Saturday, November 30, 2013


A great feature hosted by Tynga's Reviews where bloggers get to feature the new books they received over the past week.

No Good Duke Goes Unpunished (The Rules of Scoundrels, #3)
No Good Duke Goes Unpunished (Rules of Scoundrels #3) by Sarah MacLean (historical romance)

The Chocolate Thief (Amour et Chocolat #1)
The Chocolate Thief (Amour et Chocolat #1) by Laura Florand (contemporary romance)

The Chocolate Kiss (Amour et Chocolat #2)
The Chocolate Kiss (Amour et Chocolat #2) by Laura Florand (contemporary romance)



The Fiery Heart (Bloodlines #4) by Richelle Mead -- Absolutely wonderful!  Richelle Mead is a genius and the dual POV of Adrian and Sydney is sheer perfection.  Review coming soon.

Long Time Gone (Hell or High Water #2) by S.E. Jakes -- I liked this continuation of Tom and Prophet's story more than the first.  Great characterization and an intriguing mystery subplot.


No Good Duke Goes Unpunished (Rules of Scoundrels #3) by Sarah MacLean -- Just started this, but I'm already in love with Temple (the hero).

The Chocolate Thief (Amour et Chocolate #1) by Laura Florand -- I've heard so much about this series and I'm already almost done with the first installment.  Thankfully, I have book number two waiting on my e-reader!

The Ruins of Gorlan (The Ranger's Apprentice #1) by John Flanagan -- Slowly, but surely making my way through this MG fantasy.  I like it, but just haven't had much time to listen to audio books lately.


The Fiery Heart by Richelle Mead
The Chocolate Thief by Laura Florand

2014 Review Pile Reading Challenge: Sign-up Post
Top Ten Tuesday: 2014 Releases I'm Dying to Read
Throwback Thursday--Historical Romance Edition
Follow Friday: Random Book Recommendation
Upcoming Releases: December 2013

Friday, November 29, 2013


Welcome to 2014 TBR Pile Reading Challenge!

We all have those books. We buy them, win them, they're gifted to us.. Then we put them up on a bookshelf and there they stay, collecting dust, waiting for the time when we'll finally decide to pick them up.  Join a quest to dust off your TBR Pile and read all the books you've been telling yourself you'll read next time you'll get a chance.. This is your chance! Check out Bookish for all the details!

Challenge Details:
  1. This challenge will run from Jan 1, 2014 - Dec 31, 2014.
  2. Anyone can enter! You don't have to be a blogger, as long as you review the book you've read! (On your blog, Amazon, Random Buzzers or Goodreads/Shelfari!)
  3. Any genre, length or format of book counts, as long as it is a book that's been sitting on your shelf for some time now. Short stories and novellas are OK, too! Only books released in 2013 and earlier! NO 2014 ARCs and 2014 fresh-off-the-press releases allowed!
  4. You can list your books in advance or just put them in a wrap-up post. If you list them, feel free to change them as the mood takes you.
  5. You can move up levels, but no moving down.
  6. Sign-ups will be open until Dec 15, 2014, so feel free to join at any time throughout the year.

I am in desperate need of some help to clean out my TBR shelf so I am super excited to try this challenge.  I don't want to overestimate how well I will do with this one so I'm going to go with the FIRST KISS LEVEL (21-30 books).  


Alison Can Read Feature & Follow
Feature & Follow Friday is a blog hop that expands your blog following by a joint effort between bloggers. Feature & Follow Friday is now hosted by TWO hosts, Rachel of Parajunkee and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

Q:  What's your favorite Thanksgiving food?  If you don't celebrate Thanksgiving, what are some of your favorite holiday foods?

I love Thanksgiving because one of my favorite things to do is eat!  By far, my favorite food is dumplings.  I don't get them very often so it just makes this time of year that much more special.



I have created different ways for you to follow my blog: Bloglovin', LinkyFollowers, , Twitter, Goodreads, or email.  Comment, follow me, and I'll return the favor!!

Thursday, November 28, 2013


I love reading historical romances so I was ecstatic to find a 2014 reading challenge devoted completely to them!  It runs from January 1, 2014 to December 31, 2014 and allows participants to choose different levels based on how many historical romances they plan on reading in that time span.  Check out Herding Cats & Burning Soup for more information and sign-ups.

What Counts!
  • Every historical romance you read and review in 2014
  • Any time period prior to 1920 qualifies.
  • They can be historical paranormal, historical erotica, m/m, f/f, etc.
  • All historical romances over 100 pages in length--audio, ebook, print
  • Re-reads, cross overs from other challenges
I am going for LEVEL 4 which means I'm trying to read 30+ historical romance in 2014!


Happy Thursday, everyone! This is a new feature hosted by Buried Under Romance and Love Saves the World.

What is Throwback Thursday: Historical Romance Edition?
Traditionally, Throwback Thursday celebrates nostalgia, asking participants to post a personal photo or an image from their past -- usually from 5 to 10 years ago. There are a lot of book blogs that also do a book-related Throwback Thursday.  Since Tin and Mary C. are unapologetic lovers of historical romances, they've decided to focus on this beloved genre.

Here are the rules:
1. It must be posted on a Thursday.
2. It must be a historical romance novel published before October 2008.


 Then Came You (Gamblers, #1)

(Gamblers #1)
by Lisa Kleypas 

Originally Published: June 1993

Reckless and wild, beautiful Lily Lawson delights in shocking proper London society and in breaking any rule to flaunt her independence. Now she′s determined to rescue her sister from an undesirable marriage to the ruthless Alex Raiford, the arrogant Earl of Wolverton. She succeeds in rescuing her sister, but in the meantime Alex decides that Lily must be his. He has resolved to make her pay dearly for her interference -with her body, her soul...and her heart.

A lot of historical romance fans know, and love, Kleypas's Dreaming of You featuring author Sara Fielding and club owner Derek Craven.  But, some of them don't know that there is actually a prequel to that famous story featuring a couple that I think is just as intriguing.  Lily is considered a fallen woman by London society, but she doesn't let that stop her from living her life.  I loved everything about her from her independence to her loyalty to her family.  Alex is not as interesting as Lily (that's asking a lot), but I still liked his character.  His fascination with Lily starts because of her involvement in his failed engagement and quickly escalates when he figures out what an intelligent and loving person she is.  Plus this book provides readers with their first glimpses of Derek Craven!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

NOVELLA REVIEW: "Winter's Heat" by Zoe Archer

Winter's Heat (Nemesis, Unlimited, #1.5)
Winter's Heat by Zoe Archer
(Nemesis Unlimited #1.5)

Goodreads -- Amazon
Author Website

For Ages 18+ (Sex, Language)
Historical Romance
St. Martin's Press -- October 22, 2013
Ebook, 100 pages
Purchased from Amazon

Novella, Spies, Unconventional Hero, Holiday

An auxiliary Nemesis agent and one of their former clients go undercover as servants at a country estate during the Christmas season to expose corruption amongst Society's elite.

Michael and Ada never thought they would again be working side-by-side in the pursuit of justice, and now that they're on a case together, the attraction they had once shared flares to life, making a dangerous assignment even more unpredictable.

"What are you doing here?" a woman's voice demanded in the hallway.  "Who are you?"

I really enjoyed the first book in Zoe Archer's new historical series, Sweet Revenge, and I was excited to see more of Nemesis Unlimited.  For readers who are new to this world, Nemesis is a group of people from all walks of life in Victorian England whose ultimate goal is to get justice for those who cannot get it for themselves.  They mainly focus on the poor, women, and children.

Michael is an accomplished agent while Ada is a former Nemesis client who lends her aid to the group in thanks on occasion.  These two are placed in a family's country home in order to gain evidence about an upper-class couple who used to run an orphanage that was actually a workhouse.  Both Michael and Ada go undercover as temporary servants during the holidays in order to complete this mission.  Unfortunately, things are complicated by the fact that these two are former flames and haven't seen each other in more than six months.

I loved the premise of this story and how it introduced readers to Nemesis.  Undercover work is always fascinating to me and the fact that our two protagonists were posing as servants just made it more interesting.  In addition to the spy work, readers get to see how a grand country home runs on a daily basis and how it is changed around Christmas.  I am a fan of Downton Abbey and I could definitely see some resemblances in the way that the upstairs and downstairs crews worked together.

Because of the shorter length of Winter's Heat, there was not a lot of time to fully develop Michael and Ada, but I thought Ms. Archer did an admirable job.  I loved Ada's character and the resiliency she showed despite her personal difficulties.  Housemaids always seem like the strongest people and Ada shows that strength in spades.  She is determined to show Nemesis that she could be a good agent and is willing to help them out in exchange for their assistance in her past.  I also really liked Michael who specializes in acting as a male servant in order to dig up dirt on the Society's best.  I would like to have learned more about his past and how it shaped him, but he was an enjoyable character nonetheless.

The romance between Ada and Michael was a great combination of sweet and sexy.  The fact that they knew each other before this story helped with the insta-love element that often happens in novellas.  Their sexual tension was well-written and they both really came alive when bantering back and forth.  I did think the penultimate love making scene was a little contrived in its timing and placement, but that is the only major thing I can complain about.

Overall, I found Winter's Heat to be an entertaining and quick read.  One doesn't need to be familiar with the Nemesis series to find it charming and I think it acts as a great introduction.  Can't wait to read Simon's story next!


"My skirts aren't a theater curtain for you to peep through," she hissed.
"Impatient for the show to begin," he answered, unrepentant.

1. Sweet Revenge
1.5. Winter's Heat
2. Dangerous Seduction
3. Wicked Temptation (Coming 2014)

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

TOP TEN TUESDAY: Bookish Things I'm Thankful For

Hosted by the ladies over at The Broke and the Bookish.

~Bookish Things I'm Thankful For~

1. My public library -- I can't always afford the books I want and this place helps me fully stocked at all times.

2. Goodreads -- I know people are annoyed by all the changes they've been making, but I still rely heavily on it for the organization of my book lists.

3. Audible -- Audiobooks have really opened up my reading options since I am more willing to try something new in this format.

4. My e-reader -- I still love paper books more, but my e-reader has given me the opportunity to read whenever or wherever I want.

5. Harry Potter -- I loved to read before discovering these books, but these were the ones to make it become an obsession.

6. Paperback Swap  -- This used book swap website has helped me increase my holdings for over three years.  Plus it is a great way to find new homes for my used books.
7. Amazon Prime --  A great membership opportunity for me because of the free two-day shipping.  I got my money's worth just this month.
8. Bloglovin' -- I use this to read the blogs I follow and I love it especially the organization feature.
9. Netgalley  -- I am always so excited to be accepted for a review request.  This website also allows me to try lots of new books that I may not have read otherwise.
10. All of my fellow bloggers and book reviewers -- You all helped inspire me to try a blog of my own and you keep me interested even during a reading slump.  Plus you helped me find some amazing reads over the past few years!

Monday, November 25, 2013

REVIEW: "Crash Into You" by Katie McGarry

Crash into You (Pushing the Limits, #3)
Crash Into You by Katie McGarry
(Pushing the Limits #3)

Goodreads -- Amazon -- Book Depository
Author Website

For Ages 15+ (Language, Sexual Innuendo, Drugs/Alcohol Use)
Young Adult -- Contemporary
Harlequin Teen -- November 26, 2013
Ebook, 489 pages
Received from Netgalley

Dual Points of View, Family Problems, Friendships

The girl with straight As, designer clothes and the perfect life-that's who people expect Rachel Young to be. So the private-school junior keeps secrets from her wealthy parents and overbearing brothers...and she's just added two more to the list. One involves racing strangers down dark country roads in her Mustang GT. The other? Seventeen-year-old Isaiah Walker-a guy she has no business even talking to. But when the foster kid with the tattoos and intense gray eyes comes to her rescue, she can't get him out of her mind.

Isaiah has secrets, too. About where he lives, and how he really feels about Rachel. The last thing he needs is to get tangled up with a rich girl who wants to slum it on the south side for kicks-no matter how angelic she might look.  But when their shared love of street racing puts both their lives in jeopardy, they have six weeks to come up with a way out. Six weeks to discover just how far they'll go to save each other.

"Eleven years, two months, seven days.  The last time I had physical contact with a blood relative."


I have thoroughly enjoyed Katie McGarry's first books, Pushing the Limits and Dare You To.  So I had high expectations for Crash Into You and I am happy to say that it met almost all of them.  Isaiah has been an important part in this series so it was great to see his story turn out so well.

What I Liked
---I was intrigued by Isaiah since Pushing the Limits and I was so happy to see him finally take center stage.  His bad boy appearance hides such sweetness and vulnerability which is always fun to discover.  I loved that we got to see what his childhood was like and how he ended up staying with Noah and Beth in the foster home.  It was also great to watch him discover the difference between his feelings for Rachel and what he thought he felt for Beth.

---I continue to love the way that Katie McGarry takes characters who, from their outward appearances, should have everything, but are dangerously close to losing it.  Rachel is no exception to this rule and I connected with her early on in the book.  Her anxiety is a real problem and I liked the respect that was paid to such mental issues.  The situation she is in with her family is difficult, but, unfortunately, not too unusual.  The fact that her mother lost her first daughter to cancer and she is now obsessed with reclaiming her through Rachel is heartbreaking and makes all of Rachel's quirks understandable.

---I thought Rachel's brothers were a great addition to the cast.  They have their own issues that stem from their mother's inability to let their sister be herself, but they showed real loyalty to each other.  Things are not always perfect between these siblings which I think makes it much more real to readers.  I definitely hope to see more of them in the future.

---Rachel and Isaiah meet because of their shared love of racing.  I know very little about this world so I thoroughly enjoyed getting to learn more about it through their experiences.  The writing is well-done enough that I rarely felt lost by all the car talk.  I actually found myself wanting to look some of the stuff up that they were discussing which is always a good sign for me.

---While it was great to get to know such interesting new characters like Rachel and Isaiah's good friend, Abby, I was super excited to see the returns of Noah, Echo, Beth, and Ryan.  McGarry does a good job of emphasizing the happiness of each couple without making it seem perfect and overly sweet.  It was just great to see the Beth/Isaiah thing reach a conclusion and to see where Noah is going with his life.

What I Didn't Like
---Isaiah and Rachel fell in love a bit fast for what I usually enjoy in YA fiction,  But, I did find myself easily believing that they really could have such feelings that early in a relationship which says a lot about McGarry's writing style.

My Conclusions
Overall, I found Crash Into You to be a great addition to the repertoire of Katie McGarry.  I don't think it was as good as Pushing the Limits or Dare You To (my favorite), but it was right up there.  The characters were well-developed and the romance was super sweet...if a little on the quick step in terms of developments.  Definitely can't wait to see what McGarry does next!


"This is who I am, Rachel.  Accept it or not.  The tattoos won't wash off.  The earrings will never change.  I am who I am and nothing more.  I'm loyal to a chosen few, I always keep my word and I'll protect you with my life."

1. Pushing the Limits
1.5. Crossing the Line
2. Dare You To
3. Crash Into You
4. Take Me On (Coming 2014)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

SERIES SPOTLIGHT (5): Cut and Run series by Abigail Roux and Madeleine Urban

This is a feature where I "spotlight" a certain series that I love and recommend to other readers, inspired by Anna's Book Blog.

For this Series Spotlight, I am going to feature one of my favorite ongoing series that helped seal my obsession with the male/male romance genre: Abigail Roux's Cut & Run books featuring Ty Grady and Zane Garrett.

Cut & Run (Cut & Run #1)
BOOK ONE -- Cut & Run

A series of murders in New York City has stymied the police and FBI alike, and they suspect the culprit is a single killer sending an indecipherable message. But when the two federal agents assigned to the investigation are taken out, the FBI takes a more personal interest in the case.

Special Agent Ty Grady is pulled out of undercover work after his case blows up in his face. He's cocky, abrasive, and indisputably the best at what he does. But when he's paired with Special Agent Zane Garrett, it's hate at first sight. Garrett is the perfect image of an agent: serious, sober, and focused, which makes their partnership a classic cliche: total opposites, good cop-bad cop, the odd couple. They both know immediately that their partnership will pose more of an obstacle than the lack of evidence left by the murderer.

Practically before their special assignment starts, the murderer strikes again this time at them. Now on the run, trying to track down a man who has focused on killing his pursuers, Grady and Garrett will have to figure out how to work together before they become two more notches in the murderer's knife.

Excerpt from my review
"Both of these guys slowly grew on me as they did each other. I was fascinated by their growing relationship as professional partners and the slow transition to being romantic lovers. I know that this is just the beginning for these two and I can't wait to learn more about them."


Sticks & Stones (Cut & Run, #2)
BOOK TWO -- Sticks & Stones

Six months after nearly losing their lives to a serial killer in New York City, FBI Special Agents Ty Grady and Zane Garrett are suffering through something almost as frightening: the monotony of desk duty. When they're ordered to take a vacation for the good of everyone's sanity, Ty bites the bullet and takes Zane home with him to West Virginia, hoping the peace and quiet of the mountains will give them the chance to explore the explosive attraction they've so far been unable to reconcile with their professional partnership. 

Ty and Zane, along with Ty's father and brother, head up into the Appalachian mountains for a nice, relaxing hike deep into the woods... where no one will hear them scream. They find themselves facing danger from all directions: unpredictable weather, the unrelenting mountains, wild animals, fellow hikers with nothing to lose, and the most terrifying challenge of all. Each other.

Excerpt from my review
"In terms of the romance, I don't feel like Ty and Zane's relationship took a huge step forward in this book. I felt like it was pretty stationary, mostly due to the fact that they were dealing with more external issues than internal. But, despite this lack of growth, I still found them to hilarious and sweet at the same time. The chemistry between them is amazing and every scene is written to perfectly suit that tension."


Fish & Chips (Cut & Run, #3)
BOOK THREE -- Fish & Chips

Special Agents Ty Grady and Zane Garrett are back on the job, settled into a personal and professional relationship built on fierce protectiveness and blistering passion. Now they're assigned to impersonate two members of an international smuggling ring-an out-and-proud married couple-on a Christmas cruise in the Caribbean. As their boss says, surely they'd rather kiss each other than be shot at, and he has no idea how right he is.

Portraying the wealthy criminals requires a particular change in attitude from Ty and Zane while dealing with the frustrating waiting game of their assignment. As it begins to affect how they treat each other in private, Ty and Zane realize there's more to being partners than watching each other's backs, and when the case takes an unexpected turn and threatens Ty's life, Ty and Zane will have to navigate seas of white lies and stormy secrets, including some of their own.

Excerpt from my review: 
"Of course, what really makes this series stand out is Ty and Zane and their relationship with each other. Each book provides readers with more insight into the guys' characters which helps us appreciate them more and more. By making the guys portay a married couple, the authors allowed them to develop an intimacy that hadn't been evident before. On this mission they didn't need to hide their relationship and it felt a little freeing despite the fact that they had to pretend to be someone else the entire time. "


Divide & Conquer (Cut & Run, #4)
BOOK FOUR -- Divide & Conquer

Baltimore, Maryland, is a city in alarming distress. Rising violence is fanning the flames of public outrage, and all law enforcement agencies, including the FBI, are catching blame. Thus the FBI’s latest ideas to improve public relations: a municipal softball league and workshops for community leaders. But the new commitments just mean more time Special Agents Ty Grady and Zane Garrett have to spend apart when they’re happily exploring how to be more than by-the-book partners.

Then the latest spate of crime explodes in their faces—literally—throwing the city, the Bureau, and Ty and Zane’s volatile partnership both in and out of the office into chaos. They’re hip-deep in trouble, trying to track down bombers and bank robbers in the dark with very few clues, and the only way to reach the light at the end of the tunnel together requires Ty and Zane to close their eyes and trust each other to the fiery end.

Excerpt from my review
"As a couple, these two provide some of the most emotional scenes even during the most mundane situations. They are a true rollercoaster of emotions with both of them being stubborn and tortured in their own way. Ty and Zane, as characters, are written so well that they feel like they could jump off the page and walk around in your everyday life. This causes readers to get heavily invested in almost every moment of their lives. I'm telling you, even the most seemingly boring details are exciting with this couple. "

Armed & Dangerous (Cut & Run, #5)
BOOK FIVE -- Armed & Dangerous

Left alone in Baltimore after his unpredictable lover bails, Special Agent Zane Garrett takes his frustration out on everything in his path until he is ordered to Chicago to back up an undercover operative. When he gets there, though, he finds himself face to face with his wayward partner, Special Agent Ty Grady. They have to deal with the uncertainty lingering between them while they work to retrieve their intended mark, a retired hit man and CIA wet-works operative named Julian Cross. Ty, once a Marine and now an FBI hotshot, has a penchant for being unpredictable, a trait Zane can vouch for. Zane is a man who once lived for his job but has come to realize his heartbreaking past doesn't have to overshadow his future. They're partners, friends, lovers, and the go-to team for unusual cases.

With Cross and his innocuous boyfriend, Cameron Jacobs, in tow, Ty and Zane must navigate the obstacles of a cross-country trek, including TSA pat-downs, blizzards, their uncooperative prisoners, CIA kill teams, a desperate lack of sleep and caffeine, and each other. Ty and Zane are determined to get Julian Cross to DC in one piece, but it's starting to look like it might be the last thing they do.

Excerpt from my review
"I adore Ty and Zane as a couple and it is always a joy to watch their relationship grow over the course of a story. Their emotional and physical relationship is full of drama, but shows definite resilence and occasional tenderness. This particular mission forces them to deal with their interactions on a professional level since they need to keep their distance while traveling with Julian and Cameron. The sexual tension is through the roof in this book and kept me turning the pages late into the night. I liked how this book showed their growth as a couple and how perfect they are for each other even if they aren't always perfect people."
Stars & Stripes (Cut & Run, #6)
BOOK SIX -- Stars & Stripes

Special Agents Ty Grady and Zane Garrett have managed the impossible: a few months of peace and quiet. After nearly a year of personal and professional turmoil, they're living together conflict-free, work is going smoothly, and they're both happy, healthy, and home every night before dark. But anyone who knows them knows that can’t possibly last.

When an emergency call from home upsets the balance of their carefully arranged world, Ty and Zane must juggle family drama with a perplexing crime to save a helpless victim before time runs out.

From the mountains of West Virginia to a remote Texas horse ranch harboring more than just livestock and childhood memories, Ty and Zane must face their fears—and their families—to overcome an unlikely enemy and bring peace back into their newly shared world.

Excerpt from my review
"I found this book to be another entertaining installment of a great series. I think Ty and Zane are so enjoyable that I was able to overlook the bizarre plot and just hang on for the ride. The way that Roux depicts these two guys is unmatched and I find myself deeply caring about whether they get their ultimate happily ever after. Plus there is some hot cowboy sex in this one! Can't wait to read the next one!"
Touch & Geaux (Cut & Run, #7)
BOOK SEVEN -- Touch & Geaux

After having their faces plastered across the news during a high-profile case, FBI Special Agents Ty Grady and Zane Garrett have become more useful to the Bureau posing for photo ops than working undercover. Just as Zane is beginning to consider retirement a viable option, Ty receives a distress call from a friend, leading them to a city rife with echoes from the past.

New Orleans wears its history on its streets, and it’s the one place Ty’s face could get him killed. Surrounded by trouble as soon as they land, Ty and Zane are swiftly confronted with a past from which Ty can’t hide—one with a surprising connection to Zane’s.

As threats close in from all directions, both men must come to terms with the lives they’ve led and the lies they’ve told. They soon discover that not all their secrets are out yet, and nothing lasts forever.

Excerpt from my review
"I don't want to say much more about the book in order to avoid major spoilers, but I do have to mention the ending. It took me by complete surprise and really packed an emotional punch. I can tell I am going to be very impatient waiting for the next book which isn't going to be released until 2014!"

Saturday, November 23, 2013


A great feature hosted by Tynga's Reviews where bloggers get to feature the new books they received over the past week.

The Fiery Heart (Bloodlines, #4) World After (Penryn & the End of Days, #2) The Tin Box

The Fiery Heart by Richelle Mead (YA paranormal) -- One of my favorite ongoing series!

World After by Susan Ee (urban fantasy) -- Loved the first in the series and have been waiting for this!

The Tin Box by Kim Fielding (male/male contemporary) -- Bought this based on an amazing review of it over on Smexybooks.



Winter's Heat by Zoe Archer (historical romance) -- Lovely novella with two members of Nemesis who just can't escape their feelings for one another. It has a very Downton Abbey feel to it with the details about the "belowstairs" crew at a big house. Great holiday read!  Review coming soon.

Provoked by Joanna Chambers (male/male historical) -- Interesting m/m historical that really emphasizes the issues gay men faced in this time period.  Loved both characters and am excited to see what happens next.  Review coming soon.


The Fiery Heart by Richelle Mead (YA paranormal)
The Ruins of Gorlan by John Flanagan (MG fantasy)
Flowers for Him by Rowan Speedwell and Marie Sexton (male/male contemporary)


Crash Into You by Katie McGarry
Winter's Heat by Zoe Archer

Top Ten Tuesday: Things I'm Thankful For
Throwback Thursday--Historical Romance Edition
Follow Friday: Thanksgiving Day Food

Thursday, November 21, 2013


Alison Can Read Feature & Follow
Feature & Follow Friday is a blog hop that expands your blog following by a joint effort between bloggers. Feature & Follow Friday is now hosted by TWO hosts, Rachel of Parajunkee and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it'll allow us to show off more new blogs!

Q: You Are It! We are playing #FF tag this week. Comment on as many blogs as you can, even if they aren’t participating in #FF. Just say Happy #FF! At the end of your comment. Keep a running total if you want and update your post with it. The bigger the number the more impressed we will be!

I'm going to try to comment as much as I can tomorrow, but I have work and then I'm going to see Catching Fire!  But, be assured that I will be trying to catch up this weekend.  I saw that another blogger decided to ask a question so that people have something to comment on and I'm going to borrow that idea.

So...let me know which author you were so excited to discover this year? 

UPDATE #1: 14 blogs tagged

photo sparkles effect



I have created different ways for you to follow my blog: Bloglovin', LinkyFollowers, , Twitter, Goodreads, or email.  Comment, follow me, and I'll return the favor!!


Happy Thursday, everyone! This is a new feature hosted by Buried Under Romance and Love Saves the World.

What is Throwback Thursday: Historical Romance Edition?
Traditionally, Throwback Thursday celebrates nostalgia, asking participants to post a personal photo or an image from their past -- usually from 5 to 10 years ago. There are a lot of book blogs that also do a book-related Throwback Thursday.  Since Tin and Mary C. are unapologetic lovers of historical romances, they've decided to focus on this beloved genre.

Here are the rules:
1. It must be posted on a Thursday.
2. It must be a historical romance novel published before October 2008.


Lady Rogue Lady Rogue
Suzanne Enoch

Published: 1997

When the dripping wet ragamuffin showed up on his doorstep late one night claiming sanctuary, Alexander Cale had no idea the cheeky lad was actually an enchanting—but infuriating—chit! Suspicious of French-raised Kit Brantley's reasons for coming to London, Alex fears she's a traitor, spying for Napoleon. Yet as he's dragged into one escapade after another, Alex soon finds himself succumbing to her gamine charm and bold spirit—despite her dubious motives and outrageous behavior.

Kit has never seen eyes quite as blue—or as dangerous—as Alex Cale's. The Earl of Everton penetrated her disguise in record time, and now threatens to discover her reason for being in London: to find out who among the English peerage has been foiling her father's smuggling trade in France. As Kit races the clock against dark forces, Alex's devastating masculinity is a distraction she can ill afford—yet cannot resist. But when danger threatens both their lives, only love can save them.

This was my first Suzanne Enoch book and I have read many since then.  I love "in disguise" stories and this one was so much fun!  The banter between Kit and Alex is top-notch while the spy element just enhances the entertainment value. 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

REVIEW: "Shock & Awe" by Abigail Roux

Shock & Awe (Sidewinder, #1)
Shock and Awe by Abigail Roux
(Sidewinder #1)

Goodreads -- Amazon
Author Website

For Ages 18+
Male/Male Romance -- Contemporary
Riptide Publishing -- November 9, 2013
Ebook, 97 pages
Purchased from Amazon

Romantic Suspense, Military  

After barely surviving a shootout in New Orleans, Sidewinder medic Kelly Abbott has to suffer through a month of recovery before he can return home to Colorado. He’s not surprised when fellow Sidewinder Nick O’Flaherty stays with him in New Orleans. Nor is he surprised when Nick travels home with him to help him get back on his feet—after all, years on the same Marine Force Recon team bonded the men in ways that only bleeding for a brother can. He’s very surprised, though, when Nick humors his moment of curiosity and kisses him.

Nick knows all of Kelly’s quirks and caprices, so the kiss was a low-risk move on his part . . . or so he thought. But what should’ve been a simple moment unleashes a flood of confusing emotions and urges that neither man is prepared to address. Now, Kelly and Nick must figure out what they mean to each other—friends and brothers in arms, or something even deeper?—before the past can come back to ruin their tenuous future.

"Kelly had to lean against the railing of his front porch while Nick dealt with the lock and the alarm to his cabin."


I absolutely adore Abigail Roux's Cut & Run series with Ty and Zane so I was excited to see this spin-off novella featuring Ty's friends Nick and Kelly.  The most recent installment of that series (Touch & Geaux) had medic Kelly getting seriously wounded and now he is having to deal with a lengthy recovery.  His colleague Nick takes control of the situation and vows to not leave Kelly until he is completely healed.  This leads to a short, but emotional story that forces these two friends to look beyond their normal relationship in the hopes of finding something new.  I do not recommend reading this unless you are familiar with the C&R world because I don't think the characters are appropriately developed without being caught up on all the drama in that series.

What I Liked
1. I have had a bit of a fangirl crush on Nick O'Flaherty since we were first introduced to him.  His unrequited love for Ty always made me a little sad for him so I am ecstatic that he gets his own happy ending (maybe).  I love how Roux provided new information about Nick that really helps me understand him as a character.  The fact that he is constantly taking care of others just melts my heart and it was nice to see someone recognize that.

2. Kelly is a character that never got the top side character job that Nick did, but I was still intrigued by him.  I have this thing about medics and their unique view on the world.  He is so frustrated by his injury and that he is having to be reliant on someone else.  I thought Abigail Roux had a tricky situation with him due to the fact that Nick is the first guy he is willing to experiment with.  But, by emphasizing Kelly's impulsive nature, I quickly understood why he would want to try something like this and that it is more than just a physical thing.

3. Kelly and Nick have the advantage of being great friends, and military colleagues, for years.  There is a lot of mention of the fact that they have lived in such close proximity for so long that they know everything that could be known about a person.  I think this helps me believe, for the most part, that their relationship could change quickly and that it wouldn't be awkward.  Plus I have to mention that the love scenes between these two are some of the hottest I've read this year!

4. In addition to this book, readers will also get a bonus mini-novella (Bait & Switch) that shows Nick and Kelly's relationship a little farther down the road.  It was a great ending for those boys, but the main part that excited me was the Ty and Zane cameos!  After the end of Touch & Geaux, I had been impatient to see what happens to them next and, while I'm not fully satisfied, I did my fix until next year.

What I Didn't Like
1. The only thing that I did not care for with Shock & Awe was the fact that it was so short.  Abigail Roux is a talented writer and she successfully packs a lot into less than a hundred pages.  I just felt like I wanted more of Nick and Kelly's relationship away from the cabin.  I am just going to be hopeful for more Sidewinder books in the future.

My Conclusions 
I found Shock & Awe to be an entertaining and seductive novella that lets readers into the minds of some side characters in the C&R world.  Just makes me more anxious for Ball & Chain (the next Ty/Zane novel) to be published!


"You're dirty, Kels."
"That's like Satan calling me a bad boy."

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

TOP TEN TUESDAY: Books I Would Recommend to My Hypothetical Children

Hosted by the ladies over at The Broke and the Bookish.

~Books I Recommend To My Hypothetical Children~

I do not currently have children and they don't seem to be in the cards anytime in the near future.  But, I thought it would be fun to think about what types of books I would try to read/recommend to my kids...if I ever have them.

There's a Nightmare in My Closet
1. There's a Nightmare in My Closet by Mercer Mayer -- My favorite picture book!

Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing (Fudge, #1)
2. Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing by Judy Blume -- Love the crazy adventures of Peter and Fudge.
The Secret Garden
3. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett -- Just a classic.

Ramona the Pest (Ramona, #2)
4. Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary -- Ramona never failed to make me laugh.

Out of My Mind
5. Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper -- A thought-provoking look into the life of a girl with cerebral palsy.

Sideways Stories From Wayside School (Wayside School #1)
6. Sideways Stories from Wayside School by Louis Sachar -- Funny and over-the-top.

7. Matilda by Roald Dahl -- Shows how strong kids can be if they believe in themselves.

Samantha: An American Girl (The American Girls Collection/Boxed Set)
8. Samantha: An American Girl by Susan S. Adler -- Began my obsession with history.

 The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom (The League of Princes, #1)
9. The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy -- Creative twist on classic fairy tales.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter, #1)
10. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by JK Rowling -- Duh!