Category Archives: Contemporary Fiction

Book Review: ‘Lucky Star’ by Rebecca Norinne

lucky-star

Title: Lucky Star: A Hollywood Love Story

Published: 1st July 2016

Author: Rebecca Norinne

Facebook: www.facebook.com/RebeccaNorinne

Twitter: @rebecca_norinne

Synopsis:

He said nothing would come between them, but then Hollywood did. Can their love survive his fame?

The only thing actor Cameron Scott wants more than fame is Sarah Travers, the sassy director’s assistant who’s been his best friend since his days as an unknown. One night and one too many shots of tequila later, he and Sarah wind up in bed together, pushing their relationship in a whole new direction. Things couldn’t be more perfect … until Cameron lands the coveted lead in Hollywood’s latest blockbuster and the studio sets up a fauxmance with his gorgeous new co-star. With Cameron’s fame on the rise, can Sarah handle being his best-kept secret or will the temptation of superstardom cost them their love?

NOTE: There are no shifters, alphas, or billionaire CEOs in this book. Just a man who loves a woman and is willing to give up everything to be with her. If you love a smart and sassy heroine who can bring a sexy, completely devoted man to his knees, this book is for you.

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2017 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book set somewhere you have travelled to. L.A. Hollywood to be specific. Holy hell, how hot are they when they get together! Talk about scorching, you may need to fan yourself down in places when these two get frisky.

So Sarah has only recently realised that she has fallen completely in love with her best friend Cameron. Being too scared to say anything she tries her best to hide those feelings thinking nothing could ever come of them. She, at first, doesn’t seem that confident in herself (especially in regards to her looks/weight) and can’t see why or how he could ever want her. Living in L.A. has taken its toll on her a bit. She’s healthy with curves that most women wish for, living in a world of stick thin women. A drunken night back at hers and Cameron’s soon starts to change her mind. She’s almost in that dozy sleep stage right up to he’s holding her face, gazing in her eyes. The look he gives her is pure lust and something snaps. He may have held back to see if she would make a move but when she does all bets are off. Talk about zero to fifty – strike that a hundred – in the passion-o-meter. Shame a its like a bucket of ice falls over them when she mentions a condom. You feel just as crushed as she does when he walks out without looking at her. To then ignore her for a month and all you want to do is smack him upside the head, well until you find out his reasons. Seems she’s not the only one keeping her true feelings a secret.

Cameron has been in love with Sarah from pretty much the moment they met after she was a shoulder to lean on after a brutal audition. Since then she’s been all he think about. He might want to make it as a movie star, never knowing when his break might come, but he needs her like his next breath. Which is why he takes a certain trip to get something that might help him grovel his way out of their drunken night together. He didn’t want that to be the reason they got together, only thinking of his own feelings. Not even twigging what she might have thought with his vanishing act but trust me when he does he more than makes up for it. Seems when he gets an idea he runs with it and that idea now is getting Sarah. Seems she’s more than agreeable to that plan and their whirlwind romance is off with a bang.

Well that’s until he gets his big break with the movie ‘The Ties That Bind’ her boss is directing. Monday morning comes round and it seems the powers that be think the two leading stars need to have an appearance of an off-screen romance as well as on. Sarah is pretty much told she’s not “Hollywood pretty” enough to make it work so they think its a good idea for Cameron and Jillian his co-star to have a fauxmance. He is not happy about being told, not really asked, about this by Sarah. She’s doing it all for him and his big break but he can’t see it, his big head getting in the way. Seems when he’s hurt and angry he likes to fight back, blindsiding her in the process. Oh I wanted to beat the crap out of him from that moment on with how he treats her. More so as she has my name so I was taking it personally. Their relationship has to stay a secret but when his “public” one gets to feel a little too real you have to wonder how they will get back to each other.

So much anger is between them at that point that something needs to give. A trip before filming officially starts is a great idea and I loved the location. Eagle Harbour is a very romantic setting and where you hope everything might fall back into place for them after the craziness they’ve been through. The outside world (and even some of his so called friends) might not see it but they are perfect for each other and theirs is the true Hollywood style romance people would want to go watch. Chemistry between them is off the charts – even when they are fighting. They are fighting to be together and playing by others rules. Once they let go of all that they will find their way back to each other.

Steamy, steamy, steamy with what they get up to at times. Loved all the naughty things they got up to while away. Lets just say that heated fights lead to some epic make-ups. Well mainly when Cameron gets his head out of his ass and realises what she’s been going through too. When he realises he’s been played for no good reason (I’m thinking of a certain female here, you know who you are!) he’ll do anything to put it right. Being best friends first seems to have worked out just fine for them in the end. Great characters and engaging storyline your can relate to. Fun read to devour on a rainy day. Will definitely want to check out what else the author has done now.

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4 out of 5 stars

I received this ARC from the author for my honest review.

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Filed under Contemporary Fiction, Reading Challenges, Reading Nook Blog Posts, Romance

Book Review: ‘The Boss’ by J.L. Perry

the-boss

Title: The Boss

Published: 29th January 2017

Author: J.L. Perry

Facebook: www.facebook.com/J-L-Perry-Author

Twitter: @jlperryauthor

Synopsis:

Hanna Scott … she’s been my obsession since I was seventeen. She’s the object of every dirty thought I’ve ever had. I’m consumed. I lust over her … albeit from afar. She has no idea how I feel. And my secret can never come out, because there’s one major hurdle standing in our way … she’s my best friend’s little sister. When she offers to stand in as my temporary secretary, I’m torn. Will I be able to risk the temptation? Or will I succumb and lose everything that I hold dear?

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2017 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book you can finish in a day. Temptation is closer than ever for Harrison and Hanna and its not long before the tension snaps and passion explodes.

So Harrison has had a bit of an obsession with Hanna for years. She temps him like none other and the things they get up to in his head are starting to drive him crazy with need. Just a little problem with going after the woman you really want and that’s if they happen to be your best friends little sister. The more the fantasies grow the less power he feels he has over himself to make sure he keeps his distance. Well other than to be a friend that’s known her for years that is. With her being away at college it gave him space but that is all about to change when his best friends wife gets involved. She always notices more than you think so watch out. Seems Harrison is in need of a new receptionist and until he hires a new one Michelle thinks it would be a great idea for him to let Hanna help out – one idea that Hanna completely agrees on.

Seems while he was trying to not be obvious with his obsession of Hanna he didn’t see she was just as into him. He might not do relationships but if a bit of fun is all she is going to get then she’s going to go for it. Close quarter’s at the office and you can see Harrison’s resolve fading by the minute but its not till they go away on a business trip that things come to a head. If she thought he was good in her dreams then they hold nothing compared to the real thing (same goes for his dreams really). After making a bit of a fool of herself at first she thinks he really doesn’t want her but when she exits the shower damp in nothing but a towel you can literally feel the heat coming off him. It’s almost like he’s starving and she’s his last meal. One she’s very happy to be when he starts to touch her. A passionate turn to a business trip but with Harrison’s fears of what to tell Ethan looming it soon becomes a secret affair. The longer they wait the worse it will be. Doesn’t mean they can’t have a bit of fun along the way when they get back to the office though. Every naughty thought he’s ever had of her is slowly coming true and all he can think about is how much better reality really is. When things come to ahead though he’s a bit shell-shocked. It’s like he didn’t believe in his own self worth to have a meaningful relationship so never tried before. He’s slowly learning with Hanna, though really I think he was just waiting for her, his perfect match.

Loved Michelle’s character, such a feisty woman who certainty knows how to put her man (and others) in their place. You can see Ethan just wants to look out for his sister but still you just wanted to smack him upside the head when he tried to mess things up. Its not till his wife makes him see sense that he sees things a bit clearer. Great chemistry between all characters and a fun read. Harrison’s the boss in every way when it comes to Hanna’s passion and she wouldn’t have it any other way.

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4 out of 5 stars

I received this ARC from Give Me Books for my honest review.

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Book Review: ‘Winters Rising’ by Shannyn Leah

winters-rising

Title: Winters Rising (Spicy Edition) (Lexcon Tim Travel, The Winters Book 1)

Published: 25th October 2016

Publisher: Carlex Ruby Press

Author: Shannyn Leah

Facebook: www.facebook.com/Shannyn-Leah

Twitter: @ShannynLeah

Synopsis:

Brea was born a Second, a lowly class of people in the Lexcon society. But she also bore the birthmark that destined her to marry a Gatekeeper, the “superheroes” of their world. Some called her destiny a great privilege. She called it doomed to a cage with no key.

Gatekeepers were born and raised to ensure time remained untainted and unchanged, but Brea saw them as overlords who looked down on her kind… on Seconds.

Forced to marry Gatekeeper Jax Winters, Brea vows not to complete the ritual bonding with him until she can talk with council about how Seconds are treated. She plans to use her newfound status to help the plight of those born like her.

But she never dreams of the twist her life will take, moving her into a higher position than she’d ever dreamed. Will she and Jax always be at odds, or will their hearts bond together as their souls already have? Will Brea change the future of Lexcon, or will she be forever doomed to live life in the dark?

Winters Rising
Winters Rebellion (2017)
Winter Resplendence (2017)

Review:

Loved this story right from the start. Has such an intricate storyline, with multiple players pulling the story along. You know change is coming right from the start and are just waiting to see how everything plays out. You are also waiting to see if your theories about who Brea really is are correct.

Lexcon is a world of classes and those that would wish to control everything, including time itself. You have the Elders and those in charge on the Council who you really don’t want calling on you as they can bring trouble. You have the Gatekeepers who are in control of all timeline disruptions. Each prominent family has three children who will become the families Gatekeepers. The firstborn is always the Key Keeper and their future children will be the next Gatekeepers. Unless of course something happens to them and then the role would go to the second born and then so on if something happens to them. In the Winters families case the first-born is Jax, the second born is Declan who has the ability to heal others and the last-born is Gabrielle who has the visions. She sees when a timeline has been changed. This could be done by one of two people. A Rouge, someone who deliberately tries to change something, or a Drifter who falls through a time rip without meaning too. These changes in timelines are what the Gatekeepers need to fix. When they time rip they go into someone else’s body, completely embracing them, and only they can see each other as they really are. The Seconds are looked down upon by the Gatekeepers, thought of as a lower class. Which is ironic, as Gatekeepers children will bond with one if they show the matching tattoo mark. You also have the Unborns. These are the babies born, or in this case unborn, of Gatekeepers who conceive without being bonded and married yet. It is told that these women who conceive will not survive the birth and neither will the baby but nothing is ever quite as it seems.

When your future has been planned for you from the moment of birth you can’t run from it, no matter how much you wish you could. Brea finds herself in a life she wouldn’t have chosen but one she can’t change, all due to a damn tattoo on her neck. Not just any mark but a matching tattoo that means she is the other half of the Winters Key Keeper Jax. Now married she finds she still holds some power over her future. It seems that once married the pair need to bond with each other by simultaneously touching each other’s tattoos. Once done they will then be connected on a much deeper level, right down to their souls. No matter how tempting Jax might be – morning sunshine hitting his naked chest in bed aside – she will not fold until she gets what she wants. She was a Second before she married and she knows the troubles they face and how they are looked down upon. She plans to change things somehow but her first task is more of a personal one, one to a tattoo parlour so hers can be tweaked. Would have worked out fine if Jax hadn’t shown up just in the nick of time. Love the underlying passion that comes off her and Jax when he gets there. One touch on her mark, the slightest graze of his finger, and she almost folds but a bond can’t happen unless both touch. He may be tempting but she knows nothing of him and until he starts sharing the wall between them will only grow higher.

Jax seems to be under the impression that Brea should be pleased she’s married to him and is getting just as frustrated as his family are that they haven’t bonded. Well that and he’s finding it harder everyday to keep his hands off her, the pull is just too strong. The only way he can get Brea to see what he does as something worthwhile is to take her with him. Going by themselves the first few times leads to some very hot passion in the sun and under a waterfall. Seems a little alone time is just what they needed to connect but calm waters aren’t what follows for them or time itself. His personal problems are one thing but it appears that they soon have bigger fish to fry when someone messes with a timeline trying to kill a baby. Jax and his two siblings must time rip to stop it. This is what kick starts an adventure none of them saw coming. Seems there are bigger players at work trying to manipulate the past so it can change the future of Lexcon and the world as they see it. Secrets and lies get revealed and its up to Jax, Gabrielle, Declan, and Brea to set things right. Only together can they fight what’s coming, whether they really want to or not.

There are moments when I wanted to smack Jax over the head for how thoughtless he could be, also a bit with his siblings and parents. You can clearly see with their upbringing they have no clue what Seconds really think or how they are viewed. Love the pirate scene when Jax and Brea time rip though and I’m sure she did too, but not as much as when they are under that waterfall. Talk about needing to cool down after getting so hot. Steamy connection with Jax and Brea once they both let their walls down but the battle for time has only just begun. Can’t wait to see where the story goes from here. Time is of the essence it seems and for some it might be running out if the Rouges have their way.

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5 out of 5 stars

I received this ARC from the author for my honest review.

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Book Review: ‘Christmas with the Billionaire’ by Amy Lamont

christmas-with-the-billionaire

Title: Christmas with the Billionaire (Holiday Encounters Book 1)

Published: 3rd December 2014

Publisher: Productive Ink Media

Author: Amy Lamont

Facebook: www.facebook.com/AmyLamontAuthor

Twitter: @Amy_Lamont

Synopsis:

When introvert Emma Glover makes a bet with her friends to see who can have the wildest adventure by New Year’s, she has no intention of winning. She might spend her days writing about sex for her syndicated news column, but her nights are all about takeout and flannel pajamas.

When her friend challenges her to live out one of the sexual escapades she writes about, Emma knows she won’t be able to follow through. But that’s before she lays eyes on a sexy stranger across a crowded hotel lobby.

She can’t help but hope he’s interested in more than one night, but when she finds out her gorgeous one night stand is actually billionaire media mogul Nate Wilder, her hopes die a fast death. There’s no way her Christmas wish will come true. Or is there?

Read All the Holiday Encounters Books:
Christmas with the Billionaire (Holiday Encounters Book 1) ~ Now Available
Snowbound with the Biker (Holiday Encounters Book 2) ~ Now Available
Getting Lucky with the Rock Star (Holiday Encounters Book 3) ~ Now Available
Summer with the Soldier (Holiday Encounters Book 4) ~ Now Available
In Love with the Billionaire (Holiday Encounters Book 5) Coming Soon

Review:

On a train journey home on Thanksgiving four best friends (Emma, Jade, Katelyn and Paige) decide to spice things up a bit in their lives with a bet. Well one decides and others kind of get roped into it. They each have to have some kind adventure by New Years Day, do something they wouldn’t usually do. Whoever has the biggest adventure wins, other than bragging rights, a favour off each of the others. Let the adventures begin.

Jade and Katelyn seem as keen as ever to get an adventure going whereas Emma would rather stay at home in her flannel pj’s keeping Paige company between her shifts at the hospital. She on the other hand works from home and has become sort of an introvert with not wanting to really go anywhere to meet new people. She may live wildly through her writings under her alter ego Brandi Silver as a saucy sex columnist but her real life exploits are anything but. Most of her stories are either made up or from escapades from one of her friends. Paige knows Emma needs a bit of a push to get started to decides how her adventure should start. She takes some of Emma’s stories and writes a few down for Emma to pick one out of a hat. If she was nervous before it goes sky high after picking out ‘have sex with a stranger’.

The next night Paige and Emma set off to kick start her adventure. She knows she doesn’t really need to sleep with someone, a drink will do, but she needs to get out of her head long enough to have some fun. They end up going to Hotel Wynter, a special place for her that has been turned into a winter wonderland. The decorations might have caught her eye but the smouldering man who crosses the lobby is what causes her to catch her breath. With the heated look he gives her back she may just get the adventure she was looking for. A drink at the bar and cheesy lines passed back and forth puts her at ease for a moment but its not long before her head causes her to panic and want to run. A kiss to stop traffic slows down her exit and if she follows where she thinks it might lead she could get one hell of a night. Nate sure knows how to get her pulse racing by an open fire and under some mistletoe. She may be leading the race with their bet but is a one-night stand really her? Is one night enough for either of them? Tensions run high at a misunderstanding but what a way to say you’re sorry. Umm hello… lets just say you can have a lot of fun in a kitchen storeroom! Lets see if our girl can bag herself her billionaire for Christmas and maybe for longer afterwards.

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4 out of 5 stars

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Book Review: ‘Wild Designs’ by Katie Fforde

wild-designs

Title: Wild Designs

Published: 5th June 2003

Publisher: Arrow

Author: Katie Fforde

Facebook: www.facebook.com/KatieFforde

Twitter: @KatieFforde

Synopsis:

Althea is the mother of three strong-minded children – one of whom is a Buddhist – and owner of a finicky dog named Bozo.

Saddled with too large a house (albeit in a beautiful Cotswold village), worrisome mortgage payments, a bossy younger sister and irksome ex-husband, Althea still manages to muddle through life comfortably enough. Until she loses her job.

Seeking solace in her borrowed greenhouse, Althea decides to develop her passion for gardening. And when she wins the opportunity to design a garden at the Chelsea Flower Show with the unexpected help of gorgeous architect Patrick Donahugh, it looks as though Althea may have unearthed a new man as well as a new career…

Review:

Goes down as another off my 2016 Bookworm Bingo Challenge – A book set in your current town or region, the Cotswolds.

Althea’s life is already a bit manic with being a single mum to three children. She then finds out her ex-husband is intending on coming back to the UK from Hong Kong to be a father again now they have grown up. You just know he has an ulterior motive, as shallow as they come. But its about to get turned upside down more when she finds out she is being made redundant from her post at the school. Swiftly followed by finding out that the derelict house she uses the greenhouse for has been sold. Wouldn’t seem so bad if she actually had permission to be there in the first place. She may be a receptionist as her day job but what she really wants to be is a garden designer. She needs the greenhouse to keep her plants in for the few people she does help so needs to convince the new owner to let her stay until she can find somewhere else to put the plants. More so after she wins a competition to compete in the Chelsea flower show. A little white lie about being a garden designer to the new owner Patrick wouldn’t hurt anyone, would it?

One last task before she takes redundancy is to go along on a school trip to France. What she thought would be a fun trip with her co-worker Sylvia, along with taking care of the kids, turns into a bit of an uncomfortable re-meeting with Patrick. Seems she went to him stating she was already a garden designer and would be thankful if she could continue using the greenhouse until she has somewhere else to put the plants. Reluctantly agreeing for a price to be determined later. So he is none too pleased that she lied to him and they don’t get off to a great start. When they find out that they have to share a room together at the house they are staying at things get interesting. Seems he thinks sharing the bed isn’t an option, no matter what she says, so insists he will stay on the floor. From comments made later in the book though I think this is really because he wouldn’t have been sure he could keep his hands off her. He may have a girlfriend at the time – Topaz his much younger assistant who is another character who is very shallow – so seem off limits to Althea but I think he starts to rethink things that weekend too. So maybe he’s not completely off limits.

Can you guess what might happen when two very shallow people meet? After a certain something happens its funny how both Althea and Patrick wanted to console each other when they found out but neither really needed consoling at all. Seems their romance was like a plant. It was going to take some time to get good roots down before being able to blossom. He does make her feel quite cherished when they do come together though. Chemistry is seen but shied away from by her. Only when she sees things a bit clearer does she fear she’s lost the one man for her. She seems very indecisive and selfless to the point of almost giving up on herself in regards to happiness. Make up your mind or the one you want will get away! Well maybe not for a while as it seems he’s just as into her and is willing to wait – but for how long? Also question, since when is 39 old. The way she talks sometimes you’d think she was 59.

Felt this one had a few too many sub stories going on trying to be interlinked around the main one with Althea’s ex-husband, sister, work colleagues and Topaz all pulling the story in different directions. Gardening of course played a key part and you can almost imagine the one she creates at her home and then Chelsea. Gardening is her one release, something just for her that she would never give up. It was a good book, funny in places, but not my favourite with how ‘back and forth’ Althea was being with her decisions. Good winter read though to get you in the mood for getting the garden ready for the season ahead. A good garden is the best place to read in.

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3 out of 5 stars

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