Friday, January 10, 2014


Wrecked (Wrecked #1)
By: Priscilla West
ebook: 286 pages.
Published: Dec 11, 2013 by Blackbird Publishing

Summary via Two years ago, Lorrie’s mother was murdered. But that wasn’t the end of it. Reeling from the tragedy, Lorrie’s father spiraled into alcohol, depression, and finally suicide.

The two most important people in Lorrie’s life are both gone but she’s still alive.

Trying to recover from the tragedy, Lorrie returns to campus, ready to pick up the pieces of her life. All Lorrie wants is to get back to “normal.”

Then she meets Hunter. The man, the legend, “the Hammer.”

Hunter is a cage fighter who takes on every fight like he’s got nothing to lose. His life is a tangled mess of girls, booze, and fist fights. And while it may seem like he’s got a devil-may-care attitude, he’s fighting a private cage-match with a monster he can’t defeat.

Lorrie knows that Hunter is the exact type of guy she should stay away from, especially in her fragile state, but Hunter has other ideas.

As Hunter and Lorrie grow closer together, will they be able to overcome their pain and heal each other? Or will they both end up wrecked?
This was so well written, I have very few complaints about it. First of all, I didn't feel like we were thrown into a relationship starting with page 1. This book moved along gradually, watching Hunter and Lorrie build a friendship and then a relationship.......

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Where My Heart Breaks

Where My Heart Breaks
By: Ivy Sinclair
Paperback, 182 pages

Published August 29th 2013 by Smith Sinclair Books

Summary Via
Trust is in short supply for Kate at the start of the summer before her senior year of college. Her parents sentenced her to spend it under the watchful eye of her aunt at the famous Willoughby Inn. It was further proof that she was a prisoner in, and not the decision maker of, her life. Nothing she does is good enough to prove that she learned from the mistakes of her past.

Almost immediately, Kate finds that her new summer home holds another person who understands the unfairness of her situation better than most. Reed Black has had his own share of tragedy and regrets, but instead of trying to fight his reputation, he embraced it.

Sparks fly between Kate and Reed, but his mixed signals remind Kate that she needs to watch her step. He is one temptation she can't afford to indulge in, no matter how strong her attraction to him. If she isn't careful, she'll lose more than her heart.

My review:This was a great book. It started off with a bang and didn't slow down at all. We are introduced to the 2 main characters, Kate and Reed, right off the bat. They meet as Kate is driving into a new town to work for her aunt for the summer. Kate gets a flat tire and is on the side of the road attempting to change it when Reed stops to help. The chemistry is there from that moment. However, they both try to fight it due to their pasts and their attempts to make a clean break and have a nicer future.
This was also a very short story and I'd love to see it rewritten with a lot more story and detail. For example we know Kate has had a rough semester in college. She's been partying and hanging out with a "boyfriend" who couldn't be more worse for her. There are also references to the fact that she was doing drugs as well. I got the impression it was related to the boyfriend, though we never really were told what led her to this one semester of partying. Why didn't she behave this way before?Was it all just because of the boyfriend?  I would like to know a little more detail about what led her to this path.

Kate's Aunt: she comes across as very cold, and she makes it known she's going her sister a favor by taking in Kate for the summer and employing her. She rats out any sort of "bad" behavior to Kate's mom who seems incredibly cold and unreasonable for someone who wants so badly for her daughter to get her life in order. I would love for some more character development of the Aunt.

 Reed: We do get the full story on why he's so closed off. He has a bad reputation, although no one will really say why. Just that he's bad. He's bad for Kate. Of course Kate is instantly drawn to him. Reed's story is probably the most fully developed in this story, though the only thing not really told is what is wrong with his mother.

 Millie: The best friend everyone should have. She keeps Kate in line, yet when Kate is in the middle of a crisis, she is on the first flight to help. She gives good, sound advice and isn't afraid to make Kate mad.
 Sam: The good boy. He is described perfectly by Kate. He is a great guy. He's caring, sweet and good looking. He also probably always gets the short end of the stick.

This was such a wonderful story, I just don't feel that the author did it justice by making it so short. If I could beg for it to be written again and add a couple hundred more pages, had have that come true, I'd be very happy. I especially want to know more about Kate. She seems like she really does have it all. However, it was very sad that her parents really wrote her off because she chose to stand on her own 2 feet. I want to see more about what happens to Kate and Reed then just a few pages of an epilogue.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Sunset Bay

Sunset Bay By: Susan Mallery Published Feb.11, 2009 by PocketStar Paperback 342 pages Summary via L.A. accountant Megan Greene has a successful job, a handsome cardiologist fiancé, and a doting father. Surely they make up for her estranged sister and hypochondriac mother...and a niggling sense that something, somewhere, got lost along the way. But then Megan's life falls spectacularly apart. Faced with the knowledge that neither her father nor her fiance; are the men she thought they were, she is loath to trust Travis -- the high school boyfriend who never quite left her heart. But his reappearance stirs dreams she once reluctantly packed away, and forces her to confront her relationship with her sister -- a bond that has been strained to the limit but has never quite broken. And amid the turmoil lies the promise of a future Megan never expected -- one that may turn out to contain everything she really needs.... ****My Review (This does contain spoilers) ****** I must start by saying what a huge fan of Susan Mallery I am. I love and adore her Fool's Gold series and can not get enough of them. I am also a sucker for a good romance story. This book fell flat for me. It was just very unbelievable, even by romance novel standards. It begins in 1998. Megan is the daughter of Tina and Gary. She's a daddy's girl all the way. Her mom frequently tells her she's ugly and will never be popular or have a boyfriend. She has a younger sister who is pretty and popular and seems to be her mother's pet. The sister has no real relationship with the dad, and Megan has no real relationship with her mom.... They talk briefly about the one boyfriend Megan had a couple of years ago, but he did something (we never really know) and he went to prison at age 16. Suddenly Megan is at a party and the boyfriend is there! (they're only 18 here). He is with another girl and is trying to make it obvious to Megan he doesn't want anything to do with her. Only he really does, so 5 minutes later they're making out in the parking lot and then they sneak off to Vegas the next day. Her sister figures it out and blabs to the dad. When they return the dad is very upset with her. And to make matters worse, the boyfriend, who's name is Travis, decides to that he needs to run away from his enabling mom and his drunken abusive dad. He tells Megan he loves her and she has to choose right then and there. Him? or her family? Mind you, she is 18 and has never had a real relationship other than Travis when she was 16, and then again at 18 when they see each other and in 5 minutes are in love and sneaking off to Vegas..... She doesn't choose fast enough and he leaves......... Fast forward to 10 years later when things get really unbelievable. Megan is engaged to Adam, a snake of a man who is a cardiologist. Megan is confronted at work by an attorney who tells her Gary is not her dad, someone else is. That someone else has died and left her an inheritance. She confronts her drama filled mother, and as she does, her father over hears. Immediately, Gary, the man who has loved her and raised her like she was his own, the man who never knew she wasn't, decides he wants no relationship with Megan. Completely washes his hands of her. This is where it gets far fetched to me. Not only does he sever ties with the daughter he was closest to when her world, as well as his comes undone, but he leaves her mother and the mother insists it's somehow Megan's fault. This goes on and on through out the book. The mom telling Megan its her fault, so she needs to pay her bills and take care of her. Next, Megan finds out her lovely Dr. finace has been cheating on her most of their relationship. He tells her that he plans on being loyal once they're married. And then can't understand why she wants to end the relationship. He must come to talk to her a dozen times and tell her she's being unreasonable. Because a marriage should be based on lies and cheating. I guess.... Finally, Travis. They run into each other 10 years later when she's gone to Vegas to distract herself from what is supposed to be her wedding day. They spend the night together and Then Adam ends up at her door in Vegas begging for another chance. Travis takes off refusing to listen to Megan. All the while, his home situation is just as unbelievable. His dad has been in jail for years. Travis had called the police and turned him in for some illegal activity he discovered his dad doing. The mother blames Travis for the father being in jail. Then when he goes home to help his mom with her failing business, he realizes a long time friend has been skimming their books and turns him in. The mom turns on Travis. Finally by the last couple of pages Travis and Megan get it right and end up together. Forever. I think seeing Travis and Megan's relationship grow more in this book instead of maybe 3 or 4 encounters would have helped it a lot. Having the father not turn on Megan, or having that whole thing handled in a more believable way would have made this a better book. I can see Travis's situation. His mom is an enabler and was bound to blame her teenage son for every problem with the dad. That's semi believable..... I am leaving out more, just because these are the 3 main situations and the rest was just as unbelievable as the rest. This book was 3 out of 5 stars for me.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Ophelia and the Marvelous Boy

****DISCLAIMER**** I am still having formatting issues. Please bear with me as I work through them Ophelia and the Marvelous Boy By: Karen Foxlee Published: Jan.28, 2014. 240 pages. Published by: Knopf Books for Young Readers Summary via Unlikely heroine Ophelia Jane Worthington-Whittard doesn't believe in anything that can't be proven by science. She and her sister Alice are still grieving for their dead mother when their father takes a job in a strange museum in a city where it always snows. On her very first day in the museum Ophelia discovers a boy locked away in a long forgotten room. He is a prisoner of Her Majesty the Snow Queen. And he has been waiting for Ophelia's help. As Ophelia embarks on an incredible journey to rescue the boy everything that she believes will be tested. Along the way she learns more and more about the boy's own remarkable journey to reach her and save the world. A story within a story, this a modern day fairytale is about the power of friendship, courage and love, and never ever giving up My review: I have not read a Children's book purely for my own entertainment. I usually will read a chapter with my son occasionally. I was sent this book by the author to read prior to the release date,and I am very glad I dug right into this. This book was really magical. It had everything: a normal girl, her sister and father. Museum exhibits that come to life. The villain. The Hero. Love. Sadness. Happiness. Freight. And so much more. The story begins with Ophelia and her family at the museum. They have just lost their Mother/Wife and are still grieving her loss. The father takes a job at a museum putting together a sward exhibit. While they're there, Ophelia goes exploring and discovers a boy living in a room. They can see each other just by peering through the small key hole. Ophelia is introduced to magic and mystery as soon as she encounters the boy. She has a mission she needs to accomplish in order to save the boy, and the world from the evil of the Snow Queen. There are a lot of terrifying moments as she moves about to accomplish this mission before the world is taken over by the evil Snow Queen. Ophelia deals with many issues in this book. Like the exhibits coming to life, specifically the Misery Birds who are something I never want to encounter. It is as this mission unfolds that the real world and the magical worlds collide. What seems real isn't and what isn't real seems that it is. There are some characters who play a dual role in this story, and it has you guessing from start to finish. Ophelia is a brave little girl. For someone who has just encountered so much pain and heart ache, this almost gives her the chance to work with her mom and have her mom by her side as she follows instructions to get from point A to B to C........ This book uses so much imagination, and that alone makes it a worthwhile read. I felt lost in the images of the museum, the time travel, the history and so much more. Books like this make me want to share them with all the children I know. In today's age, we are so lost in the world of technology, and focused on moving at the speed of light. Children should all be able to read a book of this type and find their creativity. Open up their minds and explore the museum with Ophelia. I have never been a big fantasy reader. I have always been kind of turned off by the thought of it, but this has opened up a new genre of interest for me. This book is listed as appropriate for ages 8-12, and honestly I think that kids of all ages, from 8 to 100 will love to read this. I plan on letting my son read it once his reading pile gets a little smaller. This book was 4 out of 5 stars for me. I wish the author much luck and success with this book, and give many thanks for allowing me to read it early!