ARC Review | Felicity: (Some) Happy Stories by Divina Gracia

59123313._SY475_Pages: 142

Goodreads Rating: 4.40 / 5  stars

My Rating: 4/5 stars

Genre: Contemporary Short Stories

Publication Date: December 2nd 2021

Publisher: Self Published

Synopsis:

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WE ALL JUST WANT TO BE HAPPY.

Ten voices.
Ten narratives.
Ten short stories about the search for happiness.

Purchase the book: Amazon | Google Books | Kobo | Signed Copy (PH)

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ARC Review | The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood

56732449Pages: 352

Goodreads Rating: 4.46 / 5 stars

My Rating: 5 / 5 stars

Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance

Publication Date: September 14th 2021

Publisher: Berkley Romance

Synopsis:

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As a third-year Ph.D. candidate, Olive Smith doesn’t believe in lasting romantic relationships–but her best friend does, and that’s what got her into this situation. Convincing Anh that Olive is dating and well on her way to a happily ever after was always going to take more than hand-wavy Jedi mind tricks: Scientists require proof. So, like any self-respecting biologist, Olive panics and kisses the first man she sees.

That man is none other than Adam Carlsen, a young hotshot professor–and well-known ass. Which is why Olive is positively floored when Stanford’s reigning lab tyrant agrees to keep her charade a secret and be her fake boyfriend. But when a big science conference goes haywire, putting Olive’s career on the Bunsen burner, Adam surprises her again with his unyielding support and even more unyielding… six-pack abs.

Suddenly their little experiment feels dangerously close to combustion. And Olive discovers that the only thing more complicated than a hypothesis on love is putting her own heart under the microscope.

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ARC Review | Fallen Royal by Rachel Van Dyken

53473371._SY475_Pages: 242

Goodreads Rating: 4.65 / 5 stars

My Rating: 4/5 stars

Genre: New Adult Dark Romance, Mafia Romance

Publishing Date: October 5th 2021

Publisher: Self Published

Synopsis:

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A mafia romance about betrayal and faith by Rachel Van Dyken, the number one New York Times bestselling author of the Eagle Elite series.

“The truth may hurt for a little while, but a lie hurts forever.”—Ryan Bigge

I grew up knowing it would happen one day.
Believing that I would fall into my father’s footsteps and become a monster of my own making.

So I fought it.
I lived.
I loved.
I teased.
And then one day… I destroyed.
And realized I loved the pain.
Obsessed over the feeling.
So I cut again and again and again.

She saw my rage, my madness, and tried to stop me from destroying myself, and I hated her for it, pushing her away past the point of no return.
Izzy Abandonato was supposed to be mine.
But there are some things people can never come back from. I hurt her, she hurt me, and now I’m living a lie. Telling the ones I love that I’m on one side when for years I’ve been forced to play both.

I’m not the hero.
I’m the villain.
And I may single-handedly bring down the Cosa Nostra—by default.

I, Maksim Sinacore, will have my vengeance.
I will win her back.
Even if it means I have to kill everyone in my path.
The pain masks the betrayal.
I never realized that one day—I’d be the very rat that I hated. That I was sent to kill. But once you’re deep in a lie—you’ll do anything to hide the truth.

She fell for the bad one.
She fell for the sinner.
So why does that make me smile?

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ARC Review | Twice Shy by Sarah Hogle

54660653Pages: 302

My Rating: ★★★★★

Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance

Publication Date: April 6th 2021

Publisher: G.P. Putnam Son’s

Synopsis:

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Can you find real love when you’ve always got your head in the clouds?

Maybell Parish has always been a dreamer and a hopeless romantic. But living in her own world has long been preferable to dealing with the disappointments of real life. So when Maybell inherits a charming house in the Smokies from her Great-Aunt Violet, she seizes the opportunity to make a fresh start.

Yet when she arrives, it seems her troubles have only just begun. Not only is the house falling apart around her, but she isn’t the only inheritor: she has to share everything with Wesley Koehler, the groundskeeper who’s as grouchy as he is gorgeous—and it turns out he has very different vision for the property’s future.

Convincing the taciturn Wesley to stop avoiding her and compromise is a task more formidable than the other dying wishes Great-Aunt Violet left behind. But when Maybell uncovers something unexpectedly sweet beneath Wesley’s scowls, and as the two slowly begin to let their guard down, they might learn that sometimes the smallest steps outside one’s comfort zone can lead to the greatest rewards.

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ARC Review | Survive the Night by Riley Sager

55664968._SY475_Pages: 324

My Rating: ★★★

Genre: Adult Mystery / Thriller

Publication Date: June 29th 2021

Publisher: Dutton Books

Synopsis:

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It’s November 1991. George H. W. Bush is in the White House, Nirvana’s in the tape deck, and movie-obsessed college student Charlie Jordan is in a car with a man who might be a serial killer.

Josh Baxter, the man behind the wheel, is a virtual stranger to Charlie. They met at the campus ride board, each looking to share the long drive home to Ohio. Both have good reasons for wanting to get away. For Charlie, it’s guilt and grief over the murder of her best friend, who became the third victim of the man known as the Campus Killer. For Josh, it’s to help care for his sick father. Or so he says. Like the Hitchcock heroine she’s named after, Charlie has her doubts. There’s something suspicious about Josh, from the holes in his story about his father to how he doesn’t seem to want Charlie to see inside the car’s trunk. As they travel an empty highway in the dead of night, an increasingly worried Charlie begins to think she’s sharing a car with the Campus Killer. Is Josh truly dangerous? Or is Charlie’s suspicion merely a figment of her movie-fueled imagination?

What follows is a game of cat-and-mouse played out on night-shrouded roads and in neon-lit parking lots, during an age when the only call for help can be made on a pay phone and in a place where there’s nowhere to run. In order to win, Charlie must do one thing–survive the night.

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Book Review | Beach Read by Emily Henry

52867387._SY475_Pages: 361

My Rating: ★★★★★

Genre:  Adult, Contemporary Fiction

Publication Date: May 19th 2020

Publisher: Berkley Romance

Synopsis:

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A romance writer who no longer believes in love and a literary writer stuck in a rut engage in a summer-long challenge that may just upend everything they believe about happily ever afters.

Augustus Everett is an acclaimed author of literary fiction. January Andrews writes bestselling romance. When she pens a happily ever after, he kills off his entire cast.

They’re polar opposites.

In fact, the only thing they have in common is that for the next three months, they’re living in neighboring beach houses, broke, and bogged down with writer’s block.

Until, one hazy evening, one thing leads to another and they strike a deal designed to force them out of their creative ruts: Augustus will spend the summer writing something happy, and January will pen the next Great American Novel. She’ll take him on field trips worthy of any rom-com montage, and he’ll take her to interview surviving members of a backwoods death cult (obviously). Everyone will finish a book and no one will fall in love. Really.

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ARC Review: Scandalous Prince by Rachel Van Dyken

Scandalous PrincePages: 336

Goodreads Rating: 4.63 / 5 stars

My Rating: ★★★★.5 / 5 stars

Genre: New Adult Dark Romance, Mafia Romance

Publication Date: September 22nd 2020

Publisher: Self published

Synopsis:

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The Woods are Lovely, dark, and deep, but I have promises to keep and miles to go, before I sleep —Robert Frost

I was born under fire and swore to protect her until my dying day, I just never knew that one day, I’d be the very monster I was protecting her from.
She didn’t know it was me.
She didn’t know that I had no choice and would do it again and again to save her.
I may as well have given her the mark on her finger.
The one that shows where her loyalty must lie.
Because we don’t sin in silence.
And eventually, you have to pay up what you owe.
My need to protect her turned into a lie to save her.
And when she found out—I turned in to the very monster I was trying to protect her from.
Watching Violet Abandonato walk out of my life was like a knife to the chest, a wound that refused to heal.
The bosses sent me to protect her, to watch over her even though I was the demon she fled.
We both carry scars.
But if all I can have is her hate for as long as I breathe.
I’ll take it.
Because at the end of the day, I should burn in Hell forever thinking Chase Abandonato’s perfect angel would pick me—over her perfect life.
“I broke you,” I confessed.
“The worst part… is that you liked it,” she snapped right back.

Welcome to the second generation of the mafia, may the best man or woman, be left standing.
May God bless our tainted souls.

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ARC Review: Fragile Longing by Cora Reilly

Fragile LongingPages: 296

Goodreads Rating: 3.59 / 5 stars

My Rating: ★★★.5 / 5 stars

Genre: New Adult Dark Romance, Mafia Romance

Publication Date: September 28th 2020

Publisher: Self published

Synopsis:

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Sofia knows how it feels to be the consolation prize.
Too young.
Not blond.
And definitely not an ice princess.
Her sister is—was all those things. Perfection. Until she wasn’t. Until she ran off to be with the enemy and left her fiancé behind.
Now Sofia is given to Danilo in her sister’s stead, knowing she’ll never be more than second best. Yet, she can’t stop longing for the love of the man she’s been crushing on even when he was still her sister’s.

Danilo is a man who’s used to getting what he wants.
Power.
Respect.
The sought-after ice princess.
Until another man steals his bride-to-be. Danilo knows that for a man in his position losing his woman can lead to a loss of face.
Wounded pride.
Thirst for revenge.
A dangerous combination—one Danilo can’t leave behind, not even when a girl just as precious takes her sister’s place to placate him. Yet, she’s got one flaw: she’s not her sister.
Unable to forget what he’s lost, Danilo might lose what he’s been given.

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ARC Review: The Roommate by Rosie Danan

theroommatePages: 336

Goodreads Rating: 4.06 / 5 stars

My Rating: ★★★★★ / 5 stars

Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance

Publication Date: September 15th 2020

Publisher: Berkley

Synopsis:

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House Rules:
Do your own dishes
Knock before entering the bathroom
Never look up your roommate online

The Wheatons are infamous among the east coast elite for their lack of impulse control, except for their daughter Clara. She’s the consummate socialite: over-achieving, well-mannered, predictable. But every Wheaton has their weakness. When Clara’s childhood crush invites her to move cross-country, the offer is too much to resist. Unfortunately, it’s also too good to be true.

After a bait-and-switch, Clara finds herself sharing a lease with a charming stranger. Josh might be a bit too perceptive—not to mention handsome—for comfort, but there’s a good chance he and Clara could have survived sharing a summer sublet if she hadn’t looked him up on the Internet…

Once she learns how Josh has made a name for himself, Clara realizes living with him might make her the Wheaton’s most scandalous story yet. His professional prowess inspires her to take tackling the stigma against female desire into her own hands. They may not agree on much, but Josh and Clara both believe women deserve better sex. What they decide to do about it will change both of their lives, and if they’re lucky, they’ll help everyone else get lucky too.

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ARC Review: The Truest Thing by Samantha Young

51028863Pages: 390

Goodreads Rating: 4.52/  5 stars

My Rating: ★★★★★ / 5 stars

Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance

Publication Date: August 18th 2020

Publisher: Self published

Synopsis:

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Nine years ago, Emery Saunders moved to Hartwell to start her life over as a bookstore owner. Her inability to trust people made it hard for her to find a place in the small community until Jessica Lawson moved to town and befriended the shy beauty.
But there was one person in Hartwell who tried to befriend Emery long before Jessica arrived…

Jack Devlin has his secrets. One of them is that he fell hard for Emery the moment she appeared in Hartwell. Another is that his father blackmailed him into covering up a dark family tragedy. It forced Jack to sever his relationships to protect the people he cared about. Yet, staying away from Emery has not been easy throughout the years and he hasn’t always succeeded. When Jack’s mixed signals hurt Emery once again, she puts him out of her heart for good.
Until the Devlin family secret is finally revealed, freeing Jack from his father’s machinations. What Jack wants more than anything is to repair his relationships, starting with Emery.

However, Emery isn’t ready to forgive and Jack’s not ready to give up.
And when the town’s latest scandal ties Jack and Emery together, Jack is not above using their new reality to prove to Emery once and for all that their love is worthy of the legend of Hart’s Boardwalk.

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