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Saturday, June 21, 2014

ARC Review: Perfect Kind of Trouble by Chelsea Fine

Perfect Kind of Trouble is the second book in Chelsea Fine's new adult Finding Fate series. I absolutely loved the first book and couldn't wait to get my hands on the next one. I loved this one as well, and it was such a fun read. Chelsea Fine is a gifted storyteller, and I absolutely love her writing style. She has interesting and unique characters that are easy to love flaws and all. I highly recommend this series if you haven't already read it, and I can't wait to read the next book as well.

After hearing about her father passing away, Kayla Turner heads back to her hometown in order to attend his funeral and be at the reading of the will her father's attorney told her she needs to be present for. She finds out that her father left her a letter that she needs to read in order to get her inheritance but that she also needs to be handcuffed to Daren Ackwood at the same time. Kayla grew up knowing Daren as the spoiled rich kid who worked for her father sometimes. He now drives an expensive car, wears designer clothes and goes through a ton of women. Kayla and Daren are both interested in the inheritance though, and decide to tough out the conditions in order to see what James Turner left behind for them. Daren is struggling to make ends meet while he tries to atone for his father's sins. He doesn't let anyone know the truth about what is really going on in his life, and is determined to make things work with Kayla because he needs the money more than anyone knows. Although things start off rough for Kayla and Daren, they quickly realize that things aren't as they appear for either of them and they end up sharing more with each other than they ever have with anyone else before. As they go from letter to letter on the scavenger hunt that James planned for them, they begin to see that maybe the money wasn't the only thing that Kayla's dad left behind for them.

I wasn't sure at the beginning of this story if I was going to like Daren as well as I ended up liking him. After the first book, he came across as a bit of an arrogant jerk that often acted without care and recklessly. But I was so glad that we got to see how much more there was to him beneath the surface. He was a really good guy that was going through a lot and he was all alone. He was trying to make things right that weren't his fault at all, and I really admired how he went out of his way for others. He judged Kayla pretty harshly at the beginning, but she did the same with him. It was great to see them both realize how wrong they had been, and how much the actually had in common. Kayla had also been through a lot, and she had a lot of things revealed to her over the course of this book. She thought that she knew so much and it turned out that she had been lied to and was misinformed on so much. I felt really badly for her, but I was glad that she had Daren to lean on. These two had fun together, and had a lot of chemistry. But what made their relationship so great is that they were supportive of each other and completely understood everything the other was going through. They were a great match, and I liked watching them fall for one another.

Overall, I would have to say that this book was really great. I liked the characters and I liked that they grew and changed over the course of the book. They were able to find someone who made them a better person and they were better together than apart. I was glad that we were able to see Kayla find out the truth about why her dad hadn't been a part of her life for so long, and it was really great to get to see his letters to Kayla and Daren. I really liked following along with the scavenger hunt that they went on. This book was fun to read but there were also a lot of really emotional and touching moments too. It was great to see these two troubled and broken people find something they never knew they were looking for and come out better off for it. I thought that they judged each other a lot and made assumptions for a bit too long in this story though, and I would have liked to have seen them realize things a bit sooner. But otherwise, I didn't have any complaints. Their story was real and believable and I was interested right from the start. If you are a new adult fan, I highly recommend checking this series out. I can't wait to read more from Chelsea Fine in the future and I look forward to reading the next book in this series.

**ARC Provided by Publisher**

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Interview with Author Chelsea Fine and Giveaway

Chelsea lives in Phoenix, Arizona, where she spends most of her time writing stories, painting murals, and avoiding housework at all costs. She's ridiculously bad at doing dishes and claims to be allergic to laundry. Her obsessions include: superheroes, coffee, sleeping-in, and crazy socks. She lives with her husband and two children, who graciously tolerate her inability to resist teenage drama on TV and her complete lack of skill in the kitchen.

Find Chelsea at:

Feature and Giveaway: The Dark Duke by Laura Landon

Lady Amanda Radburn was the most outspoken, opinionated, impertinent, and irritating woman the Duke of Hadleigh had ever met. She delighted in insulting him, and arguing over the most insignificant matters. Yet when helping her was the only way he could restore a world that included a sister he loved but had driven away with his dominating ways, he realized he had stepped into a dark world of danger and intrigue. Now he is in peril of not only losing his own life, but the life of the woman he realizes he has come to love. Regretting his unguarded words that forced her to close her heart to him, he pursues her into a future that has turned dangerously dark.

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ARC Review: Intoxicated by Monica Murphy

Intoxicated is a short novella in the Billionaire Bachelors Club series by Monica Murphy. This short story gives the reader more of each of the couples from the previous books and updates you on where they are with their HEAs. When the story starts, it is Gage and Marina's wedding day. Ivy and Archer are set to be the best man and maid of honor when Ivy goes into labor. Matt and Bryn step up to help Marina and Gage when Archer and Ivy are unable to make it to the wedding. As the wedding day goes on, Bryn starts to get scared as Matt drops hints that he might be ready for them to be the next to wed. The whole time everyone is trying to figure out the sex of the baby and to see who will win the bet.

This novella was really more of a short story to me than a novella. The details for this one say that there are over 200 pages, but honestly there are so many excerpts that this one is actually closer to 50 pages. It was short and sweet, and did a decent job of updating the reader about what was going on for these billionaires that are no longer bachelors and their women. But there really wasn't a lot going on in this story other than that Ivy has her baby and the reader finds out if it is a boy or girl and the name as well as Marina and Gage get married. I think that fans will be excited to get more of their favorite characters and to get to see these events in their lives, but honestly I had been expecting more. I think that some readers will be left feeling unsatisfied with the amount of story in this one and will be left wanting more. If you are a fan of the series, I would still recommend reading this to catch up with all your favorite characters though. I do like Monica Murphy's writing style and this one was written well. I look forward to reading more from her in the future, and would be interested to see more from these characters especially Matt and Bryn because their story felt a bit unfinished to me after reading this one.

**ARC Provided by Edelweiss**

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Friday, June 20, 2014

ARC Review: Make You Mine by Macy Beckett

Allie Mauvais owns The Sweet Spot bakery and is the descendent of a famous voodoo priestess. It is believed she cursed the Dumont men. They have not married in four generations, but they have children. Especially Marc Dumont’s father, he has five sons and counting. The Dumont family owns a riverboat and Marc has been selected to captain his first voyage. His half-brothers and grandfather are part of the crew. Everything is in place, except the position of pastry chef. Allie is sent by an agency to fill in. The Dumonts believe in the curse and give her a wide berth. The renowned chef Allie looks forward to working with is rude and sabotages her work station. The only one pleasant to her is Marc’s half-sister, Ella. Marc’s attraction to Allie defies the curse, but strange things start to happen on board. Marc fights with his grandfather over Allie. After too much grief and no commitment from Marc, Allie goes back to her shop. She and her sister, Dev, stage a curse breaking ritual for Marc, but it doesn’t work. They decide they both need a break from work and men and head to Las Vegas. Dev has a history with Marc’s half-brother Beau. Marc realizes his stubbornness is the problem and follows Allie in hopes of marrying her. Will their wedding finally break the curse?

Allie is a successful business woman and uses her family’s name to her advantage. Women come in for charms or to have their fortunes told. Allie goes along and wishes them well. She follows her passion of baking and helps the Dumonts out. When the chef banishes her from the kitchen, she works in every other job on the boat. Nothing is beneath her, she signed on to work. She’s treated with disrespect from Marc’s grandfather and gets through it. She proves herself to be a good person and true friend.

It takes Marc too long to realize he loves Allie and the curse is a myth. He uses her and then lets her go. He falls for the cleansing ritual and is mad when it doesn’t work. He should stand by Allie when she accused of horrible things, but he’s silent and lets it happen. Marc’s weakness and his failing to step in and defend Allie make him an unsuitable partner.

Marc and his half-brothers revel in their prowess. They discuss their conquests and see them as part of their lore. Even their father brings his latest pregnant lady to the wedding reception. It’s a negative trait. Both Allie and Dev could do better.

**ARC provided by Publisher**

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Review: The Bad Baron's Daughter by Laura London

So… this was a tough one… I liked and disliked this book at the same time so I made peace with myself and compromised with three stars. First, I have to say that there are themes and topics covered in this book that have, thankfully, evolved over the course of time. I’m 100% sure that if this story were re-written these topics that I am alluding to would be either deleted or changed… So keeping in mind that this story was originally written in 1978, I ventured on and forgave the antiquity of these themes.

Moving on… I liked the heroine and the plot. I thought that the plot was very original. Katie Kendrick is in a tough situation. Her name is soiled by her father’s horrible reputation. All of English society stays away from her father like the plague, which is understandable since he is a reprehensible character. Unfortunately, very few characters in this story are pleasant, including our hero- Lord Linden. He is pretty much a jerk. Although he is a complete jerk, the woman cannot help but throw themselves at him. Why? I have no idea. I think that the writing of this story was a good indicator of how men were viewed and how women were viewed (my opinion).

Katie and Lord Linden meet in a gin house while Katie is disguised as a boy. There are two reason for her disguise. One, woman are not allowed to work in the gin house and two to protect her virtue. Katie is very beautiful and men are captivated by her beauty. Zack is Katie’s “brother”. He looks after her when her father –the bad baron-disappears. Katie’s father is a terrible example and not a very good guardian, he disappears quite frequently. His current disappearance has Zack in a panic and he basically “sells” her to Lord Linden.

Lord Linden, although a terrible character, feels bad for Katie and tries to help her. He just can’t figure out how given her situation-she basically has no one. As the story progresses Lord Linden’s character really evolves and he can’t help fall in love with Katie. Although completely out of character for him, he is honorable and respectful to her. Katie is sweet but it’s hard to imagine how she survived on her own. Most of the time she is terrified or running for help. As I mentioned before, keeping in mind the time that this story was written it is enjoyable and very sweet.

**Copy provided by Publisher**

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Feature and Giveaway: Violet Vaughn

With five men for every woman, the selection of eligible bachelors in Breckenridge, Colorado during ski season couldn’t get much better. Casey Cassidy can’t help but enjoy the view. But Casey didn’t move here to sit on the sidelines. Desperate to get over Jason and find a man that wants a family, Casey finds Blaine Johnson – a wish come true. A hunky surfer turned ski instructor, he checks off every requirement on her list.

Except for the one she forgot to add.

Blaine has a secret. A secret so big it keeps intimacy smoldering, when Casey needs fire. No matter how hard she tries, the embers won’t ignite. Can she live without passion to get the family she craves?

When Jason comes to town, Casey questions everything she wished for. Their consuming love threatens to explode and ruin her dream. Will she have to choose between a family and the love of her life?

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Guest Post with Author Maggie Kaye and Giveaway

Meet Maggie Kaye, author of So Right With You.

When Maggie Kaye was in college, she and a friend attempted to write their first romance book. They actually never reached the writing part. Mostly, they lay in the sun, brainstormed, laughed, and snacked, typical behavior for young college students with short attention spans.

Maggie went on to earn a teaching credential in special education and a career in teaching. Although they never completed that first book, the desire to tell stories remained with her. Eventually, she took out a writing pen or in her case a notebook computer her hero (husband) bought her to pursue her dreams and wrote the end.

Today, Maggie lives in the Southern California with her husband, two children, and two cats that sometimes share the keyboard with her. She enjoys writing stories with plenty of heart, humor and a bit of steaminess.

Find Maggie at:

ARC Review: Crave by Violet Vaughn

I will admit that the cover for Crave is what originally drew me in. I love it, and I knew that I wanted to read this one without ever having read the blurb. But honestly once I read the blurb, it was a done deal for me. I am so glad that I read this book, and I really ended up enjoying. Casey and Jason's story was one that will stick with me and was a lot of fun to read. This book is worth the read for Jason alone. He was amazing. 

Casey Cassidy leaves Vermont to head to Colorado after breaking up with the love of her life Jason. Jason is the perfect guy for Casey and they have a great relationship, except she wants a family and he doesn't. Casey tries to get over Jason and ends up getting a job as a ski instructor in Colorado. She meets Blaine through some friends of hers and develops feelings for him right away. Blaine is a former surfer turned skier and he helps Casey get better. While Casey and Blaine have an easy relationship and get along well, their relationship is missing the passion that she shared with Jason. Blaine is also keeping a secret from Casey and she begins to wonder if his desire for a family with her is enough after having what she did with Jason. When Jason suddenly appears in Colorado, Casey begins to wonder what she should do with her life. Can she give up Jason for a family, or will she be willing to sacrifice her desire to have kids in order to have the love of her life and the relationship she needs?

I loved Jason. He was sexy and sweet, and just a genuinely good guy. This is one of those book boyfriends that you want to be real so bad because he is absolutely perfect. He There is not a single thing bad about him, and I loved the way that he treated Casey. He took care of her and looked out for her, and he was willing to drop everything when she needed him even if it broke his heart in the process. He just wanted Casey to be happy and would do anything to make that happen. Casey was frustrating. I understand her desire for a family and kids was really important to her, but I just wanted to shake her for giving up so easily on Jason at the beginning. She was hurting him, and I know that she was hurting herself as well. She and Jason were just so perfect that I couldn't understand her choices even though I saw what she was going through. I really loved seeing the evolution of her character though because she really grew so much over the course of this book. She started to realize just what she was willingly giving up, and I am glad that she came to her senses. She also realized how childish some of her actions were and that was good for her to figure out as well. She had such amazing chemistry with Jason and they were smoking hot together. But they also were perfect for each other on every other level, and they just made such an adorable match.

Overall, this story was really good. I enjoyed Jason and Casey together and really liked seeing them have such a great time together doing what they both loved. But I also loved Blaine. I felt so badly for him because he was clearly struggling, and he was such a great guy. I was glad that he and Casey were such great friends and that she was able to be supportive of him. I have to admit that his secret didn't shock me at all, and I pretty much saw it coming from the first time we met him. But I loved his character and would love to see more of him in the future. I did feel like his secret and the relationship between him and Casey took longer to be sorted out than was necessary. Things seemed to carry on a lot longer than I would have liked, and I was ready for her and Jason to get back together. Because as great as Casey and Blaine both were it was clear that they didn't belong together like Casey and Jason did. I would still recommend this book though, and I really liked it a lot. I also really liked Violet Vaughn's writing style and found this book extremely easy to become invested in. I didn't want to put it down, and read it pretty much straight through. I can't wait to read the next book Release and see some of the other characters get their HEA as well as see what else Violet Vaughn comes up with in the future.

**ARC Provided by Xpresso Book Tours**

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Thursday, June 19, 2014

ARC Review: Hunter by Night by Elizabeth Staab

Alexia Blackburn, best friend of Isabel, queen of the vampires, lives in the same house with many vampires. Lee Gorman, King Thad’s right hand man and fellow vampire, avoids Alexia. Being a human she’s beneath him, which is exactly where he wants her. He fights his attraction and revulsion. Humans killed his mother and sister, but Alexia makes his undead heart beat faster. Alexia falls and cuts her knee. A strip of black leather by a gate is what she tripped over in the dark. It is a piece of pagan magic stained by an ancient enemy, one Lee thought he killed centuries ago. Haig, the crazed killer, is back with reinforcements and syringes full of a deadly virus. The older wizards welcome his return to wipe out the humans and intermingling once and for all. Lee is a soldier and hasn’t had live human blood in seven centuries. It doesn’t matter because he’s positive he’s dying. He’s willing to sacrifice himself to find Haig, but after a sip of Alexia’s blood the future is brighter. And he feels better and she feels his pain. Isabel is about to give birth and is threatened by Haig’s followers. She and Thad are at the hospital while their complex is under siege. Lee and Alexia fall in love, but not without sacrifice and fear.

The story starts fun. Lee and Alexia throw zingers at each other. Their distrust and interest battle for dominance. Once they become a couple, the story turns more serious and darker and loses the best part of their relationship. Lee is ill and Alexia can cure him. He fights against getting closer to her, putting both of them in danger. Alexia wants to leave the compound and get her life back. She’s uncertain about a future with Lee and doesn’t like vampires. The vampires breathe, have heart beats, and give birth. A different take on the usual vampires, but a bit confusing. Alexia can’t become a vampire so she will remain human, leaving Lee to go without her. Their relationship doesn’t feel like love, mostly obligation.

The secondary characters are more interesting. Siddoh is Lee’s second in command and battles internal demons, namely his family. Zander and Theresa have lost their spouses and are anxious to start a relationship, but are afraid to hurt each other’s feelings. These story lines need to be followed.

This is the third book in a series.

**ARC provided by Publisher**

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ARC Review: It Takes a Scandal by Caroline Linden

Sebastian Vane has a shattered knee from his military service. He comes home to England to find his father has gone mad and sold off most of his property for a pittance. His former best friend, Benedict Lennox, shows up in the middle of the night demanding to see his sister. Samantha has been in love with Sebastian since she was a girl. She’s not there and neither is Mr. Vane. Sebastian searches for his father to no avail. Rumors swirl that Sebastian killed his father, robbed Benedict’s father, and has gone mad too. Years later, the Westons move in to the estate, making them Sebastian’s new neighbors. Abigail and her sister Penelope are anxious to explore their new neighborhood. Abigail meets Sebastian out on a walk and is immediately intrigued and smitten with her dark brooding neighbor. She seeks him out and they begin to walk together. She learns of a mysterious grotto supposedly decorated for the King’s mistress. She asks Sebastian to take her there. It is a beautiful sanctuary and becomes their secret meeting place. Sebastian receives word his uncle has died and he travels to claim his small inheritance. Benedict comes home and decides to court Abigail, much to her parents’ delight. He proposes and she turns him down. Her father will not sanction a marriage between her and Sebastian. She doesn’t care and refuses to marry anyone but Sebastian. Mr. Weston refuses to let Sebastian court Abigail. He decides to find out what happened to his father and the missing money. The key to that evening’s events is Samantha. She was at the house and gave the money to Mr. Vane. Benedict joins Sebastian to find out the truth and start to heal their friendship.

Sebastian is a classic tortured hero. Wounded, poor, wrecked with guilt about his father’s disappearance, he’s unworthy of love. Wrongly accused of heinous crimes, he has no one to come to his aid. He keeps his dignity and carries on. He parts with a treasured book as a gift for Abigail. She sees it as a sweet gesture. He also gives her a cameo. A trinket, but worth so much to him. Abigail feels lucky and honored to have his attention.

The sisters’ relationship is real. They both read the scandalous book, Fifty Ways to Sin. Sebastian sees Abigail buy it and gets his own copy, just in case she wants a demonstration. Penelope is very defensive of her sister. Once she realizes Abigail is in love, she decides to befriend Sebastian and becomes his defender too. The two women stand together and make fun of each other and all around them. A Sense and Sensibility vibe is clear.

**ARC provided by Publisher**

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Guest Post with Author Elisabeth Staab and Giveaway

Meet Elisabeth Staab, author of Hunter by Night.

Elisabeth Staab still lives with her nose in a book and at least one foot in an imaginary world. She believes that all kinds of safe and sane love should be celebrated but she adores the fantasy-filled realm of paranormal romance the best. She loves to spend time with good friends, good music, good beverages, and good books (when she isn't making characters fall in love, that is). She lives with her family and one big scaredy-cat in Northern Virginia, outside of Washington DC.

Find Elisabeth at:

ARC Review: Burned by Sarah Morgan

Burned by Sarah Morgan is the second Miller Sisters book, but can be read as a standalone. This is a short story and is only about 83 pages. Despite the length though, I really enjoyed this one. It was sexy and sweet, and had just the perfect amount of sexual tension. Rosie Miller is having a bad week. She just found out that the gym she works for has been bought and will be under new management and now she is being dumped by her boring boyfriend. If that wasn't bad enough she is being dumped right in front of her ex that broke her heart and left her five years ago. When Hunter Black follows her after she leaves the restaurant he helps her out and refuses to leave her until he sees her home safely. She thinks that is the end of things but then she finds out that he is her new boss at the gym. The connection between them is still there, but can they move forward and get over the past?

Hunter Black was sexy and sweet, and I loved that he looked out for Rosie. He wouldn't allow her to be put in danger and was determined to protect her, even though he knew she was a capable woman. I liked that he helped her train and wasn't intimidated by her being as athletic as she was and by her being into martial arts. Rosie was strong and independent, and yet she also had a vulnerable side. She had been hurt by what happened with Hunter in the past, and she blamed a lot of it on herself. But she didn't let that stop her from being successful in her career, and I really liked how passionate she was about what she did. Rosie and Hunter were super hot together, and you could feel the tension between them. Their feelings and attraction had never gone away, and I liked seeing them rekindle their relationship.

Overall, this book was really good. I liked the steam and heat, and I really enjoyed the tension between them. I was surprised that the length of this story didn't seem to hurt anything that happened between them, and I found everything to be real and believable. It definitely helped that they had known each other so well in the past, but they seemed to step so easily back into their roles from before. I think this is a great story if you are looking for something short and sexy that ends happily. I look forward to reading more from Sarah Morgan in the future, and after reading this one I will definitely read the first Miller Sisters book Ripped.

**ARC Provided by Publisher**

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Feature and Giveaway: Red-Hot Reads

Red Hot Reads by Harlequin: BURNED by USA Today Bestselling Author Sarah Morgan, CROSSING THE LINE by NYT Bestselling Author Megan Hart, or the combo title TANGLED UP which is both BURNED and CROSSING THE LINE.

Every girl needs some self-defense. But at Fit and Physical, you'll learn martial arts and get fit at the same time. Look great, feel better and kick a little butt! Check out one-on-one personal training with our favourite karate black belt, Rosie Miller. She loves her job, the world of martial arts, and her life is just…well, brilliant.

Trainer and martial artist Rosie Miller's zen is seriously compromised when Hunter Black—her former coach and lover—becomes her new boss. With all the sexual energy still crackling between them, her poor little zen doesn't stand a chance. So this time, Rosie is determined to do more than put up self-defense. She and Hunter are going to play by her rules….

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ARC Review: Star Struck by Laurelin Paige

Star Struck is the second book in Laurelin Paige's Lights, Camera series and centers around Heather Wainwright the actress. She is first introduced in Take Two, but these are standalone and you do not need to read that one first. Although it was a really good book and I would definitely recommend reading it as well. I really enjoyed Heather and Seth's story, and I thought that it was really well written.

Heather Wainwright is a Hollywood actress that has earned the reputation of being a diva. She hardly ever has any time off and is always filling her her time with one commitment after another. When her favorite charity needs help, her assistant volunteers her to not only star in their well known 24 hour plays, but to also chair them as well. She meets Seth while attending the first event for the charity, and although attracted to one another they instantly get off on the wrong foot. Heather thinks that he is a carpenter there to help build sets and that he is beneath her, while Seth can't believe she is such a snob and would judge him so quickly without even knowing him. As they are forced to work together though, their attraction to one another becomes more than they can fight. Soon they are seeing each other and things between them are starting to get serious. But Heather has no idea that Seth is actually much more than a carpenter and is actually a very successful production designer that has volunteered his time and materials to the charity. When she decides that she doesn't care about his job and wants to move forward with a relationship, Seth knows he needs to come clean. But will Heather be able to forgive his deception after everything that she has trusted him with?

I really liked Seth. He was a really good guy and I loved how he gave back and genuinely cared about the cause he was a part of. I liked that he wanted Heather to like him for who he was and not his job, but I do think that he should have come clean before the truth came out. He had so many chances and allowed himself to become distracted and put off telling her. I did think that he was sexy and sweet with her, and I liked that he also wouldn't allow her to get away with her normal behavior. He pushed her to be the best person that she could be and to get over the things from her past. Heather was really hard for me to warm up to, and I will admit that I honestly didn't like her for at least the first half of the book. She was a complete snobby bitch, and she seemed to think that she was better than everyone else. When her past is revealed, I really didn't like her because she had no reason to feel that she was superior. But with Seth's help and her assistant Lexie's help also, I feel like she really started to realize just what kind of person she had turned into. She really had a huge transformation, and it honestly seemed to be genuine. I really believed that she was changing, and I had no problem starting to like her. Seth had believed in her right from the start and had seen something that no one else did when it came to her, and I was glad that he was correct about her. I thought that they had a lot of chemistry and were really hot together.

Laurelin Paige definitely knows how to bring the heat, and I loved how these two characters couldn't keep their hands off each other. The scenes were written well, and I loved seeing them fall for one another. But for me this one took a little while for me to really get into because I just didn't like the heroine for the longest time. I wish that Heather hadn't been such a bitch for so long, because after awhile it really made me wonder why Seth kept trying. I am glad things worked out the way that they did and I think that they had a great connection. But it just took so long for me to come around, that I spent half the book hating her. I did think that the story was good though, and I really love Laurelin Paige's writing style. I can't wait to read more from her in the future. I would definitely recommend this story though, especially if you are a fan of Paige's and have read Take Two. We get to see Micah from Take Two briefly in this book, and it was so nice to see that he and Maddie were still living their HEA.

**ARC Provided by Inkslinger PR**

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