Early Review: The Day of the Duchess by Sarah MacLean

The Day of the Duchess by Sarah MacLean
Series: Scandal & Scoundrel #3 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: June 27th 2017
Links: EbookPaperback • HardcoverAudible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

The one woman he will never forget…

Malcolm Bevingstoke, Duke of Haven, has lived the last three years in self-imposed solitude, paying the price for a mistake he can never reverse and a love he lost forever. The dukedom does not wait, however, and Haven requires an heir, which means he must find himself a wife by summer’s end. There is only one problem—he already has one.

The one man she will never forgive…

After years in exile, Seraphina, Duchess of Haven, returns to London with a single goal—to reclaim the life she left and find happiness, unencumbered by the man who broke her heart. Haven offers her a deal; Sera can have her freedom, just as soon as she finds her replacement…which requires her to spend the summer in close quarters with the husband she does not want, but somehow cannot resist.

A love that neither can deny…

The duke has a single summer to woo his wife and convince her that, despite their broken past, he can give her forever, making every day

THE DAY OF THE DUCHESS

AAHHHHH I AM SO IN LOVE WITH THIS BOOK!!!!! This might honestly be my new all-time favorite book of Sarah MacLean’s (and if you know me, you know how much I loved One Good Earl Deserves a Lover). The angst had me in TEARS. I LOVED it. THIS is exactly the kind of book I want when I read a second chance romance (aka has a groveling hero who is unrelenting in his pursuit to win back the one and only love of his life). As soon as I finished The Day of the Duchess, I knew it would be one of the best books I’d read all year. I wholeheartedly loved every bit of this wonderful book, and I encourage all historical romance lovers and second chance romance lovers to read this book!

Home required more than river and rolling hills. Home required her. And so he would do this summer what he had done every moment he’d been away from London for the past two years and seven months, exactly. He would search for her.

For the past three years, Malcolm Bevingstoke, Duke of Haven, has been searching endlessly for his runaway wife. We experience the pain and agony he’s been going through the past few years missing his wife – the woman he loves and hates. Sarah MacLean writes his anguish so well – I could FEEL exactly how he was feeling, and it was literally hurting my heart. I love some good angst, and the author gives it to us in huge doses. Then, finally, Malcolm’s wife reappears back in London, demanding a divorce… and all he can think about is having her back in his life forever.

The only woman he’d ever loved. The only woman he’d ever hated.
The same, and somehow entirely different.

Here, Sarah MacLean intertwines Sera and Malcolm’s love stories that take place both in the past and the present. We get the background of how they met and fell in love… before everything fell apart, before Malcolm hated Sera, before Sera ran away. Their past is heartbreaking and full of pain – I nearly had tears in my eyes because I felt like I was experiencing every bit of their pain alongside them.

Love is not enough.
There had been a time when it would have been. When he had been all she’d ever wished for. All she’d ever needed. But he’d been too blind to see that everything she’d done had been for him. For their family. For their future. And by the time he’d understood, she’d already been fixed to the firmament.

And then, I ACTUALLY cried as Malcolm was trying to win back his wife and love of his life. His desperation to earn Sera’s forgiveness and love again had my heart hurting, but I loved every second of the hurt. His path toward redemption is a bit wonky – having Sera find a replacement wife for him, all the while trying to get her to love him again – but he is definitely not letting her go again, because he never stopped loving her. I love a good grovel, and Sarah MacLean gave me everything I never knew I wanted in a groveling hero. I honestly didn’t think Malcolm would be redeemable after what happened in The Rogue Not Taken, but all I can say after having read this is that Malcolm is 100% redeemed in my eyes and I absolutely loved him and Sera together.

“I shall have you. I shall love you. And I shall grow old in your arms.”

This is probably my all-time favorite redeeming love story. I’m such a sucker for second chance romances but they’re never done quite the way I want them to. Luckily, Sarah MacLean surpassed all my expectations in a second chance romance with this beautiful, powerful love story. Everyone needs to experience the wonder that is this book!


lacey

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


Reading Order: Scandal & Scoundrel series

The Rogue Not Taken by Sarah MacLean A Scot in the Dark by Sarah MacLean 

#1 ~ The Rogue Not Taken: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ A Scot in the Dark: My Review • EbookPaperbackHardcover • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ The Day of the Duchess: EbookPaperback • HardcoverAudible • Goodreads (June 27, 2017)

The Scandal & Scoundrel series is a spinoff of The Rules of Scoundrels series. You don’t have to read The Rules of Scoundrels prior to Scandal & Scoundrel, but I highly recommend the series! Here is the reading order if you’d like to start it:

Reading Order: The Rules of Scoundrels series

A Rogue by Any Other Name by Sarah MacLean One Good Earl Deserves a Lover by Sarah MacLean No Good Duke Goes Unpunished by Sarah MacLean Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover by Sarah MacLean

#1 ~ A Rogue by Any Other Name: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ One Good Earl Deserves a Lover: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ No Good Duke Goes Unpunished: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Never Judge a Lady by Her Cover: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads


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Early Review: Infini by Krista & Becca Ritchie

Infini by Krista & Becca Ritchie

Infini by Krista & Becca Ritchie
Series: Aerial Ethereal #2 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: January 31st 2017
Links: Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Some love is infinite

“Don’t have a best friend that’s a girl” — this was the advice from my older cousin. I didn’t take it. Because he followed with, “friends don’t f*ck friends. And you’ll want to f*ck her.”

It was terrible advice.

My cousin should’ve told me that being best friends with Baylee Wright — since she was twelve — would be the best and worst decision of my life.

He should have told me to protect her from what was coming.

He should have told me that when a darkness crawled towards us, there’d be no safety net.

Now I’ve signed back on to the same Vegas acrobatic show as Baylee, working together for the first time in years. And she tells me that she’s having trouble in a certain “area” of her life — because of our past.

“You can help me fix it,” she says.

And then she hands me a list.

“Circus is family.”
The love we carry for each other is the strongest and most vulnerable place in us all.

Oh my gosh, y’all!!!! Infini. Was. Incredible. Krista & Becca Ritchie never cease to amaze me with their talent at writing. Their characters come to life in every single book they’ve written, and even more so in Infini. If you thought you loved the Kotovas in Amour Amour, think again. They will burrow their way into your heart once you read this book, and you’ll honestly want an infinite number of books about them because you’ll never want to stop reading them! The Addicted series is my all-time fav, but Aerial Ethereal has my heart too. It’s New Adult done right. It’s the circus and all the wonder and magic that goes along with it. This circus is truly a family that you feel welcome to and a part of.

Do you still think about me?
Are you the same as you once were?
How much have we both changed?

Luka and Baylee were best friends over four years ago – but it’s been four and a half years since they’ve seen or spoken to each other. Their relationship was abruptly cut off years ago, and now they’ve been thrust together in the Infini show. They’re left floundering and don’t know what to do – but one thing they do know is that the love they had for each other never went away. Their love story is a little painful, a lot heartbreaking, and not without its struggles, but the happiness they bring each other is completely worth it. Luka and Baylee are just RIGHT for each other – you can’t imagine one without the other. And despite the struggles these two face (especially Luka, who broke my heart multiple times), every time they were together on the pages, I couldn’t stop smiling.

Love is strange and weird and unpredictable—and that’s probably why I’m drawn to it.
To her.

The best part about Infini, besides Luka and Baylee, is the fact that you get to know the Kotovas on a much deeper level. You get a different perspective on their family thanks to Luka. You see Nikolai differently, you get to see more of Timo, Katya, and even Dimitri. And just saying, I am head over heels in LOVE with Timo and his boyfriend, John. They might be my favorite AE couple and we don’t even have a book about them (yet)! Oh, and Dimitri totally stole my heart in Infini with his rude, crass, ridiculous, hilarious ways. I’m eyeing him with a certain someone that I hope will happen, but honestly, I just want more Kotovas! I love them ALL.

“I feel the safest in your arms, but in reality it’s the most dangerous place to be.”

Infini was everything I hoped it would be and more. It was MAGICAL. Intense. Exciting. By the end of reading the book, my heart was crying with happiness because it was just a beautiful story. The romance took my breath away and the family dynamics had my heart overflowing. I loved this book so, so much, and I’m praying this won’t be the end of Aerial Ethereal! (Although quite honestly, I’ll read anything and everything K&B write.)

5 hearts
lacey

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


Reading Order: Aerial Ethereal series

Amour Amour by Krista & Becca Ritchie Infini by Krista & Becca Ritchie

#1 ~ Amour Amour: EbookPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ Infini: Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads (Jan. 31, 2017)


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Early Review: Ruled by Elle Kennedy

Ruled by Elle Kennedy
Series: Outlaws #3 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: November 1st 2016
Links: EbookPaperbackGoodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review

In the latest novel in the series with the “sexiest, baddest, hottest”* outlaws around, one woman must choose between the two men who want to claim her…

…Or does she?

Despite his magnetic personality, Rylan can’t seem to seduce Reese, the deadly leader of their town of outlaws. Winning her over is a welcome challenge, but her indifference isn’t the only thing standing in his way. If he wants Reese, Rylan must also win over Sloan, her stoic protector…

Sloan has always loved Reese, but their painful past has stolen his chances of a future with her. Rylan’s interest in Reese only intensifies the tension—until Sloan begins to wonder if the reckless man might be the one person who can bridge the distance…

The last time Reese fell for the wrong man, she had no choice but to kill him. Now, she desperately wants to take what both Rylan and Sloan are offering. But if she makes the wrong call again, she risks losing them both.

To say I’d been dying to read Ruled ever since finishing the previous Outlaws book would be an understatement. You have no idea how READY I was for Reese, Sloan, and Rylan’s story because hello, THREESOME!!! And SLOAN!!! And now, all I can say is that Sloan is one of my favorite heroes from Elle Kennedy, and Ruled might be the hottest book she’s written yet. If you thought you were ready for the steam thanks to Claimed and Addicted, think again, because Ruled will seriously blow your mind with the chemistry between this threesome.

Reese is the queen of her outlaw community. She is fierce, independent, badass – she will do anything and everything to protect her people. But there’s only one person she allows to protect her and stand by her side: Sloan, her quiet, stoic right hand man. These two are tied to the knot, and there is essentially no Reese without Sloan, and vice versa. But what Reese doesn’t know is that Sloan has been in love with her since forever. Will Sloan ever be able to win his queen? Or will he need the help of a new man to get her to open up to him – to them?

The only thing he didn’t like about the man was this creeping feeling he had that he was losing Reese to him. But was he really losing her? Or was Rylan the key to winning her?

Rylan – the irreverent, perpetually horny Rylan – has also wanted Reese since the moment he met her, but he’s gotten nothing but rejections from her. But when the stress piles up on the outlaw queen, Rylan offers his body as a way to relieve it. But there’s only one catch from Reese – that Sloan has to be there to watch them. So what starts off as an insanely hot exhibition act turns into so much more when the chemistry between Sloan and Reese, Reese and Rylan, and even Rylan and Sloan ignites. This is a threesome with no shortage of lust and raw desire – but can Sloan and Rylan ever get Reese to be vulnerable enough to admit to loving them?

“There is nothing we won’t give you,” Sloan said softly. “Nothing you could want that we can’t deliver.”

The steam in Ruled went above and beyond my expectations. Elle Kennedy knows how to write erotica, and I’m seriously hoping this won’t be the end of the Outlaws series. I’ll admit, I really wasn’t that into the plotline regarding the evil dystopian government – all I cared about were the main characters. It just wasn’t as engaging as the love story, and some details about it were too rushed. So if you’re like me, and just want the sexy hot threesome to set your panties on fire, trust me, you won’t be disappointed with Ruled!

4 hearts
lacey

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


Reading Order: Outlaws series

Claimed by Elle Kennedy  

#1 ~ Claimed: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • AudibleGoodreads
#2 ~ Addicted: My Review • EbookPaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Ruled: EbookPaperbackGoodreads (Nov. 1, 2016)


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Early Review: Four Letter Word by J. Daniels

Four Letter Word by J. Daniels
Series: Dirty Deeds #1 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: October 4th 2016
Links: EbookPaperbackGoodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

Fate. Hate. Love. Lies.
Which four letter word will change their lives forever?

Sydney Paige was never so mortified to hear the words “wrong number” in her life. She meant to tell off the guy who broke her best friend’s heart, but unleashed her anger on a perfect stranger instead. And now her world is turned upside down by the captivating man who wants to keep her on the line.

Brian Savage is living a life he’s quickly come to hate-until Sydney’s wild rant has him hooked and hungry for more. Soon the sexy woman on the phone becomes the lover in his bed. But Brian has secrets, and the closer he lets Syd get, the harder it is to shield her from the devastating mistakes of his past . . .

Ho-lee god, I was not expecting Four Letter Word to be as hot and dirty as it turned out to be! WOW. If all of J. Daniels’ books are like this, I think I’m going to have to start reading them, because seriously, this book nearly had me on fire. I loved it! I loved Brian and Sydney and I’m so happy about how their story turned out. I was intrigued by the idea of two strangers accidentally meeting by phone, and the execution, while starting off slow, didn’t disappoint. I’m very impressed with this story, and I’m definitely looking forward to more of the series!

After getting basically dumped by her husband of seven years, Sydney needs a break from her life, so she hides away at her best friend’s place. Turns out her bff, Tori, also has a man who’s scum – so with all her pent-up anger thanks to her husband, Sydney goes to dial the man who broke her best friend’s heart and yell at him and chew him out. Except she misdialed and called the wrong man – who would turn out to become so much more than just a voice on the other end of the phone. An exchange of texts leads to phone calls, which leads to sharing things about each other that neither of them have ever shared before. Who knew an accidental phone call would change a person’s life?

“You’re the best mistake I’ve ever made.”

Brian Savage lives for Sydney’s texts and calls. He thinks about her 24/7 – but he knows that nothing will ever come out of it, much to his devastation. The situation he’s in, the job he has, everything conspires to prevent him from being with the one girl he knows is meant for him. I’ll admit, when I found out about Brian’s job, I was wary of his character as a hero, but I really shouldn’t have worried. This is a man completely obsessed and into his woman – there is no one and nothing but her for him. If you know me, then you’ll know I kinda love that in my heroes, so Brian won me over pretty quickly. And holy smokes, does this man have a mouth on him! He’s a dirty talking alpha like no other, and I loved it. He honestly reminded me of Kristen Ashley’s heroes, but dare I say it… even better?

Best two and a half weeks of my life came from a girl who was never meant to give me anything. And she was giving me everything.

This book did get off to a rough start for me. It was kind of dragging and I was basically just waiting for when the main characters would meet. But once the story picked up, I seriously couldn’t stop reading. I got HOOKED onto the story, the characters, and their explosive love. The ending gets a little OTT, but that was easily forgivable because I was enjoying Brian and Sydney so much. If you love insanely hot books with a hero who is 100% into the heroine, you will definitely want to pick this book up. It was a fabulously dirty read – and now I’m crazy for book two! I don’t particularly care for Jamie (Brian’s best friend) at this point, but I love enemies-to-lovers romances, and I know Jamie and Tori will have one epic story. I can’t wait to read it!

Love was a risk. It was wild and unpredictable. You could either hold on for the ride, not knowing how it would end, or you could let go and never know the amazing you could’ve had.

4 hearts
lacey

quote

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


Reading Order: Dirty Deeds series

 

#1 ~ Four Letter Word: EbookPaperbackGoodreads
#2 ~ Hit the Spot: Ebook • PaperbackGoodreads (Dec. 6, 2016)


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Early Review: Rock Wedding by Nalini Singh

Rock Redemption by Nalini Singh
Series: Rock Kiss #4 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: July 19th 2016
Purchase: Ebook • PaperbackGoodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

New York Times bestselling author Nalini Singh continues her Rock Kiss series with a hot, sweet, emotional contemporary romance about love and forgiveness…

After a lifetime of longing for a real family, Sarah Smith thought she’d finally found her home with rock star Abe Bellamy, even if she knew Abe didn’t love her the way she loved him. But their brief relationship, filled with tragedy and heartache, nearly destroyed her. Alone, emotions in turmoil, and already shaky self-esteem shattered, Sarah struggles to pick up the pieces in the wake of their divorce.

Abe knows he’s to blame for the end of his marriage. Caught in a web of painful memories, he pushed away the best thing in his life – the sexy, smart woman he adores – breaking them both in the process. Then fate throws him a second chance to get things right, to prove to Sarah that she means everything to him. Abe desperately wants that second chance at love…even if he knows he doesn’t deserve it.

But can he convince Sarah – now strong and independent without him – to risk her wounded heart one more time?

This booook!!! I had crazy high expectations for Rock Wedding because first, it’s Nalini Singh, and second, it’s a second chance romance! And thank god NS didn’t let me down – I absolutely LOVED. IT. Abe and Sarah’s heart-wrenching story of love, forgiveness, and redemption swept me away and stole my heart. This is one of the best second chance romances I’ve ever read, and it’s definitely my new favorite of the series. If you love the second chance romance trope, READ THIS BOOK. There’s so much angsty goodness and amazing grovel from the hero. This can be read entirely as a standalone, too, so even if you haven’t read the series, you need to get your hands on Rock Wedding!!!

As keyboardist for Schoolboy Choir, Abe Bellamy is one of the hottest rock stars in the world. He should be at the top of his game, but losing his wife and the love of his life because of his own stupidity will bring a guy down. He’s got no one to blame but himself for hurting Sarah back when they were married and he was struggling with his addiction. But now, months sober, he’s ready for the fight of his life to earn forgiveness and win back the only woman he has ever loved.

High, he’d brutally hurt her. Sober, he could destroy her.
Because love? The kind of love she’d had for Abe? It never really died.

Sarah Smith once gave everything she was to her husband, and he destroyed her for it. She’s been able to move on, but not without scars and pain. This woman is one of the toughest heroines I’ve ever read – she’s been through so much loss and hurt, I’m amazed she was able to pick herself up and move on, especially from Abe. And now that Abe wants back in her life, she wants nothing to do with him, and rightly so. I LOVED that she doesn’t give in to him easily, love- and heart-wise. She’s not a pushover, and Abe has so much to prove before he’ll ever get to touch her heart again.

“I’m not letting you go.” It was a whispered promise. “Not this time.”

I have to say, Nalini Singh absolutely nailed the redemption and forgiveness aspect of this second chance romance. My heart honestly couldn’t stop aching throughout the book, both for Abe and Sarah. They have so much hurt and pain to overcome, but never does Abe stop fighting for Sarah, and neither does Sarah stop loving Abe. There’s hope for happiness again for the two of them and a very well-deserved HEA.

“But I was stone-cold sober the night I met you and I’m stone-cold sober now—and no woman, no woman, does to me what you do. I fucking love you. Always have, always will.”

To say this book is an emotional roller coaster would be an understatement. Nalini Singh truly blew me away with Rock Wedding and the way she incorporated so much emotion and heart to the story. I couldn’t stop reading this book – it’s a second chance romance at its finest. If you’re a fan of this series, you’re in for a fantastic, emotional ride that is this final Rock Kiss book. I’m sad that this is the end of the series, though I’m thankful we’re getting a spinoff with Gabriel’s rugby-playing brothers. I can’t wait to read more of NS’s contemporary novels!

5 hearts
lacey

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


Reading Order: Rock Kiss series

Rock Addiction by Nalini Singh Rock Courtship by Nalini Singh
Rock Hard by Nalini Singh Rock Redemption by Nalini Singh 

#1 ~ Rock Addiction: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#1.5 ~ Rock Courtship: My Review • Ebook • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Rock Hard: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Rock Redemption: My Review • Ebook • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Rock Wedding: Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads (July 19, 2016)


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