ARC Review: Nova by Rebecca Yarros

Nova by Rebecca Yarros
Series: The Renegades #2 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: February 20th 2017
Links: EbookPaperback • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

He’s got one shot to make it right…

He’s Landon Rhodes.
The Renegade they call Nova.
Sinfully gorgeous, broody, tatted-up, professional snowboarder.

They say a girl broke him once–
That’s why he’s so reckless, so driven, so careless with his conquests.
But I’m that girl.
They can call me his curse all they want.
He and I both know the truth–
He’s the one who destroyed me,
And I’m too smart to let that happen again.

I LOVE second chance romances but I’m not exactly a fan of them when the hero becomes a manwhore during the time he and the heroine are broken up. We previously met Landon, aka “Nova,” as Wilder’s best friend and a major player. We knew he was hurting from a past relationship and drowned himself in women to ease the pain, but when the truth comes out, it turns out that Landon was the one to break his heart and and the heart of the girl he loved. I went into Nova a little wary of Landon because I wasn’t sure he’d be able to redeem himself and his past mistakes. I was prepared for the angst and the groveling, and thankfully, Rebecca Yarros delivered just that. If you’re a fan of the second chance romance trope, then I would definitely recommend you give this book a try!

My entire world narrowed to the woman standing in front of me. Even my heartbeat stilled in reverence to the moment. How was she here? After all this time, she was close enough to touch, and all I could do was stare at her, like if I blinked she would disappear.

The last person Landon expects to show up on the cruise ship he and the rest of the Renegades are on is Rachel – the love of his life, the girl he abandoned, and Wilder’s ex-girlfriend. So messy, right? But Landon sees this as the second chance he thinks he doesn’t deserve, but he’s taking it anyway. There is no other girl for him but Rachel, and this time he’s going to prove it to her and win her heart again.

I was going to win her back. Not just her friendship. Her heart. Her love.
Maybe I wasn’t worth of any of it now, but I could be. I could earn her.

Rachel was utterly destroyed when Landon chose the Renegades over her and their future. She vowed to never let him into her broken heart again, so she would’ve never accepted getting onto the cruise ship if she’d known he was onboard. Surprised is an understatement when she discovers that she’ll be around the boy who abandoned her again. She’s determined to stay away and not let him get under her skin, but how can she resist a Landon who is finally fighting for her love and their future?

“I’m not going anywhere. If I have to tell you that a million times before you’ll believe me, then I’ll do just that. You and me—we’re own little infinity. Our forever is wrapped up in everything that’s between us.”

I have to say I enjoyed Nova just a little more than Wilder. I LOVED Rachel and how she didn’t cave easily to Landon and made him honestly WORK to earn her forgiveness. She’s tough on him, and rightly so. My favorite part about the second chance romance trope is when the hero has to grovel and fight to win back his heroine, and Landon did an amazing job of that. I didn’t quite love the book as much as I wish I could’ve though, because I’m still not entirely invested in the Renegades and their story. BUT! I have high hopes for the rest of the series, and can’t wait to read Rebel’s book!

3.5 hearts
lacey

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


Reading Order: The Renegades series

 

#1 ~ Wilder: EbookPaperback • Goodreads
#2 ~ Nova: EbookPaperback • Goodreads
#3 ~ Rebel: Goodreads (release date TBA)


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Blog Tour + ARC Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: The Failing Hours by Sara Ney

the-failing-hours-tour

Welcome to today’s stop on the blog tour for The Failing Hours by Sara Ney!! I absolutely loved this book – check out my review below, as well as an excerpt and tour giveaway!

The Failing Hours by Sara Ney
Series: How to Date a Douchebag #2 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: January 31st 2017
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Zeke Daniels isn’t just a douchebag; he’s an asshole.

A total and complete jerk, Zeke keeps people at a distance. He has no interest in relationships–most assholes don’t.

Dating? Being part of a couple? Nope. Not for him.
He’s never given any thought to what he wants in a girlfriend, because he’s never had any intention of having one.Shit, he barely has a relationship with his family, and they’re related; his own friends don’t even like him.

So why does he keep thinking about Violet DeLuca?
Sweet, quiet Violet–his opposite in every sense of the word.
The light to his dark, even her damn name sounds like rays of sunshine and happiness and shit.

And that pisses him off, too.

Buy Links:
Amazon • Barnes & NobleiTunes • Kobo

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The Failing Hours took me by surprise in the BEST way possible. I’ll admit, going into this, I didn’t have high hopes for Zeke. He was the BIGGEST douchebag in the first book and such a misogynist – I was so sure he couldn’t be redeemed in his book. But I am so glad I turned out to be wrong about him. Yes, he’s a dick and nothing can excuse that, but there’s more to Zeke than just his meanness. You get to see a new side of Zeke, one that Violet brings out in him, and I fell head over heels for him by the end of the book. If you love the classic new adult college romances, you HAVE to give this book a try. I was in NA heaven reading this – my heart was so happy to be reading college romances again!

Then.
She smiles.
My eyes, goddamn them, go to those curved glossy lips and rest there as she tries not to grin at me. Brilliant white teeth wink. Big, virginal doe eyes crinkle at the corners.
She’s like a fairytale caricature. Like a pixie.
So endearing it almost makes me want to barf.

To say Zeke Daniels is a jerk would be the biggest understatement. This is the sort of guy who cares for nothing but himself and keeps everyone at a distance. He’s annoyed that he has to get a tutor so he doesn’t fail his class, and even more annoyed that his coach forced him to join a “Big Brothers” program where he has to mentor a kid. He is moody and rude – and his first meeting with his tutor, Violet, is not a good one. She couldn’t be more opposite him if she tried – she’s quiet, gentle, has a slight stutter. She’s everything good that he is not. And when circumstances keep pushing them together, he can’t seem to stop thinking about her… and reluctantly falling for her. Her strength, heart, and kindness make a huge impact on him and make him believe that there just might be more to life than just keeping everyone away.

After driving away from her last night, I realize I probably know her better than she realizes. I know she’s a damn bleeding heart. I know she’s selfless, but only to a point. Kindhearted. Quiet. Inexperienced.
Stronger than either of us realizes.
Too goddamn trusting.
Too goddamn sunny for my gloom and doom.
Too light for my dark.
Too good for my bad.
Too everything.

My biggest worry about this book, besides whether or not Zeke could be redeemed, was the portrayal of the heroine, Violet. I was less than impressed with the shallow way the heroine from the first book was portrayed and was hoping for more character development with Violet, and thankfully Sara Ney delivered. Violet is a sweetheart of a character – despite losing her parents at a young age and not having a stable family for most of her life, she sees the positive side in all situations. She’s tough on the inside and never gives up – and she’s also not a pushover when it comes to Zeke. She discovers there’s more to him than meets the eye and that he has just as painful a past as she does, but she doesn’t let that excuse his douchey-ness. She’s a fantastic heroine and I applaud this girl for being able to put up with the grump that is Zeke.

“The best part of me is you, Violet.”

I loved this book SO MUCH. It was the perfect opposites-attract romance – bad boy athlete jerk meets good girl tutor… honestly, it was new adult perfection. I try not to read books with the douche-y heroes because it usually doesn’t end up well, but I absolutely adored this one. It was freaking hilarious, had fantastic characters, and the romance had me so giddy and in love. I LOVED that Violet didn’t make it easy for Zeke to win her heart – this was a redemption story done right. It was my first 5 star read of 2017 and I’m really hoping there’ll be more books in this series, because I can’t get enough of it!

5 hearts
lacey

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

Now here’s an excerpt from The Failing Hours! ❤

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The clock on the wall counts the seconds, steady as the rhythm of my beating heart, which thumps wildly within my chest until the glass door to the library opens, propelled by a gust of wind.

Some new fallen leaves flutter in, the heavy doors slamming from the draft.

Along with them? Zeke Daniels.

He shuffles in, dark gray sweatpants hanging low on his hips, black Iowa Wrestling hoodie pulled up over his head, the university’s bright yellow mascot screen-printed across the chest. Backpack slung over one shoulder, black athletic flip-flops, and a pair of black sunglasses perched on the bridge of his strong nose complete the overall ensemble.

He is utterly…ridiculous.

Unapproachable.

Daunting.

His arrogance knows no bounds; I can see it in his loose gait, the exaggerated swagger, and the too-casual way he’s dragging his flip-flops across the cold, marble tile floor. It’s noisy, irritating, and completely uncalled for.

In the moment, my mind drifts to his personal life, and I theorize that he listens to heavy metal music to sooth his foul temperament, drinks his coffee black—as black as his soul—and his liquor straight up. I imagine once he’s had sex with someone, they’re never invited back. I go one step further and theorize that they’re never invited to spend the night at his place, either.

Zeke Daniels makes his way to a table at the far end of the room, near the periodicals, one out of the way with plenty of privacy.

Sets his bag down in one of the four wooden chairs. Flicks on the small study lamp. Plugs his laptop cord into the base and stands.

Turns.

Our eyes would have met then were it not for those ludicrous sunglasses. I choose the exact moment he lifts his gaze to look down at the ground. Busy myself with shuffling papers on the counter. Count to ten instead of chanting, Please don’t come over, please don’t come over, please don’t come over…

But luck isn’t on my side because he most decidedly does.

Makes his way over like a predator at a pace so deliberate, I’m convinced he’s doing it on purpose. As if he suspects I’m watching from under my long lashes, dreading his imminent arrival.

He basks in my discomfort.

The distance between us closes, his strides purposeful.

Twenty feet.

Fifteen.

Ten.

Eight.

Three.

His large hand reaches up, pushing down the hood of his sweatshirt, his fingertips pinching the earpiece of his sunglasses and pulling them off his face. My eyes follow the movements as he folds them closed, hanging them on the neckline of his hoodie.

His gaze lingers—those clear gray eyes famous around campus—and finds the shiny silver bellhop bell perched on the counter with the sign next to it that reads, Ring for help.

Ding.

The tip of his forefinger presses down on the small bell.

Ding.

He hits it again, despite me standing not three feet in front of him.

What an ass.

Reading Order: How to Date a Douchebag series

 

#1 ~ The Studying Hours: EbookPaperback • Goodreads
#2 ~ The Failing Hours: EbookGoodreads

about the author button

Purveyor of all things witty & romantic, I love: iced latte’s, traveling, and bright, bold colors. On any given day, you can find me in my office, lovingly gazing at my bookshelf or shuffling my Bic felt-tip pen collection. I love hand writing letters, and sarcasm.

I live in the midwest, but “Will Write for Travel,” and believe everyone should follow their dreams, no matter how big or small. My favorite authors include Cindy Miles, S Walden, Suzanne Enoch, Tessa Dare (to name a few). I am a glutton for Historical, RomCom, Sports and MC romance.

One husband. Two daughters. Plenty of chaos.

Facebook • Twitter • Instagram • Goodreads • Amazon Page

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$10 Amazon Gift Card

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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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Release Day Review: Next to Never by Penelope Douglas

Next to Never by Penelope Douglas
Series: Fall Away #4.5 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: January 17th 2017
Links: EbookAudible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

New York Times bestseller Penelope Douglas introduces Quinn, younger sister to Jared, Madoc, and Jaxon, in the latest novella in the series that began with Jared and Tate in Bully….

Quinn Caruthers has several problems.

Her father, Jason, and her three older brothers, Jared, Madoc, and Jaxon.

Under the close watch of the men in her family, Quinn has found it nearly impossible to spread her wings—or even date—without them jumping in to hover. And when a family friend—several years older—from her childhood captures her heart, she knows they’re going to be a problem. Lucas Morrow is a man—experienced, sophisticated, and important. And knowing her brothers, he may as well be forbidden.

But Lucas left town years ago and shows no signs of returning. Quinn knows she shouldn’t wait for him anymore.

But then a package turns up on her doorstep with no return address and its contents reveal family secrets that threaten to turn Quinn’s world upside down. She’s never asked about the tumultuous path of her parents’ romantic history, but she soon learns their happy marriage had a very rocky and passionate start.

As she begins to see things around her with new eyes, Quinn will have to make tough choices about whether she’ll keep waiting…or finally go after what she really wants.

“A strong person realizes that the only love you truly need in this life is the love you have for yourself. If you have that, it’s like armor. No one can stop you. No one else matters.”

Ugh, I’ve missed the Fall Away characters SO MUCH!!! This novella was the perfect way to introduce the second generation of characters while still rewarding fans of the series with cameos of the original characters. Plus, we finally get Katherine and Jason’s full story! Next to Never was the perfect tease from Penelope Douglas – it left me desperate for more, but I loved it all the same.

Quinn – Jared, Jax, and Madoc’s little sister – is now a teenager, but her life is being overshadowed by everyone in her family. There’s Jared’s Dylan, Jax’s Hawke, and Madoc’s twins Hunter and Kade, who all have their own personalities and problems that seem to be bigger than they are. They have a presence that Quinn doesn’t believe she has, and she’s afraid to go after what she wants and to mess up the status quo. She’s stuck in her life, with no direction out – but when a book lands on her doorstep, its contents changes everything for her.

It turns out the book is actually a diary… the story of her parents’ relationship. I don’t want to say much about Jason and Katherine’s story because I feel like it’s best to go in blind, but the road to their now-HEA has not been an easy one. They had an addicting, intense, and ultimately toxic relationship that broke them both… but you’ll have to read this novella to find out how they healed themselves and each other.

Honestly, there’s so much to love about this novella. Seeing the original cast of characters was such a delight – you have no idea how giddy I got every time they appeared on the page. Reading about them here made me fall in love with the series all over again, honestly. But now that I’ve finished Next to Never, I’m dying for more, especially Quinn and Lucas’s actual book! The wait for them is killer, but I know Penelope Douglas won’t disappoint. If you love the Fall Away series, I don’t know why you wouldn’t read this novella (that didn’t feel as short as a novella at all, thankfully), because it’s everything you expect and more from PD and the series!

5 hearts
lacey

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


Reading Order: Fall Away series

Bully by Penelope Douglas Until You by Penelope Douglas Rival by Penelope Douglas
Falling Away by Penelope Douglas Aflame by Penelope Douglas  

#1 ~ Bully: My Review • Ebook • Audible • Goodreads
#1.5 ~ Until You: My Review • Ebook • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Rival: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Falling Away: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Aflame: My Review • Ebook • Audible • Goodreads
#4.5 ~ Next to Never: Ebook • Audible • Goodreads (Jan. 17, 2017)
#5 ~ The Next Flame: EbookPaperbackGoodreads (May 2, 2017)


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Audiobook Review: The Architect of Song by A.G. Howard

The Architect of Song by A.G. Howard
Series: Haunted Hearts Legacy #1 (full reading order below)
Audiobook Publication Date: October 11th 2016
Length: 12 hours and 45 minutes
Narrated by: Gemma Dawson
Links: Audible • Ebook • Paperback • Goodreads
Source: I received an audiobook in exchange for an honest review

A lady imprisoned by deafness, an architect imprisoned by his past, and a ghost imprisoned within the petals of a flower – intertwine in this love story that transcends life and death.

For most of her life, Juliet Emerline has subsisted – isolated by deafness – making hats in the solitude of her home. Now, she’s at risk to lose her sanctuary to Lord Nicolas Thornton, a mysterious and eccentric architect with designs on her humble estate. When she secretly witnesses him raging beside a grave, Juliet investigates, finding the name “Hawk” on the headstone and an unusual flower at the base. The moment Juliet touches the petals, a young English nobleman appears in ghostly form, singing a song only her deaf ears can hear. The ghost remembers nothing of his identity or death, other than the one name that haunts his afterlife: Thornton.

To avenge her ghostly companion and save her estate, Juliet pushes aside her fear of society and travels to Lord Thornton’s secluded holiday resort, posing as a hat maker in one of his boutiques. There, she finds herself questioning who to trust: the architect of flesh and bones who can relate to her through romantic gestures, heartfelt notes, and sensual touches … or the specter who serenades her with beautiful songs and ardent words, touching her mind and soul like no other man ever can. As sinister truths behind Lord Thornton’s interest in her estate and his tie to Hawk come to light, Juliet is lured into a web of secrets. But it’s too late for escape, and the tragic love taking seed in her heart will alter her silent world forever.

International and NYT bestselling author, A.G. Howard, brings her darkly magical and visual/visceral storytelling to Victorian England. The Architect of Song is the first installment in her lush and romantic Haunted Hearts Legacy series, a four book New Adult gothic saga following the generations of one family as – haunted by both literal and figurative ghosts – they search for self-acceptance, love, and happiness.

I’ve only read one other book of A.G. Howard’s and that was her YA novel, but the premise of The Architect of Song sounded promising, and I’ve been super in NA fantasy lately so I decided to give it a try. This is more paranormal than fantasy though, but anything in the NA genre that wasn’t contemporary was still right in my boat. Here we have a story about nineteen-year-old Juliet whose deafness has caused her to live a life of isolation. But when her home is at risk of being seized, she is unknowingly thrust into a web of secrets and lies… and even ghosts.

Listening to this audiobook was a strange experience, to say the least. Usually I don’t have a hard time following a story when I listen, but this wasn’t the case with The Architect of Song. I felt like too many things were happening at the same time, and the story was too tame to really hook me in. I wanted more romance, especially between Juliet and her ghost, because I wanted to see how that would work out. The mystery surrounding the ghost Hawk and Lord Thornton, who was the one trying to take away her estate, was a bit too convoluted for me. I’m sure if I read this instead of listened, I would’ve understood more, but the audiobook just wasn’t working too well for me.

This is the first time that I’ve listened to a narrator with an English accent though, which was wonderful and lovely. I really enjoyed Gemma Dawson’s accent and voice and would definitely listen to her again. Her narration was what made listening to The Architect of Song a little more enjoyable, so it wasn’t a complete bust. I’d say if you’re a fan of mysteries and love stories, you should give this a try! Hopefully it’ll keep you hooked more than it did for me.

THE ARCHITECT OF SONG is now available on Audible: http://amzn.to/2jxKfCC

3 hearts
lacey


Reading Order: Haunted Hearts Legacy series

#1 ~ The Architect of Song: Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ The Hummingbird Heart: Goodreads (out Aug. 2017)
#3 ~ The Glass Butterfly: Goodreads (out Aug. 2018)
#4 ~ The Artisan of Light: Goodreads (out Aug. 2019)

Here’s an audio excerpt from The Architect of Song!


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