Coffee and a Review with Love Unfeigned by Nadine Keels

odd_coffee_art_2Happy Monday!  I hope everyone is ready for the new week to begin.  I’m going to start your week off with a great short read.  Love Unfeigned is a great little love story with a big twist.  It’s definitely a refreshing break between books.  For my full review keep reading after the book blurb.  I hope everyone has a great week ahead.

17449184Book Blurb:

From the first time Lorraine, a plucky and competitive girl, contends on the playground against Isaiah, an impish boy whose smile gleams in more ways than one, the two of them can’t help knowing each other. Neither can they avoid passions and misfortunes lining the path to young adulthood, and when the breakup of Isaiah’s family disrupts the haven he’s shared with Lorraine, their natural relationship is eventually threatened by jealousy, grave trauma, and abandonment. As one year follows another, and another, what might it take to reunite these two companions in love: love undeniably real and unbounded by time?

Review:

Ever since Lorraine was in Elementary school Isaiah has been a part of her life.  All the way through til high school when things became very different.  Lorraine tries to put him out of her mind but he was always there even when she was with other men.  It isn’t until they reconnect a few years after high school that their true feelings come out and her secret finally comes out.  Isaiah will soon realize how he affects Lorraine and how he is helping her with her terrible secret.  Can Lorraine and Isaiah finally come together or will what Lorraine is hiding destroy all hope?

I really enjoyed this short read. I read this in one sitting.  The love story between Lorraine and Isaiah was very fun and cute.  You just wanted them to end up together from the beginning.  The characters develop so well in the short novel.  I really loved the back story and how their relationship developed through the years.  Though this novel is short read it is a very fulfilling on.  If you’re looking for a good short read after a long book this is definitely a refreshing novel that you won’t want to put down til the end.  Overall, it is a great novel that you will really enjoy.

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Fresh Face Friday: Just Destiny by Theresa Rizzo

Happy Friday!  Today I get to spotlight a wonderful author and book.  Just Destiny is the second book of Theresa Rizzo’s that I have read.  After reading this I have come to expect poignant and heartfelt books.  This book did not disappoint and is definitely one that draws you in and won’t let go until the very end.  For my full review keep reading after the book blurb.  I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and get to do something great.

935293Book Blurb:

What would you do if your whole world fell apart?
Jenny Harrison made some poor choices in the past, but marrying Gabe was the best thing she’d ever done. They had the perfect marriage, until a tragic accident leaves Gabe brain dead and her world in ruins.
Devastated by grief, she decides to preserve the best of their love by conceiving his child, but Gabe’s family is adamantly opposed, even willing to chance exposing long-held family secrets to stop her. Caught in a web of twisted motives and contentious legal issues, Jenny turns to best friend and attorney, Steve Grant. Steve wants to help Jenny, but he has reservations and secrets of his own.
When something so private and simple turns public and complicated, will Jenny relent? What is Steve willing to sacrifice to help Jenny?

Review:

Jenny’s life was perfect.  That was until the accident that turned her world upside down making it not so perfect anymore.  Throughout her life she has made mistakes and errors in judgment but when she married Gabe it was the best decision she ever made.  They made each other happy despite the age difference and seemed to have the prospect of a happily ever after with their own child.  That is when the unthinkable happens and Jenny loses Gabe in an accident and in turn miscarried the baby.  When the tough decision to let Gabe go comes and she decides to donate his organs and harvest his sperm she is met with contention from his uncle.  Jenny leans on her best friend, Steve Grant to help her get through these losses and the impending trial.  It soon becomes very clear that Steve has strong feelings for Jenny and can’t do what she asks.  In the end will Jenny get her happy ending out of the tragedy or will her world crumble and everything she has lost be for not?

This is a wonderful novel.  Theresa Rizzo has done it again with a fantastic story and wonderful characters.  Though many may have differing opinions about what Jenny wants to do the story allows for you to see both sides and root for who you believe to be right.  The characters of Jenny and Steve are great.  They are well-written and develop nicely through the story.  Their relationship, though only a friendship at first, develops very naturally through Jenny’s trials.  I think one of the best parts of this story is how it illustrates the levels of grief along with the emotional toll a trial can take on a person.  Theresa Rizzo really does a phenomenal job in capturing the emotions of these characters and the story.  In the end, you realize the real point of everything and you along with the characters have an “ah ha” moment.  If you like books that can give you an emotional ride and will leave you emotionally spent, you have to pick up Just Destiny.  You will not be disappointed when Theresa Rizzo is writing the book.

7041259Author Bio:

Theresa Rizzo is an award-winning author who writes emotional stories that explore the complexity of relationships and families through real-life trials. Born and raised in Grosse Pointe, Michigan, she now lives outside of Boulder, Colorado with her husband of thirty years. 

 

Coffee and a Review with Prudence and the Professor by Sibelle Stone

images2.1Happy Monday!  This week I’m starting you off with a wonderful steampunk romance set in the Civil War era.  The love story between Prudence and her Professor is both exciting and entertaining.  The story sucked me in and wouldn’t let go until the last page.  For my full review just keep reading after the book blurb.  I hope you all have a great week ahead.

20757234Book Blurb:

Civil War widow Prudence Worthington has vowed to never again be at the mercy of a man. She’s determined to make her own way in the world after being one of the first women to graduate from a business school in upstate New York. In search of adventure and independence she takes a position as a personal secretary to an eccentric inventor and heads to Montana Territory.
Professor Gerritt Rhinehart must develop his newest invention to meet a critical deadline. Someone is willing to do almost anything to stop him, and the distraction of a raven haired beauty he hired as his secretary makes it impossible to concentrate. But he must stay focused, especially when his invention could change the course of the War-Between-the-States.
Discover a rollicking steampunk romance from an award-winning author. The first book in the Brides of Jubilee series.

Review:

Prudence is an independent minded woman in a time when that is not appreciated.  She is a war widow and a business school graduate.  She finds herself finally being appreciated for her intellect instead of being denigrated for her sex.  She moves out to Montana to work as a secretary for Professor Gerritt Rhinehart.  He is an inventor who is currently working for the Union government to develop an invention that will possibly stop the war.  When Gerritt hired Prudence he didn’t realize he was getting more than he bargained for.  Prudence wanted adventure and to focus on her career.  When they meet they immediately know that their plans will become very difficult to keep.  Fighting off the attraction between the two of them and doing there jobs will be a task that may be beyond their capabilities.

I really liked this story.  It was a cute love story with the steampunk feel.  It was quite fun seeing the two of them fight proprieties and their feelings.  Gerritt’s love of his work only becomes a shadow of its former intensity once he and Prudence finally decide to express their feelings and be honest with one another.  Montana during the Civil War was a territory almost untouched by modernity.  This background along with the love story sets up a great novel.  This romance novel was a quick entertaining read that you won’t want to put down.  This is the first in her Brides of Jubilee series and I personally can’t wait for the next novel.

A Very Late Fresh Face Friday: Ethereal Underground by Brooke Kennedy and Briana Gaitan

I apologize for so very late Fresh Face Friday.  I was slammed with weekend with my son’s birthday and all the festivities with the holiday.  But, better late than never I am presenting to you Brooke Kennedy and Briana Gaitan’s Ethereal Underground.  This is a very interesting paranormal/sci-fi romance.  It’s an intriguing story and I am interested in reading the continuation of the series.  For my full review keep reading after the book blurb.  I hope you all have had a great weekend and a very Hoppy Easter.  😉

18749046Book Blurb:

Can the person who was sent to steal your soul, be the same person who steals your heart?
The keepers are protectors of the planet Cabalin, charged with defeating identified enemies and preventing other planets from waging war on their dying planet. They are expected to keep their emotions in check and do as they are told no matter what the consequences. One of their rising warriors, however, has been placed on sabbatical for reasons unknown to those around him. Rebellious, impulsive, and moody, Ash has continued to break the rules by frequenting the Ethereal Underground, the seedy hang out in the eighth layer of the planet. Ash has always believed in the keeper’s cause, but his taste for adventure always seems to get him in trouble.
The seraphs live on a different plane of existence. They watch over the mortals and reap their souls when it is time for them to depart to the afterlife, but do not associate with the beings otherwise. They are duty bound and loyal creatures, each of them having an affinity for a force of nature that they can use when needed. When a seraph breaks the rules, they are banished and stripped of their affinity. These evil creatures are named the fallen. Annalise, a reaper seraph blessed with an affinity for water, has always followed the rules until she is called to reap Ash’s soul and take it to the afterlife. This time, however, she finds it difficult to take the soul.
Their worlds were never supposed to meet. Now everyone’s future is in jeopardy, their lives turned upside down as they find themselves on the run from the very people they thought they could count on. The two of them must search for a way to clear their names and hunt down the evil forces of the fallen, without losing themselves or those they hold dearest. This epic fantasy will take you on an exhilarating quest for love, truth, and revenge.

Review:

Ash is a keeper.  He is a guardian for all of the layers of Cabalin.  Annalise is a reaper seraph.  She is responsible for taking souls to the afterlife.  Ash has been leading a double life in the eighth layer.  None knows him as a keeper but most know him as a successful fighter.  Annalise has followed the rules all of her existence until the day she is sent to reap Ash’s soul.  Something inside her decides to heal him instead of reap his soul.  This affects the both of them.  They soon realize that they are now bonded.  Ash can use her powers with water and Annalise can feel his human emotions.  Along with this body they are also both cast out from their worlds.  Ash, feeling responsible for Annalise’s position, decides he will do anything to make it right even hunting down fallen seraph’s that have a devious and evil plan.  The one thing they didn’t count on was the feelings for each other that would come with the bond.  Can two different beings work together for a common goal of truth and revenge to return to their lives or will their adventure and bond change them irrevocably?

I enjoyed this story after it got started.  It was a bit of a slow start, but once the story really picked up it was quite an addicting read.  In fact when it ended I wasn’t ready for the story to end.  I really enjoyed the creative story.  It was inventive and unique.  I think for me personally it started slow because so much of the world had to be built before the story could really get started.  But, once it took off and the story with Ash and Annalise really took off it was quite engrossing.  I think what also helped were the supporting characters.  Finley, Arie and Leon was wonderful additions.  Leon was especially important with the love triangle aspect.  Finley and Arie helped with the comedic relief. Not only were the characters fundamental in the story but the structure of the world helped to propel the story and created a depth that really extended the adventure.  The layers with representation of a class system was wonderfully portrayed something not just socio-economic but actual physical layers of the world.  This really added a great dimension to the story.  Overall, I think this was a very interesting book and an intriguing start to a wonderful series.  I look forward to reading the next novel in this series.

Coffee and a Review with He Belongs With Me by Sarah Darlington

imagesHappy Monday!  I hope you all had a fantastic weekend.  I am going to start your week off with an enjoyable read that is both entertaining and written well.  He Belongs with Me by Sarah Darlington is a nice addition to the New Adult genre.  I look forward to reading more from her.  For my full review be sure to keep reading after the book blurb.  Have a great week everyone and I will see you guys again on Friday!

21486045Book Blurb:

Two girls. One Leo. 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. *NEW ADULT ROMANCE. Recommended for 17+ due to sexual situations and adult language.*

Review:

Maggie and Clara are as different as two identical twins can be.  Maggie is the sweet and dependable one.  While Clara is the rebellious opposite of Maggie.  This has always been the way.  Even Leo, Maggie’s best friend, is Clara’s mortal enemy.   That is until one night when Clara runs him over with a golf cart.  Soon, Clara and Leo go to NYC together and figure out that all along they have had feelings for each other.  This puts Maggie in a position that she isn’t used to.  But, Maggie has her own problems.  The one boy she has always loved comes back into her life and she begins to wonder if she still has feelings for him or if she has really loved Leo all along.  All of this has to be sorted out before someone makes a mistake that will break someone forever.

This was an enjoyable story.  I liked the characters of Leo and Clara.  Maggie was a bit dull to read but Dean made things with her more interesting.  Though this was a good story I felt like it was too predictable.  Also, I really didn’t see much of a love triangle at all.  I feel like the book description is a bit misleading and in the end after reading the book could turn a reader off.  I did, however, love how it ended.  I was happy all the questions got answers and it wrapped up very nicely.  Overall, I think this was a good debut novel for Sarah Darlington.  I think she has some great potential and would love to read another book by her.  If you don’t pick this book up for the story at lease pick it up for the hot sexy men, Leo and Dean.  🙂

Fresh Face Friday: Together Tea with Marjan Kamali

Happy Friday!  I hope all of you have had a great week and are looking forward to a great weekend.  Today I am bringing to you a great book by Marjan Kamali, Together Tea.  This is a unique perspective of Iran and Iranian culture through the story of a mother and daughter.  This story really sucked me in and kept me enthralled.  You will enjoy the sights and sounds of Iran and New York.  For my full review keep reading after the book blurb.  I hope you all have a great weekend and enjoy the weather with a good book outside.  🙂

16240786Book Blurb:

In Together Tea, Marjan Kamali’s delightful and heartwarming debut novel, Darya has discovered the perfect gift for her daughter’s twenty-fifth birthday: an ideal husband. Mina, however, is fed up with her mother’s years of endless matchmaking and the spreadsheets grading available Iranian-American bachelors. Having spent her childhood in Tehran and the rest of her life in New York City, Mina has experienced cultural clashes firsthand, but she’s learning that the greatest clashes sometimes happen at home.

After a last ill-fated attempt at matchmaking, mother and daughter embark on a return journey to Iran. Immersed once again in Persian culture, the two women gradually begin to understand each other. But when Mina falls for a young man who never appeared on her mother’s matchmaking radar, will Mina and Darya’s new-found appreciation for each other survive?

Together Tea is a moving and joyous debut novel about family, love, and finding the place you truly belong.

Review:

Mina is tired of her mother’s matchmaking. All she really wants to do is  paint but she is committed to getting her MBA because her parents want her to.  Darya, Mina’s mother,  loves mathematics and statistics. She  knows she can find the perfect husband for her daughter through her spreadsheets, but when the most recent match doesn’t work Darya is at her wit’s end.  So, when Mina announces she wants to return to Iran to visit her family her mother heartily agrees to go with her.  On their trip over to Iran they remember how life was before moving to America and how things changed through historical events.  Once in Iran the familiarity that rushes back to both of them fills them with both joy and sorrow.  It is during one of these times that Mina finds a man who her mother wasn’t thrusting upon her.  Through her experiences in Iran and remembering both the good and bad in both their home’s, Mina and Darya appreciate what they have and what they have lost.

This was a great novel.  It really brought a different perspective to a culture that is not always highlighted well in American society.  I think using the mother/daughter dynamic really illustrated the cultural differences and the similarities that all mothers and daughters share.  The timeline in this was a wonderful tool to accentuate the before and afters of significant political strife.  The use of the family dynamic and how they are affected by the Islamic Revolution, the return of the Ayatollah and Iran/Iraq war.  In addition to the great historical aspect and the wonderful cultural illustrations, the characters were very vibrant and brilliant.  You could really relate to their strife and their reasoning in the decisions that they made.  Marjan Kamali has done a phenomenal job bringing the beauty and complexities of the Iranian culture and people.  If you want to read a book that will enlighten you and entertain you pick up, Together Tea.

Author Bio:

6547914Marjan Kamali was born in Turkey to Iranian parents. She holds an MFA in creative writing from New York University and an MBA from Columbia University. Her work has been a top finalist in Glimmer Train’s Fiction Open and the Asian American Short Story Contest.

Together Tea is her first novel and has received rave reviews from Publishers Weekly, Kirkus Reviews, and Booklist. It will be translated into several languages including German, Italian, Norwegian, Czech, and Slovak.

Marjan lives in the Boston area with her husband and their two children.

Coffee and a Review with Silver Rain by Jan Ruth

untitled10Happy Monday!  Today I am gonna start your day and your week with a sweet romance.  It’s a wonderful story that shows that you can fall in love at any age.  Jan Ruth tells a wonderful tale that will keep you turning the page.  Be sure to read my full review after the book blurb.  I hope you all have a wonderful week.

18779229Book Blurb:

Al is the black sheep of his family, Kate, the good shepherd of hers. Can black and white become silver, or just a dark and dangerous grey?

Alastair Black has revealed a secret to his wife in a last ditch attempt to save his marriage. A return to his childhood family home at Chathill Farm is his only respite, although he is far from welcomed back by brother George.
Kate, recently widowed and increasingly put upon by daughter, sister and mother, feels her life is over at fifty. Until she meets Alastair. He’s everything she isn’t, but he’s a troubled soul, a sad clown of a man with a shady past. When his famous mother leaves an unexpected inheritance, Kate is caught up in the unravelling of his life as Al comes to terms with who he really is.
Is Alastair Black her true soulmate, or should Sleeping Beauty lie?

This publication is written in British English. Spellings and grammatical conventions are conversant with the UK.

Review:

Al has lost everything.  He just lost his house, his marriage has fallen apart and now he must go to the one place he hasn’t been in 15 yrs.  Kate lost her husband over a year ago.  Though she lost him she isn’t as upset as everyone assumes.  She decides to vacation at her sister in laws house to escape all the reminders of her dead husband.  That is where Al and Kate meet.  Though Al has brought his haughty girlfriend there is an attraction between Kate and Al that can’t be denied.  Though they have a strong connection the secrets they both hold could destroy any possible relationship.  Can Al and Kate find the love they both want and never had or will the skeletons come out and kill any prospect of love.

This was a sweet love story with a lot of twists.  I really enjoyed the characters of Al and Kate.  It was definitely a story where you could see the influence each character had on the other.  The twists added a wonderful element with the development of their love story.  Though the story was good, it was a bit difficult at times with the British English.  I have read books with the use of British English before but there were a lot of things that I couldn’t interpret.  Overall, it was a great book even with the few confusing British English/American English terms.  The story was strong and the love natural.  You will definitely love Al and Kate.

 

Review: Flawed Perfection by Cassandra Giovanni

Happy Friday, Everyone!  I hope you all have had a great week and looking forward to a nice weekend.  Today, I am reviewing Cassandra Giovanni’s newest book Flawed Perfection.  I honestly was left speechless with this book.  I was drawn in and taken for a ride only to be left fabulously heartbroken in the end.  It was a fabulous book that I can’t wait to read the next in her series.  For my full review be sure to keep reading after the book blurb.  Oh, and don’t forget only a couple more days left in my big blogiversary giveaway!

18302556Book Blurb:

Bobby Beckerson was the American All-Star hockey player–he was the spitting image of perfection to his family. Goofy, sweet and undeniably gorgeous, he had everything but the one girl he wanted: River Ahlers.

River Ahlers is successful in everything but love. She’s been in love with Adam Beckerson since they were kids. Worst of all she’s stuck right in the middle of the brothers dueling over everything and anything, and she doesn’t even know she’s the ultimate prize.

Adam Beckerson was a boy with a guitar, a smile that sunk girls’ hearts and a stone wall around his own. He was anything but perfect, and no matter how hard he tried he was nothing compared to Bobby. Sweet, damaged, with boyish good-looks, nobody thought Adam loved anyone but himself.

Bobby loved River, River loved Adam and Adam only loved himself–or so everyone thought. Then one night everything changes, and as it threatens to destroy everyone involved a tragedy strikes that will break them all…

Review:

River has loved Adam for as long as she can remember and for just as long Bobby has loved River.  The problem is that River is best friends with both Adam and Bobby, who happen to be brothers.  Now that they are all grown up and live across from each other things are becoming more difficult.  Bobby tries his best to slyly seduce River, which never works and River pines over Adam.  Adam is an enigma even as an adult and ties River up in knots not knowing what feelings are real or just friends.  After Adam helps River with a work emergency their feelings for one another are finally known.  They decide to keep their relationship a secret until Bobby finds out in an unceremonious way and is enraged.  It seems that the relationship of all three will never mend until everything is put aside.  When they decide to finally fix things tragedy strikes and crushes the fragile relationships.  Can any relationship bounce back from tragedy or will it all crumble?

This book left me wrecked after I read it.  I was emotionally drained and loved every minute of it.  The love triangle of River, Adam and Bobby was fantastic.  From the beginning you know who River will choose.  But, love is complex and this story does a phenomenal job of showing how even those who are supposed to love you no matter what can hurt you beyond repair.  This story is so strong and poignant because of not just the love triangle but of the side relationships the characters have.  You feel just as heartbroken and sad as they do when their parents hurt them or when Bobby hurts Tara.  You also feel the love that River’s Dad shows her and the love that both of the Beckerson boys show her.  I think the underlying damage that is in a past the reader isn’t privy to is shown through the characters and it takes a very talented writer to be able to illustrate that kind of pain that is not witnessed.  Overall, this is a book I will be feeling for a while.  I can’t wait for the next one and will be waiting anxiously.  Cassandra Giovanni definitely has a new fan in me.  If you are like me and love books that will tear your heart out and leave you feeling an emotional wreck only to want to pick the book back up and read it again than Flawed Perfection is right up your alley.

Review: Bagpipes and Bullshot by Janice Horton

Happy April Fool’s day!  Today is a day full of checking your chairs and the hands that you shake.  Though it is a day for pranks I don’t have one for you today.  My Day 9 review is another of Janice Horton’s works, Bagpipes and Bullshot.  This is one of her full length novels.  This was a fun read that I couldn’t put down.  When I read this book I really wished I was the cowgirl finding her Scottish Laird.  For more of my rave review be sure to keep reading after the book blurb.  Happy April Fool’s Day! 🙂

18688402Book Blurb:

A contemporary tale told with timeless Scottish romanticism and a knowing sense of humour. Bagpipes and Bullshot twists an everyday love story with a whole cast of village eccentrics into an entertaining play on rural life.

Review:

Oley first meets Innes when Innes plays the bagpipes at her mother’s wedding.  After a few dates they have grown to really care for each other.  But, Innes must go back to Scotland.  Not ready to let Oley go he asks her to be his cattle manager and come to Scotland with him.  Oley’s first instinct is to say no but after some thought about what she needs and wants she agrees.  When Oley arrives to Scotland she wasn’t expecting what she saw.  Innes is a Laird and lives in a large home.  As Oley spends more time with Innes and his Scottish estate she begins to fall hard for both.  But, there are things conspiring against them to thwart their happiness.  It gets so rough that Oley almost loses everything.  Can Innes and Oley fight against those who wish them harm or will their love crumble like the buildings on Innes’ estate?

I loved this book.  Its both entertaining and addicting.  Innes and Oley’s love story is so sweet and natural.  What woman wouldn’t want a Scottish Laird to come sweep them off their feet.  It was fun to see the opposites attract work in their favor.  With Oley and her work and Innes and his they should want completely different people but in reality they are perfect for one another.  The story takes you from Texas to Scotland and that in itself is a fantastic aspect to the story.  I also love the element of intrigue that is within the story.  The factors fighting Innes and Oley being together add a wonderful roller coaster ride.  Overall, this was a fantastic read that I fell in love with.  Anyone who likes a good love story with a few hurdles will adore this story.

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Favorite Book Series

Eternal Guardians by Elisabeth Naughton Dark-Hunter by Sherrilyn Kenyon Black Dagger Brotherhood by J.R. Ward Lords of the Underworld by Gena Showalter Lords of Deliverance by Larissa Ione discovery of witches love at stake
The Fallen Angels by J.R. Ward Fairy Tales by Eloisa James Night Huntress by Jeaniene Frost Fever by Karen Marie Moning Guild Hunter by Nalini Singh Kate Daniels by Ilona Andrews
Mercedes Thompson by Patricia Briggs Midnight Breed by Lara Adrian The Hollows by Kim Harrison Witch by Carolyn MacCullough westfield wolves
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