Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Heaven and Hell Review

Heaven and Hell by Kristen Ashley  

Book description.....
After making a bad decision when she was very young, Kia Clementine finds herself in hell. Then, suddenly, within the time it takes for a shotgun to blast, her hell changes. Completely. Then out-of-the-blue she sees Sampson Cooper, her celebrity crush. A man the whole world knows is decent. A man the world knows is loyal. A man the world knows is good. All of these very unlike her now dead husband.  He’s sitting at a table right next to hers. And she catches his eye.  Terrified of the interest Sam shows in her, Kia finds the courage to go out with him. Not long after, she shares her dark secrets and Sam shares that he’ll stop at nothing to gain her trust.  As Sam leads Kia to heaven, Kia realizes that Sam is living his own hell. But although he gives her beauty and she gives him everything, he withholds his trust.  Even with all the beauty Sam shows her, Kia wants it all. But Sam forces Kia to make a heartbreaking decision and only she can decide. It’s all or nothing.

Kia oh sweet Kia!  I adored Kia, I connected with her, I could relate to her, and I just simply felt for her throughout the entire story.   Kia lived in hell for seven years, she lived in hell with her husband Cooter Clementine.....LOL...yep that's his name - cracked me up so much I had to call some friends to tell them about it....wait, now that I'm thinking about it after a awesome cup of coffee, no wonder he was such a jerk...his masculinity was probably questioned daily because his name is sometimes used to refer to a .....well you know lol.  By all means I am NOT excusing what he did, there is never an excuse for that believe me I know I've been in Kia's shoes before...  Anyway, so Kia is in hell and let me tell you I feel for her, I feel for any abused woman so reading this was a bit difficult for me but at the same time Kia meeting Sam and then having what she did made reading it worth while to me!

Sam.....sweet Jesus that man got my skin tingling he was so hot (I picture Cristiano Ronaldo....mmmmm) ...He was an ex-NFL star who enlisted in the Army after his brother was killed in the line of duty... I kind of have a soft spot for anyone involved in the Army because my nephew just left for basic training last week...(So proud of you and love you Steven!!!!)  Loved this quote and because I'm big into supporting our Troops...... "One thing to play at warrior wearin' pads on a field.  Another thing all together to be one."  Anyway, Sam..... he happened to be sitting at the table next to the table Kia was seated at.  She is desperately trying to ignore him and let's just say Sam found that appealing along with finding Kia quite appealing ;)
"Baby for ten minutes you made me invisible."
I seriously have to sit back and wonder.....how often do celebrities get to go out to dinner or out at all without being hounded by other people?  It's a shame that celebrities don't get a day off to do whatever they want without criticism!  It really is sad that society can't look at them as the everyday people they really are.

Needless to say Kia caught Sam's eye so when she went to dinner a few days later and sees Sam with a beautiful woman she's kind of crushed.  She doesn't say hi to him she just completely ignores him and apparently that did not make him happy.  So he approaches Kia while she's thinking about her past and has tears in her eyes...upon seeing them Sam's anger slips away and he tries talking to Kia about why she's upset....  Once Sam sees that Kia really is who she is and is not playing a game he asks her out.....on a date..... and Kia ends up getting quite a little parting gift from Sam Cooper

Sam and Kia start seeing each other and let me tell you it's beautiful and I say beautiful because Sam knew if he helped Kia work through her hell that heaven would be waiting on the other side for them.  So he did, he helped her see that there are good men out there, men who will treat you right, men who will show you that not only are you beautiful but that you deserve to feel that beauty.  BUT Kia is still afraid that Sam will get bored, that he'll get sick of dealing with her because she has A LOT to work through
"So yeah.  Definitely yeah.  I can handle the shit that comes with you just as long as it comes with you."
Love Sam....seriously I love him....he knows what to say, he knows how to handle Kia and let me tell you handling a woman who has had to face abuse the way Kia did is hard....having to handle a woman who faced it to that extreme for as long as Kia did is almost impossible and takes the patience of a saint....but Sam did it and he did a beautiful job of it and Kia sees it too....She's falling in love with him as she's finding out who she is.... She's also finding her way with Sam...her way in a 'healthy' relationship...
"Anywhere is heaven as long as it's an anywhere with you."
Here is where it got emotional for me because I knew what Sam gave Kia was beautiful and it upset me to no end to watch her struggle with her decision especially because of what she found in Sam, how he takes care of her, how he handles her....so here is where the tears really began for me
I felt the tears pool in my eyes, one slid over and trailed down my cheek.  Sam turned into me and with a hand at my jaw he tipped my head back so he could look at me.  His eyes moved down my cheek.  Then he whispered, "Seein' that kills me."
Knowing how much I loved Sam and why I loved Sam....I have to admit that he also pissed me off....I mean pissed me off so bad that I was at the point of tears in my eyes pissed.  I know he saw what he had in Kia and he knew it was only a matter of time before she'd give up...that was quite clear by the desperation in the things he would do or even the things he would say but yet he couldn't let go and give it to her....he couldn't let go until he realized he'd lost her and that....that's what pissed me off.  Kia waited for it, she fought for it, she begged him to give it to her and even told him why but he wouldn't give it to her, he wouldn't even tell her he couldn't give it to her...he just...closed off.  I get it, I really do but it can not be said that not once did I get upset with Kia for her decision....not once did I blame her and quite frankly she deserves a pat on the back for having the patience she did until she'd finally given up.  After what she went through she deserved it all and knowing what Sam knew he should have realized that too.  THANK GOD.....Sam got his head outta his ass and gave Kia what she wanted...he gave it all to her and it was heavy stuff....but giving that to her meant they could walk into Heaven together!

I have to admit I seriously struggled with this review.  With everything else my thoughts just come to me but with this one they didn't.  I don't know if it was the fact that I felt so connected to the characters or if it was the emotional struggle I faced while reading it because I could relate almost too well.  All I kept thinking was beautiful simply beautiful..... that Kia got that after living in hell for seven years....she deserves that beauty.  Abuse is such a tough subject.  You can't understand it unless you've lived it.  It's easy to cast judgment but until you've actually been in that situation...and I mean ACTUALLY lived it you'll never understand the decision someone has made.  This book actually gave a small glimpse of what it's like to be in an abusive relationship and it also gave a small glimpse of why it's so hard to reach out and ask for the help you need or even accept the help that is offered.  Because of everything Sam and Kia faced, how they faced it, and how they ended up this book will always have a special place for me, it will always be something special to me.

I don't think it's hard to figure out that I definitely recommend Heaven and Hell by Kristen Ashley....My review isn't all peaches and cream, my thoughts on this book are more emotional than anything, they come from something personal, and they were hard to think about but don't let that give you the wrong impression that Heaven and Hell is not a typical KA book....it is....it SO is ;)  You have your hot alpha male, adorable and sweet as pie heroine, AWESOME secondary characters, and a great story line with lots of drama, humor, and a little hot smut thrown in there.  So make sure you check it out and after you do....make sure to keep me up to date on how your love for Same Cooper continues to grow as he shows Kia what heaven is really like!

Happy Reading!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Lady Luck (Colorado Mountain #3) Review

Lady Luck (Colorado Mountain #3) by Kristen Ashley is the equivalent to finding your favorite department store has shoes, clothes, purses, ect. by your favorite designer on sale and not just on sale but on clearance.....it's exciting, it's mesmerizing, it's hot, and most of all it makes your day that much better!  I loved Sweet Dreams but I LOVED  Lady Luck!

Book description........
Ty Walker was wrongly imprisoned and for the five years he was inside, he honed his plan so when he gets out, he has nothing but vengeance on his mind. But then he walks straight to stylish, leggy, beautiful, goofy Lexie Berry and he suddenly has something else to think about. He knows within seconds he wants her and within days he can love her but with the filth that was flung at him clinging; he also knows he can’t have her. Since birth, Lexie Berry has been Lady Luck’s favorite toy and because of that, Lexie is cautious. But within a day, she senses Ty is something special. With her luck, however, she can’t trust it. Then she finds out what was done to Ty and she’s willing to do anything to make it right. Even what Ty will never forgive her for doing. Ty clings to vengeance and Lexie goes all out to give him back the time he lost. But Ty is battling demons within and they’re up against dirty cops and criminals who will stop at nothing to sway Lady Luck against them. All Ty and Lexie have is hope Lady Luck will finally swing their way.

 Let's start off with Lexie....God, I loved that Girl!!!  She seriously reminds me so much of one of my friends that I pictured her while reading Lady Luck... She's funny and clearly tries to live her life to it's fullest.  She gives and asks for nothing in return.  Lexie had it rough growing up...quite honestly she had it rough up until she met Ty Walker!  Even having it as rough as she did and Lady Luck slapping her wrist every time she tries to reach for something good she was still a beautiful woman and I'm not talking about her appearance.  She had the inner beauty of an angel, the inner beauty of a person anyone would be lucky to have in their life!

Now, Ty Walker...God...beautiful man... I have a great imagination so I had quite the mental picture of Ty going on then I take a little internet detour to Kristen's Facebook page and what do you know....my girl Sheryl posted a picture of a naked......sorry had a little shiver there.....anyway a naked picture from the waist up of Vin Diesel, head tilted back and water running down his........*clearing throat*...... and holy cow my imagination got even better and then it got even better when there's a scene of...ummm.... never mind, you'll see it when you read it and believe me..... to have THAT picture in my head while reading that scene was.....WOW!!!

So Lexie is sent on an errand and that errand happens to be Ty...unfortunately....well I guess fortunately... she wasn't given a full description of what this errand would entail and ends up Lexie Walker.  Reading it I totally get it but at the same time really questioned it because.....well....Ty was kind of a prick at first.  He barely spoke and when he did it was pretty crude..... but whatever because he totally moves past that and totally moves into so sweet I got tingles EVERY time he called her Mama.... I mean how adorable is that? 

After a rough start to their 'marriage' they start really giving it a go but Ty has other business on his mind and that business has to do with him being wrongfully imprisoned for 5 years.  Lexie plays some cards and ends up bringing Tate....oh yes girls Tate from Sweet Dreams makes quite a few appearances ;) to help 'sway' Ty from tending to his 'business'.  This distraction seems to be working in more than one way when Ty's feelings for Lexie start turning thankful for his time spent in prison
He didn't mind doing that time when doing it meant he would walk out to Lexie.
Lexie's family....Ella, Bessie, & Honey....bring her things to Carnal and are shocked to find out that she is not only living with Ty but is married to him.  So being the loyal and over protective adoptive mother she is Ella gets to the point and Lexie confesses her feelings
"He's generous, he's gentle, when he talks to me soft it's like a gift, when he calls me 'baby' or 'mama', I feel it in my heart, my belly.  So yes, I'm falling in love with him."
While there Lexie's family and Ty get to know one another.  And again Ella being the loving, loyal, and over protective adoptive mother gives to to Ty straight
"I see it the way she looks at you, talks about you, you don't grasp hold and let her give as good as she gets, you'll destroy her."
At this point Ty is seriously feeling good about where his relationship with Lexie is going.  He pretty much loves everything about her but hasn't admitted even to himself that he does love her.  Unfortunately even these feelings he has and how strong they are, knowing what Ella told him about Lexie, knowing why Lexie would do what she did....he did not handle finding out about her 'distractions' well.....AT ALL....and O.M.G.... did he piss me off, I mean come on I get his reasoning but he not only had her family tell him what she feels, her showing him how she feels by all that she gave....and he knew because he loved the fact that she gave so much.....but his friends saw it - Julius was extremely angry, even Tate was pissed at him, not to mention he could have put a stop to her distraction any time but yet....he didn't, he even liked it.  But it still took Ty finding out that she was back in Texas and the garbage that led her to him in the first place had her.

So he takes off after her.  Unfortunately all this did break her to the point of her admitting to him she had nothing left to give anyone once he finally found her.  That scene of him and her on the beach...seriously, I was all teary... He's trying to fix it, wants to fix it but she can't listen.... she seriously is broken and has nothing left in her to give.  I could feel it when I read it, I understood it...but I was still upset she didn't give him more of a chance.

Then a phone call in the middle of the night changes it all..... Lexie rushes back to Carnal.  It's a sweet reunion that at first leaves not only Ty and Lexie a little mad at Julius but also a few others....that is until they got over it and instead got happy about the fact that it brought Ty and Lexie back together.  Ty knew he hurt Lexie and he knew he was going to have to prove to her that he made a mistake, over reacted, and would have to win her trust back and that he was more than willing to do it....more than willing to do anything it took to get the light that Lexie brought him back
"I'll work my ass off to make it all worth it to you and you gotta always remember I love you and I have never, not once, said those words to any breathing soul so you also gotta know what that means."
.....sigh.....So Ty was very determined to flip that switch and bring Lexie's light back not only for him but for her too.  They had a crazy ride before their thing but after things got crazier and I mean crazier.... for the town of Carnal, for the Carnal PD, and for Ty and Lexie in both good....very good.....but also bad ways. 

Ty and Lexie get their happily ever after and let me tell you.....it was a GREAT happily ever after.  There was not one thing missing, they got it all and by getting it all it must be said that Lady Luck finally decided she liked Ty and Lexie.  Their happily ever after was so great that after reading the last line I had a huge smile on my face.  It's not often that I feel like the Author gave complete closure for the h/h but in Lady Luck I got complete closure.....not that I don't miss Ty and Lexie, but that I felt like they got everything they deserved and believe me those two deserved it all!

Lady Luck by Kristen Ashley is a great...no, fantastic.....no, awesome.....no, a favorite read and something I recommend with a cheesy smile on my face and I request to update me with your thoughts as you read it, after you read it, and even when you reread it.

Then again, Kristen's books all seem to do that for me.....they consume me, I feel attached to her characters....every single one of them!  She is so good at building up characters, and when I say that I mean ALL of them including secondary characters, that you see it all as real life, you feel a connection, a bond, and you don't want to let go.  Lady Luck is no different.....we got to see Tate and Laurie, quite frequently, and even though we may not get much of it we even get a small glimpse of Max and Nina as well!  Which leads me to the point I have to make that after everything went down in Carnal, it seemed Chace and Lexie developed a friendship which makes me hope we will get more of our Colorado Mountain characters in Chace's story which I hope is soon :)

Click the link below to check it out......
Lady Luck (Colorado Mountain Series)

Happy Reading!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

When to give up on a book....

When do you give up on a book?  When do you decide that you've given it your best shot?  I'm asking these questions to myself right now.

I'm in the middle of a book and I'm struggling with it.  It's not horrible, it's actually not even bad but at the same time it is bad...it's like a train wreck and I can't look away. 

Here are my issues: 

*The characters aren't bad, the author has introduced them quite nicely... However....they have so many flaws that I'm constantly raising an eyebrow or thinking "Are you serious?"  It seems like one minute they're acting their age but the next minute they come across extremely immature. When I say they have flaws I don't mean it in the sense that the character build up is flawed..... I mean it in the sense of if these were real people.  She comes off as too desperate and maybe even has a touch of a multiple personality disorder.  He comes off as extremely fun but also a little on the psycho side.

*The story line isn't bad, I mean who doesn't like an overprotective, possessive, alpha male every now and then?   But this one is a little over the top.  I just can't see the reality of it, I just don't buy it...any of it really.  Then there's the heroine and her use of endearments or her referring to specific parts...The endearments fit her personality but one in particular just annoys me to the point of rolling my eyes but her references to her body parts are so not what a woman like her would use nor do I as a female reader really enjoy seeing a heroine say.   It's not the I dislike the word but there is a place to use it.

I really wanted to like this book.  I really did!  It actually got an average of 4 stars and the description and reviews I've read tells me that it's a book I'd really enjoy!  But so far I'm not, I can't find the enjoyment.  I'm about 47% finished on my Kindle but I have to admit I wouldn't be upset if I didn't finish....actually I've considered just moving on to another book and possibly coming back to this one numerous times already.  BUT....like I said before - it's like a train wreck that I can't seem to tear my eyes from while I'm actually reading.

I'm not going to tell you the name or Author of the book other than to say this is the first book I've ever read of hers.  I won't tell you and here's why.... I think if I did it wouldn't be fair to the book or the Author.  I'm sure she worked extremely hard on her work and I admire anyone who takes the time to not only do something creative they like but they're proud enough to share that creativity.  I can not take that away from the Author and having said that I often get frustrated reading reviews where the author and their work is trashed for something the reviewer didn't like.  We all have our opinions and have the right to voice them but there is always a tactful way to voice that. 

Even with the knowledge that no one but myself will know what book I'm referring to, I still want to take the time to wish the Author luck and give her a virtual pat on the back for believing in herself and her work enough to share it with others!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Effortless (Thoughtless #2) Review

Effortless by S.C. Stephens is the second book in the Thoughtless series and is by far my favorite of the two because of the love Kellan and Kiera have for each other.  If you haven't read Thoughtless you really should read it first otherwise you may be a little lost at points in the book!

Book description.....
A lot can happen in a year. You grow, you change, you learn from your mistakes. And Kiera had made a lot of mistakes to learn from. But she had learned, and she was determined to never cause a man pain again, especially the amazing man who currently held her heart. But life offers new challenges for every relationship, and when Kiera’s love is put to the ultimate test, will it come out the other side unscathed? Love is easy…trust is hard.

The D-Bags are back!!!!!!!!

Picking up where we left off in Thoughtless....Kellan and Kiera's relationship continues to grow and they continue to share this passionate love for one another.
His eyes rested on mine and my breath caught at the love I saw in that gaze.  I didn't think I'd ever get used to seeing how much he adored me.
These two had a rough start....first they fell in love while Kiera was still in a relationship with Denny, then they did the whole back and forth thing, and then finally after both had months of misery they reunited.....so it's not like their relationship actually started off on the right foot.  They knew they loved each other and that love ran bone deep but yet they both had some big insecurities in themselves and in each other.

Kellan wants Kiera to lose her insecurities about herself, most especially the ones where she feels like she isn't enough for Kellan
"Someday, I'll get you to feel like the confident woman who was prancing around in her underwear last night, all of the time."  Running his hand back through my hair, he added.  "You are a beautiful, intelligent woman with a boyfriend who adores you.  You have nothing to fear...ever."
She felt like she was constantly judged by people on whether or not she was worthy to belong to Kellan.  It especially didn't help that Kellans "past" continued to throw itself in Kiera's face.

When Matt is able to get the D-Bags a spot on tour with a famous rock group, Kellan doesn't want to take it.  He's happy just playing at Pete's and a few other local bars but most of all he doesn't want to leave Kiera because he doesn't want to be away from her, hurt her, or her hurt him
"I didn't love him more than I love you, Kellan."  Pulling back, I met his eye.  "I love you more.  I love you enough to let you go and live your dream."  I tilted my head and shrugged.  "Don't you see...?  I love you more."
 With the upcoming tour Kellan and Kiera spend as much time as they can together.  He confronts one of his past...umm whatever they were LOL..., they get cell phones to keep in constant contact with each other, they have an interesting introduction to The Hulk....LOL...you'll understand after reading the book...Griffin is all I'm sayin'..., they share a moment during the D-Bags last show at Petes while Kellan sings Kiera her song, and have an....ummmm *cough cough* awesome?...lol yeah that works....time at Matt and Griffin's party on their last night home. 

Saying goodbye is hard for both of them....but it must be said that Kellan has got a way with words and those sweet words make saying goodbye seem almost easier
"This tour is just me being gone for another show...a really long one.  But when it's over, I'm coming home to you, to slip into your warm, inviting be, like I always do..." 
So the D-Bags take off to tour the country and Kiera, Anna, Jenny, and Rachel head to Pete's to load up the boys instruments and take them to Evan's loft.  It's at Evan's loft that Kiera gets her first and second taste of what Kellan has left behind for her and he has left hundreds and hundreds of letters for either someone to give her or for her to find.....again that boy has got a way with words....SIGH....

Life with Kellan on the road starts off okay for Kiera.  She keeps herself busy with finding Kellan's letters & even a picture...wish I could get a look at that..., work, school, friends, study groups, and her talks with Kellan every night.

Then there is one phone call in particular that....ummmm so can't give it away it's just too darn funny but I will say.....Denver Omelet.....O.M.G....seriously I read this part and thought somehow S.C. figured out something my wonderful husband would so freaking do to me....I LOL'd so hard I had tears.

Finally after two months of being apart Kellan and Kiera get to spend Christmas together at her Parents house back in Ohio.  They have a beautiful 5 days together before he has to head back out to the D-Bags and the tour.  BUT....because of a text that Kellan received from a "private" Kiera is now having a few doubts but tries to push them off because she wants to believe in Kellan instead of doubt him and is afraid to be "that" girl. 

Unfortunately here is where the doubts seriously begin and to top it off Kiera is faced with the challenge of how to tell Kellan that Denny is back in Seattle.  First, Rachel gets the D-Bags site up....fans start posting pictures and videos of the guys and Kiera gets a small sight of something that could be taken many different ways and sees that familiar face three times.  Second, Kiera and Anna fly to Boise where the guys have a show and while on the bus with Kellan another band member makes a comment that makes Kiera question Kellan's faithfulness and honesty.  Third, Kellan says he has something he needs to tell her but again avoids it and even receives a few more texts before the girls head back home.  BUT....on a side note.....Our D-BAGS GET SIGNED!!!!!! Congrats boys!  Having to deal with Griffin....who I actually find extremely amusing - just sayin'....as long as you have you SOOOOO deserve it :)

Moving on......Kiera finds some more letters from Kellan, meets a new friend (Cheyanne), has some amazingly hot...ummm...*clears throat* phone conversations ;), and Anna finds out some HUGE news.  Unfortunately because he wasn't able to fly home to celebrate their anniversary Kellan surprises Kiera and he does it while Denny is there.  Things start off real bad....then they go good because he believes her....BUT then they go real bad because he finds something and thinks it's Kiera's and has a bad memory of what his Mother constantly informed him of....so he walks out on her. 

Don't worry though...Kiera has had enough of Kellan hiding from her and decides to confront him about what he's hiding.  They end up working everything out after Kiera has to share Anna's secret and Kellan finally....finally....confesses to Kiera what he has been hiding and again K&K are back to complete bliss. 

I'll leave you with one last quote from Kiera's graduation party at Pete's
"Come on tour with me.  Hell, come to L.A. with me."
I am really hoping that S.C. Stephens will write the third book.  I'm deliriously anxious to find out what happens to our adorable K&K next as well as what happens with the rest of the D-Bags ;)

Effortless by S.C. Stephens is an emotional read.  It shows real struggles that couples face when dealing with the long distance thing and/or extreme trust issues.  I have to say I honestly, as much as I love the two of them together, did not see them where they ended up but have to admit I'm so happy they did.  They finally got their communications issues worked out and found their way back to happiness together. 

Happy Reading!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Sweet Dreams (Colorado Mountain #2)

Sweet Dreams by Kristen Ashley is like Heaven in book form!  Smokin' hot bad boy bikers that know how to sweet talk a girl, some serious drama and suspense that will keep you on the edge of your seat!

Book description......
Lauren Grahame has spent her whole life thinking something special was going to happen.  So, after divorcing her cheating husband, Lauren searched for nothing special and she thought she found it when she landed a job as a waitress in a biker bar in Carnal. It was perfect: a nothing job in a nowhere bar in Nowheresville. Then Tatum Jackson walked in. Part-owner of the bar, he took one look at high-class Lauren and wanted nothing to do with her. The clash of the bartender and barmaid begins but, even though Tate makes his change of mind clear (in biker-speak, a language Lauren is not fluent in), Lauren is intent on going her own way.  Until a serial killer hits Carnal and Lauren finds out Tate isn't a bartender, he's a bounty hunter. He stakes his claim for Lauren before he goes on the hunt for a killer but Laurie doesn't speak biker nor does she understand bounty hunters and Tate comes back from the hunt to find his old lady has moved on.  Life throws curveball after curveball at Laurie and Tate as secrets are revealed, women are brutally murdered, Tate leads Lauren to special and Laurie tries to find her inner biker babe.

I'm going to start off by saying that Sweet Dreams was my first Kristen Ashley read (a few months back...and yes I know I've already reviewed other books by Kristen LOL) and let me tell you I knew at least half way through the book that I was going to become a life long fan of Kristen's work.  It was awesome, the entire story is so smoothly written that you can't help but become so consumed you feel a part of the characters and Tate....well Tate is simply put....A...MAZ...ING!!!! 

Lauren...gosh how I would love to meet Lauren if she was a real life person!  She was sweet as pie and had the vibe about her that was so friendly you couldn't help but like her on spot!  After a devastating divorce from her husband, Brad of ten years, Lauren roams the country looking for the place that fits and she stumbles on Carnal, Colorado.  She's dreamed of having something special but after her husband cheated on her then divorced her she came to believe that her something special wasn't out there
"I realized I didn't have anything special.  All of a sudden I realized that life didn't have anything special in store for me"  I took in a deep breath and finished, "And I'm okay with that.  I don't want special anymore."
 Sad, I know...and you'll see that too especially after seeing what she went through, what her husband and friends did, how they treated her and you'll feel the hatred she does towards them after seeing how special She actually is!

So Lauren gets a job at "Bubba's" a local biker bar in Carnal and in walks her absolutely beautiful boss, Tate!  Tate has some things going on in his life takes one look at Lauren and wants no part of her being in his bar.  He takes Krystal (another awesome character and Lauren's other boss) in the back and tells her exactly how he feels about Lauren.... which let me tell you made me want to smack the bad boy right outta him... and he does it so loud that Lauren hears what he says and she is crushed.  His words hurt and he tries to talk to her and tell her to shake it off but she can't.  So they begin this little battle of him trying to get her attention and her avoiding him as much as possible and thus began the nicknames for each other....Tate called Lauren Ace and Lauren called Tate Captain.

Finally, Tate breaks through but because a serial killer is now on the loose and the Carnal P.D. asked for his help Tate has to go on the hunt.  He takes off after leaving Lauren with one hot kiss and his biker slang of which she has no clue of the meaning....
"I get back, Lauren, you're on the back of my bike."
Ummm....I gotta admit I can't say I don't blame her because I would have no clue what it meant either, but while Tate is gone, Lauren starts something up with Wood - Tate's ex-best friend now enemy and Neetas (Tate's psycho ex-girlfriend)  brother.  Wood says some things about Tate that crush Lauren's crush for Tate and when Tate finally returns to Carnal and comes straight to Lauren she throws this in his face and he storms out after saying some more hurtful words to her.

A few days later Tate shows up to inform Lauren that she will be training some new waitresses and while there Lauren gets a call from her sister that her Dad is in the hospital.  She shuts down emotionally and Tate takes over, between him, Ned & Betty (Hotel owners and great friends) they do everything to get her home to her family in Indiana....get her showered, packed, and on a plane.  Tate stops everything going on in his life to go home with her and from there he confronts her ex-husband
"Then you shouldn't have thrown her away when she was your wife.  Now she ain't.  Now she's somethin' to me and I don't let men I don't like get close to her and I gotta tell you, man, I do not like you."
....Sigh....and here is where it begins...the sweet, wonderful, perfect, everything that is Tate!  They finally....FINALLY.... get on the same page and something beautiful begins.  Absolutely beautiful!  They talk about what happened while he was gone and Tate tells her how he went straight to her because she was all he could think about.  Then they talk about the things Wood told Lauren and after he tells her he knocks her socks off by telling her what he feels about her
"Two kinds of women get under your skin.  The ones who do damage, they don't feel good there but once you're fuckin' stupid enough to let them in you got no choice but to take the time it takes to work them out.. Then there are the ones who don't do damage, who feel good there, feed the muscle, the bone, the soul, not rip it or break it or burn it.  The ones you don't wanna work out."
Like I said...knocks her socks off....in his own Alpha-male way what he said was beautiful.

After she gets back to Carnal they start to get to know each other.  There are arguments, badass biker fights in living rooms, ex-girlfriends showing up in the middle of the night, half the town showing up to the bar to take Laurens back because of ex-girlfriends, ex-husbands showing up at work, a murderer on the loose, finding out about a 10 year old son, and lots and lots of sweet words.  Oh....a trip to the Mega Home Store and a conversation letting Lauren know the little things she's been doing to make Tate's house a home are welcomed but also letting her know when to draw a line
"Sheets are chick territory," he said without delay.  "You gotta use tools, that's dick territory."  "Oh," I whispered.  "Don't tread on dick territory," he advised.
LOL'd at this....I mean cracked up, what he says is so straight forward but so funny ;)!

Lauren ends up meeting Jonas, Tate's ten year old son, and is nervous as heck but Tate says that he is just like him and he will love her because she wants him too and because she's taking the time to bake him a cake and make him special dinners.  And he does, thinks she's a MILF...another hilarious conversation where I giggled non-stop. 

Drama picks up again starting the weekend she met Jonas...... Going for full custody of Jonas, Jonas' mother Neeta manhandling him, Neeta showing up drunk in the middle of the night.....again...., Sunny (another friend) going missing and found after being stabbed by the serial killer, having to talk to Sunny on behalf of the F.B.I. to get info on said killer, Neeta's posse confronting Lauren and watching Twyla (another friend) beat them all up, Serial killer striking again and getting Jonas' mother, funerals, meeting Tate's mom...who is a flighty bee-otch!, ex-best friends and ex-husbands showing up at Bubba's, and confessions of love.  It was a lot but then again their love shinning through and adding to it the love she had for Jonas and his love for her....it was beautiful.....it was sad, it was funny at times, there were a few "Are you kidding me?" moments....but still it was beautiful!

Then they get even more beautiful but I'm gonna let you see that beauty for yourself because it all brought tears to my eyes.  That is until Lauren is kidnapped by the serial killer who happens to be someone she knows.  It's crazy, it's intense but still it ends in happiness and this amazingly sweet book ends with Tate and Lauren's words they whisper to each other every night.....
"Sweet dreams, baby."  "You too, Captain."
I can't even put into words what this book did to me.....I mean seriously is it even possible that a man can be that perfect?  Not that Tate is exactly perfect in actions or words but my God, the man knows what to say and how to make his girl feel good physically and emotionally.

Sweet Dreams by Kristen Ashley is a book that I recommend to everyone...heck, I've already read it three times and not just a quick scan through either....., especially those who love a good alpha male that knows what he wants and gets it in his hot alpha male way ;)  I don't know how Kristen comes up with these amazing stories but I will say that I have yet to read a book of hers that I did not love and have not put on my reread list!  She is an amazing author with an even more amazing talent!  Not only are all and I mean ALL her characters perfectly built up but so are her secondary characters....everything about her books are awesome and everything I could possibly think to want in any book I read!  Seriously though....read it and you'll find yourself wishing for your very own Tate, even if it's just to whisper "Sweet dreams" in your ear every night!

Happy Reading!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Beautiful Disaster Review

Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire is a book that is sure to cure your bad boy cravings with so much college co-ed drama you'll feel like you're in the middle of an addictive soap opera.

The new Abby Abernathy is a good girl.  Abby believes she has enough distance between her and the darkness of her past, but when she arrives at college with her best friend America, her path to a new beginning is quickly challenged by Eastern University’s Walking One-Night Stand. Travis Maddox, lean, cut, and covered in tattoos, is exactly what Abby needs—and wants—to avoid. He spends his nights winning money in a floating fight ring, and his days as the charming college co-ed. Intrigued by Abby’s resistance to his charms, Travis tricks her into his daily life with a simple bet. If he loses, he must remain abstinent for a month. If Abby loses, she must live in Travis’ apartment for the same amount of time. Either way, Travis has no idea that he has met his match.

Abby is awesome!  She's had a rough life because of her parents but has decided to get a fresh start at college.  She's sweet, loyal, and doesn't fall for Travis' charms.  
"I didn't say you're a bad person.  I just don't like being a forgone conclusion for the sole reason of having a vagina."
Love it....especially being said to a male who does NOT have female friends...it was just priceless.  So anyway, Travis and Abby start to become friends and learning about each other.  Travis gets called for a fight and makes a bet with Abby that he won't let his component get even one hit if she stays with him for a month and if he does get hit he will abstain from sex for that month.  Of course, being the perfect bad boy he is, Travis wins and Abby ends up moving in to his apartment for the month.  She's afraid it's all a ploy to get in her pants but Travis continues to tell her that he likes her too much and that she's important to him
"Why on earth would you want me to stay with you, anyway?" I asked.  Travis shrugged, shoving his hands in his pockets.  "I don't know.  Everything's better when you're around."
So sweet....sigh....  So they begin their month of living together.  Abby starts to date one of Travis' frat brothers, Parker, and he does not take it well but tries to act nonchalant because he doesn't want to lose Abby all together.  A few rumors start and things end between Parker and Abby at least until her month is up with Travis and she's back in her dorm, or at least he thinks that's what will happen.  But lines start to blur between Travis and Abby and her last night at his apartment the line is totally crossed.

She's so confused about what to do about Travis because she thinks he is exactly what she doesn't need so she moves back into her dorm and Travis freaks out.  He thought things had changed and that they were going to be together but even thought she's determined to act like nothing happened between them he is just as determined to prove her wrong.
"I know we're fucked up,, all right?  I'm impulsive, and hot-tempered, and you get under my skin like no one else.  You act like you hate me one minute, and then you need me the next.  I never get anything right, and I don't deserve you...but I fucking love you, Abby.  I love  you more than I've loved anyone or anything, ever.  When you're around, I don't need booze, or money, or the fighting, or the one-night stands...all I need is you.  You're all I think about.  You're all I dream about.  You're all I want."
Uh.....wow...who wouldn't want to hear those words...Right?  I swear my eyes got that dreamy look in them just reading it!  Finally, they both get what they want and start dating and when they are together things are amazing for both of them.  Not only are they in love but their best friends as well.....it's sweet and adorable but one night in Vegas, after tending to a problem for her dad, everything goes down hill for Abby and Travis.  He thinks he's doing something good that will benefit both of them and Abby refuses to be with him if he chooses that path since she's been down that road before.  So things end and both of them are down right miserable....I was so pissed at Travis at this point in the book I wanted to smack him upside his head....a couple of times at that!

Even though they were broken up Abby still goes home with Travis for Thanksgiving since she told him she would and he was too scared to tell his Dad why they weren't together.  While there things start to change and Abby realizes she doesn't want to fight herself anymore and wants to get back together with Travis  especially after a talk she has with his Dad
 "I've never seen him smile the way he does when he's with you.  I hope all my boys have an Abby one day."

Instead of asking for her back he finally gives her the out she's been wanting.  He wants to keep her in his life and is afraid if he doesn't let her go he'll lose her friendship.

Abby is absolutely miserable and it seems that Travis is back to his old self or at least not showing how upset he is over not being with her anymore.  She ends up going to the Valentine's Dance at Travis' frat house with one of her friends and after a night of both of them drinking and not exactly getting along, Travis has finally had enough.  He throws her over his shoulder, all cave man style...eeek!, takes her to his apartment and makes her sleep it off so they can talk about their problems and get back what they had
 "I knew the second I met you that there was something about you I needed.  Turns out it wasn't something about you at all.  It was just you."
Back to sweet and adorable..... Abby and Travis get an absolutely beautiful happily ever after, although it's still full of drama but then again they are still in college.  All I can say is it was an addictive book, like a car wreck that you couldn't look away from...you  just had to know what was going to happen next to Travis and Abby.  Travis is like the ultimate bad boy...you know the super hot one that every girl would love to tame but really there will only be one girl that will ever get that pleasure?  Yeah....that's Travis and let me tell you it's so much fun to read ;)

Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire is a definite must read!  It kept me up past my bedtime because I just couldn't put it down.  They had me in knots the entire story cheering for them to get together, make up, and find peace together.  Check it out, seriously, you'll love it! 

Happy Reading!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Play It Safe Review

Play It Safe by Kristen Ashley was fan-freaking-tastic!!!  I can not even begin to explain how much I love Kristen's books!  So far they've all been awesome.  I have started to wonder about my sanity though because it seems when it comes to the power of Kristen's creativity and writing style I end up completely consumed by these characters and I fall in love with the book.

Book description
No connections. Play it safe. These were the rules Ivey lived her life by. Until she hit Mustang, Colorado, a perfectly imperfect town where the citizens were welcoming and one of them included the tall, beautiful, macho man rancher cowboy, Grayson Cody. On the run for a decade, Ivey knew she was supposed to play it safe. But she was tired of being on the run. She wanted a normal. She wanted real. She wanted a home. And she wanted Grayson Cody. And Grayson Cody wanted Ivey. No one who looked at them couldn’t see they belonged together. There was one man in this world for Ivey and one woman in this world for Grayson Cody. So they fell in love. But just as quickly as they fell together, they were betrayed and torn apart. Separated for years, Ivey was certain her life would not include her rancher cowboy. Until the town of Mustang reached out to her when Gray was in trouble. Even though she thought he broke her heart, she charged in to help. Then Gray and Ivey discovered they were betrayed and, not only that, Gray had an enemy who would stop at nothing to defeat him

I'm going to try something a little different here....normally when I write a review it's on a book I have either read more than once or I've done a quick speed read through the parts I want to concentrate on in my review.  This one I did not.  I just finished it and wrote what was fresh on my mind and just a little warning.... my mind is running on total fumes because I may or may not have been up a little...ummm okay a lot... past my bed time reading and not able to put my kindle down even though my eyes were burning ;)

Ivey Bailey is a twenty two year old woman who has been on the road (living out of hotels) with her brother, Casey, for the past 10 years.  Casey did what he had to do to protect and provide for his sister and even though he loved her he never provided any kind of a life for her.  Ivey had only wanted two things....a home and a family!  I liked Ivey...I mean really liked her!  She was sweet, she's beautiful but doesn't know it, she's caring, and after being on the run she is still innocent.  

So her and Casey end up in Mustang and after only days there she runs into trouble from the local rich boy who's used to getting whatever he wants.  That's when Gray steps in, helps her out, and ends up taking her home with him so he knows she's safe.  Ivey plans on hightailing it out of Mustang the next morning but Casey has found love and decides he wants to stay...so because, like always, Ivey gives in and they stay
"Glad his shit kept you in town dollface."  he whispered.  I nodded again.  I was glad too.  Very glad.
Ivey and Gray start dating and Ivey falls in love fast and hard with Gray!  She's also planting some roots and has fallen in love with Mustang and everything she has created for herself as her new life.  She got a job as a waitress and she is elated to know that she has cash and it's cash that she earned and earned the good old fashion way.  After yet another fallout with her brother....this time public....Gray lets her know what she's doing for herself is good, that she's on the right path, and ends up confessing his feelings while at it
"You still fallin' in love with me?  I stared, my cheeks now getting warm and opened my mouth to answer affirmative when he went on.  "Cause you should , baby, I'm already gone for you."

Just as Ivey is realizing she is exactly where she wants to be and has planted her roots in Mustang and loves them there, tragedy strikes in the form of Casey.  He's been badly beaten and gets her back on the road with him for three months before she returns to Mustang, just like she said in her note she left to Gray.  But, to her, it seems that he's moved on, so she moves right through town and straight to Vegas and into a job as a showgirl.

Here is where we meet two fabulous men who would do anything for Ivey... Lash, her fake-gay-boyfriend/B.F.F and Freddie (Brutus...Ivey's nickname for him lol) her bodyguard and friend.....Oh how I loved Lash, I wish I had my very own Lash!

After getting a call, 7 years later, she finds out that Gray is in major trouble so without taking anytime to sit and think about what she's doing she heads off to Mustang, with Lash and Freddie following, to help him out.

Gray finds out what Ivey has done and follows her to her hotel room to confront her.  He's pissed and not just because she showed up to bail him out of trouble but because she just took off on him....he never got the note she left for him 7 years ago.  They have a few words and quickly discover they'd been torn apart.
"That isn't true," I said quietly.  "I packed in a hurry.  I left clothes behind.  Books.  Shoes.  I told you I'd be back."  "There was no note, Ivey.  There was nothing left of you at all."
 When Gray gets a little push from Lash and Freddie, after he finds out the entire truth about Ivey's past and how she still feels about him, he makes his feelings known and they find themselves back together where they should have been for the past 7 years.
And when I made it the two steps to him, I was right.  Right where I wanted to be, right where I belonged.  Held tight against the long, lean frame of Grayson Cody

Ivey ends up back home in Mustang.  She's so nervous that the town won't accept her back because even when she tried to make those connections back when she had first left with Casey they had all turned their backs on her.  But now, knowing the truth about what happened to Gray and Ivey, what Ivey did for Gray and in turn what that did for the town, they welcome her with a standing ovation, hugs, and lots of "Welcome Home".

Trouble wasn't over for Gray and Ivey.  Whoever had ripped them apart was determined to continue to mess with them.  So they dealt with it as best they could.  They knew who was responsible for ripping them apart and they knew that same person was responsible for the trouble that had been caused but there was no real proof so he remained free to do as he pleased.

But this didn't stop Gray and Ivey from continuing on with the happiness they once again found and were determined not to lose again.  That happiness was special and even though they lost the 7 years they should have had together, they made sure to cherish each moment they now had
Then it hit me I was in a swing when I first met Gray.  And now we were in a swing together on the porch on his house on his land.  Him and me
Play It Safe by Kristen Ashley is one of those books that pulls you in so tight you can't help but feel for the characters and what they're going through.  You feel their happiness, their heartbreak, the relief of finding their way back, and their sadness at the different losses they had to face.  I fell in love with this book and I mean to the point where it wasn't just Gray who had me in knots, it was their entire story, it was the secondary characters, and it was Ivey and the tragic life she led only to find what she had always truly wanted.  No worries though Gray had that whole perfect alpha male that had me drooling and craving more but of course he would because he's one of Kristen's men and if I've learned anything from her books it's that Kristen Ashley KNOWS how to write a man....a perfect man!!!!

Definitely check this book out.  It's already on my reread list and if this tells you anything I'm still thinking about Gray and Ivey and wondering if maybe I should just pick up their story and read it again.....crazy I know I just finished it.....but it really was THAT good!

Happy Reading!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Catch Me If You Can (New Orleans Trilogy #1) Review

Catch Me If You Can by Nina Bruhns was a sweet romantic read with a bit of suspense and a sweet cajun man. 

Simon "Beau" Beaulieux oozed sensuality -- from his bedroom eyes to his broad shoulders to his lilting Louisiana drawl. Kit Colfax knew the parish sheriff always got what he wanted, but to protect her future she couldn't let him have his way... or her. Kit sought to put Beau's thieving cousin behind bars. Beau sought to stop her. And painful experience had taught Kit how powerful men operated... and manipulated. Well, not this lady. Not this time. Sure, Beau made her FEEL as she never had before. Made her WANT to trust him as he so unwaveringly trusted in his cousin's innocence. But was that a lover talking, or a deceiver bent on saving his family... whoever paid the price?

Kit wasn't my most favorite heroine but I still liked her.  She was determined to save her job by getting her man, Remi, behind bars and getting the stolen jewelry of the clients her company insured.  Thinking she was playing Remi at a private poker table in Vegas, she lost not only her necklace but her dress as well.  She knew he was bad news but she couldn't help the feelings he brought up in her.
Again his lip curled in that roguish smile and her temperature kicked up about ten degrees.  Man, oh, man, it should be illegal to look that sexy.
She convinces him to let her win the dress back only he has other things in mind but he gives in with the promise she can try to win it back in the morning.  So she leaves without the necklace or the dress thinking she's got her man right where she wants him only to find out she didn't have the right man.

Beau was trying to find his cousin to get back his Grandmothers jewelry he had stolen before anyone in the family found out.  He was posing as Remi to try and draw him out when he met Kit.  He had a potent reaction to her and knew with out a doubt that he wanted her like he's never wanted any woman
An immediate, primal recognition coursed through him.  Incredibly, in the few minutes he'd stood close to her, her unique smell had imprinted itself on his brain.

Both Beau and Kit are a little leery of each other and the relationship they both had or wanted with Remi.  It certainly didn't stop the undeniable chemistry between them....all I can say is Beau even had me breathing a little faster while I read about him "kiss a woman without touching her"....and you'll have to read it to find out if he actually does "touch" her anywhere including her lips ;).

Beau takes off for San Diego after getting word that's where he was but makes sure to leave an obvious trail so Kit can follow him.  He was still struggling with his desire for her and didn't know how he should greet her once she arrived at his hotel in San Diego...a kiss or handcuffs?  He also made sure to call his Deputy back home to run a back round check on her
He wanted to know everything about his delicious, dangerous kitten before she showed up at his hotel door.
Of course she follows him and they work out a deal to search for Remi together while fighting their feelings and thoughts for each other.  It was cute how they both fought their attraction for each other stopping mid-thought to question their own thoughts of falling in love with the other.  

After baiting Remi, Beau and Kit find themselves unable to deny their passion any more.  Both of them becoming aware of their feelings for the other.  Kit had learned the hard way not to fall for powerful men and tried so hard to deny her feelings for Beau, knowing what would come once she gave in to them and not willing to give up any part of her life.  Beau knew he wanted Kit like nothing he'd ever wanted before in his life and planned to figure out a way to get him back to Louisiana in his house with him but knew he'd have to tread carefully
"I won't ever hurt you.  I swear,"  he vowed softly, placing gentle kisses on her eyes.  When they opened, they were shiny with tears.  A wave of incredible protectiveness washed through him.
Unfortunately when Kit baited Remi, she did too good of a job.  He had somehow gotten into their room and stolen the necklace that Beau had won in their hand of poker.  Beau and Kit find out that Remi was headed south to see family and after Kit is shot at Beau finds a way to get her in his home.

Going on with the search for Remi while staying in Beau's home and tagging along with him on his daily errands she continues to fight what they could have.  They haven't so much as kissed since San Diego because Beau promised to be a gentleman after she let him know with a finality in her tone that once Remi was caught she was headed back to New Orleans.  Her thoughts are constantly battling between what she thinks she wants and what is real
She felt comfortable with him.  She didn't have to pretend she was something she wasn't.  When was the last time that had happened with a man?  Never.
Beau knew he was in love with Kit and knew that touching her was only going to make things worse so he told himself and eventually her, after she made a play for a repeat of what happened in San Diego knowing she was leaving the next day, that if she couldn't give him more than one night he couldn't do it at all.  But eventually they end up exploring what could be between them.  Only both of them have different ideas of continuing the relationship....Beau wants her to move to his home and be his wife (even asks her) and Kit wants to go back to New Orleans and spend weekends possibly more with Beau.  Kit tells him she needs time to make that big of a decision to rearrange her life and Beau takes it as a brush off and questions himself if he loves her enough to let her go.

After getting a mysterious letter Beau takes off in the bayou and Kit follows.  She's thinking he's going to betray her and go warn Remi so she loses her job and accepts his proposal.  She follows him to a shack and finds him on the floor with gunshot wounds and Remi kneeling over him.  Remi tries to help him while waiting on the paramedics and helicopter.  She's terrified something will happen and she'll never get the chance to tell Beau how she feels
"Please don't die.  I love you so much," she whispered.  "I'll leave my job, anything you want.  Just live, damn you."
 Once released from the hospital and able to get up and move around, Beau goes in search of Kit with the intentions of begging for her forgiveness but she's quit her job and abandoned her condo in New Orleans.... don't worry though, he tracks her down to her home town and let's her know exactly what he wants
He cradled her cheek in his hand and gazed at her lovingly.  "Anywhere you say, chere.  Just tell me and I'll be there.  I need you in my life and I'm willing to go anywhere you want to be."
Her dream come true!  She realizes how much he truly loves her if he's willing to give up his family, job, and home to move where ever it is she wants to live.
She hugged him close and held on for dear life.  "I love you so much.  And there's nowhere else on earth I'd rather live than Terrebeau."
Their happily ever after was sweet.  Kit gets what she wants just by knowing the man she's fallen for would do anything to make her happy and loves her enough to give up his life and Beau gets his dream by having Kit as the Lady of Terrebeau, his family's plantation.

Catch Me If You Can was a sweet romantic story.  Normally I like for a book to completely consume me to the point where I feel like I'm a part of everything happening but this book didn't.  But I did still enjoy watching Beau and Kit fight their feelings until finally giving in to the love they both felt.  I'm still undecided if I would want to reread this story right now or not....I'm sure I'll make up my mind once I'm in the mood for a sweet as candy love story though ;)  If you're into hot cajun men who have that sexy southern drawl and speak sweet nothings in french then I would recommend checking out this book....it's why I read it, I have a thing for cajun french, there is something out it that's a major turn on ;).

Happy Reading!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

A Lot Like Love (F.B.I. #2) Review

A Lot Like Love by Julie James is the second book in the F.B.I. series and by far has so much sarcastic humor that it's difficult not to have any LOL moments!

As the daughter of a billionaire and the owner of the city's top wine store, Jordan Rhodes is invited to the most exclusive parties in Chicago. But there's only one party the FBI wants to crash: the charity fundraiser of a famous restaurateur, who also happens to launder money for the mob. In exchange for her brother's release from prison, Jordan is going to be there—with a date supplied by the Bureau. As the top undercover agent in Chicago, Nick McCall has one rule: never get personal. This "date" with Jordan Rhodes is merely an assignment— one they're both determined to pull off even if they can't be together for five minutes before the sarcasm and sparks begin to fly. But when Nick's investigation is compromised, he and Jordan have no choice but to pretend they're a couple, and what starts out as a simple assignment begins to feel a lot like something more

I don't even know where to begin with this one because it was just....THAT GOOD!!  Jordan is awesome, she has one heck of a sarcastic, sassy mouth on her that had me laughing so hard my kids looked at me like I had a screw loose!  Her relationship with her brother, Kyle who was in prison for....LOL....hacking into twitter and shutting it down for two days, is too funny (kind of reminds me of how I interact with my brother, hmmm....Terry, I now have some awesome material should you ever find yourself incarcerated so consider yourself warned!).  Anyway, it's so obvious they love and adore each other but the sarcastic wit they throw at each other is quite comical!  

"I'm hardly perfect.  I'm just a lot better at not getting caught than you."  She took in their surroundings.  "Maybe I should've given you a few pointers."  Kyle nodded approvingly.  "Nice one."  "I have months and months worth of this material" Jordan said.

So Jordan loves her brother right?  I mean like A Lot!  The F.B.I. need more evidence to make this arrest  so Jordan is visited by two agents during a blizzard and carted down to their office to discuss her brother.  She ends up agreeing to help them out to get her brother out of prison. 

Nick had me in knots...he has this rugged sex appeal and he's just as quick witted as Jordan....Total match made in heaven ;).  Anyway, he was asked by his boss to assist on the case involving Jordan as more of a favor because of his undercover expertise.  He's simply supposed to be there more for advice purposes than anything and is told he would be finished in time to head home to New York for his Mom's birthday.  Unfortunately things don't go as planned and he ends up as Jordan's date the night of the party.

Here's where Nick and Jordan's 'relationship' starts to get interesting.....

He finds her sassy and beautiful and has to check himself on more than occasion because she simply "isn't his type".  She finds him annoying 95% of the time and has to bite her tongue on more than one occasion to keep from getting into a sarcasm smack down with him.
"Tell me something.  Are you trying to get a rise out of me, or does being this irritating come naturally to you?"  Nick's eyes flickered over her with amusement.  "I suppose I may be trying to annoy you a little."
So....Nick ends up as Jordan's date because the agent who was supposed to go with her got the stomach flu the day of the event.  They start off as totally fake but it's undeniable there is some chemistry between the two even as they discuss their "cover story"
"Our cover story is that my character has been smitten from the moment he met you.  He's not about to let another man get anywhere  near you."  "Your character sounds a little possessive.  Is this something my character should be worried about?"
They go to the event and Jordan gives Nick a quick lesson on wine tasting.  It's quite amusing how simply talking about wine and the steps of a wine tasting can sound so.....dirty ;)....It's even more amusing to see how intrigued Nick becomes while listening to Jordan talk about it
"Fine by me.  I'm as eager as the next guy to get to spit or swallow."
Nick gets his job done that night and Jordan is relieved she was able to pull off her part of the deal.  Now that she is finished with assisting the F.B.I. she's ready to move on to the part where her brother gets released from prison!  Too bad for her, the bad guy has this psychotic illusion Jordan is meant for him and is quite upset that she showed up to his even with another man when he planned on impressing her with his wine selection that was made just for her.  So the bad guy hires a P.I. to follow Nick to find out more about him and his relationship with Jordan.  Which means Nick and Jordan get to continue their fake relationship and the release of Kyle isn't going to happen as planned.  Jordan is none to pleased about this turn of events but plays along because she really wants to see her brother out of prison.  Funny thing is....now she is playing a bigger part in the operation and is starting to enjoy all the secret agent stuff
"Are you sure I don't need a code word or something?"  Jordan asked.  "Maybe we should have one just in case."
So they go about their ways throughout the week.  Jordan seems to be unlucky when it comes to this case working in her favor.  She has to keep what's going on from her brother and because the paper announced that she was at the Valentines Day event with "Mr. Tall, Dark, and Smoldering" she now has to lie to her friends and family about her relationship with Nick.

Things start to pick up between Nick and Jordan and they both start to question what they're feeling because this is a fake relationship after all.  After a nice evening alone together on what could be considered an "almost" date where an "almost" kiss happened at Jordan's doorstep, one of Nick's lovers shows up at Jordan's store to question her relationship with Nick.  After she leaves Jordan calls to tell Nick about it and they get into a little bit of a tiff about it because he feels the need to explain but she tells him she doesn't need any explanations.  Nick decided to go talk to her only to find her having a glass of wine with a man at her store.
Something inside Nick snapped.  That was his fake girlfriend in there.  Sitting at the table where they had just shared cheese friends the night before.  And if she thought she could throw scorching hot sex-looks to any pansy-ass scarf-boy who wandered into her shop, she has another thing coming.
Things changed.... their "fake" kinda became real....for both of them.  Nick was doing things he'd never even thought to do for another woman and Jordan was discovering there was more to Nick than she thought.  So they have a chat and Nick tells her she isn't going to get the same speech he has used with all the women before her so Jordan invites Nick to Napa Valley.

They have an amazing weekend in Napa together.....a HOT, amazing weekend ;).  Nick knows it's time to make a decision about what should happen as far as him and Jordan are concerned but he's realizing that his usual MO wasn't what he was wanting and started considering career changes but decided it was up to Jordan to make the next move. 
Jordan thought, because of his past situations it was up to Nick to make the next move and she gave him lots of opportunities but because their communication on this subject sucked they ended up parting ways with a  
"this was an incredible weekend but....."
Both are unhappy with this decision and after thinking about it for a while Jordan decides to call Nick to talk about what was going on between them.  He's convinced it's not meant to be and doesn't pick up but the tightness in his chest doesn't let up even after he should have been "over" her

And here's what freaked him out most:  if he was one of those sensitive, introspective types, he would say that the feelings he had for Jordan sure seemed a lot like love and he, Nick McCall, didn't do love.
So Jordan gets held at gun point by the bad guy and Nick comes to her rescue and it all gets all happy and cute after that
"You came into my life and messed the whole thing up and now I'm screwed.  Because I'm in love with you.  As in balls-out, head-over-heels, watching- Dancing with the Stars on Monday nights, wine-and-bubble-bath kind of love.  Hell, I think I'd even wear a scarf indoors for you."
 See....happy and cute!  Kyle confronts Jordan about her involvement of him getting out of prison and then confronts her about Nick and tries to tell her what to do about "Mr. Tall, Dark, and Sarcastic" so she lets him know she thinks Nick is a keeper.  But it's even pretty obvious to Kyle that Jordan and Nick are meant for each other... after all his first reaction to Nick is to note that he's just as sarcastic as Jordan!

A Lot Like Love was an absolute delight!  I enjoyed every bit of this book and recommend that you read it too!  Julie James has marvelous knack for sarcastic humor and had me laughing just about every chapter!  It's already found it's way onto my reread list and will remain there even if just for the sarcasm alone....but really the entire story was great.....the romance, while funny, was still sweet and had me cheering for a happily ever after!  Check it out, you won't be disappointed you did!

Happy Reading!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Rock Chick (Rock Chick #1) Review

Rock Chick by Kristen Ashley was one awesome read!  Yet another hit with yet another one of Kristen's super hot men!

Indy Savage, cop's daughter, rock chick and used bookstore owner, has been in love with Lee Nightingale, once bad boy, now the man behind Nightingale Investigations, since she was five years old. No matter what ingenious schemes Indy used to capture his attention, Lee never showed an interest and Indy finally gave up. Now Indy's employee, Rosie, has lost a bag of diamonds and bad guys are shooting at him. When Indy gets involved, Lee is forced to help. Complicating matters, Lee has decided he's interested, Indy's decided she's not. But she can't seem to keep Lee out of her life when she's repeatedly stun gunned, kidnapped and there are car bombs exploding (not to mention she's finding dead bodies).  Indy's best bet is to solve the mystery of the diamonds before Lee. Lee's challenge is to keep Indy alive and, at the same time, win back her heart.

Indy was awesome, I absolutely loved her!  She had this long lasting childhood crush on her best friends, Ally, brother... Lee.  She threw herself at him year after year until at age 20 he told her he thought of her as a sister.  After that....it was avoid Lee at all costs!  

So, Indy's employee, Rosie, is in a bad situation and has something that belongs to some bad guys.  Those bad guys come to talk to him about it and Indy, being the mouthy smart ass she is, mouths off and the bad guys shoot at her and Rosie.  She ends up at Lee's condo when he is supposed to be in DC.  Unfortunately for Indy he comes home in the middle of the night, pulls her out of bed, and ends up letting her know that because of his bad-ass profession he is going to "take care" of the Rosie situation
"It's not Rosie who's gonna pay."  My head did an involuntary little jerk when I understood what he meant.  "I don't have that kind of money."  You aren't gonna pay me in cash."
Ummmm.....YOWZA!!!!  Indy tries to figure out what it is that he is wanting, even though it's quite obvious that she is just in total denial!  Instead of telling her he decides to show her after she tells him her only stipulation is no cleaning his bathroom and he plants a hot one on her.  Of course because of what Lee had said to Indy 10 years prior she's still having a bit of a problem processing this and decides to question him on it and when he tells her he lied she still tries to dodge the situation because she isn't sure if she wants the "heartbreak" that will no doubt come with Lee.
Indy had been in love with Lee for so long and had tried to get his attention for like...ever.... Once her friends found out, which took like hours, she was getting calls and friends stopping by to "congratulate" her.  Funny thing is all they seem to be interested in learning is if they did it yet....LOL!  Indy lets them all know they are taking it "slow" and their reactions are all kind of the same
"That isn't possible.  Slow isn't possible.  Lee Nightingale doesn't move slow.  One second he's looking at you, the next second he's walking away and he has the little satin bow from your panties as a souvenir."
HA!  So.... Lee was a bit of a man-slut!

Lee ends up doing his thing and calls the bad guys.  Tells them that Indy is his and to back off.  Only bad guys must be stupid and they don't listen.  Indy ends up getting kidnapped by a bad guy....a very icky...creepy....bad guy who takes a bit of a liking to her.  After getting rescued by Lee and going out for sushi with the family, she does a little B & E with Tex (who she met while trying to "work" the Rosie thing) where Lee finds her and isn't too happy.  They end up having a bit of a disagreement about it and Indy ends up cuffed to the bed so she "doesn't do anything stupid".....not my idea of why I'd want to be cuffed to Lee's bed!....and she is mad and plans on holding a mean grudge.  Only problem is Lee is there to comfort Indy when the reality of what's going on hits her. 

So things start to get a little heated between them....heated in a good way but Indy decides she wants to talk about what is happening between the two of them and lets her fears of them not working out and how it will ruin everything for everyone be known.  Lee wants Indy to know that she means something to him....that them together means something to him and he wants them to work out
"Honey, it occurs to me from what you asked me earlier that you have the wrong impression about me.  Today, I'm gonna show you who I am.  Tonight, I'm gonna tell you what I want.  Tomorrow, you can make up your mind."
Wow he is no doubt a straight shooter!!!  

Moving on.....Rosie shows up to Indy's house waving a gun and demanding the diamonds.  She doesn't know where they are so he takes off.  Then Lee and Indy go to her Dad's (Who is a cop) house for a BBQ.....where they get into a fight and Lee decides to take a drive to cool off.  While he is on that drive Indy get kidnapped....again!   No worries though....they make up!  But Indy is still freaking out because she thinks he's good at "this relationship stuff".  Lee being the man obviously made for Indy reads her like a book
"What we have here is good and if you'd get over your thoughts that it isn't gonna last, you'd realize how much better it's gonna get if you'd just relax."
 They finally get around to.....ummmm....ya know.....doing it..... and then Lee goes on to tell Indy how he knows that she's loved him since she was 5 when he held her hand at her mothers funeral (which is true and he knows because he read her diary.....bad boy needs a spankin' and I volunteer!!!!).  So he goes on to tell her that all those years he had intended to have her and considered her his but had to get himself together before they could get together.  Tells her that he not only wants her but she also fits into his life perfectly in more ways than one
"No.  I'm sayin' I used to laugh all the time because I was with you.  You're crazy, you're funny.  It's one of the things I love about you."

.......Sigh....... He goes on to tell her what he loves about her in a typical male way, when he knew he loved her, which was pretty sweet, and also his intentions
"You and me, we aren't practice for the real thing.  It isn't that too much is at stake with family and friends, it's because I love you."
After getting numerous gifts from creepy...icky...bad guy, shot at during a drag queen charity show, high speed car chase, car bombings, cat fights during Girls Night Out with ex-girlfriends, doing a ride along with Lee, finding a fascination with stun guns, and finally another kidnapping.....all the bad guys are caught or "disappeared" and Lee and Indy are finally able to have their happily ever after
"I'm not going anywhere.  I'm right where I've always wanted to be."  His mouth moved to mine and he said, "It's about fucking time."

Rock Chick by Kristen Ashley was a definite 5 star read for me!  It was like Christmas morning at age 6 all over again!  There is no doubt that this book will be on my reread list....yes, just like the rest of Kristen's books!  She knows how to write exactly what I like to read :)

I'm all over Eddie's story next, Rock Chick Rescue!  It won't be up until next month because that is February's read for my book club on Facebook.... Romance With A Side of Smut (Look us up!) 

Hope you take the chance and check out Rock Chick it will be worth your while especially if you enjoy those super hot alpha males who know what they want and are not afraid to go for it and awesome women who it seems every girl can somehow relate to! Here is a parting quote I have to share about Girls Night Out.....
"It's Girls Night Out.  We talk about needing to lose weight while we drink and eat a lot.  We talk about how all men are scum and lazy and useless.  Last, we gossip about people pretending we're trying to be thoughtful and caring as we rip their lives to shreds.  Then we hug and go home."
So true......Love it!!!!

Happy Reading!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Thoughtless (#1) Review

Thoughtless by S.C. Stephens was...well...I don't even know how to describe what it was, I'm actually speechless (for once) because to me the story was That Good!  Fair warning...this will be a long one and you'll understand why once you read the book ;)

Kiera Allen  followed her boyfriend Denny, who was the love of her life, to Seattle for a new job.  She was happy and in love.  Denny's dream job unexpectedly took him to Arizona  for weeks and feeling lonely and confused by Denny's lack of attention she turned to her room mate and local rock star Kellan Kyle.  They have a sweet friendship and Kellan takes to looking after Kiera until things change after one night.

Kiera, a young college student reminded me so much of a typical girl who is not entirely sure of herself.  She was sweet, caring, and loving.  She was so in love with her boyfriend, Denny, that being away from him wasn't in her plans so she followed him to Seattle where he was starting as an intern for his "dream job"
"I know what you gave up for me by coming here - your family, your home.  I'm not blind, I know you miss it.  I just want to make sure that this is worth it for you?"  I placed my hand gently on his cheek "Don't.  Don't ever question that.  Of course I miss my family, miss them terribly.  But you are worth it, you're worth anything.  I love you.  I want to be where you are."
Kiera and Denny had a little time to settle into their new life in Seattle until he comes into the bar one day to tell Kiera about heading to Arizona for "a couple of months" to set up a new location for work.  Kiera's not happy about it but understands that he has no choice and has to do it.  So off he goes....

There love for each other was sweet and Denny...well...he was amazing!  BUT...he didn't do it for me because the relationship just seemed too easy, he was almost too sweet and understanding there didn't seem to be any passion between the two of them which I guess is why it's a good thing Kellan Kyle comes along ;)...ummm.... but of course bad for Denny

Kellan took to Kiera almost immediately and helped keep her busy and taken care of while Denny way gone.  He was a great friend and so sweet to Kiera by taking her places, making her laugh, or just hanging out with her so she wasn't alone.  Their friendship was very innocent until a day spent together where it was still innocent but yet intimate
"Don't be.  I'd rather hold a beautiful girl than be all bruised tomorrow." 

Kellan and Kiera had a special relationship.  They grew closer as did their affections towards each other like holding hands or cuddles on the couch.  I may not view it as completely innocent but for the most part it was until one night Denny drops a big one on Kiera and she tells him they're over.  That was when everything between Kellan and Kiera changed and let's just say ....ummm....WOW can I trade places with Kiera!?
"You want to talk about it?"  I paused. "No"  He glanced over at the empty wine bottle on the counter and up again, at the glass I was just finishing.  "You want some tequila?"
 As much as I'd love to share more of that scene I can't it's just too good to give away.

So things change over the course of a couple of weeks.....Denny comes back to Seattle and Kellan starts acting cold towards Kiera and even a little gun shy around Denny (which is understandable considering did kind of betray a guy he totally cares about).  But towards Kiera he is pretty cruel
"Denny leave you again?  I could find you another drinking buddy if you're...lonely?"  he asked wryly before grinning devilishly.  "Maybe Griffin this time?"

Low blow I know but he had his reasons and you'll eventually find them out.  Anyway....after this Kiera tells Kellan he was the biggest mistake of her life and wishes he would go.  So.....he decides he is done, can't do it anymore and decides to leave Seattle
"I'm sorry, I'm sorry I've been cold, but I can't stay, Kiera.  I can't watch it anymore.  I need to leave..."  his voice trailed off in a whisper.

Now I'm not much of a coffee drinker...well not at all but let's just say after this I have a new appreciation for it ;)

So Kellan sticks around because he was "very convincingly persuaded" to stay.  Kiera knows she wants him in her life, he clearly wants any part of her he can get, whatever that may be so they start back with their little "friendship"

I got so frustrated with Kiera and yes even Kellan a few times but mostly Kiera because she was just....ugh I can't even say it without spoiling it.... Anyway I wanted to smack her upside the head, shake her, yell at her, and a bunch of other things to get her to wake up already!!!  Some things happen between Kellan and Kiera and they decide their "friendship" can be no more, well she told him numerous times before, but now he agrees lol...Men!  Anyway, KellanVERY heated fight in the middle of Pete's they're both drug in the back by Jenny to sort their problems.  A lot comes out as in A LOT!
"God, I love you, I need you.  Forgive me...stay with me.  Say you need me too...say you want me too.  Please...be mine."  He instantly stopped kissing me and froze, staring at me terrified again, like he finally just realized exactly what he had been saying.

So we learn that Kellan is in love, we find out for how long too (but you're going to have to read it to find out and trust me, you'll smile).  We also find out why Kellan is the way he is and let me warn you it's heartbreaking but it makes you understand why he's that way, not that it's right, but you still get it.  So they end up professing their love for each other but Kiera still has yet to make me happy with what she is actually doing to Denny (her boyfriend) and Kellan.
"I want to be with you the right way - in the open.  I want to walk into Pete's with you on my arm.  I want to kiss you every time I see you, no matter who's looking.  I want to make love to you without fear of someone finding out.  I want to fall asleep with you in my arms every night.  I don't want to feel guilty about something that makes me feel so...whole.  I'm sorry, Kiera, but I'm asking you to choose."
Can't say I don't blame Kellan at this point, he's poured his heart out and even heard her return the sentiment and yet he still feels as though he isn't good enough for her to be with him completely. (poor guy, if I was available you could call me Kiera - ummm...did I just say that out loud?)  So anyway, he tries leaving...yes again, and Kiera tries talking him into "more time" (which is just a joke now, the girl has known for a while now that she doesn't want to be with Denny in that way but she's too scared to commit to that choice)...yes again.  He doesn't fall for it, actually begs her not to ask him because he'll do what she asks.  In the middle of their heartbreaking goodbye Denny (Who was supposed to have been called into work) catches them in the middle of a passionate kiss.  What happens next is sad, especially for Kellan...not that sad but still sad!

FINALLY...finally, Denny finds out what has been going on under his nose...not that he didn't suspect it.  He breaks it off with Kiera and sweetly gives her the unanswered question of why she couldn't leave him and why that seemed to hurt him more
"I think in the end, you would have stayed with me, out of obligation...or maybe comfort.  Maybe I was safe to you, and you needed to feel that."  He rubbed my cheek again.  "I know how scared you get of the unknown.  To you...I must be kind of a security blanket."

Wow...totally what I figured out almost immediately after seeing the fire and passion between Kiera and Kellan.  Anyway, Denny moves back home to Australia.

Kellan ends up asking Kiera to move out.  He's hurt and needs space, he even asks "for a minute".  Kiera's sister Anna decided to move to Seattle and she gets an apartment for her and Kiera.  Months go by where Kiera is just existing...she's going to school, she's going to work but that's it.  Kellan isn't in her life anymore and she can't seem to get him off her mind, it's like she doesn't even want to.  Anna finally has enough and drags Kiera out of the apartment to "Show her something she needs to see".

Kiera and Kellan end up seeing each other and after what Anna wanted Kiera to see so badly (apparently Kellan had just been existing too).  They talk, finally talk...she doesn't feel the nerves and realizes she knows what she is telling him is from the bottom of her heart
"No.  I just...I just want you.  We're meant to be, Kellan.  We need each other."


Thoughtless by S.C. Stephens is must read, I personally like the next book Effortless better but in order to understand everything you have to read Thoughless first.  I'm not a fan of how Kellan and Kiera started off but yet even I can't deny they were meant to be...that fire and passion...is like an addiction to watch it all unfold.  These Characters will pull you in so deep that you'll find yourself questioning if you're a part of their actual story or what.  I normally do not emotionally...yes emotionally...connect with Characters like I did with Kiera and Kellan.  My feelings for these characters are boarder line sick...I mean I'm a fan of a fictional characters fan page on facebook because I can't get enough of him lol.

Anyway, definitely pick up Thoughtless you won't be disappointed!

Happy Reading!