Monday, March 28, 2016

Rushing the Goal by Toni Aleo


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Introduced in Toni Aleo’s Bellevue Bullies Series, it’s the Sinclair brothers’ big sister’s turn to find love in the next installment of the New York Times and USA Today best-selling series, the Assassins.
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Lucy Sinclair was no stranger to pain.
She grew up with three younger brothers, met a bad boy, got pregnant by him, married him, and then suffered through a nasty divorce from him. Pain. That was pain. To top it off, she even had to go through the heartbreaking divorce of her parents. Through it all, she survived. All she cared about was making sure her daughter was happy and taken care of. Despite an ex-husband hell-bent on ruining her life, she fought to overcome. She’s gotten to the point that she’s okay with being just okay. She never cared about herself because she never had the time. It was Angie and only Angie she focused on, but that all changed when Benji Paxton offered to help her daughter on the ice.
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Benji knew the moment he saw Lucy, he’d never be the same. Especially when she came with the bundle of crazy that was her daughter. His heart wasn’t ready for them. After years spent sobering up and finding who he was without the alcohol, he never forgot he was being punished for not appreciating the love he had when he was younger. Because of his past, he had gotten used to being alone, a recluse, but even he had to admit it was getting old. He was lonely. Hockey wasn’t enough anymore. He wanted a family; he wanted his true love, and Lucy and Angie were just that.
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Benji and Lucy were just two lost souls.
Floating through life with no purpose.
But finding each other gave them direction, a chance at a future.
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☆☆
     When I got this book, I knew once I started, I wasn’t going to be able to be productive. And I was right. From the minute I started it, I couldn't put it down because it was captivating and amazing and everything and more I expected from a Toni Aleo book. If you are like me and have been eagerly awaiting Lucy's story, you will not be disappointed. 

     Lucy is an incredible character and I loved everything about her. I loved her sassy, confident, and independent personality because I relate to it, and there aren't a lot of characters like that who don't come across as bitchy. Lucy doesn't like depending on people, but she knows when to accept help. Toni Aleo wrote her perfectly. Lucy goes through a ton of heartbreak and shit thanks to Rick the Dick, but she doesn't give up. She falls, but then gets back up and fights full force for her and for Angie. She is a very very strong female character and she contrasted with Benji perfectly.

     Benji is very different from most of the characters in Toni Aleo's other books. He isn't a character who lives for the spotlight and comes off as commanding and fierce. He's shy and geeky, but confident. He is such an interesting character because he's powerful without being too in your face.  He knew he wanted to get to know Lucy, pursued her, and never gave up on her. He too has been to hell and back, and as the book goes on, he progresses. Toni Aleo is a master at writing emotional change in a character, like was seen in Benji. Benji was the perfect match to Lucy. Whatever pieces of themselves that they were missing, they found in each other. They are the definition of soul mates and their chemistry sparked from that very first parking lot scene.

     The humor in this book is fantastic. All of Lucy's brothers, Jace, Jayden, and Jude, were in the book significantly and all four of them together are so entertaining. Actually, their whole family is incredibly entertaining. Angie is a hilarious. I loved all he scenes that had her in it, especially when she was with Benji and Lucy. One of my favorite things that she says is, "Thank you for Benji, for him cooking for us and picking me up and giving me the best day ever. And maybe, Lord, if you could break him and his girlfriend up so he can marry me–". I am telling you now, it is worth reading the book just for Angie and all the other scenes with the Sinclairs.

     Characters aside, the story line is amazing. It's not overly dramatic, but it's not boring. Like I stated above, it will suck you in from the start. This book will make you laugh, cry, smile, get angry, and get frustrated, but all of that is what you want in a book anyways. If you've read a Toni Aleo book before, you've probably already bought this book and have finished it and are reading reviews. If you've never read a Toni Aleo, clear your schedule and buy her books and fall in love with her characters and their stories.



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COVER PHOTOGRAPHY || SARA EIREW 

COVER DESIGN || REGINA WAMBA

EDITING || LISA A. HOLLETT

MARKETING ||  KELLIE GUNDERMAN

This book is for any single mom who wants to give up.
Just keep being a great mom. And take care of yourself.
Your prince is coming.



Thursday, January 14, 2016

The Score by Elle Kennedy

The Score by Elle Kennedy

He knows how to score, on and off the ice 
Allie Hayes is in crisis mode. With graduation looming, she still doesn’t have the first clue about what she's going to do after college. To make matters worse, she’s nursing a broken heart thanks to the end of her longtime relationship. Wild rebound sex is definitely not the solution to her problems, but gorgeous hockey star Dean Di-Laurentis is impossible to resist. Just once, though, because even if her future is uncertain, it sure as heck won’t include the king of one-night stands. 

It’ll take more than flashy moves to win her over 
Dean always gets what he wants. Girls, grades, girls, recognition, girls…he’s a ladies man, all right, and he’s yet to meet a woman who’s immune to his charms. Until Allie. For one night, the feisty blonde rocked his entire world—and now she wants to be friends? Nope. It’s not over until he says it’s over. Dean is in full-on pursuit, but when life-rocking changes strike, he starts to wonder if maybe it’s time to stop focusing on scoring…and shoot for love.

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   As the first new book I've read this year, high expectations have now been set for all the others I'm going to read. This series is one of my favorite series so I was really freaking excited to read it. I think this is my new favorite from the series and in my opinion, the best written.

   The last two books in the series are incredible. I've re-read them a few times and I love them more each time. But this book, was ten times better than the last two. It was phenomenal. The story line had so much more depth in it because there's wasn't just one big issue, but a couple, and it made the book a more realistic read. The conflicts tested Allie and Dean's relationship and the two separately. And the best part about the story line was that it wasn't overwhelming. By that I mean, you aren't given so much drama that you can't keep them straight. Its the right amount to keep you engaged throughout.

   The plot line is freaking fantastic, but the best part of the story that alone would get 5 stars, is the relationship between Allie and Dean. From the little bit we know about them, they are total opposites. Allie is a relationship girl and Dean is your ultimate man whore and it seems like such a cliché to put them together. But once you start the book and read from their point of view, you get it. From the moment Allie arrives at Dean's house, you just want them together.

    Their chemistry is off the charts. I don't think 'fucking hot' could cover it. There is a ton of passion between Allie and Dean and it's so fun to read. Their banter and teasing is also so funny and flirty and their personalities just go together. Everything about the two is so right. Elle Kennedy definitely knows what she's doing.

   Another thing about this book that I loved was how much of the other main couples we got to see. It's wasn't a brief mention here and there, but they were involved in the story. I think that's so important because it makes sure that we don't forget about Garret and Hannah or Logan and Grace. And along with the old favorites, there were a lot of new characters that we met that I would love to read a story about all of them.

   Overall, this was fantastic. Throughout reading this, I could tell how much effort and thought was put into this story and it paid off. This book added a whole other light to this series, and I highly highly recommend you guys go read it.



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xxo,
A


Sunday, January 3, 2016

Top 10 Reads of 2015

      Hello everyone! Today I bring you the top 10 books I read this year. This does not mean that all the books were published in 2015 (although most of them were), but they were read by me in 2015. All these books that I have chosen are books that I just adored and they made me think and after I finished them I just sat there in amazement of what I just read. So in order by the date published, here are my favorites for this year.


1. 
Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

     I never read this book before because I was hesitant about all the hype around it, but I finally ended up reading it and I now understand all the excitement about this series. I am a very picky reader when it comes to fantasy type books because I need a story to be 100% original and engaging. And this book had it. I loved Celaena and how badass she was. This story was funny and there was a good mix of action, romance, humor, magic, and suspense and after I finished, I immediately started reading the second book.

     
2.
Last to Know by Micalea Smeltzer

     This book. Oh my gosh, this book is not only one of my favorite books of the year, but of all time. This is the first book in the Willow Creek series, and it's freaking perfect. I loved Maddox and Emma and their story was adorable. This book was hilarious and was a very light romance, so there wasn't intense drama or anything unnecessary and I loved it. There is also a hedgehog in this book and if that's not reason enough to go read this book, read it because it's a great series and it's just fun and will put a smile on your face.


3.
The Deal by Elle Kennedy

     This book was everything I love in a romance. It was a hockey college romance and I absolutely adored Hannah and Garrett's story. Elle Kennedy did such a good job giving depth to the characters along with developing their love story. Garrett and Hannah had so much chemistry and they clicked really well together. It was just so obvious that they made each other better and stronger and I loved being able to read that. And if that wasn't enough, this book was laugh out loud hilarious too. This was the first Elle Kennedy book I read and I am now a huge fan.

     
4.
Clipped by Love by Toni Aleo

     Toni Aleo always releases incredible books, so this one was no different. It was so different from her other series but still had that magical secret ingredient that made me fall totally in love with Baylor and Jayden's story. There was so much chemistry and these characters were clearly made for each other. Additionally, the storyline was so unique and refreshing to read about. Read my full review here.


5.
Moonlight on Nightingale Way by Samantha Young

    Out of all 10 books listed, this is my favorite one. This is the last book in the On Dublin Street series, which is a series that means so much to me as it was the first romance I ever fell in love with. And Samantha Young put everything she had into this book and it was perfection. The characters were so strong and dynamic individually and together they were electric. There was so much emotion and love in this book, not only between Logan and Grace, but with the other couples in the series. This book was more than I could have wanted in the finale to such a beautiful series. Read my full review here.


6.
Ride Steady by Kristen Ashley

     Obviously Kristen Ashley made in on my list because she a freaking romance wizard. I literally love every single book she has released (and that's a lot of books), and this one was no different. This book was a true love story. Not clichéd or sappy, but raw and emotional. Joker and Carissa went so well together and they just made me so happy. I adore this book so much and I'm probably going to reread after writing this. Read my full review here.


7.
Him by Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy

     This is probably the best author collaboration book I've ever read. This story was so realistic and when I finished it, I just wanted more. Wes and Jamie were absolutely perfect together and just completed each other. Their story was hot, emotional, raw, and beautiful. For being a realistic romance, this book was original and it just sucked me in. By now, I have read this book about 15 times, not exaggerating. Read my full review here.


8.
Until Jax by Aurora Rose Reynolds

     I love the Until series and the amazingness continues to this book. One of the main reasons I loved this book so much was because of Hope. Jay and Ellie were fabulous together, but the three of them being a family melted my heart and I loved. There was so much humor and fun in this book along with a lot of love, both the romantic and familial and I thought that was so beautiful. Along with all the other characters and the hints of books to come, I can't wait to see what comes out in the new year.


9.
Untamed by S.C. Stephens

     When going into this book, I had no idea that it was going to make me cry and fall in love with Griffin. Griffin and Anna's story touched me so much and I loved being able to finally see who both of them really were aside from Kiera and Kellan's points of view. This is a really emotional read and very raw and it's definitely one of the best written books of the year. S.C. Stephens did a seriously incredible job of writing this story. This book is my favorite in the series and I seriously recommend buying it and reading it all the way through. 


10.
November 9 by Colleen Hoover

     And she does it again. This book was so unique, not predictable at all, and just sucked me into the story as if I was right there with Ben and Fallon. It was written very interestingly with the time gaps, that Colleen Hoover executed perfectly. The characters were both very dynamic and there's definitely more than meets the eye with them, and it was very exciting finding out their pasts and how they connected with each other's. The biggest theme in this book was the emotion. This story wasn't a straight forward romance, but was intertwined and complicated, and the entire time you are on the roller coaster with Ben and Fallon. Read my full review here.


     Well there you go. Those are my top 10 favorite books that I read this year. Each one has touched me and means a lot to me, so I really do recommend reading them. I am so excited to see what new books will be coming out in 2016 by these authors and all the other wonderful authors are there. I hope everyone has a great New Years, and feel free to let me know your favorite books of the year down below.


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xxo,
A