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Search tags: 4-5-in-a-series
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review 2018-01-16 13:55
#4 - Lola and The Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
Lola and the Boy Next Door - Stephanie Perkins

My theme for this month was second book in a series. I received this book for Christmas and I desperately needed a contemporary romance to take my mind off things. It totally worked and I ended up loving the book.

 

This is the second book in the Anna and the French kiss series, but you can totally read it even if you have not read the first one, as this book focuses on other characters. Nonetheless, you get a bit of Anna and St. Clair from the first book which was totally amazing, but you could read it without knowing them first.

 

Lola’s parents do not approve of her older rock star boyfriend Max (who is totally badass but kind of a jerk) and she is determined to show them he is the one until she starts wondering if he really is.

 

I loved everything about Lola, she is funny and has a strong personality, she knows what she wants (or at least she thinks she knows what she wants) and she wants to make the most out of everything. I also loved the fact that her family was really present in the story, something (you all know) seems to be missing in most YA books.

 

It was in all a cute coming-of-age story and I recommend it!

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review 2018-01-16 08:47
good book and characters
Lost Rider (The Coming Home Series) - Harper Sloan

It had been eleven days since the doctor had told Maverick/Mav his career was over. Eleven days of drinking himself into a stupor. Mav had become the thing he had swore he would never be , become the man that raised him. Mav had everything he ever wanted in the palm of his hand. Riding was all Mav had ever needed and now it was gone. Ten years of living his dreams and then it was gone. Bull riding is one of the two things in Mav’s life that bring him peace. Mav still had a fearless streak. For almost ten years Maverick had been the biggest name in professional bull riding. He had always been able to conquer the bulls until Lucifer. Then the doctor said Mav had too many head injuries. One more and he would be taken out of the arena in a body bag. So Maverick was heading home and his older brother Clay was calling again to see when he would get there. Quinn was Mav’s sister. Their father had died and they wanted Mav at the church. Mav had a rough childhood.  But their father hadn’t wanted Maverick around ten years ago. Just being home made Mav feel trapped all over again. There was one thing Mav had wanted more than riding but he had run away from it to chase his dreams  and lived with the regret  since. No matter what he had done or accomplished it still hadn’t made his father proud of Mav. Then Mav thought of Leighton/Leigh. Mav had known Leigh had a crush on him for years. But Leigh didn’t want to leave Pine Oak. Leigh and Quinn were best friends and she sat next to Quinn in church to comfort her. Leigh still loves Mav Leigh was now a baker and owned the Pie Hole.

I enjoyed this book. It was a good hot romance and I loved it.  I liked the plot also. I loved Leigh and Mav together. I felt this was well written. His was a passionate sweet second chance romance story. At times this book dragged for me The chemistry between Leigh and Mav was sizzling. This caught my interest from the beginning and held it until the end. I love how it focused  on the healing of Mav and Leigh. This was a little repetitive at times. I loved the characters and the ins and outs of this book and I recommend.

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quote 2018-01-16 01:28
“As real as my twenty-inch cock. Care to come in and see it?” He takes a step to the side and sweeps his arm from one side to the other, motioning for me to come in. “Excuse me?” I nearly choke on my tongue and take a step back as I envision him pulling down his pants and whipping out his anaconda. “Are you insane or something?” “Inviting you inside is what we folks down here call southern hospitality, sweetheart.” He flashes me one of those smirks I’d write about in my novels where the girl’s panties instantly combust, and although this man is sex on a stick, I’m not falling for it. “I do not want to come inside and see your python-sized cock, okay? Just give me the keys, and I’ll find my way around.” He starts laughing. Laughing. The asshole. “Sweetheart, I wasn’t talking about my python-sized cock—although you aren’t wrong on how big it is—but I was literally talking about my rooster, Henry.”
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review 2018-01-16 01:04
Release Day Review: The Hockey Player's Heart by Jeff Adams and Will Knauss
The Hockey Player's Heart (Dreamspun Desires Book 50) - Jeff Adams,Will Knauss

I liked this story about an out hockey player who in his teens nursed a crush on his older sister's best friend who was also his geometry tutor. Who's now a teacher at the same school where his sister is the principal. 

After an injury, hockey player Caleb Carter returns to his home town of Foster Grove to recuperate and hang out with his sister before going back to NYC to play for the Rangers. He doesn't realize that his one-time teenage crush Aaron Price now works as a teacher for his sister, but is shook when he finds out. That teenage crush he thought he was over - yeah, not so much. So Caleb pursues Aaron - inviting the slightly older man on a date and makes his interest clearly known. 

Aaron is a bit gun-shy to date another athlete after one broke his heart back in California, but Caleb is persistent, and every argument Aaron brings up that a relationship between them wouldn't work, Caleb counters. And obviously, there's a spark for Aaron too. 

The plot doesn't have any big misunderstandings nor any obvious miscommunications, and both men are open and honest about their interest, even if Aaron isn't convinced this thing between them will be anything more than a short-lived romance. 

We get a glimpse into Aaron's life as a teacher, and Caleb's life with his hockey team (gotta love Dimitri, what a great friend), and also the school's hockey team. The kids were an added bonus, and I enjoyed watching Caleb and Aaron interact.

The drama in this story comes primarily from Aaron, shy, cautious Aaron, who doesn't think he fits in with Caleb's life as a star hockey player, so he finds excuse after stupid excuse to not fully give the relationship a real chance. 

I liked Caleb a lot. He was so honest and straight-forward, and so open about how he felt and what he wanted, but also not pushy - he gave Aaron time to come around to his way of thinking. And really, three hours drive isn't a deal-breaker for most people, especially since there's an off-season to consider. Aaron is just gun-shy, which I could understand, but I also didn't think it was fair of him to think that all athletes are alike. Aaron had some self-esteem issues too - again, understandable, after being treated like so badly by the California jerk. 

There is definitely chemistry between the two men, and we are treated to some steamy yet emotional scenes between them. This being a Dreamspun Desires title, I expected a grand gesture toward the end - and yeah, I got that. Lovely scene, that.

The entire story and relationship development takes place in just a few weeks' time, which might be too fast for some, but in this case, I believed the timeline from meet-cute to HEA, because the two men knew each other from high school, and both had a bit of a crush on each other - it was easy to see how that spark might be kindled to burst into flame. 

This was my first read by this author team, even though I own the Hat Trick series by Jeff Adams in paperback, which obviously I need to read. Apparently, there will be another book which will be about Dimitri, Caleb's friend and teammate. And judging by how Dimitri feels about romance and long-term relationships in general, I cannot wait to read that one!

Give this a try. While there's a lot of hockey in the book, the romance and relationship take center stage.


** I received a free copy of this book from its publisher. A positive review was not promised in return. **

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review SPOILER ALERT! 2018-01-15 17:51
Shiver (Unbreakable Bonds #1) - DNF @ 50%
Shiver - Rinda Elliott,Jocelynn Drake

That's three for three. What the hell is going on? I've never had this many DNFs in a row. *frustrated sigh*

 

There was some good stuff here, which is why I kept reading so long, hoping the rest of the story would catch up. But...

 

The Good:

 

~Ian seems like a fun character, though I hope he has a good manager since being a good chef isn't enough to keep a restaurant going. 

~Banner, the intrepid detective, is so dedicated to his job he goes on interviews with a flu. Because nothing will scare witnesses into giving answers than fear of getting sick. ;) Naw, that's not why he does it, he just really wants to solve his case.

~This isn't entirely GFY. Andrei's noticed guys and had some sexual encounters with them, but only when their was a woman or alcohol involved. Still, it smacks of GFY because "there's just something about Lucas" that makes him different. What that something is I have no clue. Lucas isn't a bad guy, he's just kind of jerk sometimes.

~The writing is decent and doesn't have too many typos.

 

The Annoying:

 

~Incorrect medical procedures are incorrect. There's no way the hospital would let Andrei out of there, even with a minor burn, without first dressing the burn and wrapping it up, so that whole scene that takes place after the hospital doesn't make sense; it shouldn't need to be happening. And then Lucas is putting this green gel goop on it and also not dressing it. Poor Andrei's shirts are all going to be a mess at this point.

~Speaking of, this is yet another story where the MCs are seriously injured and aside from a few aches and pains the next day, they're walking around like no big deal. At least Lucas took a couple of pills? And only one with alcohol. Yay? But Lucas has broken ribs. RIBS! And he keeps getting thrown down the ground like no big deal. If you're going to go to the trouble of trashing up your characters, can you please remember they're injured? Thanks.

~And why aren't his ribs wrapped?! Are his broken fingers even wrapped or did I just imagine that they were?

~Andrei's supposed to be protecting Lucas's life and keeps getting distracted by his lips and other stuff. Ugh!

~Insta-lust is boring to me on the best days, but when he's lusting after someone covered in cuts and bruises, I have to wonder about the character's mental state.

~Inconsistencies with established facts: Lucas's penthouse is initially described as three stories. Andrei only ever checks the first two stories. What's up with the third floor? Also, Andrei is described many times as being bigger than Lucas, but then suddenly Lucas is bigger than Andrei. Which is it?

 

The Bad:

~Rowe, Lucas and Snow (and Ian) are supposed to be these super tight BBFs but aside from Ian, all the other three seem to do is bicker, fight or strangle (yes, literally) each other at every turn. Just not feeling the unbreakable bond here.

~Lucas is so stupid that he goes off to the property he bought that's putting his life at risk to show off the night skyline view to Andrei. Andrei's so stupid that he actually takes Lucas there. 

~And that's only the first stupid thing they do in the first half. I don't doubt there is plenty more stupidity waiting in the second half.

~That sex scene up against the window is just logistically impossible the way it's written. Andrei's facing the window with his hands on the glass and Lucas is behind him. But then Lucas is suddenly giving Andrei a blowjob. How? Did he crawl between Andrei's legs when no one was looking?

~I kept hoping the glass would pop out of its casing and they'd plummet to their deaths like that Darwin Award winner, but they didn't. :(

~When I realized that I didn't even care enough to skip ahead to see who is targeting Lucas or why, I realized I just needed to put the book down.

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