Sunday, January 31, 2016

Book Review: Closer by Aria Hawthorne

Famous Dutch architect, Sven van der Meer, has just completed the greatest achievement of his professional life--the design and construction of The Spire, Chicago's tallest, most controversial skyscraper. But a shameful secret threatens to destroy his prestigious career--he's losing his eyesight. Now, he's run out of time and the only woman qualified to help maintain his charade of invincibility is also the one woman who despises him and The Spire. And he's fairly certain she's hiding something as well. Will the fiery, but enchanting Miss Sanchez be the right woman to play the role of his pretend girlfriend? Or will the temptation of getting too close, too fast jeopardize their business arrangement and the future of his entire career?

When twenty-eight-year-old, woefully unemployed, Inez Sanchez, arrives to her interview with hotter-than-hell billionaire architect, Sven van der Meer--mastermind behind The Spire--she quickly realizes his job proposition isn't what she was anticipating. He's hiding a life-changing secret, one that could ruin his career as the most influential architect in the world, and he's willing to pay her five thousand dollars a day--just to help him keep it. Will she accept his offer to become his "pretend girlfriend" for the next four days in order to ensure the success of the most important week of his life? Or will her sassy flair for independence and smartass sarcasm keep her from submitting to his stern authoritative commands, no matter how sexy his European accent might be? And what will happen when he discovers she's hiding a secret, too--one that could threaten the stability of their arrangement and prevent her from getting too close to the one man in the world who might be capable of gaining her trust...

Closer is the first book I've read by Aria Hawthorne, so I'm completely ignorant to her other novels. In her bio it says that Closer is her NEWEST erotic romance novel. To me, that insinuates that she's written other erotic romance novels, right? Well, here's my thing ... I didn't think that this was an erotic romance novel. Sure, that could be because I've read so many romance novels lately that I've turned into a giant perv and nothing shocks me anymore. It all boils down to this one question: How exactly does a book get classified as "erotic"? If it's racy scenes, I just didn't think that Closer was any more risque than other romance genre novels. This doesn't have anything to do with my rating, I just think that this book is classified incorrectly, that's all. 

Anywho ... I think that the concept for Closer was pretty interesting! Not too many books out there that are about a billionaire architect that is going blind whom hires a random lady to pose as his girlfriend and guide-dog. I didn't really know what to expect but I found myself immediately transfixed with the snarky conversations that went on between Sven and Inez. Man. She's a firecracker! And with him being this domineering, always-in-control dude who always gets his way ... the push and pull between them was just delicious. I couldn't wait to see what they would say to each other. I also enjoyed reading about the plight that Sven was in ... he's unwilling to give up the control that he needs to relinquish so that Inez can actually help him with what he hired her for ... that's quite a tough position to be in. At least I guess it is. I'm controlling but I not going to give that up. I'm not a quitter.

The storyline was something that kept me engaged throughout the entire book. I read it in one sitting and I was disappointed when it was finished. I did wish that there was a little more to the story. There were quite a few things going on during the whole thing but at times it felt like there could have been just ... more. I would have liked more depth, I guess. I wanted some of the scenes to last longer than they did and I felt like it would have been a little more entertaining if they had been fleshed out a bit. But then again, it did keep me entertained and I didn't get irritated with the speed of things and nothing was boring or long-winded. All in all, I enjoyed my reading experience with this one. I think that I might pick up another book by this author in the future because I know that I'll be in for an interesting ride. 

* I received this novel in exchange for an honest review *

Available Now

Book Review: Necessary Risk (Bodyguard #1) by Tara Wyatt

Trained to protect against all danger, a professional bodyguard can provide all the muscle a woman needs. But when their hearts are on the line, love is the riskiest business . . .

Former child star Sierra Blake is making a stunning Hollywood comeback-and attracting a scary amount of attention. When her home is vandalized and her safety threatened, she knows it's time to bring in the professionals. But from the moment she sets eyes on her indecently sexy new bodyguard, Sierra's thoughts are anything but professional . . .

Few things in this world scare Sean Owens-until he realizes he's in serious danger of losing his heart to his new client. No matter how much he wants to, Sean won't let his feelings for the smart and gorgeous Sierra get in the way of doing his job. Because as the attacks against her escalate, crossing the line between business and pleasure could get them both killed.


When I first heard about this book, I had a bit of a SQUEE moment. The blurb reminded me of The Bodyguard. I fell in love with overly protective men the first second I saw Kevin Costner on the screen in that movie. Talk about hot as hell!! I just KNEW that Necessary Risk would be amazing and I wasn't disappointed in the least. 

The story of Sean and Sierra that Tara Wyatt created was nothing short of perfect. I loved how Sierra was so strong in the face of such terrifying events happening around her. A strong female heroine is an amazing thing to read, especially when she's also vulnerable and so much like a real person that she's easy to relate to. I instantly wished I was more like Sierra and that I had a best friend just like her. And then there's Sean. Dear, sweet, protective, powerful and sexy Sean. You can't help but fall in love with a man that makes you feel safe and protected. Sean was incredibly protective of Sienna yet he wasn't suffocating and instead of coming off as creepy (as it sometimes does in these romantic suspense novels), it was endearing and sigh-worthy. It was very easy to get caught up in the chemistry that was furiously swirling around these two and it made it difficult to put the book down. I guess that's why I read it in less than a day!

I enjoyed the plot line, there were quite a few things going on but the author wrote it in such a way that it wasn't confusing in the least and she kept the suspense and tension spiked up to a level where you are permanently sitting on the edge of your seat, just waiting for things to happen. Most of the time, I can figure out who the bad guy is while I'm reading but Tara Wyatt got me! I had no freaking clue and I was happily surprised to find out that all of my initial hunches were completely wrong and apparently, unfounded. 

This is the first book in a new series and while it does not end in a cliffhanger, I'm hoping that any subsequent novels will briefly touch on Sean and Sienna's relationship because I don't think that I could ever tire of hearing about their relationship. I can't believe my luck in finding yet another amazing author that I'm going to have to book-stalk for the rest of my life. AND you know what I just found out?!? Necessary Risk is Tar Wyatt's very first book. Are you freaking kidding me? Unbelievable. She is a talented lady and I'm so excited to see how the rest of this series plays out. 

* I received this novel in exchange for an honest review *

Available: February 23rd, 2016

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Book Review: Daring the Bad Boy by Heidi Rice

What happens on Valentine’s Night, stays on Valentine’s Night… That’s the rule.

After a trip home to bury his father, US photographer in London Caleb Landry finds himself stranded in a Soho bar full of boozy women brooding his way through his least favourite night of the year.

But when college art teacher Rosie Smith tries out the cheesiest pick-up line ever on him, Cal becomes captivated by this good girl with a filthy mind – especially when he discovers she has a V-Day allergy of her own. So he dares her to one smokin’ hot Valentine’s night hook-up with no questions asked, satisfaction guaranteed…

But when Valentine’s Night turns into the morning after, suddenly Rosie’s asking questions she shouldn’t, and putting Cal in danger of breaking his number one rule.


Daring the Bad Boy ... this is a good one ... a short one, but good! I have been on this "bad boy hero" romance novel kick. I like the bad boy who gets reformed stories or even the bad boy who turns worse stories. I'm not too picky and when I saw that this one was NAMED Daring the Bad Boy I thought that I couldn't go wrong with it. 

All in all, it's a good book. I didn't realize that it would be written with such British (is that rude?!?) lingo, though. There were a few words that I didn't have any damn clue what the hell they meant but I'm lucky enough to have a wonderfully sweet, Scottish friend whom lives in England and she is my English to English translator! She translates everything for me, including her FB statuses ... one time she was talking about the "rubber on her desk" ... a rubber in the US is a condom but over there in that not-so-foreign land, it's an eraser. Anyway ... sorry about the minor derailment ... I think what I was trying to say is that there were a couple of words in this book that I didn't have any clue what they meant. That's okay, it kept things interesting. 

I enjoyed getting to know the Cal and Rosie. Rosie was this sweet (almost virginal) girl-next-door type who was looking to break her Valentine's Day curse by bringing out her inner slut (as she put it). And Caleb was running from his past. Caleb wasn't what I would consider a "bad boy" ... he's this hotshot photographer who doesn't stay in one place for long because he's always traveling for work. Due to this, he isn't interested in keeping a lady at his side. I don't see this as a bad boy ... I see this as a man who is invested and committed to his work ... nothing wrong with that! After I got to know Caleb, I just didn't think that this title was fitting for the book. At all. I mean, you can describe a character to have "bad boy" characteristics but really, are there honestly set characteristics that ONLY a typical bad boy would have? I don't think so. A dude can have a nonchalant attitude, leather jacket, a criminal record and a shitty attitude and that doesn't make him a bad boy. He could just be an asshole! Let's not sell out our bad boys, people! 

The story was short and sweet. I'm not totally for sure how many pages this book is but it did feel like something that was 150 pages or so. Nothing wrong with that! I like the short ones. When you have two kiddos who have ADHD, I have to pick up and put down books numerous times a day. Sometimes a short book is exactly what's needed. The flow of the book was nice, I enjoyed how nothing slowed down and dragged the story (and my patience) with it. Plus, the chemistry between Cal and Rosie was pretty awesome! Their love story was hot and desperate and loving and spectacular. I really enjoyed everything that was within these pages and I'm interested to see what else this author has to offer! I'm hoping that her other books are just as enjoyable.

* I received this novel in exchange for an honest review *

Available: February 4th, 2016

Friday, January 29, 2016

Book Review: Playing Pretend by Tamsyn Bester

Kadence Kavanagh has spent the last two years trying to rebuild her life. When a job opportunity presents itself, she can’t say no, even if it’s with the man who’s life was ruined by her father’s indiscretion. It’s been years since she last saw Caleb Callahan, and she’s not even sure he remembers her, but she’s determined to give herself a clean slate no matter who she has to work for.

In the unlikeliest of circumstances, Caleb becomes her savior – if somewhat reluctantly - and she discovers that the man she’s read about in the gossip columns is nothing more than a smoke screen. Kadence knows that keeping her distance is for the best, no matter how difficult, but when Caleb proposes the unthinkable, she finds herself caught between what’s real, and what she wishes was real.

Caleb and Kadence lose themselves in a lie, and when reality comes knocking, they realize that all they were doing was playing pretend…

Playing Pretend is the first book that I've read by Tamsyn Bester and holy crap. What in the hell is wrong with me?!? I should have picked up one of her books WAY before now. All of that lost time with a new author that have come to adore. Le sigh. I just added a ton of her books to my ridiculously long TBR pile but they are definitely at the top!

Gosh, I just don't even know where to start but before I do ... if you don't enjoy reading gushy reviews then you definitely need to go somewhere else right now because this review is going to be full of praise for this amazing book and more than likely, I'll go overboard. Let's start with the story itself ... no ... the characters! The leading lady in this one is named Kadence and she's this spunky, headstrong woman who is clawing her way out of a horribly deep hole that her family has left her in. She is perfectly flawed and you can't help but love her from the very first page. I found myself laughing with her and sympathizing with her and being mad at her and loving her ... the way that Bester wrote Kadence, she made Kadence like a friend and it created a connection that I always look for in books. Now on to Caleb ... dear, sweet, Caleb. I wanted to hate this ruggedly handsome, stubborn man but I just couldn't. I would get so damn irritated with him and then forgive him almost immediately. Bester sure can write some entrancing characters. The push and pull between Kadence and Caleb had me on the edge of my seat throughout most of the book. I just couldn't get enough of either of them and saying that I was absolutely pissed when the book ended would be a massive understatement. Livid. Times infinity. 

The storyline took some twists that I wasn't expecting. It was refreshing to not be able to predict what was going to happen in a romance novel. Too often, it feels as if romance novels all have this outline that they follow and everything is predictable but not with Playing Pretend. Just when you think you've got a firm grip on the story, Bester will come out of nowhere and smack you on the back of your head and while you're disoriented for a bit, she'll elbow you in the side and knock the wind out of you. There was quite a bit going on within the story but never once did I feel bogged down or hindered by the heaviness of the story. It was the perfect combination of humor, sass, action, controversy and everything in between. 

This was such a great book. Definitely one that you need to read if we are going to continue being friends. I have a feeling that I'll be picking this book up again soon because the love story between Kadence and Caleb isn't going to leave my memory any time soon. Absolute perfection.

* I received this novel in exchange for an honest review *

Available: February 2nd, 2016
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads
Links for Amazon and B&N aren't available yet, but I'll update when they are!!

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Book Review: The Broken Road (The Broken Road #1) by Melissa Huie

Twenty-six-year-old Megan Connors’s life is not going in the direction she thought it would. With her love life in the dumps, she doesn’t think it could get any worse until her long-time crush, Shane asks to move in. After all, he has no clue that she’s been in love with him for the past ten years. But fate has a way of turning things around.

As their relationship goes from “just friends” to lovers, life takes a turn for the unexpected. Shane isn’t the person that Megan once fell in love with all those years ago. Shane has a past; deadly secrets that are only revealed once the FBI knocks on Megan’s door.

Secrets, tragedy, and deceit force Shane—and Megan—to make choices that will change their lives forever. Once Megan learns the truth, will she still want to be with Shane? Or will someone else be at the end of her broken road?


When I first picked The Broken Road up, I was so excited. I really enjoy these unrequited love books. I don't know why ... I just do. Anyhow ... so very excited. But then I started having issues with the book. While I was enjoying it, there were just these little things that kept bugging me for some reason. I don't know if I just had a stick up my ass or what but it was not going well. Luckily, it picked back up and I ended up enjoying it. Well, let's get down to the nitty gritty!

I guess one of the first things that irritated the hell out of me was how EVERYONE was one of Megan's friends. There were close to 7800 characters in this book and all of them were a close friend of hers. Maybe that was an slight exaggeration but hopefully you get my point. After a while, I was making bets with myself as to whether the next new character in the book would be a friend of Megan's. Unfortunately, I always lost. It was just irritating for some reason. No clue as to why. 

Throughout the book, it felt like some of the scenes were kind of glossed over ... you know how when you want the scene or conversation to be explored more, maybe some more details given but then it just ends and you feel like you're missing out on something? Yeah, I had that feeling a few times with The Broken Road. And this could very well just be me since I'm a greedy reader and I want every molecule of information that the author is willing to give plus all of their notes that they jotted down while writing the book. Holy crap ... I guess that makes me like Cookie Monster. But with books. Wow.  

By the time I was about 60% through the book, I just couldn't put it down. Things started happening really quickly and I couldn't pull myself away from reading. I was more than a little disappointed that the book ended in a cliffhanger but since the 2nd book is already out, I was excited and immediately purchased it. I'm hoping to get to be able to read it soon because the ending of The Broken Road was such a shock that I just need to know what happens next. 

I'm excited to see what Melissa Huie comes up with in the future because she definitely created some characters that I won't soon forget and I'm hoping that all of her books have that same feel to them. 

* I received this novel in exchange for an honest review *

Available Now

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Book Review: Going All the Way by Cynthia Cooke

Love is the worst complication…

After a failed marriage and quitting her high-pressure job, Carrie Steinhem is ready for uncomplicated fun. Love? Not what she’s looking for. She’d rather crash a wedding with her friends and find a hot hookup. The bride’s father is onto her, though. But just as her night out veers toward public embarrassment, a sizzling stranger sweeps in and claims Carrie as his date.

Potential hookup? Check. If she doesn’t get cold feet first.

Ryan Burton is on the fast track to a promotion…assuming he can avoid distractions and nail this new account. Except the woman he rescued at a friend’s wedding ends up not only being his new neighbor—she’s his client’s ex-wife. And his client has every intention of winning her back.

Carrie and Ryan would love to leave complicated alone, but when two people share a duplex and irresistible chemistry, temptation—and love—is right around the corner…


Cynthia Cooke has written quite a few romance novels but Going All the Way is the first one that I've had the opportunity to pick up. I had some mixed feelings about this one. I'm not completely sure how I feel about this book, actually. Looks like you'll know when I do because this is one I'll figure out as I write the review. 

The story between Ryan and Carrie was ... okay. For the majority of the book, I really didn't feel any spark or passion between both of them. That's a really horrible thing to say about a romance novel but it is what it is, right? I just ... I was reading the words on the pages but for some reason it didn't translate into something tangible for me. That just happens sometimes but it's never a good experience. I could tell that passion and excitement for their relationship was intended, I just didn't get it. 

I enjoyed reading about both of the characters but I also had this feeling at the end of the book that I still didn't really know them. I knew stuff about them, of course, because there are a lot of details about both characters within the pages but I felt like I couldn't really grasp what kind of person each of them were. Sure, I knew details ... workaholic, stressed out, career driven ... got all that ... but I didn't feel that personal connection where I could pick them out just by their description if I was in like a character line-up or taking a test on the characters from the books I'd read lately. I just wanted something more from them. I wanted to be so connected to them that they seemed like old friends. I guess that is what I'm looking for with all books that I pick up. 

This book is one of those slow burn type situations. There aren't any fiery spots where everything just explodes with some kind of emotion ... everything is just boiling below the surface. Because of that, it read a little slower than I'm used to. There were some sentences that I skimmed over because I was wanting to just push the storyline along. It would have been okay with me if it had sped up just a bit to keep everything moving more fluidly. 

I didn't hate it but it probably won't be on my MUST READ AGAIN list any time soon. I might pick up another book by this author or I might not. No real urge there either. But it wasn't a bad book. It was entertaining for the most part but nothing within the pages kept me up at night thinking about it or encouraged me to pick up my phone and call my bestie with the title of this one.

* I received this novel in exchange for an honest review *

Available: February 8th, 2016

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Book Review: Beyond the Stars by Stacy Wise

Falling for him wasn't in the plans...

Most girls would kill for the opportunity to work for Jack McAlister, Hollywood's hottest actor, but twenty-one-year-old Jessica Beckett is ready to kick him out of her red Ford Fiesta and never look back. She should be spending her junior year in France, eating pastries and sharpening her foreign language skills. Instead she's reluctantly working as Jack's personal assistant, thanks to her powerhouse talent agent aunt.

Jack is private, prickly, and downright condescending. Jessica pushes his buttons—she's not the type of girl to swoon over celebrity heartthrobs, precisely why her aunt thought she'd be perfect for the job—and Jack pushes right back.

But as she begins to peel away his layers, Jessica is shocked to find she craves her boss's easy smile and sexy blue eyes. The problem is, so does the entire female population. And what started out as the job from hell soon has Jess wondering if a guy like Jack could ever find love with a regular girl like her.

This is the first book by Stacy Wise and it will not be the last that I read by her. Gosh ... I just loved this book! I sat down to start reading it when my boys got off to school this morning and I was finished with it before they got home. Read in just one sitting! That doesn't happen very often but I'm starting to realize that when it DOES happen, it's when the book has been published by Entangled or one of their imprints. They sure know how to pick them and boy am I grateful!!

Let's start with my favorite thing ... the characters! Jack and Jess were just the absolute best couple! Jack was swoon-worthy and sexy as hell when he went all caveman a couple of times. I don't know what it is about a man defending his woman or getting pissed when another man shows interest but it is so damn sexy! And then Jess. She's the girl-next-door type, humble and sweet yet fiery and sassy. Such a great combination for a romance novel. I couldn't wait for the next interaction between these two because the sexual tension was damn near palpable. And one that I was so pissed at when I read the last sentence! I just wanted to continue reading about their love story. It was perfect. 

The story itself is one that has been out there before ... the movie star and a regular ol' person like you and I traversing these stormy seas of romance. Yes, I've read books with a similar premise but I've never liked one as much as I did this one. Beyond the Stars had the power to transport me into Jess and Jack's lives, like I was right there with them on their journey. That can be pretty hard to find these days with romance novels and it's exactly what I look for! I want to forget everything around me and just get completely immersed in a book and that happened quite quickly for me with this one. 

And one last thing ... the book is written in Jess' POV. But the epilogue ... oh, the epilogue ... that was written from the POV of Jack and if there was one way that the book could have been better with, it was his epilogue. I'm so glad that it was included and I really enjoyed reading what was going through that man's head. 

I'll definitely be picking this book up again and honestly, anything else by Stacy Wise. Stellar job, lady. Absolutely stellar. Thank you for giving me an alternate life to live for an afternoon!!

* I received this novel in exchange for an honest review *

Available: February 8th, 2016

Book Review: Altered by Kelly Cain

At first, I saw him as everyone else did.
But then, I saw him for who he really was.
Recognized the beauty beneath the pain.
Loved the quirks disguising the insecurity.
Embraced the man who hid behind the boy.
But there was so much more…
More I didn’t know.

And once I did, I couldn’t let go…
Of the boy.
The man.
The lover…

…even if his past is threatening our future.
Nothing will alter what we’ve built.

When picking Altered up, I had hoped that it was one thing and it turns out, it just couldn't be that one thing. I thought this would be a story about love and overcoming obstacles and struggles but no. No, it wasn't. I think that there is a chance that the book was trying to go in that direction but for me ... I don't know ... it was not one of the best books I've read this year. 

From the first page, I found Altered to be immature. This woman (Olivia ... the main character) is 23 years old and holy crap ... her behavior and thoughts reminded me of some of the stupid crap that our 13 year old says. The relationships that she has with her friends reminds me of my son also ... the conversations never really had any depth and it was all surface stuff ... that coupled with the simplistic way that this was written, it really came off as a Young Adult book instead of a New Adult. Granted, there's not much difference between the two genres ... except maturity!!

There is also this part about "breaking" someone. Not literally ... it's not that type of book. But maybe that would have been more interesting. Anyway, Olivia is talking about how she hopes she didn't break this dude. Really? She has the power to break someone? What in the hell makes her so damn amazing that she could just ruin someone? Geez. Conceited much? I'm telling you, if she was really that amazing, I would totally say something but nothing about this character is amazing or phenomenal. She seems like a little brat whom uses people as she wishes and then gets upset when they aren't okay with their position in her life. How dare her minions question her authority! (And you have to say authority like Cartman or it doesn't work) Then there is this part where she knows this dude for all of 4 minutes and all of the sudden he's her closest friend. Really? Not believable at all. I don't think I could dislike Olivia as a character any more than I do now. Nothing about her connected me to the story, nothing pulled me in and nothing about her made me want to keep reading. Very unfortunate.

The timeline is also a bit confusing at first ... you are never totally for sure how much time has passed unless one of the characters makes a comment. Sometimes it was a day, a week a couple of weeks or even a month between scenes. That's a bit confusing especially when you have a character that has a new best friend every 2 seconds. This timeline situation is another reason I had a hard time connecting. As a reader, I want to know everything! If it's been a week, don't be shy, just let me know! I want to love a book I'm reading as much as the author loves writing it but sometimes it just doesn't work out that way. 

I had some other issues with some scenes that had the perfect buildup for something amazing to happen and those situations were never explored. That was another big letdown for me. I just wanted something, other than Olivia's nonsense, to happen. Something. Anything. Needless to say at this point, but this book and I didn't get along. We had quite a few differences of opinion and I think I'll pass on this author if I have another opportunity to read her work again. It's just not for me!

* I received this novel in exchange for an honest review *

Available: February 2nd, 2016

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Book Review: Husband Wanted by Charlotte Hughes

Frannie Brisbane knew it was an impossible scheme, but unless she went through with it, the daughter she had given up thirteen years ago and who now wanted to visit, would discover that Frannie had painted a very different picture of her life in the letters they’d exchanged. Frannie’s close friends rally around her, and next thing she knows, she is living in a mansion and wearing designer clothes.

The only thing missing is a husband.

Confirmed bachelor, Clay Coleman, has ulterior motives when he agrees to play the role of loving husband, but Fannie, who nursed a crush on him for years, fears she is flirting with danger in their role of let’s pretend. But Fannie and Clay aren’t the only ones keeping secrets. Sooner or later, the truth comes out, exposing everyone involved. Can Frannie ever get past her hurt when she discovers the truth about Clay?

When Charlotte Hughes contacted me about a read request for Husband Wanted, I was excited to get started reading. I thought that the whole idea behind the book was interesting and something I had never read before and I was interested in a new experience. 

Husband Wanted is a simple story about a woman (Frannie) who had given up her infant when she was a teenager and the novel follows Frannie through that first meeting when the child (Mandy) is 13 years old. The only problem is that Frannie has told Mandy a series of lies about her current life and Frannie has to live up to those lies now. 

So that's the premise and like I said, this is a simple story. Even given the details of the book, nothing is too deep. That just guarantees you an easy read and something that you can easily pick up and put down if you've got your kiddos home with you all day. Which I did. So that was convenient. While the story was interesting, I just didn't find it engaging. I felt detached from the book the entire time I was reading it. Something was just ... missing ... and I'm not totally for sure what. I just couldn't find anything to connect to with the characters. I think that may be because the characters themselves, seemed one dimensional. I couldn't imagine them as real people. The moods that the characters would go through changed on a dime ... they were sad, then happy or angry, then laughing. Mood changes like that are absolutely normal. I have a 13 year old. We go through all emotions (quite loudly) just while putting on socks in the morning but the emotions from these characters just lacked ... authenticity, I guess. It wasn't believable. Ever. There were quite a few times in the book where the author had set up the perfect conflict within the story and I would get excited because that would add something spicy to them or even make them a little more gritty but then the scene would pass and nothing will have happened. It was quite unfortunate. 

Then we get to the part that was just weird for me. Oh, this one is a doozy. I was scribbling paragraph after paragraph of notes in my Kindle on this one. Okay ... I'm just going to dive in ... romance novels these days have sex scenes. Well, unless you're reading a Christian romance and that one doesn't or it does and it's just very vague and simple. But this isn't touted as a Christian romance novel. The sex scene was literally ONE SENTENCE. One sentence?!? I had to reread it a few times and then read ahead because surely that wasn't it, was it? Oh, hell no! He entered her, they sighed and then climaxed?!? That was not word for word but it is what happened. I'm telling you, I would be pissed as hell if that happened in real life. There better be some more shit going on or I'm going to kick his ass to the curb! Geez. It felt almost as if the author was afraid and timid. Sex scenes don't have to be erotic or crass or vulgar ... they can be sweet and sensual and innocent ... but you've got to give at least 3 or 4 sentences to a sex scene if you're going to write a romance novel in 2016. 

When I read a romance novel, I want to get swept up in it. I want to lose myself and totally live in the moment with the characters but unfortunately, it just didn't happen this time. I want the book to make me nudge my husband and give him a few notes to study before our next sexy time. I want the book to make me sigh or laugh or cry or get pissed ... anything. I want it to evoke some kind of emotion from me and this just was not the book to do that. Maybe I'm a little jaded and I've read too many raunchy romance novels lately. Who the heck knows but this one just didn't blow my skirt up and I wish that it had. 

* I received this novel in exchange for an honest review *

Available: February 24th, 2016
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Goodreads