Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Dirty Like Brody by Jaine Diamond ARC Book Review

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He was all she ever wanted. Then she broke his heart…


As longtime manager of Dirty, the hottest rock band on the planet, gorgeous and brooding Brody Mason has had his share of beautiful women.



Yet the only one he’s ever wanted is the one he never had—the one who tore his heart out.



Beautiful and elusive Jessa Mayes appears to have it all. Talent, money, and a glamorous life. But she also has a secret.



Six years ago, she ran away—from her dream career as a songwriter with Dirty, and the only man she’s ever loved—without telling anyone why.



Now Jessa’s doing the one thing she swore she’d never do. She’s coming home—to be a bridesmaid in her brother’s rock star wedding… and face the mistakes of her past.



It won’t be easy.




Love this intense never is.

REVIEW
3 1/2 OUT OF FIVE STARS

OMG GUYS, like seriously, I have been away for far, far, too long--but if I am being honest life has not been playing fair lately. But, I'm ready to come back and serve my brutally honest reviews--because who wants to read a bunch of lies?

So with all of that being said, let's get to it, shall we?

If you are a frequenter of this blog, which I really hope you are. I've reviewed this new-to-me author's book, last year, and while I enjoyed it--it was lackluster in the emotion department. And as you all know I live in a glass case of emotion--especially when it comes to reading. I need to feeeeel the book, not just read it. And by George, I think she's got it.

So, in Dirty Like Brody--we have a second chance at romance type of read. Jessa's walked out on Brody, and she hasn't been back since--well since now. Her brother is getting married, and she must be there, but of course. Jenna has been running her entire life. Except now that she's coming back she has to face not only her past--but the man who's heart she broke all those years ago. It'll be easy, right? No.

Enter Brody. Brody is heartbroken, and definitely angry about all that happened between him and Jessa. But, he nor she can't deny the chemistry is definitely still there.

What really worked in this scenario is the back and forth. Not so much banter, but a good build-up. I am all for the build-up, the tease. It gives the reader something to hope for, and, oh, how we love to root for something. I rooted for Jessa and Brody all the way through. I wanted to lock them in a room and force them to reconcile their differences, almost immediately.

The blurb says their love was intense, and it was pretty intense. It was obvious from the very beginning they needed to be together. The struggle with this, between the two, was one of the better parts of this book. It was what was lacking in book one. The author came through with book two and made the series even better--and that's all I can ask for. 

All in all I was pleased with this read. The characters were pretty solid. The story had good pacing, and the plot itself was interesting enough--even as a rock-star romance (you know how I feel about these!) to keep me reading without faltering. I'd say it was a winner. 

This is a series, but don't feel absolutely required to read the previous book. The stories are interconnected--but I don't feel like you'd be completely lost, if you skipped a book, or read out of order. To be honest this is the better of the series, so if you want to skip book one, don't feel guilty. Just my opinion, it's what we do around here. :)

Otherwise, enjoy. It's worthwhile music-based read, with feeling and spark.

Monday, April 24, 2017

PARLIMENT COVER REVEAL, 'BLUE BOTTLE TREE,' BY BEAIRD GLOVER

Blurb: 

There’s no such thing as Voodoo. At least, that’s what most of the Baptists in Bellin tell themselves. But Seven LaVey knows better. 

In a small rural town just outside of Nashville, Voodoo conjures and curses simmer and seethe under the noses of the many who will never know. Seventeen-year-old Seven romanticizes about the meaning of life while held captive as a zombie under the shell of a kiddie pool. He's counting on the strength - and maybe even love - of a certain redheaded clarinet player to save him. But will she?
Filled with betrayal and revenge, two families struggle with a curse that stretches back to Queen of the Voodoos Marie Laveau in this contemporary Southern Gothic adventure. Prepare for a wildly original twist on the paranormal.

AUTHOR
Author Bio:
Beaird Glover grew up on a farm in rural Tennessee. He graduated from The Evergreen State College of Olympia, Washington, with a Bachelor of Arts degree in creative writing. He then moved to Southern California and wrote Secret Ciphers of the 1876 Presidential Election (Aegean Park Press). He has traveled extensively and lived in eleven of the United Sates, and Taipei and Buenos Aires. His poems have been published in the New York Quarterly and his chapbook of poetry was selected by the Austin Chronicle as one of the Top 10 Best of 1994. More recently, he acquired a Bachelor of Science degree from Long Island University in Brooklyn and has worked as a physician assistant. Beaird now lives in New Orleans with his wife Kim and their cats.

PREORDER LINKS:





Friday, April 14, 2017

Beautiful Redemption by Jamie McGuire Book Review

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If A Maddox boy falls in love, he loves forever. But what if he didn't love you, first? 

No-nonsense Liis Lindy is an agent of the FBI. Deciding she is married only to her job, she breaks off her engagement and transfers from Chicago to the field office in San Diego. She loves her desk. She is committed to her laptop. She dreams of promotions and shaking hands with the director after cracking an impossible case. 

Special Agent in Charge Thomas Maddox is arrogant, unforgiving, and ruthless. He is tasked with putting away some of the world’s toughest criminals, and he is one of the best the Bureau has to offer. Though, as many lives as he’s saved, there is one that is beyond his reach. Younger brother Travis is faced with prison time for his involvement in a basement fire that killed dozens of college students, and the media want a conviction. Travis’s only savior is his unusual tie to the mob. In a deal that will spare his brother, Thomas has agreed to recruit Travis into the FBI. 

Liis is stubborn, defiant, and yet somehow softens Thomas’s rough edges, making her the perfect agent to accompany him to the ceremony. Posing as a couple, they must travel to Travis & Abby’s beach vow renewal and give him the news, but when the pretending ends, she finds herself wondering if they were pretending at all. 

In the second installment of the Maddox Brothers books, experience firsthand the mysterious world of the elusive Thomas Maddox, and how good love can be when you’re not the first, but the last.

REVIEW
*THREE POINT FIVE OUT OF FIVE STARS*

I have been in the weirdest reading place. But I knew I was in a New Adult mood. So, I grabbed Beautiful Redemption while it was free--and it served its need.

Beautiful Redemption follows the Maddox Brothers. If you're not familiar with Travis Maddox in some capacity--whether you've read the book or not--you've been living under a rock my friend.

The Maddox brothers are kind of a angry bunch. They all have these inner issues to work out, but don't we all?

Anyway, Thomas Maddox works for the FBI. He's angry, and he's harsh to everyone in his path. He's resolute in his mission--and love is off the table. That is until Liis Lindy comes into the picture--shaking his very foundation.

Okay, so this book was totally unputdownable. I just couldn't seem to separate myself from this story. I was in a state of reader's bliss. I love a good back and forth. I really truly do. A romance is made better by hate. Weird, I know. But I love to see relationships turn around that way. This book was no exception. 

HOWEVER, what bothered me most was the fact that Liis wasn't very understanding. I am all for protecting your heart, but sometimes it's like--okay, already. You proved you're a tough chick who needs no man--but it gets tired--quickly.

And it did. Quickly. 

It didn't hinder my reading, but it did get on my nerves a bit. Another thing that was disappointing that dropped my rating was the ending. It was a bunch of chapters of no--and then the end was HEA out of like nowhere. I was like, huh? How, what? I did not like that. At all.

I mean if I were to round up how I felt, I was mostly pleased with this book. It had its faults but it's a decent NA, and I think readers will enjoy it!

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

PARLIAMENT HOUSE REVEALS THE COVER FOR WILD WOOD BY JADIE JONES!

This cover is pretty fabulous, if I must say so myself, so take some sweet time gawking at it!

*OUT SEPTEMBER 5TH 2017!*


Tanzy Hightower is not crazy. At least that’s what she tells herself. She also tells herself that the shadows stalking her in the woods aren’t living, murderous beings. 

On her father’s death, Tanzy is swept up by the woods and the shadows that took him. She quickly realizes those monsters lurking in the dark now have their sights set on her. Neither Tanzy nor life as she knows it escapes unchanged when she is introduced to a world…unseen. 

Two strangers seem too willing to help her navigate her new reality: Vanessa Andrews, a doctor’s trophy wife with a southern drawl, and Lucas, a quiet, scarred man with timing that borders on either perfect or suspect. But Tanzy has secrets of her own. Desperate for answers and revenge, Tanzy must put her faith in their hands as her past comes calling and the shadows close in.

With wild blood coursing through her veins, will Tanzy’s choices shed light on the shadows of her past, or will they bring forth the darkness within her?


JADIE JONES:

Young-adult author. Equine professional. Southern gal. Especially fond of family, sunlight, and cookie dough.

I wrote my first book in seventh grade, filling one hundred and four pages of a black and white Mead notebook. Back then I lived for two things: horses and R.L. Stine books. Fast forward nearly twenty years, and I still work with horses, and hoard books like most women my age collect shoes. Its amazing how much changes... and how much stays the same.

The dream of publishing a novel has hitch-hiked with me down every other path I've taken (and there have been many.) Waitress, farm manager, road manager, bank teller, speech writer, retail, and more. But that need to bring pen to paper refused to quiet. Finally, in 2009, I sat down, pulled out a brand new notebook, and once again let the pictures in my head become words on paper.

As a child, my grandfather would sit me in his lap and weave tales about the Cherokee nation, and a girl who belonged with horses. His words painted a whole new world, and my mind would take flight. My hope - my dream - is that Tanzy's journey does the same for you.


 
Confession time: Jadie Jones is not my name. It's a pen name I created to honor two fantastic women who didn't get the chance to live out their professional dreams. First, my grandmother - a mother of four during post World War II America, who wanted to be a journalist so bad that even now when she talks about it, her blue eyes mist and she lifts her chin in silent speculation. And second, a dear friend's mother who left this world entirely too soon. To Judy Dawn and Shirley Jones, Jadie Jones is for you. It's been a pleasure getting to know her.




Jadie’s website: https://www.jadiejones.com














Friday, March 24, 2017

Vigilante by Kady Cross ARC Book Review


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A brutally honest, uncompromising story about a teen girl who decides to take matters into her own hands. 

It's senior year, and Hadley and her best friend, Magda, should be starting the year together. Instead, Magda is dead and Hadley is alone. Raped at a party the year before and humiliated, Magda was driven to take her own life and Hadley is forced to see her friend's attackers in the classroom every day. Devastated, enraged and needing an outlet for her grief, Hadley decides to get a little justice of her own. 

Donning a pink ski mask and fueled by anger, Hadley goes after each of the guys one by one, planning to strip them of their dignity and social status the way they did to Magda. As the legend of the pink-masked Vigilante begins to take on a life of its own, Hadley's revenge takes a turn for the dangerous. Could her need for vengeance lead her down a path she can't turn back from?

REVIEW
*TWO AND A HALF OUT OF FIVE STARS*

This story's strength and focus is female empowerment, and while I am always here for female togetherness--the lack of realism in this novel dragged down an otherwise decent read.

Hadley's best friend is dead. She committed suicide after battling the after effects of being raped. After being sexually assaulted by the school's popular boys--she was slut shamed and took her own life as a result.

Hadley is not taking it lying down--and after a chance opportunity to get one of the guys back--she sets herself on a plan of revenge.

This is where the book started to lose me.

Let me explain.

Hadley's plan for revenge seemed to lose focus along the way, and became a movement she wasn't ready for.


What really threw the story off for me, was the fact that there were multiple public instances where women were physical (and almost sexually) assaulted, and Hadley, happened to only be a step away, pink mask in hand.

I didn't find it to be realistic. Once or twice, okay--but multiple times just seemed--like forced action, seeking real emotions. It wasn't believable, and, neither was the MC.

She came off as unrealistic. Her actions betrayed her emotions. But by the end, even though I didn't necessarily care for her, I agreed with her initial mission and the outcome of it.

I think a lot of women and girls will feel empowered and uplifted by the female empowerment aspect of this story. There was major girl power, and I think readers will appreciate that. 

But, if you're like me, there will be some things that will set you back--the unrealistic instances, and Hadley's flat and almost life-less personality. I didn't buy a lot of the way she was. She was often crass when I felt like she didn't need to be, and she comes off as trying to be something she wasn't. 

And the romance, the romance was dry at best. It was two people, two saddened people--who clearly needed help--psychiatric help--clinging to each other because it made sense. Maybe, it was easy. Maybe, they really did like each other, but the lack of sparks and depth made for a dull romance.

As a whole, the book is pretty...okay. It has the things that worked for it, and things that didn't.

I'd recommend it to readers who love girls who kick literal butt, and may not necessarily care about the rest of it.