Shorefall (Founders: Book 2) by Robert Jackson Bennett

5 Stars

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Del Ray

Date of publication: April 21st, 2020

Genre: Fantasy

Series: Founders

Foundryside—Book 1 (Review Here)

Shorefall—Book 2

Where you can find Shorefall: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

The upstart firm Foundryside is struggling to make it. Orso Igancio and his star employee, former thief Sancia Grado, are accomplishing brilliant things with scriving, the magical art of encoding sentience into everyday objects, but it’s not enough. The massive merchant houses of Tevanne won’t tolerate competition, and they’re willing to do anything to crush Foundryside.

But even the merchant houses of Tevanne might have met their match. An immensely powerful and deadly entity has been resurrected in the shadows of Tevanne, one that’s not interested in wealth or trade routes: a hierophant, one of the ancient practitioners of scriving. And he has a great fascination for Foundryside, and its employees – especially Sancia.

Now Sancia and the rest of Foundryside must race to combat this new menace, which means understanding the origins of scriving itself – before the hierophant burns Tevanne to the ground.

First Line:

“The gates are just ahead,” said Gregor.

Shorefall by Robert Jackson Bennett

My Review:

I was pretty pumped when I got the email from Del Ray/Random House asking if I wanted to review Shorefall. I had loved Foundryside and was wondering when the next book was going to be published. So, it was a no brainer what my answer was going to be.

Shorefall is the 2nd book in the Founders trilogy. I would highly recommend reading Foundryside first. You would better understand the world, the houses, Sanica, and everything else in the book.

Shorefall takes place three years after the events of Foundryside, and Orso, Sanica, Berenice, and Gregor have founded their scriving business. They have become a sort of Robin Hood to the poor but they give out scrives instead of money. After an excursion to steal one of the remaining Houses lexicons, Sanica is contacted by Valeria. Valeria has a warning. Her Maker is coming, and he is getting ready to destroy Tevanne. Sanica and her crew must prepare to fight Valeria’s Maker. But are they prepared for the toll it will take upon the group? And with the lines between good and evil blurred, will Sanica make the right choice?

Shorefall’s plotline was fast-paced. Seeing that this book takes place within a week or so of Valeria’s Maker arriving in Tevanne, there were no dropped plotlines or characters. The writing flowed beautifully when the book had to change from Sanica. There was no awkwardness either. That alone made me love the book.

It did take me some time to read Shorefall. But, and I want to stress this, it wasn’t because the book was awful and I was putting it off. Nope, it was the complete opposite. I slowed down my reading pace so I could savor this book. The writing, the language, the characters were beautifully written.

I can’t get much into the storyline or characters of Shorefall without giving away spoilers. I will say this; the characters blossomed in this book. And the storyline was fantastic. The details that the author thought to include was terrific.

I will touch upon Clef, Valeria, and Valeria’s Maker. There is a massive twist in the plot that I didn’t see coming that involves them. Looking back, it makes total sense. But when I was reading it, I was shocked. I ended up putting my Kindle down and saying, “No freaking way.

The end of Shorefall made me cry. Again, I can’t say why, but it does involve Orso and Gregor. My heart broke into smithereens during those scenes. With the way the book ended, I am not sure what is going to happen and now will be impatiently waiting for the final book!!

I would give Shorefall an Older Teen rating. There are mentions of sexual situations (no details). There is language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 16 read this book.

I would reread Shorefall. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

Ruthless Gods (Something Dark and Holy: Book 2) by Emily A. Duncan

Ruthless Gods: A Novel (Something Dark and Holy Book 2) by [Duncan, Emily A.]

3 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, Wednesday Books

Date of publication: April 7th, 2020

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Series: Something Dark and Holy

Wicked Saints—Book 1

Ruthless Gods—Book 2

Untitled—Book 3 (expected publication date: 2021)

Where to find Ruthless Gods: Amazon | Barnes and Noble | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

The stunning sequel to instant New York Times bestseller, Wicked Saints!

Darkness never works alone…

Nadya doesn’t trust her magic anymore. Serefin is fighting off a voice in his head that doesn’t belong to him. Malachiasz is at war with who–and what–he’s become.

As their group is continually torn apart, the girl, the prince, and the monster find their fates irrevocably intertwined. They’re pieces on a board, being orchestrated by someone… or something. The voices that Serefin hears in the darkness, the ones that Nadya believes are her gods, the ones that Malachiasz is desperate to meet—those voices want a stake in the world, and they refuse to stay quiet any longer.

In her dramatic follow-up to Wicked Saints, the first book in her Something Dark and Holy trilogy, Emily A. Duncan paints a Gothic, icy world where shadows whisper, and no one is who they seem, with a shocking ending that will leave you breathless.

First Line:

There was a darkness.

Ruthless Gods by Emily A. Duncan

My Review:

I was pretty excited when I saw that SMP/Wednesday Books had granted my wish for this book on NetGalley. I hadn’t expected it, though. My wishes never get granted on that site. After my excitement died down, I realized that it was the 2nd book. I was still optimistic about the book, though. Lately, I have been reading books that are 2nd or 3rd in a series, and that was stand-alone. I figured that Ruthless Gods would be the same. Oh boy, was I wrong.

Ruthless Gods had a fast-moving plotline. The author was able to keep the pace up even with the book being split into numerous POVs. That I did like, she marked who’s chapter it was. I had zero issues following along with the book that way. It also worked well with the pacing. Some storylines were left open, and characters that were mentioned but never brought up again. But, considering that this is the 2nd book in the series, I have a feeling everything will be tied together in the 3rd book.

As I mentioned above, Ruthless Gods is NOT a stand-alone book. You do need to read Wicked Saints before reading Ruthless Gods. That way, the backstories/explanation of the different countries/explanation of the religions (which is essential!!) are fully disclosed. I was lost when reading Ruthless Gods because I didn’t read Wicked Saints first.

Another source of irritation for me was the lack of understanding of the different relationships between the character. Nadya and Malachiasz, I got right away. Serefin and Kacper’s was a little muddier. Ostiya, Parijahan, and Rashid’s relationships with each other, and the central 3 was even more mysterious. That is where reading Wicked Saints would have come in handy — now saying that I was impressed with the character growth that Serefin, Nadya, and Malachiasz had throughout the book.

Ruthless Gods had to have been one of the more darker, bloodier young adult books that I have read in a while. The amount of violence was terrific. The author doesn’t even bother to build-up to the first violent scene. It was bam, there you go. Now, that didn’t bother me. I figured by reading the synopsis that it was going to be bloody and violent. But it might bother other people.

I was fascinated by a couple of things in Ruthless Gods. I was fascinated that this book was based loosely in Russia. I do wish that there was some glossary that explained the different terms used in the book. I was also fascinated by the various religions portrayed. I do wish that there was a glossary dedicated to the different saints/terms that Nadya and her fellow monks used. Again, it would have gone a long way to helping me understand everything.

The storylines were well written also. There was almost too much going on in the book at one point, but the author did a fantastic job keeping everything separate. The Nadya/Malachiasz storyline broke my heart. Serefin’s broke my heart too. I couldn’t imagine living like he did and being forced to do the things he did.

The best part of the book was the last part of the book from when Katya was introduced onwards. Everything just snowballed once the group got into that forest. I expected what Serefin and Nadya did. The whole book was leading up to those two crucial things. But, I wasn’t expecting what happened to Malachiasz. That took me completely by surprise. The epilogue was fantastic. I cannot wait to read book three because of what was promised in that epilogue.

I would give Ruthless Gods an Older Teen rating. There is no sex. There is mild language. There is violence. I would reccomend that no one under the age of 16 read this book.

I would reread Ruthless Gods. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

Losing Kyler (The Kennedy Boys: Book 2) by Siobhan Davis

Losing Kyler: A High School Bully Romance (The Kennedy Boys Book 2) by [Davis, Siobhan]

4 Stars


Date of publication: March 27th, 2017

Genre: Romance, Young Adult, New Adult

Series: The Kennedy Boys

Finding Kyler—Book 1 (Review Here)

Losing Kyler—Book 2

Keeping Kyler—Book 3

The Irish Getaway—Book 3.5

Loving Kalvin—Book 4

Saving Brad—Book 5

Seducing Kaden—Book 6

Forgiving Keven—Book 7 (Review Here)

Summer in Nantucket—Book 7.5

Releasing Keanu—Book 8 (Review Here)

Adoring Keaton—Book 9 (expected publication date: September 2020)

Reforming Kent—Book 10 (expected publication date: ?? )

Where you can find Losing Kyler: Amazon

Book Synopsis:

Condemned to repeat the sins of the past…

Faye thought losing her parents was the most devastating thing to happen to her, but she was wrong. Her uncle’s scandalous revelation has sent her into a tailspin, leaving her questioning her entire existence.

Everything she believed is built on a lie.

And the one person she shares a passionate, soul-deep connection with can’t be there for her.

Faye and Ky can’t be together. It’s forbidden. Though they are determined to avoid replicating their parents’ mistakes, caving to their feelings is as tempting as the apple in the Garden of Eden.

Ky had sworn off girls until Faye bulldozed her way into his life. Now, she’s his whole world, and their forced separation is crushing him. Once his manipulative ex resurfaces—hell-bent on ruining the Kennedys—he’ll do whatever it takes to protect his loved ones including turning his back on the one person he can’t live without.

Then tragedy strikes and all bets are off.

But is it too late?

When Faye needs him and he isn’t there for her, guilt and hurt threaten to obliterate their love. As they start to rebuild their fractured hearts, another sordid family secret is uncovered, and Faye worries Ky may be lost to her forever.

But can you truly lose someone if they don’t want to be found?

Please note this series is only recommended to readers age 17+ due to mature content and themes.

First Line:

The room spins.

Losing Kyler by Siobhan Davis

My Review:

Losing Kyler is the 2nd book in The Kennedy Boys series. This book is not for teenagers. Again, loud so people in the back can hear, THIS IS NOT A BOOK FOR TEENAGERS. There are mature themes in this book that I wouldn’t be comfortable letting anyone under the age of 21 read. I wasn’t comfortably reading some of the things that went on in this book, and I am 42. Also, this cannot be read as a stand alone book.

The plotline for Losing Kyler is fast-paced and well written. There were a few times where I got overwhelmed with what was going on (there was a lot), but that was just me. The flow of the book was terrific too. There were no dropped characters or storylines.

The plotline with Faye, James, Alex, and Kyler was wonderfully written. I can’t say what I would have done if that bombshell was dropped on me. I want to think that I would have acted like Faye did when she found out. But the truth is, I would have had a nervous breakdown.

I thought Alex and James were incredibly selfish during that plotline. There were more than a few scenes where I wanted to smack one or both of them upside the head. They were the main reason why their kids were rebelling out. I wanted to reach through my Kindle, shake them, and tell them to start acting like parents and the teenagers they aren’t.

The plotline with Kyler, Faye, Brad, and Addison was full of drama. The drama between the 4 of them was almost too much. But it was a ton of fun to read. I loved reading Faye and Addison’s interactions. I kept thinking “Meow” every time they were together.

I did wonder what dirt Addison had on Kyler. I mean, he was adamant that he wanted nothing to do with her towards the end of Finding Kyler. Then to hook back up with her? I wasn’t surprised at what it was. I also wasn’t amazed at her role in everything that happened in the book. I am so waiting for her to get hers!!

The storyline with Kal and the rape trial broke my heart and, later on in the book, enraged me. I didn’t understand why Lana accused him of rape. But when specific details came to light, I understood. All I have to say is what goes around comes around.

The sexual attraction and tension between Kyler and Faye were terrific. Even though they had to keep their hands off each other, there was a lot of sexual tension. I had to put down my Kindle and fan myself. When they finally did have sexual contact, holy moly was it intense.

The end of Losing Kyler is a cliffhanger. I am not a big fan of cliffhangers. But in this case, it worked. I want to know what happens next. I want to know if Kyler and Faye will have their happily ever after.

I would give Losing Kyler an Adult rating. There is sex. There is language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread Losing Kyler. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

DNF: Queen of the Unwanted (The Women’s War: Book 2) by Jenna Glass

Queen of the Unwanted (The Women's War Book 2) by [Glass, Jenna]

0 Stars—DNF

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Ballantine, Del Ray

Date of publication: May 12th, 2020

Genre: Fantasy

Series: The Women’s War

The Women’s War—Book 1

Queen of the Unwanted—Book 2

Where you can find Queen of the Unwanted: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

In this feminist fantasy series, the ability to do magic has given women control over their own bodies. But as the patriarchy starts to fall, they must now learn to rule as women, not men.

Alys may be the acknowledged queen of Women’s Well—the fledgling colony where women hold equal status with men—but she cares little for politics in the wake of an appalling personal tragedy. It is grief that rules her now. But the world continues to turn.

In a distant realm unused to female rulers, Ellin struggles to maintain control. Meanwhile, the king of the island nation of Khalpar recruits an abbess whom he thinks holds the key to reversing the spell that Alys’s mother gave her life to create. And back in Women’s Well, Alys’s own half-brother is determined to bring her to heel. Unless these women can all come together and embrace the true nature of female power, everything they have struggled to achieve may be at risk.

First Line:

From the moment he’d seen the results of his aptitude testing at the age of thirteen, Jalzarnin Rah-Griffolm had set his sights on one day being named the Lord High Priest of Khalpar, and he had never for a moment doubted his destiny.

Queen of the Unwanted by Jenna Glass

My Review:

I never DNF books. I can count on one hand, in the past 2 years, how many books I DNF’d. I also never DNF ARCs. There were times where I would talk myself through reading books that bored me to the point of tears. I would also talk myself through books that confused the ever living out of me.

But, someone had made a comment on a previous review that got me thinking. Why should I read those types of books? I should read books that I like. Books that give me joy.

Unfortunately, Queen of the Unwanted did not bring me joy while reading it.

Queen of the Unwanted is the 2nd book in The Women’s War series. I found out, rather early on, that you need to read book 1 before reading book 2. I was left wondering who characters were, what their relationships were and wishing that I had read book 1. I am sure if I had read book 1 first, then I would have had an issue reading this book.

So, I am going to put Queen of the Unwanted and The Women’s War on my want to read list. I did like what little I read. I loved that what the author was trying to say. I just need to understand the backstories before I read this book. Hopefully, I will get to read both books one day!!!

Blog Tour: Tucker (Eternity Springs: The McBrides of Texas: Book 2) by Emily March

Eternity Springs: The McBrides of Texas: Tucker by [March, Emily]

4 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Paperbacks

Date of publication: February 25th, 2020

Genre: Romance

Series: Eternity Springs: The McBrides of Texas

Jackson—Book 1 (Review Here)

Tucker—Book 2

Where you can find Tucker: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

Hope springs eternal in this enchanting Texas town.

Meet Gillian Thacker. Her business: Bliss Bridal Salon. Her passion: Weddings. Her own wedding: It’s complicated. Life isn’t turning out like she’d planned. The last thing she wants is for a real-life hero to ride to her rescue but when an unexpected event puts her entire future in Redemption, Texas, at risk. So what’s a broken-hearted bridal expert to do? Maybe a new set of survival skills is exactly what she needs…

Tucker McBride has been proud to call himself a U.S. Army Ranger. But now that his days of service are over, he’s decided to put his expertise to use by founding a wilderness skills training school. He sets up shop in Redemption, next to Bliss Bridal, and so begins life: Part Two. Marriage has been pretty low on his agenda, but as soon as he meets Gillian, Tucker can’t help but contemplate the ultimate challenge: Convincing the reluctant bride to take his hand and leap into the adventure of a lifetime. . .until death do they part.

First Line:

Tucker McBride fed coins into an ancient soft drink machine, heard the clink clink clink as they fell into the box, opened the door, and pulled out a frosty glass bottle.

Tucker by Emily March

My Review:

I had discovered The Eternity Springs series a couple of years ago. I fell in love with the romances. Then, I saw that there was a spin-off with the Texas cousins. Again, I fell in love with the first book. So, when I saw that Tucker was available for review, I jumped on it. I figured it had to be as good as Jackson and The Eternity Springs series. And let me tell you, I was right!!

Tucker is the 2nd book in The Eternity Springs: The McBrides of Texas series. This book can be read as a stand-alone. But, and I will say this about all of the stand-alone books in series, read book 1!! There are recurring characters that crop up in Tucker who’s background stories will make you wonder what’s going on.

The pacing of the plotline for Tucker was perfect. It was slow and sweet. Usually, I am not a fan of those types of plotlines. I need a bit of speed to them. But, considering everything Gillian went through in the book, the slower pace was required. There was some lag in the plotline, right around when Gillian broke things off with her fiance. But the author was able to get the book back on track. There were no dropped storylines or characters.

I loved Tucker. I liked that he called out Gillian’s fiance for what he was, a pretentious d-bag. I loved that he was honest with himself about being very attracted to a woman in a relationship. I loved that he knew that he wanted to be with Gillian but was willing to wait until she healed before he pursued her. I also know that he was comfortable in his skin. He got out of the Army when he was being pressured to make friends with the suits in Washington. He used his Army expertise to start a survival school, which I loved. I just loved him and was #TeamTucker the entire book.

I liked Gillian, but man, she was a mess for 90% of the book. She was engaged to a guy who was a jerk. She changed everything she wanted for a wedding to accommodate him. I wanted to shake her and say, “Wake up, sweet cheeks!!” I liked that she was honest enough with herself to admit that she was attracted to Tucker. What I didn’t like was that she did lead him on at points in the book. I get that she was trying to find herself, but man, do it away from Tucker. Also, how could she have never hiked living near that canyon? And to hike by herself? WTH was she thinking!!

The romance between Gillian and Tucker was slow-burning. It was so slow at times that I wondered if I had imagined the heat between them. But, once Gillian and her fiance broke up, it came roaring back, and it was electric.

The sex scenes were pretty tame, considering the heat between Gillian and Tucker. They weren’t explicit, but you knew what was going on. I liked that. It didn’t take away from the romance.

I was furious with the plotline with Gillian and her fiance. I figured something happened, but I wasn’t expecting who it was. I loved how the author ended that plotline. Talk about satisfying!!

The plotline with Tucker and his business was fascinating. It was the first time that I have read a book where survival training was written about. I liked that he started small and morphed it into a thriving business.

The end of Tucker was what I expected. Some of the plotlines were wrapped up, and some weren’t. I did like that Tucker and Gillian got their HEA. I also cannot wait to read book 3!! From the foreshadowing in the book, it looks like it will be a good one!!

I would give Tucker an Adult rating. There are sexual situations. There is language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread Tucker. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

A Highlander in a Pickup (Highland, Georgie: Book 2) by Laura Trentham

A Highlander in a Pickup: A Highland, Georgia Novel by [Trentham, Laura]

3 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Paperbacks

Date of publication: February 25th, 2019

Genre: Romance

Series: Highland, Georgia

A Highlander Walks into a Bar—Book 1 (Review Here)

A Highlander in a Pickup—Book 2

A Highlander is Coming to Town—Book 3 (expected publication date is September 29th, 2020)

Where you can find A Highlander in a Pickup: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

A Highlander in a Pickup is the second book in award-winning author Laura Trentham’s romantic comedy Highland Georgia series, full of love, laughs…and highlanders!

When a gorgeous new man—in a kilt—comes to town, life in Highland, Georgia will never be the same…

Iain Connors is the poster boy for the strong and silent type. Growing up a loner at Cairndow Castle in Scotland with only the cliffs and moors for company, it’s understood Iain will assume the mantle of Cairndow groundskeeper when his father is ready to relinquish it. But his stint in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces has opened up a whole new world—and now, rather than settle down, he accepts an invitation to travel to the States to take charge of the Highland Games. After all, he’s led men into battle, how hard can planning a party be?

Anna Maitland is ready to step up for her best friend Isabel Blackmoor, who can’t run the Games in their hometown this year. Surely Anna, a dance instructor with boundless energy, spirit, and charm, is up for the challenge? What she doesn’t anticipate is a man in a kilt who turns up claiming he’s the one in charge. What’s worse about this Iain? He’s so infuriatingly handsome that she can’t help but fantasize about him whispering sweet-nothings in her ear in his rumbly, sexy brogue. . .

First Line:

Anna Maitland was waving the toddler class out the door of her dance studio, the strains of “The Wheels on the Bus” still resonating in her head, when her phone buzzed.

A Highlander in a Pickup by Laura Trentham

My Review:

I was pumped when I saw that A Highlander in a Pickup was available for review on NetGalley. I wanted to see what Anna and Iain’s love story would be like. So, now you’re wondering why a 3-star review if I was so thrilled to read it.

It wasn’t the plotline. A Highlander in a Pickup had a fast-moving plotline. There was no lag, which is a massive plus for me, and there were no dropped storylines or characters.

I hate to admit this, but it was Iain and Anna’s issues that dragged the story down for me. I love enemies to friend troupe as much as the next person. But in this book, it was taken to an extreme. Even though I knew that Anna and Iain were going to fall in love, there was a point where I wondered if they were going to make it there. There was too much bickering between the two during the first half of the book.

I wasn’t a fan of Iain being overly insecure. He overthought everything that came out of his mouth and was afraid of pissing Anna off. There was a point where I started eye-rolling because it was too much. Other than that, I loved him. He was what Anna needed.

Anna drove me crazy go nuts right. I couldn’t get over her behavior towards Iain. Her hostility was unwarranted and at times, made me mad. She couldn’t handle the planning of the games, and it showed. Also, she was super insecure. OMG, was she ever. I did think to myself, at one point, that she needed therapy. It was that bad. But, putting the insecurities and her bad attitude towards Iain aside, Anna was a good person. And that goodness was showcased time and again.

Anna and Iain’s romance was slow to get started because of everything that I listed above. There was an instant attraction that got pushed to the back burner due to Iain’s insecurities and Anna’s hostility. But, once they kissed, there was no going back. That sexual attraction snowballed into some pretty steamy sex scenes.

A Highlander in a Pickup is book 2 in the Highland, Georgia series. This book can be read as a stand-alone book. But, I would recommend reading A Highlander Walks Into a Bar to understand more about the festival and Highland itself.

The end of A Highlander in a Pickup was your typical HEA. I loved that the author gave a hint about who the next book is going feature.

I would give A Highlander in a Pickup an Adult rating. There is sex. There is language. There is mild violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread A Highlander in a Pickup. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

Lily for My Enemy (A Lockhart Sweet Regency Romance: Book 2) by L.G. Rollins

Lily For My Enemy: Lockhart Sweet Regency Romance by [Rollins, L. G.]

4 Stars


Date of publication: February 21st, 2020

Genre: Romance

Series: Lockhart Sweet Regency Romance

Wager for a Lady’s Hand—Book 1 (Review Here)

Lily for My Enemy—Book 2

Where you can find Lily for My Enemy: Amazon

Book Synopsis:

He’s from Lords. She sides with Commons.
Watch out London, sparks will fly.

Felix Lockhart is tired of balls, tired of musicales, and most especially tired of society only seeing him as the heir apparent to a powerful seat in Lords. Then, one evening he meets the witty Jocelyn Hunt—perhaps the only young lady in London who isn’t impressed with him.

Jocelyn Hunt will never hold a seat in the House of Commons herself, but she is no less an ardent supporter. When she meets the brooding Felix Lockhart, she is determined he understand that the House of Lords simply cannot continue to ignore the changing times.

Though they quarrel at first, both Felix and Jocelyn find themselves irresistibly drawn toward the other. But when their roles as heir apparent and daughter of a prominent man in Commons push them apart, can their undeniable connection be enough to bridge two groups determined to hate one another?

First Line:

Felix Lockhart, Earl of Sutby, cringed.

Lily for My Enemy by L.G. Rollins

My Review:

Regency romance is one of my favorite sub-genres of historical romances to read. I have said this often, but I love imagining what it was like back then. I have a fascination with the English ton, the Lords, and Ladies. So, when I saw that this book was available for review, I jumped on it.

Lily for My Enemy is the 2nd book in the Lockhart Sweet Regency Romance series. It can be read as a stand-alone. As always, I do suggest reading book one to familiarize yourself with the world. But in this book, the author did a great job of keeping the previous books characters in the background.

The plotline for Lily for My Enemy was medium paced. There was a bit of lag when Jocelyn went to the country, but the author was able to get the book back on track. I did notice that there was a dropped secondary storyline that involved someone paying the urchin to spy on Jocelyn and Felix and then put an unflattering article in the paper. It was never named who, and that storyline was dropped. I wish that it wasn’t. I wish that the person was named. I have a feeling who it was, but now I will never know.

I liked Felix’s character progression in Lily for My Enemy. At the beginning of the book, he was an immature boy who had little regard for people’s feelings. By the end of the book, he matured into a man who was willing to fight for the woman he loved. It was beautiful to read.

I loved Jocelyn. She wholeheartedly supported her father’s causes and his seat in the House of Commons. She viewed the House of Lords as something evil and corrupt (and she wasn’t wrong). I loved how she wasn’t afraid to go toe to toe with Felix. She was a spitfire, and I loved it.

Lily for My Enemy is a clean romance. There is no sex, and you know what, I enjoyed that. I enjoyed not reading a book that had only a couple of kisses in it.

The main storyline about Felix and Jocelyn’s romance had me on edge. I didn’t think it was going to go anywhere because of their father’s animosity towards each other. There was a point where I compared it to Romeo and Juliet. It was when their father’s found out, and the newspaper printed that article. My heart broke for both Felix and Jocelyn. But, I did admire Felix’s guts in going to Jocelyn’s father and asking for her hand in marriage. That took guts.

The end of Lily for My Enemy was your typical HEA. I cannot wait to read the next book!!!

I would give Lily for My Enemy an Older Teen rating. There is sno ex. There is mild language. There is mild violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 16 read this book.

I would reread Lily for My Enemy. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

Stepbrother with Benefits (The Masons: Book 2) by Hazel Kelly

Stepbrother With Benefits: An Opposites Attract Romance (Mason Family Book 2) by [Kelly, Hazel]

4 Stars


Date of publication: February 3rd, 2020

Genre: Romance

Series: The Masons

My Best Friend’s Sister—Book 1 (review here)

Stepbrother with Benefits—Book 2

Where you can find Stepbrother with Benefits: Amazon

Book Synopsis:

The first time I laid eyes on James Mason, the world stood still.

Unfortunately, the tether ball I’d just spiked didn’t, and when it ploughed into the back of my distracted head, I bit my tongue so hard I tasted blood.

I don’t know why I was so dumbstruck. All he did was ride up on his skateboard and call my best friend’s name.

Perhaps it was his confidence that roused me. Or the funny cowlick at the front of his dirty-blond hair. Or the way his jeans sagged on his hips… Not that I’d ever noticed the way a boy’s jeans fit before.

But it wasn’t my name he called that day, and it never will be.

Because guys like James Mason don’t fall for bookworms like me. And even if they did, that farfetched dream died the day he became the stepbrother I never wanted.

Not that I don’t want him.

I love the idea of him wrestling me to the floor and pinning me down with the weight of his body. But there’s nothing familial about the way I wish he would pull my hair, the way I wish he would pull me close.

I’ll be taking that secret to the grave, though, because our families have been through enough.

Besides, he doesn’t see me that way.

So I keep biting my tongue. As hard as it takes to keep my secret.

And only when I’m alone do I ever imagine that it’s him.

First Line:

The first time I laid eyes on James Mason, the world stood still.

Stepbrother with Benefits by Hazel Kelly

My Review:

Stepbrother with Benefits is book 2 in The Masons Series. I keep going back and forth if you can read this book as a standalone. In some sense, yes, you can. But if you want to understand the dynamics of James and Brie’s combined family, then I would highly recommend reading book one first. It explains the backstory to the series better than this book does.

I am going to throw up a trigger warning. A professor sexually assaults Brie in the middle of the book. It wasn’t rape but a combination of grabbing (breast and genitals) and threats made against Brie. It was a direct reference to the #MeToo moment. If this triggers you, I suggest picking up another book to read. The author did a fantastic job of showing how raw Brie was after that and how she dealt with it.

Brie and James had some serious chemistry going on in this book. Even before they had sex, their encounters were sexually charged. When they had sex, it was flipping amazeballs. One of the best sex scenes I have read to date. Even I was left feeling fulfilled by reading it!!

I didn’t get the “Ewww” factor with Brie and James being stepbrother and sister. One reason: They weren’t blood-related. Another reason: They weren’t raised to think of themselves as siblings. Brie was Maddy’s friend way before James’s father, and Brie’s mother got married. So they knew each other. If anything, I thought that it was a sweet romance. It was evident that James loved Brie. I guessed that right from the beginning.

I liked Brie, and I had an instant connection with her. She was quiet and didn’t bother anyone. She was loyal to her best friend, to the point where she backed off when she thought her friend was interested in James. But, she was also a fighter and a survivor.

I loved James in this book. He had come across as uptight and controlling in Maddy and Quinn’s story. So to see him unbend in this book was excellent. What I loved is that he acknowledged his feelings for Brie reasonably early in the book, and he spent most of the book trying to win her over. The most telling scene was when he went after the professor but refused to do anything. I had tears streaming down my face. If only all men (and women) could act like that when a loved one had been harmed. I loved that he also fought for her. He started reading Harry Potter, and that scene in the ice cream store was sweet.

I will say that both Brie and James dealt with the backlash about their relationship fantastically. I loved how James put various people in their places.

The end of Stepbrother with Benefits was terrific. Not only did it set up Maeve’s story perfectly, but the way it ended with James and Brie was perfect. Put it this way, they both deserved the HEA that they got.

I would give Stepbrother with Benefits an Adult rating. There is sex. There is language. There is mild violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread Stepbrother with Benefits. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

Blog Tour: An Everyday Hero (A Heart of a Hero: Book 2) by Laura Trentham

An Everyday Hero (Heart of a Hero Book 2) by [Trentham, Laura]

4 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Griffin

Date of publication: February 4th, 2020

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction

Series: A Heart of a Hero

The Military Wife—-Book 1 (Review Here)

An Everyday Hero—Book 2

Where you can find An Everyday Hero: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

From award-winning author Laura Trentham comes an emotionally layered novel about redemption, second chances and discovering that life is worth fighting for.

At thirty, Greer Hadley never expected to be forced home to Madison, Tennessee with her life and dreams of being a songwriter up in flames. To make matters worse, a series of bad decisions and even crappier luck lands her community service hours at a nonprofit organization that aids veterans and their families. Greer cannot fathom how she’s supposed to use music to help anyone deal with their trauma and loss when the one thing that brought her joy has failed her.

When Greer meets fifteen-year-old Ally Martinez, her plans to stay detached and do as little as possible get thrown away. New to town and dealing with the death of her father in action, she hides her emotions behind a mask of bitterness and sarcasm, but Greer is able to see past it and recognizes pieces of who she once was in Ally. The raw and obvious talent she possesses could take her to the top and Greer vows to make sure life’s negativities don’t derail Ally’s potential.

After Greer is assigned a veteran to help, she’s not surprised Emmett Lawson, the town’s golden boy, followed his family’s legacy. What leaves her shocked is the shell of a man who believes he doesn’t deserve anyone’s help. A breakthrough with Ally reminds Greer that no one is worth giving up on. So she shows up one day with his old guitar, and meets Emmett’s rage head on with her stubbornness. When a situation with Ally becomes dire, the two of them must become a team to save her—and along the way they might just save themselves too.

First Line:

Disorderly conduct.

An Everyday Hero by Laura Trentham

My Review:

For some reason, I have been reading a lot (and stress, a lot) of military-themed romances lately. I am not a massive fan of them. 90% of the book I have read, the soldiers come back from battle with PTSD or missing limbs, which is fine by me. But, by the middle or the end of the book, the love of a good woman makes their PTSD go away or they miraculously come to terms with how they lost their limbs. Not realistic, and that is the main reason why I stopped reading them. But, then I picked up the first book in A Heart of a Hero series and read a book where things didn’t go away. The hero and the heroine had to deal with their issues. That reason alone, I decided to read An Everyday Hero. I was impressed with what I read and the tact that the author showed when writing about PTSD in veterans.

The plotline for An Everyday Hero was medium paced. That allowed the author to develop the main character’s personalities and relationships with each other. It also allowed for the two main plotlines to be able to mature and then merge. I loved it.

I loved Greer. She had one of the more epic introductions that I have read, ever. I loved her sass and her wit during the book. She was the right choice to send over to get Emmett off his butt. I did find her character a little too much at times, but she was larger than life presence in the book. Her interactions with Ally were gold also.

Emmett made me cry several times during the book. His guilt and regret over what happened to his sergeant were palpable. I didn’t quite understand why he was so angry at his father at first. But as the book went on, I was able to piece things together. His character growth throughout the book was incredible. I loved seeing him at the end of the book, knowing what he had come from.

Emmett and Greer’s romance was medium paced. There were a few chapters of “does he/she or doesn’t he/she” going on for me. I liked that the author paced it that way, though. It allowed for Emmett and Greer to build their friendship. As for the sex, the author chose to be semi-clean with this book. I say semi-clean because while they do have sex, she didn’t go into detail. I loved it. I feel if she went into detail, it would have taken away from the more critical parts of the book.

The storyline with Ally was heartbreaking. But, I was surprised that when Ally told Greer about the online bullying, that Greer did nothing about it. She didn’t mention it to Angela (the head of the music therapy program). Instead, it was just dropped. I felt that it was an essential part of Ally’s story. It, along with the other issues, showed how tough she had it. I was a little disappointed about that. But overall, I did enjoy how Ally’s character grew during the book. I also enjoyed the twist that was revealed almost at the end of the book. I saw it coming, but I still enjoyed it.

The storyline with Greer, her community service, music therapy, and her issues was excellent. I loved seeing Greer grow during that storyline. I loved seeing her rediscover her love of music as she helped Ally.

The storyline with Wayne (who skeeved me out) was dropped after Greer invoked Emmett’s name. I was a little disappointed because up until that point, I thought he was going to turn out to be a “bad guy.” Plus, I wouldn’t say I liked that Greer had resort to using Emmett’s name to get Wayne to back off. It didn’t sit right with me.

I was also confused as to how An Everyday Hero fits in the A Heart of a Hero series. Other than Karen and Ally coming from Fort Knox, there was no connection to the other book. Maybe I missed something.

The end of An Everyday Hero was bittersweet. From the minute Emmett helped the foal be born to the not so surprising epilogue, I was a mess. The twist with Ally happened during that time. I will say that Greer’s parents were saints and that Emmett’s father ended up being not such a bad guy. The epilogue was a little predictable. I guessed everything that happened. Still, it was a great ending to the book.

I would give An Everyday Hero an Adult rating. There is sex. There is language. There is mild violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread An Everyday Hero. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**

Scot Under the Covers (Wild Wicked Highlanders: Book 2) by Suzanne Enoch

Scot Under the Covers: The Wild Wicked Highlanders by [Enoch, Suzanne]

4 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, St. Martin’s Paperbacks

Date of publication: January 28th, 2019

Genre: Romance

Series: Wild, Wicked Highlanders

It’s Getting Scot in Here—Book 1 (Review Here)

Scot Under the Covers—Book 2

Where you can find Scot Under the Covers: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

When a resourceful English lady and a hot-blooded Highlander join forces to trick a scoundrel, every rule will be broken!

Miranda Harris is known for her charm, wit, and ability to solve any problem she encounters. But when her brother lands neck-deep in gambling debt to a crafty villain and Miranda is subsequently blackmailed into marrying him, she must enlist the help of the devil himself to save the family honor―and herself.

Devilishly handsome Highlander Aden MacTaggert knows next to nothing about the ways of the ton, but he most certainly knows his way around gaming halls and womens’ hearts. Still, Aden is not sure how he’ll manage to find a Sassenach bride in time to save his family’s inheritance. When his almost sister-in-law Miranda comes to him for assistance, he proposes a partnership: She will help him navigate London society and he’ll teach her everything about wagering…and winning back her freedom. The beautiful, clever lass intrigues Aden―but is she playing her own game, or are the sparks between them real? He is accustomed to risking his pocket. But betting on Miranda’s love is a game he can’t afford to lose. . .

First Line:

I said he was in the doorway,” Aden MacTaggert stated, eyeing his older brother on the great black Friesian warhorse Coll rode.

Scot Under the Covers by Suzanne Enoch

My Review:

I am a massive fan of historical romances. I am also a massive fan of historical romances that involve Highlanders. So, when I saw that Scot Under the Covers was up for review, I knew that I needed to read it.

Scot Under the Covers is the 2nd book in the Wild, Wicked Highlanders series. This book can be read as a standalone book, but I would highly recommend reading book 1. That way, you can get a feel for the boys’ relationship with their mother and her demand that brought them to London. It is explained in this book but gets more in-depth in book 1.

Scot Under the Cover got off to a slow start. I did appreciate the slow start. The author chose to lay the groundwork for Miranda’s storyline. She also decided to let the reader get a good feel for what type of person Aden was. The book did pick up in pace after that first couple of chapters, and it kept a steady pace throughout the book.

I loved Miranda’s character growth in this book. She was introduced as a shy, sheltered debutante. She was sharp, and she knew how to defend herself verbally. Her character growth came when she was forced into an engagement to Captain Robert Vale. She was forced to depend on her wits to outwit him, and when that didn’t work, she turned to Aden. By the end of the book, she was an amazing woman, and she was worthy of Aden.

I had liked Aden in the previous book. The small glimpse that was given of him showed him to be a man who took risks, in and out of the gaming hells. If I liked him in the previous books, I loved him in this one. He knew something was going on with Miranda. Once he found out what was going on, he was going to do anything and everything to help her. What I liked is that not everything is what it seems with him. He had layers upon layers. It was interesting to see what was going to be revealed once one of his layers were peeled back.

I never do this, but I loved the villain in this book. Captain Robert Vale was indeed an evil man. Each one of his interactions with Miranda gave me chills. How he got to Miranda gave me chills. Everything about him gave me chills. I was surprised that he was juggling more than one ball, though. When that was revealed, I did have hope for Miranda after that.

Aden and Miranda’s romance got off to a slow start. She was attracted to him (and him to her), but she was too focused on trying to shake Captain Robert Vale to acknowledge it. It was when Aden found out what was going on that their romance sparked. Then it was all downhill. Aden knew that he was going to marry Miranda reasonably early in the book. It took Miranda much longer to come to that realization.

This is not a clean romance. There is sex. Now how the sex scene came about is interesting. Miranda didn’t want Captain Robert Vale to take her virginity. She asks Aden, who is more than happy to help. The sex scenes were tastefully written and were hot.

I was a little annoyed (actually a lot) with Miranda’s brother and his role in everything. How she could keep talking to him after that baffled me. I also don’t understand how Aden kept his temper too.

The end of the book was nothing short of amazing. But, I was a little put off by how Miranda and Captain Robert Vale’s storyline ended. I was left unfulfilled and feeling a little irritated. But, other than that, amazing and a real HEA!!!

I would give Scot Under the Covers an Adult rating. There are sexual situations. There is language. There is violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread Scot Under the Covers. I would recommend it to family and friends.

**I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book**