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text 2016-01-18 17:13
Best Debut Romance Writers of 2015
In Search of Scandal (London Explorers) by Susanne Lord (2015-12-01) - Susanne Lord
Act Like It - Lucy V. Parker
Ruth's Bonded (Ruth & Gron Book 1) - V.C. Lancaster
I've Got My Duke to Keep Me Warm (The Lords of Worth) by Bowen, Kelly (2014) Mass Market Paperback - Kelly Bowen
Change of Heart (A Keepsake Pocket Quilt Novel) - Molly Jebber
The Harlot Countess - Joanna Shupe
Bachelorette for Sale - Gail Chianese
Time's Up (A Maisie McGrane Mystery) - Janey Mack
Hello, I Love You: A Novel - Katie M. Stout
The Coincidence of Coconut Cake - Amy E. Reichert

I am always on the look out for new writers. Here are some great Romance Authors who made their debut in 2015.



Vote on your favorite Best Debut Romance Writers of 2015


My lists are never in any particular order. 



1. The Courtesan Duchess (Wicked Deceptions, #1)  by Joanna Shupe

2. Act Like It by Lucy Parker (first book under this name)

3. In Search of Scandal (London Explorers, #1) by Susanne Lord

4. Ruth's Bonded (Ruth & Gron, #1)  by V.C. Lancaster

5. I've Got My Duke to Keep Me Warm (The Lords of Worth, #1)  by Kelly Bowen

6. Bachelorette for Sale by Gail Chianese

7. Change of Heart by Molly Jebber

8. Time's Up by Janey Mack

9. Hello, I Love You by Katie M. Stout

10. The Coincidence of Coconut Cake by Amy E. Reichert



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review 2015-09-25 19:59
Hello, I Love You: A Novel - Katie M. Stout

I don’t know what I originally read this book for.

Maybe it was all those years ago when I was really interested in that side of the world. Asian culture, but mostly Asian food.

Maybe it was that time I read North of Beautiful but Justina Chen, and thought I may be getting the same wonderful experience with this one.

Maybe it was the music aspect of it even though I know nothing about KPOP.

And I did get ALL of that.

I was immersed in the Korean culture, even when Grace was cutting it down brick by annoying brick.

I got the cute relationship with a serious twist, except when Grace was being a whiny brat.

I felt the music and related to almost all of it, even when Grace thought she knew better than anyone because her daddy is music-producer-douchebag-extraordinaire.

But most of all, the reason why I didn’t give up on this book half way through, is the major character development. Grace actually does grow and sees how she was acting and that is was completely ludicrous of her. And this book desperately needed that to happen!

This was a quick read. I got swept up in the story and wanted to figure out what was up with Grace and Jason!

Hello, I Love You (props for all the Doors references) on the surface, is a story about a spoiled, rich girl who moves across the country because she wasn’t agreeing with her parents. But, on the inside, once you get past the rough start, it’s a story of family and loss and new beginnings.


review at yabookscentral.com

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review 2015-06-20 06:48
did not like
Hello, I Love You: A Novel - Katie M. Stout

***This review has also been posted on The Social Potato

The only reason this book wasn't a nightmare for me was because it was strangely addictive and it was more comically bad (in my opinion), than rage-worthy bad.

Grace is a young, rich, privileged, lady who chose to go to a boarding school in South Korea because she wants to get away from home. Then she proceeds to complain about all the things in Korea that are not up to her standards and how she misses home. Now, I understand cultural shock. Believe me, I do. But I have no sympathy for Grace. Especially since she chose to go to South Korea. If she was going to be so whiny, I would have advised her to choose a location more like the UK or Australia so could be far from home and not have to deal with language barriers and other cultural barriers. She does get a little better over the course of the book, but never enough for me to truly like her or feel bad for her.

Her love interest is also a douche. Talk about moody bad boy. Who even likes moody boys these days? (I am sorry if you do! I don't mean to offend you!) I don’t like moody. I don’t like boys who cannot make their mind up about whether or not they like a girl. And I certainly do not like boys who are assholes to girls they supposedly like. Jason does get better over the course of the novel but I never felt it. Why couldn’t he just be nice without, you know, having to fall in love to be nice? Wouldn’t that be nice?

Their relationship is also just weird and I never really understood that progression. Suddenly they were bffs and I never even saw them have any real conversations except for when they talked about music!

Let’s not even talk about all the ways this book can be offensive. That would be opening a can of worms I do not want to get into. Especially since it really just depends on who the reader is and how they interpret the way things are being said.

This is a book I’d recommend only to readers who are willing to overlook pretentious main characters (who admittedly do get better over the course of the book), asshole love interests and some clichés.

To conclude this review, I’d like to quote something my favorite character in the book said about American money.

“All the bills are the same color and have old white men on them.”


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review 2015-06-14 00:00
Hello, I Love You
Hello, I Love You - Katie M. Stout Hello, I Love You - Katie M. Stout 2.5 - 3 stars

This dragged for me, and I didn't think there was any chemistry between Grace and Jason. I read this mainly for the setting, but the school might as well have been anywhere, which was a big disappointment. I didn't get a feeling that Grace was in a foreign country, and the fact that everyone she interacted with spoke English didn't help make this unique or different.

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review 2015-06-11 04:02
Hello, I Love You: A Novel - Katie M. Stout

Oh, this book.  So much hope and….


Yeah, didn’t work.


To be honest, the review pre-release  of Hello, I Love You hadn’t been great, BUT I decided to give it an honest try anyway since my knowledge on Korea is very low.

The result.  It wasn’t as bad (to me at least) as the reviews were making it out to be, but it wasn’t great.




The writing itself is engaging enough.  I breezed through this thing maybe in three hours if I didn’t have mandatory real life breaks.  And I did like the love interest and the supporting characters that were developed in this book.


What I didn’t like was the main character.


She was insufferable.  And while an insufferable character can work if she’s developed into someone relatable throughout the book, Grace wasn’t.


She is obnoxious.  She stereotypes and generalizes everything about South Korea.  And doesn’t learn from anything.  In fact, the only person worse than her on being an obnoxious tourist is that chick whose main focus in Europe was getting a Big Mac.  Okay, maybe in the last fifth of the book when Grace states she was a horrible person but five pages later her bad behavior pops up again.  Even the fact that her mother is a worse person than her and emotionally abuses her doesn’t make me warm up to this close minded character.


And that’s why the romance really didn’t work for me, because I didn’t know why a guy as nice as Jason would be attracted to such a shrew.


Grace aside, I was really underwhelmed by this book.  Aside from a couple of mentions of Korean food and a brief mention of what K-Pop and K-Dramas are there was no exploration here.  I really think the one other Korea book-Gilded-did a better job describing the country than this one and that’s saying something.


A part of this might’ve been because in its original draft, the book was set in China.  So maybe Stout found it hard to incorporate Korea into the book because she originally used Chinese landmarks or experiences that just didn’t fit. Because most of the Korea we saw was at the school or in the mall.  But at the same time, and this is the huge but, I felt a lot of things about the book were treated like the usage of the setting-it was underdeveloped.


The story itself could’ve been worked further.  I feel like if there would’ve been more exploration with the Grace character maybe I could’ve liked her.  Maybe if she actually had to change and work on herself before being with Jason I would’ve felt the relationship more.  I also feel like if the side characters could’ve been developed besides hot Asian boy banders there could’ve been more of that magical feel you felt when you read Anna and the French Kiss.


And I felt like this book tried way too hard to be Anna and the French Kiss.



Book, don’t try to be something you aren’t. It will be less painful.




There were several scenes in this book that made me give the book the old side eye with it trying so blatantly but failing at being Anna and the French Kiss.  Here are a few examples:

  • *Girl goes to boarding school (to be fair this one was given in the blurb, so was the Anna and the French Kiss comparison come to think of it).
  • *Girl’s roommate is close to an unattainable cocky hot guy that’s sort of a jerk.
  • *Unattainable hot guy and girl grow close.
  • *Both have horrible family situations.
  • *They spend Thanksgiving together in a romantic type way.
  • *They get into a convoluted fight and reiterate it’s not going to happen
  • *Of course it happens that they get together at the end.


Of course there’s more to it than that, but at least with Anna you felt the characters, felt them go through the motions.  With Hello, I Love You you didn’t get the characters at the level you got them in the former book.  While I did get some idea of who Grace and Jason were at the best it was only done on a shallow level.


The same goes with the musical aspect as well.  We keep hearing how great and talented Grace is with music, but I didn’t see any examples of her mad skills other than the fact that she has pretty elitist taste when it comes to music.  I don’t even know if she can read music, so I don’t consider her a prodigy.


The big dramatic reveal of the plot, sort of seemed out of place since there was really no build up.  To be honest, a lot of the stuff in this book felt out of place.  Because no build up.  Which is a shame because there were a lot of things about this one that could’ve made for an interesting and fun read.


I hope Katie M Stout’s books will improve.  I really liked the concept of this one, and to be fair if you ignored Grace’s bigotry and bitchiness there were a few glimmers of hope here and there.  But overall, this book just didn’t work.



Source: howdyyal.wordpress.com/2015/06/11/ok-not-hello-i-love-you-by-katie-m-stout
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