Once and Always (Blackhawk Security: Book 6) by Margaret Watson

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Publisher: Dragonfly Press

Date of publication: August 2nd, 2022

Genre: Romance, Suspense, Mystery, Thriller

Series: Blackhawk Security

With One Breath—Book 1 (review here)

Once Removed—Book 2 (review here)

Once Burned—Book 3 (review here)

Fool Me Once—Book 4 (review here)

Just This Once—Book 5 (review here)

Once and Always—Book 6

Purchase Links: Amazon

Goodreads Synopsis:

Zoe was still in high school when she saw her father shot dead by a classmate obsessed with her, and then still a kid, witnessed the killer’s sentencing. A horrible tragedy, but now, thirteen years later, she’s thoroughly rebooted her life.

She’s the CEO of her own cyber security company, a celebrity in her field, and a speaker in high demand.

She’s just the kind of strong, self-reliant woman who can take care of herself in any situation.

Except the one she’s in.

She’s got a stalker.

And she already knows he’s a killer.

Given her background, Zoe knows instantly that she needs protection and she knows how to get it—her sister Mel’s the owner of Blackhawk Security.

But trust Mel to send Spence Flynn, the one agent Zoe can’t be alone with, but not because they don’t get along. It’s because attraction sizzles between the two of them like runaway electricity. And because they both know the last thing a body guard should do is get into a relationship with his principal.

It’s unethical and dangerous.

But how are they supposed to fight this thing? Spoiler: Good intentions suffer a knockout in the first round. And then, to the delight of the reader, the earth moves in the most delicious way.

Meanwhile, Zoe’s stalker is still sending her charms from a bracelet he stole from her thirteen years ago, the scariest being a heart he’s had engraved with both their names. Unnerving enough– and then he starts dropping off lunch for her, tailing her in a white Subaru, and trying to break into her condo.

Spence has his hands full in more than one way. And Zoe has a public appearance coming up. The perfect time for a stalker to strike.


First Line:

His heart racing, Ethan Davies slowed his steps as he neared Zoe’s locker.

Once and Always by Margaret Watson

If you have been following my blog long enough, I have a few authors I review regularly. Margaret Watson is one of them. I am a big fan of her books, and I always accept the invitation to review them when it comes to my email. When the invite for Once and Always appeared in my inbox, it was a no-brainer that I would accept.

Once and Always had an exciting plotline. At 18, Zoe witnessed her father killed by an obsessed classmate, and then she had to go through a trial. Thirteen years later, she has moved on with her life until she starts receiving packages. Those packages contain charms from a bracelet she lost around the time her father was killed, and only one person could have it—Ethan, her former stalker who killed her father. Contacting her sister, who owns Blackhawk Security, she is assigned a bodyguard until Ethan is caught. But when she sees who it is, she is slightly concerned. Zoe has been thirsting after Spence since he helped Nico the year before. The feelings are mutual, but Spence is there for a job: to protect Zoe from Ethan until he is caught. Will that happen? And will Zoe and Spence give in to their mutual attraction?

Once and Always is book 6 in the Blackhawk Security series. Once and Always can be read as a stand-alone book. But I suggest reading the first five books before picking this one up. That way, you know who the secondary characters are that are mentioned in Once and Always.

I will put a trigger warning on this review. The author did take great care to show sympathy and understanding for Ethan and made several references to mental illness reform (mainly about the facility he was held at for five years) and knowledge. There are mentions of attempted kidnapping. There are also talks about Ethan’s mental illness, and the author does show how he spiraled back into his delusions after his mother died. But, if these trigger you, I suggest not reading this book.


I did not expect to find sympathy for Ethan. The villains in most books are pure evil. But Ethan, well, he was different. The things he did to Zoe were terrible; there is no question about that, but knowing that he suffered a relapse after his mother’s death did soften my stance on him. The scenes in the cabin only cemented my opinion of him. I also liked that Zoe and Spence understood that after the fact. Their actions at the end of the book (which was discussed after the cabin) were proof of that.

I liked Zoe. She was a strong, opinionated, outspoken woman who knew her worth. Being a tech company CEO in an industry with few women shaped her. What also shaped her was what happened to her as a teenager. How could it not? I loved reading her scenes because she was always on point. She wasn’t afraid to share her feelings, even if she knew that the other person didn’t return them (the scene with Ron comes to mind, and a scene with Spence towards the end of the book).

I liked Spence, but I wanted to smack him at various times during the book. He was great at his job and would do anything to keep Zoe safe. But he wasn’t too good with personal skills or sharing his feelings. I did agree with him that they (him and Zoe) needed space, but I didn’t agree with how he phrased it. Also, I didn’t particularly appreciate how he treated Zoe after the scenes at the cabin. I talked out loud to the book and said, “Dude, you seriously didn’t say that to her!!” Spence had a lot of baggage he needed to lose, and I was afraid he would miss that ship with Zoe.

The secondary characters did make the book. These secondary characters flushed the book out and made the plotline more interesting to read.

I enjoyed the romance angle of Once and Always. There was a bit of Insta Love, but it was easy to overlook. It was an easy romance to read, and I liked knowing (well, for the most part) how Zoe and Spence would end up.

The sexual tension between Zoe and Spence was immediate from the beginning. It didn’t take long for them to end up in bed. The author raised the pressure by just having them look at each other. I loved it. I was a little meh about Zoe being a screamer during sex. She made Spence’s ears ring the first time she climaxed and every time after that. All I could think was, “What was her downstairs neighbors thinking” and “I hope the apartment is soundproof”….lol.

The mystery angle of Once and Always was also well written. It wasn’t too much of a mystery about who was sending the charms and why. The mystery, to me, was if Ethan would grab Zoe and when. The author gave several false leads, and I was kept on edge, wondering if it would happen.

The suspense angle was intertwined with the mystery angle. The author did a great job of keeping guessing at when (and if) Ethan was going to capture Zoe. I also was kept on edge by Spence and his decisions.

The end of Once and Always did bring tears to my eyes. While I was sad about how it ended, I loved how Zoe and Spence brought awareness to mental illness. I loved how the author wrapped up Zoe and Spence’s storyline. I am not sure who will be featured in book 7 (if there is a book 7), but if I had to guess, it would be Mel and her business partner. Either way, I am looking forward to it.

I would recommend Once and Always to anyone over 21. There are graphic sex, language, and violence. There are also the trigger warnings that I posted above.

My Fair Queen: Allies of the Fae Realm (Paranormal Misfits: Book 6) by C.J. Anaya

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Publisher:

Date of publication: August 31st 2021

Genre: Romance, Paranormal, Fantasy

Series: Paranormal Misfits

My Fair Assassin—Book 1 (Review Here)

My Fair Traitor—Book 2

My Fair Imposter—Book 3

My Fair Invader—Book 4

My Fair Princess—Book 5

My Fair Queen—Book 6

Purchase Links: Amazon

Goodreads Synopsis:

It’s not every day an obscure orphan girl becomes a fae queen.

Crysta and her companions have found the diadem and stone, but just when it looks like the tide has finally shifted in their favor, Crysta is sucked into Terise’s sleeping curse with no way of escape and nowhere to hide from Titania’s ruthless attacks.

And now she is permanently bonded…to the wrong fated mate.

Jareth is not only heartbroken at the loss of his fated mate bond, his mating frenzy is in overdrive, preventing him from functioning. He and Kheelan must overcome their differences if they hope to free Crysta, but they are faced with more setbacks as Titania takes faerie captives by the hundreds, building her army and growing her powers.

And the diadem, the key to Moridan and Titania’s undoing?

Tainted by Titania’s curse.

But a cursed relic isn’t the only surprise the wicked queen has in store for Crysta. The battle for control over the minds and hearts of the fae is one Titania intends to win by any means necessary.

Can Crysta and Jareth unite the Unseelie and Seelie Courts before Titania and Moridan destroy the Fae Realm?


First Line:

“Oberon will never allow this,” Titania said, pacing the floor of her bedroom, her tears flowing as she thought of her sons, their bodies torn in battle.

My Fair queen by c.j. anaya

I have said this on my blog before, and I repeat it, I don’t particularly appreciate picking a book up halfway through or at the end of a series. I feel that I am missing out on storylines and character arcs. Unfortunately, I did feel the same way about My Fair Queen, but the author did do a fantastic job of slipping in background stories of the secondary and main characters. So I didn’t feel that out of sync with the book.

My Fair Queen is the last book in the Paranormal Misfits series. It cannot be read as a standalone book. If you do (like I did), you will be left feeling that you missed out on something important (like I did).

The pace of My Fair Queen was lightning fast. Everything happens within a couple of days of the books starting. There is some lag towards the middle of the book (when everyone has a chance to breathe for a minute), but it didn’t affect how I enjoyed the book.

It did take me a little while to get into My Fair Queen. I want to say I started to get interested when Crysta and her friends go visit the vampires. Then the book got interesting.

The storyline with Titania was heartbreaking. The author does reveal why Titania did what she did at the beginning of the book. For the author to get me to feel pity for the bad guy is good writing.

The storyline with Crysta, Jareth, and Keelan was sad also. There were references to what Keelan did to Crysta and Jareth (and I don’t know if I could forgive and forget). There were also references to why Keelan’s fated mate has bonded to another (again, another sad story). That storyline was resolved at the end of the book. But there were some things left up in the air. It makes me wonder if there will be a series with Keelan in it.

There is some mild language in My Fair Queen. I didn’t mind that, but some people do, so the warning. There are also some heavy petting situations with Jareth and Crysta. There is sex, but that is during the last chapters of the book. It isn’t graphic, but you know what they’re doing.

The end of My Fair Queen was exciting. I loved the big showdown between Crysta and Titania. I also loved how Crysta defeated Titania. The same with the battle scene between Jareth and his father. The author wrapped up those storylines, but I have some questions that the author didn’t answer in this book.

I would recommend My Fair Queen to anyone over the age of 16. There is violence, mild gore, and language. There are also some kissing scenes and one sex scene.

Love You To Death (Moonlight & Murder: Book 6) by Reily Garrett

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Publisher:

Date of publication: June 25th, 2021

Genre: Mystery, Romance

Series: Moonlight & Murder Series

Shifting Targets—Book 0.1

A Critical Tangent—Book 1 (Review Here)

Pivotal Decisions—Book 2

Seeds of Murder—Book 3

An Unlikely Grave—Book 4

Deadly Interception—Book 5 (Review Here)

Love You to Death—Book 6

Purchase Links: Amazon

Format Read: Unedited ARC

Received From: Author


Goodreads Synopsis:

Four young women leave their dorm for a night of fun… then vanish. Each holds a unique talent with a promising career post-graduation.

FBI agent Taylor Winston and her K9 partner track the latest victim of a failed kidnapping through the Allegheny Mountains. The case, given lower priority due to lack of evidence linking to prior victims, heats up when the killer sets his sights on acquiring the federal agent.

Veteran Dylan Fitzpatrick relocates to a remote cabin to avoid the good intentions of well-meaning friends. Fresh air, forest, nature. They soothe the soul—until a scream shatters his peaceful solitude.
When a Texan spitfire suspects Dylan is the clever killer behind multiple kidnappings, he delves into a world of lies and deceit, betrayal and unwanted attraction.

Timing is crucial as he protects the strong-willed dynamo with a target on her back.


First Line:

Thick clouds created patchwork shadows on the hills straddling the valley.

Love You to Death by Reily Garrett

I was excited to see that Reily Garrett had released another book in her Moonlight & Murder series. I was even more excited when Reily approached me to review Love You To Death. I immediately said yes. I am glad that I did. Love You To Death is a well-written, fast-moving romantic suspense that I couldn’t put down.

Love You To Death is the 6th book in the Moonlight & Murder series. I recommend reading the previous books in the series but only to get the backstories of the characters mentioned in the book. Other than that, readers can read this book as a standalone.

Love You To Death got off to an explosive start. The book was on fire from the first chapter, where Amelia is drugged and transported somewhere. The author was able to keep that fast pace up for the entire book. There was no lag, and in fact, the plotline ramped up even more towards the end of the book.

I had liked Dylan in Deadly Deceptions, and I loved him in this book. He dealt with everything that came at him with a calm that I know I wouldn’t have. After a rocky start, he was dedicated to keeping Taylor safe. I also loved that he had healed enough from his girlfriend’s death to move on. He had suffered greatly in Deadly Deceptions, and it fitted that he got his happy ending.

I didn’t like Taylor at the beginning of Love You To Death. She came across as very abrasive during that first meeting. I mean, there was a young man with Amelia who was mentally incapacitated (I assumed he had Downs Syndrome, but I could be wrong), and she allowed her K9 to bite him. On top of that, she refused to listen to Dylan and had him tagged as the attacker. Her only reason: He was at the scene when she arrived, and why would he be there (dismissing his claim that he was hiking and heard Amelia scream). She stonewalled anyone who tried to tell her that he couldn’t have done it and dismissed people that told her otherwise. It wasn’t until the middle of the book that I started to have a change of heart. By the end of the book, I liked her and had come to understand her a little better.

Keeping in mind how I felt about Taylor, I did think that she and Dylan had chemistry. The author didn’t spend a lot of time with their sex scenes, but they were hot (just not graphic). I understood why she did it. The plotline with the kidnapping and the investigation was the main focus of the book.

Speaking of the main plotline, I loved it. I couldn’t figure out who it was, and the red herrings that were thrown out, worked. The author kept me guessing at who was kidnapping the co-eds while sneaking in chapters with the kidnapper.

The end of Love You To Death was terrific. I was surprised at who the kidnapper was (the author answered the why of that earlier in the book). The author also left with a mini-cliffhanger. I didn’t mind it because I believe it leads into the next book.


Love You To Death is a well-written romantic suspense novel. I couldn’t put it down.

I would recommend Love You To Death to anyone over the age of 21. There is violence, mild language, and sexual situations.

Hometown Girl (Into the Storm: Book 6)by Margaret Watson

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4 Stars

Publisher: Dragonfly Press

Date of Publication: January 14th, 2020

Genre: Romance

Series: Into the Storm

To Save His Child—Book 1 (Review Here)

An Innocent Man—Book 2 (Review Here)

An Honorable Man—Book 3 (Review Here)

The Dark Side of the Moon—Book 4 (Review Here)

Family on the Run—Book 5 (Review Here)

Hometown Girl—Book 6

Where you can find Hometown Girl: BookBub | Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Book Synopsis:

To escape from her hometown, Claire Kendall had to leave her past — and her sister — behind…

Now her sister’s sudden death has Claire going home to confront her past and her orphaned nephew — who blames her for saving herself and not his mother. Complicating matters is Tucker Hall, a man who seems to have a genius for getting in the way when it comes to parenting Nick.

Claire know she’ll be happy only once the town of Monroe is a speck in her rearview mirror, but she can’t go before Nick is ready. In the meantime, she’ll have to see a lot of Tucker and hope that he doesn’t give her any reason to stay…


First Line:

Tucker Hall leaned against the wall of the Blackhawk helicopter and pretended to stare out the window.

Hometown Girl by Margaret Watson

My Review:

I have been burnt out on reading lately. I have been finding myself making excuses not to read books, even if they are my favorite author. This reason is why I kept putting off Hometown Girl. I couldn’t bring myself to read it. Well, I decided to revamp my reading schedule. From Friday night to Sunday night, I do not touch my Kindle. I rarely check on how my blog is doing (other than making sure specific posts go live), and I don’t worry about deadlines, overdue books, …etc. Let me tell you all; it has made an enormous difference. When I got to Hometown Girl, I was excited to read it.

Hometown Girl is book 6 in the Into the Storm series. It can be read as a stand-alone book. The prologue in each book is a different take on a covert Afghanistan terrorist raid gone wrong, which is perfect. The author goes over the backstory, and the rest of the book is focused on the romance.

Hometown Girl had a medium paced plotline. Because it was somewhat of a mystery/suspense, I did expect the book to go a bit faster. But, instead, the pacing of the plotline ended up being perfect. There were no dropped storylines or characters either.

I wish that Claire’s backstory had been gone into a bit more. But, at the same time, I am glad that the author kept it a little vague. The abuse she suffered as a child/teen/young adult ended up having more of a wallop, then having it spelled out.

I did think that Claire had a massive chip on her shoulder when it came to her hometown. I understood the awful memories associated with it. I would have been the same way. Her feelings were justified in the beginning/early middle of the book. But by the end, I was over it. The people in the town were not the same people that were there when she was growing up. I felt that she only agreed to stay because Nick wanted her too. And because of her feelings for Tucker.

I loved Tucker. I liked that he found his calling after the cluster that happened in Afghanistan. He took that experience and turned it into something that he used to help kids. I loved reading his coaching scenes. He lifted the kids instead of putting them down. He didn’t take crap from them (or the parents either). He was ethical. That scene where the parents asked him to teach their kids how to cheat (after losing four games in a row) made me mad. Tucker’s response was perfect!!

I liked Nick and man, did I feel for him. His whole world was turned inside out. I didn’t blame him for lashing out at Claire either. His mother just died, and her estranged sister shows up and takes custody of him. I would have been mad too. I loved seeing his gradual acceptance of Claire. It wasn’t overt, but there were little things, like not being sarcastic or showing a childlike enthusiasm for something as simple as a cat.

I liked Claire and Tucker’s romance. It wasn’t a fast-paced, burning hot romance. But, it also wasn’t a romance where you couldn’t see the passion. It was comfortably in the middle. They did have sexual tension and chemistry. The sex scenes weren’t graphic, which was enjoyable. I like an explicit sex scene as much as the next person. But, lately, I have found myself enjoying non-graphic sex scenes.

The plotline that centered around Claire and her sister’s death was interesting. I had a feeling it was going to go the route it did. I also got a feel for at least one of the bad guys halfway through the book. The identity of the killer did surprise me. Looking back, I should have known it was that person. Actions speak louder than words!!

The plotline that involved Claire, her ex-husband, and his wife was well written. I loved how Claire handled her ex. I laughed when she called his bluff about Nick’s father. I did think Claire was a bit stalkerish when it came to his wife. Considering that Claire had been married to him and knew what life was like with him, she was right to approach her.

The end of Hometown Girl was your typical romance HEA. I loved that Tucker was finally able to come clean to Claire about his past. Honestly, I thought it was going to be worse than it was when it was revealed. I also loved the scene with Nick. It showed how far he had come!!


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

I would reread Hometown Girl. I would recommend it to family and friends.

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

Into the Inferno (The Legend Series: Book 6) by Kylie Stewart

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5 Stars

Publisher: KCS Publishing

Date of publication: September 19th, 2019

Genre: Romance

Series: The Legend Series

Set in Stone—Book 1 (Review Here)

The Duke’s Curse—Book 2 (Review Here)

Resurrection—Book 3 (Review Here)

Return to Avalon—Book 4

Rise of the Dragon—Book 5 (Review Here)

Into the Inferno—Book 6

Where you can find Into the Inferno: Amazon

Book Synopsis:

To understand means to accept one’s own mistakes.

Alexandria is trapped in Hell’s Inferno. Can she accept Guinevere’s past and face Arthur’s sins while they are played out before her very eyes? In accepting her past, she will endure the devastation, betrayal, and passion stamped in time over thousands of years.

To wander into Hell as a guest is to accept mortality.

Avalon is fated to fight his way through the nine levels of The Inferno. Every step is agony, and every level a trial, reminding him of his gravest mistakes. Will his self-loathing consume him and take those standing by his side? Or will they band together to save the queen and woman they love?Everyone’s demons will have to be faced. Old wounds will be torn open and bleed anew. Will faith and love be enough?

Into the Inferno is book six of the bestselling Legend Series based off The Legends of King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.

READING ORDER FOR THE LEGEND SERIES:
#1. SET IN STONE
#2. THE DUKE’S CURSE
#3. RESURRECTION
#4. RETURN TO AVALON
#5. RISE OF THE DRAGON
#6. INTO THE INFERNO 
#7. CHASING CAMELOT


First Line:

My eyes adjusted to the bright light reflecting off the sea before me.

Into the Inferno by Kylie Stewart

My Review:

I had been looking forward to reading Into the Inferno. As I had mentioned in previous reviews, I am an immense Camelot nerd, and I love romance. So, I have enjoyed this series. I will say that the end of Rise of the Dragon both surprised me and got me intrigued for Into the Inferno.

The plotline for Into the Inferno was perfect. It was fast-paced, and I loved it. It reflected Guinevere’s state of mind, along with Avalon’s desire to get through the nine levels of Hell to rescue Alexandria. What I liked is that the author kept the plotlines simple to allow for this. There was nothing else that distracted from it. Again, I loved it!!

Into the Inferno had dual plotlines. I am not an enormous fan of dual plotlines. I feel that things get lost when switching between two different POVs. But, not in this case. Guinevere’s POV stayed in the past, Avalon’s in the present, and there was no overlapping. I liked that.

Alexandria/Guinevere’s storyline was heartbreaking. I was prepared not to like her because of what I assumed happened. The author did a fantastic job of showing how Arthur treated her and what drove her to be with Lancelot. My heart broke for her several times during the book. But, it was the final chapters of her storyline that had me sobbing. All I have to say is that poor, poor woman.

I still liked Avalon. He was trying so hard to right the wrongs of his past. He was willing to go through the nine levels of Hell to rescue Alexandria. Each level made him face different aspects of his life. He had to battle his demons.

Into the Inferno is the 6th book in The Legend series. This book is not stand-alone. You will have to read the previous books to understand what was going on in this book.

The end of Into the Inferno shocked me. I was not expecting what happened to happen. I was also not expecting the other thing too. I will admit, I got misty-eyed and might have shed a few tears. I cannot wait to read book 7!!


I would give Into the Inferno 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 Into the Inferno. I would recommend it to family and friends.

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

Don’t Look Back (Unbroken Heroes: Book 6) by Dawn Ryder

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2 Stars

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

Date of publication: August 28th, 2018

Genre: Suspense, Romance

Series: Unbroken Heroes

Dangerous to Know – Book 1

Dare You to Run – Book 2

Deep into Trouble – Book 3

Take to the Limit – Book 4

Close to the Edge – Book 5

Don’t Look Back – Book 6

Where you can find Don’t Look Back: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

In Don’t LOOK BACK by Dawn Ryder, she is the only woman worth fighting – or dying – for…

Shadow Ops Agent Thais Sinclair has sworn off falling in love for good. It’s what’s kept her calculated, steady, and on-task in a world dominated by men. She needs nothing and no one but her own wits and strength to guide her. But when she’s slated to shadow the one man who could reveal their entire operation, all bets are off.

Dunn Bateson, the illegitimate son of a Southern debutante, has always had to fight harder than the rest to get what he wants. Now, the last thing he needs is Thais following his every move. She is so strong, sly, seductive. . . No woman has ever captivated him so completely. Thais may only have room for her mission in her heart, but is Dunn up to the challenge of showing her that she’s worth every risk he is willing to take?

My review:

Don’t Look Back justifies my dislike of picking up books mid/at the end of the series. What I dislike even more is being confused by a book. And I was confused by this book. I would have been fine if the focus was on Dunn and Thais. Maybe a secondary main plotline about Carl’s evil doings. Instead, I got a book that was told from many points of views. I got many storylines going on. I was confused by where Thais’ storyline was going and what the Shadow Ops wanted to be done with her. I could go on and on but you get the drift with where I was going.

I didn’t dislike Don’t Look Back. Stripping away the “extras” that came with it, I thought that Dunn and Thais’ story was fantastic. Their backstories were tragic. I felt that because of everything that was crammed into the book, I didn’t get a chance to know them. I felt that their story was lost under the many other plotlines. I wanted to know them better. I wanted to know why Dunn’s mother left him. I wanted to know exactly what Thais’ mother trained her to do. Even more so, I wanted to know what Thais’ husband and brother-in-law were doing that justified her killing them. Maybe these questions were answered in the earlier books but I don’t know. I didn’t read them.

My other problem with the book was that there was no distinction when the POV’s changed. I kept going back and rereading the previous paragraph because I got confused. There would be a scene between Thais and Dunn and it would change to Kagan or any of the Shadow Ops and then would change to Carl and then change back to Dunn or Thais. All within the same chapters. Something like this (*****) would have been great. It would have made reading Don’t Look Back go so much smoother than it did. I did keep in mind that I was reading an ARC but still. Very annoying.

The Thais and Dunn’s sex scenes were fantastic. I liked that Thais didn’t want to be treated like a fragile doll. She liked it a little rough. I also liked that Dunn was able to provide that and more to her.

The suspense angle of the book didn’t do it for me. Because of all the POV’s, I wasn’t able to get as involved with the book as I would have been. So, I wasn’t able to get deep into the suspense part of the book. It was there but I thought it was lukewarm, at the best.

The end of the book was a confusing mess. There was too much going on. Also, the very ending threw me. I had an issue imagining what happened happening.

What I liked about Don’t Look Back:

A) Thais and Dunn’s sex scenes. They were awesome

B) Thais and Dunn’s backstories were fascinating

What I disliked about Don’t Look Back:

A) Too many POVs’

B) No distinction when POV ended and went to a different one.

C) The ending was a confusing mess.

I gave Don’t Look Back a 2-star rating.  I couldn’t get involved with the characters. There were too many POVs’. There was no distinction between POVs within the same chapter. And the ending was a confusing mess. I did like the sex scenes, but that is about it.

I would give Don’t Look Back an Adult rating. There is explicit sex. There is graphic violence. There is language. I would not recommend anyone under the age of 21 read this book.

I would not reread Don’t Look Back. I also would not recommend this book to family and friends.

I would like to thank St. Martin’s Paperbacks, St. Martin’s Press, and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review Don’t Look Back

All opinions stated in this review of Don’t Look Back are mine

**I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**

Dark Alpha’s Hunger (Reaper: Book 6) by Donna Grant

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4 Stars

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

Date of publication: August 7th, 2018

Genre: Romance, Supernatural, Fantasy

Series: Reaper

Dark Alpha’s Claim

Dark Alpha’s Embrace

Dark Alpha’s Demand

Dark Alpha’s Love

Dark Alpha’s Night

Dark Alpha’s Hunger

Where you can find Dark Alpha’s Hunger: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

Dark Alpha’s Hunger is the sixth paranormal romance novel in New York Times bestselling author Donna Grant’s Reapers series featuring a brotherhood of élite assassins who wage war on the Fae at Death’s behest–and the women who change their hearts.

There is no escaping a Reaper. I am an élite assassin, part of a brotherhood that only answers to Death. And when Death says your time is up, I’m coming for you…

Where Death leads, I follow. Nothing will stop me from my duty – not even the darkness that claims me. It’s the music that leads me from the dark, returning me to my brethren and a new foe that has risen. Learning who hunts Thea could be the key to unraveling what we need to know to defeat our enemy. The Half-Fae’s music stirs a passion within me that I’ve never known. For her, I will break my vow of silence. For her…I will risk everything. 

My review:

I had heard of the Reaper series but hadn’t gotten around to reading any of the books. So when the publisher approached me to review this series, I decided, why not? Even though it is the 6th book in the series, I figured I could follow the plot. Which I did, kinda. The author kept bringing up earlier characters and their relationships. At one point, I couldn’t keep everything straight in my head. Besides the few quibbles I had with characters, I enjoyed reading Dark Alpha’s Hunger.

I thought that Eoghan and Thea’s relationship started oddly and remained odd. It was almost stalkerish since Eoghan decided to follow Thea around until he revealed himself. The only connection that he had with her was through her music. When she played her violin, he could find her. I thought it was a little creepy. Once they were together, they had great chemistry that bled to fantastic sex.

Speaking of the sex scenes, these were hot. The chemistry between Eoghan and Thea was off the charts. I had to fan myself a few times. If it could, my Kindle would have steamed up.

I felt that Thea got the stick end of things during the book. First, she brings Eoghan back from the darkness. Then she is semi-stalked by him until he shows himself. Then her biological mother kidnaps her and lays a lot of crap on her. That girl needed a stiff drink and a hug by the end of the book. She had been put through the wringer. I did like that she was an accomplished violinist. I loved how music immediately pulled her from crippling depression and gave her purpose.

Eoghan’s backstory killed me to read. No wonder he chose to take a vow of silence. I would have, too, if I had been put through what he went through. I didn’t get why Death told him to rescind his vow of silence until the end of the book. Then it hit me in an “AHA” moment. I liked his relationships with the other Reapers. There was an instant bond between them.

The end of the book was interesting and laid a definite foundation for the next book.

What I liked about Dark Alpha’s Hunger:

A) The chemistry between Eoghan and Thea

B) Thea music interest

C) Eoghan’s relationship with his other Reapers

What I disliked about Dark Alpha’s Hunger:

A) Had an issue following the plot at first

B) The start of Eoghan and Thea’s relationship

C) Thea’s mother

I would give Dark Alpha’s Hunger 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 Dark Alpha’s Hunger. I would also recommend it to family and friends.

I would like to thank St. Martin’s Paperbacks, St. Martin’s Press, and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review Dark Alpha’s Hunger.

All opinions stated in Dark Alpha’s Hunger are mine.

**I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**

Playing Hurt (Aces Hockey: Book 6) by Kelly Jamieson

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4 Stars

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group, Loveswept

Date of publication: July 17th, 2018

Genre: Sports, Romance

Series: Aces Hockey

Major Misconduct – Book 1

Off Limits – Book 1.5

Icing – Book 2

Top Shelf – Book 3

Back Check – Book 4

Slap Shot – Book 5 (review here)

Playing Hurt – Book 6

Where you can find Playing Hurt: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

He’s playing hurt. She’s laying low. And they’re both flirting with disaster.
 
“Kelly Jamieson is my go-to author for hockey romance.”—Jami Davenport
 
Chase: The last thing I’d ever want to do is let my team down. After overcoming my bad-boy reputation, I was dominating on the ice. But things aren’t going so well this season, and even my parents think I’m partying again. Now I’m really worried about my career. The only bright spot in my life is the Twitter flirtation I’ve struck up with pop princess Jordyn Banks. Turns out she’s a huge hockey fan—and she’s willing to wager a date on her favorite team. . . .

Jordyn: Even though I’m an L.A. fan now, I’ve always had a soft spot for the Aces, since I grew up in Chicago. Then I lose a bet to Chase Hartman, and suddenly I’m up close and personal with a pro athlete who’s anything but soft. Not only is Chase the hottest guy I’ve ever met, but he’s also secretly super sweet. As if I had time for a relationship . . . yeah, right. But when I suddenly have nothing but time on my hands, he’s the only one who understands. Now, with both of our careers at stake, Chase is tempting me to put my heart on the line too.

My review:

I needed to read Playing Hurt. I needed to read a romance where I didn’t have to use my brain to figure out complex plots/relationships. I was able to relax and enjoy reading this book. Which is something I haven’t been able to do in a long time!!

Playing Hurt is the 6th book in the Aces Hockey. This book can be read as a stand-alone. While the other characters from the earlier 5 books are in Playing Hurt, they do not take over the book. Which is something I liked.

The plot of Playing Hurt was cute. Chase starts flirting with Jordyn over Twitter. Eventually, they go on a date after she loses a bet to him. Sparks fly but nothing happens. It wasn’t until Jordyn suffers a vocal injury that lays her up for a year that she reconnects with Chase. That is where the story takes off.

I liked Chase, even if he was a stubborn SOB. Why was he stubborn? Well, he refused to go to the Dr and checked out. Even when he was in obvious pain. So yeah, that was the one part of him I didn’t like. Everything else, I loved. He was romantic (hello, surprise trip to Aruba!!) and more importantly, he knew how to communicate. Well, except for his injury. I did feel bad for him. His parents were jerks. Withholding love because he wanted to quit hockey as a child. That was awful.

I loved Jordyn. She was down to earth. She was sweet. She knew how to hold her own with Chase. My only issue with her was that she was almost too nice. There were a few points in the book where I wanted her to do something naughty to spice up her character. She was almost too sugary sweet. But that aside, I loved her. She was perfect for Chase. She was the ying to his yang.

The romance part of this book was sweet. I loved how the author chose to keep their relationship on a slow burn for the first half of the book. It made the chemistry between them insane. Sparks flew when they interacted. Be it Twitter, text, face to face or phone. And in turn, those sparks made for some pretty intense sex scenes.

I loved the end of the book. While it was your typical happily ever after, I had no issue imagining Chase and Jordyn lasting in real life.

What I liked about Playing Hurt:

A) Chase and Jordan’s Twitter romance

B) How romantic Chase was

C) How realistic their romance was

What I disliked about Playing Hurt:

A) Chase being so stubborn. I wanted to smack him upside his head

B) Jordyn being sugary sweet.

C) Chase’s parents

I would give Playing Hurt an Adult rating. There is explicit sex. There is language. There is some very mild violence. I would recommend that no one under the age of 21 read this book.

There are no trigger warnings for Playing Hurt.

I would reread Playing Hurt. I would recommend this book to family and friends.

I would like to thank Random House Publishing Group, Loveswept, and NetGalley for allowing me to read and review Playing Hurt.

All opinions stated in this review of Playing Hurt are mine.

**I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**

Taking a Chance (Whisper Creek: Book 6) by Maggie McGinnis

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4 Stars

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group, Loveswept

Date of publication: November 7th, 2017

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction

Number of pages: 256

POV: 3rd person

Series: Whisper Creek

Accidental Cowgirl – Book 1

A Cowboy’s Christmas Promise – Book 2

Once Upon a Cowboy – Book 3

Unlucky in Love – Book 4 (review here)

Meant to Be – Book 5 (review here)

Taking a Chance – Book 6

Where you can find Taking a Chance: Barnes and Noble | Amazon

Book synopsis (from Goodreads):

A fun-loving troublemaker gives a workaholic Southern gal a real taste of Montana magic at the one and only Whisper Creek Ranch.

A rising star in the corporate world, Emma Winthrop enjoys the view from her cubicle in sunny Florida. But when she’s dispatched to a nursing home in Whisper Creek for three months of field experience, she discovers a slice of heaven made of mountains and mayhem—mostly in the form of rugged, drop-dead gorgeous Jasper Stone, who grinds his specialty beans at the town’s best coffee shop in between organizing dodge-ball games and wheelchair races in Emma’s hallways.

When Jasper walks in on this beautiful angel in silky purple underwear trying to rinse out her blouse, it’s a breathtaking view—even for a Montana native. Wreaking havoc here at Shady Acres keeps his dad in good spirits, but getting under Emma’s skin is proving to be even more fun. Jasper knows that he’s falling faster than a man with his past has any right to, but his body and his heart have a mind of their own. And Emma appears to be claiming both.

Trigger Warning: None

A Night of Forever (The Disgraced Lords: Book 6) by Bronwen Evans

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4 Stars

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group – Loveswept, Loveswept

Date of publication: October 25th, 2016

Genre: Romance

Series: The Disgraced Lords

A Kiss of LiesBook 1

A Promise of MoreBook 2

A Touch of PassionBook 3

A Whisper of DesireBook 4

A Taste of SeductionBook 5

A Night of Forever Book 6

A Love to RememberBook 7 (expected date of publication: June 6th, 2017)

Where you can find this book: Amazon

Book Synopsis:

Distrust is no match for desire as a proper young miss and a self-professed rogue hunt down a murderer in this thrilling Disgraced Lords novel from the USA Today bestselling author of A Kiss of Lies and A Taste of Seduction.

Arend Aubury trusts no one besides his fellow Libertine Scholars. After his family escaped from France, penniless and persecuted, only the Scholars took him in. So when the stepdaughter of the villainess who has been plotting against them approaches Arend with allegations against their enemy, he suspects a double cross. Yet Isobel is a tantalizing prize, with lips as sweet as champagne and skin as creamy as Camembert. Is she a feast for the senses—or a bitter trap?

Lady Isobel Thompson dreams of marrying an honorable gentleman with a spotless reputation, a trait that Arend seems to lack completely. But Isobel believes that her stepmother is responsible for her father’s death, and only Arend has the skills to uncover the truth. As a cover, Arend suggests a fake betrothal—and soon Isobel finds herself forgetting that their courtship is a ploy. He’s so different from the man of her fantasies, and yet he’s so terribly handsome, so dangerously intoxicating—and all Isobel wants is more.


My review:

I went into this book thinking that it was going to be one of those historical romances that the heroine was a dimwit, and the hero had significant trust issues and couldn’t get over them. I was right about the hero, but oh boy, was I wrong about the heroine.

Isobel surprised me. I thought she would be one of those heroines who got into trouble and then is like, “Why is this happening to me.” The only time that happened was in the prologue when the Libertine Scholar’s enemy kidnaped her and sent on a wild carriage ride with Marisa that resulted in Marisa being seriously injured. All of the situations that she found herself in after that, she took responsibility for it.

Arend Aubury, Baron Labourd, has some pretty dark secrets and was scarred by events that had happened to him while he was in Paris and Brazil. He refused to let anyone but the Libertine Scholars close to him and forget it if it was a beautiful woman. Then he froze her out. I honestly felt awful for him when he was reliving the past, and it was refreshing to see a historical novel that dared to touch on some darker subjects in detail.

Isobel has fallen under Arend’s radar because her stepmother, Victoria, is believed to be the madwoman stalking his friends and their wives. They think that Isobel is helping her, which is the farthest thing from the truth. Isobel believes Victoria killed her father and is trying to secure a marriage that will take her away from Victoria.

It doesn’t help that every time Victoria does something, Isobel is there or has knowledge of it. Still, even with all that hanging over her head, Arend manages to become very attracted to her. He also goes as far as to propose a “fake” engagement after Isobel tells him what I outlined above. His reasoning, it would be a great way to fool Victoria and for Arend to keep a close eye on Isobel.

Yeah, that didn’t go over too well. Soon, Isobel and Arend have consummated their relationship in a stable. That leads to Arend getting struck on the head with a piece of wood and Isobel being kidnapped with her friend Evangeline’s young son Sealy. It didn’t look well for her because her information (stolen from Victoria) led his friends in the opposite direction as to where Arend was. So yeah, it’s understandable why Arend and his friends didn’t trust her. If I were in their shoes, I wouldn’t either.

The sex scenes between Arend and Isobel were unbelievably hot. Like off the page scorching hot, which is another reason why I liked this book. Isobel actively went after Arend and told him what she wanted. Something other historical romances don’t do. Either they wait until marriage or the heroine’s first time is rushed. Isobel’s wasn’t nor were all the times afterward. They were like rabbits.

I cried when Arend finally opened up about what happened to him. Isobel’s reaction was perfect and was what Arend needed.

In a way, I did feel bad for Victoria too. For something that awful to happen to a young girl, it is bound to affect her and not in a good way. She let vengeance rule her life, and she was willing to sacrifice everything to get to the son of the person she held responsible for what happened to her.

The end of the book and the prologue made me bawl. There’s a twist that took me by surprise. There is a HEA for Arend and Isobel. The author did pave the way for book seven, and I can’t wait to read it. I also am going to eventually buy the other books too because I want to read the other couple’s stories.


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

I would reread A Night of Forever. I would recommend it to family and friends.

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

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