Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Perfect Match by Zoe May

🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Synopsis:
Can you ever find true love online? Sophia Jones is an expert in all things online dating: the best sites, how to write a decent bio, which questions to ask and the right type of photos to use. The only thing she’s not so great at? Picking the guys…
After sitting through yet another dreadful date with a man who isn’t quite what she expected, Sophia is just about ready to give up on the whole dating scene. But her flatmate, Kate, persuades her to give it one more chance, only this time she must create a profile describing her ‘perfect’ man.
Yes, he must look like Robert Pattinson and needs to own a multi-million pound business, but there are a couple of other deal breakers, too! So, when a guy comes along who ticks every box, surely there’s got to be a catch?


I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review
I thought that the message behind this story was great! It shouldn't matter what a person looks like or what they can give you when you are trying to find a lasting relationship. Sometimes you can write someone off because of these qualities not being met or maybe they didn't give a great first impression because they are nervous. I think that sometimes it is important to take a second look because that person could possibly be a great match for you. 
Anyway...I had a hard time getting through this book regardless of the message because of one main reason. I could not connect with Sophia nor did I want to. She was so shallow! She only seemed to care about a person's bank account and their appearance. When she begins talking about her perfect man during the beginning of the book, I wanted to scream. Frankly, I think that she and another one of the characters in the book deserve each other because neither of them truly care about what matters within a relationship which is love. If she would gave been more likable, I think that the book would have been better. The saving grace of this book is Chris! I loved how down to earth and kind he was. I also happen to have a thing for nerdy guys so I found it endearing that he played with figures that he painted himself. I will say that this book gets points for originality because there were some dating preferences and pitfalls that I had never heard of before that took place in this book.
 

Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Let It Be Me by Jody Holford

🌟🌟🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Synopsis:
Megan Carter’s spent the past five years nannying for a pint-size boss—the adorable Charlie—while also navigating her full-size boss, his somewhat grouchy, way-too-methodical dad, Adam. Now that she’s finally moving on, helping Adam find her replacement should be easy…except he doesn’t want another nanny. He wants a wife.

Adam’s been burned by love in the past, so of course he believes finding someone who can be a partner in raising his son is all that matters. Too bad the woman helping him search is the biggest believer in love at first sight and happily-ever-after he’s ever met.

Even as Adam’s funny, charming, and—who would have thought it?—super-hot side starts to come out, Megan knows that without love, a family would never be complete. But convincing Adam of that might be harder than she thought.

I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review
I enjoyed how this book was character driven. There was obviously a conflict but it focused more on the conflicting emotions of the characters and whether they wanted to risk a relationship or not. I liked all of the characters but especially Megan. She had a calm, loving presence within the story which makes sense due to the fact that she is the nanny. I loved the relationship that she had with Adam's son. It was playful but also nurturing and I liked their interactions with each other. I also liked Adam despite all of the times that I found it hard to understand his actions. I think that he let his fear rule him rather than taking risks and it prohibited him from taking in a lot of joys that life has to offer. Although this story was not very original, it was still an enjoyable romance. The characters and the overall tone of the story are what really made the book for me. 



Keeper by Kim Chance





πŸŒŸπŸŒŸπŸŒ— out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Synopsis:
When a 200-year-old witch attacks her, sixteen-year-old bookworm Lainey Styles is determined to find a logical explanation. Even with the impossible staring her in the face, Lainey refuses to believe it—until she finds a photograph linking the witch to her dead mother.

After consulting a psychic, Lainey discovers that she, like her mother, is a Keeper: a witch with the exclusive ability to unlock and wield the Grimoire, a dangerous but powerful spell book. But there’s a problem. The Grimoire has been stolen by a malevolent warlock who is desperate for a spell locked inside it—a spell that would allow him to siphon away the world’s magic.

With the help of her comic-book-loving best friend and an enigmatic but admittedly handsome street fighter, Lainey must leave her life of college prep and studying behind to prepare for the biggest test of all: stealing back the book.


I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review
I found this book enjoyable although it was easy for me to put down and walk away from. I thought that the author set up the world really well. Kim Chance was able to use the classic main character doesn't know anything so we as readers get to learn along side of her when things are explained to her. I appreciated that the author also lets the reader learn about Keepers/witches through other means as well. I can't say how she does this because I don't want to reveal anything but it was my favorite aspect of the story. 
I felt like all of my questions were answered over the course of the book except for maybe one but I can guess what the answer is to that one. I loved the run-ins with the "200-year-old witch" that Lainey has. They were both informative and interesting. I feel like they kept the story moving along
The whole reason I struggled with whether to rate this book a 2.5 or 3 was due to the characters and their development. I began the book liking Lainey and her Uncle but that changed as the book progressed. Lainey seemed to have a good head on her shoulders but only believed in things that she could see scientific proof of in the world. I do find myself pulled more into books wherein the characters are not easily swayed into believing supernatural elements too easily. I got annoyed with how she seemed to have no regard for her safety and being more concerned about boys than bigger issues at hand. Her uncle was the only character that I loved the entire time even though he is not a main character. Initially, I liked Lainey's best friend but after a little while it felt as if the author was shoving it in my face how much she liked comics. I felt like every sentence out of her mouth was a comic reference. 
I think that I would like to read the next book in the series because it seems as if Lainey has a change of heart at the end. I'm hoping that she is more bad@$$ in the sequel and with the events that took place towards the end of the book it seems as if the next one will be even more action packed than this one.




 

Don't Be Afraid by C. A. Harms

 

BLURB
Have you ever looked at someone and just knew,
knew that they were placed in your life for a reason?
The one person that would be not only your best friend,
but your absolute everything.
That’s how I felt the first time I saw him.

That one day when a few little words changed our entire lives forever…

Don’t be Afraid, he said.
Life can change so quickly.
One moment you can be smiling and feeling as if you're walking on clouds and the next, everything you love, everything you treasure crumbles at your feet.

I told him to fight, I told him I needed him.
We needed him.
But there are just some fights that can't be won…

He was my angel then, and he’s still my angel now.
In a way, I believe he’s still looking out for us, giving us a future.
Sometimes it’s as if I can still feel his presence,
guiding us and keeping us safe.

So, I won’t be Afraid.
I'll live. I’ll fight.
It’s what he would have wanted.

I’ll do it for him…

GOODREADS LINK:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36641755-don-t-be-afraid

PURCHASE LINKS
US:
http://1click.bz/DontBeAfraidUS
UK: http://1click.bz/DontBeAfraidUK
CA: http://1click.bz/DontBeAfraidCA
AU: http://1click.bz/DontBeAfraidAU
Free in Kindle Unlimited

EXCERPT
I buried my body beneath the covers and curled around his warmth. With my head rested just where he’d wanted it, I closed my eyes tight and willed the tears away. Doing my best to hide the emptiness consuming me, I concentrated on breathing evenly.
“Always loved you right like this,” he confessed. “Your body so close to mine it feels like we’re the same person.”
I took deep breaths as I thought of all the reasons life was so damn unfair.
“Loved burying my face in your hair, just breathing you in.”
Those were the words most girls dreamed of hearing, and they made our love feel more solid and concrete. But hearing them now was like a slow form of torture, because they were tearing the small amount of control I had left in me to pieces.
“You were made just for me, Sawyer Cooper,” he whispered sleepily. “I truly believe that.”
I squeeze my eyes shut tighter as I curled into him closer.
“Forever my girl.”
Tears rolled along my cheeks as I did all I could to wipe them away before he noticed. I was thankful sleep had taken him over and he was oblivious to the shattering of my soul.
 
AUTHOR BIO
C.A. Harms is like any other addicted reader. She enjoys happy endings and HEA love stories. She hasn't always been a lover of Romance and had once been addicted to a good Mystery. Just recently she has taken on a new liking and now is a full blown Romance novel addict.
She lives in Illinois and enjoys spending time with her husband and two children. You will always find her with her kindle or paperback in hand as it is her favorite pass time.
 

AUTHOR LINKS

Awkward by Lily Kate

BLURB
Ladies,

I know how things look from the outside. I’m rich. I’m a successful surgeon. I’m handsome. I should have women lining up from here to New Jersey clawing for space in my bed, but there’s one huge catch.

I’m f*cking awkward.

Every time I get a date, I spoil it. Asked if she’s pregnant? Check. Forgot her name? Check. Bought a meat lover’s pizza for my vegan girlfriend? Check, check, check.

This is why my best friend, romance fanatic Allie Jenkins, has declared that she’s swooping in to save the day. She’s prepared a list of required reading straight from The Ripped Bodice, and I’m supposed to take notes, learn from the best, and put that shit into action. After all, practice makes perfect, right?

Wrong.

GOODREADS LINK:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/37559156-awkward
 
PURCHASE LINKS – $2.99 for a limited time
US:
http://amzn.to/2E4vPBr
UK: http://amzn.to/2DFg468

CA: http://amzn.to/2FahRNL
AU: http://amzn.to/2rwA2eu
Free in Kindle Unlimited
 
AUTHOR BIO
USA TODAY bestselling author Lily Kate works a pretttttty boring day job and writes books filled with heat, heart, and humor by night. Her debut novel, Delivery Girl, landed instantly on the USA TODAY list, thanks to all of her fabulous readers! :)
When she’s not writing books, you may find her watching Christmas movies before Thanksgiving, eating whipped cream from the can, or hanging out with her family.
 
AUTHOR LINKS
Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/lilykateauthor
Twitter: https://twitter.com/LilyKate_author
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lily.kate.author

Monday, January 29, 2018

Deeper (The Deep Duet Book 2) by M. Malone, Nana Malone

BLURB
The plan was never to fall in love...The plan was to avenge my father's death.
Hell, I knew better. Never fall in love with the mark.
For ten years I have plotted and planned my revenge against Rafe DeMarco. He took the most important thing in my life away from me and I meant to return the favor.
Except, I was wrong...
Now, I need his protection. And I'm the fool who went and fell in love.
The best laid plans and all.
(Deeper is the finale of the Deep Duet. Start the duet with Book 1, Deep.)
 
GOODREADS LINK:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36356939-deeper


B&N: http://bit.ly/2AILJCT
Kobo: http://bit.ly/2AHoZmA
iBooks: http://apple.co/2By4TIs

AUTHOR BIOS & LINKS
M. Malone
NYT & USA Today bestselling author M. Malone lives in the Washington, DC metro area with her husband and their two sons. She holds a master's degree in Business from a prestigious college that

would no doubt be scandalized by how she's using her expensive education.

Independently published, she has sold more than 1/2 million ebooks in her two series, THE ALEXANDERS and BLUE-COLLAR BILLIONAIRES. Since starting her indie journey in 2011 with the runaway bestselling novella "Teasing Trent," her work has appeared on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists more than a dozen times.

She's now a full-time writer and spends 99.8% of her time in her pajamas.

Website: 
http://www.minxmalone.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/minxmalone
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/minxmalone

Nana Malone
USA Today bestselling author Nana Malone's love of all things romance and adventure started with a

tattered romantic suspense novel she "borrowed" from her cousin.

It was a sultry summer afternoon in Ghana, and Nana was a precocious thirteen. She's been in love with kick-butt heroines ever since. With her overactive imagination constantly channeling her inner Buffy, it was only a matter a time before she started creating her own characters.

While she waits for her chance at a job as a ninja assassin, Nana works out her drama, passion and sass with fictional characters every bit as brazen and kick-butt as she thinks she is.

Website:
http://www.nanamalone.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/nanamalonewriter
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/nanamalone

Sunday, January 28, 2018

This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity #1) by Victoria Schwab

πŸŒŸπŸŒŸπŸŒŸπŸŒŸπŸŒ— out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Synopsis:
There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from author Victoria Schwab, a young woman and a young man must choose whether to become heroes or villains—and friends or enemies—with the future of their home at stake. The first of two books.

Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives.

I have only read one other book by Victoria Schwab but I enjoyed it. When I heard about The Savage Song I was even more invested in reading it than the other book I had read. I thought that the blurb made this book sound amazing! Monsters who don't really act like the cruel, cunning creatures that people make them out to be and humans who appear to be as villainous as one would believe monsters to be? Sign me up!
I loved this book because it turned out to be as fantastic as I thought it would be and so much more. Victoria Schwab took the idea of heroes/villains and monsters/humans to a whole new level. There were so many layers and sides to each of the characters making them interesting and complex. August doesn't want to be what he is but he doesn't have a choice so he attempts to see the silver lining in what he does and is. He has a good heart and I think that he doesn't really understand why the world is the way that it is. He fights against his very nature because he doesn't want to hurt anyone even if they have committed cruel acts. Kate was harder for me to understand. She wants to be accepted by her father so she attempts to bury any of her potential weaknesses. Kate was cruel in ways but I don't think that her heart was truly invested when she was being that way. 
I found the villains in this story a bit hard to understand. I wasn't sure that their motives were totally clear other than power and decimating their enemies. I would have liked for there have been more to it than that but I still appreciated the questions that the author posed during the book. She managed to make me question what makes someone a human or a monster. Does being human mean having emotions and striving to make the world a safer place? For putting someone's needs before your own? Does being a monster mean using others as pawns for selfish gains? Or does it mean killing people for food and/or amusement?
I found the monsters themselves to be fascinating. I loved how different they were from each other and I thought that the look and feel of each one was interesting and unique. The descriptions were so detailed that it was easy to picture them as I read. Some were known to have red eyes and to be vicious while others were known to be present at scenes like bombings and cult murders. I loved how music was used by one type of monster to take a soul and bring the truth to peoples lips. That was my favorite aspect of the description and I think that it is because music is a bog part of my life. It helped me to relate more to August because music was a part of him. He ached to play his music because he loved it.





Saturday, January 27, 2018

All of You by Lindsay Detwiler

BLURB
There’s no such thing as impossible when it comes to saving the one who holds your heart.

A sexy doctor who’s restricted by expectations.
A quirky poet who’s defined by her dark past.
All it takes is Alex Evans saving Marley Jade one fateful night for their futures to be realigned. And when a passion sparks between them, they must decide if they can piece each other back together and make love work.

GOODREADS LINK:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35527988-all-of-you

 


 
AUTHOR BIO
An English teacher, an author, and a fan of anything pink and/or glittery, Lindsay's the English teacher clichΓ©; she loves cats, reading, Shakespeare, and Poe.

She currently lives in her hometown with her husband, Chad (her junior high sweetheart); their cats, Arya, Amelia, Alice, Marjorie, and Bob; and their mastiff, Henry.

Lindsay's goal with her writing is to show the power of love and the beauty of life while also instilling a true sense of realism in her work. Some reviewers have noted that her books are not the “typical romance.” With her novels coming from a place of honesty, Lindsay examines the difficult questions, looks at the tough emotions, and paints the pictures that are sometimes difficult to look at. She wants her fiction to resonate with readers as realistic, poetic, and powerful. Lindsay wants women readers to be able to say, “I see myself in that novel.” She wants to speak to the modern woman’s experience while also bringing a twist of something new and exciting. Her aim is for readers to say, “That could happen,” or “I feel like the characters are real.” That’s how she knows she's done her job.

Lindsay's hope is that by becoming a published author, she can inspire some of her students and other aspiring writers to pursue their own passions. She wants them to see that any dream can be attained and publishing a novel isn’t out of the realm of possibility.
 
AUTHOR LINKS
Website:
http://www.lindsaydetwiler.com
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/lindsayanndetwiler
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/lindsaydetwiler
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/13508159.Lindsay_Detwiler
Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/Lindsay-Detwiler/e/B00TNAVBSS
Newsletter: http://www.tinyletter.com/lindsaydetwiler
YouTube Channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvz8hP-eesFMprJuG0a4ZzA

Friday, January 26, 2018

Book of Souls (Gods of Egypt, #1) by Nadine Nightingale

🌟🌟🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Synopsis:
They call me Angel of Death, but my name is Nisha Blake. I am Shepherdstown’s living urban legend. My life, a tale of the macabre.

People avoid me like the plague. Well, everyone but my friends. They don’t see the Angel of Death when they look at me. They see poor, broken Nisha—the bully victim, suffering from vicious night terrors and vivid hallucinations.

Things take a turn for the worse when Blaze shows up. He’s a too hot, tattooed, bad-ass MMA fighter from London, hell-bent on getting to know me. Since he walked into my miserable life, my hallucinations graduated to a point where I can no longer differentiate between fiction and reality.

I am insane.
Broken beyond repair.
Or so I think until—

I uncover a secret form the past—a link between all the deaths, my hallucinations, and my night terrors. It’s then I understand I’m not the Angel of Death.

I am something else.
Someone else.

 
*I received this copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*
I don't think that the blurb for this book did it justice. I admit that I was intrigued by the "angel of death" portion as well as the mention of hallucinations but it seemed like it would be a typical YA fantasy novel that focuses too much on the romance aspect. I'm never been so happy to be wrong. This book did have a bit too much romance in it for my taste but it mostly focused on Nisha and how when people die in her town that she tends to be in the vicinity.
I thought that the story was really interesting. I love the idea of having a character that feels emotions with such depth and is so empathetic towards others regardless of the cruelty that she suffers at their hands because they are afraid of her. I loved Nisha as a character. She cared about other people so much that she sacrificed her own happiness and ability to live life to the fullest in order to keep others safe. She bore the bullying and being treated as a pariah with grace. She went as far as to defend these bullies them saying that it was because they were afraid. I mean...talk about strength! This book was more psychological in nature than action-packed because Nisha struggles with what is real and not real. She believes that she is crazy so she tries to get through things on her own. I have reason to believe that the next book will have far more action in it. I want to say what I loved most about the story but there is nothing in the blurb about it so I don't want to spoil it for anyone. I will say that there is Egyptian mythology involved which I think is easy to ascertain from the book cover if you look at the symbols. I have always been fascinated by things of that nature and was excited that the author decided to run with it. I think that this was a solid start to this series and I am intrigued by what will happen in the next book.






 



The Road to You by Melissa Toppen

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

BLURB
Life is full of choices- of chances- of moments.
Chances we regret not taking. Choices we wish we could change.
And then there are the moments that define us.

Kam was my choice…
The one who stole my heart instantly.

Kane was my chance…
The one who set me ablaze with just one look.

They were my moment…
Two brothers that both owned a part of me.
Two brothers that I loved in different ways for different reasons.

One brother shattered my heart.
The other put it back together.
Both changed me forever.

GOODREADS LINK:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/37760782-the-road-to-you

*Received an advance reader copy in exchange for an honest review*
Wow! I have to say that I was so impressed with this book but I'm mad at the author at the same time. I feel like she stuck my heart in a blender. I have a major book hangover after this book. I'm going to have to read some action-packed or comedic reads after this one to give my emotions a break. (Sorry rant over!)
I loved everything about this book! All of the characters were great! I loved the choices that Melissa Toppen made with this book. I thought that it was interesting that she gives each of the three main characters a chance to speak in the book. She does it in such a way that it doesn't feel overdone or forced (That comment probably won't make much sense unless you read the book). Elara was an interesting female lead who sought adventure, living life to the fullest, and adrenaline rushes. She ended up being far more conservative than I thought that she would be with her feelings/being vulnerable. I think is what made her most interesting to me. 
Of course I loved Kam! He reminded me of a puppy because I couldn't help but love him. He was just so energetic, loveable, and funny. It was like it was his mission in life to help to make others lives easier by caring about them. Then there was Kane. I appreciated the fact that the author didn't just make him the dark, broody brother so that he was the complete opposite from Kamden. They were similar in certain ways but also different enough to know that they were each individuals. Kane was a bit more serious but still a dare devil in his own right. He seemed like he was misunderstood because he didn't always show his carefree, fun loving side to people other than his family. Honestly, I didn't love one brother over the other because I loved them each in different ways. 
This was such a beautiful, heart-wrenching story about love, loss, and how to move on when it feels like your emotions won't let you do so. I think that it is also about taking chances even when you are terrified of things not being in your control. Elara seemed to deal with this issue a lot throughout the book but was able to overcome it by the end of the book. This was not a unique story because I have read books with very similar plots but it was done in such a well thought out way that I was invested from the beginning until the end. The pacing was perfect and all of the relationships were build well with good foundations rather than anything being rushed.

PURCHASE LINKS
US:
http://amzn.to/2Dm5Lk2
UK: http://amzn.to/2Dwca00
CA: http://amzn.to/2DRdKql
AU: http://amzn.to/2FZQpTW
Free in Kindle Unlimited 




AUTHOR BIO
Melissa Toppen is a Reader's Choice Award Winning and Bestselling Author of New Adult and Contemporary Romance. She is a lover of books and enjoys nothing more than losing herself in a good novel. She has a soft spot for Romance and focuses her writing in that direction; writing what she loves to read.
Melissa resides in Cincinnati Ohio with her husband and two children, where she writes full time.

 




AUTHOR LINKS
Website:
http://www.mtoppen.com
Facebook Page: http://www.facebook.com/mtoppenauthor
Facebook Profile: http://www.facebook.com/melissatoppen
Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/mtoppen
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/mtoppenauthor
Instagram: http://www.instagram.com/melissa_toppen
Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/mtoppenauthor
Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/author/melissatoppen
Google+: https://plus.google.com/u/0/+MelissaToppen/posts/p/pub
Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/melissa-toppen
Book+Main: https://bookandmainbites.com/mtoppenauthor




Thursday, January 25, 2018

Unearthed (Unearthed #1) by Amie Kaufman, Meagan Spooner

🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Synopsis:
When Earth intercepts a message from a long-extinct alien race, it seems like the solution the planet has been waiting for. The Undying's advanced technology has the potential to undo environmental damage and turn lives around, and Gaia, their former home planet, is a treasure trove waiting to be uncovered.

For Jules Addison and his fellow scholars, the discovery of an alien culture offers unprecedented opportunity for study... as long as scavengers like Amelia Radcliffe don't loot everything first. Mia and Jules' different reasons for smuggling themselves onto Gaia put them immediately at odds, but after escaping a dangerous confrontation with other scavvers, they form a fragile alliance.

In order to penetrate the Undying temple and reach the tech and information hidden within, the two must decode the ancient race's secrets and survive their traps. But the more they learn about the Undying, the more their presence in the temple seems to be part of a grand design that could spell the end of the human race...

The very first page of this book that had a portion of the decoded Undying Broadcast was so powerfully written that it gave me chills. It was like a message from beyond the grave. I was hooked immediately! It seemed to set the tone for the entire book because it felt so ominous and tense. My best description of this book would be Indiana Jones in space and on crack!
Jules was Indiana Jones if he wasn't very good with women, was naive, and couldn't defend himself. I know that makes him sound lame but he was actually an interesting character. he was an academic first and foremost and a genius in his own right. I think that he saw the best in people and didn't like to believe that they have ulterior motives. He is also so hell bent on clearing his father's name and discovering the truth behind the alien message that all sense of safety flies out of the window. 
Mia was similar in the sense that she was spontaneous and a bit reckless in order to reach her goals. All that she wants is to make sure that her sister is safe and cared for. I admired her determination to free her sister and to help someone in need regardless of them slowing her down. It proved to me that she wasn't as jaded as I initially thought though I wouldn't have blamed her if she was. 
There is a romance in this book but it doesn't overshadow the plot because it is not really a main focus. The characters appear to care for each other but they each have goals they want to accomplish so they don't let those feelings get in the way of accomplishing what they set out to do. The romantic notions are more passing thoughts and feelings rather than them professing their feelings for each other. I appreciated that the authors did this because it showed that they each had a good head on their shoulders and were focused on the task at hand rather than their attraction.
I really enjoyed the story! The pacing was good with enough tense scenes thrown in to make the story flow well and keep my interest. The puzzles that Jules and Mia were faced with were thought provoking and made me wonder why the aliens wanted anyone to find the temples and make their way through them in the first place. I was still guessing the purpose of the alien message until the purpose of the warnings and tests were revealed towards the very end of the book. I have to say that I didn't figure it out until the end which was really exciting for me. I love that I wasn't able to figure it out because then the book would have been too predictable for me. I look forward to the next installment of this series. I wish that I had the next one now because it is going to kill me not knowing what is going to happen next!

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Captive Beauty by Natasha Knight

🌟🌟🌟 out of 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
 BLURB

Cilla
The Beast had Belle.
Killian Black has me.

How I got here doesn’t matter, even though he says it does. Says it was my choice. He doesn’t get it, though. It wasn’t ever a choice for me.

And now, he’s changing the rules.

The agreement was one month. For thirty days, I’d be his. He’s no longer satisfied with my body alone, though. He wants my soul, too. Wants every part of me. And even though I can pretend I’m safe when I lie beneath him, this man does something to me. Something wicked.

A thing that will break me.

Killian
Cilla made the choice. She offered the deal. I just took her up on it. So what if I changed the rules half-way in? I’m not apologizing for it.

See, Cilla and me, we’re the same. She’s dark. As dark as me. Something happened to her. Something bad. It damaged her.

But it’s not a hero she seeks. It’s an avenging angel. A dark knight. That, I can do. I’ll slay her dragons, but it’ll cost her, because in return, I want everything. And I’ll take it.

She’s mine.

Author’s note: Captive Beauty is a standalone romance. Think Beauty and the Beast, but twisted and dark in the best, dirtiest ways.
 
GOODREADS LINK:
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*Received an advance reader copy in exchange for an honest review*
The blurb is accurate when it says that this is a darker retelling of Beauty and the Beast. There are many similarities but also differences. The book focuses on the captivity of Cilla who agrees to stay with Killian 30 days in order to save her brother. The story is very dark and has sexual situations that may be triggers for people. I don't mind dark romance but I had some issues with this one. I didn't really like Killian because he was a bit too dark. He was not very likable and contradicted himself throughout the book. He said that he would not force anything to happen between he and Cilla but he did and I couldn't get past that. As for Cilla, I liked her  but wished that it would have been established earlier that she had had a rough childhood. When the author explained what had happened to her it made the book flow better and the relationship between her and Killian made much more sense. I thought that the reasoning for Cilla being put in the situation to agree to the deal with Killian was interesting. I liked that change that the author made but I would have liked to have seen more development of that story line more. It seemed like it was initially explained a little but was then left alone for the duration of the book. I was curious about Killian's other activities as well as how Cilla's brother got involved in that world in the first place. 

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EXCERPT
Prologue 1
Cilla
He’s watching me. I know he is. He has cameras everywhere. Why wouldn’t he have one here? In this, the “special” room? He told me he likes to keep an eye on his things. And that’s what I am. A thing. A possession.
His.
Fucking his.
And today I fucked up.
Today he’ll take it out of my skin.
I shudder with the thought. With the knowledge of what I know is coming.
I’ll fight him. I wonder if he expects me to. Wants me to, even. All I know is I can’t submit to him. I

can’t let him break me.
But I am breaking. Little by little.
I wonder if that’s why he took me.
This is a game to him. My life is a game.
I hug my knees to myself. This room is so cold, unlike the others.
I pull the blanket up around me, as much for the cold as for protection. It’s not like I can hide my fear. He knows. He knows the real truth. Knows everything now.
My dress is torn and I’m barefoot. He took my shoes away when he put me here. I guess the heels could be used as a weapon. As if I could somehow manage to overpower him.
I try to swallow but the lump in my throat makes it impossible. I’m scared and I hate it. I don’t want to admit it. Not even to myself.
Tears wet my eyes but before they have a chance to fall, I cover them with my hands and rub them away. I don’t want him to see my weakness. He gets off on it.
I did this. I pushed him. And I can survive this. I fucking have to.
It’s when I’m giving myself that ridiculous pep talk that I hear his footfalls in the hallway. Hear his voice, muffled so I can’t make out what he says. Probably dismissing Hugo, his fucking henchman. Like he needs one.
Every hair on my body stands on end when he slides the key into the lock. When he turns it. And when he pushes the door open, it takes all I have not to crumple. Not to cave.
It takes all I have to stand and ready myself for battle against this beast of a man.
 
Prologue 2
Kill
She claims I took her, but that’s not the whole truth.
I gave her a choice. She made it.
Someone needed to be punished. It didn’t need to be her. She chose this. Chose to be here.
Well, okay, not right here. Not like this. Standing against the far wall, her pretty, jade eyes wide with fear, the delicate skin around them pink from tears.
She’s scared.
And she should be.
She knows what’s coming.
I warned her and she fucked up.
I take her in, pretty in pink. Pretty Priscilla. Even with her hair a mess. Her mascara a black smear across her face. Her dress ruined. She’s scared shitless, but she’s defiant. I like that about her. Like her fire.
It makes my dick hard.

I close the door but don’t bother locking it. No need. She’s not walking out of here tonight. I’ll be carrying her when I’m through.
When I take a step, she makes a sound, something like a frightened little rabbit would make if they could make sound. Her hands are flat against the wall behind her. It’s like she’s trying to melt into it.
“I guess we were always going to end up here,” I say.
She has no response apart from the sudden trembling of her body. She wraps her arms around herself. I can even hear her teeth chatter. She’s too proud to beg though. Beg me for mercy. I respect her for that. But I do like the idea of her on her knees at my feet, clinging to me, pleading with me to spare her this one thing.
I slide off my suit jacket and hang it over the back of the chair. I watch her reflection in the mirror as I take off one cuff link, then the other, and set them both on the table. I’m rolling up my sleeves when I return my attention to her. Her eyes slide to my forearms. My hands.
“I know, Cilla,” I say.
She looks up at me.
“I know everything.”
 
AUTHOR BIO
USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance, Natasha Knight specializes in dark, tortured heroes. Happily-Ever-Afters are guaranteed, but she likes to put her characters through hell to get them there. She’s evil like that.
 
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