Review: The Harder I Fall, by Jessica Gibson

20619405

 

Part of a series? Yes, but the next installment is about another set of characters.

Cliffhanger? No.

Self-Published.

Pages: 215

Category: New Adult.

Genre: Contemporary Romance.

Blurb:

Becca Langer was not a normal girl, she didn’t have normal girl problems. For most of her life, she’s had to take care of herself, her younger brother Chad, and her drunk mother. She’s lived under the shadow of what her father did when she was ten years old. Forever branded by his actions.

College was her escape, she could get away and finally live. Her dream was to make it in the New York Ballet Company one day. That for her meant a long road full of hard work and dedication. She didn’t have time for distractions, and Levi Klein was definitely a distraction.

Will Levi be able to crack through her tough exterior and really see the wounded soul underneath? Becca needs to be loved, but the question is, will she let Levi love her?

 

 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20619405-the-harder-i-fall?ac=1

 

REVIEW:

 

I received this book via Netgalley for an honest review.

While the blurb isn’t all that telling, it made me think that it’d be the kind of stories I’m always hungry for. While it’s a nice and sweet read, it’s not at all as full of angst and emotional as it’s supposed to be.

Be warned, I might not be so tender even though I thank the author for the effort. I hate writing negative reviews, but every books can’t be my cup of tea.

In my opinion, when an author decides to tackle heavy issues and when an author decides to give a really, really tough background to the main character, the story needs to be emotional, needs to puts us to our knees and knock us down to better chain us to the main character, to all characters, looking for their new beginning, building themselves a new life, a better one.

Here, everything seem to just happen and I couldn’t connect fully with Becca. She opened up way too easily and too fast which contradicts completely with her character and with what we’ve been told only a few pages before. She also gives in to Levi so fast! I mean, the girl is supposed to be closed off so as a reader I’d need to see her inner struggles, the way Levi had to actually fight for her.

Everything was happening without a real idea of the time frame, without being actually conscious of the transitions. It was unsettling to the point of keeping me at arm’s length. There’s basically no or close to no build up.

Also, the dialogues seemed forced most of the times and the lack of descriptions sometimes was weighting down my reading pleasure. If only the dialogues would have been amazing it wouldn’t have been so bad, but I really had a hard time with the dialogues.

To be honest, I think this story could have been cut in two to better give the author the opportunity to develop everything from the plot, twists, consequences, stakes and characters. Then, I’m pretty sure that I would have been on board with Becca and Levi’s story. In the end, I never bought their story, their love and Levi is still an abstract character with too many things unsaid about him, things that could have brought him to life otherwise. Or so it seems.

But at the same time, when I think about Becca’s tragic past I can’t help but somehow praise the author. After all, I’m pretty sure it’s not easy writing about such things and while it’s a miss for me, I can understand if other readers are moved by this story.

Who read this book? What do you think about Becca and Levi’s story? Are you looking for reading Chad’s story?

 

RATING:

20140103-095135.jpg to 2.5

Review: Taint, by S.L. Jennings

18366077

 

Part of a series? No.

Cliffhanger? No.

Category: Adult

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Warning: Intended for adult readers.

Self-Published.

Pages: 219

Blurb:

Right now, you’re probably asking yourself two things:
Who am I?
And, what the hell are you doing here?

 

Let’s start with the most obvious question, shall we?

 

You’re here, ladies, because you can’t f*ck.

 

Oh, stop it. Don’t cringe. No one under the age of 80 clutches their pearls.
You might as well get used to it, because for the next six weeks, you’re going to hear that word a lot. And you’re going to say it a lot.
Go ahead, try it out on your tongue.
F*ck. F***ck.

 

Ok, good. Now where were we?

 

If you enrolled yourself in this program then you are wholly aware that you’re a lousy lay. Good for you. Admitting it is half the battle.

 

For those of you that have been sent here by your husband or significant other, dry your tears and get over it. You’ve been given a gift, ladies. The gift of mind-blowing, wall-climbing, multiple-orgasm-inducing sex. You have the opportunity to f*ck like a porn star. And I guarantee, you will when I’m done with you.

 

And who am I?

 

Well, for the next six weeks, I will be your lover, your teacher, your best friend, and your worst enemy. Your every-f*cking-thing. I’m the one who is going to save your relationship and your sex life.

 

I am Justice Drake.
And I turn housewives into whores.

 

Now…who’s first?

 

http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22227607-taint

 

REVIEW:

I don’t know how you feel about this book’s blurb, but honestly I was immediately intrigued. It’s the main purpose of a blurb after all and this one is really different from what you can find out there, quite fitting for an unusual plot!

Honestly, I had a hard time rating this book. I know how many readers are completely head over heels with this book and I really see why, but I’m not as won over as I thought I would be.

I enjoyed reading this book, stating otherwise would be a blatant lie. It’s always refreshing to read a book from a male’s POV. I read many books from the woman’s POV or books written with two POVs, but reading one with a male’s POV is always a refreshing experience and quite fun too. 🙂

Here, I was taken by surprise. I was expecting a story with several layers of angst, something quite dark that would shake me, that would be almost thought provoking or at least would play with my comfort zone. In the end, not at all.

Don’t get me wrong, Justice Drake is an interesting character, quite believable and his POV wasn’t boring at all. But it took me longer than I thought it would to warm up to him fully. Also, Ally didn’t help as at first I didn’t like her at all. Still don’t all that much to be honest.

The premise itself is very different from what I’ve read so far and I’m not disappointed at all. It’s not a twisted plot, the consequences for the characters quite understated, but it still works.

The writing style is quite flawless and the author made it quite easy to like Justice Drake. At least, I liked him quite early on. 😉

But other than Justice, I don’t have any characters that interested me all that much which is slightly annoying. Is it because there are too many characters? Maybe. Is it because Ally isn’t as charismatic as I’d like? Maybe. I don’t have the solution and I’m pretty sure I’m one of the few thinking that way.

But just for Justice Drake and the premise, I’m happy that I picked up this book. It’s my fault if I was expecting something a little darker and with angst. The author maneuvered expertly her story and it was enjoyable.

I will not remember much of this book in a couple of months or less, but it still provided me of a good read over the weekend.

Who read Taint? What do you think about Justice Drake?

 

RATING:

3 to 3.5

Review: Breakable, by Tammara Webber

17936925

Part of a series? Yes.

Cliffhanger? No.

Publisher: Penguin Berkley.

Pages: 368.

Category: New Adult.

Genre: Contemporary Romance.

Blurb:

He was lost and alone. Then he found her.
And the future seemed more fragile than ever.

 

As a child, Landon Lucas Maxfield believed his life was perfect and looked forward to a future filled with promise — until tragedy tore his family apart and made him doubt everything he ever believed.

 

All he wanted was to leave the past behind. When he met Jacqueline Wallace, his desire to be everything she needed came so easy…

 

As easy as it could be for a man who learned that the soul is breakable and that everything you hoped for could be ripped away in a heartbeat.

 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17936925-breakable?ac=1

 

REVIEW:

I remember when I first read Easy, the first installment that can be read as a standalone. It was when it was self-published and I read it on its first day of release. Shortly after, I had to buy the paperback because it was that good. You can only imagine how excited I was to read Lucas’s POV and discover more about him and his past.

It was a great read, but I’m a little disappointed. Easy will stay my favorite!

Breakable isn’t just Easy told from Lucas’s POV because we have an access to his past from that awful moment that changed him and his life forever to the scenes happening in Easy. So, basically, you won’t be bored by some retelling of what happened.

Though, this book is too much of an internal musing than real “live’’ scenes. Aside from the scenes from his past, everything seems to be happening with his internal thoughts on display and very little to no dialogues. It’s told, not showed. Or, it makes me feel that way. Sometimes I even thought I should take up another book for a couple of days and come back to Breakable to really keep enjoying it and not be bored. But I kept going on because it’s Lucas after all! And I was moved by his story, by his evolution. I loved the scenes from his past when he was a teenager. Everything felt quite raw and rough, exactly in adequation to his feelings. I understood him and I think it’s important even if it’s a fiction.

I liked to know exactly how he sees Jacqueline. It’s really powerful and yet you can feel his vulnerability, his fears. It was great and a more mature NA book than most you can find out there. It’s really refreshing and yet very intense.

I was glad to discover more secondary characters to the point of needing to read their own stories. I’m quite intrigued by Eve, or Boyce too.

Tammara Webber has the talent to be a story-teller even though this one isn’t as much my cup of tea as I was expecting it to be. Maybe I was expecting too much, as it’s usually what happens with me when I’m anticipating so much a book.

In my opinion, you will enjoy this book only if you’ve read Easy and if you’re a fan. Otherwise, you might be lost and you’ll be bored by the way the story is told and not exactly “showed’’.

Who read Breakable already? What do you think about it? And about Easy? Which character you’d like to read their story next?

 

RATING:

3

Review: Covert: Cover Cracked, by Missy Marciassa

22009970

 

Part of a series? Yes.

Cliffhanger? Not really.

Category: Adult, but the series started as a NA.

Genre: Contemporary Suspense with a touch of Romance.

Self-Published.

Pages: 317

Blurb:

When 23-year-old Elle can’t explain why her job as an Information Scientist at the Library of Congress keeps her so busy (because she’s actually a CIA operative who just became field rated), her boyfriend dumps her, so she decides to focus on her career and enjoy a fling.

 

Navy SEAL Reese Beckwith seems like the perfect fling material except the more he sees Elle, the more he wants to know about her, and she can’t resist him. Things get complicated when Reese spots her with her CIA partner, a known womanizer. His questions for Elle get more pointed: he sees the potential for more than a fling, and once he sets an objective, failure is not an option.

 

Yet Elle tries to keep Reese in the “fling” category as her first major assignment heats up, becoming more personal with each development. When her personal and professional lives collide, Elle is put to the test. Does she have what it takes to be a covert operative? Will she have to choose between love and her career?

 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22009970-covert-cover-cracked

 

REVIEW:

 

I received this book via Netgalley for an honest review.

This book is the third installment of what started to be a NA series but is now a cross between NA and Adult without it behind gruesome at all. It’s really mild, more so than I expected – and anticipated.

You can read this one as a standalone as the author makes a fantastic job at settling the characters, the previous events without impacting the rhythm of the story and the way things progress.

Though, the first two chapters are a little slow because I think there’s no need to state four times that Elle is a new Agent or that she has a hard time finding balance between her new job and her personal life. I felt like the author was feeding us the details as if we couldn’t quite remember them.

Fortunately, soon it becomes way better and the actual plot takes off. Also, meeting Reese is very welcome. 🙂

Elle is an interesting character. I mean, she’s a CIA agent! You can’t really find more badass for a female character than that. And yet, she stays a girl easily relatable to. She has troubles with her coworkers, guy troubles, misses her friends and so on. I liked her almost right away which isn’t always that easy with me.

Reese is an interesting character, but I would have loved to find him struggling some more against his building “feelings’’ for Elle. He’s interesting, I love the alpha male behavior he has going on without it being the cliché we often find in books. His banters with Elle at the beginning are quite entertaining.

The secondary characters are interesting, with a special mention for Preston. Now, I even want to read the previous installments to see more of him. 🙂

The writing style is efficient in this book. It flows well and I wasn’t bored while reading.

The plot itself is well-built even though I could see some twists way before they happened, but maybe it’s because I watch way too many thrillers and action movies. But seriously, it’s a refreshing plot from what I usually read, it uses interesting twists and gives a great opening for the next installment.

I’m pretty sure I’ll read the next one because I want to see where it’s going, how Elle is doing or how Reese, Preston and the others are doing.

I’m happy that I had the chance to discover a new series and a new author.

Who read this book? What do you think about this series? What do you think about Reese? Preston?

 

RATING:

4

Review: Taming the Bachelor, by M.J. Carnal

17940590

Part of a series? Yes. (The next installments will focus on other characters).

Cliffhanger? No.

Self-Published.

Pages: 174

Category: Adult.

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Blurb: 

Ex marine and bad boy, Mark Moretti, made a pact with his childhood friends to live life to the fullest and never allow a woman to tie him down. After years of success and the world at his feet, he is determined to make that pact a reality. A move back to his beloved Los Angeles threatens to change the future he had written for himself when the shy and beautiful, Sophie Barringer, ends up being the Maid of Honor at his sister’s wedding.

 

Sophie has been burned at love. The last thing she needs is a self proclaimed bachelor to turn her head. But her heart may have other plans.

 

Forced to spend a week together in paradise, can they deny their steamy chemistry and stay away from each other or will they give in to lust and take the chance? Can Mark get over his player reputation to take a shot at love or will fate be cruel enough to deny them their happily ever after?

 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17940590-taming-the-bachelor?ac=1

 

REVIEW:

I heard such great things about this book that I decided to give it a shot. Though, I waited a while before reading it. Now, I must say that it’s a complete miss for me. I rarely feel so disappointed.

I can’t deny the fact that there’s potential for this book. The premise is interesting, but did the characters have to fall in love almost right away? Playing the lust card in books is really great and fun, but stating that the girl is afraid of commitment and of love and the guy is a bachelor for life and player… Then how come they can fall in love after a couple of days? Because, basically it’s what happened in this book. Sure they wait a little before confessing their love, but no more than a few days.

I find it weird, unbelievable — it’s a fiction, but still — and quite a turn off for me as a reader. I don’t like stories with characters that fall in love at first sight. I can never really get in the story. It’s a matter of personal taste, of course.

Also, the beginning got me very confused. There are so many characters thrust into the story at once that I couldn’t have even the time to warm up to the story, build up my interest and understand who was who. I was really confused for a couple of chapters and it’s an issue.

The plot itself could have been interesting, but in the end the timeline seems a bit off and many things are left unsaid. You have several POVs at once which I hate — I’m sorry if I’m harsh, but I’m trying to explain how I truly feel. I enjoy it when a story is told from more than one POV, but it needs to be done in an orderly manner and not to the point that you don’t even know which POV it is. Why put Caleb’s POV, a few of Molly’s and Ryan’s or even Layla’s when the main story is about Mark and Sophie? I still don’t really understand right now because it doesn’t bring anything to the story.

Sometimes, I couldn’t really picture the real difference in the characterization of the male characters. They blended at some point and it’s sad because the group dynamic was interesting.

So, I’m going to stop here because this review isn’t very enthusiastic and it’s useless to go into more details. This book wasn’t for me and I know many other people don’t feel the same. I tried to explain why this book is a miss for me and it’s not because of the plot. The characterizations and the POVs are my main issues and it explains why I really didn’t enjoy reading this book. I hope you won’t keep it against me if you loved it! 🙂

 

RATING:

20140103-095135.jpg I almost rated it 1 star because that’s how I truly feel about this book, but at the same time I can only imagine how difficult it is to write about so many characters and build a story from there.

Review: Ransom, by Rachel Schurig

21933426

Part of a series? Yes.

Cliffhanger? No.

Category: New Adult.

Genre: Contemporary with Romance.

Self-Published.

Pages: 277

Blurb: 

**The first book in a brand new series from USA Today bestselling author Rachel Schurig. This New Adult Contemporary Romance novel is a complete story with no cliffhanger.**

 

Daisy Harris has no reason to suspect that her day will be any different than usual. She’ll go to class, alone. She won’t speak or make eye contact. She’ll spend her entire day doing her best to go completely unnoticed. That’s what life is like for Daisy now—an endless cycle of loneliness and fear. A life lived hiding behind the walls she so faithfully maintains.

 

Then she sees it. A magazine, left behind in class. A simple picture—just his face. And it changes everything.

 

It’s been a year since she’s seen Daltrey Ransome. A year since he and his brothers left town to pursue their dreams of rock and roll superstardom. A year since he left Daisy behind—left her to watch as everything she knew crumbled around her. She’s been running from Daltrey ever since, desperate to keep her secret.

 

But she can’t run anymore. And now that Daltrey has found her—the girl he’s loved his entire life, the girl he’d give up everything for—he’s determined never to let her go again.

 

 

 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/22032984-ransom

 

REVIEW:

I received this book via Netgalley for an honest review.

This story is exactly what I was expecting and even a little bit more. It’s not just a romance novel and that’s why I think it has that little something more that will stay with me for a while.

If you’ve been following my reviews, you must know that I love stories with rock stars or musicians. I can’t resist and while I don’t enjoy reading all of them, I still need to read more and more. Ransom is not like the other ones out there.

The fact that Daltrey and Daisy have been best friend since they were little kids gave something more to this story, enhancing more their chemistry. The author managed perfectly blending their past with the present, showing us how close they’ve been for years, how important they were for each other. In my opinion, it’s well-done.

The secondary characters weren’t just relegated in the background. They truly had a role, a purpose in the plot, in the characterization of the main characters. In fact, I can’t wait to see them all in the next installment!

Moreover, the author tackled some heavy subjects and it’s done with taste, making Daisy’s behavior very believable and rendered her all the more likable. I could relate to her easily.

Daltrey’s POV chapters wren’t that numerous and sometimes I’d have loved them to reflect even more the intensity of his emotions, of his anger even. But still, it gave us a nice input and a new rhythm to the story.

The plot was interesting with just a few twists, but still I wasn’t bored because the characters and their dynamic was too interesting to get me bored. I had a hard time putting the book down after the first few chapters that were a little too long or too slow to settle the whole situation.

If there’s one thing I’d have loved to see way more in this book it’s the actual relationship between Daltrey and Daisy. I’m sure you’ll see what I mean once you’re finished with this book.

I look forward to reading the next installment and I’m quite eager to know which bother will be under the spotlight. Cash maybe? 😉

What do you think about this book? Do you like Daltrey? Which brother would you like to see more of in the next book?

 

RATING:

4

Review: Worth the Chance, by Vi Keeland

18461788

 

Part of a series? Yes.

Cliffhanger? No.

Category: Adult.

Genre: Contemporary Romance.

Self-Published.

Pages: 300.

Blurb: 

Meet Liv Michaels
It may have been seven years, but I’d know him anywhere. Sure, he’s grown, filled out in all the right places, but his captivating blue eyes and cocky grin are exactly the way I remember. Even though I’d much rather forget.

 

Liv Michaels is almost there. She’s smart, determined and weeks away from landing the job she’s dreamed about for years. Time healed old wounds, even her broken heart from the devastation of being crushed by her first love.

 

Meet Vince Stone
Women love a fighter, especially a good one. Lucky for me, I’m damn good. But there’s one woman that isn’t interested. Not again, anyway.

 

Vince ‘The Invincible’ Stone is every woman’s fantasy…strong, sexy, confident and completely in control. Growing up surrounded by chaos, he’s learned never to get too attached. Love will drag you down. He adores women, treats them well, puts their own needs before his own…for the night anyway. With the biggest fight of his life coming up, his focus should be on training.

 

When fate brings Vince & Liv back together again, there’s no denying the chemistry is still there. But can Vince erase the old scars their past left behind? Or will Liv hurt him instead?

 

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18461788-worth-the-chance?ac=1

 

REVIEW:

It’s definitive. I can’t resist a book with a MMA fighter. This weakness of mine isn’t diminishing with time and Vince isn’t going to change my mind!

Will this book stay with me? No.
Did I enjoy reading it? Yes!
Do I think it’s a good book in the genre? Yes.

The plot isn’t original even though there’s a twist I think is interesting, but maybe just slightly not used to its fullest or else it would have been an even more appealing story. Instead, the plot is a lot centered on Vince and Liv, which is not a surprise considering the genre of the book, but is too reductive in a way.

Vince and Liv are interesting characters and I like the fact that they already have a past together. It makes it sweet and more believable as the romance starts quite easily and soon. Otherwise, it would have put me off.

The writing style is efficient, but I’m not surprised. I know that Vi Keeland is talented when it comes to write about chemistry between characters.

It’s a fast read, fast paced story and I think it could have been a hundred pages longer to better make a use of the subplots and even the secondary characters. I can’t help it, I’m greedy that way. 😉

Who read this book? What do you think about Vince? Is he one of your book boyfriends? 

 

RATING:

3.5 to 4