Category Archives: 3/5

Review: Eye Candy by Jessica Lemon

About the book:

Don’t trust lust at first sight. One woman chooses reality over fantasy in this friends-to-lovers romance, a steamy standalone by “an author to keep your eye on” (Katee Robert).
 
Jacqueline: As an adult woman–and the vice president of a marketing firm–I shouldn’t be waiting by my office window to ogle the mystery man who jogs by every morning at 11:45. Sure, he’s a gorgeous, perfect specimen of the human race, but I can’t bring myself to hit on a total stranger. However, my best friend-slash-colleague Vince Carson thinks I should do more than talk to the guy. In fact, he’s borderline obsessive about “getting me laid.” (His words.) But the more time we spend together, the more it’s clear: The one I’m falling for is Vince.
 
Vince: Jackie Butler’s got it bad for some pompous, over-pumped A-hole who struts his stuff past her window. That doesn’t bother me. I know she deserves nice things. What does bother me is that she friend-zoned me big-time last year, so I can’t ask her out myself. But what if I set her up with Mr. Steroids? Then, when he breaks her heart, I can swoop in and save her like the nice guy I am. Everything’s going according to plan . . . until we share a ridiculously epic kiss. And suddenly anything is possible.

My Thoughts:

First, this book has a great cover. Even if I wasn’t a fan of the author, I would pick up this book because of the appealing cover. Plus, the cover totally fits the plot of the book in a very sly way.

Eye Candy is sort of a twist on the friends-to-lovers trope. Although Vince has started developing lustful thoughts toward his best friend, Jackie, he has a plan to help her land her “dream man.” There were a couple of times that Vince irritated me. I felt that he was kind of playing a game with Jackie’s feelings. Jackie is infatuated with a man she has never spoken to but watches run by her office window every morning. She doesn’t really want to meet him because the mystery and excitement will be over, but Vince convinces her that she has to get herself out there and “running man” is the perfect guy. Jackie is just as bad at times when it comes to playing games. She knows that she has feelings for Vince, but continues to pursue her runner. It was a bit frustrating to read these two go back and forth.

Rating:

the book girl gives Eye Candy a 3/5

to find the book:

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Review: Royal Player by Katie McCoy

About the book:

Charlie Davenport is the bad boy of British sports – and third in line to the throne. He’s a beast on the courts, and a wild animal in bed (according to all the tabloids). Girls are lining up for chance at his crown jewels, and when I stumble into the wrong Wimbledon dressing room and catch a glimpse of his game, set, AND match, I can see why.

So what’s a little good luck kiss between f̶r̶i̶e̶n̶d̶s̶ strangers?

I know better than to get involved with a bad boy like Charlie. But now he’s on a winning streak, he thinks I’m his lucky charm – and you know what’s luckier than a kiss?

Everything.

Suddenly, I’ve got paparazzi on my trail, exes coming out of the woodwork — and you don’t know ‘cutthroat’ until you’ve seen a pack of hungry socialites set loose near the Royal Family.

I’m in way over my head, and even worse – I’m falling in love. Can this American girl win her Prince Charming? Or will we both crash out of the championships in flames?

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed this book. It is funny, sweet and sexy as hell. Charlie is the black sheep member of a royal family. He doesn’t care about much of anything except having a good time. His tennis career is good enough to get him to Wimbledon, but he doesn’t actually expect to win anything. Emmy is on an adventure and being a refreshment girl at Wimbledon is just the beginning.

This story reminded me a bit of the movie, Wimbledon, starring Paul Bettany and Kirsten Dunst. Emmy becomes Charlie’s lucky charm – both on the tennis court and in his personal life. I liked the way Emmy is able to get Charlie to think differently about his future and his relationship with his family. Emmy is also able to get others to take Charlie seriously.

If I had one complaint about the book, it is that Charlie gains a lot from his relationship with Emmy, but Emmy doesn’t. Of course she is having lots of hot sex with a bad boy, but her relationship with Charlie actually causes more problems for her – paparazzi and Charlie’s discarded women. I felt that this relationship wasn’t such a quite equal and I wanted Emmy to get more and be more than just Charlie’s arm candy.

Rating:

the book girl gives ROYAL PLAYER a 3.5/5

To find the book:

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Review: Positively Pippa by Sarah Hegger

About the book:

For Pippa Turner there’s only one place to go when her life self-destructs on national TV—home to Ghost Falls, and her heavily perfumed, overly dramatic, but supremely loving grandmother, Philomene. If anyone will understand how Pippa’s hit makeover show was sabotaged by her vengeful ex, it’s Phi. But she’s not the only one who’s happy to see her—and Pippa can’t help but wonder if Matt Evans, her gorgeous high-school crush turned Phi’s contractor, is game for a steamy close-up…

Matt owes his whole career to Phi and her constant demands to embellish the gothically ridiculous house he built for her. Getting to see red-headed, red-hot Pippa is a bonus, especially now that she’s no longer the troublesome teenager he remembers. He’s willing to stay behind the scenes while she gives her own life a much-needed makeover, but not forever. As far as he’s concerned, their connection is too electric to ignore. And the chance to build something lasting between them—before she can high-tail it back to Hollywood—is going to the top of his to-do list…

My thoughts:

Positively Pippa is a cute book, but I just couldn’t connect to the main character. Pippa comes home after her ex-boyfriend sets her up and she looses her job. Throughout the whole book she is trying to get her show back and doesn’t seem to care about the effect her leaving would on her grandmother, Phi, or Matt. Although Matt tells her that their relationship is short-term and he’s okay with her regaining her previous life, it kinda felt to me like she was using him and his long-time crush to make herself feel better. I did love the character of Pippa’s grandmother, Phi. Phi is fabulous. The relationship between Matt and Phi is sweet. Matt is sexy as hell – a man who takes care of his family (no matter how crazy they drive him) and Phi, a diva past her prime who loves him and helped him in a time when he really needed it.

The writing is funny and sexy. I liked the plot and the relationship that grows between Pippa and Matt. I just wish that I could have connected to Pippa more.

How I rate it:

I give Positively Pippa a 3/5

To find the book:

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Review: Going Nowhere Fast by Kati Wilde

About the book:

One promise.
Two hearts.
Three rules.
Four weeks to break them all.
 
When Aspen Phillips’ best friend invites her on a month-long road trip, she has serious mixed feelings. Sharing their tight quarters will be Bramwell Gage, overprotective brother and all-around jerk. Bram may be ridiculously sexy, but he’s made no effort to hide how he feels about Aspen—that she’s trash who’s no good for his sister. But Aspen is determined to get along with the uptight millionaire—and to keep her promise, concealing a secret about his sister that Bram can never know.

But after a scorching kiss reveals that Bram’s feelings toward her run much hotter than she believed, Aspen’s emotions swerve into a complete 180. Suddenly the girl who has nothing has everything—but only as long as the truth about his sister remains hidden. Because when all the secrets and promises unravel, she risks losing it all…

My thoughts:

I’m a little torn about this book. I loved the end of the book, but the journey there was up and down.

I liked Aspen – most of the time. She is a tough character and has a very big chip on her shoulder. She doesn’t seem like the type of girl who falls as fast as she does in the book. I know that her tough exterior was supposed to be just a facade, but I couldn’t see how in two weeks Aspen and Bram go from hate to love.  Bram is an ass. Most of the time he doesn’t treat Aspen very well. It was hard to like the character, even though it’s obvious the reason he “hates” her is because he really finds her attractive. Again, I just don’t see this kind of character falling head over heels in love in such a short amount of time.

I did love the intensity of their physical relationship. There was a bit of madness to it that was very well written. I definitely felt that although these characters didn’t like each other very much that they were very attracted to each other.

The subplot with Bram’s sister felt lacking. The sister is used as a plot device several times, but didn’t seem like a fully realized character.

Rating:

I give Going Nowhere Fast a 3/5

To find the book:

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Review: The House Mate by Kendall Ryan

About the book:

What’s sexier than a bad boy? A bad ass man who’s got his shit together.

Max Alexander is nearing thirty-five. He’s built a successful company, and he’s conquered the professional world, but he’s never been lucky in love. Focusing so much time on his business and raising his daughter, adulting has come at the expense of his personal life.

His social skills are shit, his patience is shot, and at times, his temper runs hot.

The last thing he has time for is the recently single, too gorgeous for her own good young woman he hires to take care of his little girl. She’s a distraction he doesn’t need, and besides, there’s no way she’d be interested. But you know what they say about assumptions?

This is book 3 in the Roommates series, but each book can be read as a complete standalone as they all feature new couples to fall in love with.

What I thought:

When you start a Kendall Ryan book, you know that you are in for a sexy, scorching romance. The House Mate is just that. There is instant chemistry between Max and Addison.

Max has just had his life turned upside down. After living a carefree bachelor life and planning on continuing everything changes with one word – baby. I love how Max doesn’t act like Dylan couldn’t be his daughter. He doesn’t question his ex-girlfriend about what happened for the last year plus. (Although I feel at some point he should have asked Jen about the important stuff.) Max instantly connects to the baby and sets out to protect her and provide for her.

Then comes Addison. Addison is looking for a change after her world blew up. She answers the ad for a nanny, but she isn’t prepared for how hot the baby’s father is. Addison is the perfect nanny. She falls in love with Dylan instantly and puts her first. When Max tries to make a move, Addison knows that it could ruin their relationship and the relationship that she has with Dylan.

I loved that in this romance, Addison is the more level-headed of the two. Max wants to jump in with both feet and jump her. Addison is scared that her life could be thrown into chaos again and wants to make sure the decisions she makes are the right ones.

My only quibble with the book is Max’s attitude toward marriage and love change almost overnight. There is almost no way a man who has lived his entire existence making sure his relationships are only contemporary and superficial would suddenly want to be a married family man. The story would have rung more true if there was at least a little resistance to his life changing so much.

Rating:

I give this book a 3.5/5

To find the book:

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Review: Love a Little Sideways by Shannon Stacey

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About the book:

Liz Kowalski  is heading home to Whitford, Maine—this time for good. Eager for her family, a fresh start and some fun, she doesn’t count on being rescued by the chief of police her very first night back in town. Drew is everything she’s not looking for…so why is she still so attracted to him?

After a brief, forbidden rendezvous at her brother’s wedding, Drew Miller expects Liz to return to New Mexico and stay there. He’s searching for someone to settle down with, not a casual fling with his best friend’s sister. But when they’re stuck together on the annual Kowalski camping trip, things start going a little sideways. Keeping their hands off each other proves just as impossible as keeping their secret from becoming public knowledge.

Amid family, mud and melted marshmallow, Liz and Drew try to fight what’s growing between them. But a little time alone, a lot of chemistry and too many opinions might be just what it takes to bring together two people so determined not to fall in love.

I’ve loved all of the previous Kowalski books and really looked forward to Liz and Drew’s book. I’m not sure what it was, but I couldn’t feel the same connection. The fact that Drew and Liz fight their attraction to each other for more than three-quarters of the book and we only get to see them as a couple for a very small part didn’t help me see them as a forever couple. I loved seeing all of the couples from the previous couples and the interactions between the siblings and cousins. Those interactions made the book work for me even though the romance was lacking. The writing is excellent as always. There is enough humor, sexual tension, and family games of doom to keep the reader turning the page and wanting more. I’m more than a little sad that Liz is the last of the Kowalskis, but I’m hoping that this isn’t the last that we will see of them.

the book girl gives LOVE A LITTLE SIDEWAYS a 3/5

to find the book

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Review: ‘Tis the Season to Kiss Santa by Kate Hardy

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About the book:

With the help of a sprig of mistletoe and some snow angels, a recently single pastry chef teaches a highly successful and sexy Scrooge the true meaning of the holidays on a snowy Christmas Eve that quickly heats up.

I enjoyed this holiday novella. Ellie and Mitch share a connection that isn’t instantaneous, but strengthens as they get to know each other. Ellie is spending her first holiday in the US to help her Godmother recover from surgery. Mitch hates the holidays, but knows that he must put on the Santa suit if he wants to impress his boss. I liked Mitch, but didn’t find his Grinch-like turn around about the holidays very believable. He changed his attitude almost completely in the course of one afternoon. ‘TIS THE SEASON TO KISS SANTA is a cute, quick read.

the book girl gives ‘TIS THE SEASON TO KISS SANTA a 3/5

to find the book:

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Review: Baiting the Boss by Coleen Kwan

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About the book:

For years Grace Owens harbored a secret crush on her boss, Jack Macintyre, the heir to the Macintyre Corporation. But Jack relocates to a remote tropical island after tragedy upends his life, cutting off all contact. Now Grace’s new boss issues an ultimatum: return Jack to the family fold or pack her briefcase and move on.

When she turns up at Jack’s bungalow, he can’t deny his attraction to the fiery woman determined to lure him out of his tropical paradise. Little does she know that returning is the last thing he wants—he’s nobody’s boss, and he likes it that way.

If he stays, she’ll lose her job. If he goes, she’ll lose her heart.

BAITING THE BOSS is a sexy and sweet romance. Grace is sent to bring Jack back to civilization and the family business, but when she gets to really know the sexy ex-businessman she realizes that he is where he needs to be. I love how flawed Grace is – she lets her boss walk all over her and it takes getting to know Jack and falling in love with him for her to come into her own. She realizes what she does and doesn’t want from life and goes for it! Jack also changes through getting to know Grace. I really love the passion between Jack and Grace – they share some very steamy moments together. My only problem with the story was the ending felt abrupt. The flow of the story had been flawless until the ending. The story needed an epilogue or one more chapter to tell us what happens next.

the book girl gives BAITING THE BOSS a 3/5

to find the book:

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Harlequin Flash Reviews – October

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HIS UNTIL MIDNIGHT by Nikki Logan

About the book:

He could look …and this time he can touch!

Each year, Hong Kong’s most kissable businessman Oliver Harmer allows himself one Christmas present: a lavish meal with off-limits Audrey Devaney. Keeping her at arm’s length—quite literally!—is a battle of epic proportions for Oliver, but also an irresistible temptation. Until the year she doesn’t come.

Now the rules have changed! Because, this Christmas, Audrey is single, and Oliver must decide if he will let her run away at midnight for good, or fight for her to stay until morning!

I enjoyed 75% of this story. I loved the idea of a couple, meeting year after year in friendship and that friendship evolving into something else. My problem with the story is that it felt like it went on forever and ever. The pace of the story is very slow. I liked the characters and the idea of the story, but the pacing just didn’t work for me.

the book girl gives HIS UNTIL MIDNIGHT a 3/5

to find the book:

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A BEAUTY UNCOVERED by Andrea Laurence

A beastly boss is tamed in this Secrets of Eden book from Andrea Laurence…

CEO Brody Eden is a loner. The brooding billionaire has secrets that he refuses to unveil to anyone…until he meets his new assistant, Samantha Davis. She’s temptation personified, and she’s sitting right outside his door.

Samantha’s never met a man as guarded—and gorgeous—as Brody. She doesn’t want to fall for her boss, but there’s something about Brody…. Beneath his gruff manner, Sam senses tenderness—and an intense passion waiting to be unleashed. And she’ll make it her mission to enter his lair …and his bed.

I enjoyed this book. Brody is gruff, grumpy, and immediately attracted to his temporary secretary. Samantha has been burned once before by being attracted to her boss and doesn’t plan on falling into that trap again, but when she finally sees the reclusive Brody Eden she can’t help herself. I loved Brody and Samantha together. She doesn’t care about his scars and shows him that there is so much more to him that his outer appearance. Brody undergoes a huge transformation through the story. There is a subplot between his brothers and an old murder that doesn’t get resolved (it carries into the next book in the series).

the book girl gives A BEAUTY UNCOVERED a 4/5

to find the book:

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THE CONSEQUENCES OF THAT NIGHT by Jennie Lucas

About the book:

An indecent indiscretion!

Emma Hayes has gone from making hotel magnate Cesare Falconeri’s bed to running his household, including handing out expensive parting gifts to his numerous conquests! But each time, it’s chipped away at her heart. Until one night, inhibitions lowered, she reaches for what she’s always wanted….

With one disastrous marriage behind him Cesare vows never to go there again. But when his indiscretion with Emma has consequences, Cesare must break his own vow—and say I do for the sake of his heir. Now he’ll expect his new bride to share his bed, instead of making it!

I had a hard time liking the main characters in this book. Cesare was a jerk to Emma over and over, yet she forgives him. She doesn’t hold him responsible for his actions on many occasions. It is almost the end of the book before Emma comes into her own and gets stronger. At the same time Cesare realizes what he’s giving up by not letting himself truly love Emma. The happily ever after is wonderful it just takes a while to get there.

the book girl gives THE CONSEQUENCES OF THE NIGHT a 4/5

to find the book:

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Review: Summer is for Lovers by Jennifer McQuiston

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About the book:

His heart is unavailable. Luckily, her interest lies in the rest of him . . .

Though she was just a girl when they first met, Caroline Tolbertson’s infatuation with David Cameron remains undimmed. Now fate has brought the handsome Scotsman back to Brighton for what promises to be an unforgettable summer. Soon, Caroline will have to choose a husband, but for now she is free to indulge her curiosity in things of a passionate nature.

That is, if David will agree to teach her.

Past mistakes have convinced David he’ll make a terrible husband, though he’ll gladly help the unconventional Caroline find a suitor. Unfortunately, she has something more scandalous in mind. As the contenders for her hand begin to line up, her future seems assured . . . provided David can do the honorable thing and let them have her.

When a spirited young woman is determined to break Society’s rules, all a gentleman can do is lend a hand . . . or more.

It took me awhile to get into this story. Caroline is so unlike any other historical heroine and I just couldn’t form a connection to her in the beginning. She is so unsure about herself and doesn’t believe in her worth, that it was hard to believe that David really found her to be as interesting as he did. However, as the story goes on and she begins to see that things aren’t what she thought they were she really grows into her own and becomes the woman who David saw all along. That was when she becomes interesting to me and when the story really began to take off. David was a slow starter for me too, but it was  for a different reason. I liked him from the beginning, but I felt that his back story was revealed too slowly. I wanted to know more about him and the details just weren’t there till the end. I wanted to know what had happened to make him act the way he did when he first met Caroline when she was a child and why he tried so had to hold himself away from someone he obviously had intense feelings for. Even with the slow start and build up, I loved the end of this book. I loved the happily ever after and how each character was finally their true selves.

the book girl gives SUMMER IS FOR LOVERS a 3/5

to find the book:

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