Sunday, January 25, 2015

Ripped (Real, #5) by Katy Evans

What it’s about
The fifth book in the New York Times new adult series that began with Real. When an angry, heartbroken girl is forced to be near her rocker ex-boyfriend, only time will tell if the fire between them will consume them both.

Pandora, the gothic friend of Brooke (Real, Mine, Remy) and Melanie, thought that getting her heart broken by her bad boy rocker ex could only happen once. But now, he's back in town with the biggest concert of the year. Pandora hates him so much that she gets Melanie to come with her and play a prank on him at his gig. But when they are caught by security, and her ex himself is summoned, he decides not to press charges if she'll follow certain conditions. Pandora likes none of his rules, or that he's in charge of her, especially since they seem designed to make sure she's in close contact with him again. But the closeness reignites the passion they once shared, and soon no matter how much she wants to hate him, it's clear she's still hung up on him. And worse: he knows it too.

Kristen’s Review

2–Should Have Been Better–Stars

I'll start by saying that I did like this book, the characters and the love story, but I can't give it a higher rating.

This story had so much potential to be great, but the execution fell short big time. The storytelling itself felt disjointed, inconsistent, random, slightly hard to follow, and sprinkled with grammar errors and small plot holes. I liked this couple (especially their past), and as harsh as this may sound, I felt they deserved better than the erratic way their story was told. Shame on the publishing editor for not helping the author produce her best work.

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Saturday, January 24, 2015

One Night of Sin (After Hours #1) by Elle Kennedy

What it’s about
Sometimes it’s good to be bad…

When it comes to sex, good girl Skyler Thompson always plays it safe, choosing stable and sedate over wild and thrilling. She doesn’t do one-night-stands, but one look at sinfully sexy Gage Holt and she’s willing to reconsider. He makes her want to be bad for once in her life, and she’s prepared to take what she wants.

Danger follows former MMA fighter Gage Holt like a shadow. Despite his successes as part owner of Sin, an exclusive nightclub in Boston, Gage can’t risk getting involved with a woman, especially one as sweet as Skyler. Still, he can’t resist a taste—and it’s so damn good he has to see her again.

As addicted as he is to her, Gage knows there’s no future for him and Skyler—not with his past lurking in the dark corners of an MMA cage. But Skylar’s tougher than she looks, and she’s ready to fight for her man.

Dorsey’s Review

4.5 Fighting for Love Stars!!! 
I thoroughly enjoyed this scorching hot novella!! I loved  the hero and the heroine, Gage and Skyler, along with the secondary characters.

Gage is an 30 yr old sexy, dirty talking, ex-MMA fighter, and current partner in a successful club, Sin. He has baggage from his troubled childhood, which is still following him. He has trouble trusting, seeking help, and opening up on a personal and romantic level.....until Skyler.

Skyler is a part-time waitress and psychology student who is a "good girl".  While on a date with an arrogant idiot at Sin, she spots Gage, is instantly in lust with him, and decides to take a walk on the wild side.

Gage does all he can to chase her away after one hot make out session. He knows she's a good girl, therefore, totally off limits. But Skyler isn't done, she has yet to get what she wants from Gage and refuses to take no for an answer!

I loved Skyler's character. It was fun to see her take charge, her confidence bloom and eventually overcome the barriers Gage had built around himself.

There is a happily-ever-after, but it ended rather abruptly. I would have liked a small epilogue, and had there been one, it would have been a 5 star read for me. Looking forward to reading the rest of the series!
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Friday, January 23, 2015

Flashback Friday: Dream of Me/Believe in Me (Viking & Saxon #1 & 2) by Josie Litton

What it’s about

They were two Viking lords, the brothers Wolf and Dragon, bound both by blood and by a shared ambition to end the war with their lifelong enemies, the Saxons. They know that their only hope for peace is to persuade the Saxon Lord Hawk to unite his noble family with theirs — in a bond sealed forever by the sanctity of marriage.

Together these three men will strive to overcome centuries-old rivalries and hatred. Each will unite in marriage with an extraordinary woman who has her own special gift — and her own dreams of bringing about an end to war....

Book One
In Dream of Me we meet the Viking leader Wolf Hakonson as he embarks on a mission to kidnap the Lady Cymbra, a legendary beauty Wolf mistakenly believes is the cause of war. Instead he discovers that she is a gifted healer who will challenge him to confront his deepest yearnings — and together they will become soul mates who forge a future blessed by peace.

Book Two
The drama continues in Believe in Me, when the Saxon Lord Hawk, brother of Cymbra, seeks to strengthen the alliance by wedding a Norse noblewoman. But Lady Krysta arrives bearing many secrets — including her gift for seeing what others cannot. And as an unexpected love ignites, only Krysta can sense the looming danger that threatens the peace — and Hawk as well.

Karla’s Review

Dream of Me...5 stars! Believe in Me...3 stars!

Dream of Me was everything I heard it was and more. Wolf is the ultimate alpha male, tough as nails and well respected, yet gentle and understanding. Cymbra is strong-willed, passionate and protective. They were dynamite together! Terrific dialogue, playful moments, lots of passion, and some heartbreak are woven into this wonderful story. It left me wanting more. These characters captured my heart, and this story is one I will not soon forget!

Believe in Me was a little bit of a disappointment. I had high hopes for Hawk’s story, because I liked him so much in the first book. Krysta’s introduction into the story was very interesting, and I thought it was off to a good start, and then it went nowhere fast. The passion wasn’t there between Hawk and Krysta like it was with Wolf and Cymbra. Krysta’s reasoning for rejecting Hawk in marriage seemed a bit far-fetched, and the magical element did not work for me. It was an okay read, and had some good moments, but Dream of Me was so much better. I'm holding out hope for Come Back to Me, the third and final book in the series, and the delectable Dragon’s story, Wolf’s brother. Oh, those Viking men!!

Josie Litton's writing is rich in detail, and she gives the reader an accurate feel for what life was like in that time period. Overall, the combo of both books made for some enjoyable reading, and being this was my first foray into Viking romance, it was a good place to start.

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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

A Forbidden Rumspringa (Gay Amish Romance #1) by Keira Andrews

What it’s about
In a world where every detail of life—down to the width of a hat brim—is dictated by God and the all-powerful rules of the community, two men dare to imagine a different way. At 18, Isaac Byler knows little outside the strict Amish settlement of Zebulon, Minnesota, where there is no rumspringa for exploration beyond the boundaries of their insular world. Isaac knows he’ll have to officially join the church and find a wife before too long, but he yearns for something else—something he can’t name.

Dark tragedy has left carpenter David Lantz alone to support his mother and sisters, and he can’t put off joining the church any longer. But when he takes on Isaac as an apprentice, their attraction grows amid the sweat and sawdust. David shares his sinful secrets, and he and Isaac struggle to reconcile their shocking desires with their commitment to faith, family and community.

Now that they’ve found each other, are they willing to lose it all?

Note: Contains explicit sexual situations and graphic language. This is not an inspirational/Christian romance.

KindleRomance’s Review

5 Stars!
Isaac was an extremely engaging character, and listening to him tell the story kept me hooked from the beginning until the end. This was the first book I’ve read about a gay Amish couple. Although there were enough details to give me a better idea of how they lived on a daily basis, I didn’t think it overwhelmed the story. Instead, it helped to give a real sense of the challenge for Isaac and David to have a relationship. Needless to say, there was a lot of angst in this story leading to quite a few tears on my part. Although there was a definite happy ending for the couple, there were enough open issues to make me excited about reading the next story in their saga.

*Originally posted at KindleRomance Reviews*

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Monday, January 19, 2015

Touch & Go (Dare to Love #2) by Mira Lyn Kelly

What it’s about
Vivacious and successful, Ava Meyers is living her dream life, except for one thing: Ever since childhood, she’s been in love with her best friend . . . and she’s never admitted it. Back then, Sam Farrow was a damaged young man with a tough past. Now he’s supremely confident, super-sexy, and totally untouchable—until the night when Sam pretends to be Ava’s boyfriend to save her from some unwanted attention. In a moment of weakness, Ava finds out that a long friendship is no match for blistering sexual chemistry.

After years of denying his own feelings, Sam finds that one amazing night with Ava isn’t enough to chase away all the pent-up fantasies. So he proposes they spend a few weeks driving each other wild, exhausting their every desire, and then return to their perfect platonic relationship like nothing ever happened. But Sam’s plan has one fatal flaw: the part where they give each other up. Because the more they let go of their inhibitions, the more they’re tempted to never go back.

 Publication date: 2/17

Dorsey’s Review
4 Friends to Lovers Stars!!

I'd suggest reading Truth or Dare, the first book in the series before reading this one. This series is about a group of close friends, and the characters we met in book one, play a big role in this book.

This book is Ava and Sam's book, and it’s a friends to lovers story. They are best friends and tell each other everything (except their true feelings for one another). I really liked Ava's backbone and I love the relationship between all of the friends.

Ava is a strong emotionally stable woman, but it seemed to me that she was the one who always took the risk and put herself out there. Sam is nowhere near emotionally stable, and it caused issues and drama that I found very frustrating at times. Ava loves Sam and has been in love with him forever, and no doubt about it that Sam loves Ava, but his upbringing has forced him to close down from emotions, and I understood his reluctance. He eagerly agrees to a hook-up with Ava...and lots of them...but love? Not something he sees for himself until Ava…..

"What do you say, Ava,” he asked, searching her eyes. “Feel like making a really bad decision with me?”
 Looking forward to Ford’s book next and I’m curious to see who will be able to catch his attention. 

*A copy of the book was provided by the Random House Publishing Group - Loveswept via NetGalley*
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Available for pre-order

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Blue Mountain (Pack Collection, #1) by Cardeno C. - Audio Book Tour + Giveaway

When Blue Mountain by Cardeno C.  was originally released in November 2014, our KindleRomance had the chance to read and review. She loved the story, so when we were offered the chance to review the audio format of the book as part of the blog tour, Karla jumped at the opportunity. She loves a good listen and by the looks of her review, this one was music to her ears. Along with Karla's in depth review on the story and narration, we also have the book trailer for you to check out and a chance to win the audio book version of  Blue Mountain from Audible! Just fill out the Rafflecopter for your chance to win!

What it’s about

Narrated by: Sean Crisden
Length: 3 hrs and 38 mins
Series: Pack Collection, Book 1
Unabridged Audiobook
Release Date: 12-24-14
Publisher: The Romance Authors, LLC

Exiled by his pack as a teen, Omega wolf Simon Moorehead learns to bury his gentle nature in the interest of survival. When a hulking, rough-faced Alpha catches Simon on pack territory, he tries to escape what he’s sure will be imminent death. But instead of killing him, the Alpha takes Simon home.

A man of action, Mitch Grant uproots his life to support his brother in leading the Blue Mountain pack. Mitch lives on the periphery, quietly protecting everyone, but always alone. A mate is a dream come true for Mitch, and he won’t let little things like Simon’s rejections, attacks, and insults get in their way. With patience, seduction, and genuine care, Mitch will ride out the storm while Simon slays his own ghosts and Mitch’s loneliness.

Available at: Audible


 Karla’s Review

4.5 Stars! Sometimes novella’s have trouble getting off the ground, the stories don't have a chance to fully develop, not so with Blue Mountain, it took flight and soared! 

The Story:
Mitch was amazing, and even though he's an Alpha, strong and dominant, when he was dealing with Simon, he was kind, gentle, and understanding. It was hard for him to do, but he took a step back and allowed Simon to ease into their impending mating. Mitch didn't have to do that, but he recognized that after all that Simon had endured, he needed to come to him on his own in terms, in his own time. Even though he was surrounded by his pack, Mitch's loneliness was quite apparent and his emotional confession to his brother broke my heart. 

Simon was apprehensive, wary, and felt the pull towards Mitch, but still wanted to run. His had not been an easy life, and the memories of the pack that inhabited Mitch's territory at another time, brought him nothing but pain, and being a gay Omega, literally put a target on his back. He felt he was destined to be alone. At times he annoyed me and I was willing him to allow Mitch in, but when he finally did let his guard down, he was cute, funny and charming. 

I enjoyed the slow growth of the relationship that developed between Mitch and Simon. Even though they were destined to be mates, it's always a plus when there is a love bond, and when the time was right, they had a sizzling sexual connection too! They were a delightful couple.

Overall, Blue Mountain is a rather in-depth progressive story with good character development. The author gives the reader a  brief overview of the  pack dynamic, with just enough detail to add another interesting element to the read, but not too much that it detracted from Mitch and Simon's story. Cardeno C's stories are also always rich with dialogue, a big plus for me, and Blue Mountain  had plenty of character interaction along with the perfect blend of heart tugging moments, passion and humor. Simon and Mitch's journey comes to a conclusive satisfying ending which readers are sure to enjoy. Blue Mountain is a great start to the Pack Collection series and I'm looking forward to the next book!

The Narration:
Blue Mountain on audio is a perfect example of a great author/narrator partnership. Sean Crisden understood the nature of Cardeno C.'s story,  and was able to emit the emotions the author intended the reader to feel into the audio version of the book. This talented narrator gave each character a distinguishable voice that reflected their personality, and his soothing dreamlike voice was a pleasure to listen to. 

Blue Mountain in the written format is enjoyable enough to stand on its own, but Sean Crisden brings the story to life, and while I like using my imagination when reading a book, I was able to sit back and experience the emotional journey that this capable narrator took me on. 

Sean Crisden is on my radar, and  I'm hoping that he will continue to narrate the Pack Collection series, but in the meantime I'll be browsing his back catalog and am anxious to give him another listen!

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