Tag: Tina’s Reviews

Guest Review: If I Didn’t Know Better by Barbara Freethy

Posted April 20, 2017 by Tina R in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: If I Didn’t Know Better by Barbara FreethyReviewer: Tina
If I Didn't Know Better by Barbara Freethy
Series: Callaways #9
Published by Fog City Publishing LLC
Publication Date: August 26th, 2015
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 323
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four-stars

The New York Times bestselling family series The Callaways continues with the first book in the Callaway Cousins Series, IF I DIDN’T KNOW BETTER, another heartwarming and page-turning romance by #1 NYT Bestselling Author Barbara Freethy.

Mia Callaway thought she had the perfect guy and the perfect job…until she didn’t. After a run of bad luck, Mia is looking for an escape, so she agrees to go to Angel’s Bay to clean out her aunt’s house. She has no idea that the wounded soldier next door and his adorable, but also wounded, daughter are about to change her definition of perfect. Add in stolen art, a family secret, and a town where miracles can happen, and Mia’s escape turns out to be the greatest adventure of her life.

Although I have read a couple of books by Barbara Freethy in the past, I don’t recall that any of them were part of The Callaways Series. To be completely honest, I usually don’t try to invest in series books as I find that I tend to get bored after awhile. But, of all the series books that HAVE captured my attention, I have read every single one in the series because they are just that good. After reading If I Didn’t Know Better, I feel like I need to start at the beginning and get to know the Callaways better!

I immediately found myself falling in love with Angel’s Bay. Barbara made this town so welcoming and real, and then filled it full of interesting and engaging people that I could only wish I had in my own town. There is nothing better than finding a story that is set in a charming locale and reading about characters that you wish could be your friends. These are the elements that make me want to tackle an entire series.

If I Didn’t Know Better, from my understanding, is the 9th book in The Callaways Series, and the 1st book of The Callaway Cousins. The book was a quick and enjoyable read that flowed seamlessly and had a good storyline that kept me interested.

I would like to thank The Barbara Freethy Review team and Melissa S. for giving me the opportunity to review this book. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who enjoys reading light-hearted romances with likeable and realistic characters. My TBR stack is already increasing with many of Barbara’s books as I look forward to learning more about the Callaways!

I really enjoyed this sweet romance. I give this one a 4 out of 5 stars.

four-stars

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Guest Review: Safe With Me by K.L. Slater

Posted January 25, 2017 by Tina R in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Safe With Me by K.L. SlaterReviewer: Tina
Safe With Me by K.L. Slater
Published by Bookouture
Publication Date: November 3, 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Suspense, Thrillers, Women's Fiction
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four-stars

Thirteen years ago someone did something very bad to Anna. Now it’s her turn to get even …

Anna lives a solitary existence, taking solace in order and routine. Her only friend is the lonely old lady next door. She doesn’t like to let people to get too close – she knows how much damage they can do.

Then one ordinary day Anna witnesses a devastating road accident and recognises the driver as Carla, the woman who ruined her life all those years ago. Now it’s Anna’s chance to set things straight but her revenge needs to be executed carefully …

First she needs to get to know Liam, the man injured in the accident. She needs to follow the police investigation. She needs to watch Carla from the shadows…

But as Anna’s obsession with Carla escalates, her own secrets start to unravel. Is Carla really dangerous or does Anna need to worry about someone far closer to home?

A compelling, gripping psychological thriller, perfect for fans of The Girl on the Train and The Sister.

I found Safe With Me by K.L Slater on NetGalley when I was looking for a new thriller after reading a couple of lighthearted holiday books. I felt like I needed something with a little more substance after being in happily- ever- after land for awhile. So I read the description and was definitely interested.

I always like to read a couple of summaries on a particular book that I am about to read to give me an idea of if I really want to read it or not. I also like to check a couple reviews from people that I am familiar with on Goodreads or LIbrarything just to see what their views are as well. The book got pretty good reviews from a lot of folks on Goodreads, so I submitted my request and was glad I got selected.

Safe With Me puts you inside the head of a woman who is slowly surrendering her grip on reality, and trust me, it’s kind of a scary place to be. The story line is fast-paced for the most part and is certainly full of twists and turns. There are parts of the book that are pretty intense and the author definitely knows how to keep you guessing. I was surprised to find that the book is actually K.L. Slater’s debut novel.The writing is spot-on, with interesting, well-developed characters that all seem to be harboring their own secrets. Although I can’t say the majority of them were likable, I don’t feel they were intended to be anyway. I felt that the book had a good flow and was a fairly quick read as well.

I finished the book knowing that I would definitely be watching for more from this new author. If this is her first offering to the literary world, I can only imagine what she will come up with next. K.L. Slater did a great job of keeping me guessing, and from what I saw from the several other reviews that I had read, I was not the only one! That is always a sign of a good thriller. A story loses a lot of it’s power when the reader has it figured out by the middle of the book.

I would like to thank the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of this book to review. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who loves a good thriller.

four-stars

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Guest Review: Tell Me No Lies by Lisa Hall

Posted December 28, 2016 by Tina R in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Tell Me No Lies by Lisa HallReviewer: Tina
Tell Me No Lies by Lisa Hall
Published by Carina
Publication Date: October 20th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Suspense, Thrillers, Women's Fiction
Pages: 183
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four-stars

From the bestselling author of Between You and Me don’t miss Lisa Hall’s new gripping thriller.

Don’t. Trust. Anyone.

It was supposed to be a fresh start.

A chance to forget the past and embrace the future.

But can you ever really start again?

Or does the past follow you wherever you go…

I have to admit that even though I enjoy many different genres of books, I always tend to gravitate towards women’s fiction and psychological thrillers. I saw Tell Me No Lies on NetGalley and after reading the summary, I submitted my request with my fingers crossed. I had heard a little bit about the author, Lisa Hall, on Goodreads because of her book Between You and Me. One of my “friends” had read it and gave it five stars. So, when I saw that I got approved for a review copy of this one I was pretty stoked. By the way, I purchased Between You and Me on Amazon right before I wrote this review.

I have to tell you that I started this book shortly after I received it and finished it pretty quickly as well. The only problem was that I read it late one night after everybody else went to sleep and my menopausal insomnia chose to keep me up. Yep, you can always count on me for a little TMI! Anyway, being a slightly paranoid person anyway, ( I mean how many times can you check to see if a door is locked??) I started reading and all was good. Well about a third of the way into it, I started getting that creepy vibe and every pop and crack of the house suddenly became somebody coming to get me! Not cool! So, fyi, if you get spooked easy, read this one during the day.

I really did enjoy this book. It was intense read and kept me powering through it because I was determined to finish it before I went to bed. As you read this book you might get that feeling that maybe you read it before, but you probably just watched a movie that was very much like it. I pretty much had it figured out by the last couple of chapters, but I still had to read on as you never know if the author is going to switch it up on you or not! But I have to tell you….I don’t really know how I feel about the ending. I mean I’m not sure if it was so unexpected that I am just freaked out by it or if I hated it. To me it was like driving 85 down the highway and slamming on your brakes! I’m sure Lisa Hall did that on purpose and that it was her intention to leave us all going “WHAT????”. At least I HOPE that was her intention..

I thought this was a great book. It had everything that a really good psychological thriller should have. Well….except that ending. But I will leave that up to you to decide for yourself. I am still on the fence about it. Great book – bizarre ending. Not gonna lie.

I would like to thank the publisher and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of this book in return for my honest review. I enjoyed it and think that if the summary sounds interesting you should give it a try. It’s a relatively quick read and only took a couple of hours from start to finish.

four-stars

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Guest Review: Evelyn, After by Victoria Helen Stone

Posted December 26, 2016 by Tina R in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Evelyn, After by Victoria Helen StoneReviewer: Tina
Evelyn, After by Victoria Helen Stone
Published by Lake Union Publishing
Publication Date: November 1st 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Women's Fiction
Pages: 247
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three-stars

Evelyn Tester is sleepwalking through her suburban life—until a late-night phone call startles her awake. Her husband, a prestigious psychiatrist, has been in an accident. And he isn’t alone.

Suddenly Evelyn’s world isn’t as tidy as she thought. And in the midst of it all is Juliette, not only her husband’s secret lover but also his patient. If news of the affair were to get out, it would ruin more than just Evelyn’s marriage. Although it’s a bitter pill for Evelyn to swallow, protecting her family means staying silent—even if, as she begins to discover, the night of the accident has consequences far more dangerous than the unmasking of an affair.

But the more Evelyn learns about Juliette’s picture-perfect life—complete with a handsome, unsuspecting husband—the more she yearns for revenge…and satisfaction. Her growing obsession fuels her rage, burning away her complacency. What will be left of her after it flames out?

I found Evelyn, After on NetGalley where I was looking for something that would bring me down from my “sugar-high” from over-indulging on a few too many syrupy Christmas stories. Now don’t get me wrong, I LOVE those kind of books during the holiday season, but a girl has to give herself a break once in awhile. The minute I saw that cover, the first thing I thought was “Oooh!! Somebody’s gonna get it!! It looked creepy BEFORE I read the blurb, and then when I found out the subject, I couldn’t wait to read it. So when I found that I had been given a review copy, I downloaded it immediately and got ready for a wild ride……or so I thought.

The first part of the book was exactly what I would expect in a thriller. We have a car crash and a woman filled with rage after discovering that her husband is having an affair. But, by the middle of the book and nobody is dead yet, I started wondering what the heck was going on. My only suspense at that point was wondering when all the crazy was gonna start!!

So was this woman pissed or what? Yep, she was, but she didn’t go all bat-shit crazy like I expected. Instead she did a little Facebook stalking and a couple “drive-by’s” (not THAT kind…) which is not exactly was I was expecting in a book that is supposed to be a psychological thriller.

What happened instead you ask? Well, our scorned wife lost quite a bit of weight in a relatively short amount of time and went out and bought herself a new wardrobe. Then she had a “revenge-affair” with the other woman’s husband. So… in finding out that her husband was a cheating bastard, she re-invents herself and becomes the woman that she had “lost”. Really???

At this point ,all I could think was “Wow”. And I didn’t mean this in a good way. I wanted her to be so enraged that she lost her damn mind on somebody! Instead I felt like I had just watched a made-for-television drama on WE!

Evelyn, After was NOT a psychological thriller in my humble opinion. Nobody went psycho, and I didn’t get so caught up in the suspense that I ate a whole bag of M&M’s or anything!! The book had some decent DRAMA, but it didn’t scare the bejeezus outta me like I had hoped. I didn’t hate the book, but it just wasn’t what I expected at all. And then to top it off, the ending totally killed it for me.

With all this being said, I thought this book was just okay. If it would’ve had a different cover and had not been labeled a psychological thriller, I might have still picked it, I just would’ve known what NOT to expect. I might have even rated it a bit higher.

I would like to thank NetGalley and the publisher for providing me with this advance ebook in return for an honest review. I would give this one 3 out of 5 stars.

three-stars

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Guest Review: Marry Me on Main Street by LuAnn Rice

Posted December 22, 2016 by Tina R in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Marry Me on Main Street by LuAnn RiceReviewer: Tina
Marry Me on Main Street by LuAnn McLane
Series: Cricket Creek #11
Published by Berkley
Publication Date: December 6th 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 304
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four-stars

In the latest Cricket Creek romance from the USA Today bestselling author of Wish Upon a Wedding, two people discover what it really takes to go after your heart’s desire...

In her small shop on Main Street, Susan Quincy sells handmade gifts and repurposed items. But she can’t part with the beautiful rocking chair she bought at an estate sale when its maker turns out to be Danny Mayfield. Even years later, Susan still cringes over how her handsome, popular high school crush only asked her to prom out of pity—or so she thinks...

Danny doesn’t know why Susan has avoided him for years, especially after the electric kiss they shared the night of prom. So when he learns that she wants him to craft more rocking chairs to sell at her shop, Danny can’t resist the chance to work on his passion and charm shy, beautiful Susan again—and this time, make it last...

LuAnn Rice has been a favorite of mine since I read Playing For Keeps, which is the first book in the series called Cricket Creek. It is the book that introduced to me this charming town filled with a cast of characters that you can’t help wanting to get to know. Since that time I have read three more in the series and am looking forward to reading the rest as well. They are all light-hearted, quick reads that are sure to bring a smile to the face of any fan of sweet, romantic comedies.

Marry Me On Main Street is the 11th book in the Cricket Creek series, and even though I have not yet read books 5 through 10, I did not feel that it took anything away from this cozy holiday story.

This book is exactly the kind that I always look forward to reading every year around the holidays. You can’t help but get into the holiday spirit while reading about this quaint little town filled with so many delightful characters.

If you love the holidays like I do and look forward to having a big TBR stack of Christmas reads, don’t forget to add Marry Me On Main Street to your list.

Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for allowing me a copy of this book for my honest review. I give this book 4 out of 5 Christmas Cookies!!!

four-stars

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