For Maggie's Sake (Tempting Seals #3)

For Maggie's Sake Summary:
Maggie Chavez is in protective custody with a member of her former lover's SEAL team. Joe, her ex-lover, thinks Maggie is hiding information from him about a powerful drug lord and the deaths of some SEALs. He intends to seduce her and get the information before she can sell it back to the drug cartel. But the desire crackles between them and their attraction is undeniable. How can Joe use her and leave her, when all he wants is to hold her close and never let go?

For Maggie's Sake Review: 
After Elle Kennedy's Out of Uniform series I wanted to try some more with Military heroes and heroines. For Maggie's Sake was my first book and it wasn't until I started reading this book that I realized it was the third book in Tempting Seals.

Lora Leigh's books are a hit or miss for me. This one was a miss, unfortunately. The romance was kinda there but the premise and plot was mind-boggling, and not in a good way. This book is erotic romance so you have to expect a very strong sexual aspect but there should be a development in the romance. Unfortunately, There was too much of the same sex that was enjoyable in the beginning but it tends to get repetitive if not done right. For Maggie's Sake was not done right. This was also because the sex was overshadowing much of the romance's development.

The characters came off as 2D sometimes. Some of them were quite interesting but unfortunately were just side characters. The main characters were the cliché romance hero and heroine, not something spectacular to read about. The hero will wait forever for the heroine no matter her circumstances while the heroine never loved her husband even though she married him. Now lots of stories do the waiting for the right match story line but not when it is kinda impossible for the two to get together. And it was cheesy.

Also Electric Penis??

Overall, this book a 1 star read. It was cheesy and cliché , the plot was not captivating, the writing was awkward and the story was too short for any actual development. I will say this though; I will be reading the previous two books to get a better understand of For Maggie's Sake. Maybe that will change my rating.

Thank you to Lora Leigh for providing this ARC in exchange for an honest review!

Only Pleasure: Part 3 (Broken Hearted #10)

Only Pleasure: Part 3Only Pleasure: Part 3 Summary:
When Chase opens Kia up to a whole new world of lust and pleasure, her world can never be the same again. But when danger looms closer and Kia's life is threatened, Chase will stop at nothing to keep his lovely Kia safe...and burning with desire in his arms forever.

Only Pleasure: Part 3 Review:
What a great way to end this Only Pleasure! It not only finishes this book but shows the beginning to Khalid's book.

This book does a spectacular job of putting together the suspense paired with the relationship between the two. While the sexual relationship is still there it has moved away from the menage. Not that a menage was a bad thing, but this transition shows the importance and connection between Ria and Chase. Also, it reinforces the emotional connection. Chase and Ria have both opened up so that they can finally love each other.

Overall, it was a great way to end this series and will get a 4.5 star rating. I am excited to read the next book in this series, Guilty Pleasures.

*Note: Only Pleasure: Part 3 is third and final part of the Only Pleasure book by Lora Leigh. *

Thank you to Lora Leigh for providing and ARC in exchange for an honest review!


Only Pleasure: Part 2 (Broken Hearted #10)

Only Pleasure: Part 2Only Pleasure: Part 2 Summary:
Kia is a dream Chase has not allowed himself to entertain. Now that he has her, it's her heart he's after and he's determined to win it, no matter the cost. And even though they both agreed that it would only be for pleasure, a feeling deeper than all-consuming lust and illicit pleasure has taken hold of them.

Only Pleasure: Part 2 Review: 
This series (just these three books) is getting better. Chase and Kia are developing as separate characters alongside their romance. We are also moving away from the ménage scenes so we can see the emotional and sexual relationship between the two. The plot is thickening with the unanswered question of who is trying to hurt Kia.

Chase is going through a turning point. He no longer sees the relationship with Kia as safe. His feelings are playing a significant role in his emotional turmoil. Chase is afraid of how much he needs Kia and if she feels the same for him.

Kia on the other hand, is becoming much more independent. She is no longer the doormat from before; gaining an inner strength that comes from moving on from her past. Kia keeps a strong face against any harrowing events and goes after what she wants.

Overall, this book is a 4.5 star read. The plot, characters and romance are developing faster to create an interesting story. Only Pleasure: Part Two is a great read that I recommend for fans of romance and erotica to read.

Thank you to Lora Leigh for providing and ARC in exchange for an honest review!


Only Pleasure: Part 1 (Broken Hearted #10)

Only Pleasure: Part 1Only Pleasure: Part 1 Summary:
Since Chase Falladay came to her rescue two years ago, Kia Stanton has never been able to forget the powerful man or the kind of life he leads. So two years later when she runs into Chase and his friend, Khalid, and leaves with them that night, she knows exactly where it is all heading. However, little prepares her for the smoldering pleasure she feels in the arms of two men. After years of holding back, Kia is finally able to find freedom...as Chase and Khalid possess her body with forbidden sensations...

Only Pleasure: Part 1 Review:
This book was good compared to the last book, Wicked Pleasures with the plot, characters and romance being much more developed. The main bad part of this novel is that it is divided into three parts. It ends off in an odd place that would have been much better had it just been continued.

Part One starts the sexual relationship between Kia and Chase that does get a little bit tedious because there is only so much sex you can handle before you want something more. It also let's us see more of Khalid, who is a character I definitely want to see more of.

The plot was suspenseful and dramatic, or as much as it can happen in such a short story. With Kia being stalked by her Ex-Husband plus Chase and Kia wondering whether they should pursue a deeper relationship, the story is very interesting.

The one thing that would have been nice is if we got a little bit more background on Kia and Chase's previous relationship. It would have helped a lot of understand where any potential relationship between the two can go.

Overall, this book is 3.5 start read. I will be posting a full review once I have read all parts of Only Pleasure

Thank you to Lora Leigh for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review!


To Love and to Cherish (Wedding Belles #3)

To Love and to Cherish (The Wedding Belles, #3)To Love and to Cherish Summary:
Alexis Morgan has spent the past six years devoted to turning her tiny start-up into Manhattan’s premiere wedding planning company, The Wedding Belles. Now that her business is thriving, it’s time to turn towards her much neglected personal life, and Alexis approaches her relationships like she does everything else: with a plan. Not a part of that plan is Logan Harris, the silent partner in the Belles, and the one person who’s been there for her since the very beginning. But Alexis needs someone fun, and Logan’s all business, all the time—except when a late night at the office ends with an unexpected kiss that leaves the usually cool and together Alexis reeling.

Logan has lusted after Alexis since the day he walked into the tiny Harlem apartment that used to double as her office. But the ambitious wedding planner has always been untouchable...until now. Alexis has made it clear that she’s on the dating market—and equally clear that he’s not in the running. But when Alexis finds herself in need of a date for her sister’s last minute wedding in Florida, Logan knows it’s the perfect time to show Alexis that there’s more to him than numbers and spreadsheets—and beneath the pinstripes and glasses lies a hot-blooded heartthrob. As Florida’s sultry days turn into even hotter nights, Logan’s out to convince Alexis that the fling of a lifetime could just maybe turn into forever..

To Love and to Cherish Review:
To Love and to Cherish was a good way to end the Wedding Belles series. It didn't match the expectations I had after reading For Better or Worse, but still provided a very enjoyable read. It had all the makings of a wonderful Lauren Layne novel with it's quirky humor, steamy romance and lovable characters.

These were two characters I was excited from the very beginning because you could feel the tension between the two and a romance just waiting to happen. Logan blew away every expectation. He was the type of hero that every girl pins for. He is smart, charming, sexy, funny, kind and is the perfect boyfriend material. By the end of the novel I was kind of disappointed that he didn't get a heroine that was equal to him.

"Logan was... everything. He was her friend and her business and her future all wrapped up into one admittedly yummy package. / And Alexis's careful, practical heart, even at its most vulnerable like it was now, just couldn't handle the potential of losing everything"

Alexis on the other hand, gave my mixed feelings. From the beginning of this series we knew that she was aloof and had some emotional problems that she was still dealing with. I started rooting for at the start. It's always wonderful to see someone gain emotional closure and self confidence. As the story progressed she started to move away from being an independent woman to a scared child. It was especially irritating because she would fear change and insult Logan. It was understandable to act like this for a bit because of her past, but throughout 90% of the story is pushing it. Thankfully, by the end of the novel she did pull herself together yet there seemed to be a lack of progressive growth in her character.

"Logan. I don't understand you like this. I don't get what you want from me."
"Yes. You do."

The other characters were amazing as usual. Always bringing a smile to my face, especially Josh from For Better or Worse. It was hilarious to see their meddling in Logan's and Alexis' love life and the way that they protected each other during tough times. It will be sad to let them go with such a heartwarming group of people.

Overall, this book is a 3.5-4 star read. To Love and to Cherish unfortunately, didn't live up to high expectations following the previous book but a great read nonetheless. On the other hand, it was a great way to end the Wedding Belles series and is a very enjoyable romance story that did a wonderful job of tying all loose ends. I recommend this book to anyone who wants to read a Lauren Layne series or wants a good romance.

Thank you to Netgalley for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review!


J.C. Braswell Q&A

Below is a Q&A that I had with long time author J.C. Braswell. He has just released his book Reignfall and in honor of this release, we're going to post this special Q&A session. 
Reignfall is released today! If you want to buy this book, click the link to go to Amazon and if you want to learn more click here to go to the Goodreads page. It is a book that I recommend you try as it is a great way to dive into this new genre. I hope you enjoy reading the answers below and if you want to read my review, click here!

1. What prompted you to become an author?
The desire to open people’s minds about a variety of subjects. Writing is an extremely persuasive tool. Also, CS Lewis and my mother played a huge role in it as well.

2. How did you become an author?

I still don’t consider myself an author. I think it’s one of those titles readers give you.

3. What does your family think of your writing?
They’re all encouraging to varying degrees. My mom was the first believer. I know my wife is proud of me. I think she carries my mother’s torch in that regard.

4. How do you get over writer's block?
I’m really not sure. I know if I ever find myself at an impasse with a story I usually get another cup of coffee. That usually helps me out.

5. What else have you written (essays, novellas, etc)?
Besides some extremely dry articles in academic legal journals, I have two short stories coming out with Scarlett Galleon Press. One is titled Netherlands and will be released in the October anthology Dark Hallows II. The other is titled Rise of Finfolkaheem and is schedule to be part of a two volume set titled Fearful Fathoms. I believe that will come out early 2017. I also wrote a series of short stories last year and combined them in a middle grade/young adult novel titled The Lighthouse Keeper.

6. What is your schedule for writing? Do you have a lot time for other things (hobbies, work, events)?
I stick to Stephen King’s 2,000 words a day when I’m writing. I think that’s the gold standard. It’s not nearly as time consuming as editing. I do find time for my family as they’re the most important thing to me.
7. How did you come up with this idea for Reignfall?
The seeds were definitely planted by my wife. While we were drinking beer during a happy hour my wife looked over at me and started talking about eternal life. Like everyone does when they’ve had a couple, we got into a fairly deep theological discussion about it. I started mapping out a story in my head that grew into Reignfall.

8. Are the views of main characters in this story a representation of your views?
You can find some of my ideology within several characters throughout the story. I tried not to focus my personal views—political, religious, or otherwise—inside one character’s point of view, rather spread them out. But, yeah, they are definitely in there. Even Sullivan captures a couple of my viewpoints. Overall, I wanted to capture a variety of viewpoints from all spectrums of life. I think it would be a disservice, given the nature of the story, to do otherwise.

9. If you have to pick your favorite character, who would it be and why?It would be easy to say Crixtian. He’s a flawed protagonist but not in the stereotypical sort of way. There’s a raw honor to him that he has trouble understanding. It also helps to know his eventual story arc in my head. But at this point in the story, I would have to say Jedediah Bane. I think his personal path of redemption mixed with obsession is a griping arc. I love where he goes in the second book. President Sullivan is a close second. Without giving too much away, I think he really captures the essence of how power and temptation can corrupt the most noble of people.

10. What future books do you have planned?
I have a supernatural thriller titled Ghosts of My Lai coming out this winter, probably near Christmas. It follows group of American soldiers in Vietnam who get lost under unusual circumstances after the massacre at My Lai. Then there’s Reignfall’s sequel A Time For War which I’ll release next year. The first few drafts are finished, and I’m really looking forward to how the story grows. I could talk about the other fourteen novels I’ve drafted, but I’m really focused on My Lai and A Time For War during the coming months.

11. What genre of books do you tend to write in?
Sci-Fi thrillers, Supernatural thrillers, some MG/YG fantasies.

12. If you have to pick a favorite book, what would it be?
It’s a draw between The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe and Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises. Lewis because of the symbolism and Hemingway because of the way he writes and the romantic story. I really love that story.

13. If you have to collab with one author, who would it be?
I think it's going to be Ronald Malfi eventually. We already floated a dark comedy novel about zombies on the Titanic. Yeah, we need to write that book.

14. How can readers discover more about you and you work?
Everything about my writing is at my website www.jcbraswell.com. You can also follow me on twitter (buyer beware) at @JC_Braz. There’s really not much to me. I’m just some ordinary guy.

15. Is there anything else you would like to add that I haven’t included?
Yes, thank you for inviting me onto your blog. I certainly appreciate the time you took to review the novel. The most important part of writing is the readers. A writer cannot thank their readers enough. A writer is essentially inviting others into their mind who don’t have to accept your invitation.

Thank you J.C. Braswell for doing this interview! I will definitely reading the next book after Reignfall and trying out some of his other books. I hope this has motivated you to give this book a read!
He is also having a giveaway on his Goodreads page which can be accessed with the link above. If you don't have a Goodreads account, then comment below and I'll see if I can get a giveaway running here.


The Written Hand

I recently had the project of making a representation of the number six. Instead of using the actual number I used one of the meanings, which is harmony. So below I'm showing some of the steps that I took to make the completed picture...

...It is a very long process but doesn't take too much skill. First, draw an outline of the hand, then fill it in with words. Then go and draw thin lines if the words didn't shade properly. Finally color in the hand any color. Then create a contrasting background. Finally paint in the fire with a variety of colors (even if you think they don't work well together, you can be surprised) and enhance with pencil crayon.



RememberRemember Summary:
When sixteen year old Charlize finds herself unmistakably lost in the forest with no memory how she got there, it was easy for her to assume the angel face boy who saves her was there to. But little did she know that couldn’t be further from the truth.

With a brush of death, she finds new reasons to live after the unexplained death of her father. Her only regret in last three years was letting the one boy she could have loved get away.

Plunged into a world not of her making, there are those that will hunt her, a foe that calls her Little Queen, and her torn heart. Most of all, she will have to remember and face her memories if she is to survive.
Remember Review: 
Remember turned out to be worse than Through the Lens. While the plot and story was there for Through the Lens, it was clearly missing from Remember. Through 80% of the story we are dragged along as Charlize tries to find out what is happening to her. The next 20% is a bucket load of information that is dumped on us, adding to the confusion. The romance was irritating and the character development was almost non-existent.

I get the Charlize woke up with amnesia, but the lack of emotion throughout this story plus not knowing what is supposed to be happening dragged out what should have been a quick read. On top of that we have a love triangle with two guys were not more ill suited towards her. One was the mysterious bad boy, but came off weak and moody. Then there was the childhood friend that was secretly in love with her, who could not figure out who to love. And their version of love was downright cheesy and hard to get over.

Charlize was not much better. She is a beautiful 17 year old girl who, obviously doesn’t realize that she is so attractive to others. She can’t understand why so many guys are suddenly falling in love with her. I could understand that she’s shy and all, but this type of characterization is overdone and boring in the YA genre. It was not used well in this book. This lead to a lot of eye rolling moments.

The one really good think about this book is the paranormal aspect of it which doesn’t show up until the 80% mark. We are introduced to vampires, shifters, Nephilim, angels which made everything much more interesting. It would have been nice for that part to be elaborated on so the book could actually be Paranormal YA. Also, there was the prophecy that came close to the end which really shouldn’t have been part of this book. It was just there to set up a sequel because the ending was so rushed.

Overall, this book is 1.5 star read. The plot was too fast or too slow, the romance was annoying, the characters were unrelatable, but the premise was interesting.

Thank you to Netgalley for providing this book in exchange for an honest review!

Through the Lens (Through the Lens #1)

Through the Lens (Through the Lens, #1)Through the Lens Summary: 
Being a twin isn’t all that bad, nor is it all that good. Being the fat twin makes things a little worse. Seventeen year old, Jessa Shelby has been all but ignored. Trimmed down, but not skinny like her sister, she has decided to make her mark in her final year in high school.

Things begin anew the summer before her senior year when she meets Ethan Hart, a super hot boy with a twisted past. Unfortunately, he has a girlfriend. Relegated to friend status with Ethan, she turns her eyes on football jock, Josh Macon, whose crush worthy too. No longer the ‘fat girl’, Josh seems to be interested in her too.

Spending more and more time with Ethan causes unexpected complications and she finds herself falling for the wrong boy. Josh is sweet but wants more than she can give. His warning about Ethan’s past may have come too late. And gasping for air with a noose around her neck, she has to wonder if trust came at a very high price.

Through the Lens Review: 
Through the Lens is the type of read that I would love because it is of a woman standing up for herself and finding her own identity. This part was spectacular and I loved every moment of it. Unfortunately, it was overshadowed by the mystery aspect and the constant grammar mistakes didn’t help either.

The mystery itself was really interesting. With one of Ethan’s friends disappearing, the suspense of Jessa trying to solve this had all the ingredients for a good mystery. If this story had had just a bit more detail, then it could have been its own book. Since it was part of Through the Lens it should have not been so prominent because as this was happening, the love story was also developing. Neither story got the attention they deserved which left the book feeling a little lackluster.

The romance part was spectacular. I am officially a die hard romance fan so I love when two people who couldn’t be more different found each other and themselves. Ethan and Jessa faced many obstacles, the biggest being the mystery, and still came to each other.

The characters were amazing because they had the depth of real people. They reacted as ordinary people and had problems that we could relate to. I loved Jessa especially because of her backstory and how she handled her new life and love.

Even with all these good qualities, the biggest drawback of this novel is the grammar. This isn’t an ARC, which may have grammar mistakes because it isn’t the final draft. This is the final copy which means that there should be missing words, punctuation or improper usage of words. It does take away from the story but if you can overlook all that the is quite enjoyable.

Overall, Through the Lens is a three star read. The story and romance was captivating but the grammar and the overbearing mystery story line made it into a bit of a disappointment. I do recommend this book as many did enjoy it.

Thank you to Netgalley for providing this book in exchange for an honest review!



ReignfallReignfall Summary:
One hundred years removed from the second Black Plague, America’s population concentrates in massive urban hubs, dependent on the corporation known as GenoSix to produce X-2, a serum engineered to suppress the plague by halting the aging process. Alcatraz guard Crixtian Donovan ignores the politics of it all. He’s content with working overtime for his wife’s next injection. But after she's arrested for a crime she didn't commit, Crixtian discovers the truth behind America’s recovery.

The self-proclaimed “Curer of the Masses” President Sullivan holds court from Chicago. Sullivan's regime uses X-2 as a tool to maintain his several-decades-long presidency and crush those who would challenge his rule. Many have tried. All have fallen. Yet murmurs of an uprising fester within the Fringe, one that involves a ghost from Crixtian’s past, a ghost that will cast him into the middle of a rebellion that will change the country forever.

With America on the brink of revolution, two men will navigate the fate of Sullivan’s tattered red, white, and blue. One will decide how to punish. The other must choose between self-preservation and embracing the revolution by forsaking his wife.

Reignfall Review:
I'm going to keep this one really short. The book had a really interesting concept and this is definitely different than what I usually read. I kept thinking it would be similar to World War Z (I'm not very diverse in this area) but it went into a more political route then expected. From there were are thrown into the action and it does not stop until the very end.

I liked the diverse array of characters that all proved unique and captivating. All of them drew you in, even, the side characters you may have thought insignificant and the villain. The hero was a strong character that makes you want to rally behind him and interested to see how he tackles each problem.

Overall, this book is a four star read. I felt that it was a little too long for me so I got a bit bored at some parts. Other than that, the book was really good.

Thank you to Netgalley for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review!

Into Aether (The Trinity Key, #1)

Into Aether (The Trinity Key, #1)Into Aether Summary:
Colorado teen Theodora (Theo) will do anything to find her missing mom, including travel into the hidden and mysterious Victorian subculture of Aether. She takes a ride with airship pirates to a floating island full of strange automatons and even stranger people.

After a century-old feud reignites, she uncovers the alarming truth about her family's past. Finding her mother is more important than ever.

Into Aether Review:
Into Aether is an interesting first book in a new magical series. It wasn’t a spectacular read but that is to be expected in the first book of a series because we need to get introduced to all the characters and world. It was pretty good, with the captivating premise that with the right world building could become a spectacular book in the second book.

The characters were an interesting mix that contrasted each other and were different then I had read before. Characters like Auntie Grace or her boyfriend really were unique and made the book feel different. Theo was a strong character because she took her life into her own to find her mother and complete the journey. The only thing I could say was irritating about her is the fact that she seems so similar to a lot of other YA heroines. Maybe the next book will change that. 

The plot from the very beginning is fast paced with the first line being "Mom, where are you?". From there Theo is constantly facing action, suspense and a really fantastic adventure. There was one problem with the insta-love but that is to be expected from a YA book. Other than that, the world that was created by Fry is amazing. I can't wait to dive back into it in the next book!

Overall, this book is a 3.5 star read. It was a little rough with the love story but the book has promise that I hope happens in the next book. If you like YA books or the setting for the book then this is definitely a book you should try out.

Thank you to Netgalley for providing this book in exchange for an honest review! 


Dragonmark (Dark Hunters #27)

Dragonmark (Dark-Hunter, #26; Dragons Rising, #1; Lords of Avalon, #5)Dragonmark Summary:
Centuries ago, Illarion was betrayed– a dragon made human against his will, then forced to serve humanity as a dragonmount in their army, and to fight for them in barbaric wars, even while he hated everything about them. Enslaved and separated from everyone he knew and from his own dragon brothers, he was forced into exile in a fey realm where he lost the only thing he ever really loved.

Now he has a chance to regain what’s been lost— to have the one thing he covets most. But only if he gives up his brothers and forsakes the oaths he holds most dear. Yet what terrifies him most isn’t the cost his happiness might incur, it’s the fact that there is just enough human in his dragon’s heart that he might actually be willing to pay it and betray everything and everyone– to see the entire world burn...

Dragonmark Review:
I went into this book thinking that it would be horrible because everyone said that it was an exact copy of Son of No One and Dragonbane. It actually turned out to be better than I originally thought but it wasn't as spectacular as the previous books in the series. The parts that were unique were very interesting and moved at a very fast paced.

Edilyn proved to be an amazing heroine. The best part of her was that she was treated as a pariah in her community and plans to be the best in her horrible situation. She is incredibly inspiring because she does not turn into a vindictive (excuse my language) bitch. She never acted superior and kept all of her morals to not only help herself but others. When she first meets Illarion, in disguise, she treats him with the same respect as she would anyone else. Even when he turns into a dragon, she treats him as a person instead of a thing. Edilyn remains honorable, caring, decisive and kick-assy from beginning to end. She comes off as a perfect heroine even with all her flaws.

Illarion comes off as a nice hero but I think there was something missing. He seems so similar to previous heroes because of their tortured past and never being touched by a loving hand. This book didn't have too much of that angst which I enjoyed. His past did reveal some nice secrets or hints that I'll talk about below. It was nice to see a human (part kikimary) fall in love with a dragon. While Maxis was okay with being human, Illarion despises it so this book is literally about a human falling in love with a dragon.

Their loyalty to each other, like Styxx and Bethany, was extraordinary and strengthened by the fact that they always talked about their problems. The main problem was their romance was falling in love within three hours which really pushes the idea of insta-love. But their path to trust is the one that will draw you in. And this made the plot interesting and unique. Saying that the ending especially came off as haphazardly put together because of it's incredibly fast pace and nothing being explained properly. It came off as unsatisfactory and failed to bring us back in for the conclusion (I'm talking about the last bit of the book that was original).

I didn't actually mind the recap of the previous book too much because it has been one year since Dragonbane came out and two years since Son of No One came out. It provided some important facts that we discovered in the series and made it so I didn't need to re-read the previous books. Saying that, I still don't fully understand why it is there. I get that it showed once again, all the tidbits we learned but some of it wasn't even in Illarion's perspective. If it were in Illarion's perspective, we would have gotten more than a "Illarion thought" or "Illarion winced" and left out a lot of the scenes that were included. It should have proved more depth into his thoughts. We could have even skipped all of that entirely and gone into what Edilyn has been doing this whole time. That would have proved much more interesting because even when she comes back we don't know what happened.

Even when we had stories that went back in time, like Styxx and Bad Moon Rising, they were done in the POV of the character and in such a way that brought a new light to previous events. It wasn't done in here and that did not engage me as much as it should have. I and many other fans would gladly wait longer for her books just so that we can get a spectacular book that really hasn't come since Styxx. It wouldn't matter how long a book takes to come out, just look at ASOIAF which can take up to five years for the next book to come out, as long the book is amazing! I honestly believe that Kenyon is a fantastic author, but her books are just not the same and something, maybe more time on the writing or writing more of the main couples' history/story, should be taken to bring it back.

Overall, this book was a three star read. The first in the Dark-Hunter series and within any of her main series actually. I'm done trying to nitpick for the good stuff and hopefully the next books turn out to be much stronger. Below I'm going to talk about any hidden tidbits from this book so beware of spoilers below. 
  1.  Xyn seems very likely as Urian's heroine because she's a dragon that is missing, which might explain the Dragon Rising. It also means that last of the siblings (Illarion, Falcyn and Maxis) has found a mate. Finally, it should explain Falcyn's comment saying he's not the only one to change into human form (not including Illarion or Maxis).
  2. Suriyel seems to be Maxis' father. We only know of four Arels at this time and by looking at their descriptions and their appearances lead me to believe that they could be related. The only thing left to find it is the mother who still seems to be hiding. 
  3. Savitar's action led to the death of the first Malachai, who is Braith's son which would explain why she hates him so much. 
  4. Thorn and Karma definitely have something going on because of the looks they keep passing to each other. 
  5. Urian might have the ability to shape shift into a dragon like Stryker does, which may explain why his book doesn't start with dragon like the Dragonbane, Dragonmark and Dragonsworn. 
  6. Aeron's two friends seem to be Kaziel and Vawn which means that Kaziel's story is probably going to come up in the LoA series. 
  7. All the baddies are getting together: Apollo, Morgen, Kessar and maybe Noir later in the series. This will strengthen the lines between good and evil which means a conclusion is on the horizon. 
  8. I read somewhere that Nick is the last ark so that means his is the last book in the series and with everyone coming together that may be happening quicker than we thought. 
  9. Savitar can make mates, something only the Greeks were supposed to do. And he can see any possible outcome of the future and that's why he stays by himself on the island which will prove interesting when trying to find his heroine.

For Better or Worse by Lauren Layne

I previously read For Better and Worse and I though it was amazing! If you want to read this book for yourself and discover a new captivating series then look below for all the information and some giveaways!

For Better or Worse (The Wedding Belles, #2)
In For Better or Worse, the sexy second novel in USA Today bestselling author Lauren Layne’s irresistible new series, an up-and-comer Wedding Belle butts heads with the literal guy next door. Will their brewing tension boil over into something more?

He’s driving her insane . . .

When small-town girl Heather Fowler finally gets promoted from elite Wedding Belles assistant to full-fledged planner, she’s determined to put her best foot forward. Unfortunately, her first celebrity client demands an opulent black-tie affair at the Plaza…in three months. Heather’s days become a flurry of cake tastings, dress fittings, RSVP cards, and bridal tantrums. But what she’s really losing sleep over is the live music blaring from her playboy neighbor’s apartment all night. Heather vows to put this entitled man-child in his place, whether he likes it or not.

But a little crazy might be just what she needs.

Five years ago, Josh Tanner was a young rising star on Wall Street, complete with the penthouse and the migraines. But a grim cancer diagnosis made him realize there’s more to life than the corner office. He kicked the cancer and dedicated his life to following his passions; now, if he could just convince his pretty, workaholic neighbor to let loose, too. Once Heather begins to show him her softer side, Josh is surprised when he starts falling for the sweet, vulnerable woman hiding beneath those power suits. Soon it’s Heather’s turn to convince Josh to take the biggest risk of all: love.

For Better or Worse will have readers engaged from the start, and wedded to the idea of a summer and fall season filled with Wedding Belles! 

For Better or Worse
The Wedding Belles, Volume 2
Lauren Layne
Pocket Books
August 30, 2016
ISBN 9781501135156

Early Reviews for FOR BETTER OR WORSE

“This engaging tale has a light, fun style…enough teases are given about the other “Wedding Belles” to create genuine interest in where their stories lead.”
—Publishers Weekly (To Have and to Hold)

“There are family and friends, coworkers, people that aren’t as they seem, wedding information galore, dinners, drinks, chocolate, fear, anger, hurt, sadness, secrets, lies, deceit, tears, laughter, happiness, romance, loving and love…I look forward to reading the next two books in the series, For Better or Worse and To Love and to Cherish…I look forward to seeing what the Wedding Belles will be up to next!”
—Romance Junkies (To Have and to Hold)

“Layne packs as much into this sexually charged and emotionally intense novella (an introduction to her upcoming Wedding Belles series) as most authors do in a full novel…The heat between [Leah & Jason] is enough to melt steel, and the emotional connection and psychological struggles will keep readers engaged.”
—Publishers Weekly STARRED REVIEW (From This Day Forward) 

“[From This Day Forward] is trope-nip to me. Weddings/wedding planners, check. Second chances, check. Sassy heroine, check…As this book is the prequel to the forthcoming Wedding Belles, I cannot wait to get all of their stories!...From This Day Forward is 100% recommended for anyone who likes stories about weddings, stories about people who are a really good at their jobs, relationships that are a tad explosive both in and out of bed, and introductions to new tribes of characters to get to know over the next few books.”
—Fresh Fiction “Fresh Pick” (From This Day Forward)

“From This Day Forward  is a delightful book. Now I can't wait for the other ones in this series…Lauren Layne hit it right on the nose on what goes on behind the scenes…Can Jason and Leah see wedding bells in their future? We can only hope and wait for the next book in the “Wedding Belles” series. From This Day Forward was a great kick-off to the series.”
—Fresh Fiction (From This Day Forward)

Lauren Layne is the USA Today bestselling author of the Sex, Love, and Stiletto contemporary romances and the all-new Pocket Books series The Wedding Belles. She lives in New York with her husband and spoiled Pomeranian. Visit laurenlayne.com, meet the author on Facebook at LaurenLayneAuthor, or follow her on Twitter @_LaurenLayne.

Lauren Layne interviews with THE LIBRARIAN:

The below blogs are hosting a Wedding Belles Bouquet Giveaway to celebrate the publication of the second in the series, For Better or Worse. The Wedding Belles Bouquet will include To Have and to Hold (7/26), For Better or Worse (8/30), and To Love and to Cherish (10/18). You can visit all sites on the Bouquet Giveaway Tour to enter to win–but keep in mind you can only win once! U.S. only. Each winner will receive one copy of each book during the week of its publication date.

Sunday, August 28th: Romancing Rakes

Monday, August 29th: The Reading Cafe & Dirty and Thirty

Tuesday, August 30th: Mrs. Leif’s Two Fangs About It

Wednesday, August 31st: Book Reader Chronicles

Thursday, September 1st: Stuck in Books

Friday, September 2nd: The Book Binge

Saturday, September 3rd: Mrs. Leif’s Two Fangs About It & Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers


The Life of Anna: The Complete Story

The Life of Anna: The Complete StoryThe Life of Anna: The Complete Story Summary:
When tragedy shatters Anna’s life at a young age, she finds hope in two men who take her under their wings. Life is perfect until her sixteenth birthday when her world is turned upside down. Her beloved Jack and Devin have turned into monsters that haunt only the darkest of nightmares; nightmares that soon become her reality.

The Life of Anna follows the naive and innocent Anna as she enters a dark world of greed, politics, and an evil puppet master who pulls the strings to her world. And beyond.

Readers be warned, for this journey is not for the faint of heart. You are about to venture into a world of dark plots, sinister villains, and deeply erotic taboo encounters. Are you brave enough to enter the Life of Anna?

The Life of Anna: The Complete Story Review:

This is not going to be a review like I usually do, instead this will be a rant. It is not going to be about one book but the series in general because I do not want to spend more time in this series. I spent three days that I wish I hadn't used for this and I wished I had listened to my earlier thoughts after reading other reviews.

I picked out this book because it didn't get horrible reviews from friends. It seemed a bit interesting and different as I usually stay away from dark or horror novels. It was horrific in the beginning but that is not why I hated this book. It is because the overall feeling I was left was meh. Why? Because of the plot, character development, everything else! It went from an interesting premise into a mess.

From here on I'll just say any problems in list form. Like I said above this is going to be a rant, it is not going to come off very pretty. I will be crude if I need to be so you have been warned. I will use trigger words because that is what makes up with story and may spoilers so you have been warned again.

Also, you might be questioning why I read the five books when I hated it. Well it had an interesting premise and the first book is pretty bad. I was hoping by the next book it would get better and then I found myself halfway through so I just completed the series. And no, it did not get much better after that. But I did like the ending because it was happy and Anna did deserve it even if I could never get into her head.

First, the sexual abuse and violence. In the beginning and for most of the first book it was necessary to show how Anna starts off and to root for her. It was horrific and left nothing to the imagination. It made me cringe and I watch horror movies like a chocolate addict would eat chocolate. But the abuse kept happening and happening. It was going until the last book, and by that point everything had almost been done. It was boring, still horrific but unnecessary to the plot. It did not prove any point or help the heroine complete her journey, it was just there as a shock factor.

Second, the warning that came with this book up. It came off as condescending saying that grown ups would be okay with this book. As if only babies wouldn't be able to read this without throwing up or having nightmares. Any person would be disgusted by the acts done in this series, and it wasn't as bad as I expected. I mean it was horrific, but was it throw up worthy? No. Nightmare Material? No. It was bad but once I put the book down, it was out of my mind. It seemed as if the author put it there to drive away any one or two star rating, which clearly didn't work. If you want to read a dark book that still gets you captivated read The Last Hour of Gann or Jigsaw Man. The warning also said that everything was done above the legal but that is incorrect. Anna loses her virginity at the age of 16 and has been having orgasms from Devin since she was three weeks old. That is disgusting.

Third, was the side characters. All of them, except Alex who acted like a moody teenager, acted like a horny teenager. Every single one of them wanted to have sex with her over and over again. And did they care that she was abused and forced to become a sex slave? Not particularly. Sure Wilhelm held off for a bit, Kurt had "nice" sex with her and Aaron held out for a couple hours, but come on! Alex was the only good character because he waited until she actually loved him and then had sex with her. Why was she written in such a way that EVERYONE, even the women, fell in love with her! And just because they were nice does not mean that they were right in having sex with her. I get that she is used to sex and needs it to deal but that is not an excuse for all those men to have sex with her.

Fourth, the BDSM labels. Now I may not know a lot about BDSM but I know that it is based on consent (willingly) between all the parties. That does not happen in this book. When she is a captive in the Manor, where most of this stuff happens, she is brainwashed or coerced into doing this acts. That does not count as BDSM in my books because this is definitely not consensual. Especially, the stuff that is done in the last two books.

Fifth, the word choice. After five books written with a limited vocabulary I am sick of the words like "cock" and "pussy" They were repeated at every sex scene, and every ten pages there was another one, and made them all seem the same. This also made the writing come off as childish.

Sixth, the lack of sufficient plot. The last two books were probably the best because we dived right in the Elder/Immortals world that proved to be incredibly interesting. But it was blanketed by the violence and emotional stuff. The first three books had almost nothing and could have been condensed into one book. I kept hoping that something would happen, get in some character development but it was like there was a switch that would turn on for character changes. Nothing to make anything actually believable (that sentence was nice).

Seventh, and I swear this is the last one, was Anna herself. What kind of 11 year old who is raised in an amazing home and has a really good education believes it's alright for a 16 year old to have a sex with a 30 year old. I know she had lost her parents and knew how to deal this with sex but still, common sense? And she can't understand German? It seems like a pretty distinctive language considering she had an education. And during the current time of this series she acted like a three year old. It made sense in the beginning because she would do whatever she could to please her master and avoid pain. I got that, but she never loses that mentality for the rest of the book. When she starts to grow some defiance in her, she throws a tantrum like a child, at everyone who comes in her way. That makes her lack a certain depth needed for a main character, development that should have happened throughout the series and failed to make me root for her. She was a mismatch of traits that could have worked but needed some definite work. There were more problems but seeing how this paragraph is already pretty long and you probably get the point, that's all I'm saying.

There were two good things about this series. The mythology was an amazing idea that should have been expanded more on. The other was the ending because Anna really did deserve a happy and peaceful ending.

Overall, this book is a two star read. The two reasons I liked this book gave this book a 0.5 star, while the rest of the story was a 1.5 star. The individual ratings are:

Enslaved: 1 star
Entwined: 1 star
Embraced: 1.5 star
Ensnared: 1 star
Emerged: 2.5 star (the ending)


Bloodmoon (Bloodmark Saga #3)

Bloodmoon (Bloodmark Saga, #3)Bloodmoon Summary:
Just months shy of her claiming at Carrowmore and fulfilling a centuries-old prophecy, werewolf Ashling Boru has stepped into her role as the Crimson Queen. She finally has the support of her pack and her love for Grey is stronger than ever.

But it's not easy being queen. Ashling's guardian, Baran, has been captured by the Dvergars, a family of evil wolves who will stop at nothing to possess Ashling's power and destroy everything--and everyone--she loves. Ashling must unite the clans and build an army to stand against the Dvergars before it's too late. Unfortunately, the Dvergars also have armies of the darkest creatures the world has ever known.

Shadows loom, growing ever larger as generations of pack secrets begin to unfold. Ashling's people, the humans they protect, and Old Mother Earth herself all hang in the balance of Ashling's choices. Will Ashling have to forsake her true love to save the world? And will she have the strength to do it?

Bloodmoon Review: 
This book is the conclusion to this YA fantasy saga. While the last book in a series is usually the fastest paced, this one seemed to take a step back slowing down to a near crawl at points. While the plot was sometimes tedious, the character development of Ashling was amazing. It is by far one of the best in this series and in YA books.

Ashling proved to be a strong heroine and someone who was worthy of being a Queen. She has really stepped into her role and has not turned into a whiny, over dramatic or manipulative girl. I commend Whittet for writing about a heroine that is believable and not irritating. Obviously Ashling has flaws, but she acts like a normal person (as much as possible in her situation). The only problem I had with her is her love with Grey. It just seemed to forced because they always said why they should be together and took way too much time in this story.

The plot was too slow for a conclusion and needed to have some depth. It had the basic structure that did provide an enjoyable journey, but it felt like there was something missing. It came off too simple or too easy. A part of this comes from the way YA books are written. YA books come off really childish mostly due to the writing. This is just the way I read it because I've gotten used to the way Adult books are written.

Overall, this book is a 3 star read. It was not a fantastic conclusion but it was still nice. It was great to revisit the old characters and to meet some new ones. Also, this book leaves you with a satisfied feeling when everyone gets their happy ending.

Thank you to Netgalley for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!


Firebolt (Dragonian #1)

Firebolt (The Dragonian, #1)Firebolt Summary: 
Dragons. Right. Teenage girls don’t believe in fairy tales, and sixteen-year old Elena Watkins was no different.

Until the night a fairy tale killed her father.

Now Elena’s in a new world, and a new school. The cutest guy around may be an evil dragon, a Prince wants Elena’s heart, and a long dead sorcerer may be waking up to kill her. Oh. And the only way Elena’s going to graduate is on the back of a dragon of her own.

Teenage girls don’t believe in fairy tales. Now it’s time for Elena to believe – in herself.

Firebolt Review: 
This book turned out to be an alright read. It wasn't fantastic as far as other fantasy books go but it did get you interested and curious enough to read the next book. The premise was really interesting but the story itself proved to a bit hard to read. The writing came off as childish and weak with the lack of a large vocabulary. The plot and characters were not developed. The setting was very confusing making it hard to get into the story.

As we started off with the story we are thrown in an action scene. What should have been an intense scene, with the dragons and fighting, came off as cliche. Scenes like the car not starting when they needed to get away, the girl with the daddy issues, the sacrifice her dad makes, and the action. The only thing I could understand is Elena feeling sad about moving because it would take a toll on any girl when she can't develop any connections and got attacked by dragons. The beginning did need some work but the rest of the story was enjoyable.

The side characters were quirky and interesting. It would be great to see more of them and about them. There wasn't much depth to any of the other characters which made them more likeable but hopefully in the next book we get a little more insight into them. The reason they felt so basic is because Dragonian (the school) is exactly like a movie high school. You have the mean girls, jocks, the ice guy that every girl falls for, the nice guy, the best friends and then the shy new girl.

Elena was a main character that needed to be more fleshed out as she lacked any significant development throughout the story. She started off emotionally distraught which was understandable with her backstory. I didn't get irritated by her crying at this point. Then at the halfway point I was getting annoyed by all the crying because she did it at the drop of a hat. She acted like she had no way to deal with or release her emotions, which she did with her friends and boyfriend. While her friendship and love were not developed well, it just popped out there that they were in a relationship, Woods showed that they would be there for her.

Another thing about her character that was poorly done is her attitude towards a confrontation. Now, I'm not saying that she should go jump into a fight and completely get her not wanting to draw attention to herself. But there is a difference between creating a fighting and protecting yourself! She nearly gets killed and instead of looking at other solutions, like getting a guard to watch over during this part, goes back into the same situation and hopes for something better. What makes this is worse right when we are approaching the climax, we are expected to believe that she can lead a mission. She comes up with this great idea that, for some reason no one has thought about this, decides to go there without knowing where it is,without a plan and doesn't want any help even though she knows nothing about what she is doing. Of course it works out, but the climax would have been more believable if her character changed gradually towards that.

The setting was the biggest problem because you couldn't understand where and how everything takes place. Here are some questions that I kept thinking about throughout the book.

1. How is there a place big enough for dragons to fly around in the human realm without them being discovered or being near a city.
2. How does Paegeria have it's own paparazzi or kingdom?
3. Has has no one in Paegeria seen a plane or vice versa?
4. Do all their dragons have lush lips? Shouldn't they be more like lizards?
5. This isn't a question related to the setting, but why all the giggling? You can laugh, chuckle, smile but it was always giggling.

There were a couple good things about this book. First is the Japanese lore mixed in with the Dragon Lore. It proved to be an interesting combination and I hope we get a lot more of that in the next book. Another was the trials at the climax of the book. It was really action packed, and a much better action scene that the opening one.

Overall, this book is a 2.5 star reading. It definitely needed some work on the development but it was still an enjoyable story that makes me want to read the next book.

Thank you to Netgalley for providing an ARC in exchange for a honest review!


Mad Hatter Hat

I'm entering into a contest for Heartless by Marissa Meyer (thanks for the oppurtunity) For the contest we had to make a hat, and we had to make it really crazy! So here is my design, and it is an actual hat.

P.S. I'll post the steps to make your own Mad Hatter hat because Halloween is coming in two months, so stay tuned for that! And yes, you can make this from scratch for under $20.


Formatting Issues

Just putting out a warning for the next few days. As I am fixing the mistakes in each post, it won't let me just update the post I have to repost it because of the problem with the pictures.


For Better or Worse (Wedding Belles #2)

For Better or Worse (The Wedding Belles, #2)For Better or Worse Summary: 
Will a budding wedding planner and her bad boy neighbor stop banging heads and start hearing wedding bells in the sexy second novel in USA TODAY bestselling author Lauren Layne’s irresistible new series that marries Sex and the City with The Wedding Planner?

When small-town girl Heather Fowler finally gets promoted from assistant to actual wedding planner, she’s determined to make it as one of Manhattan’s elite Wedding Belles. Unfortunately, her first client demands an opulent black-tie affair at the Plaza…in five months’ time. Heather’s days quickly become a flurry of cake tastings, dress-fittings, RSVP cards, and bridal tantrums. But what she’s really losing sleep over is the live music blaring from her playboy neighbor’s apartment all night.

Five years ago, Josh Tanner was an up-and-comer on Wall Street, complete with the penthouse and the migraines. But a grim cancer diagnosis made him realize there is more to life than the corner office. If only he could convince his pretty, workaholic neighbor to let loose, too. As Heather lets down her guard, Josh is surprised when he starts falling for the sweet, vulnerable woman hiding beneath those power suits. Soon, it’s Heather’s turn to convince Josh to take the biggest risk of all: love.

For Better or Worse Review:
For Better or Worse is another stellar book in the Wedding Belles series! From the very beginning, the book is hysterical and that transitions smoothly into a breathtaking romance. This is one of the best romance novels I’ve read by this author. It couldn’t have been better, and looked especially good compared to the previous book (which was already pretty good). The couples are amazing, the plot was captivating and the writing flowed seamlessly. The best part is that each character is different even across her series', meaning Josh and Heather were as unique as any other character. For Better or Worse proved to be absolutely perfect and real.

"Can you please, please just shut up until after I leave at seven tomorrow?"
"To go...to the baker?" he asked hopefully.

Heather proved to be a great heroine to rally behind. When she faced adversary she didn’t back down but put her big girl shoes on and stepped to the challenge. She never went to far as she knew when to ask for help. She has an awesome sense of humor and a great personality. There were two things that I loved about Heather. First, when she had to break away from Josh (not a spoiler, it’s romance obviously it will happen) she didn’t turn on him. She would be there for him, and knew she could not stop loving him. I appreciated her honesty about the situation. Second, her journey to finding herself. While she needed a push in the right direction, she was still honest with herself. She found what was not working and changed it so that it could help her.

"She patted his arm. 'Let's just say I think we figured out how to make amends for all those sleepless nights you’ve cause me.' Heather looked around at the other Belles' encouraged expressions and smile almost maniacally. 'You, Josh Tanner, are going to help me plan this wedding.'
Josh starred at her before glancing around the table to see if anyone else was concerned that she was losing her mind. To his horror, the women were all nodding in awed agreement. Seth Tyler gave him a sympathetic look and handed him a nearly fully champagne bottle."

Josh was a sweetheart. An alpha that was never too domineering and was very vulnerable. I enjoyed the fact that he wasn’t perfect and needed to learn from others to fully heal. His secret was a huge one that I didn’t see coming, but did kind of expect. Lauren Layne did a stellar job talking about his sickness without going overboard and becoming a tear-jerker. His reaction to love was not only real but beautifully written. Even if I didn’t agree with his actions, I understood why and that really changed how the book turned out. Finally, this journey to accepting love was stunning. His change from a lost victim (sorry if that’s a trigger) to a strong man. And his surprise at the end had me laughing out loud!

Because Josh Tanner was...in front of her. In an airport. In a tux...."I love you," he said. "I had this whole speech planned out, and Alexis and Brooke and my sister proofread it with a red pen and everything, but as I'm kneeling here awkwardly I realize it's all unnecessary. I love you. I love you more than is sane for any man to love any woman. All the way to the ends of the earth. Damn is that cheesy?" He shook his head slight. "Maybe I should brought the speech after all"

This whole chapter had my heart soaring and my face cramping from all the smiles it brought. I had to edit some stuff out because of spoilers and the quotes do not do the book justice!
One thing though, is the grammar. I’m not sure but there was one are where the words were not flowing as well. The example is in the quote below Heather’s paragraph. I think it should be smiled not smile. But I also understand this is an ARC so this can always show up.

Overall, a definite 5 star read! The side characters were amazing as in any Lauren Layne book and helped to develop the main couple. Like I said above, there were no flaws in this book. It was so enjoyable that I read it in a couple hours. Without going overboard, Layne managed to make us root for Heather and Josh and feel with every word. It captivates you from the very beginning and this is one book that I will highly recommend!

Thank you to Netgalley for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review!