Monthly Archives: April 2015

Review: The Werewolf Wears Prada by Kristin Miller

The Werewolf Wears Prada by Kristin MillerIn case you weren’t aware, I totally am in lust with werewolves. Teen Wolves is one of my favorite shows. I also really like the tv show, Bitten. Hot werewolves just do it for me I guess. So, when I saw that The Werewolf Wears Prada was available for review, I thought I would give it a try. I haven’t read too many shapeshifter romances in a long time, outside of Nalini Singh’s Psy/Changeling books.

Hayden Dean is a high profile public figure with a bad reputation. He’s seen as a careless, ruthless playboy who has no intention of settling down. Melina gets the chance to fix his image and if, successful, she may just land her dream job. Unfortunately, Melina has had a bad experience with Hayden a year ago. He stood her up on a date and she has never really forgiven him. But this opportunity is bigger than any attraction to a guy. Melina wants to write high profile fashion articles and this is her chance.

Hayden can’t be around Melina. As a werewolf, her scent is intoxicating. Unfortunately, she needs to be following his every move for the article about him and it is getting harder to resist her. He is in a precarious position in the pack unfortunately. His father’s recent death has left a vacancy and though Hayden is expected to step in as Alpha, he is not getting support. Add to that the recent murder of wolves who were bitten and not born that way is causing quite a problem. Hayden has no time to fall in love.

This book took me a bit of time to get into. I was not quite on board with Hayden and his past. There just did not seem to be any real initial motivation as to why Hayden was a playboy. I can understand wanting to not settle down, that is a common romance trope, but Hayden came off as rather shallow and one dimensional.  I liked Melina from the get-go. She was smart and sarcastic and truly enjoyed her job. I can understand liking an attractive face (and Hayden certainly is that) but I wasn’t sure what her true attraction to him was really. Hayden seems like just another pretty face.

Fortunately, as the story progresses, I was pulled into the pack dynamic and Hayden’s quest to be Alpha. I also liked how he really started to break down his barriers and showed Melina that there is a lot more than a “pretty face” to him. I loved his interactions with Minnie, a golden retriever puppy he helps at the shelter. And I liked how he did try his hardest to keep Melina away from the dangers in his life. But sometimes attraction is just inevitable, and in this case, Melina is his fated mate.

The Werewolf Wears Prada is the first book I’ve read by Kristin Miller. While this book wasn’t a perfect reading experience for me, I definitely grew to enjoy these characters and the heartfelt chemistry that developed between Hayden and Melina.

The Werewolf Wears Prada is the first book in Kristin Miller’s San Francisco Wolf Pack series published by Entangled Publishing. You can find all the great places to order this book on their website. While I wasn’t breathlessly blown away by this book, I enjoyed it and will seek out the second book come July!

ARC provided by publisher for review.

Other reviews:

SassyCat Book Review reviews The Werewolf Wears Prada

Splashes Into Books reviews The Werewolf Wears Prada

Review: The Mistake by Elle Kennedy

The Mistake by Elle Kennedy

Off-Campus #2

Ah Elle Kennedy, you are a powerful romance sorceress! All your books have a magical appeal to them that make them basically instant favorites for me. The Mistake is no different. And man, it’s tough to say this but I think I liked this book even a tad bit more than The Deal (which is phenomenal; read my abbreviated review). The Mistake is just wonderful.

John Logan is kind of in love with his best friend’s girlfriend. He doesn’t like the feeling and wants to escape it anyway he can. That leads to more than a few rather quick encounters with women. He has it easy. He’s a hockey star. He’s incredibly attractive and he doesn’t have to work hard to find a hook-up. Little does he realize he wants something more.

When Logan shows up unexpectedly at Grace Ivers door searching for a friend (of the male variety, an actual friend), neither expects an unexpected friendship to start to develop. Or an attraction. Certainly not Grace who has not had a very successful first year at Briar University. Unfortunately, their attraction does not run smoothly and most of that is due to Logan and his crush on his best friend’s girlfriend. Little does he realize how much he will miss Grace when he does the unthinkable and crushes her feelings in a very intimate moment.

So much to like about this book! I really loved Grace. Her freshman year at Briar is nothing to write home about. It’s not the experience she had been hoping for, though getting to know Logan certainly livens things up. What is really wonderful is that during her sophomore year, she decides to take charge of her life at college instead of being guided by her childhood best friend, Ramona. Grace decides to join the on campus radio station (which made me think of the movie Pitch Perfect which I love so yay). She gets a new roommate and when Logan asks Grace on a date, she says no. She really does gain a lot of independence and growing confidence between her freshman and sophomore year of college.

I also really liked that Grace helped her childhood best friend, Ramona, during a really rough scene. These two had a bad falling out and Grace needs distance. But she is also the kind of person who doesn’t want to totally cut off her best friend and when worst comes to worst, she will be there for Ramona. I was quite repulsed by the scene Ramona found herself in, surrounded by coked out hockey players. (Please note, I wasn’t repulsed by her!). The scene itself, in a hotel room surrounded by men, with her phone taken away, well, it reads a bit too close to reality. I feel like there is more to Ramona than glimpsed in this book and would be happy if Kennedy decides to explore her character.

Logan is a charmer but he has a lot of bad crap going on in his home life. Not many know what is really happening but with Grace, Logan feels like he can tell her a little bit of his situation. He doesn’t have the future he wants but he also knows he has to man-up and help his family. I really and truly believed that Logan fell hard for Grace. Yes, he does some silly stunts to prove to her that going out on a date with him is worth it (the chaise lounge in particular had me laughing) but when it came down to it, Grace was the woman Logan could see himself being vulnerable with, being part of a couple. And of course, Logan could see himself with Grace during sexy times too, and there are plenty of those moments. Elle Kennedy is pretty much a sexy times master (something to be proud of!) so prepare yourself.

And as usual, Logan’s hockey friends and teammates add more than enough extra testosterone to the story. Dean and Tucker in particular stand out in this book and I am already anxious for their stories. I love the Briar University setting. Elle Kennedy has a great grasp of the college scene and it makes her stories feel authentic. The radio stations scenes had me in stitches and I was so glad that Grace ventured out of her comfort zone. She becomes an even more interesting and layered character. Her earlier experiences with Logan really help her realize what she wants in a man and even to a degree how to go about finding it. And Logan is front and center ready to prove he is the man for her.

So yes, I continue leading the Elle Kennedy lovefest bandwagon. She is a talented writer, no ifs ands or buts about it. I’m glad I get to reap the rewards of her stories!

The Mistake is available on Tuesday, April 28! Go and pre-order so you have it on your reading device at midnight.

ARC provided by publisher for review.

Other reviews of The Mistake:

ParaJunkee reviews The Mistake

Wit and Sin reviews The Mistake

KT Book Reviews reviews The Mistake

Treat Yourself: COVER REVEAL…One More Shot by Victoria Denault

I am VERY into sports romances but hockey romances in particular are my favorite. It must be the Minnesotan in me. I’m excited today to share the cover for a new hockey romance series that will be published one June 2, the first book in her Hometown Players series. It seems to be an e-book only at this point.

One More Shot by Victoria Denault

They say you only get one shot at making your dreams come true. Jordan is determined to take two.
Drafted by the NHL at eighteen, Jordan Garrison was headed for fame, and there was only one person he wanted to share it with-Jessie Caplan. He was crazy in love with her, and had finally told her so. They shared an amazing night . . . and then everything fell apart.

Jessie tries not to think about the night she gave herself to Jordan-or how he broke her heart. She tries not to think about it, but she does. Especially now, when she’s staring into his sky-blue eyes for the first time in six years. After so much time and torment, she can’t tell if she loves him or hates him. But Jordan has learned enough to know a connection like theirs is rare. He was lucky to find Jessie once. No way will he lose her again.

VictoriaDenault_Mary Costa PhotographyAbout the author:
Victoria Denault loves long walks on the beach, cinnamon dolce lattes and writing angst-filled romance. She lives in LA but grew up in Montreal, which is why she is fluent in English, French and hockey.
I haven’t read this book yet so I can’t say for sure if it’s going to be amazing or not but it sounds really good! If you’d like to pre-order it to have it on your Kindle/Nook/Tablet/Reader on June 2, you can use one of the following links:
Pre-Order Links:
I’m also offering up a pre-order myself because I can’t help but get behind a new hockey romance series. No fancy widgets here but if you’d like to be entered in for a pre-order, please leave a comment on this post telling me your favorite sports romance. (And don’t worry if you’re comment doesn’t immediately appear. I have comment moderation on.)
Contest is open through the end of April!

Treat Yourself with Television!

I love television. Like, a lot. When I’m not reading, I”m often watching TV. I am fortunate to have many friends who also love TV so it’s become a real community space for me (much in the same way books are). I won’t list all the television shows I love (feel free to chat with me on Twitter if you want to know!) but I do want to mention a few TV shows I’ve watched recently.

Outlander. Oh yes, that famous series by Diana Gabaldon. I watched Outlander this past weekend and I was really, really excited because it’s gotten rave reviews from several people I trust when it comes to TV. So, I was prepared to basically love it. BUT… well, suffice it to say that I did not love it. I did LOVE the scenery. I was really pleased to discover it was actually filmed in Scotland. I didn’t mind looking at the main leads having sex because honestly, attractive people going at it on TV can be both sexy and comical, which it was in this show. I especially liked Claire’s two guards whose names I never quite caught. Overall however, I found the show to be slow moving and dull. Time travel has never been something that excites me overall in books or TV so I am not surprised that it didn’t work for me here. Also, I guess I expected this to be more of a romance focus rather than a focus on the politics and history of the time. I should have known better because I did read some of the reviews for the book before I started watching the show. I’m also not a huge fan of shows with so much rape and sexual assault a part of the onscreen presentation. I realize that unfortunately these are real world issues, both presently and historically, but TV is an escape for me and that often means I just want to pretend, if only for a little while, that these things don’t exist. I know that is silly but that’s how I feel.a

So yes, glad I gave Outlander a try but I don’t think I’ll be picking up the second part of season one when it reaches my library. Honestly, the actor playing Jamie Fraser is not nearly as attractive as the men on my fave show, Teen Wolf, so you know, that’s part of my issue too.

Unbreakable Kimmy SchmidtUnbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Oh yes, I thoroughly enjoyed this show. In contrast to Outlander’s eight episodes which went by at a molasses pace, Kimmy’s thirteen episodes flew by and I wanted more. Now, this show is far from perfect. It tries to be satirical by examining some issues (being black in America, the American justice system, misogyny) but it does not quite always succeed in satire. Oh yes, I still laughed (I admit it) but the humor definitely could have been refined. That being said, I really like Ellie Kemper (I have since the Office) and I like seeing her in a new show. I don’t quite understand Tina Fey’s obsession with Jane Krakowski (she’s a decent enough actress but I mostly think of her in the orange juice commercials now) so that was a bit of a miss for me. Tituss Burgess is probably the unsung hero in the show. I really enjoyed just about EVERYTHING he did in this show and he had a really great rapport with Kemper. (His tiny doll furniture out on the street?? That had me in stitches). And of course, the random of appearance of all kinds of guest stars made this show great for me too. I know there will be a second season and I hope it’s soon!

Up next: The Musketeers! What are you currently watching?

Review: Last Hit by Jessica Clare and Jen Frederick (Hitman #1)

Last Hit by Jessica Clare and Jen FrederickI’ve long been a fan of Jessica Clare. She is one of my favorite erotic romance writers in fact. When I first heard about this series, I passed on it. Just not my cup of tea, with the whole hit man angle. However, when Jane of Dear Author recently admitted that she is author Jen Frederick, I was intrigued. I definitely wanted to see what her stories were like. I have since purchased the first two in her New Adult Woodlands series but I haven’t read them yet. I decided to start with a known quantity (Jessica Clare) and see how things went. Overall, I was very glad I decided to purchase Last Hit.

This book had me intrigued from the beginning. When Nikolai lays eyes on Daisy (okay, more like when he first starts spying on her) he is instalove. He wants to watch over Daisy and protect her. Unfortunately, he is also in Minneapolis to do a job. (I love reading books set in Minnesota!) He has a certain man to take out and Daisy is interfering with his job.

Daisy has just arrived in Minneapolis, fresh off the farm, literally. She escaped her father’s closed off life and is ready to live a normal life. Unfortunately, things like finding a job and making rent definitely are major obstacles in her path. When she meets Nikolai, they just click. She sees in him the same loneliness and lust that she feels. And so, instalove. Well, not exactly but close.

I wasn’t sure how I would respond to a story about a hit man. Anti-heroes have been the big thing for a long time now and I’ve fallen in love with my fair share of them (looking at you, Kaleb Krychek). This story has a sort of ridiculous over the top quality to it. Daisy is everything virginal and sweet but when she is ready to have sex she has no problems with showing Nick her “vampy” side. Nick wallows in emotions. He is kind of a tortured, sensitive hero and while he does not feel guilt over all his kills, he definitely takes a bit of a Batman approach and feels justified in getting rid of the bad people. His youth was spent learning to kill people for the Russian Bratva so murder is all he knows. Definitely a bit over the top.

I still ended up quite enjoying this book. It had a bit of an action movie quality to it. I knew that some of the things going on were rather unbelievable but yet, I still found myself rooting for Nikolai and Daisy to have a happy ending. (And they do, but only in the way that a hit man can have a happy ending). As expected, the love scenes are really, really hot. I expected no less from Jessica Clare. Nickolai is a bit of an evil James Bond, able to use any weapons at his disposal to make sure Daisy is safe. Daisy is… at times, rather bland and cartoonish. But she really does come into her own as the story continues and I was satisfied with her big moment at the end. I believed, given her own unique background, that she could indeed do what needed to be done.

So, is this the romance for you? Well, if you can handle action movie style storytelling, with characters who are a bit larger than life (especially in Nikolai’s case), and if you happen to like your sex extra naughty and thrilling, this may be the story for you. I know I was hooked enough on book 1 to purchase book 2, Last Breath! I’m looking forward to reading it in fact.

I had wondered if this was a romantic suspense type book and let me tell you, I don’t consider it romantic suspense at all. The focus was definitely more on the romance and the action was not all that suspenseful honestly. Others may have different opinions though.

I was pleased with my first foray into the writing of Jen Frederick/Jane from DA and I look forward to trying her other books. I’m not surprised she kept me interested! She definitely knows how to appeal to the romance reading crowd.

Book purchased by Sarah.

Other reviews:

Book Jems reviews Last Hit

Under the Covers Book Blog reviews Last Hit

Babbling About Books and More reviews Last Hit