Posted in Book Stuff

A Review of Us At The Beach by Stephanie Street

Blythe’s childhood friend and Neighbor, Walker, moves back to town with his family. Their families are close and go on vacation together to the beach. Blythe figures that Walker is just paying attention to her because she’s there and he’s bored, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. 

They spend lots of time together at the beach, even kissing in the dark during a game of hide and seek with their little siblings. Sparks fly, but when they return home, things cool down. Walker has practice all the time and stops calling and talking to Blythe who assumes the worst: she was just another conquest for him. 

Walker has his work cut out for him to repair things, and repair them, he does. 

This cute story was swoon-worthy, especially the once scene where Walker has Blythe clinging to him in the ocean, jumping in the waves because she can’t swim. And the ending? So perfect. The gifts he gives her are so cute and memorable and sweet. 

I read this book several months ago, and it is still fresh in my mind. I loved the characters and how authentic they were. I also loved how the characters interacted with each other and how important family was to them. The whole cast of characters was great, and the setting was cute, in this old, small seaside tourist town. 

Overall, I would definitely recommend to lovers of sweet YA romances who love the tropes Best Friends and Boy Next Door. I will read this again soon. 

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A Review of “Playing The Field (The Trouble with Tomboys Book 3)”

Baseball legacy Alex Prince is used to moving across the country for her dad’s coaching jobs. Unfortunately, her new school doesn’t have a softball team. She has to play ball this year, but fear not, her dad has a solution! Her dad pulls some strings and she can try out for the boys’ baseball team. 

The only problem? Her crush, the guy who seemed to like her, too (and almost kissed her on the first day of school,) plays on the team, and he’s competing for her position. 

A prank war ensues as these two are pushed together repeatedly and start to fall for each other. But they can’t get over their rivalry for a long time, until they figure out how to work together for the good of the team. 

This romance was cute and well written, a great read to end out this trilogy. Christina Benjamin wrote a good enemies-to-lovers romance with a cute ending that made my heart warm. The banter was well done, and I lived for the pranks, laughing out loud at a few of them. I read this book in two sittings, which is a lot quicker than average for me. It was an enjoyable, quick read and I would recommend this, and the entire series, to anyone who loves swoon worthy, sweet, YA sports romances. 

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A Review of Playing to Win: The Trouble with Tomboys #2 by Stephanie Street

Jordan is the coach’s daughter of the most decorated boy’s hockey team in the region. Having a dream of playing hockey professionally, she decides to try out for his team to play alongside her brother and the rest of the boys because that will give her the best chance to reach her goals. 

But there’s one problem. The new kid at school, an annoyingly handsome boy named Asher who stole her parking spot, is not only competing for her parking space, but also for her place on the hockey team. And he’s good. 

Asher has dreams of being a music star like his mother. Unfortunately, ever since his mother left to pursue her music dreams, Asher’s father has refused to let him pursue his dream, instead pushing him toward hockey. They have an agreement; work hard at hockey and he gets to spend time doing his music. He doesn’t want to take away Jordan’s dreams of being a starting hockey player on her Dad’s team, but he needs to try his best at hockey or give up his music. 

Complicating matters for Jordan’s hatred of Asher is that he is a great singer. How does she know? He’s her new neighbor and spends time in his backyard, accidentally serenading her without realizing he is. 

This enemies-to-lovers, boy-next-door trope was a romance to die for. I lived for the laughs and the swoons and the kisses. One thing Stephanie Street does well is writing swoon-worthy YA romance kisses. I loved her characters and how driven they were for their dreams and how those dreams clashed until the very end. It was a wonderful story that kept me reading all day and night (hey, I’m a slow reader. Don’t judge!) just to see what would happen next. 

I would definitely recommend this story for anyone who loves YA sweet romances. 

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A Review of “Playing the Enemy” by Maggie Dallen (Trouble with Tomboys #1)

The first installment of “The Trouble With Tomboys” series follows Hannah, who has just been kicked off of her intramural soccer team by her neighbor, and now ex-boyfriend. He broke up with her using a text message. She overhears that the team on the wrong side of the tracks needs a female soccer player to round out their team because of an injury and tries out. The only problem? The team captain, River, thinks she’s still with her ex and is there to spy on his team. Not only that, but River has had a crush on her forever. 

She works hard to get the team and River’s respect. Things with River turn into something more, but he doesn’t think he’s worthy of her because he’s not affluent like her family is. 

Overall, this was a sweet romance with a slow burn and swoon worthy kisses that made my heart melt. I love Maggie Dallen’s style and the strong start to this series! River was sweet and Hannah was a strong, decisive female character who had a healthy dose of agency. It was a wonderful, quick read that I devoured. I couldn’t wait for the next installment by Stephanie Street; that review is coming up. 

The twists and turns were great, especially when you realize Hannah’s ex’s motivation for dating her, but he is redeemed in the end. That set this book apart for me. Sometimes the villains don’t get redeemed, and that was a great twist. It made for a great read with a truly happy ending for everyone. But make no mistake, the ex got his due.

Fast-paced and easy to read, I would recommend this book for anyone who loves sweet YA romances and is looking for a sporty read. 

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Review of “Jake’s Redemption” by Jamie Schulz

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Photo via Amazon.com

Imagine a world where women rule over men. Men are slaves, sold at auctions for their skills or as breeders. They are controlled by a drug that makes them freeze in fear, and women have Hysterical Strength, something stronger than men’s strength. It kicks in when women feel threatened.

That is the world Jamie Schulz has created in her book Jake’s Redemption. It follows the story of Jake Nichols, a man who is captured and treated like a slave. He is skilled in construction and ranching because of his friend, who managed to escape when Jake was captured.

After two years of being abused by one of the most powerful women in his section of the world, Darla Cain, he is offered a deal. He can get a temporary escape from Darla’s clutches to act as a foreman on a separate ranch after their foreman had an unfortunate accident.

He agrees, albeit reluctantly. There he meets Monica Avery, the owner of the ranch he will be working for. He is attracted to her but fights his attraction, afraid she is like Darla. But he comes to see she is nothing like Darla, and they start to fall in love.

This story is…[Read More]

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A Review of “Did I Mention I Love You?” by Estelle Maskame

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Photo via Amazon

Did I Mention I Love You? is a young adult contemporary romance. It follows the story of Eden, who visits her father in Santa Monica for the summer, despite the fact that he walked out on Eden and her mother three years ago. Eden blames her father for the divorce and the fact he never called her hurts.

Her dad has remarried a woman who works as a lawyer and they live in an expensive house with their three boys, all Eden’s stepmother’s kids from a previous marriage. Chase, the youngest, is sweet and innocent. Jamie, the middle child, is kind and welcoming. But Tyler, the oldest, is a troublemaker. He’s a drug addict and an alcoholic who always goes to parties to distract himself.

Eden eventually spends more time with Tyler and his group of friends, and she finds herself playing the role of… [Read More]

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A Review of “A Court of Thorns and Roses” by Sarah J. Maas

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Photo by Cait Marie via Functionally Fictional

I loved, loved, loved this book. I know I’m a little late to the party, because who hasn’t heard of these books yet, and who knows how many times this site has reviewed them alone, but the more the merrier, I guess.

So, a little about the book:

Feyre, a human, has heard stories about the Faeries and how violent and destructive they are since she was a child. A wall separates the world of Faeries from the humans, but rumors have it that the faeries have been escaping to the human side of the world for a long time. When Feyre kills a faerie, unwittingly, she must die or live with a shape-shifting high-fae named Tamlin for the rest of her life.

But Tamlin has a secret. He is under a curse, as is all the fae world, a blight as he calls it, and Feyre is the only one who can break the curse. She must go through a series of trials to make sure Tamlin is safe, and she saves the Fae from the blight.

This book was… [Read More]

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A Review of “A Discovery of Witches” by Deborah Harkness

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Photo via Amazon

In this fantasy novel, we meet unassuming professor Diana Bishop, who specializes in alchemical texts. When she calls a book from the stacks of the library at Oxford University where she lives and works, she realizes quickly that there is something wrong with it. We find out that Diana has long familial history of witches, and she is not different, even if she tries to get along without her powers.

Spooked by the magic in the manuscript, she returns it. But soon after, she meets Matthew Clairmont, a vampire who takes an interest in her and the manuscript. A romance ensues, with each party wanting different things. However, cross species romances are forbidden, and are persecuted, in part because of Diana’s ability to call that book up even though the supernatural creatures had lost the manuscript long ago.

This book was interesting and intriguing, the characters distinct and well defined. It was slow to build up the romance and relationship between Matthew and Diana, but about two-thirds of the way through the plot picked up. I enjoyed the slow pace, but I know it’s not for everyone. Some slow parts I was not a fan of, such as the extensive descriptions of architecture, but those details show themselves to be important to Matthew’s background, so I understand why she included them.

I enjoyed the book, the slow build only adding to the anticipation, and the intensity of the last third of the book being a great change of pace. It has a… [Read More]

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Review of “Through The Red Door” by Sadira Stone

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*I received a copy of this book from the author for my honest review.*

In this spicy romance by Sadira Stone, we first meet bookstore owner Clara after a pretty intense dream about her late husband, Jared. Jared died nearly a year ago in a biking accident. They started a bookstore together, and the main attraction of the store is a backroom full of erotica, both art and written word, hidden behind a locked red door. Clara screens every person who wants a look at that room, to make sure they aren’t the creepy type.

We meet one of her love interests, Nick, when he asks to get the key to the red door. Nick is a professor who needs to jumpstart his career again by writing a book about changing perceptions in beauty through the years, and he wants to use the many books in Clara’s backroom for his research. Nick, Greek in ethnicity, is immediately interested in Clara. The feeling is mutual.

But things become more complicated as Clara gets involved with another man, Doug, who is a recently divorced high school social studies teacher. He helps her with her failing business and is a strong shoulder to cry on when she feels upset or needs comfort.

She must choose between these two men, vying for her attention. One relationship is… [Read More]

Posted in Book Stuff

Review of “Crescendo” by Becca Fitzpatrick

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Photo via Amazon

This book starts out with Patch and Nora together, but she demands pretty early on for him to tell her that he loves her and no matter what happens they will always be together. As an experienced reader, I knew that spelled trouble. Also, never promise things like that. You’ll never be able to keep it.

Sure enough, less than twenty pages later they had broken up over something stupid and trivial, although suspicious. Chaos ensues, with Nora doing everything in her power to get Patch back by playing games. She also keeps seeing her father, who is supposed to be dead.

The ending was a surprise for me, but… [Read More]

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Review of “Burning Depths” by Madeline Stanford

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This is the final book in the trilogy, for now. Let’s just say Stanford left the ending in a satisfying way that wrapped up the major plot that spanned the first three books, so any new books in the series would tackle a new set of problems. It was satisfying but open-ended, which made me hope for more.

But some more things about the book: Alex and Flynn and their friend group have survived the bloody war in the last book with minimal casualties and some pretty big bombshells being dropped. Now, they are stuck with three sides to a looming war, the Azure Loyalists who want things to go back to the way they were with Attis as their leader, the Azure Rebels, led by Flynn and Alex, who want to overhaul the system and do what is right, and the Depths, run by Samuel, who want death and destruction and power.

There are some surprising deaths in this book and some twists and turns, not all of which I liked. At one point, Flynn told Alex that he needed her to be his moral compass. I didn’t approve of that. It made me feel as though the characters had become too dependent on each other, and some of the things that Stanford brought up in regards to Alex’s moral compass made me… [Read More]

Posted in Book Stuff

Review of “The DUFF” by Kody Keplinger

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Photo via Amazon

The Duff has a very sarcastic narrator. It makes the book very entertaining, despite the fact that the narrator is very secretive and treats her friends like crap throughout most of the book. It’s understandable why Bianca treats her two best friends like that, though. She deals with a lot of crap. It starts with her mother always being gone, her parents getting a divorce, her dad relapsing into drunken rages after eighteen years of being sober, and her ex boyfriend, who treated her like crap and was dating someone else at the time, is back in town, engaged.

She complains about everything, but it’s in a humorous and entertaining way. Bianca is an intelligent, smart-arse character whom I loved. She starts sleeping with the school’s notorious playboy, Wesley, who helps her quiet her brain and escape her life and problems. They start falling for each other and find that they have more than a no-strings-attached sexual relationship.

I was surprised by [Read More]

Posted in Book Stuff

Review of “Black Ice” by Becca Fitzpatrick

 

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Photo via Goodreads

In this book, the main character, Britt, finds herself stuck in the wilderness with two fugitives. She is on spring break with her best friend, Korbie, in the mountains. She hopes to encounter her ex and Korbie’s brother, Calvin. Unfortunately for her, on the drive up the mountain she misses a turn and gets stuck in a snowstorm and must find shelter.

Britt and Korbie hike through the snow for a while until they see a cabin with the lights on. They knock on the door and find themselves in the company of two men, Sean and Mason. Britt realizes something isn’t right when the cabin is dusty and hasn’t been stocked with food. She finds herself held at gunpoint and has to find a way to make herself useful in order to stay alive.

She has a map of Calvin’s that she secretly uses to guide them off the mountain, but things go awry when they encounter a dead body, someone kills Sean in cold blood, and Mason and Britt are stuck in the wilderness together facing a bear and the elements. Feelings between Mason and Britt grow, but she starts realizing he has been keeping secrets from her, so she makes a run for it.

With a whodunit twist, this story was… [Read More]

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Review of “Rising Depths” by Madeline Stanford

rising-depths

Rising Depths is the second book in the Vicious Depths trilogy by Madeline Stanford. It is a young adult dystopian fantasy that I have fallen in love with since I read the first book while it was still titled Like Hell on Wattpad. That was before Stanford took it down to self-publish the series.

Warning: If you haven’t read the first book, this review contains spoilers for that book. Don’t read ahead if you don’t want to know what happens in the first book.

Now that Alex has been exposed as a traitor and she and Flynn have escaped to the Azure, she is looked to by the residents to figure out a way to defend themselves against the oncoming slaughter the Depths are planning. The Senatus members and Seth are still locked up in the depths, and the Azure is split between loyalists for Attis’s rule and those who want a new order. Even the Sentaus have committed crimes, lied, and betrayed their own residents. Things escalate as incriminating evidence against the Senatus is found, Samuel starts sending threats to the Azure with Isaac’s body parts, and the war looms nearer.

With equal parts…[Read More]

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Review of “The Selection” by Kierra Cass

the-selection
Photo by Cait Marie

There will be spoilers at the end of this review that are marked clearly. Stop reading if you want to know what happens by reading it.

Do you remember when The Hunger Games came out and for several months afterwards Hunger Games knockoffs were being published? This falls into this category. Sure, it was okay. But I’ve read better The Hunger Game knockoffs.

Set in a post-United-States-America, the government is a monarchy. If there is a royal princess born, she is married off to other royalty from different countries. If a prince is born then the whole country gets a reality TV show called “The Selection.” It is like The Bachelor; girls from each province are selected to compete for the prince’s hand in marriage.

This story centers around America, named by her mother after learning a bit about the histories of countries past. America is already in love with another boy before she is sent to The Selection.

Everyone has a caste in this book. The lower the caste the less food and money you have. If you marry a caste below the female becomes whatever the male is. America is in love with a six, a labor worker, while she is a five, a musician. Birth control isn’t available to the lower castes which results in large families that can’t feed all the hungry mouths. As a part of The Selection your family gets a large check during the time you are competing.

It’s basically the more [Read More]