Reviewed: Point of Retreat by Colleen Hoover


If you have not read Slammed yet, stop reading this review! No matter how hard I try not to give spoilers away, unfortunately, in this review there possibly will be some.

Point of Retreat picks up a year after Lake’s life changed when she moved to Michigan with her mother and her brother. She is now the Guardian to her younger brother after her mom died and the relationship between her and Will is going strong.

Will and Lake help each other out with raising their younger brothers. They love each other very much and are getting ready to go to the next level; pretty much perfect, right? Well, perfect until someone from Will’s past stirs up trouble and causes Lake to wonder why Will is really with her in the first place. Will knows that he loves Lake and when she walked away it made him get creative in getting Lake to spend time with him. Lake believes Will loves her, but she thinks it is due to their common circumstance. She is stubborn too and poor Will, when he thinks everything is okay, she shoots him down again.

Will made me fall in love with him with the way he shows Lake how much she means to him. It was, in my opinion, perfect. Just when you think everything is going to work out and be happily ever after again, BAM, something else happens; this time it is extremely serious.

I loved this book for totally different reasons than I loved Slammed. While there is still some poetry in this book, it is not like in Slammed. It is Will’s perspective that we are shown, not Lake’s, so you get to feel what he is feeling. The antics of their nontraditional family still make you laugh and cry. It shows it’s not always the girls that are the most lovey dovey, emotional ones in relationships; guys can be that way too, but shhhh… I know most guys don’t want that secret to be made public. Overall Point of Retreat is butterflying great (read the book and you will know what butterflying means )

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Review: Down To You by M. Leighton


It’s not what you want, but what you need. Would you be able to choose?

Holy.Smokes!

I found a new author and I am in love!

Olivia Townsend is just like any other girl trying to make something of her life. She goes to college, works on the weekends and helps take care of her father. She’s just plain old Olivia- to herself that is. Definitely not to twin brothers Nash and Cash Davenport. Definitely not the them.

After briefly meeting Olivia on separate occasions, both Cash and Nash think Olivia is not only insanely gorgeous with sexy curves, but she’s smart and has a sharp tongue on top of it. Olivia’s quick wit and way about herself is what they want- both want, but can’t have. Olivia finds herself instantly attracted not only to Nash, but Cash as well. One brother is what she needs, but the other…is what she wants. The only thing stopping Olivia from going after them? Nash is already taken by her pompous cousin Marissa, and Cash is the one thing that she promised herself to never to go after again.


Down To You was a quick and fast read for me. Why, you ask? Simply because I could not put it down! It was smokin’ hot with addicting characters and an emotional storyline (my favorite!) that I could not get enough of. The beginning started off a little rocky for me, but I think it was due to the authors writing style. I found it to be a bit stilted at times with the punctuation slightly off, but clearly it wasn’t enough to stop me. No way was I stopping with brothers like Nash and Cash!

There are three point of views in this book, and trust me, it worked so well in this story. Each chapter was a new point of view and we were made aware of it too. I loved reading each view! It was great getting inside their minds and seeing where they were at. This is really a story that could use the different point of views too because of the twist that I didn’t see coming. It was totally shocked and it was slightly heartbreaking, but I didn’t ball my eyes out from it and it didn’t make me want to punch my kindle. It was just..sad in a way.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and found myself wishing it was longer. The end of the book ends with a suspenseful cliffhanger and now I’m going to have to hunt the author to find out when the next book comes out. I’ve been eying a few of the authors other books for some time. After reading this one, I can’t wait to check the others out now.

Favorite lines:

“She is the triple-S trifecta- spoiled, snobby and snide.”

“I want to paper cut her. On every square inch of her body. And then roll her in salt water.”

“Don’t get me started on her. I will cut a bitch!”

“I have ovaries; therefore I repel all things mechanical.”

“There’s an unsavory term for that- a guy forcing a girl to do sexual things. But what is it they say? You can’t rape the willing. And I’d be willing. Oh, how I’d be willing.” -Olivia about Nash

Where did you get that dress?
I stole it from a homeless person,” I say straight-faced. “She was lying right beside the stripper that gave you yours.”

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Review: A Modern Love Story by Jolyn Palliata

To sum it up: After the death of her parents, Robbie Byrne is put in foster care where she meets her exact opposite, Luc Cintrone. Abandoned as a small child, Luc is a foul-mouthed rebel who takes it upon himself to be her defender, whether she likes it or not. As they grow up, they fumble through their different roles in each other’s lives—family, confidants and then, ultimately, lovers.

Just as the couple is settling into their newfound relationship, they encounter a beautiful lawyer, Payten, who is immediately taken by Luc’s rough edges. But he denies her, making him absolutely irresistible in her eyes. Payten is a woman who has grown accustomed in her privileged life in obtaining whatever she wants, no matter the cost or sacrifice. And she is fairly confident Luc will eventually see things her way… one way or another.

Ehhhh.

This book just didn’t do it for me. When I first started it, I really thought that this would end up being a five-star read for me. I was hooked from page one… but after I hit about the 10% mark, everything just went down-hill for one of many reasons:

1.) The story-line. Very cheesy and nothing out of the ordinary. I honestly thought that one of the reasons I would love this book was because of something that was mentioned in the synopsis: “Just as the couple is settling into their newfound relationship, they encounter a beautiful lawyer, Payten, who is immediately taken by Luc’s rough edges…” Ummm, hello? Enter beautiful woman who tries to get in the way of the hero/heroine’s relationship… and there you have it: DRAMA! The thing I live for in my romance novels.

However, I was seriously disappointed. What I ended up getting instead was a psycho stalker who wanted what she couldn’t have- nothing about the story-line for me was unique or angst-ridden. It all ended up being a very cookie-cutter clean and amateur plot.

2.) The characters. Nothing out of the ordinary. I can’t think of anything that makes these characters unique or stand out. The heroine was likeable, but nothing to rant over. Her best friend was okay, but I can barely remember her name. The psycho villain takes stalker to the extreme, but nothing I haven’t seen before. The hero had about one drool-worthy quality, and that was his fierce protectiveness. But that certainly didn’t make up for his stupidity. And I say this because it took him all of about 8 years to realize that Robbie (the heroine) loved him. Forget the fact that she threw herself at him at every opportunity, told him on numerous occasions the things she wanted to do to him, and the hints she was consistently giving him… none of that made him think he loved her and vice/versa. The deal-breaker for him was the fact this his best friend told him: “Hey man- you’re in love with her, and she’s in love with you too.” And then… *gasp* …all of a sudden he realizes he’s had feelings for her all along, and maybe… just maybe… she feels the same way. …like I said- stupid.

3.) The chemistry. What chemistry? You had about 30% of build up between the hero and heroine… sure we saw the occasional forbidden cuddle and kiss here and there… their relationship had a slow start, which personally, is something that I really enjoy in my romance novels. But if the author is going to do a slow start, then I expect fireworks when the initial explosion happens… which it did in this book… for all of about half a page. Really? That was it? No long and drawn out foreplay? No whispering of sweet nothings in between the sheets? …I felt completely cheated.

The list could go on and on, but I’ll do you all a favor and leave it at three main points.

…Usually I love when other girls come into the picture to start drama… like an ex-girlfriend. Or the new girl in town. Or perhaps even a pretty co-worker. But, no. This woman ended up being an obsessive psycho who the hero never even liked in the first place. He was always mean to her since she had been introduced in the book, yet when his girlfriend (AKA: the “love” of his life) leaves for a length of time and they have to do the whole long distance thing, he starts messing with this chick behind the heroine’s back. Not once… not twice… but a full blown affair. Oh, but it’s okay and justifiable because “it meant nothing to him.” Ummm, no. …I just can’t deal with that… it was honestly a chore to finish the book because the hero was just so unlikeable to me.

And speaking of cheated- if you’re not a fan of cheating heroes, don’t bother with this book. I can tolerate it at times, under certain circumstances. For instance: if the heroine and/or hero are both going for that whole “no strings attached” thing that I’ve never really understood. Or if the hero/heroine have always been known as a “player” and therefore you’re not blind-sided with the shock of it when it happens. But the hero in this novel decides to just cheat on the heroine while she’s away, and with someone who he could barely even tolerate throughout the entire novel- I couldn’t believe it. And do you know how long before he started having an affair with another woman? A week. A FREAKING WEEK! He spends eight years of his life loving no one other than Robbie, but he throws it all away for no reason in particular, other than for the Spawn of Satan whom he thought just looked too good to pass up. Yeah… good reason.*rolls eyes* …His drool-worthy factor definitely went out the window after that. I want absolutely nothing to do with any hero I read about, who thinks that cheating on his girlfriend is justifiable because “it meant nothing to him.”

Something about the speed of this book went a little too fast for my taste as well. Everything just seemed to happen at rapid speed: Luc and Robbie moving to different foster homes. Luc and Robbie moving out of their foster homes. Luc and Robbie’s relationship. The psycho stalker’s psychotic obsession. …Everything just moved at a lightening pace, which took away from not only the plot development, but character development as well. Not to mention, once the hero begun to have an affair, he just became completely unredeemable. Not only that, but the book as a whole was just so non-believable. It was actually humorous to see how quickly the heroine forgave the hero. Or the lengths the villain went through to snag a man who’s nothing but rude to her. I highly doubt that I would go on a murderous rage for a man who would drop his pants for just about anyone who looked good, if he felt like he had a plausible enough reason to do it… I don’t care how drool-worthy and smart he is… which he obviously wasn’t.

Suffice it to say, this book honestly ended up being a chore to read, and nothing I would consider being worth the time or money I spent on it.

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Review: Slammed by Colleen Hoover


Layken “Lake” isn’t your typical 18 year old girl. She lost her father due to a heart attack, and while his death caused a massive blow to her, she knew she needed to be there for her mom and younger brother so she pulled herself together. 
Lake is definitely more mature than other girls her age. Her mom moves her and her little brother away from their home in Texas to Ypsilanti, Michigan at the beginning of her senior year of high school. She just knows she is going to hate it there. Well, that is until she meets her neighbor across the street, Will. 
Lake and Will hit it off instantly, and go out on a date that sets off a spark to the electrifying connection that is between them. Then, circumstances that were unknown to them when they met, means they can’t be together. Lake and Will still must interact with each other every day, and these interactions just tear at them emotionally and confuse them both along the way.
Will has had to step in and take responsibility for his younger brother and will do what he has to to make sure that his brother is taken care of; including sacrificing his happiness. Will performs Slam poetry and introduces Lake to it. They use it to heal their own wounds and express their feelings. He tries so hard to do the right thing and stay away from Lake, but you can see how hard it is for him. He is there for her when she needs him the most, and for me that just showed how great of a guy he really is.
Throughout this book I laughed, I cried and had my heart broken. I laughed at both Lake’s and Will’s younger brother’s antics, I cried for their shared histories and events that are beyond their control, and my heart broke when Lake found out devastating news about her mother.
If you are not a fan of poetry, you will be after reading Slammed. I never knew the definition of “slam poetry” until this book. I love poetry in all forms, but now I want to see a Slam performance in person. It is really moving when you can feel the poet’s emotions through their words. While this is a Young Adult book, it deals with real life tragedy and real feelings. This is not a happy go lucky book, but it does open your heart and emotions, and in the end it leaves a smile on your face even when you want to cry.  I am from Michigan and went to Eastern Michigan University, which is in Ypsilanti, this book really reminded me and make me miss being back home.

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Review: The Angel by Tiffany Reisz

 
Another Tiffany Reisz book and I cried. What is wrong with me?
 
I…
Have…no…
Words…

Aside from the slice to the labia…

A slice to the labia!? Say WHAT!

The.Angel.Is.AMAZING.

The Angel is a dark and abrasive yet sensual read. It’s eloquently written and will take you places you’ve never been. It will evoke many, many emotions from you. I went from happy to pissed off, to hot and bothered to morally offended. It’s a forbidden kind of read however you just cannot take your eyes away from it.

I can’t even say Tiffany Reisz pushed the envelope with this one. There are no boundaries left to push, as Ms. Reisz has toppled them down long ago with The Siren!

Nora is a trip. I would love to have a friend like her! Her wicked and warped sense of humor was some of the best parts of the story for me. She’s outgoing and fun loving, but like most, she has deep seeded issues she’s working to get the kink out of.

We watch Nora struggle with her love for Wesley in making herself believe she is over him, when she is clearly not. On top of that, there is a journalist out to uncover secrets about Soren who happens to be attracted to him at the same time. In addition, Nora is forced to stay away from Soren for the summer by living with Griffin and her charge, Michael.

Aside from the problem previously stated above, I would say I enjoyed this book to a degree. I found myself skimming over the long drawn out parts with the journalist. It did nothing for me and I feel as though it could be cut down a bit. The one part of the book I found so moving involved Michael’s mother at the end. It brought tears to my eyes. I hated the way Michael’s parents treated him. They made him feel like he was worthless. It hurt so bad on the inside not only for him, but for me as well! But what the mother did was so gratifying in my eyes.

The ending…oh the ending! The ending made up for all everything! Well…almost everything. I almost wish I hadn’t read this book until Prince is released. It made my heart beat so hard and so fast! My mind was racing. I couldn’t even think straight! Oh it’s going to be Wesley’s story! I cannot wait!

On a side note- If you have any type of religious affiliation whatsoever, you will most likely find this book offensive. We know Nora is having a heavy BDSM relationship with her priest. Priest was mentioned 208 times in this book and in most instances it was said in sexual situations. No, I did not go counting, the kindle did that for me. I felt as though the word was used heavily more so in this book than The Siren. We don’t need to be reminded constantly Soren is a priest and obviously what he is partaking in is a sin. 

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Review: Demon’s Caress by Crystal Jordan

Crystal Jordan is a new author for me and I can’t wait to read more from her. She painted an amazing story and drew me into her world. I really liked her characters and found myself rooting for them to get their HEA.

Maron was a wonderful character who had been burned before and wasn’t willing to risk herself again. It wasn’t just her heart she had to guard but her soul.  The last time she was betrayed it almost ripped her soul into hell, literally!
The two demon hunters she was paired with wanted her, not only for their hunting triad, but in their bed! The romance between them was beautiful and the sex was hot!
While I really enjoyed this story and want to read the next on in the series, I was a little disappointed. I wanted a longer story! I wanted to know more about Raum and Kabul. We didn’t get as much of their story as I wanted. I wanted their back story. I’m hoping to learn more about them in a future story! I also wanted a little more action in the demon hunting missions. I like some action with my stories and that would have made this one that much better!

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Review: Beyond Shame by Kit Rocha

This is the first dystopian erotic romance that I’ve read and I’ll keep reading cause I love me some of this!

In the future, hopefully not near, there is a place called Eden. Where basically you can’t do shit (drink, fornicate, watch porn, wear provocative clothes, etc…) because if you do these plus others you get kicked out to the Sectors. The Sectors are many, where they basically do what the hell they want (drink, fight, do illegal stuff, fornicate…excuse me, fuck I mean) and they do it with no shame at all.

Noelle gets kicked out of Eden from her councilman father after she is caught doing what she’s not allowed and she finds herself on the streets of Sector Four. The Broken Circle. She’s being followed by a strange guy who drugs her. She bumps into Jasper, right hand man to Dallas, leader of Sector Four. Jasper, who is kind hearted, takes Noelle back to where he lives with his other friends and fellow gang members so she can recover. They have instant attraction but Jasper doesn’t do anything until Noelle “finds” herself. She’s free to but she doesn’t know what she wants cause she feels nothing but shame when she has thoughts, dirty thoughts that is. Noelle’s story is about sexual discovery and I enjoyed the ride.

All I can say is that the sex is smokin’! There’s a scene at the tattoo shop that is an OMG moment. Nothing dirty dirty but it involves two men and Noelle and it’s good stuff. In this story will have orgies, menages, girl/girl…not a fan of those but I got to admit it was good. Guy and girl but no male and male…maybe in the future books? *hint hint, wink wink* Spanking, hair pulling and good ol fashion bang bang banging…all the good stuff and more. Oh! And cage fighters. Ya gotta love cage fighters! Alpha men. We have Alpha men who I am excited to read more about. Bren, Ace, Dallas, Maddox and more. There’s also some bad ass chicas that give as good as the men do. Lexi being the main one.

Favorite lines/moments:
“What if I don’t want to be in charge?” “Then you get ink. Because once you submit to a man, really submit, he’s not gonna want to let you go.” She wet her lips, suddenly uncertain. “But how do I keep from doing that before I’m supposed to?” “You give pleasure, not yourself.”
This was a message, all right, but it wasn’t a fuck you, or even a look at what you lost, dumbass. It was a declaration, of independence and self-possession. Noelle’s power, the spark of will that had always lurked inside her, in flames on the stage. And she was beautiful.
Jasper held her gaze, his eyes blazing. Intense. “Do you need me?” She wet her lips. “I can survive without you, but it’s only that. Surviving. I want to live.”

Will I be reading more of this series…FO SHO! Happy Reading!

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Grand Prize Winners from the SSS BlogHop!!

The Grand Prize winners in the Sweet, Sexy, Scorching Giveaway Hop are:

Shadow Kohler- prize pack of books
books4me- prize pack of books
Maria Durst- $40.00 gift card to winners choice of book store

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I have not heard back from this winner:
Kelly Jamieson winner of Cake Cookie Dough Personal Lubricant– Melissa (from House of Millar)
Rhian Cahill winners for one book from her backlist– Cathy M (from In Love with Romance) and Pam (from BlackRaven’s Erotic Cafe)
Vivian Arend winner of paperbak– Joy (from Lori’s Book Blog)
Erin Nicholas winner of Cotton Candy Flavored Baby Powder and Just My Type book– Di (from Close Encounters with the Night Kind)

 Jayne Rylon winner of Red Light District series- Allie (from Close Encounters with the Night Kind)
Gina Gordon winner of Bare Naked Designs series- Natasha (from Swept Away by Romance)
ALL WINNERS: Please send an email to Taryn@mysecretromancebookreviews.com and she will get your prizes off to you.
Also, if you have not received your prize, please don’t hesitate to email Taryn again. 🙂
Thank you!!

Prowl Trilogy Tour Part 1 of 3

Author Spotlight with Amber Garza
My Journey as a Writer

When I was a little girl I knew I wanted to be an author one day. I used to write stories all of the time. However, life happened and when I got married and had my children I kind of put that dream on hold. Around the time my daughter turned two, I decided to try and finally write a novel. I wrote my first book, “Confessions of a Harried Housewife.” It’s a chic lit book about a quirky stay-at-home mom. Not surprising, since I was a stay-at-home mom at the time. After that I wrote two more chic lit books – “Abandoning Alice” and “Diapering Diva.” The only one that garnered attention from agents and publishers was the first one, but ultimately it didn’t get picked up.
After that the chic lit genre sort of dissolved and I worked the next few years on honing my craft and finding my voice. I tried writing an inspirational romance but abandoned it halfway through. I then wrote my suspense novel, “Engraved” and another book called, “American Dream” that I never released. I did have some short stories published and won some contests in that time frame. I also signed with an agent at one point but ended up severing that relationship for a variety of reasons.
Then I wrote the Prowl Trilogy and felt that I had finally found my niche. I really like writing young adult. It’s a genre I enjoy so much. At that point, I decided to self-publish and I’ve never looked back. It’s the perfect choice for me. I love having control over my career. I love choosing my covers, titles, release dates. I don’t mind doing my own marketing and I’ve met so many incredible bloggers, reviewers and fans who have helped with this. It’s an amazing community and I’m lucky to be a part of it. So, we will see where this journey takes me from here on out, but so far it’s been incredible. 
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To follow this tour click HERE.

Review: Rock-Hard Heat by Cristal Ryder

Rock Hard Heat is my first taste of author Cristal Ryder and boy oh boy was it sweet!

Colorado has a special place in Jenna’s heart. She’s drawn to the beautiful lush outdoors and the Rockie Mountains. With plans to go to Colorado anyway, she heads there early in hopes of seeing the man who has also anchored her heart to Colorado- sexy cowboy Chet.

Chet is one hellava cowboy! He is undeniably head over heels in love with Jenna. He wants her by his side once and for all and he sets out to prove it to her.

I was quickly drawn to Jenna and Chet’s story, they have a chemistry that will make you wish you had one similar to it. This story wrangled me in making me completely forget it was a short story until it ended. It’s well written and enough plot for a novella to make it a definite worthy read. I will be looking to get the first book, Elemental Heat, so I can read more about them and how they came to be.

 http://rcm.amazon.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=000000&IS2=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=doitharo-20&o=1&p=8&l=as4&m=amazon&f=ifr&ref=ss_til&asins=B0095VGR34