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BOOK REVIEW- Addicted After All (Addicted #3) by Krista and Becca Ritchie

BOOK REVIEW- Addicted After All (Addicted #3) by Krista and Becca RitchieAddicted After All (Addicted #3)
by Krista and Becca Ritchie
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
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Synopsis:

Two addicts. One epic love story.

Prepare for the worst.

That’s what Lily and Lo try to do when Jonathan Hale schedules an “important” meeting. The problem: after being swept into the public eye and battling their addictions, they’re not sure what the worst is anymore.

In a sea of many changes—including Ryke & Daisy living with them—Lily realizes that the best part of her fluctuating hormones might just be the worst.

Her sex drive is out of control.

Loren knows that she’s insatiable, but he’s not giving up on her. She’s too much a part of him. And as he carries more and more responsibility, some of the people that he loves doubt his resolve.

In the conclusion to their love story, Lily & Lo stand side-by-side to fight, one last time, for their happily ever after.

I fell in love with Lo like a little girl opening her heart to magic. It always seemed surreal until the moment it became true. 

What a ride this series has been. It has been so fun re-reading these books again after having read about their children in the About Us series.  While you could read those separately, and even the Calloway Sisters series separately, it makes more of an impact if you had started at the very beginning with Lily and Lo.

And there is a hope, a chance, that he could be more than what I am. That he could be better than me. 

Initially I had decided to go back and read this series despite the negative things that I had seen about book one because of how much I fell in love with this family in the Calloway Sisters books. So much so that I felt like I owed it to Lily and Lo. In the other series, which really focuses on Rose and Daisy, I felt like I just didn’t know enough about this couple that had struggled with two very serious addictions for nearly their whole lives. I found myself being put off my Lo’s abrasiveness because I did not understand where it was coming from. I also found myself being annoyed with Lily’s skittish nature and her inability to talk about anything sex related without either turning bright red or hiding. I still came to love them though and connected with them through their talk of all things geek so I wanted a chance to remedy that.

A feeling swirls inside of me—one where you know someone all your life, but in a singular moment they look strangely different. Like you’re unearthing a fragment of them that has never surfaced or been touched before. 

By the time that this book came around, the progress that both Lily and Lo have made has been tremendous. Yes, that first book is heartbreaking and hard to read –it’s about two terrible addictions. HOWEVER, if you can weather through it (and I hope you do) it gets better. It’s not all completely smooth sailing, as both of them continue to struggle with their addictions but they TRY. They gain their strong support system and try and they gain hope which is good.

“Fly away with me, Lily Calloway?” 
She whispers, “Only if we make-believe that we never, ever have to grow up.” 

My favorite part of this book in particular was reading about the pregnancies of Rose and Lily. I almost felt cheated in Fuel the Fire because the last time I had seen the two girls, they had just found out they were pregnant and then then it skipped straight to them having the babies. I wanted to DEFINITELY see a fierce, pregnant Rose but I also wanted to see how Lo and Lily handled it seeing as they weren’t sure if they ever wanted kids. It was delightful. ALSO—that friggen scene where Rose has her baby….INTENSE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! CONNOR ♥ Loved it.

“For what it’s worth,” I tell Connor, “it’s kind of extraordinary that you can transcend sexual orientations. You’re like an amoeba.”
“Amoebas are asexual,”
he says. “I’m more like a god.” 

Another important thing that you get to see in these books are the relationships that form between Lo and Connor and especially, Lo and Ryke. Right away in Kiss the Sky you see that Lo and Connor have this really close relationship and hilarious banter but you never really get the gist of how it all happened. I loved being able to see Connor meeting the two and then how Ryke ends up inserting himself into their lives. It really is a special thing and you can really see how much Lo ends up depending on his brother for help staying sober.

“Or you could write one,” I shoot back, rising to my feet. “Perks of having the Hots for a Sixteen-Year-Old Supermodel and Having to Wait until She Turns Eighteen, Only to be Cock-blocked by Your Bastard Half-Brother.”
I flash a bitter smile.
“That title needs some work,”
Connor says, clipping on his Rolex watch. “And that’s if we all agree Ryke can write a full-length novel.” 

What I am TRYING to say is that if you have read the Calloway Sisters and fell in love with the characters like I have, you realllllly need to read this series too. It may be hard at first but believe it, it is so worth it being able to get into ALL of their lives, learning about every facet of each of them. I haven’t been able to read anything else since starting this series and am SOOOOO excited to read Some Kind of Perfect (which is basically a 664 page prologue of the three couples growing up and having babies).

“Your name is on her ass,” I state blankly.
“I’m so fucking in love with her,”
is all he says. And I believe every word. 

BOOK REVIEW- Addicted for Now (Addicted #2) by Krista and Becca Ritchie

BOOK REVIEW- Addicted for Now (Addicted #2) by Krista and Becca RitchieAddicted for Now (Addicted #2)
by Krista and Becca Ritchie
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

He's addicted to booze. She's addicted to sex... staying sober is only half the battle.

No. More. Sex.

Those are the three words Lily Calloway fears the most. But Loren Hale is determined to be with Lily without enabling her dangerous compulsions. With their new living situation—sleeping in the same bed, for real, together—Lily has new battles. Like not jumping Lo’s bones every night. Not being consumed by sex and his body.

Loren plans to stay sober, to right all of his wrongs. So when someone threatens to expose Lily’s secret to her family and the public, he promises that he’ll do anything to protect her. But with old enemies surfacing, Lo has more at stake than his sobriety.

They will torment Lily until Lo breaks.

And his worst fear isn’t relapsing. He hears the end. He sees it. The one thing that could change everything. Just three words.

No. More. Us.

New Adult Romance recommended for readers 18+ for mature content

“Lo?” Ryke’s voice turns serious. “Hey, talk to me.” 
I let out a breath. “Tell me why I shouldn’t.” I pinch my eyes. I want this to end. This torment. These feelings. I want to help Lily without needing something to drown my own thoughts.

“Because you love Lily more than that.” 

This book picks up right at the end of Lo’s three month stint at rehab. Lily had already moved in with Rose when Lo left so this is the first time that they will really be tested together since they both made moves to work on their addictions. This is the first book of the series that has both of their POVs which is great because now the reader gets to see firsthand how Lo struggles instead of just seeing Lily’s side of things. I was so glad that his POV was added because in the first book, even though you can clearly see how much he loves Lily, it might be still easy to not like him because let’s face it, he can be a major ass. Once you get to see into his head and how much he struggles and how sometimes even though the first words out of his mouth are meant to hurt a person as much as possible, you realize that he isn’t a bad person. He’s just a fragile human who has an addiction and grew up with a father that has that very same addiction and who could tear Lo down better than anyone else (even if he clearly loves his son—it’s all a pretty messed up and vicious cycle). 

Fortunately in this book Lily’s addiction is still a secret so she spends most of the book doing normal things like wading through schoolwork and working for Rose at Calloway Couture. She ended up transferring to Princeton because of her move with Rose and while I don’t think that Lily is dumb, it’s pretty obvious that she only got into Princeton because of her last name (no offense, dear Lily!!). Instead of having Connor the wonder tutor available, she gets stuck with Rose’s jackass friend. Basically I hate him because he gets Lily to cheat by giving her old tests and tries to manipulate Rose/ break up her and Connor’s relationship. He’s the worst—and obviously an idiot if he thought he could break up the nerd stars.

“I don’t know how to live without you.” And I shake my head quickly as tears pool. “And I don’t want to know how. I don’t want to find out.” He is my breath. My soul. My life-force. I have spent forever with him. Being apart is the most unnatural feeling in the world. Three months—I could handle that like a bad itch. Forever without him?

All in all this is basically a transition book that is once again more focused on the characters. While one of the main threads of the book deals with all of the nasty, anonymous tests that Lily and Lo are getting about exposing her addiction, a lot more of it just focuses on the two of them going through their lives while the battle their addictions. Because I read Kiss the Sky first (after Lily’s secret had been exposed) it was actually really nice to read about their lives before they got SUPER chaotic. Obviously they still are really rich and help run their own companies and go to galas…but still. They are safe from the paparazzi and their lives are semi private. Other than their addictions they live relatively “normal” lives. 

Certain parts that I loved included Rose and Connor going to different therapists pretending to be Lily and Lo to find the perfect one for Lily. I literally can’t imagine Connor pretending to be an alcoholic with Lo’s attitude bahaha. I also loved their trip to Mexico because we get to see more interactions between Ryke and Daisy and how protective Lo and Lily are. Also there’s the fact that Rose gets drunk so that’s a funny bonus too.

In the end you finally find out who leaks Lily’s secret and it’s pretty devastating for all involved. We see the very beginning of the fallout for Lily and things obviously spiral out of control very quickly. It’s honestly so heartbreaking to see how people treat her..including her own mother and father. What’s also hard is when Lily goes through enough therapy to figure out what might have pushed her down the path she ended up going down. Despite that though, I was reminded how darn funny she is. Sweet Lily is so kind and geeky and I laugh so hard every time she hides underneath Lo’s shirt or climbs up his body like a koala. I love that her and Lo talk about fandoms and and Marvel and that even though Connor is a certified genius, that he doesn’t know what she’s talking about half of the time, lol. Other than the sex addiction I would definitely relate the most to her out of the three sisters. So yes, this might have been one of the “tamest” books of the series but it still was enjoyable to read. Any more pages spent with this group of people is a win for me.

So in Harry Potter’s epic final words, “All was well.”

 
 

BOOK REVIEW- Addicted to You (Addicted #1) by Krista and Becca Ritchie

BOOK REVIEW- Addicted to You (Addicted #1) by Krista and Becca RitchieAddicted to You (Addicted #1)
by Krista and Becca Ritchie
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

She’s addicted to sex. He’s addicted to booze…the only way out is rock bottom.

No one would suspect shy Lily Calloway’s biggest secret. While everyone is dancing at college bars, Lily stays in the bathroom. To get laid. Her compulsion leads her to one-night stands, steamy hookups and events she shamefully regrets. The only person who knows her secret happens to have one of his own.

Loren Hale’s best friend is his bottle of bourbon. Lily comes at a close second. For three years, they’ve pretended to be in a real relationship, hiding their addictions from their families. They’ve mastered the art of concealing flasks and random guys that filter in and out of their apartment.

But as they sink beneath the weight of their addictions, they cling harder to their destructive relationship and wonder if a life together, for real, is better than a lie. Strangers and family begin to infiltrate their guarded lives, and with new challenges, they realize they may not just be addicted to alcohol and sex.

Their real vice may be each other.

New Adult Romance recommended for readers 18+ for mature content

If you guys can’t tell, I have been on a crazy streak of only reading books by these ladies lolol OH WELL

“I want to love you more than I love this”–he waves his bottle–“and I don’t know how else to do it unless there’s something to lose.”

After reading Alphas Like Us I went a little crazy and decided to re-read the entire OG series because it had been awhile and I missed the core six (parents and uncles/aunts of Moffy and the gang).   I actually ended up changing my original rating from 3 stars to 4 in the process.  Honestly I’d give it 5 stars because it isn’t that the book wasn’t good, it’s that it was so hard to read because of some of the content. Back when I first read all of these books, I started with the Calloway Sisters series. Because of that, I first was introduced to Lo and Lily while they were already working through their alcohol and sex addictions. In these books, actually reading about their struggles and problems before any of their friends/family knew was HORRIBLE. I myself have never had a serious addiction to anything so I had no personal experience to relate what they were really going through. That made it hard for me not to hate both of them at different times for enabling each other instead of truly helping like they should have been doing. It was so hard because they loved each other but just….didn’t quite know how to channel that love without giving up the love they had for their respective addictions. UGH. 

She looks at me with more concern than I thought possible. In the end, it was not a boy who helped me. It was my sister. <—LOVE that quote

For those that want to start in order with this book, here’s a little rundown of what this book and the start of this series is all about…

This and the next book, Ricochet, are the only two in the entire series that have only one (Lily’s) perspective.  Since these books are truly about the Calloway sisters, I think I like that we at first only get her perspective on things.  We learn right away that she is a sex addict but don’t truly come to understand the extent of it until later on.  You might just think “oh Lily, she’s just a slut, how can her wanting to sleep around count as an addiction…” but that is DEFINITELY not the case.  Enter Loren, or Lo, Hale.  He’s Lily’s best friend and fake boyfriend.  You see, for years these two have been covering up their addictions (his is to alcohol) by being together.  They take care of each other to the best of their abilities but honestly like I mentioned above, they do much more harmful enabling than good.  Because of their problems, they basically have shut out Lily’s family, never going to family functions, never picking up their calls…it’s heartbreaking.

Eventually, the two are in a situation on a boat trip with their family were they end up at a crossroad and Lo gives Lily an ultimatum. Yes, her addiction is so bad that she is contemplating sleeping with one of the bartenders on the boat.  She would have given up their secret to satisfy her addiction and Lo ends up telling her that if she does this, they are done for real.  Instead he offers himself up to help curb her needs.  What she finds out is that he’s not just offering himself up because he feels bad, no he truly loves her.  All of the years of teasing and offering to “help” her was really him trying to get her to realize she could have picked him over any other guy any day.  Unfortunately, Lo can kind of be a snarky ass and Lily didn’t pick up on his clues AT ALL.  Because she’s always loved him too, she decides to actually try a real relationship with him.  Their addictions eventually come out (though I won’t say how or who to in case you start with this book) and their lives change a LOT after that.  Like I said, it isn’t an easy read but Lily and Lo are such compelling characters and it was refreshing to read a romance that is entirely different than anything else out there.

What I did love about this book was meeting them all. Seeing how Lily and Lo met Connor and Ryke and how their relationship, and Connor and Rose’s started out. Those relationships are what have become so important to me so reading about them from the very beginning was great. I will definitely read the rest of this series but just know that the Calloway Sisters books are a much better read if you want more hope and happiness!

“Wait for me.” The words come out choked and pained. “I need you to wait for me.”

BOOK REVIEW-Alphas Like Us (Like Us #3) by Krista and Becca Ritchie

BOOK REVIEW-Alphas Like Us (Like Us #3) by Krista and Becca RitchieAlphas Like Us (Like Us #3)
by Krista and Becca Ritchie
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

His Bodyguard. His Love.

Maverick, know-it-all bodyguard Farrow Keene knows publicly dating American royalty comes with a great cost. Everyone wants a piece of their relationship. And as a protective boyfriend, he’s not here for the malicious hands that grab at their love life and seek to rip them apart.

But Farrow is confident — he’s confident that he could’ve never prepared for the storm to come.

Keep him safe.

Maximoff Hale isn’t a big fan of change. And to regain the charity CEO position he lost, he agrees to a task that he’s always rejected. One that could uproot his unconventional world.

But Maximoff is afraid — he’s afraid of the consequences that could destroy his boyfriend and his family.

Keep him safe.

Changes are on the horizon.
Big.
Messy.
Complicated.
Changes.

Maximoff & Farrow will fight for their forever. And with every breath, they promise that their love story won’t end here.

​​The Like Us series is a true series, one continuous timeline, that follows a family of wealthy celebrities and the people that protect them. You must read Books 1 and 2 before reading Alphas Like Us.

Tears scald our eyes, and we breathe and breathe, and I whisper, “You know, my heart is in your hand.”

Another great book by the twins about love, family, and of course, drama. By now I feel fully immersed in the lives of the Hales, Cobalts, and Meadows–enough so that they could be real people that I’m old friends with. That is by far my favorite thing about all of these books. My family has always been super important to me so I have ALWAYS loved reading books/ series that feature characters that find family (whether they be blood or not) to be important. Maximoff in particular is a prime example of this. He would literally die to protect any one of his siblings, cousins, OR friends. Ugh it’s almost hard to read about at times because not only does he have to deal with his own stress and shit but he basically is an empath and feels everyone else’s pain and emotions whether he likes to or not. He is the definition of a precious (but also sexy AF) cinnamon roll that must be protected at all costs. He is too good for this world, really. I would love to have him in my family.

If he says you’re “good people”—he’ll surround himself around you, and you’ll be glad. Because he’s the kind of man who puts his whole soul into what he loves, and if he loves you, goddamn.

I think this is my favorite book in this series. We finally get to see Moffy and Farrow in a “regular” relationship without having to hide it in any way. They can be themselves and go on dates, even if they aren’t always successful due to the ahole paparazzi. The reason I think I like this book the best is because the two come to terms (more on Moffy’s end I guess) with the fact that they are in fact “it” for each other. Before Farrow, Moffy never considered that he might actually find someone that he could trust and then subsequently love enough to be with forever, marry, have kids, the whole deal. And being a person like Moffy who is just BRIMMING with pure love, I can see how that could have been so horrible. Loren and Lily may not be perfect as individuals or even as parents but you can bet that their love for each other and their kids was something that Moffy grew up seeing and wanting for himself. I just am SO FREAKING HAPPY that they will get their happy ending *sighhh*.

But he brings me this effortless joy, and I cling onto that for dear fucking life.

Another aspect of this book that I enjoyed was getting to learn more about Farrow. We got to learn more about his time as a resident, why he quit, and how he really felt about all of it. Part of me was initially annoyed about how things turned out in this book in regards to that stuff but I eventually got over it. Farrow came to terms with what he truly wanted and so I was able to, too. He managed to get everything he wanted and boy was I happy for him. Very satisfying “ending” to their trilogy (though the twins have said they would be interested in doing more—woo!).

And goddamn, we’re both smiling.

I have to say I love getting to know each bodyguard even more, too. I am DYINGGGGGGGG for the book(s) featuring Jane and Thatcher. OMG those are going to be steamy AF I just know it. If you haven’t looked at their Pinterest boards yet, I would recommend it. They constantly post things for each character and the posts for these two…*fans myself*. I also love that Thatcher’s had a bunch of cats lol. Big, strong, serious man looking out for Janie’s kitties. Wowwowwowwow. &hearts; Overall I recommend, recommend, recommend. Read them all from the very beginning if you haven’t already. They may not all be easy to read (especially Loren and Lily’s books) but to me, it’s so worth it.

BOOK REVIEW- Damaged Like Us (Like Us #1) by Krista and Becca Ritchie

BOOK REVIEW- Damaged Like Us (Like Us #1) by Krista and Becca RitchieDamaged Like Us (Like Us #1)
by Krista and Becca Ritchie
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Don’t date your bodyguard.
It was the one rule he had to break.

Maximoff Hale is a force of nature. A ship unwilling to be steered. Headstrong, resilient, and wholly responsible — the twenty-two-year-old alpha billionaire can handle his unconventional life. By noon, lunch can turn into a mob of screaming fans. By two, his face is all over the internet.

Born into one of the most famous families in the country, his celebrity status began at birth.

He is certified American royalty.

When he’s assigned a new 24/7 bodyguard, he comes face-to-face with the worst case scenario: being attached to the tattooed, MMA-trained, Yale graduate who’s known for “going rogue” in the security team — and who fills 1/3 of Maximoff's sexual fantasies.

Twenty-seven-year-old Farrow Keene has one job: protect Maximoff Hale. Flirting, dating, and hot sex falls far, far out of the boundary of his bodyguard duties and into “termination” territory. But when feelings surface, protecting the sexy-as-sin, stubborn celebrity becomes increasingly complicated.

Together, boundaries blur, and being exposed could mean catastrophic consequences for both.

The Like Us series is a true series, one continuous timeline, that follows a family of wealthy celebrities and the people that protect them. Damaged Like Us can be read and enjoyed without reading any of Krista & Becca's other novels.

We’re like lightning and thunder, inherently different but alike enough to share the same sky.

Okayyyyy let me first preface this review by saying that I ABOSOLUTELY ADORED the other books that these sisters have written (the Addicted and Calloway Sisters series). You can’t help but be swept up by these character’s lives. By the end of Some Kind of Perfect my heart was just so full because we were able to get this huge epic epilogue for this family that I had grown so attached to. We got to see them start families, have babies–everything you usually wish you could see after you’ve read and fallen in love with a long series. When I found out that there was going to be a third series that centered on these kids after they’d grown up, I was ecstatic. I couldn’t wait to see how they’d turn out having the childhoods that they did and the amazing parents that we all know and love.

It *mostly* lived up to my expectations. I loved reading about Moffy (who is just hot AF and so kind and selfless towards his family), Jane (who seeing so freaking cool and lovely and I want to be her best friend), Sullivan (she is the offspring of Ryke and Daisy…do I need to explain it?) and the body guards. *Side note I need a book on Sullivan and Akira* Anyway, while I thought the chemistry between Moffy and Farrow was super hot and I appreciated their banter, towards the end of the book I kind of thought to myself, ‘other than the sexual tension and eventual, explosive get together—what has *actually* happened in this book?’ You know, in the other two series, there were major conflicts (overcoming addiction, dealing with the aftermath of said addiction and the infamy that followed). In this book, until the very end there really wasn’t. Because of the freaking crazy ass ending I suppose it didn’t matter though. Ugh can we just talk about that for a minute though under a spoiler cut?

View Spoiler »

Overall I was so happy to be back with these characters and will 100% be reading the rest of the series (and will just be sitting here pining away until Jane and Sully get their own books). ♥

For my twenty-fifth birthday, she wrote me an Avengers fanfic where Bucky Barnes and Captain America weren’t merely just friends. It was entertaining as shit.

The ONLY this that really pissed me off in this book was the way that the OG fam didn’t believe Moffy and Jane about the *incident*. Like what in the actual hell, guys?! Just because you all did a lot of really stupid things when you were younger, doesn’t mean that your kids will have. I assume that because all of those things happened to them that they would have taken extra care in raising their children. They all seemed to communicate very well together so why on earth would they have had reason to believe that the two oldest children in the family were now suddenly hiding this really big thing from them? Just not possible. So yeah, screw them for not immediately believing those two but…I *guess* I will eventually forgive them. 

Farrow caresses my gaze as he says, “Thoreau said, ‘Do not be too moral. You may cheat yourself out of much life. So aim above morality. Be not simply good; be good for something.’”

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