The Neon Dreams series by Caisey Quinn #Review

The Neon Dreams series by Caisey Quinn #Review

PJV QUICKIE:

The eye-catching covers might have drawn my attention, but the writing and the story are what kept me reading. Interesting characters, exciting musician-on-the-road lifestyles, and sexual tension that left my fingers scorched wherever they touched the pages are all reasons why these books are on my keeper shelf, and why I’ve got my calendar marked for the next book.  Is it October yet?

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Caisey Quinn’s Neon Dreams series is one that somehow went under my radar until I met her at the RT Convention in Dallas at the Avon party.  She was signing the second book in the series, Loving Dallas, and I was thrilled to receive a copy. The blurb was interesting and the author was very enthusiastic about the series, but I put it aside until I bought the first book, Leaving Amarillo because I can’t start with the second book in a series.

OnceI started reading Leaving Amarillo, I couldn’t put it down.  I like the characters – a brother and sister and the brother’s best friend have a band and they’re traveling around Texas trying to make it big.  Dixie, the sister, has a college music scholarship but if they can get a contract she won’t be going back to school.  She’s also got a huge crush on Gavin, their childhood friend.  Apparently Gavin promised her brother Dallas that he’d never make a move on Dixie and he’s stayed true to his word… until Dixie forces his hand.

From there it’s a wonderfully hot story of passion – both physical passion and their passion for music.  When I turned the last page, I’ll admit I was really frustrated – I gave it a 3.75 on goodreads because I was enjoying the story but the end is unresolved between Dixie and Gavin and since the next book is Dallas’ story we won’t be getting their resolution until book 3.  I knew in my heart there was no way I’d enjoy Dallas’ story because I was mad that we didn’t Dixie and Gavin’s story resolved.

Well, I am the first to admit when I’m wrong.  I really enjoyed Loving Dallas. Dallas went on the road alone and his story is a “second chance love” story.  Not what I expected and I loved it.  There were times when I was frustrated with the lack of communication between the characters, but honestly I didn’t care.  The secondary characters helped move the story along, but they were also interesting in and of themselves.

This has been a great series so far and I can’t wait for the next book, Loving Dixie. I would not recommend trying to read these books as stand-alones.  The set up for Dixie and Gavin’s HEA is set and it’s going to be epic, I just know it!

Recommendations:
Fans of “Rock Star” romance and fans of New Adult will probably enjoy the Neon Dreams series.  Fans of Jamie Shaw’s Mayhem series, Erica Kelly’s Rock Star Romance series, and Liora Blake’s True Devotion series may want to give the Neon Dreams series a try.

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The Neon Dreams series by Caisey Quinn #Review
At parajunkee.com we accept books in exchange for a review, we also use affiliate links for Amazon.
Neon Dreams 1Nashville meets New Adult in Neon Dreams, a dramatic, sexy series from bestselling author Caisey Quinn, about a country band’s rocky road to fame—and the ambition, dreams, and love of the people who make the music.

Dixie Lark hasn’t had it easy. She lost her parents in an accident when she was young and grew up in a ramshackle house on a dirt road in Amarillo with her ailing grandparents and overprotective older brother. Thanks to her grandfather, Dixie learned to play a mean fiddle, inspired by the sounds of the greats—Johnny and June, Waylon, and Hank. Her grandfather’s fiddle changed Dixie’s life forever, giving her an outlet for the turmoil of her broken heart and inspiring a daring dream.

Ten years later, Dixie and her brother, Dallas, are creating the music they love and chasing fame with their hot band, Leaving Amarillo. But Dixie isn’t enjoying the ride. All she can think about is Gavin, the band’s tattooed, tortured drummer who she’s loved since they were kids. She knows he feels the connection between them, but he refuses see her as more than his best friend’s little sister.

Convinced that one night with Gavin will get him out of her system, Dixie devises a plan. She doesn’t know that her brother has forbidden Gavin from making a move on her-a promise he swore he’d always keep . . . a promise that once broken will unexpectedly change the future for Dixie, Gavin and the band.

Neon Dreams 2In the second novel in bestselling author Caisey Quinn’s Neon Dreams series, a country rock band and its members embark on the rocky road to fame and find love along the way.

Dallas Lark is so close to achieving his dream of making it big in country music that he can taste it. Arriving in Nashville after signing with sexy, successful manager Mandy Lantram, his life goes from tragedy and turmoil to one lucky break after another—except it isn’t really luck because Dallas has sacrificed everything for his career, leaving behind his band, sister, best friend, and high school sweetheart, Robyn, in the pursuit of fame.

Robyn Breeland is a successful marketing coordinator and promotions specialist for a thriving liquor distributor out of Texas. She loves every aspect of her job: coming up with new ideas, traveling, hosting promotional parties and exclusive events—until it brings her face-to-face with the man who broke her heart, prompting her to erect a steel cage around it.

When their paths collide and they’re forced to work together, Dallas and Robyn realize that the old spark they thought they’d extinguished might still be a burning flame.

blank_book(Blurb from Booktopia) The stunning final installment in Caisey Quinn's Neon Dreams trilogy.

Fighting for redemption...

I've lived most of my life in darkness, beneath the shadows of secrets and addictions. The last thing I ever wanted to do was hurt the only girl I'd ever loved-the one who brought me into the light. In my entire life I'd made one promise-a promise I'd intended to keep. I've broken that promise and now I have to live with the fallout. Dixie Lark hates me, and I have to tell her that I love her. I also have to tell her a truth that might destroy us forever.

Can she love me even if she can't forgive me?

Learning to move on...

Gavin Garrison broke his promise to my brother and he broke my heart in the process. I may never love anyone the way I've loved him, but at least I won't spend my life wondering what if. We had our one night and he walked away. I'm finally beginning to move on when my brother's wedding and a battle of the bands brings us back together.

Our band is getting a second chance, but I don't know if I can give him one. How do you hand your heart back to the person who set it on fire once already?
Truth or Beard by Penny Reid #Review

Truth or Beard by Penny Reid #Review

PJV QUICKIE:

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: if you haven’t read any of Penny Reid’s books – why not? I’ve enjoyed her Knitting in the City series and while reading book 4, Beauty and the Mustache, I fell in love with the Winston brothers. If Truth or Beard is any indication of the rest of the series, all I can say is “Take my money and give me all the books!”

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Review:
Jessica James is a high-school math teacher who’s come home to teach and pay off her student loans before fulfilling her dream of travelling the world. Her plan is to stay home for two years and then travel. She’s not planning on starting anything with hunky Beau Winston, the twin she’s had a crush on for as long as she can remember, but when he approaches her at a community gathering, she can’t believe it. When she finds out it was actually his twin, Duane, she’s furious – she and Duane have had an antagonistic relationship since they were kids, so why is he kissing her and looking for more?

Duane Winston has had a crush on Jessica James since they were teenagers – he can remember the exact day his feelings for her changed from aggravation to affection.  When he sees a chance to kiss her, he takes it, even though he knows she’ll be furious. As he gets to know the grown-up, post-college Jessica, he likes her even more. But she doesn’t plan to stick around, and he wants something permanent with her.

~~~~~

Oh yes.  Truth or Beard was so funny and so sexy!  I have a weird one-sided love affair going on with Penny Reid, or her books anyway, and Truth or Beard is another example of what I love about her writing. If you’ve read a Penny Reid book before, you know what I’m talking about.  If you haven’t read any of her books before, you’re missing out!  Penny Reid writes absolutely delicious heroes.  I’m talking grab an imaginary spoon, dig in, and go back for seconds delicious.

Jessica and Duane have a hate-on for each other that goes back years to when they were kids.  Watching that turn around into a real attraction was delightful to read.   I enjoyed the back-and-forth between them and Duane’s plan to court her was swoony.  You’ve got this tough, bearded mechanic who is actively woo-ing his former childhood nemesis, and a sexy math teacher who’s got one foot out the proverbial door.  Throw in a side story involving one of the brothers who got into some trouble with the local motorcycle gang and you’ve got a story that’s almost impossible to put down.

Some of the conflict felt a bit forced at times – I wish Jessica hadn’t fought so hard to push Duane away, and his brilliant plan to ‘have her while he could’ really wasn’t so brilliant, but in the end it all worked out beautifully.  Of course there’s a little something that the author may be saving for a future book story line, but the seed has been planted (in my mind at least).

As Jessica and Duane’s story came to an end, all I could think was that I want every brother’s story. Right now.  (Their sister Ashley’s story was told in Beauty and the Mustache.) Whhyyyyy do I have to wait????

Recommendation:
Penny Reid is an ‘auto-buy’ author for me. I highly recommend her books if you enjoy smart, funny contemporary romance.  I think that Truth or Beard can be read as a stand-alone, although if you read ‘Beauty and the Mustache’ I think you will enjoy it even more.  Fans of Alice Clayton and Molly Harper should give Penny Reid’s books a try.

 

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About_the_book

Truth or Beard by Penny Reid #Review

Truth or Beard by Penny Reid

four-stars
Winston Brothers #1
on July 21, 2015
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Amazon Goodreads
At parajunkee.com we accept books in exchange for a review, we also use affiliate links for Amazon.
Beards, brothers, and bikers! Oh my!

Identical twins Beau and Duane Winston might share the same devastatingly handsome face, but where Beau is outgoing and sociable, Duane is broody and reserved. This is why Jessica James, recent college graduate and perpetual level headed good girl, has been in naïve and unhealthy infatuation with Beau Winston for most of her life. His friendly smiles make her tongue-tied and weak-kneed, and she’s never been able to move beyond her childhood crush. Whereas Duane and Jessica have always been adversaries. She can’t stand him, and she’s pretty sure he can’t stand the sight of her…

But after a case of mistaken identity, Jessica finds herself in a massive confusion kerfuffle. Jessica James has spent her whole life paralyzed by the fantasy of Beau and her assumptions of Duane’s disdain; therefore she’s unprepared for the reality that is Duane’s insatiable interest, as well as his hot hands and hot mouth and hotter looks. Not helping Jessica’s muddled mind and good girl sensibilities, Duane seems to have gotten himself in trouble with the local biker gang, the Iron Order.

Certainly, Beau’s magic spell is broken. Yet when Jessica finds herself drawn to the man who was always her adversary, now more dangerous than ever, how much of her level-headed heart is she willing to risk?

Series Description:
Everyone in Green Valley, Tennessee knows that the six bearded Winston brothers have been imbued with an unfair share of charm and charisma… and are prone to mischief.  Truth or Beard is book #1 in the Winston Brother’s series. Each book is a standalone, full length (120k words), contemporary romantic comedy novel, and follows the romantic exploits and adventures of one of the six Winston Brothers.
Manwhore +1 by Katy Evans #Review

Manwhore +1 by Katy Evans #Review

PJV QUICKIE:

At the end of Manwhore, I absolutely could not wait for Manwhore +1.  While I did enjoy reading about Rachel and Saint again,  Manwhore +1 missed the spark of uncertainty and anticipation that I loved in the first book.

When we left Rachel Livingston at the end of Manwhore, her life was in a shambles:  She had just been exposed for doing a secret article on one of Chicago’s hottest bachelors – Malcolm Saint. The problem was, she had fallen in love with him and was pretty sure he had fallen for her as well.  After the story blew up, he wouldn’t return her calls or e-mails.  Until now. Now he wants her…to work for him.  Rachel doesn’t want to work for Saint, though, she wants things to be like they were before.  But while she’s trying to make things right with Saint, things are not as great as she thought they would be at Edge, the magazine she works for.

 ~~~~~

I waited, very impatiently, for Manwhore +1.  I absolutely loved Manwhore and talked it up to anyone who would listen. Unfortunately, Manwhore +1 left me wanting more, and not in a good way.  While I still love Rachel and Saint, Manwhore +1 just kind of meandered across the page.  There’s really no conflict in Manwhore +1, and sometimes that’s okay if the relationship is carrying the story, but in this case I didn’t really feel that the relationship was moving the story forward either.  The plot is very loosely defined; mostly just Rachel obsessing over Saint, and sex.  Lots of sex.  I can’t believe I’m saying a book needs more plot/less sex, but there it is.  We already know from book 1 that Malcolm is all that and a bag of chips (probably some very expensive gourmet brand), so I felt like in book 2 all of Rachel’s internal fawning over him was overkill.  And there was a lot of fawning.  I thought there might be some conflict regarding someone trying to buy out her magazine, but it’s established early on that Rachel is unhappy there and it seems like she should be leaving anyway. Her job hunt felt very 50-shades-esque with Saint knowing all the editors she interviewed for and offering to “put in a good word for her”, all the while she’s refusing to work for him.  Without going into spoilers, I felt that the whole job drama didn’t really make any sense and didn’t really make any sense from the “villain’s” point of view.

I realize this all sounds like I hated Manwhore +1, but that’s not true.  Katy Evans writes great prose but I feel like in this case it got lost in a wandering story.  Several times I’d re-read a sentence just because I liked how it sounded in my head. And I still sigh whenever I think about “dibs”. I do want to see what’s next for Rachel and Saint – I will definitely be reading Ms. Manwhore; I’m hoping Manwhore +1 is just a bridge to the rest of their story.

I’m also wondering if we’re going to get a Gina/Tahoe story?  It seems to be building up to it, and I would absolutely be interested in their story.

Recommendation: If you read and enjoyed the first book, Manwhore, I’d recommend this next installment.  Fans of Sylvia Day, Emma Chase, or J. Kenner may enjoy Manwhore +1.

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Manwhore +1 by Katy Evans #Review
At parajunkee.com we accept books in exchange for a review, we also use affiliate links for Amazon.
Billionaire playboy? Check.
Ruthless businessman? Check.
Absolutely sinful? Check.

Malcolm Saint was an assignment. A story. A beautiful, difficult man I was supposed to uncover for a racy exposé.

I intended to reveal him, his secrets, his lifestyle—not let him reveal me. But my head was overtaken by my heart and suddenly nothing could stop me from falling. I fell for him, and I fell hard.

Malcolm Saint is absolute Sin, and I've become a hopeless Sinner.

Now that the assignment is over, Saint wants something from me--something unexpected--and I want this wicked playboy's heart. But how can I prove to the man who trusts no one that I’m worthy of becoming his plus one?
True Devotion by Liora Blake #Review

True Devotion by Liora Blake #Review

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PJV Quickie: Coming off the high of True North, I was worried about the dreaded Sophomore Slump. I am happy to report this was not the case and I adored True Devotion!

Review:
You’d never guess now, but Devon Jenkins has lived a hard life.  She grew up in poverty, but since her brother Trevor’s band (Trevor is the hero in True North) hit the big time, she’s living in L.A. now.  She’s turned her life around and gotten away from some bad decisions in her past – she’s a massage therapist and she loves to bake in her spare time. She loves her brother and puts up with his band-mate, Simon. Does she have a thing for Simon?  Well, sure – Simon is hot, so hot, but he flirts with anything in a skirt.  So, no, she’s going there and getting her heart broken.

Simon Cole is in Trevor’s band, Trax.  He’s had a thing for Devon, but he knows she’s off limits because she’s Trevor’s sister.  Instead he takes what is offered by willing women, but they’re nothing real for him – Devon could be.  When Devon offers him a drunken one-night stand after Trevor’s wedding, Simon tells her no – not until she’s ready to make it real.

~~~~~

I loved True North, the first book in this series, and couldn’t wait to read cocky, flirty Simon’s book. I wasn’t too sure about Devon, as she seemed kind of angry and stand off-ish, but that really was not the case here. Once you understand her background and her feelings for her brother, her actions in True North make much more sense.  

OMG y’all – Simon and Devon had CHEMISTRY: Simmering, smoldering, sensual chemistry. I loved the back-and-forth between these two, and how they both have a great sense of humor.  Their personalities were well-matched, and once they both decided to go for it, they were fabulous together.  Simon only had eyes for Devon, and all he wanted to do was make her happy.  Devon had a few bumps on the way – her past made her resistant to relationships and she didn’t feel worthy of Simon’s love and affection. And while I didn’t understand her turn towards self-destruction, I do know that it happens in real life and it felt authentic to this reader.

True Devotion had a tiny bit more of the “rock star” life in it than True North did, and I enjoyed seeing the guys doing their thing. We also get to catch up with Trevor and Kate, so that was like seeing old friends again.  (Don’t worry, it can be read as a stand-alone.)  My only complaint with the story is that it followed the same type of story arc as True North, although the different characters were enough to keep it interesting for this reader.

Liora Blake is on my “writers to watch” list and I am excitedly looking forward to the third book in this series, True Divide, which will be out in October.

Is it October yet?

Recommendations:
Fans of rock-star romance will love True Devotion!  If you like Kylie Scott’s Stage Dive series, or Erika Kelly’s Rock Star Romance series should give this series a try.

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True Devotion by Liora Blake #Review

True Devotion by Liora Blake

four-stars
True #2
Published by: Simon & Schuster on June 22, 2015
Genres: Contemporary Romance, New Adult
Amazon Goodreads
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Find out if rock sensation Simon can break through tough-girl Devon’s steely exterior—if he can keep his head on straight, that is—in this second sizzling romance in the True series!

Devon Jenkins is a feisty blonde, and Simon Cole is the arrogant, sexy guitarist playing in her brother’s band. When they met for the first time, it went something like this: He hit on her, she shot him down, he made a lewd joke, she told him he was an idiot.

In the two years since then, not much has changed. From the way Simon flirts shamelessly with any set of ovaries within a 100-mile radius, Devon knows the smartest thing she can do is keep an impenetrable wall between them.

But sometimes the smart choice isn’t necessarily the right one…

Suddenly One Summer by Julie James #Review

Suddenly One Summer by Julie James #Review

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PJV Quickie: I always know when I crack open a Julie James book that I’m going to get a great story with complex characters and just the right amount of romantic tension.  Julie James is an auto-buy author for me and her books are always worth the wait; Suddenly One Summer did not disappoint.  

Review:
Victoria Slade is determined not to ever have a serious relationship or get married.  As a divorce attorney, she’s seen the ugly side of marriage on too many occasions to ever want to go there herself. A break-in in her home causes her to temporarily rent an apartment until she can move into her new condo, and her new next-door neighbor seems to have a string of ladies at his door, which is fine because she is totally not interested in someone who’s an obvious player.

Ford Dixon is an investigative journalist who lives in the apartment next to Victoria’s.  He’s happy with his job and his life, he’s got friends and he dates, but his best friends are starting to get married and do ‘couple things’.  He’s certainly not interested in his new neighbor, who’s gorgeous but seems kind of unfriendly.  Ford’s sister Nicole is a new mom, and she’s recently confided in him that she’s overwhelmed by being a single mom but she doesn’t know anything about the baby’s father except his name.

When Victoria finds Nicole at Ford’s door is in tears with a baby, she offers to let her into her apartment to wait for Ford.  As they talk about Nicole’s situation, Victoria offers her attorney services to file for child support.  When Nicole tells Ford about Victoria’s offer, he insists on using his investigative skills to hunt down the baby’s father.  As they work together to find the baby’s father, they both realize that maybe first impressions are not reliable… but Victoria has issues stemming not only from her profession, but also her childhood, that may may ruin things between them before they can get very far.

~~~~~

As I said in my PJV Quickie, I love Julie James’ books, so it’s not surprising that I really enjoyed Suddenly One Summer.  Three words that come to mind: smart, sexy, fun.  Reading Victoria and Ford getting to know each other and rethinking their first impressions of each other really worked for me.    Their chemistry was good and I love a good ‘enemies to lovers’ story.  I liked the ‘finding the baby’s father’ plot and thought that it was a good way to draw them together.  There was no clear-cut villain in the story, no outside influence trying to keep them apart, and that was refreshing to read.  Although I wish there had been more lawyer action like we’ve seen in previous books by Ms. James, I still devoured Suddenly One Summer in a few days.  Now that I’ve finished it, I’m sad I have to wait a whole year for her next book.

I’d also like to point out that Victoria had some PTSD issues that I  thought Ms. James handled very well. Mental health issues are still considered ‘abnormal’ or ‘weird’ by many people in this day and age, and Ms. James wrote a very positive focus on the importance of going to therapy and not just ignoring your problems.

Recommendations:
If you’re already a Julie James fan, you’ll enjoy Suddenly One Summer.  If you’re a fan of Contemporary romance, definitely give Julie James a try – Suddenly One Summer is a good stand-alone if you’re not looking for a series.

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About the Book

Suddenly One Summer by Julie James #Review

Suddenly One Summer by Julie James

four-stars
Published by: Jove, Penguin on June 2, 2015
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Amazon Goodreads
At parajunkee.com we accept books in exchange for a review, we also use affiliate links for Amazon.
From the New York Times bestselling author of It Happened One Wedding comes a novel about a man and a woman whose summer is about to get very, very steamy…

Divorce lawyer Victoria Slade has seen enough unhappy endings to swear off marriage forever. That doesn't mean she's opposed to casual dating—just not with her cocky new neighbor, who is as gorgeous and tempting as he is off-limits. But once she agrees to take on his sister's case, she's as determined to win as ever—even if that means teaming up with Ford…

Investigative journalist Ford Dixon is bent on finding the man who got his sister pregnant and left her high and dry. He's willing to partner with Victoria, despite the fact that the beautiful brunette gets under his skin like no other woman. He might not be looking to settle down, but there's no denying the scorching attraction between them. Still, the more time he spends with Victoria, the more he realizes that the one woman as skeptical about love as he is might be the only woman he could really fall for…

Time for a Quickie – A Few Mini Reviews

Time for a Quickie – A Few Mini Reviews


Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Dystopian, Fantasy, Romance
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Hey all, Patti here :)  I know it’s not the weekend but I’ve got a few recent reads that I thought I’d share.  There’s a mix of genres and ratings, hopefully you find something you’re interested in: 

 

(book covers are amazon affiliate links)

The MartianThe Martian by Andy Weir:

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him & forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded & completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—& even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won’t have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment or plain-old “human error” are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark isn’t ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—& a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?

YOU WANT TO READ THIS!!! My husband was reading The Martian and sharing little snippets – it sounded like a good story, so I checked out the audiobook from the library. I started listening in my car, but when I got up to Chapter 6 and was sitting in my driveway listening, I decided I was being an idiot so I went inside and proceeded to read the entire rest of the book in less than a day! There is absolutely no romance in The Martian and I still loved it. A little bit technical but I skimmed the math stuff and still really enjoyed it. Hubs and I already have date-night planned for when the movie comes out. My Rating: 5 stars.

Young Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal Romance

DeviantDeviant by Jaimie Roberts:

Most fairy tales end with a happily ever after.

This is not a fairy tale. He is not her Prince Charming about to whisk her away into the sunset. This is a story about betrayal, lust, desire and, ultimately, revenge…

And revenge can only lead to one thing.

Tyler

He was my stranger, my visitor, my shadow in the corner of my room. He stalked me, watched me, knew everything about me. But all I could do was sit and wait. I waited for him to visit me night after night. He was becoming my addiction, my craving, my obsession. He knew every inch of me, but I knew nothing about him.

His calls himself Lotus and, as crazy as it sounds, I think I’m falling in love.

Dean

I wanted to take her, possess her, dominate her, and ruin her. I wanted to ravish her, please her, and consume her until I couldn’t take much more of her.

She will want me to kiss her. She will want me to hold her all night so that she feels a connection with me. I would make it so that she would seek me out in the dark. The one that satisfies her ultimate fantasy. A stranger who sneaks into her room. Someone who gives her the ultimate pleasure, but also seeks to give her ultimate pain. Pain she has never had to endure. Pain that will eat away at her until there is nothing left.

She was my nemesis, I was her lotus. And payback was a bitch.

Kristen Ashley made the “stranger sneaks into my bedroom for hot sex” work, this author does not. There were a lot of holes and it’s obvious the sick kid was written in to mask a plot point near the end. Really, none of the story makes sense – what kind of revenge is it to anonymously sex up your so-called enemy and flip her toilet paper roll to the wrong side? I’m not going to give away spoilers but I just didn’t buy any of it. I found Deviant to be very disjointed and I forced myself to read to the end just to see why the “hero” hated the heroine and what he hoped to accomplish by sneaking into her apartment and backing her car into her spot and stuff (which seems pretty nice to me). There’s a cliffhanger but I have no interest in the next book.  My Rating: 1 star.

Young Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal Romance

True NorthTrue North by Liora Blake:

What happens when a bad-boy celebrity rocker meets a small-town bestselling novelist? Find out in this first book in the sizzling new True series by Liora Blake!

While most novelists would consider jetting off to Hollywood for a TV interview rather exciting, small-town Montana writer Kate Mosely finds it all a bit exhausting. After losing her husband in a car accident where she was behind the wheel, Kate has finally found her bearings in the world again, rebuilding a simple but stable life. And even if that means a lot of lonely nights watching old movies and quiet days writing obituaries for her hometown newspaper, Kate’s not sure she’s ready for her life to change—again.

Until she shares the stage—and a whole heap of carnal gazes—with rock star Trevor “Trax” Jenkins. Despite his intimidating on-stage bravado, underneath it Kate discovers a man with a Rilke poem tattooed on his arm, an appreciation for cronuts, and a snarky wit that matches her own.

As she and Trevor explore their heated chemistry, the scarred parts of Kate’s heart begin to heal, making room for a love so passionate it makes her want long-forgotten things equal parts naughty, heart-swelling, and joyful. But when a searing exposé in a trashy gossip magazine sends Kate running, will it threaten their chances at forever?

I don’t remember where I first saw this book, but it was on my wishlist so when it went on sale I jumped. I’m so glad I did – I absolutely loved this one and will be reading/reviewing the next book, True Devotion, later this month. This was a sweet and sexy story about a rock star (my catnip) and a widow and it was so wonderfully done that I had a book hangover when I finished. My main qualm was that the ending seemed kind of abrupt, but other than that, big big love :)  My Rating: 4 stars.

Young Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal Romance

Elements of ChemistryElements of Chemistry (parts 1 – 3) by Penny Reid:

Parts 1-3: Elements of Chemistry
This book includes all 3 novels.
Part 1: ATTRACTION * Part 2: HEAT * Part 3: CAPTURE

ATTRACTION
One week.
Private beach.
Invisible girl.
Jerk-faced bully.
What’s the worst that could happen?
Kaitlyn Parker has no problem being the invisible girl, which is why she finds herself hiding in various cabinets and closets all over her college campus. Despite her best efforts, she can’t escape the notice of Martin Sandeke—bad boy, jerkface bully, and the universe’s hottest, wealthiest, and most unobtainable bachelor—who also happens to be Kaitlyn’s chemistry lab partner.
Kaitlyn might be the only girl who isn’t interested in exploiting his stunning rower’s build, chiseled features, and family’s billionaire fortune. Kaitlyn wants Martin for his brain, specifically to tabulate findings of trace elements in surface water.
When Kaitlyn saves Martin from a nefarious plot, Martin uses the opportunity to push Kaitlyn out of her comfort zone: spring break, one week, house parties, bathing suits, and suntan lotion. Can she overcome her aversion to being noticed? Will he be able grow beyond his self-centered nature? Or, despite their obvious chemistry, will Martin be the one to drive Kaitlyn into the science cabinet of obscurity for good?

HEAT
Four days left.
Private beach (…and boat).
Not so invisible girl.
And maybe less of a jerk-faced bully than originally thought.
What’s the worst (or the best) that could happen?
Kaitlyn is finding life outside of the science cabinet of obscurity to be quite illuminating …and so are her pants.
When things heat up between Kaitlyn Parker and Martin—previously known as the jerk-faced bully—Sandeke, she places her trust in the one person she never thought capable of earning it, let alone keeping it safe. Fortunately or unfortunately for Kaitlyn, where she gives her trust she can’t help but also give her heart.
But how will the world beyond the sanctuary of their newfound connection react to their relationship? Soon senators, chinless billionaires, and elements beyond Martin and Kaitlyn’s control want to weigh in on the young couple’s future.
Navigating the chaotic inferno of new love might be more than Kaitlyn bargained for, and much, much more than her trust—or her heart—can handle.

CAPTURE
One week.
Manhattan apartment.
Super-hot ex-boyfriend.
…What’s the worst that could happen?
It’s been nine months since Kaitlyn Parker has seen or heard from Martin Sandeke—nine months and five stages of matter. She’s lived through the worst of first-love heartbreak, and is most certainly stronger (and less likely to hide in science cabinets) than ever before.
But now Martin is back. And he wants to be friends. But he’s sending mixed signals to the Bunsen burner in Kaitlyn’s pants.
Will Martin re-capture Kaitlyn’s heart? Can Kaitlyn and Martin ever be just friends? Or, despite an abundance of chemistry, are some bonds just too unstable to endure?

Disclosure: I am a diehard Penny Reid fan and this e-book was provided by the author at no charge to me. Actually, the three parts of the book were sent one at a time and I’m so glad I waited until I had all 3 e-arcs in hand before I started reading. I have so many thoughts all jumbling together but all that keeps coming out is “wow”. Penny Reid is an auto-buy author for me – her characters are funny and relatable. So many sighs, some dreamy and some sad, and many laughs-out-loud. This is different from her Neanderthal series and different from The Hooker and the Hermit, and yet still amazingly good.  My Rating: 5 stars.

Young Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal Romance

Vicious CycleVicious Cycle by Katie Ashley:

New York Times bestselling author Katie Ashley revs up the danger and sexual tension in her brand-new Vicious Cycle romance series.

Deacon Malloy’s life is dedicated to the Hell’s Raiders motorcycle club. Tough, hard, and fast with his fists, he serves the group as sergeant at arms. But his devil-may-care approach to life is thrown for a loop when the five-year-old daughter he never knew existed lands on the club steps.

Alexandra Evans is devoted to all her students—but there’s always been something about Willow Malloy that tugs at her heart. There’s an aura of sadness about her, a girl in need of all the love Alexandra can give. When Willow stops coming to school, Alexandra’s search leads to a clubhouse full of bikers…and a father hell-bent on keeping his daughter always within sight.

The moment Deacon sees Alexandra, he has to have her in his bed—and he’s never met a woman yet who couldn’t be persuaded. No matter how attracted she is to Deacon, Alexandra refuses to be just another conquest. But it’s Deacon himself who could be seduced—into a brighter future for himself, his daughter, and the woman he’s falling for against all odds.

I liked the world but there were some issues with the heroine acting out of character (a goody-good school teacher is not going to suddenly throw back shots and dance on the bar in a biker club? Doubtful). I’m intrigued by one of the side-characters, whose story is next. I received this book free of charge at the RT Booklover’s Convention. My Rating: 3 stars.

Young Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal Romance

radianceRadiance by Grace Draven:

~THE PRINCE OF NO VALUE~

Brishen Khaskem, prince of the Kai, has lived content as the nonessential spare heir to a throne secured many times over. A trade and political alliance between the human kingdom of Gaur and the Kai kingdom of Bast-Haradis requires that he marry a Gauri woman to seal the treaty. Always a dutiful son, Brishen agrees to the marriage and discovers his bride is as ugly as he expected and more beautiful than he could have imagined.

~THE NOBLEWOMAN OF NO IMPORTANCE~

Ildiko, niece of the Gauri king, has always known her only worth to the royal family lay in a strategic marriage. Resigned to her fate, she is horrified to learn that her intended groom isn’t just a foreign aristocrat but the younger prince of a people neither familiar nor human. Bound to her new husband, Ildiko will leave behind all she’s known to embrace a man shrouded in darkness but with a soul forged by light. Two people brought together by the trappings of duty and politics will discover they are destined for each other, even as the powers of a hostile kingdom scheme to tear them apart.

A wonderful fantasy romance. If you liked The Last Hour of Gann, you’ll like this. If you thought Gann was too long or too violent, try Radiance instead. (If you haven’t read The Last Hour of Gann, you need to. Seriously. Click here for my raving review.)  I loved the hero and heroine and their sense of humor about their situations. I also loved their slow, sweet romance that neither of them expected. Also, Radiance has great worldbuilding.  Fun fact: Grace Draven walked past me at RT but but I was too shy to say hi. At one event, this book was one of the giveaway choices and I recommended it to everyone who passed the table. I own it in print and ebook. My Rating: 5 stars.

Young Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal RomanceYoung Adult Paranormal Romance

Have you read anything recently that knocked your socks off?  Or is there something coming out that you just can’t wait for?  

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