#BookReview Alejandro’s Sexy Secret by Amy Ruttan

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Alejandro’s Sexy Secret is the perfect dose of romance and medical drama.

I’ve been craving a sweet romance with a happy ending in a long while, and this book fit the bill. It’s not depressing – it’s upbeat, lighthearted and sugary sweet!! It was just what I needed with all the depressing news that has been going on in the world recently.

Amy Ruttan’s novel is a Harlequin romance, but that shouldn’t scare you off. While quite of few of the Harlequin novels have bored me to tears, this medical romance was fast paced and full of ooey, gooey excellence!! The romance doesn’t start off at the beginning and seem unrealistic, which was a nice change in my Harlequin reads. I liked that it took about half the book for the love interests to finally start their relationship – it seemed more realistic in a romance book setting.

Our lead characters are also unique and diverse. They are doctor with different backgrounds and provide a nice splash of diversity into the usual all white character cast list that seems to pop up in some of these books. I am SOOOO SOOO SOOOO happy to see diversity in this book!!! So happy!

This is such a beautiful story! There’s grief, hope, loss, love and so many themes and plot driven dramas within it that I couldn’t put this book down. This book deserves so much more circulation! I hope Amy writes more and more of these books get read!! What a great novel!!! I literally read it in one sitting, that’s how attached I was to these characters.

I 100% want to read every other book in this series and by Amy Ruttan. I’ll have to try to get my hands on these books because this book had me hooked and addicted to Amy! This is one worthy Harlequin Medical Romance read!!!

Side note: I LOVE that this book is signed by Amy!! That made my day! Along with the cute doctor bookmark as well!!

Five out of five stars.

I received this book for free through Goodreads First Reads.

 

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#BookReview Fire on the Ice by Tamsen Parker

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Maisy and Blaze are the newest feature in the SIG, and these two ladies will leave you breathless!

Maisy is a figure skater and Blaze is a speed skater. The two get hot and heavy early on in this book and already have a relationship of sorts going on. It’s a nice change from strangers or friends to lovers, to be honest. But if you were thinking these would be soft, vanilla sex scenes – you’d be wrong! Tamsen is shockingly amazing at writing these scenes that they will make you blush (so maybe don’t read them in public…?). I think this has to be the “hottest” book of the series so far, so be warned!

The “parents don’t like that I’m gay” was something new from Tamsen, but I think it worked well. There needed to be some conflict in this book, and it fit perfectly! I didn’t totally enjoy the opposites attract portion of this book, but it fits well enough within this story.

These characters do grow within this story, and I have give me praise to Tamsen for doing such. Having characters that try to change and grow was a lovely addition to tie this book in together. It really shows how much Tamsen is growing as an author – she keeps implementing new and better plot points in her books. Personally, I didn’t like the personalities of the main characters (it’s a personal problem, to be honest. They remind me of people I know, and you know how that is…). I think in relation to the story, they have the best personality for the scenario, but it just didn’t bode with me. It’s nothing against this story (because it’s a great story, honestly, READ IT).

If anything, I would have liked a little more plot in this story. I found this to be a really heavy romance compared to a plot focused one. This can be great for some readers, but for others it might not work. Keep that in mind if you’re going to read it – don’t expect a crazy, complicated plot.

This might be my least favourite SIG novel (but they are all fighting for top spot, so it’s a tight race for first place) if I had to place them in a list. It’s still a fantastic book, I just liked the others more (I related more to the characters from the other books on a personal level).

Overall, I would definitely recommend this story to anyone looking for romance, F/F, or sports romance books. It’s still top tier! Comparing them to Tamsen’s other books (based on my own personal opinion) it’s one of the best, just not MY favourite. It’s definitely one of her best.

Four out of five stars.

Side Note: Who would have thought Olympics erotica would be a category of books? It’s probably one of the few I never considered until Tamsen actually wrote these books.

I received a copy of this book courtesy of Tamsen Parker and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

 

Leave a comment below about your favourite unique romance reads!!

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Or check out another review you might enjoy! Quick Review – Uncharted Territory by Tamsen Parker

#BookReview On The Edge of Scandal by Tamsen Parker

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Surprise, surprise – I am reading another Tamsen Parker book. What can I say? I’m addicted, and Tamsen fills the prescription.

Oh man, oh man. Tamsen loves her taboos, and she doesn’t let us down with a Mentor-Mentee relationship (well, coach and team member if you want to get really picky). Throw in a splash of angst with all the ooey gooey romance, and you’ve got yourself a home run (wrong sport, but you get the point).

This Snow and Ice Games book is all about HOCKEY. As a Canadian, I approve! Finally a book that I will understand all the sports terms and be able to identify if Tamsen knows her stuff or is just really good at making up sports terms! Woo hoo!

Bronwyn and Ash are another great duo. I have never been so happy in my life to see a couple break up in a piece of literature – because Brody drove me insane. Coming from a formal athlete, I HATED IT when male athletes put down us female athletes. Brody drove me up the wall and made me hate him, which might be one of the cons of this book? I wish I had reasons to like Brody, but I really didn’t. I understood where he was coming from, but he just fell flat. Maybe one day Tamsen will give him a chance for redemption in another novel?

I loved Bronwyn – she is a strong woman who isn’t afraid to give a piece of her mind. I was so happy and proud of a certain moment in this novel, because honestly I was rooting for team Bronwyn the whole time.

There were some points in this novel where I was a little…uneasy. Not with the content, but imagining it actually happening. Lying down and sleeping with your coach? It was consensual, but it seemed kinda…weird? I can see it happening, but at the same time it just seemed odd to me. Does this actually happen? I’m from a small town, so things like this rarely happen (the coaches are normally double the age of any of the participants) around my area. Maybe it’s just my past experience clouding my vision.

I will say – this book is hot. It’s steamy. It’s sensual. It’s racy. It’s everything you want in an erotic romance and more. Okay, maybe it’s not EVERYTHING (this isn’t Tamsen’s BDSM series, it’s pretty calm), but it’s still a quality romance novel (with some R rated scenes). I even felt my heart jump a few times thinking about how sweet these two are (and how they finally get together).

I like this series a lot more than a lot of the romances I used to read. The Snow and Ice Games just kinda click. They are sweet, short and sexy. Tamsen doesn’t put in useless information, she doesn’t lead you astray and she doesn’t make you think to hard (Side note: don’t you hate those romance books that throw in some “Inception” like plot but don’t follow through with them?). Tamsen is the queen of easy, sexy reads! And probably the most important: her books aren’t the same thing over and over.

I respect Tamsen so much (and I’ve said this in other reviews) on how she grows as an author. Some romance authors stick to the same story line over and over and over and over… It gets excessive. Tamsen might use the same premise (romance story, erotic, a little taboo) but she changes up the characters (M/M, F/F, M/F, etc), the plot lines (dramatic storytelling vs just a romance) and how steamy these books go, and so on. These books are all different and have their own identity, which is SO NICE TO SEE. I’m tired of reading the same book by the same author over and over again!

Overall, it’s another hit for me. I’m having a hard time trying to figure out which book is my fave for far. I’ll have to wait until I read all five to actually put them in an order of how much I enjoyed them, because the first three are all fighting for top spot and rotate depending on my mood (or the day).

Five out of five stars.

I received an electronic copy through Tamsen Parker and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

 

What other sports book have you enjoyed? Leave a comment below!

You can visit Tamsen Parker on her website: TamsenParker.com

Or give her a shout out on twitter! @TamsenParker

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Did you enjoy this book? Why not check out another you might enjoy? #BookReview Seduction on the Slopes (SIG #2) by Tamsen Parker

#BookReview Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

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Here’s another #ThrowbackThursday – a novel I read years ago, but reread and created a review for!! This is one of my favourites – Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare.

 

 

Clockwork Princess is a beautiful finish to one of YA’s best series in recent years.

For years I waited anxiously for a book like Clockwork Princess – a story that ends beautifully, perfectly and without total heart break. With characters as strong as Jem, Will and Tessa, we needed a solid ending that would make all fans happy but also tie up the story just perfectly, and Cassandra Clare delivered.

This book will pull at your heartstrings and destroy you. It’s such a beautiful ending it’s hard to believe it’s all over with. The ups and downs of this series is ended just perfectly that there are no loose ends and no destroyed fans (at least, from what I’ve seen). I dare say that this book is the best book Cassandra Clare has ever written – it rivals the base Mortal Instrument series, and has one step up. This book was even better than City of Heavenly Angels, in my opinion. With such a satisfying conclusion, I have to say it deserves more than five stars. Not many books can be finished so perfectly.

Would I recommend this series? Absolutely. While it’s a YA, it definitely doesn’t feel like your typical YA story. Adults can enjoy this – there isn’t as much ooey, gooey silly teenage angst that is in most YA books. It’s a grown up YA with the odd silly scene. So it’s safe to say it’s a good read. This series can also be used as a standalone – you don’t need to read all the other series (Mortal Instruments, Dark Artifices) to understand this book at all. It is the prequel series to The Mortal Instruments, if you’re interested in reading further (they can be read out of order via the series though. TMI came out first, then this series and now The Dark Artifices). I would suggest reading the three books of this series in order though – it’s worthy.

It also has one of the most beautiful covers. I love the original cover – I saw a new one at my local book store recently and it wasn’t as beautiful, but in terms of cover art – judging the book by it’s cover it allowed for this book. With such a great cover comes such a great story.

Problems with this book/series:
Yes, there’s a love triangle. Can they be annoying? Yes. Does it work in this book? Yeah, it’s YA so it’s kind of an expected plot twist these days.
Weak characters – yeah, there are some. But personally, I find having all characters be strong can make for a boring book.
Repeat characters – Cassandra Clare uses the same characters/developments with different names and faces. It’s annoying, but as long as you aren’t just reading her books and expand your library, you don’t notice to much.
Rule Breakers – some of the “cannot be broken rules” are broken in this book. It’s kind of annoying in my eyes, but what can you do? It created the happy ending most fans wanted, so I guess we can over look that…
Tessa – FINALLY we learn what Tessa is. I’m a little disappointed it took so long because it would have been cooler to flesh out all about her throughout the series, but whatever, it works, I guess.

So, overall, this book is really on the fence for most readers – people either love it passionately to no end (ugly cry, putting the book on a pedestal and praying to it sort of deal) or hated it (rip the pages out, burn the book, demand a refund, etc). I’m on the end that enjoyed it and I definitely kept the book (Look at that cover, how can you not love the book for the cover alone?).

So, I will give it five out of five stars. It had it’s faults for sure, but it was a great read that kept me interested, was fast paced, and had an ending that I found to be good.

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#BookReview Seduction on the Slopes (SIG #2) by Tamsen Parker

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*Arc courtesy of Tamsen Parker/NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

Why am I reading a book about winter games in freezing weather when I’m cold and dreaming of the summer? Because Tamsen Parker has another wonderful book out! So maybe reading a book about cold isn’t the smartest idea, but Tamsen has some hot and heavy romance in this book to warm you up! (Well, I wish it worked that way…).

Pros:
1. F-Bombs galore! For me, this was actually one of the more amusing parts. There are some perfectly timed f-bombs for comedic purposes. Ah, how I love Tamsen’s fruity language.

2. I’m not the biggest fan of M/M books (mainly because most of them are trying to follow the “stereotype” of what society has deemed M/M relationships to be) but this one was more realistic (within the scenario). It’s a major plus for this book not to be the stereotypical “norm” that has become some recent M/M books.

3. “Ass-Muffin”. That term, that’s a pro all on it’s own.

4. This book is a rather quick, easy read – I found it to be addicting to the point I wouldn’t put it down.

5. There’s some great comedic tones within this novel. This book is not just hardcore M/M romance scenes page after page, there’s a plot, some sporty goodness and drama all wrapped up into one beautiful bundle. It’s also complex in the character development and back stories. These characters aren’t Mary Sue’s!!!

Cons:
1. Too Short? I felt the first book in this series was to short, and now this one also felt a little too short. But on a positive note, it’s also not too long…

2. This can be a pro or a con depending on what type of reader you are – there is lots of CHEESE in this book. And by cheese, I mean cheesey dialogue. For me, I love it (mostly because Tamsen does it “right” in my mind) but it can be considered a con by many – so I’ll list it in my con list.

3. Series wise, these books are all focused on different characters. To me, that’s kind of a con considering I love some of these characters and want much more of them. Maybe I can convince Tamsen to make some Infinity War-esque novel of all of these characters… Maybe not. It might be worth a shot though…

4. Two books in a row now have had these sugary sweet endings that all tie up perfectly super quickly. That might be my biggest con of all for some of Tamsen’s books. It’s not a bad thing, but it’s definitely something that could be worked on (can you tell I’m in school exam mode right now with the constructive criticism and feedback? Oh boy).

Overall, this book is hella sexy and definitely worth a read. If you are a fan of romance, M/M, sporty novels or a splash of comedy in with your romance, this book is for you!

Five out of five stars!!

 

Did you enjoy this review? Why not check out Tamsen Parker on Goodreads! Tamsen Parker on Goodreads

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Why not give Tamsen or I a shoutout on Twitter while you’re at it?! @TamsenParker

Or check out my Goodreads page for an archive of all of my reviews! Briar’s Reviews on Goodreads

If you enjoyed this review, check out another you might enjoy: HIS CUSTODY by Tamsen Parker Book Review

#BookReview In The Company of Vampires by Katie MacAlister

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In The Company of Vampires is a romantic tale told by Katie MacAlister.

I love Katie MacAlister – she’s not your typical romance novelist. She writes about vampires, some of them from other times with very silly/interesting points of views, and her books are always hot and steamy. One summer, years ago, I binged as much of her and Gena Showalter as I could get my hands on (it helped that I didn’t have a part time job at the time, so literally all of my time was allocated to Katie, Gena, Rachel Vincent, and a few other novelists).

Fran and Benedikt are the leads of this book – if you haven’t picked up Katie MacAlister before, these two leads were going to be the main character in her Confessions of a Vampire’s Girlfriend YA series that didn’t go very far. I absolutely loved that little series, and was broken-hearted when I discovered it was not being continued. But then, Katie did what all the best novelists do, she brought them into the adult romance genre.

And OH MY GOODNESS did she deliver. This book was hot and steamy and everything I wanted it to be. She starts it off in a great manner – these characters haven’t seen each other for a while (which makes sense since the YA was cancelled and we never knew what actually happened to them, since it was a sudden stop). The drama, romance and steamy sex scenes that follow will melt you.

This book is fast paced, and it’s absolutely hilarious. Katie always adds a sense of humor into her books – so it’s not a serious romance novel. When you have vampires, crazy unrealistic drama and the supernatural around, you might as well add in some humor! All of that together ties in for a perfectly good guilty pleasure read! I’ve picked up this specific book quite a few times, because it’s my favourite out of all the Dark Ones series. And if you have read her previous books, yup, the vikings are back. Katie has a thing for vikings… You’ll figure that out the more you read her novels.

Overall, I love this series. It’s one of my giant guilty pleasures that I reread when I’m having a bad day. I definitely recommend this book if you want something easy to read, something funny, romantic or fast, or just want something that isn’t your typical romance novel.

Five out of five stars.

On a side note: I signed up for a lot of her goodies on her website years ago and I still never got it. I even got confirmation I would receive it. So I’m kinda sad, because I am OBSESSED with this series. But what can you do? Just keep in mind if you are trying to sign up for some of the goodies on her website.

Find Katie and all of her books on Goodreads: Katie MacAlister on Goodreads

Visit her website: KatieMacAlister.com

Or give her a shout out on twitter! @KatieMacAlister

Enjoy my reviews? Check out my Goodreads page! Briar’s Reviews on Goodreads

Give me a shout-out on Twitter! Let me know your recent reads!!! Or give me some recommendations!  Briar’s Reviews on Twitter

Enjoy this review? Check out another one you might enjoy: Rogue Desires by Tamsen Parker, Adriana Anders, Amy Jo Cousins and more!

#BookReview Love on the Tracks by Tamsen Parker

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Love on the Tracks is another top tier romance by Tamsen Parker that should not be missed!

I’d hate to say it, but I love this book WAY more than The Compass series (and I was overly obsessed with that book). I didn’t think Tamsen could make me love a book or series more than her original, but she did!

This novel is a contemporary romance that follows a female sports star and a male pop star – something that makes so much sense, but I haven’t seen much in the books I’ve read. Our leads, Rowan and Zane, are a perfect duo that I definitely want to see more of in the future. Our setting, The Snow and Ice Games, introduces us to a unique setting – competition, sports stadiums, Olympic tones, etc. Our antagonists are not bad guys, and are merely trying to do their best under what they think is the right thing. Every inch of this story feels more realistic than most romances I’ve torn through in the past few years.

Positives:
1. Luge/Sports – I really liked the introduction of a sport that most people don’t really think about on a day to day basis.
2. Strong Female Lead – Yes, India was an excellent character written by Tamsen but she had her faults (which is what made her so good, FYI) but Rowan is stronger, knows what she wants and has her head on straight (for now, anyways).
3. Lighthearted, Engaging Story – I enjoy a sweet novel that doesn’t make you cringe at every turn. This book is so sweet, so simple, and an overall lovely story to make you feel good.
4. Respect – Also, if you haven’t noticed many novels don’t have the level of respect between the two leads like this book does. A+ for effort Tamsen!!

Negatives:
1. Speed – I found some portions of this book was a little fast (no spoilers), but there are more books in the series to explore different issues among characters, competitions, etc.

Overall, this book is a fantastic, romance read for all you romance enthusiasts! This book does not disappoint!!!

Five out of five stars!

I received a copy of this story through NetGalley for an honest review.

 

Did you enjoy this book? Check out another you might enjoy! #BookReview In Her Court by Tamsen Parker

Check out Tamsen Parker on Goodreads! Tamsen Parker on Goodreads

Or visit her website! TamsenParker.com