Tag Archives: ARC

Book Review: Bird After Bird by Leslea Tash

Bird After BirdBird After Bird by Leslea Tash


Dear Birdy, Princess Birdzilla von MuffinStuff, Keeper of Dreams, Lover of our Fine Feathered Friends, queen of my life and light of my world, I hope this letter finds you well. If you are reading this then I am gone, and sweetheart, I am so sorry.

Chi-town professional Wren Riley is 25 and a rising star in the business world. She can eat a man alive and laugh about it to her girlfriends in seconds flat–and she does, on the regular. Behind the power suits and the flashing, flirty eyes, however, Wren has a secret, vulnerable side. Following a devastating loss and the discovery of a bird journal she and her father made together years before, Wren sets out to seek peace, closure, and something she just can’t name. Is that something tied to the little paper cranes she keeps finding along the way? 

Laurence Byrd grew up a lanky Hoosier kid with the good/bad fortune of having the same name as the state’s perennial basketball legend. With a better affinity for dogs than sports or school, he ends up in the Army instead of the Chicago art school of his dreams. Still, his service to our country is something he can be proud of–until an argument with the girl who means the world to him results in a series of events that blows his life apart. With no one left to understand him, black sheep Laurie pours out his heart into letters and drawings he never intends to send–then he folds them into paper cranes that he leaves behind like messages in little winged bottles. He never dreams someone might be finding them.

God damn it, Sylvia, for a few moments I tricked myself into feeling really alive. I cut it off before anyone got hurt, but just for a moment or two, I really thought I might feel something again–something like trust. Something like love. Not the kind of love we had, but something new. Something like hope.

Spoiler alert: Wren and Laurie are going to meet. And when they do, their lives are never going to be the same.

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

3.5 Stars

The first time I read the blurb, I thought it sounded different from all the current New Adult books I’ve been reading. It also reminded me a little bit of Message in a Bottle because of the letters, so I got really excited about it. Of course, when the author, Leslea Tash, emailed me afterwards about doing an ARC review, I got way pumped up about it even more.

Bird After Bird is one of those sweet reads that can warm your heart. It is about a 25-year-old career woman, Wren Riley, who comes home from Chicago to small town Birdseye after her father’s death. There she finds a bird journal she and her father made together years before which leads her to rediscover her love for birds and her vulnerable side. She then meets hometown boy Laurence “Laurie” Byrd, who at only 22, has had one too many heartbreaking deaths in his life.

The two quickly move from friends to lovers, but living in different worlds get them both questioning themselves about what they want in life and who they are meant to be. Will their obvious connection be enough to see them through?

This Byrd wants a Wren.

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Blog Tour: He Belongs With Me by Sarah Darlington Review

He Belongs with MeHe Belongs with Me by Sarah Darlington


Identical twins, Maggie and Clara Ryder, both grew up with Leo Maddox, billionaire playboy, apparent alcoholic, and heir to his grandfather’s world-famous Maddox hotel empire. Their roles were cemented long ago: Maggie, as his best friend and Clara as his childhood nemesis.

But when a simple twist of fate changes everything and both girls start to fall for the lean, mean, ridiculously sexy and seemingly spoiled Leo… which girl will win his heart?

Throw in a little mischief, drama, and one smoking-hot bartender and lines are sure to blur. But one thing’s for certain, neither good-girl Maggie nor rebellious Clara will be satisfied until they each figure out where they belong.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Two things I loved about He Belongs With Me right off the bat – the cover, and the fact that it’s a standalone! Sorry, but this was definitely one of those times when I totally judged the book by its cover. I mean, come on, you have to admit it looks so gorgeous! Also, we’re now in a literary world where almost every book has to be a part of a series so yes, this was refreshing.

Maggie and Clara Ryder are identical twins who live privileged lives, being the daughters of golf legend and country club owner, Reed Ryder. The downside is that the two cannot be more different from each other. Typically, Maggie’s the good twin while Clara’s the rebellious one. Maggie lives and breathes the country club life while Clara wants nothing more than to run away from it all. Enter the other part of this sticky equation, Leo Maddox. He’s the seemingly too serious and spoiled heir to a billion dollar hotel empire (naturally), and he also happens to be Maggie’s best friend and Clara’s nemesis (of course).

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Book Review: Seconds Before Sunrise (The Timely Death Trilogy #2) by Shannon A. Thompson

Seconds Before Sunrise (The Timely Death Trilogy, #2)Seconds Before Sunrise by Shannon A. Thompson


Two nightmares. One memory.

“Chaos within destiny. It was the definition of our love.”

Eric has weeks before his final battle when he’s in an accident. Forced to face his human side, he knows he can’t survive if he fights alone. But he doesn’t want to surrender, even if he becomes the sacrifice for war.

Jessica’s memory isn’t the only thing she’s lost. Her desire to find her parents is gone and so is her confidence. But when fate leaves nightmares behind, she decides to find the boy she sees in them, even if it risks her sanity.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

3.5 Stars

OK let me start by saying that I was really excited to receive an ARC after waiting for months for this especially since I very much enjoyed the first book, Minutes Before Sunset. However, I do think that I just wasn’t in the right state of mind or mood while reading this because I couldn’t get into it as much as I wanted to. I feel like I had to say it as it may have unfavorably affected my overall rating.

Thud-thump. Thud-thump. Thud-thump. The heartbeat was unmistakable. It was his heartbeat – the dream boy’s – and he was here, with me, holding me, being with me. He wasn’t gone.

Seconds Before Sunrise picks up a few months after Jessica lost her memory, of her own choosing, and for her own protection. But it seems there are loopholes to the spell because she remembers things, and have haunting memories of a boy and a life she can’t understand. She also freaks out about the confusing gaps in her memory, especially forgetting whatever happened at prom.

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Book Review: Connected by the Sea (Hawaiian Crush #1) by E.L. Todd

Connected by the Sea (Hawaiian Crush, #1)Connected by the Sea by E.L. Todd


Living in paradise, Sydney loves her job, her friends, and her passion for marine biology. Her best friend, Henry, has an invested interest in her, but Sydney never seems to notice. While Henry is the perfect man, she only dates the wrong guys. Her ex-boyfriend cheated on her, broke her heart, and now she’s too shattered to give anyone a chance.

Until Coen…

A sexy bad boy with a tattoo, he elicits dark desires Sydney hasn’t felt in so long. His intense eyes, the color of the sea, capture her sight, making it impossible to look away. She tries to avoid him, knowing he’s no good for her, but Coen, who always gets what he wants, doesn’t take no for an answer.

Will Sydney regret this decision? Or will she find what’s been missing her entire life? The family she lost, the loves she misses, and the trust she never thought she could have for someone else?

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I’m afraid Dex and Perry have ruined me for others. I’ve been reading the EIT series for the past couple of weeks now so picking this up as a breather may not have been the best idea.

Connected by the Sea is your typical sweet NA read. Set in Hawaii, Sydney is a smart Marine Biology student who has a ‘troubled past’ – naturally – and she was cheated on by her ex-boyfriend. She’s loyal to her friends and because of that, it creates drama for her as she’s attracted to – of course – bad boy, Coen while her best friend, Henry, is in love with her.

The thing is, I really don’t mind reading the same old cliche storyline, as long as it works. This book has potential but I have a few issues with it, thus, my 3-star rating.

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Book Review: Just One Night (Sex, Love & Stiletto #3) by Lauren Layne

Just One Night (Sex, Love & Stiletto, #3)Just One Night by Lauren Layne


In Lauren Layne’s sizzling Sex, Love & Stiletto series, New York’s hottest “sexpert” has been living a lie—and it’s up to one man to keep her honest…all night long.

Riley McKenna knows sex—good sex, bad sex, kinky sex…Her articles inStiletto magazine are consistently the publication’s most scandalous—and the most read. But Riley has a secret…all that sexy talk? Not an ounce of it comes from personal experience. Her own bedroom escapades are more limited than even her best friends know. When her editor requests that all columnists write something more personal forStiletto’s anniversary issue, Riley turns to the one man she’s always been able to count on and calls in the favor of a lifetime.

Sam Compton would do anything for Riley McKenna. Anything except be her experimental sex toy. He refuses her request. At least until she tells him that it’ll either be him or she’ll go to someone else. And that, Sam can’t accept. Reluctantly he agrees to her terms—one night of completely meaningless sex in the name of research. Riley thinks she’s prepared for what awaits her in Sam’s bed. After ten years of writing about sex, actually doing it shouldn’t be that different, right? So wrong. What starts as “one time only” becomes “just one more time.” And then one more. And before they know it, Riley and Sam learn first-hand that when it comes to love, there’s no such thing as just one night.

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I’ve read every single one of Lauren Layne‘s books and I love them all. However, if I have to be really honest, out of the three Stiletto books, this was the weakest for me. I think maybe I expected more from Riley‘s story because ever since After the Kiss, she’s been portrayed as the “badass of the group” and I was really hoping that I would see more of her snarky personality. Disappointingly, I didn’t get that but I did love her very strong resolve regarding her feelings. Also, the sarcasm was sadly a bit toned down this time.

All in all, this was still a good weekend read and I can’t wait for Alex and Emma‘s book – I’m assuming there is one.

*ARC provided by NetGalley

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Book Review: To Catch a Falling Star (Crossing Stars #2) by L. Duarte

To Catch a Falling Star (Crossing Stars, #2)To Catch a Falling Star by L. Duarte


It’s been five years, but Melody still mourns the death of Tim, her soul mate and beloved husband who never had a chance to hold their daughter. Mel and her daughter have the love and support of Mel’s brother Will and sister-in-law Portia, the famous Oscar-winning actress-turned-mother. Mel works three jobs and mothers Ella, but she spends her mornings facing the demons of her grief. Her faith and her father, the pastor, helps Mel grapple with her grief.

Portia opens her home to her childhood friend Tarry Francis, a successful, womanizing rock star. He’s trying to beat his addictions. Again. He’s going through the motions, but needs his drugs and rowdy lifestyle to keep his childhood pain in check. Tarry’s privileged upbringing contrasted with his cruel parents, who starved him of affection. Who can fix that?

Mel is forced to counsel Tarry, but he’s so damaged and unwilling to try that she’s not sure anyone can help fix him. She gives him a special coin. Could this open their hearts to each other and fuel their love? Is this a step forward that will free them to catch the falling stars? Or will Mel remain faithful to her first love?

Rich in meaning, To Catch a Falling Star is about two lovers whose hearts struggle to open to find the magic of the journey of love. It’s a joyful and passionate story about overcoming challenges to lead us to love and the fulfillment of our dreams.

To Catch a Falling Star is the stunning follow-up novel to L. Duarte’s debut Chasing Stars about Portia and Will’s romance. A spiritual and playful read, L. Duarte has provided readers the chance to believe in healing a broken heart.

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“There is the good, the ugly, and everything in between.”

Well, this is simply beautiful. I can’t even begin to describe how much I love this book. For the record, I don’t always review every book that I read (I’m a terrible “book blogger”), much less write an ‘inspired’ review at that. But for my third book of 2014, I already know that this is going to end up as one of my favorites this year.

It’s one thing to enjoy a good read but it’s entirely a bigger deal when a book tugs at the heart, and this – powerful and magical. I guess it helps that L. Duarte‘s writing is still as brilliant as ever. It’s so poetic, like a thoughtful melody (no pun intended).

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Book Review: Out of Turn (Kathleen Turner #4) by Tiffany Snow

Out of Turn (Kathleen Turner, #4)Out of Turn by Tiffany Snow


Breaking up is hard to do, as Kathleen Turner discovers. After a falling-out with her ex, high-powered attorney Blane Kirk, she’s moving on the best she can. Unfortunately, someone from her past is set on revenge and nothing short of killing Kathleen will stop them.

Keeping his brother’s ex-girlfriend alive isn’t something new to assassin-for-hire Kade Dennon, but this time can he protect her from himself? She’s a woman he can’t convince himself to walk away from, no matter what it costs him.

Regret is a constant companion for Blane as he realizes the truth behind the lies he’s been told. Can love heal the past, or can some mistakes not be undone?

Murder reunites Blane, Kade, and Kathleen as the police put Blane in their crosshairs. Blane may lose everything unless he and Kade can find the real murderer before it’s too late. But if they can’t set aside their love for the same woman and work together, it will tear them apart.

In Out of Turn, Kathleen is caught between two warring brothers, and the consequences may be fatal.

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’m just SO OVERWHELMED right now. I don’t really know what to say or think, especially after that little preview of Point of No Return. Sigh. This is exactly why I detest reading about love triangles so much! Though I must admit that this is absolutely one of my favorite series ever. Pretty ironic, actually…

Honestly, I’m still at a loss for words. All I know for sure is that six months is a really long time. That’s how long I have to wait to find out who Kat will choose. 😦

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