Search This Blog

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Review: The Nearly Weds by Jane Costello

The Nearly Weds
by Jane Costello

Genre: Chick Lit, Contemporary, Humor, Romance
Publication: February 2009
Format: Paperback, 419 pages
Source: Own
Connect: Website | Twitter | Facebook
What’s the worst thing that could happen to a blushing bride?

After Zoe is jilted by her fiancĂ© Jason, she’s unable to face the pitying looks of her friends and family any longer.

Fleeing to America, she is employed as a nanny by the moody, difficult, but devastatingly sexy, single dad Ryan.

She quickly wins over his children, but her boss is more of a challenge. Things aren’t helped, of course, by her inadvertently displaying her knickers to his colleagues or nearly hospitalising him with a toy bow and arrow.

Thank God she’s got her colourful circle of friends to keep her sane: fun-loving Trudie, hippy Amber and chilly, tight-lipped Felicity.

It is only over time that Zoe and Ryan begin to understand each other and their apparently ill-fated relationship takes on a new dimension.

There’s just one problem, as Zoe soon discovers: that the past isn’t always easy to escape, no matter how far away you go.
Zoe Miller’s boyfriend stood her up on her wedding day. Unable to face her friends and family, Zoe flew to America to be a nanny to Ruby and Samuel. But Ryan, the single father was not easy for her. Just as Zoe, Ryan and the kids started to get along very well, Zoe’s past caught up with her.

I love this book. The Nearly-Weds is definitely one of my favorites from Jane Costello. It’s very entertaining and funny. I just can’t put down the book. The Nearly-Weds was told in Zoe’s point-of-view. Zoe’s a likeable character. She’s tough, caring and funny. She can be serious and fun. I love how she’s with Ryan’s kids. Ruby and Samuel were great supporting characters. They made the book a lot more entertaining. And Ryan… He’s hot. He wasn’t very friendly at first, but after a while, he began to show who he truly was. I love those arguments between Zoe and Ryan. They are mostly funny!

The Nearly-Weds was very predictable. But I still enjoyed the story very much, which is why I’m giving the book a 5 stars! I would recommend this book to those who were looking for an easy read with tons of laugh out loud moments.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Stuck In A Good Book Giveaway Hop (INT)

Stuck in a Good Book
Hosted by I am a Reader, Not a Writer
and Stuck in Books

I'm joining Stuck in a Good Book giveaway hop hosted by I am a Reader, Not a Writer and Stuck in Books. Which means that this is the chance for you to win a book from me. Yay

I recently read Poison Study by  Maria V. Snyder and was instantly hooked! I love the book so much that I bought the next two books in a flash. It was that exciting. So... For this giveaway, I think it'll be fun to giveaway Poison Study by  Maria V. Snyder to ONE lucky winner from

Okay. Here's how you can enter this giveaway:

  • To enter this giveaway, enter your contact details in the form below.
  • You are not required to follow me, but, it would be nice if you follow me via GFC/Goodreads/twitter/Bloglovin' too :)
  • This is an International giveaway as long as ship them to your country.
  • One entry per person.
  • Winner will be notified via email.  Winners will have 48 hours to respond before another winner will be selected. 
  • I'm not responsible for any lost package.
  • Have fun and good luck! Be sure to check out the other giveaway stops on this blog hop:

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Review: The Book of Why by Nicholas Montemarano

The Book of Why
by Nicholas Montemarano

Genre: Self-help, Fiction
Publication: January, 2013
Format: kindle
Source: Netgalley
Connect: Website
A novel that asks if love ever really has to die

The power to solve your problems is within you-with the right sense of belief, the mind's ability to create success, happiness, and health is limitless.

At least that's the philosophy of self-help author Eric Newborn, whose books and lectures have spawned a legion of devoted followers who swear that his ideas have pulled their lives from the brink. But after the traumatic loss of his wife, Eric is left to face the darker side of his own teachings, living as a recluse in the home they shared on Martha's Vineyard, struggling to reconcile his worldview with the pain he has suffered. It's a fundamental question that haunts him: why?

When a fan with questions forces Eric to face the world once again, he's put on a path that might lead him towards the closure he seeks, but in astounding ways he could never begin to dream.

At once a stirring portrait of a soul laid bare by grief and a celebration of coincidence and the magic of real connection, The Book of Why explores the deep powers of the heart and mind to shape the world around us, blurring the lines between loss and love, fate and free will, and despair and joy.
I don’t usually mind reading a self-help book. But just cannot get into The Book of Why. It was sort of confusing. I do not get what the book was really about.

I thought that the beginning was alright. The middle part was very confusing. I have a hard figuring out what the author was trying to deliver. I had to put down the book for a few times because of it. And I cringed every time I decided to continue where I stopped. Yes. It was a torture. The ending left me unsatisfied. I think some of the issues in the book were left unanswered. The only reason I finished the book was because I hate to start a book, and not finishing it.

I received an ARC through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Spotlight: Red Dirt Duchess by Louise Reynolds - Q&A

Red Dirt Duchess
by Louise Reynolds

Genre: Romance
Publication: August 2014
Connect: Twitter | Website | Facebook
By: Amazon | iTunes | Kobo | Google Play
When English society playboy Jonathan Hartley-Huntley is sent to outback Australia after a disastrous affair with his editor, all he wants is to take a few pictures, do a quick interview and get back to his usual life of luxury as soon as possible. Until he meets his host, the irresistible Charlie Hughes, and suddenly the back of beyond is a lot more appealing.

Running the pub is a labour of love for Charlie and she has no desire to ever leave the tiny town of Bindundilly. That is, until Jon discovers an old painting that raises questions about both their lives. Charlie impulsively decides to follow him to London, and as the feelings between them begin to deepen, she starts to wonder if there's more to life than the pub. But at Jon's family home, the magnificent Hartley Hall, they become acutely aware of the differences between them, and it soon seems clear they have no future together – especially if Jon's mother has her way.

Family and tradition threaten the course of true love in this warm and witty novel from the author of Outback Bride and Her Italian Aristocrat.
Q&A with Louise Reynolds

1. Please introduce yourself and your book.

It’s great to be here! My name is Louise Reynolds and I live in Melbourne, Australia. I write contemporary romance for Destiny Romance and my latest release, Red Dirt Duchess, is my  third book. It’s set in both outback Australia and an English stately home and is the story of two people from very different backgrounds and the obstacles they face in getting their HEA.

2. What inspired you to write this book?

I spend a lot of time travelling the outback and have written about it in a previous book (Outback Bride). This time I wanted to contrast this unique lifestyle where people are laidback and casual with that of England and the upper classes where, generally, life is more structured. Family is also a constant theme in my work and I wanted to explore the idea that some of us may not be who we think we are.

3. What do you like most about writing this book?

Creating the characters in the English country house was a lot of fun. It allowed me to draw on influences from one of my favourite authors, Nancy Mitford, who wrote comedies about the English upper classes. 

4. Are there any scene in the book that resemble real experiences?

I draw heavily on real life experiences in my writing. The opening scene in Red Dirt Duchess is a mixture of two. I was in a remote pub in the outback when some very hot, exhausted tourists walked in, carrying suitcases. They had walked, in the heat, from the airstrip some distance away because the hotel staff had forgotten to go out and pick them up. Immediately I got the picture of a very hot, angry (but gorgeous) English travel writer walking into a bar. But my heroine, the publican who’d forgotten to pick him up, needed to have a good reason to forget and I drew on my experiences of seeing bar staff toss coins over their shoulders into charity buckets, in US ski bars. 

5. Do you know what is going to happen throughout your book before you begin writing it, or do your ideas come as you're working on it?

A bit of both. I always have certain scenes in mind at the beginning and it’s a matter of working out how to get from one to the other. They’re the stepping stones of the story. They need to be very strong scenes and always include the opening scene and a couple more where quite dramatic things happen that send the story in a different direction. 

6. How do you set up your book? Do you outline them first, or did you just spin around the story?

It doesn’t matter how much you plan, as you write the creative juices kick in and you find yourself listening to your characters. The better you know them (the planning part) the more you’re free to sit back and let them take over. They say unexpected things and begin to tell you what should happen next. So you end up tweaking all those well-laid plans.

7. Grade your book. How many stars out of a perfect score of 5 stars? Please give the reason.

Ooh, that’s hard. Of course it’s 5 stars! An author has to love her story and know that she’s given her reader the very best she can. To give your own book less than 5 stars says I didn’t make it the best it can be.

8. What are you working on right now?

A Christmas novella set on Sydney’s glorious harbour. It’s fun to convey the beauty of the setting, the fabulous climate and how two people fall in love at this special time of year. 

9. Anything you would like to say to your readers?

I hope you enjoy reading Red Dirt Duchess as much as I loved writing it. 

Thank you Louise for the quick Q&A session with ai love books. I hope you had a lot of fun answering my questions. Best of luck!

Monday, September 8, 2014

On Tour: The Other Side of Gemini by LG McCann - Review + Q&A

 photo amoraldilemmabutton_zps690ded5d.jpg 

LG McCann is now on tour with CLP Blog Tours with her book, The Other Side of Gemini. Please visit her page for more blog stops.

The Other Side of Gemini
by LG McCann 

Genre: Adult, Chick Lit, Friendship
Publication: July, 2014
Format: kindle
Source: ARC, CLP Blog Tours
Connect: Twitter | Instagram | Facebook 
Buy: Amazon

Sylvia Miloche is a successful book editor by day, D-list party girl by night, and has been dating New York City’s favorite playboy James Ryan for five years. But things are far from perfect. When the New York Post catches James with an intern, Sylvia’s already precarious life comes crashing down.

Lindsay Sekulich is a high school science teacher, wife, and mother of three in the suburbs of Phoenix, Arizona. Her high school reunion is quickly approaching and that means the secrets of her bad-girl past, all of which she’s kept hidden from her husband, could come spilling out, revealing who she once was and the horrible things she’s done.

When Sylvia emerges in Scottsdale, seeking refuge in her hometown from the relentless gossip blogs, Lindsay finds herself alternately elated and terrified. The two were inseparable as teens, but a tragedy just before their senior year tore them apart. Sylvia, once a carefree, joyful girl always up for adventure, is a beaten down and broken adult. Now Lindsay must make a choice: rescue the friend who saved her in high school, or keep it all hidden to save her marriage from almost certain destruction.

I received a copy of The Other Side of Gemini by LG McCann from the author/CLP Blog Tours as part of the book tour.

The Other Side of Gemini was not what I’d expected to read, judging from the title, or the cover. This book was a story of Sylvia and Lindsay. They were best friends until one night that changed everything. Ten years later, Sylvia was a successful book editor. But her boyfriend, James, left her after the New York Post catches him with an intern.  Lindsay moved back to hometown. She’s a science teacher, and she’s married to Paul with three kids. But, Paul had absolutely no idea about his wife’s wild past. With their high school reunion is approaching, Lindsay has to convince Sylvia to go to the reunion with her before her husband found out what she has been hiding from him. 

I really enjoyed reading this book. I love watching Sylvia and Lindsey’s relationship in their past and present. Their friendship was a bit dark, and emotional. I was a bit shocked to find out the reason why their friendship ended after high school. The supporting characters were amazing. I keep wondering what’s Paul’s reaction was going to be if he found out about his wife. I think LG McCann did a really great job in writing the book. This is definitely a great story of friendship.

Q&A with LG McCann 

1. Please introduce yourself and your book.
Hi! I'm LG. My first novel The Other Side of Gemini was recently published by Soul Mate Publishers. I turned 30 this year, just got my first dog, and have to keep reminding myself that Gemini is finished and that I can't make any more revisions when I think of something I want to change (which still keeps happening!).

My book is a little Thelma & Louise, a little Valley of the Dolls, a little My So-Called-Life, and even a little Romy & Michele. It has the glossy life, the mom life, relationships good and bad, coming-of-age, wacky situations, and, of course, plenty of humor and love.

2. How do you come up with the idea of the book? What is your inspiration?
There wasn't any one inspiration for the book. There were a lot, actually, like my strongest friendships (my soul mates), my nastiest heartbreaks, my crazy jobs, and New York City.

I always start my books with my characters. The plot starts to reveal itself as I write my characters, often jumping from scene to scene, never linearly, just spending time in their worlds and in their heads. I rarely start a book with a plot in mind, and that was mostly the case with Gemini. All I knew was that I wanted to write a story about two best friends, one of whom lived in New York City, and their high school reunion. The kickoff to the book really started when I decided that Sylvia had been cheated on and had found out in a very public manner. The plot formed with each new anecdote I wrote, and once I finally had all the pieces, it was just a matter of sewing them together in the right order.

Life is my inspiration. Just as the characters form the plot, life informs my characters. I like to take little bits of little things I see every day and figure out if I can use them and where I can put them. Recently, I was trying to decide what to do about a character's career. I didn't want him to be a cop, but he needed to be a defender/protector-type. I was having a hard time choosing a career that inspired reverence. Driving to my day job one morning, a huge pickup truck passed me on the highway with a bumper stick that read COMBAT MEDIC. That was it! It was the last piece of information I needed to complete the character's basic story. Things like that are a really big deal.
3. Are there any scene in the book that resemble real experiences?
I don't think I should be telling this story, especially not on the internet, but I'm going to anyway...

There's one scene in the book where Lindsay and Sylvia, as teenagers, get into a car with two boys they don't know. The girls were used to catching rides home from parties with guys they didn't know well, if at all, but they learn it's a bad idea after one particular night: Instead of taking them to their houses, their supposedly chivalrous chauffeurs basically kidnap them and take them to a grungy apartment in a seedy part of Phoenix against their will.

This scene still makes me nervous, and not just because it was vaguely inspired by a real-life event. Actually, the real-life event was much less scary and, ultimately, kind of hilarious.

A very good friend and I were drowning our stress at a rooftop bar in Manhattan. We met and were dancing with two handsome, young Middle Eastern men who liked to flaunt their wealth. After we had all grown tired of the bar, the guys invited us to hang out with them in DUMBO (a fancy, revamped part of Brooklyn). They told us it a club, that there would be dancing and drinks. It didn't sound sketchy at the time.

I figured we would be taking a cab, but when we reached the pavement, the guys' friend pulled around in a shiny new BMW. My friend and I were directed into the back seat. I wasn't at all comfortable with being in a stranger's car, especially given how inebriated I was. But my friend insisted that we would be fine--that we were going to have fun! (Side note: She and I both lived in Harlem at the time and it was a really long subway ride home from DUMBO.) I don't know why I listened to her. A few blocks later, I panicked and tried to jump out of the car at a stoplight, but the driver just sped up and whizzed through the red light, keeping me in. He then locked the doors and continued to lock them every time I tried to get out (which happened a few times).

Before I knew it, we were crossing the Manhattan Bridge into a part of New York that I did NOT know! It's all a blur after that for me, because I was panicking the whole time, imagining the worst-case scenario. I didn't know if we were going to be ball-gagged and raped or filleted and hung up in some creepy closet. The men led us into a shiny new apartment building, past an old, greying doorman, and into an elevator. They punched the button for the highest floor and we rode to the top. When the elevator stopped, the doors opened and the guys walked out ahead of us. Thinking quickly, I grabbed my friend by the back of her coat as she moved to follow them and pulled her back in, simultaneously hitting the CLOSE DOOR button and praying the guys wouldn't notice. Just as the doors closed, we saw them run back toward us, but we were safe. We sprinted out of the elevator as soon as it hit the lobby and ran down the gleaming, tiled corridor to the front doors.

"You didn't see us!" I shouted at the old doorman as we whizzed past him. "You didn't see us!"

My friend beckoned for me to keep moving, and then we heard them: the guys had caught the other elevator and were right on our heels. We sprinted--sprinted!--and soon found ourselves under the Manhattan Bridge. We hid behind a parked car and watched as the guys stood at the entrance to their building and looked up and down the street for us. They didn't linger long; they gave up quickly and went back inside.

After my friend relieved herself under the bridge, we took a very expensive cab ride back over the bridge to Manhattan and made it home safe and sound.

In retrospect, I like to think they were weren't bad guys, that they were probably just messing with us. Still, it was super creepy, the situation was incredibly sketchy, and we shouldn't have been that dumb.

4. What do you like most about writing this book? 
Finishing it! No, I'm kidding. Finishing it was actually bittersweet after four years of working on it. My favorite time of the day to write is after dark. I love to have a desk lamp on in a dark room, with a glass of wine (or maybe a bottle) next to me, and just get sucked into my writing. I will become so engrossed in the story that I'll have forgotten what I wrote the next morning (and not because of the wine). Getting lost in my characters and their worlds is so much fun. After I knew Lindsay and Sylvia really well, from so many angles, getting lost in their scenes became even more exciting.

5. What's the happiest thing you've been told recently?
The four sweetest words of the moment are "I loved your book!" I'm even hearing from people who I haven't spoken to since middle school. I'm loving all the encouraging words and being able to connect and reconnect with a lot of people.

6. What are you working on right now?
I'm so excited about my new project. It's a new women's fiction novel about a woman who runs her family's ski resort. It deals with the emergence of dark family secrets, having to grow up and take responsibility, and learning to let people in. There's a little thrill, a few laughs, and even some sexy times. It's been really fun to work on so far.

7. Anything you would like to say to your readers?
Just... THANK YOU! Especially for making it all the way to the end of this interview. Feel free to write to me, Tweet me, or find me on Facebook! I love hearing from people, especially readers. And maybe the occasional pervert. (KIDDING! Perverts need not apply.)

Author Bio:

LG McCann was born and raised in the Last Frontier. She spent her formative years on her family’s ski resort near Fairbanks where, if she wasn’t bombarding customers with rocketlaunched Barbie dolls, she was in the cubby under the stairs making up stories. After enduring the rest of her adolescence in Anchorage, LG tried her hand in the Lower-48, where she graduated from Hollins University summa cum laude with a double major in English and Film & Photography.

After six years in New York City, where she acquired unique experiences working in reality TV, the non-profit sector, and the publishing industry, LG still hadn’t found her calling. She still just wanted to be in that cubby making up stories. She wanted to write. These days, that’s exactly what she’s doing. But when she’s not writing or proofreading (or at her day job), you’ll most likely find LG playing in her garden, cooking with her partner Jonathan, attempting complex yoga moves, or passing out from exhaustion on her couch with her fuzzy assistant Emmy Cat.

Review: A Curse of Kings (The Trials of Oland Born) by Alex Barclay

A Curse of Kings (The Trials of Oland Born)
by Alex Barclay

Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, Young Adult
Publication:  January 31st 2013
Format: Paperback, 427 pages
Source: Own
Connect: Website | Facebook

 Fourteen-year-old Oland Born lives in dark times, in a world ruled by evil tyrant, Vilius Ren. Vilius and his fearsome, bloodthirsty army have wrecked the prosperous kingdom of Decresian, once ruled by good King Micah. Oland himself has been kept as Vilius’s servant in grim Castle Derrington, and he knows little about his past – or why Vilius keeps such a sharp, close eye on him.

One night, Oland finds a letter addressed to him, from the long-dead king. No sooner has he read the message than a mysterious stranger tries to kidnap him. Oland runs, the dead king’s warning ringing in his ears…

If Oland is to live he must restore the shattered kingdom. This is his quest. This is his curse. Let the trials of Oland Born begin. . .

I’m not sure what made me pick up this book from the book store. I guess, the blurb kinda attracted me. A Curse of Kings started with King Micah being betrayed by Villius Ren. Years later, Oland Born, a servant to Villius Ren was introduced. It was said that Oland was born on the night that King Micah was overthrown with a note from his mother that said she’ll be back for him someday. One night, Oland found a letter addressed to him from the late King Micah, instructed him to run.

I didn’t have much expectation when I start reading this book. There weren’t a lot of reviews for it when I purchased the book, so, I didn’t know what to expect. 

The first part of A Curse of Kings was a bit too long and draggy. My sister started the book, and DNF at page 90++ because of this. But if you were a bit patience, you will find that the second part was way better. I enjoyed the adventure, and the friendship between Oland and Delphi. There story building was quite good. The characters and the supporting characters were great. There were a few twists that I did not expect at the ending. I kinda like the story and will definitely read the second book (if there’s any).

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery

Monday, September 1, 2014

Review: Code by Kathy Reichs

Code (Virals #3)
by Kathy Reichs

Genre: Crime & Thriller, Fantasy, Paranormal, Sci-fi, Young Adult
Publication: January 2013
Format: Paperback, 416 pages
Source: Own
Connect: Website | Facebook | Twitter
Tory Brennan, great niece of Dr Temperance Brennan, and the Virals return for their most terrifying adventure yet.

Life appears peaceful on Loggerhead Island - rescued from financial disaster, the research institute is flourishing once more. But the tranquility is quickly shattered when Tory Brennan and her technophile gang discover a mysterious box buried in the ground.

A seemingly innocent treasure hunt soon turns into a nightmarish game of puzzles, as it becomes clear that one false move will lead to terrible, explosive consequences.

The clock is ticking. Can Tory and the Virals crack the code in time to save the city - and their own lives?

I enjoyed the first two books of the Virals series. But I can’t bring myself quickly enough to read the third book, probably because of the cover. The third book didn’t match the first two books. This wouldn’t be good for my collection.

In the third book, Tory and her friends return with their next adventure when they discovered a mysterious box on their treasure hunt. But this treasure hunt turned badly when their lives, the people around them were at stake. Now, Tory and the Virals have to crack the puzzle in time before somebody dies.

It was exciting to see the Virals back. I can’t wait to see what kind of adventure the Virals will face next. I have to say that I weren’t as interested in the puzzle that the Virals found at first. I thought that the book was a bit slow paced at the beginning. But Kathy Reichs was really good with the story building. I found myself wanting to know what it is about the game and who is it that wanted to kill the Virals. I wanted to know more about the Virals’ power. I was so excited when Chance made his appearance. I'm curious about what he knew about the Virals and how he will fit in the story.

Virals was definitely as exciting as the other books, although, probably slow paced as compared to the two. I enjoyed reading this one and I can’t wait to read the next book, Exposure!

buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...