Blurred Lines

Blurred Lines by Lauren Layne

Publication Date: August 25, 2015

Publisher: Loveswept

Synopsis:

Parker Blanton and Ben Olson have been platonic best friends since they met their freshman year of college. It’s a shock to everyone they meet. After all, Parker’s a hot chick and Ben’s extremely handsome. Why wouldn’t they be hooking up? They even live together. Truth is, they’re happy being best friends. Parker’s had a serious boyfriend, Lance, for 5 years and Ben is a self-declared ladies man.

All of that changes when Lance dumps Parker. Now, Parker’s on a quest to find a no-strings-attached hook up. She looks to Ben for advice, but quickly decides she may not be up to casual sex with strangers. But what about casual sex with someone she knows? Someone she trusts–like Ben.

Ben and Parker are determined to keep their friendship the same while having casual sex together. It works great until Lance wants Parker back. Will they still have their friendship when they no longer have sex?

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I have to admit I love friends to lovers stories. There’s just something about two friends who already enjoy and care for each other falling in love. Maybe it’s just the romantic in me, but I find this type of story so sweet.

It was more than just sweet, though. It was steamy. Ben and Parker had major chemistry. (Fans self.) Their connection with each other was off the charts. I honestly can’t believe they waited six years to hook up! How did they not have any sexual tension? I get that Parker had a boyfriend, but there had to be some sort of sparks! 😉

I think New Adult readers will enjoy Blurred Lines. It’s a fun story filled with friendship, love and sex.

Restless Waters

Restless Waters (Left Drowning #2) by Jessica Park

Publication Date: August 26, 2015

Publisher: Flat Finn, Inc.

Synopsis:

Blythe McGuire has finally moved on from the dark past that haunts her. Thanks to her boyfriend Chris and the rest of the Shepherd family, she’s found happiness again. She’s found love and the sense of family she lost.

Her peaceful future doesn’t last long, though. Blythe can tell a storm is brewing in her best friend and Chris’ brother, Sabin. As Sabin begins to pull away from their close friendship, Blythe worries his past may be catching up with him. Blythe wants nothing more than to help Sabin, but will helping him ruin the peacefulness she’s finally found?

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Jessica Park is a book writing genius. Her writing is so emotional and, at times, devastating. She knows how to pull me in and get me all worried about her characters. Then, in the most unique and intriguing way, she makes everything all better. Well, as better as it can ever get for her damaged characters.

When I originally read Left Drowning, I was overwhelmed. I don’t think I had read any other book at the time that left me feeling such, well feelings. There were so many of them: sad, devastated, happy, hopeful. Left Drowning was such an emotional rollercoaster and I absolutely loved it. It’s a book I’ve recommended to most of my friends time and time again.

When I opened my Twitter account on August 27th and saw Tweets about Jessica Park pulling a Beyonce and releasing a sequel to Left Drowning, I immediately went to Amazon and downloaded it. Nothing could have stopped me from reading Restless Waters. I needed to know how some of my favorite characters were doing.

Blythe and the Shepherds seemed okay at first, but then Sabin really started to worry me. He was far from okay. What he was going through scared me. I worried the happiness everyone had finally found was going to blow up in my face. I’m not going to tell you what happens and ruin it, but it was very emotional and sometimes stressful. Don’t worry, there was some happiness, too.

I truly loved Restless Waters. Once again, Jessica Park has written a book that tears me apart and then puts me back together in the best way possible. For that reason, Jessica Park will always be one of my favorite authors. If you haven’t read Left Drowning and Restless Waters (or any of her books, really) you’re missing out.

Other books in this series:

Sweet

Sweet (Contours of the Heart #3) by Tammara Webber

Publication Date: April 27, 2015

Synopsis: 

Sweet is a spinoff of Easy and Breakable from the Contours of the Heart series. It is a standalone novel. While there are a couple of mentions of characters from the first two novels, you won’t feel like you’ve missed anything if you haven’t read them.

Bad boy Boyce Wynn is everything Pearl Torres Frank shouldn’t want. He’s from the wrong side of the tracks and doesn’t care what the world thinks of him. But Pearl wants him. She always has. Pearl knows there’s more to Boyce than the tough guy everyone sees.

Now, Pearl’s home from college for summer. Before she heads off to medical school in the fall, she’s determined to have Boyce. It doesn’t matter what it may cost her.

Boyce has been fighting his obsession with Pearl forever. He’s been waiting in the wings for her to be single. Now, she’s home for the summer and it’s his chance to make his move. Can he prove to her he’s worth taking a chance on a former bad boy?

My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Pearl and Boyce’s love story definitely was sweet! I loved how they had been in love with each other for years, but hadn’t really acted on it. Their shared history was a cool aspect to the story. I especially liked how Boyce pushed Pearl to make her own decisions and protected her. He won me over in Breakable, but I adored him even more in Sweet.

There were just a couple of things that held me back from giving Sweet 5 stars. One, all of the flashbacks. While I liked learning their shared history through the flashbacks, there were just too many of them. They overtook the current story at times. Two, I wasn’t 100% sold on the way the story wrapped up. I don’t want to ruin it, but it just seemed a little out there to me. It didn’t ruin the story or anything and I really liked the book. I just would have rather seen something different happen.

Other books in this series:

  

That moment when you accidentally schedule something….LAST WEEK!

Ugh. I was trying to schedule a post for Monday since I know I have a busy weekend and failed miserably. Somehow I posted to last Monday. Then, I decided to just go ahead and publish it immediately. I messed that up, too! It’s still the 26th at my house, but it’s the 27th on WordPress. That means I scheduled it for yesterday! I finally have it right, but I’m sure my email followers got a million emails, so my apologies. I’ll try not to do it again.

Technology. It’s a love-hate relationship.

Kick Push

Kick Push (The Road Series #2) by Jay McLean

Publication Date: August 4, 2015

Synopsis: 

At seventeen, skateboarder Josh Warden became a single dad. He gave up his dreams to take care of his son. It was a struggle. Now, three years later, he’s finally in a good place. He’s got a good job, a great place to stay and he’s got Tommy.

Then she shows up. His neighbor’s daughter, Becca. She’s beautiful and mysterious. Josh can’t seem to stay away from her. He should. He’s got enough on his plate being a single dad. And Becca…Well, Becca’s got some issues of her own. He’d love to ask her about them–if she would talk.

My rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Ugh. I loved this book, but I hated this book. Does that mean I just liked this book? I don’t know. I’m having a hard time deciding how I actually feel about it. It’s making it really hard to write a good review of it. I think I’m going to just bullet what I liked and didn’t like.

The great things about this book:

  • Tommy was stinkin’ cute. He had super powers that would make anyone adore him.
  • Hunter’s humor and support of Josh. Their conversations were hilarious. I would have liked more of him in this book.
  • The skateboarding. It was just super cool.
  • Photography aspect of the story. I love pictures of my loved ones, so this hit home for me.
  • Last (but not least), Josh. What I loved most about this book was him. He was just a stand up guy. No matter what problems he and Becca faced, his reactions were all simply because he loved her. He may have been a jerk at times, but he always made sure she knew he loved her.

The thing that drove me nuts:

  • Becca’s hidden past. It drug out FOREVER. Seriously, for most of the book. The first half of the book, it was mysterious and intriguing. The second half, it was like come on already! Just tell me! I started to think that no matter what it was, I was just going to write her off as weird. Which wouldn’t have been very nice of me because there was such tragedy in her life. Once I knew, I could identify with her actions better.
  • The ending. This one is my own fault. It’s a cliffhanger and I had no idea. I didn’t notice the (Kick Push #1) after the title on Goodreads. (Which is confusing because Jay McLean has Kick Push listed as The Road Series – Book 2 on her website.) But honestly, I would have rather seen Josh and Becca’s story wrap up in one book. Mostly because I’m still not 100% digging Becca. I am curious to see what will happen to them (or mainly Josh), so I will read the next book. Maybe Becca will grow on me now I know her backstory. I hope so.

So, would I recommend reading this book? I’m going to say yes. I have decided the positives outweigh the negatives. So much of the story is Josh and Tommy. It’s just too cute and special of a story to pass up. And I’m going to go back and read Where the Road Takes Me. I need more Hunter. I know I have it on my Kindle and never read it. Shame on me! I need to update my TBR (CRAP) list!

Other books in The Road series:

Falling From The Sky

Falling From The Sky (Gravity #2) by Sarina Bowen

Publication Date: August 26, 2015

Note: Falling From The Sky is part of the Unconditional Anthology. Sarina Bowen will be donating her proceeds from the sale of this collection to the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation.

Synopsis:

Doctor Callie Anders doesn’t take risks — especially where her heart is concerned. She’s been burned once and she’s not about to take that risk again. That’s why she’s keeping her distance from the incredibly handsome athlete that has shown up in her emergency room.

Freestyle snowboarder Hank “Hazardous” Lazarus had it all until an accident caused his world to fall apart. Now, he’s stuck in a wheel chair wondering if he’ll ever get back what he lost. The only bright spot in his life is a certain sexy doctor.

When the opportunity to run a new therapy department arises, Callie finds herself in constant contact with the one man that makes her want to take risks. She’s going to have a hard time keeping things professional with the hunky participant who’s determined to make her his.

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Falling From The Sky was an incredible love story! Watching uptight Callie slowly lose herself in “Hazardous” Hank was so much fun. And Hank. Oh, Hank. I couldn’t help but feel for his losses. But I loved the way he fought back and ended up embracing his new life.

My favorite part of this story, though; was the way Sarina Bowen spotlighted issues that wheelchair bound men (and women) face daily. She did it with such care and compassion. I honestly felt like I was learning something along with getting a great love story.

Now, if you’ve read The Year We Fell Down by Sarina Bowen, you’re probably saying, “Hey, wait a minute! Didn’t she already write a story about a girl in a wheelchair?” Yes, she did. While some of the same issues were dealt with, the story was completely different and new. If you liked The Year We Fell Down, you’ll like Falling From The Sky, too. But don’t worry, you won’t feel like you’re rereading the same story.

If you’re a contemporary romance reader, I would highly suggest reading Falling From The Sky by Sarina Bowen. It’s the second book in the Gravity series, but can definitely be read as a standalone. There are some references to the characters from Coming In From The Cold, but you don’t have to read it to enjoy book 2. I can’t wait to read Shooting For The Stars!

**I received an ARC of Falling From The Sky in exchange for an honest review.

Other books in this series:

  

ARC Review: Fall for Him

Fall for Him (Forbidden Trilogy #3) by J.C. Valentine

Publication Date: August 25, 2015 (Today!!!)

Publisher: J.C. Valentine

Synopsis:

Life is all about choices. Jo thought she made the right ones, but it turns out she was wrong. She’s lost everyone she ever cared about.

Now, Jo’s going to have to fight for what she wants. She’s going to have to take back control of her life and it’s not going to be easy.

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

The Forbidden Triology hooked me from the beginning with Dance for Me. I couldn’t help but get wrapped up in college student/stripper Jo’s story. Her “relationship” with HIM was hot, hot, hot! Plus, there were so many twists and turns that I didn’t see coming. The cliffhanger at the end shocked me and I couldn’t wait for Lie to You to be released.

Lie to You (read my review here) continued the fast-paced, intense, scorchingly hot storyline and has some surprises of its own. Of course, there was another great cliffhanger that left me wanting more.

So, I was super excited to be able to read an ARC of Fall for Him. I couldn’t wait to see what was in store for Jo. So much had changed for her since Dance for Me. I couldn’t help but wonder what surprises J.C. Valentine had in store for readers this time.

I loved Fall for Him. I thought it was the perfect ending to Jo’s story. And that’s all I’m saying because I don’t want to ruin the series for anyone that hasn’t read it yet. It’s an amazing series filled with many surprises. Readers that like enjoy erotic romances, like Fifty Shades of Grey or Bared to You, will enjoy this series.

Other books in this series:

  

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Book That Would Be on My Syllabus if I Taught New Adult Romance 101

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is Top Ten Books That Would Be On Your Syllabus If You Taught X 101 (examples: YA fantasy 101, feminist literature 101, magic in YA 101, classic YA lit 101, world-building 101). I chose New Adult Romance 101. I tried to pick different authors and different types of stories in the genre. All of these books gave me “the feels.”

Top Ten Books That Would Be On My Syllabus if I Taught New Adult Romance 101:

1. Left Drowning by Jessica Park

 Left Drowning

2. Bright Side by Kim Holden

Bright Side (Bright Side, #1)

3. Ugly Love by Colleen Hoover

Ugly Love

4. Archer’s Voice by Mia Sheridan

Archer's Voice

5. Falling Into You by Jasinda Wilder

Falling into You (Falling, #1)

6. There is No Light in Darkness by Claire Contreras

There is No Light in Darkness (Darkness, #1)

7. Broken by Lauren Layne

Broken (Redemption, #1)

8. Sincerely, Carter by Whitney G.

Sincerely, Carter

9. The Mistake by Elle Kennedy

The Mistake (Off-Campus, #2)

10. How We Deal with Gravity by Ginger Scott

What New Adult book would you add to my list? Let me know in the comments.

Frisk Me

Frisk Me (New York’s Finest #1) by Lauren Layne

Publication Date: July 28, 2015

Publisher: Forever

Synopsis:

Officer Luc Moretti would tell you he’s nothing special. He’s just a cop doing his job. He doesn’t understand why the media’s making such a big deal out of him pulling a little girl out of the East River. He can’t walk down the street without someone wanting a picture with him. Now, he’s being forced to do a special interview he has no desire to do.

Ava Sims has one chance to make anchorwoman and it all rests on the ability to get Officer Luc Moretti to comply with her requests. Too bad Luc isn’t making things easy. Ava’s going to do whatever it takes to get the real story on Officer Luc Moretti.

The only thing Ava and Luc agree on is that they hate each other. Well, until they don’t. Both Ava and Luc are trying their best to keep things professional, but the temptation is just too great. Will their personal relationship mess up their professional ones?

My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

So, first off, I have to admit it took me awhile to get into Frisk Me. I think it was Ava and Luc’s constant bickering. They really didn’t like each other and it made it hard for me to like either one of them.

Once I got a little more into the story, I started to really like Luc. He seemed like such a nice guy. (Well, besides to Ava.) His family was adorable. I loved their interactions. My favorite character was Luc’s grandmother, Nonna. She was such a spitfire! There were so many times when I caught myself laughing because of something she was doing or saying. I kind of wish she was my grandma!

Ava took me much longer to like. She was such a selfish person. I wanted to smack her half the time! The only time I really liked her was when she and Luc finally got together. He really brought out the best in her. Not to mention, their chemistry was off the charts!

I liked how Lauren Layne worked social media and how it could potentially affect a police officers life into the story. The only thing I didn’t really care for was how long the bickering went on at the beginning. It just made it hard to fall in love with the characters. For me, that’s important when I start reading a book. So, once I got past all of the initial bickering between the characters, I enjoyed Frisk Me a lot.

**I received an electronic copy of Frisk Me from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Other books in the New York’s Finest series:

November 2015

Home is Where You Are

Home is Where You Are Home is Where You Are by Tessa Marie(Theresa Paolo)

Publication Date: October 8, 2014

Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Format

Synopsis:

Anna is the perfect, rule following student. She has a 4.0 and volunteers all her spare time to fill up her Ivy League applications. Dean isn’t so lucky. His parents are gone, his foster parents abused him and now he’s living on the streets. Each day he’s trying simply to survive. Once they meet, Dean and Anna can’t help but fall for each other. Anna would do anything for Dean, but he isn’t convinced he has what it takes to survive. Anna hopes she can be the one to convince Dean that life is worth fighting for.

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Home is Where You Are is an incredibly touching teenage love story. It had me hooked from the beginning. I couldn’t help but feel for Dean. Each of his chapters (even the happier ones) were heartbreaking. At times, I found Anna’s perfection a little annoying but I loved how being with Dean transformed her. I loved how they gave each other hope and truly brought out the best in each other.

I would definitely suggest Home is Where You Are to my YA contemporary romance reading friends. If you have a Kindle, it’s a Kindle Unlimited book and it’s also in the Prime lending library.