Tag: 4.75 Reviews

Review: The Kingmaker by Kennedy Ryan

Posted January 15, 2020 by Rowena in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: The Kingmaker by Kennedy RyanReviewer: Rowena
The Kingmaker by Kennedy Ryan
Series: All the Kings Men #1
Publisher: Self-Published
Publication Date: October 28, 2019
Format: eBook
Source: Kindle Unlimited
Point-of-View: Alterntaing First
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Content Warning: View Spoiler »
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 344
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Rowena's 2019 TBR Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-half-stars
Series Rating: five-stars

Raised to rule, bred to lead and weaned on a diet of ruthless ambition. In a world of haves and have nots, my family has it all, and I want nothing to do with it.

My path takes me far from home and paints me as the black sheep. At odds with my father, I’m determined to build my own empire. I have rules, but Lennix Hunter is the exception to every one of them. From the moment we meet, something sparks between us. But my family stole from hers and my father is the man she hates most. I lied to have her, and would do anything to keep her. Though she tries to hate me, too, the inexorable pull between us will not be denied.

And neither will I.

The Kingmaker is the first book in Kennedy Ryan’s All the King’s Men duet and it was also the last book that I read in 2019. I really, really enjoyed this one and I don’t say that lightly because this book is hella political and politics are not my jam. But Kennedy Ryan did her thing again because I ate this book up.

This story covers like a decade in the lives of the two main characters, Maxin Kingsman Cade and Lennix Moon Hunter. Lennix is a Native American young woman who lost her mother when she was young. Her mother went to Seattle for a pipeline protest and never came home. She was never found and Lennix doesn’t think enough was done to help her family get the closure they needed. She doesn’t know what happened to her Mom and I think that played a huge part in while she picked up activism at such an early age. She was a big spokesperson for the Native American people in her area and she led peaceful protests against corporate oil companies that wanted to build pipelines on her people’s sacred lands, pipelines that would contaminate their water. So it’s not a huge surprise that she despises everything that has to do with Warren Cade. Warren Cade is the head of Cade Energy and he’s doing everything that Lennix is fighting against.

Maxim is determined to be his own man. He refuses to back down from joining his father’s company because his father will not listen to Maxim’s ideas on how to build a better energy company using methods that will help with climate change. His Dad’s main focus has been money and he makes a lot of it in the oil business so he’s not willing to listen to Maxim. Maxim grew up listening to his father speak, seeing his father in action so he knows that his father is relentless and ruthless and Maxim wants no part of that. He’s determined to learn all that he can so that he can build a better world for everyone and he’s hell-bent on doing it on his own, without his father’s influence.

When Maxim and Lennix meet for the first time, Lennis is too young for him but he’s very interested. There’s chemistry in spades sizzling between them but Maxim is bummed that she’s so young. He knows that she’s going to grow up to be an amazing woman and he was right. When they meet up again four years later, Lennix is older and Maxim is still interested. They spend a week together in Amsterdam and they fall in love but their love is shortlived because their lives take them in opposite directions and they drift apart for some more years…and then Lennix finds out that Maxim was keeping a huge secret from her and she is determined to never let him close enough again.

Seeing these two meet, fall in love and then are torn apart, only for them to come back together years later with one of them fighting for a love that he knows is worth everything made for a really interesting romance. I fell hard for both Lennix and Maxim. They were both intense characters that were strong on their own but in my opinion, better together. Their love was strong and it was fierce and it never completely fizzled out after years and years of separation. Kennedy Ryan will pull at your emotional strings with this one because it’s not an easy romance but man was it a worthwhile one. This book isn’t getting 5 stars from me but that’s only because of that ending. I’m not a fan of cliffhanger endings and this has one so if you’re wanting to read this, there’s your warning…but on the bright side, the follow-up book, The Rebel King is available for you to immediately jump into if you need to.

Final Grade

4.75 out of 5

All the King’s Men

four-half-stars


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Review: Getting Played by Emma Chase

Posted January 3, 2020 by Rowena in Reviews | 2 Comments

Review: Getting Played by Emma ChaseReviewer: Rowena
Getting Played by Emma Chase
Narrator: Andi Arndt, Zachary Webber
Series: Getting Some #2
Also in this series: Getting Schooled (Getting Some, #1), Getting Schooled (Getting Some, #1), Getting Played
Publisher: Audible Studios
Publication Date: June 11, 2019
Format: Audiobook
Source: Audible Escape
Point-of-View: Third
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Content Warning: View Spoiler »
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Pages: 241
Length: 6 hours, 57 minutes
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Rowena's 2019 TBR Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-half-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Listening Length: 6 hours and 57 minutesProgram Type: AudiobookVersion: Unabridged

A magnificent new romance by New York Times best-selling author Emma Chase - available in audio first!

Dean Walker is all about keeping life simple. He's effortlessly talented and intelligent - spending his summers playing drums in the local band and the rest of the year teaching high school in the same Jersey town where he grew up. He likes his love life simple too, enjoying the commitment-free hook-ups his good looks and sexy charm have always made oh so easy.

Then he meets Lainey Burrows. And his simple, easy life gets turned upside down.

One wild one-night stand was all it was ever supposed to be, so Lainey is shocked when she discovers that her sizzling summer fling is also her son's new math teacher. But that's nothing compared to the most unexpected twist of all - their hot hook-up left Lainey knocked up, and now they're about to become parents. Together.

What ensues is an addictive, insatiable, sweet and tender romance that won't be simple, but it will be more than worth the fight.

Getting Played is the second book in Emma Chase’s Getting Some series. It’s another fabulous addition to the series too. Dean and Lainey were a great couple and I really enjoyed seeing them figure out how to be together after they get their one night stand news.

When I read the first book in this series, Getting Schooled, I knew that I was going to read Dean’s book and boy am I glad that I saw that one through because this was another fabulous contemporary romance by Emma Chase. Everything that Holly and Casee said about this book being good was true. I enjoyed getting to know both Lainey and Dean, I loved seeing the relationship that blossomed between Lainey’s son and Dean. I also really enjoyed seeing Garrett and Callie again. I loved that they were still a big part of Dean’s life and I adored seeing Dean with his grandmother. This was just a great small-town romance that delivered lots of heartwarming charm that I just ate right up.

Dean was a bit immature in the last book but seeing him really come into his own in this book was fan-freaking-tastic. I really enjoyed seeing him with his students, I really loved seeing him bond with Lainey’s son and I absolutely adored seeing him get excited about the changes coming his way with Lainey. The way that they transitioned their lives to include each other made for a great romance. This was another one of those straight-up contemporary romances where the two main leads know that they have feelings for each other and they figure out how to overcome the obstacles in their way so that they can be together.

Lainey was a great heroine. She was a fanastic heroine for Dean and I really loved that she was a mother first. She didn’t take her role as Jason’s mother lightly and I dug that about her. I loved the relationship she forged with Jason as well. She built a strong and solid foundation that gave Jason the support he needed from her. I loved that she was able to be honest with Jason about anything and everything and that Jason felt like they were a team that could tackle anything together. They supported each other and when Dean came along, Jason welcomed him into their little unit but his Mom was always first with him. It was just a lot of fun to read about a bunch of normal people trying to figure their shit out…together.

Overall, this was a great book and though there were spots in the book where I wanted to ring all of their necks, in the end, they all got it right and were stronger for their obstacles. Emma Chase continues to shine brightly as a fabulous contemporary romance author and I hope she writes Dean’s brother’s book next. I need to know Connor more. Fingers crossed. If you guys are in the mood for a fun and sweet contemporary romance, look no further than Dean and Lainey’s book. I promise, it’s good.

Final Grade

4.25 out of 5

Getting Some

four-half-stars


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Review: Wildfire by Ilona Andrews

Posted December 27, 2019 by Holly in Reviews | 1 Comment

Review: Wildfire by Ilona AndrewsReviewer: Holly
Wildfire by Ilona Andrews
Narrator: Renee Raudman
Series: Hidden Legacy #3
Also in this series: Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy, #1), Wildfire, White Hot, White Hot (Hidden Legacy, #2), Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy, #1), White Hot (Hidden Legacy, #2), Wildfire (Hidden Legacy, #3), Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy, #1), Wildfire (Hidden Legacy, #3), Diamond Fire (Hidden Legacy, #3.5), Sapphire Flames, Diamond Fire
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: July 25, 2017
Format: Audiobook
Source: Purchased
Point-of-View: First
Cliffhanger: View Spoiler »
Content Warning: View Spoiler »
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 391
Length: 12 hours and 44 minutes
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
four-half-stars
Series Rating: five-stars

Just when Nevada Baylor has finally come to accept the depths of her magical powers, she also realizes she’s fallen in love. Connor “Mad” Rogan is in many ways her equal when it comes to magic, but she’s completely out of her elements when it comes to her feelings for him. To make matters more complicated, an old flame comes back into Rogan’s life…

Rogan knows there’s nothing between him and his ex-fiance, Rynda Sherwood. But as Nevada begins to learn more about her past, her power, and her potential future, he knows she will be faced with choices she never dreamed of and the promise of a life spent without him.

As Nevada and Rogan race to discover the whereabouts of Rynda’s kidnapped husband and are forced to confront Nevada’s grandmother, who may or may not have evil motives, these two people must decide if they can trust in each other or allow everything to go up in smoke.

Wildfire is book 3 in the Hidden Legacy series by Ilona Andrews. The trilogy follows Nevada Baylor as she learns how to use her magic, tries to protect her family from threats on multiple levels, and uncover the plots of a mastermind with a huge group of followers who are trying to destabilize Houston. I highly recommend reading this series in order, as the storyarc and romance are completed over the course of the three books.

Wildfire picks up just where White Hot left off. Nevada and Rogan disappeared for some much needed alone time away. They’re called back when the threat of Nevada’s grandmother comes closer. Nevada and her family will have to decide if they’ll petition to become their own House, which will change things significantly for all of them. Meanwhile, Rogan’s ex-fiance, Rynda Charles, turns up looking to hire Nevada to find her missing husband. Though Nevada doesn’t want to be, she’s slightly jealous of the easy affection Rynda and Rogan seem to feel for each other. As the case heats up and the trials to become a House loom, Rogan and Nevada discover Brian’s kidnapping is connected to the greater plot to turn Houston into a New Rome.

Another fabulous book. Wildfire is action-packed with a full, colorful cast of characters, and a steamy romance. This novel delivers on every level.

Rating: 4.75 out of 5

Hidden Legacy

four-half-stars


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Throwback Thursday Review: Hidden Currents by Christine Feehan

Posted September 26, 2019 by Casee in Reviews | 4 Comments

Throwback Thursday Review: Hidden Currents by Christine FeehanReviewer: Casee
Hidden Currents by Christine Feehan
Series: Drake Sisters #7
Also in this series: Turbulent Sea, Hidden Currents, Magic in the Wind, The Twilight Before Christmas, Oceans of Fire, Dangerous Tides, Safe Harbor, Turbulent Sea, Hidden Currents
Publisher: Jove
Publication Date: June 30, 2009
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Content Warning: View Spoiler »
Genres: Paranormal Romance
Pages: 441
Add It: Goodreads
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
five-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

From afar, Sheriff Jackson Deveau has always loved Elle Drake, the youngest telepath of seven sisters. After a long time away she’s finally returning home to the small coastal village of Sea Haven. But someone has been following Elle, someone who doesn’t want her to make it back. And when Elle fails to arrive, her disappearance strikes fear in the hearts of everyone who loves her. Now it’s left to Jackson to uncover the mystery of Elle’s vanishing, and rescue her from an unseen danger. But Sea Haven is no longer safe for anyone, and it’ll take the powers of all the Drake sisters and their men to survive the coming storm.

*** Every Thursday, we’ll be posting throwback reviews of our favorite and not-so-favorite books. Enjoy! ***

This review was originally posted on June 6, 2009.

This is the book that I’ve really been looking forward to the last few years. In the last two books, Elle Drake became even more enigmatic that she was in the first four books. The connection that she has with Jackson Deveau also becomes more perplexing and left me wanting their story, like, now. Not to say that Elle’s character hasn’t been interesting from the beginning. She always has been. As the seventh daughter of the seventh daughter, her legacy is to carry on the Drake line with seven daughters of her own. That is no little thing to have hanging over you your whole life.

Elle has stayed away from Sea Haven, but knows that she’s eventually have to return and face her destiny as the seventh daughter of the seventh daughter. What is expected of her has always weighed heavily on her shoulders, but no more than it does when she realizes that Jackson is “The One” for her. Jackson is everything she doesn’t want in a mate. An overbearing, arrogant, alpha male that she feels wants her to be someone she’s not.

Since the moment Jackson first heard her voice when he was being held prisoner by terrorists, he knew she was the one that could pull him out of the darkness. He travels to Sea Haven at the request of his friend, Jonas Harrington, knowing that Elle lives there. When he finally comes face-to-face with her, he is poleaxed. At the same time, he’s deathly afraid of what is now expected of him. Over the years, he does his best to protect her, but Elle is nothing if not stubborn.

Elle has always been confident of her ability to take care of herself. When she finds herself in serious trouble, she reaches out to the person she knows will be there; Jackson. Her hope for help is short lived. The man that Elle has been tracking for an undercover assignment has taken an unnatural interest in her. He takes her to his island, against her will. What she endures over the following weeks is almost too much to bear. Not only that, but all the gifts she’s had her whole life are unavailable to her. The only thing that is keeping her alive is Jackson’s voice whispering in her head.

Jackson is frantic when Elle is taken. He goes crazy when he finally psychically locates Elle and realizes what is being done to her. I have to say, that I was almost shocked at the depth of the torture that Elle went through. I think Christine Feehan really pushed the envelope with this one. It was definitely unexpected, but it really worked.

When Jackson finally finds Elle and takes her home, Elle knows that Stavros won’t let her go as easily as that. After years of independence, Elle is now so dependent on Jackson that she barely recognizes herself. She refuses to let her sisters come to her, for fear that they will sense what she went through; what she feels she let happen.

I believe that Christine Feehan did a credible job of writing of Elle’s recovery. When Holly and I discussed this, she said that it seemed like Elle recovered almost too fast. I didn’t see it that way. These are the Drake’s after all and they have an amazing way of coming to the aid of the sister in need. Not only that, but Jackson is almost feral in his desire to protect Elle. I think Jackson, even more than any of her sisters helped her on the road to recovery; the road to rediscovering her trust and confidence in herself.

The obsession that Stavros has for Elle is most definitely unnatural. Psychic himself, he is confident that he will find the woman he knew as Sheena. Stavros is one crazy mo-fo, that’s for sure. It takes all seven sisters and their husbands/finances to take this crazy bastard down. I loved how the book ended. It was somehow perfect. The only thing I didn’t really like was that instead of finishing the series on a good note, CF left it open to continue. Or continue on into another new series.

That aside, I still have to give this a…

4.75 out of 5.

Drake Sisters

five-stars


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Review: Archangel’s War by Nalini Singh

Posted September 23, 2019 by Casee in Reviews | 3 Comments

Review: Archangel’s War by Nalini SinghReviewer: Casee
Archangel's War by Nalini Singh
Series: Guild Hunter #12
Also in this series: Archangel's Kiss, Archangel's Kiss, Archangel's Consort, Archangel's Blade, Archangel's Consort, Archangel's Storm, Archangel's Storm (Guild Hunter #5), Archangel's Legion, Archangel's Legion (Guild Hunter #6), Archangel's Shadows, Archangel's Shadows, Archangel's Enigma (Guild Hunter, #8), Angels' Blood (Guild Hunter #1), Archangel's Heart, Archangel's Heart, Archangel's Heart (Guild Hunter, #9), Archangel's Kiss, Angels' Blood, Archangel's Viper (Guild Hunter, #10), Archangel's Viper, Archangel's Prophecy, Archangel's Consort (Guild Hunter, #3), Archangel's Prophecy, Archangel's War
Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: September 24, 2019
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher
Point-of-View: Alternating Third
Content Warning: View Spoiler »
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 400
Add It: Goodreads
Reading Challenges: Casee's 2019 GoodReads Challenge
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | The Ripped Bodice | Google Play Books
five-stars
Series Rating: four-stars

Wings of silver. Wings of blue. Mortal heart. Broken dreams. Shatter. Shatter. Shatter. A sundering. A grave. I see the end. I see. . .

The world is in chaos as the power surge of the Cascade rises to a devastating crescendo. In furiously resisting its attempts to turn Elena into a vessel for Raphael’s power, Elena and her archangel are irrevocably changed. . .far beyond the prophecy of a cursed Ancient.

At the same time, violent and eerie events around the world threaten to wipe out entire populations. And in the Archangel Lijuan’s former territory, an unnatural fog weaves through the land, leaving only a bone-chilling silence in its wake. Soon it becomes clear that even the archangels are not immune to this deadly evil. This time, even the combined power of the Cadre may not be enough. . .

This war could end them all.

This book is everything. Everything I love about the Guild Hunter series. Everything I love about Raphael and Elena. Everything. It had me on the edge of my seat, biting my nails, sighing, tearing up, smiling. I went from one emotion to another in the blink of an eye. That is Nalini’s superpower. She pulls you in and doesn’t spit you out until the last page. Maybe not even then.

Spoilers from the series will be abundant in this review, though I will try to keep spoilers from this book to a minimum.

Archangel’s Prophecy ended on a cliffhanger. A cliffhanger for real. I almost divorced Nalini for that. Okay, that would never happen, but still. A cliffhanger like that? The last year has been hard, not knowing if Raphael and Elena would come out of the chrysalis alive, if Elena would be herself, the possibilities were endless with the Cascade working to do a hard reset on the world.

The Cascade is organic. It is always changing. It has been around before now and it will be around again (assuming everyone survives). The Cascade has made it clear that Elena is to be sacrificed. It is clear she is to be an instrument to be used to manipulate Raphael. The love that Raphael and Elena have for each other and the strength of their bond can’t be manipulated. It is put to the test to be sure, but nothing can tear these two apart.

Elena went into the chrysalis with her wings cut off by Raphael himself. They both knew that it was unavoidable. They both could only hold onto hope that her wings would grow back. When they do emerge from the chrysalis, View Spoiler ».

While they were in the chrysalis, Dmitri has been holding New York together with the help of Archangel’s Caliane and Elijah. Raphael emerges at just the right time; vampires are starting to run rampant in the city without their Archangel to remind them who’s da boss. One thing I adored about this book was that it showed the bond that Raphael had with his Seven. It’s always been there, yes. We’ve always been able to see and feel it. This book just showed it a little more. It will get to you more than it has before. If it doesn’t, I worry about you.

The showdown between Raphael and Lijuan finally arrives and holy hell, Nalini does it justice. The battle is long and bloody and fucking awesome. I loved how real she made it. It was phenomenal. It just did their feud justice. This book, the title, the cover? Everything is so well done that I can hardly find anything wrong with it. Except View Spoiler ». That almost made me cry. I’ve come to expect this when reading Nalini’s books. I get all the feels.

I know this review was all over the place. I’m okay with that. I felt the exact same way while reading this book. You’re welcome.

Rating: 4.75 out of 5.

Guild Hunter Series

five-stars


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