Monday, March 18, 2019

RE-READ REVIEW: This Love by Nazarea Andrews

Original Read Date: 2013
Re-Read: March 2019

~Updated Book Review~
4.75/5 Stars

Atticus Grimes, 28, is a tatted bad boy history professor in need of a research assistant for his book on pirates.

Where were those professors when I was an undergrad?

Avery Emili, 21, is college student in need of some cash to attend her sister’s Jamaican wedding.

So how did the story hold up years later on a re-read?
I was easily reminded how I liked both of their characters. This is really critical to me for giving 5 stars so I can still see why I rated it that way. Atticus is a little surly and he gives mixed signals at first, but I was sympathetic to the fact that he was still trying to put his life back together. And he was hot in a take-what-he wants, conventions-be-damned kind of way. And yet I wouldn't call him reckless. 

I seriously enjoyed how Avery had a backbone and a brain.
“‘Time to put on your big girl panties and face the music. Hanging on a guy who so obviously doesn’t want you?’ I shake my head. ‘Have a little dignity.’”
We’re missing more girls like her in the romance market today. While I was rooting for her to just love this sexy man who was all in for her, at the same time I appreciated her concern for their academic careers/professions.

While I usually don’t care for the amount of OW/OM drama that crops up, I have to say that it worked here. The key components being that:
1). Avery and Atticus share a common ground having both been hurt and betrayed by people they loved and trusted. Their experiences weren’t unbalanced. 
2.)  Neither want their exes back…and they have no problem putting the other’s OM/OW in their place.
“‘Lose her number. Bother her again, and I swear to god I will drive to Virginia for no other reason but to kick your motherfucking ass. Are we very clear?’”
Atticus has just enough alpha in him without it ever going overboard.
I felt their sexual tension and chemistry from the start, and there’s a good blend of story and steamy times.
“‘Two months and I can still taste you—I still know exactly what you sound like when I slide my dick into you. I know what you look like when you come for me.’”
Told via their alternating dual first person POV, it incorporates the taboo student-teacher romance theme. The second book, Beautiful Broken, features Atticus’s  sister, Scout, and his buddy, Dane.

*Title purchased from Amazon. All reviews written by Book-Bosomed Book Blog are honest opinions. 

GOODREADS    AMAZON    B&N    KOBO

~Interview with Nazarea Andrews~

Original Interview Date: August 2014


5 Questions with Author Nazarea Andrews


Q1. What was your inspiration for creating the University of Branton and setting a series around it?

A. My hometown, which was very small and plays more heavily on the setting of book two, Beautiful Broken, and my college. Which was small and beautiful and where I fell in love with my husband.
College and a small town influenced me and made me the person I am. Both are hugely important to me and have a special place in my heart, even now that I live in a big city and I'm years past college. Branton allowed me to go back to that, briefly. 

Q2. Did you ever have a teacher/professor like Atticus?  How did your own university experience compared to Avery’s at UB?

A. Ha!!! No. Atticus, amazing as he is, was very much my imagination. Avery had a very normal college experience, until Atticus threw her for a loop. I didn't. I left school early, worked several jobs between classes and never partied. But I loved my college experience.

Q3. Atticus and Dane are best friends but they have rather different personalities? If you were in a character in one of your books, which one would you be more attracted to/who is more your type and why?

A. Dane.  In a book, anyway. Dane is rough and rude and oh my god, I love him. He's also broken and furious and hurting. He's a MESS.
Atticus? Atti is the boy that Dane was, after he's sorted himself out. He still has his sharp edges and mess moments. But he's got his shit together for the most part. And in real life, who wouldn't want to be with that?

Q4. Avery is a great female character—she’s smart, organized, and determined. Can you give us any more background about how you created her character?  What are your favorite qualities about her?

A. Her determination. I love love how she's so intent on what she wants. I'm that way. The problem is that sometimes we're so focused on that we miss what's right in front of us. Avery needs to learn that. 

Q5. Will we ever get another book with Atticus and Avery as the main characters? I know they make appearances in later books, but any plans for them to have a second story? A second pirate book that Atticus writes and they research together? A wedding? Kids? 

A. Haha, well. Maybe. If you read Sweet Ruin and Fractured Perfection (Oct 2015) you definitely get their next chapters. We might see novellas in the future. Maybe. :)


Nazarea Andrews is an avid reader and tends to write the stories she wants to read. She loves chocolate and coffee almost as much as she loves books, but not quite as much as she loves her kids. She lives in south Georgia with her husband, daughters, and overgrown dog. Connect with her via her websiteblogTwitter, or Facebook

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

BOOK REVIEW: Professed by Nicola Rendell


4 Stars

On the heels of an unexpected boost in his career, Professor Benjamin Beck, 38, moves east for a new teaching position.  At a mysterious party, he meets Naomi Costa, 20, (her stated age, although background stories add up to 22/23) and the two indulge in a sultry hook-up.

The opening scene with this anonymous masked rave party pulled me in. Though it later seemed like a bit of a dropped plot point, it set an intriguing mood and initiated the chemistry between the two. I also liked that it established the heroine as a typical college student with a normal sexual history—in other words no sheltered virgins here.     
“Screw the world that sees only whores and virgins, bad girls and good.”
As a student-teacher romance, I was pleased that it avoided some of the unromantic themes that often beset these kinds of stories.  Specifically, while their illicit encounters are obviously forbidden, and they do wrestle with that, Ben doesn’t turn to other women his age or even think about it. There’s some push-pull, but their feelings are always all in. The two indulge in plenty of clandestine moments, carrying out their forbidden romance.
“‘You look at me just like that in class,’ I tell her.
‘This is what I’m thinking about in class.’
She cups my balls in her hands, just sliding one finger along my perineum.”
I typically side-eye a mature, educated professor willing to risk throwing away his career, but it worked here with Ben’s characterization drawn around his field of study, specifically his interest in nihilism.

Though the tone with the taboo romance felt angsty, the threat of being caught high, the actual plot avoided angst fairly well.

Dean Osgood. Oh I wasn’t always sure how he was meant to be taken for a large part of the book.  He’s a goofy little man, erratic maybe, but I got a kick out of him. I don’t know if the humor was intended, but I found some.

That’s not to say there weren’t some issues that did distract. There’s a few continuity errors, like her dress is off and then still on. And I was never entirely clear on Ben’s position as Master of College (or Master in College.) I’ve never heard of the position, but I also didn’t attend an Ivy League school. It really felt more like they were at a small private college. Either way, I felt like his title was simply to play on the Master moniker.

And then there’s the wanting a baby in the throws of passion moment that I could always do without. I just don’t find a serious decision like that something to be utilized as a way to bind people with bigger issues.  And while they both think about, I still didn’t find it romantic. Thankfully it never materialized.

Told via Ben and Naomi’s alternating first person POV, if you are looking for a safe student-teacher read, this would be one to check out.

GOODREADS     AMAZON    

*Title purchased from Amazon in February 2019. All reviews written by Book-Bosomed Book Blog are honest opinions. 

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

BOOK REVIEW: Do You Feel It Too? by Nicola Rendell

4.75 Stars

Gabe Powers, 39, hosts a ghost and urban legend TV show. While filming in Savannah, Georgia, he spots local audio technician Lily Jameson, 35, and is instantly smitten.
“There were a lot of mysteries in the world, but the way I felt about her wasn’t one of them.”
I adored how Gabe was pretty much all in once he met Lily. He never wavered on his feelings, and he was upfront with her. He also had some smooth moves. And then he totally rocked a swoonworthy date.  Gabe was an easy-going good guy. And it was refreshing that while he’d toured the world and had a full and exciting life, he wasn’t a manwhore or player.
“The truth was that just like I’d been hunting for urban legends all these years, I’d also been trying to find the one.”
While I side-eyed their lack of safe sex practices considering they’d just met and had a time limit on their relationship, their evident chemistry helped smooth that hiccup, and their sultry encounters were pretty smoking hot.
“Flesh to flesh. Head to G-spot.” 
This story has steam; it has romance.
“I was torn—part of me wanted to ravage her, part of me wanted to worship her.”
And it also has humor. The General had me laughing out loud. He was a fabulous comedic edition to the tale. I couldn’t get enough of him. Then combine the General and Gabe…and Gabe and Ivan...well those pairing catapulted Gabe to total book boyfriend status. I love when the hero is put in a ‘challenging’ position and he shines.  

The only part I didn’t care for is when he thinks about getting Lily pregnant and she seems to get caught up in it too. I’m not a fan of coitus claiming like that; it’s too easy to get lost in the moment. Deciding to have a child should be a thought-out discussion between two consenting, committed adults when they aren’t in the throws of passion.

Never the less, while their relationship progressed pretty fast, I didn’t have a hard time picturing them long term because there are plenty of scenes that showed them working together, which is essential to a lasting couple.  There wasn’t any kind of miscommunication, and Gabe was supportive and encouraging of Lily while feeling and finding something with her that he hadn’t before. For the most part, the strengths of their relationship shined through. This is a great ‘love as a journey’ romance that avoids many tired plot clichĂ©s and character stereotypes. And no OW/OM at all...yay! 😊

Finally, I should note that the premise with Gabe’s myths and mysteries job (an original one at that) attracted me to this story. I’m not a PNR reader (and this isn’t a PNR title), but I really enjoyed the way the filming was integrated into the romance and the settings captured the mood and incorporated local lore.  It was a fun angle and everything comes together nicely. 

All in all, this story has an engaging premise and likeable characters. Told via Gabe and Lily’s alternating first person POV, it’s a mostly light-hearted, feel good romance. I closed the book wanting more of their adventures and more of the General!

GOODREADS    AMAZON   B&N

*Title purchased from Amazon in February 2019. All reviews written by Book-Bosomed Book Blog are honest opinions. 

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

BOOK REVIEW: Breaking the Billionaire's Rules by Annika Martin

~Synopsis~
Max Hilton is my high school nemesis turned billionaire. And tomorrow I deliver his lunch order. In a cat costume.

You know he’s going to love it. He’ll smile that smirky smile, sitting there all superior in his gleaming tower, the wealthiest and most notorious playboy in all of New York, the king of everything.

Turns out it wasn’t curiosity that killed the cat—it was mortification.

I’m almost ready to quit my lunch delivery job, but then my roommate tosses me a copy of The Max Hilton Playbook: Ten Golden Rules for Picking up the Hottest Girl in the Room.

It’s the book that catapulted him to stardom. And it’s my new bible.
I’m going to use his own techniques against him. I’ll wrap him around my little finger, bring him to his knees, and crush his steely heart. Call it payback for all the single girls who had to endure legions of losers wielding his legendary tactics.

But seeing Max every day, I’m discovering a side of him

I didn’t even know existed--he’s not the jerky guy I thought he was. He has this smile he shows only to me, and it melts my heart. His touch sends shivers down my spine. And those forbidden kisses are driving me wild.

Falling for him was not in my plan.

Am I breaking his rules or will his rules break me first?

BTBR_ebook_bn.jpeg
~Book Review~
3.5 Stars

Aspiring actress Mia Corelli, 28, (Lizzie’s roommate from The Billionaire’s Wake-Up-Call Girl) attended performing arts school with pianist prodigy Maxfield Miller, now Max Hilton, 28, whose face graces billboards as the head of a men’s style empire.  Ten years after high school, they face off again when Mia’s day job makes her his lunch cart girl.

There’s plenty of potential here and I didn’t have any safety issues, but I just struggled to get invested. I think a lot of that falls on the pacing. The first half of the book is soley Mia’s first person point of view, and Mia has more insecurities than I typically prefer in heroines or maybe it’s just they seem emphasized in this first portion since it’s more focused on her than him at that point.  While it aptly captured a sense of embarrassment and humiliation, a self esteem blow when dealing with the unbalance of success between their careers, that also hampered the romcom feel for me. 

It picked up a bit for me once Max’s chapters kicked in. (The Antonia charade did give me a good chuckle.)  I wish their POVs would have been alternated sooner. The quotes from his playbook were so douchey, bordering on both chauvinistic attitudes and emotional manipulation techniques. Thankfully, he didn’t come off that way at all.

I enjoyed their backstories. I think that’s where I felt their connection more than in the present.  A prologue of the Oklahoma summer or high school flashbacks would have gone a long way. In fact, I sort of craved their teenage selves. Those budding romance moments from the past I wanted to read more of rather than miscommunication in the present.

Even though it was just a small line, I was really disappointed in the homeschool excuse. As a homeshooling mom, I have to affirm what seasoned homeschooling families both know and get tired of hearing—the  socialization myth. It’s sad and frustrating to see it perpetuated, and fiction is no exception. The scenario depicted when this is brought up could have easily been explained by simple teenage inexperience that even public school raised kids are inclined to, perhaps even more so because of peer pressure.  A homeschooling background scapegoat was unnecessary.

This is a somewhat slow burn enemies-to-lovers second chance romance. It can easily be read as a standalone, although the other titles are worth checking out too.

*I volunteered to review this ARC. All reviews written by Book-Bosomed Book Blog are honest opinions. In the interest of providing unbiased book reviews and to avoid misleading other readers, it is the blog’s policy not to withhold or delay any reviews no matter the star rating.

Amazon    Amazon Worldwide    Apple Books    Kobo     Nook 

~Excerpt~

“Are we going with cheesy puffs today?” I ask.

“Cheesy puffs,” he says hoarsely.

“Good job,” I say. “You made an excellent choice. And just for that, you get an extra bag!”

He tightens his jaw as I snatch up an extra bag.

I’m keeping him off-balance. I feel like I’m really nailing his system today. I head right for him, all the way around his desk, holding his gaze, because that’s what you do to show a dog that you’re in charge.

It hits me here that holding a man’s gaze and walking steadily toward him, never looking away, is also an incredibly sexy thing to do. Every inch of my skin feels alive with excitement.

He swivels away from his desk as I near, facing me with that strangely serious expression. His shirt cuffs are rolled partway up his muscular forearms. His hands rest on his hard thighs, fingers relaxed. Nails trimmed short. Pianist-short. Some habits die hard.

And those thumbs. They’re the same thumbs he stuck in his belt loops while he sang with all of that sweet goofiness during that lost summer. Though science tells us that the cells of the body replace themselves over time—nine years for an entirely new body. So he really is a different person in every way.

I stop in front of him, heart jackhammering in my chest, remembering the way he’d sing to me during that lost summer.

Even when there was a full auditorium, it was as if he was singing to me and me alone, gaze dancing under that floppy hat. The song was about young, hopeful love. It’s how I felt that summer.

It meant nothing to him. A dalliance of proximity. The second we were back at school, he returned to his cold and cynical mode. Too cool for me.

Quizzically, he tilts his head. “Mia?”

Have I been standing there weirdly long?

I think back to his book. If you feel your control slipping, simply give her another reward for something.

“And as a reward for extra predictable behavior…” I toss one bag onto his desk and pull open the other one with a loud crinkle-snap.

His eyes flare.

I remove one puff from the bag and hold it out to him. “Open,” I whisper, pulse racing. “Open for your prize.”

He watches me sternly. Opening for his prize is the last thing he’s going to do. Nobody pushes Max Hilton around.

The book doesn’t have instructions for outright rebellion. The book doesn’t say how sexy that might be. How a person’s beauty can squeeze deep into your belly. How you might really want to kiss him. To straddle him and sink into him and make him remember. Make him come back.

“That’s not open.” I nudge his lower lip with the cheese puff. “Do better,” I say.

He grabs my wrist.

My breath quickens.

His big, warm hand, encircles my wrist snugly and completely. His challenging gaze deepens, like he can see right into me.

The bright orange cheese puff falls from my fingers.

Slowly, he pulls my hand toward him, pinning me with his eyes.

I swallow, mouth dry. “Are you going to eat my fingers instead?” I whisper.

He brushes his lips over my knuckle, soft and warm and smooth as velvet.

~Also Available~

Annika Martin loves fun, dirty stories, hot heroes, and wild, dramatic everything. She enjoys hanging out in Minneapolis coffee shops with her writer husband, and also likes birdwatching at her bird feeder alongside her two stunningly photogenic cats, especially when she should be writing. She’s heavy into running, music, saving the planet, taking long baths, and consuming chocolate suckers. She’s worked a surprisingly large number of waitressing jobs, and has also worked in a plastics factory and the advertising trenches; her garden is total bee-friendly madness and her most un-favorite word is nosh or possibly fob. A New York Times bestselling author, she has also written as RITA award-winning author Carolyn Crane.
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Thursday, February 7, 2019

BOOK REVIEW: Sins of Omission by Saskia Laine

4.25 Stars

Lashka Wright is a secret shopper for the hotel industry. Her latest assignment whisks her off for three days in the Mediterranean. It’s on the turbulent plane ride there that she first crosses paths with surly but sexy business traveler Kellan.

Told via Lashka’s first person POV, this is listed as erotic romance novelette.  It would make a great beach read provided you don’t mind your bikini bottoms getting wet. ;-) The love scenes are very well done. No cheesy dialogue here. Instead it captures all the breathtaking and body clenching touches.
“What those lips lacked in conversational skills, they made up for in dexterity. In spades.”
Kellan is a man of few words, adding an air of mystery to his character. It kept me intrigued, and it kept me wanting more.  Lashka is a smart, capable heroine.
“‘Too many guys are assholes to women, and too few other guys call them out on it.’”
This is a well-written light-hearted story. I’ll admit the full length romance reader in me would have enjoyed a few more chapters in the middle of these two getting to know each other better—they had evident chemistry—as well as an epilogue at the end, but I also greatly appreciated the low angst factor.  Fans of short, safe, and steamy reads should find it checks all their boxes. It’s an easy, relaxing tale, and I look forward to seeing what comes next in this new series Layovers.

*I volunteered to review this ARC from the author. All reviews written by Book-Bosomed Book Blog are honest opinions. 


Follow the author on her website, Twitter, Facebook, and Goodreads for this and future releases. 

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

BOOK REVIEW: Maid in England by Brenda St. John Brown

~Blurb~

Always a bridesmaid, never a bride. Except almost. That one time. 

TO: The guy who dumped me
FROM: The woman hired to advance your career
RE: I am 150,000% over you.
Alastair,

I’m on the 11:14 train out of London, so I’ll be there by 3:00. To make this as painless as possible, I thought it would help to establish key ground rules:
1. No rehashing our past relationship. Yes, we were engaged, but it’s been twelve years and I’m over you.
2. I’m very good at my job and that job is to help you shed the “reclusive” part of the whole “reclusive rock star” vibe you’ve got going on. Brace yourself.
3. My plan is to have this wrapped up by Friday, so save your smoldering looks until I’m gone, please. (I assume you still smolder?) I’m immune now. See item #1.

I’ll see you in a few hours.
Remi

P.S. My cousin is getting married at the beginning of August. Guess who’s a bridesmaid? Funny, huh? Almost as funny as the fiancĂ©e you dumped because you thought she was married to her job now saving yours. Have I mentioned I’m totally, completely 150,000% over you?
 

GOODREADS
~Review~
3.75 Stars

Remi Cooper, 34, is a workaholic publicist. Alastair Wells, 32, is a songwriter and up-and-coming musician whose agent has just hired his ex-fiancĂ© to advance his career. Back in each other’s orbit, the two have the chance to revisit old mistakes and future possibilities.
“All it would take is a kiss to ignite this spark flickering between us. Like a match in the middle of a California summer, I’m pretty sure we could burn for days.”
This is a slow burn romance with low steam. I’ll admit I was a bit disappointed it wasn’t spicier as I think it might have helped enhance their chemistry.  None the less, I appreciated that it avoided many romance clichĂ©s as well as OW/OM drama. The writing is solid, and both the premise and characters had potential.

Alastair isn’t a romance rockstar stereotype. Refreshingly, he’s quiet, low key, and not a manwhore. He seemed like a pretty genuine and down-to-earth guy.

Remi is dedicated and hard-working.  That’s both a strength and a flaw for her. There’s a lot of focus on Remi reevaluating her career and doing some soul-searching with her 35th birthday approaching, and the story is told from her sole first person POV. 

I would have really liked to have read some chapters from Alastair’s POV and more scenes of Remi and Alastair together. I think both would have gone a long way in showing what he was feeling through this process of them getting a second chance, but also to feel the connection between them more fully. It was clear they shared a past; more development of them in the present would have benefited the romantic angle.

The blurb made this title look like a lot of fun. I wish the story would have captured more of that. While the majority of it kept me engaged, there was a little zing that just felt like it was missing. In places there’s more ‘tell’ than ‘show.’

I was also left feeling a little unsatisfied with the Sarah factor. For the role she played in Alastair’s life, I felt like she should have been more central to the story, as in I needed to see more development of her relationship with Remi if I was going to truly envision their HEA, which I wasn’t a hundred percent convinced of based off the pacing of the story combined with their lack of time together in the present. Ultimately I envisioned them more of a casual couple than a family.

AMAZON


*ARC received from the author. All reviews written by Book-Bosomed Book Blog are honest opinions. 

Monday, February 4, 2019

RELEASE BLITZ: Hearts Abroad by Skye McNeil

Series: Atlas, Book #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Hot Tree Publishing

~Synopsis~

When a fun-loving American nanny turns a millionaire British single dad’s world upside down, it’s inevitable life is going to get complicated.

Taking a break from screenwriting in New York City, Londyn Bellerose takes a nannying job in Colorado to get away from the hubbub. A summer to live without regrets is all she wants. While her boss is British, gorgeous, and a millionaire, he has no clue how to have fun. Determined to mend the relationship between father and daughters, Londyn doesn’t expect to fall for the museum curator.

Londyn is American and everything Callum Archer swore to never fall for again. With her carefree spirit and energetic smile, she’s perfect to nanny Callum’s two daughters. The problem is she’s also perfect for him. She’s sassy, musical, and tends to speak her mind more than she means to.

When old history and new dreams threaten her happily ever after, will Londyn and Callum’s love survive?

Hearts Abroad is book one in Skye McNeil’s contemporary romance series, Atlas. Each book contains a millionaire to envy, snort-worthy comedy, and visits to many beautiful cities in the world. Yes, all of that, plus each novel ends with a fabulous HEA.

Cover Designer: Claire Smith

 On sale for half price! 
Amazon US    Amazon UK    Amazon AU    Amazon CA    iTunes  Nook    Kobo

~Also in the Series~
Oceans Away (Book #2)
Releases July 13, 2019
PREORDER FOR HALF PRICE!


Skye McNeil began writing at the age of seventeen and has been lost in a love affair ever since. During the day, she moonlights as a paralegal at a law firm favouring criminal law.
Skye enjoys writing romantic comedies and cozy mysteries novels that leave readers wanting more and falling in love over and over. She writes contemporary and historical novels ranging from sweet and sassy to steamy and sultry.
Her constant writing companions are two cats and two dogs. When she’s not writing, Skye enjoys spending time with family, photography, volleyball, traveling, and curling up with a cup of coffee and reading.

Sign up for Skye's newsletter HERE.
Website | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Amazon | Instagram

~Giveaway~



Thursday, January 31, 2019

BOOK REVIEW: Sugar Daddies by Jade West

4.5 Stars

Richard Warner and Carl Brooks, 39, are successful men in a committed relationship, but both bisexual they are looking for a new woman to share their companionship and complete their life plan. Katie Serena Smith, 22, needs money for her long term equestrian career goals so she connects with Rick and Carl through a sugar daddies site.

Based off the cover and the title, my expectations for this were erotic, hot, and smutty, but I was pleasantly surprised at the substance I found.  Though initially a little uneasy with the whole getting paid part, it later became a nonissue. 
“But it was a big deal. Big money, big dicks. Just…big. The whole thing was big.”
The distinct intriguing characters and the chemistry between them lead the way to a full story. In fact, I’d argue there’s more relationship development and romance than a lot of books that profess to have that but don’t come close to what I found here.

Essentially, there’s a good balance of sex and story. The character development is well done. Even side characters far surpassed initial or surface clichĂ©s and became real people with real feelings who made real mistakes. The story is developed well and provides a rounded perspective of complex situations.  I liked how it all came about and how it worked out.

Carl, despite initially coming off distant and cool, is the catalyst to bringing some heads out of some asses. (No, that’s not a kinky thing. I’m being straight up and so was he.) Though he’s intense and a bit of a pessimist, he’s also a straight shooter with maturity and probably more patience than he realizes.  
  “‘Love is love…Commitment is commitment. Integrity and consideration and communication, honestly and genuine care, compassion, support… those are the things that make a worthwhile relationship, whether that’s two people, or three people, or ten people.’”
Rick is the fun loving partner who’s easy going, devoted, and also a rock when things get tough or tense. He knew how to lighten the mood while not making light of complicated circumstances. These two not only complimented each other well, but it became easy to see why they’d both be a great catch. I only wish we’d gotten a few chapters from Rick.
“‘I’m gonna leave you two alone more often if this is the shit I come back to.’”
Katie is thankfully not a virgin! It was quite nice to have a heroine with sexual experience. She’s grown up in a tricky family situation and the story stays focused on Katie’s growth and development as dicey family issues unfold, while pleasantly avoiding any OW/OM drama. In addition, it was also incredibly pleasing to see the story avoid tired office romance taboo drama tropes. 

I’d be remiss if I didn’t comment on the sexual angle. Their encounters ran the gauntlet on the steamy scale. Some of their threesomes were seriously hot. However, the simultaneous double meat encounters left me feeling…well like someone describing their gynecological exam. I mean, for the prep work the guys are down there checking her out, widening her up, How does it look? she asks. I dunno, it just isn’t a fantasy of mine because it didn’t really sound all that pleasant, during and after. And then the fisting thing. I’ll take the heroine’s word that her lady bits took a beating. The references to her battered cervix were probably somewhat realistic. 

Told via Katie and Carl’s alternating first person POV, while initially the characters and erotic sex pulled me, it was the story that kept me engaged and turning pages.  In the end, I found it downright heartfelt, and it left me longing for more of their happy after. 

GOODREADS     AMAZON      B&N

*Title purchased from Amazon in January 2019. All reviews written by Book-Bosomed Book Blog are honest opinions. 

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

BOOK REVIEW/CHARACTER INTERVIEW: King Me by Season Vining

Genre: Romantic Suspense
Release Date: January 29, 2019

~Synopsis~

Delaney Mills is haunted by darkness. Not of a spiritual kind, but a terrible past that all the rum in the world cannot chase away. Enter Valentine King, a sexy and irresistible man with connections to the world of Voodoo—a world that Delaney is desperately trying to break into.

Chicago-native Delaney follows her dissertation research all the way to the streets of New Orleans. With King’s help, she uncovers a covert group called the Bondye Saints. The group wants to remain a secret and will do whatever it takes to keep the two quiet. But threats and attacks on her life don’t deter Delaney’s desire to expose the Saints’ sins.

While she’s willing to risk her own life, Delaney hates that the one man who can chase away her darkness is put in danger. But Valentine King refuses to let her go. Because in his world built on faith, Delaney Mills is the one thing he believes in.
 


~Review~

4.5 Stars

Troubled by tragedy, Delaney Mills, 32, sets her sights on New Orleans to refocus and complete her doctorate degree in sociology. There she meets and is assisted in her research by local Valentine King, 26.

I liked King right off the bat. He’s smooth in a cute, not cocky, way and laid back. I wanted a hug too. ;-)
“‘I’m not trying to claim what belongs to me. I’m simply declaring my desire to belong to you.’”
Whatever missteps Delaney made (and she made a few), I was always on King’s side and felt his reactions appropriate. King balanced his faith and a grounding in reality well. His protectiveness of her made him a real keeper.
“But his words touch me, they seek out the deepest cuts and heal them over like they never existed.”
Delaney is determined and stubborn, possibly to the point where she lacked a healthy sense of self-preservation. While I understood she didn’t necessarily believe and was also struggling with her own emotional demons, I also found her a bit reckless with her safety in the face of real world threats at times.

Which bring me to the voodoo premise— major points for originality there. It was intriguing. This romantic suspense has some thriller/mystery touches, but it’s not what I’d call PNR.  The budding romance and hot, steamy times interwoven with some sleuthing, prophecies of danger, and an action-suspense climax balance together nicely. The writing paints the scenes well. I’ve never been to the Big Easy, but I could envision Delaney’s surroundings based off the narrative.

It was also refreshing to see the depiction of an interracial couple. Diversity in the romance market tends to be a bit lacking.
“‘You are always beautiful…but when you fall apart like that, you are everything, all at once.’”
It was easy to feel the attraction between Delaney and King from the start, which made the almost OM scene disappointing.  Never the less, the side characters all added something to the story, and they weren’t necessarily your usual cookie-cutter side characters. The story kept me engaged, and I liked the way the pieces came together even if I had a few lingering questions/things I wanted to know more about.

Told via Delaney’s first person POV, if you enjoy romantic suspense or are simply looking for a break from the same old/same old in the romance market lately, this is one certainly worth taking a look at.

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*ARC received from the author. All reviews written by Book-Bosomed Book Blog are honest opinions. 


~Character Interview~


Book Boyfriend Data Sheet

Name: Valentine King

Age: 26

Birthday:
🎂 Jan 29 ♒

Birthplace:
🌎 New Orleans, LA

Measurements: 
📏
Height: 6'2"
Weight: 195 lbs
Length: 
Long and to the left
Girth:
 My girl can't wrap her hand around it

Turn-ons:
👍 Live music, classic cars, smart girls

Turn-offs:
👎 Liars, cold weather, drugs.

Guilty Pleasures: 
Reese's peanut butter cups, '90s rap đŸŽ¶

Ambitions: Finish school, be a positive part of the community.

People I Admire: My father and my grandmother 

First thing I do in the shower: đŸšż My face 

Favorite Book:📖 The Eyes of the Skin: Architecture and the Senses

My idea of the perfect date: A quiet place for dinner, then a walk to Jackson Square to have our fortune's told, drinks and jazz on Frenchman Street, late night snack of beignets, and a kiss to say goodnight. 💏

Sunrise or Sunset? Sunrise. Every day is another chance to get things right. 🌅

Ice or Whipped Cream? Ice. Definitely ice. 

Next thing I plan to buy: A ring for my girl