Review: Anti-Stepbrother by Tijan

Reviewed by Elise

Tijan is a prolific romance novelist and chances are you have come across one of her books. The title might be cheesy, the content is anything but.

Anti-Stepbrother is the story of Summer. Summer’s mother died and her father remarried the nurse who cared for her. This nurse just so happened to be the mother of Summer’s high school crush. Are you still with me?  So in summary Summer’s crush is now her step brother. The book starts with her going to college where he went the year before. Summer’s dad and new step mother are supportive and caring and Summer appears to have adjusted well to her new family. [Read more…]

Review: Fallen Too Far by Abbi Glines

Reviewed by Elise

This right here is the book that started my romance addiction. I can’t quite describe the emotional turmoil I experienced reading this book (and the sequels) for the first time. Sure I had read books that I had loved and connected with, but that sense of connection was more remote. Most of those books were fantasy books and not as real as romance. I felt every cringe worthy moment. Every humiliation and anxiety and look and hope. I re-read this book often and it never fails to elicit the same sense of emotion as the first time. Look at me, I’m getting all emotional just thinking about it.

Blaire Wynn moves to Rosmary Beach after the death of her mother. She was her mother’s caretaker for the final three years of her life. Blaire was left alone with this responsibility following the departure of her father who couldn’t cope with the death of Blaire’s twin sister. Are you crying yet? [Read more…]

Review: P.S. I Hate You by Winter Renshaw

Reviewed by Elise

Dear Isaiah,

Eight months ago, you were just a soldier about to be deployed and I was just a waitress, sneaking you a free pancake and hoping you wouldn’t notice that my gaze was lingering a little too long.

But you did notice.

We spent one life-changing week together before you left, and we said goodbye on day eight, exchanging addresses at the last minute.

I saved every letter you wrote me, your words quickly becoming my religion.

But you went radio silent on me months ago, and then you had the audacity to walk into my diner yesterday and act like you’d never seen me in your life.

To think … I almost loved you and your beautifully complicated soul.

Almost.

Whatever your reason is—I hope it’s a good one.

Maritza the Waitress

PS – I hate you, and this time … I mean it. [Read more…]

Review: Catwoman – Soulstealer by Sarah J Maas

Reviewed by Elise

Catwoman: Soulstealer is book three in the DC Icons series. Let me begin by saying I picked up this book because of the author, not because of the content. I have never really been a fan of the DC Universe so I wasn’t expecting to love the book as much as I did. Sarah J Maas is a phenomenal story teller and her retelling of Catwoman was no different.

For fans of the author, the premise may sound a little familiar. Young girl forced into the life of an assassin, turns into blonde, beautiful and frightening intelligent woman who makes men in her life frustrated and in desperate need of antacids. Name of Selina. Does this sound at all familiar? The similarities end at this superficial level and the book is all the better for it.

In the past, the author has been accused of lacking diversity in her work. This book is more representative of the real world and in a positive manner. None of the minority characters are killed off nor are their lives or relationships treated as anything less than normal. There is no ‘big reveal’, the relationships are what they are. Just as it should be. [Read more…]

Review: Neighbor Dearest by Penelope Ward

Reviewed by Elise

After getting dumped, the last thing I needed was to move next door to someone who reminded me of my ex-boyfriend, Elec. Damien was a hotter version of my ex. The neighbor I’d dubbed “Angry Artist” also had two massive dogs that kept me up with their barking.

He wanted nothing to do with me. Or so I thought until one night I heard laughter coming through an apparent hole in my bedroom wall. Damien had been listening to all of my phone sessions with my therapist. The sexy artist next door now knew all of my deepest secrets and insecurities.

We got to talking. He set me straight with tips to get over my breakup. He became a good friend, but Damien made it clear that he couldn’t be anything more. Problem was, I was falling hard for him anyway. And as much as he pushed me away, I knew he felt the same…because his heartbeat didn’t lie.

I thought my heart had been broken by Elec, but it was alive and beating harder than ever for Damien. I just hoped he wouldn’t shatter it for good. [Read more…]

DNF Review: Anna’s Dress by London Casey & Jaxson Kidman

Reviewed by Elise

Anna’s Dress popped up on my ‘Similar reads’ on Amazon and the blurb looked promising. I decided to give it a go on Audible with one of my credits. I’m not sure that was one of my best decisions. I found it quite difficult to get through and I often stopped to read other things before coming back to this one. It goes on my ‘did not finish’ list. I only made it through 85%.

The book is described as a second chance romance. A chance for old friends with spark to come together after a long estrangement. The story focuses on Adina and Anna, sisters who live with their Aunt. Anna is uncontrollable. An unrepentant drug addict who relies on her sister Adina to get her out of trouble. Adina continually sacrifices for Anna without Anna ever acknowledging these sacrifices. So far, so good. Emotional. A bit depressing but still a logical story line. [Read more…]

Review: The Dragonian’s Witch by Meg Xuemei X

Reviewed by Elise

I am Freyja, the First Witch. I was born with a cruel curse: anyone I touch with my bare skin will die an agonizing death. That is, until a formidable, drop-dead gorgeous Dragonian prince invades my forest home.

The prince’s lust burns hot and bright for me, yet he resists, wanting his destined witch more. The oracle promises the witch will be his true queen and bring him the greatest kingdom on Earth. Knowing he’s the only man who can touch me, I crave his scorching caress. But I’ve sworn never to reveal that I am the witch. Not until he chooses me above her.

When the mating frenzy drives both of us to the brink of insanity, someone has to give, but it won’t be me’ [Read more…]

Review: The Haunting of Hattie Hastings – Parts 1-3 by Audrey Davis

Reviewed by Elise

Where do I start with this book? It was charming, quaint, very British and I adored it. I’m not sure how to categorize this book. It’s a perfect little mishmash of genres and the description of ‘romantic comedy’ suits it well. This story is divided into 3 novellas. I’m not sure why because as a single book it was coherent and flowed well. Each part is dependent on the other for meaning. and in order to appreciate one part, the reader has to read them all.  So this is a review of the story as a whole than just one part.

The Haunting of Hattie Hastings tells the story of 40-something-year-old Hattie who is dealing with the unexpected death of her husband, Gary. Hattie has the support of her son, her mother and brother, and her best friend, Cat. She also has regular visits from Gary, who couldn’t leave without making sure she would be okay. Gary has his own unique way of ensuring this. The scenes between the two speak of a tender and familiar love. [Read more…]

Review: Handle With Care by Nina Croft

Reviewed by Elise

This book started off with a promising premise and the first chapter had me hooked. Who can pass up a Granny willing to play matchmaker? Especially one that is willing to hunt down a tattooed, hog-riding, bad boy? Not this reader that’s for sure.

This book tells the story of ‘good girl’, Emily Towson. Orphaned at 11 and living with her caring grandmother, Emily likes to play things safe. She is the first grade teacher at the local school and her small town work contract includes a morality code that she is in no danger of breeching. Her grandmother thinks Emily needs to live a little and sets her up with Tanner O’Connor. Tanner is the town bad boy and convicted felon and generally does not care what others think of him. Both are hiding parts of themselves and together they work to overcome their personal obstacles to happiness. [Read more…]

Review: Hollywood Dirt by Alessandra Torre

Reviewed by Elise

This is a Cinderella story with a southern twist. Summer Jenkins is a 29 year old southern girl living in small town Georgia. Cole Masten is an over-pampered, seemingly arrogant actor, used to getting his own way. He meets his match in Summer, an independent and somewhat lonely young woman desperate to leave the town of Quincy. The two are thrown together when Summer is cast as the leading lady in Cole’s most recent film and the sparks fly.

This story was an easy read. It’s the kind of book I would take with me and read at the beach on a hot, sunny day. It was steamy in all the right places. The romantic tension builds in believable increments throughout the course of the novel. It had just enough angst to keep the feels coming but not enough to tear my heart open. There are a number of likable offsiders in the story and this helps diffuse the tension and keep the story moving nicely. It turns out that there is a spin off novella to read more about Brad Deluca and I think I may have to put this on my reading list! [Read more…]