Thursday, May 25, 2017

Mini Review: The Perfect Illusion

Title: The Perfect Ilusion 
Series: N/A
Author: Winter Renshaw 
Genre: Adult, Romance 
Publisher: Self Published 
Publication Date: April 4, 2017 
Source: Bought

It’s only pretend…
And it’s only three months.
I’m in the midst of scrawling “I QUIT!” onto his fancy cardstock letterhead when my boss corners me. He needs a favor, he says. And then he asks how well I can act …
Hudson Rutherford needs a fiancée.
With his old-moneyed parents forcing him to marry some bratty hotel heiress and his hedonistic, playboy lifestyle at stake, the only way to get them to back off is to make them think he’s truly, madly, deeply in love … with me—his third personal assistant this year.
But I can hardly stand working for him as it is.
Hudson is crazy hot and well-aware. He’s arrogant, spoiled, and silver-spooned. He checks me out when he thinks I’m not looking, and his life is a revolving door of beautiful women. Plus, he can’t even pronounce my name correctly—how’s he going to convince his family he’s in love with me?!
I’m seconds from giving him a resounding “no” when he flashes his signature dimpled smirk and gives me a number that happens to contain a whole mess of zeroes …
On second thought, I think I can swallow my pride.
But, oh baby, there’s one thing I haven’t told him, one teensy-tiny thing that could make this just a hair complicated …
Here’s hoping this entire thing doesn’t explode in our faces.

Find The Perfect Illusion online!
I wish I could say I liked this one but I just really didn't.  I felt like it didn't deliver on anything laid out in the blurb.  The whole hate-to-love thing?  Yeah, the main character, Mari, hates Hudson for maybe like, ten pages, before things just so blah with them.  There was no spark between them, not even when they "hated" each other.  Everything just felt very juvenile and angsty.  

I found Mari to mostly be obnoxious and fairly soft willed.  She didn't come off to me as strong, despite claiming to be so throughout the story.  I wanted to feel more of a spark with her and I wanted to root for her, but the motivation behind a lot of her actions didn't make sense to me.  Hudson was much the same.  Basically think of any other book you're read with a jerk CEO and that's Hudson, except slightly less interesting.  There were some moments that I began to feel invested in their relationship and story, some threads I wanted to follow, but in the end, I just couldn't bring myself to get into it.   

While a fairly quick and easy read, this book left much to be desired and the resolution felt over simplified.  I didn't feel the spark between the main couple and thought the characters were unoriginal.  I wish I had liked it more but, unfortunately, it wasn't for me. 

“I thought it would feel like work, like a job. But it doesn’t. It’s effortless. I’ve never had that with anyone else.”

Two Teapots



Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday #105

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine which spotlights highly anticipated upcoming releases.

Title: Royally Endowed
Series: Royally #3
Author: Emma Chase 
Genre: Adult, Romance, Contemporary 
Publisher: Emma Chase, LLC 
Publication Date: August 14, 2017 

Logan St. James is a smoldering, sexy beast. Sure, he can be a little broody at times—but Ellie Hammond’s willing to overlook that. Because, have you seen him??
Sexy. As. Hell.
And Ellie’s perky enough for both of them.
For years, she’s had a crush on the intense, gorgeous royal security guard—but she doesn’t think he ever saw her, not really.
To Logan, Ellie was just part of the job—a relative of the royal family he’d sworn to protect. Now, at 22 years old and fresh out of college, she’s determined to put aside her X-rated dreams of pat-downs and pillow talk, and find a real life happily ever after.
The Queen of Wessco encourages Ellie to follow in her sister’s footsteps and settle down with a prince of her own. Or a duke, a marquis…a viscount would also do nicely.
But in the pursuit of a fairy tale ending, Ellie learns that the sweetest crushes can be the hardest to let go.
***
Logan St. James grew up on the wrong side of the tracks, in a family on the wrong side of the law. But these days, he covers his tattoos and scars with a respectable suit. He’s handsome, loyal, brave, skilled with his hands and…other body parts.
Any woman would be proud to call him hers.
But there’s only one woman he wants.
For years he’s watched over her, protected her, held her hair back when she was sick, taught her how to throw a punch, and spot a liar.
He dreams of her. Would lay down his life for her.
But beautiful Ellie Hammond’s off-limits.
Everybody knows the bodyguard rules: Never lose focus, never let them out of your sight, and never, ever fall in love.

Find Royally Endowed online 

Why I'm waiting on Royally Endowed this Wednesday: While not my favorite series from Emma Chase, I still really enjoy these books and characters! I'm excited to get Logan and Ellie's story, and also very much looking forward to catching up with the characters from the previous two books.  I've always been interested in Logan so it will be a lot of fun to get a story all about him!

What are you waiting on this Wednesday?  Have you read this series or any other book written by Emma Chase? I'd definitely recommend this series if you're a fan of romantic books about royal families!  Let me know what you all are waiting on today in the comments below!


Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Top Ten Best Beach Reads!

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish in which we share out top ten lists relating to the bookish topic assigned that week.

This week's topic is...

Top Ten Best Beach Reads!

 

 

 

 

 

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick 
P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han 
Since You've Been Gone by Morgan Matson
The Hating Game by Sally Thorne 
The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson 
Bad Romeo by Leisa Rayven 
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell 
Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum 
Girl Against the Universe by Paula Stokes 

My list is mostly romantic contemporary reads, which are my favorite beach reads!  They're all fairly light -- nothing that's going to send me into a crying fit.  I'd love to hear what books you like to read on the beach! Leave a comment down below and leave a link so I can check out your posts!


Monday, May 22, 2017

Review: Always and Forever, Lara Jean

Title: Always and Forever, Lara Jean 
Series: To All the Boys I've Loved Before #3
Author: Jenny Han 
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance 
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers 
Publication Date: May 2, 2017
Source: Bought 

Lara Jean’s letter-writing days aren’t over in this surprise follow-up to the New York Times bestselling To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and P.S. I Still Love You.
Lara Jean is having the best senior year a girl could ever hope for. She is head over heels in love with her boyfriend, Peter; her dad’s finally getting remarried to their next door neighbor, Ms. Rothschild; and Margot’s coming home for the summer just in time for the wedding.
But change is looming on the horizon. And while Lara Jean is having fun and keeping busy helping plan her father’s wedding, she can’t ignore the big life decisions she has to make. Most pressingly, where she wants to go to college and what that means for her relationship with Peter. She watched her sister Margot go through these growing pains. Now Lara Jean’s the one who’ll be graduating high school and leaving for college and leaving her family—and possibly the boy she loves—behind.
When your heart and your head are saying two different things, which one should you listen to?

Find Always and Forever, Lara Jean online!
THESE BOOKS.  They are just so, so good.  Every time I read one, I'm just in a constant good mood.  They're good mood books and just so genuine.  They don't add angst just to add angst and they don't throw in unnecessary, annoying drama.  This book was much the same.  I'll admit, I was a little nervous going into it because the second book ended so well and this one wasn't even originally planned; I was worried there would just be drama that didn't feel real or purposeful like with the other books.  But I needn't fear!  Jenny Han made this book just as wonderful as the first two. 

While this novel was a little less plot driven than the others, I really appreciated the chance to see more of these characters.  They're all so dynamic and interesting and just plain wonderful -- it was so satisfying to see how much they'd grown throughout the series and get to kind of reap that reward.  So often, especially in romance novels, we only get to see our couple get together, we don't get a chance to see them actually be a couple.  Reading this and getting to see Lara Jean and Peter together felt like a special treat -- like I'd finished dinner and a slice of cake was placed in front of me.  I just love spending time with these characters and reading about their lives and the adventures and growth they experience.  


Like I said, this novel was a little less plot driven than the others.  At times it felt like it wasn't totally going anywhere, we were just reading about the characters (which I don't mind one bit).  However, there was still an overarching goal and journey that Lara Jean went through in this book, and I really appreciated how it was handled.  Jenny Han did a good job of showing the reality of life as a senior in high school; the problems that Lara Jean and Peter faced felt important and real.  Plus, a lot of strings that had been left loose at the end of the last book were neatly tied up in this one, and I appreciated that a lot.  

I feel very satisfied after finishing this book -- while the series can stand without it, it was an amazing surprise and a a story that, despite the fact that it wasn't originally planned, fits beautifully in with the rest of the series.  I'm so looking forward to seeing what else Jenny Han has for us.  I can't wait to read more from her!

“Being vulnerable, letting people in, getting hurt... it's all part of being in love.”

Five Teapots

Friday, May 19, 2017

Judging Books By Their Covers -- Contemporary Reads!

Everyone says you shouldn't judge books by their covers, but -- admit it -- we all do it!  In these posts, I do exactly that. 

This judging session, we're judging contemporary YA covers! 

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon 
Ohhh, I LOVE THIS.  The contrast between the clean white of the top of the cover and the chaotic, colorful bottom is so relevant to the novel but also so subtle.  I think this fits perfectly with the arch and themes in the novel. 
Rating: Relevant and Beautiful.  Love.  

Girl Against the Universe by Paula Stokes 
This book was great and I really like the cover.  It's relevant to the story with the girl laying on the tennis court, too!  And while I don't totally understand the choice of the orange color, I'm not complaining because it'll be perfect if I ever try to do a rainbow bookshelf.  
Rating: Semi-relevant and bright. Will look great in a rainbow bookshelf.

Magnolia by Kristi Cook 
I'm not a fan of this cover.  Mostly because of the two supremely awkward looking people on it.  It just looks so . . . posed.  But I'm not a huge fan of having models on covers anyways.  I do really like the background though -- the stormy skies against the green trees!  I'd love to be there. 
Rating: Background is nice but awkward poses ruin it. 

The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson 
Okay, so this cover is totally an exception to my no-models-on-the-cover rule.  It doesn't look awkward at all.  I can totally see something like this in the real world.  Plus, it gives me major summer vibes and makes me desperate for the sun and lemonade and ice cream.
Rating: Give me summer now, please.  

ANOTHER example of a cover with a model on it that I actually like.  I'm really disproving my no models rule this post.  This book cover makes me want to redo my whole room and make everything look amazing and establish a beautiful aesthetic.  Plus, it totally feels like Lara Jean -- and I love that she's writing a letter (totally relevant). 
Rating: Whoever designed this cover, please come and redo my room.

What do you guys think of these covers?  I think my favorite out of all of them is The Unexpected Everything.  I just can't help it.  Maybe it's because we're so close to summer and I'm craving it so badly! Either way, that is the winner of this post!  Let me know what you guys think!

 
Imagination Designs
Images from StarCityDesigns