How To Train Your Earl (First Comes Love: Book 3) by Amelia Grey

How to Train Your Earl (First Comes Love, #3)
How To Train Your Earl by Amelia Grey

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

Date of publication: April 27th, 2021

Genre: Romance

Purchase Links: Amazon | B&N | Alibris | Powells | IndieBound | Indigo

Format read: Unedited ARC

Got book from: Saint Martin’s Press

Trigger Warnings: Grief


Goodreads Synopsis:

A roguish earl must fight using his honor and not his sword to win his lady’s hand in How To Train Your Earl, the third book in the First Comes Love trilogy from bestseller Amelia Grey.

Brina Feld has settled into a life devoted to helping others since the sinking of the Salty Dove left her widowed. She has no need for a man in her contented life. But when the notorious and handsome Lord Blacknight returns and awakens her desires, her peace and serenity vanish. If she agrees to an alliance with him, she knows she will have to battle her heart to keep from being snared under his spell.

Zane, the Earl of Blacknight, was never supposed to inherit the earldom, so he didn’t much care to lead a respectable life before then. Fistfights, card games, and drinking are the order of the day. Now he’s determined to change his rakish ways and he knows the proper lady who can help him. There’s just one problem: He’s already bet he’ll win her hand before the Season is over. With her resolve to out-scheme him, how can he show her that his love is true? 


First Line:

Brina Feld should have known a lady wasn’t safe from rakes, rogues, and scoundrels at a masked ball in Paris.

How to train your earl by amelia grey

Review:

I was excited to read How to Train Your Earl. I had read the first book in the series and enjoyed it. Unfortunately, I did miss the second book but figured that I didn’t need to read it (I was right). So, I jumped right into reading this book.

From the beginning, the flow of How to Train Your Earl was great. The chapters were well organized, and I could tell when the author shifted from one person to another (mainly Zane and Brina). That made it pleasurable to read the book.

The plotline for How to Train Your Earl was medium paced. There was some build-up at the beginning of the book, plateauing in the middle and then having a gradual wrap up towards the end of the book. Again, it was perfect for the book.

I wasn’t a massive fan of the storyline. Something about a woman forcing a man to do what she wanted (and vice versa) made me go, “eh. “ I did like the secondary plotlines with Brina’s cousin/Zane’s cousin and the gambling. It added a bit of zip to the plotline.

I was not too fond of Brina. During various points in the book, I found her to be controlling, immature, unwilling to bend, and naive. She was passive-aggressive too. Looking back on the book, I still don’t know what Zane saw in her, other than she saved him and he needed a wife. She was also almost too independent for the era. Some of the things she did with Zane were appropriate for the period. But others (having him in her house alone, hosting a dinner at his home were two) were borderline “eh. “ I also wish that there were some flashback to when she was grieving over her husband’s death. She kept saying how badly she hurt and how long it took for her to recover.

I felt terrible for Zane. He inherited the earldom when his cousins died. On top of that, his family had treated him terribly growing up, and they expected him to be OK with them acting like he was the best thing since sliced bread. So, I understood why he latched onto Brina when he saw her, and I understood why he agreed to her ridiculous rules. It was nice to see his character grow throughout the book. I liked who he became.

As much as I didn’t like Zane and Brina together, they had chemistry. Their attraction zinged off the pages, and when they finally ended up in bed, it was terrific.

The secondary storyline involving Brina and Zane’s cousins was interesting. It added a little extra oomph to the story. It also set up, I think, for the next book in the series.

The end of How to Train Your Earl was interesting. Mainly because of how Brina acted. I won’t get into it, but I had my mouth opened the entire time during that scene with Zane. She didn’t let him get a word in edgewise. Of course, this being a romance, there is a HEA, but man, I don’t know. I don’t think that they could have a HEA in real life.


How to Train Your Earl was an OK romance. The plotline and pacing of the book were good. The flow of the book was fantastic. But there were things that I didn’t like. I was not too fond of the characters, which is a massive thing for me. The characters make or break a book. There was great sexual chemistry up to when they had sex. Then it went away.

I would recommend How to Train Your Earl to anyone over 21. There are sexual situations in the book with slightly graphic sex. There is some mild violence along with some gambling scenes.

Blog Tour: Fearless (Less Than Zero: Book 3) by Kaylene Winter

Fearless (Less Than Zero, #3)

Publisher: Rockstar Romance LLC

Date of Publication: March 17th, 2021

Genre: Romance

Series: Less Than Zero

Restless—Book 0.5

Endless: Ty & Zoey—Book 1

Limitless: Jace & Alex—Book 2

Fearless: Connor & Ronni—Book 3

Purchase Links: Amazon

Format Read: Unedited ARC

Received: For Blog Tour from coordinator

Trigger Warning: Sexual Harassment, Sexual Assault (implied in one case), Alcoholism, Drug Use (talked about)


Goodreads Synopsis:

Family is everything, I protect mine with my life..

Connor McGloughlin had it all, a great family, a college scholarship and music.
Tragedy forced him to grow up too fast.
When his life finally is on track, Ronni Miller appears like a dream.
Kindred spirits in the most unlikely of circumstances.
There’s only one thing in the way—
Her dark past he’s determined to protect her from.

When your innocence is stolen, trust is a precious gift..

Actress Ronni Miller tasted fame at a young age.
But her path to stardom was riddled with tragedy.
She never imagined falling for Connor McGloughlin, a rogue, Irish rock star.
The thing is? Ronni’s got revenge on her mind.
Regardless of the risk or the consequences—
Or losing the one thing in her life that makes her feel alive.

Connor has only ever asked Ronni for one thing: her heart.
But when her bravery is couched in lies?
She risks losing the man who would do anything for her.
Will she realize being fearless means trusting true love?


First Line:

“Fuck my life!” Byron Angel, the pampered second-bit actor screeched just before shoving his chips over to me.

Fearless by Kaylene Winters

Review

When I read the blurb for Fearless, I knew that this was a book that I wanted to read. I decided that I would look past that it was book 3 in the Less Than Zero series. That is how much the blurb hooked me into reading the book. I figured that if I liked Fearless, I can go back and read the first two books (actually three because of the prequel). And I was right on all counts!!

Fearless is a medium-paced book in both storyline and pacing. With these types of books, I have come to expect a fast-paced plotline/storyline. So, I was surprised when Fearless started at a medium pace and kept it up for the entire book. I enjoyed it. It allowed me to digest what was going on (and a lot was going on initially).

Fearless has dual storylines (Connor and Ronni’s). Usually, I’m not too fond of it when there is more than one storyline. But in this case, and considering what Ronni was doing/had gone through, it was needed. To try and condense everything to one storyline wouldn’t have had the impact it did.

I thought the author did a fantastic job showing how toxic Hollywood was (and still is). I got chills when I read about Ronni’s time on the TV show and how it affected her. I also liked that the author showed that men could be forced into the same #MeToo situations as women. I never gave that much thought until I read this book. Then I remembered Corey Feldman and his claims about the same things happening in Fearless, and I began to wonder. How many times is the “casting couch” used for men and women to get parts? How many times are teenagers (and adults) forced to do things they usually wouldn’t do with producers/directors to get juicier parts? And how many of those people are forced out of the business/blackballed/labeled difficult because they refused or had parents that said: “No Fucking Way?” (like Ronni’s mom). Just food for thought.

The author also highlighted something else that I have rarely heard of—being a beard. Being a beard means that a straight woman will date a closeted gay man to convince people/keep up the appearance that the man is straight. Ronni was a beard, and she was a beard with a mission. She was collecting evidence against one of the TV producers whose show she was in when she was a teenager. The men she dated were victims of him. It was very compelling to read.

Connor’s backstory wasn’t as traumatic as Ronni’s, but it was pretty sad. His father had a horrible car crash when Connor was in high school and soon spiraled into alcoholism with a side of gambling addiction. Connor ended up dropping out of high school to run the family business. He also learned how to play poker to recover the money his father lost. His outlet was the band. The road to fame was gradual for him (it was several years before the band hit it big), and he dealt with a lot of verbal abuse from his father. It was sad to read, and I could emphasize Connor’s frustration.

Connor and Ronni’s love story didn’t get off to a great start. They met at a concert, there were sparks, and then he took off (thinking she would follow). She didn’t and thought he was a player. It wasn’t until she and her friend hitched a ride to Australia with the band that they got to know each other. That is where their relationship began. The author didn’t end the book after their initial hook-up. Nope, instead, the book kept going for several years before everything blew up. Ronni and Connor were together for 3-4 (maybe more) years by the time things went down.

For those of you who like hot sex scenes, Connor and Ronni’s were insanely hot. I loved it!! They were like bunnies every time they got together—days and days of sex. My only complaint was that Connor and Ronni were going bareback very soon into their relationship. And they didn’t get tested. Why would I be bothered? Because Connor turned into a man whore after his longtime girlfriend dumped him. He slept his way across Europe (implied). Other than that, I was all in!!

The author wonderfully wrote the main storyline (see above). Saying that I wouldn’t have been as patient as Connor was with Ronni while she was bearding. I also understood why he did what he did. But, saying that, I was surprised at the turn that the storyline took.

I will say that the secondary characters were terrific in Fearless. Ronni had such a great support group, and Connor’s bandmates were incredible. They made this book so much more interesting to read.

Fearless can be read as a stand-alone book, even though it is book 3 in the series. There are references to previous books and characters, but nothing made me go “Uh” or “WTF.” It made me want to read the previous books and see what their stories were.

There were a couple of things that I didn’t like about Fearless. First, I wouldn’t say I liked how the book began. I was left lost in the first couple of chapters. It isn’t until almost the end of the book that the first couple of chapters make sense. Secondly, I thought the ending was typical, which was disappointing. Ronni and Connor were anything but ordinary and to have that sort of conclusion was “eh.


Fearless was an emotional, well-written romance. The romance was excellent, and I loved that the author jumped into current events. The medium-paced storyline complemented the story.

I would recommend Fearless for anyone over the age of 21. There is graphic sex. There is violence. There are scenes of the aftermath of sexual abuse. There is talk of a suicide. There is talk of drug use. There are graphic examples of alcohol abuse.


AUTHOR BIO:

When she was only 15, Kaylene Winter wrote her first rocker romance novel starring a fictionalized version of herself, her friends and their gorgeous rocker boyfriends. After living her own rockstar life as a band manager, music promoter and mover and shaker in Seattle during the early 1990’s, Kaylene became a digital media legal strategist helping bring movies, television and music online. Throughout her busy career, Kaylene lost herself in romance novels across all genres inspiring her to realize her life-long dream to be a published author. She lives in Seattle with her amazing husband and dog. She loves to travel, throw lavish dinner parties and support charitable causes supporting arts and animals.


March 15th
Sunny Shelly Reads >> Excerpt
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March 16th
Adventures in Writing >> Excerpt
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March 17th
underneath the covers  >> Excerpt
Iron Canuck Reviews & More >> Excerpt
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March 18th
Hawthorn Book Reviews  >> Review
Rockin; Book Reviews  >> Top 10 List
Read With Me  >> Review

March 19th
Sadie’s Spotlight  >> Excerpt
The Bouncing Tigger Reads  >> Interview
My Fiction Nook  >> Guest post

March 22nd
Syllables of Swathi >> Excerpt
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March 23rd
Drunk On Pop >> Excerpt
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March 24th
Barbara’s Booknalysis  >> Review
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March 25th
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Highland Sword (Royal Highlander: Book 3) by May McGoldrick

Highland Sword: A Royal Highlander Novel by [McGoldrick, May]

3 Stars

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

Date of publication: March 31st, 2020

Genre: Romance

Series: Royal Highlander

Highland Crown—Book 1 (Review Here)

Highland Jewel—Book 2 (Review Here)

Highland Sword—Book 3

Where you can find Highland Sword: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

A VOW FOR VENGEANCE
Fleeing to the Highlands after her father’s murder, fiery Morrigan Drummond has a score to settle with Sir Rupert Burney, the English spymaster responsible for his death. Trained to fight alongside the other rebels determined to break Britain’s hold on Scotland, she swears to avenge her father’s death—until a chance encounter with a barrister as proud and principled as she is presents her with a hard choice…and a bittersweet temptation.

A PLEA FOR PASSION
Aidan Grant has never encountered another woman like dangerous beauty Morrigan—and he has the bruises to prove it. Yet she could be the key to defending two innocent men, as well as striking a death blow to the reprehensible Burney. Convincing Morrigan to help him will take time, but Aidan is willing to wait if it means victory over corrupt government forces and freedom for his people…and Morrigan’s hand in marriage. Can two warriors committed to a cause stand down long enough to open their hearts to a love fierce enough to last…forever?


First Line:

The afternoon sun cast a golden glow over the high walled garden beside the keep.

Highland Sword by May McGoldrick

My Review:

I was excited to read Highland Sword. I was excited because this is Morrigan’s book. I wanted to see who would be brave enough to tame her. I also wanted to know more about her. She was rarely mentioned in Highland Crown. In Highland Jewel, she was mentioned, and she did have a couple of scenes that showed how strong she was. Highland Sword more than delivered on that.

Highland Sword is the 3rd book in the Royal Highlander series. It cannot be read as a stand-alone book. You do need to read Highland Crown and Highland Jewel to understand the different backstories in the book. Also, Cinead’s story is fully explained in the first book. The author does explain it here, but it goes more into depth in Highland Crown.

Highland Sword has two, sometimes 3, POVs’. The book is split between Morrigan and Aidan, with Cinead and sometimes his mother’s POV thrown in. The transition between Morrigan and Aidan’s POV’s was wonderfully written. I had no issue following the book went it went back and forth between them.

I loved Morrigan, but I did wonder why she was so standoffish with people. I liked that she didn’t care about going against what was considered the norm for that era. She was independent, and she was handy with just about any weapons, including her fists. I wondered what made her that way. I got my answer and I was horrified. It was then that I understood why she was the way she was.

I liked Aidan. I wished there was more focus on him being a barrister. Seeing how the law worked back then fascinated me. I wanted to know more!! There were points in the book where I thought he was a pushover, but, in hindsight, he wasn’t. He allowed Morrigan to do what she wanted (well, except the last thing she did), and he made sure she was safe.

I wasn’t a fan of how Aidan and Morrigan met. But I wouldn’t say I liked how it was escalated. A knockdown fight between a man and a woman? Nope, not my cup of tea. The romance angle of the book was super slow in getting started. And even after that, I was left halfway wondering if they would break out into a fight again.

I was disappointed to read that Highland Sword was going to be the last book in the Royal Highlander series. There were a few people who I wanted to see get their happy ever afters. But, in the author’s note, there was a hint about more books in that world. I will be anxiously awaiting those.

The end of Highland Sword was sweet. I liked that Aidan and Morrigan got their happily ever after. The epilogue also saddened me.


I would give Highland Sword 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 Highland Sword. I would recommend it to family and friends.

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

All the Best Lies (Ellery Hathaway: Book 3) by Joanna Schaffhausen

All the Best Lies: A Mystery (Ellery Hathaway Book 3) by [Schaffhausen, Joanna]

4 Stars

Publisher: St. Martin’s Press, Minotaur Books

Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense

Series: Ellery Hathaway

The Vanishing Season—Book 1 (Review Here)

No Mercy—Book 2 (Review Here)

All the Best Lies—Book 3

Where you can find All the Best Lies: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

FBI agent Reed Markham is haunted by one painful unsolved mystery: who murdered his mother? Camilla was brutally stabbed to death more than forty years ago while baby Reed lay in his crib mere steps away. The trail went so cold that the Las Vegas Police Department has given up hope of solving the case. But then a shattering family secret changes everything Reed knows about his origins, his murdered mother, and his powerful adoptive father, state senator Angus Markham. Now Reed has to wonder if his mother’s killer is uncomfortably close to home.

Unable to trust his family with the details of his personal investigation, Reed enlists his friend, suspended cop Ellery Hathaway, to join his quest in Vegas. Ellery has experience with both troubled families and diabolical murderers, having narrowly escaped from each of them. She’s eager to skip town, too, because her own father, who abandoned her years ago, is suddenly desperate to get back in contact. He also has a secret that could change her life forever, if Ellery will let him close enough to hear it.

Far from home and relying only on each other, Reed and Ellery discover young Camilla had snared the attention of dangerous men, any of whom might have wanted to shut her up for good. They start tracing his twisted family history, knowing the path leads back to a vicious killer—one who has been hiding in plain sight for forty years and isn’t about to give up now


First Line:

Camilla Flores has always been in the wrong place at the wrong time, starting with the day she was born, six weeks early, in Puerto Rico, before her mother could cross the ocean and land on continental American shores.

All the Best Lies by Joanna Schaffhausen

My Review:

All the Best Lies is Reed’s story. Reed’s biological mother was brutally murdered when Reed was four months old. A prominent senator adopted him and but he always had questions about his mother. Then, a DNA test threw his world into a tailspin. The results of that DNA test makes Reed take another look at his mother’s unsolved murder. But, someone doesn’t want that murder solved, and they will do anything to keep it that way. What was in that DNA test, and who killed Reed’s mother? And what is tying them together?

All the Best Lies is the 3rd book in the Ellery Hathaway series. This book cannot be read as a standalone. You do need to read books 1 and 2 to understand Ellery and Reed’s relationship as well as Reed’s relationship with his family. If you do decide to pick the book up and read it, be prepared to be confused.

I loved Reed. He was determined to find out exactly what happened to his mother. His reactions to certain people in the book were right on. I would have been mad too!!! The only thing I didn’t agree with was when he went off on his own towards the end of the book.

I liked that Ellery took a step back in this book. What I mean by taking a step back is that her backstory and issues weren’t made the focal point of the book. She was still the same kick-ass ex-cop who went out of her way to help Reed.

I didn’t agree with the romance angle of the book. It didn’t seem right to have a romance between Ellery and Reed. I understood why the author did it (to show how far Ellery had come) but still.

The plotline about Reed’s mother’s murder was fantastic. The author did a great job of keeping the killer under wraps. Several red herrings were thrown out. I went back and forth about who killed Camilla and mentally kicked myself when the killer was revealed. I also loved the twist that was thrown in at the end. I did not see that coming.

The plotline about Ellery and her father broke my heart into little bits. I wanted to smack the crap out of her father. I understood her feelings about what he asked. I would have been torn too.

The end of All the Best Lies was terrific. The author did a great job of wrapping up all of the plotlines and bringing them together. I loved how Ellery was able to get the killer. Well, she had help but still. It was fantastic. I do wonder if there is going to be a book 4.


I would give All the Best Lies 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 All the Best Lies. I would recommend it to family and friends.

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

The Last Real Cowboy (Cold River Ranch: Book 3) by Caitlin Crews

The Last Real Cowboy (Cold River Ranch Book 3) by [Crews, Caitlin]

3.5 Stars

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

Date of publication: January 28th, 2020

Genre: Romance

Series: Cold River Ranch

A True Cowboy Christmas—Book 1 (Review Here)

Cold Heart, Warm Cowboy—Book 2 (Review Here)

The Last Real Cowboy—Book 3

Where you can find The Last Real Cowboy: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

In Cold River, sometimes forbidden love is the sweetest of them all…

Perennial good girl Amanda Kittredge knows that her longtime crush on Brady Everett was never really supposed to go anywhere. But when Brady comes home to Cold River during Amanda’s first attempt at independence, well, who better to teach her about rebellion than her older brother’s bad-boy best friend?

Brady’s plans did not include being forced to work the family homestead for a year–and yet, here he is. And, to make matters worse, his best friend’s innocent little sister is making a menace of herself in the most grown-up, tempting ways. When Amanda begs Brady to teach her about men, he knows he should refuse. But could Brady’s greatest temptation be his salvation?


First Line:

Brady Everett was the insufferable, patronizing, sadly all-too-gorgeous bane of Amanda Kittredge’s existence.

The Last Real Cowboy by Caitlin Crews

My Review:

The major plotline for The Last Real Cowboy centered around Brady and Amanda’s romance. The author chose to have that plotline go at a medium pace, which was more than OK with me. There was some lag towards the end of the book. I wasn’t thrilled with it, but the author was able to get the book back on track, so I dealt with it.

I am going to put up a quick trigger warning. Brady suffered intense emotional and verbal abuse by his father. The author didn’t hold back any punches when it came to writing what Angus did to him. Those were some of the most intense scenes of the book, and I will admit, I sobbed through them all. So, read with care if that type of abuse triggers you.

Brady was an enigma in Grey and Ty’s books. He was portrayed as someone who could care less about the ranch. I will admit, I was curious about how he would come across in the book. I was surprised when his character turned out to be the exact opposite of the previous two books. I felt terrible because he did have some legitimate business opportunities, and he got bullied/laughed at by his brothers. That was hard to read because they were continuing what Angus was doing to him.

I thought that Amanda was immature and impulsive for most of the book. But, once I got to thinking about it, I would have been the same way if I had four older brothers breathing down my neck. While she did mature throughout the book, her impulsiveness stayed. That impulsiveness was crucial towards the end of the book.

I did think that Brady and Amanda were a good couple, right from the beginning. They complimented each other. I loved that Amanda wasn’t afraid to go to bat for her man when the going got tough. I wouldn’t want to piss her off, that’s for certain. That scene was the best in the entire book.

The sexual attraction between Brady and Amanda was immediate and red hot. Of course, Brady did try to reign it in (because of her brothers), but Amanda kept chipping away at his defenses. That sexual attraction morphed into some intense sexual chemistry. The author was smart and built that chemistry up. So when they did have sex, it was explosive.

The plotline about Brady and the ranch was sad. As I mentioned above, his father abused him. He ensured that Brady would continue to be outcast by his brothers after his death. His college education was used against him time and time again. There was a point in the book where I did wonder why Brady was staying.

While The Last Real Cowboy is the last book in a series, it can be read as a standalone. But I would strongly suggest reading the first two books. It explains more about Angus and the brothers’ relationships.

I do wonder if Amanda’s brothers will be getting their books. If they do, I want to read it. They were a massive presence in The Last Real Cowboy!!

I wasn’t thrilled with the ending of The Last Real Cowboy. While everything happened the way I thought it did, I was left with a feeling that it was rushed.


I would give The Last Real Cowboy 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 The Last Real Cowboy. I would recommend it to family and friends.

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

Stranger in a Small Town (Door County: Book 3) by Margaret Watson

Stranger in a Small Town (Door County Book 3) by [Watson, Margaret]

4 Stars

Publisher: Dragonfly Press

Date of publication: August 15th, 2019

Genre: Romance

Series: Door Country

Small-Town Secrets—Book 1 (review here)

Small-Town Family—Book 2 (review here)

Stranger in a Small Town—Book 3

Where you can find Stranger in a Small Town: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

Seth Anderson arrives in Sturgeon Falls determined to prove two things — he never fathered a child, and Kat Macauley is a counterfeiter.

Fiercely protective, passionate and loving, Kat is not what he expected. Also unexpected are his growing feelings for her. To protect his investigation, he doesn’t tell Kat the whole truth. But as he unravels the crime, he has second thoughts about choosing a career over a family.

That won’t matter if Kat can’t forgive him for lying to her. Will his lies, and Kat’s doubts, make it impossible to create a new family?


First Line:

The woman on the bed stirred and her eyes fluttered open.

Stranger in a Small Town by Margaret Watson

My Review:

Stranger in a Small Town is the 3rd book in the Door County series. After reading the first two books, I knew that this book was going to be a good read. I wasn’t disappointed by what I read.

The plotline of Stranger in a Small Town was medium paced and well written. There were no dropped storylines or characters mysteriously disappearing, which added to my enjoyment of reading the book. There was a twist in the plotline that I should have seen coming.

While Stranger in a Small Town is book 3 in the series, it can be read as a stand-alone. But, and I stress but, if you want to understand the different family dynamics and relationships, then I suggest reading the books in order.

The storyline involving Seth, Kat, and Regan was heartbreaking. I liked that the author showed all angles of the story. From Seth’s disbelief to Kat’s anger to Regan’s confusion, it was real. I also liked that the author let Seth process that he had a daughter before starting things off with Kat. After the DNA test came back positive, then it was full steam ahead for the romance.

The secondary storyline with the counterfeit money/the pregnancy (because they are interconnected) was well written. The build-up to who was putting money in the safe box was excellent, as was who was counterfeiting the money. I was surprised by who it was. I didn’t see it coming at all. Talk about a twist.

The pregnancy storyline, which went at the same time as the counterfeiting one, was heartbreaking. It left me in tears. How the author wrapped, that storyline up was heart-wrenching.

I do wish that more information about Seth’s Secret Service service. I was intrigued by it. The author gave the barest glimpse into what he did, and that left me wanting more. It also explained why he was so hard to find when Regan’s mother tried to tell him that she was pregnant.

The romance between Seth and Kat took some time to build up. Kat had trust issues, and she kept lashing out at Seth. But, once those trust issues were gotten over, the romance was on its A Game. That led to some hot and heavy sex scenes.

The end of Stranger in a Small Town was intense. I couldn’t put the book down. I needed to see how the counterfeiting/pregnancy storyline was going to end. While I knew that Kat and Seth were going to have a HEA, I wanted to know how it was going to come about. And the epilogue!! It was a perfect ending to the series.


I would give Stranger in a Small Town 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 am on the fence if I would reread Stranger in a Small Town. I am also on the fence if I would recommend it to family and friends.

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

The Wrongful Death (The Great Devil War: Book 3) by Kenneth B. Andersen

The Wrongful Death: The Great Devil War III by [Andersen, Kenneth B., Andersen, Kenneth Bøgh]

4 Stars

Publisher:

Date of publication: April 5th, 2019

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

Series: The Great Devil War

The Devil’s Apprentice—Book 1 (review here)

The Die of Death—Book 2 (review here)

The Wrongful Death—Book 3

The Angel of Evil—Book 4

The Fallen Angel-–Book 5

The Fallen Devil—Book 6

Where to find The Wrongful Death: Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

An unfortunate chain of events makes Philip responsible for the untimely death of the school bully Sam—the Devil’s original choice for an heir. Philip must return to Hell to find Sam and bring him back to life, so that fate can be restored. But trouble is stirring in Lucifer’s kingdom and not even Philip can imagine the strange and dark journey that awaits him. A journey that will take him through ancient underworlds and all the way to Paradise.

The Wrong Death is volume 3 of The Great Devil War series.


First Line:

“I’m going to bed, Mom.”

The Wrongful Death by Kenneth B. Andersen

My Review:

This review is going to be challenging to write because I can’t give too much away without spoiling this book. That frustrates me because there is so much that I want to write, but I can’t!! But I will try.

The Wrongful Death is the 3rd book in The Great Devil War series. The Wrongful Death is not a book that can be read alone. To understand what is going on in The Wrongful Death, you need to read the first two books. I can’t stress this enough for this series. You will get lost!!

The plotline for The Wrongful Death was slow to start. Usually, I wouldn’t like it. I would want the author to start the book off with Philip going back to Hell. But, in this case, it is needed. Philip’s state of mind and his friendships (mainly with Sam) needed to be explained. Plus, it was interesting to see Satina’s jealousy manifesting. After those couple of chapters, the book did pick up speed, and it flew to the end.

The author did a fantastic job of creating a Hell that wasn’t as evil as I thought it would be. He also did a tremendous job of showing a fractured Hell. A Hell where the demons were starting to split between Aziel and Lucifer. I loved it!!

I loved that the author also chose to write in Biblical stories, along with Greek myths. Which meant I loved it when Philip and Satina journeyed to Hades to rescue Sam. The condemned that they met, along with Hades and Persephone (who was scarier than Hades, in my opinion), was wonderfully written.

I enjoyed getting to know more about Sam in this book. As evil as he was on Earth, he was innocent in Hell (and Hades). He was shocked by what he witnessed. Even more so, he was shocked by Philip’s infamy down there.

Philip and Satina’s relationship was cute. I did raise my eyebrows at the whole sleeping in bed together but, and I stress but, nothing happened. There were a few innocent kisses, and that’s it.

I am still getting over the ending of The Wrongful Death. I was not expecting either things to happen. I was shocked and saddened. But, at the same time, I cannot wait to read book four because I have a feeling that everything is going to hit the fan in that book.


I would give The Wrongful Death an Older Teen rating. There is no sex (some kissing scenes). There is mild language. There is violence. I would reccomend that no one under the age of 16 read this book.

I would reread The Wrongful Death. I would recommend it to family and friends.

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

Win Big (Wynn Hockey: Book 3) by Kelly Armstrong

Win Big: A Wynn Hockey Novel by [Jamieson, Kelly]

4 Stars

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept, Loveswept

Date of publication: November 19th, 2019

Genre: Romance

Series: Wynn Hockey

Play to Win—Book 1 (Review Here)

In It to Win It—Book 2 (Review Here)

Win Big—Book 3

Where you can find Win Big: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

When your name is Wynn, victory’s the only option…

Everly Wynn: As the only daughter in the Wynn family of hockey heroes, I never shared the ice with my brothers—or the approval they got from my father.
And that was before the scandal that ruined my life at sixteen.
Now that I’ve put all that behind me and built a successful career, the last thing I need is another hockey player in my life.
Especially one like Wyatt Bell.
He’s an arrogant, fast-living party boy. I hate how he gets by on his good looks and charm.
So why can’t I get him out of my mind?

Wyatt Bell: Life is short, and you’ve got to live it to the fullest. I learned that the hard way.
So on the ice, I always play to win, and on the town, fun and flirting are my game.
Because it’s better to laugh your way through the pain than to let them see you’re hurting—but I’ll never stop wishing I could find someone to share the real me with.
Something about Everly Wynn makes me think she could be the one.
But all she sees is a hockey jock hooked on good times.
If she didn’t take herself so seriously, maybe she would take a chance on being happy.


First Line:

They say that everything happens for a reason

Win Big by Kelly Jamieson

My Review:

I was excited when I read the blurb and saw that this was Everly/Wyatt’s story. Everly was an immense presence in Theo and J.P.’s books, and I couldn’t wait to read about her. I wasn’t disappointed.

Win Big’s plotline was well written and flowed well. The author was able to keep my attention focused on the plot through the entire book. Lately, I have found my attention wandering when reading. So, for a book to keep my attention is a good thing.

There are dual POV’s in Win Big. I am not an enormous fan of dual storylines. I get lost when reading them. My attention wanders, as I mentioned above. But the author did a fantastic job of switching between Everly and Wyatt’s POV.

I loved Everly in Win Big!! She was larger than life presence in the previous two books. She did get on my nerves in J.P.’s book, and honestly, I was expecting the same in this book. So, imagine my surprise when she came across as a normal girl with typical issues. I loved it!!

I loved Wyatt also. I will say that he had some significant baggage when he was getting involved with Everly. I wish that his relationship with Owen/Heather was explained earlier. I thought the same thing Everly did. Other than that, I loved him!! He stood up for her when Everly’s blast from the past came roaring back into her life. There was so much he did for her in this book, and that made me love him!!

Win Big is book 3 in the Wynn Hockey series. It can be read as a stand-alone book, but I highly suggest reading the first two books. There is a crucial storyline that is interwoven in the book. It is explained, but it’s better to read from book 1. That way, there is no confusion when reading about Bob’s problems.

Speaking of Bob’s issues, I loved how Everly, her brothers, her nieces, and nephews came together to try and solve it. I did feel bad that Everly’s digging made her face some painful truths about what was going on with Bob. The scene where they confront Bob and his two older sons was well written, and well, it made me cry.

Everly and Wyatt had some insane sexual chemistry going on. What I liked is that the author built that chemistry up to an explosive release. And yes, that is my way of saying that they had some unbelievable sex.

The end of Win Big was emotional. I am not going to get into it, but I will say that I am excited to see who the next couple is going to be.


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

I would reread Win Big. I would recommend it to family and friends.

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

Snowfall of Cedar Trail (Sweetwater Springs: Book 3) by Annie Rains

Snowfall on Cedar Trail: Two full books for the price of one (Sweetwater Springs Book 3) by [Rains, Annie]

4 Stars

Publisher: Forever (Grand Central Publishing), Forever

Date of publication: September 24th, 2019

Genre: Romance

Series: Sweetwater Springs

Christmas on Mistletoe Lane—Book 1 (review here)

A Wedding on Lavender Hill—Book 1.5

Springtime at Hope Cottage—Book 2 (review here)

Kiss Me in Sweetwater Springs—Book 2.5

Snowfall on Cedar Trail—Book 3

Starting Over at Blueberry Creek—Book 4 (expected publication date February 2020)

Where you can find Snowfall on Cedar Trail: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

From a USA Today bestselling author comes a heartwarming holiday romance between the a small-town florist and the handsome chief of police. Includes a bonus novel by Miranda Liasson!

Last Christmas was tough for Halona Locklear and her seven-year-old son Theo, who hasn’t spoken a word since his father’s death. This year, Halona wants nothing more than to give him a good holiday and to hear his sweet voice again. Enrolling him in the Mentor Match program might help, but when Theo gets matched with Sweetwater Springs Chief of Police, Alex Baker, Halona realizes that the handsome hero might know secrets about her past that she is determined to keep buried.

Chief of Police, Alex Baker, re-opens his father’s hit-and-run cold case every December, hoping to finally solve it. This year, his plate is full with being a Mentor Match to a young seven-year-old boy as well. His biggest obstacle, however, is fighting his attraction to the boy’s mother, Halona. As Alex gets close to solving his father’s cold case, he learns that those closest to him may be in danger — including Halona. Alex has already lost one of the most important people in his life; he isn’t about to lose her too, even if it means walking away to keep her safe.


First Line:

Something crashed in the kitchen

Snowfall on Cedar Trails by Annie Rains

My Review:

I love romance novels set around Thanksgiving/Christmas. I always get in the holiday mood while reading them. So, when I saw the Annie Rains had another book set around Thanksgiving/Christmas, I knew that I had to read it. I am glad that I did!! Because of this book, I was in the holiday mood for days.

The plotline for Snowfall on Cedar Trail was medium paced. The medium pace of the plotline worked for me. If the book had been faster-paced, an essential part of the plotline would have been glossed over.

I liked Halona. She was doing everything she could to run her business and get her son the help he needed. There was no place in her life for romance, which I understand. I thought her crush on Alex was cute. But she was wary of getting involved with him. I thought it was because of Theo’s issues, but then there was another reason why. That reason broke my heart when it was revealed. It also reinforced, in my eyes, how strong she was and had to be.

I loved Alex. He took his job as police chief seriously. When the book started, he was trying to help a battered woman leave her husband. He had also reopened his father’s cold case, trying to see if there were any new clues about his death. Then, while checking on the battered woman, he takes an abused puppy from her husband. On top of that, he had agreed to become a mentor to a child in need. It was a lot. His interactions with Halona, Theo, the town folk, and Officer Chew (the puppy and I LOVED the name!!) made the book.

Halona and Alex’s romance was a slow burn. I loved that they had been crushing on each other since, well, forever. They did have their ups and down, though. A significant down with their relationship was Halona’s ex-husband and how he treated her. But, they did get past it. When they did, their romance went into high gear.

Theo’s selective mutism was a significant part of the storyline. It was the reason that Theo was placed in the mentor program and in turn, got paired with Alex. I did feel bad for Theo. He saw his father doing something horrible to his mother. It affected him so much that he stopped talking. It broke my heart. But, I was glad to see that Alex was able to help Theo. But, I didn’t buy the end of that storyline. It seemed to me almost too perfect.

Another storyline that ended almost too perfectly was Alex’s father’s cold case and the battered woman’s storyline. I wasn’t a fan of Halona giving Tony advice about how to win his wife BACK. I mean, he beat his wife and a puppy. I also didn’t like how the cold case ended up. It left me with more questions, which drove me nuts.

The end of Snowfall of Cedar Trail was cute but seemed a little rushed. I couldn’t figure out who the next book will be about.


I would give Snowfall on Cedar Trail an Adult rating. There is sex. There is mild language. There is mild violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

I would reread Snowfall on Cedar Trail. I would recommend it to family and friends.

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

Lethal Nights (Brute Force: Book 3) by Lora Leigh

Lethal Nights: A Brute Force Novel by [Leigh, Lora]

4 Stars

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

Date of publication: September 24th, 2019

Genre: Romance

Series: Brute Force

Collision Point—Book 1

Dagger’s Edge—Book 2 (review here)

Lethal Nights—Book 3

Where you can find Lethal Nights: Barnes and Noble | Amazon | BookBub

Book Synopsis:

Ilya Dragonovich is no stranger to the dark side. As a safe-house owner for security agency Brute Force, Dragon knows that the battle line between good and evil runs through the heart of every man―and, sometimes, a beautiful woman…

Emma Jane Preston needs help. After her marriage crumbled, she believed she could get back to a normal, happy life. But her ex-husband moved among some shady characters, and now she needs the kind of protection that comes at a cost―one that only someone like Dragon can provide. But can Emma Jane trust this handsome, undercover operator to keep her safe when she is in danger of falling into the arms of the deeply seductive, fiery Dragon. . .and never letting go?


First Line:

Emma Jane Preston wasn’t certain what brought her awake, but between one second and the next she was fully aware, heart pounding, her mouth dry with fear.

Lethal Nights by Lora Leigh

My Review:

I was hesitant to review Lethal Nights. I had reviewed Dagger’s Edge this previous June and didn’t like it. What changed my mind was the blurb. It caught my attention and made me want to read the book. I am glad that I read Lethal Nights because I enjoyed this book.

The plot for Lethal Nights was fast-paced and well written. The author did a great job of keeping the frantic pace up the entire book. There were parts of the book where it lagged, but the author did a fantastic job of getting the book back on track.

I loved Emma Jane. She was a strong woman. The things she went through before Ilya would have broken a lesser woman. And the things she went through after him would have broken even a strong woman. I loved how family-centered Emma Jane was too. Her family and their safety came first. She wasn’t above hiding things from them (including what her slimy ex did). She was perfect for Ilya. She saw who he was beneath the tattoos and loved him. It was something that he needed.

I loved Ilya, but man, his personal life was a mess. No wonder he kept Emma Jane at arm’s length. I love that his past was a mystery. There were parts of his past that made me wonder how it is going to fit into the series. I mean, he is the heir to rule a tribe of Gypsies with powers. On top of that, Ilya is dangerous, and that part of him sent shivers up my spine. Because I knew that he wouldn’t back down when Emma Jane was targeted.

The romance between Emma Jane and Ilya was sweet but at the same time dangerous. I liked that Ilya fell for Emma Jane the minute he saw here. He respected her enough to leave her alone so she could recover from her divorce. But, once she got attacked at her house, all bets were off. And that’s when things started to heat up.

The sexual chemistry and attraction between Emma Jane and Ilya were intense. What I liked is that the author didn’t have them jump right into bed with each other. Instead, they took it slow. There was a point where I got frustrated. I wanted them to have sex, release the tension, and do-over. But, it was a great move on her part. She held them from having sex until the middle of the book. Talk about explosive!!! Then she built that tension back up.

The plotline with who was trying to kill Emma Jane was full of suspense and danger. There were two people who I felt were behind the attacks. Of course, I was surprised at who it was. I was also surprised at how depraved this person was.

I do wish that Ilya’s Gypsy background was revealed sooner. I was fascinated by it. I wanted to know more about how the Dragon King worked, what his title entailed. Some of it was explained, but I felt a lot of left out. I got a suspicion that there was some paranormal element to it.

I do want to drop a warning. This book covers some heavy situations. Even I had issues reading some scenes because of what happened. There are child abuse and domestic abuse in this book. There are several vivid scenes of Ilya being abused by his uncle and stepfather in the book. Those scenes made me cry. There is also a scene of domestic violence that involved Emma Jane and her manchild of an ex-husband.

The end of Lethal Nights was exciting. I can’t get into it because of what happened, but I will say that Emma Jane and Ilya get their happily ever after. Now, I do wonder who will be in the next book.


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

I would reread Lethal Nights. I would recommend it to family and friends.

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