2 Book Lovers Reviews

​​​​​​Looking for your next 

read?  My first five-star

review of 2021 is posted! I

hope it's the first of many.

This week's list of new 

releases is posted, too.  

Let's ​​​read!   


  New Release  & Review:

  What's Worth Keeping

       By Kaya McLaren

*Top Recommendation!*


What’s Worth Keeping  is a

deeply moving story of a

family’s journey of finding

acceptance, healing, peace,

and the things that are

worth keeping.  In my

opinion, this novel deserves

nothing less than a five-star

rating because it made me

feel so much.  Throughout the book’s entirety, I was

invested, riveted to the pages, and completely immersed in the story and the characters.


*Read my full review...






 New Releases!


​- The Invitation  – By Vi Keeland

The first time I met Hudson Rothschild was at a wedding. I’d received an unexpected invitation to one of the swankiest venues in the city.
Hudson was a groomsman and quite possibly the most gorgeous man I’d ever laid eyes on. He asked me to dance, and our chemistry was off the charts.
I knew it wasn’t a good idea to get involved with him, considering the wedding I was at. But our connection was intense, and I was having a great time.
Though the fun came to a screeching halt when Hudson figured out I wasn’t who I’d said I was. You see, that unexpected invitation I received? Well, it hadn’t actually been addressed to me—it was sent to my ex-roommate who’d bounced a check for two months’ rent and moved out in the middle of the night. I figured she owed me an expensive night out, but I guess, technically, I was crashing the wedding.
Once caught, I couldn’t get out of there fast enough. As I bolted for the door, I might’ve plucked a few bottles of expensive champagne off the tables I passed, all while the gorgeous, angry groomsman was hot on my tail.
Outside, I jumped into a taxi. My heart ricocheted against my ribs as we drove down the block—but at least I’d escaped unscathed.
Or so I thought.
Until I realized I’d left my cell phone behind at the table.
Take one guess who found it?
This is the crazy story of how Hudson Rothschild and I met. But trust me, it’s only the tip of the iceberg.


- Rebel Roommate: A Brother’s Best Friend Romance  – By Jeannine Colette & Lauren Runow 

Growing up, I had one rule: stay away from my brother's best friend.
It was easy to follow. I spent my years avoiding the boys on the baseball team, studying hard, and saving every dime I could. When I was accepted to transfer into UC Berkeley, I needed a place to live, and my brother had a free room off-campus.
Win-win, right? Except that best friend I was determined to stay away from is now my new roommate.
My very naughty, very rebellious roommate, Wesley Knight.
The boy who was once the bane of my existence with his constant teasing is now a drop-dead gorgeous athlete. He's the life of the party, but I can't have fun. According to Wes, no guys are allowed to talk to me.
Well, two can play at this game. If I can't date, then neither can he.
It starts off as innocent fun. Some half-naked yoga or a little flirting until an interrupted moment of self-gratification turns things dangerous ... for my body and my heart.


- Vengeful Queen (Violent Kingdom #2)  – By Lili St. Germain - The first book in this series, Vicious Prince, is free for a limited time!



Releasing on January 19th!


- What’s Worth Keeping  – By Kaya McLaren - Top Recommendation!  Read my review.

The day her doctor says the one word that no one wants to hear, Amy Bergstrom discovers a secret that her husband of 25 years has been keeping from her. Now that the months of treatment and surgeries are behind her, she escapes her claustrophobic life seeking healing, peace and clarity in an ancient forest in Washington State, a forest that holds memories of her childhood summers.
After dropping off his daughter at Amy’s Aunt Rae’s horse ranch in the mountains of New Mexico, Officer Paul Bergstrom visits the fixer-upper he had bought years ago as a place to retire with his family. Although it appears fine on the outside, the inside is a disaster—just like his marriage. When he finds himself with more off-duty time than he expected, he lovingly repairs his dream home, building the future he so desperately wants.
Witnessing her mother’s health crisis had been terrifying enough, but learning the cause was genetic leaves Carly with the sense that all of her dreams are pointless. With the help of her eccentric great aunt and a Clydesdale named T. Rex, Carly just may find her faith in her future again.


- Not My Match (The Game Changers #2)  – By Ilsa Madden-Mills 

Homeless and heartbreakingly innocent, Giselle Riley walks into my penthouse and chaos follows.
I shouldn’t have invited the girl genius to live with me, but it’s clear she needs my help—not only for a place to lay her pretty blonde head but in finding real love, which she’s not going to get with the crazy men she picks up online.
Too bad she’s a twenty-four-year-old virgin and I’m a bad boy wide receiver. She’s off limits for a hardcore player like me—and we’re just friends.
Instead, I’m her matchmaking service, no matter how jealous it makes me when I tag along on her dates.
I can keep my self-control. Right? No way will I give in to everything inside me that dreams of a girl like her in my world.
I may be the best wide receiver in the country, but how could I hold on to a girl like her?


- Wrecked Palace (The Wrecked Series #3)  – By Catherine Cowles

- Enjoy the View (Moose Springs, Alaska, Book 3)  – By Sarah Morgenthaler

A grouchy mountaineer, a Hollywood starlet
And miles of untamed wilderness...
What could possibly go wrong?
Former Hollywood darling River Lane's acting career is tanking fast. Determined to start fresh behind the camera, she agrees to film a documentary about the picturesque small town of Moose Springs, Alaska. The assignment should have been easy, but the quirky locals want nothing to do with River. Well, too bad: River's going to make this film and prove herself, no matter what it takes.
Or what (literal) mountain she has to climb.
Easton Lockett may be a gentle giant, but he knows a thing or two about survival. If he can keep everyone in line, he should be able to get River and her crew up and down Mount Veil in one piece. Turns out that's a big if. The wildlife's wilder than usual, the camera crew's determined to wander off a cliff, and the gorgeous actress is fearless. Falling for River only makes Easton's job tougher, but there's only so long he can hold out against her brilliant smile. When bad weather strikes, putting everyone at risk, it'll take all of Easton's skill to get them back home safely...and convince River she should stay in his arms for good.


- The Stud Next Door  – By Kendall Ryan 

Life threw me a curveball. An adorable eight-pound, four-ounce curveball with her mother’s eyes and my dark hair. I’d like to think my single-dad game is strong, but honestly? I’ve been struggling a little.
When a beautiful young woman moves in next door and offers to give me a hand, I jump at the chance to hire her as a nanny. Jessa is amazing with my daughter. She’s also patient, kind, and way too pretty.
The number one rule of hiring a nanny? Don’t bed the nanny.
It’s a rule I intend to keep.
But as the days pass, I begin to realize how much my life is missing. Companionship. Romance. Intimacy. When I discover my heart has space for one more female, it’s a lost cause, another curveball. The hot-as-hell nanny is leaving soon for a mission trip to Central America. No sense in letting myself fantasize about Jessa being a permanent part of my life.
The closer we get, the more difficult it becomes to keep my feelings in check, because my heart won’t listen. And neither will my libido.
Well, you know what they say. Rules are meant to be broken . . .


- Escape With Me: A With Me in Seattle Novel  – By Kristen Proby – Standalone.

Keegan O’Callaghan has been told he’s married to his pub. It’s true. He’s happiest when he’s pulling taps and filling drink orders, so long as he can keep an eye on his family and ensure that all is well. Bringing a woman into his life for anything but a pleasant, short-term romp isn’t even on his radar.
Until she comes running through his door, soaking wet and in a princess gown.
Isabella Harris ran out on her wedding, and she’s not even a little bit sorry. She may have loved her groom a long time ago, but standing there about to take her vows, she realizes it’s not right. And that’s all she needs to know. Four hours later, she finds herself on a tiny island outside of Seattle, walking into a random Irish Pub and locking eyes with the sexiest bartender she’s ever seen. But now what? She’s alone and broke, with only a wedding dress to her name.
Despite the undeniable attraction between them, Keegan can see that Izzy’s scared and alone. The job offer he extends is only until she gets back on her feet—he has no intention of keeping her.
But sometimes Fate has other plans…


- Before She Disappeared  – By Lisa Gardner – Thriller! 

Frankie Elkin is an average middle-aged woman, a recovering alcoholic with more regrets than belongings. But she spends her life doing what no one else will--searching for missing people the world has stopped looking for. When the police have given up, when the public no longer remembers, when the media has never paid attention, Frankie starts looking...

- Happy Singles Day  – By Ann Marie Walker

As a Certified Professional Organizer, everything in Paige Parker's world is as it should be. Perfect apartment, perfect office, perfect life. And now, the perfect vacation planned to celebrate Singles Day. After all, what's better than celebrating her pride in being single? Because who needs a man anyway? They have zero taste in quality television, leave the toilet seat up, and sleep with your best friend. No thanks. Her life is fine just the way it is.
As the owner of a now-dormant bed & breakfast, single dad Lucas Croft finally has some peace and quiet. It's only him and his five-year-old daughter, which is just the way he likes it. Because who needs a woman anyway? They nag you to clean up your stuff, want the toilet seat put down, and expect the dishes to be done the same day the meal is cooked. No thanks. His life is fine just the way it is.
But when Paige books a room that Lucas' well-intentioned sister listed without his knowledge, their two worlds collide. If they can survive the week together, they just might discover exactly what they've both been missing.


- by Mistake: (Poison & Wine #1)  – By Sigal Ehrlich - Standalone.

here’s so much going on in Anna’s life. Teaching countless hours at the studio and nurturing the three major relationships of her life – her group of tight-knit friends, all while attempting to not screw up this whole adulthood thing leaves very little time to waste on yet another dating app. At this point, a relationship is off the menu. Being “self-partnered” is more than enough.
A serious relationship has been crossed off Liam Brody’s list of goals, at least for the foreseeable future. Completing his residency and becoming a trauma surgeon is his only priority. Casual relationships, his friends, and books are the only things he’s willing to lose his precious free time to.
When an accidental email starts a deep online connection, both Liam and Anna dive in with zero concern . . . because there’s really no harm in getting close to someone who you’ll never meet in real life, right?
Wrong.
When a turn of events brings their “safe” virtual connection to an unexpected face-to-face, Anna and Liam learn their online chemistry pales in comparison to the real deal. A realization that brings along the bazillion-dollar question – what do you do when you meet The One at the most impossibly wrong time?



Releasing Later This Week!


- ​​​January 20 - Chasing the Sun (Angel Sands)  – By Carrie Elks 

- January 21My Kind of Love (Finding Love #1)  – By Nikki Ash 

- January 21Lyrics on the Wind (Lost Kings MC #17)  – By Autumn Jones Lake 

- January 21Her Turn: A Bookish Romantic Comedy – By Allison Jones 

- January 22Stealing Home (Callahan Family Series #2)  – By Carrie Aarons

- January 22Trust Me: A Manhattan Marriage Novella  – By Candace Hutton 
 




Happy Reading!

Week of Jan. 18/21 

See more from the Year of the Zombie..

The Project

​By Courtney Summers

Week of January 11th, 2021


New Release:
Cruel Summer
By Wesley Southard

Genre: Horror


​​​​Melissa Braun is a broken woman. Only wanting what’s best for her family, she’s willing to do whatever it takes to mend her fractured relationship with her abusive boyfriend. In a last ditch effort, she hopes the sun and sand of a much-needed Florida vacation will bring them and her son closer together...

*Read more...



Week of January 4th, 2021


Book Review:
Red Hands
By Christopher Golden


​​​​I find myself in a bit of a catch 22 with this book. This is book three in the Ben Walker series. If you don’t know Ben Walker, he is a government agent / scientist / special forces type. The adventures I’ve shared with him include unearthing Noah’s Ark on the side of Mount Ararat in Turkey and opening Pandora’s Box in a buried city in Iraq. 

*See my full review...



Week of December 28th, 2020


My Top Books of 2020! 


​​​​Well, 2020 is coming to an end…it has been a remarkable year.  Tough year of reading for myself. Even with my Audibles on my daily commute, my reading is down.  I found the distractions to be numerous, I’ve watched more press conferences in the past ten months than I have in my entire life prior to the pandemic. This is time that I should have been reading. 

*See my list of top books of 2020...



Week of December 21st, 2020


Book Review:
Last Christmas
By David Moody & Wayne Simmons


​​​​I’ve been waiting for the right time to take a bite out of  Last Christmas. It is the type of story that I like to read to help get me into the holiday spirit.

Last Christmas  was a quick fun trip into a zombie riddled office Christmas party, oh, we can only hope. I think that Moody and Simmons really enjoyed creating this tale; the enthusiasm comes shining through. ​

*See my full review...



Week of December 14th, 2020


Book Review:
The Awakening
By Nora Roberts


​​​​There is no doubt that Nora Roberts can write a good book. I’ve had a few excellent adventures with Nora’s stories. I was pretty excited when I saw that she was starting a new fantasy series.

The Awakening  looked like it would tick off all of my boxes: fantastical realms, sword-wielding warriors, a down on her luck hero, dragons. 

*See my full review...



Week of December 7th, 2020


Book Review:
Tyrant
By Christian Cameron 


​​​​Christian Cameron took a novel approach with Tyrant; it is set during the reign of Alexander the Great, but the focus is elsewhere. Instead of narrowing in on the “big events” of the period, Cameron decided to show some of the other things going on while Alexander was conquering Asia. I enjoyed this different perspective.

*See my full review...



Week of November 30th, 2020


Book Review:
Krampus: The Yule Lord
By Brom 


​​​​From time to time I love to pick a book to get me into the holiday season. Of course, it cannot be your typical holly jolly Christmas story. I want something a little more twisted. Krampus  seemed like just the thing for me.

The myth behind Krampus pairs well with Christmas horror. Brom has taken the myth and made it his own.

*See my full review...



Week of November 23rd, 2020


Book Review:
Ink 
By Jonathan Maberry


​​​​A tattoo artist named Patty Cakes, that’s all I needed to pull me in. I love it when an author can be creative, witty, and fun all at the same time. I didn’t even need the rest of the synopsis.

I’ve read Jonathan Maberry before, I’ve enjoyed his writing, but he has a lot of series. Don’t get me wrong, I love a good series, but with my ever-growing, mountainous TBR list...​

*See my full review...



Week of November 9th, 2020


Book Review:
Red Rising 
By Pierce Brown


​​​​It has been a long time since I had this much fun with a book. Pierce Brown has created a colorful new world where your skin color dictates your place in society, not so novel an idea, but Brown takes it to another level.

The key to any great tale is the characters, most importantly the protagonist. Darrow carries this story like a champ.

*See my full review...



Week of November 2nd, 2020


Recommendation!

Book Review:
Deadlands: Ghostwalkers 
By Jonathan Maberry


​​​​Deadlands: Ghostwalkers is a lot of things.  It’s an alternate history western with a whole lot of action and adventure, mixed together with some undead here and there, and a splash of steampunk tossed in to add a little color.  What it is, is a book paradise for someone like me.

*See my full review...



Week of October 26th, 2020


Horror Recommendation!

Book Review:
The Ritual 
By Adam Nevill​


​​​​The Ritual  hit me in all of the right places.  It had everything that I was looking for in a book right now.  It was horror mixed with Nordic Noir.  It was gruesome and gory.  It felt like it was written just for me.

The base of the scenario was familiar, a group of friends get lost in the wilderness and... 

*See my full review...



Week of October 19th, 2020


Horror Recommendation!

Book Review:
The Troop 
By Nick Cutter​


​​​​The Troop  has to be the most sensory stimulating book that I’ve read:  sight, sound, smell, even taste and touch.  Nick Cutter brought all of them to life within the pages of the book.  I could see the thunder clouds building, hear the waves crashing on the shore, smell the rotting flesh, taste the blood in my mouth and feel the... 

*See my full review...



Week of October 13th, 2020


Book Review:
The Gates of Athens 
By Conn Iggulden


​​​​As I listened to George Blagden narrate Conn Iggulden’s  The Gates of Athens, one overwhelming thought came over me: they have been teaching history wrong all these years!

*See my full review...



Week of September 28th, 2020


Releasing on September 29th!
The Cabin on Souder Hill 
By Lonnie Busch


Stay tuned for my review!


​​​Michelle and Cliff Stage bought their isolated vacation cabin in the mountains of North Carolina with hopes of repairing their eighteen-year marriage. But when Cliff disappears one night searching for the source of a mysterious light in the woods, Michelle’s life will change in unimaginable ways...

*Read more...



Week of September 21st, 2020


Book Review:
The Trials of Koli
(The Rampart Trilogy #2)
By M.R. Carey


​​​I love what Carey has done here with  The Rampart Trilogy; book one was released April 14th, now in September book two is in our hands. Enough time for book

one to be well settled in my past, but not so long that my interest has waned. Very smart timing.


*See the full review...



Week of September 8th, 2020


Book Review:
The Residence
By Andrew Pyper


​​I have a list of authors who have pulled me into one of their stories; I can’t wait to get my grabby fingers on their next new release; Andrew Pyper got on this list with  The Homecoming.

I have spent months looking forward to reconnecting with Pyper’s writing, ever since I saw that  The Residence  was set to release. I know that I like his style, who doesn’t love an old-fashioned ghost story?

*See my full review...





​​​


Darling Rose Gold

By Stephanie Wrobel

Week of Jan. 18/21


Book Review:

A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms

By George R.R. Martin


​​Like many other readers, I have been waiting for Martin to return to Westeros, back to the world of the Targaryan’s, Lannister’s and Stark’s. I’m going to assume that you want to return to this world as well; if you have not read  A Song of Ice and Fire  up to  A Dance with Dragons  and you have never seen the series, you may find a few spoilers here.


*See my full review...

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