#BookReview Love, All by Tamsen Parker

It’s that time again… I get to read another book by my fave! Tamsen Parker’s writing style has always vibed with me in a way I cannot understand. Whatever jedi mind tricks she is playing, I’m totally into it.

I managed to buy this beauty a while ago but lost it among my kindle library (what do you expect, Bookbub these days is killing me with those freebies). I marked it down on my TBR because I HAD to read it. I couldn’t not read a beautiful, little romance by my fave. So yes, I am 100% biased in my review. Beware!

Nate is an engineer who is also a tennis instructor (we’ve already got a winner folks), and he stumbles upon Ruby, who is a single mom looking for a good time. At first, this seemed like an easy one night stand sort of deal, but things get steamier. Ruby doesn’t want anymore time with him, but Nate is head over heels and wants some more!

The chemistry in this book is ON FIRE (totally a pun in reference to another Tamsen book, just saying). I totally loved the relationship between these characters and how Ruby’s daughter perfectly fit into the situation as well. Chloe was actually quite spunky and funny, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

My biggest negative was I wish there was a little bit more. I understand this book was not meant to be very long, but I wanted to see their relationship grow and change just a bit more. Maybe two or three more chapters? The issues were fixed quite quickly for my tastes. Other than that, I think they were quite the pair! Not perfectly matched right away, but they totally grow on you.

Honestly, I adored this book. If you’re looking for a quick read where a relationship builds hot and fast yet actually faces real issues, grab this book! It’s super sweet and worth the read.

Five out of five stars.

 

Check out this fabulous book on:
Goodreads
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com

 

You can find more books by Tamsen Parker littered throughout my blog. Give one of these reviews/books a try:
#BookReview If I Loved You Less by Tamsen Parker
#BookReview For Her Own Good by Tamsen Parker
#BookReview Hot for the Holidays by Marie Force, Tamsen Parker et. al

 

Find out more about my fave author, Tamsen Parker, on:
Goodreads
http://www.tamsenparker.com/
Twitter – @tamsenparker

 

Give me a shout out on Twitter if you read this review! #briarsreviews @ReviewAlholic

And like me on Facebook for more urgent updates! @BriarsReviews on Facebook

Or follow me on Goodreads: Briar’s Reviews on Goodreads

#BookRecommendations 2010s in Review

The 2010s was a rough decade for me, I won’t lie!

  1. I had to put my childhood pets (my dog and cat) down.
  2. My Father lost his battle to cancer.
  3. I dropped out of university.
  4. I completed a different diploma but couldn’t get a job.

But I also had some pretty amazing things happen too!

  1. I went back to school to get the degree I always wanted to.
  2. I started a book blog and discovered Goodreads.
  3. I met Kevin Smith, Jay Mewes, John Ratzenburger and Billy Dee Williams!
  4. I got my three beautiful fur babies (my kitties <3).

 

Since a new decade is coming into play, here’s 20 books (and series) from the last ten years that helped in my reading addiction!

Best of the 2010s Decade:

1. Kevin Miller’s Milligan Creek Series
If you haven’t read this mind blowing middle grade series, what are you even doing?! Matt, Chat, Andrew and Dean get into many shenanigans in the great west, Saskatchewan. Canoe trips, epic radio shows, an excessive water war and saving the town are just some of the wild adventures this group gets into. I’d highly recommend this book because it is absolutely my BEST of the decade. Kevin Miller is proving to be one of the best Canadian authors I’ve ever come across!
Check out this marvelous series: https://www.goodreads.com/series/247750

 

2. Rachel Vincent’s Menagerie Series
Holy moly! Rachel Vincent has been one of my fave authors from the last decade. I discovered her Soul Seekers series in high school and I’ve been hooked to her writing ever since. When I discovered the Menagerie series, I was glued to every page and was absolutely heart broken that it ended! This book follows Delilah when she’s captured and put into a magical creature Menagerie. This fantasy series is packed full of drama, political shadows and a dash of romance.
Pick up this series A.S.A.P.: https://www.goodreads.com/series/110345

 

3. Drug Gang series by Neil Walker
Holy heck, this book series is WILD! If you love Game of Thrones, Breaking Bad and the Godfather, you’ll love this series. While I wanted to include the last book in my 2019 summary, I couldn’t leave out the other two books in this series. So, I decided to give this series it’s own place in the 2010s best of list! Drugs and sex, blood and guts, and crazy gangs are littered throughout this series. It’s a hard R novel that is an absolute guilty pleasure – think the craziness of John Wick plus the insanity of Pulp Fiction. Neil has such a great collection here it’d be a shame to not introduce you to it! It was definitely one of the series I was anxiously waiting to read during the 2010s!
Takedown this series: https://www.goodreads.com/series/216836

 

4. Ready Research Series by Mindy M. Shelton
Mindy M. Shelton was introduced to me years ago, but man am I still thinking about her books! She has one excellent series that follows different types of murderers. With Making a Murderer being so intriguing, seeing a series like this pop up and come into my radar was awesome! If you like true crime and non-fiction, this series would be right up your alleyway! It’s horrifying and intriguing all at the same time.
Go down the rabbit hole: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30375247-from-birth-to-death

 

5. How To Make White People Laugh by Negin Farsad
I love Negin Farsad’s comedy. I was introduced to her by my friends (via the dreaded Facebook) and I even won a copy of this book from Goodreads! This book is laugh out loud funny and is one of the few books that actually made me laugh. Negin’s sense of humour and collection of jokes make this book a must read. It’s blunt, sarcastic and sometimes just too much! This super smart comedy book is definitely one of my best books of the decade!
How to Make Readers Laugh: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27170153-how-to-make-white-people-laugh

 

6. Lab Girl by Hope Jahren
I relate WAY TOO MUCH to Hope. Hope Jahren is a scientist who studies nature – trees, soil, seeds, flowers, etc. She wrote this absolutely intelligent autobiography that made me feel like I found my place in the world. If only I would have discovered this in high school! Hope presents this book with intelligence, comedy and realism and paints one beautiful picture. It felt like I was meant to read this book! I’d highly recommend it, especially if you love science and non-fiction.
Stop procrastinating and pick up this book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25733890-lab-girl

 

7. Peter Green and the Unliving Academy by Angelina Allsop
In 2019 I told myself I would read more middle grade and YA books, and that promise brought me many beautiful novels. Peter Green and the Unliving Academy is definitely in my top list for the year. I was floored by how magical this book was and surprised me by how much I needed a book like this in my life. In my personal, humble opinion it’s better than Harry Potter, Percy Jackson and a Series of Unfortunate Events. It tops my list with the amazing themes (friendship, family and growing up) and the fun fantasy it paints throughout the book. This book barely has 40 reviews on Goodreads, so help that book get its share of reviews! Pimp this book out my readers!
Find life in this Middle Grade Novel: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/41824802-peter-green-and-the-unliving-academy

 

8. Snow and Ice Games by Tamsen Parker
Heck, I could put all of Tamsen Parker’s books here. In this last decade I discovered one of my favourite authors and I had to pimp her out in the 2010s list. These erotic romances (and sometimes just romances) are some of my favourite novels. They push boundaries, are packed with romance and just make me feel good! I specifically chose the Snow and Ice Games series because I LOVE sport romances and I can rarely find them. On top of that, it’s winter sports and since I’m Canadian they are pretty much all we see. So, pick up some Tamsen books and see why I’m utterly OBSESSED!
Get Hot in the Winter: https://www.goodreads.com/series/215930-snow-ice-games

 

9. Life Seemed Good, But… by Richard Bell
If you’re looking for some comedy, pick up this marvelous anthology collection of funny stories by Richard Bell. Sometimes you just need a good laugh, and Richard Bell knows all about that! This incredible collection is great for teenagers and adults – there are some darker themes, but they all end up in some form of hilarity. I can’t recommend this book enough, especially since this indie bookdoes not have enough attention! Help this indie author out because this book is worth the read!
Get Laughing: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11107599-life-seemed-good-buhttps://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11107599-life-seemed-good-but

 

10. Twisted Trilogy by Geza Tatrallyay
This was another epic series that was introduced to me by the author. Geza’s series is a Russian thriller that echoes James Bond, the Man from U.N.C.L.E and Mission Impossible, but a little more romance and a pinch of comedy. This book series is dark and definitely R rated, but it’s suspense and thrills will keep you hooked regardless. Travel across the world as mysteries are unfoiled! I can’t recommend this series enough, especially from a truly remarkable author like Geza.
Join the mission: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23618187-twisted-reasons

 

11. Mountain Man series by Gary Corbin
Great authors just keep seeking me out! It was an absolute delight to read The Mountain Man series by Gary Corbin! The thrilling, crime and mystery series is packed full of action, fun and a wee bit of romance (you know, that’s how you get me – with the romance). Gary is such an incredible author that I could barely stop binging these books. Lehigh is also such an intriguing character that I just couldn’t put these books down. I’d highly recommend picking up this epic thriller, especially if you want something that’s not R rated.
Lehigh has a dog, you should meet him!: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29953081-the-mountain-man-s-dog

 

12. Second Guessing by Gail Ward Olmsted
Ah, romance. Gail Ward Olmstead’s book should all be included here because I pretty much binged every book I could get my hands on. Unfortunately, her books aren’t all in one series so this will have to do. Jeep Tour, Driving on the Left, Guessing at Normal and Second Guessing are all fabulous romance novels that you shouldn’t bat an eyelash at. They are addicting, sweet and binge worthy! I absolutely loved them and they made my heart flutter in the 2010s!
Sweet Dreams: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/37482720-second-guessing

 

13. Chalkboard Outlines by Kelley Kaye
Mystery time! I love cozy mysteries but I just don’t read enough of them! In walks Kelley Kaye with her school themed series. Emma is a high school teaching and bad things just keep happening to her! Lucky for her, the kooky cast of characters are all pretty good at solving mysteries (and deaths and murders… eek). If you want a cozy mystery with a pinch of romance, this series will do you some good!
It’s no mystery that you should read this series: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/26809659-death-by-diploma

 

14. People Who Need to Die by Victor Rook
This book is absolutely hilarious! If you want some dark but twisted stories packed full of comedy then this book is for you! It’s a real shame that more people haven’t picked this book up because I laughed my way through it. Like Negin’s novel, this book is one of the few I can say actually made me laugh out loud. I looked like a psychopath laughing at this book, but it was so worth it. This book is hilarious and oh too true!
People Who Need to Read This Book (a.k.a. YOU): https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23629805-people-who-need-to-die

 

15. So Near the Horizin by Jessica Koch
I love Jessica Koch’s novel and I can honestly say it’s one of the best I’ve ever read (not just for the 2010s). I’m somewhat sad I haven’t been able to get any more books by her, since this book is a must read. I would shout it from the hills! So many of my friends picked up this book after me because I couldn’t STOP recommending it. This book is heart breaking but such a worthwhile book. And… it’s all true! It reads like a romantic fiction, but in the end… it’s all real. Pick this book up, review it and share the story!
Be still my beating heart: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36482886-so-near-the-horizon

 

16. Something Like Love by Sara Richardson
More romance! I read a lot of romance, what can I say? Sara Ricahrdson writes amazing contemporary romance that leaves me feeling bubbly and happy. Ben and Paige continue with the absolute loveliness in this amazing series. Pick it up, become addicted and join me in my contemporary romance support group.
Love, love, love: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24820182-something-like-love

 

17. Cowboy Boots for Christmas by Carolyn Brown
I love Carolyn Brown’s books! I have a few on my shelf now and I just keep collecting them. This is yet another series that makes me feel warm, fuzzy and bubbly all over. Finn and Callie are just too cute and will perfectly fill up your romance shelf! Plus… cowboys! They are super sexy!
I do, I do, I do: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18509671-cowboy-boots-for-christmas

 

18. Return to You by Samantha Chase
Whoops! More romance?! What am I thinking?! The 2010s was packed full of romance for me so I just have to include the best ones! The Montegomery Brothers series is one I absolutely loved, and this time around it’s Jame and Selena making me swoon. More contemporary drama and romance for you lovely readers! Feel all loved up in 2020 my friends!
Super Sweet: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/23167025-return-to-you

 

19. Playing the Game by M.Q. Barber
Okay, so this is “kind of” romance… it’s erotica! I won’t lie, I love erotica and this book is just wild. Alice meets Henry and Jay, and they start a little threesome relationship… and man is it hot! I’m stuck at book two of this series because no where has book three in physical form, so I will let you guys catch up to me before I finish out this SUPER HOT series. This book is one of the few that introduced me into erotica and man it is hot. I can’t get enough of this book!
Play the Game: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/20912368-playing-the-game

 

20. The Trap by Melanie Raabe
Last, but not least, is a wonderful translated thriller that will leave you breathless. My copy of this book is worn out because I’ve loaned it out to twenty friends at this point (another reason why I love physical copies. I lend my books to my friends and we all gush over them!). Linda’s little sister Anna was murdered years ago, and now Linda sees the murderer… is she crazy? Will she kill him? Is any of this real?! Oh man, this book is wild! AND SO GOOD.
Don’t be insane, read this book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30282261-the-trap

 

 

Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy! The 2010s were wild! So many good books were littered throughout my decade and I’m sure I will only read more good books in the next decade. Hopefully I finish a few more series, grab some more classics and have WAY MORE indie authors hit me up!

What books have you read from my list? What should I read next? Help me fill up my never ending TBR list for the 2020s!

#BookRecommendations 2019 in Review

2019 In Review

Welcome! Welcome!
What a time! 2019 is coming to an end and that also brings the 2010s into retirement! With such an amazing year (and decade!) coming to a close, I figured I might as well do a recap of 2019s best books and some of my best books of the decade!
So. Here. We. Go.

Best 19 of 2019:
1. Kevin Miller’s Water War & The Great Grain Elevator Incident
In 2018 I was introduced to Milligan Creek by the author Kevin Miller. Who knew this reading relationship would blossom into one of my faves?! Lucky me was able to read TWO books from this series in 2019. The Water War and The Great Grain Elevator are full of wacky shenanigans that I wish I could have got into in my childhood. If you love Harry Potter and whimsical books along those lines, pick up this book! It’s less magic but more friendly neighbourhood chaos!
The Water War: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42611727-the-water-war
The Great Grain Elevator: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/49004354-the-great-grain-elevator-incident

 

2. Cinder, Scarlett & Cress by Marissa Meyer
I ALMOST finished this series this year. Almost! This is one of my 2020 goals once I finally get my hands on Winter (which I just did when the UPS man strolled up as I was writing this post… so soon…). This fantastical fairy tale YA adaption is absolutely BONKERS. It is packed with alien craziness, technology (STEM at it’s finest!), fairy tale lore, and LOTS of romance (I’m a romance girl, fight me). I struggled with this series initially since my friends absolutely hated it, but when I finally sat down and read the book I was STUNNED. This series is addicting and definitely one of my top 2019 reads! Pick it up people!
The Lunar Chroncies, a.ka. my must read YA of 2019: https://www.goodreads.com/series/62018

 

3. Succubus Blues by Richelle Mead
Back in my teen years, Vampire Academy was on the top of my must read shelf. I re-read that series so many times I’m surprised I can’t quote the books! I knew Richelle Mead had one more adult series I hadn’t gotten my hands on yet, but when I stumbled upon Succubus Blues at a local charity book store I JUMPED ON IT. Was I disappointed? HECK NO! This urban fantasy novel is the adult version of Vampire Academy (but with a succubus, a sexy author, some sexy demons and more sex). If you loved Vampire Academy, pick this book up! It will not disappoint!
Don’t be blue, pick up this book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/235718.Succubus_Blues

 

4. For Her Own Good by Tamsen Parker
What did you expect? I WOULDN’T include one of my favourite authors on my 2019 top list? Tamsen Parker has been one of my faves for years and I was absolutely delighted to include all of her new 2019 books in my 2019 read pile. Her newest trial was a crazy sexy novel following some taboo romance and kinks. Dr. Lowry Campbell and Starla are one horribly sexy couple that break so many boundaries. And with quotes like “tongue like a whip”, this book is an absolute must from me!
If you don’t read this, I will encase you in carbonate: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/49461017-for-her-own-good

 

5. Before the Rains by Dinah Jefferies
Historical romance is a touchy subject for me, but Dinah Jefferies may have woo-ed me over to the dark side. Eliza and Jay are one incredibly cute couple in this India inspired novel. I was blown away by Dinah’s incredible writing tone and descriptions and I can’t stop talking about it! It’s the 1930s and Eliza is a photographer. She’s enlisted to take pictures of the Indian royal family, and things don’t go according to plan.. What would you do if you fell in love with a prince?! This is an absolute must read that Goodreads introduced me to!
You’ll love this book as much as me if you just give it a try: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30900820-before-the-rains

 

6. Avalon Hall by Ruth Miranda
Like Tamsen Parker, Ruth Miranda is another author I am totally obsessed with and read with pure addiction. In this book, we follow Yseult, in Scotland, who has recently discovered some magical powers. Oh, and did I mention this book has King Arthur lore all over it? It’s like Ruth wrote this book with me in mind! This series is just getting started, but it’s fantastical and action packed style is an absolute thrill. I can barely hold my excitement, especially since Ruth Miranda left us on one killer cliffhanger…
Join my round table by grabbing this book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/47842263-avalon-hall

 

7. 100 Tiny Tales by K. Kris Loomis
Ah, time for something a little different! Anthologies are one of my guilty pleasures because you get to read so many things in one collection. And then there’s K. Kris Loomis. She wrote one hundred stories with one hundred words (exactly one hundred. Get counting!). All of these bite sized fictions are so incredible (and if you haven’t heard about Flash Fiction before, you’ll be stunned – pun intended). Whether you want to binge the book like I did, or want something to keep you tied up to weeks, 100 Tiny Tales is a must read for fiction lovers!
Click this link 100 times (or not… that’s excessive): https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43526260-100-tiny-tales

 

8. Tiny House, Big Love by Olivia Dade
I love Property Brothers, which is a house building and fixing show housed on HGTV. So when I found out a twitter friend of mine had a book based on finding a home (similar to my Property Brothers addiction) I WAS IN. I’m so proud of this little book because it’s such a gem! It’s sweet, short and full of ooey gooey romance that makes me turn into a puddle! Lucy and Sebastian are the cutest friends to lovers couple that you’ll ever see! Plus, help out my indie author friends, they deserve all of the love!
Tiny Book, Big Love: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/47158436-tiny-house-big-love

 

9. Fly With Me by Hudson Lin
Another romance, Briar?! Yes! Another cutie patootie romance! Hudson Lin wrote one flawless romance featuring the flight attendants Marco and Vivian. This contemporary romance finds these two getting entangled with one another and is just too darn cute not to share! I love Hudson Lin’s writing and I love that she features characters that feel REAL. If you love romance and haven’t checked out Hudson’s books, get on it!
Read with me:https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/43823638-fly-with-me

 

10. Dear Haiti, Love Alaine by Maika Moulite and Maritza Moulite
YA novels are hit and miss with me these days, but Dear Haiti, Love Alaine broke the mold! Years back in high school I had to do a presentation on Haiti, so I was more than excited to pick this book up. Ever since that grade nine project, I’ve been interested in Haiti and learning more about it. Seeing this book pop up in my local book stores made me giddy with excitement! Alaine is sent to live in Haiti due to some devastating circumstances (teenagers and their wild antics… I tell ya), and she learns a lot about her history and family values. I highly recommend this book! It’s one of the few 2019 reads I picked up twice because it’s just that good!
Dear Readers, Love Briar – read this book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/41861731-dear-haiti-love-alaine

 

11. The Long, Hot Summer by Kathleen MacMahon
I stumbled upon this book by Goodreads (it’s recommendations can be absolutely amazing sometimes) and I was blown away. This miraculous story followsm ultiple generations of the MacEntrees family. There’s so much drama, big personalities, mischief and insanity that it was hard to put down! Think Big Little Lies but more comedy – it’s a definite must read from me. It’s such a shame this book barely has 60 reviews at the time I’m writing this post, because it was one stellar reads and tops my 2019 list!
Must read of the decade: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27416003-the-long-hot-summer

 

12. The Last Straw by Ed Duncan
I love a good thriller, but I rarely pick them up. Probably because romance makes my heart sing… but then came Ed Duncan. This requested review brought back the mystery and thriller genre into my life, and I was not disappointed! This is the second book in a series, but it was an easy book to jump into. When a young girl witnesses a bad carjacking, chaos ensues. A feud is brought to light and things will never be the same… If you love mysteries, thrillers and crime novels then grab this book!
This is the last straw if you don’t check out this book: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/36671089-the-last-straw

 

13. Peter Green and the Unliving Academy by Angelina Allsop
In 2019 I told myself I would read more middle grade and YA books, and that promise brought me many beautiful novels. Peter Green and the Unliving Academy is definitely in my top list for the year. I was floored by how magical this book was and surprised me by how much I needed a book like this in my life. In my personal, humble opinion it’s better than Harry Potter, Percy Jackson and a Series of Unfortunate Events. It tops my list with the amazing themes (friendship, family and growing up) and the fun fantasy it paints throughout the book. This book barely has 40 reviews on Goodreads, so help that book get its share of reviews! Pimp this book out my readers!
Find life in this Middle Grade Novel: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/41824802-peter-green-and-the-unliving-academy

 

14. Virals by Kathy Reichs
Another YA/Middle Grade book apart of my 2019 goals: Virals. I love Kathy Reichs – she made Bones famous and Temperance Brennan was one of my teenage idols. In this book, we meet Tory Brennan (grandniece of Temperance) and her buddies. They become Virals (think of werewolves but not werewolves and demons but not demons… it’s complicated) while trying to save their town. I’ve almost finished this entire series, but it’d be a shame to only include half, so meet the introduction novel! This must read is super addicting and surprisingly a quick read (for having almost 500 pages… yup, it’s a long one but totally worth it!).
Get Exposed to this series: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/17829789-virals

 

15. NYV: Goth by K.D. McQuain
This book on the list is kind of cheating. Overall, this entire series should be read but I only read the newest addition in 2019. It’s the second in the New York Vampire series but it is totally worth your time! R rated vampire drama packed with action and adventure. If you don’t become addicted to this book, I’d be surprised and disappointed! This series is dark, twisted and absolutely brutal!
Don’t make me bite you…: https://www.goodreads.com/series/182541

 

16. Yara’s Tawari Tree by Yossi Lapid
I might be an adult, but children’s books still get me feeling youthful and nostalgic! Yossi (Or Yosef) Lapid is a must read children’s author! If you’re looking to read an environmentally friendly novel that features excessively beautiful water colour pictures, this book will wow your socks off! This book is cute, light hearted and brings a smile to my face!
Picture books aren’t just for adults these days: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/46373335-yara-s-tawari-tree

 

17. Nobody Gets Out of Catering Alive by Joe Montaperto
Joe’s a comedian, but my gosh does he write with style! This book follows catering (did the title give it away?) yet is super raunchy and hilarious. All of Joe’s books always knock my socks off, but this one was a real treat! If you’re looking for a memoir full of hilarity, insanity and realism, this book should be perched up on your shelf.
Comedy at it’s finest:https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/46002329-nobody-gets-out-of-catering-alive

 

18. Love Comes for the Bodyguard by Savannah Adams
Ah, romance again! Yes, I’m predictable! Tyler and Brianna are a match made in heaven, but they just don’t know it. If you’re looking for a brother’s best friend trope, you’ve got it! This super sweet, super sexy and super addicting book is a must read for my romance lovers. Childhood crush tropes always get me all giddy and this book was no exception! It’s the first in a series, so you know it’s only going to get better with more books on the way! Pick up this romantic comedy with a splash of suspense, and emphasize with my addiction:
Love Comes for the Reader: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/45361462-love-comes-for-the-bodyguard

 

19. The Masked Truth by Kelley Armstrong
To finish with a strong Canadian author, here’s Kelley Armstrong’s YA stand alone: The Masked Truth. This book was INSANE (pun intended). After a brutal murder, Riley is struggling with some mental health issues. Her parents put her into a group therapy camp, and things go wrong fast. The teenagers with a variety of mental health issues are taken captive and being murdered left and right. Will the teens survive? Will they get out? Is there a bigger plot going on than they know? I was stunned by how insanely fast this thriller moves and I was floored by the surprise ending. Even I didn’t figure that one out! It’s a must read from me, as always with the marvelous Kelley Armstrong.
A+ for The Masked Truth: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/24733600-the-masked-truth

So, that’s it! 19 books from 2019! It was hard to pick since I read almost 200 books this year. Some of my fave 2019 books weren’t here because I felt like they deserved a bigger spot on the 2010s summary list.

Am I right? Am I wrong? Did I forget something? Let me know! There’s so many books out there I’m sure I missed some epic 2019 books I will need to put on my TBR!

#BookReview Hot for the Holidays by Marie Force, Tamsen Parker et. al

Happy Holidays! Merry Christmas! Happy Christmas! Merry Holidays!
To continue this amazing season of holiday books and cheer, check out a super sexy collection packed full of romance and sexy Santas!!

 

To begin with, I was not able to read all of the stories in this super sexy collection. I do plan on finishing it, but I figured this book deserved a review during it’s peak.

I originally picked up this book for free during a wondrous sale so I could read Tamsen Parker’s story. I’m a big fan, so of course I wanted to read about some sexy Santa/Elf play with a bit of a May/December romance. Gosh darnit, it was sexy and seriously silly. The amount of Christmas puns killed me. I’m not quite sure how she can mix ridiculously hot sex scenes with Christmas puns and make it work, but goshdarnit she did it!

Holly is home for the holidays and is working at her kinky sex play/dungeon where people hook up and play for fun. Her boyfriend is supposed to pick her up, but like most boyfriends who you go out with when you bounce off to post-secondary school, he turns out to be an absolute dick. He sends his Dad Cal instead and it’s slightly awkward. That is, until, Holly and Cal decide to have some dirty, sexy Santa-Elf play. It’s hot, it’s full of fa-la-la-la-la-la-ing puns and it’s a story I’d love to see expanded. I want to see the fall-out of Holly and her former boyfriend’s relationship SO BAD. Holly and Cal seem like a better couple anyways.

It took me a few days to read it, but not because it wasn’t good. I decided to drag it out to enjoy the fabulous-ness of Tamsen’s writing. Then, I stayed for the other stories because this anthology is so good!

In full, this collection has 13 sexy holiday stories to fill up your TBR. Some of my recent faves are apart of this collection (Skye Warren, Marie Force, & Noelle Adams) and they’re all short and sweet (or super naughty, whichever you prefer). If you are going to get anything out of this series, come for an author you’ve loved in the past and meet some new authors to binge in the future.

Five out of five stars!

Check out this marvelous book on:
Amazon.ca
Kobo
Goodreads

 

If you love sexy books, these books might make it on your TBR (take a peek!):
#BookReview For Her Own Good by Tamsen Parker
#BookReview Naked by Kay Brandt
#TopBooksList Briar’s Top Romance Novels

 

Give me a shout out on Twitter if you read this review! #briarsreviews @ReviewAlholic

And like me on Facebook for more urgent updates! @BriarsReviews on Facebook

Or follow my on Goodreads: Briar’s Reviews on Goodreads

#BookReview For Her Own Good by Tamsen Parker

Oh man, oh man, oh man! Another Tamsen Parker gem!!

This book is a 6 out of 5, but unfortunately that rating does not exist on this site so I guess I can settle with just a 5 out of 5.

Seriously though, this one was a DOOZIE!

Tamsen has amped up the plot, has some truly epic references and kept me hooked the entire time! Starla and Lowry (amazing names, by the way) are one incredibly interesting pair that make this book feel more than just a romantic, erotic tale. These characters felt real – mental health issues, sweet and seductive storylines and one heck of a finale! This book is just AMAZE-BALLS.

So, down to the actual plot – Starla was Dr. Lowry Campbell’s patient way back in the day (about 15 years if you are a numbers person) and suddenly he’s back into her life. Except, this time he’s not her doctor and is instead a sexy man she’s interested in. She liked him back then, but now the lines are blurred and it’s their chance to pounce at each other. Their romance is slow burn and faces many obstacles along the way. Starla has some mental health issues but deals with them like a champ. Lowry is an understanding man who is hella sexy and ready to be in her life.

If I have to summarize ALL of the amazing things I liked, here’s a list to start you off:

1. Lowry’s descriptions and accents and OMG Tamsen seriously made this man my dream man. She’s killing me! Reddish copper hair, smart doctor and the European twang… Ugh. SO SEXY.

2. This story has such a way with words – “Tongue like a whip” – seriously majestic. I loved some of the amazing phrases used because they added SO MUCH to this book. It felt like this book had attitude and was sassy at times. Example number two: “He deserves to have his heart cut out with a rusty spoon and fed to him.”

3. Star Wars references galore! “My enemies encased in carbonate” was the best gem, but there’s SO MANY.

4. “Daddy kink kryptonite” is the best way to describe this novel AND that’s a quote from the book!

5. Oh, and did I mention there’s a dominatrix? Oh yeah, this book is SPICY.

This slow burn novel is ridiculously amazing. Tamsen’s writing is only getting better and this book was seriously cool. Not all readers will like it – it takes about half the novel for the couple to get dealing with their romantic emotions – so readers who like quick, fast-paced romance might want to steer clear. There’s also talks of self-harm and suicide, so this book might be a little triggering for some.

Overall, I think this book is incredible! As I said, 6 out of 5 stars level good! I liked that Tamsen keeps taking risks with these stories. They are different, totally romantic and erotic and well written! What more can this reader ask for?

Five out of five stars!

I received this book for free from Tamsen Parker in exchange for an honest review.

 

Check out this book on:
Goodreads

 

Fall down the rabbit hole into my many reviews of Tamsen Parker books:
#BookReview The Inside Track by Tamsen Parker
#BookReview If I Loved You Less by Tamsen Parker
#BookReview Thrown Off Track by Tamsen Parker
#BookReview Fire on the Ice by Tamsen Parker
#BookReview In Her Court by Tamsen Parker

 

Check out Tamsen Parker on Twitter @TamsenParker or on her website

Give me a shout out on Twitter if you read this review! #briarsreviews @ReviewAlholic

And like me on Facebook for more urgent updates! @BriarsReviews on Facebook

Or follow my on Goodreads: Briar’s Reviews on Goodreads

#BookReview Rogue Ever After Anthology Collection by Tamsen Parker, Hudson Lin, et al.

This final collection in the Rogue series has proven to be another lovely addition!

This LGBTQ+ book is full of sweet (and sometimes sexy!) stories. F/F, M/M, poly and more, with each having a different focus. Some of the stories center around politics, Hollywood and even just good, old-fashioned relationships.

I can’t get enough of these short stories, because they are so easy to slip into. They aren’t difficult to follow, they make me smile, and I just love these authors. Since every story is different, you get a really good mix of romance and erotica.

I focused on three stories from the collection, but all of them were marvelous.

Hudson Lin’s Ipso Facto ILU follows Jonny and Brandon, who are OMG levels of cuteness. Brandon is a political science PhD candidate and Jonny is a famous podcaster. Following their super sweet love story was such a treat! Brandon’s shyness and adorable nature made me love this couple oh so much! Throw in some funny lines about Zest body soap and Canadian references and you’ve got me totally engaged in this story. Honestly, it felt like a fan girl’s heaven. This story was definitely a 5 out of 5 stars for me!

Ainsley Booth’s Love Your Love was a lovely poly romance which following Win and Penny (and Tanya, you can’t forget about Tanya). Cute crushes, spooning and fun quotes about beaming and blooming flowers fill this little story up. I like Ainsley’s way with words – it somehow felt so elegant yet so natural! This story moved very quickly and felt a little shorter to me, but it was still super sweet. 5 out of 5 stars!

And to top it off, Tamsen Parker’s Starlet Struck shed some light on causes AND included some super sexy F/F romance. Archer and Hadley make one wild pair – an activist and a Hollywood actress. The characters bring up causes dear to their heart, like the Rivera House which helps homeless LGBTQ teens, and I have to say that made me respect this book even more! At the end, we get the hottest ending that will rock most erotica fan’s socks off. The tension that built up to that part made it even better than I expected! Five out of five stars!

Overall, this is a great anthology for romance and erotica lovers. It’s definitely an R rated book, but it’s worth the read if you love some sexy scenes.

Five out of five stars.

Thank you to Tamsen Parker for providing me a copy of this book to review.

 

Check out this anthology on:
Goodreads
Kobo
Amazon.ca
Amazon.com
Barnes & Noble
Indigo / Chapters / Coles – Canadian Retailer

 

Check out my other reviews from this series:
#BookReview Rogue Hearts (Anthology) by Tamsen Parker, Amy Jo Cousins, and more
#BookReview Rogue Affair by Adriana Anders, Tamsen Parker and more!
#BookReview Rogue Desires by Tamsen Parker, Adriana Anders, Amy Jo Cousins and more!

 

Give me a shout out on Twitter if you read this review! #briarsreviews @ReviewAlholic

And like me on Facebook for more urgent updates! @BriarsReviews on Facebook

Or follow my on Goodreads: Briar’s Reviews on Goodreads

#BookReview A Love Thing Anthology by Laura Kaye & More!

For today, I’ve included a short little review about an excellent anthology! Almost all of these books have been featured on my blog and they are all on my Goodreads! But, I did want to include a little info about this fabulous collection if you were looking for a romance anthology!

 

This anthology has taken me forever to read, but boy was it worth it!

A Love Thing has an excellent collection of sexy reads for those romance readers who want a great selection! There’s cute romances, sexy reads and steamy affairs that will set your heart on fire! Each story definitely brings the heat!

My ratings were as followed (in no particular order);

The Prince and the Player by Tia Louise – 2.5 stars
Masterings her Senses by Laura Kaye – 5 stars
The Pawn by Skye Warren – 3 stars
Willing Victim by Cara McKenna – 5 stars
Spin by C.D. Reiss – 4 stars
Filthy Wicked Love by Lili Valente – 4 stars
Diamonds by K.A. Linde – 5 stars
A Week in New York by Louise Bay – 5 stars
Assumption by Aurora Rose Reynolds – 3 stars
Personal Geography by Tamsen Parker – 5 stars

I’ve put a review on each individual book from this collection, so if you’re eager to find out my thoughts then venture to each individual review (keep your eyes out on my blog, they’ll be coming or they’ve already appeared!).

As for my overall review – this anthology is seriously worth every penny! There’s a wide selection of books that are uber sexy and you are bound to like at least one! I have found a few new fave authors in this collection that I will be definitely looking out for!

Five out of five stars!

 

Here are just some of my reviews for the book in this collection:

#BookReview Assumption by Aurora Rose Reynolds

#BookReview A Week In New York by Louise Bay

#BookReview Spin by C.D. Reiss

#BookReview Mastering Her Senses by Laura Kaye

Quick Review – Personal Geography by Tamsen Parker

#BookReview Willing Victim by Cara McKenna

#BookReview The Pawn by Skye Warren

 

If you enjoyed this review, give me a shout out on Twitter @ReviewAlholic or give me a like on Facebook @BriarsReviews

#BookReview Best Women’s Erotica of the Year, Volume 4 by Rachel Kramer Bussel et al.

When I saw that my fave Tamsen Parker had a short story in this collection, I jumped on it! She is always apart of the best compilations and anthologies, so this book became a must read for me. And of course, this book did not let down! There are stories for every erotica lover (whether you love the crazy hot and heavy, or the sensual and romance).

The best part about this collection is that there are so many varieties of stories. Not only does this introduce the reader to each author’s work, but it’s just enough to get your mouth watering for more. When I read anthologies like these, I love picking out new authors to follow. You can test the waters with each little story to see the true potential of each author to open up your bookshelf for a few more readers.

I definitely had my faves from the collection – Tamsen Parker, Alessandra Torre and Mica Kennedy to name a few – but they were all fantastic! I think this is the best way to check out some new authors without committing to 12+ 300 page novels.

Each story had a few chapters to sink the reader’s teeth into, and all of them were spicy! The diverse types of stories is also a nice touch – BDSM, existing couples, new couples, experimenting, kinks and more! It dabbles in each “category” of erotica to spice up the reader’s life.

Overall, I think this is an excellent collection. There’s a little bit of erotica for every type of reader and it is truly the best way to find a new author (or two!) to add to your collection.

Five out of five stars!

I received an ARC of this book from the editor.

 

Find this book on:

Amazon.ca

Amazon.com

Kobo

Barnes & Nobles

Indigo/Chapters/Coles

Barnes & Nobles

And give me a shout out on Twitter if you read this review! #briarsreviews @ReviewAlholic

And like me on Facebook for more urgent updates! @BriarsReviews on Facebook

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#BookReview Thrown Off Track by Tamsen Parker

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“It sounds serial-killer creepy” = the best quote of this entire book (and it’s pretty darn quote worth).

Here’s the thing – I don’t normally like M/M romance. Not because I don’t enjoy M/M romance stories, but because every book I’ve ever read that involved M/M centered around stereotypical men and always made M/M seem like a joke. But this book? It has characters that felt real, with awkward situations that would actually happen, and doesn’t make M/M look like some weird fairy tale full of characters without personalities.

I loved it, like normal. Tamsen clicks with me, and all of her nerdy references make me fangirl beyond believe. Narnia? Schrodinger’s cat? Heck yes!

Continuing on with this series (some characters from SIG, and now LtL) is an excellent way to keep these characters alive. I love Tamsen’s creativity with her series – Olympics, boy bands. What’s next?! This fantastic author is filling my childhood obsessions up, now she just needs to make a story about a swimmer and she’s hit almost every point in my childhood (because I was a highly competitive swimmer…most readers won’t understand that reference if you don’t know me). Essentially, these series feel like throwbacks, and I love it!

This book is fun, lovable and about boy bands (of all topics…) and raises this genre to a new high for me. I was hooked and addicted (yes, I got side tracked often by the nerdy references and had to tweet Tamsen about it, but what can you expect from me? I embrace my nerdiness). Although, this book isn’t as R rated as her past books (the deleted scene is very hot and heavy, but I’m not sure if that will be in the final copy).

Thank you for including LGBT characters in this story – I have never heard of the term demisexual before, and I’m so thankful you’re introduced me to more terms that I can totally understand and relate to. On top of that, having these male leads with personalities and likes and dislikes and not being perfect? It makes it even better. It felt more realistic (within the realm of a superstar boy band, realism).

So, delving into these characters – Teague and Christian are a really different/unique pair (in a good way). Teague is a superstar, rock star who is a demisexual. Christian is the drummer (in the same band of Teague) and is a little more shy and awkward (and always JUST on time). Christian likes guys, Teague’s been with both genders. And then Teague develops a little crush on Christian, who’s been crushing on him for a long time and sexy antics ensue! I feel like everyone saw this coming with the boy band theme, but that doesn’t make it any less cute! They’re awkward together at first (which felt wildly refreshing, since everyone just seems to mesh well the first time and BAM they’re a couple, which isn’t always the case in real life) and slowly grow.

Even though most readers could see a relationship between members coming from a mile away, the bassist and the drummer? I wouldn’t have seen that pair coming.

If you haven’t read anything by Tamsen before, I highly recommend her (as a fan). But, she might not be for you (because it happens). I find her books are fun and uplifting, and are never too serious. They move fast, are full of romance, and will open your eyes up to different worlds (religion, sexuality, lifestyles, etc). I keep praising over and over, and I’ll do it again in this review – she doesn’t stick to the same old story. There are some really fantastic authors (who I love and still read) that do that, but Tamsen changes it up and keeps me on my toes! The likelihood that there will be one book you like (because she has so many different types of romance books) is high! Read through her catalogue and find the topics you like, but keep in mind all books might not be for you!

My reading style and Tamsen’s writing style just click, and the nerdy references on top of that lift these books up. This is definitely a must read and a recommendation from me, as I think it’s one of her better books (at this rate, I can’t pick a best. It rotates depending on the day and how I feel, but this book will be included in that “top tier”, ever rotating list).

On a side note, I really like the little guitar symbol that was above the names of when the characters switch back and forth between point of views. My copy is an ARC, so I’m not sure if that will be on the final copy, but I thought it was a nice addition and looked aesthetically pleasing!

Five out of five! Ten out of five! Fifteen out of five! I’m pulling an Oprah with these stars! Every gets one! Five for every boy in the boy band and Rowan gets six for a surprise cameo!

I received an uncorrected proof from the author Tamsen Parker in exchange for an honest review.

 

Check out Thrown Off Track on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/40144194-thrown-off-track

Want to purchase this book? Find it on Amazon!

Amazon.com – Thrown Off Track

Amazon.ca – Thrown Off Track

Find out more about Tamsen Parker on her website: http://www.tamsenparker.com/

Give Tamsen and I a shout out on Twitter!@TamsenParker & @ReviewAlholic

 

Did you enjoy this review? Check out part of my collection of reviews of Tamsen Parker books:

#BookReview Rogue Hearts (Anthology) by Tamsen Parker, Amy Jo Cousins, and more

#BookReview Craving Flight by Tamsen Parker

#BookReview #OnTheBrinkofPassion by Tamsen Parker

#BookReview In Her Court by Tamsen Parker

Book Review: The Cartographer by Tamsen Parker

 

#BookReview Craving Flight by Tamsen Parker

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Tziporrah and Elan are another hit pair by Tamsen Parker!

To say this story is unique is an understatement! It’s rare for me to read a book involving some heavy erotica mixed with religion, but yet again Tamsen blows readers’s expectations out of the water.

You can tell this is one of Tamsen’s earlier novels – it’s written beautifully, but it’s not as awesome as her newer ones. Her skill has grown so much, that if you haven’t read some of her newer readers, please pick it up after this book! This novel was fantastic, but her skill is continually growing.

To pick apart this book, it’s an emotional roller coaster full of romance, self doubt and change. In so few pages, Tamsen is able to weave some fantastic story telling to introduce us to a woman who seems so down on herself. She finds her religion, gets married and tries to live the life she wants to – yet it’s just not that perfect. I felt so strongly for this woman, and at times I hated Elan with a passion. He slowly grows on you, but I still felt frustrated with some of his behaviour. I would love to see Tzipporah grow more, but in under 200 pages Tamsen did a fantastic job of growing her character.

BDSM is a big part of this novel (and it seems to have more sex scenes in it than most erotica books I’ve read, percentage wise anyways). The romance isn’t as big of a focus as the BDSM and strange relationship the main couple have. That being said, I liked that it was so different and wasn’t just focused on some heavy romance. While I was frustrated with some of the situations, that just showed up skilled Tamsen is as a writer. She made me feel so passionately for Tzipporah which many other writers struggle to do.

Overall, I liked this book! It’s unique and made me think. Also, everytime Elan said “little bird” it killed me a little on the inside because it seems so cute!

Five out of five stars.

 

Comment below with your favourite unique romance novel!
If you enjoyed this book review, check out another you might enjoy! #BookReview #OnTheBrinkofPassion by Tamsen Parker

 

If you read this review, use the hashtags #BriarsReviews #CravingFlight on twitter!

Check out Tamsen Parker on her website: http://www.tamsenparker.com/ or on twitter @TamsenParker

Buy it now from Amazon:

Amazon Canada – Craving Flight

Amazon US – Craving Flight