Category: Reviews

Book Review: Final Girls by Riley Sager

Final GirlsFinal Girls by Riley Sager
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. And oh, what a read this has been. It has been about a month since I finished this book and I am still not over it.
Quincy, Lisa and Sam have been dubbed “Final Girls” by the press. Each of the girls were the only remaining survivor of three different massacres. It’s been a decade since Quincy and her friends were attacked at a cabin in the wood and she has put the past behind her. She has a great life, a great career and an amazing boyfriend. Her life is pretty perfect… Until she finds out that Lisa has killed herself. Lisa was a motivational speaker and possibly the most upbeat of the Final Girls. Her death leads to Sam showing up to meet Quincy in person. As the remaining Final Girls bond, two things quickly become clear- 1) Quincy is not as okay as she thought she was and 2) Sam can’t be trusted. Quincy may be done with her past but her past is certainly not done with her.
This novel had me glued to my seat. The plot was compelling and the writing was great. I also enjoyed the many plot twists. This novel was unexpected but so enjoyable. I will definitely be reading more from this author in the future. If you enjoy mystery novels and thrillers, you will love this book.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- The Scot Beds His Wife (Victorian Rebels #5) by Kerrigan Byrne

The Scot Beds His Wife (Victorian Rebels, #5)The Scot Beds His Wife by Kerrigan Byrne

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Gavin, the Earl of Thorne has decided that he needs a wife. More specifically he needs to wed Samantha, the short-tempered heiress to the land he is after. However what Gavin doesn’t realize is that Samantha has some dark secrets that she’s hiding. Samantha isn’t who she claims to be and marriage to Gavin may be the only way that she can protect her secrets and herself. Marrying him is a great idea- until she begins to fall in love with him.
My biggest issue with this book is the title. I had no interest in this book because I thought the title made it sound like a book with no plot (which it isn’t-it actually has a really action-packed plot). I only read this book because I love Kerrigan Byrne’s writing and I have been following this series for a really long time.
It was great to see characters from the previous novels in this series. This novel also did a great job introducing new (and very colourful) characters for future books. I also enjoyed the uniqueness of Samantha’s backstory and her “secrets”. This book had more danger and darkness than the previous books in this series which I thought was great. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical romance.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Christmas at Mistletoe Cove by Holly Martin 

Christmas at Mistletoe CoveChristmas at Mistletoe Cove by Holly Martin

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Eden and Dougie have been best friends since they were kids. Eden has always been in love with Dougie while his feelings for her seem to just be platonic. Now Dougie has moved back home and he is Eden’s neighbour. Desperate to find the girl who once believed in magic, Dougie takes Eden to a magical spot in town where you can have any three wishes granted. Eden doesn’t believe in magic and the only thing she has ever wished for is the one thing she can’t have- Dougie.
As much I was looking forward to this book, I found it pretty predictable. I loved the chemistry between Dougie and Eden. They are undoubtedly my favourite couple in this series. The only flaw in this book is the predictable plot. The character’s are entertaining and funny, the romance is beautiful. This is a great Christmas read that I recommend to anyone who is looking for something sweet and light-hearted.

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Fiction Friday: The Law of Tall Girls by Joanne Macgregor

The Law of Tall GirlsThe Law of Tall Girls by Joanne Macgregor
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Peyton is a very tall girl who makes a bet that she can get a guy who is even taller than her to take her on three dates and the prom. However finding a guy who is taller than her, interesting and single turns out to be a challenge. The number one person on Peyton’s “Tall Guy” list is Jay. But while Jay is taller than Peyton, gorgeous and charming, he is also taken. But when Peyton and Jay are both cast as the leads in the school play (an adaptation of Romeo and Juliet), things might turn a turn in Peyton’s favor. If she can keep all her secrets locked safely away from Jay, that is.
The whole idea of a romance between characters playing Romeo and Juliet in their school play seemed incredibly cliched but Joanne Macgregor carries this out in a wonderfully real way. I loved seeing all the effort that went into the play and the romance happened naturally. Instead of the play driving the romance, both the play and the romance seemed to happen at the same time which was great. As a tall girl, I found this book difficult to get into at first. It just reminded me of my awkward teen years (which I honestly didn’t want to be reminded of now. I’m an adult now. Being tall doesn’t bother me anymore but reading this book brought back alot of those old feelings of inadequacy). However which I got through my tall girl issues, I devoured this book. I loved Peyton and Jay’s character and I loved that their families had such interesting backstories (especially since so few YA novels mention parents and other relatives). This book was funny, entertaining and dealt with real-life issues. I definitely recommend this book to fans of YA contemporary fiction.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Now I Rise by Kiersten White (The Conqueror’s Saga, #2)

Now I Rise (The Conqueror's Saga, #2)Now I Rise by Kiersten White
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I had major doubts going into this book. It had been about a year or so since I read “As I Darken” and while I did enjoy it, I wasn’t sure that “Now I Rise” would be as good (second books rarely are).  I was wrong. “Now I Rise” was infinitely better and I cannot wait to read the next book in the series. Since I read “As I Darken” so long ago, I was sure that I wouldn’t remember much of the plot or the characters. In fact, I read about two pages before I realised I didn’t remember the events of the last novel (of course the only thing I remembered was the love triangle between Radu, Lada and Mehmed). Thankfully the novel recounted characters and events from the first book so I was able to read this without having to reread “As I Darken.”
“Now I Rise” follows Lada, Radu and Mehmed as they each go after the thing they want most. Lada wants to be prince of Wallachia, Radu wants to be respected by Mehmed (but any sort of positive attention from Mehmed makes Radu happy because he has an unhealthy obsession with Mehmed) and Mehmed just wants Constantinople. However for each of the characters to get what they want, they have to make difficult decisions- decisions that involve lies, betrayal or brutal deaths.
This book is nothing like what I would usually read. However there is just something about this series that drew me in and refuses to let go. I NEED to know more about these characters. Will Lada get her throne? Who will Mehmed choose? Will Radu ever grow a pair? (Can you tell he’s my least favourite Dracul sibling?) I need answers to these questions ASAP.
There was amazing character development in this novel. Both Dracul siblings see that their way is not always the best and they may need the other. Lada is as bloodthirsty in this novel as she was in “As I Darken”- but this time instead of just threatening people she is a girl of action and I loved seeing that side of her. She is fierce, she is vicious and it is incredible.
“Now I Rise” has a compelling plot and flawless writing which makes the book impossible to put down. Definitely get yourself a copy. NOW!

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Spellbound and Ever After by Nora Roberts

Spellbound & Ever AfterSpellbound & Ever After by Nora Roberts
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I think this book was a good read but just not a very realistic one. Both stories deal with the supernatural and of course love is the answer for these two couples. However while Nora Roberts normally uses these elements flawlessly, I found this novel difficult to follow.
The first story, “Spellbound” tells of a couple who have been separated through death and are now brought together. But while Bryna accepts their destiny together (since she has always known Calin is the one for her), Calin is far more disbelieving (which is ridiculous considering he had a childhood of the supernatural). However the story betwen Bryna and Calin is sweet and well-developed despite it’s relatively short length. I really enjoyed this story.
The second story, “Ever After” was just a really painful read. There was too much of insta-love and I did not find any of it believable. The characters seemed weak and I found the entire story to be over-done.
I warn anyone considering this book to proceed with caution.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Firsts by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn

FirstsFirsts by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Mercedes has an unusual after-school activity. She helps virgins learn how to have sex. Mercedes believes other girls should have the special first-time experience she never did and so she coaches their boyfriends. But Mercedes’ life is about to get more complicated. As she tries to stop her unique service, things don’t work out as planned and everything starts to spiral out of control.

I absolutely loved loved loved this book. It was so well-written and the characters are so well-developed. Mercedes seems like a foolish girl but it’s hard to not feel sympathy for her. I especially liked how sweet Zach was no matter how often she pushed him away. This book was a great coming-of-age novel and I will definitely be reading it again. I recommend this to all fans of YA and contemporary fiction.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Shooting for the Stars (Gravity #3) by Sarina Bowen

Shooting for the Stars (Gravity #3)Shooting for the Stars by Sarina Bowen
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Stella has had a crush on Bear for most of their childhood. However after he turned her down in high school, Stella has to content herself with just being his friend. Until one night when he has a crappy day and Stella is the one who comforts him (and somehow they end up in bed together). But any chance of a happy ever after is ruined when Stella finds out that her brother- and Bear’s best friend- has been badly injured in an accident.
I’ve read most of the Ivy Years series and I really enjoyed it. I love Sarina Bowen’s writing style and her characters. However this book seemed really filled with angst which kinda spoiled it for me. I did still enjoy it but I miss the lightness of the Ivy Years (maybe I should just go and finish the last few books in the series).
I loved the romance between Bear and Stella. I also loved the characters of Hank and Callie and will definitely be tracking down their story. This is a great read that I recommend to anyone who enjoys romance novels.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Falling from the Sky by Sarina Bowen (Gravity #2)

Falling from the Sky (Gravity, #2)Falling from the Sky by Sarina Bowen
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Callie meets dashing and daring Hank for a few minutes before one of his jumps. While it is clear that she makes no impression on him, Hank definitely makes an impression on Callie. And then he gets in an accident that leads to them running into each other repeatedly.
While pre-injury Hank was dismissive of Callie, post-injury-Hank is pretty taken with her. Ever since losing his career, his girlfriend, his friends and his drive for life, Callie is the only one who sees him as a person and not as someone as a wheelchair. But Hank’s accident has left him with more than just physical scars and if he wants anything to do with his pretty doctor, he will need to overcome his own personal demons and Callie’s own issues too.
I thought this was a really great novel. Callie and Hank are an adorable couple and this book was not as angst-filled as I thought it would be. I also really liked Hank’s character. He was flawed but well-written and well-developed. I especially enjoyed seeing the characters from the first book.
I thought that both Callie and Hank’s exes were awful and I enjoyed seeing them get what (I thought) they deserved.
I definitely recommend this book to all fans of romance novels.

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Fiction Friday: Book Review- Secrets of a Runaway Bride by Valerie Bowman (Secret Brides #2)

Secrets of a Runaway Bride (Secret Brides, #2)Secrets of a Runaway Bride by Valerie Bowman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Annie has earned herself the (very unfortunate) nickname of “The Runaway Bride” after a botched elopement attempt. When her sister and brother-in-law leave on their honeymoon, Annie sees it as a perfect opportunity to fix her past mistake and actually get married to the man that she loves. But first she needs to escape her brother-in-law’s meddling best friend, Jordan.
Jordan has sworn to keep an eye on Annie and is determined to keep his word. He knows firsthand what it is like to love someone and not have that love returned. And since Annie’s beau has no backbone, it falls to Jordan to protect her reputation. So he kidnaps her and takes her to the country.
I really liked Jordan and Annie together. They have a very clear chemistry and the build-up to their romance is great. However I felt like that latter part of the book was forced. The plot seemed flat and it just seemed like Annie and Jordan’s relationship was dragged on. This was a really good book and I look forward to reading the rest of the series.

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