Tag: Melissa West

Guest Review: No Falling Allowed by Melissa West

Posted July 18, 2016 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: No Falling Allowed by Melissa WestReviewer: Tracy
No Falling Allowed (The Not Allowed #2) by Melissa West
Series: The Not Allowed #2
Published by Entangled Embrace
Publication Date: July 18th 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
three-half-stars

My life just went South…

Twenty-four hours. That’s how long it took my life to flip upside down.

Wake up in bed alone after the best night of my life? Check.

Get fired instead of the promised promotion? Check.

Wealthy parents cut me off when I refuse to follow their path for my life? Check.

Now I’m in Cricket Creek, SC—a place where no New Yorker belongs—disowned and broke, with a new job that I can’t mess up. Oh yeah, and staring at my one-night stand, who happens to be the complete opposite of my type.

Southern.

Cocky.

Bartender.

Noah Hunter never should have made it back to my apartment in NYC, and I definitely shouldn’t be in his small town. But fate had another plan. Or a horrible sense of humor.

Who knew Mr. Wrong could feel so right…

Grace Soaring is pissed when she sees one of the wait staff at one of her Met events drinking at the bar.  He’s supposed to be working!  She heads over to confront him and they exchange words.  He actually ends the conversation inviting her to a bar where he’ll be bartending later.  She refuses but he just gives her a sexy smirk. Her friend Janey ends up arranging to meet friends at that bar and next thing you know Grace is chatting up Mr. Sexy aka Hunter.  He walks her home, one thing leads to another and they end up in bed.  It was amazing for both of them but when Hunter gets a call in the middle of night telling him that his young brother, who is guardian of, is in the ER he hightails it out of Grace’s apartment without leaving a note.

Grace is understandably upset when she wakes in the morning as she felt such a connection with Hunter but manages to get to work, where she’s promptly fired.  Apparently there are layoffs and her friend Janey gets laid off as well.  When she complains to her father, who runs his own company and is a billionaire that she was let go he wasn’t upset.  In fact, when she questions him he admits that he talked to a friend of his on the board at the Met and made them let her go so that she could take her rightful place at Soaring Industries.  Grace wants nothing to do with the company but her father isn’t happy with that decision.  She loved event planning when she was at the Met so she plans on becoming a wedding planner which, of course, her father scoffs at.  He finally tells her that if she doesn’t work for him then he’s cutting her off.  He cancels her credit cards, closes her checking account and she’s pretty sure he’s planning on kicking her out of the apartment she lives in which he pays for.  Sure, she makes a living but she’s never had to live on a budget.  She’s not a snob, she’s just had a privileged life.  She sets out to make a life for herself by getting a job as a wedding planner and her first job is to take care of a wedding taking place in South Carolina.  When she walks into the bar/restaurant where the wedding will take place she sees Hunter.  Hunter is actually Noah Hunter and the owner of the bar, Hunter’s Place.

Noah has been thinking about Grace as much as she’s been thinking about him but he feels that they’re too different to be together.  He is also guardian of Jonah, his 9-year-old brother, and he doesn’t feel like he deserves a life as he feels responsible for the accident that killed their parents.  Noah finally starts thinking that maybe Grace can be with him but when Grace’s father shows up in his small SC town Noah thinks that maybe Grace is changing her tune about working at Soaring Industries and plans on leaving him.

This was a bit of a love at first sight story.  Not that they acknowledged that fact but from the moment Noah and Grace’s eyes met they each felt something.  Spending the night together kind of solidified it but neither of them admitted it to themselves.  Neither could get the other of their minds so by the time they met each other again it was almost impossible to stay away.  I loved how they were together even though they had their issues.

I do wish that the book had been just a tad longer so that the author could have shown us more of Noah and Grace spending time together.  Not that the time they spent was bad it just seemed a bit fast for my liking.  They were very different people and had a lot to work out but that didn’t seem to play into it.  Idk, I just needed…more.

I did like the story in the end and plan on going back to read book one in this series and read about Grace’s friend Cameron.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5

three-half-stars


Tagged: , , , , , , ,

Guest Review: Miles from Kara by Melissa West

Posted December 2, 2014 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Miles from Kara by Melissa WestReviewer: Tracy
Miles From Kara by Melissa West
Series: Charleston Haven #2
Also in this series: Pieces of Olivia
Published by Penguin
Publication Date: December 2nd 2014
Genres: New Adult
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

Kara Marcus is desperate to forget the past and move on. But she can’t escape her choices—especially when she finds herself falling in love…

Since the first day she stepped into her childhood Southern Baptist church, two truths have been engrained in Kara Marcus’s head: sex before marriage is bad and murder is a sin. And that’s why Kara can never forgive herself for what she did at the age of sixteen.

Now, as second semester of freshman year comes to a close, Kara has stood by her high school boyfriend, Ethan. But as they seem to grow further and further apart every day, Kara realizes that she has feelings for someone else: Ethan’s roommate Colt.

Suddenly, Kara’s clear-cut world shifts out of focus, and she’s torn between what her head tells her is right and what her heart is desperately pushing her to do—even if it means committing another undeniable sin...

 

Tracy’s review of Miles from Kara (Charleston Haven #2) by Melissa West

Kara has been dating Ethan for a pretty long time. Unfortunately she’s not really feeling it for him any longer – especially when his hot Aussie roommate is around. She knows it’s wrong and tries to stop herself from looking at Colt but she just can’t. She soon realizes that she is better friends with Ethan and breaks it off with him. He seems to pretty much feel the same so it’s relatively amiable.

Not long after that Kara finds herself with Colt as he’s staying in Charleston Haven for the summer. The pair hang out but soon can’t deny their attraction to each other any longer. Colt is such a good guy and careful with Kara. He doesn’t rush her with anything and he respects the hell out of her.

Kara spends the summer working at a non-profit clinic trying to decide if psychology is really what she wants her major to be. There she meets Maggie who is 16 and pregnant. At first Kara can’t even bring herself to look at Maggie because when Kara was 16 she too became pregnant. She had gotten an abortion against her wishes (forceful mother) and has a hard time dealing with Maggie but eventually latches on to Maggie rather than push her away. Despite everyone telling her that she’s getting too close to Maggie and too involved she seems to see Maggie as her second chance at having a baby.

The story is not only about the romance and relationship between Colt and Kara but also about Kara finding herself and dealing with the abortion that she had 3 years previously. She grows and learns about herself with the help of several different people – all people who have her best interests at heart.

I loved seeing Kara grow throughout the book. Was she stubborn and pig-headed at times? Oh, yeah, definitely. But she needed to ride that emotional rollercoaster in order to come out on the other side a better person. I also admired Colt for his clear-headedness and insight when it came to Kara. He truly saw her and could read her like a book. He was kind and patient (well, except for that one time) with her and I just adored his character (he was sexy as hell, too! :)).

We got to see Preston and Olivia in this book as well as some other characters that we met in book one of the series. I was happy to see that the friendships, fun and budding new relationships in this book. Based on what I read in this book the next one’s going to be a doozer but in the best possible way. I can’t wait.

Rating: 4 out of 5

This title is available from InterMix. You can buy it here or here in e-format. This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

four-stars


Tagged: , , , , , , , ,

Review: Fifty First Times Anthology

Posted July 22, 2014 by Rowena in Reviews | 0 Comments

Rowena’s review of Fifty First Times Anthology.

You always remember your first time…

Whether it’s the couple who decides not to go through with it, the two boys who finally aren’t ashamed, the newlyweds whose wedding night could very well be their last night together, the deaf pair who have no choice but to take body language to a new level–or, of course, the two young lovers fumbling and laughing, getting everything wrong. These are the memories that will never fade.

Join nineteen fantastic authors as they pull back the curtain and give you a peek inside that one intense moment in their characters’ lives when everything changes and nothing will ever be the same again.

Featuring stories from some of the hottest names in New Adult, Young Adult, and Romance including New York Times Bestselling authors J.Lynn/Jennifer Armentrout, Molly McAdams, Sophie Jordan, and Carrie Ryan.

NOTE: These stories are works of fiction. If you want to know about our first times, you’ll have to buy us a pet monkey first.

When I saw that J. Lynn had a story in this book, I was all about reading it.  I’m a fan of her Wait for You series and the story included in here was Britt and Ollie’s story of their first time.  I’m really hoping that this wasn’t it for them, that they were only a nice fling but after reading that the next book, Stay with Me, is not Britt’s book but Calla’s book, I’m glad.  Anyway, that is why I wanted to read this book but I read all of the stories in this book and there were some good ones and some that just didn’t do anything for me.

There were a lot of short stories in this book and I can’t think which book was my favorite.  I’m going to go through each story and jot down a few of my thoughts for each of them.

The Corner of First & Second by Gennifer Albin.

I liked this one.  It was cute story about two best friends who fell out of touch after a disastrous prom night who meet up after almost a year and reconnect.  I liked both Wes and Jac and thought their first time together was sweet.  This is probably one of my favorite reads in the entire anthology.

Daylight by Julie Cross

I’ve never read anything by Julie Cross but I’ve heard good things about her.  I wasn’t really feeling her addition to this anthology.  This short story is about a newlywed couple named Jack and Audrey. Audrey is the daughter of a preacher man and Jack is the mysterious tenant of the small apartment at the Church that her father preaches at.  They come into contact there and fall in love but I thought their story was too short to really get a feel for it so I didn’t really connect with either of the leads.  Oh, well.  I’m still curious about her other books.

A Little Too Scarred by Lisa Desrochers

This story is about a girl who has returned from Afghanistan, disfigured from a bomb that went off near her and killed her friend.  Before she was injured, she started growing closer to a guy that she went to high school with, named Rick.  Rick is two years older than her and used to date her sister’s friend. She was excited to come back home and meet him but now that she’s scarred up, she’s embarrassed and is pulling away from Rick but Rick isn’t having it.  He’s got no idea why she’s pulling away from him but he doesn’t give up on her and his persistence won me over.  My heart went out to Rene in this story because of what she went through but there were times when I wish she had more faith in Rick.  In the end, I liked it.

Once Bitten by Cole Gibsen

This is a story of a couple who fell out of contact with each other with no word.  The girl was left behind and the guy is back and wants to make things right.  I wasn’t too forgiving of Tanner.  I didn’t think there were enough pages to convince me that he was truly sorry for leaving without a word and I thought that Avery fell into his arms too soon, which is what we get for this being a short story but it still didn’t win me over.

Crash by Sophie Jordan

Hunter’s story! We met Hunter in Foreplay, he’s the guy that Pepper had a huge crush on.  But he’s not the guy that she ends up with.  In this short story, we meet Brooke.  The stripper that Hunter meets on a night out with the boys.  I won’t lie, the entire time that I was reading this book, I was singing, “I’m in love with a stripper” by T-Pain and it did make me laugh but really? This story was cute.  I adored Hunter and I liked Brooke.  They were cute together.

Under the Seryn Moon by Melissa Landers

This is Lyra and Kai’s story.  Their countries are at war with each other and to regain peace in the land, their fathers marry their kids to each other to keep it all in the family.  This short story follows Lyra and Kai after their married.  Lyra is scared and feels all alone and Kai is a mysterious stranger to her.  This story was cute and the only historical in the bunch of stories.  I liked both Kai and Lyra and even though I wished for more page time for these two, the pages we were given were good ones.  I liked this one.

How to be a Heartbreaker by Lauren Layne

Story of Annie and the guy that you don’t think she’s going to end up with at first.  Oh man, this is another story that I really liked.  With each passing chapter, I was thirsty for more and I was surprised at how quickly I switched camps from one guy to the next one.  The guy she ended up with was such a good fit for her that I was grinning like a crazy lady after I finished this one.  So cute!

Two in the Morning by Roni Loren

This is my first gay romance short story.  Besides Jules and Robin’s story from Suz Brockmann’s Troubleshooters series and while I loved their story, gay romances haven’t been anything that I read on the regular.  This story was cute and sweet.  Two best friends.  One gay, and one not…or so we’re led to believe until we find out, he’s not so straight.  When these two finally get together in the end, I smiled because I couldn’t help but think, “FINALLY”  Bates was a good guy and I was thrilled for him that Malcolm was not only gay but returned his feelings. Big happy face!

Believe in Me by J Lynn

Britt and Ollie’s story.  The story of their first time.  Ooh, the feels!  I’ve been wanting Britt and Ollie to end up together since I read Cam and Avery got together in Wait for Me.  If you read Be with Me, then you’ll remember when Britt and Ollie meet up at a party that Tess and Jase are at.  It’s before Jase and Tess get together so at the party, Tess gets pretty drunk and catches Jase with that other girl, Stephanie. Well, this story shows us what’s going on with Britt and Ollie.  And just like I knew I would, I loved it. So freaking cute.  My only complaint is that they don’t get a full novel…or do they? I hope so.

Sharing Firsts by Molly McAdams

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started this book.  I went into it with very low expectations because I hated the other book that I read by McAdams.  I was not a fan of that book, at all.  But this story was heaps better than Taking Chances…but saying that, I don’t think McAdams is for me.  This book was just okay, I didn’t read the other book featuring Kinlee and Jace so I didn’t understand what was going on but I thought their fight was silly and the way that Jace is portrayed as completely pissed off one minute and then does that quick switcheroo to completely in love again didn’t feel believable.

Strike Out by Myra McIntyre

This was another story that was just okay for me.  I didn’t connect with Liza at all, I wasn’t a fan of the way that she lumped all baseball players together and held “being a baseball player” against Ben for no reason other than past experiences with players that are not Ben.  Ben’s been nothing but a gentleman to her and she treats him like shit.  So when she finally decides to give him a chance, I rolled my eyes because she didn’t grovel nearly enough in apology to suit me.  I thought Ben was too good for Liza and when it ended, I still thought that.

This is My Sign by Hannah Moskowitz

I didn’t understand this story, or poem at all.  It was about two deaf kids who lost their virginity to each other before one of the deaf kids goes away forever.  And that’s it.  Meh.

Going for Broke by Lyla Payne

I think this was my absolute favorite story of the bunch.  I thought what Tressa did was completely adorable and brave.  You could tell that she had grown up from the last time that she saw Noel and I thought it was completely cool that she wanted one last chance to come clean about her true feelings for him, without an agenda of any kind.  She loved him and was still in love with him and she just wanted him to know before he got married.  My heart broke, my heart soared and then sighed all while reading this book.  So cute!

For the Sake of Science by Mark Perini

This was another story that I wasn’t a fan of.  I couldn’t connect with the main character, Luke mostly because I didn’t understand what was going on.  The character development didn’t do a thing to make me connect or even care what was happening with Luke and at the end, I was left thinking, “Alright, next.”  So yeah, this one didn’t work for me.

Love in an Elevator by Carrie Ryan

This is a love story about two strangers who get stuck in an elevator for hours and …fall in love.  Yeah, it was so implausible that it was hard for me to get into the story.  They met in an elevator and she’s completely soaked from being sent for food in the rain, with a broken umbrella.  So in the elevator, she’s soaking wet and the hot stranger sharing the elevator with her offers her his button down, she accepts, takes off ALL of her clothes and sits in the elevator with a complete stranger in nothing but his shirt.  No bra, no skirt, no PANTIES and she finds NOTHING wrong with it.

Yeah, not buying it.  So yep, this wasn’t for me.

Bunga, Bunga by Andrew Shaffer

Another gay hook up story? I’m not sure they were in love by the end of their story but they did end up enjoying each other’s company and it was cool.  Not much to the story but I was happy for the main character since he finally got to nail the guy that he’s always wanted to.  Go him! I feel bad because I forgot his name.

With the Lights On by Alessandra Thomas

This is a story about a girl Anna, who has body issues and her relationship with her boyfriend, Tal.  Tal loves her but because of some stuff that went down in her past, she doesn’t really believe that he loves her.  Well, she does but she doesn’t understand why. She’s not a skinny bitch, she’s got curves and she’s unsure of those curves.  Over the course of this short story, we see Anna come to be okay with her body.  This was cute but too short and I didn’t think that the characters developed completely to make me fall in love with them.  Still, it was okay.

Field Emotions by Melissa West

Oh, this was another cute story.  It features Blake and Summer, who have been really good friends since high school.  Blake is the big football star at their college and Summer is a nerd who is not a fan of watching Blake get hurt on the field.  Summer thinks that Blake is a big player but he’s anything but.  Oh man, I love the whole best friend to lovers bit and I thought West did a great job with these two.  They were adorable and when they finally did the deed, I grinned like a maniac.  So freaking cute!

Grind by Tracy Wolff

This was a short story about two lovers who have been a part for the last three years and are now reunited.  Gage and Dyani.  Their story was short and sweet and even though I wished for more, I still thought this was a cute one.

Overall, there was a shit load of stories but I wasn’t mad that I read them all.  I enjoyed some and I didn’t enjoy others but overall, it was a good mix of stories and I’m glad that I picked this up for review.

Overall grade: 4 out of 5

This book is available from Avon Impulse.  You can purchase it here or here in e-format.  This book was provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.


Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

What I Read Last Week

Posted July 16, 2014 by Tracy in Features | 0 Comments

Hey folks!

Sorry this is delayed this week.  I traveled by car on Friday to Vegas, then on Saturday to Denver then on Sunday to Overland Park, Kansas (just outside of Kansas City) to see my sister, brother-in-law and niece.  It was a long drive but my youngest was with me and we had a good time.  She’s a really great traveling companion so the time didn’t seem all that long. We’ll be here for 4 or 5 days then we’ll be moving on to Tennessee to see my parents. 🙂

Beautiful Colorado mountains

Since then my sister and I have been busy catching up even though I just saw her in May when she was visiting San Diego.  She had breast cancer and had a double mastectomy last year.  Then just a few weeks ago had to have a complete hysterectomy as she had a football size fibroid in her uterus.  The poor woman has been through a lot in the past year and still she’s doing really well.  She’s now completely cancer free!  Yay!

My sister is also an interior decorator and since she’s not able to work due to her recent surgery I helped her business partner do an “installation” yesterday.  It was pretty cool helping to decorate a person’s living room.  It turned out really well.  

Congratulations to the winners of the recent giveaways:
Martha L was the winner of the print copy of The Longest Night by Kara Braden
Tish D. was the winner of the digital copy of Napoleon by JC Mells.

So what I read last week (which was very little):. 

First for the week was Pieces of Olivia by Melissa West.  The story was a really good one about a girl dealing with going to college and dealing with a horrible accident that changed her life.  You can read my review here. 4 out of 5 

Next was Silver Wolf Clan by Tera Shanley.  This story was about a man who fights to save the life of a woman and ends up getting bitten by the creature he’s fighting and turns into a werewolf.  He has to deal with figuring it all out without any guidance.  He then sees the woman again and realizes that she is his mate and has to cope with keeping her safe.  It was a good story that I had a couple of issues with.  3.75 out of 5 (read for Book Binge)

Last for the week was Dangerous Territory by Emmy Curtis.  This is a novella that begins the Alpha Ops series.  The story is about two people who have a one night stand but then can’t stop thinking of each other.  Three years go by and then the man ends up having to save a reporter during a rescue and they get to meet again.  Unfortunately the man has no respect for reporters whatsoever and this causes a ton of friction between the two. It was a good story and I really liked it. 4 out of 5

My Book Binge reviews that posted last week:
One Night with a Quarterback by Jeanette Murray
Two for One by Ann B. Harrison
Poplar Place by Ellen Butler   

Happy Reading!


Tagged: , , , , , ,

Review: Pieces of Olivia by Melissa West

Posted July 15, 2014 by Tracy in Reviews | 2 Comments

Review: Pieces of Olivia by Melissa WestReviewer: Tracy
Pieces of Olivia by Melissa West
Series: Charleston Haven #1
Also in this series: Miles From Kara
Published by Penguin
Publication Date: July 15th 2014
Genres: New Adult
Buy on Amazon | Barnes & Noble
Goodreads
four-stars

Olivia Warren used to be a normal girl with a bright future. But on one fated night, everything changed.

Hiding the scars of her past up her sleeves, Olivia transfers her enrollment from Columbia University to The College of Charleston, determined to pursue her own dreams for the first time in her life. She intends to allow herself a bit of alone time to heal... that is, until she meets Preston.

Preston is best friends with her roommate, completely hot, and off-limits. But the chemistry between them is instantaneous—and as the pair begins to spend more time with one another, their feelings for each other build into something undeniable, something powerful enough to heal Olivia’s deepest scars. Olivia tries to put her own past behind her and trust Preston, but she discovers that his past might be more present than she ever bargained for…

Olivia is going to college. Not the college her parents would like her to go to, unfortunately, but one she feels will work best with her life. She meets her roommate Kara and Kara’s best friend, Preston, almost immediately, and they all are fast friends. Olivia is attracted to Preston but as he’s a serial dater and never stays with a girl very long she tries to steer clear.

Olivia obviously has some issues. She sees a therapist about an event that happened in her life that destroyed those she loved and she’s dealing with incredible guilt. As she tries to work through it all with her therapist she finds herself falling in love with Preston. Unfortunately they each have secrets and when those come out it may tear them all apart.

Pieces of Olivia was a very emotional story. From moment one I was invested in Olivia and what she was going through. We don’t find out the entire story until later in the book but we’re given enough hints to piece it together. It’s not a pretty picture and the times in the book that Olivia is remembering the event that changed her life, and those involved, honestly had me in tears.

While Olivia is trying to deal with her past so that she can see a future for herself, she’s falling in love with Preston. She tries not to but he’s a really great person. Ok, he wasn’t great to some girls as he never felt an emotional connection with them, but with Olivia he’s perfect. I liked their time together and how it affected both of their lives in a positive way. I could tell that there was a huge secret that Kara and Preston were keeping from Olivia. The pair had been friends for a long time so that wasn’t too unusual. When that secret came out I was surprised and a bit disappointed in Olivia’s reaction. I was happy she finally considered her actions and realized how overblown they were.

Rose is Olivia’s therapist and played a pretty big role in the book. I can’t say I cared for Rose’s therapy methods but I loved that she was always there for Olivia no matter when she called or came by.

The story is about love, friendship, loss, trust and honesty and exactly how those things affect and change our lives, for better or worse, daily. I enjoyed the story and I’m looking forward to reading more in this series.

Rating: 4 out of 5

Melissa West

four-stars


Tagged: , , , , , , , ,