ARC Review: Masquerade (Games #3) by Nyrae Dawn

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Coming out on January 7, 2014. Pre-order here! See my review for Facade (Games #2) here.

A biker. A tattoo artist. A love to last a lifetime.

Maddox Cross has always had to be tough. When his father went to jail for murder, the teenager took care of his sister and mother. Now on his own and working security at a night club, Maddox wants to become a tattoo artist-a dream that comes closer to reality when he falls for the hottest, most tatted woman he’s ever seen. She’s wild and beautiful, and Maddox will do anything to be with her.

Bee Malone came to town to open up her new tattoo parlor, Masquerade. Since being kidnapped as a young girl, Bee has had trouble getting close to anyone. But when she meets Maddox, she sees that under his hard biker’s body is the sensitive soul of an artist. What starts out as a sizzling one-night stand soon becomes so much more.

Bee wants Maddox to join her tattoo business, but letting him into her life means revealing all her most intimate secrets. And as the past begins to intertwine with her present, Bee fears their love may not be as permanent as their ink . . .

My thoughts-

Whoa! (Seriously, that’s what I thought!!) Nyrae Dawn blew me away with Charade. I was fond of Façade. But Masquerade…I fell head over heels in love with this book!

Masquerade is book 3 of the Games Series. I recommend reading the other books so you’ll understand the back story. Bee and Maddox are my favorite couple of this series. Maddox is so dark and deep. I loved his passion for drawing and his desire to become a tattoo artist. Bee totally understood him. She has one of the coolest (and heart breaking) back stories. It was just so unique, and I thought it was neat how she used her past experiences as inspiration for her name and tattoos. Maddox and Bee’s struggles are so raw and painful; I felt so broken for them.

I don’t understand it. Don’t get how people can love someone and want them to be someone different or love them and hurt them. – Bee

This is a beautifully well written book that answers Bee’s question- “How do you love like that?”

My Maddow and Bee-

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**I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Book Review: A Basic Renovation by Sandra Antonelli

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When it comes down to it, rats in the oven trump Lesley’s desire to never set eyes on another Brennan family member. So Lesley, a pro at property redevelopment, scrambles to Dominic Brennan’s hardware store for supplies. Dominic knows poison — rat and otherwise — and he sees it in Lesley. The woman ruined his brother’s life. Now that she’s back in town, Dominic’s afraid she’ll drag up the past, the secrets, and the pain. They clash immediately, but mix in a teenage boy, a puppy, some white paint, and some loud music, and what starts as cold fury transforms into a nuclear attraction. This basic renovation becomes a major life refurbishment for them both.

My thoughts-

Well…part of me didn’t want to read this book because I’m currently renovating my own house and I typically read to try and forget about it. But I took the plunge.

Things I liked- Lesley, Dominic, Kyle, GP and the puppy. I liked the history between the characters…it wasn’t a “love at first sight” type book. I liked that they were older. I liked the house renovation part, believe it or not! It was funny and made me laugh. And the crappy parts were super realistic…I’m an expert, trust me.

Things that were just ok- the ending. I wanted more…something that would grab my heart and squeeze.

Things that drove me nuts- the families!! I wanted to strangle all of them! They were well written, but she wrote such great “unlikable” characters! Bravo! So depending on how you look at this, it could be considered a “like!”

If you like a more mature romance with tons of witty dialogue, this book is for you!

**I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review: Working It by Kendall Ryan

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Emmy Clarke is out of her depth in New York City’s fashion world, but when she lands a job as an assistant at a modeling agency it seems like the perfect mix of business and pleasure. Working under the notorious Fiona Stone is a nightmare, but there’s one distinct perk: ogling the ridiculously hot male models who parade through the office—particularly rising star Ben Shaw.

Ben is everything Emmy’s not: exquisitely gorgeous, highly paid, and well-traveled. He’s also got more issues than Vogue. Emmy looks after Ben on photo shoots, but she refuses to become another one of his lusting groupies. Ben finds Emmy’s refreshingly real attitude to be surprisingly attractive.

Against a backdrop of the most fashionable cities in the world, casual flirting turns into an illicit affair, but when Ben’s twisted past is revealed, and the bitter Fiona catches wind of their relationship, their careers and hearts are threatened.

My thoughts-

This book made me want to kiss Kendall Ryan! Haha! I’m sure all of you have felt that way about an author at some point…this just happened to be mine! Working It is a sexy book full of wit and a dash of “The Devil Wears Prada!” I couldn’t put it down!

Emmy is super relatable. She is EVERY girl.

The position certainly had its perks. Ogling delicious man candy daily was the main one. Did that make me shallow? No. I didn’t think so. I’d has a bunch of crappy jobs and crappier relationships before all of this. If I wanted to be surrounded by completely delicious and highly unattainable men all day, I felt that was a God-given right. And getting paid to boot- yes please. Sign me up.

And Ben. Oh geez, don’t get me started on Ben.  He says things like, “Let me have you.” Can you imagine?! I’d be like, “okay, um…yes please!”

“Stop assuming you know what I want. I’ve never had a girl like you. Soft…” His thumb caressed my cheek. “Sweet…” His lips pressed over mine. “And southern…” His hand found my backside and he squeezed, pulling me closer. “Let me do this. Let me have you, Emmy.”

I highly recommend this book! It’s one of those books that never gets old…I’m pretty sure I could read it over and over.

My Ben and Emmy-

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**I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Book Review: Elect (Eagle Elite #2) by Rachel Van Dyken

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Would you die for the one you love?
Nixon Abandonato made his choice. And now he has to pay the price. Tracey is the love of his life, but being with him has made her a target of his family’s enemies. The only way to keep Trace alive is convince the world she means nothing to him.

Trace Rooks has fallen irrevocably in love with the son of her family’s sworn rival, and she knows in her bones nothing can tear them apart. Until Nix suddenly pushes her away and into the arms of his best friend… But Trace isn’t ready to give up on a future with Nix–and if he won’t fight for them, she will.

In the end, a sacrifice must be made. A life for a life. For what better way to cover a multitude of sins than with the blood of a sinner…

My thoughts-

If you haven’t read Elite (Eagle Elite #1) yet, read it first before you pick up Elect! My review here!

Elect (Eagle Elite #2) by Rachel Van Dyken picks up where Elite leaves off. Nixon (swoon!!) decides it’s imperative to distance himself from Trace to keep her safe. (Two words of warning- love triangle) But he pushes her into the arms of a man who will keep her safe. (And love her…) Smart? Not so much. Darn triangle.

Secrets, sacrifices, blood, angst, loyalties…ORGANIZED CRIME! This book has everything I love! FOR REAL! I highly recommend this book! It’s so entertaining; I didn’t want to put it down!!

Sidenote- Rachel Van Dyken is a fabulous author! I was looking back at all the books she has written and was blown away! I LOVE quite a few of her books, and am even more excited that she’s got some I haven’t read yet! I’m looking forward to grabbing ALL of them! and don’t worry, i’ll let you know what I think! 😉

My Nixon and Trace-

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Book Review: Ignite (Explosive #1) by Tessa Teevan

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After nearly a year and a half of grieving the loss of her husband, twenty-seven year old Alexa Sullivan Tate is headed back to her hometown after a decade of being away. She has no idea her high school crush, Jace McAllister, the guy who stole her heart the same night that he broke it, is more than ready to pick up the pieces.

Jace has spent the last ten years in the Army defusing bomb after bomb, trying to forget the girl who ignited all his passions. Little does he know that the spark still exists.

Ten years ago they had smoldering chemistry, but the spark between them now might light a fuse that leads to an explosion even Jace can’t stop. Not that he wants to. If only Alexa can get past her guilt and trust her heart again.

But how do you put it all on the line when you’ve already lost everything once before?

My thoughts- 

It’s official. Tessa Teevan is on my list of favorite authors! I don’t have enough good words to say about this book!! What an incredible debut!

This book is heartfelt and genuinely lovable. The characters are relatable and you can’t help but love them (okay okay…want to be them is more like it). The writing is good, the pace well kept, the editing great. The story is believable and I cried, giggled and got really hot!!! Speaking of hot…this book is steamy! There is so much sexual tension and it’s fabulous! Jace and Alexa just have this awesome chemistry that pops off the page!

“Don’t worry. I’ve got you,” he leans down and whispers in my ear. I pull my head back and look up at him again.  “Yeah, you do,” I let out, surprising both myself and Jace.

I highly recommend this book to all NA lovers. You will adore every second and then read it again! 

My Jace and Alexa-

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Book Review: Freefall (Custom Culture #1) by Tess Oliver

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After leaving high school, with a hard won diploma and the title of most likely to break hearts, Alexander “Nix” Pierce has left his wild, out of control years mostly behind him. A small inheritance from his grandfather has given him the funds to open up his tattoo shop, Freefall, and he has started to pull his life together. Aside from trying to keep his best friend, Dray, from killing himself in the fight ring, and his slight obsession with a pin-up model he’s never met, Nix’s life is going smoothly . . . until Scotlyn James, the object of his obsession, walks into his shop.

Ever since a tragic accident killed her family and left her alone in the world, Scotlyn James hasn’t spoken one word. Up until now she didn’t care that she had no way of talking to people. Her awful aunt would never have listened, and Lincoln Hammond the arrogant, selfish man who pulled her from the streets of Los Angeles wouldn’t hear her words if she could speak. But when Lincoln insists she get a tattoo to cover up a scar on her side, Scotlyn meets the artist, Nix Pierce. And now she longs for her voice. Now she has found someone who will hear her.

My thoughts-

I’m surprised you made it down to the review and aren’t stuck staring at the book cover…so hot, right?! Well, the book is just as good!

I loved the premise of this book! Nix is obsessed with a girl and carries her picture around, yet has never met her. Scotlyn hasn’t spoken his a word since the accident that killed her family, and now she’s in too deep with a controlling asshole. They meet when Lincoln, Scotlyn’s boyfriend, decides she needs a tattoo to cover up a scar. She walks in the door or Nix’s tattoo shop and *fireworks*…well, at least for Nix!! Scotlyn takes a awhile to warm up to Nix, but she very quickly passes “warm” and is “hot” for Nix in the blink of an eye! To bad she’s with Mr. Controlling Asshole Lincoln.

Nix and Scotlyn are super cute together. It was really interesting and unique for one of the characters to be mute, it changed up the story some. I really enjoyed this book and look forward to more from this series!

My Nix and Scotlyn-

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Series Review: Tragic, Manic and Panic (Rook and Ronin) by J.A. Huss

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Rook Walsh is TRAGIC

Because life so far – just sucks. Some girls get parents. Rook got the foster care system. Some girls get Prince Charming. Rook got an abusive frog. Some girls get lucky…

Rook got a second chance.

And she took it. Because when fate throws you a bone – you grab it with both hands and run.

Antoine Chaput knows the minute he spies Rook in his photography studio that she’s got The Look. The dark and desperate look he must have to land the exclusive TRAGIC media contract.

Rook is paired up with top model, Ronin, and he’s everything her abusive ex-boyfriend wasn’t. Patient, gentle, happy, attentive, and sexy! He knows exactly what to do to make Rook blush for Antoine’s camera.

Rook’s luck changes in an instant and suddenly she’s the darling of the modeling world. It’s a dream job to go with a dream guy and all she has to do is look pretty and follow directions. But there’s always a price to pay – and Rook is about to get the bill.

My thoughts-

omg. omg. omg. This series blew my mind. I read all three in two days! I couldn’t put it down!! Rook (such a cool name) and Ronin are so hot together…I thought my kindle was going to melt! And it certainly didn’t hurt that there were a few hot guys (Ford and Spencer!) in this book…all of which i’m dying to read their own stories!! I can’t really give you great reviews on the separate books because I read them all together, but here are a few thoughts-

Tragic– I need a cherry blossom tree. Rook’s totally hiding something. Ronin is a greek god. Elise is the cutest thing in the whole world, love her! Antoine, speak english already!

Manic– Where do I buy this body paint? Spencer’s tattoos…yum! I secretly hate Claire. Rook is totally hiding something pretty big. Ford- you drive me crazy…a good kind of crazy. I love Rook’s “I came here to shuffle” mentality!!

Panic– I HATE CLAIRE. Rook’s hiding something that’s SO big! Holy crap! Rook’s part of The Team…they need shirts…maybe painted on shirts? Ford- I love you. Ronin- you are so perfect for Rook, but wise up about Claire already! Rook is so kick ass!! WHAT AN INCREDIBLE ENDING!! (what happened to Claire?!)

I’m unbelievably excited about Ford’s story due out Feb. 20, 2014!!! I’ve got my calendar marked!!

My Rook and Ronin-

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ARC Review: All He Needs (All of Nothing #2) by C.C. Gibbs

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All He Needs is out December 17th! Pre-order here!

See my review for All He Wants (All of Nothing #1) right here!

All He Needs, book two of the All of Nothing trilogy, knocked my socks off! This book, like the first one, is off the charts steamy!! Dominic is my favorite alpha male of all alpha book boyfriends! (which is a big deal) Kate is witty and smart, a great female character. I love them together. Kate handles Dominic like a pro in this book, he even starts to mellow out some. Dominic spends most of the book trying to protect Kate from enemies unknown to her, so that he won’t lose her…but will he lose her because of his own decisions? I absolutely love this series and I can’t wait for the next book! I can’t give anything away, but i’m excited about what’s to come!

The cover art for this series is GORGEOUS!

My Dominic and Kate-

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**I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review!

Book Review: Unsettled by S.C. Ellington

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To be released on 12/10/13!! Mark your calendars!!

After a horrific breakup with her long time boyfriend, Brooklyn Caldwell is completely disenchanted with the notion of mingling with the opposite sex. Damon Williams had been everything she thought she wanted…until he wasn’t.

In an attempt to escape her heartbreaking past, Brooklyn seeks refuge in bustling Washington DC where she folds into the fast paced society unnoticed…until she meets a young entrepreneur, Logan Colton.

Brooklyn is surprised to find that while she has been successful in keeping the opposite sex at bay, somehow she is defenseless against Logan’s confidence and charm—and it doesn’t hurt that he is absurdly beautiful. While thrilled with Logan’s candor, Brooklyn hesitates, as she can’t seem to move past the heartache that she suffered at the hands of Damon.

As much as Logan didn’t plan on pursuing her, he is drawn to Brooklyn’s muted beauty and her witty persona. For all his success, Logan is ensnared in the coveted world of unequivocal wealth and power, but behind closed doors is taunted by demons and an undeniable need to atone for a monumental mistake.

As the two embark on a tumultuous obstacle course saturated with unknown twists and turns, Brooklyn is left to question whether she can endure the journey ahead.

My thoughts- 

um did this author stalk me and then write a book about me?! haha!! I read this book the day after I turned 25, the main character, Brooklyn, is about to turn 25! Also, I’m an administrative assistant, just like Brooklyn! Ok, that’s where the similarities stop..but I still got a kick out of it!

Brooklyn is your normal girl…working a job she doesn’t love, dreaming of doing something else, spending time with friends, trying to get over a broken heart. She left home after college to get away from Damon, the guy who broke her heart. Well, years later and she’s never let anyone else in. Until she meets Logan Colton. He pursues Brooklyn, despite when she shuts him down! Slowly she starts to let down her walls and it takes awhile but she realizes that she’s fallen for him and trusts him completely.

I really like Logan Colton. He is flawed, sexy and mysterious.I thought it was cool how he shows Brooklyn that he’s just a normal young guy who plays board games and hangs out in local bars…but also is smart enough to own his own company and make tons of money. Brooklyn is relatable and likable. I liked her up until the end…then I didn’t. She seemed so level headed until…you guessed it, the end. Also, cliffhanger alert.

I’ve got my fingers crossed for book 2. We will see.

**I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

ARC Book Review: Storm Shells (Wishes #3) by G.J. Walker-Smith

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The only way to move forward was to go back to the very beginning…. 

After three miserable weeks without Charli, Adam makes the decision to follow her, desperately hoping to find a way of following through on his promise of a happy ending. He finds her back in Pipers Cove, healing her broken heart by spending time with the one person who never lets her down. Both know nothing has changed. They’re desperately in love, hopelessly stuck in limbo, and unable to find common ground. When fate offers them a chance at a different kind of ending, it’s a one-shot deal. Running with it means changing their plans – something neither of them has ever been willing to do before, even for each other. Just as one begins to find their way, the other completely loses direction – and neither of them realise that time is running out.

My thoughts-

Writing reviews for my favorite book is the hardest thing. Like, i’ve put this off for days because every time I think about writing this review…I get nervous!!! I know I can’t possibly put into words how much I love this series and the new book, Storm Shells, but i’m going to try! Especially since it’s getting released in the next 48ish hours! I know that the release date is November 11th, but on itunes it will be released on the 10th. So depending on where you live and what device you use, start looking for it soon!

So back to my review… I was really upset at the end of Second Hearts. Charli had left New York, and even though this was a good decision, my heart still hurt for her and Adam. Adam was such a dumb guy…I wanted to smack him upside the head! How could he just let her walk away?! Didn’t he know she was the best thing that had ever happened to him?! So Charli heads back to Kaimte, where Mitchell is. She finds some solace in the beach and her old friend, but after a week decides to head back home to Pipers Cove. Upon arriving, she finds Gabi has moved in with Alex and they are struggling with issues of their own. Charli now feels out of place in her childhood home and decides to move into the cottage.

Adam is staying with Ryan, his brother, because he couldn’t bear all the reminders of Charli in their apartment. It takes him three weeks of being miserable before he decides to go after her.

In Pipers Cove they are faced with their true love for each other, but also that they haven’t found out a way to make their lives work together. They must both be willing to sacrifice and change their own plans, which they’ve never been willing to do before now. It is so heart wrenching to see them struggling with these decisions. Will they be able to find common ground?

This whole series is incredible, and I highly recommend you start from the beginning. GJ has this insane talent to write such relatable, believable characters, you can’t help but be absorbed into this story. She weaves this element of magic and La La Land into this series, you fall in love with the way that Charli lives her life so completely. When you’re done you can’t help but to be more like Charli, enjoying life to its fullest and being honest, courageous and passionate.

Adam, Ryan, Alex and Gabi are all in this book. I love Ryan and can’t wait for his to get his own story. Also, Alex and Gabi have their own book now too! It’s called Sand Jewels and is available for free on itunes. For all you kindle users, if you have an iphone you can download ibooks and read it on there!

I can’t tell you how much I love this book. It is my most favorite series of all time! You must go read it!

Check out my character interview with Charli and a sneak peek of Storm Shells here!

**Thank you so much to Gemma for the ARC copy! I truly appreciate the opportunity to read your beautiful book!!