Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Review: I See London by Chanel Cleeton

I See London by Chanel Cleeton
Review Copy Via Netgalley

Maggie Carpenter is ready for a change— and to leave her ordinary life in South Carolina behind. But when she accepts a scholarship to the International School in London, a university attended by the privileged offspring of diplomats and world leaders, Maggie might get more than she bargained for.

When Maggie meets Hugh, a twentysomething British guy, she finds herself living the life she always wanted. Suddenly she’s riding around the city in a Ferrari, wearing borrowed designer clothes and going to the hottest clubs. The only problem? Another guy, the one she can’t seem to keep her hands off of.

Half French, half Lebanese, and ridiculously wealthy, Samir Khouri has made it clear he doesn’t do relationships. He’s the opposite of everything Maggie thought she wanted…and he’s everything she can’t resist. Torn between her dream guy and the boy haunting her dreams, Maggie has to fight for her own happy ending. In a city like London, you never know where you stand, and everything can change in the blink of an eye.

Ooooh man, you’ve got to love Europe. Wonderful accents, yummy food, hot guys. Ice Queens who aren’t so icey and both a player and a man you maybe sort of lied to about pretty much everything vying for your attention. Or sex. Or friendship. MWHAHAHA. ALL THE THINGS HAPPENING. *regains composure* That description makes this book sound really complicated (its not). 

Reality: we have a girl of 19 years who’s only real family is her grandmother. I mean she has an absentee father and a no where to be found mother, but they don’t really count. After her rejection from Harvard, she has to find another way to get out of the hole she has been crammed in to. International School in London (LONDON!) offers her just that. There she meets the not so icey ice queen and Arab-French boy. She also meets Hugh (I don’t care for him) and there our course of events. 

One kiss changes everything and London changes her. 

This book as fine. Yes, just fine. I didn’t really like – no, that’s wrong- I liked everything fine (except for that whole lying mess) but nothing really left my wheeling. It was just that- fine. 

"You deserve more. You deserve everything." -ARC

Thursday, November 20, 2014

#Interview : Naomi Bellina + a #Giveaway

Hey everyone! Wow! This school semester has been insanely busy. So there's the cause for my 2 posts a weeks as opposed to what had been five to six. Anyways, welcome to the newest interview! Let's all give a big round of applause to Naomi Bellina!

Naomi lives in sunny Florida with the love of her life and a magical calico cat. She writes for various fiction and non-fiction markets but is drawn to romance because her characters insist on canoodling and falling in love. So she lets them. Her interests include dancing, motorcycle riding, drumming and creating healthy meals. She takes the opportunity to play whenever possible. Her motto:  Never pass up the opportunity to have an adventure!   

1. If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you go?
That answer changes depending on the seasons but right now I'd like to be somewhere cold with great fall colors, a fireplace and a hot tub. Maybe Colorado or Montana. It's still warm in Florida and it's hard to get in the holiday mood when we're all sweating. I've always wanted to visit Austria and Switzerland, during their winter season.

2. How did you get the idea for your newest book?
A lot of Don't Say No comes from my own experience working in a spa. I was also a mystery shopper so I decided to combine the two jobs. My mystery shopping wasn't nearly as fun as Amber's assignment, though.

3. If you were stuck on a deserted island, would you rather have with you a book, a banjo, a pineapple or a cinnamon scented candle with you? How would you use it?
A banjo. Once I read the book it would be done but it would take me a long time to learn to play the banjo. I'd give mini concerts for the wildlife critters.

4. What character that you’ve brought to life is most relatable to you?
I can really relate to Amber in this book, even though I'm older. I remember those years, trying to figure out what the heck I wanted to do with my life. Amber has a pretty good plan, more so than I did. She's just having trouble getting it together and picked the wrong, butthead boyfriend. I did that once or twice too!

5. How has music impacted your writing and who’s your favorite artist/ song? 
Another thing that changes all the time. I really like classic rock but I recently heard a great idea to keep me motivated when writing. Find a movie that resonates with my book and listen to the soundtrack. I've been jamming to a few songs from Guardians of the Galaxy and dancing to songs from Rio 2.

6. Do you have a favorite quote? I’m personally a fan of pretty words—especially poems. 
I have a whole file of quotes! Nice to hear someone else likes them. Here's one of my favs, to get us in the mood for the holidays:  We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.  ~Thornton Wilder

7. What’s a book you’d totally recommend and possibly swear on your life is the greatest book ever written?
The dictionary. Ha! Can you tell I have a hard time picking favorites? I've read way too many to chose just one. Seriously, I love looking through a dictionary and finding all kinds of strange words. A Thesaurus is a great to browse through also and I use both a lot when writing.

8. What’s a favorite food that come from your part of the world (or is more commonly known there)? For example, I’d say chicken fried steak because, well, Texas.
I recently ate star fruit, picked right from a tree. They have an odd flavor, hard to describe. When you cut them, the sections are really shaped like a star. Oh, and you haven't lived until you've eaten a juicy, sweet orange fresh from a local grove or slurped down a glass of really fresh OJ.  Now I'm hungry.

9. Do you have a snacking while reading food that you’d care to share?
No, I never share my snacking food. Oh, you mean share what KIND of food.  :-)  I love pan-cooked popcorn. It's kind of a pain to make and stinks up the house but it tastes soooo good with melted butter and salt drizzled all over. Now I'm really hungry.

10. Anything else you’d like to add?
Thank you so much for having me here today. I love sharing with readers and am always happy to answer questions. I hope everyone has a joyous holiday season. Remember to read lots of books!

Make sure y'all check out her newest book!

The cute blurb: 

Happy accidents or how not to scream when crap happens

Have you ever had your life on track and were cruising along real nice when suddenly, wham! Something comes and bitch-slaps you upside the head and everything changes. Most of us have had this happen, at least once or twice. Sometimes the end result is great, sometimes not so much but staying flexible and adjusting to changes makes life a whole lot easier. It's really awesome when we can look back at one of those slaps and say, "Oh wow, that actually worked out pretty well." Yep, sometimes Fate has better plans than we do. To quote Joseph Campbell, "We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us." 

In Don't Say No, Amber is all set to go to college, and then open her own business with her boyfriend Randy. He gets them both kicked out of school and her plans fizzle out like a dud firecracker. Amber quickly comes up with Plan B. One of the reasons I love the character of Amber so much is because she doesn't let a major setback get her down. Even when Plan B gets shot down she keeps going, adapting to some major changes and making them work out for the best.

How about you? Ever have something happen that seemed liked the worst but turned out good in the end? Thanks so much for reading.  

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Review: Feel the Heat by Kate Meader

Feel the Heat by Kate Meader
Review Copy Via Publisher

Photographer Lili DeLuca spends all her time working at her family's Italian restaurant, instead of following her dream of getting an MFA. When famous British chef Jack Kilroy unexpectedly challenges her father to a cook-off, Lili decides she's tired of playing it safe and vows to seduce the tempting Brit. But once a video of her and Jack kissing goes viral and her luscious (if voluptuous) butt starts trending on Twitter, Lili fears she's cooked up a recipe for disaster . . .

Jack Kilroy's celebrity has left him feeling used and used up. While Lili's oh-so-sexy moans when she tastes his delicious creations turn him on, he's even more aroused by how this beautiful, funny woman is unimpressed by his fame. He knows they could be amazing together, if she could only see past his rabid, bitch-fork-wielding fan base. Now as he's about to start a new prime time TV cooking show, can Jack convince Lili to realize her own ambitions-and turn up the heat in his kitchen?

Between her family’s business, self-doubt and her photography, Lili think she doesn’t have time for a man- especially not the too hot to handle British television chef. Who she may or may now have pulled a Tangled on.

So, everyone meet Lili. Hardworking, selfless and surrounded n self-hate that began with school yard bullying, she’s an awesome heroine, even if her . . . what should I call it . . . flimsiness? Annoyed me at times. Her self- doubt showed in everything, so I can understand why sir chef was doubting what Lili’s true emotions were.

Who is this sir chef who Lili’s sister manages, as well as basically shoves at her? Everyone meet Jack Kilroy. Tall, dark (well, not really) and handsome, he’s the eternal optimist. And it makes me feel stabby. For some parts of the book, I couldn’t tell if he loved Lili or the way Lili loved (perhaps adored) his cooking. Also, where can I get some goat cheese and caramel gelato?

Jack has his debut of “Jack of all Trades” in Lili’s family run restaurant. Between Lili, idiot cousins as well as family issues, he has really got his hands full. Entranced by the youngest daughter, he’s rekindling his passion for food again though Lili and her passion for eating. One which I can totally understand. I mean, food, man. Food is life.

I feel like this entire book was Katy Perry’s “Hot and Cold” just because of Lili. Besides her love for all things edible, I found myself not actually being able to relate to her.

Onto the plot. It was sweet; small town girl stuck in her ways meets big city chef who’s always moving and doing. They really do compliment each other. Even if butting heads did seem to be a particular specialty of theirs.

In the end, more than anything the food aspect of this book, especially seeing how different characters reacted to it, was what kept me reading, rather than the story itself. This novel was fun and sweet and made me want to eat gelato and buy photography. Or become and photographer.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

ARC Review: A Cowboy's Christmas Promise by Maggie McGinnis

A Cowboy's Christmas Promise by Maggie McGinnis
Published November 18 of 2014 by LoveSwept
Goodreads /
Review Copy via Netgalley + Publisher


In a captivating novel spiced with holiday magic—perfect for fans of Rachel Gibson, Susan Mallery, and Molly O’Keefe—a rugged Montana man mends a Northeast girl’s jaded heart.
Boston veterinarian Hayley Scampini tends the city’s pampered pets but dreams of the rural life of a country vet. She’s single and determined to stay that way, convinced that love isn’t permanent enough to trust. Then a vacation to the Whisper Creek dude ranch introduces her to Daniel McKee, a sexy single dad who runs the kind of veterinary practice she aspires to—and rattles her conviction to keep men at a distance.
Managing a thriving practice, coping with the loss of his wife, and fighting a custody battle with his in-laws over his twin daughters, Daniel couldn’t be more overwhelmed. Hayley is a godsend, accompanying him in the field and winning over his girls. It doesn’t take Daniel long to realize he’s falling for this woman, hard and fast. So before Hayley returns to Boston, he extracts a promise: that she will return to Whisper Creek for Christmas. It’s the perfect time and place to show Hayley that the promise of a beautiful life together is something she can believe in.

Hayley and Daniel are two of a kind, both in their rather tragic back stories and (and trust me, I know how cheesy this sounds) but their spirits. Plus, they’re both veterinarians. Which it really awesome and cool and I’m in total awe if their mad skills. But I’d also totally want Daniel’s job as opposed to Hayley’s: horses to small overbred dogs who are allergic to themselves.

When Hayley goes to visit Montana for her best friend’s wedding, she goes with the intention of a fling (like always) and leaves Montana with a promise. A promise to come back and see her soul mate (even though she refuses to acknowledge it) and his two adorable little daughters. Daniel’s wife dies from cancer a few years back and ever since his mother-in-law has been trying her hardest to get them closer to her, even going so far as to trying to legally gain custody over the girls.

While the wedding planning is going about, Hayley and Daniel are falling for each other; a new experience for both of them. Hayley practically becomes part of the family. Through all this there’s the possibility that things won’t be forever or that something will go horribly wrong.

This was an easy read. It was entertaining and sweet and overall, really fun. I love the characters and the place and the back stories for both of the main characters. The minor characters we’re AWESOME! I loved everybody by the time I was 25% through the book. The only complaint I have is that I was easily distracted throughout the book.

Y’all need to read this book!


Friday, November 14, 2014

Book Look: The Avery Shaw Experiment by Kelly Oram

The Avery Shaw Experiment

When Avery Shaw’s heart is shattered by her life-long best friend, she chooses to deal with it the only way she knows how—scientifically.

The state science fair is coming up and Avery decides to use her broken heart as the topic of her experiment. She’s going to find the cure. By forcing herself to experience the seven stages of grief through a series of social tests, she believes she will be able to get over Aiden Kennedy and make herself ready to love again. But she can’t do this experiment alone, and her partner (ex partner!) is the one who broke her heart.

Avery finds the solution to her troubles in the form of Aiden’s older brother Grayson. The gorgeous womanizer is about to be kicked off the school basketball team for failing physics. He’s in need of a good tutor and some serious extra credit. But when Avery recruits the lovable Grayson to be her “objective outside observer,” she gets a whole lot more than she bargained for, because Grayson has a theory of his own: Avery doesn’t need to grieve. She needs to live. And if there’s one thing Grayson Kennedy is good at, it’s living life to the fullest.


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

ARC Review: Starry Night by Isabel Gillis

Starry Night by Isabel Gillis
Published September 2, 2014
Review copy via Netgalley + publisher


Sometimes one night can change everything. On this particular night, Wren and her three best friends are attending a black-tie party at the Metropolitan Museum of Art to celebrate the opening of a major exhibit curated by her father. An enormous wind blasts through the city, making everyone feel that something unexpected and perhaps wonderful will happen. And for Wren, that something wonderful is Nolan. With his root-beer-brown Michelangelo eyes, Nolan changes the way Wren’s heart beats. In Isabel Gillies's Starry Night, suddenly everything is different. Nothing makes sense except for this boy. What happens to your life when everything changes, even your heart? How much do you give up? How much do you keep?

This book was a DNF at 5% for me. I didn't like the character's voice at all. 

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Free Books and an App to Believe In

Hello there all you lovely people! I've done, what? One other post on the beauty that is Wattpad? Have I even done that? *searches through tag and archive*

I seriously an hoping that y'all have an account. Or maybe your shouldn't. It is rather addicting and time consuming. *looks around blog. Sees a lot of work to be done.* *Looks at TBR pile/ shelf/ bookcase*

Okay, so this is the most addicting app and website you will ever find. It's more addictive than Pinterest. And sweet lordy is that website addictive. Anyone else find themselves pinning at two in the morning? No? Just me? OH YOU! YOU ARE MY PEOPLE! *shakes hand*

If you do happen to have a Wattpad and are looking to expand your library (and I mean, when are you not?!) here are a few books that you need to add to that reading list. And then to your favorites.

  1. Bitter Kisses by LifeGoesOn31 : Not your typical rejection story, and on Wattpad, there's a whole freaking lot. This one shows strength as opposed to some of the. . .let's say whinier female leads. Go ahead and add it!
  2. Beast of America by JuneValentine : Fine! I'll say it. Anything by this author is amazing. She should have a shrine. You know what? She probably already does. Go ahead and read SKIN by her while you're at it as well. 
  3. Avalon by palominolane : OH LORD THIS BOOK IS AMAZING AND NOT FINISHED AND SO FAR OVER 300 PAGES. I love this book. I love this book. I love this book. 
  4. Baked Love by thecuppedcake : Despite the rather stupid name, this may, in fact, be the most adorable book on the face of the earth. If this book had cheeks I would pinch them. 
  5. True North by Blondeanddangerous : My friend told me to read this. I should really trust her most because this main guy was hot *sizzle*

Here, my lovely readers, is my favorite cover out of these books. 

Fantastic right? So the follow me is on the sidebar. OH WAIT! HALT! DO NOT LEAVE YET!

I wrote a short story on Wattpad

Monday, November 3, 2014

The Only Writing I've Ever Finished is Poetry

Hey, y'all! Well the school year for me has gotten off to a pretty good start. How's all of your lives been going?

Let's talk writing and finishing things and why I am in total awe of authors and their epic skills in the art of actually finishing what they started. I can't finish ANYTHING. It's pretty bad. I'm actually working on something right now and this is the farthest I've ever gotten. It's about twelve thousand words right now. *sighs* My goal is about sixty thousand words. Yeah. Not even close. What can I tell you? I get distracted. Really, really easily. Which is why I adore poetry so much.

I CAN FINISH THAT STUFF! So maybe I'll just become a poet. And an artist. I think this is a pretty awesome back up plan. Maybe I'll discover I like living in a box. Or maybe I'll become really well-known and all that jazz.

Anyways. I'm going to reccomend a few poets that you oh so very totally need to check out. They're on Instagram.

Christopher Poindexter (becasue you will never meet anyone more perfect)
Amanda T (Her writing is rather gorgeous)
Tyler Kent White (Don't even get me started)

*some I've newly discovered*

My Poetry Shelf on Goodreads

Are any of y'all authors or people who can actually finish writing a book? Could you please tell me the secret? There is a secret, right?