Februrary Book Haul

These are the books that found their way to my bookshelf this month.

Bought Books:
– Celebrity Shopper by Carmen Reid
– The Stranger by Camilla Lackberg
– Buffy The Vampire Slayer Vol. 1 (Coyote Moon, Night Of The Living Rerun & Portal Through Time) by John Vornholt, Arthur Byron Cover & Alice Henderson

Giveaway:

Goodreads Giveaway:
– Fallout by James K. Decker
– The Winter People by Jennifer McMahone

NetGalley:
– Don’t Even Think About It by Sarah Mlynowski
– Undone by Shannon Richard
– Hell Without You by Ranae Richards
– Plain Jayne by Laura Drewry
– Third Degree by Julie Cross
– Me Since You by Laura Weiss
– Endless by Amanda Gray
– Cowboy In My Pocket by Kate Douglas
– The Johnstown Girls by Kathleen George
– Alpha Goddess by Amalie Howard

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Book Review – Hell Without You

Hell Without You by Ranae Rose
Title: Hell Without You
Author: Ranae Rose
Series: n/a
Publisher: Amazon Digital Services Inc. (Self-published E-book)
Release Date: September 5th 2013
ISBN-13: 978-1-4921-6559-0
Source: Netgalley
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Synopsis

Time changes everything, except what’s meant to be.

Seven years is a long time – long enough to transform Clementine from a small-town teenager with a broken heart into a woman ready to take on the world, but not long enough to make her forget about the man she was never suppose to see again. A temporary return to Willow Heights thrusts her back into Donovan’s life and home, unearthing heartbreak and obsession that have stood the test of time.

He left seven years ago too, for war and other things Clementine can only imagine. Coming back to town where he grew up in the shadow of poverty and drug addiction makes no sense, and neither do Clementine’s feelings for him. He could never forgive her for leaving, could he? Even if she had no choice.

Now, she has the freedom to choose…and so does he. Every day in Willow Heights makes it clearer: all he ever really wanted was her, and nothing will change that. Not even a taste of hell that drove them apart in the first place.

My Thoughts

My what a short and sweet little romance this was. It really did have my heartstrings pulled from cover to cover. I never imagined that Trevor would meet his end, I mean I envisioned something happening involving Trevor, Clementine and Donovan but not his death. If anything I thought his demise would be at the hands of Donovan and not Donovan’s friend and co-worker/employee Mike.

I’m really glad and had a teary eyed moment in the end where she and her mother’s relationship finally started to mend together. It’s really an eye opener to how people react and how much it takes for a person to realize their wrong.

I feel Trevor fully deserved what he got, and that justice was fully served for Clementine and the others that weren’t as lucky as Clementine to get away.

This novel highlighted the fact that true love can and will withstand the tests of time and anything that life has to throw at it. Novels like this give my big romantic sappy heart that something like this will one day happen for all of us.

I wasn’t disappointed with this novel, it was a truly a feel-good romance and I look forward to reading more works from Ranae Rose.

My Rating: 5/5

Goodreads: Hell Without You
Author’s Website: Ranae Rose
Amazon: Hell Without You by Ranae Rose

Book Review – Undone

I’ve got another review for you today, I know I haven’t been as active this month, but I hope to be with work finally settling back into an equal pace.  This will be my first review for an Arc from NetGalley, so without further adieu…

Undone by Shannon Richard
Title: Undone
Author: Shannon Richard
Series: Country Roads – Book #1
Publisher: Forever (Grand Central Publishing)
Release Date: July 2nd 2013
ISBN 13: 978-1-4555-4723-4
Source: NetGalley
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Synopsis

Things Paige Morrison will never understand about Mirabelle, Florida:

Why wearing red shoes makes a girl a harlot
Why a shop would ever sell something called “buck urine”
Why everywhere she goes, she runs into sexy-and infuriating-Brendan King

After losing her job, her apartment, and her boyfriend, Paige has no choice but to leave Philadelphia and move in with her retired parents. For an artsy outsider like Paige, finding her place in a tightly knit town isn’t easy-until she meets Brendan, the hot mechanic who’s interested in much more than Paige’s car. In no time at all, Brendan helps Paige find a new job, new friends, and a happiness she wasn’t sure she’d ever feel again. With Brendan by her side, Paige finally feels like she can call Mirabelle home. But when a new bombshell drops, will the couple survive or will their love come undone?

My Thoughts

What a lovely feel-good novel this was. I don’t exactly know where to begin with my thoughts. The whole novel was like a movie playing in my head, for one because you can picture yourself in the setting of Mirabelle and place yourself in Paige’s shoes as being the outsider in a small town. The novel was humorous in most spots, so much so that I was told to stop “cackling” roughly around midnight. But it was also sad in others like with the death of her father. It was a tear jerker both happy tears and sad tears.

The main characters were your typical – girl meets boy, boy and girl fall in love, boy loses girl, boy gets girl back and they live happily ever after – couple. < This most of the time isn’t a bad thing and wasn’t in this case. Paige and Brendan had their share of flaws and skeletons in their closet, and were easily relatable as I mentioned above. I could place myself in Paige’s shoes.

In the beginning I never would have guessed that Brendan would get her a job working in a funeral home, that had been a twist I wasn’t expecting at all. It did end up working out for her in the end and she actually enjoyed working with what she did. I also didn’t expect her father to pass away with cancer. That plot twist was a blinding, mostly because how the author introduced it into the plot was subtle but out of the blue – like all of the sudden he wasn’t feeling well and had pain and the only one who noticed had been Brendan. I don’t know about Pancreatic cancer from personal experience and each instance could be different but when a family member of mine had cancer you could tell there was something wrong, it slowly got more noticeable. They should had been able to notice but in the defense of Paige and her mum, they probably didn’t know the signs that started to show that he had cancer.

All in all it was a very good read and I’m excited to read all about Jax and Grace’s relationship…hopefully in the second book.

My Rating: 4.5/5

Goodreads: Undone
Author’s Website: Shannon Richard
Amazon: Undone by Shannon Richard

January Book Haul

So theses are the following books that found their way onto my shelf for the month of January.

Store Bought:
City Of Bones by Cassandra Clare
Hard As It Gets by Laura Kaye
A Dance With Dragons by George R. R. Martin
My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Piccoult
Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks

NetGalley:
The Tyrant’s Daughter by J. C. Carleson
Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor

Goodreads Giveaway:
Daughter of Oreveille by Tricia Ballad
Blood Reunited by Amber Belldene
Alabama Sons by E. A. Whitehead

Giveaway:
A Holiday Miracle In Apple Blossom by June McCrary Jacobs

January Review Novel Wrap Up

I’m going to try to do a monthly wrap up of the novels I’ve read, link their reviews and mention what Reading Challenges I counted them towards, and since I don’t think I’ll get any more reading done for the month of January I’m just going to post it now. However if I do, then I’ll update this post accordingly.

15789401

Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks

Challenges
– 100 Books In A Year 2014 Reading Challenge
– 2014 Contemporary Romance Reading Challenge
– 2014 Nicholas Sparks Reading Challenge
– 2014 Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge
– 2014 Book Bingo Reading Challenge
– Just For Fun Reading Challenge 2014

Review

An Earthly Knight

An Earthly Knight by Janet McNaughton

Challenges
– 100 Books In A Year 2014 Reading Challenge
– 2014 Everything YA Reading Challenge
– 2014 Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge
– Book Bingo Reading Challenge 2014
– Meet the Protagonist Reading Challenge 2014
– The Literary Exploration Reading Challenge 2014

Review

HardAsItGets mm c (1)

Hard As It Gets by Laura Kaye

Challenges
– 100 Books In A Year Reading Challenge 2014
– 2014 Contemporary Romance Reading Challenge
– 2014 Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge
– Book Bingo Reading Challenge 2014
– The Literary Exploration Reading Challenge 2014

Review

Daughter of Oreveille by Tricia Ballad

Daughter of Oreveille by Tricia Ballad

Challenges
– 100 Books In A Year Reading Challenge
– 2014 Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge
– Book Bingo Reading Challenge 2014
– The Literary Exploration Reading Challenge 2014

Review

The Laird Who Loved Me by Karen Hawkins

The Laird Who Loved Me by Karen Hawkins

Challenges

– 100 Books In A Year Reading Challenge
– 2014 Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge
– Book Bingo Reading Challenge 2014

Review

Book Review – Daughter of Oreveille

Daughter of Oreveille by Tricia BalladTitle: Daughter of Oreveille
Author: Tricia Ballad
Series: Oreveille Cycle – Book #1
Publisher: Faeland Press
Release Date: November 16th 2013
ISBN: 978-0-615-910390
Source: Goodreads Giveaway (Paperback)

Synopsis

Brianna will inherit everything – if she can play by the rules.

Instead she rejects yet another fine noble of the Faelands in favor of a half-Fae commoner.

The House of Oreveille has been without a Defender since her father’s death in the jotnar wars. Her mother’s drunkard second husband has neglected his duties; the estate has fallen into decay and rumors are flying that the grand house of Oreveille, protector of the border between Gaia and the Faeland for thousands of years, may soon fall.

How much will Brianna be forced to sacrifice to protect the life – and the man – she has chosen?

My Thoughts

First off I must express how overcome I was with emotion with this novel, and I’m absolutely thrilled that Gabriel has come back…in the form of Gabe, yay!!

This novel was probably the quickest read (2 hours give or a few minutes) that I’ve had in a long time, and the only regret that I have…well two actually is for one that I wished it was longer. The story was over as fast as it began and I wished it didn’t have to end. The other being I hit a bit of confusion, when the novel jumped or so I thought into the future. The chapter page stated it was still the same time (month and year) as when the book started, even though on the second page in the chapter (chapter 23) they talked about how it had been years. Left me a bit confused as to how much time had passed since they first left her home. < Now that, that bit is out of the way let me get on with what else I have to say that’s positive.

The characters were so easy to fall in love with…well with the exception of Cordov and Brianne’s mother…by the end of the novel I was kind of glad they ended up with each other because in a sense they deserved each other. They were both manipulative in ways that ended in Gabriel’s death. Hell if Cordov hadn’t of told Gabriel to pretty much kill Brianne’s step father then they would have never had to leave in the first place and Brianne could have had help to properly heal Gabriel’s wound. Brianne did however become Madam of the house in the end I can only assume her mother passed on, or shall we see her in the next book? The author for me left a lot of questions hanging. For instance what happened to Brianne and Gabriel’s daughter Kathleen?

All in all it was a different kind of novel with the Fae elements, a refreshing read for me and I can’t wait to read the second installment when that becomes available.

My Rating: 5/5

Goodreads: Daughter of Oreveille
Authors Website: Tricia Ballad

Book Review – An Earthly Knight

An Earthly KnightTitle: An Earthly Knight
Author: Janet McNaughton
Series:
Publisher: HarperTrophyCanada
Release Date: March 2nd 2004
ISBN-13: 978-0060089948
Source: Owned (Paperback)

Synopsis

The year is 1162. Sixteen-year-old Lady Jeanette Avenel has always enjoyed her freedom as second daughter of a minor Norman nobleman in Teviotdale, Scotland. But after her sister, Isabel, disgraces the family, Jenny is suddenly thrust into the role of eldest daughter. Now Jenny has been chosen as potential bride to the heir of the King of Scotland. While learning the customs of the royal court, Jenny is drawn to the mysterious young man rumored to have been kidnapped by fairies, not knowing his past holds a secret that threatens everyone close to him – including Jenny.

My Thoughts

This book has been one I’ve read over a hundred times. I loved to read it growing up as a child and teenager and as an adult I still found the delight in the plot. It was gripping from beginning to end and just as it used to when I was younger I wound up dreaming of the setting and myself in Jenny’s shoes looking for adventure. I’ve found a love for historical romance novels and though I can’t be positive I’m pretty sure this book was the beginning one that started it all.

The characters were easy to fall in love with and hate. I could see myself as Jenny and sympathizing with her and her sister about the choices they had to make and the emotions that felt during the novel. It was also easy to hate William from the start there was an air about him that said something wasn’t right. The whole plot with the fairies brought a magical element in, and I saw fairies in a different light. Normally when I think of fairies I think of small, harmless mystical beings but the author cast a different light on them that was refreshing.

My favourite character had to be the nurse Galliane. She seemed to know everything…Jenny said through eavesdropping and the author hinted at that a little bit but it seemed to me, she had a good intuition when it came to her girls Jenny and Isabel. Just as Jenny has when it comes to the people who try to get close.

My Rating: 5/5

Goodreads: An Earthly Knight by Janet McNaughton

Author’s Website: Janet McNaughton

Update

So by the end of tonight I should have two new book reviews posted for you all to read. I am making a fabulous start to my reading this year with three books under my belt – well I think I have anyway. I should have a few others read within the next week as I had a terrible accident which resulted in a really bad ankle sprain and it could end up that my ankle might be broken provided I get a second opinion. I’ll be laid up in bed for the next week with nothing better to do than get some of my reading out of the way.

I wanted to say that I received a new novel in the mail – thanks to a Goodreads giveaway. I won the novel “Daughter of Oreveille” by Tricia Ballad and finally received it today in the mail. Super excited to get a start on reading it so stay tuned for that review.

Books on my shelf this week to read:
1. An Earthly Knight by Janet McNaughton
2. Hard As It Gets by Laura Kaye
3. Daughter of Oreveille by Tricia Ballad
4. My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult
5. A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
6. The Tyrant’s Daughter by J. C. Carleson < courtesy of NetGalley

Book Review – Safe Haven

15789401*SPOILER ALERT* 

Title: Safe Haven
Author: Nicholas Sparks
Series:
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Release Date: September 14th 2010
ISBN-13: 978-0446547598
Source: Owned (Paperback)

 Synopsis 

When a mysterious young woman named Katie appears in the small North Carolina town of Southport, her sudden arrival raises questions about her past. Beautiful yet self-effacing, Katie seems determined to avoid forming personal ties until a series of events draw her into two reluctant relationships: one with her plainspoken neighbor, Jo; and another with Alex, a widowed store owner with two young children. Katie slowly begins to relax her guard, putting down roots in the community and becoming increasingly attached to Alex and his family.
But even as Katie begins to fall in love, she struggles with the dark secret that still haunts her. With Jo’s support, Katie eventually realizes that she must choose between a life of transient safety and one of riskier rewards…and that in the darkest hour, love is the only true safe haven.

 My Review

First off I have to say that I did see the movie way before I got a chance to pick the book up and finally read it. With that being said like most instances books are way better than movies, well this novel was no exception. It was definitely way better than the movie and I only wish now that I had gotten a chance to read the novel before hand.

This book was hard to put down and even when I had to put it down it was never far from reach. I liked the characters from the beginning with the exception of Kevin; Katie’s husband. But who would like a man like that, character or not. The characters were relatively easy to relate to in their everyday lives. I could feel the fear that Katie felt with the way Spark’s put it all into words. Spark’s painted setting that I could easily see the characters in. It was like watching a movie, a fantastic movie. The plot twists kept me on the edge of my seat, and it was interesting to see how gradually mentally insane Kevin got as the story unfolded, while the opposite happened to Katie, it was like they switched roles.

I’d have to say out of the whole novel my favorite character was Jo, the spirit of Alex’s deceased wife. I loved her personality and the way she helped Katie realize that she doesn’t need to keep hiding in fear. It was very interesting in the end to know that she had all along just been a figment of Katie’s imagination and it wasn’t until the end that Katie put all the pieces together and realized it when she read the letter.

My Rating: 5/5

Goodreads: Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks

Author’s Website: Nicholas Sparks

Reading Challenges 2014 Master List

With the new year comes new reading challenges for me to try. I’m an avid reader and I like to try and challenge myself to read different books from different genres and try to read as many books as I can. Here is the master list to the many reading challenges I’m going to attempt in the new year. It will be updated as I continue to find others to join. Should you be interested in doing the same, follow the links posted and sign yourself up. Each link will take you to my page and there links will be posted to the official challenge page.

100 Books In A Year Reading Challenge 2014

2014 Contemporary Romance Reading Challenge
Goal: 10 Contemporary Romance Novels Read

2014 Everything YA Reading Challenge

2014 Nicholas Sparks Reading Challenge
Goal: 13 – 16 Books Read

2014 Outdo Yourself Reading Challenge
Goal: 15+ Novels Read

2014 TBR Pile Reading Challenge
Goal: At least 30 Books off my to be read list on Goodreads

2014 Witches and Witchcraft Reading Challenge
Goal: 1 -5 books read

Banned Books Reading Challenge 2014
Goal: 15 or more books that have been banned or challenged

Book Bingo Reading Challenge 2o14

Just For Fun Reading Challenge 2014
Goal: Read One Book For Each Month

Meet The Protagonist Reading Challenge 2014

The Literary Exploration Reading Challenge 2014
Goal: 24 Novels Read