Mini Book Reviews

This week I’ve been on a quest to find a nice light romantic read, and because I’ve read two books in quick succession I thought I’d do mini reviews:

Book 1: Undeclared (Woodlands #1) by Jen Frederick

Blurb

For four years, Grace Sullivan wrote to a Marine she never met, and fell in love. But 17612258when his deployment ended, so did the letters. Ever since that day, Grace has been coasting, academically and emotionally. The one thing she’s decided? No way is Noah Jackson — or any man — ever going to break her heart again.

Noah has always known exactly what he wants out of life. Success. Stability. Control. That’s why he joined the Marines and that’s why he’s fighting his way — literally — through college. Now that he’s got the rest of his life on track, he has one last conquest: Grace Sullivan. But since he was the one who stopped writing, he knows that winning her back will be his biggest battle yet.

I really wanted to love this book, I thought the synopsis had a lot of promise but ultimately, I was left disappointed. My main problems were that I didn’t like Noah, his possessiveness rang a few alarm bells and it just didn’t sit right with me. I also thought some his behaviors towards Grace at times was pretty shitty and the fact that she didn’t stand up and demand that he treated her better was astounding.

Grace annoyed the hell out of me as well. I felt no connected to her and her self-pity and lack of confidence in herself were a total turn off.

I also felt the story writing to be a little stuffy, and not really to my taste.

My Rating:  2/5 🌟 🌟


Book 2: The Boy Next Door (Off-Limits Romance #2) by Ella James

Blurb

The boy next door. That’s what he was. Dash Frasier—my hero from the day we met, when I was six and he was nine. His sister was my best friend, the three of us one happy crew. Then one sweaty summer night changed everything.35104252
No one understood me like Dash. No one made me feel so loved. That’s why, when he skipped town, it wrecked me.

Now I’m older. Wiser. I’ve just snagged my dream job, writing at a film studio. The lead animator on my project? You guessed it.

He’s not the boy next door. Not anymore.

I’m guarding my heart this time.

But Dash has secrets that could break us both.

This book surprised me, it turned out to be a lot heavier than I was expecting. The start of the book took you back to when Amelia first met Dash so it was nice to get that back story, from then on it was dual perspective.

I liked both the main characters. I picked up almost straight away that there was something amiss about the way Dash was behaving. I enjoyed the chemistry between him and Amelia. I think that fact that I didn’t guess what drove Dash away from Amelia was what kept me hooked until the last page.

Overall I can’t say that I loved this story but it was a fairly good read.

My Rating: 3/5  🌟 🌟 🌟


So as far as my quest goes neither of these books have matched what I’m looking for. I’m a 3rd of the way through The Allure of Julian Lefray (by R.S Grey) and so far this is holding a lot more promise. Review will probably arrive tomorrow!

Stay Tuned!

 

A Strange Hymn (The Bargainer #2) – Laura Thalassa

Blurb

Siren and soulmate to the King of Night, Callypso Lillis survived the clutches of Karnon, the mad king, and his twisted prison. But the nightmare isn’t over. Callie wears the physical reminders of her time as a captive, and mounting evidence suggests the Thief of Souls is still out there.

When a fae celebration thrusts Callie and her mate, Desmond Flynn, into the Kingdom of Flora, they take their investigation with them. But under the bright lights and striking blooms of the realm, they find there are more immediate issues to deal with. No place is more uniquely savage than the great fae halls, and no amount of bargains can save Callie from royal intrigues.

Fairies play dangerous games. Some want love, some want vengeance, some want flesh, and some want things too unspeakable to utter. One thing is for sure: no one is who they appear to be. Not even Des, who only grows more enigmatic with every passing secret.

But the Kingdom of Flora has its own secrets, from bleeding trees to branded slaves and missing guards. Something is stirring in the land of all that grows, and if Callie isn’t careful, it will claim everything and everyone she loves—and her along with it.


Stats

Page Length: 324
Publication Year:
2017
Genre: 
Fantasy
Characters:  Callie, Des, Temper


Thoughts

I thought this was a very good follow-up to Rhapsodic. I liked how the story carried on right where the other one left off.

Story

The story begins with Callie still trying to accept her physical changes from her time spent with Karnon. Des begins to train Callie in combat and in a bid to make her feel more at home in his world he takes her on a tour of his kingdom.

After visiting many islands in the Kingdom of Night Des and Callie are called to a solstice celebration at the Kingdom of Flora, this where the story really starts to get interesting.

I thought the storyline of this book was very clever, it did keep me guessing until the end, I was not expecting the Thief of Souls to be who he was.

Characters

The shining light of this book was the chemistry and understanding between Des and Callie. I loved reading the banter between them.

I like to take a moment here and talk about Desmond Flynn, this guy is so swoon worthy it’s ridiculous! For a character who is so dark and badass, he says the most romantic things to Callie. I loved that he treats Callie like an equal and actively trains her himself so that she can defend herself. I also like that he embraced her wings and scales even when she herself couldn’t.

“Seven years apart,” he continues, “and the woman you became was a world away from the girl I met.” He tilts my head so that he can look me in the eye. “That only made me want you more. You were both old and new, familiar and exotic, within reach and forbidden. And I wanted you so badly for so long I was sure it would kill me. “And when I look at you even now—especially now—I see one simple truth.” He stops speaking. I sit up a little. “What was the truth?” In the darkness, I can see him staring back down at me. “You are magic, love.”

I really liked Callie’s character development in that she learned to accept herself. Her Siren side is also an absolute pleasure to read. I like how fearless and independent she is. She doesn’t feel the need to hid behind Des, the way she stood up to Mara (The Queen of Flora) was brilliant! This quote right here is a prime example of what I love about her:

“I wrap my own towel the best I can around myself, accidentally plucking a few of my feathers in the process, my eyes fixed on the Bargainer. I am absolutely creeping on this man right now and I have zero regrets.”

I also loved that we got to see more of Temper (Callie’s BFF) in this book. I really enjoy the fierceness of her character.

Favorite Quote:

stange the hymn-2

Conclusion:

This was a very enjoyable read. If you loved Rhapsodic than this is a must read. I’m super excited that the last book is set to be released this year!

My Rating:  5/5  🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟

Update & New Post Announcement

Update: A new look for Books & Other Pursuits!

Hi, I hope you are all having a great weekend.

As you may have noticed over the last month or so I have given this blog a brand new look. It’s running a new theme: Toujours. I have designed a brand new header image along with new feature image templates for each post. Basically, all the big things have been replaced. I have also changed the color scheme and fonts that I’m using.

Here are some before and after photos:

Screen Shot 2017-06-04 at 15.42.27
Before
Screen Shot 2017-06-04 at 15.45.34
After

Overall I’m pretty happy with how it has turned out, I think it looks like a proper blog now. I’m hoping this is it in terms of big changes. I’m still working on smaller things like page dividers and add an “add to GoodReads” graphic etc.


New Post Announcement.

When I first decided I wanted to start a blog I knew I wanted it to be mainly focused on books but I also wanted to leave it open so that if I did want to discuss other things I could, hence the name “Books & Other pursuits.” Now that I have a rhythm with the bookish it part of this blog I feel it’s time to expand a little.

So I’m super excited to announce that I will be posting a monthly post called “Other Pursuits” in which I will be giving you a round up of everything else I have been up to during the last month. Things that will feature are; what I’ve been watching on TV, Movies that I’ve enjoyed and anything else I think might be interesting or significant that it needs a mention.

These posts will be scheduled to go live either on the last day or the first day of the month depending on what day it happens to fall on because I don’t want it to interfere too much with the other things I post weekly.


That’s all from me, this should be the last update a do for awhile!

– See you on the flipside! 🤓

Let’s Talk (#5) – Benefits of Reading

Happy Thursday! Although it’s been a short week I’m feeling exhausted already. So this week I’m going to cheat a little bit for this post and use an infographic that I found on The Expert Editor which I think just about sums up all the Mind and Body benefits of reading:

ReadingInfographic

Personally, I find that reading helps my concentration and focus on other things that I’m doing during the day. I would atribute my good memory to reading too.

I agree with the reducing stress part, I only have to walk into a book shop and I immidiatly feel calmer. I used to do this a lot when I was at college.

That’s all from me, if you feel there is anything missing feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.

 

R.S. Grey’s THE FOXE & THE HOUND is out TODAY!

Find my Review Here 

R.S. Grey’s THE FOXE & THE HOUND is available today! You don’t want to miss getting your hands on this sexy and hilarious new read from R.S. Grey. Find out more about THE FOXE & THE HOUND below and grab your copy today!


 About THE FOXE & THE HOUND

When your life is a hot mess at twenty, it’s cute. At twenty-seven…well, not so much.

It’s just that my lofty dreams—making it as a real estate agent, paying rent on time, showering daily—have stayed just that: dreams. Oh, and love? I’ve decided love might be a little ambitious for me at the moment. Instead, I’ve settled for the two guys who will never leave me: Ben & Jerry.

That is, until Dr. Adam Foxe takes up residence as the town’s new vet.

With his strong jaw, easy confidence, and form-fitting scrubs, it’s not long before every housewife in Hamilton is dragging neglected tomcats in for weekly checkups.

Like everyone else, I’m intrigued. Even after I spoil my chance at a good first impression, he still offers me a proposition I can’t refuse: play his girlfriend at a family function and he’ll hire me as his real estate agent. Welcome to love in the 21st century.

It’s too bad I underestimated Adam’s irresistible charm and the undeniable attraction that burns between us. The day he pins me to the wall and silences me with a kiss, the line between reality and ruse begins to blur. Every teasing touch brings me to my knees. Every kiss promises more.

It looks like my hot mess of a life is about to get a little hotter.

Add THE FOXE & THE HOUND to your Goodreads list here!

Get your hands on THE FOXE & THE HOUND by R.S. Grey now!


 

Get a Sneak Peek of THE FOXE & THE HOUND

I follow his gaze to where my dress has ridden up. When I’m standing, it’s a modest length, but the leather seats in his Audi have hiked up the skirt and a few inches of my thighs are now on perfect display.

His gaze drags down, pausing on my lips for a moment before he trails down my neck and chest. He’s studying my dress—no, he’s studying my body beneath the fabric. His smile is slow to spread, a little haunting…sexual.

About R.S. Grey

R.S. Grey is the USA Today bestselling author of thirteen novels, including THE FOXE & THE HOUND. She lives in Texas with her husband and two dogs, and can be found reading, binge-watching reality TV, or practicing yoga! Visit her at rsgrey.com

Website | Twitter | Facebook | R.S. Grey’s Little Reds Facebook GroupNewsletter | Instagram 

A-Z Bookish Survey

As I have no review for you today, I thought I’d do something fun! This survey is hosted by Jamie from The Perpetual Page Turner.  So definitely check her blog out.

Let’s Begin:

Author you’ve read the most books from:

Jennifer L. Armentrout – I’m obsessed with her books!

Best Sequel Ever:

Hands down A Court of Mist and Fury! Seriously there is no contest

Currently Reading:

A Strange Hymn (The Bargainer, #2) by Laura Thalassa

Drink of Choice While Reading:

Usually tea or coffee

E-reader or Physical Book?

E-reader

Fictional Character You Probably Would Have Actually Dated In High School:

Kayden Rowe – Sweet Evil Series

Glad You Gave This Book A Chance:

Throne of Glass –  I stopped and started this book twice before I persevered and read the whole thing and I’m so glad I did because it’s such an awesome series!

Hidden Gem Book:

Easy by Tamara Webber. This spent a longggggg time on tbr list but boy was it good.

Important Moment in your Reading Life:

A couple of months after starting this blog I received my first ever ARC which was pretty exciting!

Just Finished:

The Foxe & the Hound by R.S. Grey

Kinds of Books You Won’t Read:

Thrillers, Crime and true story books do not interest me at all.

Longest Book You’ve Read:

Hmmm probably Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Major book hangover because of:

A Court of Mist and Fury – Sarah j Maas

One Book You Have Read Multiple Times:

Obsidian – Jennifer L. Armentrout

Preferred Place To Read:

I have a corner sofa and I like to wedge myself in the corner of it when I read.

Quote that inspires you/gives you all the feels from a book you’ve read:

BxG808EIAAAz3qe

Reading Regret:

Jumping on the hype train and reading Divergent! It was such a waste of time.

Series You Started And Need To Finish (all books are out in series):

The Star Bright Series

Three of your All-Time Favorite Books:

  • Every Last Breath – Jennifer L. Armentrout
  • A Court of Mist and Fury
  • Rhapsodic – Laura Thalassa

Unapologetic Fangirl For:

Sarah J. Mass and JLA – I have zero regrets about how much I go on about these authors!

Very Excited For This Release More Than All The Others:

The last book in the Throne of Glass series!

Worst Bookish Habit:

Ok…. This is a bad one but I always priorities books that are written in the first person!

X Marks The Spot: Start at the top left of your shelf and pick the 27th book:

Cinder & Ella – Kelly Oram

Your latest book purchase:

When It’s Real by Erin Watt

ZZZ-snatcher book (last book that kept you up WAY late):

Nocte by Cortney Cole…


And that’s it! Feel free to do your own 😁

e-ARC BR: The Foxe & The Hound – R.S. Grey

Blurb

A full-length STANDALONE romantic comedy from USA TODAY bestselling author R.S. Grey. 

When your life is a hot mess at twenty, it’s cute. At twenty-seven…well, not so much.

It’s just that my lofty dreams—making it as a real estate agent, paying rent on time, showering daily—have stayed just that: dreams. Oh, and love? I’ve decided love might be a little ambitious for me at the moment. Instead, I’ve settled for the two guys who will never leave me: Ben & Jerry.

That is, until Dr. Adam Foxe takes up residence as the town’s new vet.

With his strong jaw, easy confidence, and form-fitting scrubs, it’s not long before every housewife in Hamilton is dragging neglected tomcats in for weekly checkups.

Like everyone else, I’m intrigued. Even after I spoil my chance at a good first impression, he still offers me a proposition I can’t refuse: play his girlfriend at a family function and he’ll hire me as his real estate agent. Welcome to love in the 21st century.

It’s too bad I underestimated Adam’s irresistible charm and the undeniable attraction that burns between us. The day he pins me to the wall and silences me with a kiss, the line between reality and ruse begins to blur. Every teasing touch brings me to my knees. Every kiss promises more.

It looks like my hot mess of a life is about to get a little hotter.


Stats

Page Length: 385
Publication Year:
1st June 2017
Genre: 
Romantic Comedy
Characters: Madeline, Adam


Received an ARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Thoughts

R.S Grey is fast becoming one of my favorite author’s. I’m so honored to have been chosen to receive an ARC of this book.

Story

This is a stand alone story but it does feature character’s from Any Thing You Can Do. 

It’s told in the first person from both Madeline and Adams perspectives. I writing style was very easy to read and I managed to finish this book in one day.

I really enjoyed the chemistry between Madeline and Adam, I thought the pace that they fell in love was very well done. All the comedic elements of this book were executed perfectly. It had me laughing right to the very end!

Characters

Madeline, I really liked how realistic her character was, she faced real everyday struggles, staying afloat at work and paying rent on time among other things. The way in which she met Adam had me in stitches it was brilliant!

Adam, I thought his character was very charming. His conflicted feelings about Madeline were entertaining no end. I was a little dubious about the way he was acting in the beginning because he was a little bit of a jerk to Madeline, but as the story went it on in became clear that this was because he was fighting feelings for her.

Favorite Quote

fxah

Conclusion

I really enjoyed this story. It’s frothy fun at its finest! If like your romance light with lots of funny moments then you will like this book.

My Rating:  4/5

Pre-order THE FOXE & THE HOUND now:

Amazon US  | Amazon UK 


About R.S. Grey

DPE2JLb

I am a lover of books, chocolate, reality TV, metaphors and similes, black labs, and cold weather.

Contact me: AuthorRSGrey@gmail.com

Find me on InstagramPinterest | Facebook

 


BR: Red Queen – Victoria Aveyard

Blurb

This is a world divided by blood – red or silver.

The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.

That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power.

Fearful of Mare’s potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime.

But this is a world of betrayal and lies, and Mare has entered a dangerous dance – Reds against Silvers, prince against prince, and Mare against her own heart.


Stats

Page Length: 383
Publication Year:
2015
Genre: 
FANTASY/DYSTOPIA
Characters:  Mare, Maven and Cal


Thoughts

I’ve read a lot of hype about this book so I was expecting a lot from this book before I even started. I did enjoy the story but I don’t think it really lived up to the hype and I’ll explain why a bit further on.

Story

This story is written in the first person and is told from Mares POV. I thought the writing was mostly good, I felt the tone of it came off as a little juvenile at times though. I felt the length of time the war had been going a bit unrealistic if I’m being honest. I mean how were there so many Reds left if they are the ones doing most of the fighting? Surely their numbers would be dropping steeply?

Characters

To being with I really liked Mare, I felt for her cause and I really wanted her to triumph over the Silvers. But then she started trusting Maven way to fast. Just because some is kind to you doesn’t mean they are on your side, from that point on I started feeling frustrated with her character. I thought she was very naïve believing everything that was coming out of his mouth. Especially when he was blatantly jealous of his brother and his mother is a heinous bitch. I could see his deception coming a mile away.

I liked Cal way more than I should have, even though he was let’s be honest an ass for 3 quarters of the books. I really feel there is more to him than what we see from Mare’s perspective. I also think that he and Mare are a better fit for one another. – If I read the next books I’ll be interested to see where this goes.

Favorite Quote:

b5a3a8db917b80a5a0f8bbec8e846298.jpg 

 Conclusion:

This was an entertaining read but as said before I don’t really get all the hype that surrounds this book. I would recommend this book. I’m fairly certain I’ll read the 2nd book just to see where the story goes.

My Rating:  3/5  🌟🌟🌟