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review 2018-09-06 13:01
Release Blitz w/Review - Her Royal Boyfriend

 

Title: Her Royal Boyfriend

Author: K.R.Grace

Genre: New Adult

Release Date: September 6, 2018

Hosted by: Buoni Amici Press, LLC.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Reese Fitzgerald knows how to go for the gold…except when it comes to dating. After her gymnastic career ends with a near-death accident, she decides attending college is the best way to submerge herself into a regular life. Ever the Olympic athlete, Reese plans to go all in with the college experience: dating, sororities, football games, and one night of beer pong gone wrong. What she does not expect is to be sucked into a media frenzy by a prince with dreamy eyes and a smile that makes her forget her name.

 

 

Mason Livingston has two years before he becomes king, and he plans to spend every bit of it living it up in America. Girls, parties, and drinking are par for the course. When a story leaks about an incident involving a friend back home, he must find a way to restore his country’s faith in his ability to assume his father’s throne. His advisors convince him the best way to do so is by showing he has found his queen. Someone with grace, elegance, and pedigree. And he sets his sights on Reese.

 

Will the two together be Olympic gold, or will Mason turn out to be just another frog?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Her Royal Boyfriend (Awkward Duckling, #3)Her Royal Boyfriend by K.R. Grace
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is book #3, in the Awkward Duckling series. This book can be read as a standalone novel. For reader understanding, and to avoid spoilers, I recommend reading this great series in order.

Reese meets Mason on the flight over to the school they will both be attending. He shocks her and technically uses her, so she is skeptical to believe anything he tells her after that. Unfortunately, you cannot help you are attracted to, and they often run into one another.

Mason is looking for a real relationship. He is in a hurry to have one, since his parents and country are pushing him to clean up his image. He realizes there is more to Reese than at first glance, and he wants to get to know her better.

This was such a surprise! I loved the banter and was laughing out loud as I read. These characters are such a joy. I really liked the pace, and there was chemistry right from the start. The friendships in this series are great also. This was just a great read.


***This early copy was given in exchange for an honest review only.

View all my reviews

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a child, K.R. Grace had an overactive imagination. When it was obvious she wasn’t going to change anytime soon, her mom shoved a pen and paper in her hand and said, “Write it down.” So, at the age of eight, her first story was born, and the writing hasn’t stopped since. When she’s not running with wolves, sleeping with bears, or flying with falcons, she can be found checking out local bands or watching movies about things that go “boo” in the night. She lives in East Tennessee with a dog that is afraid of his own shadow and a cat that was a mob leader in a former life.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

 

 

 

 

 

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review 2018-09-06 06:53
Fresh start
Her Royal Boyfriend - KR Grace

This is book #3, in the Awkward Duckling series.  This book can be read as a standalone novel.  For reader understanding, and to avoid spoilers, I recommend reading this great series in order.

 

Reese meets Mason on the flight over to the school they will both be attending.  He shocks her and technically uses her, so she is skeptical to believe anything he tells her after that.  Unfortunately, you cannot help you are attracted to, and they often run into one another.

 

Mason is looking for a real relationship.  He is in a hurry to have one, since his parents and country are pushing him to clean up his image.  He realizes there is more to Reese than at first glance, and he wants to get to know her better.

 

This was such a surprise!  I loved the banter and was laughing out loud as I read.  These characters are such a joy.  I really liked the pace, and there was chemistry right from the start.  The friendships in this series are great also.  This was just a great read.  I give this story a 4/5 Kitty's Paws UP!

 

 

***This early copy was given in exchange for an honest review only.

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review 2018-08-06 07:16
Go For It, Nakamura! (one-shot manga) story and art by Syundei, translation by Amber Tamosaitis
Go For It, Nakamura! - SYUNDEI

Go For It, Nakamura! is comedy with gay high school romance elements. I want to emphasize, however, that it isn't a romance. If the series ever gets another volume (maybe it already has, just not in English?), I could see it becoming a romance, but this particular volume is not.

Nakamura is an awkward, introverted, and occasionally uncomfortably intense 16-year old. He adores his pet octopus, Icchan. He has no friends and practises conversations in his head all the time but has difficulty actually having them in real life. He also happens to be gay. He has an enormous crush on his popular and outgoing classmate, Hirose, and his goal is to 1) actually talk to him and 2) become friends with him.

I picked this up on a whim. Happily, this turned out to be a good decision. For the most part, I loved this volume.

I don't handle secondhand embarrassment well and found myself having to take breaks several times while reading this. Nakamura was painfully awkward in ways that, yes, were played for humor but were also often realistic enough that awkward and/or introverted readers could probably find something to relate to. One particular horrible moment Nakamura remembered exactly matched a horrible memory from my own middle school years. Seeing it on-page was a bit horrifying.

I rooted for Nakamura, but I also had issues with him. I disliked how completely focused he was on Hirose. He had zero friends, and yet when his efforts to talk to and impress Hirose led to him meeting and talking to Hirose's friends, he never once considered them to be potential friends. Instead, he viewed anyone who was even vaguely close to Hirose as rivals and possible sources of information about Hirose. He also didn't seem to realize that a lot of the things he was doing to try to get to know Hirose better were kind of creepy, like eavesdropping on Hirose's conversations to find out what sorts of things he liked.

Chapter 2 contained one of my least favorite moments, a single panel in which Nakamura had a sudden tentacle rape fantasy about Hirose. And Chapter 4 was a little weird, introducing a fujoshi artist who developed a crush on Nakamura. I'm still not sure whether she was aware that Nakamura liked Hirose, although I don't see how she could've missed it considering the nature of Nakamura's request.

Aside from those things, however, I really enjoyed this volume. The artwork was well-done and reminded me a lot of Rumiko Takahashi. And the humor usually worked for me, despite my secondhand embarrassment issues. It was focused on Nakamura's awkwardness and his efforts to accomplish something where his secret crush was concerned, but it didn't feel, to me, like Syundei was being overly cruel to Nakamura or making fun of him for being gay. (Be warned, however, that there are a couple instances of homophobia. At one point, for example, Nakamura's teacher laughed at the idea of two boys dating.)

The last couple chapters had some surprisingly serious moments, as Nakamura began to lose hope that he'd ever truly connect with Hirose and become his friend. He compared himself to his effortlessly cool teacher, who Hirose certainly idolized and, Nakamura feared, possibly had a crush on, and found himself focusing on all the ways he fell short.

The ending was sweet. I considered it reasonably satisfying, although some readers might not feel the same. Syundei gave Nakamura a bit of happiness but left plenty of room for the story to be continued.

Although the romance fan in me might have liked something more, I think it would have felt rushed and weird - not to mention there'd still be the issue of Nakamura's potentially unhealthy level of focus on Hirose, and what that would mean for any sort of romantic relationship between them. One interesting thing: This may be the only work I've ever read where the closeted main character is still closeted by the end, but not unhappy.

(spoiler show)


Extras:

A couple full-color pages, character profiles for Nakamura and Hirose, and a 2-page comic-style afterword by the author. In the afterword, Syundei talks a little about each chapter's creation - I wonder if the "tentacle rape" panel would have made it in if Syundei had known the series was going to continue?

 

Rating Note:

 

I debated between 4.5 and 5 stars for this. I don't really know that it deserves 5 stars, considering its problems, but I've found myself going back and rereading parts of it several times since I finished it. I decided that's worth bumping my rating up.

 

(Original review posted on A Library Girl's Familiar Diversions.)

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review 2018-05-23 20:41
The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl
The Misadventures of Awkward Black Girl - Issa Rae

The Story:

Sitting here a full 26 hours after finishing I don’t have anything significant to say about this book. I enjoyed listening to it. I laughed and commiserated with Issa’s pain. I had wonderful nostalgic memories of 90’s music. I was jealous that I didn’t come from such a multicultural family and do not speak more than one language.

Overall the book was well written and narrated and kept me interested.


The Random Thoughts:



The Score Card:

description

4 Stars

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review 2018-04-24 06:39
the Awkward Squad
The Awkward Squad - Sam Gordon,Sophie Hénaff

I can't remember where I heard about this book (best bet is here on BL) but it was described as a new mystery series similar to the old tv show Leverage*.  The premise of the show was a group of misfits coming together to right the wrongs big business perpetrated against the people.  The Awkward Squad's misfits are police officers unfit for regular duty but can't be fired, banded together and stuffed away in a remote location with the ostensible task of investigating cold cases.  I loved Leverage, so bought this directly after it came out.

 

It's not quite Leverage - the misfits here aren't conmen, toughs or savants; these misfits are all broken by their jobs in one way or another, but it's close enough.  For a first novel, I thought the story was excellent and well plotted too, although with definite room for improvement.  It was written well enough that I only had vague suspicions about the solution, but not done so well that the author was able to lead me down the blind alley she'd constructed.  The characters were the kind you cheer on, even if some of them aren't always likeable.

 

I didn't know when I bought the book that it was originally published in France a few years ago, under the name Poulets grillés.  This leaves me with a lingering suspicion that it might have been an even better book in the original French.  Not that the translation is bad - as far as I can tell it's flawless - but some of the marketing I've seen raves about the book humor. I can see how it's meant to be amusing, and one scene was definitely shooting for hilarity, but either something was lost in translation or it's a cultural difference of what defines funny.  

 

Either way, I didn't like it less because I suspect I'm missing something, I just wonder if, had those 2.5 years of French lessons stuck at all, and I were able to read it in the original, I'd have liked it even more.  Ce n'est pas grave, if Hēnaff writes another one, I'll happily be on board for reading it (in translation). 

 

* - Has also been compared to Jussi Adler-Olsen’s tales about Copenhagen’s equally marginal Department Q.  I cannot comment on how accurate this is, as I've not read Adler-Olsen.  Yet?

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