Tuesday 30 January 2018

Review: The Night Child by Anna Quinn

Nora Brown teaches high school English and lives a quiet life in Seattle with her husband and six-year-old daughter. But one November day, moments after dismissing her class, a girl's face appears above the students' desks -- ''a wild numinous face with startling blue eyes, a face floating on top of shapeless drapes of purples and blues where arms and legs should have been. Terror rushes through Nora's body -- the kind of raw terror you feel when there's no way out, when every cell in your body, your entire body, is on fire -- when you think you might die.''

Twenty-four hours later, while on Thanksgiving vacation, the face appears again. Shaken and unsteady, Nora meets with neurologists and eventually, a psychiatrist. As the story progresses, a terrible secret is discovered -- a secret that pushes Nora toward an even deeper psychological breakdown.

This breathtaking debut novel examines the impact of traumatic childhood experiences and the fragile line between past and present. Exquisitely nuanced and profoundly intimate, The Night Child is a story of resilience, hope, and the capacity of the mind, body, and spirit to save itself despite all odds.

Kindle Edition
Expected publication: January 30th 2018 by Blackstone 

Kristine's Thoughts:

** I received an advanced readers copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!**

The Night Child was about a woman who's personal and professional life were on shaky ground and she began to see a face. After exploring different medical routes she ended up in front of a psychiatrist. It was at this point that the story started to get interesting.

Without saying too much I will say that things from Nora's past began to emerge. Things that Nora had blocked out and couldn't remember. A journey of self discovery and a haunting look at her past pushed her to the edge. The Night Child showcased her journey to overcome the terrors of her past and her journey of strength and healing.

As difficult as the subject matter was, I felt that as the reader that I needed more of Nora's story from her childhood when the trauma occurred. In order to fully comprehend the emotional scars that it had on her, I needed more from her childhood. I don't necessarily mean the trauma itself but the family dynamic, the relationships between them in the good times as well as the bad. The story focused primarily on the discovery and healing process versus the story that brought her to the point she was at when she was introduced to us. I guess I felt that the back story was too fleeting and glazed over to give it the impact that was really needed for Nora's journey. Don't get me wrong. I'm not saying that it wasn't horrible and that her scars weren't warranted. I'm saying that I found the book moved too quickly and the discoveries of her past would have had more of an impact if the reader got a bit more of her back story.

There were some great moments in this book and I enjoyed Nora's journey however I didn't particularly like Nora or any of the characters in this book. None of them were overly likeable. I also struggled with something that Nora was going to do at the end of the book before the twist? Cliffhanger? or whatever it was that happened at the end. The ending felt unfinished and I'm not sure if that was intentional and meant to infer that Nora's struggled would never be finished or if it was a way to set up a sequel. Whichever it was left me feeling like I wasn't finished the book and not necessarily in a good way.

About the Author
Anna Quinn is a writer, teacher, and the owner of The Writers’ Workshoppe and Imprint Bookstore in Port Townsend, WA. She has thirty years of experience teaching and leading writing workshops across the country. Anna’s first novel, “The Night Child”, published by Blackstone will be released Jan. 30th, 2018

Connect with Anna

Sunday 28 January 2018

Review: My Last Love Story by Falguni Kothari

Promise me you'll learn to cuss, learn to love again. Live again. Promise me you won't give up on each other.

Simi Desai is thirty years old and her husband is dying of cancer. He has two last wishes in his final months: first, that she'll have his baby so that a piece of him lives on, and second, that she'll reconcile with her old flame, who just happens to be their mutual best friend. And so over the course of their last summer together, Simi's husband plans a series of big and small adventures for this unlikely trio, designed to help them say goodbye to each other and prove to Simi that it's okay to move on without him--and even find love again. 

Kindle Edition, 304 pages
Expected publication: February 1st 2018 by Graydon House

Kristine's Thoughts:

** I received an advanced readers copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!**

I finished this book a while ago and I've been trying to figure out how I feel about it ever since. I'm conflicted with My Last Love Story and I'm not sure if I can adequately explain my reasons why.

At the centre of this book were Simi, Nirvaan and Zayaan. Simi was married to Nirvaan who was dying of cancer. Nirvaan and Zayaan were best friends since childhood. The three of them were inseparable during their teen years and Simi and Zayaan were in a relationship at that time. Now the three of them live together in the same beach house while trying to carry out Nirvaan's wish list. Did I mention that Nirvaan also wanted Simi to have his baby and was pushing his wife and best friend together? Yes ladies and gentlemen, the most unusual love triangle to date.

What I enjoyed most about this story was their time as teenagers when they were still in India. This was an extremely important part of the story in order for the present day to make sense but it was fleeting. I didn't feel like enough time was spent with the back story to give the present day the depth that it really needed in order to make it as emotional as I think it was intended to be.

I truly enjoyed Nirvaan and Zayaan but I struggled to connect with Simi at times. She had such anger towards Zayaan and I was never very clear on why. Was it because he looked like his brother? Was she angry because she still desired him? Was it because her husband seemed to want them together? Was it because he was helping Nirvaan with his dying wishes? I was never quite sure and he was nothing but kind to her and  most importantly they were friends.

There were some things that bothered me towards the end of the book that I can't explain without giving some of the story away so I won't. I'll just say that I struggled with some of the events that happened. I don't necessarily disapprove of the events so much as the timing of these events. It felt cheapened and a little tactless.

Over all this story made me think a lot. It had moments that I enjoyed thoroughly and moments that I'm not sure I'll ever understand. For that I can at least say it was memorable and would make for some great book club conversations.

About the Author

Falguni Kothari is the author of unconventional love stories and kick-ass fantasy tales. Her four novels, most recently MY LAST LOVE STORY, are all flavored by her South Asian heritage and expat experiences. An award-winning Indian Classical, Latin and Ballroom dancer, she currently spikes her endorphin levels with Zumba. She resides in New York with her family and pooch.

Connect with Falguni

Saturday 27 January 2018

Review: The Alice Network by Kate Quinn

In an enthralling new historical novel from national bestselling author Kate Quinn, two women—a female spy recruited to the real-life Alice Network in France during World War I and an unconventional American socialite searching for her cousin in 1947—are brought together in a mesmerizing story of courage and redemption.

1947. In the chaotic aftermath of World War II, American college girl Charlie St. Clair is pregnant, unmarried, and on the verge of being thrown out of her very proper family. She's also nursing a desperate hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France during the war, might still be alive. So when Charlie's parents banish her to Europe to have her "little problem" taken care of, Charlie breaks free and heads to London, determined to find out what happened to the cousin she loves like a sister.

1915. A year into the Great War, Eve Gardiner burns to join the fight against the Germans and unexpectedly gets her chance when she's recruited to work as a spy. Sent into enemy-occupied France, she's trained by the mesmerizing Lili, the "Queen of Spies", who manages a vast network of secret agents right under the enemy's nose.
Thirty years later, haunted by the betrayal that ultimately tore apart the Alice Network, Eve spends her days drunk and secluded in her crumbling London house. Until a young American barges in uttering a name Eve hasn't heard in decades, and launches them both on a mission to find the truth...no matter where it leads.

Paperback, 520 pages
Published June 6th 2017 by William Morrow Paperbacks

Terri's Thoughts

Those who follow my blog and read my reviews know that without question my favorite genre is historical fiction.  In particular, if I can find a good wartime story to pull at my heartstrings I am a happy girl.  While this story did not necessarily pull the heartstrings for me, it did encompass the rest and really made me think.

I won't spend too much time regurgitating the story as I can see that it has pretty much been covered when I was researching to see if this book was a good match for me.  I don't normally read other reviews until after I finish a story so I do not go in with expectations but for some reason it did and for once I am glad I did.  What I saw in a few of the reviews was people saying they did not like the character of Eve.

Are you even kidding me right now?

I don't think the reader is supposed to like Eve.  It is kind of the premise of the whole story.  I can't explain it fully without spoilers but to me the whole purpose of the story is the journey that cause Eve to become the person she is on 1947.  Let me tell you it is easy to judge sitting in our cushy homes reading the story on our expensive devices but I am perfectly willing to admit in her shoes I would be the exact same or worse.  I have seen people become bitter and jaded over a lot less than what she went through.

Charlie's story was not really as captivating however I looked at her story as the vehicle in which we learned all of Eves story.  I liked how her journey from the first to the last pages made her a completely different and independent person.  I must admit that I was relieved when she finally stop seeing her cousin in the crowds.

Missing from this story is the epic love story that tends to come hand in hand with these types of stories.  That is ok.  I feel like the story was more to tell of the female spy network, and story namesake, The Alice Network and that there was already enough to tell without complicating it with another layer.  I admit that I plead ignorance to know if any of this is based off of any actual true historical events whether loosely or not or how much research was involved.  I imagine that things like this did go on during the war and I must admit that I would not have a quarter of the courage of the ladies in this book.

I apologize if this review does not make any sense to those who have not read the story.  For those who have, I think I may have gotten my point across.  All I can say is that although I think I am late to the party with picking up this book, fans of historical fiction who have not yet been introduced to this story should pick it up now and read it.

About the Author

Kate Quinn is a native of southern California. She attended Boston University, where she earned a Bachelor's and Master's degree in Classical Voice. A lifelong history buff, she has written seven historical novels, including the New York Times bestseller "The Alice Network," the Empress of Rome Saga, and the Borgia Chronicle. All have been translated into multiple languages.

Kate and her husband now live in San Diego with two black dogs named Caesar and Calpurnia, and her interests include opera, action movies, cooking, and the Boston Red Sox.

Wednesday 24 January 2018

Review: Kiss Me, Sweetheart (Something Borrowed #2) by Codi Gary

The bridesmaids and groomsmen for hire at Sweetheart, California’s Something Borrowed have the cure for celebrity wedding headaches. But even a job that’s strictly business can lead to the
real thing . . .
Rylie Templeton had big dreams, until she quit culinary school to take care of her father and signed on with Something Borrowed. Suddenly years have gone by and she’s still a bridesmaid-for-hire, with her idea to open a gourmet bakery on the back burner. Scoring a high-profile wedding could help turn her life around, if only she didn’t have to share the spotlight with her coworker, the insufferable—and undeniably gorgeous—Dustin Kent.

Instructed to make it work, Rylie plunges into the wedding festivities with Dustin by her side. If only she could convince him to turn his spectacular charm on someone else! But the enigmatic, reformed playboy has his own ideas about romance, and they all include Rylie. As the nuptials get closer, Rylie realizes that Dustin’s wooing is actually working, and that the two of them might make a good team in more ways than one . .

Kindle Edition, 210 pages
Expected publication: February 13th 2018 by Lyrical Shine

Terri's Thoughts

I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!

This is the second in the Something Borrowed series.  Although I have read the whole series thus far, no need to worry if you did not read the first installment.  This can be read as a stand alone.  That being said, I would recommend starting the series at the beginning as it is a fun series and you do get the introduction to both Rylie and Dustin in the first book.

There really are no surprises with this story, it really is just pure light and fun entertainment.  The chemistry between the characters is evident from the get go and the reader knows that it will not take long for the temperature to rise on said chemistry.  Given the fact that this story is 210 pages, it really does not take long at all.

It also doesn't take the reader very long to see past the playboy persona of Dustin to see who he really is.  I think it is every (single) girls fantasy to be able to win over a player and change his ways.  This is probably why so many woman date frogs in hopes that they meet their prince.  Too bad it works out in fiction way more often than reality!  I digress....however it really is heartwarming to see the transition within Dustin all because of Rylie.

That is all I am going to say about this story.  If you are looking for a romance that is on the shorter side, has some witty banter, and is entertaining, this is a good choice for you.

About the Author

(From her Goodreads profile)

From the time I could put a Disney Book cassette into my little stereo,and read along, books have held a fantastic distraction. When I was eleven, I decided I wanted to be one of those magical people that brought stories to life. Devouring a book a day sometimes, my first romance novel stuck with me. I've always been a sucker for a happy ending (and the great romantic gesture)and that's what I try to put into my stories. I am so honored to be a part of Avon, and am so excited to have my own dreams coming true.

Monday 22 January 2018

Review: Buried Truth (Siren Cove #1) by Jannine Gallant

isit Siren Cove, Oregon, for gorgeous beaches, miles of hiking, delightful small-town shops--and a dark side none of its residents could have possibly imagined . . .

Leah Grayson has lived in Siren Cove all her life. It's where she buried a time capsule with her fifth-grade class. Where she spent an unforgettable night on the beach with her first love. Where she married then divorced her rotten ex.

But there's something ugly going on in her pretty little town. When Leah organizes a reunion for her fifth-grade classmates to open their time capsule, they discover a roll of film no one remembers saving. Afterward, strange incidents begin happening. Warnings. Accidents. Random acts of vandalism.

Luckily, her first love is back in town, too. Ryan Alexander has made it big with a wildly popular social media startup, but he's still the same sweet, cynical man she fell for all those years ago. And the chemistry they felt as teenagers is as strong as ever.

A nostalgic fling turns deadly when someone is convinced Leah has the key to secrets long buried. With no way to know whom they can trust, Leah and Ryan will have to seek out the answers themselves . . .

Expected publication: January 30th 2018 by Lyrical Press, Inc

Terri's Thoughts

I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!

I have read quite a bit of Gallant's work so I did not hesitate to try this story.  It delivered exactly as expectations would of a romantic suspense.  A little heavier on the romance and a little lighter on the suspense.

I liked how the reader is pretty much given the short list of who the possible "bad guys" are and tries to decipher it from there.  While the amount of close calls and near death experiences Leah experienced could be described as far fetched, I was still along for the ride.

It is evident in Gallants work that she is a huge fan of nature and the outdoors as a lot of this story takes place there.  It almost made me want to be a rock climber like Ryan, ok maybe not, but I will take the nice hiking trails minus the creepy stone.

I have two pieces of constructive criticism. 

The first is the reader reads about Leah's upturned lips a couple too many times.  I don't know why but every time it came up I visualized her lips bigger and bigger until they were the fish lips that are all over social media.

The second one may just be me.  I had a hard time reconciling Leah the character with her description.  I was stuck on the fact that she had hair to her butt.  I can't say I know or have known anyone with hair that long at that age demographic.  I am laughing at how petty it is but it really bothered me.  So this one is my issue.

Overall, I would tell readers to set your expectations.  This story is a romantic suspense and therefore is a little on the lighter side than say a thriller novel would be.  If you go in knowing what to expect, you will have a good time with this story.

About the Author

Write what you know. I've taken this advice to heart, creating characters from small towns and plots that unfold in the great outdoors. I grew up in a tiny Northern California town and currently live in beautiful Lake Tahoe with my husband and two daughters. When I'm not busy writing, I hike or snowshoe in the woods around my home. Whether I'm writing contemporary, historical or romantic suspense, I bring the beauty of nature to my stories.

Sunday 21 January 2018

Review: Fake Wife by Stacey Lynn

This marriage is strictly business... until the temptation gets way too real.

Corbin: I loved my grandma, but I don’t need her money. All I care about is keeping the house—the only place that’s ever felt like home. That, and screwing over my dad, who wants to turn the property into a mall. There’s only one catch: To receive my inheritance, I have to get married within six months. Me, the guy who’s never dated a girl for more than six minutes. Now I need to find a woman I can trust. So when I’m rear-ended by a Prius, I figure it’s a sign that I’m supposed to meet gorgeous, down-to-earth Teagan Monroe.

Teagan: First I lose my job. Then I come home and find out—in the most graphic way possible . . . yeah, that way—that my boyfriend is a cheating jerk. And then I speed off and nearly kill Portland’s sexiest bachelor. Corbin Lane should be pissed. Instead, he offers me more money than I’ve ever seen in my life to marry him and live together in a mansion for two years. No sex. No feelings. Just cash—enough to make all my dreams come true. Then we go and break all our rules . . . and I realize I’m falling in love with my fake fiancé.

Kindle Edition, 1st edition, 219 pages
Published January 9th 2018 by Loveswept
Series: Crazy Love #1
Genre: Romance/Contemporary Romance

Kristine's Thoughts:
** I received an advanced readers copy from Loveswept in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!**

Fake Wife was the story of Corbin and Teagan. When Corbin's beloved Grandmother passed away she willed him her property that was near and dear to him on the condition that he get married. This was a problem for a man without a steady girlfriend. Teagan lost her job and her long term boyfriend on the same day she rear ended Corbin's car. It was almost like it was fate.

This is a story line that has been done a million times before so my expectations weren't high for Fake Wife. However, I have read all of Stacey Lynn's Fireside series and adored it so I was excited to see what the first book in this new series offered.

I have to admit to seriously liking this book. It had the two things that I always require in this genre of book in order to thoroughly enjoy it. What is that you might ask? It would be chemistry and anticipation. Lynn was bang on with the two. She perfectly captured the chemistry between the two characters but gave the reader enough anticipation to really give you the feels.As with most things in life, anticipation is half the fun and sexy time in a book is just sex unless there is a build up of chemistry and lust to make it steamy. On top of that, both characters were really likeable. Both were respectful of each other and were genuinely good people. It was easy to route for the two of them.

I look forward to following the rest of this series to see what other kinds of crazy situations Stacey Lynn comes up with.

About the Author

Stacey Lynn is a simple girl raised in the Midwest. Over the long, frigid winters, she would read every book she could get her hands on, from John Grisham and Danielle Steel to Ann M. Martin and C. S. Lewis. She began writing poems and short stories long before she reached high school, and now, as a wife and mother to four children, she finds solace from the craziness of her life by creating steamy, sexy stories. After publishing her first book, what began as a hobby has now turned into an unending passion.

Connect with Stacey

Saturday 20 January 2018

Review: Golden Opportunity (Romance By Design #3) by Virginia Taylor

They grew up together yet worlds apart. But a wealthy young man and a classy young woman find that some bonds can’t be broken . . .

The only thing Marigold Reynolds and billionaire Hagen Allbrook ever had in common was their attraction. Marigold made sure that never went anywhere by cutting ties with him six years ago. Now, however, she needs a job—and Hagen’s design assistant desperately needs someone to fill in for her at his family’s construction firm. Trusting that time has dimmed the electricity between them, Marigold accepts. But as she undertakes his challenging renovation of her own ancestors’ home, it’s soon clear she’s mistaken.

A year after his wife’s death, Hagen is coming to terms with the past. He’s as drawn to Marigold as ever, but as they finally cross long-held boundaries, a misunderstanding, and Marigold’s belief that she can never measure up to his perfect wife, threatens to tear them apart once more. Hagen’s only chance of winning her back is to reveal the truth about his marriage. And perhaps then Marigold will reveal a heartfelt secret of her own .

ebook, 200 pages
Expected publication: January 30th 2018 by Lyrical Shine

Terri's Thoughts

I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher vis Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!

Although this book is part of a series, it can easily be read as a stand alone.  Considering this is the third installment and I had only read one of the two that came before it, there was zero impact to this story.  To be honest, I am not even sure which characters were present in the other story and which ones were not.  It didn't matter.

This story follows the standard formula one would expect in this genre.  There is the push and pull of attraction, the denial, and ultimately giving in.  Mix in some drama caused by a shared past and emotional baggage and voila you have a story.

This story did exactly what I expected it to.  It entertained me in the sense that it did not pretend to solve or even address the worlds issues.  This was exactly what I was looking for.  While it may not end up on the top of book club picks, it provided me with a pleasant way to pass the time.

On a side note, it was funny to read about a car crash that was caused by a kangaroo.  Coming from a geographical region that does not have these animals I did a double take when I read it.  It is not something I hear about often although I am sure it can happen frequently.  I guess it would be the equivalent of hitting a deer where I am from!

About the Author

Virginia is a full time writer who used to be a nurse/midwife, a scenic painter and designer, a renovator of heritage houses, and still is an avid gardener. She is also a bad driver, an unenthusiastic cook and a reader of all things bookish.

Friday 19 January 2018

Review: Now That You Mention It by Kristan Higgins

New York Times bestselling author Kristan Higgins welcomes you home in a funny, emotionally charged must-read novel about the complications of life, love and family 
One step forward. Two steps back. The Tufts scholarship that put Nora Stuart on the path to becoming a Boston medical specialist was a step forward. Being hit by a car and then overhearing her boyfriend hit on another doctor when she thought she was dying? Two major steps back.
Injured in more ways than one, Nora feels her carefully built life cracking at the edges. There's only one place to land: home. But the tiny Maine community she left fifteen years ago doesn't necessarily want her. At every turn, someone holds the prodigal daughter of Scupper Island responsible for small-town drama and big-time disappointments.
With a tough islander mother who's always been distant and a wild-child sister in jail, unable to raise her daughter—a withdrawn teen as eager to ditch the island as Nora once was—Nora has her work cut out for her if she's going to take what might be her last chance to mend the family.
But as some relationships crumble around her, others unexpectedly strengthen. Balancing loss and opportunity, a dark event from her past with hope for the future, Nora will discover that tackling old pain makes room for promise…and the chance to begin again.

Kindle Edition, 416 pages
Published January 1st 2018 by HQN Books
Genre: Contemporary Romance/Chick Lit

Kristine's Thoughts:

** I reveived an advanced readers copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. Thank You!**

I read this book a while ago but a severe concussion didn't allow me to write my thoughts on it. Normally I like to discuss a book while it is still fresh in my head so I hope I can do this book justice.

Now That You Mention It was a cute story about a woman who was essentially stuck between two worlds. There was her childhood life and the adult life that she made for herself. When circumstances had her returning to the place she couldn't wait to leave, she wasn't very happy.

My biggest enjoyment in this book was the setting. I adored reading about Scupper Island and I felt like I was a part of the tiny community. It was easy to visualise it and I could almost taste the salt air. For me, this was the best part of the book. The other thing that I really enjoyed was the large cast of quirky and unique characters.

This book had some pretty funny moments in it but there were times that I felt like it was meant to be funny and it really wasn't, almost like it was trying too hard. The other thing that really stood out was the over abundance of Harry Potter references. There would be nothing wrong with that if everyone has read it and could understand what the author was talking about but that is not the case. I have never read it (I know, I know) and the references, quotes and comparisons were completely lost on me. One or two could easily have been overlooked but there were many in this book.

All in all it was a pleasant read that I am happy that I got the opportunity to enjoy. It wasn't the first book by this author for me and I look forward to enjoying many more in the future.

About the Author

Kristan Higgins is the New York Times and internationally bestselling author of more than a dozen novels. Her books have been honored with dozens of awards and accolades, including starred reviews from Publishers Weekly, Kirkus, Library Journal, the New York Journal of Books and Romantic Times.

Connect with Kristan


Thursday 18 January 2018

Review: What The Valley Knows by Christie Heather

Millington Valley is a quintessential small Pennsylvania town: families go back generations. Football rules. Kids drink while adults look the other way. High school is a whirlwind of aspiration and rivalry, friendship and jealousy.

When smart and pretty Molly Hanover moves to town and attracts the attention of the football team’s hero, Wade Thornton—a nice guy with a bad drinking habit—longtime friendships are threatened and a popular cheerleader tries to turn the school against Molly.

The young couple’s future is shattered when Wade, drunk, wrecks his truck and Molly is thrown through the windshield. She wakes from a coma to find her beauty marred and her memory full of holes. As she struggles to heal, she becomes sure that something terrible happened before the accident. And there is somebody in the valley who doesn’t want her to remember.

Paperback, 1st Edition , 250 pages
Expected publication: January 25th 2018 by Black Rose writing

Terri's Thoughts

I had received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!

I can't say a lot about this story without giving anything away but I will say the book synopsis captures the plot well.  I will also say, aside from said mentioned parts I can't mention, this reminded me a little of my high school days.  Although football is not such a big deal here, the high school football players were still the top dogs in school.

This story deals with more than one heavy topic.  Since it is in the YA genre, it doesn't go too with the topics as far as details however fair warning that this is not a light and fluffy read.  This is more for those who prefer their topics serious.

While I feel the story would have been good enough with only delving in to one of the serious issues, it was still interesting without being overwhelming.  I would read more from this author.

About the Author

Heather Christie grew up in rural Pennsylvania and, at age seventeen, took off for New York City in hopes of becoming a movie star. Flash forward several decades, a couple degrees, a bunch of cats, two kids and one husband later, she's back in Pennsylvania writing her heart out and chasing dreams again. She loves to read, run, drink tea, and make Sunday dinner.

Monday 15 January 2018

Review: Kiss the Sky by M.K. Schiller

Love can move mountains . . .

Strong, athletic, and driven, Tristan Sinclair is determined to fulfill his late brother’s wish to climb Pakistan’s K2, the world’s second highest mountain. He never expects part of the challenge will be getting along with one of his fellow climbers—or that the greatest peril may lie beyond the summit . . .

A passionate, life-long climber, Pakistan born Farah Nawaz is skeptical of the hotshot from Arizona. But as she and Tristan help each other conquer obstacle after obstacle, they find they have more in common than they thought—including a simmering attraction. And when suspicious deaths put them in the sights of a ruthless killer, they’ll have to cover their tracks long enough to find out why—and stay alive for a future together . . .

Kindle Edition
Published January 2nd 2018 by Lyrical Shine

Terri's Thoughts

I received an ARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!

I had no idea what to expect with this story.  It was centered around mountain climbing which I have no desire to do nor any real knowledge on it.  I thought what the heck, I will give it a shot.

I actually really enjoyed the story.  Instead of a simple romance, this actually had an interesting plot.  With the backdrop of the mountain and Pakistan, this story felt like it held some substance that can sometimes be lacking.  The reader also learns about the characters long before any romance takes place, I liked this.

The part about the climb was interesting to me even though it was a little glossed over.  I can't even imagine what it would be like to stand on the summit of the world's second highest mountain.  Who am I kidding, I don't even want to step to the top of a ladder!

To be completely honest in my review, the point that the characters reach the summit was also the "summit" of the story for me.  From there is kind of went a little downhill, pardon the pun.  Not completely, however the twists in the storyline got a little far fetched and crazy afterwards.  As I was invested by this point I just settled in for the ride to see where the plot took me.  Without spoilers, I did guess the what and the who before it was revealed.

This story was interesting in a good way for me and I really enjoyed the backdrop in which it was set.  Enough so that I will be keeping an eye out for more work by Schiller.

About the Author

Not knowing a word of English, MK Schiller came to America at the age of four from India. Since then, all she’s done is collect words. After receiving the best gift ever from her parents—her very own library card—she began reading everything she could get her greedy hands on. At sixteen, a friend asked her to make up a story featuring the popular bad boy at school. This wasn’t fan fiction…it was friend fiction. From that day on, she’s known she wanted to be a writer. With the goal of making her readers both laugh and cry, MK Schiller has penned more than a dozen books, each one filled with misfit characters overcoming obstacles and finding true love.

Saturday 13 January 2018

Review: After Hours by Melinda Di Lorenzo

Six foot two. Lips to die for. And boy, can the man fill out a suit. The gorgeous stranger sending Aysia Banks steamy looks from across the bar is the perfect way for her to take her mind off her high-stress job, and maybe even forget about her ex. An invitation to dance leads to a smoldering night, which turns into a weekend of uninhibited, toe-curling, blow-your-mind passion. Things are starting to look up for Aysia—until Monday morning . . .

Another city, another company to save. It’s nothing new to executive Marcelo Diaz, who’s used to calling the shots and getting what he wants. But what is different, is Aysia: the vixen he spent the weekend rewriting the entire playbook with. But before Marc can take things any further he’s shocked by what he discovers . . .

Marc was hired to keep his employer’s reputation squeaky clean.

Part of Aysia’s job is to enforce her department’s strict no-dating rule.

And they work for the same company.

Now, with their red-hot connection doused by office policies and politics, Aysia and Marc try to put their fling behind them. It should be easy. But when a behind-the-scenes power play threatens their careers, they’ll have to bring their hearts to the table . . .

ebook, 304 pages
Published January 2nd 2018 by Lyrical Press

Terri's Thoughts

I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  Due to a hectic schedule, I am just getting around to writing my review now.

As you can guess by the story synopsis, the story starts out as a one night stand, so you know there is going to be some sexy scenes.  In fact, reading this on my kindle, I was at 33% completed by the time said one night stand was completed and the rest of the storyline began.  So those who like their stories on the cleaner side may want to avoid this one.  On the other hand, those who like their reads steamy, this would be a good choice.

While the attraction between Marc and Aysia is evident from the get go, it was perhaps too evident.  I did struggle with the fact that their physical attraction seemed to override all other priorities such as work and family.  Neither of these places/people were off limits when it came to succumbing to their physical needs.  While I appreciate a strong physical attraction, I do also recognize the fact that there are boundaries that should perhaps not be crossed.

That aside this was a pretty enjoyable read.  The characters were likeable and it was easy to read.  A good choice for fans of steamy fiction

About the Author

Friday 12 January 2018

Review: Dreaming of Manderley by Leah Marie Brown

Going from old money to no money, the three Maxwell sisters' lives are about to change drastically. Now, one by one, each must blaze her own trail to happily-ever-after . . .

Manderley Maxwell has always been the dependable, hard-working one while her younger sisters live
A-list lives, courtesy of their family fortune . . . until it's suddenly lost, leaving behind a truckload of debt! Now Mandy is faced with two choices: play perpetual caretaker to her spoiled siblings, or finally break out of her predictable routine--by way of France . . .

When Mandy's boss relocates for the summer, Mandy is really just trading in coffee runs for running errands through the streets of Cannes--until handsome, debonair Girard Fortune Xavier de Maloret sweeps her off her feet--by saving her from falling off a cliff. Mandy's walking on air--except that she's living in the chic shadow of the first Madame de Maloret, complete with whispers about the suddenly secretive Xavier's part in her disappearance. Again, Mandy has two choices: be the unfortunate, duped American--or the gutsy, fierce woman who'll track down the truth in the name of true love . . .

Published December 26th 2017 by Lyrical Press, Inc

Terri's Thoughts

I had received an ARC copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  While I read it before its publication date, my busy schedule is only allowing me to post my review now.

This is the first in a new series from Brown.  Those familiar with her It Girls series will want to pick this up.  It has the same quirky sense of humor that was found in her previous works.  The same fish out of water leading lady, swoon worthy leading male and pop culture references (although thankfully slightly tones down).

A few minor things bothered me.  I did get a little sick of hearing how many times Xavier's hand was on the small of her back, however it seemed to be a big deal for Manderley so I overlooked it.  I also felt Manderly was a little step backwards for all womankind.  I wont go in to detail, I will just say that a woman can have it all, a high power career and a loving man.  There is no need to wish it is the forties.

Now that I got that out of the way, the story was just fun.  This is something I have discovered with Brown's work so far.  Her characters always tend to be a little bit of a train wreck that can make us appreciate that our lives are vastly different.  I look forward to reading about the rest of Maxwell sisters because based on the little bit this book shares of them, they are way bigger train wrecks than Manderly could ever hope to be.  It should be fun.

About the Author

(From her Goodreads profile)

I am an American writer with a penchant for Paris and all things pink!

Before writing novels, I worked as a print journalist for a Pulitzer prize winning newspaper and served in the United States Air Force as a Radio and Television Broadcaster.

An avid traveler, I have had adventures and mishaps from London to Tokyo, which I write about on my blog, On Life, Love & Accidental Adventures, and in my contemporary romantic series, The It Girls.

I was once a collector of truly useless bric-a-brac and cheesy tee-shirts. My cheesiest? A tee with a cartoon Jesus riding a surf board and the words, "And on the eighth day, Jesus went surfing in Greece."

Today, I prefer to gather friendships and memories as travel souvenirs.

I live in the shadow of Pike's Peak Mountain, near Colorado Springs, with my family and shamefully pampered poodles.

In my free time, I like to watch movies, read, and snap photographs. You can view my photography by clicking on the Adventures tab above or by following me on Instagram.