WWW Wednesday: June 16, 2021

WWW Wednesday is hosted by Taking on a World of Words.

WHAT DID YOU RECENTLY FINISH READING?

I just finished The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Millay. It’s a book that I’ve planned on reading for a long time and just rescued from the depths of my Kindle. I’m so mad at myself for waiting so long because this book was SO GOOD. It gave me chills!

WHAT ARE YOU CURRENTLY READING?

I decided to give Racing Savannah (Hundred Oaks, #5) by Miranda Kenneally a chance since I’ve enjoyed most of the books in this series and it’s been on my Kindle for a long time.

WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’LL READ NEXT?

My plan is to read He Found Me (He Found Me, #1) by Whitney Barbetti. If I like it, I will probably read the second book because I have that one sitting on my Kindle as well. Can you see a trend?

Review: When Sparks Fly (Helena Hunting)

When Sparks Fly
Author: Helena Hunting
Publication Date: September 21, 2021
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ 

Synopsis:

Running the Spark House, a hotel/event space that has been in her family for years, has been Avery Spark’s lifelong dream. After years of working hard and making personal sacrifices, Avery and her two younger sisters have turned the Spark House into the premier destination in Colorado Springs. Avery is living her best life—she works with her sisters and loves every minute of it, she has a great group of friends, and she lives in a fantastic condo with her best friend Declan. She might not have any love in her life, but she’s happy.

But everything comes to a screeching halt when Avery is in a car accident, leaving her immobile for weeks. After nearly losing Avery, Declan insists that he will be the one to take care of her while she recovers. However, as Declan becomes Avery’s caretaker, lines begin to blur.

Avery and Declan have been best friends since college and always had an attraction to one another, but when she ended up dating his best friend, Sam, they successfully stamped down any feelings they may have ever had for one another. Now, as Declan and Avery spend more time together, they each begin to wonder what would’ve happened if she’d dated him instead of Sam. What starts as a friend helping out another friend turns into foreplay and, before they realize it, they recognize how deeply they care for one another. But when things get serious their past threatens to destroy everything they have built.


A best friends and roomies to more by Helena Hunting? My answer will always be “Yes, please.” to this. I truly enjoyed When Sparks Fly. It was a sweet and somewhat steamy romance. Avery and Declan are besties who live together. After Avery is injured in an accident, Declan naturally takes care of his roommate. Their close friendship morphs into something more with each passing day. I loved how close Avery and Declan were emotionally. Their friendship and connection was so strong. It made their chemistry pop when they finally decided to become more. I loved them as single friends, but I adored them in a relationship.

Usually when I get to the conflict in a romance I’m all for hurrying up to resolve it and get to the happy ending. Surprisingly, I didn’t feel that way about this one. I appreciated the way Hunting wrote the way the conflict was handled. There was a lot the characters needed to think about and deal with to be whole as a couple and I loved how the ground work was laid. It made the romance all the sweeter. So while the romance between Avery and Declan was my favorite thing about this book, the resolution of the conflict was close up there.

Another great thing about this book was the supporting characters. Avery’s sisters were a close knit group and fun to get to know. Avery and Declan’s friends were also tight and entertaining. I would adore for the two sisters and two best friends to end up together in future books to make this a series. Or even books for each of the four of them. The characters are too good to go to the character graveyard.

One last thing… I feel like I need to talk about a couple of things that weren’t a problem for me, but are sure to be for other readers. This first thing is kind of SPOILERISH, but happens in the first few chapters so I don’t think it’s a true spoiler. As the blurb details, Avery and Declan are best friends and roommates. They know pretty much everything about each other. This is their love story, but at the beginning they aren’t together at all. Declan brings a woman home. There are no details of this, only the morning after seen through Avery’s eyes. While some readers will put this in the OW in a book category, I don’t. If it was, it would bug me. Done with SPOILERISH. The second thing is the heat level. I would not call this high heat, but those who favor closed door romances might be surprised by the steam factor. This isn’t the steamiest I’ve read of Hunting’s books, but it’s also not the least. I would say it’s closer to her NA romances than her adult romances in heat level. It’s more mature, but not quite there. I won’t go into my dislike of cutesy illustrated covers as what it makes people think they’re going to be reading, but this one might do some damage in that area.

So, yeah. When Sparks Fly hit the spot for me. It reminded me what I enjoy about Helena Hunting’s writing and made me hope the next release is sooner rather than later.

10 Year Challenge Book Tag

I was tagged by Bea @ Confessions of a Pinay Bookaholic to do the 10 Year Challenge Book Tag. This tag created by Rincey Reads. It’s a fun tag that takes a look back at my reading 10 years ago versus today. Please check out  Bea’s post here. Thanks for the tag, Bea!

What was your favorite book in 2011?

I’m going to try to give you the most honest answer I can because I didn’t start using Goodreads to track my reading until 2012. That being said, I picked up The Beach Trees by Karen White while browsing at Border’s (Man, I miss that Borders!) back when it was released in 2011. I loved this book and went on to read her entire backlist…and I’m still reading her books today.

What is your favorite book of 2021 (so far)?

Ugh! I’m horrible at picking a favorite! I could give you 10 for this year already. I think I’ll go with Taylor Jenkins Reid’s Malibu Rising. I loved this multigenerational tale set in Malibu.

What was your least favorite book in 2011?

I used to be in a book club with my sister and her husband’s female co-workers. These ladies were very bright and read a wide variety of books. One woman picked Brilliant: The Evolution of Artificial Light as her choice for us to read. It was like reading a text book.

What was your least favorite book in 2021?

Letters in White is a book that sat on my Kindle for 6 years before I read it. It was one several authors promoted saying how much they loved it and I bought it for $.99 all that time ago. I gave this book 3 stars because the writing was good and I knew it hit the right people the way they needed it to. That person wasn’t me. It’s a book about a woman who is going through depression and suicide is her answer. It’s sad and depressing. The only thing I liked was the last chapter.

What is a book published in 2011 that you still want to read?

This is the only book published in 2011 that is still on my bookshelf that I have yet to read.

What is the book published (to be published) in 2021 you want to get before 2022?

Um, all of them? Haha. Let’s just go with Bend in the Road because I didn’t get an ARC of this one. 🙁

What is a genre you used to read a lot of that you don’t read as much of anymore?

YA contemporaries. I’ve had some issues reading them lately. They just haven’t been working well for me. Racing Savannah is one on my Kindle I need to read soon since I’ve had it forever.

What is a new genre you’ve discovered since 2011?

New adult romance!!! I don’t remember what book was the first. It was either Slammed or Left Drowning by Jessica Park.

What is a reading or book habit you are hoping to leave behind in this decade?

Reading so much. Yes, you read that right. Reading so much. I’m hoping the world goes back more towards normal and I can get out and do stuff rather than hang out at home so much.

What is a new reading goal or habit you want to create in the upcoming decade?

I can’t really think of a new one, but I have been working on a big goal this year. I went through all of the books on my Kindle and looked them up on Goodreads. I dumped the ones I knew I wouldn’t read and made an Excel spreadsheet of the ones still on there. I have been diligently reading those books in between ARCs and new releases this year. My goal is to have read all of them by the end of 2021. I think I have around 10 books left. Then, I will move on to the books on  my physical bookshelf that I haven’t read. I think I have somewhere around 5 to 10 there to read. That can be my 2022 goal.

I am tagging these readers to do the tag:

Stephanie @ Stephanie’s Book Reviews
Tanya @ Girl Plus Books
Sam @ We Live and Breathe Books
Natalie @ Natalie the Biblioholic
Lenore @ Celebrity Readers
Kayla @ Books and Blends
Alison @ Ali’s Books

Review: The Perfect Catch (Meghan Quinn)

The Perfect Catch
Author: Meghan Quinn
Publication Date: June 10, 2021
Genre: Contemporary, Sports Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Synopsis:

“Kiss me. Just this once . . . please Walker.”

Those whispered words were my undoing . . .

As the most hated player in baseball, I had two options: either clean up my image or pack my bags. Being traded wasn’t an option which only meant one thing, I had to become compliant.

That’s how I found myself sharing a small bistro table with Kate Chapman, the Chicago Bobbies newest PR Manager. Devastatingly beautiful, vastly intelligent, and incredibly cunning, she knows exactly how to handle my grumpy demeanor.

It was supposed to be simple. Book some PR events, show up, smile for the camera, and be done. But one massive mistake on my end sends me into the trenches with Kate, forcing me to open up to her.

Innocent glances turn into cordial encounters.
Secret touches turn into tempting invitations.
And dangerous nights alone turn into consuming desperation.

I’ve never wanted a woman as much as I want her. And I know she wants me, but there’s a no fraternizing with the players rule. Neither of us can afford to lose our jobs, but we also can’t seem to keep our hands off each other either. 


I’ve loved all these Brentwood Boys and their books. My favorite characters have changed and multiplied while the series expanded. For the longest time I haven’t been able to pick just one favorite. Well, that changed with The Perfect Catch. Walker’s book is now my favorite.

What makes The Perfect Catch my favorite after seven other amazing stories? Walker himself. If you like a grumpy hero, you will love Walker. He’s a baseball catcher who has anger issues. He’s magic behind the plate with a pitcher he HATES. He is filled with rage and self-hate. Everyone should probably dislike him, but there’s something underneath his tough exterior that makes you know he’s really a decent guy. I wanted to know what that was from the very beginning and I loved finding out through Kate’s eyes.

Kate works for the Bobbies and it’s her job to turn Walker’s image around. She knows she has her work cut out for her. What she doesn’t know is how sweet Walker is under all those thunder clouds. There’s no fraternizing in baseball, but Kate can’t help falling for Walker. I loved Kate’s spunky personality and her confidence when dealing with the players. I don’t know that I would call her sunshine to Walker’s grump, but pretty close. Their chemistry is some of the best I’ve read in a long time. Their entire connection was what made me love this book so much. I loved how Kate broke through Walker’s layers. In my opinion, this romance was perfect. Dare I say it’s now my most favorite Meghan Quinn book ever?

WWW Wednesday: June 9, 2021

WWW Wednesday is hosted by Taking on a World of Words.

WHAT DID YOU RECENTLY FINISH READING?

I just finished an ARC of Small Town Pretender (Havenbrook, #5) by Brighton Walsh.

WHAT ARE YOU CURRENTLY READING?

I pulled Maverick (North Ridge, #2) by Karina Halle out of the depths of my Kindle to read.

WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’LL READ NEXT?

 I’m going to read The Cornerstone (The Walshes, #4) by Kate Canterbary because I have that one sitting on my Kindle as well. This will be my first ever book by this author.

Series Review: Moo U (Books 8-10)

Good morning! I have something fun to share with you today. It’s a series review for the next three books in the Moo U series in Sarina Bowen’s World of True North. Get ready for some college hockey romance fun!

Playmaker
Series: Moo U, #8
Author: Sierra Hill
Publication Date: June 7, 2021
Publisher: Heart Eyes Press
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Sports Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ½

My thoughts: 

I loved everything about Playmaker minus the conflict. Cal and Aria were so cute together. Their relationship was totally swoon worthy. I just hated that Aria didn’t confide in Cal when she should have. I understood why Aria was trying to distance herself from her father’s problems, but I hated that she was keeping things a secret and building a life upon half truths at Moo U. It made her seem immature and took away from everything she had built with Cal, in my opinion. It brought my enjoyment of Playmaker down, which makes me sad because I enjoy Sierra Hill’s writing. I wanted to be completely in love with this book.

Add to Goodreads: https://bit.ly/3iFVKDT
Purchase here: https://geni.us/AmazonPlaymaker
Moo U Hockey: https://hearteyespress.com/wotn#/moo-u-hockey/

Snowballed
Series: Moo U, #9
Author: Melanie Ting
Publication Date: June 7, 2021
Publisher: Heart Eyes Press
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary, Sports Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

My thoughts: 

Snowballed was the first book I’ve ever read by Melanie Ting and I enjoyed it. I loved Noah’s character and his family dynamics. It brought so much to the story. The same can be said for Zoe — although I liked Noah more than I liked Zoe. I think that was because Noah faced his hardships head on and Zoe let hers build up waiting to detonate. I could feel that tension and it made me uncomfortable at times. That being said, I loved Noah and Zoe together. The way they connected through hockey, farm chores, food, and animals was sweet.

Add to Goodreads: https://bit.ly/366wdyu
Purchase here: https://geni.us/AmazonSnowballed
Moo U Hockey: https://hearteyespress.com/wotn#/moo-u-hockey/

Goalkeeper
Series: Moo U, #10
Author: Andi Burns
Publication Date: June 7, 2021
Publisher: Heart Eyes Press
Genre: goNew Adult, Contemporary, Sports Romance
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

My thoughts: 

I’ve got another book to add to my Moo U favorites list! Goalkeeper is exactly what I’m looking for when I pick up a book in this series. It was so adorable! Shy goalie Spencer and party girl Paige were a perfect match. They got each other. I love when a couple gets each other the way these two did. It makes me believe they could go the distance. This book was so much fun. The amount of drama was just right and I loved how it all resolved. I hadn’t read a book by Andi Burns before, but I will be checking out her backlist for sure!

Add to Goodreads: https://bit.ly/39Xy4H2
Purchase here: https://geni.us/AmazonGoalkeeper
Moo U Hockey: https://hearteyespress.com/wotn#/moo-u-hockey/

Review: The Good Lie (A.R. Torre)

The Good Lie
Author: A.R. Torre
Publication Date: July 20, 2021
Publisher: Thomas & Mercer
Genre: Thriller, Mystery, Fiction
Note: This review is for an ARC and is my unbiased opinion.

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ 

Synopsis:

Six teens murdered. A suspect behind bars. A desperate father. In a case this shadowy, the truth is easy to hide.

Six teenagers dead. Finally, the killer behind bars. But are the games just beginning?

Psychiatrist Dr. Gwen Moore is an expert on killers. She’s spent a decade treating California’s most depraved predators and unlocking their motives—predators much like the notorious Bloody Heart serial killer, whose latest teenage victim escaped and then identified local high school teacher Randall Thompson as his captor. The case against Thompson as the Bloody Heart Killer is damning—and closed, as far as Gwen and the media are concerned. If not for one new development…

Defense attorney Robert Kavin is a still-traumatized father whose own son fell prey to the BH Killer. Convinced of Thompson’s innocence, he steps in to represent him. Now Robert wants Gwen to interview the accused, create a psych profile of the killer and his victims, and help clear his client’s name.

As Gwen and Robert grow closer and she dives deeper into the investigation, grave questions arise. So does Gwen’s suspicion that Robert is hiding something—and that he might not be the only one with a secret.


My review for The Good Lie is going to be different. There are a lot of different characters and multiple points of view going on in this book. Rather than lay it all out for you and possible spoil something, I’m going to give you my impressions while reading this book.

First impression: I’m kind of confused to what’s going on. All of these people are messed up. I can’t tell if I’m going to like this book or not.

Impression half way through: All of these people are REALLY messed up. I can trust no one. Why are they all so sketchy? Except Nina. She’s the real sleuth.

As things start being revealed: I saw that coming, but why didn’t I expect that?

Final impression: The Good Lie was a fast paced thriller with expected and unexpected twists and turns. It took me a bit to get into, but once I was hooked I couldn’t put it down. All the characters were flawed and messy and I loved that. I enjoyed the ride this book and its multiple POV took me on. I loved how everything tied up at the end.

WWW Wednesday: June 2, 2021

WWW Wednesday is hosted by Taking on a World of Words.

WHAT DID YOU RECENTLY FINISH READING?

The last book I read was Insatiable (Cloverleigh Farms, #3) Melanie Harlow. It’s the first book I’ve read in this series, but I think I want to go back and read the others now.

WHAT ARE YOU CURRENTLY READING?

I’m reading an ARC of The Perfect Catch by Meghan Quinn.

WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’LL READ NEXT?

I just got Fallen Jester (Tin Gypsy, #5) by Devney Perry from the library, so I’ll probably read it next.