Release Day Review: Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren

Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren
Series: Standalone
Publication Date: April 10th 2018
Links: EbookHardcover • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
Source: I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Love, loss, friendship, and the betrayals of the past all collide in this first women’s fiction novel from New York Times and #1 international bestselling author Christina Lauren (Autoboyography, Dating You / Hating You).

The story of the heart can never be unwritten.

Macy Sorensen is settling into an ambitious if emotionally tepid routine: work hard as a new pediatrics resident, plan her wedding to an older, financially secure man, keep her head down and heart tucked away.

But when she runs into Elliot Petropoulos—the first and only love of her life—the careful bubble she’s constructed begins to dissolve. Once upon a time, Elliot was Macy’s entire world—growing from her gangly bookish friend into the man who coaxed her heart open again after the loss of her mother…only to break it on the very night he declared his love for her.

Told in alternating timelines between Then and Now, teenage Elliot and Macy grow from friends to much more—spending weekends and lazy summers together in a house outside of San Francisco devouring books, sharing favorite words, and talking through their growing pains and triumphs. As adults, they have become strangers to one another until their chance reunion. Although their memories are obscured by the agony of what happened that night so many years ago, Elliot will come to understand the truth behind Macy’s decade-long silence, and will have to overcome the past and himself to revive her faith in the possibility of an all-consuming love.

My very first 6 star review of 2018 (and the first in a while) has to go to Love and Other Words, a gorgeously written love story by one of my favorite authors, Christina Lauren. I can’t remember the last time I was this wholeheartedly obsessed with a book. I finished L&OW last week and I’ve yet to stop thinking about it. The storytelling was incredible, the blend of past and present seamless. I couldn’t get enough of Macy and Elliot. If there’s one book you need to read this year, let it be this one.

I adore second chance romances – it is one of my go-to tropes, but I admit there have been few and far between that have been done perfectly. With second chance romances, I need angst, heartache, but most of all, I need to believe in the love that still exists. L&OW was everything I wanted in a second chance romance – and also so much more. Told in alternating chapters of Then and Now, we have teenaged Macy and Elliot who meet, connect, become best friends, and fall in love for the first time, alongside their adult counterparts, who reunite for the first time in eleven years and fall in love for the second time.

The way Christina Lauren handled the alternating chapters was stunning – each chapter connected, despite the eleven year difference in timeline. My heart was full from the beginnings of first love between Macy and Elliot, yet I loved even more that the foundations of their all-consuming love was built on friendship. I hurt and hoped for these two characters in the present timeline, as Elliot fights for the only woman who has ever held his heart. I can’t even tell you how in love I am with this man. He’s bookish, nerdy, a writer, and knows Macy is his one and only soulmate. There is no other woman for him, and he is not letting this chance to make her believe in love again go.

I read L&OW in one sitting. I literally could not put this book down, nor did I want to let the characters go by the time I got to the end. Elliot and Macy’s love story of friendship, heartbreak, and second chances absolutely stole my heart. Theirs is a love that is tender, raw, and beautiful beyond words. This book is now my favorite read of 2018 so far – it is pure perfection.


lacey


Also by Christina Lauren:

  

Dating You / Hating You: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
Autoboyography: Ebook • Hardcover • Audible • Goodreads
Roomies: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads

Reading Order: Beautiful Bastard series

Beautiful Bastard by Christina Lauren Beautiful Bitch by Christina Lauren
Beautiful Stranger by Christina Lauren Beautiful Bombshell by Christina Lauren Beautiful Player by Christina Lauren Beautiful Beginning by Christina Lauren
Beautiful Beloved by Christina Lauren Beautiful Secret by Christina Lauren Beautiful Boss by Christina Lauren 

#1 ~ Beautiful Bastard: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#1.5 ~ Beautiful Bitch: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Beautiful Stranger: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2.5 ~ Beautiful Bombshell: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Beautiful Player: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3.5 ~ Beautiful Beginning: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3.6 ~ Beautiful Beloved: My Review • Ebook • AudibleGoodreads
#4 ~ Beautiful Secret: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#4.5 ~ Beautiful Boss: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#5 ~ Beautiful: EbookPaperback • AudibleGoodreads

Reading Order: Wild Seasons series

 Dirty Rowdy Thing by Christina Lauren Dark Wild Night by Christina Lauren Wicked Sexy Liar by Christina Lauren

#1 ~ Sweet Filthy Boy: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Dirty Rowdy Thing: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Dark Wild Night: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Wicked Sexy Liar: My Review • EbookPaperback • Audible • Goodreads


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Review: Getaway Girl by Tessa Bailey

Getaway Girl by Tessa Bailey
Series: Standalone
Publication Date: March 26th 2018
Links: Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review

This unlikely getaway driver never expected to help the mayor escape…

After a six-year absence, Addison Potts is back in Charleston to stir things up. And what better place to make her villainous return than her estranged cousin’s wedding? Only, the nuptials hit a snag when the bride doesn’t show, leaving Addison to play getaway driver for the jilted groom. A groom whose heartbreaking smile and deep, southern drawl she should not be noticing…

Elijah Montgomery Du Pont is the future mayor of Charleston. From his military career to city hall, every detail of his life has been meticulously planned. Until now. His only respite from life’s sudden upheaval is Addison, his new, improbable best friend. She makes him happy. Grounds him. And public disapproval be damned, he’s not willing to give her up. But with an election on the line and public pressure rising, Addison—and the cruel hand of fate—might not give him a choice.

I’ve found a new book to add to my favorites of 2018 list, and Getaway Girl is IT! I absolutely LOVED this friends to lovers romance!! We have a mayor hero who’s self-conscious about his bubble butt and a fierce, dirty-talking heroine who saves him after his bride ditches him at the altar. It’s sweet, incredibly sexy (it’s Tessa Bailey, after all) and all-around the perfect friends to lovers romance – I highly recommend this for those who love trope!

I have a friend. A completely platonic, non-romantic one.
But occasionally I rub one out to her.

When Addison Potts moves back to Charleston and attends her estranged cousin’s wedding, the last thing she expects is be the getaway car for the jilted groom, one Captain Elijah Montgomery Du Pont, candidate for mayor. There’s just something about Elijah that pulls Addison, and she couldn’t resist helping him out. The two strike up the most unlikeliest of friendships – as a candidate for mayor, Elijah is expected to keep up appearances as the perfect Southern gentleman, which he is. Addison, on the other hand, is the black sheep of the family and town. But these two characters GET each other and are able to connect in a way they’ve never been able to connect with anyone else. Somehow, they end up being roommates, then friends… but is there possibly more?

“You own this city now, Mr. Mayor. Right now, that includes what’s under my dress.”

The tension throughout the book was divine. Elijah and Addison connect on the friendship level, yes, but there’s always an underlying sexual chemistry that’s hard to ignore. They struggle not to cross the line into something more, but when their dynamic is fun, witty, and flirty, it’s hard to know where the line even is. Tessa Bailey had me DYING for Addison and the Captain to just do the deed – this is one author who knows how to write sexual tension right. And when the line is crossed… let me tell you, the dirty talking queen doesn’t disappoint. I loved that the heroine was main dirty talker in this case, though Elijah could definitely dish some out too. The passion and intensity between these two was perfection!

“You have my heart. You have my soul. And you’re the first and land person to ever have either one. I love you first. And last. I’ve only got this feeling for you. No one else. Never. Do you hear me?”

If you love the friends to lovers trope, I can’t recommend Getaway Girl enough. I adored the characters, the story had me hooked, and the chemistry was off the charts. I also loved that this was in dual first-person POV. Tessa definitely has a knack for it, and I really hope she gives us more of it! Also… can we please have a story for Addison’s cousin, the runaway bride!?


lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.


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Release Day Review: Burn Bright by Patricia Briggs

Burn Bright by Patricia Briggs
Series: Alpha & Omega #5 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: March 6th 2018
Links: Ebook • Hardcover • Audible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

In her bestselling Alpha and Omega series, Patricia Briggs “spins tales of werewolves, coyote shifters, and magic and, my, does she do it well” (USATODAY.com). Now mated werewolves Charles Cornick and Anna Latham face a threat like no other–one that lurks too close to home…

They are the wild and the broken. The werewolves too damaged to live safely among their own kind. For their own good, they have been exiled to the outskirts of Aspen Creek, Montana. Close enough to the Marrok’s pack to have its support; far enough away to not cause any harm.

With their Alpha out of the country, Charles and Anna are on call when an SOS comes in from the fae mate of one such wildling. Heading into the mountainous wilderness, they interrupt the abduction of the wolf–but can’t stop blood from being shed. Now Charles and Anna must use their skills–his as enforcer, hers as peacemaker–to track down the attackers, reopening a painful chapter in the past that springs from the darkest magic of the witchborn…

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Patricia Briggs is one of the best urban fantasy authors I’ve ever read. I adore her Mercy Thompson series, but the Alpha & Omega series is what I LIVE for. Charles and Anna are two of my all-time favorite beloved characters – the beginning of their romance was slow and sweet, but with each book, they prove just how much they are meant to be mates. I honestly could read about them forever, so to say I was excited about Burn Bright would be an understatement. If you’ve been a fan of the series, you’ll definitely want to pick up Burn Bright.

Ours, said Brother Wolf. She is perfect, our soul mate, our anchor, the reason we were created. So that we could be hers.

I don’t want to go much into detail about the plot because the blurb explains it perfectly. I do want to say that this book shouldn’t be read as a standalone – this is a complex, fascinating paranormal world that Patricia Briggs has created, and it’ll be easier to understand if you start from the beginning. Plus, more Anna and Charles 😉

Anna slipped her hand under Charles’ tee, just at the small of his back, and let her fingers rest against the skin there. Brother Wolf relaxed. Anna made Brother Wolf happier than killing their enemies would have.

The author’s writing always amazes me every time I open one of her books. It reads simply but beautifully, every word holding significance. I love the way she writes all the little details, especially about Anna and Charles, because it makes me more immersed in their world and in love with the characters. It’s usually hard for me to dive back into a series after a year or two wait, but Patricia Briggs is so skilled in bringing me back into the series as if no time has passed. It almost has me not minding the wait… almost.

Anna started to agree but then stopped and shook her head. “No. Then I wouldn’t have Charles. He’s worth all the rest.”
“Charlie?” said Sage. She started to say something else, but she shook her head and gave Anna a rueful smile. “Charlie sure thinks the sun rises and sets on you, that’s for sure.”

Each book in the A&O series is suspenseful and action-packed, and Burn Bright is no different. I loved reading about Charles and Anna again, and already want more of them. This book is a fantastic addition to an incredible series and I can’t wait to see where Patricia Briggs will take us next!


lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.


Series Order: Alpha & Omega series

Cry Wolf by Patricia Briggs Hunting Ground by Patricia Briggs
Fair Game by Patricia Briggs Dead Heat by Patricia Briggs 

#1 ~ Cry Wolf: Ebook • Hardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Hunting Ground: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Fair Game: Ebook • Hardcover • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Dead Heat: My Review • Ebook • Hardcover • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#5 ~ Burn Bright: Ebook • Hardcover • Audible • Goodreads

The Alpha & Omega series is a spinoff of the Mercy Thompson series!

Reading Order: Mercy Thompson series

Moon Called by Patricia Briggs Blood Bound by Patricia Briggs Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs
 Silver Borne by Patricia Briggs River Marked by Patricia Briggs
Frost Burned by Patricia Briggs   

#1 ~ Moon Called: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ Blood Bound: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#3 ~ Iron Kissed: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#4 ~ Bone Crossed: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#5 ~ Silver Borne: EbookHardcoverPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#6 ~ River Marked: EbookHardcoverPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#7 ~ Frost Burned: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#8 ~ Night Broken: EbookHardcover • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#9 ~ Fire Touched: My Review • EbookHardcover • Audible • Goodreads
#10 ~ Silence Fallen: My Review • EbookHardcover • Audible • Goodreads
#11 ~ Storm Cursed: Goodreads (March 2019)


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Early Review: Marriage of Inconvenience by Penny Reid

Marriage of Inconvenience by Penny Reid
Series: Knitting in the City #7 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: March 6th 2018
Links: Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review

There are three things you need to know about Kat Tanner (aka Kathleen Tyson. . . and yes, she is *that* Kathleen Tyson): 1) She’s determined to make good decisions, 2) She must get married ASAP, and 3) She knows how to knit.

Being a billionaire heiress isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. In fact, it sucks. Determined to live a quiet life, Kat Tanner changed her identity years ago and eschewed her family’s legacy. But now, Kat’s silver spoon past has finally caught up with her, and so have her youthful mistakes. To avoid imminent disaster, she must marry immediately; it is essential that the person she chooses have no romantic feelings for her whatsoever and be completely trustworthy.

Fortunately, she knows exactly who to ask. Dan O’Malley checks all the boxes: single, romantically indifferent to her, completely trustworthy. Sure, she might have a wee little crush on Dan the Security Man, but with clear rules, expectations, and a legally binding contract, Kat is certain she can make it through this debacle with her sanity—and heart—all in one piece.

Except, what happens when Dan O’Malley isn’t as indifferent—or as trustworthy—as she thought?

“Knitting means never having to say you’re sorry.”

Kat and Dan’s story has seemed like it has been a long time coming, but trust me, Penny Reid will not disappoint you! I binge read and caught up on all the KitC books I hadn’t read yet to prepare myself for Marriage of Inconvenience, which was SUCH a fun experience. It’s not necessary to read the entire series before starting Marriage of Inconvenience because I know, they are such big books, but I do recommend them, not only because they are all fantastic reads, but also for the lead-up to Kat and Dan’s romance.

Marriage of Inconvenience takes on the classic marriage of convenience trope, but in Penny Reid fashion, she delivers the trope in her own unique, intelligent, complex way. Kat has always been a bit of a mystery to not only readers, but also her group of knitting friends. We know that she’s richer than God, and has got a crush on Dan O’Malley since they first met. Both finally come into play when Kat needs a man to help save her family’s legacy, and who better than Dan the Security Man?

“I want it all, Kit-Kat. I want all of you.”
I nodded, sniffing. “I want all of you, too.”
He placed a gentle kiss over my mouth, and then brushed his lips over the tears on my cheeks before resting his forehead against mine and closing his eyes.
“And I want it to last.” It was a rough whisper.
The words sounded like a wish.

Despite it being fake, there are real, complicated feelings on both sides of this marriage. Kat and Dan both want this to work in the long run, but they’re terrified that the feelings they have for each other aren’t strong enough to last. I ADORED these two characters – they’re both clueless about love, but I couldn’t help but love them anyway. Kat is fierce and lovable – she’s had to be tough to survive in the ruthless world she grew up in. Dan is an absolute sweetheart with a heart of gold and mouth of unending curses. He is protective, kind, and devoted to making Kat happy and safe. And anyway, how can you not love a man who names his dog Bark Wahlberg? In between the lovey dovey stuff (where it’s OBVIOUS they’re meant for each other), there is some action and suspense that makes you unable to put this read down.

I don’t want to delve too much into the plot, because it’s best just to experience the wonder that is the knitting group and their men together. Penny Reid has created a wonderful, unforgettable cast of characters I could read about forever. I highly recommend Marriage of Inconvenience (and the rest of the series, for those who haven’t started) for fans of slow burn romances, with a little kick to them. And for those of you who’ve been patiently waiting for Kat and Dan, you don’t have to wait much longer!

“I’m in love with you. You’re my fucking–fucking sunshine. My goddamn everything. You’re the center of my whole fucking universe. I’d give up swearing for you, I swear. If you asked, I’d never say the word fuck every again, that’s how much I love you. I love you more than fuck, so that’s a whole-fuckavalot.”


lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.


Reading Order: Knitting in the City series

Neanderthal Seeks Human by Penny Reid Neanderthal Marries Human by Penny Reid Friends Without Benefits by Penny Reid
Love Hacked by Penny Reid Beauty and the Mustache by Penny Reid Ninja At First Sight by Penny Reid
Happily Ever Ninja by Penny Reid  

#1 ~ Neanderthal Seeks Human: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#1.5 ~ Neanderthal Marries Human: Ebook • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Friends Without Benefits: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Love Hacked: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Beauty and the Mustache: Ebook • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#4.5 ~ Ninja at First Sight: My Review • My Review • EbookPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#5 ~ Happily Ever Ninja: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#6 ~ Dating-ish: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#7 ~ Marriage of Inconvenience: Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads (March 6, 2017)


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Release Day Review: The Lucky Ones by Tiffany Reisz

The Lucky Ones by Tiffany Reisz
Series: Standalone
Publication Date: February 13th 2018
Links: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

They called themselves “the lucky ones”

They were seven children either orphaned or abandoned by their parents and chosen by legendary philanthropist and brain surgeon Dr. Vincent Capello to live in The Dragon, his almost magical beach house on the Oregon Coast. Allison was the youngest of the lucky ones living an idyllic life with her newfound family…until the night she almost died, and was then whisked away from the house and her adopted family forever.

Now, thirteen years later, Allison receives a letter from Roland, Dr. Capello’s oldest son, warning her that their father is ill and in his final days. Allison determines she must go home again and confront the ghosts of her past. She’s determined to find out what really happened that fateful night — was it an accident or, as she’s always suspected, did one of her beloved family members try to kill her?

But digging into the past can reveal horrific truths, and when Allison pieces together the story of her life, she’ll learns the terrible secret at the heart of the family she once loved but never really knew.

I love Tiffany Reisz – she’s an auto-read for me, because her storytelling and writing never disappoint. She doesn’t write traditional romances, and honestly I wouldn’t even categorize The Lucky Ones as a romance, but I love her books despite, or even because of, that. This latest book of hers is set along the coast of Oregon – you almost feel as if you’re transported to the Gothic mansion and can feel the breeze of the Pacific. The Lucky Ones honestly gave me the chills as I was reading – it’s mysterious, suspenseful, Gothic… TR constantly kept me on the edge of my seat. I highly recommend this book if you love the author or anything related to mystery!

Too many secrets in this house.
So many they were starting to feel like…
Lies.

Thirteen years ago, Allison was living the perfect life with her adopted family, the Capellos. Dr. Vincent Capello was a renowned brain surgeon with a habit of fostering and adopting troubled children and giving them a life they never thought they’d have – becoming “the lucky ones.” But one mysterious night, Allison was shoved down the stairs and nearly died. She was taken away to live with her aunt, never to contact her beloved family for thirteen years. Now, she gets a letter in the mail from her foster brother, Roland, telling her that Dr. Capello is on his deathbed. She returns to the home she had the happiest days of her life in – and the darkest. Will she discover what truly happened the day she nearly died… or was murdered?

This was the kind of suspenseful novel where I literally had no idea where the author would take me next. It’s a wild, chilling, mind-blowing read – I couldn’t put it down! I won’t tell much more of the story because this is one you have to experience for yourself. Just know that Tiffany will take you on a thrilling, wild, mysterious adventure along the Oregon coast.


lacey

Quotes are taken from the arc and are subject to change in the final version.


Also by Tiffany Reisz

Standalones

  

The Bourbon Thief: My Review • EbookPaperbackAudible • Goodreads
The Night Mark: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
The Lucky Ones: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads

The Original Sinners series

The Saint by Tiffany Reisz The Angel by Tiffany Reisz The Prince by Tiffany Reisz The Mistress by Tiffany Reisz
The Saint by Tiffany Reisz The King by Tiffany Reisz The Virgin by Tiffany Reisz The Queen by Tiffany Reisz
The Mistress Files by Tiffany Reisz 

#1 ~ The Siren: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ The Angel: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#3 ~ The Prince: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#4 ~ The Mistress: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#5 ~ The Saint: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#6 ~ The King: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#7 ~ The Virgin: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#8 ~ The Queen: Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
Novella ~ The Mistress Files: Ebook • Goodreads
Collection ~ The Confessions: EbookPaperback • Goodreads


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