Author: Jen Frederick

Review: Downed by Jen Frederick

Posted December 1, 2016 by Rowena in Reviews | 4 Comments

Review: Downed by Jen FrederickReviewer: Rowena
Downed by Jen Frederick
Series: Gridiron #3
Also in this series: Jock Blocked
Published by Self-Published
Publication Date: December 1, 2016
Genres: New Adult
Pages: 300
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-half-stars

He’s the guy no one likes…

Despite winning two national championships, JR “Ace” Anderson was sent packing from his old school after losing the trust of his coach. At Southern U, he has a second chance to prove that his college legacy isn’t endless debauchery and selfishness. But his reputation precedes him, and his teammates offer a chilly welcome in the locker room. The one person who is willing to accept him is the very woman he should stay away from—his new coach’s daughter.

She’s the girl everyone loves…

Bryant Johnson’s only goal in life is to make others happy, even at her own expense. One look at her father’s new star quarterback, and she knows that Ace is her next project. With a reputation for being a “jerk whisperer”, Bryant has spent her last three years at college reforming sorry behavior and turning bad boys into the best boyfriends ever. In Ace, though, she’s met with surly resistance and a sizzling attraction she doesn’t expect. Fixing this wounded warrior will be her biggest challenge yet. Not falling for him will be even harder.

Between her big heart and his damaged one, a battle is ensuing. In this game of love, every defense will crumble.

Downed is the third book in Jen Frederick’s Gridiron series and it follows, Ace Anderson’s book. If you read the last book in this series, Jock Blocked then odds are, you weren’t a fan of Ace’s. With good reason, of course. Ace was an asshole. He did his best friend dirty and with friends like him, who needs enemies, am I right? 🙂

It’s a new year and for Ace Anderson, a new school as well. Ace transferred from Western to Southern and his new coach is hoping that he can lead the team to a championship and that’s what Ace plans to do. Ace has been at Southern for a few weeks now and hasn’t made any friends. He’s got two roommates that don’t include him in their plans, he hasn’t developed any relationships with any of his other teammates and he knows it’s because he’s an asshole. At a party, a girl named Bryant approaches him and before he knows what is what, she’s claimed his as her boyfriend and he just kind of falls in with her. It’s funny because she’s the girl that everyone loves and he’s the guy that nobody likes. Perfect pairing, right? 🙂 Things really take off after Bryant claims Ace and I’m happy to say that this book hit me in all the right places because I loved the heck out of this book.

So Ace’s main focus is playing football. He knows that he probably won’t be playing professional football so he’s focusing on making the most of his time playing football now. He’s not connecting with his receivers and any of his other teammates on and off the field and while they’re pulling wins out of their hats, the team chemistry still needs a lot of work.

Bryant is the coach’s daughter and when Ace finds out about that (all after the fact), he’s not interested in starting up a relationship with her. He’s been there, done that and he’s got a whole lot of regrets where that is concerned. He’s done with all of the drama from Western. He wants to start fresh here and while he never planned on going the girlfriend route (he likes sex, of course), the more time that he spends with Bryant, the more he likes her.

I really like Jen Frederick’s writing style. She writes realistic college romances that just hits me with all of the feels. I love her dialogue. It’s not cheesy. It’s not over the top. It’s just right for the characters and their age groups. I’m always drawn to her characters and it wasn’t any different in this one. Ace and Bryant were great characters that really leaped off the pages. Their personalities shined bright and I really fell in with everything going on. From Ace’s Dad’s shenanigans to Bryant’s issues with the her sister and all of that, I was right there with them through it all.

I really enjoyed getting to know Bryant. I thought she was a compelling character. I really connected with the way that loved to help others. She was genuinely caring and I adored the way that she grew to love Ace, in all of his asshole-ish ways. I really loved how loyal she was to Ace as well. Her attitude toward everyone from Western had me grinning because first and foremost, she was Ace’s girl.

Another thing that I really loved about this book was how Ace was redeemed without changing his personality completely. He was still the same asshole, just better. He was Ace 2.0 and by the end of the book, I had forgiven him for everything from before and still thought he was low key a jerk but I loved that he was Bryant’s asshole. They were cute and I’m curious to see who gets their story told next. This was a great addition to the Gridiron series. I loved the characters, the new ones, the old ones and I’m excited for more. Kudos to Jen Frederick for writing another winner for me. 🙂

Grade: 4.75 out of 5

four-half-stars


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Review: Paper Princess by Erin Watt

Posted April 20, 2016 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Paper Princess by Erin WattReviewer: Rowena
Paper Princess by Erin Watt, Jen Frederick, Elle Kennedy
Series: The Royals #1
Also in this series: Broken Prince (The Royals #2)
Published by Self-Published
Publication Date: April 4, 2016
Genres: Young Adult
Pages: 370
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

From strip clubs and truck stops to southern coast mansions and prep schools, one girl tries to stay true to herself.

These Royals will ruin you…

Ella Harper is a survivor—a pragmatic optimist. She’s spent her whole life moving from town to town with her flighty mother, struggling to make ends meet and believing that someday she’ll climb out of the gutter. After her mother’s death, Ella is truly alone.

Until Callum Royal appears, plucking Ella out of poverty and tossing her into his posh mansion among his five sons who all hate her. Each Royal boy is more magnetic than the last, but none as captivating as Reed Royal, the boy who is determined to send her back to the slums she came from.

Reed doesn’t want her. He says she doesn’t belong with the Royals.

He might be right.

Wealth. Excess. Deception. It’s like nothing Ella has ever experienced, and if she’s going to survive her time in the Royal palace, she’ll need to learn to issue her own Royal decrees.

Two of my favorite New Adult authors wrote a book together and I have been anxious to get my hands on it ever since I found out. I’ve been hearing good things about this book everywhere that I go and I went into it thinking that I was going to get one of those guilty pleasure books that is filled to the brim with drama and memorable characters. I’m happy to say that that is exactly what I got.

Ella Harper’s Mom just died of cancer and she’s never met her Dad so she’s on her own. Her plan is to work as much as she can to scrape by, graduate from high school and stay under the radar so that she doesn’t find herself in the foster care. She just wants to work hard, get good grades and hopefully land a scholarship for college. She wants a life she can be proud of and she’ll do whatever it takes to get it. If it means that she has to work as a stripper to make money than that’s what she’ll do. Everything was going according to plan until Callum Royal shows up and ruins everything.

When Callum offers Ella a chance at a bright future, Ella decides to go for it because what else she does she have to lose? She was prepared to keep her head down and get through the next two years with the promise of that future she always wanted in reach but she wasn’t prepared for life as a Royal.

When Ella is introduced to Callum’s five sons, she wasn’t expecting them to hate her on sight but whatever, she’s a survivor. She’ll survive anything they throw her way and she’ll do it with a smile on her face and I think that, above anything else was what I really liked about this book. How strong Ella was. She wasn’t a weak flower who let others get away with treating her like shit. She woke up each morning and just handled her shit. It didn’t matter how hurt she was or how much she was grieving, she handled her shit and made no apologies for it. She faced down the bullies and the whispers behind her back and she just went about her business.

Reed Royal was a mystery that I wanted to solve. I can’t wait to delve into his story in the next book. I wanted to know everything about him and his brothers. What in the hell happened to make him act the way that he does? Because hands down, Reed Royal was a complete dick to Ella when she first shows up in town. The shit that him and Easton did to her made me want to punch their lights out but as the story continues, for some reason (I have no idea what reason) your heart softens toward him. There’s a story behind all of his sneers and his cold attitude toward everything and everyone and I want to know it all. The Royals are an interesting bunch and I want to know everything about all of them. Easton, the twins and Gideon. What in the world is Gideon’s story? Who is the girl that Easton is in love with but can’t have? What’s the real deal behind Reed and that cliffhanger? I know there is one and I’m so bloody excited for the next book.

There’s a lot of stuff packed into this book. Lots of drama, lots of angst and a whole lot of attitude but Erin Watt did a great job of making room in the story for it all. It didn’t feel like too much, too soon. The story at the center (Ella finding her way in this new world and trying to navigate this new attraction to Reed Royal) doesn’t suffer with all of the other additions to the overall story being told. Whoever said that this book was a mix of Cruel Intentions and Gossip Girl hit the description right on the head because that’s exactly what this book reminded me off. It had the best parts of both movie and TV show and I’m wrapped up in it all. I need more…now. If you’re looking for a book with a deliciously cruel and interesting cast of character, look no further. This is for you. 🙂

WARNING: THERE IS A CLIFFHANGER IN THIS BOOK!

4.25 out of 5

four-stars


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Review: Unrequited by Jen Frederick

Posted February 16, 2016 by Rowena in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: Unrequited by Jen FrederickReviewer: Rowena
Unrequited by Jen Frederick
Series: Woodlands #4
Also in this series: Undeclared, Unraveled, Unspoken, Unraveled

Publication Date: April 13th 2015
Genres: New Adult
Pages: 300
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

Winter Donovan loves two things: her sister and her sister's ex boyfriend. She's spent her whole life doing the right thing except that one time, that night when Finn O'Malley looked hollowed out by his father's death. Then she did something very wrong that felt terribly right.

Finn can't stop thinking about Winter and the night and he'll do anything to make her a permanent part of his life, even if it means separating Winter from the only family she has.

Their love was supposed to be unrequited but one grief stricken guy and one girl with too big of a heart results in disastrous consequences.

I’m still all about the Jen Frederick right now. I can’t get enough of her stuff and Unrequited was another great story that I fell right in with from the very beginning.

We finally get Finn’s book. Finn has been slowly spiraling out of control, drowning in booze and babes ever since his father died. He hasn’t taken the news of his father’s death too well but one hook up with Winter Donovan and he’s starting to sit up and take notice of just what he’s doing. All of the meaningless hook ups, all of the booze and all around irresponsible behavior isn’t doing much for him and seeing Winter again, hanging out with her again has changed Finn’s outlook on everything but it’s a little too late to come to that discovery because now that he’s decided he wants Winter…she’s not on board with his plan.

Winter has had a crush on Finn ever since she was a teenager and he was her sister’s boyfriend. It’s not anything she thought would ever become something so she was safe in her crush but it’s been years since she’s seen him and she just couldn’t help herself…she had to have one night with him. Never mind that she’s still thinking about that one night with Finn weeks later. Never mind that he seems to want to pick up where they left off. She can’t think about any of those things because Ivy comes first and she needs her right now.

Oh man, this book was full of angst and a whole lot of swoony Finn things. I wasn’t sure how I’d feel about the whole ex-girlfriend’s little sister thing but Frederick won me over with Finn and Winter. I adored both of them and connected with Winter more than I thought I would. Her whole family loyalty and going above and beyond for her family (even when they weren’t worthy of that loyalty) was well written. I connected with her struggle to keep her family happy at the same time she was trying to be happy for herself with a guy that she had big time feelings for.

I loved seeing how constant Finn tried to be with Winter. No matter what was thrown at the two of them (and there was a lot of things thrown at them), he proved time and time again that she was first wife. She struggled with her feelings for Finn because of her sister but she wasn’t dumb about them. I loved that Finn understood her struggle and wanted to be there for her. He wanted to put her first and ugh, OMG I loved Finn.

Finn was everything I was hoping he would be. He was strong and steady and he knew what he wanted. I loved that his love for Winter never wavered and I loved seeing him win her over.

Winter was a great heroine, it would have been easy to get mad at her for the way she kept Finn at arms length for a bit but I understood why she did what she did. I understood what motivated her but when she finally wises up to her dirty rat of a sister, I was glad that she stood up for herself. I was glad that she was finally living her life and not one that would make things easier for her sister.

This was an emotional book for me and I really enjoyed it. I loved seeing the Woodlands gang, I loved seeing Finn and Adam’s friendship and I really loved the romance between Finn and Winter. Their love wasn’t perfect but it was still pretty great. I can’t wait for Adam’s book and I’m mighty curious to see which girl he ends up with….those love scenes are going to be interesting considering Adam’s choice of jewelry. Haha.

Grade: 4 out of 5

Reading Order:

Undeclared
Unspoken
Unraveled
Unrequited

four-stars


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Review: Unraveled by Jen Frederick

Posted February 15, 2016 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Unraveled by Jen FrederickReviewer: Rowena
Unraveled by Jen Frederick
Series: Woodlands #3
Also in this series: Undeclared, Unraveled, Unspoken, Unrequited

Publication Date: January 20th 2014
Genres: New Adult
Pages: 280
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

From the USA Today Bestselling Author Jen Frederick comes another sexy romance in the Woodlands series.

Twenty-five-year-old Sgt. Gray Phillips is at a crossroads in his life: stay in the Marine Corps or get out and learn to be a civilian? He’s got forty-five days of leave to make up his mind but the people in his life aren’t making the decision any easier. His dad wants him to get out; his grandfather wants him to stay in. And his growing feelings for Sam Anderson are wreaking havoc with his heart…and his mind. He believes relationships get ruined when a Marine goes on deployment. So now he’s got an even harder decision to make: take a chance on Sam or leave love behind and give his all to the Marines.

Twenty-two year old Samantha Anderson lost her husband to an IED in Afghanistan just two months after their vows. Two years later, Sam is full of regrets—that she didn’t move with her husband to Alaska; that she allowed her friends to drift away; that she hasn’t taken many chances in life. Now, she’s met Gray and taking a risk on this Marine could be her one opportunity to feel alive and in love again. But how can she risk her heart on another military man who could share the same tragic fate as her husband?

Unraveled is the third book in the Woodlands series and it was another enjoyable story. I’ve been reading a lot of Frederick books lately and I’m really enjoying everything that I’m reading so I’m hoping she doesn’t ever stop writing fantastic books.

This book follows Noah and Bo’s Marine brother Gray as he figures out his life and where his life goes from here. He’s at a crossroads and he’s trying to figure out if he’s going to stay in the Marines and re-enlist or get out and figure something else out. He’s got some leave time so he takes off for the Woodlands to think things through. He wasn’t expecting Sam Anderson though.

Sam Anderson lost her husband to the war two years ago and she wants to move on with her life. She’s done waiting for Will to come home, she’s done playing the grieving widow so when she meets Gray Phillips, she starts to feel again. She feels alive and the more time she spends with him, the more she comes into her own.

I enjoyed Gray’s character before Unraveled so I was pretty excited to finally dig into his own book. I was not disappointed in his story. There were times when I wanted to kick him in the nuts for being a jackass. He wasn’t the perfect hero who did all of the right things and made all the right decisions but I didn’t even care, when all was said and done, I adored him. He was a great hero to Sam and he more than made up for his boneheadedness. I loved that he had Bo and Noah to steer him in the right direction where his relationship with Sam was concerned. I will say that after I read the first love scene between Gray and Sam, I texted Ames and told her that I wanted to bang Gray because ….HOT DAMN! He put it down for Sam. Haha.

There were times when I wanted to shake some sense into Sam as well but I think overall, their imperfections made me like them both even more. Their stories and their romance was fun and perfect for what I was in the mood for. I loved, loved, LOVED the way that Gray was trying to win Sam back and I just love how their love for each other came around. It was a fun romance with an emotional pull as well and I enjoyed it.

I definitely recommend.

4 out of 5

Reading Order:

Undeclared
Unspoken
Unraveled
Unrequited

four-stars


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Review: Jock Blocked by Jen Frederick

Posted February 15, 2016 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Review: Jock Blocked by Jen FrederickReviewer: Rowena
Jock Blocked by Jen Frederick
Series: Gridiron #2
Published by Self-Published
Publication Date: February 11, 2016
Genres: New Adult
Pages: 300
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
five-stars

She’s always played it safe…

College junior Lucy Washington abides by one rule—avoid risk at all costs. She’s cautious in every aspect of her life, from her health, to her mock trial team, to the boring guys she dates. When a brash, gorgeous jock walks into the campus coffeeshop and turns his flirt on, Lucy is stunned by the force of attraction. For the first time ever, she’s willing to step out of her comfort zone, but can she really trust the guy who’s determined to sweep her off her feet?

He’s always played around…

Entering his last year of college eligibility, linebacker Matthew "Matty" Iverson has the team captaincy in his sights. And it’s his for the taking, if he can convince his quarterback Ace Anderson to give up the starting position. Luckily, Matty already has an edge—the hottie he’s lusting over just happens to be Ace’s childhood best friend. Getting Lucy on his side and in his bed? Hell yeah. Matty is more than confident he can have both, but when he falls hard for Lucy, it’s time for a new game plan: convince the woman of his dreams that she’s not sleeping with the enemy.

This is the second book in the Gridiron series and I’ve got to say that Jen Frederick is really coming into her own as a writer. Her writing just keeps getting better and better with each new release and I am one happy camper because of it.

I read this book in one sitting and then because I wasn’t ready to let go of these characters (even though it was almost 3am on a week night), I bought another copy of Sacked because my iPad died and I didn’t have a copy of the book on my phone…and then as if that wasn’t enough, I picked up the Woodlands series back up and have pretty much been glomming all of Jen Frederick’s back list because I can’t get enough of her stuff. All because I loved this book so much.

So Jock Blocked follows Matty Iverson, the linebacker for Western University as he tries to get the girl. He’s having a hard time of it because 1) the risk assessment isn’t in his favor and 2) her best friend has warned her off of him saying he’s bad news (what a hater) so it’s not looking good for Matty. It’s not like that’s going to stop Matty from trying to win her over because what hard-headed athlete would give up?

Not Matty.

Lucy Washington is a stickler for rules and risk. Her life kind of demands that she minimize any and all risks. She has to follow a strict diet because she’s diabetic and she’s not all that wild about getting her heart broken by a big time player, no matter how hot he is. It doesn’t matter if she was interested in Matty Iverson anyway because she’s got a pact with her best friend Ace. Ace is the starting Quarterback for the Western University Warriors and is one of Matty’s teammates. Luce and Ace have a pact that Ace won’t hook up with any of Lucy’s roommates if she doesn’t hook up with any of his teammates. It’s served them well and Lucy doesn’t have any plans to break that pact until Matty turns the charm on extra high.

They both have their own things that they’re battling over the course of the story and I found both of their conflicts interesting and I just gobbled this book right up.

Coach is looking at Matty to be a leader on the team, to be a Captain but in order for Matty to get the captaincy, he has to get their starting Quarterback Ace to switch positions and be a safety. The team is coming off a national championship and the star Quarterback isn’t going to want to give up his position to a incoming freshman but if Matty wants to be Captain, he better make that happen and he better find a way to make sure that everyone is good with that decision.

Talk about rock and a hard place for Matty. He knows that his defense will follow his lead on this but the offense is a different story. This whole thing was interesting to me because it wasn’t easy for Matty, because 1) he is not a fan of Ace and 2) Ace is Lucy’s best friend. He’s in the dog house no matter what he decides to do.

This was such a fun book. The romance was great, the characters were awesome and it just too stinkin’ cute. I really liked the way that Frederick wrote this story. Everything was dealt with but not in a lazy way. Frederick did a great job of pulling emotion after emotion out of me. She kept me on my toes and I connected with each and every single one of her characters…even Ace and he pissed me the freak off. I have every confidence that fans of sports romances will enjoy this book. I did. I laughed, I swooned. I rolled my eyes and when all was said and done, I was completely satisfied. This was a damn good book and I cannot wait for the next book in this series.

Grade: 4.75 out of 5

Reading Order:

Sacked
Jock Blocked

five-stars


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