2.27.2015

Review: When I Dream of You by Rosa Sophia

When I Dream of You by Rosa Sophia
Published: September 17, 2014
Format: via Xpresso Blog Tours
Rating: 3/5

Synopsis
Nina Archer battles memories of a trauma that occurred twelve years ago... With plans to move to North Carolina, she hopes to separate herself from her mother, whose excessive drinking is becoming unbearable. Then suddenly, fate steps in to help her heal in a way she would never think possible. While running a race in Juno Beach, Nina finds herself next to a man whom she's immediately attracted to. Wes Ladner, the same man she dreamt about one year ago...

Wes is focused on his writing, and has no time for a woman. But the night before they met, he dreamt of Nina. Although they come from two very different worlds neither of them can deny the sparks that fly between them. As her time runs out to make a decision, Nina wonders if she's been given the chance to come to terms with her past, and accept a gift that some never receive - true love.

My Thoughts
I was bit a torn by this read. I liked the premise of the book, a girl named Nina who is trying to start a new life away from her alcoholic mother. She keeps having these dreams of being assaulted and yelling for her mother for help yet she doesn’t come to help. We find out she was raped but she hasn’t really dealt with that in her life. She hasn’t really had much interaction with guys since then until she meets a new mystery guys who wants her for her and is willing to really be there for. While the book isn’t bad it just wasn’t what I thought it would be. I must admit I judged a book by its cover big time on this one. I thought I was going to get a fun beachy read but I got a novella focusing in some heavy subjects. 

2.26.2015

Book Blitz: Lighter by Gia Riley




Lighter by Gia Riley
Published: February 16, 2015
Genres: New Adult, Romance
Add to Goodreads


Synopsis
What do you do when you can't save the one you love?


Sophie can’t survive without control. Growing up with an alcoholic father, she craves the discipline of gymnastics. Feeling lost on a brand new college campus, she lets loose for the first time in her life. But with freedom comes consequences. Is one night everything she hopes? Or will she become her own worst nightmare?


Kipton's one year away from graduation. He's never thought beyond a one night stand until meeting his sister’s new roommate. Finally setting his sights on the girl he can't resist, he's more determined than ever when she won't give in to his persuasions. He's always gotten the girl, and he's not about to give up without a fight.


Will Sophie be able to salvage her dreams and wage a war against her own vices? Can she finally let love in? Or will history repeat itself causing her to self-destruct?


Lighter isn't your typical college romance. Darkness suffocates, dreams are dashed, and battles are lost. Love takes on a whole new meaning.


Purchase



AUTHOR BIO
Gia is a lover of all things romance and a firm believer that everyone deserves a happily ever after. She resides in the small but mighty state of Delaware with her husband and son. Mother and wife by day, writer by night - she's a girl with a dream to write.


When she's not busy writing, she can be found roaming the isles of Kirkland's or up to her elbows in Play-doh.


"I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel." ~Maya Angelou


Author links

GIVEAWAY



Blitz-wide giveaway (INTL)
A signed copy of Lighter by Gia Riley 
2x $5 Amazon giftcards
Click HERE to Enter



Prologue
Two Years Ago
“Sophie, wait! I’m sorry. I’m just worried about you,” Megan yells from the double doors leading from the locker room into the hallway.
She saw the bruises on my body.
I knew better than to change in front of everyone after gym class, yet I did it anyway because I was running late to meet my boyfriend. Blaine doesn’t like it when I keep him waiting. Tossing my book bag over my shoulder, I round the corner and smack right into him – and he doesn’t look happy.
“What did you say to her?” He questions with a deadly stare.
“Nothing. I didn’t say a word.” I didn’t but I still avert my eyes, choosing to stare at the tile on the floor instead of him. Without warning, he grabs my arm and pulls me into the bathroom. It’s empty.
“Please, Blaine.” I’m begging him to stop. He hears me, but he doesn’t listen.
“I told you what I would do, didn’t I?”
I swallow, my hands shaking. “Yes.”
He pins my arms against the wall, hovering over me. “And yet you still couldn’t keep your damn mouth shut.”
I try to yank my arms from his grasp, but his grip is too tight. His fingertips dig painfully into my arms, his nails breaking through the skin. “I swear I didn’t tell her anything.”
He inches closer to my face, the warmth of his breath hits my cheek. “Don’t fucking lie to me, Sophie. What happened the last time you lied to me?”
“I’m not lying. Please, Blaine. I wouldn’t.”
“What happened, Sophie?”
He’s going to make me say it – as if I’d ever need a reminder. It’s impossible to forget. “You had to teach me a lesson.”
“But you never learn. No matter how hard I try to protect you.”
“I’m sorry,” I plead. Regardless of the fact that I’m innocent, he morphs my apology into an admission of guilt.
“Damn right you are,” he spits through gritted teeth. His calmness now completely gone and replaced with anger. “Don’t you ever lie to me again, you hear me?”
“Yes,” I whisper.
He grabs my chin, roughly scraping his calloused thumb over my lips. His dilated pupils pierce straight through me sending chills down my spine. “Tell me you love me.” My words get lodged in my throat and I make the mistake of pausing a second too long. “Say it!” he warns as his fist pounds against the wall next to my head.
“I love you, Blaine.” And maybe there was a time I actually did. He wasn’t always like this, but neither was I. If I could go back in time, I’d tell him no. I’d push him away from me and keep my distance. But I’m just like my mother - unable to get away and desperate enough to stay. “Please let go of me. You’re hurting me.”
Finally he releases me, replacing his harsh words with sweet promises – his rough touches with gentle caresses. With a flip of a switch, he’s back to the Blaine I fell for, masking any signs of the evil he’s become.
“You make me so crazy, Sophie.” He runs his fingers through my long blond hair, leaving a trail of light kisses on my neck. “I only get mad because I love you so much.”
“I know.” Painfully well. My scattered bruises a daily reminder of his temper.
His hand falls from my hair as he latches onto my hip, pulling me flush against his body. “Baby, I need you. You’re everything to me.”
Everything I don’t want to be. Not anymore.
Beneath the surface, I’m scarred and broken; a much darker version of the girl I once was. There was a time I believed I was worthy of true love. But now, living in a hell littered with reminders of broken promises, I know what we have is anything but love.
It’s in this moment that I know I’m not strong enough to fight another day unless I get away from him. But I don’t know how. I need a plan – something to get me away from this town and its memories.
Closing my eyes, I say a silent prayer that my luck will change – that someone will save me from the hell my life has become.

Cover Reveal: Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Expected Publication: July 7, 2015
Publisher: Washington Square Press

Synopsis
At the age of twenty-nine, Hannah Martin still has no idea what she wants to do with her life. She has lived in six different cities and held countless meaningless jobs since graduating college, but on the heels of a disastrous breakup, she has finally returned to her hometown of Los Angeles. To celebrate her first night back, her best friend, Gabby, takes Hannah out to a bar—where she meets up with her high school boyfriend, Ethan.
It’s just past midnight when Gabby asks Hannah if she’s ready to go. Ethan quickly offers to give her a ride later if she wants to stay.
Hannah hesitates.
What happens if she leaves with Gabby?
What happens if she leaves with Ethan?
In concurrent storylines, Hannah lives out the effects of each decision. Quickly, these parallel universes develop into surprisingly different stories with far-reaching consequences for Hannah and the people around her, raising questions like: Is anything meant to be? How much in our life is determined by chance? And perhaps most compellingly: Is there such a thing as a soul mate?
Hannah believes there is. And, in both worlds, she believes she’s found him.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Taylor Jenkins Reid is an author and essayist from Acton, Massachusetts. She is the author of Forever, Interrupted and After I Do. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband, Alex, and her dog, Rabbit.




MAYBE IN ANOTHER LIFE by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Atria Books/Washington Square Press Paperback | 352 pages | ISBN:  9781476776880 | July 7, 2015 | $16.00
eBook: Atria Books/Washington Square Press | 352 pages | ISBN: 9781476776897
July 7, 2015 | $11.99

FIND TAYLOR ONLINE:
PRE ORDER:


2.25.2015

WoW [110]

Waiting on Wednesday [WoW] is a weekly event hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

              After We Fall by Emma Kavanagh
Expected Publication: June 2, 2015
Publisher: Sourcebooks

Synopsis
A moody, intense debut psychological thriller by a former police psychologist, this debut novel explores four lives that fall apart in the tense aftermath of a plane crash, perfect for fans of Tana French, S. J. Watson, and Alice LaPlante. Unraveling what holds these four together is a tense, taut tale about good people who make bad decisions that ultimately threaten to destroy them. Debut author Emma Kavanagh deftly weaves together the stories of those who lost someone or something of themselves in one tragic incident, exploring how swiftly everything we know can come crashing down.

Why I Can’t Wait
I love a good mystery/thriller every once and awhile and this one seems like the perfect summer read to escape with!


Feel free to link me to yours.

2.24.2015

Review: When Joss Met Matt by Ellie Cahill

When Joss Met Matt by Ellie Cahill [Liz Czukas]
Published: February 24, 2015
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Format: Edelweiss
Challenge: NetGalley/Edelweiss
Rating: 4/5

Synopsis
Dating can be fun, but it can leave a nasty taste in your mouth. For Joss, ever since her longtime boyfriend cheated on her, she doesn’t want her last memory of a guy to be that jerk. Enter her college friend, Matt. They come up with a theory: after a bad break-up, a person needs to cleanse the palate with a little sorbet sex. Lovers for a night, but always back to being friends in the morning. The two can handle it because they have a contract: rules they wrote, rules they follow and rules they can sometimes bend. The arrangement works: everyone needs a little sorbet now and again … until it starts to be the only thing you want. And then Joss breaks the one rule they never wrote down: don’t fall in love.

My Thoughts
When Joss Meets Matt it’s a college party and they strike up a conversation that soon leads to being friends. After the breakup of Joss and her long time love they decide on a thing called sorbet sex. You know the classic friends with benefits thing that NEVER EVER works out. Well 8 plus years later and they are still doing it…so to speak. They have been there for each other through heartaches and family tragedies yet have continued this charade of sorbet sex. Joss is looking for the perfect guy Mr. Right yet maybe he is right there before her eyes yet she never sees it. After all these years Matt realizes that he is tired of what they have and unknown to Joss wants more. Will Joss finally see what’s in front of her or will she let her best friend/soulmate slip through her fingers?

This is an amazing tale of two people who are meant to be but are so in denial that they might miss the chance of the real thing. I think Matt is the best! You can tell from the get go that he was meant to be with Joss, while Joss is so clueless that it made me so mad at times! Ugh! However I loved seeing how their love story evolved and the near misses of them expressing how they really feel! This is one love story, odd as it is will make you swoon. Unconventional as it may be it will still make you love and embrace their story. To see these two people fall in love before your eyes is so touching that you can’t help but root for them from page one.

Release Day Book Blitz: The Ghost of You by Amanda Burckhard




The Ghost of You by Amanda Burckhard 
Release Date: February 24, 2015
Publisher: Swoon Romance
Buy Links: Amazon


Summary via Goodreads
Emmy has everything she’s ever wanted: a hot boyfriend she adores, great friends, a promising future, and even a well-connected family. But one night rips it all away.


A car accident shatters her world, claiming the lives of her twin brother and her best friend. In the wake of the accident, her friends drift away, her family falls apart, and her boyfriend cheats.

The grief is more than she can handle, so she finds escape at the bottom of a bottle of painkillers. Taking the pills makes her brother alive again, if only in her head. Seeing and talking to her brother as if he were still alive is the only thing that keeps her going. Until Logan King moves to town.

Logan sees past the mask of pristine popularity she wears in public and he’s the only one who can tell she hasn’t moved on. His uncanny ability to read her forces her to open up and she starts to fall for him, no matter how unwilling she is to admit it. But Emmy isn’t the only one keeping secrets and when a close brush with death sparks events that bring everything to light, Emmy will have to decide what’s more important: learning how to forgive and move on, or holding onto the pills and the ghost of her past.



About the Author
Amanda Burckhard grew up exploring bat caves and hunting for dinosaur bones in the Black Hills of South Dakota. When she wasn’t crossing paths with mountain lions, she was making up stories and devouring books at the library. Although, she still does that.


Amanda loves to travel and cross out things on her adrenaline packed bucket list. Some of the things she's been able to cross out include see an active volcano erupt, ride a gondola in Venice, and pet a tiger.

She currently lives in North Sioux City, South Dakota and works as a microbiologist by day. Some of her obsessions include comic book movies, hot chocolate, sushi, sunshine, and Doctor Who.


Author Links

GIVEAWAY
Click HERE to Enter


Excerpt
Everything in my room reminded me of him somehow. The candle Mom got me he used to joke smelled like cinnamon on steroids. The lopsided dream catcher we made at a school carnival in middle school. The running shoes he got me last Christmas. I didn’t want to see any of it. I wanted him.
Then I was screaming, ripping, tearing, throwing anything I could get my hands on. My vision blurred. My head pounded in my ears. When my hand tightened around a smooth cylinder on my desk, I almost didn’t realize what it was in time to stop myself from shattering it against the wall. Derek had given me the green, plastic flashlight when we were ten as a way to ward off nightmares. It didn’t work anymore, even with new batteries, but I could never bring myself to get rid of it. I collapsed onto the floor, hugging the flashlight to my chest, crying and sobbing so hard I couldn’t breathe or see or think.
What was I going to do without him? We were the Grayson twins. We did everything together. I didn’t know who I was without him. He couldn’t be gone. He couldn’t.
When I pulled myself off the floor, it was nearly dark out. I looked around the room that appeared as if a tornado went through it. The shelves from my dresser lay on the floor, their contents scattered. Papers and posters lay crumpled and torn into pieces. My bedding and clothes were strewn everywhere. Almost every visible inch of the floor was covered. I couldn’t remember doing most of the destruction. I didn’t even feel better after doing it.
Something on the ground caught my eye. Something orange and familiar. I reached for the small bottle of pills and read the label. Vicodin. They were from my tonsillectomy last year. They must’ve been stuck away in a drawer, forgotten and unused.
I remembered how they made me feel like I was floating on water, like my brain was fuzzy and nothing seemed like a big deal. That feeling would be a nice change to what I felt now.
Throwing two pills into my mouth, I grabbed a week-old bottle of Gatorade from my dresser and took a swig. I left my disaster of a room and went down the hall to Derek’s room. The room felt dull and lifeless without him. The posters of old rock bands plastering the walls and wrestling trophies displayed on every shelf didn’t fit without the boy who had put them there.  
I set the flashlight on his nightstand and crawled into his bed. His pillowcase smelled of peppermint. Jess and I had picked out that shampoo for him a few weeks ago. He swore he’d never use it, but I guess he changed his mind.
I stared at the flashlight until the pills made my eyelids droop and my mind slipped off into darkness.  
Derek’s voice reached out to me just as I was falling asleep. “It’ll be okay, Em. Sleep. I’m here.”

2.23.2015

Blog Tour: New Uses for Old Boyfriends by Beth Kendrick

New Uses for Old Boyfriends by Beth Kendrick
Published: February 3, 2015
Publisher: NAL
Format: via BookSparks
Rating 4/5

Synopsis
After growing up in privilege and marrying into money, Lila Alders has gotten used to the good life. But when her happily-ever-after implodes, Lila must return to Black Dog Bay, the tiny seaside town where she grew up. She’s desperate for a safe haven, but everything has changed over the past ten years. Her family’s fortune is gone—and her mother is in total denial. It’s up to Lila to take care of everything...but she can barely take care of herself.

The former golden girl of Black Dog Bay struggles to reinvent herself by opening a vintage clothing boutique. But even as Lila finds new purpose for outdated dresses and tries to reunite with her ex, she realizes that sometimes it’s too late for old dreams. She’s lost everything she thought she needed but found something—someone—she desperately wants. A boy she hardly noticed has grown up into a man she can’t forget...and a second chance has never felt so much like first love.

My Thoughts
If you haven’t read a Beth Kendrick book drop what you’re doing and go read one or two or all! I’ve been lucky enough to read a few of her books and let me say they are the best. They are funny, cute and just the breath of fresh air that everyone needs in their lives.

In New Uses for Old Boyfriends she continues doing so. We meet Lila who has recently lost her job and her husband and is now in route back home to her mom after the recent death of her father. She goes home to Black Dog Bay and is thrown for a loop when she realizes her mother is knee deep in debt and must find a way to make her mom realize what trouble she is in. While all her mom wants is to spend more money and find Lila a new husband via some old high school flames. I love the relationship between Lila and her mother; although at times Lila is forced into the adult role I love how much they love each other and the banter between them. The other stars of the show are the background characters of Black Dog Bay. I love how quirky and funny they are!

What I love most about this book is how Beth Kendrick writes strong women leads. They might seem weak but they always come out on top. They never give up and despite all the heartache and heartbreak they endure they never give up on love. This read is all about making the most with the hardships life throws your way. So go and read her books…they are truly worth it!

 About the Author
Beth currently lives in Arizona and loves her dogs. She’s a Leo, a middle child, and a formidable Trivial Pursuit opponent. Reads everything she can get her hands on, from the classics to comic books.  She’s the writer of several books including Cure for the Common Breakup and Second Time Around.

Connect with Beth

2.20.2015

Mini Review: Tangled Vines by Melissa Collins

Tangled Vines by Melissa Collins
Publication: September 21, 2014
Format: free Kindle read
Rating: 3.5/5

Synopsis
Fate has a funny way of twisting together the lives of people who are destined to be connected, but just don’t know it yet. One phone call.  That’s all it took to change Owen Carmichael’s life forever. One meeting.  That’s all it took to turn Elle Blackwell’s life around. Tangled, like the vines of the winery they both seek to control, will they realize they work better together than as enemies?

My Thoughts
The classic tale of two people whom dislike each other from the start, but you know are bond to fall in love by the end. Owen’s life has always been just him and his mother and his father was never around, until one day he gets a letter saying his father has passed away. Owen doesn’t want anything to go with him but decides to see what’s going on. He finds out his father was rich and left him half his business a vineyard.

Elle was Owen’s father protégé and she saw him as a father figure and mentor who taught her everything about business. When he passed away she was surprised he left her the other half of the business. When the two come together they dislike each other from the get go. Elle has her own ideas about the business and Owen doesn’t want anything to do with it. However as much as they hate each other they can’t help but to be attracted to each other. So will lust and feelings get in the way or will their dislike for one other be deep enough to keep them apart? While a bit predicable I found this enjoyable. This story has great scenery and characters that definitely have great chemistry.

2.19.2015

Mini Review: The Promise by Tiffani Trawick

The Promise by Tiffani Trawick
Published: December 5, 2014
Format: free Kindle read
Rating: 4/5

Synopsis
At twenty-seven, Alicia Clark is a career woman on track to marry and have a family before turning thirty, but she still yearns for more out of life. She yearns for something that she felt long ago.

After years of soul-searching, Jason, twenty-nine, is in the midst of having his world turned upside down, but he can’t continue life without the girl that stole his heart on the first day of high school. This story is one that tests the strength of past love. Is Alicia and Jason’s love for one another strong enough to overcome the past heartbreak and present obstacles that stand in their way?

My Thoughts
I really enjoyed this short read. Alicia is a girl who has always done what was expected of her so when she thinks she has all her life figured out and then runs into her ex-boyfriend her life flips outside down. She has a boyfriend but when she sees Jason again she realizes she never got over her first love. I love that she follows her heart and for once follows her own path. While not everything is picture perfect can their love conquer it all? I for one was rooting for them because who doesn’t love those who are lucky enough to find their soul mates? This is a great love story and one that gives you a quick break from everyday life.

2.18.2015

Book Blitz: Love Bites by Rachel K. Burke





Love Bites by Rachel K. Burke 
Release Date: 12/29/14
Harper Impulse
New Adult


Summary from Goodreads
What do you do when you fall in love with your best friend’s boyfriend?

That is the question that twenty-six year-old Justine Sterling has been asking herself ever since the day she met David Whitman, her best friend Renee’s boyfriend. Justine is determined to ignore her growing feelings for the irresistibly charming David, until one night, when she finds herself in the bed of the one person she should stay away from.

When Justine and David’s affair ends in heartbreak, Justine is forced to repair the damaged friendship with her best friend. In doing so, she learns that right and wrong decisions aren’t always black and white, and sometimes you have to follow your heart to see where it leads.


Buy links

Excerpt
I didn’t sleep at all that night. Neither did David. The conversation between us just seemed to unravel and expand into further levels of depth, and before I knew it, the sun was streaming through the window.
I told him things I had never told anyone. My fears, my insecurities. He was the only person I had ever felt completely, wholeheartedly comfortable with. It was like I could be myself, unconditionally, without judgment. It felt real. It felt right.  
David propped his head up on his elbow and stared at me from the other end of the sofa. “You do know you’re beautiful, right?” David, who typically joked about everything, was being completely serious.
“Everyone in L.A. is beautiful,” I said.
“Yeah, but you have an edge. You have that feisty east coast attitude. And honestly…” He hesitated, clearing his throat. “If we weren’t in these circumstances, I’d be with you in a heartbeat.”
“Oh come on, Renee’s great,” I said, trying to bring my best friend back into the picture before I forgot about her altogether and did something stupid.
“She is. But she can be really critical. I bet you’d watch football with me on a Sunday and not roll your eyes.”
I would’ve done anything with him if it meant I could stare into those crazy brown eyes for one more second.
“I’m really glad I came over tonight,” he said in a low voice, changing the subject. “I can’t tell you the last time I felt…” He closed his eyes. “I shouldn’t be saying this.”
He shouldn’t have. But I wanted him to.
There was a pause, and neither of us said anything. Something was changing. I could feel it. It was like an unstoppable force was pulling us together.
When I looked up, his eyes locked with mine, and my heart stopped. The look on his face was unfamiliar to me. He was usually so laid back and funny, but the intensity in his eyes felt like he was an entirely different person.
He inched his body closer and pressed his face toward mine, but I pulled back.
“David, I can’t,” I said. “Trust me, I’d love to, but…”
“But what?” he asked. “Don’t you feel this, between us? I know you feel it. I’ve felt it since the minute we met.”
“Of course I feel it,” I admitted. “But I love Renee, and I would never do that to her.”
“Okay, then we’ll wait,” he said. “We’ll wait until she breaks up with me. We’ll wait until she moves on. But… there’s something here Justine. You can’t argue that.” He looked straight into my eyes again. “Maybe we can’t act on it now, but someday.”
And then, as the sun came pouring through the window, I drifted off to sleep next to him.
Someday. I could live with that.

About the Author
Rachel discovered she wanted to be a writer at the age of ten, when her love of R.L. Stine murder mystery novels inspired her to start writing her own.
In 2008, Rachel combined her love of writing and music and began freelancing for a music column in Worcester Magazine. She also worked as a music journalist for Starpulse News Entertainment and Jamsbio Magazine, as well as a fitness journalist for Prevention Magazine.
Rachel graduated from Bridgewater University in 2011 with a B.A. in Communications and Media Studies.


She currently resides in Santa Monica, CA.


Author Links