Category: Review (Page 1 of 239)

BOOK REVIEW: Dauntless (In Vino Veritas #6) by Victoria Denault

BOOK REVIEW: Dauntless (In Vino Veritas #6) by Victoria DenaultDauntless (In Vino Veritas #6)
by Victoria Denault
Purchase on: Amazon
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

He’s everything I’ve ever wanted, at the worst possible moment.

One and done. That’s always been my motto when it comes to guys, because I’m not about to pull someone else into the closet my parents have locked me inside. I’ve been waiting years to claim my inheritance and live the life I want to live–out, free, and oh yeah, rich.

So why is the universe dropping the sexy farm boy with the lazy smile into my life right now? When Bowen Whitlock says he’ll join my band, and later my bed, I know one time won’t be enough.

But loving Bowen is dangerous for me. And he has his own struggles, like keeping his family afloat and trying not to get fired from his job at Vino and Veritas. But he lives his life with an authenticity that gives me a tantalizing taste of living my truth.

My secret relationship with Bowen is everything, until someone betrays us in the worst possible way…

Review

WHAT A WAY TO END A WONDERFUL SERIES! Oh my gosh this was such a great addition and Bowen and Chase completed this series in the best way. (Also yes I was cackling at the fact Bowen’s name is Bowen and that there was a reference to Him while Chase was visiting the bookstore side of Vino & Veritas LOL). I was lucky enough to get my hands on an advanced listener copy of this one which worked out great because I had a long drive yesterday and was able to finish almost all of it in one go! The narrators were PERFECTION. It’s crazy how that really can make or break my experience with a story sometimes but it’s true. Teddy Hamilton and John Lane you did great, sweeties.

Not like I even need to mention this in yet another review for this series but I WILL just to get the point across. The chemistry that Bowen and Chase had was off. the. freaking. charts. Bowen is the “sexy hemp farmer” that we first heard about back in Wildfire who was selling buns to Joss and Chase is first seen for tiny bit in Wonderland when he offers to help the Meadows family with the old amusement park. During one of Bowen’s many disastrous nights at V&V, Chase has his own disaster. The drummer for his cover band flakes and what do you know? Bowen knows how to play drums and knows several of the songs that the band had already planned on playing.

Apart from these two getting to know each other more through band practice and the occasional gig, we also see conflict in the form of Chase not truly being out with his sexuality because of his shitty family who are all knee deep in politics and because he doesn’t want to lose access to a trust fund he plans on using to better their community. Bowen’s brother is also trying to run for Mayor during the book and his main opponent is a family friend to Chase’s. So really, the two are dealing with a lot in this book, both together and separately. Without spoiling anything, I will say that Chase does have a moment towards the end where he makes a choice during a very pivotal scene and it is SO good, you guys. I love love love how the ending turned out so much. It was such a treat to be able to come back and spend more time with both new and old characters!


Huge thanks to Heart Eyes Press for allowing me to listen to an ALC of this book in exchange for my honest review!

BOOK REVIEW: Wonderland (In Vino Veritas #5) by Rachel Ember

BOOK REVIEW: Wonderland (In Vino Veritas #5) by Rachel EmberWonderland (In Vino Veritas #5)
by Rachel Ember
Purchase on: Amazon
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

I left Vermont on the most painful day of my life and swore I’d never go back. Meadows Park–the shuttered amusement park that’s been in my family for generations–is the home of all my finest and worst memories. They all star Peter Landry–the best friend I ever had, and the only guy I’ve ever loved.

But then my eccentric grandfather buried two million dollars on the property and couldn’t remember where.

So I’m back, and asking Peter for help. He’s an Ivy League lawyer now. Still gorgeous, and able to gut me with a single smile. And I’m still a disappointment, living in the city and washing dishes to get by. As soon as we strike off down the first sunlit path, the Meadows Park magic begins to fill my heart with yearning, lust, and most dangerous of all—dreams.

I’m secretly relieved each time the day ends, leaving us empty-handed. I know it’s wrong—without that money, we could lose the park.

But if I find the treasure, I lose the guy.

Review

Wonderland truly deserves gold for having the most unique premise in this series! This story revolves around Peter (Aaron’s friend from law school that we meet in Counterpoint) and Riley Meadows. Riley’s grandpa who was his most stable and caring family member growing up was best friends with Peter’s uncle so the two spent many a summer together when they were younger on the land that Grandpa Meadows owned. It was home to an old amusement park that had been closed down for many years even at that point but it didn’t stop the two from exploring every inch and using the land as their personal playground. Naturally the two became best friends and from there, their relationship progressed into something more and they eventually experienced quite a few firsts together.

Fast forward about ten years and the two are thrown together again after not having any contact for YEARS. After a falling out/injury the two parted ways, never planning on seeing each other again. Because of how special their relationship had been in the past, it was no surprise to me when they immediately felt that old sizzle during their first meeting. Sure, part of it was anger and confusion on Peter’s part from not knowing what even happened to cause the rift in the first place but mostly it was purely their old attraction.

In a wild turn of events Riley finds out that his grandpa…..misplaced…something, LOL and the two band together like old times to help him find it. That honestly was my favorite part. Just those two, “forced” together trying to do this very important thing for Grandpa Meadows, back in a place that meant SO much to the both of them. I loved seeing them talk about what went wrong with that last argument they had in the past and how they still meant so much to each other, even after all these years. I am such a sucker to childhood-friends-turned-lovers, especially if a second chance romance is also thrown in the mix. SUCH a good story and I really really enjoyed every minute. AND LEMON!!!

Huge thanks to Heart Eyes Press for allowing me to listen to an ALC in exchange for my honest review!

BOOK REVIEW: Underdog (In Vino Veritas #4) by L.A. Witt

BOOK REVIEW: Underdog (In Vino Veritas #4) by L.A. WittUnderdog (In Vino Veritas #4)
Purchase on: Amazon
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Life in foster care wasn’t easy. Life after prison? Unforgiving. But I’m determined to stay out of trouble, and I’m gaining a foothold on the closest I’ve ever known to normal.

Then, thanks to a pair of escape artist dogs from the sanctuary where I’ve found work, I cross paths with my boss’s neighbor, Ty Adams. He’s a horse trainer, and winter is his quiet season. It’s also the season when he gets restless and lonely—two things I know all about. He’s not interested in love or romance. I’m just happy someone’s interested in me at all, even if emotions are strictly forbidden.

When we’re not together, I’m thinking about him. When we are together… Well, I’m definitely thinking about what he does to me and what I want to do with him.

As we keep each other warm through the Vermont winter, this feels a lot more than physical. Somehow he soothes my pain, and I wonder if I’m touching something deep inside him too. But Ty won’t let himself love anyone. I never had a chance. And now, with my past closing in, I could lose the one man I hoped I could count on. The one I thought might be different.

When his present and my history collide, is it too much to hope he’ll choose me?

CW: Sick horse and a minor accident involving a horse—no animal deaths or serious injuries/illnesses.

Review

Ahhhhh I feel terrible that it took me so long to review this but I felt like death last week/ this weekend and just…couldn’t.

Anyway, I was so excited to get Ty and Landon’s story after we got a few little tidbits here and there from Luke meeting and texting with Landon during Unmanageable. Gosh I am just such a sucker for these series that interconnect even if you don’t HAVE to read all of the books in order. I was immediately drawn in by the animals in this book. Blain and Houdini really stole the show for me hehe those little trouble making escape artists. Also!!! The horses! As a Millennial I’m pretty sure I can speak for most of my generation when I say that it was impossible to grow up and not be a horse girl for at least a small chunk of time. I read all of the horse books I could get my hands on and wanted one for myself until I was able to ride one at a local county fair and it actually scared the hell out of me, LOLLL but I digress. The animals were a special part of this book and I really, really enjoyed that element.

On to the characters and relationship. ONCE AGAIN, the immediate chemistry that Ty and Landon had was off the charts. I’m not sure how this has happened so consistently in every book this series has given us so far but I am a huge fan. Ty lived and breathed horse training and boarding and competitions. That was his family’s whole world and he continued on the legacy after his parents decided to retire. Because that was such a demanding and time consuming lifestyle, he has always tried to keep relationships low key and simple. Landon on the other hand has recently gotten out of almost a decades worth of time in jail/prison. He didn’t have an easy or stable childhood which led to him getting into a lot of bad situations that he just couldn’t seem to get himself out of. That has all changed though. This time around he is determined to live life the “right” way and stay as far away from trouble as he possibly can. Through a work rehabilitation program, he was hired by Brent and Jon (MCs of Aftermath in the Vino and Veritas series) to work for Second Chances Animal Sanctuary and eventually started working for Ty at Lost Acres Farm after Ty learned he had experience with horses and was good with animals.

As you might expect this book deals a lot with the aftermath of Landon being a released prisoner and how other people perceive him because of that. Oof my heart. The BEST part of this how this specific theme played out in this book was how, for the most part anyway, Ty trusted Landon with his whole gut and gave him so many more opportunities than most people would. That’s all it takes sometimes. People who have spent time imprisoned can’t hope to reintegrate with society if they don’t have people at their back, encouraging them and actually helping them live a normal life again. This book definitely brought up a lot of things I never would have thought about before and I know I will be keeping them in mind for the future….On the opposite end of that there are also parts of this book that feature many people mistrusting Landon and even trying their best to get him to screw up because they assume that’s all he’s capable of. That hurt to read. L.A. Witt is definitely a pro at tugging on heartstrings in a very real way, let me tell you.

Seriously this is one you aren’t going to want to miss!

Huge thanks to Heart Eyes Press for allowing me to read an eARC of this book in exchange for my honest review!

BOOK REVIEW: Stealing Infinity (Stolen Beauty #1) by Alyson Noel

BOOK REVIEW: Stealing Infinity (Stolen Beauty #1) by Alyson NoelStealing Infinity (Stolen Beauty #1)
by Alyson Noel
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

These days, I’ve been killing it when it comes to letting people down. Now I’ve been kicked out of high school, arrested, and accepted into a remote, off-the-grid school owned and operated by an inscrutable billionaire tech guru.

Gray Wolf Academy is looking for a certain kind of student. Ones that no one will miss. Like me.

Then there’s Braxton. The beautiful, oddly anachronistic guy who showed up right when the trouble started. And he’s a total enigma―which means that I definitely can’t trust him, even if there’s something about him that makes me want to.

They all tell me I have a gift. A very rare gift. And Gray Wolf Academy wants me to learn it. To use it. Because if what they say is true, I have all the time in the world.

And that makes me the most dangerous high school student you’ll never know…

Review:

When you can’t go back, the only choice left is to move forward.

Stealing Infinity was a unique fantasy that kept me guessing!  With a premise of traveling into the past, and an academy setting, this book completely intrigued me.  If you love young adult, academy or time traveling, then you’ll want this one on your tbr!

“What the hell is happening?”
Last thing I remember, before I black out, is the feel of Braxton’s arms breaking my fall.
“Oh darling,” he says. “I’m afraid you’re about to find out.”

Natasha seemed to be struggling to get by.  Not only in life, but financially and with her mother too.  Her dad disappeared when she was younger and her one constant was her fabulous friend, Mason.  She also had Elodie as a friend, but she seemed to have ‘bad friend choice’ written all over her lol.  Elodie was flashy, people were obsessed with her and she took Natasha on adventures instead of being in school, where she belonged.  After being arrested and kicked out of school, Natasha was shipped off to a remote school where her entire world completely changed.

“You’ve been accepted into Gray Wolf Academy.” He waits, like he’s expecting me to be grateful or something.
“Yeah, no thanks.” I stab another forkful of buttermilk pancake and lift it to my mouth. Taking great satisfaction in the way Braxton stares at me in shock.

I liked Natasha right away.  I loved how confident she could be.  She was so sure of herself, even when she faltered.  So as we slowly started to learn about this new world, it was right along with Natasha.  Not all was what it seemed, and I wanted to scream at her to be suspicious.  Yes she was given weird answers at times, but she was smart and cunning.  So I was thankful when she started to put stuff together.  Add in that we got to see memories from her past and it completely rounded out this story.  Those memories were like clues leading to her future.  And I couldn’t wait to see how it all went together.

On my waist, I can feel the ghost of his hand.
There’s a place on my neck where his lips continue to haunt.
And I have no idea what to do with any of that.

Braxton, hmmm.  I wasn’t exactly sure what to think of him.  Could he be trusted?  I loved how he got flustered around Natasha and that he made Natasha feel cared for.  But he could also be hot and cold with her.  So there were many moments I desperately wished we knew his thoughts.  I understood why she liked him, but call me a skeptic….I hesitated with him.  So when Killian stepped onto the pages, he garnered all of my attention.  Yes he intrigued me too, but there was just something about him that so easily captured my attention.  He was brave, heroic, took chances and caused all of the butterflies. I don’t think I’ve ever said this before, but I’m hoping for a love triangle because goodbye Braxton and hello Killian.  Please?  Pretty please?

The pieces of the puzzle are coming together, but I’ve got a terrible feeling about the image they’re forming.

Stealing Infinity was a ton of fun and I’m looking forward to reading that next book!  With so many other characters in the pages, I had some strong opinions and I can’t wait to see if I’m right down the road.  And I loved that this book started in the past, her father gave us a glimpse that was filled with so much knowledge. So after finishing this story, I went back and read that prologue and eeps, soooo many things clicked into place!  I highly recommend doing that too!  Finishing that last page we were left at a good stopping point but also left us wanting more!  Come on next book!

With my back against the wall, I crouch low in the shadows, head bent in submission, hands pressed together as though praying for redemption.
Whoever it is, they’re in for a surprise.
I am not the broken girl they’re expecting to find.

*I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book, provided by the author. All thoughts and opinions are my own.*

BOOK REVIEW: House of Beating Wings (The Kingdom of Crows #1) by Olivia Wildenstein

BOOK REVIEW: House of Beating Wings (The Kingdom of Crows #1) by Olivia WildensteinHouse of Beating Wings (The Kingdom of Crows #1)
by Olivia Wildenstein
Purchase on: Amazon
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

FREE THE CROWS, FALLON, AND THEY WILL MAKE YOU QUEEN.

Until an oracle predicted my regal future, I'd never imagined myself rising above the curve of my round ears. After all, I was the magicless halfling loved by beasts but loathed by every pure-blooded faerie at court. Well . . . by all but one.

Dante Regio, prince of Luce, had owned my heart since he gave me my first kiss. If gathering a slew of iron relics could help me overthrow the current monarch and crown his brother to rule at my side, then treasure hunting I'd go.

If only the oracle had warned me what winged demon I was releasing into the world.

And that I'd become this demon's obsession.

Fans of Sarah J. Maas and Mary E. Pearson will devour this epic fantasy romance full of deceit, betrayal, and false loves that could swallow a person whole.

Review:

House of Beating Wings completely consumed me.  This magical world filled with fae grabbed a hold of my heart and refused to let go.  There was peril and heart stopping moments within the pages!  Truces were made with consequences attached to them.  And the characters and story-line leaped from the pages!  Fans of fantasy won’t be able to put this story down!

Antoni squeezes my waist. “One day soon, there’ll be peace.” 
I frown because I hadn’t realized we were at war.

Fallon was a magicless halfling who was given a prophecy, free the crows and they will make you queen.  Being loathed by the full blooded fae, Fallon was intrigued to go above her station.  Especially since she saw a chance with having a future with her friend, Dante.  Who was brother to the crown.  Fallon’s world was changed forever when she started her quest to free the crows!

I’ve stolen a mythical, murderous creature. I shudder as the depth of what I’ve done folds over me like dark water.

I loved Fallon!  She was brave, head strong, honest, had a good heart and loved her friends.  Because of her rounded ears, she was discriminated against and it hurt my heart.  Yet there was so much more to Fallon than meets the eye.  She could supposedly charm the beasts that lived in their waters.  And one of them captured my heart, I was just as nervous for his fate and I was for Fallon’s.  I was also so nervous for Fallon because she seemed to have all of her faith and trust in Dante.  And as her Grandma reminded her, they could never be.  Yet the key to her future revolved around releasing the crows, so we jumped head first into a spellbinding adventure with Fallon!

“Don’t betray me and I won’t betray you.”

The romance in this book will keep you on your toes!  It was brilliant how it all unfolded.  I found myself vacillating between Antoni and Dante.  I didn’t know which one would be the right choice for Fallon and I liked them both for different reasons.  But hold on, because a few somethings happened and my mind was reeling.  The story took me somewhere that had my pulse pounding, I beyond ecstatic and it was absolutely genius!  Fans of slow burn romance are going to love it!

“You’re such an ass.”The chuckle that resounds between my temples widens  my eyes. “Did you just . . . laugh, Morrgot?”
A charmless ass like  myself laugh? You must be hearing things.

The crows, oh there is so much I want to say but my lips are zipped except for a few things. Dark sarcasm, it was phenomenal! The lengths that were went to to protect, oh my heart there was nothing that was off limits.  And the way Fallon was led, there were so many secrets and twists within the pages.  I loved watching the little pieces of the puzzle come together.  Looking back some of my guesses were correct!  Others I didn’t even see coming.  I don’t even know how many times I gasped out loud or was muttering omg again and again to myself.  This story blew my mind!

I’m not defective. 
My lids burn. My chest hurts from how chaotically my heart beats. 
I’m not defective.

With a richly imagined world, a dark and luscious story and characters that were brilliantly done, House of Beating Wings was a phenomenal start to a new series!  This story kept me glued to the pages and consumed my every waking thought.  The ending left us at the perfect stopping spot  but I’m anxiously dying for that next book, I have to know what happens next.  Fans of fantasy should definitely have this book on their tbr!

I won’t fail you, I whisper through the bond.

*I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book, provided by the author. All thoughts and opinions are my own.*

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