Friday, April 17, 2015

Audio Review: Beautiful Bastard by Christina Lauren

Beautiful Bastard
(Beautiful Bastard #1)
Christina Lauren
Release: February 12, 2013
Goodreads  Amazon
Audible
An ambitious intern. A perfectionist executive. And a whole lot of name calling.

Whip-smart, hardworking, and on her way to an MBA, Chloe Mills has only one problem: her boss, Bennett Ryan. He's exacting, blunt, inconsiderate—and completely irresistible. A Beautiful Bastard.
Bennett has returned to Chicago from France to take a vital role in his family's massive media business. He never expected that the assistant who'd been helping him from abroad was the gorgeous, innocently provocative—completely infuriating—creature he now has to see every day. Despite the rumors, he's never been one for a workplace hookup. But Chloe's so tempting he's willing to bend the rules—or outright smash them—if it means he can have her. All over the office.

As their appetites for one another increase to a breaking point, Bennett and Chloe must decide exactly what they're willing to lose in order to win each other.

Review:

Anyone who knows me as a reader knows that #1 - I hardcore prefer paranormal over contemporary and #2 - I don't really enjoy erotic romance. Well, #1 is always going to be my preference, but after starting the Beautiful Bastard series I can't really say #2 anymore! Beautiful Bastard was sexy, fast paced, and has terrific characters.

In Beautiful Bastard we meet Bennett Ryan, the bastard in question, and his intern Chloe Mills. Their story is told in alternating POVs that give readers insights into how each character feels. Their situation goes from office coworkers that don't care for each other to hot and heavy office sex prettttttttyy quickly. This is always one of my complaints about this type of story but I guess its just a trope of the genre I have to roll with. After that initial sexual encounter Bennett and Chloe develop an obsession with having sex with each other. The twist? They still can't stand each other! I felt like this was the aspect of this book I enjoyed the most. Bennett and Chloe are having some dirty, steamy romps and they still can't help trading verbal barbs before, during, and after.

Chloe:
"I had never felt this way. And I had never expected to feel this way about him. I wanted to slap him, and then pull him up by his shirt and lick his neck."
“If only he would keep his mouth shut, he'd be perfect. A piece of duct tape would do the trick. I had some in my desk that I'd occasionally pull out and fondle, hoping someday I could put it to good use.”

The author manages to keep up the heavy sexual tension between Bennett and Chloe even after they've been having sex for weeks. Their constant back and forth kept up the pace of the story and made things interesting even when it started becoming clear that this relationship was turning into more than just sex. Seeing the change in Bennett, albeit against his own will, as he started to realize his true feelings for her just drew me more into him as a character. He managed to maintain his "bastardness" while also showing a softer side.

Bennett:
“You have very Grace Kelly-like tendencies about you. I hear Grace Kelly had a filthy mouth too," he added.
"You love my filthy mouth."
"True. But I like it better when its full," he said, meaningful smirk in place.
"You know, if you would shut up once in a while you'd be damn near perfect."
"But I'd be a silent panty ripper, which I think is a lot creepier than the angry-boss panty ripper.”

Oh yes. The panty ripping. The panty ripping. I found this to be QUITE hot and sexy. All of Bennett's growling and ripping of Chloe's various panties and lingerie...WHEW!

All in all, this was a naughty romance with tons of sex that just got better and better. Bennett and Chloe were hot, tantalizing, funny, sweet, and steamy. I absolutely adored these two characters and this book made me curious what other contemporary erotic romances I might be missing out on. But for now, I'm on to book two!

Notes on the narrator: This first one was narrated only by Grace Grant. I know that the remainder of the audios for this series add a male voice but honestly Grace Grant did a phenomenal job. She expressed Bennett's snark and growliness perfectly. In fact, I often forgot this wasn't dually narrated! If you're thinking of trying out this series I would highly recommend it on audio. It added a whole other layer that I think would have been missing if I read the story in print.

Recommended for fans of: erotica, sassy women and bastard guys who fall for them, office romance, and panty ripping stairwell sex.



    
  4 / 5 stars






Thursday, April 16, 2015

Review: The Care and Feeding of Stray Vampires by Molly Harper

 

The Care and Feeding of Stray Vampires
(Half Moon Hollow #1)
Molly Harper
Release: July 31, 2012
Goodreads Amazon
Iris Scanlon, Half-Moon Hollow’s only daytime vampire concierge, knows more about the undead than she’d like. Running all their daylight errands—from letting in the plumber to picking up some chilled O neg—gives her a look at the not-so-glamorous side of vampire life. Her rules are strict; relationships with vamps are strictly business, not friendship—and certainly not anything else. But then she finds her newest client, Cal, poisoned on his kitchen floor, and only Iris can help.

Cal - who would be devastatingly sexy, if Iris allowed herself to think that way - offers Iris a hefty fee for hiding him at her place until he figures out who wants him permanently dead. Even though he’s imperious, unfriendly and doesn't seem to understand the difference between "employee" and "servant," Iris agrees, and finds herself breaking more and more of her own rules to help him - particularly those concerning nudity.

Turns out what her quiet little life needed was some intrigue & romance—in the form of her very own stray vampire.
Review: Iris Scanlon, the vampire concierge, was introduced in the last Jane Jameson book Nice Girls Don't Bite Their Neighbors when she planned a vampire wedding. Her business has grown in the year or so since, so she has plenty of vampire clients. But other than Jane she doesn't have any vampire friends. So when Cal (whose real name is Cletus Calix but Iris, having grown up with the Simpsons, can't bring herself to call him that) wants to stay with her, she has some major reservations. But the extra money will really help her fledgling business so she agrees to protect him.

Cal is an investigator for the Vampire Council looking into cases of poisoned synthetic blood. Once he's nearly killed by his welcome basket, he suspects someone on the Council is involved and has to keep his investigation off their radar. Iris is a perfect accomplice since she regularly goes to Council HQ and other vampire centered locations. She also has some special skills that Cal doesn't realize can help him break the case.
The phrase "sex with the guy who sleeps in our basement" is not used by most responsible parental figures.
I liked Iris. Her practical, organized, list-making personality is very different from Jane. She makes most of her decisions based on what's best for her seventeen year old sister Gigi, who she's been taking care of for the five years since their parents died. Gigi is fun and sassy and very much a teenager. She's also much more accepting of the supernatural than Iris, which is ironic given Iris's job.

Cal is the first truly ancient vampire in this world. He manages to be both modern and old-fashioned, embracing technology but acting a little chauvinistic and overprotective. So he and Iris take a little while to open up and get on the same page in their relationship. And I'm a little disappointed Cal didn't meet Jane's father the historian yet. He would probably appreciate Cal's stories about the Trojan war more than Iris and Gigi.

I was also impressed with the twistiness of the plot. The Vampire Council members are a little bit mysterious and very intimidating. I liked learning a little more about them and getting Iris's perspective. The villain actually was who I thought it would be at the very beginning, but Harper had me convinced it was someone else for most of the book. And the motives behind the plot came as a surprise.

One of the things I was hoping to get from this series is a more in-depth look at Half Moon Hollow. I loved the quirky small town in the Jane Jameson series and I want to see it all. I did get to see the Vampire Council offices, but I was disappointed that Iris didn't go to any other new places. Though, she did also go back to Jane's book shop and I always enjoy those moments of checking in with the characters from the earlier books. Because, unlike the previous one, this is a PNR series with a new couple in each book I'm still hoping to get a little bit more of the Hollow each time.


Recommended for fans of: The Jane Jameson series, lighter PNR like Dakota Cassidy's Accidentals


    
 stars






Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Release Day Review: Hit by Delilah S. Dawson

 

Hit
(Hit #1)
Delilah S. Dawson
Release: April 14, 2015
Goodreads Amazon
 NO ONE READS THE FINE PRINT.

The good news is that the USA is finally out of debt. The bad news is that we were bought out by Valor National Bank, and debtors are the new big game, thanks to a tricky little clause hidden deep in the fine print of a credit card application. Now, after a swift and silent takeover that leaves 9-1-1 calls going through to Valor voicemail, they’re unleashing a wave of anarchy across the country.

Patsy didn’t have much of a choice. When the suits showed up at her house threatening to kill her mother then and there for outstanding debt unless Patsy agreed to be an indentured assassin, what was she supposed to do? Let her own mother die?

Patsy is forced to take on a five-day mission to complete a hit list of ten names. Each name on Patsy's list has only three choices: pay the debt on the spot, agree to work as a bounty hunter, or die. And Patsy has to kill them personally, or else her mom takes a bullet of her own.

Since yarn bombing is the only rebellion in Patsy's past, she’s horrified and overwhelmed, especially as she realizes that most of the ten people on her list aren't strangers. Things get even more complicated when a moment of mercy lands her with a sidekick: a hot rich kid named Wyatt whose brother is the last name on Patsy's list. The two share an intense chemistry even as every tick of the clock draws them closer to an impossible choice.

Delilah S. Dawson offers an absorbing, frightening glimpse at a reality just steps away from ours—a taut, suspenseful thriller that absolutely mesmerizes from start to finish.
Review: Did you ever wonder what the first day in a dystopia was like? Before everyone was divided into Houses or Districts? Before most people are even aware that their world has changed? That's the world of Hit. Patsy Klein is one of very few people who know that Valor National Bank has bought up the national debt and now they own the nation.

Patsy has a loaded gun with Valor National stamped on the side, a postal service uniform, an old mail truck and a list of ten names. She has five days to visit everyone on the list, read them each a prepared speech and give them a choice - pay off their debt, become an indentured bounty hunter like her, or die.

She only recognizes one name on the list, but it seems to have been compiled just for her. Each hit means something personal to Patsy - a chance to avenge a wrong, a look into her future or an opportunity to learn about her past and her absentee father (if she didn't have to kill the people who could teach her.) It's horrifying to think that a bank could have such personal information, especially when she doesn't have it herself. As if the name of your second grade best friend is in your credit report somewhere.

Patsy starts to put together information not only about her past, but about Valor National, and begins to question what they told her. I found the conspiracy theory story line intriguing and I'm curious about how it will develop in the rest of the series. And I found it frightening that a corporation could exert so much influence so quietly that no one noticed it was happening.

Even though the dystopian government's just getting started, Patsy's world already feels post-apocalyptic in some ways. I was often struck by how bleak her town has become with even the wealthy neighborhoods hit hard by the recession and falling into disrepair.

I think that's why I enjoyed her relationship with Wyatt, even though his reasons for staying with her weren't really clear. They are attracted to each other, but they often felt like partners in a twisted cop show. He's the veteran who lets the young hot shot take the lead, but he bails her out when she gets in over her head. Patsy calls him her shield but he's also her anchor, keeping her grounded when everything around her is changing.

Hit is powerful and emotional and not for the faint of heart. This is not one of those YAs that I'd be okay with my twelve year-old niece reading. The violence is probably R rated, but seeing it through the eyes of the person committing it and dealing with the emotional consequences is what really requires a more mature audience. It broke my heart at times, but it kept me riveted with its action and intrigue. I loved this book and I can't wait for Strike!


Recommended for fans of: Strong, quirky heroines, semi-reformed bad boys, YA dystopian thrillers

ARC provided by the publisher

    1/2
4 1/2  stars






Monday, April 13, 2015

Read This F@!%ing Book 36


Welcome to a feature we're going to post on Mondays called:


Read This F@!%ing Book!
This is a feature for us to push our favorite reads that just aren't getting enough attention! 
We're also opening it up to anyone who would like to guest post. Do you have a book that you just LURVED but feel like it's not getting the play it deserves? Email us to let us know and we'd be THRILLED to have you post about it here! Especially if its something we haven't reviewed yet - that's even better (but not necessary)! If you're interested email:
Goldilox3weres@hotmail.com

 This week's post comes from our very own: 
Gretl!
Read This F@!%ing Book Post 36: The Jane Jameson series by Molly Harper
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/5618698-nice-girls-don-t-have-fangshttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/5999242-nice-girls-don-t-date-dead-men
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7724610-nice-girls-don-t-live-foreverhttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13236544-nice-girls-don-t-bite-their-neighbors
 
Click covers for Goodreads
 
These vampires have a sense of humor
When most of us think of vampires we probably imagine a strong, silent Angel type or bad boy Brit like Spike or Bones. But who says they have to be so serious? Sure, Jane Jameson's sire/boyfriend Gabriel Nightengale pretty much epitomizes tall, dark and broody. But then there's Dick Cheney (the vampire, not the former Vice President.) Dick's the guy who can get you anything, any time as long as you don't ask where he got it. He drives a beat up El Camino, collects Dukes of Hazard memorabilia and wears rude novelty t-shirts.
I wonder if it would be unethical for me to turn James Marsters? And then force him to fake the Cockney accent? And then make him my love monkey?  - Jane Jameson in Nice Girls Don't Live Forever
Jane herself is far from a typical vampire. She's about as far from badass as you can get. She was a children's librarian before she was turned. She's obsessed with Jane Austen, collects unicorns, and she's likely to spout random facts and pop culture references at the most inappropriate times. There are no dusters and leather pants in sight for any of these vampires. It's probably too hot for leather in Kentucky even if vampire's don't sweat. 

And they're so very Southern
I'm always a fan of quirky small towns like Cicely, Alaska or Bluebell, Alabama so I totally fell in live with Half Moon Hollow, Kentucky! Not only does it have hilarious characters that you would never find in a big city, it's got vampires, werewolves and witches too. Jane has to deal with her own meddling mother, her best friend's mother, and then the local Vampire Council wants to manage her life as well.

Jane tries to join the Chamber of Commerce and finds it's a lot like high school and consists entirely of women named Courtney. Her antebellum home has not just an address, but a name and her disapproving grandmother won't stop pressuring her to put it back on the annual tour of historic homes. The werewolves in their trailers are a hilarious twist on a Southern stereotype. And even Jane's ghostly Aunt Jettie wears her University of Kentucky shirt on game day. 

But wait, there's more
Before I started my Jane Jameson binge, I'd only ever read one stand alone Molly Harper novel. So I was thrilled when I realized that she has another series set in Jane's world. The Half Moon Hollow series features a new couple and another piece of the Hollow in each book. And it has lots of Jane and her friends. Watch for my reviews of the Half Moon Hollow books starting later this week.

 

Friday, April 10, 2015

Review: Moon Called by Patricia Briggs



Moon Called
(Mercy Thompson #1)
Patricia Briggs
Release: January 31, 2006
Goodreads Amazon
Mercedes "Mercy" Thompson is a talented Volkswagen mechanic living in the Tri-Cities area of Washington. She also happens to be a walker, a magical being with the power to shift into a coyote at will. Mercy's next-door neighbor is a werewolf. Her former boss is a gremlin. And she's fixing a bus for a vampire. This is the world of Mercy Thompson, one that looks a lot like ours but is populated by those things that go bump in the night. And Mercy's connection to those things is about to get her into some serious hot water...

Review by Rose Red:

The Mercy Thompson series is one of the first urban fantasy series I discovered when I first started exploring the genre a few years ago. I couldn't stop myself from binge reading all the books that were out and I instantly pre-ordered the next book, River Marked, as soon as I finished those. I've read a lot more in urban fantasy since I first read these and in my opinion the Mercy books (and its companion Alpha & Omega series!) are some of the best books in this genre on the market. I've found that I can reread these books over and over again and never get tired of them.

The first book in the series, Moon Called, can be summed up literally as the girl-next-door gets involved in a bunch of werewolf drama. I absolutely adore Mercy! She's an extremely likable and unique character with a big heart and full of delightful snark. I love the diversity of the cast in all o Briggs's books and I love that Mercy is half Native American and a completely competent Volkswagon mechanic. She's owns her own shop! And it's also quite refreshing that she isn't a werewolf, but a coyote shapeshifter or "walker".
 

This book is what I have wanted other urban fantasy novels to be. The mistakes that other novels normally make in an urban fantasy are not made here: Mercy isn't so headstrong and independent that she doesn't know when to get help; she takes karate but isn't a black belt yet; her finances are not great, but they aren't poor either. It's a different take on the urban fantasy heroine and I've found it quite refreshing that Mercy has weaknesses. Don't get me wrong. She's a badass, but she's also semi-human and breakable.

The novel itself is almost nonstop action, but in the best possible way.
The plot is fantastic, but since it is mainly a mystery, I don't want to say too much more about it. Just know that it is one hell of a ride. There is a slight element of romance in the book, but it is very much in the background. It's definitely one of those good slow burn ones. I love when the characters are allowed to get to know one another. There is something that resembles a "love triangle" but it never really struck me as one while I was reading this book.

Mercy's world has seen the Fae come out of hiding, so the populace knows that there is a little bit of supernatural in the world. But they don't know about people like her, the werewolves, and the vampires. They are all still in shadows and not really out in the public view. One of the interesting bits of the novel is the discussion of the implications of other supernatural creatures coming out like the Fae did. There's not a lot of discussion but it was refreshing to see the subject talked about as a present tense strategy than as a past tense "whee the world knows now!" thing. 

One of my favorite things about this series is Briggs's writing style. It makes it so much fun to read. The witty banter and the first person narrative helps us get to know Mercy rather well while setting up the plot and introductions to all the characters. And there are a lot of characters (humans, werewolves, witches, vampires, and Fae)
introduced in this book even though it isn't that long. Each character is well-developed without revealing everything there is to know about them. Even though most of them are some supernatural creature, Briggs made them human. It made it really easy to develop feelings for each one of them whether it be love, hate, pity, or disgust. You can't help but finish this book having a few favorites. I absolutely adore Warren and Kyle! I just want to be friends with them in real life. Also, I can't help but laugh at Stefan and his love of Scooby Doo!

Overall, Mercy's world is interesting, fun, dangerous, and makes for one hell of a setting. And it makes this book (series really) such great read! If you like Urban Fantasy, kickass heroines, and lots of action wrapped in mystery, this is the book for you. Trust me. You'll love it!

Recommended for fans of: 
Halfway to the Grave by Jeaniene Frost
Magic Bites by Ilona Andrews
Some Girls Bite by Chloe Neill


    
  5 / 5 Stars!


Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Review: Fall With Me by Jennifer L. Armentrout


Fall With Me
(Wait For You #4)
Jennifer L. Armentrout
Release: March 31, 2015
Goodreads Amazon
Jennifer L. Armentrout, New York Times bestselling author of the Wait for You series, delivers a new novel of first love, second chances, and scorching chemistry.

Eleven months ago, bartender and weird-shirt-wearing extraordinaire Roxy and Officer Reece Anders had a one night stand. Well, kind of. She's been in love with him since she was fifteen, and he wishes that night they shared never happened. She's sworn him off forever, but the past and future collide, forcing her to rely on the one man who broke her heart not once, but twice. 
Her best friend since birth has been in a long-term care facility since he became a victim of a hate crime years ago, and the person who put him in there is out of prison and wanting to make amends with him and Roxy. She's not sure she has room for forgiveness in her and when she begins to receive frightening messages and is on the receiving end of escalating violence, she thinks she knows who is to blame. The man who already destroyed one life already.

But Reece isn't convinced. The threats are too personal, and even if Roxy doesn't believe him, he's not willing to let anyone hurt her. Including himself. He's already messed up more than once when it comes to Roxy and he's not going to let history repeat itself.

Review by Rose Red:

Jennifer Armentrout’s Wait for You series is my favorite New Adult series on the market right now. I love how all the books are connected together by reoccurring secondary characters, but each story still has a unique feel to it. This book is probably my favorite of the series, or it's at least tied with book one. I absolutely LOVED it!

Roxy and Reece’s story was different than I had expected, which made it even more enjoyable. Fall with Me was the perfect mix of steam, romance, emotion, and suspense. I was intrigued by what we saw of Roxy and Reece in Stay with Me and looked forward to seeing why Roxy was so intent on avoiding Reece. What I didn’t count on was Armentrout breaking my heart in the process with a story of friendship and the pain and guilt of regret.

Roxy has been in love with Officer Reece Anders since she was 15 years old. They had a one-night stand almost a year ago, but Reece made it clear he wished that night never happened. Hurt by Reece’s apparent dismissal of their time together, Roxy does her best to distance herself from him. Suddenly weird things start to happen to Roxy. She dismisses them until something happens that makes her worry about her safety. Believing it is the man who ruined her best friend’s life and is currently looking for forgiveness, Roxy reluctantly involves the man who broke her heart. Reece is determined to keep Roxy safe at all costs, as well as set the record straight about their past and future together.

Probably since the books in this series are on my auto-buy list, I realized that I didn't have any clue about what the book was about other than it was Roxy's story. Since I hadn't read the synopsis I had no idea about what had happened to Roxy’s friend so that first chapter hit me pretty hard. Roxy’s anguish and guilt were palpable. Although as a reader I never held her at fault, I think that if I were in her shoes I would have felt the same way she did. Despite her self-blame, Roxy was a dedicated and true friend. It was clear during her weekly visits how much she adored Charlie, and how difficult it was seeing him as a shadow of his former self. I was rooting for her to find a way to forgive herself.

I adored Roxy’s wit and quirky attitude, not to mention her awesome t-shirts. It made me laugh every time she attempted to avoid Reece because that man who was not going to let her get away without setting the record straight. Guys! I absolutely loved Reece! Seriously. He may have just pushed Cam out of the number one spot as favorite love interest in this series. I appreciated how straightforward Reece was with Roxy. He wasn’t interested in playing games. Reece was sexy, dedicated to his job and Roxy, and just an all-around good guy. What I loved the most about him, though, was how he helped Roxy understand that she couldn’t live her life for her friend. He was incredibly supportive and encouraged her to follow her heart and her passion.

What I truly loved about this book was that nothing was dragged out. We didn't have to wait the majority of the book to see Reece and Roxy get together. Armentrout pretty much puts you right into the middle of things right from the start. The mystery/suspense of the story is throughout the whole book, but that just makes you want to turn the pages faster to find out how it all plays out.

Seriously. Everything was on point with this story. There was great chemistry between Roxy and Reece and a good balance of romance and heat. Roxy’s story tugged at my heart more times than I could count, and I definitely shed some tears. Add in healthy doses of snark, angst, and suspense, and Armentrout knocked this one out of the park. I loved the overall message about letting go in the book. Nick was a primary secondary character in this installment, and I enjoyed getting to know him more. I SO can’t wait to read to his story next! Whenever I am looking for a great book in the New Adult genre, I know I can always count on Jennifer Armentrout.

Recommended for fans of:
I Want It That Way by Ann Aguirre
Losing It by Cora Carmack
The Hook Up by Kristen Callihan 

    
 5 / 5 Stars!!!

My reviews of other books in this series:
Wait For You by J. Lynn
Be With Me by J. Lynn
Stay With Me by J. Lynn


Monday, April 6, 2015

Read This F@!%ing Book (35)


Welcome to a feature I'm going to post on Mondays called:
Read This F@!%ing Book!
This is a feature for me to push my favorite reads that just aren't getting enough attention! 
I'm also opening it up to anyone who would like to guest post. Do you have a book that you just LURVED but feel like its not getting the play it deserves? Email me to let me know and I'd be THRILLED to have you post about it here! Especially if its something I haven't reviewed yet - that's even better (but not necessary)! If you're interested email me:
Goldilox3weres@hotmail.com

 This week's post comes from our very own: 
Rose Red!


Read This F@!%ing Book Post 33: The Jessica Series by Beth Fantaskey
     
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/3389671-jessica-s-guide-to-dating-on-the-dark-side   https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7239607-the-wedding-of-antanasia-jessica-packwood-and-lucius-valeriu-vladescu   https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/10025007-jessica-rules-the-dark-side

(Click book cover to go to Goodreads page)
 
The Best Post-Twilight YA Vampire Book You Probably Haven't Read.
Funny story, one of my friends actually bought the first book in this series for me as a gag gift for our college graduation. He bought it mainly because the title has my name in it while referencing a dating guide at the same time. Which was super hilarious to him because he thought I needed one. Also, he gave it to me because it contained vampires. At that time, I was very vocal about hating the trend of romanticized vampire books. Where were the vampire books like Sunshine? You have to admit, that there were some pretty terrible vampire/paranormal YA books published in the huge paranormal YA craze that happened after Twilight made the genre cool again. That being said, this book was an exception and it helped me to fall in love with the genre again. The problem is that very few people know about this hidden gem.
 
This series was not what I was expecting when I picked the first book up. With the tag line of “The undead can really screw up your senior year” I was thinking it would be more of a fluffy and entertaining read. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a cute novel but it was definitely darker than I assumed it would be.
 
The Premise
In rural Pennsylvania, math nerd Jessica Packwood is about to enter her senior year of high school. Her biggest concerns are how to potentially date her neighbor, Jake, have fun, and win some more math competitions. Her carefully thought out plans go down the drain with the arrival of Lucius Vladescu, the good looking Romanian exchange student who just happens to be staying with her family. Lucius also happens to be a vampire. But he’s just not any vampire; he’s a vampire prince who has been betrothed to Jessica since they were infants. Their union would stop a centuries old war between their families. While Jessica has always known that she was adopted, she just never imagined that she was a long lost vampire princess. 

Math Nerd Heroine vs. Vampiric Mr. Darcy 
I loved this newish take on vampirism when I read it! I particularly loved how the guidebook that Lucius presents to his betrothed was integrated into the story. The pacing and the humor in this book were spot on as are the continual misunderstandings between Jessica and Lucius. I devoured this book in one sitting and I’ve reread it several times over the years. Plus, this book has active parental figures in it which is not something you see much of in YA. The plot was great but what really made the story fantastic was the characters!

I loved Jessica! She’s got moxie and buckets of it. She’s smart, capable, and unknowingly a vampire. I found myself really relating to her on a personal level. Jessica loves scientific facts and believes things like Lucius’ fangs to be illusions and cheap parlor tricks. Lucius is an intense and haughty Romanian (think more Mr. Darcy and not Edward Cullen) who has come to America to convince Jessica that they should marry and reunite their warring families. I loved every bit of the interactions and exchanges between these two. Lucius would get all high and mighty and Jessica would put him in his place. Each possessed very distinct voices, which made for some hilarious dialogue! Jessica and Lucius are two of the best YA main characters that I've ever read about and they both undergo a ton of personal growth by the end of the series.

Action, love, mortal danger, family, humor— Jessica’s Guide to Dating on the Dark Side will leave you grinning ear-to-ear, biting your nails, and reading far into the night. I loved it and I hope you will too! And that's just the first book, book two, Jessica Rules the Dark Side, is just as good as it is different from the first book! Don't forget to read the author's self-published short story, The Wedding, in between the two books!

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

April Releases: Buy Borrow or Beg?


Buy, Borrow or Beg is our monthly new release feature. Each of the co-bloggers is going to tell you which books they're most excited about and whether you should buy - the ones we preordered or plan to stand in line for, borrow - the ones we'll be stalking at the library, or beg - the ones we've gotten for free as review copies or prizes that you'll be begging us to tell you about. Let us know what you're looking eagerly awaiting this month in the comments.

Buy:

Garden of Dreams and Desires (Crescent City #3) by Kristen Painter
Release: April 7 Goodreads Amazon
This is the series finale and I'm sad for it to end. But the last book ended with Harlow in a difficult position and I have to know how she gets out of it.

Dark Heir (Jane Yellowrock #9) by Faith Hunter
Release: April 7 Goodreads Amazon
It took me a few books in to the series, but now Jane Yellowrock's is a world that I fall into effortlessly and feel right at home. I'm always excited to see what happens next for Jane and all the men in her life.

Vengeance of the Demon (Kara Gillian #7) by Diana Rowland
Release: April 7 Goodreads Amazon
The last Kara Gillian book completely blew me away. I was happy I didn't have to review it since I was pretty much speechless. Can't wait to see how Rowland follows that.

Rogue (The Talon Saga #2) by Julie Kagawa
Release: April 28 Goodreads Amazon
The end of Talon was really exciting (and kind of a cliffhanger) so I've been eagerly awaiting the next one in this series. This would probably be a library pick for me but the covers are so pretty I had to put it on the list.

Borrow:

Overruled (Legal Briefs #1) by Emma Chase
Release: April 28 Goodreads Amazon
A few months ago I spent a whole weekend reading Chase's Tangled series and really enjoyed it. Legal Briefs is sort of a spin off since Stanton Shaw went to college with Drew from the first series.

Beg:

Hit (Hit #1) by Delilah S Dawson
Release: April 14 Goodreads Amazon
Hit was one of my Most Anticipated of 2015 and I was definitely not disappointed. It's dark and violent and witty and unputdownable. This is how the dystopia begins.

Cold Burn of Magic (Black Blade #1) by Jennifer Estep
Release: April 28 Goodreads Amazon
This is the first YA I've read from Jennifer Estep and I was surprised how much it feels like Elemental Assassin. I loved the world and the magic system and I'm already clamoring for the next book in the series.





Buy:



The Rebirth of Tao (Tao #3) by Wesley Chu
Release: April 7 Goodreads Amazon
This is the last book in the Tao Trilogy and I'm sad that it's going to be over. I can't wait to see what happens in this book!

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
Release: April 28 Goodreads Amazon
I've been hearing nothing but great things about this book from some of my blogger friends. I'm not quite sure what this book is about but it's a YA fantasy standalone! You don't see many of those on the market anymore and I can't
help but be intrigued! The Kindle book pre-order is only $2.99 at the moment. For that price, I'll buy and read it!

Of Noble Family (Glamourist Histories #5) by Mary Robinette Kowal
Release: April 28 Goodreads Amazon
This is the last book in the Glamourist Histories series and I'm so sad that we won't have any more Jane and Vincent books after this. I love their adventures! And you don't see many books where the main characters are a married couple.

Borrow:

Pirate's Alley (Sentinels of New Orleans #4) by Suzanne Johnson
Release: April 21 Goodreads Amazon
An urban fantasy book that takes place in New Orleans and features wizards? Yes! Please! I'm a book behind on this series but I can't wait to get my hands on this one! I've really been impressed with these books so far.

Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley
Release: April 28 Goodreads Amazon
Neil Gaiman's Stardust meets John Green's The Fault in Our Stars! I'm intrigued and that's all I need to know to pick this book up! I can't wait to get this from the library!

Beg:




The Girl of Midnight (The Girl of Midnight #1) by Melissa Grey
Release: April 28 Goodreads Amazon
I've heard nothing but great things about this book and I'm intrigued that it's being marketed for fans of Cassandra Clare's City of Bones and Leigh Bardugo's Shadow and Bones. That's an interesting combination and I can't wait to read my ARC!

Cold Burn of Magic (Black Blade #1) by Jennifer Estep
Release: April 28 Goodreads Amazon
I love Jennifer Estep's Elemental Assassin series! I've never read one of Estep's YA books before and I can't wait to read this one! I've heard nothing but good things about it! I've started it and I'm enjoying it so far!
 
The Deepest Poison (The Clockwork Dagger #0.5) by Beth Cato
Release: April 28 Goodreads Amazon
This is a prequel novella to one of my favorite books from last year! I can't wait to learn more about Octavia and her healing powers!

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