Book Review · Books · Fantasy · Fiction · Sci-fi · series · YA

(Book Review) Blue Bloods ~ Melissa de la Cruz


Title: Blue Bloods (A Blue Bloods novel , Book #1)
Author: Melissa de la Cruz
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal, YA
Publisher: Hyperion
Date of Release: March 27, 2007
Pages: 302
Format: Paperback (Gifted by a Friend)

Earlier this year, a few friends of mine and I were having a spirited (yet hilarious) discussion about a particular author and her books. I will admit I was extremely critical of the author, the series, and anyone who thought the series was great, awesome, was in love with it… blah, blah, blah. Needless to say, when the biggest defender of said series recommended Blue Bloods, I was skeptical; praying not to be led astray. Well, I can say with full confidence… my dear friend, she was on the money!

What if vampires were among you? Could you tell? Would you be able to point them out? Would you believe your eyes if you saw something you knew to be impossible actually happen? In New York City, there’s a hip club that everyone who is anyone goes to. There we meet Schuyler, Oliver, and Dylan, three friends who go to THE prestigious private school in the city. By the night’s end, we got ourselves a murder mystery! When a popular girl is found dead outside the club, some cages get rattled. Who’s next? Is a specific group being targeted? Is anyone safe?

Jack knows something’s happening with the bodies popping up over town, but his memory is getting in the way. His twin sister, Mimi, is all about herself and her popularity. Bliss is the new girl from Texas. When she’s not with Mimi, she’s quite likable… and she really likes Dylan; which Mimi does not approve. And everyone is being secretive and cryptic. Just when you think you solved the mystery, you find out you’re not even close! Melissa de la Cruz does describe some things in great detail, which I’m sure can annoy some people, but I like it.

I do look forward to reading more in this series… especially since this book ends with a nice change of scenery. Italy, anyone?

18+ · Book Review · Book reviews · Books · Fiction · HEA · NetGalley · Romance · series

Dirty Little Secrets ~ AJ Nuest (Book Review)


Title: Dirty Little Secrets (A Likely Story , Book #2)
Author: AJ Nuest
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Romance Suspense
Publisher: Lyrical Underground
Date of Release: June 27, 2017
Pages: 246
Format: Kindle (NetGalley)

Xander and Charlie are on separate missions that could come back to haunt them. They have known each other for a long time and Xander has loved her from the beginning. Coming together after Malcolm’s death is a perfect time to reveal your feelings for each other, but it may come at a cost. Someone is after Charlie due to her latest heist and someone wants revenge against Xander. Could they be connected? Can they help each other? Will love prevail? As they race against time to find out who is after them, their connection grows stronger and it’s beautiful to watch.

AJ Nuest can weave a story that hooks you from the first page. She has a way of bringing each character to life in a way you feel like you know them. You root for Xander and Charlie to not only bring down the bad guys, but to realize their feelings for each other. This is an awesome story that is beautifully told. I always look forward to hearing AJ has a new book coming out. This is the second book of the series and so far it’s my favorite one. There is a third book to this series, and if it’s half as good as this one, my day will be made!

Book Review · Books · Fiction · HEA · Romance

Mister Catfish ~ Alice Grace

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Title: Mister Catfish
Author: Alice Grace
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Romantic Comedy
Publisher: Bic Wall Press
Date of Release: June 23, 2017
Pages: 74
Format: Epub (Alice Grace via AXP)

Catfish: someone who pretends to be someone they’re not using Facebook or other social media to create false identities, particularly to pursue deceptive online romances.

There’s always some danger when meeting someone online. They could be crazy/dangerous or genuinely a nice person. It’s a gamble really. That was a risk Nicole was willing to take!

Matt just wanted to meet a nice girl without having to worry about his twin brother who is the complete opposite of Matt. A funny story ensues as you watch the story unfolds. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and was engaged from page one. This story constructed in a funny and adorable way. A great story of mistaken identity!

Book Review · Books · Fiction · HEA · LGBTQIA · Romance · series

The Rancher’s Son ~ RJ Scott

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Title: The Rancher’s Son
Author: RJ Scott
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: LGBTQIA, Mystery, Romance
Publisher: Love Lane Books Limited
Date of Release: June 26, 2017
Pages: 200 (6 hr, 25 min)
Format: Audio (Signal Boost Promotion)

Ethan, a cop, has been looking for his brother, Justin, and friend, Adam, for 12 years after they mysteriously went missing without a trace. While dad has given up searching, Ethan refuses; which causes strife and tension between the two of them. Ethan receives word, while at work, of an attack with a few code words that he had flagged. Instead of finding Justin, he finds Adam… with no recollection of who he is or what happened.

As Ethan takes Adam back to Crooked Tree Ranch, Adam has random memories and feelings about himself. Ethan is reminded of the young boy he fell in love with and I wanted so much for more to happen, but Ethan is an honorable man. Once at Crooked Tree Ranch, there isn’t a shortage of people who are helping Adam remember, but will he remember? Will he be the guy Ethan once knew? Where is Justin?

I thought this story was quite lovely. The interaction between Ethan and Adam was beautiful. Ethan wasn’t pushy, as is the case in most stories. It was a slow build, which is perfect. The narration was perfection. Sean Crisden was absolutely fantastic with the personalities he gave each character. I haven’t read book 1 of this series, so book 2 does leave some unanswered questions. All that means is: STAY TUNED!

Book Review · Books · Fiction · HEA · NetGalley · Romance · series

On the Plus Side ~ Alison Bliss

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Title: On the Plus Side    (A Perfect Fit , Book #2)
Author: Alison Bliss
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Romance
Publisher: Forever
Date of Release: June 27, 2017
Pages: 336
Format: Kindle (NetGalley)

I know it’s early in the series, but this is my favorite book in the series… So far! Valerie is smart, sassy, curvy, and sexy. She’s confident and she wants Logan. Logan is sexy, inspires loyalty… and the best friend of Val’s brother. They were attracted to each for a long time and the results are off the chart chemistry!

This story gave us steamy and sensuous romance and I wanted more! Those live scenes were great. Val being comfortable in her own skin was awesome and I loved that. What drove me bonkers was Val’s over-protective older brother. As someone who has a protective older brother, I completely understand her plight! She handles him well and she earned her golden ticket to heaven!

This series is awesome and I can’t wait to read more!  I hope this series NEVER ends!

Book Review · Books · Fiction · Romance · series · YA

Starr Gone ~ Kim Briggs


Title: Starr Gone  (Starr Fall, Book #3)
Author: Kim Briggs
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Romance
Mystery/Thriller/Suspense
Contemporary/Action & Adventure
Publisher: Inkspell Publishing
Date of Release: June 3, 2017
Pages: 258
Format: ePub (YA Insider)

Please give me a second to compose myself! I was not prepared for this… I’m still trying to process! Holy crap! Sigh… Deep breath

*** SPOILERS ALERT ***

Okay, so we pick up where we left off and I find that Di is my spirit animal. Any girl who carries a taser and pepper spray is a girl after my own heart! We find out Sam and Jody aren’t dead, they’re working for the Organization, Jude is the turncoat I thought he would be, and I’m worried about Christian. After finding misleading information, Starr has gone missing. Unfortunately, she was taken by the Organization and they want to return her to her “loving” grandparents in exchange for money… naturally. How will Christian and the team rescue Starr? Can they rescue her?

This book is quite the page turner! It kept me on the edge of my seat, had me feeling a range of emotions, needing to know what happens next. The character development was outstanding! Starr and Di came into their own. They’ve become strong young women and I was especially proud of the development of Di. She didn’t feel like a secondary character in this story, which gave me a higher appreciation of her. I won’t lie, there were times Frank annoyed me, but I understood his thought process and his reasoning. The development of the team independent of Starr was astounding. They were organized and ready for anything! With the way the story ended, they will have to be ready and down for anything!

Can we discuss the ending for a second? I wasn’t ready for this story to end! And definitely not the way it did! The anticipation is KILLING me! What I love about this series is each book is stronger than the previous and it continues to get stronger. Each character serves a purpose; the purpose may not be clear in the beginning, but when you find out… you are shocked and can’t wait to find out what will happen next. And just when you think you know what will happen, there’s a twist. I don’t know if I can wait this long for the fourth installment, but I do wait with excitement of where this story will go and I look forward to it!

18+ · Book reviews · Books · Fantasy · Fiction · HEA

Silver Silence ~ Nalini Singh


Title: Silver Silence (Psy-Changeling Trinity #1)
Author: Nalini Singh
Rating: 5 Stars
Reviewed by: Shakera
Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal Romance,
Publisher: Berkeley Books
Date of Release: June 13, 2017
Pages: 464
Format: Kinde (First to Read)

As someone who gets really attached to my characters, I instantly fell in love with Silver and Valentin. When an alpha falls for someone, it is ill-advised to try and assassinate her! Valentin is a fun loving bear shifter with a heart of gold and going through strife about his broken clan. Silver is a strong and pure telepath who avoids emotions and practices “Silence”. It prevents her from hearing every mind in a certain radius. It kinda makes her an Ice Queen, but oh does she have a spark! But it’s a spark only Valentin notices. Per his usual, Valentin shows up to Silver’s apartment, unannounced… which would annoy anyone, but turns out to be a great thing! There’s an organization that wants the Trinity Accords (An agreement amongst the Psy, Humans, and Changelings to co-exists) to fail and the best way to do that would be to take out Silver. Not so fast! Valentin is there and Silver is his mate, she just doesn’t realize it yet. To protect her, she has to do the unthinkable. She has to live in the heart of Denhome, Valentin’s home.

This was my introduction to Nalini Singh and she had me captivated from the first page. Silver is a kickass, badass female lead. There were a few moments I felt myself get riled up on behalf of Valentin, but I was rooting for Silver as well. This book is close to 500 pages and I found myself practically reading this in almost one sitting. I’m not sure if this is a spin-off, but this is not a standalone story. However, it can definitely be read as one. It gives just enough information so you don’t feel lost. What I really loved was the integration of each race with each other. Silver’s interaction with other races was well detailed and showed a mutual respect between the races. Nalini Singh combats preconceived notices and biases with her writing and storytelling, so much that you can (if you choose to…) reflect on your own beliefs and biases. Ms. Singh’s storytelling is entertaining and compelling. She definitely knows how to pull on the heartstrings. When decisions are made and you have to deal with the fallout, you see where loyalties lie.

I look forward to reading more in this series, and can’t wait to go and start at the beginning!