Tag: New Adult (page 1 of 34)

BOOK REVIEW – Making Faces by Amy Harmon

BOOK REVIEW – Making Faces by Amy HarmonMaking Faces by Amy Harmon
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

Ambrose Young was beautiful. The kind of beautiful that graced the covers of romance novels, and Fern Taylor would know. She'd been reading them since she was thirteen. But maybe because he was so beautiful he was never someone Fern thought she could have...until he wasn't beautiful anymore.

Making Faces is the story of a small town where five young men go off to war, and only one comes back. It is the story of loss. Collective loss, individual loss, loss of beauty, loss of life, loss of identity. It is the tale of one girl's love for a broken boy, and a wounded warrior's love for an unremarkable girl. This is a story of friendship that overcomes heartache, heroism that defies the common definitions, and a modern tale of Beauty and the Beast, where we discover that there is a little beauty and a little beast in all of us.

Review:

Making Faces was beautifully lyrical and truly unique. While it took me a few chapters to connect to the story, since it’s written in 3rd person, I was so happy when everything clicked into place.  The characters who took you on their journey were multifaceted and fascinating.  And the flashbacks that were sprinkled throughout the story, helped craft a full picture of their history and what they meant to one another.  This book was heavily character driven, with a touch of Beauty and the Beast, and it left me looking forward to discovering the rest of her books!

“Why do terrible things happen to such good people?” Ambrose asked.
“Because terrible things happen to everyone, Brosey. We’re all just so caught up in our own crap that we don’t see the shit everyone else is wading through.” – Ambrose & Bailey

Starting out you meet Fern, Bailey, Rita and Ambrose.  While there’s many more characters I adored, those were my top ones.  They’ve started their final year in high school, and will soon be finding their place in the world.  But by that second chapter, I didn’t realize that I was stepping back into 9/11.  My  own memories slammed into me like a cold sheet of ice.  The terror I had for my fellow citizens, and the terror I had for one of my good friends who worked next to the towers, hit me just as hard today as it did years ago.  So watching the horrifying events take place put tears in my eyes and a sense of dead in my heart for what would unfold.

“She lost her son, Fern,” Ambrose said softly. His own anger dissipated as he spoke the simple truth. He took the towel from Fern’s hands and used it on her hair, wrapping and squeezing, absorbing the moisture, the way he used to do on his own. She stilled, obviously not used to a man’s hands in her hair. He continued his ministrations, and she sat quietly, her head lolling to the side, letting him.

Ambrose ended up enlisting in the military, to support his country, along with four of his best friends.  And their little tiny town was shocked to the core.  Ambrose, from his wrestling career, already had a full ride scholarships to college. Yet none of them took the path that was expected of them.  But I’m getting ahead of myself, I have to explain how they’re all connected.  Ambrose’s wrestling coach was Bailey’s dad and Fern’s Uncle.  And I loved how the team saw Bailey as one of them, how Ambrose stood up and protected him.  Because while Bailey attended meets, offered advice, and tracked their statistics, he couldn’t participate in the actual sport since he had Muscular Dystrophy and was in a wheelchair.

“Do you think there’s any way someone like Ambrose could fall in love with someone like me?” Fern caught Bailey’s gaze in the mirror again, knowing he would understand.
“Only if he’s lucky.” – Fern & her cousin Bailey

Fern, Bailey’s cousin, had been in love with Ambrose since she was a little girl, yet she never acted on it.  He’s this beautiful, muscular God in her eyes, and she’s very plain with her pale skin, thick glasses, a stick thin body and red hair.  Yet while that may describe how they looked on the outside, it doesn’t even a shine a light on who they were on the inside.  Fern was a caring, compassionate girl who loved and took care of her cousin, Bailey, so fiercely that it was powerful.  Their friendship was one of the most beautiful relationships I’ve ever read about.  And the other friendships in this book were beautiful too.  It made for such a strong theme.

“News flash, Fern Taylor!” Ambrose barked, slamming his hand against the dashboard, making Fern jump. “Everything has changed! You are beautiful, I am hideous, you don’t need me anymore, but I sure as hell need you!”

And while I watched the past and the present unfold into a beautiful story of friendship, hardships, school and war, we then moved ahead. To when Ambrose came back from war, alone.  And Making Faces took on a Beauty and the Beast element, that I loved!  Ambrose and Fern’s positions have flipped, yet their shaky friendship was still there.  While Ambrose wanted to hide from the world, Fern was determined to get close to him.  So watching Fern and her tenacious will was captivating, while watching Ambrose as he suffered, was heartbreaking.  

Death is easy. Living is the hard part. – Bailey

I did have a few hiccups throughout the story though. There was a strong religious theme, and I struggled with Ambrose not suffering more from losing his friends and from the horrific situation he was in at war. And lastly, Ambrose’s speech, at a certain event near the end of the book, felt off to me. It was too much about him, and that felt wrong. But regardless, I definitely recommend this book to people who are looking for something out of the ordinary, and who want to meet characters that you won’t find in every other book. Making Faces is also for people who want a story line that takes risks and shows the uglier side of life, whether it’s bullying, domestic abuse or even just the struggle of accepting who you are. While not everyone got their happily ever after, my heart was still happy with how the majority of theirs lives closed in those last few pages. And as an epilogue junkie, that ending was perfect!

PS Towards the end, there was a little touch of a spiritual or some could even say paranormal element (depending upon your view point on life), that I loved too.

*ARC kindly provided by Spencer Hill Press via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

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 – All In (Full Tilt #2) by Emma Scott

BOOK REVIEW – All In (Full Tilt #2) by Emma ScottAll In (Full Tilt #2)
by Emma Scott
Purchase on: Amazon
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

*HUGE SPOILERS FOR THE 1ST BOOK - FULL TILT*

*********************************************************************************

Reeling from her loss, Kacey Dawson is grieving and heartbroken, her addictive demons hauling her back into the alcohol-soaked abyss she worked so hard to crawl out of. Kacey teeters on the edge of oblivion, and must fight her way through the pain, to build a new life for herself with her music, and somehow fulfill the promise she made to Jonah…one she feels is impossible to keep.

Theo Fletcher has a secret burning in his heart, one that he holds close, while he struggles to keep strong for his family that is falling apart. His mother’s health is fragile and his father’s disapproval is breaking him down. Theo is afraid if he follows his heart, he’ll fail, and not just himself, but his brother who believed in him when no one else did.

Drawn together by their pain, Theo and Kacey slowly build a friendship, re-forge old ties, help each other to heal, and give one another the courage to reach for their dreams. Together, from the depths of grief and guilt, they learn to laugh again, to trust again, and quite possibly find something beautiful and lasting amid the shattered pieces of their broken hearts.

***HUGE SPOILERS FOR FULL TILT!  You can read my review of the 1st book, Full Tilt → here***

*********************************************************************************************************

Review:

All In was an enjoyable conclusion to the Full Tilt trilogy.  Their lives were nicely wrapped up, and we received not one but two epilogues looking into their future.  I fell for both Kacey and Theo in the first book, and I loved the moments that showed us clues Theo was interested in Kacey.  It gave me hope that Kacey would get her happily ever after since it seemed inevitable that Jonah wasn’t going to survive.  So I started this book with my heart in the palm of my hands.  Especially since the Prologue backtracked to when Theo went into Jonah’s hospital room to say goodbye for the very last time. Their conversation brought tears to my eyes, I miss Jonah so unbelievably much!  But I knew Theo would keep the promise he made to his brother.  That Theo would make Jonah more than proud!

Goddammit, Jonah, come back and fix all this because I fucking can’t. – Theo

Fast forward six months after the funeral and Theo is still reeling.  Not only from the loss of his brother, but Kacey has fled and he has no clue where she went.  Watching Theo’s interactions with his parents, friends and co-workers was devastating.  He tried to put on a good show, but he was so stilted from all of the pain weighing him down.  And when he was alone, the amount of suffering he radiated was monumental.

My chest constricted and tears burned behind my closed eyes. After six months, I should’ve been used to the way he snuck up on me. Little bits of conversation. Little slivers of memory.
Little moments.
Jonah
. – Kacey

Kacey is in an even darker place than Theo.  She is drowning herself in alcohol to numb the pain.  Being drunk 24/7 allows her to continue on with her life and her music.  Even if she knows she’s teetering on the edge of killing herself.  While Kacey continued to spiral hard out of control, I held out faith that Theo would rescue her.  Much like how Jonah rescued her in Full Tilt.

But as the story progressed, I found myself struggling here and there.  At times I couldn’t fully connect to the characters.  It was like what I went through while reading the second half of How To Save A Life.  Which shocked me, because Full Tilt was a solid 5 Stars and I loved these characters.  While I more than loved how the story played out, I constantly found myself being pulled away from being emotionally connected.  I’m not sure if it’s because I was still hung up on the epicness of Full Tilt or if in fact parts of this book just honestly fell flat.  So I’m going to try and pick this book back up again down the road.  These characters more than deserve that and I’m going to hold out hope that I fall just as madly for this story as I did for Full Tilt!

*ARC kindly provided by author via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

Reading Order & Links:
Amazon (click on covers) & Book Depository (click on book #)
full-tilt-emma-scott
Full Tilt #1
Reviews:
Jen
all-in-emma-scott
Full Tilt #2
Reviews:
Jen

 

BOOK REVIEW – Full Tilt (Full Tilt #1) by Emma Scott

BOOK REVIEW – Full Tilt (Full Tilt #1) by Emma ScottFull Tilt (Full Tilt #1)
by Emma Scott
Purchase on: Amazon
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

"I would love you forever, if I only had the chance..."

Kacey Dawson has always lived life on the edge--impulsively, sometimes recklessly. And now, as lead guitarist for a hot up-and-coming band, she is poised at the brink of fame and fortune. But she is torn between wanting to be a serious musician, and the demons that lure her down the glittering, but alcohol-soaked path of rock stardom. A wrecked concert in Las Vegas threatens to ruin her career entirely. She wakes up with the hangover from hell and no memory of the night before, or how she ended up on her limo driver’s couch...

Jonah Fletcher is running out of time. He knows his situation is hopeless, and he's vowed to make the most of the handful of months he has left to him. His plans include seeing the opening of his glass installation at a prestigious art gallery…they do not include falling in love with a wild, tempestuous rock musician who wound up passed out on his couch.

Jonah sees that Kacey is on a path to self-destruction. He lets her crash with him for a few days to dry out and get her head on straight. But neither of them expected the deep connection they felt, or how that connection could grow so fast from friendship into something more. Something deep and pure and life-changing…something as fragile as glass, that they both know will shatter in the end no matter how hard they try to hold on to it.

Full Tilt is a story about what it means to love with your whole heart, to sacrifice, to experience terrible grief and soaring joy. To live life with all its beauty, and all its pain, and in the end to be able to smile through tears and know you wouldn’t have changed a thing.

Review:

Full Tilt was an emotional powerhouse that kept me on a wonderfully vicious cycle.  I found myself smiling, then laughing, then swooning and then crying.  And I would repeat that time and again.  I completely loved this book, even when I didn’t want to.  Even when I was scared out of my mind, right alongside Kacey, that Jonah wouldn’t make it. *shuddering breath*  So I must advise you to step into this story at your own risk, because your heart will definitely be on the line and put through the wringer.  But it’s worth it.  I swear.  It’s more than worth it.

I kissed Jonah Fletcher with all of my heart, and with every piece of my soul that would love him forever.

Kacey and Jonah met in the most different of situations.  You see Kacey was an up and coming rock star.  She was in a band that was on the brink of huge stardom.  She drank herself into blackouts to avoid the world and her reality.  And those that surround her sure as hell weren’t going to help pull her out of that cycle.  Jonah on the other hand kept to his strict schedule, since receiving a heart transplant.  He didn’t drink or smoke, ate crazy healthy and he had his days and life planned out for him.  Then one night, Jonah was Kacey‘s limo driver. Kacey was in one of her blackouts and Jonah being the good guy that he is, took her home.  So she could be safe.  He rescued her in a sense, and Kacey realized it.

“Every time I see you, I think, This is it. She cannot possibly look more beautiful than she does right now. And then I see you the next time.”

While they seemed worlds apart, they were both desperately looking for a connection.  For someone who they could confess their deepest, darkest secrets and fears to.  A friend that would always be there.  No matter what.  And after spending not even five minutes together, you could just tell that they were going to be something spectacular.  You know how sometimes you meet someone and you just know they’re going to be your best friend in the world?  Well that’s how their interaction felt like.  While there was an underlying simmering of sexual tension, what stood out was their connection.  How they pulled out the best from one another.  How they were able to feel comfortable just being around each other.  I loved watching their friendship unfold.

“So, the whiskey bottles ,” I said, nodding at the lights. “Are you repurposing my bad habits?”
He smiled. “No, just a friendly reminder.”
“Of what?”
“That you can find beauty everywhere, even in the things that scare you the most.”

I became invested in hoping that Kacey would get her act together and I became terrified of how Jonah’s healing after his transplant panned out.  And as the pages passed, I can’t even put into words how alive and real they felt to me.  How they became insanely important to my happiness.  The more I learned about them, the more they interacted, the more I fell for this book.  I loved how much I smiled, laughed and even had tears in my eyes.  Full Tilt was filled to the brim with characters whose emotions were pounding against my heart to feel what they felt.

You don’t give up,” I shrieked, making him flinch. Making me flinch at the hysteria that was lurking just below the surface.

As the clues unfolded, I had a good idea where this book was headed.  Especially when it became.. View Spoiler »  I don’t want to say whether I’m elated or devastated, because I don’t want to give away the ending.  But know that I am most definitely looking forward to diving right into the second book in this duology!  I can’t wait to see what happens, even though this book doesn’t have a cliffhanger!  While How To Save A Life and I didn’t mesh all the way, I completely fell in love with Full Tilt.  Full Tilt was beautifully heart wrenching and I can’t wait to read more of her books!

*ARC kindly provided by author via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*

Reading Order & Links:
Amazon (click on covers) & Book Depository (click on book #)
full-tilt-emma-scott
Full Tilt #1
Reviews:
Jen
all-in-emma-scott
Full Tilt #2
Reviews:
Jen

BOOK REVIEW: Price of a Kiss (Forbidden Men #1) by Linda Kage

I loved it just as much this time and the butterflies were insane. Mason will always be my favorite forbidden boy. I can’t wait to read him again……already!

BOOK REVIEW: Price of a Kiss (Forbidden Men #1) by Linda KagePrice of a Kiss (Forbidden Men #1)
by Linda Kage
Purchase on: AmazoniBooks
Book Depository
Add to: Goodreads

Synopsis:

I don’t care what my cousin says; I am not the queen of impossible relationships. I mean, just because my last boyfriend tried to kill me and left a bit of a scar on my neck, then forced me to move across the country and legally change my name to Reese Randall to escape him, does not mean—

Oh, who am I kidding? For a freshman in college, I have to have the worst dating track record ever.

It’s no wonder love is the last thing on my mind when Mason Lowe enters my life. But the chemistry between us is like bam! Our connection defies logic. And he’s just so freaking hot. Being around him makes me feel more alive than I’ve ever felt before. I even like bickering with him. He could be my soul mate...except for one teeny tiny glitch.

He's a gigolo.

Boy, do I know how to pick them.

Leaning down, he hugged me and buried his face in my neck. “It feels like a dream, like I’m going to wake up any second and you’ll be gone. I don’t want to wake up from this.”  

So…..this was unexpected. Lately I’ve been…off. So, naturally, my reading schedule has been disturbed. Don’t worry, I’ll save you the repetitive details. But, just know, this is definitely a new trend for me. At least, as of late. I’ve grown to hate these cheesy, overly worked smutty books, mostly because somewhere around the time I found GR, I realized just how badly I was trapped in these types of worlds. I didn’t know what I liked or how to find it. Sure, as a kid/middle-schooler, etc. etc., I was drawn toward paranormal, fantasy, peril type books-I just didn’t know it. I didn’t know there was a label for these types of stories. I just knew, when my mom took me to the bookstore, that when faced with a normal romance and a book with…edge…I was most certainly going to pick up the one with edge.

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Shaking my head, I muttered, “You are so…”
He grinned. “Charming? Handsome? Intriguing?”

All three, not that I’d ever admit it to him. He appeared to have a big enough ego as it was. I scowled hard. “I was going to say confusing.”

“Ahh.” He nodded in an astute manner. “We’ll slot that under intriguing.”

“Actually, I think it really deserves its own classification.”

“Fine. Whatever you like.” Shrugging as if it made no difference to him, he sent me a look full of smug, glittering eyes.  

But another thing I never realized was that there was a constant there-did you guess it?? Well, let me make it simple for you because I’m a complicated soul-Romance. I didn’t realize it, but as I read my books, the thing that made me all happy and tingly inside (naïve fool that I was) was the romantic aspect (shh, aside from the peril…self-discovery can be a beautiful thing). But, again, I didn’t realize that was the common thread. Fast forward to pre-GR and pre iPad/ereader-I realized I wanted romance, sex appeal, adult contemporary….but I was in a slump. All the books tended to be sexy and…not much else. Sure, it seemed there were nice build ups and even some cool action scenes and I even found two favorites out of the pile of crap, but something essential was missing, like a piece of my soul was absent.

I rolled my eyes and let out a big sigh. When I realized he was still just standing there, watching me, I lifted an eyebrow. “So, are you going to sit down or not?”
His smile fell flat. “You don’t mind?”
 

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I was losing all hope that adult romance was anything different. I was like…this is what adults have always read? My mom was addicted to this? I couldn’t believe it. Fast-forward like…a year and a half? I don’t know-it was a painfully dry reading time. My friend makes me get GR and…all of a sudden I start getting emails, alerts, ‘your books are similar to’, etc. Then I made friends one by one, found books one by one….and genres started expanding and…you get the picture-My world exploded in a rainbow of Technicolor. So, back to my original point: I grew to resent smutty books. I resented how cheesy they were. I resented how I had been stuck for years in a slump with those disasters. And, hell, I even grew to resent how popular they were among my friends.    

He lifted a finger to hush me. “We’re not talking about me. We’re taking about you. And you are…you’re…” He paused to shake his head.
“I’m…?” I prompted, not sure if I wanted to know where this was going, but my curiosity was too intrigued not to push for more.

“You’re quirky…and yet conventional. Innocent but worldly. Reserved yet outgoing. Candid yet guarded. Trendy but also practical. And childlike while still managing to be mature. It’s like….you’re the perfect contradiction.”
   

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So, I concocted a list. A list of…don’ts, if you will. I follow my list with rigid precision, rarely faltering in the fear that I’ll get stuck reading another eye-roll worthy bow-chicka-wowow romance. And, I admit, the list isn’t foolproof-I still find stinkers now and then. But it’s so rare that I’m beginning to become spoiled with such a high success rate. But then there come dark times in a person’s life, and it turns out that those can really drain you, exhaust you, make you want to throw in the towel and give up trying so hard because you just don’t have time to read as much anymore and it effects the fun of it all.    

“Okay, okay.” I lifted my hands to stop her rambling. “Just…keep calm and think of Chris and Liam.”
“Okay,” Eva repeated. “Okay.” She panted a few times as if she was already View Spoiler » When an expression of shock lit her face, she straightened and gaped at me. “Hey. That actually worked.”
With a grin, I tossed my hair. “I know, right.”
No hetero female on the planet could panic with a mental image of the Hemsworth brother combo running through her head.
   

Enter my forbidden little weakness. As it turns out….I do have a soft spot for tortured boys. Just so happens? They’re my favorite. The bad part about that?? Forbidden boys are oh-so-hard to find in the sci-fi and dystopian sections-at least, harder to find than in, say, the NA section. The section I studiously avoid. The section that, while alluring, is so fucking corny that it sets your teeth on edge…*starts in whiney voice and stomps foot* but I. Don’t. Care. I am tired, busy, and I just want my GD tortured male lead and I want to put in minimal work for it. So, here I am. On that side of the realm I hate. That side I swore I’d stay away from. That side that, until a week ago, I had forgotten existed until I searched my iPad and found Forbidden Men #2 from years ago sitting unread and looking oh-so-easy and ready for the taking. And take I did. And far did I fall….And never did reading something so cliché ever feel so good.

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So, yeah, I fucking went there.
Dumb, you say? Nah. Just not what I normally read.
Cliché, you say? Hmm…..maybe.
Cheesy, you say? Oh, undoubtedly, yes.
Sexy? Addicting? Unputdownable…You ask?
Well..obviously.
It caught my attention, didn’t it?    

After he accepted praise from them, he turned to Sarah and bent down to hug her. “You’re…my…hero…too,” she told him in her halting voice.
He looked like he might start bawling. Cupping her cheek, he grinned at her and murmured, “For you. Always.”
   

Rule #1 : Cheesiness. I hate it. I hate it hate it hate it hate it. Yet…sometimes, if the story is just good enough, alluring enough, I don’t care. Yeah, I mean, I do care. It’s just…sometimes the story just works for me, you know? Like, it takes all the stupid out of the inner thoughts that make me roll my eyes and just makes me…laugh. Makes me shrug and giggle and say, C’est la vie! And, hey, this book did it for me. Normally I’d be ashamed, but, why should I be? This boy, this story, no matter how stupid it was, because it was just plain moronic, really, did it for me. And you know what? I’m so happy. That’s all that matters.

Rule #2: The blurb and it’s sexual content ‘warning’. Gag. Really. These make me run away, but…eh. Whatever. My bitchdar is lowered…for now.

Rule #3: Genre. Tried and failed too many times, my friends. It begins to get tedious, you know? And so many more rules, really, but I proved my point: Rule book? Meet window. And Mason? Come to Mama. Just a word about him, ‘kay?? Just a widdle quick word, teeny-tiny:

SEXY TORTURED GIGOLO TORMENTED OSTRACISED LONELY MISTREATED USED HURT SEXY (OOPS DID I MENTION SEXY ALREADY) INTELLIGENT BROKEN BRAVE LOYAL—-
I lied. Suck it.

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And I even loved Reese. Though, hey, those inner monologues? Psst-she’s the culprit. I went from wanting to strangle her in chapter one to loving her to thinking ‘is this chick real?’ to ‘okay she’s cute’ to…whatever. I like the girl…even if her thoughts are out of this world odd…and a lot like mine. Whoops.

What I didn’t like:
Idiotic, bitchy cousin: Go to hell, asshole
Twirling her lady mustache-like villain: Yeah, this is soooooo realistic, bahahah not
How the little sister was introduced: It wasn’t bad….but it certainly wasn’t good. It felt….wrong. But, then, I don’t know how it should have been handled.
The back and forthness
The writing: Damn the writing!
-Probably a ton more I’ll think of after posting but ugh-so fucking tired sooo….    

Mrs. Garrison had actually kind of disappointed me. She’d let me go without a fight. Humph. Chicken. I’d been all keyed up to kick some cougar ass, too.
Oh, well, such was life. C’est la vie. Maybe I could beat up the next woman who tried to hurt my man.
   

All in all, this was exactly what I needed. Sexy and fun and light without being too light, I fell under this book’s spell…even though it was so unbelievable. Like…so soooo unbelievable. But…eh. The inner dialogue, the quirky humor, the way they became friends on campus and his vulnerability and willingness to do so was just…perfection. I’ll never forget those moments in this book. There was a lot wrong but, sometimes wrong is right, ya know? I fell in love, despite its many flaws, and that’s really all I could ask for. Mood=lifted. Just…sigh. Shut up, Pea.

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