The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (The Chronicles of Narnia (Publication Order) #1) by C.S. Lewis

Lion witch and wardrobeBlurb: Four adventurers step through a wardrobe door and into the land of Narnia, a land enslaved by the power of the White Witch. But when almost all hope is lost, the return of the Great Lion, Aslan, signals a great change . . . and a great sacrifice.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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This book satisfies challenge #9: A classic about a animal or which includes the name of an animal in the title. 

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5 stars

I’ve read this book about three times now. Still love it. I forgot how fast paced it was.  And the sentences are quite long-winded.  It was hard to read it to my daughter in any kind of rhythm cause I had to keep catching my breath, so annoying.

My kid loved it, we tore that book in about a month.  I read aloud to her so it takes a lot longer to finish books with her. My favorite part was when the wolf was fighting Peter and Aslan was all, “Nah bro, he needs to earn his bones on this fight, don’t help him.” I mean, not in those words but you get the idea. My daughters favorite part was the end, when they were all grown up and they came back through the wardrobe and no time had passed for them on earth.

Anyway, if you don’t know this book, you were probably never in the US public school system cause it mandatory reading here.  Great book, highly recommend.

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Becoming Steve Jobs: The Evolution of a Reckless Upstart into a Visionary Leader by Brent Schlender

BEcoming Steve JObsBlurb: Brent Schlender is an enormously respected journalist, writing about technology and Silicon Valley over the past three decades, and in May 2012, his Fast Company cover story about Steve Jobs, entitled “The Lost Tapes of Steve Jobs,” broke, spawning hundreds of articles and a feeding frenzy for the book rights. Walter Isaacson’s authorized biography, Steve Jobs, was a landmark publication that sold millions of copies and has been on the New York Times bestseller list for two years. But the most interesting years of Jobs’s life are shortchanged, as many people refused to talk, because Jobs was still alive and because of the extraordinary haste in finishing the book in order to get it out immediately after Jobs’s death.
Apple devotees and Silicon Valley tech readers will be dazzled by the array of stories from people who worked alongside him. Becoming Steve Jobs is a vividly dramatic and high-octane biography that reveals Jobs at his most colourful and volatile.

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This book satisfies a place on my 2016 Read Harder Challenge being hosted by Book Riot. I know its well into 2017, but I’m no quitter!

5 stars

I loved this book.  It’s not generally in my wheelhouse of genres that I read but it’s part of my read harder challenge from last year.  This book took me about 6 weeks to get through. Partly because its an audio book and I only listen to those on my commute to work and partly because I had to take A LOT of breaks.  It was very monotone and linear, not really what I’m used to.

However, the reporting on his life and all the interviews that were quoted were awesome. I felt like I got to know him on a more intimate level.  I had no idea how much of an asshole he was. LOL, and arrogant, my god he was very much about his ideas and had no qualms about telling anyone what his opinion of them was.  And he was so damn impulsive, he would judge a person on the first impression and wouldn’t let it go.  All faults IMO, but when you are on the outside looking in.  And only focusing on his career, it was quite fascinating. I mean, I could never have worked for him, but hey, nobody’s perfect.  I don’t mean to say that he was a devil or anything, but the biography didn’t hold anything back in regards to his professional life.

This book was very in depth about his career, and since I remember most of it growing up, I got a little nostalgic while listening.  Especially, when he purchased Pixar, and then eventually sold it. Or when he came back to Apple and slowly turned it into one the most profitable and recognized brands in the world.  But I think the thing that stands out most to me were his values.

They spoke a great deal about how Steve thought the past was the past and you couldn’t change it, so instead you needed to learn from it.  And how he looked in the mirror and asked himself if I died today, would he have accomplished everything he wanted?  Or how he was constantly asking himself, “What comes next?”  Constantly looking forward, I really liked that.  I do that to. Don’t dwell on the past, always move forward.  These are things I can relate to and I found that very interesting that we shared some of the same views on life.  When his sickness and eventual death was covered, I actually started crying.  He was a giant in the PC world and I wish I would have read this book sooner.

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Broken Skies (Broken Skies #1) by Theresa Kay

20764638Blurb: Thirty years ago, civilization collapsed. Few survived.
Ten years ago, the aliens arrived…and stayed.
One year ago, I killed two men and went a little crazy.
Today, the aliens took my brother and I will do anything to get him back.

In seventeen-year-old Jax Mitchell’s world, humans are nearly extinct and alien settlers have arrived.

Until recently, the E’rikon have remained segregated in their city and ignored the few humans who have tried to engage them… but now they have taken Jax’s brother. To rescue him, she forms an uneasy alliance with a teenage E’rikon left stranded in the woods. She agrees to guide him to the city if he sneaks her past the human-proof barrier. Too bad it’s not that simple.
Jax, who cannot stand to be touched, finds that she’s drawn to the alien boy with bright green hair and jewel-like scales on his back. And he’s equally affected by her, the courageous redhead with haunted eyes. But she doesn’t know the alien’s true motives and he has no idea that she is much more than she seems.

With the aliens and the humans at odds, the connection forming between the two teens has consequences. What started off as a rescue mission sets a chain of events in motion which threatens not only the remaining humans and the growing alien society, but Earth itself.

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5 stars

~I just realized I never posted a review for this book on our blog! ~

This kind of book is my favorite. Aliens, sci-fi and post apacolyptic. Trust no one. Evil is about. That is what this book screamed to me as I read it. Ooooooh! I love when evil is about. It had it all, equal parts action, love, war, internal strife.

Jax had it hard. Like post apocolyptic hard. The background was detailed and I totally felt a connection with Jax. We are like BFF’s now. In fact, I may have a bit of a girl crush on her.

Jax is a bit of a bad ass. She finds paths when none seem possible. She perserveres when all is hopeless. I admire her greatly. She doesn’t use her past as an excuse to give up. She goes on. It’s hard, but anything worth doing is right? Even when she has no idea what she is doing, she doesn’t allow the idea of failure to settle in her mind. Its amazing really. She just steamrolls on.

Lir is the like a warm sun to her dark cold night. Fire and ice people. He has a close, loving family. A promising future within his community and an easy going personality. He would have to after the crap that happens to him at camp. He is down to earth and protective without being pushy. He lets her in and shows her it is okay to trust.

Flint was a favorite supporting character. Jax and he have a sibling like relationship. He looks out for her and she has no appreciation for it. If you have siblings you understand.

Her bio-brother is pretty cool too. They are twins and they have that spooky twin thing which I love. It was just them two for the longest time so they know they can rely on each other. He is a bit over-protective since her incident. Oops, nuff said on that.

The bad guy is pretty evil. He has control issues and seriously needs to talk it out with a shrink. Maybe he wasn’t loved enough as a child.

I have read this book a few times and it never gets old, so you should go read it too. Just saying.

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Trust by Kylie Scott

Blurb:
35157260Being young is all about the experiences: the first time you skip school, the first time you fall in love…the first time someone holds a gun to your head.

After being held hostage during a robbery at the local convenience store, seventeen-year-old Edie finds her attitude about life shattered. Unwilling to put up with the snobbery and bullying at her private school, she enrolls at the local public high school, crossing paths with John. The boy who risked his life to save hers.

While Edie’s beginning to run wild, however, John’s just starting to settle down. After years of partying and dealing drugs with his older brother, he’s going straight—getting to class on time, and thinking about the future.

An unlikely bond grows between the two as John keeps Edie out of trouble and helps her broaden her horizons. But when he helps her out with another first—losing her virginity—their friendship gets complicated.

Meanwhile, Edie and John are pulled back into the dangerous world they narrowly escaped. They were lucky to survive the first time, but this time they have more to lose—each other.

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My Review:
5 stars — I received a free copy through NetGalley in exchange for an honest and unbiased review/opinion.

Well shit.  That was just awesome.  I’m so sorry people, but this is going to be a fangirl review.  And not because I’m a Kylie Scott fangirl, b/c to be honest?  This is actually my first read of hers, even though I have been collecting some of her other books since they sound like my bag.  It’s a fangirl review b/c I just loved this book so much.  I was sucked in and just freaking enthralled.  It’s funny, b/c I really do rate just on overall pulled-from-the-gut feeling.  So was this book perfect?  Nah.  But by the time I finished, I had 5 star glasses on my face…  I don’t think that even makes sense.

I’ve been having a hard time staying focused on words lately, and I will admit that right at the very beginning I was having a hard time focusing as well.  But Edie’s voice just pulled me in, and the intensity of what she was going through in the robbery had me paying more attention to the book and forgetting to adjust my bike resistance (bad for my physical health, but good for my soul).  I just felt all of her emotions with her, even if I didn’t always understand them all.

And the book is about so much more than the robbery; it’s more about watching Edie struggle to deal with the aftermath and changes those events wrought in her personality and attitude.  All of which is conveyed in the blurb, but I guess I just never imagined what that would entail.  It’s not just about dealing with PTSD type symptoms (though those are there).  It’s that she honestly had a hard time finding importance in so much of life.  I will admit that I didn’t find her new self to be that wild.  Wild for her maybe, but not actually *that* reckless…or maybe it’s that her new friends and John helped to temper that wildness.

Edie was just everything for me.  You know how as a reader you just gravitate towards certain types of heroines?  Edie embodied so much of what I gravitate towards.  I could see some of myself in her.  She’s a bigger girl, and she was this perfect mix of content with her size most of the time (and how the choices she’s made in her life led to that, and not wanting to change those) and yet still damaged by her experiences being bigger (low self esteem, believing she wasn’t good enough, basically allowing the bullies to affect her).  I can totally vibe with that.  It’s a bit schizophrenic in some ways, b/c you’re both confident and insecure at the same time.  I thought those elements of her personality were portrayed beautifully, and that the development of her character as she navigated her relationship with John moved at a realistic pace.  And it wasn’t really the focus of the book AT ALL, but it was an element that just existed and influenced things.  I liked that.

And she was so beautifully snarky and sassy!!  GAH!  Love that so much.  I can’t tell you how many interactions I highlighted b/c they just delighted me to no end.  And part of that is that she ended up surrounding herself with some fabulous people.  I LOVE when a book has a great secondary cast (and a diverse one at that).  From her new BFF Hang, to Carrie and Sophia, to Anders…I just wanted them all to be real.  I was so glad that Edie had them in her life, even if it took her awhile to trust them and let them in.

I enjoyed the fact that there could have been incidences of horrible slut-shaming, but that the girls tried to cut it off at the pass.  I actually liked that the opportunities were presented, b/c I think it’s really hard as a society to change and get past slut-shaming, so the girls weren’t perfect, but they tried to adjust their attitudes.  It made them more real.

And then we get to John.  Oh what I wouldn’t give to be in his head…PLEASE LET THERE BE A BONUS SCENE FROM HIS POV, please please please!!  He was swoony in such a weird way.  He definitely wasn’t perfect, there were times when I thought he was a bit harsh on Edie, even if his heart was in the right place.  But my heart just broke for all that he had to struggle with.  I can’t imagine how hard it would be to overcome your own reputation and keep striving forward when everyone already judged you and painted you with one brush.  And even though it was only from Edie’s POV, you could really see how her friendship and love changed him…how unused to it he was, but how he craved it in some ways.

And their romance was just butterfly inducing.  Epic slow burn, but it really allowed you to become invested in their friendship as it developed and grew.  And there were lots of tummy tingles when things started to heat up.  *sigh*  *swoon*

So yeah.  Did I convince you?  You should totally read it before you get attacked by a rabid Pekingese.  😛  Insider book joke for the win.

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Goodbye Paradise by Sarina Bowen

Blurb:
34527470Most people called it a cult. But for twenty years, Josh and Caleb called it home.

In Paradise, there is no television. No fast food. Just long hours of farm work and prayer on a dusty Wyoming ranch, and nights in a crowded bunkhouse. The boys of the Compound are kept far from the sinners’ world.

But Joshua doesn’t need temptation to sin. His whole life, he’s wanted his best friend, Caleb. By day they work side by side. Only when Josh closes his eyes at night can they be together the way he craves.

It can never be. And his survival depends on keeping his terrible desires secret.

Caleb has always protected Josh against the worst of the bullying at the Compound. But he has secrets of his own, and a plan to get away — until it all backfires.

Josh finds himself homeless in a world that doesn’t want him. Can Caleb find him in time? And will they find a place of safety, where he can admit to Josh how he really feels?

Warning: Contains a hot male/male romance, copious instances of taking the Lord’s name in vain, and love against the kitchen counter. This book was previously released under the title: In Front of God & Everyone.

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My Review:
5 stars — OMG guys, I don’t even know what to say except this was so my kind of book.  Like you know how you have those specific kinds of things that just shoot a book over the top for you?  Well this book had them all.  I have an unhealthy fascination with books about characters from religious cults.  I love best friends to lovers stories.  And I adore male/male romances.  Plus a million little things that I could never put into words.

I fell in love with both characters, obviously, but perhaps more for Josh than Caleb.  Josh had such a sweet naivety to him, and he was just so damaged from living in fear that someone would find out his “sinful” thoughts.  The compound did a real number on him, from the doctrines that they were taught, to the people who mentally abused him by tearing him down at every chance, to the family that basically abandoned him.  At times I was flabbergasted at the stark difference between Josh and Caleb, because even with Caleb’s ability to leave the compound, I didn’t understand how he was able to see the compound for what it was so much more than Josh.  But as I went on with the book, I could really tell how the differences in their family situations growing up could make an impact, could allow Josh to believe it more fully with less skepticism.

And Josh just developed even more fully in their time outside the compound, and my heart ached for how lost he seemed.  How everything that drew him in reinforced the horrible things the bullies made him feel about himself.  I was so invested in his growth, in watching him love his new jobs, and eventually come to understand that that was OK.  And seeing him stand up for himself against Caleb was both heartbreaking and rewarding.

Since a larger part of the book was in Josh’s POV, I did feel I got to know him a bit more, but I fell in love with Caleb all the same.  It’s funny, b/c I felt like we got to see more of his damage in the second half of the book, and the effects of the compound on him were more subtle perhaps.  But I loved that he wasn’t as strong and together as we might have thought at first glimpse.  I wasn’t expecting it, I thought his contributions to the story would be more wrt the romance, but it’s funny how those we see as so together can sometimes be hiding great strain and sorrow.  There’s a TINY part of me that perhaps wanted more from him, but I’m also OK with it because I loved the story we got.

The romance was amazing.  Seeing them figure things out together, and struggle against their upbringing and their fears to embrace what they desired was very fulfilling.  Obviously the steam factor was amazing, right from the first kiss.  It’s kind of funny, b/c it’s like taking the fears of most LGBT folks and magnifying it a bit.  Fear of being discovered, shame of their feelings, fear over being accepted by their loved ones, fear of losing their loved ones because of who they love.

And then to top off this amazing story of Josh and Caleb, we got a FANTASTIC set of secondary characters, some of whom we got to see a bit of their own story as well (Maggie and Daniel).  I LOVED the dynamic of a runaway from the cult wanting to help other runaways from the cult.  I truly believed in the bond they shared from their shared experience, and how they became a family.  And I appreciated that Ms. Bowen added more to the story in little bits, like Maggie’s struggle after Chloe’s birth.  I loved how much love they had to give to each other.

And it wasn’t just these more major secondary characters, I also loved the minor ones.  From Washington, to the tiny glimpse of Trey, to Caleb’s work buddies.  They all added something to the story.

So there’s my gushing review.  When this first came out, it pained me that I didn’t have time to read it right away, b/c I had a feeling I was going to be in love.  Thank the baby jesus that Ms. Bowen republished it under her name, b/c what if I’d never discovered it otherwise?  That would have been a travesty.  A travesty I tell you!

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The Hard Count by Ginger Scott

30827273Blurb: Nico Medina’s world is eleven miles away from mine. During the day, it’s a place where doors are open—where homes are lived in, and neighbors love. But when the sun sets, it becomes a place where young boys are afraid, where eyes watch from idling cars that hide in the shadows and wicked smoke flows from pipes.

West End is the kind of place that people survive. It buries them—one at a time, one way or another. And when Nico was a little boy, his mom always told him to run.

I’m Reagan Prescott—coach’s daughter, sister to the prodigal son, daughter in the perfect family.
Life on top.
Lies.
My world is the ugly one. Private school politics and one of the best high school football programs in the country can break even the toughest souls. Our darkness plays out in whispers and rumors, and money and status trump all. I would know—I’ve watched it kill my family slowly, strangling us for years.

In our twisted world, a boy from West End is the only shining light.
Quarterback.
Hero.
Heart.
Good.
I hated him before I needed him.
I fell for him fast.
I loved him when it was almost too late.

When two ugly worlds collide, even the strongest fall. But my world…it hasn’t met the boy from West End.

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Favorite Quotes:

I’m a girl-freaked, dream-puncher!

That girl? Her name is Lexie, and she thinks you’re too white to deserve the boy she likes. She’s from West End. He’s from West End. You’re…not. How could you even begin to get their world?” my friend says. “I know…” I begin, set to agree with her, but she shakes her head, cutting me off. “No, that’s not it. Reagan, your world…Nico’s world…same fuckin’ world. You come from different parts, but who cares? You meet in the middle.

“We failed to learn from the stories that warned us that if we create environments that perpetuate poverty, that force the people in them to beg and steal, then we’re equally to blame for many of their outcomes.”

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5 stars!!!!

Lenore bought me this book cause she loves me! I had mentioned I wanted to try  a book by this author since she raved about her.  

This is one of the best books I’ve ever read! It was so good I immediately re-read it.  I loved both Reagan and Nico’s characters equally.  They each brought something different yet equal to the story making it easy to see their perspectives.  One side, a privileged life, the other, unfairly stereotyped.  Each side valid yet difficult to see past the labels.  

Reagan had a quiet strength that she wielded with precision. Doling it out in small increments giving it that much more weight.  I’m not sure she was aware of her power of influence.  She was not afraid to let her thoughts be heard and she had a powerful sense of right and wrong.  I noticed she had a excellent filter on her responses, particularly ones that had the capacity to change a persons outlook. Her artistry was a firm presence in this book and was one of my favorite things about her character.  She had a gift to make others see things through a different view.  It was beautiful.    

Nico had a chip on his shoulder that he was all too aware of.  It seemed as if he was looking for a reason to get rid of it but just couldn’t seem to find anyone strong enough to help him lift it.  He, also was not afraid to speak his mind and sometimes he said things that were blatant but needed.  He didn’t pull punches and could be stubborn at times. Although I love how he humbled himself when he knew he had erred.  He was respectful and masculine without coming off as an alpha or a bully.  He was a classic underdog that found a reason to keep fighting in his family, the team and Reagan.  One of my favorite parts is when he tells her to keep looking at him.  It made me literally gasp you guys. Both times I read it.  The emotions I felt while reading this book guys, deep, very deep. Its been awhile since a book has made me feel this way.  

Now you must go read this book. 

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Saving Detroit: A Challenged Faith Novel by Michelle Bolanger

SDBlurb:  Luke Kelso is about to land what he thought was his dream job as crew chief for his dad’s pro-race team, but a celebratory night out with friends turns into a six-month nightmare of abuse after he is drugged and forced into service for a high-end sex trafficking ring.

His rescue and return home to a family that loves him should have given him a safe place to recover and begin rebuilding his life. But when the truth about his family’s involvement in his ordeal is revealed, Luke turns his back on God, his family, and his career, vowing to take down the one who shattered his world forever.

An emotional story of recovery and healing through faith in God, Saving Detroit is a heartbreaking look at the horrors of human trafficking seen through the eyes of a young man fighting a battle against an evil only God can defeat.

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5 stars

I had the pleasure of alpha reading this story. Although, I think my job was super easy because MB knows how to write and didn’t really need much help on this one so I found myself really able to let loose and just enjoy the story as it unfolded.

So, full disclosure, I’m what you would call a casual observer of faith. I don’t go to church every week and if you know me at all you know that I rarely talk about faith with people. I’ve never finished the bible and quite frankly God and I argue quite a bit.  Which is one of the reasons why I identified so much with Luke’s character.

I got his questionable faith. I constantly question my own. (Every day)  It made me feel better to read about a character in a faith based novel that wasn’t whole heartedly about God. He was not perfect, he could’t explain his feelings about faith and God.  In fact, he hated God at one point.  I related to that so hard.   It made me feel less alone.  He was like the anti-hero.  His struggle was…uncomfortable to read.  Or maybe it just hit a bit to close to reality for me.  But I think that’s what the author was aiming for and in that she succeeded.

While his situation doesn’t mirror mine, I do have some experience in sexual abuse. (As I’m sure we all do)  And I found myself backing his impulsive decisions for revenge. I wanted him to get closure his way.  I felt the anger, the helplessness and the hopelessness.  It was a very intense and emotional read. As I’m sure it would be for anyone else.  The topic of human trafficking is a serious and sensitive one.  And I’ve not read a book with this focus ever before so I was a bit hesitant to read it. But I’m so glad I did.

Writing abuse is hard.  Reading about it is equally difficult. I must say MB has a way of writing that pushes you emotionally to that edge without going to far.  And that’s why I keep coming back for more from her.

The ending though you guys! I just can’t even!  (And that will be the first and last time you see me write that.)   I would absolutely recommend this to anyone. Whether they are believers or not.

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The Faerie Prince (Creepy Hollow #2) By Rachel Morgan


17621248Blurb: 
Guardian trainee Violet Fairdale is just weeks away from one of the most important occasions of her life: graduation. After messing up big time by bringing a human into the fae realm, Vi needs to step up her game and forget about Nate if she hopes to graduate as the top guardian of her year. Everything would be fine if she wasn’t forced to partner with Ryn, her ex-friend, ex-enemy, current ‘sort of friend’. They might be trying to patch up their relationship, but does she really want to spend a week undercover with him for their final assignment? On top of that, the possibly insane Unseelie Prince is still on the loose, free to ‘collect’ as many specially talented faeries as he can find—and Vi is still at the top of his list. Add in faerie queens, enchanted storms, complicated not-just-friends feelings, and a murder within the Guild itself, and graduation is about to become the least of Vi’s problems.

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5 stars

My favorite one in this series so far! I love how they go from enemies to friends in this book. The best part of this story is the way it happens. It happens in slow, bite sized chunks that gave me a chance to adjust to this new dynamic.  They truly hated each other in the last book and I didn’t think they were gonna be able to move past it.

Its not all easy and quick, they back-slide a few times.  I love how the struggle to make their friendship work is shown; how they manage to compromise in important situations.  It’s seems to be a big part of their characters development. And in focusing on that, we get to see how it all interconnects to the rest of their interactions with the rest of the characters.  The writing just had a great flow to it and was super easy to relate to.

The characters are very self-aware in this story and are not afraid to confront each other and argue.  I think that’s one of my favorite things.  The not being afraid to argue, it’s needed in order to deal and move past the issue.  It’s also important for closure.  The only thing I will say about the end was I was a bit disappointed in Vi and Ryn with how they handled things.    I get that it takes work to trust and be there for each other, but it was too soon to do what they did IMO.  Made for a great climax though. I can honestly say I was not expecting that.

This is my third read through and it hasn’t gotten old for me.  And bonus, I just found out that there are more books in this series!  It’s not over like I thought!

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Anti-Stepbrother by Tijan

anti-stepbrotherBlurb: He told me to ‘settle, girl.’
He asked if ‘something was wrong with me?’
He said I was an ‘easy target.’
That was within minutes when I first met Caden Banks.
I labeled him an *sshole, but he was more than that. Arrogant. Smug. Alpha.

He was also to-die-for gorgeous, and my stepbrother’s fraternity brother.

Okay, yes I was a little naive, a tad bit socially awkward, and the smallest amount of stalker-ish, but if Caden Banks thought he could tell me what to do, he had another thing coming.

I came to college with daydreams about being with my stepbrother, but what if I fell for the anti-stepbrother instead?

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4 stars

I love me some Tijan. This is her best work so far in my opinion. I was expecting a step-brother romance even though the title clearly states it’s the anti-stepbrother. And we kinda-sorta get a little something.   I loved the slow burn of this novel.  It isn’t as fast and intense at The Fallen Crest Series and it definitely doesn’t have nearly the drama.  You almost don’t realize when they fall.

And the step-brother!  He was a great jackass! Head of a big fish but poor kid didn’t seem to realize he was in a little pond.  I almost felt sorry for him.  But then he would go and say something and ‘Bam’ I’d remember why I didn’t like him.  He was almost unredeemable…almost.  I think the author did a great job of giving you the mixed emotions regarding his character.

And I really liked Caden.  Yeah, he may have been a bit stereotypical when it comes to frat boys: alpha, muscle-filled, arrogant, and dominant.  But then you get to see the underneath and you are are all, “Damn, this is why you don’t judge a book by it’s cover.” He has a way with words my friends.  That’s all I’m gonna say about that.

Summer was a bit flat as far as female leads go.  With her stubborn, yet soft side and her blind attraction to her step-brother. She couldn’t seem to be alone, and her lack of dealing with shit was pretty lame to me.  But she redeemed herself by the end of the book.

Now, I must say that the ending was a bit anti-climatic for me.  But the overall story was so good I was able to overlook it.  This is my second read through and I don’t think it will be my last, in fact, I’m kinda itching to re-read it again right now.

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In Your Dreams by Ginger Scott

Blurb:
29353356Casey Coffield has a growing list of personal flaws he keeps locked away in his head:
He’s never on time.
His list of IOUs to his best friend is endless.
Money is always short.
Goals are never in reach.

Oh, and he’s decided to add college drop-out to that list, too. He doesn’t really think that last one’s such a bad thing, but his family insists it is, so it stays on the list.

On paper, he’s a zero. But in person, when he’s mixing tracks for a sea of bodies at the hottest clubs and parties, he’s downright irresistible. Just-right stubble on his chin, body of a boxer and a smirk that stimulates all the right nerves—women have never been a problem. They flock to his swagger and fall for his charm…fast.

All except for this one.

Purple hair, gray eyes, a raspy voice and sass, Murphy Sullivan is a little bit country and a little bit rock-n-roll. And her and Casey? They have history. He can’t remember it, but she wrote a song about him—and it’s not exactly a love song. But it is good. Damn good. And uncovering her inspiration just might be the key to solving a few of his shortcomings—not to mention open doors to his own big break in the music industry.

But sometimes dreams get messy when they collide. Sometimes life changes patterns. A past paints the wrong picture and futures get cloudy. The only question that remains is who will you choose when the dust settles—you? Or the girl of your dreams?

** This book is a Falling Series spin-off. It can be read as a standalone. **

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My Review:
5 stars — I don’t even know why this one is a full 5 stars for me, I just feel it in my bones, you know??  I just loved this whole book, I really really did.  It just made me feel good and happy and squeezed my heart and made me feel all those things that Ginger Scott has always makes me feel with her books.  I don’t know why it took me so long to get to Casey’s book, I should have read this right after release!!  *sigh*  Makes me want to go back and reread the whole Falling series.  It’s the series where I fell in love with Ms. Scott.

This one is going to be really hard to review, b/c I’m not sure how to accurately express exactly what it was about this book that just got to me so much.  I think Casey just surprised me a whole heck of a lot.  Now, my memory is crap when it’s been a bit since I’ve read a book, so I didn’t have detailed memories of him, but I don’t remember being particularly enamoured with him…not that I didn’t like him, I just didn’t have strong feelings one way or another.  And Casey was really complicated and flawed.  I think maybe that’s where the surprise came in.  He had way more depth than I had been expecting.  He was such a strange combination of a bunch of different personality quirks that somehow worked together, and I was still left in love with him.  Like really in love.  He could definitely be cocky and arrogant and an a-hole, but there was so much going on inside his head too.  He was sensitive, and easily hurt, and WANTED to be more.  But almost afraid of it too, you know?  He was shaped by the environment in which he grew up, and even that was strange and unique.  Not full out horrible, but not awesome either.  I LOVED the way he soaked up the love from Houston’s family and eventually Murphy’s.

And Murphy was fricking awesome too.  Her story and history with Casey were not at ALL what I was expecting, and I really appreciated that it didn’t follow the typical formulas, you know?  It shaped her, but there was a LOT that shaped her that had nothing to do with Casey.  And she was just someone I could empathize with, she reached to my heart as well with her mix of sass and shyness.  She just fit with Casey so well, and I was invested in her story all on her own.  Casey may have been my shooting star in this story, but Murphy held her own.  I LOVED her songs too.

And Lane was such a surprise.  He brought out the best in both Murphy and Casey.  I LOVED the way he fit into the story, he really brought a lot of heart.  And I loved Murphy’s parents too, they made me laugh and love.

And hot damn!  The chemistry was fantastic, and while the physical component came later, holy smokes was it hot when it came!  DAMN, the dancing scenes killed me.  I want to go to a club where Casey is DJing.

*sigh*  Yup, it was all just so nicely balanced with difficult topics, hard situations, heartwrenching scenes, sexy time and humour.  And Casey just may be the most surprising book boyfriend on my list, he won me over hook, line and sinker, even despite his flaws.  *happy sigh*

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