NEW RELEASES, SALES, & RECOMMENDATIONS!!

NEW RELEASES, SALES, & RECOMMENDATIONS!!

There’s a huge selection of new books this week with tons of stories I can’t wait to start reading!! My newest top recommendation is Black Lies (Read My Review). HOLY WOW it was brilliant!! 5 STARS!

Also, one of my favorite 5-STAR books, Maybe Someday, is on sale for a limited time only and so is the entire Unfinished Heroes series by Kristen Ashley!! And there are so many that I’m crazy excited to get to read, like This Is Falling, Rival, Assumption, Ten Below Zero, Sweet Fall, Be My Hero, and sooooo many more! Check down the list to see them all. Happy reading, everyone!!! :D

Oh, I also recently posted my Top 10 Books That Have Stayed With Me so be sure to check them out too!

Let me know if there are any other books you’re loving right now too!!

 

Black Lies by Alessandra TorreNew Top Recommendation!! 5 STARS!!

WOW WOW WOW!!! I finished reading this last night and it was honestly one of the most BRILLIANT books I’ve ever read!! Please, please, please just TRUST ME and READ. THIS. BOOK.!!!! It’s one of the most complete LOVE STORIES I’ve ever read. The twist is just WOAH. One of my favorites of the year. 5 STARS!!!

“Go ahead. Judge me. You have no idea what my love entails. If you think you’ve heard this story before, trust me – you haven’t.” (Read My Review)

 

Maybe Someday by Colleen HooverFirst time on sale!!! 5 STARS!!

Woohooo!!!! Colleen Hoover fans, this is the first time this book has gone on sale so if you don’t have a copy yet, be sure to grab one now!! This is a standalone romance (unrelated to any of her other books) and it’s only $2.99 for a limited time (reg. $7.59). This is a 5 STAR MUST-READ!!! Click here to buy your sale copy.

“If there are two people in this world capable of finding a way to love each other, it’s us.”

 

Don’t Let Go by Sharla LovelaceTop recommendation!! 5 STARS!!

This is one of my TOP FAVORITE books read this year!!! It’s just stunning and exactly the kind of book I’m always looking for: A gorgeous love story with intensely strong emotions. It made me laugh. It made me cry. And it has one of the most wonderful endings EVER!!!!!! Also, if you’re a fan of The Sweet Gum Tree, you will LOVE this. The hero + heroine were childhood friends and later young lovers torn apart by a tragedy. Then, he suddenly comes home 26 years (!!!) later and the secrets behind why they were torn apart come out… Read my review

 

Losing Me, Finding You by Natalie Ward New top recommendation!!

I read this book in one sitting recently and absolutely LOVED it!! Holy hell!!! The intensity of this love story was off the charts!!!! My heart was pounding from start to finish and this book was totally unique. Unlike anything else I’ve ever read. — The heroine wakes up every four years in a different city, with a different life, and no memory of her previous lives. Each time she has to figure out where she is, who she is, and has to find her way back to HIM. The man she loves and the man who loves her unconditionally. This is their story. Read my review.

 

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This Is Falling by Ginger ScottNew Release!!

I’m SO excited to read this!! It’s a standalone romance. ➜ An All-American baseball player, Nate wasn’t supposed to notice a girl like me. But he did. He shouldn’t want to know my name. But he did. And when he learned my secret, he was supposed to run. But he didn’t… He showed me everything I was missing. And then he showed me how to fall.

 
 

Unfinished Heroes series by Kristen Ashley$0.99 each!!

Woohoo!! All the books in the Unfinished Heroes series are on sale in anticipation of the 4th one coming out next month!! These heroes are all A.L.P.H.A. and each of the books can be read as a complete standalone!!!

Sale links: Knight, Creed (my favorite!!), Raid, Deacon (pre-order).
All my reviews.

 

Rival (Fall Away) by Penelope DouglasNew Release!!

Woohoo!! This new standalone in the Fall Away series is now available for purchase and I can’t WAIT to read it!!!! ➜ “Madoc and Fallon. Two estranged teenagers playing games that push the boundaries between love and war.”

Rival may be read as a standalone but it is the third book in the series so it is recommended to read Bully (#1) and Until You (#2) first.

 

Assumption by Aurora Rose ReynoldsNew Release!!

YAY!!! This is finally LIVE!! This standalone romance is also the first book in the Underground Kings series by Aurora Rose Reynolds (known for her protective, Alpha male heroes) and I’m SO excited to read it!!!

The hero and heroine made assumptions about each other but now he needs to prove her wrong in order to protect her…

 

Ten Below Zero by Whitney Barbetti$0.99 New Release!!

Omigosh!!!!!! This blurb gave me SHIVERS!!! I just one-clicked. ➜ The heroine is scarred from an attack she doesn’t remember and keeps her distance from people. A text message sent to the wrong number changes her life… “His name is Everett. He’s pushy, he’s arrogant, he crowds my personal space, and worst of all: he makes me feel… But he’s dying. And he’s spending his final days truly living. He’s forcing me to heal. He completes me. And still, he’s dying.” — (PS: this is NOT a tragic book ;) )

 

Reasonable Doubt 3 by Whitney G.New Release!!

Reasonable Doubt 3 is LIVE!! This is the highly anticipated conclusion to this sexy serial with a dirty-talking lawyer!! ➜ “My rules are simple: One dinner. One night. No repeats. This is only casual sex. Nothing more. Nothing less. At least it was, until “Alyssa”. — This story is now complete and the first 2 volumes are only $0.99 each!!

Reasonable Doubt: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.

 

Sweet Fall by Tillie ColeNew Release!!

This is a standalone romance in the Sweet Home series and it sounds SO good!! I can’t wait to read it!! The story is about a girl who finds herself falling straight into the dangerous, tattooed arms of a guy from the wrong side of the tracks…

These books can be read as standalones but here’s the full list: Sweet Home, Sweet Rome, Sweet Fall

 

Be My Hero by Linda Kage $0.99 New release!!

This is a new standalone in the Forbidden Men series. The hero is a “sexy, tattooed orphan” who is out on parole but all he wants is to find his one true love. He knows this woman by scent, smile, and laugh, but he’s never actually met her. He doesn’t even know her name. He just has to find her…

All the books can be read as standalones and are each very unique stories. Here are all the books: Price of a Kiss, To Professor, With Love, Be My Hero.

 

Until Series by Aurora Rose Reynolds$0.99 Series Bundle!!

$0.99 SERIES BUNDLE!! All 4 books in the Alpha male romance “Until” series have been bundled for only $0.99 total (going up to $7.99)!! This is a very popular series of standalones with very protective heroes and the sale is limited time only!! This includes Until November, Until Trevor, Until Lily, and Until Nico all together.

 
 
 

Vanquish by Pam GodwinNew Release!!

Dark romance fans, this new release, Vanquish, can be read as a standalone, but it’s recommended to read Deliver first. ➜ Her life is like a prison cell. He belongs in a prison cell. But he’s free. And he just captured her.

If you’re a fan of dark romance, Deliver is definitely a book you should add to your list!! It’s dangerous, suspenseful, erotic, and at it’s heart, it’s a love story. Read my review.

 

Fueled (Driven) by K. Bromberg$0.99 Sale & Recommendation!!

For the first time ever, FUELED, the second book of the Driven trilogy, is ON SALE!!! Colton Donavan is a sexy, tortured bad boy race car driver and one of my favorite book boyfriends!!! ➜➜ “I bet he fucks like he drives — a little reckless, pushing all the limits, and in it until the very last lap.”

Complete trilogy: Driven, Fueled, Crashed.

 

Second Chances by HM Ward & Stacey Mosteller New review!!

This is a new “forbidden love story” and I read recently in one sitting!! It had been recommended to me a few times so I tried out the first chapter and then never put it down!! It was about a single mom with a very painful past. She’d tragically lost the one man she loved and wasn’t looking to replace him but ended up finding love again in the most unlikely of places… with her lawn boy, who’d been caring for her and her son from afar for many years. — Read my review.

 

Beast (Part 2) by Ella Frank New release!!

This is a dark and erotic, modern-day twist on the Beauty & The Beast fairy tale!! — HE was once a movie star but a 10-year prison sentence turned him into a Beast. Ruthless, and cunning, he now runs the prison from the inside and his word is law…. and only SHE can save him. Annabelle, the warden’s stepdaughter. — I’m very intrigued!!!

The full story will either have 3 or 4 parts. Reading order: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.

 

No Limits by Lori FosterNew release!!

MMA FIGHTER ALERT!!! The sexy, protective fighter hero in this book is reunited with the one woman he’s never forgotten… Three years ago, he saved her life and now protecting her becomes the only fight that matters. And he’ll break all the rules to do it…

This is a standalone. The next book in the series will be about a different couple (interconnected).

 

Get Me (Keatyn Chronicles) by Jillian Dodd New release!!

This is the 6th and final book in the Keatyn Chronicles series so the series is now complete!! It’s very popular and highly-rated and has been recommended to me by countless readers. Here is the full reading order (there are 6 full length books & 1 novella):

Stalk Me, Kiss Me, Date Me, Love Me, Adore Me, Hate Me, Get Me.

 

The Beautiful Ashes by Jeaniene Frost New release!!

One of my favorite paranormal romance authors, Jeaniene Frost, just released a new book that sounds good!! The heroine has been having visions of other realms when her sister goes missing, she discovers that her hallucinations were real!! And the only person who believes her is the dangerously attractive guy who’s bound by an ancient legacy to betray her…

This is the first book of a new series.

 

Rules of Protection by Alison Bliss$0.99 new release!!

Teehee!! This sounds fun and it’s only $0.99!! The rebellious heroine is put into Witness Protection with Special Agent Jake Ward as her chaperone. But when the location of their safe house is compromised, he takes her with him deep in the Texas backwoods to hide…

This is a standalone.

 

The Write Stuff by Tiffany KingNew release!!

The heroine of this book is a romance writer and also a virgin and the hero the hot bartender (and also her cover model) who is stubbornly refusing to take her virginity!! ;) “Stuck between a rock and a stubborn male, what’s a virgin to do? Seduce him, of course. How hard could it be? If it works for the characters in her stories, why wouldn’t it work for her? After all, what happens under the cover…stays under the cover.”

 

Never Me by Kate Stewart $0.99 Sale!!

I’ve had this book recommended to me many times and it just went on sale!! ➜➜ “I was a thief of men… I was the girl you shielded your boyfriend from when I came near. I was at threat to you… One week, one incredible week was all it took to forever change me. I was NEVER going to be you … until I met HIM.”

 
 
 

The Viper by Kele MoonNew release!!

Bad boy alert!!! Oh, this guy is a VERY bad boy… He’s a fighter, a gang member. He commits crimes and he breaks the rules. Until her. She’s a high school teacher. Smart, strong, and sexy. She is a woman he shouldn’t want. Shouldn’t touch. Shouldn’t love. But he finds himself going back for a taste of the forbidden…

 
 
 

Thin Love by Eden ButlerNew release!!

This new book comes recommended by one of my favorite authors, Penelope Douglas (she said 5 stars!! “Read this in one sitting! Without a doubt, my favorite dynamic of bad boy meets feisty good girl. Superb writing!”) and it sounds really good!! It’s a second chance romance. The hero is an NFL player… and he’s reconnecting with the girl he lost sixteen years ago… ➜ “Love isn’t supposed to be an addiction. It isn’t supposed to leave you bleeding.”

 

Worth Forgiving by Vi KeelandNew release!!

New MMA fighter book!!! This is a standalone romance and the sexy, Alpha hero is described as a “gentleman in public, a commanding, dirty talking rogue in the bedroom.” — Sounds HOT!!!

All the books in this series are standalones about different couples, but if you want to read them in order, here are the links: #1 Worth the Fight, #2 Worth the Chance, #3 Worth Forgiving

 

Forever Kinda Love by Clara Stone Recent release!!

This book comes recommended by another of my fav authors, Nina Lane, and I love the sound of it ➜ The hero and heroine met when they were little kids on the day her mother died. From then on, he sticks by her side, slowly becoming her strength and her entire world. Ten years later, a crippling event threatens to change her life. She tries to hide the truth but he knows her too well and is ready to do whatever it takes. He will stay by her side until she accepts that their love is worth fighting for.

 

Unlit Star by Lindy Zart $0.99 New release!!

This book’s blurb really grabbed me. It sounds really good! The hero is the untouchable popular guy, a star. But all stars eventually fall. The heroine is the outcast, alone in the dark. And when he falls, she catches him…

PS – this is a standalone, but I’ve been warned that its a heart-breaker, so definitely bring lots of tissues when you read it.

 

A Whole New Crowd by TijanNew release!!

This new standalone is about a girl who grew up with a criminal boyfriend and a brother who was in a gang. She’s thrilled to be adopted by a family in a nearby town. New family. New friends. A new world. But secrets start being revealed that tie her new life back to her old one and now she’s fighting for survival…

 
 

The Sweet Gum Tree by Katherine Allred$0.99 sale & recommendation!

This is one of my all-time favorite second chance love stories. It’s one of those hidden gems with an unforgettable story!! It’s a beautifully written, intense, and highly emotional standalone that is both heart wrenching and heart warming. 5 STARS!!! And, it’s ONLY $0.99!!! Read my review.

“You’re the only one I’ve ever wanted, Alix, the only one I’ll ever want. That’s a promise.”

 

What Price Paradise by Katherine Allred$0.99 sale & recommendation!!

Another of my favorite books is on sale!!! This is a standalone written by the author of The Sweet Gum Tree about a girl who finds herself pregnant after a one-night stand with a guy she’s secretly loved for a long time. And, from the moment he discovers she’s pregnant, he tries to do right by her… It’s a really beautiful, heart warming love story. Still a FAVORITE and only $0.99. Read my review.

 

 

Neighbor From Hell series by RL Mathewson$0.99 series sale!

All 4 hilarious Neighbor from Hell series books are on sale!!! These are fun, sexy enemies-to-lovers standalones. I loved them and highly recommend them!!

The first 3 are contemporary, the 4th is historical romance.

#1 Playing For Keeps, #2 Perfection, #3 Checkmate, #4 Truce

 

 

Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon - Series sale!!

This is a epic romance historical fiction story set in 18th century Scotland (the hero, Jamie Fraser, is a Scots warrior) and the TV series starts this month!! All the books (except the newest) are on sale for $3.99-$4.99 each right now (reg. $7.99-$11.99).

#1 Outlander, #2 Dragonfly in Amber, #3 Voyager, #4 Drums of Autumn, #5 The Fiery Cross, #6 A Breath of Snow and Ashes, #7 An Echo in the Bone, #8 Written In My Own Heart’s Blood.

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*** RECENT RECOMMENDATIONS & REVIEWS ***

 

Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover (My review) – Top recommendation!!!!

It’s LIVE!!!!! It’s finally here!! I adored this book!!! Absolute, stunning perfection in every way. It’s an intensely emotional, beautiful, sexy, and heart-wrenching story of love and healing. I almost guarantee that you’ll cry (seriously, my heart broke for Miles!!!) but I promise you it’s worth every tear because the way that it all comes together is just gorgeous!!! Truly a must-read!! 6 STARS!!

“If I were capable of loving someone… it would be you.”

 

Come Back To Me by Mila Gray (My Review) – Recent recommendation!!

I absolutely LOVED this book!!! It was SO much more than I expected. Deeply emotional, sexy, funny, romantic…. and it had that special heart-pounding intensity to it. Definitely a new top fav!!! :) — It’s a forbidden romance about a Marine who’s home on leave and drawn to the one girl he can’t have… his best friend’s sister. But he’s only home for 4 weeks before he’s sent out again for another 9 months so every second they have together is stolen and precious…

 
 

Within These Walls by J.L. BergRecent review!!

I just posted my new review for this book! It was a really sweet love story ➜ The heroine is a survivor. She was born with a damaged heart and has spent most of her life in the hospital. The (tattooed) hero is broken inside, grieving the death of a woman he’d loved. But when he sees her, something changes and he makes it his mission to try and bring happiness into her life…

 
 

Calmly, Carefully, Completely by Tammy Falkner Recent review!!

SQUEEE!!! I just finished this and LOVED it!!! So many feels, so much swoon!! You can read it as a standalone (I did) even though it’s part of the Reed Brothers series. This story is about Pete Reed. He’s covered in tattoos and fresh out of jail but he’s a good man with a good heart, one of the Reed Brothers… And that’s when he meets HER. Again. Two and a half years ago he saved her and she’s been wanting to thank him ever since… Read my review.

 

Among The Echoes by Aly Martinez – Recent release & recommendation!!

Ok, I’m sneaking this one in too because it was recently released and I really loved it too! The story is a complete standalone but there’s a little twist that connects it with the two books posted above (if you’ve already read those books, you’ll totally *squee* when you read the twist ;) ) This book was a sexy, suspenseful romance about a woman in witness protection who catches the eye of a celebrity boxer!! If you like strong, ALPHA, protective heroes, you’re going to LOVE Slate Andrews!! That man made me SWOOOOON!!! Read my review.

 
 

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*** LISTS OF BOOKS ***

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Book Review — Black Lies by Alessandra Torre

Book Review — Black Lies by Alessandra Torre

“If you think you’ve heard this story before, trust me – you haven’t.”

WOW WOW WOW!!!

Black Lies was absolutely brilliant!!!  A captivating, intriguing, and mysterious love story with a twist. It was addictive, enthralling, and incredibly well-written. This is one of those books that makes me want to go up to everyone and be like YOU HAVE TO READ THIS NOW!!!

This is one of the most complete love stories I’ve ever read. It’s a standalone with a fully resolved, and heart-warming ending but with the way the story unfolds, you realize just how deep their love truly is.

I know that some of you (like me) are going to be both intrigued but also scared by the blurb but please just TRUST ME. You all know the kinds of things that usually bother me and I promise you’re safe to read this!

Brant: Became a tech billionaire by his twentieth birthday. Has been in a relationship with me for 3 years. Has proposed 4 times. Been rejected 4 times.

Lee: Cuts grass when he’s not banging housewives. Good with his hands, his mouth, and his cock. Has been pursued relentlessly by me for almost 2 years, whether he knows it or not.

Go ahead. Judge me. You have no idea what my love entails. If you think you’ve heard this story before, trust me – you haven’t.

That last line is especially important. There is so much more to this love story beneath the surface.

What makes this story different than it seems? There is a twist. A secret that changes the whole dynamic of the story and it is brilliantly set up. Looking back, you’ll see each of the hidden clues, all the layers of this secret, and it’s so clever the way the author tells you exactly what is happening without ever saying it!

Whether you guess the twist early, or if you know about it before you start reading, or even find yourself completely surprised by it, won’t make a difference. I think this is one of those stories you can enjoy no matter how you approach it because this journey is just as enthralling as the outcome.

In order to keep things spoiler-free, I’m going to tell you as little as possible about these characters because most anything I say (even names) is technically a spoiler. My only comment will be that I found it so refreshing to have such a smart heroine!! Please, when you’re reading, don’t judge her too quickly or harshly. I can honestly say that she’s one of my favorite heroines. This is going to sound odd if you don’t know the story but I absolutely loved the way she handled the situation she was put in. LOVED it!!!

I love stories where the lines are sometimes blurred but the love is unquestionable. You think you know whats happening but then you take a look from another angle and realize that nothing is as it seems. I know the blurb might sound scary to some of you but I promise you that there is nothing stupid or frustrating about any characters’ actions. Once you see the complete picture, everything will all make sense.

Black Lies is about people willing to go to any lengths to fight for their love and protect their relationship. My heart was racing as I read. My chest got tight the closer things got to coming out into the light. The layers of secrets and love are woven seamlessly together to create a rich, multi-layered story.

Ok… now, I’m going to be honest. I knew the twist before I started reading the book. I’m not a very trusting reader and with a story set up like this, I just had to know that this was actually a story I’d be okay with. So I found out first. But let me tell you, the moment I found out the twist, I literally dropped everything to start reading immediately. Personally, I felt like knowing in advance made me appreciate the story even more because I knew what to look for and I was able to enjoy the journey rather than worry about the outcome.

For me, the point was not being surprised by the twist, for me it was enjoying the story with the twist as a part of my understanding. But every reader is different. I know that many of you love going into books blind and I fully respect that which is why I’ve kept this review spoiler free. But… for those of you who want to know about about cheating, love triangle, and HEA, click this link here for an explanation of the twist.

Honestly guys, the way these characters loved each other was absolutely breathtaking. Unconventional to be sure, but all consuming and truly beautiful. I felt like I was left with the strong message that if you never stop believing in it, love will always find a way and it will last forever.

I can’t recommend this book highly enough!! It’s one of my new top favorites!!

Rating: 5+ STARS!! Standalone Contemporary Adult romance.

BLACK LIES blog

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SIGNED GIVEAWAY — SLAMMED & POINT OF RETREAT by Colleen Hoover

SIGNED GIVEAWAY — SLAMMED & POINT OF RETREAT by Colleen Hoover

Calling all Colleen Hoover fans!!

I have a special signed set of Slammed & Point of Retreat (the two books of hers that I originally fell in love with) to gift to one lucky winner! These books are really special to me because they were the first ones to ever inspire me to write a review and the first ones that made me desperate to get all my friends to read so, in many ways, I owe my blog to them!

If you haven’t yet read these amazing books, I have all the info on them right below here. Then, be sure to scroll down to the bottom of the page to enter at the Rafflecopter for your chance to WIN!!! :D

Falling in love can feel like poetry. Or it can feel like a slam to the heart.

Colleen Hoover’s romantic, emotion-packed debut novel, Slammed, unforgettably captures all the magic and confusion of first love, as two young people forge an unlikely bond before discovering that fate has other plans for them.

Following the unexpected death of her father, eighteen-year-old Layken becomes the rock for both her mother and younger brother. She appears resilient and tenacious, but inside, she’s losing hope. Then she meets her new neighbor Will, a handsome twenty-one-year-old whose mere presence leaves her flustered and whose passion for poetry slams thrills her.

Not long after a heart-stopping first date during which each recognizes something profound and familiar in the other, they are slammed to the core when a shocking discovery brings their new relationship to a sudden halt. Daily interactions become impossibly painful as they struggle to find a balance between the feelings that pull them together and the forces that tear them apart. Only through the poetry they share are they able to speak the truth that is in their hearts and imagine a future where love is cause for celebration, not regret.

Click covers to purchase eBooks. This is a complete series.
Note: eBook covers are different than paperbacks but the content is the same.

 ❤ SIGNED GIVEAWAY 

Open Internationally. Void where prohibited by law. Must be over 18 to enter.
1 winner will a signed set of Slammed & Point of Retreat.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

SLAMMED GIV FINAL

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Book Review — Second Chances by H.M. Ward & Stacey Mosteller

Book Review — Second Chances by H.M. Ward & Stacey Mosteller

“I love you. Don’t ever forget that… Twice as much as yesterday, but not half as much as tomorrow.”

I read this forbidden romance in one sitting the other night!! It was one of those surprise reads where I tried out the first chapter to see if I would like the book and then just never put it down!

The story starts out with heart-break. Genevieve learned that her husband, best friend, and long-time love would never return from his deployment right after finding out that she was pregnant with their first child. Two years later, his loss still weighed heavily on her. He might be physically gone, but she still felt married to him in her heart. She’d had her first love and lost him, and now her only focus was on their little boy.

“Cade is a hard act to follow. He loved me. It’s hard to describe, but I feel like we’re still together, that he’s still mine and I’m still his – even though he’s gone.”

She wasn’t looking for a relationship and wasn’t looking to ever replace him but ended up finding love again in the most unlikely of places… with her lawn boy, Daniel, who’d been caring for her and her son from afar for many years.

Ok, so I’ll admit that I was a little nervous going into this book because of the age gap thing. Not that I’m judging or anything but sometimes it just doesn’t work for me. But in this case, it honestly just felt right. For the record, Daniel was 22 years old (about 10 years younger than her) and this completely amazing guy. Mature, self-sufficient, in full control of his life. He was kind, caring, and he made her feel safe. And I think it helped that he was the one who made the move to enter her life initially. He just quietly took care of them until, as a reader, you just could see so clearly that he belonged with them. It just felt right. And honestly, the way that their relationship developed was really sweet. Naturally, Gen had understandable worries about how their relationship would look to the rest of the world but for them, it really just worked.

There were only 2 things that bothered me a little… First, Gen’s mother and her whole attitude kind of drove me up the wall and but hey, thankfully she didn’t do any lasting damage. And second, I wish there’s been an epilogue. There is a happy ending and it does end in a good place but I do feel like an epilogue would have been a good addition to have.

This is a standalone romance though. Overall, I’d say it’s a little emotional — there were a few times when I got misty-eyed — and quite sweet. Daniel and Gen were an unlikely couple but I really liked them together. And I gotta say, it’s incredibly swoony to watch a guy care for a child that isn’t his and just totally accept that child into his life. I also found it to be quite an easy read. It’s a full-length novel but I was surprised at how quickly the pages flew by. I liked the writing style and just generally really enjoyed the story.

Rating: 4 stars. Standalone romance.

 SECOND CHANCES HM ward

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Top 10 Books That Have Stayed With Me In Some Way

Top 10 Books That Have Stayed With Me In Some Way

I was on tagged Facebook to list my Top 10 Books That Have Stayed With Me In Some Way… and I wasn’t planning to do it at first because I didn’t think I could manage to only list 10. I guess I just felt like there are so many books I love that I’d feel weird, or even guilty, only naming a few of them because lets face it… I know that all of us have a ton of books we love and adore.

But this wasn’t just asking books I loved or even my “favorite books”, it was literally books that somehow just stuck with me over time so please remember, this is different than a normal favorites list. And, as such, there are 2 books/series listed on it that I’ve never even mentioned before on this blog!

(PS: Thanks Abby C. for the tag!)

Also, I’ve only listed books I’d read prior to 2013 or preferably even way before then. I took this quite literally to mean books that have had a chance to stay with me for a while so even though I have many newer books that have had a strong impact on me, I tried to focus on the ones I’ve loved for longer here…

  1. The Bronze Horseman series by Paullina Simons (My Review) — This is (and I think always will be) the story that has had the strongest and deepest impact on me. It’s the most powerful and epic love story I’ve ever read. And, even though there are many favorite books I love with all my heart and soul, I honestly can’t imagine any other story ever having this strong an impact on me which it’s why I’ve put it on a pedestal as my one and only 10-stars series. It’s absolutely incomparable in my eyes.
  2. Fifty Shades of Grey by EL James – I owe this book for getting me seriously into contemporary romance. I read it back when it first came out as an indie and even though I’d read a few before this and loved them, this was the series that made me go ‘OMG. I want more!’ … For me, and I think for many other readers of romance, this book was a reading life changer. It’s one of those series I could re-read endlessly and it would still make my heart race each time. *sigh* I love you, CG.
  3. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer – The vampire who fell in love with the innocent human… This was the first 100% romance series I ever read and I fell in complete and total love with Edward. I think the entire romance world owes this book so much. Not only did I adore this book on it’s own merit but I also love it for the incredible creativity it inspired. So many of my top favorite books today originated as fanfiction of this book and I’m so grateful that this story inspired so many authors to write.
  4. Slammed series by Colleen Hoover (My Review) — Oh gosh, I can still so vividly remember the heart-racing intensity I felt the first time I read this book. That twist!!!! This was still one of the first contemporary romances I’d ever read so I have no idea what to expect and it totally caught me off guard and took over my life!! This was the first book I officially pimped out to anyone who I could get to read it. I even made my parents read it (PS – they loved it!). It was the first book I reviewed — my review was very short but it was something and it inspired me to keep reviewing. But this was the first time I just had to get my feelings about a book out because I loved it that much. And I still do.
  5. Bared To You (Crossfire #1) by Sylvia Day (My Review) — This was the first (and only book) that I’ve ever read straight through and then immediately flipped it right over and started it over again. The kind of relationship that Gideon and Eva have is the kind I most love reading about — characters with a lot of pain in their pasts, who love each other with every fiber of their beings and are doing everything in their power to work together to build a functional relationship. The writing, the characters, the story, everything about this book is just perfection to me.
  6. Thoughtless series by SC Stephens (My Review) — My first rockstar book and still my favorite one!! Kellan Kyle. Holy hell. The things this book did to my heart. The angst was like nothing I’d ever read before. My stomach was in knots. My heart was pounding. I literally stayed up til the wee hours of the morning glued to the pages of this book. Safe to say, it was another life changer for me as a reader.
  7. The Sweet Gum Tree by Katherine Allred (My Review) — This was the book that made me fall in love second chance romances. I remember inhaling this book in one sitting. Such strong emotions — such intense emotions —  and gorgeous writing. Even looking back now, I can still feel for this story even though it’s been quite a while since I read it so yeah… this one has stayed with me.
  8. Captive In The Dark by CJ Roberts (My Review) — This was the first ‘dark romance’ book I read and it is absolutely still my #1. This book pushed the boundaries of my comfort zones to the very very very limits and me questioning my feelings (and my sanity because of those feelings) over and over again. There was nothing black and white about this story. It was all about the grey zone. Such a twisted and yet beautiful love story. Incredible writing, complex and multi-layered characters, and just this emotionally draining, utterly mindfucking, meticulously crafted story. Gah. I loved this series!
  9. Love Me With Lies series by Tarryn Fisher (My Review) — It’s kind of a big deal for me that I’m listing these books here because on the surface they seem like the polar opposite of the kind of story I love. Interestingly, this series ended up as one of my 5-star top favs. It’s easily the most heart-breakingly dysfunctional love story I’ve read but also one of the most beautiful. People aren’t perfect and this story had a raw honesty to it that just reached right into my heart. And the writing is outstanding. Truly brilliant story telling.
  10. Black Jewels Trilogy by Anne Bishop (Book 1, Book 2, Book 3) — Ok, so I’ve never mentioned this series on my blog before because a) I don’t have reviews for them because I read them before I started blogging, and b) the series is kind of a romance and yet, it’s also not. I’d probably classify them as sexy, dark urban fantasy. There are strong relationships and very dark, sexual themes but the whole story is just in it’s own category all together. The world that this author created is entirely, 100% unique and very complex. Gosh, I’ve probably read this trilogy at least 10 times over minimum and it was one of those where the more I read it, the more I loved it. It has Alpha men, strong women, completely original world building but it’s completely unlike anything else I usually blog about. I’ve also never mentioned them because I guess in a weird way, I feel like I need to explain them a little or something (they’re really different)… One day, I’ll re-read and review them but for now, I’ll just add them to this list. (PS: please don’t judge them on their covers. Seriously.)
  11. Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind – This is a fantasy series (like actual fantasy, not fantasy romance) that is another that I’ve read so many times but never before mentioned on my blog since it’s not specifically a romance. There is however a single, strong, unwavering love story throughout all 11 (looooong) books. This series as a whole has a set of very powerful messages which really resonate strongly with me personally and even though this is really not the kind of series that fits in with this blog per se, it’s one of those ones that has always stayed with me.

k, so 11 is close to 10 right?? haha I cheated a little. Sorry! ;) There are so many other honourable mentions … so many more unforgettable stories. But I’m trying to stick to the rules here. So instead, I’ll just refer you to my favorites list for each of the years I’ve been blogging…

 

What about you? What are the Top 10 Books That Have Stayed With You?

I’d love to see your choices so feel free to comment below with them!! :D

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Book Review — Within These Walls by J.L. Berg

Book Review — Within These Walls by J.L. Berg

“We all have scars… Some are just more visible than others.”

What a sweet romance!

I loved the sound of this when I first heard about it and just had to give it a try. I thought it might be a bit of an emotional roller coaster to be honest, but it was more of a low-angst, “make-you-smile” kind of love story about a girl with a damaged heart and a guy who’d lost it all finding love and healing with each other.

Lailah was born with a heart defect and had spent most of her life in the hospital dreaming about a life outside it’s walls. She was a survivor though and lucky to be alive given her condition.

Jude was emotionally broken on the inside. After losing the woman he loved in a tragic accident, he began to work in the hospital she’d died in, the memories and guilt of his loss so strong that he couldn’t let go. He covered himself with tattoos and kept to himself, keeping his true identity a secret from the whole world.

But when he saw Lailah, something inside his heart came back to life. For the first time in three years, he felt something more than just emptiness and he decided to make it his mission to try and bring happiness into her life. And, that is how their story began…

“He was like a Greek god covered in tattoos — and scrubs. Or at least that’s what the nurses were describing him as.

Having spent the majority of my life in a hospital bed, I knew I was a little innocent when it came to the male species, but I understood “hot” when it smacked me in the face – or walked by my door and the little I’d seen was definitely droolworthy.”

I don’t want to tell you guys any more of the story, but I’ll just say that the way they actually meet is just SO incredibly cute!! There is a lot of swoon and sweetness in this story as they become friends first and then more. They were two broken hearts slowly mending each other but the scary thing was that she was living on borrowed time. She needed a transplant to live so throughout it all, their future was ever uncertain.

“Asking someone to step into my world would be like asking him to sign away his own life to take care of mine. I could never do that. Love wasn’t an option for me.”

I want to reassure you that this story won’t devastate you. No ugly tears! There are definitely some more emotional parts but they’re not going to rip your heart out. Oh, and it’s also a standalone so you get the whole story in one sitting! If you’re looking for a sweet love story to get lost in, try this one!

*** NOTE: A portion of sales during the first week of release (this week) will be donated to a children’s heart charity. So if you’re planning to read this at all, be sure to grab your copy now! 

Rating: 4 stars. Standalone New Adult romance.

WITHIN THESE WALLS promo2

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