Review: Play (Stage Dive 2) by Kylie Scott

Play (Stage Dive #2)
by Kylie Scott

Mal Ericson, drummer for the world famous rock band Stage Dive, needs to clean up his image fast—at least for a little while. Having a good girl on his arm should do the job just fine. Mal doesn’t plan on this temporary fix becoming permanent, but he didn’t count on finding the one right girl.

Anne Rollins never thought she’d ever meet the rock god who plastered her teenage bedroom walls—especially not under these circumstances. Anne has money problems. Big ones. But being paid to play the pretend girlfriend to a wild life-of-the-party drummer couldn’t end well. No matter how hot he is. Or could it?

OMG!!!

Hot damn! This was so good, I couldn’t put this book down! Mal and his crazy antics would be the death of me. And I don’t blame him if I’d die laughing with him right now. Seriously.

Kylie Scott continues to rock my world with her awesome Stage Dive stories. I thought David Ferris was already a cool dude in the first book, Lick. Until I got a glimpse of one of his bandmates, Malcolm Ericson. Oh man, this guy stood out and stood loud and proud. A certified hottie, I must add.

In this second book, PLAY, Mal is an enigma. Seriously, this talented drummer is so good with his hands, and mouth. He is the life of the party and when he speaks, everyone listens. And gets mesmerized.

No wonder Anne Rollins can’t stop gazing at him with her crazy eyes. This poor gal has been cheated by her roommate who took off without paying her debts to her. Badly needing help with her housing predicament, she soon agrees to Mal’s offer and the two lovers are inseparable ever since.

Life with Mal Ericson is full of fun and excitement and laughter. I wish I was in Anne’s shoes, spending the night with him and shouting expletives and what not just to piss off the other couple next door with his crazy antics. Oh god, Anne and Mal’s pretend bed moments were really hilarious! They even broke the bed by just screaming! How much more if they give in to their carnal needs. Seriously, this book is everything!

I dunno how to proceed with my review without revealing the rest of the story, so I gotta stop now. So far, Mal Ericson is my book boyfriend of the month, and I intend to enjoy each and everyday with him. Gosh, Kylie Scott, you are making a fool of me, but I like it! Yay!

 

OMG… I didn’t know that the book, PLAY was published exactly 3 years ago. Is this just a coincidence, or what? I really didn’t know about this, but let just say, Happy Birthday PLAY and MAL Ericson! 

Review: Beauty of the Beast by Rachel Demeter

 

Beauty of the Beast

by Rachel L. Demeter
Fairy Tale Retellings, #1
Publication Date: March 15, 2017
Genres: Historical Romance, Fairy Tale Retelling, Gothic Romance

 

A BEAST LIVING IN THE SHADOW OF HIS PAST

Reclusive and severely scarred Prince Adam Delacroix has remained hidden inside a secluded, decrepit castle ever since he witnessed his family’s brutal massacre. Cloaked in shadow, with only the lamentations of past ghosts for company, he has abandoned all hope, allowing the world to believe he died on that tragic eve twenty-five years ago.

A BEAUTY IN PURSUIT OF A BETTER FUTURE

Caught in a fierce snowstorm, beautiful and strong-willed Isabelle Rose seeks shelter at a castle—unaware that its beastly and disfigured master is much more than he appears to be. When he imprisons her gravely ill and blind father, she bravely offers herself in his place.

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST

Stripped of his emotional defenses, Adam’s humanity reawakens as he encounters a kindred soul in Isabelle. Together they will wade through darkness and discover beauty and passion in the most unlikely of places. But when a monster from Isabelle’s former life threatens their new love, Demrov’s forgotten prince must emerge from his shadows and face the world once more…

Isabelle Rose is a hardworking woman who looks after her blind father and endures her two selfish stepsisters. She has to dodge the advances of Vicomte Raphael Dumont even though they are already betrothed.  A trip to the Merchant’s Fair is exactly what Isabelle needs to get away from the vicomte’s clutches. But is she really willing to defy the snow storms with her ailing father?

Adam Delacroix has shut himself from the world when his parents were murdered and his younger sister died in fire. No one else knows he still exists, except for his faithful servant Sebastien. His world is in darkness, shrouded by the hood that keeps his monstrous face at bay. When he meets Isabelle in his threshold, his eyes alight with splendor and suddenly he comes alive. But death is imminent within his reach, and that death could very well be the reason Isabelle will never accept nor see him for the human he truly is. Not a monster, not a beast.

I love how this tale teaches us readers how to look beyond what’s in front of you. Like the fairytale, it teaches us to see what’s inside the heart. In this story, it also shows us the brutality of man that lives copiously in wealth doesn’t mean that he is rich in attitude. Because that man of wealth could very well be vicious, a savage, a monster… More monstrous than the Beast himself.

I am truly at a loss for words after reading this beautiful retelling of one of the greatest fairy tales of all time. Aside from Cinderella, Belle of Beauty and the Beast has always been a favorite character of mine. I’ve read a number of retellings of this story over the years but I could never grow tired of reading them.

What made this tale different and stand out is the lack of magic and enchantments and spells on the characters. I must warn you, this isn’t the typical fairytale that kids would prefer. This version is quite mature, more intense and definitely not for the little girls dreaming of rainbows and unicorns and Prince Charming. No, this one is bolder and more forward. And definitely more intimate. Just the way I like it.

This is my first book by Rachel Demeter and I am already a fan. I loved how she took so much care and attention to her stories, particularly this latest book, which came out just in time with the Disney movie. I loved how it’s different from the usual fairytale retelling. I loved how beautiful and beastly the characters turned out to be. I loved how I was mesmerized by it from beginning till the end.

 

 

Review: CONFESS by Colleen Hoover

Confess
by Colleen Hoover

At age twenty-one, Auburn Reed has already lost everything important to her. In her fight to rebuild her shattered life, she has her goals in sight and there is no room for mistakes. But when she walks into a Dallas art studio in search of a job, she doesn’t expect to find a deep attraction to the enigmatic artist who works there, Owen Gentry.

For once, Auburn takes a chance and puts her heart in control, only to discover that Owen is keeping a major secret from coming out. The magnitude of his past threatens to destroy everything important to Auburn, and the only way to get her life back on track is to cut Owen out of it.

To save their relationship, all Owen needs to do is confess. But in this case, the confession could be much more destructive than the actual sin.

Right from the start, I told myself to expect the unexpected when it comes to Colleen Hoover. I’ve read most of her books, I always get surprised with the twists, and I always end up loving them. So I knew first hand that Confess was gonna be different, unique and brilliant.

But my heart wasn’t prepared to break, my mind wasn’t ready for the clusterfuck of emotions and my eyes refused to release the tears threatening to open the floodgates. Damn that prologue, it really had me worried. Auburn’s pleas and heartfelt farewell with  Adam deeply penetrated my heart. I thought I would never be  able to finish the story, because damn, first chapter in and I was already wailing.

“I’m selfish. And if one night with you is all I can get, then I’ll take it.”

But I refused to give up. I, for  one, do  not  have  the  habit  of  DNFing  a  book. So I devoured each and every page of Confess, I dissected Owen’s obsession with confessions, I recoiled from Auburn’s cries for her child, and I tortured myself to tears, until the last page. Good thing I wasn’t wearing makeup nor mascara that day, or else, I’d look like Alice Cooper with all the tears that I’ve shed.

I’ll take whatever you’re willing to give me. Because I know that if you walk out that door, then ten years from now . . . twenty years from now . . . we’ll wish we had listened to our hearts when we think back on tonight.”

Confess is really a surprisingly unique story. The idea of writing confessions and having them illustrated in an artwork was a totally amazing, intriguing and engaging idea. I don’t know how CoHo get her book ideas, it’s like every book she writes is like Pandora’s box, opening new and different surprises that tempts the readers to crave for more.
Owen Mason Gentry had a great impact on me. OMG, I want some lovin’ like Owen. This book totally blew me away.  I regret not reading it immediately after I got it a year ago. What was I thinking,  right?  I’m so grateful to my reading buddy,  Jel who inspired me to read this masterpiece.  I couldn’t ask for any other book to read with a dear friend.

Confess is definitely a must read,  highly recommended and totally worth every tear. I think I can safely say that Confess is now my most favorite CoHo book.

Review: Candidate {Black Mage 3) by Rachel E. Carter

candidate

Candidate (The Black Mage #3)
by Rachel E. Carter

Welcome to the Candidacy. Where dreams go to die.

Twenty-year-old Ryiah is a black mage of Combat, but she’s not the Black Mage. Yet. She’s had her eyes on the legendary robe for as long as she can remember, and in just one year, she will have a chance at her country’s prestigious—and only—tourney for war mages… Too bad she is going up against a certain prince—the one person she has yet to beat.

The Candidacy finally arrives and a winner is robed, but something dark is lurking in her kingdom’s midst. Rival nations are closing in, and it’s time to make an alliance.

Unfortunately for Ryiah, that’s only the beginning. The worst enemy resides in the palace.

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Rachel Carter continuously amazes me with her writing prowess and powerful story. Reading Candidate felt like entering the Hogwart’s world with Katniss Everdeen at the helm and Ash the Iron Fey by her side. And the twists and turns had me gasping for breath! Ryiah and Darren are awesome heroes.. Prince Blayne is the ultimate tyrant.. And oh! I can’t believe what happened with Derrick…. Just when my heart was softening for him. Argh.. This third book by Rachel Carter is all sorts of action-packed masterpiece and crazy wonderful perfection.

This.Is.Amazing!

I feel like my lungs are about to burst, it hurts to even breathe. I don’t know how to properly react, after all these surprising twists and turns. I think this is by far the best in the Black Mage series and I am holding my breath for the last one.

Candidate featured a story about love and deception by blood. There’s really nothing more devastating than learning that your own kin would be the cause of an annihilation that was about to happen. Brothers against brothers, loyalty versus honor, love against deception.

Love love love everything in it and can’t wait to read The Last Stand.

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5cups

Review: The Apprentice by Rachel E. Carter

apprenticeApprentice (The Black Mage #2)
by Rachel E. Carter

She survived a trial year at the Academy of Magic, but that was the easy part…

Now sixteen-year-old Ryiah is an apprentice of Combat, her school’s most notorious faction. When she finishes, she will be a war mage, but in order to do so, she has to survive four years traveling across Jerar, training with a master she hates, her old nemesis, Priscilla, and Prince Darren, her sometimes-rival sometimes… more?

Ry’s new apprenticeship is nothing like what she prepared for. War is on the horizon and her lessons aren’t just for practice anymore.

It’s time to fight.

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Ryiah is now an Apprentice, a surprising feat, considering only five first years were to be accepted in Combat faction. Now Ry must prove her worth throughout the year, joining mock battles, winning strategies and going to war with the regiment, while fighting another war inside her heart. All this while making sure she and her twin brother wouldn’t end up dead when the rebels and enemies of the Crown attack.

Now this is the second book that surpassed my expectations. I was worried The Apprentice would fall short after the success and intensity of First Year which I absolutely loved. Now all my worries for all for naught. Although Darren, you wretched prince, you almost gave me a heart attack! This second book is way better, faster in pace, more action packed and definitely more deadly than the first book. Rachel E. Carter surprised the hell out of me.

The Apprentice reminded me of Hunger Games (girl power, ya’ll), The Selection (Ryiah can’t make up her mind, just like America!), The Iron King (Darren, are you some kind of Ash’s reincarnation?), Harry Potter (Ella is Hermione in my opinion and Byron is Severus Snape, ha!) and Percy Jackson (just because of all the lightning effects).

So you can see, I am greatly entertained and thoroughly pleased with how this book turned out. I loved that it covered all four years of apprenticeship and the romance side of the story was well-thought of, not rushed, not instantaneous. I can’t contain my excitement for book 3! Bring on The Candidate, baby!!!

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5cups

Review: No Perfect Secret by Jackie Weger

nps

No Perfect Secret (Almost Perfect)
by Jackie Weger

coffeesynopsisdAnna Nesmith believes she has it all–a great marriage, a dream job and a home of her own. When an investigator begins asking questions, Anna’s ordered world crashes like Jenga blocks. Frank Caburn is man to the bone and manufactures testosterone like Frito Lay does chips, which seems not to impress Anna one whit as she picks through the rubble of her shattered life. Attracted to Anna, Caburn determines to make her his own–But how to tell her without tripping over a layer of secrets is beyond him. Falling in love has never been more difficult.

thoughts-dividerI couldn’t believe I did it! Finished and loved this book in a day and still wishing to be part of the Caburn family. I must admit, at first I was quite impatient with all the loose ends and mysteries throughout the first few chapters. There were a lot of trivia and what not, I thought the book contained too much information. Then as the story progressed, I got to know the characters and the scenarios had me laughing out loud in no time.

Oh man, finding out about the abominable snowman, I mean Kevin Nesmith actually got me into a whirl. Add his lunatic mom to the equation and my head imploded. I gotta hand it to Anna Elena Nesmith (nee Price) for having a good head on her shoulders, literally. This woman was a machine gun, firing off one trivia after another, gradually educating me about the Mayans and kuru and planners and teas with Scotch and wars and different countries and chicken cordon bleu.. I totally fell in love with her relationship with the people around her outside her marriage. The initially awkward and tense meeting with Frank, the warm kinship between her and feisty Lila, the weird but colorful tandem of Clarence and Jojo, the beautiful friendship from the State Department people (Helen, you’re my favorite!), and soon the hilariously casual bantering between Anna and Caburn had me smirking and grinning like a dog at the end of the book.

Jackie Weger is a gem. I found her writing very unique and comfortable and so annoyingly beautiful. No Perfect Secret is such a perfect read! I wouldn’t want it any other way. Now let me indulge in Anna’s double chocolate fudge cake which she baked and graciously shared after her wedding before Clarence aka Savannah comes back for second helping. Yum!

P.S.

I liked the fact that the characters are aged between 30-40 years and the most interesting one is 90 years old. Love love love these people!

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5cups

Review: Code Name: Forever And Ever by Natasza Waters

cn4everCode Name: Forever & Ever

(A Warrior’s Challenge #5)
by Natasza Waters

coffeesynopsisdWhen an Ivy League girl falls for a guy from the wrong side of the tracks, all the cards are stacked against them except one.

Patrick Cobbs has just graduated his BUD/S training. He’s the last guy Marg Stines’ anti-military parents want for their daughter. With her grandfather’s name etched on the Wall of the Fallen, Marg’s father will do anything to keep them apart. Pat’s father is a drunk; his family is poor. He has nothing to offer Marg except the man he wants to become. Only one person believes in them, and he’s dead.

thoughts-dividerMargaret Stines isn’t the typical rich girl daughter of a film magnate. She isn’t a spoiled brat who wanted everything handed down to her. No, she’s quite the opposite. She’s smart, driven, independent, strong and loving. She doesn’t condone her parents’ decision to make her a trophy wife to the man of their choice. She believes in love and she knows someone’s out there deserving of her love.

Patrick Cobbs is going to be a Navy SEAL, along with his best friend Thane Austen. These military heroes are the very kind of men Marg’s parents don’t want her to ever get associated with. In San Diego, far away from home, she starts anew as a model. She doesn’t want to be a star. She just wants to live her life the way she wanted it, no pressure, no expectations, no ministrations from the parentals. Men are enamored by her beauty, admire her from afar, adore her, stalk her. And then there’s Cobbs – the one man who practically shatters her world, the one man who makes her heart beat wild.

But their future is not certain. Not when he’s about to become a SEAL. Not when he’s going to be away from her for a long time. Not when she’s not sure if she’s ever going to see him again. Not ever.

I am at a loss for words… I never thought I’d cry so much over a book involving navy SEALs and models.. Believe me, at first I thought this would be like another version of erotic military -romance stories I’ve read before. But I was in for a shock.

Code Name: Forever and Ever is all heart and soul and blood. I want to bop my head for not reading this sooner. Natasza Waters is a phenomenon. I can’t comprehend this feeling of guilt for not having read her previous books before. I swear, this book is all things amazing – heart pounding, bone melting and tear inducing. I love the story so much, I wanna cry again.

The best thing about this book – I believe that there are angels watching over us. Forever and Ever. Amen.

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5cups