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Friday, April 18, 2014

ARC REVIEW: To Love a Highlander by Sue Ellen Welfonder


Sorley the Hawk believes he is the bastard son of a Highlander. He’s tolerated by the court’s men because he saved the king’s life with a precision arrow shot, hence his nickname. Mirabelle MacLaren’s father, Munro, is a scholar and herbalist, translating books for the king. He also seeks to marry off his daughter. He doesn’t see through Sir John Sinclair’s treachery, but everyone else does. Especially Mirabelle and Sorley. Mirabelle propositions Sorley, ruin her so Sinclair will take his attentions elsewhere. He believes Sinclair killed his friend. He’s happy to oblige, but doesn’t want to let Mirabelle go after one night. She believes in ghosts and sees the infamous Pink Lady. She also figures out Sorley is a member of the Fenris soldiers. She recognizes him when he’s in disguise. A stranger comes into the local tavern looking for Sorley. Grim MacKintosh has an astonishing message, Archie of Duncreag Castle is Sorley’s father. He travels with Grim to meet Archie. Sinclair sees an opportunity to kidnap Mirabelle. Sorley spots them on the road and rushes to save her. She witnesses his brutal strength with his treasured sword, Dragon Breath. I loved the fact it has a name. The Pink Lady continues to follow them because their love is true.

Sorley and Mirabelle met as children and the spark has never gone out. They make a good couple because he has respect for her. He appreciates her intelligence and recognizes her predicament. She has no choice in her father’s decision about a husband. Sorley does rescue her from Sinclair and from the life she’s led. Sorley proves he’s worthy of her love and confidence. Sorley is making the best of what life has handed him. Being born on the wrong side of the sheets doesn’t define him. He makes his own place in life.

Mirabelle is surrounded by books and intelligent people. Because she is a woman, she’s relegated to the back of the line. She tries to be a good daughter, but sees her father’s naiveté about reading people’s characters. She loves her home and Scotland and will be a welcome addition to Archie’s family.

I liked this story because it shows people were intelligent and interested in the natural world. Mirabelle’s father and the King both are looking for medicinal properties for plants. It reminds us fascination with the world around us is as old as time.

This is the first in a series of books. Other men are introduced as fellow outcasts. My guess is they will be the heroes of the next books.

**ARC provided by Publisher**

Purchase: Amazon | Kindle | B&N |



My Favorite Book Couple with Sara Humpreys


Sara is a graduate of Marist College, with a B.A. Degree in English Literature & Theater. Her initial career path after college was as a professional actress. Some of her television credits include, A&E Biography, Guiding Light, Another World, As the World Turns and Rescue Me.

Recently, Sara joined the HEA Blog at USA Today as a weekly contributor and her novel, UNTAMED won two PRISM awards--Dark Paranormal and Best of the Best.

Sara has been a lover of both the paranormal and romance novels for years. Her sci-fi/fantasy/romance obsession began years ago with the TV Series STAR TREK and an enormous crush on Captain Kirk. That sci-fi obsession soon evolved into the love of all types of fantasy/paranormal; vampires, ghosts, werewolves, and of course shape shifters. Sara is married to her college sweetheart, Will. They live in New York with their 4 boys and 2 insanely loud dogs. Life is busy but never dull.

Places to find Sara:
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ARC Review: Lost In Me by Lexi Ryan


I know that I shouldn't have been surprised about this book having a cliffhanger because of the fact that Lost In Me is the first book in the Here and Now series. But seriously I was not expecting that ending! Talk about the mother of all cliffhangers, I need the next book now! This one was so good. I was instantly drawn into this story and I read it in a single sitting. I seriously could not put this one down and I loved every second of reading about how Hannah's life was unfolding and seeing as she got her memories back. I loved this book, and I am so intrigued by all the characters. This one is a must read!

When Hannah wakes up in the hospital, she has no idea what has happened over the last year. She has lost eleven months and everything in her life is completely different than what she remembers. Her longtime crush Max is now her loving fiance, her twin sister is no longer her best friend, and she has also lost about fifty pounds. At first glance her new life seems to be almost perfect. Her hot fiance is devoted to her and they are going to be sharing a life together, she owns her own bakery which was always her dream. But the more she starts to remember her past, she quickly begins to piece together the fact that her life is not what it seems at all. Now she is left trying to figure out her entire relationship with Max, but also why she is drawn to the sexy rocker Nate. Nate seems to know more than he is letting on, and Hannah is determined to get answers before she marries Max. Who is the man for Hannah, and was her fall down the stairs that landed her in the hospital really a fall? Or did someone push her?

I liked Max. He seemed to be so perfect at first, but of course no one ever is. The more we get to know him, the more I could tell something was a bit off with him though. He really did treat Hannah well, and he seemed to be really kind and patient with her. At first he seemed to be interested in her twin, but when Hannah wakes up and finds his ring on her finger Max only has eyes for her. I feel like we really don't know him that well yet, and there is a ton more to his story. I am curious to learn more about him. I have to admit that I was team Nate from the start though. We don't know a ton about him and of course the more we find out, the more questions there are. But there is just something about him that seems to be so genuine and sincere. I feel like he was more honest with Hannah than anyone else really had been even if he didn't tell her much or talk to her a lot. What he did say seemed to ring true every time, and he seemed so torn up and lost about his feelings and their relationship. I felt so bad for him and all that he was going through. I really liked Hannah's character, and I enjoyed the first part of her journey. This entire book is one emotional ride, and I can't imagine what it would be like to be in her shoes. She has no idea who some people are, and she has no idea what she has done for a year. Even the people she would normally turn to don't seem to really know who she is at this point because she has changed so drastically. I really loved that her character was so easy to relate to though. She was a normal girl, that was confused and lost and just looking to find her way. I also really liked that she was so real and that she struggled with some issues that most girls face at one point in their life or another. It was hard to watch her struggle with her weight and be treated horribly by some because of it. I really liked how both Nate and Max seemed to like her for who she was though and they seemed to be supportive of her regardless of her size.

Overall, this story was a really fantastic start. This one has a huge cliffhanger that left me absolutely reeling and had me wondering so many things. This book definitely has more questions than answers, and once you think you start to figure something out it goes in a completely different and unexpected direction. I feel like we are just scratching the surface of these characters and their story. I will say that I really have no clue how things are going to turn out and I have no clue what has happened. I love that this book is so different and unpredictable. This book really is a journey, and I am so glad that I took a chance on this one. I can't wait to find out more and to see what happens next in their story as well as get more pieces of their past. I know that cliffhangers scare some readers off, and this one is a real doozy. I do think that this book is worth reading though, and I know that with two more books coming we are a long way from the end. I am excited to see what Lexi Ryan has in store for Hannah, Nate and Max. I highly recommend this book, and I think that no matter what team you find yourself on you will really like both Nate and Max. Now all we have to do is wait until June for the release of Fall to You to see where Lexi Ryan takes us next.

**ARC provided by AToMR Tours**

Purchase: | Amazon | Kindle | B&N | The Book Depository |



Thursday, April 17, 2014

ARC Review: Perfectly Broken by Prescott Lane


I have never read anything by Prescott Lane before, so I went into Perfectly Broken not knowing exactly what to expect. The blurb sounded really interesting though so I figured this was one to take a chance on. I ended up liking the story and the characters, and found it interesting enough to keep me turning the pages. There were a few things that I had a couple of criticisms about, but not enough to really detract from my enjoyment of this book.

Peyton owns a pie shop that she named after her grandma in New Orleans. She wears baggy clothes and doesn't date or really think about guys. She spends time with her friend Quinn, talks on the phone with her friend Griffin who is also Quinn's brother, and she goes to therapy. Peyton believes that she is broken after a horrible event that happened in her past. One day when Quinn and her boyfriend Bret come into her pie shop, Bret's best friend Reed comes in as well. Reed and Peyton are instantly drawn to each other. But Reed is a player that is not looking for more than his next hook-up, and Peyton isn't about to be another notch for him. Reed begins to pursue Peyton, and after several attempts to get her to see him Peyton finally agrees to dinner. Reed and Peyton begin seeing each other, and Reed is determined to show her that she is special and is anything but a hook-up like the girls of his past. But not only does Peyton have a troubled past, Reed does also. With so much yet between them, can they possibly have any chance of a future together? What happens when the truth comes out? Can they find a way to trust each other and take the risk?

I liked Reed. He was really great despite his flaws. I loved that he was who he was and didn't make excuses for being a man-whore. He openly admitted it and wasn't afraid to tell Peyton the truth. I also love how quickly and easily he gave that up for her. He was sweet and thoughtful, and I loved that he got her flowers to make her see that she was different and that he was paying attention to her. I also really loved that he would leave her petals behind even if she returned the flowers so that he was still letting her know he was thinking of her. I thought that he had a few issues though, and some of that was due to his past and his family. I could tell that it really bothered him being judged based on his family rather than himself. Peyton was a survivor. She might have thought that she was broken, but she really had a silent strength to her. She was a fighter and I loved that she didn't give up easily. She made Reed work for it and I loved that she made him prove himself. Reed and Peyton were really great together, and I thought that they were exactly what the other needed. They not only fit together, but they had really great chemistry and you could feel their attraction. But it was so much deeper than that, and I loved that they seemed to really understand the other.

I did have a bit of a tough time getting used to the writing style with this book though. Perfectly Broken was written with multiple POVs. It was hard to get used to not only Reed and Peyton's POVs, but also those of some of the secondary characters. The change between POVs is what really confused me though as there was often little or no warning when it would switch from one character to another. It wasn't changed with each chapter, but often times in the middle of a chapter or even paragraph. I found it confusing and disjointed, and it really affected the flow of the story for me. No matter what was going on in the story at the time, it would distract me and really take me out of what was happening. I wish that it wouldn't have been done that way because I think that it really took away from the story and the characters. My other criticism was that I felt like the big reveal about Reed's past fell a little bit flat. It was alluded to most of the book and was made a big deal only to be kind of a let down. I felt like Peyton reacted really badly, and it was extremely judgmental and immature of her to handle things the way she did while never giving him a chance to really explain anything. I didn't understand that considering she had taken her own time and her own way to explain her past, and couldn't figure out why she wouldn't allow Reed to do the same. I also felt like Reed while patient and kind with Peyton was a little bit shallow and focused on the physical a bit too much. He might have been one way with her, but in his POV he was constantly thinking about how he could get her naked or have sex with her despite her wanting to wait. It just felt like he was one way to her face and then another way in reality. Its not like he ever acted on those urges or tried to push her, but it just felt like he wasn't really being true to his character at times. I also felt like he was a bit over-the-top and judgmental when it came to Griffin. His concerns were well founded and accurate, but he went about handling them wrong and I thought that he came off too heavy handed considering the length of time he had known Peyton. I also really did have some issues with Griffin. He might have helped Peyton when she needed it. But what kind of a friend helps her get through a horrible past only to date someone else and then expect Peyton to drop Reed and take a chance with Griffin because all of a sudden he says he loves her? Why did it take her finding someone else for him to ever say anything or try to be with her? I just didn't really buy that his feelings were true love or he never would have handled things like that. I also thought that what he did at the end was really selfish and it just proved to me that he cared about himself more than he had ever cared about her. She was much better off.

I did like this story despite my issues with things, and I was really glad to see Peyton heal and grow as well as Reed. I think that they were great together, and I really enjoyed seeing their journey separately and together. I think that they were real and believable and I loved the ending of this story. It was really nice to get a conclusion and be completely satisfied with it. I also really enjoyed most of the secondary characters in this story. I absolutely loved Dr. Lorraine. She was a hoot and really cracked me up. I loved her no nonsense approach to her clients and the fact that she was so unconventional. I think that she really was able to reach Peyton because of how she was, and I will admit that she sort of stole the show for me! I would love to see more of her character with other clients of hers, I bet it would be a riot! Overall, I think that this story was easy to become invested in and is one that a lot of people will be able to relate to. Perfectly Broken was one that drew me in and had me turning the pages because I had to know what would happen. This one is definitely worth the read, and I look forward to seeing more from Prescott Lane in the future.

**ARC provided by Author**

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My Favorite Book Couple with Lara Adrian


LARA ADRIAN is the New York Times and #1 internationally bestselling author of the Midnight Breed vampire romance series (Random House) and numerous other titles published independently. With nearly 4 million books in print and digital worldwide, and translations licensed in more than 20 countries, Lara's books have been called "addictively readable" (Chicago Tribune), "strikingly original" (Booklist) and "a must-read" (Fresh Fiction).

Places to find Lara:
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