RhiReading News

Dear readers,

Hi Rhireaders! Check out the latest events in the sidebar! Thanks for visiting, be sure and follow me on social media for MORE awesome content.

Did you drop by to request a review or tour stop? I am currently OPEN for review requests for review requests. I have promotional openings for July through November open so please reach out. Just please drop me an email with a polite request and if I'm interested I will reply.

-- Rhi


10.30.2012

Review: Her Mad Hatter by Marie Hall

Her Mad Hatter (Kingdom Series #1) by Marie Hall
Paranormal Romance, Fairytale Retelling
Ebook 99¢ (129 pages, SELFPUBLISHED) Alice is all grown up. Running the Mad Hatter's Cupcakery and Tea Shoppe is a delicious job, until fate--and a fairy godmother with a weakness for bad boys--throws her a curveball. Now, Alice is the newest resident of Wonderland, where the Mad Hatter fuels her fantasies and thrills her body with his dark touch. The Mad Hatter may have a voice and a body made for sex, but he takes no lovers. Ever. But a determined fairy godmother has forced Alice into Wonderland--and his arms. Now, as desire and madness converge, the Hatter must decide if he will fight the fairy godmother's mating--or fight for Alice. Long length Novella ~ Approx. 40k words. Additional pages are sneak peeks to future books! This is not erotica, just a good old fashioned romance.
Author Site: mariehallwrites.blogspot.com


Not so Wonderful Wonderland... (2 stars)

Since I think the blurb covers the jist of the story pretty well I'm gonna skip resummarizing and dive right into my review.

Readers of my blog know what a fanatic I am for retellings, particularly of the romantic variety. So when I saw HER MAD HATTER at a great price and read all the raving reviews I caved and snapped it up. Afterall, how could a romance for the Mad Hatter go wrong?

Well... what didn't work for me obviously puts me in the minority. From the get-go I was sincerely bugged by Alice's being such a huge fan of the whole Wonderland thing. It read like fanficy wish fulfillment and that, for me personally, always turns me off. While I admit I instantly wanted to board the next flight to Hawaii to visit the Mad Hatter's Cupcakery and Tea Shoppe it just felt off that Alice was as obsessed as she was. Then there's Hatter. I wanted to find his somewhat brooding manner and random muttered thoughts quirky and sexy but they seemed more somber and contrived than the utterings of a man driven mad by loneliness. I just couldn't find any organic chemistry flowing between them as hero and heroine so the romance just didn't work for me. Even Wonderland itself lacked the feel of the classic that I love.

Having said that I actually really love the concept of the Kingdom series and Hall's writing style. She blends cutesey humor into serious situations well and I freaking LOVE that Alice was not the stereotypical blonde white girl most often associated with Wonderland. In spite of not liking HER MAD HATTER I will definitely be checking out the rest of the series because conceptually it is right up my alley and my reasons for not liking this one were so character (and specific fairytale) related.

While it wasn't quite for me, I think readers who have fallen in love with the television show Once Upon a Time should definitely check HER MAD HATTER and the rest of the Kingdom series out. Especially those of us who have a soft spot for the villainous, bad boy types.




Other Reviews:
Melindeeloo
Tome Tender

Notes: Purchased by me.

Check this book out if you liked:

10.29.2012

Review: Night Thief by Lisa Kessler

Night Thief by Lisa Kessler
Paranormal Romance, Vampires, Historical
Ebook $2.99 (109 pages, ENTANGLED)
After the fall of the Mayan civilization, Kane, an immortal Night Walker, has taken refuge in France for over 800 years. The modern world holds little interest for him until the night he meets the Golden Thief and is robbed of much more than his pocket watch. Marguerite Rousseau is living a double life. By day she is the assistant to an eccentric French artist, Antoine Berjon, and by night she dons elegant evening gowns to woo French dignitaries before lifting their wallets. Sparks ignite when Kane captures the thief, but Marguerite harbors a dark secret that could ruin them both.
Author Site: lisa-kessler.com


An aperitif for NIGHT DEMON... (4 stars)

An immortal Night Walker, with a jaguar spirit, Kane has made a home for himself in Paris. The Mayan people from which he came have long since fallen and the world around him has long since lost his interest. When a not-so-chance meeting with the elegant seductress known as the Golden Thief leaves him missing his pocket watch it is only a matter of time before he discovers just exactly why she has turned to thievery. Marguerite Rousseau spends her days as an assistant to Antoine Berjon, an artist known for his talent and pecularity. It is his secret that has driven her to her dangerous evening pastime. When Kane discovers the mystery behind his Golden Thief and her master's secret he vows to release Rita from Antoine's hold over her.

To my utter frustration I must admit I wasn't fully satisfied with NIGHT THIEF. Kessler's Night Walkers is a series I've been being as patient as possible for but this was only a nice bite when I was starving. I'm baffled as to why NIGHT DEMON still doesn't have a release date. That whine aside my big problem with NIGHT THIEF was that I felt like something was missing. There just wasn't enough background on Kane to have me fully interested in his relationship with Rita. Maybe it's the curse of the novella length not allowing enough time to be spent on it?

Putting aside that I didn't feel connected enough to Kane, I loved the idea of a lovely female thief roaming the social scene by night and seducing fools out of their purses and trinkets. Rita proves to be a very likable heroine stuck in a really awful situation. That she's protecting someone dear to her and trying to save them in the process proves her gumption. Big kudos to Kessler who didn't write Rita having instant love or even quick trust for Kane! It made me proud of her resolve as a heroine and the eventual building of their romance much sweeter.

NIGHT THIEF might be a little jarring to readers who haven't yet read NIGHT WALKER because there's a lot to know about the immortals who are but yet aren't vampires that I feel was better covered in the latter. On the same hand, if you read this first it might intrigue you enough to go back and read NIGHT WALKER. (In all honesty I would recommend reading them in order). Those who've already read it might find that this one is entirely historical in setting a bit mucky to get through if they prefer contemporary settings. Overall, not an unenjoyable addition to the series, just not enough to calm the hunger for the next book... please Entangled... stop torturing me and release it already!




Other Reviews:
Melindeeloo
Sabrina


Notes: Review copy received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

10.28.2012

Review: Conjure by Lea Nolan

Conjure (The Hoodoo Apprentice #1) by Lea Nolan
Young Adult, Witchcraft, Romance
Paperback $9.99 (400 pages, ENTANGLED TEEN)
Ebook $5.99

Be careful what you search for… Emma Guthrie expects this summer to be like any other in the South Carolina Lowcountry--hot and steamy with plenty of beach time alongside her best friend and secret crush, Cooper Beaumont, and Emma’s ever-present twin brother, Jack. But then a mysterious eighteenth-century message in a bottle surfaces, revealing a hidden pirate bounty. Lured by the adventure, the trio discovers the treasure and unwittingly unleashes an ancient Gullah curse that attacks Jack with the wicked flesh-eating Creep and promises to steal Cooper’s soul on his approaching sixteenth birthday. But when a strange girl bent on revenge appears, demon dogs become a threat, and Jack turns into a walking skeleton, Emma has no choice but to learn hoodoo magic to undo the hex, all before the last days of summer—and her friends--are lost forever.
Author Site: leanolan.com


An entertaining answer to 'How did you spend your summer vacation?' for teen readers! (5 stars)

The Guthrie twins, Emma and Jack, love spending their summers visiting their dad in the South Carolina Lowcountry. Days at the beach with Jack's best friend, Copper Beaumont, who also happens to be Emma's secret crush, are what summer is all about. But when the trio come across a strange bottle buried in the sand that contains clues to a hidden pirate treasure the mention of a curse just seems silly. Until Jack—at the prompting of a mysterious girl who keeps popping up at just the right times—uncovers the treasure setting off the ancient Gullah curse known as the Creep.

With Jack's flesh rotting from his bones, the threat of Cooper losing his soul on his 16th birthday, and demon dogs trying to keep them from breaking the curse Emma's summer is going to be far from ordinary. Becoming a hoodoo apprentice and learning the healing magic of the locals comes with a whole lot of responsibility and danger. If Emma can't break the curse she'll lose the two people she loves the most and she'll risk it all to save them.

Talk about a fun read! It's been a while since an author managed to take characters this young (15) and make them ones I wanted to hang out with. Even without the curse and hoodoo the trio of Emma, Jack, and Cooper would have been fun to read on some other kind of adventure. There was a distinct realism to them that made them jump off the page. But throw in the curse, and mystery, and magic and BAM!... what an adventure. I loved seeing a culture I was previously unfamiliar with explored in such a pleasant and surprising way, kudos to Nolan for making the Gullah and hoodoo her inspiration.

Aside from the great characters and fun of the plot I was also impressed with how 'clean' CONJURE is without feeling forced into it. Parents looking for books for younger readers on the YA scale that aren't too racy or colorful in language should definitely check it out.

CONJURE is a little slow at times but manages to pack a lot of action, mystery, and a sprinkle of romance into it. It might not work for all adult YA fans but I think it will be widely enjoyed by teens and would recommend it as a beach read considering the 'summer vacation adventure' style.



Other Reviews:
Valia Lind Writes

Notes: ARC received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

Review: Beyond Shame by Kit Rocha

Beyond Shame (Beyond #1) by Kit Rocha
Dystopian, Romance, Erotica
Paperback $15.00 (354 pages, SELFPUBLISHED)
Ebook $3.99
A dangerous world of sex, lust and violence... All Noelle Cunningham has ever wanted is a life beyond--beyond the walls of Eden, where only the righteous are allowed to remain, and beyond her stiflingly restrictive existence as a councilman's daughter. But only ruins lie outside the City, remnants of a society destroyed by solar storms decades earlier. The sectors surrounding Eden house the corrupt, the criminal--men like Jasper McCray, bootlegger and cage fighter. Jas clawed his way up from nothing to stand at the right hand of Sector Four's ruthless leader, and he'll defend the O'Kane gang with his life. But no fight ever prepared him for the exiled City girl who falls at his feet. Her innocence is undeniable, but so is their intense sexual attraction, and soon they're crossing every boundary Noelle barely knew she had. But if she wants to belong to Jas, first she'll have to open herself to the gang, and to a world where passion is power, and freedom is found in submission.
Author Site: kitrocha.com


One of the BEST books I've read in 2012 (5 stars)

Where has this book been all my adulthood? In my time as an erotica reader I've found many that I've enjoyed but few that brought something special to the table. They're either too busy being graphically descriptive and trying to shock or focus solely on the physical relationship(s) without considering that there is a great mental/emotional component to sexuality. BEYOND SHAME, quite literally, awed me with how masterfully the social, emotional, and physical pieces of each character were explored without losing any of the tantalizingly sensual detail.

In its very foundation the dystopian world of Eden—home to the pure and just—and the Sectors beyond it, sexuality plays a subtle but foundational role. In Eden, Noelle's life is little more than a puppet show in which she is stuck playing her role of councilman's daughter. There's no room for her to have desires (sexual or otherwise) of her own. When her little rebellions at last find her cast out into the streets beyond the safety of Eden she is both relieved and aware that she's in danger. When her path crossed with Jasper's he becomes her protector.

Jasper is the righthand man of the O'Kane gang's leader, powerful in the streets of Sector Four. To be an O'Kane means a lifelong commitment to the gang. To wear O'Kane ink is a symbol of status and belonging and Noelle wants desperately to belong to both the gang and Jas. The complexity of the world-within-a-world that is the O'Kane gang and the rich canvas of characters that compose it, bring naive Noelle to her knees—literally and figuratively—as she embraces every dirty desire of her heart. Through her exploration of pleasure, pain, passion, and submission she discovers the difference between being owned and belonging, the power of losing control, and how to know what she really wants.

I have yet to have read another erotic novel with a romantic subplot or not that so effectively explored female sexuality as a positive thing. Where the very act of submission to a man left the woman in control. In that regard BEYOND SHAME is a breath of fresh air in a genre I was beginning to lose interest in. Somehow, Rocha (aka Moira Rogers, aka Bree & Donna) manages to write each sexual encounter in rich detail of both the body and the mind with an organic feel that's truly impressive. Even situations that usually bother me on a personal level managed to be readable without making me so uncomfortable I was skipping paragraphs.

The O'Kane men are a refreshing contrast of alpha-male strength tempered with a worshipful respect for the women they welcome into their ranks. Sharing a lover or having multiple parties involved is treated in such a way that it seems more of an honor and pleasure than a taboo. For readers in need of a sultry read that explores many forms of sexual play from bondage and spanking to exhibition and orgies BEYOND SHAME is deliciously varietal.

Ultimately, as the title suggests, BEYOND SHAME's underlying theme of embracing the desires within and not feeling wrong for wanting—and even enjoying—the taboo things is what makes it such a superb read. A wicked blend of sex, romance, and a fabulously imagined world make it a book I will recommend for years to come. I can hardly wait to read another Beyond series title from Rocha! It might be a great choice for dystopian romance readers who've wanted to explore the erotica shelves but haven't been sure where to start. Definitely ranks in my top 10 reads for 2012.



Other Reviews:
BamaGal
Smexy Books

Notes: Review copy received via NetGalley.

Check this book out if you liked:

10.23.2012

Review: Playing With Fire by Tamara Morgan

Playing with Fire by Tamara Morgan
Paranormal Romance, Superheroes, Anthology
Ebook $2.99 (81 pages, ENTANGLED/EVER AFTER)
Fiona Nelson has always been one hot ticket—even before she took the conversion serum that gave her superhuman abilities. Fiona's powers come at a price: lack of human contact, or she won't be the only thing burning. When she loses control of her emotions, her fire powers run rampant...and she's hurt enough people already. Including herself. But when the man behind her conversion returns to blackmail her into helping him gain power, the only person she can turn to is Ian Jones, the man who broke her teenage heart. The man determined to expose the criminal known as Fireball, whose explosive escapades are just a little too close to Fiona's M.O. Ian is convinced Fiona's dangerous, convinced she's Fireball, and convinced he'll damn himself if he doesn't resist a heat that's always drawn him to Fiona like a moth to a flame—but Ian has his own secrets. And he'll learn far too soon what happens when you play with fire.
Author Site: tamaramorgan.com

A bit flawed but a comicbook fan is likely to devour it. (3 stars)

Ian Jones had a good reason for rejecting Fiona Nelson all those years ago. He was the teenaged geek and she was a hottie with a reputation. When their paths cross this time it's not long before he suspects that she underwent the costly converstion treatment that's gifted people with supernatural abilities. He's been studying the effects of the conversion serum and trying to track down a specific firestarting criminal nicknamed Fireball.

Fiona's conversion has left her bereft of human touch and forced to control her emotions lest she set her world ablaze. When the ex who paid for her conversion drops back into her life to blackmail her into helping his latest bid for power she'll have to face the past she's tried to let go and decide whether to fight back or become a martyr.

Conceptually, PLAYING WITH FIRE is very comic-book-ish in a totally great way and the shortness of the story delivers itself to that narrative very well. It's not a bad story or a bad romance, it just fell flat to me. I felt like I'd read it before. The whole hot-girl with a crush on the geek (as teenagers) thing kind of confused me and never really felt plausible. It actually made Fiona seem shallow as if she couldn't possibly imagine the geek would be the one who rejected her. Like he should have been thanking heaven he was that lucky. That she was still hanging onto that a decade later seemed even sillier. That aside, I did like them together as a couple.

The plot has a nice twist that's not totally unpredictable but enjoyable. The world building was just right as far as a superhero-type one is concerned. I liked the sort of cliched source of the conversion serum and honestly, if Morgan wrote more novellas in this world, I'd probably read them.

As a novella it's a nice afternoon filler read for readers who love comicbook type stories and superheroes. If you're not big on the superhero thing I can't imagine this one would really entertain.



Other Reviews:
Manga Maniac Cafe
Smexy Books
R.E. Butler


Notes: Review copy received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

Sexy Snippets: DOWN FOR THE COUNT by Christine Bell

 
Tuesdays have never been so sexy!
Sexy Snippets is a weekly feature hosted by Reading Between the Wines for the 18+ crowd.
 
My ♥ for Christine Bell is well known here at RhiReading so it's been notably difficult not to dive into DOWN FOR THE COUNT the second it hit my inbox. Much thanks are owed to Sarah from Entangled for not forgetting about sending it to me considering how long ago we were talking about it. ;) As soon as I finished the other romance I was reading yesterday I pulled it up and immediately was interupted. Which turned out to be good because I read 60% of it in one sitting last night. I would have read the whole thing but sleep is kind of a neccessary evil. In the meantime... please enjoy this tame teaser of the hawtness that this book has to offer... it gets much, much hotter right after that. -- Rhi
 
“How about a compromise? One kiss, here under the waterfall, so I can remember this exact place and moment of freedom with you. No regrets.”  
His mind was racing faster than Usain Bolt at the Olympics. He was so caught up with the After all the times I’ve thought of part, he almost missed the invitation. Almost.  
He plucked the drink from her fingers and set it on a flat rock, then took her hand. He didn’t speak as they made their way toward the waterfall, afraid to break the spell. When they reached the shelf of rocks beneath the rushing water, he turned and put his hands on her waist. “Ready?”  

10.22.2012

Review: Three River Ranch by Roxanne Snopek

Three River Ranch by Roxanne Snopek
Category Romance, Contemporary Romance
Ebook $2.99 (171 pages, ENTANGLED/BLISS)
Needing a fresh start from her two-timing fiancĂ©, Aurora McAllister answers a realtor’s ad for a guesthouse on the beautiful, serene Three River Ranch. She shows up at Three River tired, heartbroken, and with no one but her trusty Labradoodle as a companion. Cowboy Carson Granger has enough trouble in his life without adding a woman and her dog to the mix. There’s the untamed mustang he’s prepping to release into the wild, not to mention his father’s crazy will, which stipulates that if Carson wants to fully inherit Three River, he’ll need to find a bride. Carson wants nothing to do with love and especially not a marriage of convenience. But he soon realizes Rory, and everything she represents, might just be exactly what he needs. Sometimes love arrives on your doorstep when you least expect it…
Author Site: roxannesnopek.ca

Not your mama's category romance! (4 stars)

Did you read the blurb? It's a pretty standard category romance trope, the marriage of convenience, and THREE RIVER RANCH's blurb describes it really well. But expect to be pleasantly surprised that this over-the-top concept can be executed with masterful brush strokes to make it feel less silly than it sounds.

Rory and Carson are far from an easy match from the outset. His family history and the stipulation in his father's will make him very distrustful of both romance and his own ability to be a husband or father. It's actually one of the best parts of the plot because it makes him a good man who tries everything he can to do what's right while trying to protect his mustangs. In contrast, Rory is just a little bit frustrating because she really doesn't belong at Three River. My only real issue with the story was that Rory went to the ranch at all. You'd think she'd have found a place closer to civilization considering her pregnancy—our state is geographically HUGE so everything is a long drive . That said she's a lovely determined woman who could have chosen not to have the baby and instead works hard to help Carson.

Worth noting, Snopek does a pretty good job of portraying Montana (I live a couple of hours from Chinook so I know what I'm talking about lol) without going with Hollywood cliches. The issues of wild mustangs is very real and here we face similar issues with wolves, so animal lovers be aware, this will tug your heart strings. I think I wanted Carson to be able to save the mustangs even more than I wanted he and Rory to live happily-ever-after. This isn't your typical cattle rancher cowboy Western romance and for that I have to applaud Snopek, I was really scared that the stereotypes that aren't realistic to my state would be thick and ruin the story.

If you love a hero (and heroine) who are passionate, determined, and a little gun-shy about their feelings I think you will love THREE RIVER RANCH. I especially loved that Carson never really balked at the idea of taking on another man's unwanted child. The message—intentional or not—that family can can in many forms sat well with me on a personal level.

If you're looking for a category romance that won't make you cringe at the cheesiness of the over-the-top trope and you love animals please look no further! If you're sick of heroines who get walked all over by heroes who are overly alpha you will find THREE RIVER RANCH a refreshing change of pace that will warm your heart.




Other Reviews:
(un)Conventional Book Reviews
Harlequin Junkie


Notes: Review copy received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

10.21.2012

Guestpost: Author Lisa Kessler [NIGHT THIEF Blog Tour + giveaway!]


Good afternoon dearest readers...

I. Am. An idiot. *looking mighty sheepish* In the crazy of the week I received a ton of email and let one slip through the cracks that I should not have. Admittedly, having looked through all of them I can say I never did find the date I was supposed to post this one on so I didn't just blow it off, but I should have emailed Lisa as soon as I received her email with the post to find out why I couldn't seem to recall the date or find it in my calendar. Especially considering the content of her post! *dies a little more* As punishment I can only offer myself up for flogging by one of Lisa's Night Walkers and pray she will forgive me the boo-boo. ;) -- Rhi



Book Bloggers Rock…

Hi everyone –
It’s great to be back on Rhianna’s blog again!!!  Happy 4th Blogoversary!!!
The publishing world is changing so rapidly it can make your head spin.  With more bookstores closing, and libraries cutting their hours, it elevates the importance of book bloggers.  There aren’t as many places to go meet up to talk about books anymore, but most everyone has a way to connect over the internet.
I met Rhi when my debut novel, Night Walker, hit the shelves.  She gave me one of my first reviews and quest blog spots…  I’ve learned a lot since then, but one of the best things I’ve learned is that Book Bloggers are some of the coolest people on earth!

10.19.2012

Weekend Reading [10/19-10/21] :: Week from hell & then some...

 
This week was not my week. I can't even believe it's already Friday. I'm doing some serious head/desking. What on Earth happened this week?
 
Sunday day was filled with cooking and night was overfilled with TV to watch so I missed Once Upon a Time & 666 Park Avenue
Monday night was Castle and stepkid drama
Tuesday I spent 5 hours laboring over the above 'cake' for tot's birthday (strangely enough it's the same amount of time I spent bringing her into the world), birthday fun, and then TVD dvd scram session before SoA
Wednesday I attempted to play catch-up with email, had a stepkid related school meeting, son's last football game (they won!!!), & dinner out before American Horror Story
Thursday kids were out of school and it was Vine day, lots of kid mouthing and attempting to clean house, plus stuck camping thechivery for the latest T-shirts for my guys, then an evening of Beauty and the Beast and Elementary while hubs is out having beers
Friday... gawd only knows what I have on my plate for today... errands and kid stuff most likely...
 
Which brings us to this weekend where I'm frustrated because I haven't had a lot of reading time all week. I'm frustrated. I've been working on All the Broken Pieces by Cindi Madsen, which is pretty good but frustrating in its lack of reveal so far. I think I know where the author is going but need some details to soothe my inner book devourer while I'm stuck being busy with life. lol If you like a great mystery with a splash of romantic subplot I think you'll enjoy it. I think I'll be part of the blog tour so be on the lookout in December.

Anyone else have a book they're reading and enjoying but struggling to get time for? Are certain times of year really bad for that? I always find the first week of school is one of the worst for me but strangely holiday break I find more time even though I'm way busy with cooking, cleaning, kids, gift wrapping, and stuff like that. I'm looking forward to it and kind of agonizing over how behind I am on my reading goal for the year. :(

Well, on that note I better go get on the day's chores so I can sit down with a book at some point. Have a lovely weekend! -- Rhi


10.17.2012

Interview: Author Kelley Vitollo [LUCKY BREAK Blog Tour]


Hi Kelley and welcome to RhiReading where today we're celebrating the exciting start of your Shamrock Falls series for Entangled Publishing's sweet and sassy category romance line, Bliss. I'll sheepishly admit, LUCKY BREAK, wasn't my first pick of Bliss' launch titles but once I started reading and realized it's set in my home state I did a big ol' mental happy dance. It has a great small town setting and plenty of characters for readers to fall in love with.

LOL! I was lucky to be part of the launch with such great books. I'm glad you like it and I loved writing the small town and all the characters.


Sidney and Kade, heroine and hero of LUCKY BREAK, were childhood best friends until she took off to pursue her acting dream without even saying goodbye. When she comes back to Shamrock Falls for a vacation the tension is thick. What was the most challenging part of writing a romance where the couple has this much history and hurt?

It's hard to make it so people understand why Sidney did what she did--if not understand it, sympathize with her. I loved their history. It was one of my favorite parts to write, but I admit it was difficult getting them both past the hurt and to a place where they could move forward.


With a tagline of 'sweet & sassy short romance' one of the key elements of the Bliss imprint that makes it different from its sister imprints is that any love scenes are closed-door or 'fade to black'. What can you tell my readers about LUCKY BREAK that might convince those who love their romances filled with steamy love scenes to give it a try in spite of the lack of nitty gritty details?

I think it's a challenge to write sexy without giving all the details. Sexual tension is upped. It can be exciting to experience the attraction and emotions through sexual tension. And then when they do finally go there, the reader's imagination can fill in all those fun details ☺


While romances are, by formula, all about a couple coming together, great secondary characters really strengthen them in my opinion. While LUCKY BREAK is Sidney and Kade's story, we readers also meet secondary characters Rowan, Betsy, and Jace—characters with the potential for stories of their own. Can you tell us anything about who in Shamrock Falls will be getting their happily-ever-after next?

I can! Rowan's story is next. It releases in December and is titled, LUCK OF THE DRAW. Rowan finally gets her B&B and is up for a surprise when her guest is the sexy, poker-playing, playboy she had a one-night-stand with.


You have already published several YA titles under another pen name but romance remains the common theme. What are some of your favorite love stories (that you didn't write) or ones that have inspired you in your own writing?

I'm a huge romance addict. I love The Outlander. The way Jamie loves Claire is so very beautiful. I think there are very few epic romances out there and The Outlander is one. I'm a big Black Dagger Brotherhood fan too.


And now for a few completely just-for-fun questions!


If (hypothetically, of course), Sidney had decided to stay in L.A. and get her big break, which sexy Hollywood hunk would you want to see her make the tabloids with?

LOL. That's hard because no one is as good as Kade. I am going to say Chris Hemsworth just because I thing he is so incredibly hot ;)


Now that Shamrock Falls' favorite bar/bowling alley is back up and running I assume there will be league nights. Who's team would you want to play on and what would its name be?

Hmm… I think I would be on Kade's team. He's so passionate about everything that I would want that to rub off on me. LOL.


Every other year or so I head up to the region where the fictitious town of Shamrock Falls is located to visit family. If I happened to drop by Lucky's for drinks with my cousins and asked for the LUCKY BREAK cocktail what would it consist of?

It would be Kade's special mixture of Blue Hawaiians. When people read the book they will know why.


Thanks so much for being here today to answer my goofy questions and the very best wishes for inspiration for more Shamrock Falls stories... 'cause I can't wait to read them!

Thank you so much! I had a blast.





Connect with Kelley Vitollo
 
Get your copy of LUCKY BREAK through Amazon or from your favorite ebook retailer!

10.13.2012

S.O.S.: Seeking On Sunday [Launch + GIVEAWAY!]


Seeking On Sunday is a once-a-month meme hosted by RhiReading to bring together readers who are looking for book suggestions. It is open to any blogger on the 2nd Sunday of each month who wishes to post one of the following:


  • an 'If you like this book/series/author, I think you will enjoy this book/series/author because...' suggestion post

  •  
  • a post seeking commentors' book suggestions within a certain set of terms

  • a post seeking the name of a book the blogger can recall details about but can't remember the name of


This is for ALL bloggers, not just book bloggers! If you're seeking bread baking books or suggesting board books for babies or having a difficult time finding the name of the romance novel you read the blurb of while standing in line at the grocery store this meme is for you.

 
Grab the button to share in your post &
feel free to share it in your sidebar too.




This month I'm seeking...

Review: Sugar Rush by Rachel Astor

Sugar Rush by Rachel Astor
Category Romance, Contemporary Romance
Ebook $2.99 (158 pages, ENTANGLED/BLISS)
Dulcie Carter has been running her family’s homemade sweet shop, Candy Land Confections, on her own since her mom passed away. But business is slow and rent is high, so Dulcie knows if she wants to keep her mom’s dream alive, she’ll need a miracle. The annual Assembly of Chocolatiers competition might be just the thing, if she can bring herself to try creating something new for the first time in a long time. Then she meets Nick, a molten-hot guy with a sexy smirk and an attraction stronger than any sugar rush, whose family also happens to own the big-box candy shop in town—her strongest competition for first prize. Nick’s got his own reasons for needing the win, but then being around Dulcie is proving addictive. As their competition heats up, so do the sparks between them. Can they keep their sights on winning, when love might be the sweetest prize of all?
Author Site: rachelastor.net

Sugar and Spice and Everything Nice (5 stars)

Since her mother passed away, running Candy Land Confections, has been difficult for Dulcie Carter. Homemade sweets made from the family's original recipes was her mom's dream. But keeping the business afloat while getting a business degree with sales slow is proving more and more of a challenge on top of the fact Dulcie can't seem to find her inner chocolatiering mojo. When she's invited to compete in the annual Assembly of Chocolatiers competition the allure of the prize money is hard to pass up... if only she could tap into her mom' creative spirit and create something utterly original and wowing.

When Dulcie meets Nick, the gorgeous guy with whom she shares instant chemistry, she discovers there's one big problem to top all the others if they were to get involved—he's the son of the big-box candy maker that stands to be her strongest competition! The stakes are high for both, as the win could mean everything to their respective families. Can these dueling chocolatiers keep it professional or can a chance at love be the sweetest thing to come?

I am an absolute sucker for romances where the hero and heroine are put into a situation where they're competing with one another or have enemy families. It just adds a certain drama that makes the HEA ending all the sweeter. But I've never seen it done with such a great contemporary twist on a theme that is delicious on its own. I cannot praise Astor enough for creating Nick. He's a hero among heroes and one of my favorites I've ever read. In contrast Dulcie's lack of confidence makes her very real and I loved how they matched one another and just made a great pairing.

This is the read for fans of competition shows on Food Network like Cupcake Wars. The creative side keeps it interesting during the slower sections where Nick and Dulcie aren't directly interacting. There are some good surprises thrown in when I least expected them and when the story ended I had an embarrassingly huge grin on my face. There's even a recipe you can make in the back of the book! If you're in the mood for a read that will bring a lot of warm fuzzies with it I highly recommend SUGAR RUSH... just be sure and have a snack handy because all the talk about candy and cupcakes and spices and chocolate will have your sweet tooth rampaging. ;)




Other Reviews:
BrazenReads
Passionate Book Diva


Notes: Review copy received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

10.12.2012

Weekend Reading [10/11-10/13] :: S.O.S. Meme Launch, Blogiversary Giveaway, & TV time...

 
So... who else was less than impressed with the new Beauty & the Beast? I definitely have a lifelong love of the B&B conceptualized so I'm probably the worst judge. I just kind of expected the characters to seem more adult. Was I the only one who felt like the actors looked like high schoolers playing adults? Obviously they're not but it just felt off to me. I figure I'll give it another few episodes before I bail but was wondering what you guys thought... anyone here watch the one from the 80's?

This weekend I'm still swamped with reviews needing written. Can't seem to write them fast enough. Which is kind of unusual for me. lol But then I've had a lot of great reads in the past couple of weeks. It can make it challenging to write reviews when you're still mentally buried in one you've loved.

This weekend I'm reading Night Thief by Lisa Kessler and trying to sneak in a few pages of Her Mad Hatter by Marie Hall as a break for something non-review related for a change. Believe it or not, I only actually read about 3 or 4 books a year that I haven't received for review in some capacity. I buy lots, just never get the damned things read. Now that Once Upon a Time is back for season 2 I've just been in the fairytale mood. I think in 2013 I'm going to make a concerted effort to request fewer 'ooh that sounds interesting' ARCs and let myself read some of the hundreds of books I buy and don't read every year. :P

On Sunday I'll also be officially launching the S.O.S. meme... that's Seeking on Sunday... and in honor of the blogiversary it will also have the giftcard giveaway I was planning going on. It's going to be a good one so please be sure and drop by!

Other than that my weekend will be filled with birthday planning for the wee one, The Walking Dead and Dexter on Sunday... it frigging sucks that everything I want to watch comes on at the same time BTW. My ABC shows are just going to have to get caught up on the ABC app later in the week. :( Plus I think we'll be marathoning season 3 of The Vampire Diaries tonight and Saturday since we still haven't caught up and forgot to order it sooner. Nobody spoil me on what happened until next week okay? lol

I hope you all have some fun weekend plans and get to do lots of reading! Leave a comment telling me what you're reading if you have the time, I really do love to see what's interesting my readers. ♥ -- Rhi

10.11.2012

Review: From The Ashes by Adrien-Luc Sanders

From the Ashes (Fires of Redemption #1) by Adrien-Luc Sanders
Paranormal Romance, Anthology, Superheroes, GLBT
Ebook $2.99 (91 pages, ENTANGLED/EVER AFTER)
Sociopath. Killer. Deviant. Monster, devoid of morals, incapable of human emotion. The villain known as Spark has been called that and more, and as a super-powered aberrant has masterminded countless crimes to build his father's inhuman empire. Yet to professor Sean Archer, this fearsome creature is only Tobias Rutherford--antisocial graduate researcher, quiet underachiever, and a fascinating puzzle Sean is determined to solve. One kiss leads to an entanglement that challenges everything Tobias knows about himself, aberrants, and his own capacity to love. But when his father orders him to assassinate a senator, one misstep unravels a knot of political intrigue that places the fate of humans and aberrants alike in Tobias's hands. As danger mounts and bodies pile deeper, will Tobias succumb to his dark nature and sacrifice Sean--or will he defy his father and rise from the ashes to become a hero in a world of villains?
Author Site: kowloonbynight.com

Can a sociopath find love? (5 stars)

As with the occasional book, I find myself incapable of summarizing FROM THE ASHES any better than the book's own blurb. Which in this rare case is truly fortunate!

Something I've been seeking but find difficult to get in my science fiction based romances is one featuring protagonist characters that aren't all heterosexual—or caucasian for that matter—without all the fluff and dogma associated with forcing them into gay and lesbian labeling. On a personal level I can enjoy sexual pairings that don't mirror my own preferences but have found it difficult to find a read that wasn't overly in-your-face about it. After all, shouldn't a love story... a romance novel... be focused on two parties (regardless of gender) finding a happily ever after together? Keeping that in mind FROM THE ASHES was actually my first m/m romance read and I owe Sanders a debt of gratitude for being able to write Tobias' story in such a way that was so organic and true, that I loved it.

As a character, Tobias is fascinating and a narrator I could quickly liken to Dexter (of the television series, as I haven't read the books). He's a monster in his own rite, yet manages to have a way of justifying his choices not to commit crimes when it should be the opposite that's both chilling and makes it hard not to like him. I found Sean a little bit harder to resolve my feelings about, the persona he puts on as a professor contradicts his private self making it easy to keep reading in hopes of uncovering his secrets. Their attraction is a bit illicit for a multitude of reasons but ultimately drives the heart of Tobias' growth from villain to potential hero.

It is a very rare book that captures my attention so well I let hours pass without noticing and I found myself realizing I was at the climax of the action not knowing I'd read almost the entirety of FROM THE ASHES in one sitting. I very much enjoyed the moral dilemma of the abberants... if you were told you couldn't be anything other than the monster does that make it so? It's an engrossing plotline that I hope spans into additional stories, perhaps not featuring Tobias and Sean, but other aberrants and humans.

If, like myself, you enjoy science fiction and superhero-ish type romances where neither race nor sexual orientation matter as long as there's a great plot and two people falling in love I highly recommend FROM THE ASHES. It certainly won't be everyone's cup of tea but it's engrossing in a comic bookish way and satisfying as a romance. If the steam level is a concern—and I'll sheepishly admit I was kind of afraid I'd be uncomfortable with the m/m love scenes—I'll say that Sanders handles the 'fading to black' style with graceful flourish and there's nothing truly more notable than a lot of kissing. Maybe the die-hard m/m readers will find it lacking in the hardcore details of more erotic stories but as a romance I found it gave just enough.




Other Reviews:
Red Hot Books
Joyousreads


Notes: Review copy received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

10.09.2012

Review: Lucky Break by Kelley Vitollo

Lucky Break by Kelley Vitollo
Category Romance, Contemporary Romance
Ebook $2.99 (147 pages, ENTANGLED/BLISS)
One lucky break is all struggling actress Sidney Williams needs. But when living the LA life becomes too much, she heads back to the small town of Shamrock Falls for the vacation she needs to get her life on track—and immediately runs into Kade Mitchell, her former best friend and the boy next door she’s always regretted leaving behind. Kade, the new owner of Lucky’s—once the most popular bar in Shamrock Falls—is determined to bring the place back to its former glory, and seeing Sidney again is a distraction he doesn’t need. Sure, the chemistry between them is explosive, but Kade can’t let himself fall into a fling with his best friend—not when he knows she’s soon heading back to the glitter of Tinseltown. Now, with the possibility of her first major acting role looming, Sidney must decide if her lucky break is in Hollywood or right where she left it—in Shamrock Falls.
Author Site: kelleyvitollo.com

Loved Shamrock Falls, Didn't Love the Couple (3 stars)

Lucky's was one the most popular bar in Shamrock Falls, an iconic haunt where locals could grab a drink or bowl. But a few years of being closed and neglected have left it in need of lots of hardwork and TLC from new owner, Kade Mitchell. What Kade doesn't need adding distractions, after only recently coming back to his hometown, is for the girl who broke his heart years earlier to show up in the town she deserted for bigger and better things in Hollywood.

Sidney Williams left Shamrock Falls, and the boy she might have settled for, with the ambition to persue a career as an actress. All she needs is for her big break to hit. Commercials just aren't getting her what she really wants and a vacation in her hometown will give her just enough time to sort out the chaos while her agent tries to find her the role of a lifetime. But when she finds herself faced with the friends she abandoned, the people she hurt, she might have to face her own demons.

I wasn't too sure about LUCKY BREAK going in, the concept of a small town always kind of appeals to me but the heroine's dilemna definitely turned me off. Unfortunately, it really did make it a tough read for me. I adored Shamrock Falls and the idea of a small town with troubles and secrets that could affect the romances happening within it, but found Sidney and Kade to be really difficult to like. Both struck me as immature, Sidney especially. Their whole relationship felt like it was founded on a sort of twisted need for the other to sooth their childhood traumas, rather than any current circumstances. I just couldn't connect with them as a couple enough to feel excited they'd wind up having their happily-ever-after.

Aside from not liking Kade and Sidney I actually enjoyed LUCKY BREAK a lot. Vitollo's writing style really worked for me, blending light-hearted humor and sensual tension into the romance without making the story too cutesey. I didn't care much for the frequent jumps to the past, for some reason they felt more distracting and gratuitious than useful in propeling the storyline forward, but they weren't a deal breaker either. What really stood out for me—and if you read a lot of my reviews you know this is where a writer can win me as a fan—was the secondary characters. I grew a considerable softspot for the characters whom I believe will be getting their own books next and think many other readers will too.

Boiled down, I know fans of the childhood crush trope, small town romances, and similar category romance concepts are going to love LUCKY BREAK. It's a sweet story, a light read, and the things that made me not fall in love with it are not likely to be as problematic for regular readers of the genre. I might not have cared for the couple this time around but you can count me in to be reading the next Shamrock Falls story!





Other Reviews:
Did you read and review this book? Please feel free to leave a link to your review in the comments!

Notes: Review copy received via publisher.

Check this book out if you liked:

10.05.2012

Interview: Author Roxanne Snopek [THREE RIVER RANCH Blog Tour] + Giveaway!

 
 Romance lovers... please join me in welcoming author Roxanne Snopek to the blog today! I have to say it before we get to the interview... THREE RIVER RANCH is a really great romance, I can't wait to share my review with y'all next week. Chances are I'm the only blogger on the tour who actually lives just two hours down the road from where the book is set so I think my opinion gets just a little extra street cred as far as this sweet story is concerned. Trust me, if you have a soft spot for men who are passionate about animals and heroines who don't let even the hardest circumstances keep them down you are going to love THREE RIVER RANCH. Now read on to get to know more about Roxanne and her work! -- Rhi
 

RHI: Hi Roxanne, and welcome to RhiReading where today we’re celebrating the release of THREE RIVER RANCH, your sweet and sassy addition to the BLISS imprint from Entangled Publishing.

ROX: Hi Rhianna! I’m so excited to be here! Since you’re going with RHI, I’ll go with ROX. That’s what most people end up calling me anyway…

RHI: Since the story takes place at a Montana ranch and I happen to be a resident Montanan I couldn’t help but clamor into the line of bloggers eager to sample this romantic tale of critters and cowboys which begs me to ask my first question… why’d you pick the Big Sky country to be the setting for THREE RIVER RANCH versus somewhere more popular like Texas?

ROX: First off, I’m terrified to hear that you live in Montana… I’m geographically illiterate, so can we just pretend I got it right? I’ve actually been there a few times, but long, long ago. However, I remember thinking it was beautiful.

But as to why I chose Big Sky country for my romance? Well, I think Texas has had enough attention, don’t you? Also, I was born in Saskatchewan. (That’s not a swear word. It’s in Canada. Look it up.) It’s big sky country, too, and it’s where I learned to love horses and cowboys and fresh air… and it’s where I fell in love with my own happy-ever-after guy. Canada, however, doesn’t have the name recognition that marketing-types tell me is essential. So I went as close to Saskatchewan as I could. (And I even mention Alberta in my book! We. Are. CANADIAN!)

(Rhianna's note: Let's all start demanding romances set in Canada and change that marketing hooplah! If anyone ever actually came to Montana they'd know our state is nothing like you see in the movies... most movies set here are actually filmed in Canada, Legends of the Fall for example.)

RHI: The first thing that sold me on THREE RIVER RANCH was that the heroine, Rory, is pregnant and alone. It’s not a trope commonly seen outside of category romance and personally, I think it’s under-appreciated considering how common it actually is. What challenges did you have writing a romance where the heroine is having a baby that isn’t the hero’s, versus the pregnancy being the result of their own tryst?

10.04.2012

Review: Two and Twenty Dark Tales: Dark Retellings of Mother Goose Rhymes (anthology)

Two and Twenty Dark Tales: Dark Retellings of Mother Goose Rhymes
Young Adult, Fairytale Retelling, Horror
Release Date: October 16th, 2012
Paperback $14.95 (340 pages, MONTH9BOOKS)
Ebook $6.99

In this anthology, 20 authors explore the dark and hidden meanings behind some of the most beloved Mother Goose nursery rhymes through short story retellings. The dark twists on classic tales range from exploring whether Jack truly fell or if Jill pushed him instead to why Humpty Dumpty, fragile and alone, sat atop so high of a wall. The authors include Nina Berry, Sarwat Chadda, Leigh Fallon, Gretchen McNeil, and Suzanne Young.


Tantalizingly twisted retellings of beloved children's rhymes (4 stars)

I am secretly a huge fan of Mother Goose Rhymes. I still have my gigantic and tattered copy of Marguerite de Angeli's Book of Nursery and Mother Goose Rhymes from which I begged constant readings of my favorites as a small child. But even then, in my pre-school years, some morbid part of me wondered at the hints at dark themes.

With deliciously wicked imaginings the tales collected here bring new light (no pun intended) to the possibilities. It's best suited to the fan of retellings and reimaginings that lean toward horror but fans of the authors who've contributed should definitely consider sampling it too.

With so many tales I decided not to review each one that I read but rather to select those I most enjoyed.

[SING A SONG OF SIX-PENCE by Sarwat Chadda], my favorite rhyme and a story well suited to the weirdness of it. I've not yet read any of Chadda's books but will definitely be adding them to my wishlist now.

[BOYS AND GIRLS COME OUT TO PLAY by Angie Frazier], an unexpected twist and a world I would love to see explored in full novel length. Fans of witches this one is for you!

[LIFE IN A SHOE by Heidi R. Kling], my favorite of the collection! Have you ever wondered why the old woman in the shoe had so many children? Kling can tell you in this monsterous dystopian tale.

[LITTLE MISS MUFFET by Georgia McBride], I wasn't sure what could really be done with this classic favorite of little girls everywhere but McBride pulled it off flawlessly. I will never look at spiders the same way again.

[SEA OF DEW by C. Lee McKenzie], another favorite rhyme from my childhood, retold with painful desolation and a poetic flair that gave me chills.

[TICK TOCK by Gretchen McNeil], the creepiest and briefest of retellings this one's enough to have you avoiding small children for years to come.

[THE WELL by K.M. Walton], I always thought Jack and Jill were the clumsiest kids ever. Now I know how they really went down that hill. Another one with a dystopian flavor that is sure to please YA readers.

[THE WISH by Suzanne Young], while not very original in it's twist, Young tells this one with a delicacy that still made it enjoyable. Be careful what you wish for is always good advice.

As a whole this is an inspired and enjoyable nibbler for those days leading up to Halloween. If you love dark retellings, especially when they involve murderous fiends there's more than one here that will leave a wicked gleam in your eye. I found a couple of them lacking in rereadability and one didn't seem very well suited to the theme of the anthology but I'd still recommend it to horror lovers in need of something dark to read this autumn.

If, like myself, you tend to read anthologies to find new authors who might interest you I don't think I would recommend this one for that purpose. With the thematic elements and shortness of these I don't think they'll turn you on to authors you haven't tried yet.




Other Reviews:
Levina C.

Notes: ARC received via NetGalley.

Check this book out if you liked:

Weekend Reading [10/05-10/07] :: Smiles, Snow, & What I'm Reading

 
Okay... so it took me long enough to find my freaking camera that it doesn't look as much like it's smiling as it did when I first looked down at it. But I swear my coffee was smiling at me. Maybe it was a freaky fluke but I like to think some unseen force knew I needed a smile.
 
I'm getting this weekend's Weekend Reading post up today since I have a special guest tomorrow. As much as I dislike interviewing, the authors from the Bliss imprint have been such lovely guests and I can't wait for you to meet Roxanne Snopek tomorrow.
 
We had our first snow this week and I barely survived it. How can weather be 80 on Monday and then hit freezing on Wednesday? Brrrr. All I wanted to do was stay inside but instead spent yesterday evening trying not to shake to pieces watching my son's football game. (They won and he actually got to play most of the game so it was way worth the chill).

What are you guys reading this weekend? I'm finishing up the uber naughty (and crazy good) BEYOND SHAME by Kit Rocha and getting started on Lea Nolan's CONJURE. A weird contrast that's for sure.

With the wonky weather and life being life the hubs and I didn't celebrate our 13th anniversary on Tuesday so we're hoping to get a sitter and have a special dinner out tomorrow. Here's hoping the weather's nice enough I can wear heels!

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and would love to know what plans you have for reading and fun! -- Rhi

10.02.2012

Review: Velveteen by Daniel Marks

Velveteen by Daniel Marks
Young Adult, Ghosts, Supernatural
Release Date: October 9th, 2012
Hardcover $17.99 (464 pages, DELACORTE)
Ebook $10.99

At sixteen, Velveteen Monroe was kidnapped and murdered by a madman named Bonesaw. But that's not the problem.
The problem is she landed in the City of the Dead. And while it's not a fiery inferno, it's certainly no heaven either. Grey, ashen and crumbling more and more by the day, and everyone has a job to do there. Which doesn't leave Velveteen much time to do anything about what’s really on her mind.
Bonesaw.
Velveteen aches to deliver the bloody punishment he deserves. And she's figured out just how to do it. She'll haunt him for the rest of his days.
It'll be brutal...and awesome.
But crossing the divide between the living and the dead has devastating consequences. Velveteen’s obsessive haunting could actually crack the foundation of her new world, not to mention jeopardize her very soul. A risk she’s willing to take—except fate has just given her reason to stick around: an unreasonably hot and completely off-limits coworker.
Velveteen can’t help herself when it comes to breaking rules . . . or getting revenge. And she just might be angry enough to take everyone down with her.

Author Site: Blog

A Twisted Genre-Breaker Lacking Substance to Justify Length (3 stars)

The City of the Dead, an ashen realm beyond death but neither heaven nor hell, is home to a motley assortment of tweens, teens, and adult outcasts. Velveteen Monroe found herself in purgatory after meeting a brutal end at the hands of a serial killer known as Bonesaw. Now it's her job to keep the order and balance of souls along with her team of misfits. Except Velvet has been slipping into the mortal world to wreak havoc on her killer, to rescue his latest victim.

When her team is sent out into the mortal world to bring lost souls to their rightful place, they discover a mass conspiracy that's threatening the fabric of the City. Saving a lost soul who becomes part of her team, a soul that Velvet is drawn to against her better judgement. VELVETEEN gives a somewhat dystopian look at the afterlife and dribbles a tidbit of romance on top.

It isn't often that I read a book I just really don't want to review because even though I didn't dislike it, I can't think of anything very favorable to point out. VELVETEEN is one of those genre-breaker type books that is both great and bad at the same time. The world is never fleshed out well enough to cover the mass of questions raised about it from page to page and while it's one readers will definitely get into it might not leave them satisfied. On the one hand it makes sense since Velvet herself doesn't know all the answers but it feels less like a lack of knowledge and more like Marks' world would fall apart if too many details conflicted each other.

Velvet and her crew are okay. It's hard to really care about their ultimate fates when there's no real knowing what happens to them if their spirit selves 'die'. The part of Velvet's story I was most excited about ended up not being the central story, so without spoiling anything... don't expect this to focus on her revenge against her killer. The romance was also pretty blah. Other than being dead teenagers there was nothing about Nick and Velvet that logically drew them to one another. It felt a little rescuer-worshippy on the part of Nick. In the end the story was unmemorable, the characters even less so. It read very much like someone asked 'what if...' and then spilled a bunch of answers which then spawned more 'and then what if...' answers barely strung together by a loose thread of 'because it's a YA novel'.

As a whole it wasn't a horrid book, just long, overly drawn-out, lacking in memorability, and ultimately not something I can think of whom to recommend it to. I think the target audience might find it a little bit like it talks down to them and adults will find it unrewarding for how long it is. Definitely don't read it expecting it to be about Velvet's revenge, that's a very minor plot point that will get resolved but you'll have to read all 400 plus pages to get there.




Other Reviews:
Experiment BL626 on Goodreads
Sony the Book Lover
Tom Ryan on Goodreads


Notes: ARC received via NetGalley.

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