16 November 2017

Bite Sized Books // The Arcs Which Time (Or I) Forgot Part 2

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You guys might have thought I wouldn’t continue with my lost ARCs series but I totally am… even if one of them is actually only like a week old. I still read two more ARCs on my reading list and that is a victory for me while I stall in my reading.

Published: 10th August 2017
Source: Author
Genre: Science Fiction
My Rating:
When destiny and desire collide...

In a community full of supernatural powers, eighteen-year-old Jewel longs for a life of normalcy. But nothing in her life is ordinary. And suddenly she discover she's more abnormal than she ever realized--complete with a past she never knew existed. Once a goddess from ancient Greece, Jewel is the main reason everyone has their special abilities.

As she struggles with her newfound knowledge, Jewel encounters the mysterious god of Egypt, Anubis. With a past she has no recollection of, she tries to deny the pull she has for the sexy god. But, destiny has other plans. As she uncovers more secrets about who she really is, Jewel is pulled into a dangerous world surrounded by a prophecy--a prophecy that both terrifies and intrigues her. Will Jewel accept who she once was for a chance to become who she's meant to be?
I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.

I first saw this book over at Feed Your Fiction Addiction and was interested. It sounded original with the inclusion of gods and mythology, and the mixing of different mythologies. I do love a good mythology based book, after all. I admit, I had my own ideas of what this book would be like and it ended up being nothing like I was expecting and that is both a good and bad thing.

I was not expecting the sci-fi element to this book. I think because I knew there was a Greek/Egyptian gods element I was expecting more of a fantasy read and that was what I was craving so there was that. It meant I was waiting for elements to be included which never came it didn’t feed that craving of mine. I did like the really unique take on the gods, though. I loved the originality as it made them far more interesting and original than you get in most mythology influenced books.

I struggled to connect with the characters a little. I think because there wasn't enough introduction to the story and characters for my liking. Instead, it just gets going with all these characters introduced and you're dropped into the world of the Evols. In some ways that is a good thing, I prefer a fast pace, but I would have liked to get to know Jewel a bit more first so I could have felt a bit more connected with her from the start. The same goes for Anubis who begins loving Jewel and it was obvious. I would have liked him to be a touch more reserved about it so it would have felt like they were falling for one another from the start. I do love a good romance after all.

Despite feeling a distance from the characters at times I was interested in the story. I would have liked to learn more about the Egyptian gods but I hope that will come in the next book as Jewel learns more so shall we. I think this was a good start and it was interesting and fast paced with plenty more to come.

Christmas With Her Millionaire Boss
Published: 1st November 2017
Source: Netgalley
Genre: Romance, Contemporary
My Rating:
The magic of Christmas…

Abandoned by his mother on Christmas Day, James Hammond wishes he could simply erase the date. So when his company buys a new toy store devoted to Christmas, he wants to seal the deal and get home. Until he finds himself injured and under the care of employee Noelle!

Nobody loves Christmas more than young widow Noelle Fryberg! But could she be the one to change his mind and melt the millionaire's guarded heart?

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.

I have been seeing plenty of Christmas themed romance lately and so when I saw this on the Mills and Boon Insiders list of ARCs I thought perfect. Millionaire romance set at Christmas? Sounds like it should be fun with a touch of heart-warming thrown in. It definitely met expectations unlike Acceptance. It was Christmassy and heart-warming and totally predictable. I kind of needed that, because romance is always predictable but I kind of wanted it to surprise me in some way.

Noelle is the woman who loves Christmas and loves working in a place where it is Christmas everyday providing toys and joy for children. So, when James Hammond comes along buying the company and possibly threatening the comfort she has had in the small-town she has lived her whole life you just know she didn’t give him a warm welcome. She is happy in the spot she’s carved for herself and she doesn’t have time for Grumpy Hammond glaring at folk and threatening to change store traditions. She hopes to get rid of him as soon as possible and then a drone in the shop gives him a concussion and forces him to stay. James Hammond wants out of Fryberg as quickly as possible. He doesn’t like Noelle and he hates Christmas, even if he runs a very successful toy store chain. When he’s forced to spend more time then expected with Noelle, though… well, the two end up growing close and the pesky attraction gets in the way.

I admit, it was predictable, there was the usual not wanting to be together. They get together, then there’s a whole thing where one of them has a crises and flees which leads to misunderstandings which keep them apart. Then they eventually get their happily ever after. I liked them as a couple but they definitely needed to have a few pages for me to really grow attached to them. The biggest flaw outside of predictability was that the characters never felt fully real to me. They needed a bit longer to develop and get together and may have enjoyed it far more.

A good festive read which could have been great but was just enjoyable and a good way to spend an evening.

Anyone else find themselves by books when they do and don’t meet expectations? Sometimes they meet expectations too closely and so fall into the trap of being predictable, and others go too far from what was expected that I end up not getting the read I fancied.

14 November 2017

Here We Are Now // I Enjoyed It But Thing Were Left Unresolved For Me

Here We Are Now
Here We Are Now – Jasmine Warga
Published: 7th November 2017

Source: Publisher

Genre: Contemporary, Young Adult

My Rating:
Despite sending him letters ever since she was thirteen, Taliah Abdallat never thought she'd ever really meet Julian Oliver. But one day, while her mother is out of the country, the famed rock star from Staring Into the Abyss shows up on her doorstep. This makes sense - kinda - because Julian Oliver is Taliah's father, even though her mother would never admit it to her.

Julian asks if Taliah if she will drop everything and go with him to his hometown of Oak Falls, Indiana, to meet his father - her grandfather - who is nearing the end of his life. Taliah, torn between betraying her mother's trust and meeting the family she has never known, goes.

With her best friend Harlow by her side, Taliah embarks on a three-day journey to find out everything about her 'father' and her family. But Julian isn't the father Taliah always hoped for, and revelations about her mother's past are seriously shaking her foundation. Through all these new experiences, Taliah will have to find new ways to be true to herself, honoring her past and her future.
I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.

This was such a brilliant read. I didn't get totally absorbed, like I'd hoped, but considering it's relatively short length I enjoyed it plenty.

Taliah, Tal to her friends, has never met her father in person, but she's seen plenty of him on TV and magazines. He is a rockstar and after 16 years he turns up on her doorstep. It's a farfetched story idea. It would basically never happen in real life, but for this books purposes it was a good idea and it was interesting to read about. I found some of the plot points hard to believe (mainly that a sixteen-year-old would be left home alone while a parents goes to Paris for work for a few days and also that she would immediately go on a road trip with a dad who she had never met). My minor grumbles about farfetched plot points aside, though, it was an easy book to read all about learning to let people in. Finding family. And learning that people are not just who they seem to you. They are multi-faceted and you cannot know all of them all at once.

I really liked the characters. Taliah was so cool with how she adored music and worried it was part of her trying to emulate a father she doesn't know, yet she was also shy and reserved. She was slow to trust but loyal as hell to those she loves. And Harlow, her best friend, was interesting and cool and I wanted to get her so much more than we did. All I know is that she was a bit of a hipster, into music, and that her girlfriend, Quinn, was in a band. I definitely felt like she could have been explored as a character way more. She was Tal's opposite in many ways and I would have liked more of them together and actually being friends because most of Harlow and Tal together in this book was about them airing their issues and Tal being upset that she felt like she was losing Harlow to Quinn. I liked them having issues as friends because that is friendship but I would have liked their bond to be felt some more.

Julian, Tal's dad, was great because you kind of expect him to be the stereotypical ageing rocker and he actually ended up being more than that. He had his issues and he was a bit of a big kid. He didn't feel parental in the book, but much of that will be because he hadn't been in that role before. I liked how he slowly got to know Tal and Tal let him in and got to know who he was and is. I adored the father/daughter bonding, especially as they were relative strangers. Them bonding and growing to accept one another as family was pretty cool to read.

I think my issue with this book really comes down to its length. The book isn't that long (what YA is?) but I wish it had been longer. There were so many story threads which weren't truly resolved. Whilst this was done for effect, you can tell the way the book is ended is intentional, it was frustrating because I have unanswered questions. They aren't things I need to know, but I would have liked to have known. I would have happily have read so much more. Especially as I enjoyed seeing the past history of Tal's parents and how they met. I would have liked to see their story continuing to the present day too. And getting more resolution to Tal and Harlow's friend issues as they learn to grow together as friends.

It was a fun and easy read and I really enjoyed it. I would recommend it and I will have to read more by Warga.

Have you read this? Do you agree that there were unresolved elements to this book?

12 November 2017

Sunday Summary // 12.11.2017

Sunday Summary
Once more it is Sunday. I had a less relaxing weekend this weekend as I had a normal weekend, no two day weekend. I also had numerous errands to run Saturday which is always a drag because all I really want to do is sit and play video games and listen to Reputation on repeat. Like, I am obsessed with Taylor Swift’s new album right now. I know, I should be embarrassed but just try and stop me. Teenage me would be utterly ashamed of current me’s taste in music.

I’ve recently rediscovered my PlayStations and I love it. I discovered that Final Fantasy IX has been released on PS4 and I was all over buying that (after my brother convinced me as it had a couple of extra modes added in) and it was the best/worst decision. I know everyone raves about the genius of Final Fantasy VII and that is an amazing game, but 9 will always be my favourite as it’s the first FF game I played properly as a kid. The one where I learnt to play and follow the story and really enjoyed it. I then spent several hours playing over the past week and I am totally in love. Who needs to read books anyway? I am so loving playing an old favourite and they have FFVII so that may be purchased next, because who wants to play new games when you can replay old ones?

I saw the new Thor film this week and I am in love! I adored it. It was so funny and totally fitting to reboot a character without actually recasting and redoing it and Thor needed this film because he was the boring avenger. Loki was more interesting a character than Thor ever was, but now I want to rewatch the marvel universe films because of reasons but I don’t own any of them and I wouldn’t be able to figure out what order to watch them in. Release order, maybe? I need to get these films!

And that is my week. Nothing exciting really but lots of wanting to return to old favourites. We did go to the care home and pick a room for my nan, and we have a moving date for her so hopefully it all goes smoothly. I honestly want her to be happy there and the nurse we spoke to was so lovely and really made me feel happy with our choice. The social worker has said when she moves they’d rather we hold off visiting too much for the first week so she can get used to the staff. My mom says she might pop by and see how she is and see if anything is needed, though. I’ll be away so I probably won’t be able to visit until a few days after she has moved in anyway.

Also, I won a competition. Two in fact! I got an ebook of Lauren Layne’s latest, An Ex For Christmas which I can’t wait to start reading. And more exciting, a little while back I won a Lucy Parker competition and got a signed copy of Pretty Face and it arrived yesterday and it’s awesome! She even sent me some chocolate and I thought Lucy Parker couldn’t do anything which would make me like her more but she has!

What I’ve Been Reading

11761452Christmas With Her Millionaire Boss
Erm… it’s been a slow week? I honestly can’t settle on a book. I tried reading Burn Mark (from my pile of last chance books which have lurked far too long on my shelves) and I just couldn’t connected. And then I picked up Christmas With He Millionaire Boos expecting a quick fun read. And it was fun and totally seasonally appropriate… but I didn’t finish it anywhere near as quickly as I’d hoped. In fact, I’ve probably read more fanfic this week than actual books.

New To Me

The Last NamsaraI Temporarily DoOnce Upon a Rose23276983Morning Star
I realise my new books far outweigh my read books, but I can’t resist a good deal! And all of these were part of a deal and a girl has to stock up their Kindle! No, I know. No excuse but I’m going to be going on a ban soon for Christmas.

What have you been up to this week? Has anyone else seen the new Thor and wants to flail with me?

10 November 2017

My Blogging Problems // My ARC Failings

My Blogging Problems
I am like a million miles behind on my ARC reading, it’s crazy. I didn’t intend for it to happen but it did. I actually used to be a really good reviewer. My Netgalley rating was in the 90% range and I only ever had books on my shelves that weren’t published yet. I was totally in control and ready to conquer all the books. I would request and be confident my review would go up on my blog around the time of publication. Then something happened this year and I don’t know what. I got into some reading slumps. My mood reading got crazy. I just didn’t feel a strong urge to read. Whatever happened my ARCs got out of control. I think I requested books I wasn’t totally convinced I wanted to read. I gave into hype pressure and then avoided reads. I waited until it was too close to the publication date and I am the worst about reading when the pressure is on. My brain gets all contrary. ‘Oh, you need to read this book by next week? Don’t you want to reread that book you read five years ago instead?’ because yeah, my brain sucks.

I have plans on how to conquer my ARC pile (and books which have sat gathering dust on my shelf for forever). I will embrace DNF-ing with those which are way, way overdue and I’m not getting into and start focusing more on those books on my shelf. ARCs will be just those books I genuinely cannot wait to come out.

My question to you guys is: is there a point you give up on ARCs? Like, do you admit you’re never going to get that review up if it’s been two months after the release date or is it better to review whenever, regardless of how long after publication it is?

Obviously, if I receive a copy of a book and actually agree to take part in a blog tour or whatever I put the pressure on my brain and force myself to read, no matter how much I’m not feeling it. I make sure I get to the end and get my thoughts on screen or whatever, but those ARCs I requested off of Netgalley and then get approved for like three weeks later and am slightly less excited for so they then linger on my Kindle until well after publication. Should I still be getting reviews up for those? Should I spend my time reviewing them? Or should I just focus on current releases? I mean, I feel like it’s only polite to put the effort in and review. I put the effort in to request and it’s my own damn fault I didn’t read them sooner. I obviously want my Netgalley ratios to be good and for a publisher not to blacklist me (do they do that? I bet they do). I’m just wondering, at what point do you not even bother attempting to read an ARC? I’m planning to read, or attempting to read all those on my shelf but I wanted to know what your ARC attitude was.

Anyone else failing with their ARC reading? What do you do when you get behind? Do you still review all old ARCs and what about DNF-ing ARCs?

08 November 2017

Bite Sized Books // The Arcs Which Time (Or I) Forgot Part 1

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I am currently on a quest to conquer my Netgalley shelves by the end of the year (or at least to no longer have 26 books to review on there). I have a whole heap of books I simply forgot/no longer fancied reading and I am going to power through or at least read a solid way in (between 10 and 25%) and give them that chance to hook me. There are a few I know I will review and a couple of 2018 releases, so it’s not as bad as I’m making it in my head… but it’s quite bad.

This first batch of books (because I hope to have 3 or 4 of these posts up through to the end of the year) I had planned to call this batch the DNF Chronicles after I skimmed The Scot Beds His Wife to get an even vague idea of the story and because Duke With Benefits ended up being abandoned. I thought Juniper Lemon’s Happiness Index might be the same as I didn’t think I was in the mood for more YA… I was wrong. And then after being guilted into reading Completely by Nick I discovered that all my unread ARCs weren’t misses, I was just not giving them a full chance. These are my mini reviews for those books.

15. The Scot Beds His Wife
Published: 3rd October 2017
Source: Netgalley
Genre: Historical Romance
My Rating:
The Scot Beds His Wife is the next lush, captivating Victorian romance in the Victorian Rebels series by Kerrigan Byrne.

They’re rebels, scoundrels, and blackguards—dark, dashing men on the wrong side of the law. But for the women who love them, a hint of danger only makes the heart beat faster.

Gavin St. James, Earl of Thorne, is a notorious Highlander and an unrelenting Lothario who uses his slightly menacing charm to get what he wants—including too many women married to other men. But now, Gavin wants to put his shady past behind him...more or less. When a fiery lass who is the heiress to the land he wishes to possess drops into his lap, he sees a perfectly delicious opportunity...

A marriage most convenient

Samantha Masters has come back to Scotland, in a pair of trousers, and with a whole world of dangerous secrets from her time spent in the Wild West trailing behind her. Her only hope of protection is to marry—and to do so quickly. Gavin is only too willing to provide that service for someone he finds so disturbingly irresistible. But even as danger approaches, what begins as a scandalous proposition slowly turns into an all-consuming passion. And Gavin discovers that he will do whatever is necessary to keep the woman he has claimed as his own...

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.
This one I agreed to review simply for the fact it mentioned a Scot (because who doesn’t love a good Scottish accent?) and I really wanted to enjoy it. I read the beginning and although it was a bit dark and twisted I could see a close bond between two brothers shining through and was thoroughly interested in the story. I thought I would see this brotherly connection between Liam (or a previous book in this series) Gavin and I was totally wrong. Maybe I’d have had a better idea if I’d actually read any of the previous books in this series, but I was mislead and that really affected my enjoyment.

When the book moved to the present the story just wasn't as interesting. I guess I should have read the summary a bit more closely as it did mention that this was about rogues and criminals. I just wasn't quite prepared for it and found the characters a little absurd and I couldn't connect. I genuinely didn't care for their story and ended up skimming through the book to the end. I probably wouldn't have even done that if I hadn't have gotten an ARC so felt obliged to be able to offer some thoughts on the book.

This book was not for me and I admit I was probably wrong to want to read. If I'd have read the summary I would have known it wouldn’t be what I was thinking in my head and I probably wouldn’t have been as interested in reading. You live and learn, don’t you?

Duke with benefits
Published: 27th June 2017
Source: Netgalley
Genre: Historical Romance
My Rating: DNF 

Lady Daphne Forysthe is a brilliant young math prodigy with a burning passion for puzzles. When she learns that the library belonging to her benefactress houses the legendary Cameron Cipher a mathematical p that, once solved, holds the key to great riches Daphne is on the case. Unfortunately, her race to unlock the cipher s code is continually thwarted by a deliciously handsome distraction she hadn’t counted on. . .and cannot resist.

Dalton Beauchamp, the Duke of Maitland, is curious as to why Daphne is spending so much time snooping around his aunt s bookshelves. He s even more intrigued by her bold yet calculating manner: she is unapologetic about her secret quest. . .and the fiery attraction that develops between them both. But how can they concentrate on decoding a mathematical mystery once the prospect of true love enters the equation?

Witty, sensual historical romance that will captivate readers. Romance Junkies
I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.
I decided I was still fancying a good historical romance after finishing The Scot Beds His Wife, one where I didn’t have to flick through to the end just to sate my curiosity about what happened (it was ridiculous, don’t bother) so I picked up Duke With Benefits as I knew it was on my ARC list and I figured why not? I read the first book this series with Kaja and Danya and it was highly ridiculous and the mystery in it hadn’t been great and the characters weren’t brilliant, what on earth possessed me to read the second?

I tried valiantly but this one just didn't click for me. This is partly to do with how sudden the romance is. There isn't build up you are told the Daphne and Dalton have chemistry, there is a rejection of a possible affair to explore this chemistry and then you jump forward in time to the cipher mystery this book focuses around whilst our MCs supposed chemistry continues. I didn't feel this at all. Maybe it had been too long between reading the first one and this one where you would have noticed the chemistry. I don't know, but in the end, I felt like I'd been told more than seen the chemistry for myself, I didn’t even get to the good stuff with the romance because it felt so stiff and forced. Never a good sign for a romance.

Maybe I was too harsh but this romance and this series maybe won’t be one I continue for obvious reasons.

Published: 1st June 2017
Source: Netgalley
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
My Rating:
This moving and uplifting debut follows Juniper Lemon, heartbroken after her older sister Camilla's unexpected death, as she navigates the holes that have been torn in her world, and the mysteries that Camilla left behind.

It's hard to keep close a person everyone keeps telling you is gone.

It's been sixty-five painful days since the death of Juniper's big sister, Camilla. On her first day back at school, bracing herself for the stares and whispers, Juniper borrows Camie's handbag for luck - and discovers an unsent break-up letter inside. It's mysteriously addressed to 'You' and dated July 4th - the day of Camie's accident. Desperate to learn the identity of Camie's secret love, Juniper starts to investigate.

But then she loses something herself. A card from her daily ritual, The Happiness Index: little notecards on which she rates the day. The Index has been holding Juniper together since Camie's death - but without this card, there's a hole. And this particular card contains Juniper's own secret: a memory that she can't let anyone else find out.

The perfect summer read for anyone who loved All The Bright Places or The Fault In Our Stars.

I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.

This was the point I realised my ARCs weren’t all misses and those reads I’d put off because of bad reviews or simply because I’d not heard enough about them was judgey of me and I needed to do better.

Was this book a totally original YA contemporary? No. Did it matter? Not really. I may have felt like I'd seen some of these characters in one form or another in various YA but it didn't once bother me because this book was about much more than romance or friends (although, those things played significant roles within the story) this book, at it's heart, is about loss and grief and that was what was important with this one.

I began this book unsure of what to expect, to be honest, I was drawn in my the cover and the cool name. I needed little more than that for the story to appeal to me. I began reading and I was still uncertain what the book was about but with the mentioning of a sister that Juniper didn't wish to be reminded of and the various mentions of condolences it wasn't hard to tell this was a book which very much centred around less. It was heart-breaking to see Juniper struggle with the loss of her sister, especially as throughout the book you learn how close the two girls were. They were friends and Camilla played a major role in Juniper's life, pushing her out of her comfort zone to try new things and have new life experiences. The absence is never more obvious when you learn that as Juniper is still grieving and keeping herself separate at the start.

I enjoyed Juniper's quests within the book, especially with the lost and found things. I know some of the choices she made weren't right or fair but everything she did she with good intentions. She was never being cruel, she was just on a continual quest to make things right as she could never do that with her sister.

I enjoyed the friends Juni found along her way in the book. Kody was so sweet and I loved seeing her at the start, especially as she grew closer with Juni and Kody finally got to be herself and break from her old self. And Angela was so sweet with her love for unattainable men and how she was the most understanding for Juni. I wasn't as big a fan of Nate's, but I think that's because I easily saw that there was more to him than it initially seemed (nothing bad, I just saw things coming). It was Brand I loved, though. I know you shouldn't have a thing for bad boys, but I am a sucker for a fictional bad boy, especially when he was a real softie really. I do not forgive all of his actions in the book (there should have been grovelling) but I understood why he did as he did.

This wasn't a perfect read but it had me tearing up in all the right places and I didn't even notice the time as I read and those are really the signs of a good old enjoyable read

Published: 26th September 2017
Source: Netgalley/Bought
Genre: Contemporary, Romance
My Rating:
Everest. If they can make it there, they can make it anywhere. Maybe even New York, where Ruthie Knox takes her charming rom-com style to new heights.

Beneath her whole “classic English beauty” appearance is an indomitable spirit that has turned Rosemary Chamberlain into something of a celebrity mountain climber. But after an Everest excursion takes a deadly turn, Rosemary is rescued by her quick-thinking guide, New York native Kal Beckett. Rosemary’s brush with death brings out a primal need to celebrate life—and inspires a night of steamy sex with the rather gorgeous man who saved her.

The son of a famous female climber with a scandalous past, Kal Beckett is still trying to find himself. In the Zen state of mind where Kal spends most of his time, anything can happen—like making love to a fascinating stranger and setting off across the world with her the next morning. But as their lives collide in the whirlwind of passion that is New York City, the real adventure is clearly just beginning. . . .
I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review.

I got both an ARC and preorder myself a copy of Completely. I was excited for it’s release. I did a happy dance getting approved for the ARC. I was excited! So why did it take me so long to read? In fact, it was a tweet from Nick which guilted me into picking this up (thank you, Nick, you help me make good choices). I will forever be ashamed I didn't read this sooner but I'm also glad I waited until I was totally in the mood for a romance read as this book was a perfect example of romance done right.

I admit, I think I waited because I had some doubts. I loved the idea of the book and everything I’d hears about it but remembering what I knew of Rosemary from the last book I wasn't overly enamoured with her and wasn't sure I'd enjoy a book focused on her and her journey. Turns out I'm an idiot because I loved it. She was a powerful woman who had spent far too long as wallpaper. She finally had her freedom after divorcing Winston and choosing to climb Everest was part of her being her. When it doesn’t even remotely go as planned and she and her team are evacuated off of Everrest she ends up growing closer with Kal, an ice doctor on Everest (I didn’t know what that was either, I got a full mountain climbing education with this one). The romance which develops between the pair is brilliant, their chemistry is crazy, but I loved that they grew as friends as well. Like seriously, they were adorable and I loved them.

The thing is, this is a romance. It has an utterly brilliant romance between Rosemary and the slightly younger Kal (yay for an age difference romance which doesn't feature an older man) but it's way more about Rosemary finding herself and who she is it's her journey to who she is and also Kal's journey to regain his focus. Along the way the two just happen to fall in love and I love them for it. Rosemary was very lost, that was obvious from the first page. She is on a quest to find herself, which I think any woman is who is coming out of a long term relationship and has had children and is now trying to figure out who she was before marriage and being a mother. I think a lot of people will relate to Rosemary. I loved her realisations as she learnt what she actually wanted from life. And Kal! He used to be a sweet idealist thinking he could save the world, it sucked that he had to learn it isn’t as simple as having strong ideals but also work, and failure and a whole heap of picking yourself back up and trying something different. I really loved him figuring out his purpose once more, and the fact that he time with Rosemary helped him do that. The pair helped push one another forward and that’s what should happen in any good relationship.

This was a brilliant romance. I expect no less from Knox and I totally enjoyed every page. Kal and Rosemary are fantastic, the romance is brilliant, and this is a romance with an awesome story which links so well with the rest of the series which I hadn’t totally expected!

Have you read any of these books? Which ARCs have you put off reading for far too long? Anyone else discovered some brilliant books from their neglected book pile?

06 November 2017

Blog Tour | Wilde in Love // A Book Which Fit My Reading Mood Just When I Picked It Up

Wilde in Love
Published: 31st October 2017

Source: Publisher

Genre: Historical Romance

My Rating:
Lord Alaric Wilde, son of the Duke of Lindow, is the most celebrated man in England, revered for his dangerous adventures and rakish good looks. Arriving home from years abroad, he has no idea of his own celebrity until his boat is met by mobs of screaming ladies. Alaric escapes to his father’s castle, but just as he grasps that he’s not only famous but notorious, he encounters the very private, very witty, Miss Willa Ffynche.

Willa presents the fa├žade of a serene young lady to the world. Her love of books and bawdy jokes is purely for the delight of her intimate friends. She wants nothing to do with a man whose private life is splashed over every newspaper.

Alaric has never met a woman he wanted for his own . . . until he meets Willa. He’s never lost a battle.

But a spirited woman like Willa isn’t going to make it easy. . . .

The first book in Eloisa James’s dazzling new series set in the Georgian period glows with her trademark wit and sexy charm—and introduces a large, eccentric family. Readers will love the Wildes of Lindow Castle!
I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

There are certain authors in life you hear plenty about and get on your radar. Eloisa James is one of those authors. I know her name, I know she writes historical romance, beyond that I had no clue. When I got an email about her latest release I knew I wanted to read it, even though I had no clue what Eloisa James’s writing was like, I mean, it sounded pretty good to me. As my first Eloisa James book, I think this was pretty perfect. It was the right balance of romance, humour and drama. I had witty characters who were drawn together. Excellent secondary characters I know will get their chance to shine and a Wilde family filled with siblings with ridiculous names. Everything about this book worked for me and I just know I will be reading more of Eloisa James's books in the future.

Wilde in love is the first in a series of books about the eccentric Wilde family. The head of the Wilde family is on his third wife and probably had more children than he cares to count and his current wife is expecting another child any day. We get to meet Lord Alaric Wilde in this book. He is renowned for being an adventurer and is very much adored, maybe not for the right reasons. He has finally returned to English soil for the first time in a long while and he is forced to return to his father’s castle for a party celebrating his brother’s engagement. Whilst there he is learning women are believing some farfetched rumours about him and he is getting far more attention than he ever thought his books would get. He also meets Willa, a woman he becomes very intrigued by as she is not falling over herself to get his attention. In fact, she believes his stories to be lies.

Willa is a woman who had a perfect first Season and who has a lot of rules to ensure she comes across as the perfect English lady because if she let her true self out she knows men would be intimidated by her intellect and find her attitude unbecoming, except she can’t seem to follow her own rules around Alaric, no matter how much she wishes to.

Willa was the kind of heroine you are destined to love in a romance. She is intelligent and unswayed by a man's riches or fame. She instead wants a man who is intelligent and respects and will never be daring or reckless. She is a woman you can respect and love for her wit and when she meets Alaric, the exact opposite of what she wants in a husband, you just know there will be chemistry.
I loved the adventuring Lord Wilde, but it was Alaric who was the fun version of his character. The man is drawn to Willa despite her protests and who pursues her without ever trying to force himself upon her. His jealousy was sweet but even then he didn't go all he-man on her he just seethed and gave folks dirty looks. It was love.

What I really loved was how Willa was embraced by the Wilde family and how the Wildes were just the most entertaining family. They had a ridiculous naming system but they were fun and you could tell they were close. I adored all the secondary characters. They all seemed interesting and I just know their stories will be brilliant. The hints for the next book have gotten me so excited!


This was definitely the best book to pick up when I was craving a little historical romance. Which book did you stumble across at just the right time to fit your reading mood?

05 November 2017

Sunday Summary // 05.11.2017

Sunday Summary
remember remember
That’s right guys, it’s Bonfire Night tonight! For us in the UK that means bonfires, fireworks, and usually burning a Guy Fawkes on the bonfire. Although we also like to burn folks right along with Guy Fawkes, I’ve seen one bonfire in Kent is burning an effigy of Harvey Weinstein, Trump got burned last year. Anyway, I’m looking forward to sitting in my pyjamas with the lights off and seeing the fireworks out of my window. I had my outdoor bonfire fun on Friday night. I went to the same bonfire I did last year and me and my friend had a great time. They had a bar and food stalls and a DJ on so we had a drink and then danced in a field (we may have been the only ones dancing outside of the children). It was great as we only had one drink before realising that was a bad decision as our hands got cold so we danced sober in a field. The fireworks were very pretty and the bonfire was warm. I will definitely try and go again next year.

Work is getting busier again so I’m glad I’ve got some holiday booked over the next couple of months to give me a break. I have plans on my days off but I am looking forward to the rest. I mentioned last week we’re looking to get my nan in a home, I am thrilled that the home near to us is willing to keep a room for her and think she’d be suitable to move in. They’re only concern is how my nan will be told about the move so we’ve got to plan how best to broach the subject with her. She has little choice (in the kindest possible way, the money is simply gone so this is our only solution) but I know she will not be happy with the lack of choice. We’re hoping the fact she will be closer to us and that we can visit more frequently will help persuade her. Keep your fingers crossed for us.

I actually gave myself a long weekend this weekend, I was off Friday and I have Monday off, I’m trying to get organised for my friend's wedding and also do that thing no one wishes to talk about (Christmas shopping). I haven’t successfully shopped at all yet but the thought is there. I did get my haircut for the wedding, though! And they cut it to the right length for once, it’s shorter than I usually have it and I really love it. I definitely need to try and keep putting in the effort to getting it cut regularly because this once every six months business is not working for me and my hair.

I also got myself organised Saturday. We have family coming round on Sunday so I knew I had to make the house look less like a bomb has gone off, more specifically in my room. I vacuumed, dusted and chucked stuff out. I also took a long hard look at my shelves and my unread books. I’ve created a pile of last chance books (yes, more of them). Much like my ARCs, I am going to read between 10% and 25% and if I’m not interested after that they are going to a better home. I also need to find a better home for all of my no longer want books. Maybe more Twitter swaps? Or I might start my own Depop, that could work.

What I’ve Been Reading

But Then I Came Back15. The Scot Beds His WifeDuke with benefitsJuniper Lemon's Happiness IndexCompletely23281690
Yes, guys, I did read six books this week. One was a skim read to the finish and another a DNF, but I attempted to read six whole books! That’s pretty damn impressive for me. But Then I Came Back was good, I enjoyed it way more than expected. The Scot Beds His Wife was the skim read and Duke With Benefits the DNF. I am slowly tackling my overflowing ARC piles though! I was surprised how much I enjoyed Juniper Lemon’s Happiness Index, I think because I’d attempted two books from my ARC pile I didn’t enjoy I was expecting a repeat experience. It wasn’t an original YA but I really enjoyed it regardless. Completely was a guilt read from Nick and I think her for it because it was so good. I can now swoon over Kal. I then began rereading The Shattered Court because I have The Forbidden Heir ARC and I am excited but remember very little of the story!

New To Me

Chasing CrazyLady of MagickNeandertahl Seeks HumanDefeneslessWish You Were HereAlmost Midnight
My shopping looks terrible, doesn’t it? Chasing Crazy I had to get when it went down to 99p, I’ve been interested in reading for a while and decided to say screw it and buy. Lady of Magick I also got on sale, and I may not have read the first one but I am pretty certain I’ll love it (I hope) so figured might as well make sure my Kindle is stocked up with the second. I got two freebies, Neanderthal Seeks Human was free and Defenseless way my Kindle First book of the month. I loved the first couple of Renee Carlino books I read so when I saw Wish You Were Here on sale I immediately bought a copy. And I adore Rainbow Rowell so I preordered Almost Midnight even though I have both short stories already. The book is sparkly! How could I not?
Christmas With Her Millionaire BossNo Place Like YouThe Forbidden HeirLucy's Book Club For The Lost And FoundA Distant HeartA Winter's Tale
I admit, I got a little ARC happy. I finished (or DNF) a few and I got all excited at Netgalley again. Oops? I also requested The Forbidden Heir form the author when I saw the email about bloggers getting review copies, I loved the first book, how could I not? I am excited for all of these, and it is all romance heavy, but I am totally in the mood for that right now. Fingers crossed for me reading all of these. I am on an ARC quest for the end of the year. I can do it!

And that is my week. I feel like I’ve been really productive this week guys. What have you been reading? Anyone else had a surprisingly productive week?

03 November 2017

But Then I Came Back // It Exceeded Expectations But I Had To Be In The Right Mood To Read

But Then I Came Back
Published: 6th April 2017

Source: Bought/Netgalley

Genre: Romance, Contemporary, Young Adult

My Rating:
Estelle Laure is a bright new talent with a gorgeous voice - perfect for fans of John Green and Rainbow Rowell. Eden has always let her head lead the way. It's why she excels at ballet, at school, and at life in general. But when she nearly drowns and then wakes from a month-long coma, everything is different. She's troubled by dreams that seem more real than waking life, and her neat cookie-cutter existence is no longer satisfying. Unable to stifle her passionate heart anymore, she finds herself drawn to a boy with melting-chocolate eyes, and to a future different to what she ever imagined. That's when Eden discovers that when it comes to love, first you fall, then you have to leap. Estelle Laure's debut, This Raging Light, was a stunning debut with an unforgettable voice that has captured the hearts for readers.
I received this book for free from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinion of the book, or the content of my review (and then I bought my own copy anyway).

I read This Raging Light a while back and I enjoyed it. The book took me several attempts to get into because the writing is unique and I had to be in the right frame of mind to read it. I think this was the same. I only bought it recently and picked it up a couple of times and gave it a shot only to have to put it down again. I mean, this is a book I got approved for on Netgalley and still didn’t manage to read so I ended up buying my own copy to see if that would motivate me months after the fact. It was this attempt on a Saturday when I didn't want to do a whole lot that this book clicked for me and the writing was just enchanting as in This Raging Light.

This book delves a little into magical realism and was insanely interesting. The story was so good because we are all intrigued by death so for someone to return from a coma and near death and the experiences then and after are interesting. It was not wholly unrealistic to think that a brush with death could change things. That by almost dying Eden began to see things no one else could and that her personality may be influenced, as would her attitude to certain things.

Eden wasn't my favourite character in the first book. In fact, I called her a bad best friend for not being more supportive to Lucille while she was trying to care for herself and her sister and making vaguely bad life choices with Eden’s twin, Digby. She was too focused on her own problems in that book and I honestly didn’t like her. It’s was probably why it took me so long to pick this up. I didn't care for Eden so why should I care for what happened to her? She was mean and selfish and she still was in this one. But getting to see in her head and her thoughts made her so much easier to like. Instead, I found myself getting frustrated with Lucille and Digby and their attitude to Eden (I’m seeing a parallel here). I did find myself much more forgiving of Digby and Lucille and their attitude to Eden and some of her choices because they cared and only wanted to help, even if Eden did interpret their actions as manipulation instead.

I did find myself rolling my eyes a little at the romance. Eden meets Joe at the hospital during her recovery and is strangely obsessed with him and his friend who was also in a coma. They grow closer and explore the strange things Eden can see and no one else can and at the same time fall for one another. Both acknowledge it’s very inappropriate timing and I liked that Eden found a friend who didn’t know her before the accident and so wasn’t trying to force her to fit who she used to be, but allowed her to be who she was. I just found it convenient how the romance progressed, but maybe I’m becoming a bit of a cynic.

This was definitely a book of growth, metamorphosis, and generally what happens when life continues. I adored the writing. Laure once more demonstrated great skill in sucking me completely into a story. I stayed up late to finish this one and I'm glad I did. I feared I'd be disappointed by the companion novel to This Raging Light but this one met and exceeded expectations.

Have you read this or This Raging Light? What did you think? And have you got a rec for a good YA romance because it turns out that’s what I’m fancying right now?

01 November 2017

Monthly Wrap Up // October 2017

Monthly Wrap Up_zpshjihxrbe.png
My months are flying by and we’re so much closer to Christmas! It’s truly terrifying how fast time has gone, but then some might say that’s a good thing because this year hasn’t exactly been sunshine and rainbows. I am shocked at how fast Christmas is approaching, I mean there has been mention of the Christmas party, that’s how fast time is flying by.

October was a month which was all about being busy. I went to Bath for a hen do and had my first spa experience. I had to be the temporary supervisor at work while my own supervisor was out of the office. I had a bit of a blogging and reading slump but picked myself back up and now I’ve got a whole bunch of posts brewing… if only I could remember to schedule them all.

Can’t Stop Listening

Revenge – P!nk
Gorgeous – Taylor Swift

I feel like I should apologise for how much Taylor Swift I put in these posts each month but you know I’m going to do this until her new album is out next month, right?

October Reads

The Love ExperimentEliza and her MonstersBut Then I Came Back
386199116479550Wilde in Love257505463

Rereads weren’t counted in my monthly favourites (otherwise Act Like It and Pretty Face would have totally been there) but I don’t think it was a terrible reading month. I enjoyed some decent reads.  And more romance than I realised.

October Posts

Sunday Summary // 08.10.2017 (which I accidentally labelled up 04.10.2017)

October Links

The Innocent Smiley | Why I Have Been Seriously Slacking
Boats Against The Current | On Being A Kindle Convert
It Starts at Midnight | When Your Brain Betrays Your Books
Confessions of a Book Geek | 8 Reasons Reading is a Superpower

What’s been the highlight of your October? Any amazing reads you need to tell me about?