Author: Sarina Bowen (Page 1 of 3)

BOOK REVIEW: The Best Men (The Best Men #1) by Sarina Bowen, Lauren Blakely

BOOK REVIEW: The Best Men (The Best Men #1) by Sarina Bowen, Lauren BlakelyThe Best Men (The Best Men #1)
by Sarina Bowen, Lauren Blakely
Purchase on: Amazon
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Bestselling authors Sarina Bowen and Lauren Blakely team up for the first time in an enemies-to-lovers, opposites-attract, irresistibly sexy standalone romance between the best man and the other best man!

In my defense, I was left alone with a bottle of single-malt and a life-long penchant for protecting my baby sister. Still, that's no excuse to send ten drunk-texts on why her hasty marriage would be a mistake.

If only I had just texted my sister. But nope. I accidentally sent the message to her, her groom, and his super hot wingman.

I also used the phrase “super hot wingman,” so I’d like to die now.

Instead, I have to plan a wedding with the aforementioned hottie and share a too-small guesthouse in steamy Miami.

Three days in the sun with the cocky, charming former athlete who likes to push my buttons? Fine, two can play at that let’s-infuriate-each-other game.

Until Asher ups the stakes with one wildly sexy suggestion. A no-strings fling, then I go back to my single dad life in New York, and he returns to his star-studded one.

Sign me up.

But the more nights I spend with the other best man, the more I want days too, and that just can't happen. Especially when I find out the real reason why…

Contents Include: First times, a secret to-do list, champion-level flirting, fast cars, #eggplants, and two men who look good in formal wear.

Review

I loved this SO incredibly much. I don’t need to talk about how big of a Bowen stan I am since you all should already know but this is actually my first book by Lauren Blakely–and it won’t be my last! Being a lover of the Brooklyn series, and especially Bombshells, Asher DID leave a mark but I never in my dreams thought it was going to be possible for him to have his own book! Imagine my surprise when this was announced.

Mark and Asher are chosen to both be best men in Mark’s sister’s and Asher’s best friend’s wedding. The problem? Last night Marky Mark got drunk and texted some pretty embarrassing things to a group chat with the four of them instead of just to his sister. OOPS. Asher being the snarky shit that is he is, is NOT about to let Mark live this down. Especially when flirting with him and seeing his unexpected (and is that possibly a reciprocated????) reaction is so much fun.

The two head down to Miami a week early to get everything read for the couple and things immediately heat up. Seriously though, you guys. The dynamic between these two was so hot. Mark is more of a serious guy–a damn good negotiator in the finance world, a single dad, and just overall not as big of a personality as Asher. Asher…is opposite in almost every way. Kind of a flies-by-the-seat-of-his-pants type. The teasing and back and forth between these two because of that was *chefs kiss* Perfection. I loved everything about their dynamic, the story, the romance–ALL OF IT. I will certainly be going back through all of Blakely’s back log to catch up on what I’ve missed out!

Huge thanks to Troliver books for allowing me to read this eARC in exchange for my honest reivew!

BOOK REVIEW: Boyfriend (Moo U #0) by Sarina Bowen

BOOK REVIEW: Boyfriend (Moo U #0) by Sarina BowenBoyfriend (Moo U #0)
by Sarina Bowen
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

A new hockey player to steal your heart this fall...

The dreamiest player on the Moo U hockey team hangs a flyer on the bulletin board, and I am spellbound:

Rent a boyfriend for the holiday. For $25, I will be your Thanksgiving date. I will talk hockey with your dad. I will bring your mother flowers. I will be polite, and wear a nicely ironed shirt…

Everyone knows it’s a bad idea to introduce your long-time crush to your messed-up family. But I really do need a date for Thanksgiving, even if I’m not willing to say why. So I tear his phone number off of that flyer… and accidentally entangle our star defenseman in a ruse that neither of us can easily unwind.

Who knew that Weston's family was even nuttier than mine? He needs a date, too, for the most uncomfortable holiday engagement party ever thrown.

There will be hors d'oeuvre. There will be faked PDA. And there will be pro-level awkwardness…

Boyfriend is a full-length book for Weston and Abbi!

Review

It should come as a surprise to ABSOLUTELY NO ONE that I absolutely loved this book. I was lucky enough to read every other Moo U book as an eARC and when I saw that the Queen of True North herself was going to be making an addition to the series???? Well, I was ecstatic.

You see, The Year We Fell Down was my first foray into the world of hockey romances and I have not looked back since. ALL of Bowen’s characters feel like home and family to me. Whether it be the entire town of Colebury, the Brooklyn Bruisers organization, or even Moo U. I know that if I’m going to be immersed into one of these stories, I WILL be leaving them fully satisfied.

And how come someone not? Abbi is a relatable, hard working college student just trying to work long enough to get a fat bonus at work to help with her rent. Weston is a pretty typical college jock– charismatic, hilarious, but also kind and willing to go the extra mile to make sure a person in need of a Thanksgiving date, has one LOL. Fake dating man. Who doesn’t love fake dating?

The best part about this book, in my own humble opinion, is that they start out purely as acquaintances from both of their time spent at the Biscuit, to partners in crime as a fake couple trying to deal with their respective families during the holidays, to friends, to so much more than that. They laid the best foundation they possibly could have for themselves, ESPECIALLY for someone like Weston who had seen first hand how messy a relationship and ship ensuing divorce could be. Then both just naturally fell in love and there wasn’t anything either of them could do to stop it. Serious love talk aside though, this book also had me howling with laughter as is typical of a Bowen book. She has some of the best banter and dialogue in romances that I’ve ever read. Top of the line stuff. HIGHLYYYY recommend.

Huge thanks to Sarina Bowen and Heart Eyes Press for allowing me to read this eARC in exchange for my honest opinion. ♥

BOOK REVIEW: Wildflower (Speakeasy Taproom #5) by Mae Wood

BOOK REVIEW: Wildflower (Speakeasy Taproom #5) by Mae WoodWildflower (Speakeasy Taproom #5)
by Sarina Bowen
Purchase on: Amazon
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

When the prize is love, sometimes you get stung. But if you’re lucky, you just might hit the sweet spot…

Juliana Burton needs a medal at Speakeasy's beer festival to push her brand-new brewery into the spotlight. She thinks she knows how to do it, too--with a beer made exclusively from Vermont hops, barley and the best honey in the state. Too bad the only thing standing in her way is a six feet tall, smokin’ sexy, and her secret high school crush.

After a very public disaster in Boston, Riggs Lyon is home with his teenage son in tow. Riggs is taking over the family beekeeping business with an eye to offload it and start life over somewhere where "Lyin' Lyon" isn't a joke. Selling honey to Juliana doesn't make business sense. She can't afford the high prices Lyon honey fetches in specialty shops and farmer's markets. But somehow, he’s having trouble saying no to anything she asks for, whether it’s in the hive or in the bedroom.

Review

I am OBSESSED with this one!

I have always been a sucker for those stories when one of the characters has had a crush on the other for YEARS but things didn’t work out and they are able to come back together, years later, and finally connect. And actually even then it’s usually just a few years while they were away at college, whereas with these two it’s been about 20. I’ve actually read a few books/fics lately that feature characters who get a second chance at love when they’re in their 40s and I love it. Even if kids are involved, at that point they usually are old enough that they just want their parent to be happy and for the character themselves, they just know what they want out of life and they usually don’t want to waste time.

The two may get off to a semi-rocky start, mostly involving old family drama, but it doesn’t take long for things to come to a head. And when it does–phew. It’s hot. Again, at this point in both Juliana and Riggs’s lives, they know what they want (in this case in bed) and are not afraid to ask for what they want and give as good as they’ve got. That first scene between them was way hotter than I anticipated and I was very happy about it, lol.

Of course I did also enjoy seeing life on the Lyons’ apiary and Julie’s brewery coming to life and learning about what it means to be a solely woman run business, especially in an area that ALWAYS predominantly features beer-bros. Those ladies were so badass and I loved the process of naming the beers (EXCEPT I WANTED VERMOST TO STICK SO BAD LOL), brewing them, bringing them to the competitions, etc.

Once again a great addition to The World of True North!

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

BOOK REVIEW: Bombshells (Brooklyn #5) by Sarina Bowen

BOOK REVIEW: Bombshells (Brooklyn #5) by Sarina BowenBombshells (Brooklyn #5)
by Sarina Bowen
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

The women's league is in the house! And Brooklyn will never be the same again for Anton Bayer and the team…

This is my last chance to ditch my playboy reputation and finally fulfill my potential. So I’ve made three rules for our biggest season yet: no boozing, no women, and no scandals.

Especially that last thing.

So who do I befriend on the very first day back at the rink? An amazing female hockey player. I want Sylvie in a way that’s more than just friendly. I crave her. But I have a championship to win, and so does she.

Then she gets her heart broken by my teammate, and I make the foolish mistake of comforting her in the best way I know how. Our night together sets off a string of sins.

Nobody can know about our affair, especially my overprotective teammate. I can’t let anyone see into my greedy little heart. Not even her.

The things I want from her, and the things we’ve already done? If anyone knew, there’d be bombshells.

Contains: a defenseman with dreamy blue eyes, a female goalie with bad ideas, a major battle of the sexes and a swimming pool scene...

Review

Hold the phone—this goalie is a girl. No—a woman. With rich brown hair and luck olive skin. She shakes out her hair, which seems to be in the process of escaping whatever braid or ponytail that had confined it. Then she smiles, giving the little girl a wave.
And I can’t fucking breathe. Her smile lights up her eyes, which are a warm brown. She is like the living, breathing picture of female perfection.


Reading about the same kinds of tropes over and over in romance, as long as I love them, rarely ever gets old to me. Authors come up new ways to spin things and unique and loveable characters to get attached to but all is well. That’s not to say though, that a lot of those book are just okay. Like I read them, they make me happy, and then they’re over with. THEN, there are books that you read and something strikes you like a bolt of lightning while reading a certain line and you just…can’t breathe. I felt that way when I read the quote found above. “And I can’t fucking breathe.” Like who wouldn’t want someone to look at them and literally lose the ability to breathe because they are so stunned by what they are seeing in front of them. That line for me was the very moment that I knew Anton and Sylvie’s story was going to be something extraordinary.

Sylvie stares right back at me. And then her hand finds the back of my neck, where her fingers sift through the short hair at my nape. Maybe she’s trying to make Campeau jealous. But my body doesn’t know that. Every nerve I possess sits up straight and sings hallelujah.
“Any man could lose his heart to you,” I whisper. “So easily.”
“Just dance with me,”
 she whispers back. “I’m don’t talking about him.”


I will never not feel comforted by Bowen’s writing and the familiarity that her characters and even just their world bring. When one of her books has that some extra though I feel like I’ve won the lottery. Baby Bayer, excuse me, Anton is freakin hilarious. I loved that even though he was trying to take things more seriously this season, he still was the funny guy without even trying. Sylvie was great. She was strong and kind, and so amazing. The chemistry that she and Anton had, even while just friends, was off the charts. Also, can I just say that I am so excited for more books with the Bombshells alongside the Bruisers? I know nothing about hockey other than what I’ve learned from romance books (LOLOL) but the thought of this woman’s team rising up like a phoenix from the ashes has me real excited for future books. If you’ve enjoyed any of Bowen’s previous books, I will personally guarantee you will love this one.

And the soundtrack running through my head is mine mine mine. And finally. I’ve never been so turned on, because I’ve never wanted anyone as badly as I want her.

Huge thanks to Sarina Bowen and Tuxbury Publishing LLC for the chance to read this eARC in exchange for my honest opinion. ♥

BOOK EXCERPT: Bombshells (Brooklyn #5) by Sarina Bowen

BOOK EXCERPT: Bombshells (Brooklyn #5) by Sarina Bowen

I cannot stress enough how amazing this book is. It honestly might have bumped its way into the top favorite spot of everything I've ever read by Bowen (and that's a lot of books, lol).

BOOK EXCERPT: Bombshells (Brooklyn #5) by Sarina BowenBombshells (Brooklyn #5)
by Sarina Bowen
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

The women's league is in the house! And Brooklyn will never be the same again for Anton Bayer and the team…

This is my last chance to ditch my playboy reputation and finally fulfill my potential. So I’ve made three rules for our biggest season yet: no boozing, no women, and no scandals.

Especially that last thing.

So who do I befriend on the very first day back at the rink? An amazing female hockey player. I want Sylvie in a way that’s more than just friendly. I crave her. But I have a championship to win, and so does she.

Then she gets her heart broken by my teammate, and I make the foolish mistake of comforting her in the best way I know how. Our night together sets off a string of sins.

Nobody can know about our affair, especially my overprotective teammate. I can’t let anyone see into my greedy little heart. Not even her.

The things I want from her, and the things we’ve already done? If anyone knew, there’d be bombshells.

Contains: a defenseman with dreamy blue eyes, a female goalie with bad ideas, a major battle of the sexes and a swimming pool scene...

Excerpt

He hums under his breath as he locates the safety pin tucked under the fabric, and carefully frees it from the dress.

“There,” he says quietly as the velvet begins to slip against my skin. “Ah, careful.” He pauses, holding the dress in place, because that narrow circle of fabric is the only thing holding up the top of the dress. It wants to slip down my body. 

I don’t make a move to help him. I don’t reach back, and I don’t let him off the hook. Instead, I reach for his free hand, and wrap it around my hip. And then I lean back against him, taking in the heat of his hard chest through his tuxedo shirt. 

I hold my breath. Because I want this. No, I need this. I’m so tired of waiting and wanting. And Anton’s nearness has always done swoopy things to my stomach. 

Why not now? Why not him, and why not me?

“Sylvie,” he whispers, and it sounds like a prayer. Then he drops the collar of the dress, and it slides like a silky waterfall down my upper body, until stopped by the zipper.

Then? I reach back and tug the zipper down slowly. 

Cool air hits my skin. Anton makes a low groan of protest as the dress continues to slide, exposing my lacy strapless bra. Then soft lips slip across the back of my neck. “Is this what you’re asking me for?” He kisses the juncture of my shoulder.

“Yes.”

“And this?” His tongue darts out to taste my skin, and my goosebumps redouble.

Yes,” I gasp.

He kisses me again, his mouth growing bolder and less gentle. Wet, open-mouthed kisses swirl against my skin, and then he taunts me with his tongue. 

Hell, I feel it in my nipples. I feel it everywhere. And I tilt my head to give him better access. He groans again, tasting my skin, tonguing each new inch, sucking lazily where it suits him before moving on. 

I had no idea a man could get me so hot by kissing my neck. I want more, so I try to turn around. 

But Anton tightens his arm around my waist, fighting me. He pins me in place, my back to his chest, and he continues the erotic assault on my bare shoulder.

My breasts feel achy, and I’ve started to shake. The brace of his hard body makes me sweat. “Please,” I beg. I’m in a hurry now. More. Hotter. Faster. 

“Slow the fuck down,” he hisses. “If we’re making this trip to the land of reckless decisions, I’m gonna enjoy the ride. Now hold still.”

I stand quietly on loose knees, while Anton locates the zipper where it’s trapped at my hips. He eases it down at a torturous pace. I fight off a shiver as he drags his fingertips down my bare back, past the lace of my bra, and all the way onto my lacy black panties.

My dress falls into a silky heap at my feet.

“Sweet Jesus,” he whispers, as one big hand massages my ass cheek. “You’re stunning, Sylvie.”

No one has ever paid me such a compliment, in such a reverent tone. And nobody has ever run his hands over my ass the way he’s doing now—his touch a mixture of wonder and ownership. 

This is exactly what my life has been missing. 

Again, I try to turn around, and this time he lets me. I look up into that incredible gaze. “Take me to bed now, Anton. You know you want to.”

He swallows roughly. I see a flicker of something dark cross those bright eyes. “If this is really what you want.” He lifts his chin toward the bedroom. “Lead the way.”

“It is,” I assure him. Then I step out of the circle of my dress and lean down to pick it up, wearing nothing but see-through black lingerie and my heels.

“Jesus fuck,” he mutters in a voice that sounds almost angry. The moment I’m vertical again, he yanks my hips toward his body as his mouth crushes mine. 

I wasn’t expecting the kiss, but I am a professional goalkeeper, and pretty damn good at catching things flying my way. So it only takes me a split second to adjust to the friendly assault of Anton’s aggressive mouth. His lips stroke mine urgently. I lean in and kiss him with everything I’ve got. 

He tilts his head and brushes his tongue across the seam of my lips. His roughened hand cups my jaw, his thumb sliding over my cheekbone. It’s possessive in a way that makes my heart stutter. 

It doesn’t matter that I’m in way over my head. It doesn’t matter that I’ve never actually been naked with a man before. When I chose this one, I chose well.

 

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