The Sway (Classified #1)

Sway

Author: Ruby Knight
Published: May 17, 2016
Pages: 186

Stars: 2 out of 5

Synopsis:

Her mission is to get close to him for inside information.

His mission is to kidnap her for a supernatural militant group.

Recruited in her teens for a life of espionage, Julia Caldwell, now 19, is theyoungest CIA agent on record. Her mission is simple: get close to Cole Thomas for intel on his father, a known and dangerous weapons dealer. As she grows closer to Cole, something is off. He might not be who she thinks he is. And worse, his mission will put an end to hers.

Always believing the government’s story that her purpose in life was to keep the world safe, Julia doesn’t know who to trust or who to believe. But now, THE SWAY has a different story—a different purpose for her—that goes well beyond all she ever imagined.

Review:

This book is difficult for me to review. As an adult, this book was not for me. The adolescent immaturity and instant love was too much. But if I was a teenager, I can see this book being a big hit. This book touches on the emotions and insecurities teenagers face. And all the ‘firsts’ when it comes to love and relationships.
Julia is a 19 year old who has been manipulated by the government. Although she is exceptionally smart and strong, she has an immature nature about the way she does things and acts. Even though she is nineteen, she acts much younger and focuses on her crush instead of more important things, like saving the world. And let’s not forget within a couple weeks her love interest went from enemy to my one and only love.
The plot was a combination of x-men mixed with the fantastic four. Although there were some lively plot twists, there wasn’t anything entirely amazing about them. I felt like the author added things to the plot not because they necessarily made sense, but because they were needed to lead the plot in the direction she wanted. The plot itself was an easy read and didn’t get very deep. The writing was not very strong and overall made the book weak.
Again, I think a younger generation would enjoy this book. There seem to be a good amount of positive feedback on goodreads.

Brave Enough (Tall, Dark, and Dangerous, #3)

Brave Enough

Author: M. Leighton
Published: April 5, 2016
Pages: 288

Stars: 2.5 out of 5

Synopsis:

He was the most charismatic man I’d ever met. Strong, tough, brave. Bold as hell. Something told me Tag Barton could have anything—anyone—he wanted…and he wanted me. It didn’t matter that he was wrong for me in practically every way possible. It didn’t matter that my father would hate it.

I couldn’t resist him. Even if I’d known who he really was and what he was really capable of.

When he suggested we pretend to be engaged, I thought he was the answer to all my problems. He wasn’t. And, in his wake, he left nothing but scorched earth and me, just another casualty of my father’s war.

Can I believe him now when he tells me he loves me?  Or is he nothing more than a beautiful, breathtaking lie?

Review:

Weatherly is upper class and is exhausted of always having to be perfect, look perfect, act perfect, date the perfect guy who will fit into her perfect world.. It isn’t until her father informs her that she either loses her trust fund or marry a man to solidify a business merger that she runs away to the family vineyard to form a plan. Weatherly is soft, sweet, flirtatious, but her upbringing has left her a bit naive. As the story progressed, her character got on my nerves. I think the thing that bugged me the most was how soft she was. I wouldn’t necessarily say she had much for common sense.
Tag maintains the vineyard Weatherly’s father owns. And he is dead set on getting Weatherly under him. But is it because of his plan or the growing attraction he has for her? Tag is a secretive guy who cares deeply for his family. He is an expert at flirtation and innuendo phrases. His one liners were a little much but I did enjoy the mystery behind his character.
The chemistry between Weatherly and Tag is instantaneously thick. That might have something to do with Tag walking in on Weatherly touching herself while taking a bath. But as the book continues, I can’t help but think Weatherly’s reaction to Tag is similar to a young adolescent who desperately wants to get laid. The way the author describes her reactions is a bit over the top. For example, I felt like her nipples would harden at the slightest thing and she would become turned on with just the sound of his voice. It was fun to read at first but quickly became annoying.
The book is written in a duel perspective and I can’t decide how I feel about this. At first, I couldn’t help but think the author did the book a dis justice by doing this. Even though there is a lot of mystery surrounding Tag, some of it is lost with what his internal monologue gives away. I think the flirtation, playful remarks, and the slight game that is played between Tag and Weatherly would have been more potent if the book was told strictly through Weatherly’s perspective. But near the end, I understand why the author wrote it this way. Without the duel point of view, the plot wouldn’t have been as complex without Tag, his secrets, and the insight on what he was going through.
The plot was a bit slow until the engagement. Then things really took off. Up until the engagement, I felt the plot was really fluffy and didn’t hold much as far as a plot. But once the engagement happened, aka the drama took off, then the dynamic of every relationship in the book changed.
The book was extremely unrealistic. For example, the couple gets married after knowing each other less than a month. But the really kicker is how Tag is good with marring Weatherly but it’s a struggle to say ‘I love you’. This made it really difficult for me to get into the book. Without giving away anything, I wanted to roll my eyes at Weatherly’s reaction when things start going south. There were a couple points where I actually got upset and wanted to yell, “what do you think was going to happen?!?” Which brings me back to how naive her character is.
Overall, this book wasn’t the right fit for me. I need something more realistic. This book isn’t really deep and would be perfect for those who want a steamy romance without needing to dig into a deep, complex plot. For those of you needing more out of your stories, I’m not sure this is the right choice for you.

Manhandled (Hammered #2)

Manhandled

Author: Cari Quinn & Taryn Elliott
Published: April 8, 2016
Pages: 277

Stars: 2 out of 5

Synopsis:

My name is Faith Keystone, but my friends call me Keys.
I’m the piano player for Hammered.
Did I mention I’m the only female in my band?
That means I technically have five older brothers.
Can’t forget my manager and security team, too.
Alone time is nonexistent.
I escaped an overbearing family to join this happy circus, and most of the time it’s awesome.
Except now, because of one teensy little incident at a show.
Now I have this hulking bodyguard shadowing me like a freaking puppy.
Only this puppy is more like a Doberman with an attitude problem.
And he only knows one word—NO.
I hate that word.
And I hate Quinn Alexander.
The one thing I do like is giving him the slip. Is it wrong that I kinda like when he growls at me after he finds me?
Because he always finds me.
Worst of all? I want him so bad that I keep forgetting I hate him

Review:

This book started off really slow. The author introduced a lot of characters and to be honest, I was lost. The wedding ceremony dragged and I couldn’t understand why the author included all this information. And then I realized this was the second book in the series. No wonder I’m confused. Overall, I think you can get by if you start this book before the first. You will only be confused for a short bit. But it might be a good idea to start with book one.
So once I figured everything out, I got better understanding for Keys, aka Faith. She is fiercely independent, loyal, strong, but not to the point of stupidity. At least in the beginning her character isn’t stupid. As the story progresses, she comes off a bit spoiled, becomes careless, and makes stupid decisions because the rules that are meant to keep her same are really inconvenient. She is smart enough to be scared of her stalker. But doesn’t think much or even twice about things that happen around her that are strange or weird. By the end of the book, I didn’t mind her character.
Right from the start Quinn admits he is attracted to Faith. But Quinn comes with a lot of baggage and fights his attraction. He is the opposite of Faith in almost every way. But he is a strong alpha character who is very dominant if not abrasive at times. By the end of the book, he was a completely different character and more compatible for Faith.
To be honest, the begging of this book doesn’t exactly have me rooting for Faith and Quinn to get together. They are completely opposite. He’s controlled, quiet, reserved, boring… And she’s loud, free spirited, laughs, fun. I guess I just don’t really see the match here. The way Quinn and Faiths romance starts is similar to a firecracker going off without warning. I felt like it came out of nowhere and wasn’t a very smooth transition from what was happening prior.
Then next thing you know, Quinn and Faith are together. By this point in the book, it mellows out and is a little more enjoyable to read. I really enjoyed the ending. I felt like everything was leading up to meet I g her stalker and all of that was just there. It wasn’t exciting but still entertaining to a point.
Overall, the book was alright. I didn’t love it and was ok with putting it down for a day or two at a time. I felt like the flow was off and the book was choppy. And in the end, I walked away from the book not loving it, not hating it, but feeling more indifferent about it.

The Safe Bet (The Game Changers, #3)

The Safe Bet

Author: Shealy James
Published: December 29, 2015
Pages: 174

Stars: 2 out of 5

Synopsis:
There’s no man in the world who won’t break Reagan Anders’s heart…

At the fragile age of eight, Reagan’s life seemed perfect. But when her beloved father abandoned their tiny family, Reagan was left emotionally scarred. Now in high school, not much has changed. Reagan still won’t let her guard down. Not even for her long-time friend, Brock Anderson, who has spent years pursuing Reagan, yet never tearing down her walls.

By graduation, Brock has finally won over Reagan’s affections. They aren’t a public item, but Brock is content just being hers, even if that means going without the official boyfriend title. As usual, Reagan’s fears get the better of her, and suspicions of Brock’s commitment creep in. Surviving their relationship’s tension, they make it to college together, where their game of cat and mouse takes a darker twist.

But after a tragic car crash that kills her best friend, her mother ships her off to the one person Reagan hates more than herself. Her father. When she meets her brother she never knew, they immediately become friends. Years pass until one day when she meets one of her brother’s friends…Brock Anderson—and he’s on a mission to win her back.

When Reagan and Brock are reunited, the chemistry is stronger than ever. But when uncertainty threatens their future, will Brock be the safe bet, or will he be the heartache she always feared?

Review:
Do you ever read a book and all you can think is how perfect the timing of this book is. This is how I felt about this book.. At least the first half of the book. In a way this book is about destiny- that some people are always meant to be in your life and they keep showing back up. But mostly this book is about second, no I mean third, no wait I mean fourth chances, love, forgiveness, and opening yourself and your heart up to the possibility of love/getting hurt.

Like I mentioned, I really enjoyed the first half of the book. The first couple chapters were well written and detailed enough to provide the reader with a smooth flow of the story line. But the further you read into the book, the more grammatical errors showed up: Hopefully this is just because the book is up for review on Netgally and these will be fixed before released. This made the book at times confusing because entire sentences didn’t make sense. Near the end of the book I just really struggled to follow what the author was trying to get at.

Throughout the book, the chapters skipped around from past to present. Overall I have mixed feelings about this. By doing this, the author did create secrecy around Reagan and Brock that makes the reader want to read more and try to solve the mystery surrounding their relationship. But each chapter felt like a new date and there were too many to follow. I started getting lost within the timeline of the book and it was confusing how the author responded to these moments from her past. For example, in the beginning of the book there would be three chapters- present time, a past date, and followed by other chapter of Reagan in the present. Present time Reagan often ignored what happened in the past time chapter. But later in the book, the author hinted at the past chapters being dreams or flashbacks. The execution was poor and confusing.

As I was reading through Reagans past, my heart pulled with the love, loss, and struggles she faced with Brock. It’s easy to connect with her pain because we have all been there- either recently, in high school, college, now- we have all more than likely gone through similar heartache. Not to mention her struggles with her father. Wow, the beginning chapter especially is heartbreaking. The author did a fantastic job of creating scenes where I felt a strong emotional pull towards a character/situation.

Reagan’s character was frustrating because I didn’t think she stayed true to who she was, especially at the end. I felt like there was all this build up and then she just swept everything under the rug like it was no big deal. I enjoyed her sassiness and the way she would bring humor to lighten a situation up.

I really don’t like Brock’s character. At first I loved him but by the end of the book, I just didn’t care for him. In a way I understood his actions when he was in high school and some of his actions in college. But as an adult, I found them questionable. For example after Brock and Reagan finally move past things Hailey, his ex, shows up the next morning. But it’s how Reagan finds them that irritates me. If she meant nothing to him, like Brock claims, then why was he holding onto her while her legs were wrapped around his body? And why did he wait so long to speak up?

Brock always seemed to find himself in questionable situations. And his responses or reasoning behind them seemed too simplistic. Again, I just had the feeling that issues were made into big deals just to have someone wave their hand in the air and say’ “ah, that’s no big deal”. I will admit, it was hard not to gush over Brock’s romantic jesters. But that was all ruined for me when he put all the blame on Cadence on why they didn’t get together when he was playing the games just like she was.

So why the two star rating? Simple, I think the idea behind the book was good and the book was interesting that I wanted to finish the book. But overall, the book just lacked and the ending/last 25% of the book was frustrating.

Overall, I had high hopes for this book but ultimately the book wasn’t for me. This book might be better paired for a younger generation, people closer to high school. But then again, maybe not.

Love Struck (Miss Match #2)

Love Struck

Author: Kayti McGee                                                                                                   Published: February 2, 2016                                                                                               Pages: 336

Stars: 2 out of 5

Synopsis:
Lacy Dawson is a young singer-songwriter with a record deal, a studio gig, and a serious case of writer’s block. After looking for love songs in all the wrong places, she finds inspiration at an online support group called Song Writers Anonymous. Thanks to one mysterious member who motivates her and inspires her, Lacy’s career is back on track. But is she ready to meet her sexy musical muse…face to face?

Eli is definitely interested in hooking up with Lacy, aka “LoveCoda.” But between writing her new album and his band’s success, they can’t find the time to face the music-or each other-about their burgeoning online romance. All that changes when Eli and Lucy get booked on tour together. In person, the attraction is all too real and explosive. They both should walk away, but once they are in each other’s arms, there is no turning back…

Review:

This is the second book I’ve read from the author Laurelin McGee. Laurelin McGee stands for two authors: Laurelin Paige and Kayti McGee. The first book in this series I absolutely loved. I wish I could say the same about the second book.

After her fiancé dies, Lancy is left broken, trying to piece together her life and hoping to filter her headache through her music. Lacey’s character struggles to find who she is. She makes a lot of illogical assumptions and ignores the warning signs all around her. I can’t say I really appreciated her character because it took her far too long to get with the program and figure things out. But her character was well rounded and her backstory brought her heartache to the surface.

Eli is a gifted musician/writer with dreams of branching out on his own. Eli’s character drove me crazy! His character really brought the book down for me. He’s this passionate, kind, and thoughtful individual. But he’s the biggest pushover I’ve ever seen. For example, he lets his ‘best friend’, who is a horrible friend if you ask me, walk all over him and claim Eli’s ideas as his own. I was really hoping for a stronger character.

I think the thing that bothers me the most is both characters find strength, inspiration, and freedom within each other as their online counter parts Folx and LoveCoda. But in their day to day lives, they aren’t nearly as strong.

This story is far more complicated than it needs to be and the inner monologue and the plot dragged. I did really enjoy reading about the perspective of a singer/songwriter and what it’s like going on tour. I especially found myself loving the creativity and the dynamic of what it takes to write a song.

Overall, I think you either loved the complexity and Eli or you didn’t care for it. The writing was well done and I think these authors are very talented. This book just wasn’t for me.

Fever (Breathless #2)

Fever

Author: Maya Banks                                                                                                    Published: April 2, 2013                                                                                                      Pages: 416

Stars: 2 out of 5

Synopsis:

Jace Crestwell, Ash McIntyre, and Gabe Hamilton have been best friends and successful business partners for years. They’re powerful, they’re imposing, they’re irresistibly sexy, and Jace and Ash share everything—including their women. When they meet Bethany, Jace begins to feel things he’s never experienced before: jealousy, and a powerful obsession that threatens him, overwhelms him—and excites him beyond control.

Jace isn’t sharing Bethany—with anyone. He’s determined to be the only man in her life, and it’s jeopardizing a lifelong friendship with Ash. Bethany will be his and his alone. Even if it means turning his back on his best friend.

Review:

I was really disappointed in this book. I felt like the story plot was too similar to the first book. In this book, Jace falls complelty head over heals for Bethany but doesn’t even know her. He feels this uncontrollable and absolute love for her after just meeting her. I hate stories like this where the characters are utterly in love but they have no history together and hardly know each other. In the first book, it was understandable for Gabe to be in love with Jace’s younger sister, they have history. But this book was just ridiculously. The sex scenes were good as expected. But if I am going to read a book, regardless how great the sex is, I need at least a half way decent plot and ideally one that is original. I need something tangible and this book feel short. If you are looking for a book that is almost identical to the first, then you would like this second installment in the breathless series.

Ignite (Midnight Fire #1)

Ignite

Author: Kaitlyn Davis                                                                                                   Published: December 16, 2013                                                                                           Pages: 395

Stars: 2 out of 5

Synopsis:

When Kira Dawson moves to South Carolina, she meets Luke, a blond goofball who quickly becomes her best friend, and Tristan, a mysterious bad boy who sends shivers down her spine. Kira knows they’re keeping secrets, but when she discovers Tristan’s lust for blood and her own dormant mystical powers, Kira is forced to fight for her life and make the heartbreaking decision between the familiar comfort of friendship and the fiery passion of love.

Review:

I went back and forth between two stars or three. But ultimately ended on a two star rating  because the story plot was not creative or unique in any way. If you have read twilight, then you have read this book. Throughout this entire book I could not help but think of how close this story was to twilight. Everything from new girl at school, hot vampire guy every girl at school swoons for but only has eyes for the new girl. There’s a love triangle and even a dance. The main character falls complelty in love with the vampire who is also in love with her but for no apparent reason.

The writing was captivating and the story was fast paced. But There wasn’t any part of the book I could get lost in and the story plot was unrealistic. I walked away from the book thinking ‘What a disaster’. I would not recommend the book

Reawakened (Reawakened #1)

Reawakened

Author: Colleen Houck                                                                                                Published: August 11, 2015                                                                                                 Pages: 400

Stars: 2 out of 5

Synopsis:

When seventeen-year-old Lilliana Young enters the Metropolitan Museum of Art one morning during spring break, the last thing she expects to find is a live Egyptian prince with godlike powers, who has been reawakened after a thousand years of mummification.

And she really can’t imagine being chosen to aid him in an epic quest that will lead them across the globe to find his brothers and complete a grand ceremony that will save mankind.

But fate has taken hold of Lily, and she, along with her sun prince, Amon, must travel to the Valley of the Kings, raise his brothers, and stop an evil, shape-shifting god named Seth from taking over the world.

From New York Times bestselling author Colleen Houck comes an epic adventure about two star-crossed teens who must battle mythical forces and ancient curses on a journey with more twists and turns than the Nile itself.

Review:

This book was annoying at times but also fascinating. It’s hard to explain and to be honest, I still haven’t fully formed an opinion about the book.

The overall book was very similar to the Tigers Saga in regard to the lead female character, Lily, and the romance between her and Amon. Even the potential for a love triangle between them and his brother Anubis.

Lily’s character was also frustrating because she was first described as a strong, determined, and extremely bright person. But most of the book she was overly emotional, let her emotions drive her actions, and was beyond dense. So dense she couldn’t understand that Amon was taking her ‘life force’ from her so he could survive. Then there’s the issue that Amon and his brothers are trying to save the world from a horrible evil but all she cares about is why Amon doesn’t like her or kiss her. It made me roll my eyes at how stupid her character was acting.

But what fascinated me was the mythological aspect of the book and the Egyptian history.

Overall, the book was interesting. If you enjoyed reading the Tiger Saga, I am sure this book is perfect for you. I’ll probably give the second book in the series a chance but I’m not sure I’ll stick with the series.

Free Pass

Free

Author: Allie Kincheloe                                                                                               Published: June 15, 2015                                                                                                     Pages: 284

Stars: 2 out of 5

Synopsis:

My world flipped upside down with a single text—photographic proof my boyfriend cheated. In a last ditch effort to save our so-called relationship, Austin blurts out the most ridiculous idea—even the score with any guy I choose?
Austin’s plan is hardly an option … until I stumble into Jake’s path. Now the only possibility I can bring myself to consider is the one man I am forbidden to choose.

One chance…

Laney is everything I want. Lips that beg to be kissed every time she speaks. Eyes that look straight into my soul. And that ass…
Going after my brother’s girl? Some lines aren’t meant to be crossed—until those lines blur and I get my chance.

Review:

I have never hated a character so fast and so much as I did Austin! Within a couple pages, I was outraged for Laney and I had yet to discover the plot. The author did a fantastic job grabbing the readers attention with the introduction of Austin. Although the book was an easy and fast read, the complexity of the plot was interesting, if not surprising. To say a double standard existed was a huge understatement. After only a couple chapters in the book, I didn’t know who I hated more- Austin, his parents, or Laney’s parents.

Laney is a girl we all know- pretty, loyal, all to trusting, and hands her heart over to the wrong guy. In this case that’s Austin, the cheating boyfriend of three years. But the thing that irritated me about Laney is her inability to stand up for what she wants. Her character isn’t very strong but more of a submissive, walk all over me kind. I really didn’t care for Laney’s character and all the drama she created.

Jake, Austin’s brother and her two week free pass, is confident but sometimes has the cheesiest lines. Throughout the book, I find myself laughing at how ridiculous the lines are. As the book progresses, it’s easy to see Jake has a temper with a dominant personality.

The book was a little hard to follow in the sense you didn’t know how old the characters were or what they did right away. In fact, it took till chapter 9 to find out Laney was in college and Jake was possible in advertising?? No wait, the next chapter states he’s a graphic designer. See, hard to follow.

Overall, the book wasn’t for me. The sex scenes were steamy and fun to read. But Laney’s character really bugged me and there was far too much unnecessary drama for my taste.

The Drafter (The Peri Reed Chronicles #1)

Drafter

Author: Kim Harrison                                                                                                  Published: September 1, 2015                                                                                            Pages: 422

Stars: 2 out of 5

Synopsis:

Detroit 2030. Double-crossed by the person she loved and betrayed by the covert government organization that trained her to use her body as a weapon, Peri Reed is a renegade on the run.

Don’t forgive and never forget has always been Peri’s creed. But her day job makes it difficult: she is a drafter, possessed of a rare, invaluable skill for altering time, yet destined to forget both the history she changed and the history she rewrote.

When Peri discovers her name on a list of corrupt operatives, she realizes that her own life has been manipulated by the agency. She joins forces with a mysterious rogue soldier in a deadly race to piece together the truth about her final task, unable to trust even herself.

Review:

This book was a disappointment. Throughout the book, I wanted to roll my eyes at how ridiculous the plot was. I felt like the plot was on repeat, with the same concept happening over and over again. And by the end, I just felt pity for the Peri. I really can’t put into words how much this book failed.