#BookReview #RomanticSuspense // Crow by A. Zavarelli

Crow
Boston Underworld #1

A. Zavarelli

Mackenzie “Mack” Wilder is searching for her BFF, the girl who helped her survive the horrors of being a teen in the care system. No one wants to know or help and all the clues point to a club run by Lachlan Crow, a mover and shaker in the Mackenna syndicate aka the Irish mafia. Throwing caution to the wind, because without Talia what’s the point anyway, Mack decides to step into the lion’s den. What she didn’t expect was to catch the eye of the pride male. Lachlan Crow doesn’t need the complication of the dark haired, blue eyed beauty, he’s already promised to another and his Russian associates want her “controlled”.


Does Mack feel like the average 22 year old? Not really, but then her backstory doesn’t paint her in that light either. So despite her usually feeling much older, I didn’t find her maturity, or her strength, out of the bounds of believability. Lachlan is probably an awful lot nicer than most genuine members of a criminal gang, however we wouldn’t fall in love with him if he was without some morals, compassion and integrity. On balance I did feel his character was plausible, and his utter obsession with Mack allowed me to forgive the rest!


The chemistry between this pair is scorching and this is one pretty hot read. It was easy to believe in the feelings that developed between Crow and Mack, particularly as the book is written first person from both perspectives. Being able to listen in on their thoughts, to feel their passion and the incredible attraction they share, had me sold on their feelings.


Unlike many mafia romances, this did feature the syndicate in a believable way. It wasn’t overly sanitised though many of the darker aspects were more briefly touched on, so this didn’t feel a particularly dark read. I was left with some questions, particularly around the Russian mafia and the betrayals, but if I remember correctly subsequent books run concurrently with this and more of the story is revealed with each new instalment.


I’m so glad I got the chance to re-read this. It did take a couple of chapters to really get into the story, but once I did it became a book I just did not want to put down.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Mafia Romance

Age 18+, Contains adult content

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31309440-crow

Synopsis
An Irish mobster. A missing friend. Two loyalties, ripping me apart.

I had a plan. Get in, get my information, and get out. Easy, right?

That’s when Lachlan Crow noticed me. Problem was, he wasn’t a soldier. No, he was next in line for the throne of the Irish underworld. And he was determined to hate me from the outset. My sob story about needing a job? Yeah, he wasn’t buying that either.

Too bad for him, I won’t let anyone get in the way of my mission.

Who cares if we have some kind of crazy chemistry? He’s the worst kind of wrong- and I would never in a million years be with a guy like him.

Because they took her from me, and I’m going to make them pay.

REVIEW – Women’s Fiction // The Wedding Dress by Dani Atkins

The Wedding Dress
by Dani Atkins

Three very delightful and very different stories that all bring something special to this wonderful book. Dani Atkins has a very emotive writing voice, and as someone who needs to feel a connection to the main characters it suited me perfectly.



As we hear more and more of Suzanne’s story (#1) the reader just knows that something isn’t right. So whilst the actual “secret” comes as no surprise, there is much entertainment to be found in how the author leads us to that point and how the reveal pans out is both unexpected and rather satisfying.



My only issue was why the person who revealed the secret didn’t just speak face-to-face with Suzanne a little sooner. I did have to suspend my disbelief more than a little with the manner they originally chose to act. However without that delay we wouldn’t have had a story.



Bella’s story (#2) was spell-binding and even had me shedding the odd tear. There is almost a love triangle in this one, though definitely no cheating, in fact Bella is unaware of the true feelings of both men. I loved how the author spun the ending to this one, right until the last moment I wasn’t sure who it would be, though of course it was the man who had always shown his love towards Bella. The man who had quietly shown his loyalty and devotion.



I would love this to be made into a full length book, though it would be difficult to maintain the suspense and secret of who won Bella’s heart. However after the Wedding scene I would love the story to have gone back in time so we could see how and why things played out the way they did. The book deserves five stars for this short story/novella alone!



Mandy and her grandmother’s story was unexpected and yet the perfect way to end the story. Whilst the story was about her gran getting married, for me this was more about the love of family and of acceptance. An entertaining and thought provoking read without being too preachy.


I definitely recommend this book.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Contemporary Romance

Age 15+

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/56077293-the-wedding-dress

Synopsis
Three women. Three love stories. One dress. The new heartwarming and uplifting romance from award-winning romance writer Dani Atkins.


Suzanne is engaged to be married to the man of her dreams – except the lead up to her wedding is beginning to feel more like a nightmare. Can Suzanne uncover the truth about her fiancé ahead of her big day?


Bella’s life was on track until the day of the hen party when everything changed. Now she must find the strength to rebuild her future – and decide who she wants to spend it with.


Mandy’s grandmother has fallen in love but her family don’t approve. For her grandmother’s dreams to come true, Mandy has a secret wedding to plan, and a very special dress to find.


These are the three strangers whose stories are about to be woven together by one perfect wedding dress.

Promo & Review – Enemies-to-Lovers// The Belle and the Beard by Kate Canterbary

The Belle and the Beard by Kate Canterbary is now live!

Jasper-Anne Cleary’s guide to salvaging your life when you find yourself publicly humiliated, out of work, and unemployable at 35—not to mention newly single:

1. Run away. Seriously, there’s no shame in disappearing. Go to that rustic old cottage your aunt left you. Look out for the colony of bats and the leaky roof. Oh, and the barrel-chested neighbor with shoulders like the broad side of a barn. Definitely look out for him.
2. Stop wallowing and stay busy. It doesn’t matter whether you know how to bake or fix things around the house. Do it anyway. Dust off your southern hospitality and feed that burly, bearded neighbor some pecan pie.
3. Meet new people. Chat up the grumpy man-bear, pretend to be his girlfriend when his mother puts you two on the spot, agree to go as his date to a big family party. Don’t worry—it’s only temporary.
4. Cry it out. Screwing up your life entitles you to wine, broody-moody music, and uninterrupted sobbing. 
5. Get over it all by getting under someone. Count on your fake boyfriend to deliver some very real action between the sheets. 
6. Move on. The disappearing act, the cottage, the faux beau—none of it can last forever. 

Linden Santillian’s guide to surviving the invasion when a hell-in-heels campaign strategist moves in next door:

1. Do not engage. There is no good reason you should chop her wood, haul her boxes, or pick her apples. 
2. Do not accept gifts, especially not the homemade ones. Disconnect the doorbell, toss your phone over a bridge, hide in the basement if you must, but do not eat her pie. 
3. Do not introduce her to your friends and family. They’ll favor her over you and never let you forget it.
4. Do not intervene when she’s crying on the back porch. Ignore every desire to fix the entire world for her. By no means should you take her into your arms and memorize her peach-sweet curves. 
5. Do not take her to bed, even if it’s just to get her out of your system.
6. Do not, under any circumstances, fall in love with her.

Download today or read for FREE with Kindle Unlimited!
https://geni.us/BATBam

Goodreads: http://bit.ly/2YQv5Lj

Oh what a well written, steamy, push-and-pull romance this is. I want to state very clearly that I really liked Jasper. So she was ballsy, closed-off and capricious – no-one is perfect! And how come it’s OK for the heroes of books to have flaws, but the heroine has to be some perfect superhuman? Gah! give me real over impossible every time.

Kate Canterbary has such a beautiful, poetic, descriptive, style of writing. Every paragraph feels like a quote worthy moment. The prose draws you in and gives you ALL the feels. I don’t form clear or distinct pictures as I read, but with this author – and this book – I am captured by the intensity of the emotions that are portrayed. You can’t read a Kate Canterbary and not feel something.

I loved the protagonists, I loved the writing, I loved the push and pull, I loved the setting. This is a fairly long read and this, in part, is where it dropped a star. I’m really torn to say this but there were some parts that didn’t really move the plot forward. The scenes were stunning in their beauty because, great writer alert, but cutting the from the final version wouldn’t have disrupted the overall story flow. However I still loved these scenes, just because of the #greatwriting and the feelings this book pulled from the depths of my soul. Because this author has me there in every moment, living the story alongside the protagonists. So it kinda hurts to have to criticise this book, but it wouldn’t be fair not to mention that I did occasionally want to press fast forward.

I haven’t read the two previous books in the (very loose) series and managed fine in understanding everything, so it’s definitely stand alone. It’s also written, as is most contemporary romance, in alternating first person, allowing us to experience the full depth of each characters feelings and their inner thoughts. And what inner thoughts they were! Wow, the heat level of this book is H-I-G-H, be careful reading it in public. People will either think you are mad as you snigger out loud or swoon, and they definitely will wonder why you are becoming so flushed.

Meet Kate



USA Today Bestseller Kate Canterbary writes smart, steamy contemporary romances loaded with heat, heart, and happy ever afters. Kate lives on the New England coast with her husband and daughter.



 
Connect with Kate

Website | www.katecanterbary.com
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// REVIEW \\ Contender

Contender:
The Everyday Heroes World
by Tiffani Lynn

Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Whilst “straight” contemporary romance isn’t my go-to in reading terms, the author Tiffani Lynn definitely is. And she didn’t disappoint in this gentle, yet emotional story of two imperfect people finding their HEA. She had me sobbing within the first few pages – always a sign of great writing.


Normally if I struggle with a character it’s with an overbearing, conceited and irritating hero but, despite Keegan being a hot shot champion boxer with a troubled background. he was actually very balanced and immensely likeable. I couldn’t always say the same about Collins. Overall she had led a fairly charmed life, not easy, not perfect but comfortable. So the enormous chip on her shoulder occasionally made her quite irritating. However the author always managed to pull things back and allow me to forgive her, thus providing an enjoyable read that was neither too bland nor too angsty.


The book is quite short, perhaps because it’s part of another author’s “world”, so whilst we had well developed, complex characters it did feel as though the relationship side of things was a little rushed. Not so much in timeline context but rather that we didn’t get much opportunity to see Collins and Keegan just spending relaxed time with one another. I just needed a little more convincing of the strength of their feelings, a little more time with just the focus on them together but not arguing. It would have transformed this from a really good to a really great read for me.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/56545445

Genre – Contemporary Romance

Tiffany Lynn’s Contender is a sexy, heartfelt, contemporary romance written in K. Bromberg’s Everyday Heroes Worlds project.
Officer Collins Sutton can take care of herself…
Returning to Sunnyville was never part of the plan, but after the death of their mother, she’s home to help care for her disabled brother. As she finds her footing being back in her hometown her path crosses with the new guy in town. Sexy, mysterious and not swayed by her usual brush off… Sunnyville might not be big enough for both of them.
Boxer Keegan “The Punisher” Ranger was once the light heavyweight champion of the world but he lost his passion for fighting when his mentor died. Now he’s focusing on building his new gym… and life. After taking verbal blows from Officer Sutton, the sassy redheaded sister of his new gym helper, he realizes something might finally be worth fighting for again.
Collins isn’t convinced that Keegan is the good guy everyone else in town thinks he is and moves in for a better look. As much as his dark eyes and wicked smile are a warning bell she draws closer to him. However, when he betrays the most important person in her life he just might lose his shot at being the only contender for her heart.

Photo by Luiz Gustavo Miertschink on Pexels.com

// REVIEW \\ Mister Baby Daddy

Mister Baby Daddy
(Bad Boys In Love #3)
by Cassie-Ann L. Miller

Photo by freestocks.org on Pexels.com

Hence forth this shall be know as “The book which pulled me out of a reading slump.”

I seem to have spent the few weeks struggling to stick with a book, and even when I have it hasn’t touched my heart and soul in the way that a great book did. Mister Baby Daddy took that poor reading streak, stomped all over it and tore it into tiny pieces with it’s great writing, amazing characters and emotional depth. Even though there is nothing particularly ground breaking or new within the plot, the quality of writing, the sheer amount of feels this book gave me, along with how much I found myself caring for both Walker and Penny, made it a wonderful read.

Whilst I wouldn’t class this as a rom-com, the author does thread humour throughout the story. She balances some very sad and difficult situations with moments of levity and fun. And did I mention just how great Penny and Walker are? It would be easy to become frustrated with the pair, but I couldn’t because the author created two very “real” people who I simply fell in love with.

It was great to catch glimpses of previous couples, and we got to know just a little bit more about Jessa, our next heroine. Based on this series so far I am really, really, REALLY looking forward to reading her and Eli’s story.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Genre- Friends-to-Lovers Contemporary Romance

Goodreads- https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/53571712-mister-baby-daddy

All my life, I’ve been in love with my best friend. All my life I’ve waited for him to notice.
I’m done waiting. I’m moving on with my life…I’m having a baby.

really need to get over Walker Kingston.
My lifelong infatuation with my best friend is sort of embarrassing. The tall, broody hunk of farmer has always been my fierce protector, my constant hero, my knight in flanneled armor. But to him, I’ve never been more than a friend, the girl he saves from trouble in the middle of the night.
This whole damsel-in-distress thing is getting kind of old. I’m tired of being a burden on Walker. I’m ready to stand on my own feet.
I may never win his love but I’m ready to focus on the other things I want in my life. And what I want most? A baby.
I’ve practically got one foot inside the sperm bank when the overprotective farmer intercepts my plan. Now he says he will father my child.
Nope. Nuh-uh. Absolutely not.
I’m trying to get over the guy. So letting him be my baby daddy is low-key dysfunctional. But Walker insists it won’t affect our friendship. Plus, he has all these amazing qualities that make his offer super hard to resist. He’s strong and charming and fine as hell. And he’s the only person I really trust.
Okay. Fine. Grab the specimen cup. Off to the fertility clinic we go.
Except nothing ever goes to plan.
Now I need rescuing–again. And Walker has made it his mission to take care of my every need–again. And when the ever-grumpy cowboy introduces me to his soft, nurturing side, I’m a goner.
Well, damn. How the hell am I supposed to get over the man now?

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

// BLOG TOUR & REVIEW\\ The Proposal by Kitty Thomas

The Proposal by Kitty Thomas


Publication date: October 14th 2020
Genres: Adult, Dark Romance, Romance


Synopsis:
I got in over my head.
I bit off more than I could chew. 
And now my fate is sealed to the most ruthless man I know.
Two hundred and fifty guests. They think they know what’s happening today. But they don’t have a clue.
My wedding day. But it’s so much more than that.

NOTE: This is a standalone contemporary dark romance with NO cliffhanger!

Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/55511161-the-proposal

Purchase:
Amazon: https://amzn.to/2H5K5jj
B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-proposal-kitty-thomas/1137783384
iBooks: https://books.apple.com/us/book/the-proposal/id1533862835
Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/ca/en/ebook/the-proposal-66
GooglePlay: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Kitty_Thomas_The_Proposal

Blitz-wide giveaway (INT)
$100 Amazon gift card and 5 signed books by Kitty
http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/70f5e72b20/

You just have to take a risk on this one – I promise you, you won’t be disappointed!

The blurb is deliberately vague to allow what unfolds to surprise you, so this review will be somewhat vague on details! Beware some reviews are not so spoiler free.


It took me a little while to totally get into the story, I’m not sure if it was me, or that it took a while to get to truly know the characters, or because the book hops around in time. (The latter is necessary to allow the story to unfold without spoilers and each chapter is clearly “timeline” labelled.) However that doesn’t mean I wasn’t loving this twisted and unusual tale. In part it was probably because I needed to get to know the characters, particularly Soren, in more depth before I could fall in love with them. I very enjoyed that this was written from multiple points of view, the story simply wouldn’t have worked otherwise, you definitely need to hear each characters motivations and reasoning.


I was fairly annoyed with Soren for quite a chunk of the story. He got so butt-hurt because Livia had the “gall” to date like a men do – keeping her options open and making no promises. She didn’t sleep around, and she was honest with him. So his reaction to finding out was totally unreasonable. It wasn’t until a scene from the last night of Livia’s honeymoon that I actually had a total 180 on the guy and realised that he was, at heart, a really good man. Livia I liked from the start and I’m so glad she got her HEA.


Whilst most of what I want to say would be spoilers, what I can say is that I was constantly surprised by this book, could never guess correctly what would happen next. Soren’s friends Griffin and Dayne were much more likeable, most of the time, than he was, but I was still happy with how things played out. By the end of the story I was very confident that Livia’s answer to Soren’s question would have been “yes”, but after all he had put her through, he definitely deserved the teasing non-answer she graced him with.

Chapter One from: The Proposal

(c)2020 Kitty Thomas. All rights reserved. Used with permission from the author.

I stand at the back of the enormous church. The stained glass windows mute the over bright sun outside on this unassuming summer Saturday at half past four. The string quartet begins to play Pachelbel’s Canon in D. Two hundred and fifty guests stand. I take a deep breath and walk down the aisle clutching the bouquet of pale pink roses which hide my shaking hands. I’m wearing a stunning white Valentino gown which I’m convinced has seven thousand buttons down the back. It’s a true white, but it’s a soft, elegant white.

You don’t realize the variety of white until you shop for your wedding gown. The color palette of white goes all the way from the harsh tacky bright white of office supply copy paper to off-white, into beige and blush barely-there pinks and lavender. Occasionally there is the most subtle mint green which you are sure must be a trick of the light. 

And even though they aren’t all really the same color, lined up on the racks they seem like they all belong together. Like family. I’d considered going a little less traditional with a pale lavender or pink gown, or even that daring pale fairy green, but in the end I went with tradition—anything else feels like half measures with a man who doesn’t know the meaning of that word.  

I chose to walk down the aisle by myself. I’ve never liked the idea of giving the bride away or what it represents. Besides, I don’t want to bring my father into this; it feels wrong. He’s here, on my side with the rest of my family and friends who admittedly take up a much smaller portion of the guest count than the groom’s side and business associates. His business associates are seated on my side, so everything looks more even and normal for the pictures.

I am twenty-nine, and to everyone here my story is the story of Disney Princesses—the story every seven-year-old girl fantasizes about until she’s long grown out of such fantasies. But I’m not walking down this aisle to my prince. I’m walking down this aisle to the most ruthless man I know.

I feel as though I’m being kidnapped in the middle of a crowded room, but I can’t scream. It’s like a dream where everyone acts as though everything is fine even though an evil killer clown is sawing my hand off. But still, everyone smiles politely and makes small talk—or in this case, everyone stands and murmurs complimentary things they don’t think I can hear as I drift down the aisle like a fairy tale princess.

They think this is the part of the story where the princess gets the prince, where they get married and live happily ever after. But this is the part where she gets locked in the tower.

When I reach the altar, he takes my hand in his, helping me up the two small steps to stand in front of him. The collective sitting of two hundred and fifty people is the last thing I consciously hear as his intense, searing gaze holds mine hostage. His thumb strokes over the back of my hand, and I don’t even know anymore if the gesture is meant to comfort or control me.

We stand there, staring at each other. Words fall over me like gentle rain. Vows are spoken. Rings are exchanged. The announcement that we are now husband and wife moves through the air like a cool breeze.

His hand snakes behind my neck pulling me possessively toward him as he claims my mouth as his property. Later he will claim everything else. 

I’ve never had sex with this man. I’m not an innocent. I’m not a virgin, but right now I feel like one—off balance and unsure of what’s in store for me behind the closed doors of our suite in only a few short hours. I want to run as far and as fast as I can, but I know he would catch me. Right now the reception is the only thing that buffers me from his dark intentions.

We take what feels like a thousand wedding photos, each one more intimate and romantic than the last. His hands and mouth suddenly feel foreign on me as though he’s a stranger and not a man I’ve been seeing for the past year. The reception is being held at a swank nearby 5-star hotel called The Fremont, where we’ll spend the night before taking his jet to our honeymoon in Costa Rica. Our jet. Is it our jet now? Or am I merely an indefinite extra on his stage? I’m not really sure anymore.

We don’t speak during the limo ride to the reception. I don’t know what to say to him. Suddenly, for the first time ever, I have no words. All I can think about is what will happen later when there are no longer hordes of unassuming guests to protect me from his attentions. I feel more and more uncertain about this devil’s bargain I’ve made—like I ever had a choice.

He would have destroyed me. At least this way there is a veneer of love and respectability. At least this way it looks like he is giving me the world instead of taking it all away.

I glance up to find his triumphant gaze locked on mine. It scares me as much as it thrills me, and then his thumb is stroking the back of my hand again. I find the courage to speak, but the words fly out of my mind as soon as they appear as the limo comes to a stop in front of the hotel.

The door is opened for us and my husband guides me out, helping me so that my dress doesn’t get dirty. Husband. That word feels so strange to me. So wrong and somehow scandalous. This can’t be real.

His grip on my hand tightens as he leads me up the stairs and through the hotel lobby back to where our reception is starting. The guests are already seated and being served their dinner. We’re led to our own private table at the front of everything. Some people come by and talk to him. He’s so polite to everyone, so normal, so different from the man I’ve come to know.

As we eat, silverware clinks against glasses, and each time we kiss as expected. Before the first dance, he rises from his chair, takes the microphone that is handed to him, and addresses our crowd of guests. And he is so charming. So smooth. The perfect beautiful lie.

“Livia and I would like to thank you all so much for coming to share this special day with us and supporting us as we start our life together. Don’t get too creeped out, but I filmed the proposal. If she’d said no, I would have burned the evidence.”

Obligatory laughter. He continues.

“But it occurred to me that probably many women wish they had a video of the proposal. And so now she does. With Livia’s permission I’d like to share that video with you now.”

Our guests are very excited about this prospect. No one knew they’d be seeing this. A large projector is rolled out along with a screen and a few minutes later a video begins to play.

He and I are on his boat in the middle of the ocean. I’m lying in the sun in a red bikini and oversized dark sunglasses. He approaches with a wrapped gift. It’s large—about the size of a Labrador puppy.

“Livia, I have something for you.”

My eyes light up on the screen. “A present? Is it a pony?”

He chuckles. “Not a pony.”

“A Ferrari?” 

“Nope.”

Our guests laugh at my antics, their anticipation growing, knowing somehow inside that giant box is a ring.

“Open it,” he says.

I dutifully open it, only to find another gift wrapped box, then another, then another as I go through about five boxes, each time the gift getting smaller and smaller. 

“Is it an empty box?”

He chuckles again. “No. There’s something in there.”

I open the final box to find a blue box. Yes, that blue box. A box from Tiffany in just the right size.

The me on the video screen looks up at him and says playfully, “Is it a clown pin?”

He laughs again. “No.”

I open it and start to cry when I see the ring.

He gets down on one knee and says, “Livia Fairchild, will you be my person?”

I’m blubbering and crying and say, “Yes, I will be your person.” We kiss. He puts the ring on me. It’s all so perfect.

Our guests say a collective, “Awwww” as the screen goes black. Then they’re back to clinking their silverware against their glasses, and he leans over and kisses me again. 

Before he pulls away, his mouth brushes my ear. “Time’s up. You’re mine tonight.” His words are a growl so different from the version of himself that everyone else in this ballroom sees. It’s jarring the way he can go from this charming facade to something so dark and menacing in an eye blink—the way he can transform only feet from our guests. Yet only I can see the monster. Everyone else sees the man.

I swallow hard at this proclamation and twist the wedding band on my finger. There are three words engraved on the inside of the band. Those three words seal my fate.

The rest of the reception goes by in a blur. The first dance. The dances with the parents. The cake. The bouquet. The garter. All the well wishes that come from guests as they each take turns wishing us a long and happy marriage. We go through a tunnel of sparklers created by our guests, riding off in the limo with the just married sign on the back and the cans dragging along the road behind us, only to circle back into the parking garage so we can go up to our suite for the night.

My hand is trembling as he takes it in his, leading me back inside the hotel and up the elevator to our room. He carries me over the threshold. Inside are candles and champagne and fancy chocolate and rose petals everywhere.

Two men in tuxedos step out of the shadows, looking me up and down with an appreciative once-over.

“It’s about time,” one of them says.

My husband guides me over to the other two men, and then all three of them are touching me.

The words inscribed on the inside of my wedding band are their names:

Griffin. Dayne. Soren.

AUTHOR BIO:
KITTY THOMAS writes dark stories that play with power and have unconventional HEAs. She began publishing in early 2010 with her bestselling COMFORT FOOD and is considered one of the original authors of the dark romance subgenre.

To find out FIRST when a new book comes out, subscribe to Kitty’s New Release List: KITTYTHOMAS.COM
Author links:
https://kittythomas.com/
https://twitter.com/kitty_thomas
https://bookandmainbites.com/KittyThomas
https://www.bookbub.com/authors/kitty-thomas
https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/2654606.Kitty_Thomas

// REVIEW \\ The Proposal by Kitty Thomas

The Proposal by Kitty Thomas

The blurb is deliberately vague to allow what unfolds to surprise you, so this review will be somewhat vague on details!


It took me a little while to totally get into the story, I’m not sure if it was me, or that it took a while to get to truly know the characters, or because the book hops around in time. (The latter is necessary to allow the story to unfold without spoilers and each chapter is clearly “timeline” labelled.) However that doesn’t mean I wasn’t loving this twisted and unusual tale. In part it was probably because I needed to get to know the characters, particularly Soren, in more depth before I could fall in love with them. I very enjoyed that this was written from multiple points of view, the story simply wouldn’t have worked otherwise, you definitely need to hear each characters motivations and reasoning.


I was fairly annoyed with Soren for quite a chunk of the story. He got so butt-hurt because Livia had the “gall” to date like a men do – keeping her options open and making no promises. She didn’t sleep around, and she was honest with him. So his reaction to finding out was totally unreasonable. It wasn’t until a scene from the last night of Livia’s honeymoon that I actually had a total 180 on the guy and realised that he was, at heart, a really good man. Livia I liked from the start and I’m so glad she got her HEA.


Whilst most of what I want to say would be spoilers, what I can say is that I was constantly surprised by this book, could never guess correctly what would happen next. Soren’s friends Griffin and Dayne were much more likeable, most of the time, than he was, but I was still happy with how things played out. By the end of the story I was very confident that Livia’s answer to Soren’s question would have been “yes”, but after all he had put her through, he definitely deserved the teasing non-answer she graced him with. 

You just have to take a risk on this one – I promise you, you won’t be disappointed!

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Genre- Erotic Contemporary Romance

Goodreads- https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/55511161-the-proposal

I got in over my head.
I bit off more than I could chew.
And now my fate is sealed to the most ruthless man I know.
Two hundred and fifty guests. They think they know what’s happening today. But they don’t have a clue.
My wedding day. But it’s so much more than that.
NOTE: This is a standalone contemporary dark romance with NO cliffhanger!

Review //\\ One More Thing by Lilliana Anderson

One More Thing (47 Things #2)
by Lilliana Anderson

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How much did I love this book? Reading until 2.30am in the morning, that’s how much!


Despite this being sub-titled as 47 Things #2 it CAN be read stand alone. I know that because I haven’t read 47 Things. I don’t know if my heart and soul could stand it, I cried enough at this book – even though we were getting a forever love story. Jude, Sarah, Ty and Tyler made me laugh, smile and sob. They made my soul ache with a longing for something that would never be and my heart sing with joy at them finding their always.

The man in my arms made everything better. The moment he stepped into my life, he started shining a light on all my darkest moments. He could brighten any bad mood and he loved me in all the best ways.

Listening to Sarah’s struggles, her pain and loneliness, and then reading Tyler’s journal extracts, lord that didn’t just break my heart, it shattered it into a million tiny shards. Thank goodness there was the awkward, bumbling, geeky Jude there to glue it back together.

I would give anything for the chance to have grown complacent with Tyler. Anything. I think that was part of what made life without him hard. I missed everything we never got to have. I missed it every moment of every day.

I did miss having Jude’s voice in the book, it meant I didn’t connect to him at the same level as I did Sarah. However I still felt I knew him and I still really, really, REALLY loved the book.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

One More Thing by Lilliana Anderson

Genre – Contemporary Romance
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35626261-one-more-thing
I never asked to slip on a piece of gum then fall in love with a man who would die before the ink was dry on our marriage certificate.
But that’s what fate had in store for me. It broke me. I vowed I’d never fall in love again.
Five years later, fate had one more thing planned. It wanted to play around in my life again. Its tool? Another blasted stick of gum. Same place, only this time, it was Jude Baker, a university lecturer, who slipped on the gum.
Despite being a pacifist, Jude wasn’t particularly happy about having gum stuck to his shoe and made his distaste abundantly clear.
But that stick of gum was the catalyst to a series of events where our paths would continue to cross. There would be a broken nose, a fractured hand, a cat on a lead and a crashed corporate Christmas party that would align our hearts and make me realise that I wanted to be happy again.
But there would also be tears. Many, many tears. Because falling in love was never easy, especially when you were still in love with another man.

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Review //\\ Professional Development

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Professional Development (Benchmarks #1) by Kate Canterbary

The book starts commences with Tara’s point of view, and I quickly found myself detesting, loathing, Drew with an absolute passion. Oh my word I wanted to shake him until his teeth rattled. Condescending, bullish and down right rude. I knew without a shadow of a doubt that Kate Canterbary would have me loving him by the end, and I wasn’t wrong. Between his penchant for providing arm porn and his tight ass in grey pinstripes, he needs a health warning label. Tara deserves a medal for the amount of self restraint she demonstrated, is it wrong to want to be her BFF since she’s a fictional character?


Novella’s are not often a format I bother with, they often leave me with a feeling that things just weren’t quite developed enough. Not enough depth to the protagonists, not enough plot, not enough heat, not enough believability. We’ve all seen facsimiles of the Mona Lisa, but there’s nothing quite like standing in the Louvre gazing upon the genuine article. That’s how I view novella’s, they’re the reproductions, the lacklustre images that don’t do the real thing (ie novels) justice.


Apart from that once in a blue moon moment, when all the stars align perfectly and a great author produces that exception to the rule, an amazing novella. That is exactly what Ms Canterbary has achieved with the masterpiece that is Professional Development. I quickly came to adore both main characters and totally believed in the strength of their feelings for one another. I swooned with delight when the walls finally tumbled down and grinned like a loon over those final scenes of the book.


Bravo Ms Canterbary, this is a truly wonderful story.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Contemporary Romance Novella

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/50315164-professional-development

Tara Treloff and Drew Larsen hate each other. They really hate each other.
This would be fine except for the issue of them sharing a job title
…and an office
…and now a five-hour-long drive to a conference their boss has made mandatory to resolve their issues.
And they would’ve been able to muddle through all of those matters but a major snowstorm is heading their way
…and there’s only one bed.

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Review //\\ Maximum

Maximum (Cultivated #6) by Elin Peer

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Maximum is a story of personal growth, letting go of fear and love. Neither protagonist is perfect, in fact they both of issues that hold them back. However compromise, listening to one another and wanting to be a better person results in a unique and compelling love story. Maximum and Fleur are both likeable, down-to-earth characters – even though both had a far from normal upbringing. I adored not only them but also their story.


This book doesn’t follow the usual cliche of meet, get together, break up and reconcile. Instead we see a couple work through their issues together. Observe how persistence and respect are used to form a connection and watch as they fall in love. Nothing in life is perfect but it is how we deal with those bumps in the road that can make or break a relationship. Fleur and Maximum might not get it right first time, but they do persevere and endeavour to be better.


I loved the epilogue, who knows if it will pave the way for stories in the future. It was also great to “bump into” some very old friends too.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Maximum (Cultivated #6) by Elin Peer

Genre – Contemporary Romance

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/54322138-maximum

What if your soulmate gave up on love before even meeting you?
I’ve lived my life trying to undo the evil my father caused in this world. With every penny I donate, and every orphan I help, I feel lighter, but it never lasts long. Always on the move, I’m restless and feeling more lost than I allow people to see.
That is, until I met Fleur. She is as grounded as Mother Earth and fearless around wild animals, but is she brave enough to take another chance on love? And if so, would she ever fall for someone as flawed and troubled as me?

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