2.28.2019

Monthly Wrap Up: February

Hey Everyone! Can you believe it will be March already? I don’t know what it is about February but it’s always been a great reading month for me and this one didn’t disappoint! So let’s check out how things went for me reading wise.

Books Read
5. It Happens All the Time by Amy Hatvany
6. Forever Interrupted by Taylor Jenkins Reid
7. The Handmaids Tale by Margaret Atwood
8. Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid
9. This Love Story Will Self Destruct by Leslie Cohen
10. On the Come Up by Angie Thomas
11. The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison
12. If Beale Street Could Talk by James Baldwin
13. Sugar by Bernice L. McFadden
14. Before She Knew Him by Peter Swanson

Reading Stats
5 Stars - 5
4 Stars - 5
3 Stars - 0
2 Stars - 0
1 Stars - 0
DNF - 0

Genres
Mystery/Thrillers - 1
Fiction - 8
YA - 1

Pages Read - 3,129

Books via Publisher
A Beautiful Corpse by Christi Daugherty
One Night at the Lake by Bethany Chase
Ask Again, Yes by Mary Beth Keane
The Girl He Used to Know by Tracey Gravis Graves
Her Daughter’s Mother by Daniela Petrova
Waiting for Tom Hanks by Kerry Winfrey
The Southern Side of Paradise by Kristy Woodson Harvey

Thank you to G.P.Putnam’s Son, St. Martin’s Press, Berkley, Gallery, Ballantine, Scribner and Minotaur for all the great books!

ARC’s via NetGalley/Edelweiss
The Arrangement by Robyn Harding
A Stranger on the Beach by Michele Campbell
The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman
Because You’re Mine by Rea Fey
The Farm by Joanne Ramos
The Friends We Keep by Jane Green
Sunset Beach by Mary Kay Andrews
Girls on the Verge by Sharon Biggs Waller
Meet Cute by Helena Huntington
Layover by David Bell
The Night Before by Wendy Walker

That’s it for my February wrap up please feel free to share your wrap up I love to check out all things bookish!!

2.27.2019

Review: Before She Knew Him by Peter Swanson

Before She Knew Him by Peter Swanson
Expected Publication: March 5, 2019
Publisher: William Morrow
Format: via NetGalley
Rating: 4.5/5    


Synopsis
Hen and her husband Lloyd have settled into a quiet life in a new house outside of Boston, Massachusetts. Hen (short for Henrietta) is an illustrator and works out of a studio nearby, and has found the right meds to control her bipolar disorder. Finally, she’s found some stability and peace.


But when they meet the neighbors next door, that calm begins to erode as she spots a familiar object displayed on the husband’s office shelf. The sports trophy looks exactly like one that went missing from the home of a young man who was killed two years ago. Hen knows because she’s long had a fascination with this unsolved murder—an obsession she doesn’t talk about anymore, but can’t fully shake either.


Could her neighbor, Matthew, be a killer? Or is this the beginning of another psychotic episode like the one she suffered back in college when she became so consumed with proving a fellow student guilty that she ended up hurting a classmate?


The more Hen observes Matthew, the more she suspects he’s planning something truly terrifying. Yet no one will believe her. Then one night, when she comes face to face with Matthew in a dark parking lot, she realizes that he knows she’s been watching him, that she’s really on to him. And that this is the beginning of a horrifying nightmare she may not live to escape.


My Thoughts
I’ve become a huge Peter Swanson fan recently and I’ve been reading everything I can get my hands on so when I heard he had a new book coming out I couldn't wait to read it. It seems like his books just get better and when I finished his latest read… WOW is all I could say… this one blew my mind!

In Before She Knew Him we met Hen and Lloyd who recently have moved out to the suburbs and decide one night to join the neighborhood block party to be nice and be neighborly but soon they become friends with the only other couple who don't have kids, Matthew and Mira and realize they are actually next door neighbors. They soon have dinner together and while having a tour of the house something in Matthews office soon catches Hen's eye a simple trophy that makes something click in her head. She soon becomes obsessed with this trophy and remembers it from the newspapers a few years back connected to a murder. She then becomes convinced that Matthew is a murderer and makes it her mission to prove it. She starts to follow and spies on him trying to get any evidence to prove that she is right and not having another manic episode like she has in the past.


Years ago Hen began having manic episodes and it got so bad she was asked to leave school after an altercation with a fellow student. She soon became consumed with all things murder related and when a few murders happen nearby she studied them as if it was her job. However, with the help of family and Lloyd she balanced her meds and got her issues under controlled but after meeting Matthew and connecting things about him she now thinks he is the one behind everything.


Matthew sees himself as a savior of sorts. He had a horrible childhood, to say the least, and we learn in time his past has a huge play in everything that has happened. He survived his upbringing and now is a loving husband to Mira but he has some dark secrets that he has kept to himself...that is until Hen came around. Ironically he isn't scared of Hen because he thinks they are kindred spirits of sorts, after seeing her dark and disturbing art and learning of her obsession with crime and murder. They soon strike up a sort of understanding of and he begins to tell her things he has never told anyone before. We learn why he does what he does, he tries to make excuses for his actions and no matter how he wants to validate these things they are criminal, disturbing and simply horrifying. To get into the mind of this man who can do such unbearable things and then lay in bed with his wife and teach kids the next day is so bizarre, how he can compartmentalize his actions is beyond words.


This book had me from the very beginning. We get to two souls who seem so different but in time we see how they connect in a way we never saw coming. I found it dark, creepy and at some points horrifying but all in a great way. The story was fascinating and with its twist and turns especially the plot twist towards the end there are some amazing jaw-dropping moments. I would call this my favorite Peter Swanson by far and I highly recommend this sinister of a novel.

2.26.2019

Release Day Blitz: Sunkissed Days by Samantha Chase

We are so excited about the release of SUNKISSED DAYS by New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Samantha Chase. 

SUNKISSED DAYS kicks of the brand new Magnolia Sound series and it's a story you don't want to miss!

 About SUNKISSED DAYS
Mallory Westbrook is ready to make her move on Jake Summerford, the boy – now man – she’s been crushing on for years. Coming back to Magnolia Sound to celebrate her great-grandfather’s birthday provides the perfect opportunity to show Jake that she’s no longer a child.
The last thing Jake expected to do at his mentor’s birthday party was to find himself kissing Mallory under the moonlight. Though he’s known her for years, the thought of kissing her never crossed his mind. But the shy tomboy he once knew is gone, and in her place is a woman he can’t resist. They have one summer before they go their separate ways. Insecurity wars with the possibility of a future together, but it could all come to an end before it even has a chance to start.

Add SUNKISSED DAYS to your Goodreads TBR!


Get your copy of SUNKISSED DAYS today! 


Amazon | Apple Books | Barnes & Noble | Kobo | GooglePlay | Audible

   

Don't miss all the Magnolia Sound stories coming in 2019!

Sunkissed Days | Remind Me | A Girl Like You | In Case You Didn't Know

 

About SAMANTHA CHASE

Samantha Chase is a New York Times and USA Today bestseller of contemporary romance. She released her debut novel in 2011 and currently has more than forty titles under her belt! When she’s not working on a new story, she spends her time reading romances, playing way too many games of Scrabble or Solitaire on Facebook, wearing a tiara while playing with her sassy pug Maylene…oh, and spending time with her husband of 25 years and their two sons in North Carolina.

2.21.2019

Review: On the Come Up by Angie Thomas

On the Come Up by Angie Thomas
Published: February 5, 2019
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Format: via audiobook
Rating: 4/5


Synopsis
Sixteen-year-old Bri wants to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. Or at least make it out of her neighborhood one day. As the daughter of an underground rap legend who died before he hit big, Bri’s got big shoes to fill. But now that her mom has unexpectedly lost her job, food banks and shutoff notices are as much a part of Bri’s life as beats and rhymes. With bills piling up and homelessness staring her family down, Bri no longer just wants to make it—she has to make it.


On the Come Up is Angie Thomas’s homage to hip-hop, the art that sparked her passion for storytelling and continues to inspire her to this day. It is the story of fighting for your dreams, even as the odds are stacked against you; of the struggle to become who you are and not who everyone expects you to be of the desperate realities of poor and working-class black families.


My Thoughts
On the Come Up centers around Bri and her ambition to become the next big rapper. She has the passion and talent for it not to mention it's in her blood, seriously her father is a local legend. However she has many things against her, her mother is a recovering addict and her brother quit school to help the family out not to mention the gangs and drugs that are consent in her daily life. And while having a father who was a legend in the rap game is a major plus living in his shadow is something that Bri doesn't want, she knows she has what it takes to make it.

We see Bri at local rap battles and how she kills it every time but no one thinks a girl rapper could seriously make it without using her body and Bri isn't about that life. She writes her own rhymes and only speaks of what she knows so when a label wants her to use their songs and “act the part” of someone who is running with gangs, using drugs and being sexual she is torn. She knows this isn't who she is but she wants to make it and support her family, her mother lost her job and Bri is scared this could set her back to drugs and she really doesn't want that. She also knows all of this shouldn't fall on her brother’s back, he should be back in college not working trying to make ends meet.

What makes this book so good is that this could be anyone's story. This is life for so many people, trying to make it day by day, living in areas that aren't safe with local gangs running things and drugs hurting and killing those around her. We see the double standard that Bri tries to overcome in trying to make her dreams come true. It’s hard to make it in entertainment in general but being female and black is even harder. Even her own mother tells her that her brother should follow his dreams of finishing college are way more important than Bri’s. Why is that? No dream should be shot down simply because you're a female, all dreams are of equal importance. I felt this story had a ton of topics that it touched upon that are very relevant: race, gender, and sexuality to name a few and they addressed them pretty well. This was an entertaining and relevant story that’s another winner from Angie Thomas.

2.20.2019

Review: Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Daisy Jones and The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Published: March 5, 2019
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Format: via NetGalley
Rating: 5 /5


Synopsis
Everyone knows Daisy Jones & The Six, but nobody knows the reason behind their split at the absolute height of their popularity . . . until now. Daisy is a girl coming of age in L.A. in the late sixties, sneaking into clubs on the Sunset Strip, sleeping with rock stars, and dreaming of singing at the Whisky a Go Go. The sex and drugs are thrilling, but it’s the rock and roll she loves most. By the time she’s twenty, her voice is getting noticed, and she has the kind of heedless beauty that makes people do crazy things.
Also getting noticed is The Six, a band led by the brooding Billy Dunne. On the eve of their first tour, his girlfriend Camila finds out she’s pregnant, and with the pressure of impending fatherhood and fame, Billy goes a little wild on the road. Daisy and Billy cross paths when a producer realizes that the key to supercharged success is to put the two together. What happens next will become the stuff of legend.
The making of that legend is chronicled in this riveting and unforgettable novel, written as an oral history of one of the biggest bands of the seventies. Taylor Jenkins Reid is a talented writer who takes her work to a new level with Daisy Jones & The Six, brilliantly capturing a place and time in an utterly distinctive voice.


My Thoughts
Growing up music has always been an important part of my life. I remember listening to music with my mom and aunt so Fleetwood Mac, The Eagles, and all those '70s rock groups have always had a place in my heart. So when I heard Taylor Jenkins Reid was coming out with a new book about a rock group in the ’70s my heart was happy and I couldn't wait to read it.

We meet Daisy Jones who was known to hang out within the rock scene. She was the IT girl when it came to that, she was a rich girl who didn't matter to her parents so she found her family with the rock stars who gave her attention if it was only for one night or to party. She soon discovers she wants more and thinks she has a gift when it came to singing and writing songs and in time she puts her energy in that.

The Six is a band on the rise lead by Billy who is the Six, he writes all the music and decides everything when it comes to them. He soon meets the love of his life in Camilla a headstrong girl who sees Billy’s potential and will do anything for Billy to make it there. She wants him to do what she knows he can and when she ends up pregnant and he turns into an alcoholic she makes him chose...it’s either her or the booze...he chooses her. She knows life on the road is hard and temptations are everywhere but Billy keeps his word and stays clear of the alcohol and the women but his biggest test is when he meets Daisy.

Its a thing of fate that brings Daisy and Billy together their hatred of each is so strong you know there is definitely something more there. While they fight and bicker when they come together and make music it's... magical. Daisy is soon asked to be a part of The Six and that's when the real story begins, while Daisy and Billy fight more the songs that come out of them makes the best album of that era. You see this passion between them but Billy made a promise to his wife and he is determined to keep it and that just makes Daisy fall deeper into her vices. Billy sees her potential but steers clear of her because he knows if he doesn't Daisy will be his downfall in more ways than one.

I loved how this story was told in an interview formed. You get everyone’s side of the story and as the saying goes there are three sides to every story, yours mines, and the truth. So to hear how everyone could see things entirely differently is interesting, to say the least. I especially enjoyed the chemistry between Billy and Daisy, they have this love/hate relationship but you know there are so many more layers to them. You see this push and pull between them that you want them together but you also want Billy to stay true to his wife but at the same time, you also want to cheer for Daisy. Daisy is someone you root for you want her to be happy and get help because all she wants is love. A true love, someone who wants her simply for her and not for who she is and Billy could be that guy. Plus Daisy gave me serious Stevie Nicks vibes whom I LOVE! This is another winner from TJR who constantly give us great characters and storylines we get consumed by. She hits a high note with this one, and the fact she made me believe this was an actual group blows my mind. Plus the little twist in the end as to who was the interviewer is was a great touch. So do yourself a favor and dive into the musical journey of Daisy Jones and The Six where the real story starts when the music ends.

2.19.2019

New Release Blog Tour: Crashing Into Her [Love on Cue] by Mia Sosa



“Mia Sosa delivers wish fulfillment with off-the-charts sparks.”—Entertainment Weekly
Relationships are a thing of the past for Eva Montgomery. Her current motto? You can’t spell “manipulative” without man. But Eva has needs, and a one-night-stand at her best friend’s wedding is the perfect way to kick off her new approach to singledom. Then a job opportunity puts her in the same city with the guy she can’t forget . . .
Anthony Castillo is a perpetual bachelor—no strings, just flings—a status he maintains by being honest about his intentions and never looking back. So why is he still thinking about the firecracker of a woman who rocked his world at his cousin’s wedding? It’s a question he refuses to answer, until she comes crashing back into his life, taking his emotional walls down with her.
When her father doubts her ability to make it in LA, Eva vows to go big and prove him wrong. With her athletic background, she’s an ideal candidate for stunt work. But first she’ll need training, and the instructor is none other than her former hookup, Anthony Castillo. Except he’s not as cocky as she remembers and he’s definitely still sexy as sin. The only problem is . . . Anthony doesn’t want her anywhere near his stunt school—or his heart.


Crashing Into Her by Mia Sosa
Series: Love on Cue Series
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Avon Impulse
Publication Date: February 19, 2019

Purchase Your Copy Today!
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Tour Wide Giveaway
To celebrate the release of CRASHING INTO HER by Mia Sosa, we’re giving away three paperback copies of the book!
GIVEAWAY TERMS & CONDITIONS:  Open to US shipping addresses only. Three winners will each receive a paperback copy of Crashing Into Her by Mia Sosa.  This giveaway is administered by Pure Textuality PR on behalf of Avon Romance. Giveaway ends 3/3/2019 @ 11:59pm EST. Avon Romance will send the winning copies out to the winner directly. Limit one entry per reader and mailing address.  Duplicates will be deleted. CLICK HERE TO ENTER!

About Mia Sosa

MIA SOSA was born and raised in New York City. She attended the University of Pennsylvania, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in Communications and met her own romance hero (spoiler alert: she married him). Mia once dreamed of being a professional singer, but practical considerations (read: the need to generate income) led her to take the law school admissions test instead.
A graduate of Yale Law School, Mia practiced First Amendment and media law in the nation’s capital for ten years before returning to her creative roots. Now she spends most of her days writing contemporary romances about smart women and the complicated men who love them. Mia lives in Maryland with her husband and two daughters and will forever be on the hunt for the perfect karaoke bar.
Website  |  Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Goodreads  |  Amazon




Release Day Promo: Boyfriend for Hire by Kendall Ryan


     

I’m the guy you calour ex. Yeah, I’m a male escort, but not just any escort, I’m the escort. The one with a mile-long waiting list and a pristine reputation that’s very well-deserved. I’m the guy who’ll make you feel beautiful, desired, and worshipped . . . all for a steep price. I’m hired to make you shine, and I always deliver. I’ll be whatever you want me to be for one night—except my true self. This is just a job, a role I play to earn a paycheck. But I’m not the guy who falls for a client. Not once in six years. And then I meet Elle. Her friend has hired me to escort her to a wedding, but Elle doesn’t know we’re just pretending. There’s a fire between us I never expected. A connection I haven’t felt in so long. One kiss and I’m losing all control. But what will happen when she finds out who I really am? 

AVAILABLE NOW

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A New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author of more than three dozen titles, Kendall Ryan has sold over 2.5 million books and her books have been translated into several languages in countries around the world. Her books have also appeared on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists more than 70 times. Ryan has been featured in such publications as USA Today, Newsweek, and InTouch Magazine. She lives in Texas with her husband and two sons. 
Visit her at: www.kendallryanbooks.com for the latest book news, and fun extras 

Release Day Promo: Tinsel by Devney Perry

     
               
Sofia Kendrick has always cherished her tiara. As the youngest daughter of a wealthy New York family, she’s lived the life of an American princess. But after two scandalous divorces and a breakup smear her name across the society rags, the shine from her crown has dulled. People call her superficial, even gaudy. She’s nothing more than tinsel. Desperate for escape and starving for peace, Sofia heads to Montana for a holiday weekend with her brother. But she doesn’t get the relaxing vacation she planned. Instead, she’s put to work in a bar alongside Dakota Magee—a man who does not want her help. A man who is set on teaching her a few lessons about real life and hard work. But Sofia has a couple of life lessons of her own to teach. Like how to fall in love.

AMAZON | AMAZON UK | AMAZON AU | AMAZON CA | APPLE BOOKS | B&N

           
Devney is the USA Today bestselling author of the Jamison Valley series. She lives in Montana with her husband and two children. After working in the technology industry for nearly a decade, she abandoned conference calls and project schedules to enjoy a slower pace at home with her kids. She loves reading and, after consuming hundreds of books, decided to share her own stories. Devney loves hearing from readers! 
Connect with her on social media. 

2.18.2019

Review: The Handmaids Tale by Margaret Atwood

The Handmaids Tale by Margaret Atwood
Published: March 16, 1998
Format: via audiobook
Rating: 5 /5

Synopsis
Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. She may leave the home of the Commander and his wife once a day to walk to food markets whose signs are now pictures instead of words because women are no longer allowed to read. She must lie on her back once a month and pray that the Commander makes her pregnant because, in an age of declining births, Offred and the other Handmaids are valued only if their ovaries are viable. Offred can remember the years before when she lived and made love with her husband, Luke; when she played with and protected her daughter; when she had a job, money of her own, and access to knowledge. But all of that is gone now.

My Thoughts
I found The Handmaids Tale quite scary. Why? Because everything that happens in this book could very likely happen. The reality of the U.S. becoming like Gilead isn't such a far fetched idea. The idea that women could be treated like this and made to do such things is frightening and unbelievable.

In Gilead, women are merely there to serve men and to solely reproduce. They are the property of higher-ups in the government and expected to bare their children and they have no voice in what happens to them. They were taken away from their families and especially their children if they had any. We get the story of Gilead by one of the handmaids, she tells us about this new world and the experiences she has gone through. We learn about her story and her life as Offred. We also get the story of her life before everything changed. We see how she had a life with a husband and daughter and how one day everything she knew crashed all around her.

This is a masterpiece without a doubt. Its written in a way that breaks by heart but also scares me like nothing else. The fact that it relates so much with this day and age definitely makes you think that this could happen. The way the government wants to decides what happens to a woman's reproductive system is something that only women should have a say in. This story is as important now more than ever and one that I think everyone needs to read.

Excerpt Reveal: The Stand In Boyfriend by Emma Doherty

Today we have the excerpt reveal of THE STAND-IN BOYFRIEND by Emma Doherty! 

Check it out and be sure to grab your copy on March 12th!

The Stand-In Boyfriend by Emma Doherty

Genre: Contemporary Romance

Release Date: March 12th

About The Stand-In Boyfriend

Livy Chapman is in love with Jessie Stephenson. It’s that simple. She has been for years but he only see’s her as his best friend. His best friend who copies her homework, relies on her to bail him out of trouble and who he hooks up with other girls in front of.   Enough is enough and when Chase Mitchell, star of the soccer team, and all round Mr. Popular steps in and convinces her that they can do each other a favour by pretending to date, Livy is just crazy enough over Jessie to agree to it.   I mean, Chase is just her stand-in boyfriend. Nothing could go wrong. Right?
 

Exclusive Excerpt

“What’s wrong? Everything going okay with you and Jessie?” “I don’t know where he is.” My eyes flash around the room, but he’s not in here either. Where the hell did he go? He wouldn’t just leave, would he? “I’m sure he’s around. He must have gotten stuck talking to someone.” I shake my head. For some reason, I have a bad feeling about this, but I don’t know why. I mean, yeah, I was gone for half an hour so of course he’s not just going to stand there on his own and wait for me, but there were a lot of people in the kitchen—he could have just joined them, and he said he’d wait for me. We had a connection, didn’t we? He wouldn’t just walk away. “Have you seen him?” Sophie shakes her head. Her eyes narrow in concern and she takes a step closer to me. Anyone else would laugh and tell me I’m being stupid, but Sophie knows me too well for that. She knows I’m getting anxious and panicky. “Should I come look for him with you?” I shake my head, glancing behind her at Mark and Jackson, who have been joined by more of their crowd. “No, no. You’re right, he’s probably back in the kitchen by now and I just missed him.” I force a smile then back out of the room. I turn back in the direction I came from, intent on returning to the kitchen and even trying subtly to do some of those breathing exercises the child psychologist I saw in middle school told me to do when I start to get anxious. I walk past the huge spiral staircase in Aaron’s hall. I pause, my heartbeat hammering my chest, and I don’t know what makes me do it but I step up onto the first step, and then the next, and the next, until I’m heading upstairs with my eyes locked ahead of me. I know what goes on in the upstairs bedrooms at these parties. Every Monday morning, the Grove Valley High rumor mill is in full swing talking about who hooked up with who. But Jessie was waiting for me! Jessie was looking at me like I was special like he was finally seeing me differently and something was definitely happening, but that doesn’t stop the sickening feeling in my gut. Despite the fact that my heart is pounding and I can feel my hands shaking, I know I need to rule this out. I get to the top and look down the hall just as a girl in my trig class emerges from the first bedroom on the right with a boy I don’t recognize. She smiles sheepishly as she passes me, the cocky grin on the guy’s face making it clear what they’ve been up to. I force myself to smile, ignoring the dead weight in my stomach as I take a couple of steps farther along the hallway. I suddenly feel stupid. What the hell am I going to do now that I’m up here? I’m certainly not going to go knocking on any doors just to check if Jessie is behind one of them. The thought alone makes me blush bright red. He’s probably downstairs in a corner talking about his latest video game obsession and I’m stalking the halls of Aaron’s mansion. I almost laugh out loud at the sheer ridiculousness of the situation. I decide to try to find a bathroom now that I’m up here, hoping it’s obvious from the outside that it’s a bathroom and not a bedroom, and continue walking, assuming the bathroom will be at the end of a hallway. I take a right at the end (seriously, that’s how big Aaron’s house is—the hallway leads onto another), and that’s when I stop dead. That’s when I feel my heart crack in two. That’s when I find Jessie. With Courtney. Making out against the wall. Somehow I manage to not say a word as I watch them kissing…as I watch his hand under her top, groping at her body…as she makes these ridiculous noises like she’s in some sort of adult film, dropping her hands to his belt buckle and starting to undo it. I feel like I’m going to throw up. I start to back away, tears already in my eyes, and I swear, I swear Courtney looks my way for a split second and a smirk covers her face when she sees me standing here. Then Jessie reaches for the handle of the door she’s leaning up against and they both tumble into the room, slamming the door behind them. I am so stupid. I am so, so fucking stupid. My body starts shaking and fresh tears roll down my face. How could I think tonight was going to be it? How could I be dumb enough to think Jessie might actually like me back? I swipe away at the tears, heartbroken that he’s just dismissed me after what felt like a new beginning, but at the same time angry at myself. I should have known. I should have known better than to think I might actually get what I want, and I can’t cover up the sob that escapes from my throat. “Uh…” I jump out of my skin at the voice behind me. “Are you okay?” I whirl around to see Chase Mitchell standing there, looking the most awkward I’ve ever seen anyone look. I turn my back to him and swipe at my face, trying to get rid of the tears, which won’t stop falling. “Yeah,” I reply. “I’m fine.” It’d be more believable if my voice wasn’t cracking as I speak. I wait to hear his footsteps back away, sure the sight of a crying girl is enough to make him run for the hills, but instead he steps around me while I stare at my feet. “Livy.” I shake my head frantically. I can’t look up. I can’t face anyone right now, not when it feels like I’ve just had my heart ripped in two. “Livy,” he says again softly, and something about his voice, the way there’s no mocking lilt and the concern in his tone make me look up at him. He’s standing by the door opposite the one Courtney and Jessie are in, and he pushes it open. “Come in here. It’s Aaron’s room—no one will see you in here. It’s been locked so there’s no one inside.” I nod, because honestly what else can I do at this point? My body won’t stop shaking and I’m having no luck stopping the tears. I just need to sit down for a couple of minutes and pull myself together before I have to face the party again. Once inside the room, I sink down onto Aaron’s bed and look down at my hands, twisting my fingers together in a desperate attempt to stop them from shaking. I can’t believe how stupid I am. I can’t believe I let Sophie convince me this time might actually be different. I’m in here feeling like my world has ended while Jessie is across the hall having sex with his ex. “Are you okay?” Chase asks again. I startle slightly at his voice. I wasn’t expecting him to stick around. I wish he’d disappear; I don’t want anyone seeing me like this. I force a smile and look up, but it wobbles as fresh tears tumble down my cheeks at the memory of Courtney looking at me. She must have been at the party all along and seen me with Jessie in the kitchen. She clearly took my absence as her opportunity, and Jessie certainly didn’t look like he had any objections. “Honestly, I’m fine. Something happened earlier at home and I was just thinking about it,” I lie. Chase doesn’t look away from me. “I saw Stephenson go into that bedroom with Courtney,” he tells me. And there it is. My humiliation is complete. Chase Mitchell is witnessing my meltdown after watching my best friend hook up with his ex. I look away, swiping my hand across my face. God knows what I look like right now. My makeup is probably running everywhere. I let out a sigh and feel my shoulders sag even farther. “He doesn’t see you, Livy.” “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” I whisper. “I told you, I was just thinking about something that happened earlier.” “Liv—” “Chase, please,” I plead, another errant tear streaking down my face. “Just leave me alone, okay? I can’t deal with anyone seeing me like this.” He doesn’t reply as I squeeze my hands and try to focus on pulling myself together, but after what feels like an eternity, I hear the door open then click shut behind him. I burst into tears all over again because not only is Jessie back with Courtney, now everyone in school will know what a pathetic loser I am.
 

About Emma Doherty

Emma Doherty was born in Yorkshire, England. She attended university in Newcastle before moving to London. She loves to travel, write, spend time with friends and family and hear from her readers.

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2.14.2019

Review: This Love Story Will Self-Destruct by Leslie Cohen

This Love Story Will Self-Destruct by Leslie Cohen
Published: January 23, 2018
Publisher: Gallery Books
Format: via audiobook
Rating: 4 /5

Synopsis
This is the classic tale of boy meets girl: Girl…goes home with someone else.

Meet Eve. She’s a dreamer, a feeler, a careening well of sensitivities who can’t quite keep her feet on the ground, or steer clear of trouble. She’s a laugher, a crier, a quirky and quick-witted bleeding-heart-worrier.

Meet Ben. He’s an engineer, an expert at leveling floors who likes order, structure, and straight lines. He doesn’t opine, he doesn’t ruminate, he doesn’t simmer until he boils over.

So naturally, when the two first cross paths, sparks don’t exactly fly. But then they meet again. And again. And then, finally, they find themselves with a deep yet fragile connection that will change the course of their relationship—possibly forever.

Follow Eve and Ben as they navigate their twenties on a winding journey through first jobs, first dates, and first breakups; through first reunions, first betrayals and, maybe, first love. This is When Harry Met Sally reimagined; a charming tale told from two unapologetically original points of view. With an acerbic edge and heartwarming humor, debut novelist Leslie Cohen takes us on a tour of what life looks like when it doesn’t go according to plan and explores the complexity, chaos, and comedy in finding a relationship built to last.

My Thoughts
This story is raw and messy and I fully enjoyed it. In This Love Story Will Self-Destruct, we have Eve and Ben who continue to meet over the years but never actually take the time to get to know each other until years later. We see that they run in the same circle of friends but never really talk. Their first meeting is while they are still in college but Eve is so hung up on a certain guy that she never sees anyone else. She continues to date this guy who is truly an ass and clearly doesn't love her but she loves him and nothing will change her mind. We see Eve as she goes through the struggles through her twenties with her job, friends and especially relationships. We see how she changes and realizes what she wants in life. We also find out more about her past, her family and how she battles with the loss of her mom years ago.

Ben is sweet and nice and likes order in his life. When he first saw Eve he liked her but knew she wasn't really into him. As he and Eve reconnect over the years they are at different places in their lives and something just clicks. It’s almost as if they were meant to be together. Ben brings calm into her life and Eve needs and deserves that and in time she opens up about her personal life and then Ben connects all the dots and realizes he knows more about Eve than they both wouldn't believe. When he finally tells Eve what he knows and she is mad and upset and one night she makes a huge mistake that she will never be able to take back.

I really enjoyed this story and I loved the characters and how we are shown their separate stories but then when it finally merges everything just comes together seamlessly. I liked how they are opposites and I believe that balances them out. I also liked that their relationship was messy and raw which life is like. Nothing is perfect and showing us that makes it all very real. This is one of the most real relationships I’ve read about in a long time. So if you want a realistic tale of love and loss look no further than this read.