Thursday, September 30

Audiobook Review: Pride, Prejudice, & Poison by Elizabeth Blake

Author: Elizabeth Blake
Narrator: Justine Eyre
Title: Pride, Prejudice and Poison
(A Jane Austen Society Mystery #1)
Genre: Cozy Mystery, Fiction, Mystery, Retellings
Format: Audiobook
Published: August 13th 2019
Where I got It: Audible

Antiquarian bookstore proprietor Erin Coleridge uses her sense and sensibility to deduce who killed the president of the local Jane Austen Society.

Erin Coleridge’s used bookstore in Kirkbymoorside, North Yorkshire, England is a meeting place for the villagers and, in particular, for the local Jane Austen Society. At the Society’s monthly meeting, matters come to a head between the old guard and its young turks. After the meeting breaks for tea, persuasion gives way to murder—with extreme prejudice—when president Sylvia Pemberthy falls dead to the floor. Poisoned? Presumably…but by whom? And was Sylvia the only target?

Handsome—but shy—Detective Inspector Peter Hadley and charismatic Sergeant Rashid Jarral arrive at the scene. The long suspect list includes Sylvia’s lover Kurt Becker and his tightly wound wife Suzanne. Or, perhaps, the killer was Sylvia’s own cuckolded husband, Jerome. Among the many Society members who may have had her in their sights is dashing Jonathan Alder, who was heard having a royal battle of words with the late president the night before.

Then, when Jonathan Alder narrowly avoids becoming the next victim, Farnsworth (the town’s “cat lady”) persuades a seriously time-crunched Erin to help DI Hadley. But the killer is more devious than anyone imagines.

I couldn't resist listening to this. A mystery and a nice nod to P&P?? Pah-lease. This has my name all over it. 

When a murder occurs at the local Jane Austen Society, it is up to Antiquarian bookstore proprietor Erin Coleridge, Detective Inspector Peter Hadley, and Sergeant Rashid Jarral to solve this. It's a small English town, but there are a lot of suspects who seem to be gunning for Erin next. 

Ooooo this was fun. I thought I KNEW who....but I was wrong. The twist in the end was fantastic. After all is revealed it ALL makes sense and so obvious.

I loved our cast here. 

Erin is adorable. 

I loved Hadley and Jarral too! 

I liked Farnsworth and her P&P named cats. I loved her yelling at Wickham all the time because he is a hellion. Too funny. It had me chuckling. HOWEVER, she really could've calmed down on calling Erin "pet" 50 million times though. We get's a common English term of endearment. X_X I wanted to rip my hair out near the end. LIKE STOP. 

The narrator is good. I've heard her in the past and she did a great job. 

In the end, this was a fun cozy perfect for Fall and for those that like Jane Austen. Lots of references that will make you smile. 

I'll give this 4 stars.


- #65 for Audiobook challenge

Monday, September 27

B's Monday Review: The Duchess Hunt by Lorraine Heath

Narrated by: Kate Reading

Length: 10 hrs and 15 mins

Release date: 09-28-21

Publisher: HarperAudio

Historical romance

to review

In the last book the Duke tried to get a wife, and failed (she left him for someone else, but they didn't love each other so no loss.) In this one he places an advert in the paper again to find a wife. And to help him he has his trusted secretary, Penelope.

Obviously, Penelope and King start to suddenly feel like they could be right. But he is a Duke, and she is a secretary.

Oh and there is a secret that she is running from, and usually those can be very lame. Like oh no I stepped on a dress 10 years ago and I am ruined! But this one was good! It was really really bad. So very bad for her. Run to another country bad. For them to be together did seem very unlikely

Book 3 has a name, and I certainly hope it is about a certain former Duke to be in the shadows. Exciting!

I enjoyed it. They were so good for each other

Good narration. Voices, tone and setting, all blending to a good book. Historical romance is great for audio

Hugh Brinsley-Norton, the Duke of Kingsland, is in need of a duchess. However, restoring the dukedom—left in ruins by his father—to its former glory demands all his time, with little room for sentiment. He places an advert encouraging the single ladies of the ton to write why they should be the one chosen, and leaves it to his efficient secretary to select his future wife.

If there exists a more unpleasant task in the world than deciding who is to marry the man you love, Penelope Pettypeace certainly can’t imagine what it might be. Still, she is determined to find the perfect bride for her clueless, yet ruthlessly charming employer.

But when an anonymous note threatens to reveal truths best hidden, Kingsland has no choice but to confront the danger with Penelope at his side. Beguiled by the strong-willed, courageous beauty, he realizes he’s willing to risk everything, including his heart, to keep her safe within his arms. Could it be the duchess he’s hunting for has been in front of him all along?

Sunday, September 26

Audiobook Review: Wicked Angel by Julia London

Author: Julia London
Narrator: Anne Flosnik
Title: Wicked Angel (The Rogues of Regent Street #2)
Genre: Historical Romance
Format: Audiobook
Published: 1999
Where I got It: Audible

Forbidden love is always a scandalous choice....

She raced across the pasture, vaulted a fence, and landed, stunned and breathless, on top of the most handsome man she had ever seen. The bemused stranger stayed to capture the fancy of the brood of orphaned children in her charge, then stole Lauren Hill's heart with a searing kiss as he left. Lauren couldn't tell him she was a widowed countess fallen on hard times. She tried to forget him-until she saw him again at a London ball. The man who haunted her dreams was a duke, out of her class...and he was pledged to another woman.

The ton is ablaze with talk of the ravishing Bavarian countess. Stunned, Alexander Christian, Duke of Sutherland, recognizes Lauren as the country girl who's captured his heart. Duty has forced him to pledge himself to another, to take his proper place in society and in Parliament. He wants one night with his blue-eyed enchantress, but will he be able to walk away from her again, or will he risk it all to be with the woman who fires his blood and makes him think of a . . . Wicked Angel

This is technically book 2, but you can for sure read this out of order or as as standalone. The previous couple is briefly mentioned here and there and pop up. It has no real impact on the story.

Lauren Hill is now widowed, so she returns back to England to care for her family land and the orphans under her protection. After a certain event with being chased by a hog, she lands on the most handsome man she has ever seen. The man is none other than Alexander who is a Duke. However, they keep their real titles to themselves. He a duke and she a widowed Bavarian countess. After spending some time together they becomes friends and maybe something more after sharing a goodbye kiss. The two meet again in London. He is already betrothed and Lauren needs to find a rich husband to save her land and the orphans. The two realize, though, they are madly in love with each other but they have responsibilities.

I was absolutely hooked from page one. I adored these two together. They seemed so perfect. They had a rare chance to fall for each other without the weight of their titles and their responsibilities. They also didn't kiss or have smexy time until he had to leave and all they shared was a heated kiss. I liked this meeting and getting to know each other. 

However...things - for me - began to corrode when both parties got to London.

Yes. Alexander was engaged already to a really nice girl. Maybe if she was a beyotch or rude or dumb or they were JUST newly engaged or something....I wouldn't have felt bad. However, she was sweet and innocent and they were engaged for like 2 years. She had previously been engaged to his older brother, but the brother died so when he became duke he decided to take her on. Poor girl. I felt SO bad for her. I want her to find love darnit. Yes - it was obvious her and Alexander were NOT right for each other, but she was so sweet. 

And Magnus. OMG. He wanted to help Lauren and I really feel like he liked her. AND SHE JUST RIPS HIS HEART OUT! WAH! Honestly?????? I feel like him and Lauren would've been perfect together. Sighs. He was an angel and he deserves love too. I did some research and he never got a book. GAH! The author did mention in passing in the epilogue he saved a girl? So maybe they fell in love too. Sighs. I'll have to use my own imagination I guess.

Okay...two great people hurt two great people. It happens....but was Alexander great? He was sort of a jerk to his fiancĂ©, to Lauren, to his brother, to his everyone. Plus.....what was special about him? Okay - he was nice to the orphans and didn't point out Lauren's brother's disability. Sure. Points there. However, all Lauren ever thought about was how hawt he was, how big his hands are, how nice his legs are, and he's a Duke. What truly had her in LOVE with him? He understood her quotes she would randomly say? He was a decent politician and wanted to lower taxes for businesses? I mean...he owns a business so it is self serving for sure. IDK. It all seemed rather shallow when it came to him. Lauren was a nice, pretty, smart, and charitable gal. Too good for Alexander methinks.

I am kinda bummed. I felt like Lauren should've ended up with Magnus in the end. He was a grumpy fella, but he seemed like he had a personality outside of his looks and he was willing to wait for Lauren and even marry her and take the orphans along. Good egg there. 

The narrator was good. I liked her. No issues there. 

In the end, I wish I had liked this more. It started out awesome, but Alexander lost too many points with me. I wanted Lauren to be with someone else. Maybe he will redeem himself if we see him around town in the next one. 2 stars from me. 


- #64 for Audiobook challenge

Thursday, September 23

Audiobook Review: The Ghostwriter by AR Torre

Author: A.R. Torre
Narrator: Andrea Izzy Anthony
Title: The Ghostwriter
Genre: Fiction, Thriller, Mystery, Suspense 
Format: Audiobook
Published: October 2nd 2017
Where I got It: Audible

Four years ago, I lied. I stood in front of the police, my friends and family, and made up a story, my best one yet. And all of them believed me.

I wasn't surprised. Telling stories is what made me famous. Fifteen bestsellers. Millions of fans. Fame and fortune.

Now, I have one last story to write. It'll be my best one yet, with a jaw-dropping twist that will leave them stunned and gasping for breath.

They say that sticks and stones will break your bones, but this story? It will be the one that kills me.

This was picked for my mini book club I'm in. I was nervous at first because I had zero idea what to expect...the summary says a lot but not a lot at the same time. 

The story follows an author who is dying. She decides that she needs to share her story and her expose her lies and truths. This is her confession and her apology. 


Okay with that out of the way......*puts on reviewing hat*

This book had me captivated from page one. I finished it in just a couple of sittings. I did the audio of it and I couldn't stop listening. I was 30 mins from the end and I forced FH to listen to a chunk of it. This.....made me feel everything. 

You will not guess the end fully. You can guess and you MAY be close like I was. won't guess. Nope. It blew me away. I could not stop crying when I realized what was happening. I wanted the truth but I wanted the truth to not be the truth. It's like a car can't help but watch and be intrigued about what is going on even though you should turn your eyes from the horror. I sobbed. Utterly and truly sobbed. But her getting her truth out was such a relief. 

I've avoided reading other reviews until I could get mine done because I didn't want to be swayed or spoiled. At the same time I was simply ACHING to know the truth. Oh Helena. Poor, poor Helena. 

Yes, you will have conflicting emotions for her. She was a jerk sometimes and she could be seen as cold and callous even both the lie/event/tragedy occurred. She was for sure flawed like we all are. By the end you just want to wrap your arms around her and make it go away. 

I loved how she made some unlikely friends like her nemesis. It made me smile. I won't say more even though that is a mini spoiler. 

The audio just made this better. I read a few pages but I really loved the narrator more. She really helped the story and the characters. This NEEDS to become a movie. NEEDS to. 

In the end, this is for sure a contender for best book of the year in my eyes. It makes you feel everything. You will want to cheat and skip to get the reveal...but at the same time you will be hooked by the words. That ending. OMG. I am curious about other books by this author...if they are half as good as this one - I will like them. 5 stars of course.  READ IT!!!


- #63 for Audiobook challenge

Tuesday, September 21

Tell Me Something Tuesday: Falling in Love With Covers.

9/21 - Have you ever bought a book just because you fell in love with the cover? And did such book live up to it?

Of course!! Too many times to give a number. Sometimes a cover just CALLS to you and you can't resist.

Did they live up to their cover???? I would say 50/50. Some have been absolute winners. Some? Absolutely not. Some have lead to sorrow and sadness. We shall call those sirens. Lovely to look at, but will lead you to a bad reading experience. 


Monday, September 20

B's Monday Review: A Lot Like Adios by Alexis Daria


Narrated by: Seraphine Valentine

Length: 9 hrs and 45 mins

Release date: 09-14-21

Publisher: HarperAudio

Contemporary romance

To review

Two former besties who never fully got to explore if they could have been more meet again. And they are both idiots.

Gabriel left and never talked again. Internet people! You can be friends while living far away, especially considering how close they were. But then he ditched his family after a fight too.But I get that, his father had been really hard on him,I thought he forgave too easily.

Michelle then, well she was an idiot too. She got mad at him cos he wanted to leave. He has to follow his own dreams! Not just stay cos you are best friends, and maybe more. But they had been best friends since they were 6, I wish I had friends like that, I would not dump them then.

They meet again, they realise they have the hots for each other. Better scratch that itch. But his life is in LA, and she,well why couldn't she leave? Cos of family? I guess the book teaches, never leave family, they are more important than love. I over analyze. But yes, Michelle does seem rooted in place.

It was a fun one, they deserved their second chance, but they had to work for it.

The narrator was really good. I could feel I was there with them. She was excellent at voices and feeling.

After burning out in her corporate marketing career, Michelle Amato has built a thriving freelance business as a graphic designer. So what if her love life is nonexistent? She’s perfectly fine being the black sheep of her marriage-obsessed Puerto Rican-Italian family. Besides, the only guy who ever made her want happily-ever-after disappeared thirteen years ago.

Gabriel Aguilar left the Bronx at eighteen to escape his parents’ demanding expectations, but it also meant saying goodbye to Michelle, his best friend and longtime crush. Now, he’s the successful co-owner of LA’s hottest celebrity gym, with an investor who insists on opening a New York City location. It’s the last place in the world Gabe wants to go, but when Michelle is unexpectedly brought on board to spearhead the new branding campaign, everything Gabe’s been running from catches up with him.

Michelle is torn between holding Gabe at arm’s length or picking up right where they left off—in her bed. As old feelings resurface while they work to make the new gym location a reality, their reunion takes a sexy turn. Facing mounting pressure from their families—who think they’re dating—and growing uncertainty about their futures, can they resolve their past mistakes, or is it only a matter of time before Gabe says adios again?

Sunday, September 19

Book Review: Cowboy Rebel by Carolyn Brown

Author: Carolyn Brown
Title: Cowboy Rebel
(Longhorn Canyon #4)
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Western
Format: ebook
Published: May 28th 2019
Where I Got It: Library

Ever since losing his best friend in a motorcycle accident, Taggart Baker wants to make every moment count. No dare is too dangerous, no adventure too crazy for this cowboy. But after one bad brush with the law, he realizes it's time to ditch his hooligan friends and grow up. Now he's running his own ranch next to the Longhorn Canyon spread in Texas. Still, no one would ever call him tame.

Nikki Grady has worked too hard for her RN license just to throw it away for some reckless cowboy who shows up in her emergency room after a barroom brawl. But she can't help being drawn to Tag's sense of humor and those crystal blue eyes. The more time they spend together, the more she sees his good heart. But just as Tag seems ready to settle down for good, his troubled past comes calling-and this time he won't be able to walk away so easily.

Forgot about this series until I stumbled upon this while scrolling my library's ebook section. 

We follow Taggart, Tag, and Nikki. Tag was once a rebel but after one bad brush with the law, he finally realized it's time to grow up and ditch his hooligan friends. He also wants to live life to the fullest after his best friend died in a motorcycle accident. Nikki has worked so hard to become an RN and make herself a nice life. She refuses to throw it away for this reckless cowboy. However, she feels drawn to Tag because of his humor and his blue eyes. The more time they spend together, the more she can see his good heart. Things seem to be going good until demons from his old life come calling and puts Nikki in trouble. 

This would be okay as a standalone I think, but I would recommend at a minimum reading the book before this one.

I struggled at the beginning. I liked Nikki and I loved Tag, but it took me a while to really feel the chemistry between them. They are opposites for sure, but it didn't seem legit or feel real at first. However, things changed when he got her a goldfish....and then I was hooked to them and I could see and feel the love!!! Don't ask me why that scene made everything click for me. It's such a little thing, but how freakin' sweet of him! They needed each other!!

Gah! Poor Nikki. She really deserved love! I am so happy a certain twist happened. It melted my lil heart and made me so happy. I won't say WHAT, but I was so happy. Her mother is a piece of work for sure. Yes, yes, the mom had major issues, but she should've gone to a therapist or something. Poor Nikki. And that poor brother of hers who passed. All so sad. 

They both had issues and lots of bad things tossed at them, but I loved them fighting through it together. They were so supportive of each other. It was nice to see them be friends and lovers. What a healthy couple they were! Loved it!

I can't wait to see Hud find love now (Tag's twin) esp after his accident.

Love this series and these cowboys!

In the end, I did struggle at the beginning, but once I was hooked I could not stop reading. I always forget how much I like this author and her work. I'll give this 4 stars. 


- #23 for Romance Bingo - "Cowboy" in title. 

Thursday, September 16

Audiobook Review: Be Our Ghost by Kate Kingsbury

Author: Kate Kingsbury
Narrator: Tavia Gilbert
Title: Be Our Ghost
(Merry Ghost Inn #3)
Genre: Cozy Mystery, Paranormal, Fantasy, & fiction    
Format: Audiobook
Published: October 9th 2018
Where I got It: Audible

The Merry Ghost Inn is well and truly open for business. Melanie West and her grandmother, Liza, are rapidly getting the hang of running their charming bed-and-breakfast inn on the rocky Oregon coast. Not that business goes without a hitch—when your hostelry boasts its own laughing resident ghost, you’d better be expect the out-of-the-ordinary. But Melanie and Liza take it all in stride…until a hotshot real estate developer arrives in Sully’s Landing, touting his plans to build a tacky amusement arcade smack dab in the middle of the tasteful cliff-side town.

No one in Sully’s Landing can stand the gaudy developer, but it’s still a shock when he ends up murdered. It’s even more shocking when Liza’s friend, Doug, emerges as the chief suspect. Melanie and Liza put on their sleuthing caps yet again and set out to clear Doug’s name. But the ante is upped when Max, Melanie’s beloved sheepdog/wolfhound mix, disappears.

When Max reappears just as mysteriously as he vanished, with a threatening note attached to his collar, Melanie and Liza know the killer is on to them. They nearly check into accommodations six feet under when, en route to the crime scene, their brakes give out and they narrowly miss plunging over the cliffs to the beach below. Meanwhile, the merry ghost who haunts the inn tries to help by dropping clues for Melanie to find, but her mind is otherwise preoccupied when the killer kidnaps Liza and holds her prisoner.

Now, it’s up to Melanie to piece together the ghost’s clues, save her mother, exonerate her friend, keep her guests happy, and make sure Max gets his walkies.

Okay guys...I am addicted to this series apparently and this is the final one and my heart is broken. Sighsssssss.

The Merry Ghost Inn is well and truly open for business. Things have been going well for Melanie and Liza. However, things go haywire when a hotshot real estate developer arrives in Sully's Landing. No one can stand this developer and no one (except those swayed by money) wants his plans to go ahead. When he is found dead, the town is in shock. It's even more shocking how many suspects there are including Liza's friend, Doug, seems to be the chief suspect. The duo pull out their sleuthing hats again to try and find the truth and maybe clear Doug's name. The ante is upped when Max, Mel's beloved dog, disappears but then reappears just as mysteriously with a note attached to his collar telling the two to stop their questions or something worse will happen. 

This had me listening nonstop. I HAD to know who dunnit especially after the threatening note and the attempt made on their lives. This killer is dangerous. I had NO idea. I knew it couldn't be Doug. Doug is Liza's boo!!! 

But I really had no idea. The guy was well hated so his list of enemies was long. 

Once everything was revealed at the end....I was still blown away. BUT it all made sense...especially thinking back on everything the person revealed. I'm shocked it took our team this long to figure it out. 

The side mystery of Melanie's mom does conclude as well (no spoilers). However, it made me want more....I feel we were left on a slight cliff-hanger. Sure we got to know the answer, but there are more questions I have. Maybe a short story???? That would be nice. 

Also, things are still up in the air for Mel and her cop boo. Will they? Won't they? They have some stuff to figure out. 

Sighs...I am sad. This was the last one and it came out in 2018. Not sure if there will be a fourth!!! I would be content with a short story or something. I do not see anything announced or even rumors. SIGHS. HOW CAN THIS BE????

The narrator was fantastic. If another one ever comes out again...*wishes*...she will need to continue narrating them. 

In the end, I am sad to say goodbye to this series. I am upset that there are a lot of unanswered questions and there are so many loose ends. I enjoyed this mystery a lot, but I am kinda bummed at how it all ended. Maybe someday we'll get a short story at least. I'll give this 3 stars. 


- #62 for Audiobook challenge

Monday, September 13

Blodeuedd's Monday Review: My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella

Chick Lit, Fiction, Romance, Contemporary

464 pages, Paperback

Published: July 13, 2017 by Black Swan


Something light, fast and easy was just what I needed!

Katie shows off a perfect London life, but in reality everything sucks and then she looses her job. I liked her, she tried being all insta perfect, she wanted that great job, but London is a tough place.

Then we get a bit of country life, and some hilarious moments.

There is also a maybe guy, but no romance. This is Katie's journey, but yes she will find someone nice at the end, yay.

You know what, nice and easy. I liked it

Everywhere Katie Brenner looks, someone else is living the life she longs for, particularly her boss, Demeter Farlowe. Demeter is brilliant and creative, lives with her perfect family in a posh townhouse, and wears the coolest clothes. Katie's life, meanwhile, is a daily struggle--from her dismal rental to her oddball flatmates to the tense office politics she's trying to negotiate. No wonder Katie takes refuge in not-quite-true Instagram posts, especially as she's desperate to make her dad proud.

Then, just as she's finding her feet--not to mention a possible new romance--the worst happens. Demeter fires Katie. Shattered but determined to stay positive, Katie retreats to her family's farm in Somerset to help them set up a vacation business. London has never seemed so far away--until Demeter unexpectedly turns up as a guest. Secrets are spilled and relationships rejiggered, and as the stakes for Katie's future get higher, she must question her own assumptions about what makes for a truly meaningful life.

Sunday, September 12

Audiobook Review: Doom with a View by Kate Kingsbury

Author: Kate Kingsbury
Narrator: Tavia Gilbert
Title: Doom with a View
(Merry Ghost Inn #2)
Genre: Cozy Mystery, Paranormal, Fantasy, & fiction    
Format: Audiobook
Published: September 12th 2017
Where I got It: Audible

With the arrival of six senior reading group members at the Merry Ghost Inn, the long-awaited Grand Opening week has finally begun for Melanie West and her grandmother, Liza. All is well with the Oregon coast-side B&B until Melanie's dog, Max, finds the dead body of one of their guests. Everyone at the inn immediately falls under suspicion, including the innkeepers themselves. Melanie and Liza are not sure who they can trust, and the idea of cohabitating with a murderer is enough to send chills down anyone's spine. To make matters worse, the curmudgeonly town detective wants them to steer clear of the investigation, but doesn't seem too inspired to solve the case in a timely fashion himself. To clear their own names and to avoid the blight on the inn's reputation that yet another dead body will bring, Melanie and Liza dive headlong into the murder investigation. With a little help from their chuckling ghost, Melanie and Liza dodge the detective, tip-toe around their suspicious guests, and still serve up delicious Bed & Breakfast meals on time/

Yayy book 2! I wanted to wait until closer to Halloween or Oct...but I couldn't resist ;) 

After a rocky start, Liza and Melanie have finally opened their B&B. With the arrival of six senior reading group members, things start out okay...until Melanie's dog finds the dead body of one of the guests. At first, it looks like a heart attack, but soon they realize the guest was murdered. Everyone at the inn immediately falls under suspicion. Melanie and Liza are not sure who they can trust and the idea of cohabitating with a murderer is chilling. To make matters worse, the detective doesn't want their help, but he doesn't seem too inspired to solve the case in a timely fashion. To clear their own names and avoid getting murdered, they dive headlong into solving the case themselves.

I feel so bad for Liza and Mel. All they want to do is run their B&B and find peace. Yet another murder falls....(bad pun on accident)....on their lap. That detective sucks. They need to fire him and find someone else. I don't blame this duo for wanting to clear their names and find the murdered. How scary knowing SOMEONE staying there is a murderer. *shudders*

The mystery was good. The who and they why had me. I really had no solid idea on who and/r why. Kuddos to the author. When all was revealed I kinda felt bad for the murderer. I won't spoil why.

Again, I'm glad that the possible love story doesn't take center stage. However....I want them to get together and they are going SOOOO slow. Yes, yes, it works because both parties have been really hurt by exes, buut stilllllllllllll. LOVE EACH OTEHR DARNIT! They are perfect for each other and I want everyone happy. Even Grandma Liza and that pub owner!

The narrator is good. I like her voices. This was a big cast and all the voices were different. Made it easy!

Overall, I enjoyed this. I'm liking this series. Sadly, I think there is only one more and I know I'm going to be sad. I really hope that everyone gets a HEA. I am getting nervous and I really hope we don't have an open-end. Gah. We shall see. This was just as good as the first. A good mystery and a fun set of characters. 4 stars. 



- #60 for Audiobook challenge

Friday, September 10

Book Review: Good Girl by Tricia O'Malley

Author: Tricia O'Malley
Title: Good Girl
(Siren Island #1)
Genre: Contemporary Romance, Paranormal
Format: ebook
Published: November 13th 2018
Where I Got It: My shelf - Amazon

She shouldn't be on this island.
If she was smart, Samantha Jameson would turn around and march right back to the plane that deposited her at a faded hut of an airport on Siren Island. Yet, Samantha just can't muster the energy to do so, not after the hellish week she's had. Her whole life has been spent playing by the rules, and for what? An empty apartment, a career with no upward movement, and one failed relationship after another.  When it all blows up in her face, what's a girl to do but book a last-minute trip to the ridiculously named Laughing Mermaid Bed & Breakfast on an unknown speck of an island in the Caribbean?
Lucas Mosteron knows all about burning out from first-hand experience. Over the years, he's discovered that he isn't the only one, as everyone has their own unique story for landing on Siren Island. His lovely and mysterious neighbors at The Laughing Mermaid Bed & Breakfast are no exception. Little does he know that there is more to their story than he could ever have imagined possible. When Samantha Jameson arrives as their guest - depleted and needing respite, Lucas can't help but feel like he could be the man she needs. Irresistibly drawn to her uptight demeanor, Lucas is determined to unwind Samantha and show her that life on Siren Island could be the answer to all her problems.

Got this free from Amazon and I adore this author. Plus Mermaids! Fun!

Samantha Jameson is smart and great at her job...but after being skipped over for the promotion, she decides to cash in her vacation time and actually take a long vacation. She randomly goes to an small island in the Caribbean. There she comes across Lucas who knows all about having a burnout at his job. She also meets the mysterious neighbors at The Laughing Mermaid Bed & Breakfast. This island might be everything she needs. 

This needs to become a Hallmark movie for real. In a good way of course ;) This had all the elements. An over-worked woman who deserves the stars but who's company and family stink finally gets away. Meets a hunk....and some fun side character/new besties. 

And there is a lore of mermaids....even better! So fun! Spoiler, not spoiler, the fun neighbors are mermaids and will help Samantha unwind and find her inner mermaid. Fun! I do wish we had more mermaid-ness.

This was a whimsical love-story! Some slow parts, but like the islander there was no rush and it wasn't a race. I enjoyed it. 

Overall, I highly recommend this and it's a great way to end the summer. So fun and cute romance. I'll give this 4 stars. 


Thursday, September 9

Audiobook Review of Fairer Sex Collection by Michelle Miller (part 2)

Stumbled upon this short story series while I was prepping to get my butt outside to start staining our deck. I downloaded all 8 of these short stories from Audible. What is fun about these is that you can read or listen to them all out of order. They don't tie into each other. These are about 8 different women. 

Narrator: Samara Naeymi
Title: Clara
Genre: Chick Lit, Short Stories, & Humor
Published: February 14th 2019 

A young novelist trapped in a bad relationship takes the first step toward true pleasure and tenderness…but does she have the courage to be swept off her feet?

It doesn’t matter how many people read and like her new book, there’s only one man’s opinion that matters to Clara…or at least that’s what she thinks. But when a chance encounter at a film premiere introduces her to someone new—someone who understands her in a way the first man can’t—Clara finally discovers the validation she really wants and needs.

We now have Clara. She is a young novelist trapped in a bad relationship. She has a chance to get away and stand on her own...will she find the courage to do so?

I had NO idea what was going on with Clara. Every two seconds something crazy was happening and a new reveal happening. The smexy scene in the back of the theater threw me for a loop. This was all so unrealistic though. 

And then that ending. Woah. Good for you Clara. I'm glad you got the courage. I was hoping she would. 

I'll give this 4 stars. 

Narrator: Samara Naeymi
Title: Lauren
Genre: Chick Lit, Short Stories, & Humor
Published: February 14th 2019

The dysfunctional relationship between a rising Manhattan gallery owner and her mother spirals out of control in a harrowing and unflinchingly honest short story of inheritance, sabotage, and the pressure to excel.

Lauren is angry enough that her mother couldn’t find time to show up to the opening of her new art gallery. But when she gets home and discovers the gift her mother has sent instead, Lauren comes undone in the face of a temptation that will push her to the edge, closer to her demons and the bitter taste of a mother’s love.

Lauren is a rising Manhattan gallery owner who has a very dysfunctional relationship with her mother. Her mother couldn't be bothered to show up the opening and sends her a gift instead. Lauren comes undone and goes toe-to-toe with her inner demons

This was sad. Horribly sad. I hated how it ended. Lauren deserves to lover herself, but we were left with Lauren harming herself and then just hiding behind her mask again. It left a bad taste in my mouth. Maybe she is done with her mother now???? I hope so. 

2 stars from me. 


Narrator: Samara Naeymi
Title: Eleanor
Genre: Chick Lit, Short Stories, & Humor
Published: February 14th 2019 

Dinner is served—with a little something on the side. A Brooklyn wife is too sharp to allow her husband’s wandering eye to get the best of her in this witty short story of a dinner party with a delicious comeuppance.

Eleanor and Jonathan have joined a few of their most irritating best friends for an intimate catered gathering. Through all the intellectual chatter, Eleanor’s on watch. Jonathan has already confessed to wanting an open marriage, and tonight, Eleanor has decided to accommodate him. Just not quite the way he expects.

Next is Eleanor. She is a Brooklyn wife who's husband wants to have an open marriage because of his success in life. The two go to an intimate gathering with some of their "best friends" for dinner and conversation. Something happens and Eleanor is about to accommodate him....but not in the way he expects. 

This was great. Probably my favorite of the collection. 

You GO GIRL! I hope she divorces him and takes all his money. What an asshat....he only wants an open marriage because others in his field are all single and they are getting all the ladies. HOW on FAIR that he is STUCK with his wife. Grrr. 

Sighs. One has to love a good revenge tale ;) 

5 stars of course. 

Narrator: Samara Naeymi
Title: Keridee
Genre: Chick Lit, Short Stories, & Humor
Published: February 14th 2019

A small-town waitress, awestruck by dreams of a bigger world, looks forward to the biggest break of a budding career in this darkly comic short tale of what happens when innocence collides with cynicism.

Eighteen-year-old Keridee is done with high school, her cheating boyfriend, her jealous friends, and Nowhere, Florida. She’s determined to do something with her life, and her small-time modeling agent has already scored her a gig. She’s working an event for a billionaire real estate mogul who happens to own a huge modeling agency. What if he’s dazzled by her smile and makes her a star? What if the impossible actually happens?

This is the last one! Last, but not least, is Keridee. She has just finished High school. Everything seems to be falling apart until she gets a really good modeling gig. She's working an event for a billionaire real estate mogul who happens to also own a huge modeling agency. What if she can dazzle him and make a name for herself?

I had high hopes for this one. I really wanted Keridee to succeed and thumb her nose at her lame ex and shitty friends...but alas...this did not end great. I won't spoil it, but I was bummed. I needed more story. What did she do next? What happened? Too open-ended. 

I'll give this 2 stars. 

- #56, 57, 58, & 59 for Audiobook challenge

Wednesday, September 8

Audiobook Review of Fairer Sex Collection by Michelle Miller (part 1)

Stumbled upon this short story series while I was prepping to get my butt outside to start staining our deck. I downloaded all 8 of these short stories from Audible. What is fun about these is that you can read or listen to them all out of order. They don't tie into each other. These are about 8 different women. 

Narrator: Samara Naeymi
Title: Candace
Genre: Chick Lit, Short Stories, & Humor
Published: February 14th 2019 

Is there any chance of a second date? That all depends on what a woman and a man are willing to invest in the first, in this quick-witted short story of a perfectly equitable modern romance.

After ten years of bad blind dates, Candace is having a hard time believing Patrick is so spot-on. He’s sharp, handsome, and kind—her mind can’t help racing to where it all will lead. Then the check arrives. It’s time to get real.

The first story is about Candace. She has been on more blind dates than one can count over the years so she has been having a hard time believing that Patrick is so perfect AND then the check arrives. 

This was fun. I wasn't sure what was going to happen when that check arrived and Patrick opened his mouth. Kuddos to Candace! That was certainly clever. 5 stars.

Narrator: Samara Naeymi
Title: Meredith
Genre: Chick Lit, Short Stories, & Humor
Published: February 14th 2019

A frustrated lawyer finds release where she least expects it—and where she needs it most—in this exhilarating, sexy romp through the finest gluten-free indulgences in a New York City grocery store. After another long workday, the only thing Meredith wants is a nice big bowl of paleo maple-pecan coconola. But the hour-long checkout line at 7:00 p.m. at an all-organic supermarket stands between her and satisfaction, and the yupster mob is working her last nerve. Then, out of nowhere, a spontaneous flirtation with a stranger shows her there’s a lot more than coconola waiting for her in the bulk-food aisle.

This one follows Meredith. She is a frustrated lawyer looking for release and finds it where she least expects the gluten-free indulgences in a New York City grocery store. 

This one took a huge turn and that escalated quickly. I was just waiting for the cops or security guard to be called over on her and that guy. Like WOWZERS.

Honestly - I think I wanted more of this...I would've liked to see what happened next. It sort of just...ended. Yes, yes, it's a short story but still. It felt....*thinks of word*....incomplete. 3 stars overall from me. 


Narrator: Samara Naeymi
Title: Alicia
Genre: Chick Lit, Short Stories, & Humor
Published: February 14th 2019 

An aspiring artist gets a seven-figure offer that could change her life forever in this provocative and surprising short story of a woman torn between saying yes and saying no.

Alicia could do a lot with a million dollars. But what’s she willing to do for it? Her top client, a billionaire hedge fund manager, has made a very intimate business proposal. In the world of finance, it’s just another transaction, right? An efficient supply-demand exchange. At least that’s what Alicia tries to tell herself. But as the deadline for her decision closes in, it becomes clear that things are a lot more complicated than that.

Now we have Alicia. She is an aspiring artist who is given a seven-figure offer that could change her life and let her dreams come true. However....can she get herself to do it? Her top client, a good-looking billionaire hedge manager, has offered to pay for sex one time. 

We mainly get to see Alicia struggling with this decision and waiting at the hotel. 

I found this one really intriguing. Easy answer....heck yes. BUT the ramifications can be bad. And that guy doesn't seem bad...even though what a creepy offer. 

This short really showed that people and situations are never black and white. I'll give this one a 5 as well. 

Narrator: Samara Naeymi
Title: Meredith
Genre: Chick Lit, Short Stories, & Humor
Published: February 14th 2019

For an imaginative screenwriter, the best way to explain Wall Street is to strip the men of their suits in this flirty and provocative short story of sex, romance, and capitalism.

Heidi is writing a script to explain the financial industry, based on how the men within it approach romance. Her clueless heroine is looking for a Wall Street husband, but who’s the best option? The Trader? The Investment Banker? The Venture Capitalist? Scene by sizzling scene, Heidi considers their assets. What she wants for certain is a happy ending—but when she hits a dead end, it might take a real-life finance guy to show her what a long-term investment really looks like.

We have Heidi now. She is writing a script that explains the financial industry based on how the men within it approach to romance. Her poor clueless heroine is looking for a Wall Street husband...but who is the best option? Scene by scene, Heidi and her heroine consider their assets and their flaws. Heidi hits a roadblock can she make this a happily ever after for her character.

I think I was most excited about this one. What a weird and different way to tell a story. 

I felt like Heidi got the short stick. This should've been named after Heidi's heroine instead because we got to see Heidi only for like 5% of the story. I would've loved to have some glimpses of Heidi as she is typing the story or something. 

But yes - I did enjoy this and it had me laughing...but I really felt like Heidi's heroine took center stage too much. I'll give this 3 stars though.

- #52, 53, 54, & 55 for Audiobook challenge