Friday, August 31, 2012

Book Review: Broken by Kelley Armstrong

Author: Kelley Armstrong
Series: Women of the Otherworld #6
Publisher: Bantam
Release Date: April 25th 2006
My Rating: 4 cups
Burb: (from Goodreads)

In this thrilling new novel from the author of Industrial Magic, a pregnant werewolf may have unwittingly unleashed Jack the Ripper on the twenty-first century — and become his next target…

Ever since she discovered she’s pregnant, Elena Michaels has been on edge. After all, she’s never heard of another living female werewolf, let alone one who’s given birth. But thankfully, her expertise is needed to retrieve a stolen letter allegedly written by Jack the Ripper. As a distraction, the job seems simple enough — only the letter contains a portal to Victorian London’s underworld, which Elena inadvertently triggers — unleashing a vicious killer and a pair of zombie thugs.

Now Elena must find a way to seal the portal before the unwelcome visitors get what they’re looking for — which, for some unknown reason, is Elena…

It was really nice to go back to the original narrator of this series. I kind of missed her sarcasm and her strength.

I felt like this book shows a completely different Elena. She's pregnant and, because she isn't allowed do to almost anything (by any of her pack mates), she's bored. She's also a little afraid I think. Being the only female werewolf, her pregnancy is a mystery for everyone and it's a reason for everyone to worry about her and her babies. For me it was a little strange seeing this side of her, because I'm used to a powerful, confident Elena, one that isn't afraid of anything and one that can do almost anything. Oh, and let's not forget about powerful, nothing-can-hurt-him Clay. But I think it was a good thing to see the vulnerable side of both of them. Makes them that much stronger and makes me love these characters more.

I also liked that we get to see Jamie. I really do love her!

The book was fast-paced, full of action, mystery, zombies and the occasionally funny dialogue, along with sarcasm. It isn't my favorite book of the series so far, but it is good. Now off to read about Jamie :D

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Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday #2

Top Ten Tuesday is weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.
Each week, they will post a new Top Ten list that one of the bloggers at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join, just link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.

Top Ten Bookish Confessions
Everyone has at least one bookish confession (Anything! You dog ear, you hated a book but said you loved it, you have $500 library fines...anything goes!). Join us in spilling our deepest held secrets around one of our most beloved pastimes. Everyone has a bookish confession. What's yours?

  1. I hate hardbacks. I just cannot stand them. They're too big, to heavy and they have a jacket that will most likely get ruined no matter how much I try to handle them with care. Also, I can't be sneaky during classes and pretend to pay attention while I'm actually reading the book that's on my lap, hidden by my backpack :P
  2. If a book is boring, I stop reading it. This is something that happens no matter where I am with my reading: the beginning of the book, the middle or 30 pages before the ending. If it doesn't make me want to turn the page, I won't. I figure I spent 12 years reading books I hated just because I wanted to avoid getting a bad grade, I will NOT do that with the book I read in my free time. Call me shallow, but I'd rather re-read a book I loved than finish a book I hate.
  3. Guest posts are fun, but finding the topic kills me. I'd rather do an interview with an author than find a topic for a guest post. I lack imagination with this kind of things. Plus, what if I choose a topic that has already been used for a certain author? I know, the chances are slim, but they still exist. 
  4. I usually shy away from books that get too popular, too fast. It happened with Harry Potter, it happened with Lord of the Rings and with a lot of other books. Some of those I've read and discovered the popularity and the almost hysteria is more than understandable and I in fact loved the books. Some I hated. I don't know why, maybe because hearing about them so much sets a higher level of expectations and it's easier for the book(s) to let me down. 
  5. I have no problem rereading a book more than 3 times. There are books (mostly series) that I love beyond what's "natural". You could call it obsession. For example the Dark Hunters series. I have lost count of how many times I've reread them. Same with Harry Potter and many other books and series.  I know the ending, I know the middle and I know what happens. But I still reread them with the same joy and whatever you want to call it, either pleasure or anxiousness or whatever, as the first time I read the book. (The same thing goes for a certain song that I get obsessed with and I'll listen to just that song for an entire day without getting bored *shrug* I'm a weird person, I know)
  6. I read the last few sentences of the book before deciding if I want to buy it. This happens if I don't know the author and, therefore, I'm not familiar with his/her works. Funny thing though, if I decide to buy the book and I finish reading it, I almost always forget the fact that I have an idea of how the story's going to end. It's like my brain hits a "delete" button or something.
  7. I have a mini-soundtrack list for each and every book I read. It happens with every book. Because I can't function without background noise (another testament to my craziness), I always read with music. So it happens that sometimes a certain song is perfect for a certain scene in a book, so I write it down or save it in a different playlist. By the end of that book I'll have at least 6 songs that I know will always remind me of that book. I might share those soundtracks soon ;) 
  8. I hate to see a mark/price tags or anything on my books. I hate it when bookshops stick the price directly on the cover. It looks ugly. That's why I tend to buy books from bookshops that don't do that. Shallow, I know, but I'd rather have a book wrapped in plastic with no way to check if it might be something I'd enjoy reading and therefore taking a risk in buying it, than have papers with prices stuck on the cover. 
  9. I'm obsessed with bookmarks. It's true, I collect them. And I have doubles, because I hate ruining the ones that I collect. And so I use and reuse the doubles until they're ruined and I have to go hunt for new ones. The ones that are intact or the ones I have only one copy of I keep them in a folder, wrapped in plastic. Will share photos sometimes this week.
  10. If I don't like one book of an author, chances are I won't be checking a different book by the same author. Again, it might sound shallow. But I can't imagine liking something by that author if I don't like the writing style in a book I didn't finish/disliked by him/her. It never happened before, to have a surprise like that. On the other hand, if I do like a book I randomly picked by an author, chances are I'll be checking most if not all of his/her works. 
I can think of many more "vices", pet peeves and such when it comes to books, but I'll stop at 10. I think I already sound like a crazy woman, there's no need proving it beyond a shadow of a doubt, right? *grin* Anyway, these 10 are the most important ones. 

What are your bookish confessions? 

Book Review: Soul Weaver by Hailey Edwards

Photobucket Author: Hailey Edwards
Series: Wicked Kin #1
Publisher: Forever Yours
Release Date: August 7th 2012
My Rating: 4.5 cups
Blurb: (from Goodreads)

Since the accident that nearly took her life, Chloe suffers from acute agoraphobia. Living alone above her family's bookstore, she spends restless nights terrified by strange visions . . . until a mysterious stranger appears and offers her salvation. Chloe is drawn to the ethereal, gorgeous Nathaniel-but her haunted soul warns her there is more to him than meets the eye.

An archangel who roams Earth collecting souls of the newly departed, Nathaniel is the sole witness to the accident that should have taken Chloe's life. Seduced by the purity of her soul, he defies Providence by saving her life. But his attempt at kindness marks Chloe for damnation, and makes her an unwitting pawn in a game of unholy ambition. Now together they must fight the demons of Hell itself-for a love that defies the boundaries of Heaven and Earth.

Archangels, fallen angels, demons... *le sigh* That's basically what my brain picked up when I first read the blurb to Soul Weaver. That is, after I stopped drooling at the cover. Seriously, that is one hawt cover!

One thing I loved about this book, besides the paranormal theme, was Chloe's agoraphobia. Wait, that sounds bad, I know. I didn't love that she had it, I loved the way it was portrayed. It was extremely accurate and for a few moments, as I was reading about Chloe's episodes, I was sucked in, almost feeling her fears as if they were my own. It was very vivid and frightening and it showed how debilitating it was for Chloe to have it, how scary. I think everyone that has a phobia or at least a great fear of something can probably relate to how Chloe is feeling (I know I do).

Then there's Nathaniel. There's just something about him, you know? Besides the fact that he's a fallen angel, besides the aura of danger that surrounds him, there's something incredibly hot about him. I mean really, what guy (or angel guy) can work his ass off on a porch and be sexy? Well, Nathaniel does it.

Chloe was interesting. Besides her "small" problem, she seems like a normal person. I liked the fact that you can see how by the end of the book she's a totally different person. She seemed more confident and stronger than when the book started. And I liked her, despite being a heroine who couldn't do much because of her phobia. Maybe that's why I liked her? I mean she was unique in that way, I don't think I've ever read about a character with agoraphobia before.

Soul Weaver was a good start for a series and I liked the mythology used in this series. And it was really fast paced without feeling rushed. I'm curious what happens next. I'd definitely recommend this book ;)

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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Blog Tour Book Review: Betrayal by Amber Garr

On tour with Bookshelf Confessions

Photobucket Author: Amber Garr
Series: Syrenka #2
Publisher: CreateSpace
Release Date: February 20th, 2012
My Rating: 5 cups
Blurb (from Goodreads):

Life as a mermaid can be suffocating.

Eviana Dumahl has returned home as a clan leader, an orphan, and a heartbroken teenage girl. Her parents are dead and her boyfriend, Brendan, has decided that he needs some time away. While battling her inner turmoil, Eviana is forced into the war that Lucian Sutherland has incited amongst her own kind. With the help of Kain, her friend and formally betrothed, the two work together to prove that they deserve their birthrights as young merfolk leaders.

When the Council requests a demonstration of Eviana’s mermaid powers, she finds herself with an opportunity to win back Brendan’s heart. But her orders to train with a repulsive merman and the presence of an attractive new suitor challenges Eviana to embrace her leadership and resist temptation. Lucian is after her, and no one seems to understand why. Loyalties are tested as the casualties increase, showing Eviana that sometimes it is impossible to delineate between friends and enemies.

Betrayal is the second book of The Syrenka Series trilogy following Eviana and her friends as they navigate through the challenges of existing in a secret world.

If the first book in this series, Promises, was good, the second one was even better. I think it was an amazing continuation of Eviana's story.

In Betrayal we find a more mature Eviana, one that is trying to cope with everything that has happened to her. I admired her a lot in this book. Her parents are dead, she becomes clan leader and tries to stop a war, she's supposed to take care of her younger sister and her boyfriend left for God knows how long. I'd be terrified, angry. She was too, but she didn't let that fear and anger take over her. She found her strength in those feelings. What's not to admire? There was this moment where my heart broke for Eviana and I felt so much anger towards the people hurting her. I'm very curious how will she deal with those people in Arise, the final book in this trilogy.

I loved the pacing. There's always something happening, usually something surprising. I liked that a lot, the fact that I couldn't predict anything. I have to admit that I thought the traitor was someone else entirely. So I was very surprised when I saw how wrong I was. But I loved that. And I love that we get to meet some new creatures and learn more about the syrenkas and their world.

I love the cover (if you haven't noticed yet, this series has amazing covers!) and I think it's perfect for Betrayal.

I have to find out what happens next and how the story ends. If you haven't read this series yet, don't wait any longer. It's amazing!

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Thursday, August 16, 2012

Book Review: Differential Equations by Julian Iragorri & Lou Aronica

Authors: Julian Iragorri & Lou Aronica
Publisher: The Fiction Studio
Release Date: April 24th 2012
My Rating: 4 cups
Blurb (from Goodreads):

This evocative, moving, and gorgeously detailed novel is the story of Alex Soberano, a contemporary man in crisis. A tremendously successful New York businessman, Alex finds it difficult to embrace joy and accept love. When his life threatens to boil over, he escapes for a brief respite on the West Coast. What waits for him there is something he never could have imagined.

Intertwined with Alex’s story are the stories of three people from different times and places whose lives affect him in surprising ways:
• A woman from the South American city of Anhelo in 1928 that everyone knows as "Vidente." For decades, Vidente, has been one of Anhelo's most celebrated citizens because she has the ability to read colors that speak of a person's fate. However, during one such reading, she sees her own future – a future that includes her imminent death.• A man named Khaled who left his home in Bethlehem in 1920 to seek fortune in the South American town of Joya de la Costa. He has barely begun to gain a foothold when he learns that the wife and three children he left behind have been murdered. When a magical woman enters his life, he believes that destiny has smiled on him. However, destiny has only just begun to deal with Khaled.• A nineteen-year-old student named Dro who flies from the South American country of Legado to Boston in 1985 and immediately walks onto the campus of MIT expecting instant admission. Dro's skills at mastering complex, ever-changing differential equations intrigues the associate admissions director. However, the person he intrigues the most is the celebrated US ambassador from his country, and his relationship with her will define his life.
How the stories of these four people merge is the central mystery of this arresting work of imagination. Differential Equations is a story that will sweep you up in its magic, enrich you with its wisdom, and compel you with its deep humanity.

This book managed to surprise me in a lot of ways. In a good way. You have four people, four plots, for very different perspectives and no idea how or why they're connected.

Though there are four different plots, I didn't get confused about who was doing what and with whom and why. You know how it happens sometimes, that you get more than one plot and it's not very clear when the story changes and when the perspective shifts and you are left wondering "What the hell am I reading?". I didn't feel that with Differential Equations. And I didn't feel that the stories where lacking some details, or that they were thin. Even though you get four stories, they are so well written and so full of details, I felt like I was reading four books at the same time.

There are a lot of surprises. Each and every time I managed to think of a way these four people were connected, the following chapter would always prove me wrong. I think that's the one thing I loved most about this book, the fact that I wasn't able to foresee anything. There might have been little things that made sense to happen in a certain way, but the important things were a mystery to me until the very end of the book.

There were several scenes that made me very sad in this book. I guess they were a sort of lesson for the main  characters, but I still felt incredibly sad for them. That's another amazing thing about this book, the fact that I felt so connected with the characters. And it was one of those books where you can't stop reading.

It was an amazing read and I think you should give it a try.

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Monday, August 13, 2012

Author Interview: Cat Lavoie

Please welcome Cat Lavoie to Ruby's Books. she stopped by to talk a little about her debut novel, Breaking the Rules (read my review here)


• Thank you for stopping by, Cat! Tell us a little about yourself.

Thank you so much for having me, Ruby!

Where do I begin? I live in Montreal, Canada with my cat, Abbie. I work as a claims analyst for an insurance company by day and I write chick lit. BREAKING THE RULES is my first novel.

• When did you realize you wanted to become a writer?

I've loved reading for as long as I can remember but I fell in love with writing when I was a teenager and tried to write a romance novel. From that moment on, I knew that writing was what I wanted to do.

• What's your favorite book/author?

That's a tough one. If I had to pick just one book, I'd say CONFESSIONS OF A SHOPAHOLIC by Sophie Kinsella. I knew I wanted to write chick lit after reading that novel and Sophie Kinsella remains one of my favorite authors to this day.

I loved that book too. I don't think Sophie Kinsella wrote a book that I didn't like.
• What are you doing when you're not reading or writing?

I'm usually either watching cooking and home improvement shows or trying to bake something without setting off the smoke alarm.

• What inspires you when you write?

I'm inspired by everything around me. I like to observe how people interact with each other and—on more than one occasion—I've overheard snippets of conversation from complete strangers on the bus or subway and integrated that into a story.

• What your favorite and your least favorite part of the writing process?

I love almost everything about the writing process—from the initial spark when you get an idea and run with it to editing and whipping your manuscript into shape. I guess my least favorite part is that it takes me a lot of time to complete a first draft. I wish I could write faster.

• Are you a plotter or a panster?

I'm definitely a plotter. I like to have a pretty detailed outline before I start writing.

• What projects do you have for the future?

I'm currently writing my second chick lit novel called ZOEY & THE MOMENT OF ZEN and I'm hoping to finish it by the end of the year.

I can't wait to read it! Thanks for stopping by!



Cat Lavoie was born in the small town of Jonquière in Québec, Canada. At the age of nineteen, she packed up her things (mostly books) and moved to the big city of Montreal where she currently lives with her tempestuous cat Abbie—who is both adorable and quite possibly evil.

An incurable Anglophile since her university days where she studied English Literature, she can often be found daydreaming about her next trip to London. Since she’s an expert at the art of procrastination, Cat is easily distracted by cooking and home improvement shows—even though she’s not particularly good at either.

Cat grew up watching soap operas and legal dramas and—had she not decided to be a claims analyst by day and write chick lit by night—she would have probably become a designer suit-wearing lawyer. Or a character on All My Children (which is what she really wanted to be when she was twelve).

Cat is not sure whether she’s a geek or a nerd—and is afraid she might be both. Breaking the Rules is her first novel.

Cat blogs about the writing life and posts adorable pictures of Abbie over at the Catenabi Chronicles. Come say hello at: and follow @Catenabi on Twitter.


Book Review: Breaking the Rules by Cat Lavoie

Author: Cat Lavoie
My Rating: 5 cups
Publisher: Marching Ink LLC
Publishing Date: August 8th 2012
Source: review copy offered by author
Blurb: (from Goodreads)

When twenty-seven year old Roxy Rule’s best friend and roommate accepts a glamorous new job overseas, she expects their relationship to continue as it’s always been—carefree and easy—until they share a heart-stopping kiss moments before his departure. Overcome with mixed emotions, she fights the urge to over analyze the situation and resumes back to her normal life in New York City, working for an intolerable boss at a dead end job, creeping further and further away from her own dreams of becoming a professional chef.

While things become more complicated between her and Ollie, Roxy is sure that nothing can come between two lifelong best friends—not even mild jealousy over a thriving career or a silly little kiss that meant nothing. In fact, it was such a meaningless and forgettable kiss that she convinces herself that it’s not even worth mentioning to her fiancé, although it is all she can think about.

Roxy’s already topsy-turvy life only gets more complicated when her sisters Steffi and Izzie suddenly become her roommates. Steffi is six months into a pregnancy she refuses to discuss and Izzie is in the throes of a premature midlife crisis. Roxy tries to take control of her career, her love life and her sisters – but can she really handle it all? And can the Rule family keep it together – or break under the pressure?

This is one of those books that remind me why I love a certain genre (in this case, chick lit). It has everything I could wish for, and then some: humor, drama, romance, family crisis, surprising twists and turns... Like I said, everything.

Roxy Rule is one of those impossible-not-to-love characters. She's funny, she's friendly, she has an amazing family and a hot best friend. I really loved Roxy. I was rooting for her the entire novel and I was wishing she'd end up with the love of her life, Ollie. Just when things get complicated and she starts to doubt everything in her life, from her job, to her boyfriend, her two sisters knock on her door, needing some time off from their own lives. Her younger sister is pregnant with an unknown man and her older sister just broke up with her  boyfriend. I liked how Roxy tries to protect her sisters and hide the fact that they moved in with her from her parents. And I liked that out of all the sisters, she was the least judgmental one, the one that just listens and waits for things to unfold, the one that doesn't try to pry.

Ollie is Roxy's best friend since infancy. I liked him, even though he gave me a big surprise near the end of the book. I don't know how I would've reacted if I were Roxy, but I liked the fact that in the end Ollie makes things right and he makes the right decision. He's been in love with Roxy for a long time, but he doesn't act on it. I liked that he doesn't force things, though I would've expected more resistance towards all the crap his girlfriend was throwing his way.

I think the subject of love between two best friends is a dangerous subject, but Cat Lavoie wrote a beautiful story and I had a lot of fun reading it. For me, it was one of those books that you start reading and the next thing you know, it's a few hours later and you are reading the last page.

If you love chick lit, you definitely need to read Breaking The Rules.

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Cover Love (24)

Rabid Reads - Cover Love

This feature is hosted by Carmel @ Rabid Reads. The rules are very simple. Choose a cover (or two, or three), preferably new-ish, and share what you like about it. Grab the graphic or don't just so long as you link back.

My pick this week:

This is a pretty cover, isn't it? I'm just wondering if that burst of light in the corner of the jar means the butterfly will escape his prison or not. Like a crack in the wall, you know? Or at least that's how I see it. Anyway, it also looks a little creepy :P

Beautiful Disaster - Jamie McGuire

What about you? What's your pick this week?

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Winners: Need by Sherri Hayes

Thank you to all who entered the giveaway to win one of the two ebook copies of Sherri Hayes' new release, Need.


The winners are:

  • Nicola
  • Kelly
Congratulations! I will send you an email as soon as possible. Please respond to my email in 72 hours (3 days) or I will choose another winner.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Blog Tour Book Excerpt: Promises by Amber Garr

You might remember that Promises by Amber Garr (read my review here) was the very first book with mermaids that I ever read. I loved this book then, I love it know. If you haven't yet decided to start this series (shame on you, really! LOL) here's a little excerpt from Promises:

Excerpt 1.1

I barely heard her parting words as the screen door slammed shut. My head spun in desperation as the anger coursed through my bones. “Get back in here Eviana!” she continued to scream at me. “We are not finished with this conversation!”

I was already racing down the deck stairs toward the sandy beach, kicking off my shoes and unbuttoning my blouse. We are for now, I thought as my blood boiled with rage and resentment. I was going to be trapped! How dare they? This was not the eighteenth century anymore! I had rights!

I stumbled onto the sand, taking just a brief moment to savor the warmth and the feeling of the grains massaging my toes. My shirt came off and I started to unzip my jeans. No one was around. But I wouldn’t care anyway. The water was calling me and it was the only voice that I could hear now. With one pant leg off, I hopped along in my forward progression until the other one was free. My oasis was so close now that I could taste the salt in the air. The sun broke free of a cloud, stopping me for a moment. It was late afternoon with sunset still a few hours away, but the sky had already turning multiple shades of pink and orange. The coloration reminded me of the inside of a brilliant conch shell.

I closed my eyes and took a deep breath. I knew there would be hell to pay when I returned to the house. Marguerite, my mother, had tolerated my rebellious behavior when I was younger, giving me more freedom and second chances than anyone in our clan. But apparently now, at seventeen, I was an adult. Adult enough to bear children. Adult enough to participate in clan gatherings. Adult enough to navigate our youth through their transition period. But not adult enough to choose who to love.

A slight breeze wafted off the ocean, bringing with it scents that filled my gut with
longing. The freedom of the ocean. Why couldn’t I just stay there forever? A gull called
overhead, beckoning me to join him. The splashing waves calmed my inner rage as they ebbed and flowed in a hypnotic pattern. A distant moan of a shipping vessel reminded me of our history. I opened my eyes to see that I was standing alone along miles of sandy beach interlaced with large rocks and cliffs emblematic of the northern California coast. So beautiful. I stripped off the rest of my clothes and ran into the ocean.

As soon as I was under the water, I could feel the transition begin. My lower body ached as the bones adjusted from a life on land to one at sea. Both legs began to fuse together and work as one. My foot bones elongated while I prepared for the agony. I was accustomed to the changes now, but it was still a struggle of mind over matter. Breaking through the surface of the water, I grabbed one last breath before the final jolt of pain ravaged through my body. I bit my bottom lip and squeezed my eyes shut, willing the moment to be over. At last I felt an electric tingle move from my hips to my toes as the hardened iridescent, scales appeared on my tail. I opened my eyes to find that the internal transformation was complete as well. My vision cleared. My lungs expanded. I could hear for miles. I was free.
Do check this book out, you will love it!

Promises (Book One of The Syrenka Series) By Amber Garr

Sometimes following your heart can end up destroying the ones you love.

When seventeen-year-old Eviana Dumahl is faced with the responsibility of an arranged marriage and clan leadership, she is forced to choose between the life required of a mermaid and one of a teenage girl simply infatuated with the wrong guy. Kain, her devoted fiancé, would make a wonderful husband except that she’s been in love with Brendan, a shape-shifting selkie, ever since they were kids. Choosing to abandon her family, her clan, and her life with Kain will have dire consequences far beyond anything she could have imagined.

A war is brewing amongst the clans and Eviana unwittingly becomes a pawn in the intricate schemes of a twisted mastermind. With Brendan’s life on the line, she has no choice but to involve those she once considered friends. Amidst encountering senseless tragedies and immense loss, Eviana discovers that she is more valuable as a clan leader than anyone ever suspected. Her survival is not only dependent upon the loyalty of her friends, but also on her acceptance of a life she so adamantly tried to escape.
Buy Links: Amazon  Smashwords  Barnes and Noble

Monday, August 6, 2012

Blog Tour Book Review: The More I See by Lisa Mondello

Author: Lisa Mondello
Series: Texas Hearts #3
Publisher:  Self-pub
Publishing Date: April 19th, 2012
My Rating: 5 cups
Blurb: (from Goodreads):

As a top-notch cutting horse trainer, Cody Gentry was riding high until he lost his eyesight after a freak chemical accident.Unable to see the hand in front of his face,never mind the horse or cattle he trained, he knows his life is over and slips deep into depression.His whole future hinges on the success of an eye surgery that could give him his old life back.

When guide dog trainer, Lyssa McElhannon, arrives on his ranch like Florence Nightingale coming to save him, he wants no part of her or her guide dog. But something about Lyssa's musical laugh coupled with her tenacity digs under his skin and won't let go. Having been blind most of her life, Lyssa understands the paralyzing fear Cody feels after losing his vision.But she refuses to let the stubborn cowboy waste his life away sitting in a chair when she knows firsthand that a good guide dog can change his world. She just needs one month to prove it to him.

Falling in love with Cody was not part of Lyssa's plan, nor was having him openher eyes to see that there was a whole lot of living she'd been missing out on.

This is my favorite book of the series. I think that, besides the great characters and the romance between Lyssa and Cody, the story itself is exceptional.

I don't think it's a sad story. I feel like it's more a story of triumph, of growth. And there's also this idea that you can appreciate things better if one your senses or your brain doesn't get in the way. I mean, really, you usually read about drop-dead gorgeous heroines (which is  not bad, mind you), but for me it's always refreshing to read about those women who aren't exactly perfect.

I didn't think I'd like Cody. I was afraid he'd be like his dad for some reason. Instead, I found a tortured soul in need of some love. Real love. I respected him a great deal. I don't think I'd be able to go through what he did and not go completely crazy. I liked that he was modest, caring, fun. And he was honest from the start, not trying to be someone different.

Lyssa is also an interesting character. I liked her strength, her courage. She went through what Cody does at an early age, so she knows what it's like to depend on others for even the most simple things. But she doesn't pity him, or make him feel like it's ok to feel depressed or that it's ok to hide from the world, sitting in a chair all day and refuse to do things. She also doesn't try to help him, making him feel useless. I liked that, because she's treating him like he's a normal person, not like someone who can't see.

Like I said, this was my favorite book of the series. I am hoping we'll get more books in this series in the future. I would definitely recommend it to anyone that loves a good romance story and sexy, stubborn cowboys

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Friday, August 3, 2012

Blog Tour Book Review: His Heart For The Trusting by Lisa Mondello

Author: Lisa Mondello
Series: Texas Hearts #2
Publisher: Self-pub
Publishing Date: February 15th, 2012
My Rating: 4 cups
Blurb: (from Goodreads)

Ever since Mitch Broader set foot in Texas, he dreamed of owning his own ranch. Now that he’s bought a share in the Double T Ranch, he’s one step closer to the dream. Then his past greets him in the form of a baby basket, complete with infant and birth certificate naming him as the father. He can’t change diapers and work toward his dream at the same time.

When Sara Lightfoot, “Miss Hollywood” in Mitch’s eyes, rescues him with her particular knack for handling his precocious son, he hires her on the spot as a temporary nanny. No matter how much Sara’s dark eyes and warm heart make this bachelor think of making their arrangement permanent, she’s made it perfectly clear she has other plans that don’t include him or his dreams.

Sara Lightfoot never thought she’d return to her home on the reservation. Now she plans to reclaim the life she left by going back to the reservation as a Native American storyteller, teaching the Apache children stories of their culture. She didn’t expect Mitch Broader’s sexy smile or job offer as a live-in nanny to derail those plans. After all she’s been through to come home, can she open up her heart once again to love?

I liked this book a lot more than the first one in the series, Her Heart for the Asking.

First of all, I liked the friendship between Sara and Mitch, their chemistry. And the thing I loved most was that their story didn't feel rushed in any way to me. I loved seeing them together, bonding and trying to figure out what their relationship should be like, all the while keeping their friendship intact.

Sara is a woman with scars. She went through some ugly moments with her ex-husband and she did some things she's not exactly proud of, but she tries to learn from her past and use it to help Mitch. She tries to see the good in everyone, even if she's sometimes mistaken.

Mitch is a very sexy cowboy. But there's a lot more to him than that, trust me. He's funny, stubborn, proud, sensible and he has great taste in music. He had a rough childhood and he'll do whatever it takes too make sure that his son won't go through the same traumatic experiences, even if it means giving up his dreams.

There were some very funny moments, there were some sad moments and everything in between. One thing I adored was that we get some info on what happens currently with Mandy and Beau, the heroine and hero from the previous book. I like getting news about old characters, it makes the stories inside a series a lot more real to me.

I would recommend this book to anyone loving a good romance book.

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Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Blog Tour Book Review: Her Heart For The Asking by Lisa Mondello

Author: Lisa Mondello
Series: Texas Hearts #1
Publisher: Self-pub
Publishing Date: February 8th, 2012
My Rating: 4 cups
Blurb: (from Goodreads)
Promises made...secrets kept...
Mandy Morgan swore she’d never step foot in Texas again after Beau Gentry left her for life on the rodeo circuit eight years before. He once promised he'd love her forever. But he'd abandoned their love for the rodeo and she hadn't seen him since. Now she's back in Texas. Her uncle’s heart is failing and Mandy has to convince him that surgery will save his life. She never dreamed the first thing she’d see when she stepped off the plane would be her biggest nightmare...the one man she’d never stopped loving.
Beau Gentry had the fever for two things: the rodeo and Mandy Morgan. But for Beau, loving Mandy was complicated by his father’s vendetta against her uncle and a promise he'd made to an old friend. Hank Promise, Mandy's uncle, was more like a father to Beau than his old man had been. The hardest thing Beau had ever done was leave Mandy behind for the rodeo. He can still see the bitterness and hurt on her face. It has killed him all these years to think Mandy had forgotten him...maybe even in the arms of another man. But now they’re both back in Texas, and Beau's going to do all he can to win back her love.

One of my favorite themes in romance has to be the one about second chances. There's just something about them, ya know? This is probably the reason why I enjoyed reading about Mandy and Beau so much.

If you love cowboys, you'll definitely love Beau. He's sexy, wild, passionate about what he likes and loves. And I could really see he truly loved Mandy, enough to sacrifice himself to keep her safe. That's one of the reasons I liked him. The other one is that he is a man of his word. He made some promises to Hank, Mandy's uncle, and he never broke them. Besides that, he is funny.

Mandy never really got over Beau. She might think she did, but she really still loves him. She has some hurt bottled up inside, not just over Beau, but her family also. I felt like she would to... explode or something. I don't know, I was expecting her at some point to scream, kick, yell, whatever. But she didn't act like a brat, she acted like an adult the whole time and I respected her for that. She sacrificed herself and her dreams to work for her father, a job I don't really think she wanted or enjoyed.

I loved the fact that it wasn't some "oh, we've been here before, let's hook up again for old times' sake" kind of story. Both Mandy and Beau had some growing up to do before getting back together and they both needed to say and hear some things.

I really enjoyed reading Her Heart for the Asking and I can't wait to read the other books in this series. You should try it out, the book was good.

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