December 30, 2018

Book Review: Half Wolf by Aimee Easterling

Alpha Underground Book 1Title: Half Wolf
Author: Aimee Easterling
Series: Alpha Underground #1
Pages: 226
My Rating: ❤❤❤

Every werewolf knows the meek don't inherit the earth. Fen Young is a half-shifter whose inner beast is more mouse than wolf. Home is her castle, the only place she's ever felt safe. Enter Hunter Green, an uber-alpha strong enough to stop traffic with a single look. He's handsome and enticing and seems like just the ticket to broaden Fen's horizons...until the uber-alpha brushes off his admirer and summarily rejects her from her home pack. Now treading water in the no-man's land of outpack territory, Fen must confront a missing pack mate, a tantalizing stranger, and a serial killer targeting half-werewolves. Will she be able to shore up her waning power in time to save her friend...and half-breeds everywhere...before it's too late?

I found the first installment in the Alpha Underground series to be entertaining, however, I found myself wanting something more. Although the characters were interesting, I wanted more depth to them and to their interactions. I believe they all had the potential to be complex characters, but instead fell flat to me. I wanted to know more about Fen's pack mates and why they would want to leave the safety of an established pack to follow Fen into outpack territory.

Additionally, I was seriously rooting for Fen. I believed that she would come into her own and find her strength as a leader. Instead I was disappointed in her development. I know that she is young and cannot possibly know everything about leading a pack, but I at least expected more from her. I did not really feel like she ever took the time to get to know her pack members and form connections with them. She had zero idea that Ginger even had a crush on her. Not only did she not form connections with her pack mates, but she never formed a connection with her actual legitimate mate, Hunter.

The interactions between Fen and Hunter were few and far between, yet she would drool over him and throw herself at him as soon as he would decide to come into the picture. I needed a lot more to that little relationship. It just seemed extremely rushed and a bit lacking to me. Overall, Fenn's decisions always seemed somewhat rushed to me, and I greatly questioned her decision making skills. She trusted the first person that seemed to help her, and allowed him into the pack despite Lia having apprehensions about him. This was just shady to me. I know you need help, but you don't want to compromise any of your pack mates feelings of safety. Even knowing how Lia felt about him, she wouldn't limit their interactions together. This was very odd to me.

Although I did have quite a few hangups with certain parts of the story and the characters, I did find the book to be entertaining. I believe that the book did have a lot of potential, and I only hope that as the series continues, more growth and depth is instilled in the characters.

July 20, 2018

Book Review: Cliffhanger (The Belinda & Bennett Mysteries Book 1) by Amy Saunders

Belinda and Bennett Mysteries Book 1
Title: Cliffhanger
Author: Amy Saunders
Series: Belinda & Bennett Mysteries #1
Pages: 237
My Rating: ❤❤❤❤❤

Making her grand re-entry into Portside, Rhode Island, Belinda Kittridge expected fun, sun, and sugar cookies.

Instead, she gets one jilted lover braced for round two, an old rival on the hunt, and the murder of a former classmate and friend. Even worse, Belinda must return to the events surrounding a tragic sailing accident to set things right.

But new possibilities emerge in the form of security expert Bennett Tate. Between her connections and his know-how, they're bound to catch the killer - and kick the skeletons out of the closet for good.

I was enthralled in Belinda and Bennett's story instantly! The scenery sounds beautiful, the characters are super realistic, and the mystery is enthralling!

Cliffhanger is one of those books that is so engrossing and loaded with detail that you feel like its a movie playing in your head. You can perfectly picture the locations and even the expressions on the characters faces. It was truly that great! It definitely felt like a Hallmark movie to me! 😊

Growing up, one of my favorite series to read was Nancy Drew, since that time it has been I don't know how long since I've actually sat down and read a good mystery book. Cliffhanger brought all those good memories back to me! I absolutely love how Saunders weaves in the perfect amount of humor and romance with such a great mystery! I also really enjoyed how as a reader, I didn't know every little thing the characters were thinking, Instead, they were able to surprise me!

I can't wait to get my hands on the second book in this series and see more of Belinda, Bennett, Jonas, Kyle, and Victoria! I really enjoyed getting to know all of them in this book!

May 20, 2018

Book Review: Guide My Heart (The Stirring Book 1) by Caroline Swart

The Stirring Book 1
Title: Guide My Heart
Author: Caroline Swart
Series: The Stirring #1
Pages: 76
My Rating: ❤❤❤❤

A two-week safari in Africa is the perfect holiday for Britney and her friend Meghan. But Chris, the swoon-worthy tour-guide, is fascinated with the paw-print birthmarks on her arm. Mysterious lions and visions of chains haunt Brit after they share a mind-blowing kiss, but is there something deeper than pure animal attraction between the two?

Book 1 of The Stirring.

**I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review**

When I read the description of Guide My Heart, I thought what's not to like?

- African Safari Vacation (I have always wanted to go on one😍).........check
- Hot Thor Look-a-Like Tour Guide........check
- Descriptions of Cute Baby Rhinos........check
- Neat Paranormal Twist........check

As you can tell, I really loved how the book was set against the backdrop of an African Safari! Our main character even went on a jeep tour!! While on the tour, Chris (Mr. Thor look-a-like) explains the black stripes found on antelopes, and his blurb made my little biology major heart happy!

"They form the letter M, like the M in McDonald's." We gave him blank stares, waiting for him to explain. "These antelope are the preferred choice of food for predators. They're like McDonald burgers for lions and cheetahs. if you see the M running in the distance, you can bet that a leopard or another predator is following behind."

Besides loving the little biology lesson, I also enjoyed the overall premise of the book. The entire storyline was interesting. Despite reading a ton of paranormal romances, I haven't actually read one with lions! Additionally, the chemistry between Chris and Britney was off the charts! However, my only wish is that I could have gotten to know the characters better! Due to the book's length, the story had to progress pretty quickly, so I wasn't able to see their relationship unfold like I wanted to. It would have really helped since the end went from zero to a hundred. Don't get me wrong, I did like the ending, it just caught me a bit off guard!

Despite progressing super quick, I did really enjoy the story! Guide My Heart was a fun read, that definitely has the potential to lead into a FANTASTIC series!

May 9, 2018

Book Review: The Panther's Lost Princess (Redclaw Security Book 1) by McKenna Dean

Redclaw Security Book 1
Title: The Panther's Lost Princess
Author: McKenna Dean
Series: Redclaw Security #1
Pages: 267
My Rating: ❤❤❤❤

Ellie West has always known there was more to her story than being abandoned at birth. A child of the foster-care system, she didn’t get many breaks, but the one thing she can do is sing. It’s her only ticket out of poverty and obscurity. Nothing else matters, not even the nagging sense that she’s different. She's headed for great things. She only needs a chance.

Jack Ferris couldn’t agree more. His firm, the elite paranormal agency Redclaw Security, has been hired to find a missing princess and return her to her family. Discovering that Ellie, a waitress in a hole-in-the-wall diner, is both the princess and his fated mate is like being hit with a sledgehammer. Ellie West can't be his mate. She's the mission.

The sooner Jack completes this job, the better, only Ellie has no intention of throwing her dreams away for a kingdom she's never known. With hired assassins on their trail, Ellie might not have a choice. They must do whatever it takes to stay alive.

**I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review**

There are books that upon finishing them leave you completely satisfied; they contain no huge cliffhanger or questions unanswered. For me, The Panther's Lost Princess is one of those very books! It had one of those endings that just leave with a huge grin and a deep feeling of satisfaction. Not only was the story interesting, but I was able to truly connect with the main character, Ellie West.

Ellie has never felt confident about herself. Despite getting support and words of encouragement from her friends, she is still scared to put herself out there and take charge. I definitely don't blame her for this. It is hard to put yourself out there after you have been looked down upon. She does however gain the courage to audition for a singing competition, which in itself is an amazing feat!

As the story continues, we get to see that deciding to audition isn't the only bit of braveness that Ellie possesses. Instead, she evolves and discovers a confidence in herself that wasn't there before. She does have a little help with this amazing awakening through the support of a handsome panther shifter. 😉

Yes, it is true that this book does involve the whole fated mates trope, but it does have a slightly different spin on the cliche. Instead of being super possessive and domineering of Ellie, Jack supports her and ultimately wants to do what's best for her. Their relationship truly is pretty stinkin' cute!

Overall, The Panther's Lost Princess is a satisfying romance that not only has a shifter spin, but also allows the reader to see a character come into her own.

Jack looked so agonized, and he was being so self-sacrificing that she wanted to brush hair off his brow and kiss his cheek,promising him it would all be better soon. Or punch him. She couldn't decide which. 

May 5, 2018

Book Review: Savage (Wolf Springs Chronicles Book 3) by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie

Wolf Springs Chronicles Book 3
Title: Savage
Author: Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie
Series: Wolf Springs Chronicles #3
Pages: 336
My Rating: ❤❤❤❤❤

Who do you run to?

Out in the forest, tensions are blazing like forest fire. The ancient rivalry between the Fenner and Gaudin packs has reached fever pitch, and only a battle will quell the blood lust.

Katelyn is caught in the middle, her pack loyalties tested like never before. The person she needs the most - strong, sexy, loyal Trick - has no idea about her dark secrets. And while werewolf wars are raging, the Hellhound is still out there, stalking her every move.

It's time to take control. It's time to get savage.

After finishing Hot Blooded, I had a TON of questions that I desperately needed answers to. I was really hoping to get the answers I wanted in Savage, and boy did I! The book was AMAZING!

Holder & Viguie really know how to test my willpower! They had so completely enamored with the story that I couldn’t wait to see how everything unfolded! I constantly had to stop myself from flipping to the last page! Through sheer force of will I was able to make it to the end without giving in and taking a peek! 😊

I’m so glad that I didn’t spoil the ending for myself, because it was AMAZING!!! There were several twists and turns that I wasn’t expecting! I was literally on the edge of my seat for the last half of the book! Katelyn’s journey was intense, entertaining, and full of surprises! I’m so happy with how everything in the story turned out, and that ALL my questions got answered!

March 9, 2018

Book Review: Hot Blooded (Wolf Springs Chronicles Book 2) by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie

Title: Hot Blooded
Author: Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie
Series: Wolf Springs Chronicles
Pages: 400
My Rating: ❤❤❤❤❤

Wolf Springs was just going to be a short stop for Katelyn McBride--until she turned 18 and could return to LA on her own. But Katelyn's plans have unraveled.

Katelyn wasn't in Wolf Springs a month when she was attacked by a werewolf. And now she carries that creature's curse in her veins.

But she's not alone. Wolf Springs is home to werewolves. And they swear that it wasn't any of them who bit her. Changing humans without permission means the death penalty, and they're none too happy about Katelyn.

The only explanation is that there's a monster on the loose--something wild and uncontrollable. Because Katelyn has some of its power.

And two guys want Katelyn: one dark and mysterious, yet perhaps the perfect confidant; the other ferocious and forbidden--a werewolf that she can't keep her hands off of.

After finishing Unleashed I was left with a ton of questions. I was hoping Hot Blooded would answer some of these questions. While it did manage to answer a few of them, I was left with even more questions than when I started!

Holder & Viguie are like the wonder twins of young adult fantasy! The worlds that they create are vivid and they somehow manage to get me invested in their characters! I absolutely love Katelyn! In this installment she is learning more about herself and the world that she has been thrown into. She is a super strong individual and despite having Trick’s perfect muscular shoulder to lean on, she handles everything going on herself. After all, she can’t jeopardize anyone’s safety, despite the fact that I’m pretty sure that Trick and her grandpa could handle themselves just fine...

Speaking of Trick and her grandpa, something isn’t quite right with either one of them. I think they are keeping some secrets and I can’t wait to hear about them in the next book! However, I do have another major question that I desperately need answered, what is the connection between Kat and Justin? I know it can’t be just because of the wolf hormones, since they’ve felt it from the moment they met. Hmmmm......I guess I’ll just have to wait and see. 😉

February 25, 2018

Book Review: Unleashed (Wolf Springs Chronicles Book 1) by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie

Wolf Springs Chronicles Book 1
Title: Unleashed
Author: Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie
Series: Wolf Springs Chronicles #1
Pages: 382
My Rating: ❤❤❤❤❤

Katelyn McBride’s life changed in an instant when her mother died. Uprooted from her California home, Katelyn was shipped to the middle of nowhere, Arkansas, to her only living relative, her grandfather. And now she has to start over in Wolf Springs, a tiny village in the Ozark Mountains. Like any small town, Wolf Springs has secrets. But the secrets hidden here are more sinister than Katelyn could ever imagine. It’s a town with a history that reaches back centuries, spans continents, and conceals terrifying truths. And Katelyn McBride is about to change everything.

Broken families, ageless grudges, forced alliances, and love that blooms in the darkest night—welcome to Wolf Springs.

When I came across Unleashed, I knew that I had to read it for a number of reasons.

1) The book is set in Arkansas

2) It's about werewolves

3) Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie are AWESOME

4) There's a bit of eye candy 😉

With reasons like that, how could I not pick it up, I mean it's got to be good right? Well, at least that's what I thought. Much to my chagrin it was awesome! Being from Arkansas, I loved how I felt as if I could picture the scenery better. The book would have gotten bonus points if it would have taken place in my hometown, however, I did know some of the towns, and I have actually been to the airport in Bentonville. Score one for me!

I especially enjoyed how such a big city girl like Katelyn called Arkansas "banjo land." She is by no means alone in thinking that! I've traveled places before and people have looked at me funny when I tell them that I'm from Arkansas. Not everywhere in Arkansas is "banjo land," just like not everywhere in California is Hollywood.

Despite her trepidations about Arkansas, Katelyn comes to learn that there is actually a lot of interesting stuff in her little town. Just like with any small town in the woods, Wolf Springs is full of legends. Katelyn learns all about them, and ends up a little too close for comfort with one in particular...

Not only is Katelyn intrigued by the legend of the hellhound, but I am as well! I can't wait devour the next installment. There's way too many questions that I need answers to! Such as, what's up with Trick? What's the connection between Katelyn and Justin? What is Mike's deal (seriously, he has got to be one of the biggest jerks EVER)?, and the question on everyone's mind What is going on in Wolf Springs?