Book Review

ARC Book Review: Running Wild (The Simple Wild #3) by K.A. Tucker

Rating: ★★★★
Audience: Contemporary Romance
Length: TBD pages
Author: K.A. Tucker
Publisher: Self-published
Release Date: January 25th, 2022
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

From the internationally bestselling author of The Simple Wild comes the story of a woman at a crossroads in her life, struggling between the safe route and the one that will only lead to more heartbreak.

Veterinarian Marie Lehr knows unrequited love all too well after pining for her best friend, only to watch him marry another woman. It’s a mistake she will never make again, especially not when she can practically hear the clock ticking on her childbearing years.

The trouble is, she can’t seem to find anyone who appeals to her even a fraction as much as that burly bush pilot did. Competitive musher Tyler Brady certainly doesn’t, especially not after the heated altercation with the handsome but arrogant, spiteful man.

Or so she thinks.

While volunteering at the Iditarod Sled Dog Race, Marie discovers that first impressions may have been false, and her attraction to Tyler is very real. But his heart belongs to someone else, leaving him with nothing to offer but friendship. Marie’s been down this road before and knows how that ends. Yet, no matter how hard she works to keep from falling for Tyler, it seems she’s doomed to follow her own trail once again.

Thank you to Valentine PR for the eARC.

BEAUTIFUL STORY.

I could not put this down. I have a deep love for Tucker’s romances and this was another great one. I’m elated that we got to read Marie’s story at last!!

Marie and Tyler got off to a bumpy start (which is honestly kind of my favorite). I loved the slow nature of their connection as it built over months. Truly becoming friends first and then watching that love grow as they got to know each other on very deep levels. These are two heartbroken people just trying to find the next right step on their paths. I wanted a bit more of page time between them in the first half, but that 50% mark really set off a rollercoaster ride to the end. I was alllllll up in my feels wondering how it was going to end. Grateful for a short and sweet epilogue that gave some closure.

The Alaskan setting is always the best. I loved that this focused on the Iditarod race and all that that entails. It was SO COOL. I learned a lot from the book and looking up my own information. How can you not love a book that’s filled with ALL THE DOGS? Answer: you can’t.

I never felt overly negative towards Marie in TSW. Going in to Running Wild, I wasn’t sure what to expect from her character. But I ended up loving the whole process. Grappling with feelings for Jonah, moving on, dealing with family and what she hoped for herself and the dreams she wanted realized. Everything together made for a beautiful characterization and I adore Marie. I do. She gave it her all, and finally got her all.

And yes, you do get to see Jonah and Calla again!!

Overall audience notes:

  • Contemporary Romance
  • Language: a little strong
  • Romance: two brief open door scenes
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: major theme of the book is about pregnancy/babies, brief mention of miscarriage (side character), abused animals, discussion of treatment for pets (euthanasia, amputation, etc.)

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Book Review

Book Review: The Fastest Way to Fall by Denise Williams

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
Audience: Contemporary Romance
Length: 384 pages
Author: Denise Williams
Publisher: Berkley Romance
Release Date: November 2nd, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Britta didn’t plan on falling for her personal trainer, and Wes didn’t plan on Britta. Plans change and it’s unclear if love, career, or both will meet them at the finish line.

Britta Colby works for a lifestyle website, and when tasked to write about her experience with a hot new body-positive fitness app that includes personal coaching, she knows it’s a major opportunity to prove she should write for the site full-time.

As CEO of the FitMe app, Wes Lawson finally has the financial security he grew up without, but despite his success, his floundering love life and complicated family situation leaves him feeling isolated and unfulfilled. He decides to get back to what he loves—coaching. Britta’s his first new client and they click immediately.

As weeks pass, she’s surprised at how much she enjoys experimenting with her exercise routine. He’s surprised at how much he looks forward to talking to her every day. They convince themselves their attraction is harmless, but when they start working out in person, Wes and Britta find it increasingly challenging to deny their chemistry and maintain a professional distance.

Wes isn’t supposed to be training clients, much less meeting with them, and Britta’s credibility will be sunk if the lifestyle site finds out she’s practically dating the fitness coach she’s reviewing. Walking away from each other is the smartest thing to do, but running side by side feels like the start of something big.

I LOVED THIS SO MUCH.

New favorite alert.

New must read alert.

THIS IS THAT BOOK.

THE FASTEST WAY TO FALL is going to be a top contender for my favorite romance of the year. I LOVED IT. As someone who’s had a rocky path with safe diet/exercise practices and learning to love the body I’m in, this book meant so much to me. I love the way topics were approached and the validating sense of feeling good about the way you’re taking care of yourself rather than the numbers on a scale.

Wes had me swooning in a puddle wit how supportive he was. He was this steady presence and his conversations with Britta left me begging for more. The wedding scene?? The race scene?? IF YOU KNOW YOU KNOW because hot dang it was amazing. Book boyfriend alert.

Britta was an amazing, honest, strong heroine. Once of favorites of recent memory. I adored her with all of my heart. I felt seen by her. I felt her hope and her wants. Britta’s story was all encompassing and emotional. I would love to be her friend. Put Britta and Wes together and there chemistry was off the chart from the beginning. I love the email/texting component and how they finally met (taking care of someone who’s sick trope alert!!!).

This book sang to my soul and I highly recommend it be on you pick up.

Overall audience notes:

  • Contemporary romance
  • Language: some strong
  • Romance: 1-3 open door scenes
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: eating disorder mentioned, a parent with alcohol and drug abuse

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Book Review

ARC Book Review: Isn’t It Bromantic? (Bromance Book Club #4) by Lyssa Kay Adams

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆
Audience: Contemporary Romance
Length: 352 pages
Author: Lyssa Kay Adams
Publisher: Berkley
Release Date: July 20th, 2021
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

With his passion for romance novels, it was only a matter of time before Vlad took up the pen to write a novel the Bromance Book Club would swoon over.

Elena Konnikova has lived her entire adult life in the shadows. As the daughter of a Russian journalist who mysteriously disappeared after speaking out against government corruption, she escaped danger the only way she knew how. She agreed to marry her childhood friend, Vladimir, and move to the United States, where he is a professional hockey player in Nashville.

Vlad, aka The Russian, thought he could be content with his marriage of convenience. But after four years, it’s become too difficult to continue in a one-sided relationship. He joined the Bromance Book Club to learn how to make his wife love him, but all he’s learned is that he deserves more. He’s ready to create his own sweeping romance–both on and off the page.

The Bros are unwilling to let Vlad forgo true love–and this time they’re not operating solo. They join forces with Vlad’s senior citizen neighbors, a group of meddling widows who call themselves The Loners. Just when things finally look promising, the danger from Elena’s past life intrudes, and the book club will face their first-ever life-or-death grand gesture as they race to a happy ever after.

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for an eARC in exchange for a review. All opinions are my own!

BEST OF THE SERIES.

Yup. I said it. I stand by it. I LOVED THIS ONE SO MUCH.

Sweet soul Vlad had my heart wrapped around his finger. He’s my favorite. I love him so much. Bearing his soul over and over and over again. Leaning on his friends, renewing his love, and finding his voice. IT WAS ALL AMAZING. Vlad is an unconventional hero and underneath that intimidating, hockey player, exterior is a smushy cinnamon roll.

Marriage of convenience might be one of my favorite tropes. I want all of the books with this plot line because I am enamored. This was no exception. Getting a bit of childhood friends, and a few other tropes that make me weak and I was instantly in love.

Elena hurt me sometimes. I just wanted her to see herself the way Vlad does!! But this only racketed up the pure angst between them. There was just the right amount of steam to match this story and it fit in beautifully with the rekindling of their love. Elena and Vlad has so much growth as individual characters.

The side characters y’all. Oh my gosh, couldn’t get enough. I love every moment that the entire Bromance Book Club is together. The way they have bonded and the deep friendships that have aligned make me melt. I love the communication and power of loyal friends. Vlad’s other set of friends, a group of ladies, The Loners, also had me smitten. I loved the clash and meeting of the minds whenever everyone was together. This whole cast makes this book.

I loved this. I hope to goodness there’s another book. I don’t want this series to end!

Also lowkey, I want to go make all of the Russian dishes in this book. They sounded mouth-watering delicious!

Overall audience notes:

  • Contemporary romance
  • Language: some
  • Romance: kisses to mild open door scenes
  • Violence: car wreck, physical altercation
  • Trigger/Content Warnings: kidnapping, loss of a parent, severe sports injury, mentions and discussion of a sex trafficking ring

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