Release Day Review: The Emperor of Evening Stars by Laura Thalassa

The Emperor of Evening Stars by Laura Thalassa
Series: The Bargainer #2.5 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: October 15th 2017
Links: EbookGoodreads

In the beginning, there was darkness.
Before he met Callie, before he became the Bargainer, there was Desmond Flynn, the bastard son of a scribe. A boy born to a weak mother, cursed with little magic, and destined to marry a slave.

But fate had something else in mind.

Till darkness dies.
From the barren caves of Arestys to the palace of Somnia to the streets of earth, this is how Desmond Flynn, a fairy who began with nothing, became the Emperor of Evening Stars.

***This is a roughly 200 page novella told from Desmond Flynn’s perspective.***

“Love costs even more than power, even more than revenge or hate.”

Laura Thalassa has given me exactly what I didn’t know I needed in the Bargainer series. I have loved Callie and Desmond and their story from the very first page, but after reading The Emperor of Evening Stars, I’ve come to love them even more – Des especially. This novella (which is a pretty decent length) is told entirely in Des’s POV, from his very beginnings in the Caverns of Arestys, to his rise in becoming the King of Night, and finally, his love story with his soulmate. If you’re a fan of the series, this companion novella is a must read.

I loved everything about this novella. We learn about Des’s past, which is heartbreaking, and about his quest for revenge against his father. But what I was really dying for was the moment Des would meet Callie, his soulmate and love of his life. When he first learns that his soulmate is human – mortal – he is appalled and not too keen on her. But after experiencing loss after loss, he realizes that he’ll do anything to find the woman who will stand by him and love him. So he does.

I swear to the Undying Gods that once I’m able to, I will scour the earth for me soulmate. I’ll put my past behind me and focus on the future. And when I find her—if I find her—I won’t waste time fearing what others will think. I’ll cherish her, respect her, love her.
For all the days of her mortal life, I’ll claim her as mine.

Getting Des’s POV about his first meeting with Callie, how he fell in love with her, how he withstood being without her, was perfect. If you didn’t love him in the first two books, you will definitely fall head over heels in love with him in his novella. He has been such an enigmatic character throughout the series in Callie’s POV, but we get so much insight in how he thinks and feels. The wait for the third and final Bargainer has gotten just the tiniest bit easier thanks to this novella. And I’m hoping we get a few more chapters in Des’s POV in Dark Harmony!

Can’t she tell that she brings me to my knees? Morning, evening, and night, she’s always right there in every beat of my heart. That sweet voice of hers sings through my veins. It calls to me across worlds. Everything she is, is mine, and everything I am is hers. Always.


lacey

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


Reading Order: The Bargainer series

  

#1 ~ Rhapsodic: My Review • Ebook • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#2 ~ A Strange Hymn: EbookPaperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2.5 ~ The Emperor of Evening Stars: EbookGoodreads


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Blog Tour + Review & Excerpt: Racer by Katy Evans

Racer by Katy Evans
Series: Real #7 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: September 28th 2017
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A bad boy with something to prove.
A woman with a mission.
The race of their lives.
The love of a lifetime.

I don’t think his parents expected him to live up to his name—Racer Tate—but once he felt the adrenaline rush behind the wheel, he was addicted.

He’s the fastest, fiercest driver around.

Scouting new talent brings me to his doorstep…
but his smile sends me to my knees.

The sexy, mysterious Racer Tate is not the kind of man a girl like me falls for. He’s secretive, reckless, elusive. But his proximity pushes me beyond reason, and his kiss….

This is our last chance to win, and he is our only hope. I’m supposed to watch him—make sure he doesn’t get into trouble. But it’s an impossible task. And now the one in heart wrenching, toe-curling, soul-crushing trouble is me. Because when your heart belongs to someone, their truths become your own, and their secrets become your salvation…or your curse.

He says he wants me. He says I’m the One. But he also thinks he’ll break my heart, one piece at a time until it’s gone.

Buy Links:
Amazon • Barnes & NobleiTunes • Kobo

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Racer is a book I never knew I needed in the Real series! Racer is Brooke and Remy’s baby boy, but he’s all grown up now, and he’s just as potent, virile, and charming as his father was. But he didn’t take up fighting like his father – instead, he fulfilled his name’s destiny and lives to race cars.

All I know is that this guy is not just a star, he’s a comet, someone with rare talent that is near impossible to find. Sometimes there are drivers that when you watch them drive, you know they are destined for greatness. This guy is one of them….
But does he have it to shine in F1?

Lana Heyworth is desperate to find someone that will save her father’s Formula One team, which is standing on its last legs. Flying out to St. Petersburg, she hopes to see potential in some indie drivers, but on the way to the race, she bumps her car into a guy who steals her spot and has no driving etiquette… and is the most beautiful man she has ever seen.

There’s something inside of me screaming her name. Something like I’ve known her my whole life. Something the moment I locked eyes on her that whispered, you’re going to marry this chick. This girl is going to own you, and you’re going to own her, and that’s that.

Racer Tate never expects to meet the love of his life that fateful day in St. Petersburg, or to have the opportunity of a lifetime to participate in the F1. Because he’s not just an illegal car racer, but the BEST one out there. He has the raw skill and talent that it takes to win and take number one – he knows it and he’s going to prove that to Lana. All the while winning and claiming her heart for his own. But there are challenges he faces along the way, because he inherited not only his dad’s looks, strength, and determination… but also his Bipolar I disorder. Will Racer have what it takes to win the race, win the girl, and not let his BP-I define him?

Patience, I hear my father say, Rome wasn’t built in a day … and nobody said it was easy to fall in love with a Tate.

I adored this book SO hard. Katy Evans never disappoints with her epic love stories and intense alpha males. Racer is definitely up there with his father and the other heroes of the Real series. I also adored Lana and how much she wanted Racer, but didn’t want to fall immediately into bed with him. Their romance is slow and full of tension, which balanced perfectly well with the adrenaline and suspense of the F1 races. If you love Katy Evans, you will NOT be disappointed with Racer. It’s a beautiful romance that is as sexy as it is sweet, with all the excitement that is car racing!

“I’ve never loved anything in my life the way I love you. My crasher. You looked at me with these two eyes …  and I haven’t been able to see anything else. You little witch, you crashed my single party.”


lacey

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

Now here’s an excerpt from Racer! ❤

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I’m still reeling. While people approach him, he cuts a path straight to me, his gaze penetrating and target-like; making me want to bolt.

His lips do that little upward tilt they do that seems so sexy, and for a second, I feel like I’m lightheaded.

I gulp, and then feel mad at myself for acting like some idiot as fucking devil-Racer Tate reaches me, throws himself into a seat next to me, and turns to look at me expectantly with the most gorgeous grin on his face.

I don’t know what to say.

This guy has left me sort of speechless.

“So … ” I say, staring in the distance at his beat-up mustang, then at him.

“So … ” he says too, in his deep voice, his smile a little more wicked than it was two seconds ago. He glances at my mouth.

Oh god.

Why am I licking my lips?

It only made his eyes narrow and darken.

I open my mouth to speak, failing to find words. He smells like sweat and soap and shampoo, and I feel my traitorous nipples push up to my top again. Why do they do that when he’s around?

“This is illegal,” I state.

His voice is husky from exertion, and his eyes glint with laughter. “That’s why it’s fun.”

I look away from his eyes, trying to focus and clear my head. He leans over and peers into my face, his face shadowed by the moonlight and his jaw now carrying a little scruff. “Are we in agreement?” he presses.

“No.” I glare and shake my head, meeting his cocky gaze. “You’re reckless, Racer.”

“So are you, Alana.”

“It’s just … Lana.”

His brows fly up in surprise. “And a bit of a liar too.”

I purse my lips, still glaring as my gaze goes back to his car. Girls are rubbing against it as if it were him, and I find it disgusting. Why are women always acting so slutty around race car drivers and bad boys?

“You crashed your car,” I say flippantly.

“You crashed my car,” he contradicts, amused.

I laugh, then scowl in his direction. “You crashed it more. I can’t believe you were making such a fuss about me crashing into you when it was just a little kiss—”

He leans in to peck my lips—fast but firmly. “That’s a kiss.”

I lose my breath.

My eyes wide.

He eases back, lips smiling as he comes to his feet and stretches his hand out to take me by the elbow and help me to my feet.

“Let’s get out of here.” He starts walking, leading the way.

“And go where?”

“Anywhere I can get my hands on you.”

Reading Order: Real series

Real by Katy Evans Mine by Katy Evans Remy by Katy Evans
Rogue by Katy Evans Ripped by Katy Evans Legend by Katy Evans 

#1 ~ Real: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Mine: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#3 ~ Remy: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Rogue: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#5 ~ Ripped: My Review • Ebook • Paperback • Audible • Goodreads
#6 ~ Legend: My Review • EbookPaperback • AudibleGoodreads
#7 ~ Racer: EbookPaperbackAudibleGoodreads

about the author button

Katy Evans is a New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author. Her debut REAL shot to the top of the bestselling lists in 2013 and since then 9 of her titles have been New York Times bestsellers. Her books have been translated into nearly a dozen languages across the world.

Website • Twitter • FacebookInstagram • Goodreads


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Release Day Review: The Learning Hours by Sara Ney

The Learning Hours by Sara Ney
Series: How to Date a Douchebag #3 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: September 26th 2017
Links: EbookAudible • Goodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review

He’s not a douchebag; but that doesn’t stop his friends from turning him into one.

MY FRIENDS WANT ME TO GET LAID.

So much so that they plastered my ugly mug all over campus, in bold printed letters:

Are you the lucky lady who’s going to break our roommate’s cherry?
Him: socially awkward man with average-sized penis looking for willing sexual partner. You: must have a pulse. He will reciprakate with oral. Text him at: 555-254-5551

The morons can’t even spell. And the texts I’ve been receiving are what wet dreams are made of. But I’m not like these douchebags, no matter how hard they try to turn me into one.

THIS ISN’T THE KIND OF ATTENTION I WANT.

One text stands out from hundreds. One number I can’t bring myself to block. She seems different. Hotter, even in black and white.

However, after seeing her in person, I know she’s not the girl for me. But my friends won’t let up–they just don’t get it. Douchebags or not, there’s one thing they’ll never understand: GIRLS DON’T WANT ME.

Especially her.

There’s not much I can say about The Learning Hours without giving anything away regarding characters, plot, etc., but what I can say is how much I freaking LOVED this book with my whole heart. I fell head over heels in love with the hero and heroine, who felt so unique and refreshing to me. I was surprised by this book in the best way, since it is quite different from the previous two books in the How to Date a Douchebag series. It’s unlike any new adult college romance I’ve ever read, and for that, I’m grateful to Sara Ney. If you want a book with a unique take on an NA/college/sports romance, I highly recommend The Learning Hours!

After wholeheartedly loving the second book in the series (Zeke makes me do heart eyes), I had no idea if Sara Ney could top what is still one of my favorite reads of the year. Well, it turns out Sara is on a freaking roll because this book ALSO became one of my favorite reads of 2017. The Learning Hours is entertaining, romantic, sweet, funny, adorable – everything you can imagine a new adult romance to be, with some college wrestling sprinkled in. I had so much fun reading this book – my heart was swooning like crazy over the charming, wonderful, atypical hero. The chemistry between the main characters had me giggling and smiling near the entire book.

I honestly can’t recommend The Learning Hours enough. As soon as I picked this book up, I couldn’t put it down. It’s been a while since I read a good new adult romance, but this one had me addicted from the very first page. Anyone who loves romance or new adult needs this book in their lives!


lacey


Reading Order: How to Date a Douchebag series

  

#1 ~ The Studying Hours: EbookPaperback • Audible • Goodreads
#2 ~ The Failing Hours: My Review • EbookPaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#3 ~ The Learning Hours: EbookAudible • Goodreads


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Blog Tour + Review, Excerpt & Giveaway: Drumline by Stacy Kestwick

Drumline by Stacy Kestwick
Series: Standalone
Publication Date: September 5th 2017
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Traditions are important. Especially in the South.
College football. Rivalries. Tailgating. Halftime shows.
Some things just don’t change.
Until Reese Holland shows up with her long legs and no-bullsh*t attitude to audition for the prestigious all-male Rodner University snare line.
It doesn’t matter how much hazing she has to endure from Laird Bronson, with his narrowed green eyes and arrogant smirk. She wants that damn spot, and she’s more than good enough to earn it.
She expects there to be tension. Even friction.
But not sparks hot enough to burn the entire campus down.

Buy Links:
Amazon Ebook • Amazon Paperback

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Drumline was my first Stacy Kestwick book – I usually don’t read new authors without heavy recommendations from people I trust, but I just couldn’t resist a new adult college romance. It feels like it’s been forever since the last time I read a college romance, so Drumline came at the perfect time. I enjoyed it – it took me by surprise in a good way. If you love anything related to new adult, I highly recommend you give this book a try! It’s sweet, sexy, and just an overall fun read.

Laird Bronson is captain of the snare line, and as its his last year at school, he needs the band to go out with a bang. What he doesn’t expect is for a spitfire of a woman to audition for the previously all-male Rodner University snare line. He’s utterly enthralled by Reese Holland and can’t seem to resist her. She’s tough, gorgeous, ambitious, determined, and gives as good she gets. I fell a little in love with her myself right alongside Laird.

I wanted to know her everything.
I wanted to fucking be her everything.

In spite of the wild attraction she feels for Laird, Reese isn’t about to let her feelings for the band’s captain get in the way of her earning her spot in the snare line. But Laird isn’t like any college boy she knows – he’s as sweet as he is alpha, and incredibly supportive of her ambitions. She tries to keep her distance but can’t help herself to the sexy wonder that is Laird.

I LOVE that this was about the marching band rather than the athletes, etc. because how many books are there about football players? And how many books are there about the drummers of a marching band? Because Drumline is the first I’ve read of them. We need more band geek romances!

I have to say that while I was a big fan of the romance, I wasn’t the biggest fan of the drama in Drumline, especially when it had to do with the antagonist. I could’ve done with less of it, but that’s just me. I’m sure many won’t have the same problem, but this was just the reason why I couldn’t fully love the story like I wanted to.

Drumline is full of sexual tension, sweet romance, and did I mention a snare line!? It was such a unique take on a college romance so I have to give props to the author. I may have to check out her other books now, but I do hope she writes more college romances in the future!


lacey

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

Now here’s an excerpt from Drumline! ❤

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He devoured me.

Being eaten alive had never felt so good.

His lips. His hands. His heat. My entire being was overwhelmed by him finally, finally touching me.

The kiss started hard, desperate, the inevitable conclusion to the tension that had been building between us for two weeks. With my eyes closed and my breasts flattened against the wall of his chest, I gave into it, surrendered to the moment. My mouth clung to his as he tilted my head to the side, changing the angle to deepen the contact.

His hands moved over me restlessly, hungrily, skimming down my back on the way to my ass, then back up my sides to frame my face, his fingers leaving a trail of heat behind on every inch of skin he claimed for himself. I pulled at his shirt while he pushed me against the solidness of the door. My heart tripped over itself in its race to keep up. Muffled sounds came from both of us, vibrating in our throats but not escaping our lips because we hadn’t even parted for a breath yet.

Who needed fucking air when Laird Bronson was kissing them? Not me.

His lips were somehow firm and soft at the same time as he slanted them over me again and again. It was like being called up to the major league from the minors. Nothing in my past compared. I shivered from the intensity of it, from the innate authority of his mouth as he consumed me. Like I was made to bend to him, as inevitable as the moon ceding to the sun.

I lifted on my tiptoes to get closer, one of my hands snaking up to tangle in his dark hair. The strands were barely long enough at the top to grip, and when I gave them a tug, he rolled his hips against me, showing me just how much he liked it. I moaned and felt an answering wetness gather at the juncture of my thighs.

Dear sweet rosy-cheeked baby Jesus and all the saints in heaven.

His mouth needed to come with a warning label. Danger. Highly flammable.

But it was too late. I’d had a taste and I liked the burn.

about the author button

USA TODAY Bestseller Stacy Kestwick is a Southern girl who firmly believes mornings should be outlawed. Her perfect day would include puppies, carbohydrates, and lounging on a hammock with a good book. No adulting, cleaning, or bacon allowed.

Where to Find Stacy:

Website • FacebookTwitter • Instagram

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Drumline Prize Pack: Signed copy of Drumline, “I Have Some Nonfictional Feelings About Some Fictional Characters” tote bag, Stacy Kestwick water bottle, and lots of swag!

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Release Day Review: Fallen Heir by Erin Watt

Fallen Heir by Erin Watt
Series: The Royals #4 (full reading order below)
Publication Date: August 28th 2017
Links: Ebook • PaperbackGoodreads
Source: I received an ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review

These Royals will ruin you.

Easton Royal has it all: looks, money, intelligence. His goal in life is to have as much fun as possible. He never thinks about the consequences because he doesn’t have to.

Until Hartley Wright appears, shaking up his easy life. She’s the one girl who’s said no, despite being attracted to him. Easton can’t figure her out and that makes her all the more irresistible.

Hartley doesn’t want him. She says he needs to grow up.

She might be right.

Rivals. Rules. Regrets. For the first time in Easton’s life, wearing a Royal crown isn’t enough. He’s about to learn that the higher you start, the harder you fall.

We finally have Easton’s story!! Well, at least the first part of it. 😉

Fallen Heir has been a huge anticipated release ever since Easton Royal and his charming ways showed up in the Royals series. I adored his cocky, naughty self and couldn’t wait to see what would be in store for him, and what kind of girl would be able to knock him off his feet. I can say that Erin Watt didn’t disappoint with the heroine – I absolutely LOVED Hartley and might possibly love her more than Easton. If you’re a fan of the series, then you absolutely don’t want to miss this next installment in the dramatic, angsty Royals series!

I know what it’s like to be alone. I know what it’s like to want and not have. I don’t want Hartley to feel that way. Not anymore. Not while I’m around.

There’s more than meets the eye with Easton. From previous books, we knew him as a joker and a player, who’s had vices in drugs, alcohol, and women. He’s given up the drugs, but not much else has changed. His two older brothers are away at college and his two younger brothers, who are twins, are off doing their thing with their girlfriend (yes, they have one girlfriend together). He has Reed’s girlfriend Ella with him, but he couldn’t feel more alone during his senior year of high school. That is, until he bumps into a new student named Hartley Wright, and things start to look up for him.

Hartley couldn’t give two shits about Easton, who he is, or how much money he has. That is honestly my favorite part about her and why I love her so fiercely. She’s not like any other person who adores Easton and fawns all over him. She literally wants him to leave her alone – though of course he won’t. Hartley has secrets that are only barely touched upon in this book, and Easton is incredibly intrigued – and attracted to – this mystery girl. But since he won’t leave her, they come to a compromise and become friends, with a few bumps along the way.

I don’t know why I latched onto the idea of being friends, but it sits right with my gut. I want Hartley in my life and if being friends is the way that happens, then friends is what we’ll have.
It’s different, but maybe that’s not a bad thing.

Hartley and Easton were absolutely amazing in Fallen Heir. They are opposites, yet they understand each other in a way no one else can. Hartley makes Easton want to do better and be better – he broke my heart in the first half of the story, but his gradual transformation is heartwarming to experience. I will say that there isn’t much of a romance in Fallen Heir, though. If there is, it’s reaaally slow. So I’m hoping things will pick up in the sequel!

Fallen Heir was a great start to Easton and Hartley’s story. It’s told entirely in Easton’s POV, which I adored. We get to see little glimpses of Ella and Reed, which was great. One thing I will say is that I was a little disappointed with the twins’ girlfriend’s characterization and how different it was from previous books. Mainly because I wouldn’t have minded some love triangle story for them, but I guess we’ll have to wait and see how that goes. You can read Fallen Heir without having read the first three books, which are Ella and Reed’s story, but I’d highly recommend reading the series in order to understand all the characters and what’s happened so far better. That being said, if you love anything with angsty characters and lots of drama, read this book (and series)!

4 hearts
lacey

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


Reading Order: The Royals series

  

#1 ~ Paper Princess: My Review • Ebook • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#2 ~ Broken Prince: My Review • Ebook • PaperbackAudibleGoodreads
#3 ~ Twisted Palace: Ebook • PaperbackAudible • Goodreads
#4 ~ Fallen Heir: Ebook • PaperbackGoodreads
#5 ~ Cracked Kingdom: Goodreads (Jan. 2018)


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