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REVIEW + GIVEAWAY – Walk of Shame by Lauren Layne

REVIEW + GIVEAWAY – Walk of Shame by Lauren Layne

Walk of Shame is my FAVORITE Lauren Layne book to date! So check out my 5 Star review below and enter the giveaway! Enjoy!

REVIEW + GIVEAWAY – Walk of Shame by Lauren LayneWalk of Shame (Love Unexpectedly #4)
by Lauren Layne
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Pampered heiress Georgianna Watkins has a party-girl image to maintain, but all the shopping and clubbing is starting to feel a little bit hollow—and a whole lot lonely. Though Georgie would never admit it, the highlights of her week are the mornings when she comes home at the same time as her uptight, workaholic neighbor is leaving to hit the gym and put in a long day at the office. Teasing him is the most fun Georgie’s had in years—and the fuel for all her naughtiest daydreams.

Celebrity divorce attorney Andrew Mulroney doesn’t have much time for women, especially spoiled tabloid princesses who spend more time on Page Six than at an actual job. Although Georgie’s drop-dead gorgeous, she’s also everything Andrew resents: the type of girl who inherited her penthouse instead of earning it. But after Andrew caps one of their predawn sparring sessions with a surprise kiss—a kiss that’s caught on camera—all of Manhattan is gossiping about whether they’re a real couple. And nobody’s more surprised than Andrew to find that the answer just might be yes.

Review:

Walk of Shame was crazy addicting, laugh out loud hilarious and continually pulled at my heartstrings. And when I closed the book, I couldn’t stop the happy tears! Here’s a few reasons why this is definitely my new favorite LL book!

✮Fabulous Heroine –

I put on my widest, sparkliest smile, only because I know it drives him crazy.
As always, I see a muscle in his jaw twitch as I flutter my eyelashes.
“Good morning, Andrew,” I say sweetly.
“Georgiana.”

I loved Georgiana Watkin’s voice, aka Georgie, and that her happiness and friendliness was infectious. She was this honest, bubbly, hilarious women who had the most generous heart. She was such a good person…..even though she loved to get under Andrew’s skin. But besides all that, she talked directly to us readers, sporadically. It made me feel like Georgie was my bff and I happily listened as she poured her heart and soul out to me. I loved everything about Manhattan’s famous party girl!

✮Rigid Yet Sexy Hero –

I pop another piece of donut in my mouth and smile. “It’s fine. I won’t tell a soul you checked me out.”
“I wasn’t—” He clears his throat. “Forget it. You’re ridiculous.”
I’m grinning outright now, because that’s two you’re ridiculouses this morning, and when he takes to repeating himself, I know I’ve successfully gotten under his skin.
Georgie, one; Andrew Mulroney, Esquire, zero.

Andrew Mulroney, Esquire…a famous divorce attorney…. was structured, rigorous and completely no-nonsense. Yet he captivated me, especially when he had his morning squabbles with Georgie. It was so much fun watching Georgie push Andrew’s buttons, and getting glimpses into the other sides of him. Even if I was always left wanting to desperately know or learn more about the allusive Andrew. Because even though it seemed as though Andrew was always in control, he wasn’t always on his game and he was insanely hot when jealous! And I have to put this out there, but I truly believe that fans of Michael from After the Kiss, will fall just as hard for Andrew!!

✮Fun and Flirty Vibe –

If I had even a lick of sense, I’d forget him and this weird game we’re playing. Instead I keep coming back for more.
I’ve been thinking about why, and, well . . . I’m simply not used to people not liking me. And yes, I know how that sounds. Diva much? But really, usually people at least want to be my friend. He hated me on sight for no reason, and I seem to be having a wee bit of a difficult time letting it go.

Georgie’s party girl routine rubbed Andrew’s off to the gym and then the corner office vibe at 5am the wrong way. Their morning confrontation in their lobby was always entertaining and the electricity running between the two of them was scorching hot. Well actually anytime they were near each other I always found myself smiling, laughing and then wanting to shove them together lol. Besides Walk of Shame being so much fun, LL writes some of the best banter, and she hit gold with Georgie and Andrew!

This book about polar opposites had me a giddy, laughing, crying mess! And I don’t think I have ever happy cried so much, this book, oh, it made me a ridiculously emotional girl! *sigh* Walk of Shame was absolutely perfect! I loved it so much and I hope you do too!

*ARC kindly provided by Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

 

About Lauren Layne: 

Lauren Layne is the New York Times bestselling author of over a dozen romantic comedies.
A former e-commerce and web marketing manager from Seattle, Lauren relocated to New York City in 2011 to pursue a full-time writing career.
She lives in midtown Manhattan with her high-school sweetheart, where she writes smart romantic comedies with just enough sexy-times to make your mother blush. In LL’s ideal world, every stiletto-wearing, Kate Spade wielding woman would carry a Kindle stocked with Lauren Layne books.

 
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BOOK REVIEW + GIVEAWAY – Love Story (Love Unexpectedly #3) by Lauren Layne

BOOK REVIEW + GIVEAWAY – Love Story (Love Unexpectedly #3) by Lauren Layne

I’m so happy to be on the Love Story Tour because this book was beyond adorable! Check out my 4 Star Review below and enter the fabulous giveaway! Enjoy!

BOOK REVIEW + GIVEAWAY – Love Story (Love Unexpectedly #3) by Lauren LayneLove Story (Love Unexpectedly #3)
by Lauren Layne
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

When Lucy Hawkins receives a job offer in San Francisco, she can’t wait to spread her wings and leave her small Virginia hometown behind. Her close-knit family supports her as best they can, by handing over the keys to a station wagon that’s seen better days. The catch? The cross-country trip comes with a traveling companion: her older brother’s best friend, aka the guy who took Lucy’s virginity hours before breaking her heart.

After spending the past four years and every last dime caring for his sick father, Reece Sullivan will do just about anything to break free of the painful memories—even if it means a two-week road trip with the one girl who’s ever made it past his carefully guarded exterior. But after long days of bickering in the car turn into steamy nights in secluded motel rooms, Reece learns that, when it comes to Lucy, their story is far from over. And this time, they just might have a shot at a happy ending.

Review:

I quickly devoured Love Story in one sitting, and absolutely adored Lucy Hawkins and Reece Sullivan.  Their friendship was volatile, hot and filled with history that we got to witness through flashbacks.  It was all centered around a road trip which made for a cute, fun read, that left me feeling all warm and fuzzy inside when I finished that last page.

He laughs, and my heart hurts at the flood of memories. Of how we used to talk so easily, how we used to laugh so much . . .

Lucy and Reece have known each other almost their whole lives, since Reece is Lucy’s brother’s best friend.  After his mother died, when he was a little boy, he became an even bigger part of Lucy’s world.  Her family took him in, to a certain extent.  But from the beginning, Lucy couldn’t help fall for Reece.  Even if she knew he only saw her as his best friend’s little sister.  They were the truest of friends, until they pushed their relationship past the friendship boundary.  And from that point on, they barely spoke to each other.

“Not at all,” I say sweetly. “See, I just watched the way you attempted to juggle multiple girlfriends and failed, and then did the exact opposite.”
He glances at me then, a mocking smile on his face. “Oh, sweetheart. When did I ever claim you as my girlfriend?”
I suck in a quick breath, because it’s one of the more hurtful things he can say— dismissing that summer as though it were nothing.

Years later, they’re both headed to California for new jobs, and they end up getting stuck together for a road trip.  A two-week road trip.  Oh this made me so giddy!  Because from just those first few minutes being together in the car, I couldn’t stop smiling.  Sexual tension and friendship simmered and exploded between the two of them.  So emotions definitely flew high, and it made for an exciting trip that was filled with tears, jealousy, anger, and lots of desire!

I glance down at my towel, considering throwing some clothes on first, but then I shrug. It’s just Reece.
My inner skank rolls her eyes. There’s never been anything just Reece about what’s between us.
A fact I’m reminded of when I open the door and his gaze rakes over me.

My favorite thing about this story was definitely the characters.  They were the reasons I read this book in one sitting!  First off, Reece.  I love tortured men, and Reece played the part perfectly.  He was highly jaded from his past, since everyone he loved except Lucy’s family left him in one way or another.  Yet he seems to harbors so much anger and hatred towards Lucy.  And I was dumbstruck why.  Things she would say or do would set him off so easily, he was so explosive towards her.  Which felt ironic to me, since it was his fault their relationship blew up in a fiery inferno.  So Reece was a fun mystery to unravel!  And his moments of tenderness that alternated with want towards Lucy made me easily fall for him.

When she held out her small hand expectantly for the card, he took a deep breath and handed it over, meeting her eyes. “Thank you. For staying with me.”
Lucy blinked , looking a little confused, as though it was the most obvious thing in the world that she’d spend an afternoon with a crybaby.
Then she gave him a small smile, looking a little shy for the first time since going to him, as though she’d just realized something. “I’ll never leave if you don’t want me to.”

I liked Lucy from the get go.  She was driven and knew exactly what she wanted in life.  Whether it was her future job or Reece.  But what made me really connect to her were the flashbacks.  I loved watching their friendship unfold right from the start!  BUT the flashbacks didn’t feel seamless to me.  Each and every time I desperately wanted to stay in the present, even though I loved the moments the flashbacks showed.  I just wish they would have fit in a little differently to the story-line.

I blow out a breath. “Thanks.”
“For?”
I pluck at the hotel comforter. “For yesterday. For coming after me and holding me, even though I know you hate me.”
I hold my breath, waiting for him to confirm that he
doesn’t hate me. Which is stupid. He has no reason to hate me. He’s the one who ruined things.
I hold my breath anyway. Deny it. Say you miss me like I miss you.
There’s a rustling noise, then the creak of a crappy couch. “Night, Lucy.”

So Love Story was an enjoyable, quick read that I easily devoured.  While I guessed how a few things turned out, it didn’t take away from how much fun their story was.  And just so you know, each book in this series is a standalone and the characters don’t interact with one another from book to book.  Except they did listen to a Jenny Dawson song on the radio woohoo, which was a shout out to Good Girl.  If you adore road trips and hate to love stories, then there’s a good chance you’ll like Love Story too!

PS The nicknames were kinda different…. Spock, Horny ummm okay lol.

*ARC kindly provided by Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

 

About Lauren Layne: 

Lauren Layne is the New York Times bestselling author of over a dozen romantic comedies.
A former e-commerce and web marketing manager from Seattle, Lauren relocated to New York City in 2011 to pursue a full-time writing career.
She lives in midtown Manhattan with her high-school sweetheart, where she writes smart romantic comedies with just enough sexy-times to make your mother blush. In LL’s ideal world, every stiletto-wearing, Kate Spade wielding woman would carry a Kindle stocked with Lauren Layne books.

 

 

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BOOK REVIEW + GIVEAWAY – Good Girl by Lauren Layne

BOOK REVIEW + GIVEAWAY – Good Girl by Lauren Layne

Good Girl has become my FAVORITE Lauren Layne book and I can’t wait for you to meet Jenny & Noah! It was definitely one of her sexier books, and it contained all of the laughter, smiles and heartfelt moments that I’ve come to love from her writing. So please check out my 5 Star Review below, read an excerpt that made me smile and enter a fabulous giveaway. Enjoy!

BOOK REVIEW + GIVEAWAY – Good Girl by Lauren LayneGood Girl (Love Unexpectedly #2)
by Lauren Layne
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

In this steamy novel from the USA Today bestselling author of Blurred Lines, country music’s favorite good girl hides away from the world—and finds herself bunking with a guy who makes her want to be a little bad.

Jenny Dawson moved to Nashville to write music, not get famous. But when her latest record goes double platinum, Jenny’s suddenly one of the town’s biggest stars—and the center of a tabloid scandal connecting her with a pop star she’s barely even met. With paparazzi tracking her every move, Jenny flees to a remote mansion in Louisiana to write her next album. The only hiccup is the unexpected presence of a brooding young caretaker named Noah, whose foul mouth and snap judgments lead to constant bickering—and serious heat.

Noah really should tell Jenny that he’s Preston Noah Maxwell Walcott, the owner of the estate where the feisty country singer has made her spoiled self at home. But the charade gives Noah a much-needed break from his own troubles, and before long, their verbal sparring is indistinguishable from foreplay. But as sizzling nights give way to quiet pillow talk, Noah begins to realize that Jenny’s almost as complicated as he is. To fit into each other’s lives, they’ll need the courage to face their problems together—before the outside world catches up to them.

Review:

Lauren Layne has done it again!  Good Girl was sizzling sexy, laugh out loud funny and pulled at my heartstrings!  Upon closing that last page I knew that Good Girl was easily one of my favorite books of this year.  I mean, I read it in one sitting.  And that happens once a blue moon for me.  But I couldn’t put it down.  I didn’t even fake promise myself the ‘only one more chapter’ line.  Nope.  I devoured this story!

Good Girl played out in my head as though I was watching a movie.  And out of all of Lauren Layne’s books, I would absolutely die if this were to get optioned as a movie, it would be fabulous.  You see, Jenny is a country singer who had been dubbed as America’s good girl.  Yet she got thrown under the bus, and instead of fighting it, she stepped away from Hollywood and off the grid.  Jenny ended up staying in a house that captured a moment in time of her childhood.  In Louisiana.  And while Noah was the owner of the house, that’s not how he really played it.  He painted himself as the caretaker, which had me smiling huge. Being on a rural property lead them into some very passionate, hilarious and heartfelt moments.

Jenny had such an adorable voice.  She was funny without even trying, she talked to her Pomeranian named Dolly, and put chocolate chips in her supposed to be healthy smoothie.  She was so easy to relate to, especially since all my family and childhood friends call me Jenny, I always talk to my two little Havanese babies and I’ve tried the whole chocolate chips in a spinach smoothie, because while it sounds great, yeah, it doesn’t really work out.  But any who, I loved Jenny from the get go!  And as the story progressed, she earned my respect by being a woman who had a heart of gold and always saw the best in anyone or any situation.  I loved how positive she was!

I can’t wait for you to meet Noah!  And in case you don’t know, the jerky dickheads always tend to be my favorite!  So I loved Noah completely and whole heartedly!  Noah had a jaded past, and he knew that he didn’t want to go down that same road again.  Especially with a woman like Jenny.   So he called her princess and pushed her away.  Yet Noah could only push her so far away, because the sexual attraction between the two of them pulled them straight back to each other.  And their attraction and banter was toe curling and probably one of the sexier books that I have ever read by Lauren Layne. I loved it!  The scenes between them were SO hot.  Who knew pink zip ties could be so sexy?

Noah always seemed to push Jenny away after they had a moment of being close, whether it was physical or emotional.  He was hurtful.  He was the biggest jerk.  Actually, jerk is too nice of a word.  He was the biggest asshole.  YET, I never once disliked Noah.  Since the chapters alternated between the two of them, I got to be in his head.  I watched as he struggled.  I watched as the realization would hit him with what he just did to hurt Jenny.  And it hurt to watch him and Jenny suffer.  Still, he always apologized.  Those apologies left me with hope that he would work past those issues he struggled with.  That he was redeemable.  And that hopefully Noah deserved our love.

Lauren Layne continues to write stories that find their way into my heart, make me laugh, make me cry and make me fall in love with all of the characters she creates.  This is why she is one of my favorite authors.  So if you’re a fan of bad boys or reading books that play out in your head like a movie then definitely pick this book up!  I have a feeling you’re going to fall head over heels in love with this story too!

PS I loved all the dog scenes!  And how they played such a large part in their owners lives.  Loved, loved, loved.

*ARC kindly provided by Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

 

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Excerpt:
Noah

“What time did you say this chick was arriving?” Finn asks around his cigarette.

“Tomorrow morning,” I say, rapping my toe against a funny-looking floorboard and wincing when it buckles.

“Huh.” Finn exhales and looks out the window.

I know that tone. “What?”

“Seems she might have gotten here early,” he says, a second before the quiet afternoon erupts with the sound of my dog losing his mind, mingled with the shrill piercing yap of a much smaller dog.

“Seriously?”

Finn shrugs and nods. “There’s a girl outside.”

“Shit,” I mutter as I head toward the stairs, dodging the two broken ones.

Ranger’s about as good a dog as they come, wouldn’t hurt a fly. But he’s a big dog with a big bark, and one serious weakness: gleefully humping smaller dogs. He’s a rescue, and though he was fixed after they brought him in, he’d already gone through canine puberty, or whatever. He’s still got the fierce urge to hump, although it’s more habit than hormones.

I exit out the front door just in time to see my big brown Lab leap forward, his clumsy paws finding the shoulders of a blond girl who lets out a shriek, holding a cat above her head like that scene from The Lion King.

“Ranger, no! Down.”

I run forward, my hand finding the collar of my dog and yanking him backward as I search the ground to find the source of the small-dog barks still piercing the air.

Then I register that the sound is coming from above, and realize . . .

The cotton ball isn’t a cat.

That orange piece of fluff is a dog, and Ranger is apparently in love.

“What the heck is wrong with your dog?” the girl says as she slowly lowers the puffball from over her head, cradling the hideous little monster against her chest as it continues its high-pitched bloody-murder yips.

“At least my dog is actually a dog,” I say, staring in horror at the pointy face of a canine that could fit in one of my hands. “I’ve seen dust bunnies bigger than that thing.”

“Dolly’s a Pomeranian,” she says, setting a hand on top of the monster’s head. “She’s supposed to be this tiny.”

“Well, Ranger’s a Lab. He’s supposed to be this normal.”

“He attacked me,” she says, giving Ranger a wary look as his tongue hangs out the side of his mouth, his eyes locked lovingly on Dolly.

“He didn’t want you, he wanted the . . . dog,” I say, forcing myself to acknowledge that the creature in her hands might be part of the canine family.

“For what, dinner?”

I don’t respond, because now that the crisis is averted, I’ve managed to shift my attention from the dogs to the girl, and . . .

Holy shit.

I’m not sure I’ve ever been sucker-punched by equal waves of lust and disdain before.

Jenny Dawson is hot as hell.

I knew that going in, but up close she’s even more mouthwatering. Her white skirt is short and tight, her legs long and toned.

She’s wearing some billowing pink top, so I can’t get a good look at what’s happening there, but it doesn’t really matter. I’ve always been a legs man, and I can’t stop looking.

The legs are a 10.

The face is a 10.

And the long blond hair spilling over one shoulder definitely begs to be spread over a man’s pillow. My pillow.

And yet even as my cock says yes, my brain is saying hell no.

Gorgeous as she is, she screams diva from the pink toenails to the sky-high stiletto sandals and all the way up to the carefully made-up face.

I just turned my entire life upside down trying to get away from a woman exactly like this one, so this is definitely a look, don’t touch situation.

But I’m looking. I’m definitely looking.

 
About Lauren Layne:

Lauren LayneLauren Layne is the USA Today Bestselling author of more than a dozen contemporary romance novels.

Prior to becoming an author, Lauren worked in e-commerce and web-marketing. A year after moving from Seattle to NYC to pursue a writing career, she had a fabulous agent and multiple New York publishing deals.

Lauren currently lives in Manhattan with her husband and plus-sized Pomeranian. When not writing, you’ll likely find her running (rarely), reading (sometimes), or at happy hour (often).

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram

 

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BOOK REVIEW: Good Girl (Love Unexpectedly #2) by Lauren Layne

BOOK REVIEW: Good Girl (Love Unexpectedly #2) by Lauren LayneGood Girl (Love Unexpectedly #2)
by Lauren Layne
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Lauren Layne brings all the unpredictable heat of her USA Today bestseller Blurred Lines to an all-new cast of characters! Country music’s favorite good girl is hiding away from the world—only to find herself bunking with a guy who makes her want to be a little bad.

Jenny Dawson moved to Nashville to write music, not get famous. But when her latest record goes double platinum, Jenny’s suddenly one of the town’s biggest stars—and the center of a tabloid scandal connecting her with a pop star she’s barely even met. With paparazzi tracking her every move, Jenny flees to a remote mansion in Louisiana to write her next album. The only hiccup is the unexpected presence of a brooding young caretaker named Noah, whose foul mouth and snap judgments lead to constant bickering—and serious heat.

Noah really should tell Jenny that he’s Preston Noah Maxwell Walcott, the owner of the estate where the feisty country singer has made her spoiled self at home. But the charade gives Noah a much-needed break from his own troubles, and before long, their verbal sparring is indistinguishable from foreplay. But as sizzling nights give way to quiet pillow talk, Noah begins to realize that Jenny’s almost as complicated as he is. To fit into each other’s lives, they’ll need the courage to face their problems together—before the outside world catches up to them.

*ARC provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

“A little more time, Vaughn,” I say quietly. “I hate having to say this out loud, but I’m…I’m reeling, man. I feel like I’ve been in an aimless free-fall for years, and this place…it’s helping. I don’t know why, I don’t know how, but it’s helping.”
He searches my face carefully. “You sure it’s the place?” he asks slowly. “Or is it the girl?”

 photo tumblr_inline_n9m1nwb3Bg1qhnyca_zpsj2iwsf0w.gif

Romance is an escape. It’s a good break from the hardcore fantasy and soul-crushing dystopian. And, most importantly, if it’s a romance novel by an author I like, then it makes all the bad things go away, turns my frown upside down, and gives me the laughs I need to make it through the day. And as it turns out?? This is an author I really enjoy and this was a week where I needed a little bit of happiness.

I look from her to the dog, who I belatedly realize is now wearing a pink bow.
No. Just hell no.
What have I gotten myself into?
More important, how do I get myself out?

It’s no secret that I’ve never really rated an LL below a four-I always feel like that day is coming, yet it hasn’t. And it may not be the author so much as me-Do you ever feel like an author just…gets you?? Like, if you were to write a book in this genre, or write a book at all, that author takes almost all the words out of your mouth and handles things just as you would? Almost as if he/she is you in author form. Well…I think LL is that person. She never fails to make me smile and I’ve yet to be near the end of one of her books and wishing it would ‘just be over already’. LL is my author soul mate and I’m not afraid to admit it. If ever I need a smile…I know just where to go. But, as it turns out, I’m always out of her books lol.

I hurriedly grab my stuff, making sure there’s no sign of my presence before I can dash into Noah’s tiny closet, leaving it open just a crack so I can breathe and see what I’m doing.
Oh, what’s that? I didn’t mention that my revenge plan is totally creepy and a lot immature? It is.
Don’t care.

This book has been getting a really bad rap. I mean yeah, there are lots of four star reviews in the community section, sure. But, more often than not, my feed has made me cringe with the status updates and reviews. And, ya know, I get it. I went into this expecting to hate it (even though I am almost always on my own in the ‘LL is the best’ fan club) because a lot of my close friends did. And I’m not going to name any names, that would be ridiculously rude, but even someone who I think is my equal in LL love gave this a three. Why, you ask?? Well…let me list the ways.

I stand still, my body humming in anticipation, as Noah comes in the door.
“Hey, boy,” I hear him say quietly to Ranger. “Where’d you get that bone, huh? You steal it from the stupid cotton ball?”
I roll my eyes. Sure, my dog’s the stupid one. I saw Ranger barking at his own shadow the other day.

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Noah is an asshole. Noah is an asshole who continually hurts Jenny. Noah is an asshole who says things that are basically unforgivable….yet he is always forgiven. Jenny is the girl who wants to see the good in everybody (much like me-something that didn’t escape my attention as I was reading-EEPS) and wants to believe Noah isn’t a total jackass. Now, some people believe she was a doormat….but I disagree (See reason above…why would I diss on myself, flawed or not?).

But anyway, back to Jenny.
Am I avoiding her? Yes.
Out of embarrassment? No.
I’m avoiding her because I can’t even think her name without remembering what it felt like to have her hands and mouth all over me. I can’t blink and not see her in that sexy black bra. I can’t breathe and not smell her scent, all sweet and innocent.

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Just because you repeatedly forgive someone doesn’t make you a doormat…it makes you someone who just wants, I don’t know, the happiest life with the person you have feelings for. And hey, let me just say, I don’t like doormats for main characters, and I know a damn doormat girl when I see one, and Jenny was distinctively different based on her actions. Or, at least, I’ve seen much worse. Namely…myself.

I dump a handful of chocolate chips into the blender. Chocolate fixes everything.
Tucking the phone between my ear and shoulder, I put the lid on and flick the blender back on, sort of relishing the hacking noise the chocolate chips make as they whir.
“What the heck is that noise?” Amber asks.
“Just throwing some carrots into the blender,” I lie.
“Oh, good call! I love how carrots add that delicious bit of sweetness,” she says.
I roll my eyes. Sweetness my ass. They’re carrots.

 

Just wanted to put here that I deleted three paragraphs of a personal story because I don’t want friends and family here at home to get the wrong idea-It was relevant to why I loved this story so much, but this is what’s best for me. Back to the review! 😛

So here is my disclaimer, and it is different from the one that I put in my pre-review: This is unlike any LL book I’ve ever read….and I’ve read them all. If you don’t want change or something different than you’re used to with LL, then don’t read this one. That can be the only warning I give you. I may have loved the different style of this story, but ratings have proven that others don’t. It is what it is-just use your gut and go from there. I can’t make that decision for you.

I exit out the front door just in time to see my big brown Lab leap forward, his clumsy paws finding the shoulders of a blond girl who lets out a shriek, holding a cat above her head like that scene from The Lion King.
“Ranger, no! Down!”
I run forward, my hand finding the collar of my dog and yanking him backward as I search the ground to find the source of the small-dog barks still piercing the air.
Then I register that the sound is coming from above, and I realize…
The cotton ball isn’t a cat.
That orange peace of fluff is a dog, and Ranger is apparently in love.

So, the good stuff! This is my favorite atmosphere yet by this author-

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I both loved and hated this book in equal measure, making this a completely foreign feeling, which I’m totally unaccustomed to. I went into this not expecting to like it, yet came out with the goofiest smile on my face, scolding myself all the while because it felt wrong to love something that, at times, was vile. But it made me feel strongly, and that’s all I ever really want when I read-To feel strong emotion for a story, both good and bad, instead of the typical, ’Okay, onto the next!’ This was a situation of ‘like-love-hate’, but love-more-than-dislike and happy-more-than-not that it was a 5 star love/hate relationship rather than a 3 star love/hate. Does that make sense? No?? Oops.

I climb into the truck, moving the seat slightly, since Finn’s a couple inches shorter than me. I glance over at Jenny, hoping she doesn’t ask why I’m adjusting the seat in what she thinks is my truck, but she’s too busy fiddling with something orange and hideous on her head.
I pause in the process of jamming the key into the ignition, staring at her in horror. “What the hell is that?”
“A wig,” she says, pulling down the visor to look in the mirror. Only there isn’t one, it having broken long ago, so she turns to me. “So how does it look?”

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The writing, the banter, the conversations, her eye-rolls, Noah’s looks of horror when Jenny did something moronic. The humming her songs in secret and then humming them to taunt her. The way he always walked her back to her house no matter what so she’d be safe. Jenny reminded me of myself, wanting to hold her resolve but unable to when Noah looked hurt or hopeful. And hey! He teared up..I can’t even.

You know how I said Jenny’s voice sounded like her heart?
I’m wrong.
Her voice sounds like my heart.
And I want it back. I want her back.

I do have to say this: this book set a record of firsts for me: One being her Pomeranian, Dolly!!!! LL has a pom, and I have a pom, so naturally we know the breeds mannerisms and what makes them so fucking perfect…and it all translated perfectly onto the page. I just….it was so sweet to feel like I was reading about my baby every time I read. It was just awesome. And then, oh yeah, Noah was so cruel one time that I actually found myself tearing up for Jenny. Like…wow. That has NEVER happened before. Bravo…or…ouch, I dunno.

“What the heck is wrong with your dog?” the girl says as she slowly lowers the puffball from over her head, cradling the hideous little monster against her chest as it continues its high-pitched bloody-murder yips.
“At least my dog is actually a dog,” I say, staring in horror at the pointy face of a canine that could fit in one of my hands. “I’ve seen dust bunnies bigger than that thing.”
“Dolly’s a Pomeranian,” she says, setting a hand on top of the monster’s head. “She’s supposed to be this tiny.”

^YES

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Yet I liked him, loved him, swooned over him (at times) –especially at the end. It definitely makes me want to re-evaluate what types of dudes I like (book wise). I get what she was trying to create-A different guy, a different atmosphere….and she succeeded-He was so mean, almost unforgivably so, and I’m always on the guy’s side.

His eyes rake over me. “Playing dumb won’t change the fact that you’ll be thinking about me all night, princess. Your fingers will be a poor stand-in for my tongue, I can promise you that.”
“I’m trying to figure out which word better applies here, delusional or disgusting. I’m thinking it’s a tie.”
Noah bends down slightly, enough so that I can feel his warm breath on my mouth. “Enjoy your night, princess.”

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Soooo yeah. Feeling super vulnerable after this one, but the review took me there, and I respected it’s wishes. I don’t think this one is for everyone, but I think a lot of people will still love it-If you like the type of book that makes you smile so big your face is bursting or you like laugh out loud banter and conversations or inner monologues, LL is the author for you, and this book is most likely something you’ll enjoy….just know that this one has a crueler guy and he’s unlike any of her other heroes-Even Paul was kinder (I ADORE PAUL I LOVE YOU PAULLLLL). I giggle snorted (hey, a new first) and covered my mouth to stifle my smiles and giggles and, frankly, LL won again. But is this a shock to anyone?? Hmmm…no. Even when I try not to like it…I like it harder. Whatevs. I lose…like usual.

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Soooo yikes. Black sheep much??? Okay, so, here is the most honest thing you will ever hear me say, so listen closely: I legitimately feel guilty for loving this book. There-I said it. The way Noah treats Jenny is deplorable, disgusting. And yet….I just couldn’t help smiling and, ultimately, falling in love with this story. And the sickest part: I DID NOT WANT TO FALL IN LOVE WITH THIS STORY BECAUSE IT FELT SHAMEFUL TO DISAGREE WITH THE VALID POINTS MY FRIENDS HAVE SO ASTUTELY POINTED OUT.

And the bottom line? I loved this fucking book, even though I tried to not like it, just so I would feel like everyone else. And it makes me extremely mad at myself. Shame on me. I can like whatever the fuck I want and I shouldn’t feel like I first did when I got on GR. So. There it is. I don’t give a fuck if I have five starred fifty books this month- I like what I like and I refuse to feel ashamed about it.

I loved the Louisiana setting. I loved Dolly. I loved Ranger. I loved Jenny and Noah and Finn and Vaughn. They are flawed and they are wrong and they make lots of mistakes…but my heart wants what it wants.

I didn’t like this because it was an LL-I liked this because I was having a shitty week and this cheered me up immensely. *shrugs* whatever.

Baaaaah

Review to come-a less crazy sounding one, for sure

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