Kindergarten” program at the same time. Needless to say, I read a lot of books and had little time to blog.

    In those two years we actual read over 5000 books with E. Just amazing to see her read and grow during that time. A lot of things changed during that time as well. For one, I decided to leave the crazy job with busy hours and to spend more time with E. I was lucky enough to land a job as a library aide at our local library. Which I soon discovered was like giving drugs to an addict. Books, all free, there for me to read. These are my kind of people at the library!

    Another thing happened in the last two years, I discovered the “new adult” genre and began reading it like crazy. The good, the bad and the ugly. You know what I’m talking about. The .99 special that has a great story idea but is in need of much editing. (Even though I can’t promise to be a great editor on my own stuff…sorry in advance.)

    Before I worked at the library, I wanted to read 50 Shades #3 but in paper form and free from the library. I remember walking up to my soon to be boss and asking softly, “You wouldn’t happen to have that book. You know. Maybe not, I mean this is a library after all.” I was so embarrassed to ask about a “sexy” book in public, much less at the library. I soon learned there was no shame and judging. I became more open about the book I read and starting talking at the local salon and even less embarrassed. There’s no shame in reading a sexy book or a plain fiction book or even a YA book. Which I LOVE YA books.

    So with this I begin my reading journey online. Happy Reading!