Book Review

Book Review: Gleam (The Plated Prisoner #3) by Raven Kennedy

Rating: ★★★☆
Audience: Fantasy Romance
Length: 681 pages
Author: Raven Kennedy
Publisher: Self-Published
Release Date: May 31st, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

King Midas made me the woman I am today. Notorious. Unattainable. His.

The thing about being confined is that you believe it’s to keep the bad out… Until you realize it’s about keeping you in.

I’m now in a strange kingdom surrounded by liars, with no allies of my own, but I won’t sit idly by and let myself wither. No, there’s something that’s bloomed from the pit of my repression. Something dark. Something angry.

But the last thing I expected was for my anger to call out to him. King Ravinger.

He’s sinister and powerful and entirely too seductive. I’ve learned my lesson with trusting manipulative kings, so why does my chest constrict every time he’s near? I need to tread carefully, or I’m at risk of losing much more than just my freedom.

Regret and revenge war inside of me, and I need to figure out a plan fast before I get tangled up in the schemes of kings and queens.

Because I won’t be caught in a cage again. No, this time, It’ll be me setting the trap… I just hope my heart comes out of this unscathed.

I GUESS I’LL READ BOOK FOUR?

I held off on picking this one up as long as I could. Unpopular opinions flying out ya, you’ve been warned.

Nothing happens in this entire series for 90% of these books. The last 10% gets a bit wild, you feel called to pick up the next, but it’s the same dang cycle. Auren spent most of this particular installment wandering around a castle looking for an old guard who I didn’t know she cared so much about?? I must be feeling cold-hearted, but I needed way more than that. Castle wandering is BORING. BO-RING.

I did like some stuff; namely Rip. The romantic development was good. Plenty of swoony conversations when Rip shows his feelings and his alpha nature is *chef’s kiss*. The steam was wayyy past my limits, but there wasn’t much of it (considering 700 pages) and is easy to skip by. If there had been even more just general interaction between Rip and Auren that would have raised this book.

At last, Auren finally used her power. So the ending was interesting and expected. I wasn’t flipping out (as I was told would happen) but I am genuinely curious how there’s supposed to be a book four? I’m sure there’s more wandering to be had. One can hope that Auren really does something next round.

Overall audience notes:

  • Fantasy Romance
  • Language: strong
  • Romance: two open door; high explicit
  • Violence: high
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: domestic abuse, rape (off page but alluded to), sexual assault, drug use, torture, weapons violence

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Book Review

Book Review: Marriage for One by Ella Maise

Rating: ★★★★
Audience: Contemporary Romance
Length: 520 pages
Author: Ella Maise
Publisher: Self-published
Release Date: May 8th, 2019
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Jack and I, we did everything backward. The day he lured me into his office-which was also the first day we met-he proposed. You’d think a guy who looked like him-a bit cold maybe, but still striking and very unattainable-would only ask the love of his life to marry him, right? You’d think he must be madly in love.

Nope. It was me he asked. A complete stranger who had never even heard of him. A stranger who had been dumped by her fiancé only weeks before. You’d think I’d laugh in his face, call him insane-and a few other names-then walk away as quickly as possible. Well…I did all those things except the walking away part.

It took him only minutes to talk me into a business deal…erm, I mean marriage, and only days for us to officially tie the knot. Happiest day of my life. Magical. Pop the champagne… Not. It was the worst day. Jack Hawthorne was nothing like what I’d imagined for myself.
I blamed him for my lapse in judgment. I blamed his eyes, the ocean blue eyes that looked straight into mine unapologetically, and that frown on his face I had no idea I would become so fascinated with in time.

It wasn’t long after he said I was the biggest mistake of his life that things started to change. No, he still didn’t talk much, but anyone can string a few words together. His actions spoke the loudest to me. And day after day my heart started to get a mind of its own.

One second he was no one. The next he became everything.
One second he was unattainable. The next he seemed to be completely mine.
One second I thought we were in love. The next it was still nothing but a lie.

After all, I was Rose and he was Jack. We were doomed from the very beginning with those names. Did you expect anything else?

WELL, THIS WAS GOOD.

I can’t believe I waited so long to read this one because it was so goooooood. Oh my goodness. I LOVED the first half. The grump x sunshine trope with a dash of I hate everyone but you. GOLD. I didn’t realize just how much of a sucker I am for that kind of vibe in my romance reads.

Jack and Rose are in a marriage of convenience (lets just drop all of my favorite tropes into this one). Watching the push and pull of feelings had me in a puddle. I adored all of the small things Jack did to subtly show her he cared and how Rose remained positive about the new situations before her. The angst was real and the banter was top notch. And I swooned right along with Rose every time Jack rolled up his sleeves or gave a small smile. These are the things that I love.

What I didn’t love was how one of my favorite tropes was dragged out a bit. I’m here for a good, take care of someone when sick trope, buuuut this one went on for probably 100 pages or so and slowed down the pacing of the book a bunch. Without that I probably would have thrown 5 stars at it easy.

Yessss, there’s *drama*, but I didn’t care one bit. I was already so deep into this relationship and I think it actually fit the book well. Things get wild, and I was into it. ANYWAYS. Definitely recommend this one [spice was too concentrated/too much for met at the end, buuut for those who love that, read it!!]

Overall audience notes:

  • Contemporary Romance
  • Language: some strong
  • Romance: 3 long open door scenes
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: bribery, loss of a loved one, surgery, medical situations (exams, testing, appointments), extortion, panic attack

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Book Review

Book Review: The Gravity of Us (Elements #4) by Brittainy C. Cherry

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
Audience: Contemporary Romance
Length: 270 pages
Author: Brittainy C. Cherry
Publisher: Self published
Release Date: April 12th, 2017
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Graham Russell and I weren’t made for one another.

I was driven by emotion; he was apathetic. I dreamed while he lived in nightmares. I cried when he had no tears to shed.

Despite his frozen heart and my readiness to run, we sometimes shared seconds. Seconds when our eyes locked and we saw each other’s secrets. Seconds when his lips tasted my fears, and I breathed in his pains. Seconds when we both imagined what it would be like to love one another.

Those seconds left us floating, but when reality knocked us sideways, gravity forced us to descend.

Graham Russell wasn’t a man who knew how to love, and I wasn’t a woman who knew how to either. Yet if I had the chance to fall again, I’d fall with him forever.

Even if we were destined to crash against solid ground.

THIS WAS EVERYTHING.

I couldn’t put this down from chapter one. All of a sudden I had a deep need to know what happened next and so I began a journey of ALL the dang emotions through the lives of Lucy and Graham.

“If you need to fall, fall into me.”

I mean, COME ON. Look at those words. Did you swoon? Because I swooned so many times throughout this book!! One of my new favorite grump and sunshine trope reads. I loved these characters with my whole being. I found myself almost in tears by the end waiting for a happy ending. I love that Lucy was optimistic and truly cared from her soul about her loved ones. That Graham was hardened by abandonment, but was also able to work on himself. The chemistry was undeniable. It was a slowwww burn and incredibly romantic with all of the lead up.

An incredibly sweet story that has a lot of heavy and deep content matter (I’ll put that in the warnings below). I adored the banter and soft smiles. The cute way they just hung out together. How they undeniably stood by each other’s side when things got hard instead of running away. I was wrapped up in this opposites attract love story and I beg of you to read it!!

Overall audience notes:

  • Contemporary romance
  • Language: some strong
  • Romance: kisses to one brief open door scene
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: a mother smoked while pregnant (off screen), emergency delivery, preemie baby in NICU, cheating, loss of parent(s), domestic abuse, alcoholism, child abuse, parental/spousal abandonment

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Book Review

Monthly Reading Wrap-Up: May 2022

A mixed bag of a month, most of five star reads came from rereads. But now I am ready for all of the summer reads!

Favorite Reads This Month: Some Mistakes Were Made, The Phoenix Priest, TBK/TTQ, QOS, Love & Olives, All the Feels, Love in Bloom, Roaring, The Bluff

  • [Graphic Novel] Heartstopper Vol. 4 by Alice Oseman
  • Obsidian Throne (The Lochlann Feuds #4) by Robin D. Mahle and Elle Madison
  • [ARC] Exactly Where You Need to Be by Amelia Diane Coombs
  • Just Go With It (Just Us #1) by Madison Wright
  • Bonded Fate (Guardians of the Maiden #2) by Beck Michaels
  • The Do-Over by Bethany Turner
  • Some Mistakes Were Made by Kristin Dwyer
  • Book of Night by Holly Black
  • Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen
  • Book Lovers by Emily Henry
  • The Phoenix Priest (The Blood and Water Saga #2) by Cassidy Clarke
  • [Reread] The Bridge Kingdom (The Bridge Kingdom #1) by Danielle L. Jensen
  • [ARC] Every Summer After by Carley Fortune
  • [Reread] Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass #4) by Sarah J. Maas
  • [ARC] Edward and Amelia by Karen Thornell
  • Love & Olives (Love & Gelato #3) by Jenna Evans Welch
  • Last Chance Summer by Shannon Klare
  • The Queen’s Rising (The Queen’s Rising #1) by Rebecca Ross
  • The Witch Collector (Witch Walker #1) by Charissa Weaks
  • [Bonus Chapters] The Calm Before the Storm (The Bridge Kingdom #3.5) by Danielle L. Jensen
  • All the Feels (Spoiler Alert #2) by Olivia Dade
  • [Novella] The Missed Connection (Airport Novellas #2) by Denise Williams
  • [Graphic] Miss Butterworth and the Mad Baron by Julia Quinn
  • [Reread] The Traitor Queen (The Bridge Kingdom #2) by Danielle L. Jensen
  • [ARC] For Butter or Worse by Erin La Rosa
  • Complex (The Sweet Rom”Com”s #2) by Kortney Keisel
  • An Arrow to the Moon by Emily X.R. Pan
  • Love in Bloom (Some Kind of Love #4) by Jenny Proctor
  • Firebrand (Green Rider #6) by Kristen Britain
  • Maybe Now (Maybe #2) by Colleen Hoover
  • Reign & Ruin (Mages of the Wheel #1) by J.D. Evans
  • [Novella] Unrequited (The Donovans #0.5) by Martha Keyes
  • How to Kiss Your Best Friend by Jenny Proctor
  • Roaring by Lindsey Duga
  • [Novella] A Wilderness of Glass (Wraith Kings #2.7) by Grace Draven
  • The Queen of Blood (The Queens of Renthia #1) by Sarah Beth Durst
  • Gleam (The Plated Prisoner #3) by Raven Kennedy
  • A Show for Two by Tashie Bhuiyan
  • [ARC] The Bluff (Graham Brothers #2) by Emma St. Clair
  • [Novella] Love Beginning (Some Kind of Love #0.5) by Jenny Proctor

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