February 20th, 2014
Once in a Lifetime
Author: Jill Shalvis
Page Count: 352 pages
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing (February 18, 2014)
Received From: Publisher for blog tour
Whats it About According to GoodReads:
SOMETIMES WRONG IS OH-SO-RIGHT
After a wrenching loss, Ben McDaniels tried to escape his grief by working in dangerous, war-torn places like Africa and the Middle East. Now he’s back in his hometown and face-to-face with Aubrey Wellington, the hot-as-hell woman who is trouble with a capital T. Family and friends insist she’s not the one to ease his pain, but Aubrey sparks an intense desire that gives Ben hope for the future.
Determined to right the wrongs of her past, Aubrey is working hard to make amends. But by far, the toughest challenge to her plan is sexy, brooding Ben …even though he has absolutely no idea what she’s done…
Can this unlikely couple defy the odds and win over the little town of Lucky Harbor?
What I Thought: Out of all the Lucky Harbor books I’ve read, I think that Once in a Lifetime is in my top 3 favorites. I connected with both Ben and Aubrey right away, to the point where there were parts during the story where I was crying. Both characters had been through so much, and in the end it was that connection I feel that brought them together.
Aubrey having to always be the perfect daughter, could never really let her guard down enough to show her true emotions. Watching her go through the steps to not only repair her past, but to also learn to forgive herself was really heartbreaking. I think I cried more during Aubrey’s sections of the books then I did during Ben’s – even though on the traumatic scale Ben for sure has her beat.
One thing I really didn’t care for is how through out the whole book it’s hinted at how Aubrey wronged Ben, and I was waiting to hear that she had done something truly awful – however once it was revealed how she had wronged him I was a little disappointed. Although thinking about it now, I see how it was such a big thing for her and for him. I also really wish that Ben would’ve found out the truth about his wife and forgiven himself a little bit more. Yet, once again if I think about it I can see how it would be hard to believe the worst about someone who was no longer there to stick up for their self, also how hard it would be to forgive yourself when you’ve been carrying this burden around with you for so long.
I also wish that it wouldn’t have tied up as neatly as it did with Kendra and Pink. I would’ve liked to see Ben and Aubry later adopt them. But hey there’s always a chance for a sequel!
Do I Recommend: I do. This story was super interesting, and while you know the pair is gonna get the happy ever after – the path that they had to go through to get there really made for a great story. Plus Ben is a super awesome hero – like seriously he made my heartstrings tug a little bit. Also, Lucky Harbor as a whole is a wonderful setting for these books. I eagerly await each book that comes out in this series.
Apparently I scheduled this post for 2015 so I’m sorry for the late posting! This post should’ve been posted yesterday.
As a part of this blog tour I’m able to link to the main giveaway hosted by Grand Central Publishing -fill out the Rafflecopter below and have a chance at being the grand prize winner and win EVERY Lucky Harbor book written by Jill Shalvis, or be one of 5 people who win a copy of Once in a Lifetime!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
February 18th, 2014
As a part of the Once in a Lifetime blog tour, I’m able to offer you guys an excerpt from Once in a Lifetime which comes out today!
The excerpt I picked is what immediately drew me into Ben and Aubry’s story. It gives just enough mystery to Ben’s character, without giving away everything he’s been through right off the bat. I really hope you enjoy it.
Also I hope you’ll come back tomorrow and check out my review of Once in a Lifetime. If you do you’ll also be able to fill out the Rafflecopter and have a chance at being the grand prize winner and win EVERY Lucky Harbor book written by Jill Shalvis, or be one of 5 people who win a copy of Once in a Lifetime!
A few snowflakes floated lazily out of the low, dense clouds. One block over, the Pacific Ocean carved into the harbor, which was lined by three-story high, rugged bluffs teeming with the untouched forestland that was the Olympic Mountains. Around him, the oak-lined streets were strung with white lights, shining brightly through the morning gloom. Peaceful. Still.
A month ago, he’d been in South America, elbows deep in a project rebuilding a water system for the war-torn land. Before that, he’d been in Haiti. And before that, Africa. And before that … Indonesia? Hell, it might have been another planet for all he remembered. It was all rolling together.
He went to places after disaster hit, whether man or nature made, and he saw people at their very worst moments. Sometimes he changed lives, sometimes he improved them, but at some point over the past five years, he’d become numb to it. So much so that when he’d gone to check out a new jobsite at the wrong place, only to have the right place blown to bits by a suicide bomber just before he got there, he’d finally realized something.
He didn’t always have to be the guy on the front line. He could design and plan water systems for devastated countries from anywhere. Hell, he could become a consultant instead. Five years of wading knee deep in crap, both figuratively and literally, was enough for anyone. He didn’t want to be in the right hellhole next time.
So he’d come home, with no idea what was next.
February 12th, 2014
Once Tempted (Silver Creek #1)
Author: Laura Moore
Page Count: 400 pages
Publisher: Ballantine Books (March 26, 2013)
Whats it About According to GoodReads:
Oldest son Ward Knowles feels the sprawling California ranch in his blood. And now that the family business has expanded to include a popular resort, he’s working harder than ever. Silver Creek is his legacy and his life, which is fine for the ruggedly sexy ladies’ man and committed bachelor. Love and trust don’t come easily for Ward since he lost his heart to a gold digger—until he meets a shy, unpretentious beauty whose sweet grace is about to turn his jaded heart into a hungry one.
Tess Casari has found sanctuary at Silver Creek, working as an assistant to Ward’s mother, Adele. Grateful for her busy new life running the ranch’s spa and resort, Tess can escape the heartbreak, humiliation, and secret shame of her failed marriage. The last thing she needs is temptation—especially from a man who reminds her so much of the husband who shattered her faith in love. But passion and destiny are about to change the rules for two people who have stopped believing in the healing power of love.
What I Thought: First I would like to point out that I really did like reading Once Tempted. The story was engaging and just interesting enough that I wanted to keep reading. And I really liked Ward’s family dynamic and I am interested in reading more about the rest of the family.
That being said I could not for the life of me stand Tess. In the first few pages of Once Tempted, she is painted as someone who has had a pretty rough life. Honestly, I thought maybe it would mean then that she would at least have some sort of working plan or something. Nope. Not at all. She ends up in Silver Creek based on where her finger landed in weird game of Pin Point Where I Will Go. Whatever, that’s fine. However for the next 200 pages or so we are reminded that Tess is a kicked puppy. Over, and over, and over again.
By the time I got to the meaty point of the story, I was ready for Tess to bite back and prove that she wasn’t some kicked puppy (with a great taste in shoes) but sadly she let me down. Instead she just kind of folded in on herself and let the big bad get away with being well … big and bad.
Of course we do get the Happy Ever After between Tess and Ward. I would be interested in seeing more of Tess (and I probably will as I read the other Silver Creek books) because I’m interested in seeing if she ever loses that kicked puppy aura that she seems to emit.
Do I Recommend: I do. My dislike for the heroine aside, Once Tempted was a solid read. Plus, Ward and his brothers sound super hot. I can’t wait to see the rest of Ward’s siblings fall in love as well!
February 10th, 2014
Dirty Rocker Boys
Author: Bobbie Brown
Page Count: 272 pages
Publisher: Gallery Books (November 26, 2013)
Whats it About According to GoodReads:
SHE’S MY CHERRY PIE. Tastes so good, make a grown man cry.
Who could forget the sexy “Cherry Pie” girl from hair metal band Warrant’s infamous music video? Bobbie Brown became a bona fide vixen for her playful role as the object of lead singer Jani Lane’s desires. With her windblown peroxide mane, seductive scarlet lips, and flirtatious curves, she epitomized every man’s fantasy. But the wide-eyed Louisiana beauty queen’s own dreams of making it big in Los Angeles were about to be derailed by her rock-and-roll lifestyle. . . .
Ever wonder what it ’s like to f*** a rock star?
After her tumultuous marriage to Jani imploded, and her engagement to fast-living Mötley Crüe drummer Tommy Lee ended in a drug haze—followed by his marriage days later to Pamela Anderson—Bobbie decided it was time Hollywood’s hottest bachelors got a taste of their own medicine. Step one: get high. Step two: get even.
In a captivating, completely uncensored confessional, Bobbie explicitly recounts her encounters with some of the most famous men in Hollywood: Leonardo DiCaprio, Kevin Costner, Mark McGrath, Dave Navarro, Sebastian Bach, Ashley Hamilton, Rob Pilatus of Milli Vanilli, Matthew and Gunnar Nelson, Orgy’s Jay Gordon, and many more. Who’s got the most titanic dick in Tinseltown? Whose bedroom did Bobbie (literally) set on fire? No man was off limits as the fun-loving bombshell spiraled into excess, anger, and addiction.
Bobbie survived the party—barely—and her riveting, cautionary comeback tale is filled with the wildest stories of sex, drugs, and rock and roll ever told.
What I Thought: I first heard about Dirty Rocker Boys on a satellite radio station where Bobbie Brown was hosting a rock show. I went home and bought it right away, thinking it was going to be a light-hearted book full of gossip about certain rock stars that I too have fantasized about at different times.
This book starts off with a bang, literally, and paints a not so sweet picture of the Bobbie Brown that I admired growing up. She comes off as not only a bit immature, but also a little more conceited, at times, than I had imagined her to be.
Most people have heard rumors of how rock stars behave, but her stories show a much deeper insight into what it’s like to date someone famous or even someone trying to make it big while also trying to figure out who you are and how to achieve your own success.
What you get with this book is a look at her life growing up in a smaller town before she took off to Hollywood, her rise to the top and decent into the seductive world of addiction along with her self-destructive behavior in the hopes of getting revenge on the men who had hurt her.
Do I Recommend: Is the best book I’ve ever read, no. Bobbie at times sounds very juvenile like a heartbroken teenager scribbling furiously in her diary. However, she’s also very honest about who she was and the things that she’s done no matter how unflattering it may be. I would recommend this book, but be prepared to learn some very disturbing things about musicians and actors you may know and love.
February 7th, 2014
Dark Witch (The Cousins O’Dwyer Trilogy #1)
Author: Nora Roberts
Page Count: 368 pages
Publisher: Berkley Trade (October 29, 2013)
Received From: Purchased
What It’s About According to GoodReads:
With indifferent parents, Iona Sheehan grew up craving devotion and acceptance. From her maternal grandmother, she learned where to find both: a land of lush forests, dazzling lakes, and centuries-old legends.
County Mayo, to be exact. Where her ancestors’ blood and magic have flowed through generations—and where her destiny awaits.
Iona arrives in Ireland with nothing but her Nan’s directions, an unfailingly optimistic attitude, and an innate talent with horses. Not far from the luxurious castle where she is spending a week, she finds her cousins, Branna and Connor O’Dwyer. And since family is family, they invite her into their home and their lives.
When Iona lands a job at the local stables, she meets the owner, Boyle McGrath. Cowboy, pirate, wild tribal horsemen, he’s three of her biggest fantasy weaknesses all in one big, bold package.
Iona realizes that here she can make a home for herself—and live her life as she wants, even if that means falling head over heels for Boyle. But nothing is as it seems. An ancient evil has wound its way around Iona’s family tree and must be defeated. Family and friends will fight with each other and for each other to keep the promise of hope—and love—alive…
What I Thought: Typically, Nora Roberts is an auto buy for me. So when I saw that she had a new book out, naturally I bought it.Now usually before I read a book I don’t look at other reviews or anything about said book. Sure I’ll look at the rating on GoodReads and such, but I don’t read reviews.
That being said, this time I did look at some of the reviews before I bought it. There were so many 1 star reviews that I was curious. A lot of other reviewers were comparing The Cousins O’Dwyer series to the Three Sisters Island series, and I was a little disappointed. Never the less, I pushed on and read the book.
To me I could see the similarities between the two series, but they weren’t exact copies of one another at all. I felt that Dark Witch started off with a bang, literally. While I was more interested in the history of Sorcha and the Dark Witch, I really liked reading about Iona and her life in Ireland.
The action parts of Dark Witch were described really well, and I LOVED reading about Iona as she came into her powers and learned how to use them.
However, I do have to say that the story did start to feel flat to me, after hearing time and time again how Iona’s parents ignored her, or neglected her. I would have liked to see some kind of evidence to that fact. The reader also constantly hears how great Iona’s grandma is, but we only get to meet the grandmother once, and then there’s sporadic mentions of her sprinkled throughout the story.
Do I Recommend: I do. Everyone knows that Roberts has a formula for her series. Three friends meet (usually one of them is new to the area) and just so happens to coincide with three other friends being there and them needing to solve something that only the six of them can solve together. Throw in some sexual tension, a splash of heartbreak, and a guy who “doesn’t normally act this way” and you’ve got a Nora Roberts book that’s a hit. Dark Witch is no different, while the story wasn’t exactly original, I felt that it was a solid read.
February 5th, 2014
Omens (Cainsville #1)
Author: Kelley Armstrong
Page Count: 496 pages
Publisher: Dutton (August 20, 2013)
Received From: Purchased
Whats it About According to GoodReads:
Twenty-four-year-old Olivia Taylor Jones has the perfect life. The only daughter of a wealthy, prominent Chicago family, she has an Ivy League education, pursues volunteerism and philanthropy, and is engaged to a handsome young tech firm CEO with political ambitions.
But Olivia’s world is shattered when she learns that she’s adopted. Her real parents? Todd and Pamela Larsen, notorious serial killers serving a life sentence. When the news brings a maelstrom of unwanted publicity to her adopted family and fiancé, Olivia decides to find out the truth about the Larsens.
Olivia ends up in the small town of Cainsville, Illinois, an old and cloistered community that takes a particular interest in both Olivia and her efforts to uncover her birth parents’ past.
Aided by her mother’s former lawyer, Gabriel Walsh, Olivia focuses on the Larsens’ last crime, the one her birth mother swears will prove their innocence. But as she and Gabriel start investigating the case, Olivia finds herself drawing on abilities that have remained hidden since her childhood, gifts that make her both a valuable addition to Cainsville and deeply vulnerable to unknown enemies. Because there are darker secrets behind her new home and powers lurking in the shadows that have their own plans for her.
What I Thought: Seeing this book marked as Paranormal Romance or even Urban Fantasy was what made me pick it up in the first place, well that and the fact that I’ve read some of Armstrong’s books before and really liked them. However it was far from either one of those genres. Yes, there was an element of the ‘paranormal’ in the sense that Olivia could see omens and the like, but that was about it.
The story started off really slow for me. Like so slow I almost put it down once I hit the 50 page mark. But I didn’t and oh man I am so glad. Olivia started out as this character who I just couldn’t gel with, but as time went on and she kind of lost her spoiled rich girl shell, things got better and better.
I think my favorite parts of the story were when she would see an Omen or get this flashback from her life with the Larsen’s. Also the fact that it was set in Illinois was a real winner for me.
Now I’m not 100% sure that there is an actual Cainsville, IL. A quick Google search only pulled up one site, for a cemetary in Cainsville, otherwise the only other Cainsville that shows up is in Missouri. But either way, made up or real Cainsville, IL is a creepy place, that I’m pretty sure I would visit, if only to find all the different gargoyles.
Do I Recommend: I do. While not like the Bitten series that Armstrong writes, Omens is still a solid book with enough back story to fill the reader in but not overwhelm.
February 3rd, 2014
Confessions of a Video Vixen
Author: Karrine Steffans
Page Count: 224 pages
Publisher: Amistad (October 17, 2006)
Received From: Borrowed
Whats it About According to GoodReads:
Part tell-all, part cautionary tale, this emotionally charged memoir from a former video vixen nicknamed ‘Superhead’ goes beyond the glamour of celebrity to reveal the inner workings of the hip-hop dancer industry—from the physical and emotional abuse that’s rampant in the industry, and which marked her own life—to the excessive use of drugs, sex and bling.
Once the sought-after video girl, this sexy siren has helped multi-platinum artists, such as Jay-Z, R. Kelly and LL Cool J, sell millions of albums with her sensual dancing. In a word, Karrine was H-O-T. So hot that she made as much as $2500 a day in videos and was selected by well-known film director F. Gary Gray to co-star in his film, A Man Apart, starring Vin Diesel. But the film and music video sets, swanky Hollywood and New York restaurants and trysts with the celebrities featured in the pages of People and In Touch magazines only touches the surface of Karrine Steffans’ life.
Her journey is filled with physical abuse, rape, drug and alcohol abuse, homelessness and single motherhood—all by the age of 26. By sharing her story, Steffans hopes to shed light on an otherwise romanticised industry and help young women avoid the same pitfalls she encountered. If they’re already in danger, she hopes to inspire them to find a way to dig themselves out of what she knows first-hand
to be a cycle of hopelessness and despair.
What I Thought: Interesting. Honestly, I love books like this because I’m a nosy person. If I knew I could read peoples diaries and not get caught/in trouble I totally would. For some reason people utterly fascinate me, so being able to read all about Steffans inner thoughts and workings really intrigued me.
However interesting I found Confessions of a Video Vixen to be, it could not make up for the fact that the writing was not stellar, and at times often disjointed. I understand that it was written as a reflection instead of being written as it happened but there were so many times I had to re-read a page to make sure I had all the characters right. And the ending really threw me for a loop, it ended so abruptly that I actually went and checked a copy out at the library to make sure that there weren’t pages missing.
Do I Recommend: While reading about “Superhead” and the lifestyle of a video vixen was interesting, I just personally cannot recommend it.
January 21st, 2014
So there’s only so many times I can let Find the Time to Read lapse, and not feel guilty about it. I spent a good chunk of time trying to figure out if I want to let the blog go, or if I want to keep reviewing books, reading I will do regardless as it is a huge passion for me. After thinking about it and talking about it with other folks I’ve decided that I am going to keep Find the Time to Read going.
Before I felt like I had to compete with all these other book blogs so that I didn’t get lost in the shuffle, and now I’m realizing that it just doesn’t matter. I let myself get swept away and feel inadequate because my stats are not as high as other peoples. I was also stressing and blaming myself because I wasn’t posting 5 times a week, which then made me not want to post anyway. Because I figured whats the point.
I’m not going to let myself fall into that pit trap any longer. I’m going to aim for posting at least 3 times a week, but if I don’t meet that then that’s fine. I’m not going to beat myself up over it. I’ve also got some friends who are willing to write some guest reviews here as well so that will also help out some.
I’m giving myself a start date of February 1st so that I have some time to stock pile some reviews and other things. Just to give myself that little bit of a head start. I’m actually excited about doing this and about starting to blog again. See you in February!
Until then keep reading,
September 30th, 2013
Kindling the Moon (Arcadia Bell #1)
Author: Jenn bennett
Publisher: Pocket Books
Received From: Library
What it’s About According to GoodReads:
Meet Arcadia Bell: bartender, renegade magician, fugitive from the law. . . .
Being the spawn of two infamous occultists (and alleged murderers) isn’t easy, but freewheeling magician Arcadia “Cady” Bell knows how to make the best of a crummy situation. After hiding out for seven years, she’s carved an incognito niche for herself slinging drinks at the demon-friendly Tambuku Tiki Lounge.
But she receives an ultimatum when unexpected surveillance footage of her notorious parents surfaces: either prove their innocence or surrender herself. Unfortunately, the only witness to the crimes was an elusive Æthyric demon, and Cady has no idea how to find it. She teams up with Lon Butler, an enigmatic demonologist with a special talent for sexual spells and an arcane library of priceless stolen grimoires. Their research soon escalates into a storm of conflict involving missing police evidence, the decadent Hellfire Club, a ruthless bounty hunter, and a powerful occult society that operates way outside the law. If Cady can’t clear her family name soon, she’ll be forced to sacrifice her own life . . . and no amount of running will save her this time.
What I Thought: Lately I’ve been on a huge paranormal kick. I don’t know if it’s because it is nearing fall here in Chicago which immediately makes me think of Halloween, or if it’s just because I’ve spent the last couple of months reading nothing but school books. Either way picking up Kindling the Moon was a great decision on my part.
Arcadia, Cady to her friends, was a super memorable character. Honestly all the characters in Kindling the Moon were. I liked how Bennett, really worked the lore of her world into her characters. Everything was explained without feeling like it was being explained. To me it was more of a this is how the world is for me type thing. Which in a paranormal setting with demons done differently, was really awesome.
I also really liked how each character had it’s own distinct voice without relying on the tropes of what they could have been. For example Lon, who is the love interest for Cady, is an Earth Bound (Demon) and a single father. He is also significantly older than Cady, and instead of making him seem like a perv for being attracted to Cady, their relationship was presented in such a way that it felt natural and not at all forced.
Do I Recommend: Yes. Kindling the Moon was a fast read, full of entertaining characters.
August 19th, 2013
I can’t believe that I completely failed this read-a-thon. It actually blows my mind. I had over a week. I downloaded all these amazing free books and got started with one of them, and then my Nook died. Seriously, the charge ran out on it and I couldn’t find the charger for it anywhere. I was only able to finish one of the books I downloaded. The rest are currently waiting for me to recharge and begin them again as soon as my Nook charger is delivered later in the week.
That being said, I still want to thank Danielle @ Consuming Worlds and Jessica @ Literary, etc – for hosting this amazing eRead-a-thon. I hope that everyone else had better luck than I did!