Review: The Gravity of Us by Brittainy C. Cherry

Reviewed by Joanna

Phew! Finally I made it to the fourth and most lauded book of this series of standalones. This story follows Lucy and Graham. A hippie florist who loves too much, and a famous writer who is so closed up he can’t feel anything at all.

We start with Lucy’s sister being gravely ill, and her douchebag husband walking out on her as he can’t handle watching her die–a theme in this book. Lucy cares for her sister, Mari, and thinks upset thoughts about their elder sister, Lyric, who doesn’t give a damn. [Read more…]

Review: Bad Princess by Julianna Keyes

Reviewed by Joanna

This novella was a surprise release for me, and the first I heard of it was via the author asking for opinions on the cover. I love her choice, what do you think?

The story is a new adult fairy-tale-style romance, between Princess Brinley Cantrella of Estau and Prince Finn, a sober and serious man from the neighboring Kingdom who Brinley has loved since the age of five. And who was, until a few months ago, engaged to be married to her sister. [Read more…]

Review: The Silent Waters by Brittainy C. Cherry

Reviewed by Joanna

Maggie May was a sweet little loudmouth who fell in love at aged ten with her stepbrother’s best friend. Brooks tolerated her chatter and her plans for their wedding, but the day he was late to their rehearsal, deep in the woods, little Maggie witnessed a murder, then was attacked herself by the murderer.

She escaped, but was traumatized and lost the use of her voice, unable to tell anyone what happened. The poor child became mute. For years. [Read more…]

Review: Ruin You by Molly O’Keefe

Reviewed by Joanna

A journalist tries to take revenge on a chef for the sins of her father, but falls for her instead in the middle of a beautiful countryside farm setting. City grit meets tranquil, carefully put together love. Where this story didn’t break me, as I’d expected, it gently settled around me, and I read it in one shot, thriving on the feel of it alone.

Simon Malik was a resident of St Judes—a foster home for young people who found themselves in trouble. In books 0.5, 1 and 2 (which follow a different couple) we see the same scene played out a number of times. The abusive foster parents attack the kids, the husband gets stabbed, and the children get offered a deal by the mysterious Bates who keeps them from jail. Then the debts get called in, which causes the protagonists to tussle with their loves. Like Bates is some sort of HEA fairy godfather. [Read more…]

Review: The Fire Between High and Lo by Brittainy C. Cherry

Reviewed by Joanna

Here’s another offering of big love from the author who charmed me with book one’s tale of love after spouse loss. And though I leapt on this with excitement, this is grittier, and not quite as enjoyable, despite many great ingredients.

Logan and Alyssa were best friends as kids. They did everything together despite coming from different backgrounds and having little in common besides unhappiness. She’s a musician, with wealthy parents, one of whom is a controlling nutcase and the other of whom runs off and abandons her. He’s got a drug addict mother and a violent drug dealer father, and lives hand to mouth with little by way of love. Together they create a pocket of happiness, constantly reassuring one another that they’re okay and they’re surviving, and they make each other’s lives better. [Read more…]

Review: The Air He Breathes by Brittainy C. Cherry

Reviewed by Joanna

Fancy a good dose of angst today? This novel of love after loss comes souped-up to the gills with Big Emotion. I just so happened to be in the mood to see two people mangled so this was right up my street.

Lizzie lost her husband, and father of her five-year-old daughter, in a car crash, and for the past year since his death, she’s been away from home, mourning and generally trying to hold it together for her child. Disillusioned by her mother’s constant stream of boyfriends, she returns to her own house, where she and her husband lived together. On the way, she runs over a dog and takes the creature to the vet, it’s angry and wild-looking owner in tow. [Read more…]

Review: Hideaway by Penelope Douglas

Reviewed by Joanna

This book has been eagerly anticipated by yours truly for two years, since the first in the dark romantic suspense series—Corrupt—knocked my socks off. So first, I should start with my standard Penelope Douglas warning. This is not a sweet and kind lovely story. It’s mean and brutish, with guys being horrible to girls, physical threats, rape threats, slut shaming and worse. The theme of these books is around the psyche and its link to the inner animal, with pursuit and aggression a key part of the route to love (for both the hero and heroine). If you can handle that you’ll happily drown in the oodles of tension and sexy atmosphere.

Now buckle up and I’ll tell you all about Kai and Banks. [Read more…]

Review: Bountiful by Sarina Bowen

Reviewed by Joanna

Back to beautiful Vermont we go, with a new couple ready to apple-pick their way to a gentle HEA. Zara Rossi tends the bar at the Mountain Goat, and in previous books she was the ex-lover of Griff and new bestie of Audrey (book one hero and heroine). While this couple was off finding its way to happiness, rejected Zara was enjoying a hot, hot, hot affair of her own, with a handsome red headed stranger who came to her bar. Hurting from Griff Shipley’s rejection, Zara rebounds right onto this new guy, making a rule that it’s all physical, with no personal details shared. He is tall and gorgeous, only in town for a month and up for her game. Perfect.

And boy do they make the most of it. [Read more…]

Review: Low by Mary Elizabeth

Reviewed by Joanna

I read modern day Bonnie and Clyde on the story blurb and jumped right on this… this romance? Romantic fiction? I’m leaning toward the latter as by the time we meet Low and Poe (Lowen and Poesy) they’re a well-established couple who are doomed to be separated by his going to jail for theft and assault.

Where I enjoyed parts of the story, we don’t actually see the falling in love, and I think that would’ve made a huge difference to how I rated this book. [Read more…]

Review: Legs by Kelly Siskind

Reviewed by Joanna

Rachel is a little bit lost. She careens from job to job with stints at university collecting diplomas, but she’s never quite found her calling. On a birthday night out with her girlfriends, they each make a secret wish, and Rachel decides to sort her life out. She also gets rather drunk, yells Pussy loudly in a gap in the music, and ends up going home with a hot bad boy she pursues to the next bar.

Enter Jimmy. Said bad boy is tattooed, pierced and rides a motorcycle. Oh mama. He is happy with one-night stands as he’s in a hiatus from life and can’t handle anything heavy. Two years ago, he became estranged from his family, got dumped by his fiancé and walked away from his career. Now he works in a bar and wallows in his pit of misery. [Read more…]