Monday, February 26, 2018

Twenties Girl - Sophie Kinsella (Review)

6063187Twenties Girl by Sophie Kinsella
Genres: Fiction, Romance, Contemporary, Humor 
Publication date: 
July 21st 2009 
Publisher: The Dial Press
Format: audiobook, 15 hours and 5 minutes
How I got it: My public library
Buy it: Amazon Barnes & Noble
My rating: 3/5 

Lara Lington has always had an overactive imagination, but suddenly that imagination seems to be in overdrive. Normal professional twenty-something young women don't get visited by ghosts. Or do they?

When the spirit of Lara's great-aunt Sadie-a feisty, demanding girl with firm ideas about fashion, love, and the right way to dance-mysteriously appears, she has one request: Lara must find a missing necklace that had been in Sadie's possession for more than seventy-five years, because Sadie cannot rest without it.

Lara and Sadie make a hilarious sparring duo, and at first it seems as though they have nothing in common. But as the mission to find Sadie's necklace leads to intrigue and a new romance for Lara, these very different "twenties" girls learn some surprising truths from and about each other. Written with all the irrepressible charm and humor that have made Sophie Kinsella's books beloved by millions, Twenties Girl is also a deeply moving testament to the transcendent bonds of friendship and family.


My thoughts:
Lara is having some major life issues currently including, her ex- boyfriend, a job that she isn’t too sure about and now a dead aunt who might be haunting her.  Lara is just trying to keep her imagination under control and get her life on track, but maybe her dead aunt Sadie is just what she needs to get everything in line.

The author does a great job creating Lara’s personality.  We can see right from the beginning that Lara is a little stressed and has a lot going on, but is working hard on putting up a good front.   Lara doesn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings or trouble anyone. Lara grew on me when I was reading the book and I ended up rooting for her the whole time to get everything in order.  Lara did get a little stuck on the ex-boyfriend issue, but it does end up working on in the book.

The story follows Lara as she is in search of her great-aunt Sadie’s necklace.  Lara is somewhat looking for the necklace while trying to keep going with her career.  I loved the banter that occurred between Lara and Sadie during the book.  The banter alone would keep me listening to the book.  I loved the relationship that developed between the two of them and how much that Lara could learn about Sadie’s life.  Sadie was an amazing second character since she was a ghost stuck in the past it was an interesting view on life.  I enjoyed how it brought the Twenties Girl idea to life through Sadie.

The story moves along at a nice pace and is easy to follow along.  I loved how the story unfolded and it kept my attention most of the time.  The story gets busier towards the end, but overall a great pace.

My major complaint with the book would have been the romance.   I have read several Sophie Kinsella books and enjoyed the romance portion of those books.  The romance in this book felt slightly as an afterthought in this book.   The book is focused mainly on Lara and getting her life back together and trying to figure out what she wants out of life.  I did enjoy the romance at times and felt it was cute, but at other times I felt it could have been almost a second book.

I would suggest this as a nighttime read.  There were a lot of parts where I felt that the book could be put down and picked back up.  The book kept my attention while listening to it, but I was able to take some breaks and not feel like I missed anything. 

About the Author

Sophie KinsellaMadeleine Wickham (born 12 December 1969) is a bestselling British author under her pseudonym, Sophie Kinsella. Educated at New College, Oxford, she worked as a financial journalist before turning to fiction. She is best known for writing a popular series of chick-lit novels. The Shopaholic novels series focuses on the misadventures of Becky Bloomwood, a financial journalist who cannot manage her own finances. The books follows her life from when her credit card debt first become overwhelming ("The Secret Dreamworld of a Shopaholic") to the latest book on being married and having a child ("Shopaholic & Baby"). Throughout the entire series, her obsession with shopping and the complications that imparts on her life are central themes.

Author Links:

A Good Idea - Cristina Moracho (Review)

29960804A Good Idea by Cristina Moracho 
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Mystery
Publication date: 
February 28, 2017

Publisher: Listening Library
Format: Audiobook10 hours and 54 minutes
How I got it: My public library
Buy it: Amazon Barnes & Noble
My rating: 4/5 

Fin and Betty’s close friendship survived Fin’s ninth-grade move from their coastal Maine town to Manhattan. Calls, letters, and summer visits continued to bind them together, and in the fall of their senior year, they both applied to NYU, planning to reunite for good as roommates.

Then Betty disappears. Her ex-boyfriend Calder admits to drowning her, but his confession is thrown out, and soon the entire town believes he was coerced and Betty has simply run away. Fin knows the truth, and she returns to Williston for one final summer, determined to get justice for her friend, even if it means putting her loved ones—and herself—at risk.

But Williston is a town full of secrets, where a delicate framework holds everything together, and Fin is not the only one with an agenda. How much is she willing to damage to get her revenge and learn the truth about Betty’s disappearance, which is more complicated than she ever imagined—and infinitely more devastating?


My thoughts:
This book contains topics that might be triggers.  There is a large amount of drug use, sexual contact, binge drinking, and depression in the book.  Also, this book deals with mostly just graduated seniors before college so a younger age group.

This book starts up with Fin returning to her father’s house from Manhattan after her best friend Betty had disappeared during their senior year.  We jump into the story right as Fin is sitting at graduation awaiting Betty’s name to be mentioned and when it isn’t you can see the emotions come right off Fin.  Fin has decided she will figure out what happened to Betty while she is town and needs this to get closure.  Fin believes Betty has been killed and is not missing.

Fin has a somewhat of a boyfriend named Owen when she is in town.  Owen runs his family dinner and is the town drug dealer.  The relationship between Fin and Owen is interesting they seem to not be friends outside of the time she spends in time and, they appear to be close at the same time.  The way the relationship turns out is an interesting listen.

The book went into a lot of details of how people felt regarding Betty’s disappearance.   We get to see how each character felt about what happened to Betty and how afterwards they thought why didn’t they try to stop her.  It takes a hard look at actions and reactions.    Everyone got to take a good reflection about what they may have missed or how they could have stopped Betty.

Serena was another character that joined the mix in helping to bring justice for Betty.  Serena comes off to me immediately as if she is hiding something.  I am not sure why, but it might be how she is introduced that comes off as shady and something is off.  I did enjoy how the relationship between Serena and Fin came together.

My biggest complaint was the ending of this book.  I listened to the audio of the book and it appears the climax ends with about an hour left in the audio.  The last hour is dedicated to tying up all the loose ends as possible.  I felt like it was almost too neatly tied up.  I could have left with more vagueness of what happened to everyone, but the author took the time to explain what happened in detail after the climax.  

I would suggest reading this book over the weekend or when you have a longer time to read.  The book had a lot of parts that I couldn’t stop listening to and I ended up binge listening to the book in one day at work.   It was hard for me to stop listening because you could tell the book was building and building up for something big to happen. 

About the Author
Cristina MorachoCristina Moracho is a novelist and freelance writer/editor. Her debut novel, Althea & Oliver (Viking), will be published this October. She lives in Red Hook, Brooklyn, where she makes all the bad decisions.

Author Links:

Thursday, February 22, 2018

{Blog Tour} I Stop Somewhere - T.E. Carter (Review & Giveaway)

I Stop Somewhere 
by T.E. Carter
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Release Date: February 27, 2018
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary


Ellie Frias disappeared long before she vanished.

Tormented throughout middle school, Ellie begins her freshman year with a new look: she doesn't need to be popular; she just needs to blend in with the wallpaper.

But when the unthinkable happens, Ellie finds herself trapped after a brutal assault. She wasn't the first victim, and now she watches it happen again and again. She tries to hold on to her happier memories in order to get past the cold days, waiting for someone to find her.

The problem is, no one searches for a girl they never noticed in the first place.

TE Carter's stirring and visceral debut not only discusses and dismantles rape culture, but it also reminds us what it is to be human.



This book contains the topic of rape culture, it might be a trigger for people.

This book is about Ellie who disappeared after being captured and assaulted.  Ellie tells us the story of what is happening and how she got there in her own words.  

At first when I was reading I didn’t love the back and forth between past and present I was completely confused on where Ellie was, but as the book goes on I found it to be the perfect start for this book.  We go back and forth into Ellie’s memories before she was taken and get a look into where she is currently.  The author leaves it somewhat vague and grows into more details as the story transforms, which was also driving me a little crazy while reading.  I wanted more information up front, but in the end, it was worth it.  The author did a great job building the story and Ellie's life.

Ellie was trying to reinvent herself for high school and by doing this she wanted to make herself blend in more versus being bullied.  Ellie reaches out to a neighbor to reinvent her look, which is an interesting relationship that we get a look into.  Ellie doesn’t consider her a friend, but the amount of interaction really does show that they weren’t friends that confide in each other.

I loved that we got a look into how Ellie felt about not having a mother growing up as well as a look into the relationship between Ellie and her father.  Ellie breaks down the relationship between her and her father while she is narrating because she doesn’t have much else going on so it feels like a deeper insight.   The author does a great job with the pacing of the story it kept me hooked and wanting to keep reading.  I wanted to know what was going to happen to Ellie in the end.

The story does take a darker turn in the book.  I found it a little shocking, but it worked with this story.  I did like that we got to see the entire story through from the beginning until the end.  I did feel complete once I finished this book.

I would suggest this as a weekend read.  I found it hard to put the book down I wanted to try and piece together what was going on in the book.  

I received a copy of this book from the Fantastic Flying Book Club for an honest review.  This does not affect my opinion of this book.

My Rating: 4/5


TE Carter was born in New England and has lived in New England for pretty much her entire life. Throughout her career, she’s done a lot of things, although her passion has always been writing. When she’s not writing, she can generally be found reading classic literature, playing Xbox, organizing her comic collection, or binge watching baking competitions. She continues to live in New England with her husband and their two cats.

      Prize: 1 hardcover copy of I STOP SOMEWHERE by T.E. Carter (US Only)
      Starts: 2/19
      Ends: 3/9
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Saturday, February 10, 2018

{Blog Tour} Shadowsong - S. Jae-Jones (Review & Giveaway)

Shadowsong (Wintersong #2)
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Release Date: February 6, 2018
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy


Six months after the end of Wintersong, Liesl is working toward furthering both her brother’s and her own musical careers. Although she is determined to look forward and not behind, life in the world above is not as easy as Liesl had hoped. Her younger brother Josef is cold, distant, and withdrawn, while Liesl can’t forget the austere young man she left beneath the earth, and the music he inspired in her. 

When troubling signs arise that the barrier between worlds is crumbling, Liesl must return to the Underground to unravel the mystery of life, death, and the Goblin King—who he was, who he is, and who he will be. What will it take to break the old laws once and for all? What is the true meaning of sacrifice when the fate of the world—or the ones Liesl loves—is in her hands?


Liesl is back again in the second book of the series.  This book picks up from where the first book left off with Liesel returning from the underground after being released.   Liesl is dealing with heartbreak and also trying to put her family back together when we meet her back in this book.  She is trying to get her life back together, but also worried about her brother Josef since he is still off traveling for his new job.

Liesl has a lot of emotions going on in her head at this time and she is trying to figure out her next steps in life.  She thinks the opportunity of a lifetime has come in the form of a music lover and also she will be reunited with her brother Josef, but things aren't always as they seem.

The author does an amazing job bringing not only the characters to life, but the scenery as well.  The author is very talented with describing what is going on and it really brings the book to life when you are reading.   I could imagine myself being transported to the different locations in the book while just reading the authors descriptions. 

I enjoyed my Kathe scenes in this book a lot.  I felt that the comments that she was making in the book helped me understand what everyone might be seeing from Liesl.   The book is told mostly through Liesl thoughts and we get to see that she has a lot going on in her mind.  Kathe helps to show the reader what Liesl's actions where doing to others or how others might view her.   Also, Kathe has some other pivotal points in the book that help bring her to life. 

My biggest issue with the book was some of the pacing.  It felt like some parts of the book sort of began dragging for me and I wanted to figure out what was going to happen so I felt like almost skimming until the action picked back up.  Once the action picked up again though I couldn't put the book down.

I would suggest this as a nighttime read. I found sections of the book that I felt I was able to put down and pick it back up.   The book does have a nice transition from Wintersong so I would also suggest reading the first book in the series first.  I would not consider this a stand alone novel. 

I received a copy of this book from The Fantastic Flying Book Club to provide an honest review.  This does no affect my opinion of this book.

My Rating: 4/5



S. Jae-Jones, called JJ, is an artist, an adrenaline junkie, and the NYT bestselling author of Wintersong.

Born and raised in sunny Los Angeles, she lived in New York City for ten years before relocating down to Dixie, where she is comfortably growing fat on grits and barbecue. When not writing, she can be found rock-climbing, skydiving, taking photographs, drawing pictures, and dragging her dog on ridiculously long hikes.

Prize: 1 copy of Shadowsong by S. Jae-Jones (US Only)

Thursday, February 8, 2018

{Blog Tour} The Bastard’s Bargain - Katee Robert (Review)

Have you Pre-ordered THE BASTARD’S BARGAIN YET?

Do it. Dmitri will be yours forever.

New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Katee Robert delivers the final installment in her sizzling O'Malleys family series, hailed as "The Godfather meets Romeo & Juliet." In THE BASTARD’S BARGAIN Dmitri Romanov must use his legendary focus and control to stay one step ahead of everyone else in the ever-shifting power plays of New York City.

What readers are saying:

“The Bastard's Bargain presents a seductive escape and a fulfilling fantasy for that bad boy craving a girl can never outgrow.”—Isha at Book Likes

“Keira and Dmitri are everything. What develops between them is raw and carnal and wanton. The way they need each other and the way they connect is beyond sexy. It’s something deep and dark and heartbreakingly beautiful.”—Eva, Goodreads Reviewer

Meet Dmitri and Keira!

Pre-order THE BASTARD’S BARGAIN and add it to your TBR pile on Goodreads! Then keep reading to get a sneak peek excerpt and to enter the giveaway for a $50 Amazon gift card and Dmitri Romanov scented candle! 

Title: The Bastard’s Bargain
Author: Katee Robert
Genre: Dark Contemporary Romance
Release Date: February 6, 2018
Publisher: Grand Central/Forever
Series: The O’Malleys
Format: Digitial and Print


Married to the enemy

When Keira O'Malley was a child, she used to picture her perfect wedding. The flowers. The dress. Her husband. But nothing could have prepared her for saying "I do" to Dmitri Romanov-cold, domineering, and always one step ahead of everyone else in the ever-shifting power plays of New York City. She agreed to his bargain to secure peace for her family, and she may want the bastard more than she'd ever admit, but she'll be damned if she'll make this marriage easy for him.

Dmitri knows better than to underestimate Keira for one second. Molten desire smolders between them, a dangerous addiction neither can resist. But his enemies are already on the move, and he needs every ounce of his legendary focus and control to keep them alive. Keira could just be his secret weapon-if she doesn't bring him to his knees first.

Order at:


This book contains adult themes.

I love the O’Malley series by Katee Robert.  This was the 6th book in the series and my guess the final book since all the characters have had a book.   This was one of my top books I wanted to read in 2018 and I was not disappointed.

This book follows Keira the youngest O’Malley sibling and Dmitri who is the head of the Romanov family.  The story picks up right where the last book left off with Dmitri taking Keira.  Keira and Dmitri end up getting married quickly in the book and now need to figure out a life together.  Keira is used as pawn so she is always trying to keep herself one step ahead of the game and brings her own set of knowledge and experience to the situation. 

I loved that the book was told in dual POV’s.  We get to see the relationship between Keira and Dmitri unfold.  Keira has her guard completely up and doesn’t even realize that Dmitri is turned on by her being so strong.

Keira turned out to be my favorite female lead of the series.  She is so strong, but doesn’t see it due to her dependency on drugs and alcohol.  I love when she is forced to get sober that you can see she is fit for this world that she lives in and can take control of all situations.  Keira comes into her own throughout this book.

Dmitri was an interesting character in all the books in the series so I was very intrigued that the last book was going to be specifically about him.  We did get a little more backstory on how he became to be, but the story was more focused on developing a relationship with Keira.  Dmitri is a complicated man, but he does keep himself somewhat honest in the book and we do get a refreshing look at him.

The story line is great for this book.  We get a great look at the relationship between Dmitri and Keira from the beginning.  My second favorite part is seeing Keira begin to recover and her realizing what is wrong with her.  I loved the way the author handled addiction because it is not over when you are simply recovered.

My one complaint would be the lack of action in this book.  Other books in the series have hard more action in them and this one felt a good portion of the buildup was happening during the story and there was only a mild amount of actual action that happened towards the end of the book.  I felt that the focus of this book was more on the relationship between Keira and Dmitri versus the overall O’Malley story.   My other complaint is I wish they brought all the siblings back together one last time I missed Sloan.

I would suggest this as a weekend read.  I got totally sucked in as I knew I would and couldn’t put the book down.  The story line does have some parts where you can stop reading, but I found it very challenging to take a break because I just wanted to know what was going to happen.

I received a copy of this book from Barclay Publicity to provide an honest review.  This does not affect my opinion of this book. 

My Rating: 4/5

Enter to win a grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card and Dmitri Romanov scented candle!
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The Bastard’s Bargain Excerpt
Copyright © 2018 Katee Robert
It wasn’t until the front door closed behind Ivan that the reality of her situation sank in. Dmitri was furious. He might have faked it for his friend, but he stood next to her, a pillar of stone with anger coming off him in waves. His grip on her elbow didn’t hurt, but if she’d tried to leave, he would have restrained her.
She should be afraid. She should be terrified.
Keira’s heartbeat picked up, adrenaline kicking in. She swung to face him with a fierce smile on her face. “You didn’t compliment me on my dress.” It was a work of fucking art. She smoothed her free hand over her hip and up her side. “Actually, you called me a high-class sex worker. Is that any way to speak to your beloved wife?”
His gray eyes followed the movement, a muscle ticking in his jaw when she cupped her breast. “I meant it when I said you’re playing with fire.”
That wasn’t just anger on his face now. No, it was rapidly being overtaken by sheer lust. An answering feeling sent a bolt straight to her core. She stepped back, and he released her instantly. A strange feeling coursed through her, straightening her spine and making her want to laugh out loud. Power. This is what power feels like.
He wanted her. He wanted her so badly, he had his hands clenched at his sides to keep from touching her again. But he wouldn’t until she gave the green light. Keira took another step back. “I have a hypothetical question.”
“Ask.” His voice was rough. The way he watched her made her feel like prey, and she liked it far more than she should—because she wasn’t prey. Keira had her own teeth and claws, and Dmitri would learn that as time went on.
“Hypothetical, if I said yes tonight…how do you imagine that would go?”
He stared at her a long moment. “Nyet. I’m not playing this game with you.” She blinked and he was on her, one hand snaking around to press against the exposed small of her back, the other tangling in her hair. “We are not children, moya koroleva. These games don’t become us.”
He kissed her. There was no cautious exploration or easing into it. Dmitri kissed her like a conquering warlord who was sure of his welcome because he owned everything in the room—including her. There was no fighting this. She didn’t even want to try. Keira slid her arms around his neck and pressed herself more firmly against him. His cock was a hard length with too many layers between them. She rolled her hips, an invitation she wasn’t sure she was ready to follow through on.
Dmitri slid his hand down to cup her ass, guiding her movements. Long slides up the length of his cock and back down again. The stupid goddamn dress kept her from spreading her legs wider, from getting him exactly where she needed him. Her nipples rubbed against his shirt, the silk incredibly decadent across her sensitized skin.
“Keira. Moya koroleva.” He kissed down her jawline, tilting her head back until she had to arch her spine to accommodate the position. “Did you enjoy their eyes on you? Ivan’s. The men who owe allegiance to me. Anyone who cared to look.”
It took her desire-drugged brain a beat to catch up, but by then he was already growling out more words against her skin. “Did it make you feel powerful to know they were imagining stroking the nipples you flash with such impunity?” He moved his hand from her ass to do exactly that, dragging a finger over her puckered nipple. “They wanted the body you so proudly put on display.” His voice roughened. “They wanted what’s mine.”
ve in tonight and then it will all be over.
He moved his hand to her back and bent her until she relied solely on his strength to keep her off the ground. And then Dmitri’s wicked, wicked mouth closed around her nipple. The weight of the beaded design seemed heavier with his tongue flicking the engorged bud, making his touch that much hotter. She couldn’t hold back a moan as he moved to her other breast.
Dmitri dragged his mouth up the center of her chest, the only part of her not caged in the dress, stopping at the thick collar. He flicked the hollow of her throat with his tongue. “This is my favorite part of the dress.” He ran his thumb over it. “This, more than anything else, marks you as mine.”
A collar for a kept pet.

It was as if he’d doused her in icy water. Keira went rigid and shoved Dmitri away. She almost fell when he released her, but she regained her balance at the last second. They stood mere feet apart, breathing hard and staring at each other. I am no one’s pet. She slashed her hand through the air. “I might be your wife, Russian, but I’m not yours. I’ll never be yours.”

Read all the books in The O’Malleys Series

About Katee Robert
New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Katee Robert learned to tell her stories at her grandpa’s knee. Her 2015 title, The Marriage Contract, was a RITA finalist, and RT Book Reviews named it 'a compulsively readable book with just the right amount of suspense and tension."  When not writing sexy contemporary and romantic suspense, she spends her time playing imaginary games with her children, driving her husband batty with what-if questions, and planning for the inevitable zombie apocalypse. 
Connect with Katee at: Website | Facebook | TwitterGoodReads | Instagram

{Blog Tour} Make Me Crave - Katee Robert (Review)

Have you Pre-ordered MAKE ME CRAVE Yet? In MAKE ME CRAVE by NYT Bestselling Author, Katee Robert, Roman Bassani will do anything to ...