Off Limits by Clare Connelly

Off limitsBlurb: “I want to taste you tonight.”

With chemistry this hot, it’s worth getting burned…

Billionaire Jack Grant is totally off-limits to Gemma Picton. He’s wild, deliciously dangerous…and her boss. When working late turns X-rated, it’s better than her wildest imaginings—and Gemma’s imagined a lot! But Jack has major emotional baggage, so when Gemma starts wanting to heal his heart as well as enjoy his body, she knows she’s in big trouble…

 

 

 

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Netgalley

3 stars

Whoa! This book was full of some serious graphic sexy times.  And it was nearly on the first page.  Now I love graphic sex scenes, however, and I may have said this before; there is a balance that needs to be displayed for me to like the book as a whole.  I need depth of character as well as hot lovin’.  I need intimacy as well as carnal actions.  And this book had all of that, but it was nearly too late in the story for me to start caring about the characters.  I barely finished it TBO.

The chemistry was on point.  It was a bit overused though, to the point where I was wondering what else they really had in common that would make this a lasting relationship.  GEmma knew him but he didn;t really make any effort to know her outside of work or sex. Total turn off form me as an alpha lover.

In fact, Jack Grant was a grade A dick when it came to behaving towards women.  His back story explains this a little in flashbacks but I don’t think it was enough for me to forgive him for treating them that way.  So I was already a bit salty toward him from gate.

And Gemma was a bit of a pushover when it came to pleasing her boss (pun intended) so that didn’t endear me to her character either.  She had some serious ambition though, which I can relate to in a work atmosphere. And she wore her black sheep status like a damn face tattoo, something that also moved her into the likability category for me.  So I wanted to push through and see if my mind could be swayed. Which, if an author can make me feel for the characters after I’ve already made a decision on them is a big deal for me.

And she did change my mind towards them in the end, but because it took so long for us to get THERE, it impacted my attitude towards this story in a much more negative way.  And I think I’m pretty lenient when it comes to rating so for this to happen is kind of a bummer for me.

I received this book from netgalley in exchange for an honest/unbiased review.

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All of Me (The Bridesmaids Club #1) by Leeanna Morgan

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Blurb: Four friends. Twenty-two bridesmaids’ dresses.
One random act of kindness that will change their lives forever.

Tess has given up looking for Mr. Right, but that doesn’t mean she’s given up on love. When she reads a newspaper article about a young couple who’ve had everything stolen from their home, including four bridesmaids dresses, she knows she has to help.

But by helping the bride, Tess risks exposing a past she doesn’t want anyone to know about. She does everything she can to minimize the danger she’s in, but she does the one

thing guaranteed to destroy everything – she falls in love with the wrong man.

Logan Allen has spent most of his career reporting on the news from around the world. When a letter arrives from Afghanistan, the trauma he’s been living with is about to explode back into his life. He betrayed a small Afghan village and Tess thinks he’s betrayed her.

From their first random act of kindness comes an experience Logan and Tess will never forget. And maybe, if they work together, they can create a future that’s better than anything they’ve left behind.

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DNF

I tried. Like really hard to get into this book.  The chemistry was there, the adventure was there.  It was just going soooooo slow.  And I apparently have an issue with patience since I just quit on it after about 33%.  The cover, title and blurb attracted me. Unfortunately, the pacing of the story killed my enjoyment of this book.

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The Black Chapel (Chapel #1) by Marilyn Cruise

20452700Blurb: What would you do if a sexy billionaire asked you to marry him just for his money?

Scarlett hates her new job as a stripper, but she can’t afford to quit or she’ll lose her house and won’t be able to afford to pay for her dad’s chemo. One night, the handsome billionaire Michael Manning visits the club and shows interest in Samantha—Scarlett’s stage name. Scarlett is immediately attracted to Michael, but she refuses to date anyone she meets at the club.

The next day, Scarlett’s friend drags her to church, and to her surprise, Scarlett meets Michael again. He doesn’t realize she’s Samantha from last night (she wears a mask while performing) and asks her out. But Scarlett would never have guessed what kind of a scandalous, yet utterly irresistible deal he’s about to propose…

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3 stars

So the romance was wanting but I did enjoy the way Scarlett was able to juggle being two people at once without getting the lies mixed up.  That was entertaining as all get out.  And her dedication to helping her dad even though it was a degrading experience gave her a bit of dimension. But I must confess, it was crystal clear it was a ploy to make you care more about her character because if she didn’t have that going for her, she would have fizzled out for me. That was really the only thing I liked about her.

I kinda think Michael should have know it was Scarlett once he kissed ‘them’. I mean, he doesn’t even mention it, which I just found weird.  And frankly it made me think he was missing a few sandwiches short of a picnic.  Now, the sex scenes were on point and I’m glad I read this book, but the characters were just too flat for me to really care about them or what happens to them.  The plot is shallow to begin with so I guess I should have expected it.

So, I will not be reading anymore of this series because the ending had too many loose ends that I felt should have been tied up in this book in stead of leaving them hanging to entice you to read the next one. This may sound weird but it didn’t feel like an authentic ending. It felt unoriginal.  Maybe I read to many of these types of books because it felt trope-y and while I love a good trope, this one just was okay.

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Existence (Existence Trilogy #1) by Abbi Glines

existenceBlurb: Pagan Moore doesn’t cheat Death, but instead, falls in love with him.

Seventeen year old Pagan Moore has seen souls her entire life. Once she realized the strangers she often saw walking through walls were not visible to anyone else, she started ignoring them. If she didn’t let them know she could see them, then they left her alone. Until she stepped out of her car the first day of school and saw an incredibly sexy guy lounging on a picnic table, watching her with an amused smirk on his face. Problem is, she knows he’s dead.

Not only does he not go away when she ignores him, but he does something none of the others have ever done. He speaks. Pagan is fascinated by the soul. What she doesn’t realize is that her appointed time to die is drawing near and the wickedly beautiful soul she is falling in love with, is not a soul at all.

He is Death and he’s about to break all the rules.

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5 stars

This author will be at Book Bonanza 2018 so I thought I’d try her stuff out.  And I kinda loved it. It was pretty classic paranormal love story.

Pagan is hard headed and stubborn.  I really like how she copes with her unique ability. She doesn’t necessarily shy away from it, but attempts to help them, at least some of them. I admired that about her character, she didn’t shy away from the unknown. And she didn’t try to know all there was to know about her ability either, she just….allowed it to be a part of her as much as it was without forcing anything.  It was organic and worked well in this story.

I really loved how her and Deaths’ relationship evolved.  It was a slow simmer that came close to boiling over a few times.  He was a smart ass know it all with a gooey center.  The lovingly way he watched over her as she slept when she was scared and when he sang to her was enough for me to wish for my own reaper to come sweep me off my feet.

They had a more mature relationship than most teenagers, of course because of their other worldly knowledge. One of the best things about this book though is their ability to be intimate with each other without it getting physical!  Just lovely. I’ll definitely be reading more of this author in the future.

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Never Kiss a Stranger (Never #1) by Winter Renshaw

never kiss a strangerBlurb: It was an innocent mistake…

All workaholic real estate broker Addison Andrews wanted was one night of pleasure, and picking the right guy was no different than shopping from a catalog thanks to the dating app on her phone. His name was Wilder, and his profile was blank – just a sexy picture of a man who promised every wicked intention of a one-night stand.

The agreement was simple. One night. No last names. But the second their bodies melded together in the sheets of their posh Manhattan hotel room, there was no denying they fit together like two pieces of a broken puzzle.

There’s just one problem…

Addison unknowingly swiped right on the one man she wasn’t supposed to be with – her new stepbrother. All it takes is one bite of forbidden fruit to become addicted, but being with him has major consequences for their entire family. And if anyone found out about them, the career she worked so hard to build would crumble to the ground.

But Wilder Van Cleef doesn’t care about the possibility of a scandal. He wants her, and he’s willing to do whatever it takes.

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3 stars

This one was okay. The chemistry and sex carried this book as the characters themselves didn’t really have much in the way of depth. You can tell from the blurb what kind of book this is, and it was exactly what I expected. For some reason though, I wasn’t digging this story arc like I usually do.

Addison was selfish and while that was a turn off, I admired her dedication to telling Wilder no.  She just wanted to get hers and didn’t really care about anyone else.  But Wilder just kept pushing and it wasn’t even like a cute pursuit, it was borderline stalkerish.  Like dude, how many times does she have to say no before you get it?

And yeah, I know in this specific instance, Addison really didn’t want to say no, another thing that kinda turned me off actually.  I can’t stand when people just don’t say what they mean.  Maybe I’m reading too much into it and not letting the fiction take me away but these kinds of situation really rub me the wrong way.

But….I was able to ignore all that because holy rusted metal batman, the sex scenes were on FIRE!  And that’s what kept my interest throughout the book and ultimately what kept this book above 2 stars.  So there you have it.

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Promise to Keep (Promises #2) by Jessica Wood

PTKBlurb: I’ve loved her since we were seven. We were best friends. We even made a pact to marry each other if we were both still single at thirty. I grew up thinking I would always love her for the rest of my life.

But I was proven wrong. Because the first time I made love to her turned out to be the first time I hated her. It became the first time she hurt me, and the first time I wanted nothing to do with her.

Today, nine years after the day that broke us apart, we are both thirty and single, and fate decided to intervene. I finally discovered that the reasons behind her betrayal were far different from the ones I’d created years ago in my mind.

Now I’m torn between my hatred over what she did and my undying love for the one girl who I’ve held close to my heart for most of my life.

But is the truth enough for me to forgive her?

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Favorite Quote

“Forgiveness is me giving up my right to hurt you for hurting me.” Anonymous

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2 stars

Real disappointed in this book… I got this book back in 2015 and I’m pretty sure my reading tastes have changed because while I loved the first book, I was less than impressed with this one.

It seemed it was just the same story but from the male MC’s POV.  So really I just read the same thing.  Not to mention the premise was completely unrealistic and I know I know, its fiction and so doesn’t necessarily have to be realistic. However, even in this world there are some rules that apply.  And I just didn’t believe it.

The blurb describes the story in a nutshell. But honestly it just drug on and on before it got the part where I was finally getting new information.  It was filled with a bunch of past tense things that were intended to give us depth of character and background but we had all that from the first book so it ended up just feeling like fluff to hold folks over to the next book.

Now don’t get it twisted, I do enjoy alternate POV’s with the same story but this one was just poorly executed IMO. Not gonna finish this series which is a bummer because I hate when I bail on a series.

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Hooking Up by Helena Hunting

Hooking upBlurb: Amalie Whitfield is the picture of a blushing bride during her wedding reception–but for all the wrong reasons. Instead of proclaiming his undying love, her husband can be heard, by Amalie and their guests, getting off with someone else. She has every reason to freak out, and in a moment of insanity, she throws herself at the first hot-blooded male she sees. But he’s not interested in becoming her revenge screw.

Mortified and desperate to escape the post-wedding drama, Amalie decides to go on her honeymoon alone, only to find the man who rejected her also heading to the same tiny island for work. But this time he isn’t holding back. She should know better than to sleep with someone she knows, but she can’t seem to resist him.

They might agree that what happens on the island should stay on the island, but neither one can deny that their attraction is more than just physical.

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4 stars

So the beginning of this book kinda threw me.  It’s very unlike the first one, even though you don’t need to read them in order as they are not really a series, I feel reading the first one would be beneficial. I totally get why Amalie did what she did after finding out the husband was unfaithful.  I would probably have found the closest male and tried to jump his bones too.  But I would not have felt guilt about it after.  🙂

I felt the beginning of this book moved too fast for me.  The cheating and then diving into a sexual relationship just doesn’t jive with me for some reason.  Everyone knows that the first sexual relationship you get int o after a break up is a rebound! Those are the rules!! LOL, okay I may be holding on to tight to that.

Armstrong’s methods for attempting to win her back were childish and a bit ridiculous.  Trying to scare her into getting back with him because of her families status?  That’s quite frankly laughable.  I guess that might work if you were super famous or rich.  But while they may have lived comfortably it was in no way inferred that they were either of those things.  So really, who cares what others think right? And it took forever for the divorce to happen.  I mean, if its contested it can take about 6 months but not like super long after that, I would have expected Amalie to be smarted that that and just pull the infidelity card from gate. But she isn’t your normal character.

Maybe I couldn’t get my head into a believable space for the little things in this book but lucky for me the sex and chemistry made up for it….in spades!  If you are looking for a emotionally charged sex fest, this is the book for you.

I received this book fro Netgalley for an honest/unbiased opinion.

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The Horse and His Boy (The Chronicles of Narnia #3) by C.S. Lewis

the horse and his boyBlurb: Narnia . . . where horses talk . . . where treachery is brewing . . . where destiny awaits.

On a desperate journey, two runaways meet and join forces. Though they are only looking to escape their harsh and narrow lives, they soon find themselves at the center of a terrible battle. It is a battle that will decide their fate and the fate of Narnia itself.

 

 

 

 

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3 stars

My daughter really wanted us to keep reading this series so I pushed through this book but I was never really a fan of this story. I think this might be my least favorite CS Lewis book in the Narnia series.  My daughter loved it though.  She was very excited to read it and I think we may have finished it faster than TLTWATW.

I found Aravis to be a bit spoiled and overbearing.  We see the potential for her character to grow but it happens at such a slow pace for me that I kinda just gave up on her.  Shasta seemed to be a bit of a pushover, never really coming to any conclusions on his own.  Just kinda letting events happen to him as opposed to facilitating them himself. And the horses seemed to be more of just extras to tie in the Narnia theme.  Their personalities reflect Shasta and Aravis, making them less likable to me due to lack of originality.

I did enjoy the hermit quite a bit along with the king and the young prince as well. I could have spent more time getting to know him more.  Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy are the ones I wanted to learn more about really, but they were only in it sparingly.  The good news is, my favorite book in the series is next so yea, more Pevensies!

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Juked (Texas Mutiny #1) by M.E. Carter

jukedBlurb: Juked: verb.

/jook-t/
A slang soccer term meaning: faked out, deceived, confused your opponent
See examples Daniel Zavaro and Quincy Watson:

As the rising star in Houston, Daniel has found fame as Captain of his Pro soccer team and the city’s most eligible bachelor. Daniel has everything – except someone special – and that suits him just fine. He doesn’t want, or need, complications.

Quincy has baggage, and lots of it. After a tragic accident spins her world on its axis, she finds herself as a single mother, raising a newborn nephew she never knew she had. Between parenthood, her full-time job, and dealing with the suffocating grief of losing her sister, every day is a struggle.

When they begin to cross paths unexpectedly and often, an unlikely friendship starts to evolve. Feelings change. Lines get crossed. What happens next surprises them both…

Before they know it– they’ve been Juked.

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4 stars

This was a cute, easy going romance.  I didn’t really feel a whole lot of chemistry throughout in it. What I did feel was Daniel’s admirable work ethic and friendliness.  He was sweet and kind.  Not really my kind of guy TBH. I like them a bit more assertive.  He didn’t seem to really care enough about Quincy.  Or else I didn’t see enough for me to really think he cared.  That’s the only thing that really affected the likability of this book.

Quincy was pretty relatable.  She was logical and responsible; both qualities I’m a huge fan of.  She does show the baby a bunch of love and you get to really see the struggle from inept mother evolve to expert which was one of the best things of this book IMO. Again, not a whole lot with regards to chemistry on her part either so the romance bit was a bit bland for my tastes.

The sports bit was nice. We see his team dynamic and how he interacts with his manager which was a nice added layer to his character.

I’d read another by this author.

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Shattered Stars (Broken Skies #3) by Theresa Kay

36480990Blurb: Unexpected allies. Unexpected betrayals. Unexpected abilities.

The last thing Jax Mitchell ever wanted was to be a weapon. Her abilities are unpredictable at best, but with her twin lost, there’s no one else with enough power to take on Jastren and his mental manipulations. She doesn’t have to do it alone, though. Not only can she rely on the unwavering support of Lir, Rym, and her human friends, she also ends up with help from a surprising source.

Meanwhile, her twin brother Jace—his body controlled by Jastren, and the shattered pieces of his mind locked inside—has become a monster. The struggle to hold on to what’s left of his humanity has left him weak and more confused than ever before. Every thought, every impulse, and every memory has the potential to destroy him—and everyone else around him.

The futures of both the humans and the E’rikon are on the line, but as ulterior motives and political machinations are revealed, it becomes clear that the betrayals aren’t restricted to only one species. Can Jax and Lir get everyone to work together in time to prevent the two species from destroying each other? Can Jace find some measure of redemption for all he has done? And will Jax be able to harness her powers… without losing herself in the process?

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5 stars

This story was fast paced and attention grabbing from the first page. This is not some easy plot that you can guess at the 30% point.  No, it makes you think and gasp and cry and rage!  And if you are a fan of Sci-fi like me you will appreciate not only this story but HOW it was written. It’s almost a throw back to the older authors with their deep world building and danger from multiple directions.  Such great story telling.

Jax is one of my favoritist and most memorable characters I’ve had the pleasure of reading about.  I could read about her forever.  She’s feisty, intelligent, responsible and incredibly vulnerable.  She has no qualms about fighting for what she believes in. One of the things I love about her is the fact that half the time she is playing it by ear. She has no idea how to handle everything going on around but she just doesn’t quit!  I can relate so hard to that you guys.  She is forgiving and isn’t too proud to accept help when she needs it.  I mean, yeah she can be a stubborn little shit too but the good outweighs the bad.  🙂

Lir is so understanding, like the perfect counterpart to her wildness and impulsiveness.  He grounds her when she needs it and doesn’t try to control her when she gets wild.  He just accepts her as she is and loves her.  This little alien boy has grown and matured over the course of this series. I think maybe even the most in this book TBH.  I really enjoyed this aspect of their relationship. It evolved into something we don’t often see in a Science Fiction/Dystopian.

I’m sad to see this story end, hopefully we can get a novella from her cause I need just a little it more to satisfy my love of this world and all its players.

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