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An Unplanned Lesson (Unplanned #1), by Beth Rinyu

An Unplanned Lesson______________________________________________
Nicole Morgan, the new second grade teacher at Pineview Elementary school, has it all together in the classroom; it’s her personal life that she can’t find peace with. Unable to let go of the guilt that she is harboring from her past, she punishes herself by running from all potential relationships.

Her patience is put to the test when Dailan O’Maley the obnoxious but very sexy uncle of one of her students enters her life. She slowly cracks away at Dailan’s crude, crass exterior when they are forced to work together for the sake of his nephew. The two of them learn a lesson in love that neither had planned as they discover that the guilt they are hiding deep inside isn’t the only thing they have in common. Unbeknownst to her, he holds more than just the key to her heart.
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“It’s so amazing when someone comes into your life and you expect nothing out of it and suddenly, there, right in front of you is everything you needed.”

It wasn’t exactly like that for me. I was a little disappointed by this book and quite bored while reading it. And in a weird way it upsets me because I really wanted to like this book.

I mean, when the main male character is an Irish guy with an arrogant and playful streak and a big heart, you kind of have to like the guy. And the whole plot and situation talked to me. So like I said, I was actually looking forward to reading this book when I started it.

I liked the characters a lot. Nicole and Dainan were nice characters to follow and get to know and I was curious to see how their relationship was going to play out.

Their first meeting didn’t actually do much for me but I liked that Dainan didn’t play games and was always straight forward with Nicole concerning his feelings and what he expected of her as we got more deeply into the story. Of course, he was far from perfect, considering a number of reactions he had in the story regarding Nicole, but in truth, it’s Nicole I had a hard time with while reading this book, but I’ll tell you why in a little while.

“Dailon O’Maley had opened his heart to me. Now I had to decide if I wanted to enter.”

The storyline was promising and all, but to me it really felt like that Beth Rinyu wrote what she felt was expected by the readers, and that made it so that I just couldn’t believe in Nicole’s feelings and emotions while reading. Like for instance, when Nicole talks about her feelings. It felt like she was thinking: “Well, that’s what I have to feel now that this happened. Okay, now I feel that way!” It actually came to the point where the story felt a little fake.

Another thing that didn’t work for me was the fact that the story never made my heart race and I was almost never taken by surprise (I say almost, because the ending actually did surprise me a little) and everything felt very predictable (again, except for the end).

I guess what I’m trying to say here is that it wasn’t a bad story in itself and the characters never annoyed me but something was definitely missing for me and the whole thing felt somewhat a little ….clumsy. But this story remains a cute, sweet and quick one that is easy to read (even though I got a little bored with the way the story was told).

Now, I know a book is never read the same way by two readers, so I won’t say don’t read this book, because you might like this one a lot. Unfortunately, it just didn’t work for me and it didn’t make me wanted to read more of Nicole and Dainan’s story in their sequel.

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Crushed (Redemption #2), by Lauren Layne

Crushed______________________________________________
Lauren Layne’s latest novel about the healing power of redemption tells the story of a crush gone wickedly wrong, proving that what you want isn’t always what you need.

Growing up in New York, Michael St. Claire never expected to spend his twenties wearing cowboy boots. But that was before he learned about his real father, a total stranger with a family in Cedar Grove, Texas. Once in the Lone Star State, Michael meets Kristin Bellamy, who is exquisitely refined and everything Michael always thought he wanted in a woman. The only problem is that Kristin is dating Michael’s new half brother, Devon.

Kristin’s mouthy, curvy sister Chloe has always been in love with Devon Patterson. So when Michael offers to help Chloe break up Devon and Kristin, Chloe agrees to a deal that seems too good to be true. Before long, Chloe finally gets her man, only to make a startling discovery: She no longer wants the guy she had to fight for—she wants the one who stood by her side.

After all he and Chloe have been through, Michael swears he’s damaged goods. Can Chloe convince him that love is worth the risk?
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Out of everything I’ve read by Lauren Layne, the Redemption Series is my favorite. And surprising as it may be, this series is much closer to the YA genre than what I’m used to read but gosh does it work for me. I’m actually kind of sad Crushed will be the last book in this series and that it hasn’t come out in paperback yet. I so want to get my hands on it.

“With Chloe, it’s easy to forget that I’m nobody. Because she makes me feel like somebody.”

Crushed was such a great book. Just so you know, this week I was reading a book and it took me over a week to finish (and that’s kind of a long time for me). I was tired and busy and all and so I got a little behind on my reading. And then I (finally) picked Crushed from my TBR list and it took me about 24 hours to read it. That’s how good this book was.

“Michael, listen. I get it. Nobody’s ever loved you first. You’re tired of being second choice. Or nobody’s choice. I get it. Because nobody ever loved me first, either.”

I was actually really looking forward to Micheal’s story. Olivia’s and Ethan’s were really great ones too but I really wanted to know what was going on in Micheal’s head after he lost his two best friends. And I wasn’t disappointed.

“I’ve tried being someone’s second choice. I can’t do it again.”

Micheal was beautifully broken and in denial. I loved seeing him go from the very dark and numb place he was at the start of Crushed, to the “new” version of himself he found and was forced to show at Chloe’s contact. It was time Micheal faced his demons and he had the chance to find a friend along the way to face them with. Plus he was broody and a bit intense so that’s a plus (at least here it was) but I wish he didn’t think so little of himself and his worth.

“I don’t know why I keep doing that. Coming back to Chloe. She’s annoying as fuck, and yet there’s something strangely calming about her manic personality.”

Now Chloe. Gosh how I loved her. She was so funny and quirky and sweet and lovely. She’s this great loving girl, full of life and sass, and she just brings light and laughter where she goes. I liked her instantly and everything she is was such a delight to read about. I loved how she connected with Micheal even though he (and herself included) didn’t realize it at first. How they became friends and then more, how she was never fooled by Micheal’s attitude and somehow saw right through him, how she brought him back to himself. I just plain loved her. She was a blast to read about and I ate it all up. Basically, I loved her and she was great.

“A girl wants to be loved, sure, and I thought I wanted that. I thought I wanted that from Devon. And now…I don’t know about that. But I do know that I want to be wanted. I want to be wanted by you.”

The two of them made me smile and laugh like a loon. Even when things weren’t great between them I just couldn’t get enough of them. I loved how she never took shit from Micheal and never let him hold back from her. And I certainly loved the sexual tension between them after that first kiss. Daaaaaaaym that first kiss….and that second…but I won’t say more so you have the pleasure of experiencing it for yourself. Just know that Chloe and Micheal together are freaking hot and that sparks usually fly when they come together (pun totally intended).

“I love you best. More than I love anyone. More than you’ve ever been loved.”

I loved getting to know both Micheal and Chloe, separately and together. I have to say though, besides those two, the other characters were a little bit stereotypical. Don’t get me wrong, I liked the book as it was, but if you do read it, it pretty much enfolds like a rom-com, and you definitely feel the movie like ambiance of the book. It was a little bit like that with Isn’t She Lovely and that’s something I liked about this serie), but the end result is that even though we do have two main characters that are well shaped, the secondary ones are a little more stereotyped.

Take Chloe’s (evil) sister Kristin: in short, she’s The Bitch. She’s fake, perfect (at least from afar), has everyone wrapped around her little finger and whatever she desires, she gets (but mainly she gets male attention whereas Chloe… does not). The we have Devon, Chloe’s crush: he’s kind, smart, handsome….but in the end (even though he is all that) he felt a little bit tasteless, at least in comparison to Micheal.

“I don’t think it’s about who loves you first. It’s about who loves you best. And that’s me.”

So there’s that. But in the end, I still enjoyed the book. I especially liked the sexy and almost sexy moments in the book and the ending. And the fact that it was in fact a little bit predictable didn’t bother me …a all. I was glad to read a fluffy, funny and cute love story with a happy ending that felt like I was watching a rom-com where I knew the girl was going to get the guy and I loved it. This book (and this serie) makes for a great summer/beach read. It left me in a very good mood (pretty much the same way certain movies do). It made me smile, laugh and swoon a little. It was sweet and funny with just the right amount of cheesy and seriousness and quite simply, this book was just plain lovely. If you are looking for a nice, funny and cute NA romance, look no further because you’ve found you’re next (three) read(s).

Inappropriate (Bristol Island #2), by Elizabeth Finn

Inappropriate______________________________________________

A New Standalone Bristol Island Tale.

Cohen is a man apart on Bristol Island—an outcast loved by all but separated by his position within the community. Dylan is the newest resident in town, but she arrives with a dark secret and a desire to keep it buried.

But when burning attraction is thrown into the mix, his job and her secrets are quickly forgotten—that is until one impetuous decision renders a relationship off-limits, unethical, and utterly inappropriate.

Living next door to one another on the island’s isolated peninsula guarantees their paths will cross time and time again. With fate tempting Cohen to ignore his conscience and, for the first time in his life, gamble with the rules, will he risk everything for Dylan?

And what happens when Dylan’s past suddenly catches up to her? Will she find the strength to bare her soul to him? Or will she let her secrets take them both down?

Sometimes the inappropriate relationship is the most appropriate of them all.

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“It was quite simple really. Men were supposed to be men, and women were supposed to be women. And, frankly, everything else was supposed to be irrelevant.”

 I don’t know about you, but sometimes, I get a little tingly before reading a book. Not the sexy tingly you get before starting a sexy book. It’s a tingle that has more to do with its author and the kind of books she writes.

“The woman he couldn’t ethically fuck, he wanted to fuck six ways to Sunday without a single socially acceptable barrier between them.”

Well, every time I’m about to start a book by Elizabeth Finn, I get tingly. This woman is truly gifted. She writes the kind of books that treat of controversial subjects, stories that suck you in, make you feel warm inside, then proceeds to tear you apart to the point you don’t know if you’ll be able to keep on reading, and eventually patch you up with a HEA.

“She seemed to have a thing for unrequited love or maybe it was just the forbidden, because he knew her writing style enough at this point to know unrequited would not remain unrequited for long. Her stories always involved heavy and hot amounts of requiting.”

Inappropriate was this kind of book for me. I downloaded the book because of the blurb and its author. I knew this book was going to be sort of tough to read. I always get a little apprehensive before reading her books. And to be honest, this book in particular felt a little bittersweet to me. Not because of how it ends, because I was pretty much happy with the ending and the resolution of conflict with this book, but because of how a particular character reacted.

“People shared their hurts and anger with a person who meant something to them. And when they stopped, it meant they’d lost a reason to.”

The characters are one of the reasons why I enjoy Elizabeth’s writing so much. They aren’t the perfect characters. They are flawed, and they can be wrong, and they can even be ugly in the way they react but that’s what makes then so true and human. That’s something I like about her books and her writing and her characters. But in the case of Inappropriate, Cohen’s attitude and actions toward Dylan REALLY bothered me. I’m not going to quote anything major from the book because even now it seriously pisses me off and because it’s impossible for me to do so and still keep this review spoiler free, but here is a taste of Cohen’s venom. Just keep in mind that he says this to the woman he loves:

“The sight of you made me vomit once already today. I’d really like to avoid that happening again.”

It was to the point where I though he was practically being abusive with her, at least that how it felt. Some of the stuff he has to …digest because of Dylan’s past were hard to swallow since he has a romantic interest in her and that it was obviously upsetting but he would say stuff to her so hurtful and mean and he would do so intentionally. And I couldn’t understand how he could be so intentionally mean to her and pretend to do that because he was in love with her. How could someone want to hurt the person they love the way he does? With words so hateful? Especially when Dylan has been through so much abuse (verbal abuse). He never even tried to put himself in her shoes. Other characters had to to it for him.

“Our past only has the power we give it, and I think you’re giving yours too much.”

That was the dark spot of the book for me because Cohen and Dylan’s relationship could be so good and all of a sudden he would ruin everything by jumping to conclusion and judge her without letting her talk and explain.

“She stood in front of the door, staring at the mat at her feet and waiting for what wasn’t going to happen. Forgiveness, understanding empathy, all those things she’d been stupid enough to hope for.”

He was so quick to judge her, and point out her wrongs and punish her if he though she was wrong. Every time he felt like he was going to get hurt, he would hurt her first. And I just don’t see how redeemable that could be. I’m usually the first to be forgiving and see why someone would do something, even if it’s wrong, but in Cohen’s case, I just couldn’t and that just made him ugly to me as a person. Especially when Dylan was such a sweet girl and had already been through so much hurt.

“Life wasn’t easy, nor was it supposed to be, and she seemed to understand that.”

Now, Dylan was a great character. She was sweet and strong even though she was still scarred from her past. But again, how she reacted to Cohen’s excessive reactions to her, how she kept forgiving him without ever calling him on his bullshit attitude toward her had me raging at my Kindle. It enraged me to see her just taking him back (without him really apologizing for his words and actions or groveling) every time without ever pointing out his wrongs.

“To err is human; to forgive is divine.”

I’m all for forgiveness, but here, the situation bordered on doormat territory.

“You deserve to be happy, Des (…) You need to remember that, because you might have to fight for it. And if you don’t see your worth, how the hell can you make anyone else see it?”

But beside this very black point in the book, I really liked it. The whole island universe and atmosphere, the people on the island and side characters (except for one though). And let’s just say that Elizabeth Finn’s sex scenes have the same punch as they usually have. Damn, there were some hot moments during this winter. And I really liked the matter she treated with Dylan’s situation and past and how she was perceived  and sometimes judged too. It was a great subject to ponder upon and she treated it really well.

“You are the best mistake I could have ever made (…) I… regret… nothing.”

Three Broken Promises (One Week Girlfriend #3), by Monica Murphy

Three Broken Promises______________________________________________

Breakout New Adult sensation Monica Murphy returns with a hot new contemporary romance—a heartfelt story of second chances, forgiveness, and redemption.

Commitment. That’s what I really want from Colin. Ever since my brother, Danny, died in Iraq, Colin’s done so much to help me, including giving me a job at his popular restaurant so I can leave my crappy waitressing job at the strip joint. But lying in bed with him every night to comfort him from his horrible nightmares isn’t enough anymore. I know he feels guilty about Danny’s death, about not going to Iraq, but I can’t keep living this double life.

I love him desperately, but he’s got so many demons, and if he can’t open up to me now, then he’ll never be the real partner I need him to be. I gave him a month, and now I’m out of here. If he truly loves me like he says, he knows where to find me. ______________________________________________

I’m kind of bummed about this book. i always look forward to a story about friend falling for each other, and even more when those friends are a guy falling for his best friend’s little sister. So I was reeeeally excited about Three Broken Promises.

“There’s more between us than friendship, more than our shared history. She means everything to me.”

But in the end I’m a little disappointed with this book. It started out well but turned out to be … I don’t know really, but sone things didn’t feel right. I enjoyed some things like going back to the universe of OWG and SCB and the sexy bits (which were really sexy), bit Colin and Jen were almost too dysfunctional and the fact that they are unable to tell or show clearly that they feel more to each other than friendship and lust got really frustrating after a while. They could have made things easier for each other even by correcting a misunderstanding while they were arguing bit instead they just said nothing, sulked, and then pretended like nothing was wrong. Most of their problems were because of their lack of communication and general miscommunication between them.

“You don’t want me”, he finally says, dropping his head to stare down at the floor, a self-deprecating chuckle escaping him.”Trust me.”

I also felt like the plot, and/or the characters’ personalities and issues were a bit shakier in this novel than other books M. Murphy has written. I have a hard time finding exactly what makes me say this but it’s how I felt toward the last half of the book. For instance, Colin’s trauma over the death of Jen’s brother was….how can I say this….it felt a little overdone. I get that he can feel guilty over his death somehow, but to the point where he is almost crippled by it at times felt weird. But most of all, it felt a little far fetched to me to associate his guilt and the fact that he can’t seem to discuss it with Jen. And also the fact that he can’t seem to say the right thing when it comes to Jen and his feelings for her got a little old after a while. 

“And like a dumbass, I said nothing.”

Also, Jen got really weird at some point. It felt as though she didn’t even make sense to herself for a while there. She kept saying she wanted Colin to care enough about her to not let her go, and then, when he shows that he does care for her by actually taking care of her and really paying attention to her and  actually showing her that he doesn’t want her to leave, she has the gal to be irritated about it.

“I want you Colin. All of you – your faults and your strengths, the good and the bad, it doesn’t matter. I want it all.”

Oh is that right? Because you had me confused here for a second! What do you want woman? I know the guy can’t say anything right when it comes to you and his feelings for you, but when he tries to show you how he feels by taking care of you and actually caring about you on a general basis, you get mad at him! What’s he supposed to do then to make you happy? Let you go? Ah no wait, that would make you sad and feel unwanted. Make you stay? Nope, won’t work either because then you feel like a burden for him and like he doesn’t think you can do anything on your own! Well Jen, I have five words for you: Make up your freaking mind!

“It makes no sense, the confusion swirling in my brain. Why do I resent Colin for wanting to take care of me?”

Figure out what you want and tell him what you want and how you feel once and for all woman! This is unnecessary drama you’re making here!

And then, once they finally say they love each other and can’t live without the other (and actually listen this time) the ending felt all wrong to me.

“Their behavior makes absolutely no sense to me.” 

By the end, it’s like they are trying to make up for the fact they never said I love you to each other for a whole book in one chapter. The last one is way, WAY lovey-dovey compared to the book.

And it really felt rushed. It’s weird to say that after all the time they took to own up to their feelings and figure their shit out but it felt like one moment they couldn’t understand each other if their lives depended on it and the next, they actually communicate and everything is all better and they understand each other so well and Colin cries and Jen doesn’t act like a bipolar about Colin taking care of her and blah blah blah.

So yeah, this ending felt rushed compared to the pace of the whole book. It felt forced or like M. Murphy wrote this last chapter because it was what was expected of the story but it didn’t feel like the same characters at all. Anyway, what I’m trying to say is something felt off about this ending, on a general basis.

So like I said, I feel a little bummed about this book. I was really looking forward to it and I had high hopes for it since I’ve really enjoyed all the books M. Murphy has written so far, but this one turned out to be filled with little things that, on the long run, made it so that I became frustrated both with the characters’ behavior and the story. I didn’t hate it, but I expected more out of this novel. I hope Owen’s story will be more like the kind of books I’m used to when it comes to M. Murphy.

Second Chance Boyfriend (One Week Girlfriend #2), by Monica Murphy

Second Chance Boyfriend______________________________________________

From breakout New Adult author Monica Murphy comes the exhilarating conclusion to Drew and Fable’s story—the star-crossed young romance that began in One Week Girlfriend.
 
Lost. Everything in my life can be summed up by that one sickening word. My football coach blames me for our season-ending losses. So does the rest of the team. I wasted two whole months drowning in my own despair, like a complete loser. And I lost my girlfriend—Fable Maguire, the only girl who ever mattered—because I was afraid that being with me would only hurt her.
 
But now I realize that I’m the one who’s truly lost without her. And even though she acts like she’s moved on and everything’s fine, I know she still thinks about me just as much as I think about her. I know her too well. She’s so damn vulnerable, all I want to do is be there to help her . . . to hold her . . . to love her.
 
I just need her to give me one more chance. We may be lost without each other, but together, we’re destined to find a love that lasts forever.

BONUS: This edition includes an excerpt from Monica Murphy’s Three Broken Promises

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I’m a little ashamed to say that I have had this book gathering dust on my Kindle since 2013 and I picked it up just now. Considering what happens in this book takes place only two months after the events of the first book, I had to refresh my memory a bit before starting Second Chance Boyfriend. I really don’t regret doing it, but I still berate myself for waiting soooo long before starting this book and finish Drew and Fable’s story.
I’m really glad I dove back into this series and got closure with those characters.

“True love isn’t easy, but it must be fought for. Once you find it, it can never be replaced.”

The first 20% or so felt a little longish though. To me it dragged a little. I wanted Drew and Fable to deal with their problems from the start so the whole waiting for them to meet again and then talk and listen to each other, made me have to work on my patience a whole lot.
Thank Gosh though, after the 25% mark or so, they started paying attention to what each other had to say and realized that they actually were on the same page and wanted the same things out their relationship.
But I liked that their relationship wasn’t all flowers and hearts after that either.
No way those two could have simply decided to be with each other and be the greatest and happiest couple to ever be. I liked that they actually had to work for it, that sometimes they had it wrong, that they argued and were able to realize who was at fault and for what, but most of all, I loved that they always put their love for each other at the center of their relationship. Even when they argued, it was always out of love and that really made this book and Drew and Fable’s story good for me.

“I’ll never forget the things you said to me. Not because they mattered, but because they made me feel like I did.”

We get to see more of Fable’s life in this book. In One Week Girlfriend, we meet Drew’s very weird, very twisted family, but apart from the fact that we know Fable’s home life isn’t great, we don’t know much about it either. In SCB, we do see more of it and she really doesn’t have it easy at all. I thought Fable was very mature (even though she was forced to be) and strong in this book. I really got to see more deeply into her personality with this book. She was fiercely protective of the people she loves and so affectionate but she could also be really on the defensive at times. I could understand why she was like that sometimes, but then, in other situations, more precisely with Drew, I really wanted her to let down her walls and let him in and help her, especially when it was obvious he wanted to help and be there for her. There was one scene between Drew and Fable, when they face this particular defense mechanism of Fable’s that I thought was really beautiful and sweet and just really moving. I loved how they resolved their argument and the way Fable finally let Drew in was really sweet and the whole scene was just really tender.

“Loving someone is taking a constant risk with your emotions. When you find the right person,the one you know you want to be with, that person becomes worth the risk.”

Drew’s side of the story was really moving too. At the end of OWG, we know his troubles and trauma are far from over. That he was able to function somewhat normally really amazed me if you consider what Adele did to him and then the bomb that she dropped on him. I was so sad for him that he was so afraid his own father would reject him for what happened to him. In some way, I can understand why he would think that. When you know how he sees his father, it makes sense, but it still broke my heart that after all this time and some people telling him again and again that he wasn’t to blame for what happened to him, he still had a hard time accepting it. Also, in this book, Drew has to work at being independent. His connection to Fable was sometimes bordering on unhealthy. He was so happy of this connection with her that he couldn’t find in anyone else that he acted like he couldn’t function if she went away. Drew had to work on becoming his own person and I’m sure you know it’s not always easy to do.
But I loved that Fable never made him doubt of her love for him and told him times and times again that she loved him completely even after knowing what had happened to him.

“Sometimes you have to stand alone, just to make sure you still can.”

Now let’s talk about the elephant in the room: Adele.
Gosh how I wanted to hit that b**** ! Her character is beyond creepy if you ask me and how deeply delusional she truly is was seriously scary. I still can’t believe what she made Drew go through for so long and so, unknown from almost everyone and unpunished. I can’t say I’m glad about what happens to her in the story, (even though I did wish for her to get what she deserved) because I wouldn’t wish that to anyone and honestly, I think she deserved to be legally punished for what she did to Drew, but I’m not really sad that now, she can’t hurt anyone anymore.

“Once upon a time, we were cynics facing the world alone. Our story changed into two warrior cynics facing the world together.
Now, we own the happily ever after and we refuse to let that bitch go.”

Now I’m really looking forward to the other books in this series. Colin and Jen’s story is really one I’m looking forward to and I’m also curious about Owen’s story. How he turns out to be is really something I’m curious about. I just hope those stories don’t drag as much in the beginning as this one did.

One Week Girlfriend (One Week Girlfriend #1), by Monica Murphy

One Week Girlfriend_______________________________________________

Temporary. That one single word best describes my life these last few years. I’m working at a temporary job until I can finally break free. I’m my little brother’s temporary mother since our mom doesn’t give a crap about either of us. And I’m that temporary girl all the guys want to get with because I give it up so easily. According to the rumors, at least.

But now I’m the temporary girlfriend of Drew Callahan, college football legend and all around golden guy. He’s beautiful, sweet—and he’s hiding way more secrets than I am. He’s brought me into this fake life where everyone seems to hate me. And everyone seems to want something from him. The only thing he seems to want though is…

Me.

I don’t know what to believe anymore. All I know is, I think Drew needs me. And I want to be there for him.

Forever.

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Well, what a surprise! This book totally made a number on me! This novel really went beyond what I expected. The story is much deeper and darker than I thought it would be… But Oh. My. God! THIS BOOK IS FREAKING AMAZING !!!!

“There’s no going back,” he whispers … “Once I am inside you, you’re mine.”

When I first picked One Week Girlfriend, the title let me think it would be one of those sweet, cute, funny — and definitely sexy — stories where the characters play pretend and end up developing actual feelings for each other and not play pretend so much anymore. And well there is a little bit of that in this book, but it’s only the tip of the iceberg. Literally.

“It’s the people who know you the best who can hurt you the most.”

There are so many sweet and lovely moments in the story I kept oooow-wing  at all the time. And at the same time the “true story” is so freaking insane and one character in particular is SO SICK and disgusting I truly wanted to punch her through my Kindle!!!! Adele is freaking sick, insane, delusional, disgusting, manipulative and let’s just say it, just a freaking psycho. I really hope bad things happen to her in the next book because she definitely deserves it. And I’m not one to wish harm to people or character so it’s saying something.

“I shut myself off to make life bearable. I’m like a damn machine sometimes. Unfeeling. Uncaring. Emotionless.”

She completely messed up Drew and she acts like they share something special. Like she owns him. Like what she did wasn’t completely sick and awful. Honestly, sometimes I just felt like taking a shower when I read moments of the story she was involved in, she made me feel so dirty!

“But this girl…she doesn’t feel pointless. She’s real and she’s beautiful and she fits perfectly when she’s in my arms. She makes me want to feel.”

I really cannot wait for the second part of the story to be released. Drew and Fable were amazing characters. They start out as complete strangers and complete opposites too, but they eventually find in each other someone special who cares for them and accepts them for who they are. Their connection to each other and their relationship was lovely and deep and so beautiful.

“He might be more trouble than he’s worth but I don’t think so. This man came into my life for some reason. Just as I came into his. Maybe we’re supposed to help each other cope. Or give each other hope.”

Honestly, the ending left me hanging and I can’t wait to read the next part of Drew and Fable’s story because I might just go insane not knowing what happens next.

“Honestly, I don’t quite know how we got to this point. I hated him on sight. I did this only for the money. I thought he was a fucked up mess. I still think he’s a fucked up mess. But so am I. And he’s so beautiful, so thoughtful, so vulnerable. We can be a mess together. I want to heal him. I know I can heal him.”

I really recommend this book. This story is so much bigger and darker than it seems at first glance but it’s totally worth it!

God, I’m sorry, this review sucks. I actually wrote this right after finishing the book so, let’s just say that my emotions were all over the place and it was kind of hard to write anything remotely good we me still gushing over this novel.

I’ll just add one last little thing:

“M-A-R-S-H-M-A-L-L-O-W” !!!

Rules of Protection (Tangled In Texas #1), by Alison Bliss

Rules of Protection_______________________________________________

It’s rule breaker Emily Foster’s birthday, and like everyone at The Jungle Room, she just wants to get some action. Unfortunately, she stumbles on the wrong kind, witnessing a mob hit. To protect her, she’s entered into the Witness Protection Program with by-the-book Special Agent Jake Ward as her chaperone.

When the location of their safe house is compromised, Jake stashes Emily deep in the Texas backwoods. The city-girl might be safe from the Mafia, but she has to contend with a psychotic rooster, a narcoleptic dog, crazy cowboys, and the danger of losing her heart to the one man she can’t have.

Jake’s as hot as he is infuriating, and she can’t help but push all his buttons to loosen him up. Their mutual, sizzling sexual attraction poses a dilemma: Jake’s determined to keep her safe and out of the wrong hands; she’s determined to get into the right ones—his.

_______________________________________________

“Jake smiled, as if he enjoyed my temper tantrum. “Patience is a virtue.”
“Yeah, well, so is virginity, but I don’t have that anymore, either.”

This quote is the reason I bought this book. I mean, just from this quote and the glimpse it gave of the characters dynamic and the sass of the heroine and I knew I was in for a good time. And I was right. I loved this book! I had such a blast reading it! I was hooked from chapter one and couldn’t stop reading until I reached the end! I really wasn’t expecting to like this book so much and it turned out to be exactly what I needed to read.

“You know what your problem is? Your mouth operates faster than your brain does.”

Emily’s character made this book so good for me. I loved how crazy she was and just whole. To me she is the perfect definition of “Go big or go home”. She made me laugh with her over the top reactions and the fact that she has no filter whatsoever when it comes to say what she thinks. Her reactions sometimes make more problems than anything else but I still enjoyed her a lot. And I just loved the dynamic and banter between her and Jake!

“Damn it, Emily. I’m responsible for your safety.” “Then wear a condom!” “Jesus,” he said, breathing out hard. “I was right before. You definitely have multiple personalities.” My eyes narrowed. “Yeah, well maybe I do, and none of them like you!”

Jake was really hot with the hole take charge, alpha male persona and I loved how he and Emily always pushed each other.

“I don’t usually have anything on me in bed…unless it’s a woman.”

I loved how those two seemed to not stand each other but always came back for more and couldn’t get enough of each other at the same time.
I loved every second of their time together and even when they were both being stubborn and/or stupid, they still managed to have me smiling at their antics.

“Jesus Christ, woman! We don’t have to have sex. There’s enough damn friction between us to last a lifetime.”

Those two have some serious chemistry going on and I loved seeing them try to keep it under control and fail royally. I really enjoyed seeing those two falling for each other and being stubborn about it.

“Choking a chicken is an old slang term. You just told us you performed sexual favors on Jake this morning.”

I also loved the universe of this book and all its characters. Jake’s family and friends were great secondary characters and I very much enjoyed that they were really present in the story and not just on the side lines. I really felt that I was in the deep of Texas and I loved it. Their way of living and the way they were with each other, always welcoming each other with open arms and all was really great to read. It really made me want to be part of the gang.

“If you’re the undercover agent, how come I always end up being the one on the ground?”
“I like being on top,” he said smugly.”

The mystery/action part of the book is nothing extraordinary, so if that’s really what you are looking for, I’d say look elsewhere, but I was still satisfied with it. I enjoyed the suspense and the bit of action it provided and the little twist hidden in the mix.

I don’t know when or if there is going to be a Tangled In Texas #2 but I sure hope there is because I want to see more of Jake and Emily, as well as Cowboy, Bobbie Jo, Ox and all the others!
This book was the perfect combination of sweet, fun and swoony.

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