Publisher: Entangled Embrace

Review: Getting Lucky Number Seven by Cindi Madsen

Posted March 21, 2019 by Rowena in Reviews | 1 Comment

This month’s reading suggestion for the TBR Challenge was about choosing your favorite trope to read and I have a lot of favorites but I chose the best friend’s to lovers trope because that’s in the top of the tops list and this book fit the bill perfectly.

Review: Getting Lucky Number Seven by Cindi MadsenReviewer: Rowena
Getting Lucky Number Seven by Cindi Madsen
Series: Taking Shots #1
Publisher: Entangled, Entangled Embrace
Publication Date: April 28, 2015
Format: Audiobook
Source: Audible Escape
Point-of-View: Alternating First
Genres: New Adult
Pages: 363
Length: 6 hours, 32 minutes
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Reading Challenges: Rowena's 2019 GoodReads Challenge, Rowena's 2019 New to Me Challenge, Rowena's 2019 TBR Challenge
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Series Rating: four-stars

What's your lucky number?

Lyla Wilder is done being the shy, chemistry nerd extraordinaire. While every other college student is out having fun, Lyla is studying. With her cat. Well, she's played it "safe" quite enough, thank you. So she creates a "College Bucket List"―with item #7 being a night of uninhibited, mind-blowing sex...

But she needs some help from her man-whore best friend.

Hockey player Beck Davenport thought Lyla's transformation would be subtle. Man, was he wrong. With every item she ticks off, Beck finds himself growing seriously hot for his sweet, brainiac best friend. And if he's not careful, he'll end up risking their friendship in order to convince Lyla that he might just be her lucky #7...

Getting Lucky Number Seven is the first book in the Taking Shots series by Cindi Madsen and this book has been sitting on my TBR list for years. Ames brought this to my attention and I remember her telling me that she enjoyed it so I purchased it not too long after that and then I never touched it. When I was browsing the Audible Romance Package titles, I came across this series and knew that I was going to read this one finally so I downloaded the audiobook and listened to the entire thing one day at work. I haven’t read anything by Cindi Madsen before but I was looking forward to reading her and I’m happy to report that I liked this one and will definitely be reading more from this author.

This book follows two best friends, Beck and Lilah as they grow closer when Lilah decides to stop being a hermit nerd and get out there and have college experiences that she only reads about in books. She’s tired of being the frumpy nerd that guys can’t connect with so after a really bad date, she heads to her best friend Beck’s house and tells him that she’s going to put together a college bucket list and she needs his help with it.

She’s got a bunch of stuff on her list already, kiss a handsome stranger, get drunk at a college party, stuff like that but as she starts to check things off her list, she starts to add things and Beck, who loves his best friend as she is, is starting to see her in a different light. In a romantic light and though he wants to be there for her while she goes through this list, it’s starting to get harder to deny his attraction to her. When he finds out that number seven on her list is to have mind-blowing sex, Beck wants in on that list item.

This was such an easy story to fall into. I really liked both Lilah and Beck. They were a fun couple to get to know and I really liked seeing the both of them come into their own. I loved that Lilah could be there for Beck with everything that he was going through and even when I wanted to smack Beck upside his head, I really liked him. He was genuine in his affection for Lilah and that was exactly what she needed in her life. Cindi Madsen worked her magic with these two and their romance and I’m glad that I finally gave it a chance. I’m definitely finishing out this series. I recommend.

Grade: 4 out of 5

Taking Shots


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Guest Review: Straight Up Irish by Magan Vernon

Posted February 22, 2018 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Straight Up Irish by Magan VernonReviewer: Tracy
Straight Up Irish by Magan Vernon
Series: Murphy Brothers #1
Publisher: Entangled Embrace
Publication Date: February 19th 2018
Format: eARC
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 309
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Series Rating: four-stars

I need a wife if I want to help save my family’s billion-dollar pub empire. There’s just one problem: I never plan on marrying. So, I need someone who understands that this is just another business deal. I don’t do commitments. And my brother’s executive assistant, Fallon Smith, fits that bill.

Fallon needs help with her grandmother’s expenses, and her pretending to be my fake wife is a way we can make that happen. She’s not my biggest fan, but we can help each other and then go our separate ways. That she’s beautiful and I enjoy spending time with her–doesn’t matter. When all of this is done, she’s heading home to America, and I’ve got a company to run.

A fake wedding and a whole lot of whiskey. What could go wrong?

Fallon finishes her MBA and is looking for a job.  She needs a good one so that she can pay for her grandmother’s nursing home and of course her student loans.  She ends up taking a job in Dublin for the Murphy Pub Franchise.  For the past six months she’s been keeping Connor, her bosses brother, in order.  Calling him to make sure he got to his meetings, etc.  She loves the sound of his voice but when she sees him in person she’s amazed at how good-looking he is.

Connor is a total playboy and not about to settle down any time soon.  This is until his father dies in the will dictates that all three brothers, Connor, Jack and Sean must marry and be married for at least 6 months in order to keep the company.  Also, this must all happen within the next year.  All the men are floored but none more than Connor.  He quickly comes up with a scheme that has him getting quickly engaged to Fallon, getting married and staying that way for a little more than six months.  When that time is through she’ll have her student loans paid off and enough money in the bank to take care of her Nana’s nursing home for the next ten years.\

Fallon isn’t sure about this whole plan but decides to go along with it.  The problem is that if anyone suspects that it’s a farce Connor loses it all.  The more time that Fallon spends with Connor the more she likes him and she’s soon falling in love with the man.  He is so nice to her but she knows that love isn’t something that will ever be on his radar.

Nice book.  I liked Fallon ok and definitely liked Connor both by the end of the book.  I must admit that Fallon was a bit wishy-washy and that bothered me throughout most of the book.  She was just so indecisive and I just wanted her to stand her ground with everyone in her life.

Connor was a bit of a bastard at first but we didn’t get to see too much of his playboy ways before he was “dating” Fallon.  You could tell from the start that he really liked her and that he was falling in love with her, even though he tried to hide it.  I liked seeing the playboy fall. 😉

Overall it was a cute contemporary novel and I look forward to reading about Sean and Jack in the future.

Rating: 3.5 out of 5


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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
Publisher: Entangled Embrace
Publication Date: July 18th 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance
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Series Rating: four-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.




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


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Guest Review: Rush by Shae Ross

Posted May 11, 2016 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Rush by Shae RossReviewer: Tracy
Rush by Shae Ross
Series: Pretty Smart Girls #3
Publisher: Entangled Embrace
Publication Date: May 9th 2016
Genres: Contemporary Romance, New Adult
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Series Rating: four-stars

Priscilla Winslow has a mouth that spits fiery sarcasm faster than I can throw a touchdown. But I’ve wanted her ever since I saw her in that Bo Peep outfit on Halloween. Yep, I’m a sheep who will follow that little hottie anywhere. There’s one problem…she hates me. Just because we ended up in jail and quite possibly ruined both our futures...

They’re changing the rules…

College Quarterback, Preston Rush is living the dream. He’s leading his team to the National Championship and days away from earning a ‘first round draft pick’ label. When he meets Little Bo Peep at a Halloween party, he thinks he’s scored big. Instead, he wakes up in a jail cell with the corseted beauty. Because of him, she’s in trouble and when he discovers her true identity, he realizes, his nightmare is just beginning.

The always shooting for perfection Priscilla Winslow can’t believe her good deed has cost her soccer career. Even though she knows it isn’t Preston’s fault, she can’t forgive him for the disaster that is her life. She just wishes her damn body would get the message. Every time she sees him, it’s all she can do not to kiss him.

When everything crashes down around him, Preston will have to decide if doing the right thing is worth losing it all.

Priscilla is the captain of the women’s soccer team at her university.  She loves soccer and can’t wait to go to the championships (they’re almost there).  Unfortunately, going to a Halloween party puts that all in jeopardy.  She is at a bar with a friend dressed as Bo Peep (her sister stole her ninja costume and left her with the BP costume) when she heads to the bathroom after a few drinks.  She meets a guy dressed as Chewbacca in the hallway outside the bathroom and something about the eyes behind the mask get to her.  Not long after that interaction Priscilla heads out the back door of the bar to get a breath of fresh air and sees Chewbacca getting beaten up.  She tries to intervene but makes no headway so she decides to pull the fire alarm when no one will help her.  The cops come and arrest both Priscilla and Chewbacca (aka Preston Rush who is the quarterback of the football team) and throw them in a cell.

Priscilla ends up going before the Athletic Board and gets suspended for the remainder of the year.  She’s despondent about the outcome as she was just trying to help someone out and she’s pissed off because she had left a letter for Preston to tell him when the AB meeting was so that he could be her witness to the events but he didn’t show.

Preston is quite taken with Priscilla and when he sees that she’s pissed off at him he can’t understand it.  He wanted to help but never received her letter.  He swears he’ll help her (as his charges were dropped) but that means going before the AB and telling them his part in the matter which will get him suspended from the football team when they’re about to go to the National Championship.  His teammates get wind of what he’s planning and don’t like it at all.

Preston and Priscilla get closer the more time they spend together but Preston is keeping secrets and Priscilla’s not sure if she can completely trust that when her appeal comes around he’ll actually be there for her.

This was my first read by this author and it was a good one.  I really liked her writing style and the way she slowly brought the characters together.  The romantic and sexual tension between the two MC’s was intense and I loved it.

There were several things about this story that I really enjoyed.  Of course the romance was one of them as I enjoyed seeing Preston and Priscilla come together.  I admired Preston so, so much.  He had a good head on his shoulder, cared about his family and his teammates and tried to live his life with honor.  Yes, he’d screwed up at one point but since then he’d been trying to do the right thing.  He was also trying to help his teammates do the right thing as well and his show of support for them made me like him even more.  His support of Priscilla despite the ramifications of his coming clean to the AB made me want to throw my arms around him and hug him to death.

Priscilla was a strong character.  When Preston didn’t show up for the first AB meeting I loved how she didn’t let him get away with it.  She wasn’t afraid to get angry with him and tell him exactly how she felt.  Loved that!

Overall this was a great New Adult sport romance.  It was nice to have both the hero and the heroine involved in sports and not just the hero as it added another element to the book that I hadn’t read in other stories.  I liked Shae Ross’s writing and will be going back to read the other two books in this series.

Rating: 4 out of 5


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Guest Review: Altered by Marnee Blake

Posted December 16, 2015 by Tracy in Reviews | 0 Comments

Guest Review: Altered by Marnee BlakeReviewer: Tracy
Publication Date: December 28, 2015
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When "normal" ends, survival begins...

The sickness came on suddenly and violently. When it was done, waitress Blue Michaels was different in a really strange way. And the entire town of Glory was dead...except for her.

Only that's not exactly true. A handful of people made it, including U.S. Army Specialist Seth Campbell, who was caught in the wrong town at the worst time. He's fierce and protective, and way too good-looking. As much as they need a leader—as much as Blue wants to trust him—there are too many questions and not enough time for answers. Now they are hunted. But what their pursuers don't know is each of them has strange new powers. And they'll use their "gifts" to matter who stands in their way.

Blue Michaels just got home from work as a bartender when she becomes violently ill.  When it finally stops and she’s finally slept she finds most of the people in her small town of Glory, Colorado dead.  There are some people who, like her, survived but she’s not sure what exactly she survived.  One of the people who she finds living is Army Specialist Seth Campbell.  He manages to hide them enough to get to her friends house when she finds her alive.  Her friend, Kitty, is freaking out because she can all of a sudden read minds.  When Seth and Blue think about it they find they have special powers as well and it’s freaking them out.

The group grows while they try to get out of town and seek assistance but they’re being followed by a group by the name of Goldstone who wants to take them prisoner.  Blue and Seth as well as the others want to find out what the hell happened to them, how did their families get killed, WHY this happened and how can they make it all stop?  They don’t know who to trust and just when they think they’ve found the right people they’re betrayed and now have nowhere to run.

I have to admit that when I read the blurb to this book it definitely sounded interesting but it was vague enough of a description that I really wasn’t sure what I was getting into.  I’m happy that I took a chance on the book because it was a good one.

The story was bizarre enough that I had to keep reading to find out what happens to the group but the writing of the characters and the way they each dealt with their powers/afflictions was what kept me reading.  Marnee Blake kept me glued to the pages as with each one I turned there was something exciting happening.  It definitely had me on the edge of my seat.

Within all of this there was a blooming love story between Seth and Blue that started pretty suddenly, but as the book went on I saw the relationship grow and I liked the two together.  They were each caring people to start with so together they made quite the pair and led the group to the best of their ability – taking care of those who wouldn’t have necessarily been able to take care of themselves.  They were most certainly stronger as a whole unit than individually.

The story is not finished which is the only bad thing about the book – which for me was a big one.  I really don’t care for books that have cliffhangers.  Really, this wasn’t truly a cliffhanger but it’s not a complete story either.  I know that the next one is about Kitty but it will include the group as well as none of their stories are finished.  This was a major problem for me because I’m not a patient person! lol  Hopefully we won’t have to wait too long for the next story to roll around because I really want to know what happens next.

If you like a good suspense story that has pretty major paranormal elements to it then this one would be a good one for you to pick up.

Rating: 4 out of 5


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