Blood Solstice by Samantha Young

Synopsis:
10775474Enter a world of fierce wolves, stunning magic and romance…

In the final installment of The Tale of Lunarmorte, Caia is caught between the most powerful beings in her world, and they are all desperate to use her for their own means. While Caia struggles to find her purpose, tragedy strikes close to home, and time runs out.

Now she must decide if she will join the extremists she was trying to destroy… or bring them all down on her own terms…

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My Review:
3.5 stars — Well I’m going to say something that doesn’t really make any sense — I stayed up til 5am finishing this book, and yet when I came out of it I was mildly disappointed.  I guess I was just so excited after the conclusion of the 2nd book, and when this one started we were sort of hit with a major infodump right at the beginning and it felt a bit dry to me.

The area in which this book excels, and what kept me flipping pages for more and more was the action.  Ms. Young seriously knows how to write some engaging fighting scenes and gripping suspense.  And I was really just genuinely intrigued with how the war was going to unfold.

Where I guess she lost me on this book was some of the secondary characters…  Particularly Reuben and Jae.  For the life of me I couldn’t figure out what to think about Reuben, he was the most conflicting character I’ve met in a long time.  Someone who was not truly evil or good.  And I guess I just had a hard time empathizing with Jae and what she went through and how she reacted.  I could understand some of the motivations, but it just went too far and I was truly disappointed in her.  I found it amazing how easily she was forgiven by some.  There was just a ruthlessness to her that left me feeling cold.  And don’t even get me started on the forgiveness of Alexa.

I am still totally onboard with Caia — she was definitely a kick ass heroine that I loved to read about.  Some of the other secondary characters were still fantastic too — Ryder, Magnus, Vil and Laila…  Lucien was up and down for me.  I felt for some of what he was going through, but he was mega stupid about the whole Rose situation so I guess he disappointed me in a fashion too.

And while I was totally engaged with the story, I don’t know if my emotions were turned off, but I didn’t get as emotional in this story as I did when the tragedy happened in the first story…and so much MORE happens in this one.  I don’t know if it was just me and a mood I was in, but I should have been bawling at so many points in this story, and I just wasn’t.

And I guess the final point against the story that will probably have me rounding down instead of up is the really disappointing romantic aspect.  I’m a romance girl at heart, and I just wasn’t feeling it much in this series, particularly in this last book.  It just sort of existed, but I didn’t get any butterflies for our couples, or feel the connections as much as I wanted to I guess.  Again, maybe that was just me, but it always just felt kind of rushed and there and while it could be a driving force for some of the plot, I just wasn’t feeling it at all (no swooning for me).

So all in all I did enjoy this series, I guess it just brought different things than I was expecting and while the action and plot was totally engaging, I was missing some of those extras that turns a series into one I love.

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River Cast by Samantha Young

Synopsis:
22012723Enter a world of fierce wolves, stunning magic and romance…

Swept into the world of the Daylight Coven, Caia is caught between her loyalty to the Daylights and her new insight into the hearts of the Midnights. As more obstacles are thrown in her and Lucien’s way, Caia is pushed further adrift from him and Pack Errante. With no one to turn to, Caia has to make the most difficult choice of all…

Who does she truly belong with? The Daylights or the Midnights?

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My Review:
4.5 stars — Totally finished this book with my heart racing and my finger itching to one-click the next book in the series.  I am soooooo thankful that this series is finished and so I don’t even have to wait, b/c I became totally wrapped up in the world and all the crazy happenings going on.

I thought Caia grew up quite a bit in this book.  And she was faced with so much adversity, from the meddling in her love life (which was kind of sad for me, b/c I missed having a bit more romance between Caia and Lucien) to her discoveries about both Covens.  I thought she handled things pretty well given she sort of had the responsibilities thrust upon her.  And while it was frustrating to see some of the misunderstandings happening between Caia and Lucien, I could see how it came about and mostly didn’t want to smack them too hard (though I would have smacked more Lucien than Caia anyways).  I really came to love Caia as the book went on, and felt for her having to make so many hard decisions and not feeling like she had anyone she could trust and turn to.

I also enjoyed getting to know Ryder and Jaeden through their POVs as well.  I really loved their little side plot, it made me extremely happy….it provided that something that I was missing from the story otherwise (and yes, I’m vaguebooking b/c I don’t want to spoil it necessarily, even if I totally saw it coming).

The bad guys have me all flustered.  I honestly can’t stand the girl bad guy (again, being vague), and was so glad to see that my dislike of that character was for good reason.  And can I just say that I totally called who Kyrios was??  But not knowing what their plans are is just making me crazy!!!

So yeah, probably not a great review, but I was trying not to give anything away.  But I definitely enjoyed this book even more than the first one and am excited to see how it concludes!!  It’s been awhile since I got into a paranormal series (I’ve been reading a LOT of contemporary lately), so it’s been a really fun change of pace!

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Moon Spell by Samantha Young

Synopsis:
10439599Enter a world of fierce wolves, stunning magic and romance.

It’s bad enough feeling different among the human crowd, but feeling different among wolves?

No one said returning to her pack would be easy, especially after ten years without them, but seventeen year old Caia Ribeiro is unprepared for the realities of the transition. Raised in a world where kids aren’t scared by bedtime tales of the bogeyman but by the real life threat of enemy supernaturals who might come creeping into their community to kill them in their sleep, Caia is used to the darkness; she’s used to the mystery and the intrigue of the ancient underworld war she’s bound to by chance of birth. What she’s having trouble with are pack members treating her with wary suspicion, the Elders tucking secrets behind their backs, and her young Alpha, Lucien, distracting her with a dangerous attraction from her decision to uncover the truth.

But as the saying goes ‘the truth will out’ and when it does, Caia will only have so long to prepare herself before the war comes pounding on their door threatening to destroy the safe, secret lives of the wolves… and the girl they protect.

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My Review:
4 stars — After a less than impressive first read by this author, I actually picked this book next because it had less “good” reviews by my friends than the other paranormal series I have by her, and I kind of wanted to get the “bad” book out of the way if that makes sense.  So I was actually pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this book!  It had some of the pitfalls of the other book I read (Smokeless Fire) — a bit of info dumping in places, but not nearly as bad.  And I found myself interested in it much more quickly.

In general I really enjoyed Caia.  She had a vulnerability to her that speaks to me in characters…it’s just a personal preference type of thing.  I guess I like the outcasts.  Occasionally she would get on my nerves with her choices, like how she dealt with Sebastian’s crush for example.  And she really could act her age, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, it’s just surprising sometimes b/c so often the heroines in YA books act more mature.  But overall she really tugged at my heartstrings with all that she was going through.

I guess part of the reason you really noticed how young Caia was is because of how much older her romantic interest, Lucien, was….not that he always acted like it, but it was a bit of an age gap…one you wouldn’t notice if they were both adults, but it added a strange feel to their romance.  Now, despite that, the kisses were hot.  But the progression from there was a bit of a surprise.

I don’t tend to read a lot of shifter paranormal books…I’m not entirely sure why, I just don’t gravitate towards them.  But I appreciated the world that was created in this book, and the background of all the paranormals in this book…  Sometimes it got a bit confusing b/c there was so much information, but I think it will start to become easier as the books go on.

And I really loved a lot of the secondary characters — from fellow lycans Magnus and Ryder, to the witch Marion and the sassy faerie Saffron.  They added great moment of levity and (obviously) sass, and I look forward to more glimpses of them.

So definitely looking forward to the next book in the series and finding out what’s going to happen in the war and all that shiznit.  A bit on the fence about the romance, but I was glad that there was at least a little bit of it in this book.

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Smokeless Fire by Samantha Young

Synopsis:
12926109FEAR THE HEAT…

When eighteen year old Ari Johnson is transported from her bedroom into the chilling realm of Mount Qaf – home to the terrifying and mercurial Jinn – she learns a truth that rocks her very world. Suddenly her anxiety over college and her broken friendship with Charlie seem like small change compared to the war she now finds herself stuck in the middle of. Her unease isn’t lessened any by the hot guardian, Jai, who won’t stop following her around everywhere – a Jinn whose loyalty Ari hates to question but must. She has no idea who she can trust.

When the truth burns through her life in its determination to turn it to ashes, Ari will have to battle with ancient deadly creatures, epic family drama and heart-wrenching romantic entanglements.

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My Review:
3 stars — Generally meh.  It had a slow beginning, and there was a lot of info dumping (which I guess kind of had to happen given the whole world that Ms. Young was creating, but it was still a little dry and there was a LOT to keep track of).  The writing was ok, and I’m somewhat curious about what’s going on with the Sultan and the 7 Kings, b/c there’s a lot of mystery and machinations going on there, but quite honestly it just wasn’t enough to make me want to finish the series — I just want to find someone to give me a basic rundown on what happens, but I don’t want to invest my time.  :S

So even though this is a 3 star review, it’s probably going to come across negative b/c there just happened to be a lot that bugged me or just wasn’t intriguing enough and I wished for more from, kwim?  It’s not that it made for a bad book, but I guess I was just disappointed in the end.  I wasn’t that enthralled with any of the main characters.  Jai could have some potential, and was basically the only saving grace for me…but I just didn’t get enough of him in the end.  Ari had some good moments, but in general she didn’t really inspire me.  Her hangups where Charlie is concerned could have taken this down to a 2.5 stars…there was really not much of ANYTHING redeemable about Charlie to me, and so her obsession with him just made for boring reading.  She wasn’t that nice of a character to her other friends at all.  And she came across fairly flat a lot of the time.  I was actually really intrigued by Ms. Maggie, and then she just disappeared in the background and that was that.

I really wanted a bit more from the romance aspect, and it just wasn’t there.  I’m not a huge love triangle fan, and honestly I didn’t feel much from either side of the triangle.  I don’t know what drew Jai to Ari actually…it felt a little forced.  And Charlie was such a douche, I just became annoyed with him hanging on and her feeling conflicted over him.

And I thought the development of her powers was kind of too easy and boring….  I can’t really say more about that without spoiling.

So while it was cool to see a book series about a new and different paranormal aspect, it ended up sucking up a lot of time explaining and there wasn’t as much action as I was expecting.  So I won’t end up reading the next in this series, but I do have a few other first books in the series by Samantha Young, and I’ll definitely give them a try and see if I enjoy them more.

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Unmaking Hunter Kennedy by Anne Eliot

Decided I needed to go back and reread this book, and I definitely enjoyed it even more than the first time through, so yay!  Definitely a solid 4 star read this time.  But I posted my original review below.

Synopsis:
15783623After a car accident–an event he considers a prank gone bad–pop star, Hunter Kennedy is forced to hide out with his aunt in small-town Colorado. He’s supposed to rest, heal his scars and attend high school in disguise until the press dies down. But he only wants to get back to work.

Worse, the girl who’s been assigned to make him over into a geek is a major geek herself. Vere Roth is a chattering pixie, a blushing tornado and a complete social disaster. He’s never met a girl who’s never-been-kissed, believes in romance and thinks Hunter’s a ‘nice’ guy.

Funny thing is…Hunter is nice around Vere because she’s his first real friend. He also can’t seem to stop sharing his secrets or keep her out of his heart. Knowing he’d never deserve a girl as sweet as Vere, he resigns himself to the friend zone, and helps his new bestie with her own makeover.

She tortures him daily for ridiculous guy advice on how to snag her life-long crush. A guy Hunter thinks is totally wrong for Vere, and sadly, one who has taken note of Vere’s transformation.

When Vere asks her best friend for some kissing advice, Hunter can’t resist…

And that’s when things get out of control…

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My Review:
Between a 3.5 and 4 stars…I waffle. On the surface, it’s 4 stars all the way baby! Great witty banter, Vere and Hunter/Dustin were adorable together and that first kiss….SMOKIN. I thought the backstory with Hunter and his Mom was interesting, and believable about a teen star. I waffled on some of the depression bits b/c I suffer from depression and b/c it starts after his 6 week stay, the book kind of glossed over what kind of help is out there…so you didn’t see Hunter’s transition on that part. That being said, I LOVED the beginning parts where she’s describing his mental states or whatever…. It was so fabulous to see Hunter fall in love with Vere too…just a whole bunch of awwwww all over the place. The ending…well, that’s where things go weird. I both loved and hated the ending. It came across very teen movie ending…I just can’t imagine it in the real world. So I would say it’s unrealistic that a star would do that…but at the same time *sniff* *blink blink* OMG, so sweet!!! See how Jekyll and Hyde I am? It was the same for a few different parts with the ending…like Jenna’s reaction when she found out….that was opposite, that was actually very realistic, but I wanted her to be more sensitive to Vere. And Charlie’s actions were a bit crazy, and then how easily Hunter forgave him…I guess I didn’t always get Charlie. Like how could he be best buds with such a lame guy like Curtis? On the other hand, I LOVE LOVED LOVED Charlie’s interactions with Vere and Jenna. The whole scene where they first meet Dustin just killed me… SO yeah, this was a big waffle read. I know most of this didn’t make sense, and probably would not help anyone decide whether to read it or not…but at this point I’m just babbling for me.

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How I Fly by Anne Eliot

I’m actually reading this book in the 2 book bundle available from amazon here: http://amzn.to/1QF2zyP
(it’s the same price as each book individually, so it’s a good deal!)

Synopsis:
24253369*WHAT IF IT’S TIME TO MOVE ON…?*
Over six months after an accident that broke her legs as well as removed her boyfriend from her life—because Cam Campbell left town and dumped her—high school senior, Ellen Foster, wants to move past her broken heart. She’s off to attend a summer photography workshop at a real university along with her best friends. Ellen’s determined to find a new love—or at least a summer boyfriend. In the dorm, she meets Harrison Shaw. He’s a handsome photography student, a charmer who likes her, and a perfect way to forget her past.

*WHAT IF IT ALL GOES PERFECTLY…?*
Ellen thinks she has everything she wants. Her summer program couldn’t be better. She’s half in love with Harrison Shaw, and she’s going after her next scholarship. But when she kisses Harrison, she can only remember how Cam Campbell used kiss her better, sweeter, and how he used to make her feel like she could fly…

*WHAT IF SOMETHING IS NOT RIGHT…?*
When Cam shows up at the university it’s a shock, especially to Ellen’s new boyfriend. Cam’s distant, different and very afraid to hurt Ellen again. He asks Ellen if they could be friends despite the past and how they’ve both changed and Ellen agrees. But after all they’ve been through, can Cam and Ellen ever be just friends?

*WHAT IF…?*

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My Review:
3 stars — I’m unsure how I feel after finishing the story.  After rereading the first book, I could already tell I was in a different mood than the first time I read it, and so I’m sure that affected my enjoyment of finally finishing the series…but in the end, I guess I was a bit disappointed.  I think I just had lower tolerance for the drama found in these books, and they just felt really unrealistic so much of the time that it took away from my enjoyment.

I knew from the ending of the first book that things were not going to go all smoothly for our star-crossed lovers.  But I guess I didn’t expect them to spend so much of this book apart.  And since I love me a romance, I was disappointed in the lack of that in this book.

Honestly, I think most of my disappointed feelings can be summed up in Harrison Shaw.  (And here’s where the review could get a bit spoilery, so please skip the rest if you haven’t read the book).  I was leery of Mr. Shaw right from the first moment of meeting, and actually pretty much called his role in this book from close to the beginning.  So watching it all unfold wasn’t that fun for me.  I mean, I really liked Ellen and Cam, so to watch them (mostly Ellen) succumb to yet another super villain just wasn’t what I was looking for.  I guess I would have preferred more real life adversity instead if that makes any sense.  But I suppose that wouldn’t have made for quite as much of a book.  It just felt very overdramatic and unrealistic to me and so I didn’t enjoy any of the climax at all.

And quite honestly, I KNOW that Ellen was trying to get over Cam, but I just couldn’t understand how she could be so naive about Harrison.  And knowing how important her photography was to her, I guess I was just surprised that she was so easily sucked into Harrison’s machinations.  I try to remind myself that she is just a teenager, only *just barely* a senior in high school, and so I should give her a little slack.  But I just wanted her to figure it out on her own or something I guess.

In the end the part I found most interesting in this book was finding out what had happened to Cam in the 6 months between the first book and this one.  But that was really only a small part of the story.  And in general I enjoyed Cam’s POV more in this book than Ellen’s POV.

So yeah.  Disappointed with this conclusion.  Would have also liked a bit more on the epilogue and resolution with Ellen and Cam, and especially with Laura and Patrick.  Laura’s crazy antics actually annoyed me a bit more this time around too, so maybe I really am just in a mood.  😦  I hate it when I’m in a mood, I prefer to just blindly like things.  😉

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How I Fall by Anne Eliot

Got this and the next book in a 2 book bundle, so finally going back and finishing this series.  So had to reread this one again — thus includes my original review as well as a reread note.

Synopsis:
22494015*WHAT IF YOU HAD AN IMPOSSIBLE CRUSH?*
Impossible because she’s Ellen Foster. The beautiful, smart, and possibly fragile photography-girl. You’re Cam Campbell. The guy who plays football 24/7 with no life. But what if during junior year, you decide to finally try for her phone number—until this glitter-crazed new girl ruins your plan. Worse, the girl is Irish, awkward, and insists you and Ellen should become best friends—with her! Only, you don’t want to be friends with a human tornado, and you think Ellen might need to stay a crush. This is because after one interaction you’ve discovered Ellen Foster really is fragile. Your problems and secrets are too big for anyone to understand.

*WHAT IF YOU COULDN’T RESIST?*
But what if the three of you wind up assigned to a group photography project, where rumors are already circling about the new girl being ridiculous? You know she’s nice but very alone, so you convince your crush to help protect the new girl. Suddenly, working on the project makes hanging out, texting, talking—and even high school—seem fun and completely normal when it’s anything but normal.

*WHAT IF YOU KISS*
What if you kiss Ellen Foster and it’s perfect enough to make you believe in things you shouldn’t. You tell her secrets and share your dreams. You make the kinds of promises and create plans to be together that might be impossible to keep when you’re only sixteen and your parents control your entire future,
but…

*WHAT IF YOU HURT HER…*

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My Review:
ON REREAD: Probably would round down to 4 instead of up to 5.  The things I noted in the review below bothered me a bit more this time around.  But I’m going to leave it on here b/c I could be just in a mood.

4.5 stars — this book had me mega grinning from practically the first page.  Honestly, there was so much to love about the characters, and it was just one of those sweet ya romances….well, that is until they ran into conflict and my heart was ripped out when I discovered this was actually a 2 book series!!!  Seriously, how did I not know that??

REALLY had a hard time deciding whether to round up or down on this one.  The parts that I LOVED had this book at a 5++++.  But there were a few little things that bugged me, and one of those was the naivety of Cam.  I really disliked how blinded he was to his parents….well, sometimes I felt like he totally saw them for the snobs and jerks they were, but then he’d be like “don’t worry, when I explain it will all be good.”  I just don’t get where that came from?  It was the same with his friends.  Was he really that oblivious to how Ellen was treated?  But then I think, maybe it’s b/c he was only 16 and truly just thought that good would prevail and all that.  So yeah, not sure how I ended up feeling on that in the end.  I mean, I LOVE LOVE LOVE Cam.  Seriously, LOVE that boy.  And he and Ellen together were so sweet and just OMG <3’s everywhere awesomeness.  So maybe that’s why I was disappointed in him?

Regardless of that little niggle, I LOVED the characters.  I am chagrined to say that when I read the synopsis, I somehow got it into my head that Laura was either younger, or had perhaps a developmental handicap.  Honestly, I HAVE NO IDEA where I got that from.  Going back and rereading it doesn’t enlighten me, so feel free to laugh your butts off.  Seriously.  Laura was hilarious.  She was such a nice addition to the cast, along with Patrick.  So it wasn’t just a romance developing, but an expansion of both Ellen *and* Cam’s friend group.  Loved the dynamics between the 4 of them.

Some of the bits in the climax bordered on unbelievable, but it didn’t bother me as much as it has in previous books by Ms. Eliot.

And on a weird side note, as a Western Canadian, and HUGE CFL (Canadian Football League) fan, I found the football notes irksome on occasion….but that’s a TOTAL personal thing.  Honestly, I’m from Saskatchewan, and it’s like a religion over there.  So to see the CFL sort of relegated to lameness or second best rose my hackles.  😉  But since Timmie’s was appropriately worshipped in the book, I will forgive the American author.  Besides, maybe it’s different over in Ontario, especially closer to the border like the town was.

And now that I got rid of that silly aside, I will just say that it is BY FAR my favourite Anne Eliot book.  Seriously, most of it had me grinning and laughing and just happy so much my cheeks hurt.  Now I will have to impatiently wait alongside the rest of the fans for the conclusion.  *leg starts tapping uncontrollably*  HURRY!!!

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The Butter Battle Book by Dr. Seuss

Teh butter battle bookBlurb: Dr. Seuss’s classic cautionary tale, introduces readers to the important lesson of respecting differences. The Yooks and Zooks share a love of buttered bread, but animosity brews between the two groups because they prefer to enjoy the tasty treat differently. The timeless and topical rhyming text is an ideal way to teach young children about the issues of tolerance and respect. Whether in the home or in the classroom, The Butter Battle Book is a must-have for readers of all ages.

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5 Stars

When I was a young girl, my father used to read Dr. Seuss books to me before bed.  He would do accents and speak in a comforting rhythm that never failed to lull me to sleep. It’s one of my earliest memories of reading. And one of my fondest.

I knew once I found out I was going to be a mother that I would get to pass on that love of Dr. Seuss to my daughter.  I’m confident it will turn into a tradition because my daughter loves to read Dr. Seuss to me; I can only imagine when she has a family of her own to read too.  It kinda makes you feel small when you think about it that way.  Something that you did will continue to live on after you expire.

But enough with the history lesson, the reason I’m telling you this is because this book is on my Read Harder challenge list from Book Riot.  Read a book out loud to someone.

This book should be mandatory reading IMO because it touches upon a subject that is very difficult for some people to deal with; the judgment of others. Many types of judgment can be seen in our soci0-economic structure; in our past as well as our present.  Just because some people don’t talk the same way, look the same way, act the same way, or do the same things that you do; like say, eating bread and butter a certain way, doesn’t mean you are better than them. Or that they should be treated differently for it.

This book explains to children a complex concept in a simple way that can be easily understood.  Dr. Seuss was a brilliant writer/poet and his books will continue to remain in mainstream literature because of his catchy rhymes and awkward illustrations that show kids a more adult view of the world.  A view that they can identify with and understand.

It’s my favorite Dr. Seuss book of all time. And that’s saying a lot since he had so many great books.  Highly recommended to people of all ages.  You are never too old for Dr. Seuss!

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Breaking up with Barrett (English Brothers book #1) by Katy Regnery

Breaking up with barretBlurb: Barrett English, aka “the Shark,” is the fair-haired, first-born of the English brothers, and the CEO of the oldest, most prestigious investment banking firm in Philadelphia. He rules the boardroom with an iron fist, refusing to take no for an answer and always getting his way.

Emily Edwards, a first-year doctoral student at the University of Pennsylvania, grew up in the gatehouse on the outskirts of Barrett’s childhood estate. The daughter of his family’s gardener and housekeeper, she was always looking through the window of privilege, but forced to remember her place at the very periphery of the kingdom.

When business partners suggest that a fiancee might soften Barrett’s image over business dinners, he approaches Emily for the “job” of fiancee. And while love wasn’t necessarily on Barrett’s radar, he begins to realize that Emily always has been. But will his take-no-prisoners boardroom tactics work on the heart of the woman he loves.

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5 Stars!!!!

Holy crap this book is awesome!!!!  This book was just what I needed. It has depth of character, a decent plot and the emotional intensity I love when reading romance. Its not all about the physical.  That shows me a different side of the same coin.  Layers people! Layers!

Characters:

Emily: she is emotionally mature but at the same time has intense feelings that she doesn’t know how to hide.  The way the author wrote Emily was so perfect!  She was level headed, yet spontaneous and loving. The balance the author weaved between physicality and emotion was just brilliant!  One of my favorite parts is when she realizes he needs more than a love interest, but a partner to trust and share with.  ::Sigh::

Barrett: He is like an alpha male but not. I don’t know how else to put it.  He was confident and demanding in business.  But when it came to her, her wasn’t overbearing.  You could see he respected her for more than her body.  He wanted more from her than just sex, he wanted time with her.  Just to be around her.  And that, I think, makes him one of the most sexiest men I have ever read about.  My favorite scene with Barrett is when his mother comes in and he is is bed.  OMG, it was hilarious.

They had some sick chemistry!  The steamy scenes made me blush.  I also loved how the author incorporated every aspect of their lives into the book for great background, such as Emily’s schooling and family along with Barrett’s family and business.  It really helped me get a full picture of their dynamic past as well as how their relationship would work in the long run.

The climax to this book was subtle but poignant.  It was written so gracefully . Something I lack but can appreciate in others.  Well done! Katy Regnery, you have a fan in me.

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Try by Ella Frank

Synopsis:
17798649Try – verb: to make an attempt or effort to do something or in this case…someone.

Sex. Logan Mitchell loves it, and ever since he realized his raw sexual appeal at a young age, he has had no problem using it to his advantage. Men and women alike fall into his bed—after all, Logan is not one to discriminate. He lives by one motto—if something interests you, why not just take a chance and try?

And he wants to try Tate Morrison.

Just coming out of a four-year marriage with an ex-wife from hell, a relationship is the last thing on Tate’s mind. He’s starting fresh and trying to get back on his feet with a new job at an upscale bar in downtown Chicago.

The only problem is, Tate has caught the unwavering and unwelcome attention of Mr. Logan Mitchell – a regular at the bar and a man who always gets what he wants.

Night after night Tate fends off the persistent advances of the undeniably charismatic man, but after an explosive moment in the bar, all bets are off as he finds his body stirring with a different desire than his mind.

As arrogance, stubbornness and sexual tension sizzles between the two, it threatens to change the very course of their lives.

Logan doesn’t do relationships. Tate doesn’t do men. But what would happen if they both just gave in and…tried?

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My Review:
3.5 stars — So I was honestly all over the fucking place with this book (excuse the language).  I ended this book and overall felt I’d enjoyed myself — so I was initially thinking 4 stars.  But here’s the thing — the book ends on a cliffhanger of sorts (middle of an unanswered question), and I didn’t immediately want to snatch up the next book…and that doesn’t seem like a 4 star experience at all then.  And then I started reading reviews on Goodreads (which is always a bad idea before I’ve gotten my thoughts out), but I was just curious how others felt (and I think I was trying to figure out if I wanted to read the next book).  And I could agree with things from both the good and the bad reviews (and this book really does seem to be very polarizing — lots of mega fandom and lots of hate).  So I just sat there.  Stumped.  And I’m still kind of stumped.

So here’s the thing — there’s a LOT of sex in this book…and it is an erotica, so that makes some sense.  And in general the sex was actually really hot and steamy for me.  But there got to be so much of it, and each encounter was quite long, that it got a bit mundane somewhere along the way.  I did appreciate that there was a progression to it for the two men, so it didn’t feel like “straight Tate” went from zero to gay in 2 seconds.  There was a lot of experimenting, and getting used to it.  But wow, were these 2 insatiable.

And I actually enjoyed the interactions between Logan and Tate — they had some good banter, and even their fighting was kind of hot and volatile.  And I enjoyed the few moments we did get where it wasn’t just about sex — like their first “date”, or the coffee shop incidents.  But inevitably even those just led to sex.  It was like you would maybe get a glimpse of something more to their relationship, but then nope — back to sex.  And I love to read about sex, don’t get me wrong…but it’s nice to feel other things between your characters too.  What else, besides sexual attraction, was drawing these two together?  So I ended up feeling unfulfilled…I think that’s what had me baffled at the end.  I wanted something more.

There were little things that bugged me — how come they kept having meetings with the ex-wife, but then nothing would happen at those meetings?  Just felt like a plot device to bring more encounters between Logan and Tate in a different setting.

And in the end the thing that has me rounding down instead of up was the ending.  I mistakenly didn’t look and realize this was a series, and so to have it just end so abruptly kind of turned me off.  And from what I read the 2nd book ends the same way.  That’s not enticing to me.  And maybe if there was more development in the *romance* department in the next book, I’d be more interested…but from my quick scanning, I’m not sure that it’s a whole lot different than this book…just new complications.

At least it wasn’t a total failure like some other books I’ve been reading lately, but I am sad that it wasn’t all that and a bag of chips for me.

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