Review: Window Shopping by Tessa Bailey

WINDOW SHOPPING
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Tessa Bailey
Release Date:
October 19, 2021

A sizzling, standalone, feel-good holiday romance from Tessa Bailey, New York Times bestselling author of It Happened One Summer.

Two weeks before Christmas and all through Manhattan, shop windows are decorated in red and green satin.

I’m standing alone in front of the famous Vivant department store, when a charming man named

Aiden asks my opinion of the décor.

It’s a tragedy in tinsel, I say, unable to lie.
He asks for a better idea with a twinkle in his eye.
Did I know he owned the place? No. He put me on the spot.

Now I’m working for that man, trying to ignore that he’s hot.
But as a down on her luck girl with a difficult past, I know an opportunity when I see one—and I have to make it last.

I’ll put my heart and soul into dressing his holiday windows.

I’ll work without stopping. And when we lose the battle with temptation, I’ll try and remember I’m just window shopping.

AMAZON

I’m not what one would refer to as approachable. In fact, I’m fluent in Fuck Off. Hopefully he speaks it, too. Or at least knows how to read body language.

This is the story I never knew I needed but now I have no idea how I lived without it.

A reverse sunshine/grump trope with a grumpy with an ex convict heroine and a sunshine, Christmas loving and bow tie wearing hero? I. Am. PUTTEH.

I really thought I had a read on this man. He’s a wholesome rule follower who believes the best in people. A man who has a few demons lurking but is innately good at his core. Now we’re throwing a dirty streak into the mix? Good grief.

Oh did I forget to mention that he still has Tessa’s signature dirty talking side? Because holy ovaries, batman! I’m obsessed!

This was one of the cutest holiday romances I’ve read and the perfect book to cuddle up on the couch with on a cold and snowy night. But we’re still in fall, and I made due with a nice cup of tea and a blanket that I enjoyed with a giant goofy grin on my face, because THIS BOOK.

Stella nods, letting her head tip back and hit the wall. “Yes. Anything. Yes.”
Anything.
Permission granted, I reach down and yank up her skirt.

Stella recently moved to NY after serving her sentence and stumbles upon an atrocious holiday window display. Naturally, she tells the bow tie wearing handsome stranger making idle small talk with her on the street how she feels. And naturally he invites her to interview for the window design job. Oh and he may have forgotten to mention that he happens to be the namesake and owner of the store. Whoopsy.

Aiden is the quintessential nice guy I never knew I wanted. I am not generally a reader that likes nice guys. Wow, that sounds bad. What I mean is I want a nice guy in real life, and I love them toxic in fiction. But Aiden? He was just impossible not to love. He’s a sweet man with a dirty streak who is already picking out china patterns in his head the minute he and Stella get together. It takes Stella a hot minute to come to terms of her feelings for her boss, but once she does, it’s all in.

This was one of those feel good type of romances that will put a smile on your face and keep it there. It wasn’t angsty. It wasn’t full of drama. It was opposites attract in the perfectly cute holiday romance with plenty of dirty talk thrown in and all of the warm and fuzzies. The warm blanket of romances that is cozy, comforting, and heart warming.

Review: To Burn In Brutal Rapture by Nyla K

TO BURN IN BRUTAL RAPTURE
Genre: Forbidden/Taboo Romance
Author: Nyla K
Release Date:
October 22, 2020

From the author of PUSH comes a new epic tale of unexpected forbidden romance…

The ache of tragedy sunk deep, like the claws of a wicked monster.
To heal was to remember what my godfather told me when I was six…
Pain is a part of life. If you prepare for it, it will hurt less.
He would know, after all. Lazarus Weston is pain personified.
The scowling man with stormy eyes and tattoos covering his excessive muscles is not only my godfather, but also my dad’s business partner and best friend. A permanent fixture in our lives. Well, in Dad’s, not mine.
But when grief mixes with confusing new feelings, I’m forced to see Lazarus differently, in a way that severely complicates my world.
Because he’s too old for me. He’ll never be mine.
I’m not allowed to have him, but obsession burns a fine line between can’t and won’t.

I can’t want her…
The curse on my heart is heavy, the tale of my malediction drenched in brutal loss. Wearing ink like scars reminds me of the tomb I left behind.
I’ve been expecting pain all my life, yet I’m still unprepared, failing to see my downfall until she’s wrapped around my soul like barbed wire.
Tracien Wright. My best friend’s daughter. Part of my life strictly through association. She was never meant to be more than that.
But Traci is a trickster. A skilled predator in the most unexpected package, oblivious to her own power.
She’ll learn the hard way that not all beasts should be hunted.
I’m not what she thinks I am, having rose from a pit, only to bury myself in secrets and lies.
Deep down I’d love nothing more than to have her. But I don’t get to keep nice things.

**To Burn In Brutal Rapture is a standalone novel which contains sensitive subjects that may be triggering to some. Open-minded readers only! Please do not read or post spoilers.**

AMAZON

We’re a chemical reaction. Explosively beautiful. Dangerously exquisite.”

Clearly I have been living under a rock. How am I only reading this book now when it’s been out for almost a year? Me! ME! The reader that lives for all things taboo and forbidden. And it simply doesn’t get more deliciously forbidden than father’s best friend. This is an age gap with a bite, folks, and I was so here for it. DANG.

Every droplet of joy in this life comes at a price,” his jagged voice breaks through the silence, and the sounds of people chatting in the next room. “Happiness… It always turns to pain in the end.”

One thing I will advise is for you to go into this book absolutely blind. Seriously. I didn’t even read the full blurb let alone reviews. I first discovered Nyla with Distorted and am now just systematically making my way through her backlist because I’m obsessed. All I knew about this book was it was taboo and I needed it!

Now what can I tell you about this story? Well, almost nothing. *evil grin* It’s for your own good, trust me. But I will say, the one thing I’ve come to strongly appreciate about Nyla’s writing is that she’s not afraid to go there. This is clearly an author that writes for herself and her characters and not what she thinks is safer or would be more accepted. And I seriously love that. These characters are flawed and fucked up, my second two favorite f words. Ha! There are some twists to this story that were just UGH. To be honest, I’m still processing them and don’t know how I feel. Did I like it? No idea. I’m conflicted as fuck. But I digress.

One of the things that can be a make it or break it for me when it comes to age gap, is the heroine. I’m just not a reader that enjoys reading about sheltered ingenues. But Tracien (Trix) while young, was one of the most relatable characters. This is a girl with some deep rooted issues of her own, stemming from the loss of her beloved mother, to lusting after her father’s best friend. She’s not perfect by any means. She’s an old soul of sorts and that clearly comes across. She’s also not the typical rich girl and I loved that about her.

Lazarus was one of my favorite tortured souls. This is a man that your heart just hurts for.

But that’s all you’ll be getting from me. I will tell you that this story is fucked up. It’s downright uncomfy at times. It’s also sizzling hot and full of depth and emotion. I devoured this thick ass book in a span of two days and had a hangover from hell to follow. Did I love all parts of it. Well, there were parts that I’m still figuring out how I feel about. But what I will say, is if you like age gap/forbidden tropes, this one is simply not to be missed.

Review: The Bratva’s Heir by Jane Henry & Sophie Lark

THE BRATVA’S HEIR
Genre: Mafia Romance
Series: Underworld Kings
Author: Jane Henry & Sophie Lark
Release Date:
October 15, 2021


A stand-alone novel in the Underworld Kings series

Prison’s a dark, bleak place.

But Clare brings me light.

My sweet little bird will be my ticket to freedom.

The first time I saw her, I had to have her.

From her big, dark eyes, to the curves she can’t conceal…

The way she can only hold my gaze so long.

The way she shivers every time I move inside these chains.

And most of all, the way she’ll bend the rules when I order her to…

I know a natural submissive when I see one.

Her degrees and titles don’t change who she is: a woman who will bend to my will.

She doesn’t know it yet, but Clare is mine.

Mine to train.
Mine to protect.
And mine to control…

AMAZON

I know you better than you know yourself. You think you want a gentleman? A Prince Charming? Someone to buy you flowers and rub your feet?
…You want permission,” I say. “To be as bad as you want to be. You want to be told to get down on your knees, to open your mouth, to do as you’re told… so you don’t have to feel guilty. Because you’re just doing what Daddy said…”

Ummm excuse me?! THE AUDACITY. The sheer AUDACITY to write something this hot and not to put a warning that I shouldn’t read it in public? Jane and Sophie, I demand to speak to your manager!

I’ve always had certain proclivities. I don’t like kissing, I don’t like cuddling, I don’t like murmuring sweet endearments in the dark. What I like is total obedience. Total control. .

Some girls like dirty talking alphas. Some girls enjoy the morally corrupt anti heroes. This girl? I want it all. But my true crack of choice is convicts. That sounds worse when I read it out loud, but you know what I mean. There’s just something about a dangerous anti hero who’s locked up but you just know he won’t be for long that just makes my blood run hot. I live for it. And the second I read the blurb for this book, I knew I needed it. But nothing prepared me for the sensual punch that it brought. Because mama! Or should I say, Daddy? *Evil grin*

Now admittedly, the daddy kink thing isn’t my fave, but GOD it just worked for me here. Constantine is the kind of uber alpha I die for. He’s a ruthless Bratva enforcer with a penchant for control, in all facets of his life, including the bedroom. And when he first lays eyes on the demure and innocent looking prison psychologist, he can read her desires a mile away. If you like praise kink and the hate everyone but her vibes, this book has it in spades.

Tell me I’m your good girl…”
“You’re my princess, my queen. I’ll slaughter anyone who lays a finger on you. Only I touch you. Only I look at you. You’re mine and mine alone.”

While what you see is what you get with Constantine, Clare is a bit different. She starts off demure but then really grows into her own. Watching her evolution through discovering more about her sexuality was satisfying as all get out. I love how she’s equally terrified of and turned on by Constantine when she meets him. I also loved her evolution into someone a lot more fierce towards the end.

This book was pure crack. There was action, twists and turns, and ALL OF THE STEAM. Oh my GAWD. The steam! THE STEAM! I devoured this book and licked my fingers afterwards. Hell I felt like I needed a cigarette after. Was the ending a little OTT on Clare’s side, a little. But did I care? Not even a little. This was pure mafia romance crack. CRACK I tells ya!

Review: The Lost Fisherman by Jewel E Ann

THE LOST FISHERMAN
Series:
Fisherman #2
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Jewel E Ann
Release Date:
October 14, 2021

It’s been five years since I’ve seen him.

 

An unexpected event takes me back to the place where it all began.

But I’m no longer the naive young woman he once knew.

 

 

And he’s no longer the man who took nearly everything from me.

 

Can this be our time?

 

Or is it too late?

 

Did I find myself only to lose him?

AMAZON

I love you today.

Did I feel like I may pop a blood vessel in my week long wait until book two? Yes.
Did I start this book the second it landed on my kindle? Yes.
Did I stay up until the buttcrack of dawn finishing it? Also yes.
Do I have any regrets? Absolutely not!

I thought we were strong enough to make it through. I thought it was finally our time. I thought wrong.

So how do I even begin to review this book when one of the most integral parts of the story is a huge spoiler? Well, I don’t. I’m not going to tell you much details beyond what you can gather from that blurb, and you’ll thank me for it. Trust me.

What I can tell you, is this book takes place five years after the first one. It’s one of my now favorite second chance romances. And I devoured it in one sitting.

I fell hard for Fisher and Reese in The Naked Fisherman. I loved Fisher and his unapologetic crudeness. I loved the way that Reese got to see a side of him that no one else saw. Fast forward 5 years, and I think I loved these two even more. Reese is now a young woman rather than the naive child she first met Fisher as. She’s seen the world. She’s lived. She’s experienced. She knows her mind and isn’t afraid to speak it or go for what she wants. Her personality really shone through this story. She was more self assured. She also just grew into her own in a way that she never could have as an 18 year old girl.

The romance element was one of my favorites. It still echoed a bit from the forbidden parts of book one, but in a different way. I lived for the angst. I loved the emotion. And I died for the chemistry.

So why not 5 stars even while I clearly loved it? Well, I couldn’t help but feel like there was just a little something missing for me. I wanted to know more about Fisher, and while I get the POV is constructed the way that it was for a very specific reason, I still couldn’t help but wish for more. Yes, we got to learn him through Reese, but I would have loved to be in his head just a bit more than what we ultimately got. Now the part that we did get was extremely potent, but still.

That very minor detail aside, I loved this duet. I loved the feels, the chemistry, the once in a lifetime love. It was as beautiful as it was painful and I devoured every page.

Review: Mafia Queen by CD Reiss

MAFIA QUEEN
Series: The DiLustro Arrangement #3
Genre: Dark, Mafia Romance
Author: CD Reiss
Release Date: October 12,  2021

What doesn’t kill you makes you a killer.

Santino DiLustro changed me.

You can’t spend time in bed with the devil without getting addicted to the heat.

Before him, I was a girl.

Innocent and weak.

Now, I’m a woman.

A fighter.

A killer.

I’ll burn the world down for him.

Shatter the sky.

But I will not break.

No.

I will rise up and destroy whoever dares to threaten what my king has built, because I am forever his queen.

AMAZON

Between us, he rules me with love, and my love for him rules my life.

Talk about ending a trilogy with a bang. What a twisty, action packed, high octane ride this book was. My head is still spinning.

Love rules without rules. You are outside expectations. Bigger than the law or tradition. A filthy sinner like me can never reign over a woman like you.”
“The only place I want to be reigned over is the bedroom…”
“This, I can do.”

Each book in this trilogy brought a little something different. And in this one, as the title already implies, is the full evolution of Violetta. She started out as a bit of a petulant child bride in book one. We saw her evolve a bit and come to some hard realizations in book two. But this one truly brought her in full force. We get to see this young woman grow into the queen that she is, and man was it satisfying.

Santino and his uber alpha qualities were always my favorite thing about this story. I loved his cold detachment almost as much as I loved his singleminded obsession with his wife. But what I appreciated was finally seeing his true devotion and feelings come out in this installment and seeing a different side of him. A softer side that did nothing to take away from his savage one.

There’s a lot that happens in this book, and at times it always felt a bit much with all the twists and turns. The pacing at times felt a little bit off for me as well. There’s so much happening, and some of it felt like it was happening all at once, that it was hard to wrap my mind around it. But that didn’t stop me from devouring this book. It was a bloody, violent bang of an end, and I was so here for it. What I loved the most was seeing Violetta’s savage and ruthless side come out. This is a mafia queen that doesn’t shy away from pulling the trigger when it comes to protecting those she loves. There’s twists you never see coming, and turns that leave your mind reeling. There’s also a hook for a new book with a secondary character that I’m practically salivating to get my hands on.

I’ve missed this side of CD’s writing and I lived for it with this trilogy. I’m even more thrilled to see we’ll be getting more in this world. If you’re looking for a sexy and gritty mafia romance with bite, look no further! Read this one!

DGRFave & Review: Joyless by Nyla K

JOYLESS
Series:
Alabaster Penitentiary #2
Genre: Dark, Erotic MMF Romance
Author: Nyla K
Release Date:
September 30, 2021

Alabaster Penitentiary, Volume 2

Correctional officers get a bad rep. But in our case, it’s fully justified.
We’re not 𝘨𝘰𝘰𝘥 people… We’re guard dogs. As twisted as the inmates we patrol, courtesy of the monster who created us.

Prisoners ourselves on an island of manipulation, we’ve spent years drowning in vices to dull reality. If these walls could talk, I’m telling you… they’d scream.
They call me Velle, but that’s 𝘖𝘧𝘧𝘪𝘤𝘦𝘳 𝘊𝘩𝘦𝘷𝘦𝘭𝘭𝘦 to you. Hands dirtier than my mind, I have no qualms with staying ruthless to keep these creatures in line.
And I’m not alone.

𝘑𝘰𝘺 𝘑𝘢𝘮𝘦𝘴𝘰𝘯 is my partner in crime, and my ex. Together we rule Alabaster Isle like Bonnie and Clyde, only prettier and far more dangerous. It’s the two of us against this wicked, secluded world.
Until he shows up…

Although we need him, the rookie is a problem. Flipping me upside down, using my own hidden desires to tempt me.
𝘙𝘰𝘰𝘬… with his green eyes and country boy smile…
He has no business luring me into something that will get everyone hurt.

Let it be known, denying myself and dominating this role is my default setting. But with him in the picture, I’m struggling to keep it intact.
The mask is slipping, control I can’t lose wavering as we welcome our newest psycho to the roster.

Let’s hope, for all our sakes, 𝙄𝙣𝙢𝙖𝙩𝙚 #101 doesn’t do anything stupid.

**Joyless is a MMF romance with its own HEA, and while it explores new characters, it is highly recommended that you read Volume 1 first, as the timeline mirrors that of Distorted and there will be references to Distorted in Joyless that could spoil book 1.**

AMAZON 

 

You’re like a rollercoaster, baby. Scary as fuck, but just the best shot of adrenaline.”

Holy.
Fucking.
Shit.

This book. I don’t even have the words right now. Gimme a minute here.

Being a self professed erotic romance addict for many years, I went on record a few years ago to state that I have steel plated ovaries. Like a book can be hot, but it’s not going to get me that hot because I’m desensitized to it. Ok. It’s what I thought. So what did I do? I read this fucking book in public. I was cocky and I miscalculated. Bite me.

So there I was. Squirming uncomfortably in the waiting room while getting my oil changed. Paranoid as fuck that everyone in the room and also outside of it knew exactly what I was reading. With my loins burning and my ovaries hurting, rethinking my stupid steel plated ovaries statement to hell and back. But I digress. Let’s talk about the fuckery that is this book for a hot second, kay?

Welcome to Hell, rookie.”

Do not, and I repeat, DO NOT read this as a standalone. Yes it has different characters from Distorted, but just trust me. You want to appreciate what is Nyla K’s deeply twisted, depraved, evil genius mind by reading this series in order. The time lines overlap and you will miss some huge plot nuances and do yourself a big disservice by not reading Distorted first.

So what’s this book? It’s a super sizzling, super fucked up, super dirty and deliciously kinky MMF menage. And this bitch? I WAS SO HERE FOR IT.

The second Velle made an appearance in Distorted, I knew I had to have his story. The big, bad, tatted and pierced prison guard that takes no shit just had to have a good story arc, right? Wrong. It wasn’t just good, it was fucking amazing. MY GOD. But I digress again.

So what can I tell you without spoiling anything? This book brought it, ok. It bought it big time. The revelations. The secrets. The backstories of Velle and Joy and how they came to be guards at Alabaster Penitentiary really lays the foundation. We get more glimpses at the mysteriously evil Warden, and when I say I never thought I’d hear myself say that I’m desperate for that man’s book, well let’s just say I’m still shocked as shit. But here I digressed again. FOCUS. GOD. OKAY.

One of my favorite things about this story was the dynamic between Rook, Joy, and Velle. How neither one of them are what they seem on the surface. I loved Joy’s sexual freedom and how she just owns her sexuality. This is a woman that’s not shy about her sex drive, her body, or her desires, and we need more heroines like this in romance. But Velle. Oh my baby Velle. He was the most dynamic, multi-layered of the three. Velle with his dark secrets and darker desires. He completely stole my heart.

A-are you gonna… lick me?” My breathing is truly out of control. “No.” He bites his lip. “I’m gonna eat you alive.”

Now this is not a story for the faint of heart. And what I appreciate about Nyla’s story telling is that she’s not afraid to go there. She’s not afraid to really dive right into the pits of true depravity if it’s what her characters demand, and it just WORKS. This is a book that if anyone else wrote it, I’d say had way too much sex. But when I tell you that EVERY SINGLE sex scene added something to the story, well that’s talent, folks. Because there was a lot of sex. A LOT. It was hot. It was incendiary. Seriously. It was fucking sizzling as hell. My loins are still burning.

There’s also nuances that get revealed from Distorted, and hints dropped about future characters. And just OMG. I FUCKING LOVED THIS BOOK.

It’s dark. It’s fucked up. It’s seriously fucked up. And I loved every depraved page of it. And the set up for the next one? HOLY SHIT!!!

So if you like your book dark as hell, sizzling enough to set ovaries on fire, and fucked up enough to make you uncomfy while reading it? READ THIS FUCKING BOOK.

That is all. I’m now off to calm my tits. And I thank you,

Review: Stolen- Dante’s Vow by Natasha Knight

STOLEN: DANTE’S VOW
Genre: Dark, Mafia Romance
Author: Natasha Knight
Release Date:
September 30, 2021

Five years.
That’s how long it took me to find her.

Five years after my world shattered, leaving me a scarred and broken man.

By then, the girl I knew was gone. In her place stood a woman. One who looked like an angel. An impossible, beautiful angel.

I killed for her. Soaked my hands in the blood of those who hurt her and rescued her from hell.

But hell has a way of following you. Becoming a part of you. Maybe the only part you recognize.

I had every intention of bringing her home. Setting her free.
I swear I did.

But the men who kidnapped her all those years ago weren’t done with her yet. They’d stop at nothing to get her back. And I’d kill any man who tried to take her from me.

She calls me her avenging angel.
But I know the truth.
I’m no angel.

Because even as I tell myself I’m protecting her I know one thing for sure.

I am a monster, too. No better than them.
Because just like them, I’ll never let her go .

Author’s note: Stolen is Dante Grigori’s story and although a standalone, would be better enjoyed after reading With This Ring and I Thee Take.

AMAZON 

 

I’m here now, Mara. And I may not be the boy you remember, but I am the man you’ll come to know. The man who will destroy your demons.”

I feel like I’ve been waiting for this story forever! The second that Dante appeared in With This Ring, I was intrigued. And when the revelations in I Thee Take happened, well, let’s just say I was damn near salivating for this story. When I saw Natasha post a teaser about writing Dante’s book, I was pretty much rabid in my need to get my hands on it. So is it any surprise that the second it landed on my kindle, I devoured it in one sitting? I think not.

I can’t have her. So much has been stolen from her already. I won’t steal a love I don’t deserve.

I highly recommend that you read the To Have and To Hold duet prior to this book. There’s a lot of overarching story arc that really sets the stage for this story. And while you can technically still enjoy this as a standalone, some of the big nuances may be missed on you if you do.

We met Dante’s brother in that duet and we learn quite a bit about the brother’s family and history. We get to know their years long vendetta for the gruesome death of their family. But at the end of the duet we learn that the woman that they thought died all those years along with their family, may not have. Stolen actually takes place five years after I Thee Take.

Dante has been tirelessly searching for Mara, who has been barely surviving her captivity to a monster all of these years. Sold into sexual slavery, she made a deal with her owner five years ago to save Dante’s brother’s woman. And it cost her. The book starts off pretty much right away with her rescue and the aftereffects of what she’s been through.

I loved Mara. She’s a fighter and a survivor, no matter the hell she’s been through the past 15 years. She may have grew up with Dante the boy, but she doesn’t recognize the man, and their connection takes a while to reestablish. I loved watching this ruthless killer handle this woman like she’s made of spun glass. He was her fiercest protector, even if that protection was against himself.

I’m not sure why I thought this was a duet when it’s a standalone. But a part of me kept thinking that I would have loved this to be a bit longer. I would have liked to get a bit more fleshing out with things at the end. But as it was, I still devoured it and loved every page. The connection between Mara and Dante was years long in the making. There’s a deliciously complex secondary character who gets introduced and I’m already hoping we get his story next, because DAMN.

But if you’re looking for a gritty mafia romance read, look no further. Knight delivers as always with packing a story full of emotion, darkness, and steam.

 

Natasha Knight is the USA Today Bestselling author of Romantic Suspense and Dark Romance Novels. She has sold over half a million books and is translated into six languages. She currently lives in The Netherlands with her husband and two daughters and when she’s not writing, she’s walking in the woods listening to a book, sitting in a corner reading or off exploring the world as often as she can get away.

AUTHOR LINKS

Website: http://natasha-knight.com
Bookbub: https://www.bookbub.com/authors/natasha-knight
Amazon: http://amzn.to/2kg2fRX
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/natashaknightauthor
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/1752075498339742
Newsletter: http://natasha-knight.com
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/natashaknightromance

Review: The Naked Fisherman by Jewel E Ann

THE NAKED FISHERMAN
Series:
Fisherman #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Jewel E Ann
Release Date:
September 30, 2021

It’s official.

I’m eighteen and a young woman with endless possibilities on my way to reunite with my mom in Colorado after five years apart—she had a little weed incident in Nebraska.

At the airport, she springs the news on me … she’s leaving for a month of job training.

And me?

 

I’m left on my own in the basement she’s renting from the fisherman, aka her landlord who lives upstairs.

 

He’s ten years older than me. Never wears a shirt.

 

And makes it hard to remember all the things I learned at Christian Academy.

 

Did I mention he’s also my new boss?

AMAZON

I thought you were a gentleman,” I mumbled, making the walk of shame to the stack of drawers and hunching down instead of bending over to retrieve a towel. “Why did you think that?”

So first of all, this cover is incredibly deceiving, I swear. I love it, don’t get me wrong. But this is so much more than a cute contemporary and I fell head over heels for Fisher and Reese. It’s not often I get a heroine who by any other author I would quite honestly hate to read about, but was totally in love with in this book.

Reese is an 18 year old girl who has both experienced a lot and nothing in life. Her mother went to prison 5 years ago. Her father passed 3 years ago. And she grew up with her deeply religious grandparents knowing not much about life outside of the preaching she got at home. Suffice it to say that this girl is the epitome of naive ingenue. And yet, where this normally would have annoyed me, I loved this in her. I loved the way that Jewel packed so many layers into her character. This is a young girl that’s hungry for life and also scared to experience and ask for what she wants. She has a chance to reunite with her mother now that she’s out of prison, yet she feels so removed from her because of what her father and grandparents made her believe about her.

Fisher Mann, yes, that’s really his name, is her mom’s friend and landlord. He’s handsome, charming, cocky, and known womanizer. They shouldn’t have anything in common. Yet when her mother leaves them alone to travel to California for work related trip, these two realize the one thing they have in common is undeniable chemistry.

I loved Fisher’s unapologetic personality. He’s not afraid to push every button Reese has. But this is also a man that clearly has many layers, and with each one that slowly gets peeled back, you fall more and more for him. This book definitely spent more on the development and growth of Reese. Though there’s clearly only so much growth she can have in this book. I’m super excited to see what book two brings. What I really loved is the chemistry between these two and how they both try to fight it in their way, Reese definitely more than Fisher.

There’s a bit of a forbidden element because Fisher is older, more experienced, and her mom’s friend. He’s 28 to her 18 but in life experience he’s definitely even older.

I devoured this book. I loved the build up these two had. I loved the growth that Reese had, though I have a feeling it would be much more satisfying in book two. Now to just gather up the patience in my rabid need for conclusion.

Review: The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood

THE LOVE HYPOTHESIS
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Author: Ali Hazelwood
Release Date:
September 14, 2021

As a third-year Ph.D. candidate, Olive Smith doesn’t believe in lasting romantic relationships–but her best friend does, and that’s what got her into this situation.

Convincing Anh that Olive is dating and well on her way to a happily ever after was always going to take more than hand-wavy Jedi mind tricks: Scientists require proof.

So, like any self-respecting biologist, Olive panics and kisses the first man she sees.

That man is none other than Adam Carlsen, a young hotshot professor–and well-known ass.

Which is why Olive is positively floored when Stanford’s reigning lab tyrant agrees to keep her charade a secret and be her fake boyfriend.

But when a big science conference goes haywire, putting Olive’s career on the Bunsen burner, Adam surprises her again with his unyielding support and even more unyielding…six-pack abs.

Suddenly their little experiment feels dangerously close to combustion.

And Olive discovers that the only thing more complicated than a hypothesis on love is putting her own heart under the microscope

AMAZON 

 

I wish you could see yourself the way I see you.”

Interestingly enough, I avoided reading this book due to the hype around it. It’s so rare that I see a highly hyped up book that I end up loving. But the cover was so dang cute and the blurb sounded so good, that I decided to cave and take the chance. Sadly, reality won out, and I ended up feeling like I read a different book from everyone else. Such is my life. *Deep sigh*

It started out so strong. I was immediately hooked by the quirky and awkward Olive and the super grumpy professor Adam Carlsen. I love me a good fake dating trope, so there was that going for it. And quite honestly, I was riveted to the pages for the first 20% of the story, with a goofy smile on my face thinking I’ve found the book. Sadly though, that giddy feeling didn’t last for me. And while I didn’t necessarily dislike it, I just didn’t love it either. For me, it felt like a book a novice romance reader who’s just dipping their toe in the genre might enjoy. Now take that with a grain of salt. This is coming from someone that generally just doesn’t gravitate towards cute contemporaries, so this could very well have been the case of just me. And going off of reviews and just how many absolutely adored this book, I definitely feel like the black sheep here. But alas, it is what it is.

So let’s go with a good ole’ feedback sandwich here. I loved the STEM representation and the way it was written. I was afraid that the academia and science aspect of the story would bore me to death, but the author wrote it in such a way that it added to the story and kept even non academia readers engaged. I loved that about this. I also loved the trope and the quirky heroine meet grumpy professor aspect.

What was missing for me was the chemistry. I just didn’t feel it between these two. This is very much a slow burn, but the more time these two spent together, the less I felt it. The way they were thrown together into awkward situations by Olive’s friend Ahn, the more it felt that way…awkward. I also struggled with the way it was written. It was third person POV in Olive’s perspective, but it read like it should have been first person, if that makes sense. I still struggle to have a visual in my head on what Olive or any of the secondary characters looked like, there was almost no physical descriptions of them. As it was, all of the secondary characters just came across flat, rudimentary, and two dimensional. And it didn’t take long before the main characters came across that way too.

I did enjoy the ending and seeing Olive finally, FINALLY, stand up for herself and truly show growth as a character. I also loved seeing Adam’s fuzzy and soft side. There was some steam at the end that added, though not much for me, to the chemistry. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t need steam to enjoy a book. But when the chemistry is already lagging for me, it just felt super lacking here.

So did I dislike it? No. Did I love it? Also no. Would I recommend it? Sure! It’s a cute, slow burn romance that I think plenty would love. I just wish I was one of them. So while it was an enjoyable read, it also won’t be anything I remember or come back to after finishing.

Review: The Lawyer by Marni Mann

THE LAWYER
Series:
The Dalton Brothers #1
Genre: Erotic Romance
Author: Marni Mann
Release Date:
September 28, 2021

A sexy, new stand-alone in the Dalton Brothers Series from USA Today best-selling author Marni Mann …

 

I’m not the type of girl who picks up a man on a rooftop bar.

Not the kind of girl who lets a man’s hands roam my body, discovering I have no panties on.

Never the girl who has hours’ worth of o’s from a smoking-hot one-night stand.

 

But Dominick makes it so easy to say yes.

His body, his moves, and his oh-so-wicked tongue have me saying it over and over again.

Yes, please.

Yes, more.

Yes, right there.

 

He worships every inch of my body, and I’m still sore the next morning when I meet him again.

 

This time, he’s Mr. Dalton, my sister’s cutthroat entertainment lawyer.

And he has a proposition for me.

 

He wants to make me famous.

 

Of course, that means sharing a screen with my wildly jealous sister.

It means giving up my career.

It means the whole world will suddenly know everything about me.

 

Which presents one catastrophic problem—Dominick doesn’t date famous people.

 

So, do I take a chance at becoming a Hollywood star, or do I pass up the opportunity to be with the man who gave me a taste of forever?

AMAZON | iBOOKS | NOOK | KOBO

Get over here.” My eyes narrowed as I took her in, deciding that if she didn’t move closer in the next few seconds, I was going to lift her myself.

Well, wasn’t this just the spicy little number. Ovary approved!

The Lawyer is an erotic romance in the brand new Dalton Brothers series, and after this book, I am so here for it!

She was soon going to be a client, and that was something I wouldn’t mess with. “Not going to happen, man.” I shook my head to emphasize the point. “Trust me.” He tapped his fist on the wood. “What do you want to put on it?” “Your plane.” He laughed again. “It’s a bet I’m not going to lose, so why don’t you tell me what I’ll get if I win?” “Name your prize—one of my cars, a trip to fucking Fiji, a hundred grand, whatever you want.” He stretched his hand in my direction. “You’ve got yourself a deal.”

Now generally, I don’t love when a book starts with an immediate bang, if you catch my drift. I like the burn. I want the anticipation of it. I want the feels. But damn it all if I minded for even a second that we get right to the good stuff here. The very second that Dominick appears on the pages with his dominant, alpha male energy that’s just oozing sexual appeal, I couldn’t care less what happens. And when the man lays his eyes on a beautiful stranger at a bar, he’s not shy going after her. But what both anticipate to be a one night stand turns out to be much more.

Kendall moved from home to work for her reality star sister, or as I like to call her, the wicked witch of blah. Because my GOD did I hate that woman. But I digress. Kendall never wanted the stardom like her sister does, but her beauty and charisma is exactly what Dominick is looking for in a new reality star. He can shut off their chemistry for a second and look at it as business only. HA!

This was one of those books that I didn’t really care about the plot but more about the romance, if that makes sense. The Hollywood thing in books isn’t my cuppa, but I didn’t mind it here. I did wish I got to see a bit more of Kendall’s backbone when it came to her selfish sister, but it didn’t fully come until the very end. I also loved seeing the ultimate playboy and self professed womanizer fall for the girl and become her biggest defender.

All in all it was a fun, fluffy but steamy romance that I thoroughly enjoyed.


USA Today best-selling author Marni Mann knew she was going to be a writer since middle school. While other girls her age were daydreaming about teenage pop stars, Marni was fantasizing about penning her first novel. She crafts unique stories that weave together her love of darkness, mystery, passion, and human emotions. A New Englander at heart, she now lives in Sarasota, Florida, with her husband and their yellow Lab. When she’s not nose deep in her laptop, working on her next novel, she’s scouring for chocolate, sipping wine, traveling, or devouring fabulous books.

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