Carolinareader

I Read Stuff

Cuff Me by Lauren Layne — July 27, 2016

Cuff Me by Lauren Layne

Cuff Me is the third book in Layne’s New York’s Finest series.  I haven’t read the first two books in this series but when I read about this one I just had to pick it up.  It contains a gruff hero and a friends to lovers plot, how could I pass that up?

Vincent Moretti and Jill Henley have been partners for several years .  At the beginning of the book Jill has been gone three months because she had to take care of her mother who took a fall.  Vincent isn’t really in touch with his emotions but he has missed his partner and is glad she will be back.  Unfortunately, for Vincent, while she has been gone she got engaged and is planning to move away in a few months.

Jill’s news throws Vincent’s world for a loop, he doesn’t want to lose her but is not sure what to do and isn’t quite ready to acknowledge how strongly he really feels.  He has always been a bit of an outsider.  His mother tells a sweet and  yet sad story about how he got that way.  Vin is a loner in a crowd and even when he wants to connect to someone he isn’t quite sure what to do about it.

Jill got engaged to Tom because she wants the kind of relationship she sees happening all around her  and Tom is a pretty great guy, the kind of guy every girl dreams of when they are young.  She is  perplexed by her current relationship with Vincent.  She had hoped that maybe something would happen with him once but it never did however now she is getting all sorts of mixed-messages from him.  Plus they are having a more difficult time than normal solving their current case.

Though Jill is engaged to someone who isn’t the hero at the start of the book there is no cheating in the story if that is something you dislike .  This also means that while there are love scenes in the book they don’t happen right away.  This story isn’t perfect and the mystery that they need to solve isn’t that complex but I still enjoyed it greatly.

BTW I didn’t  mean to focus so much on Vin but he is one of my favorite types of heroes, a  big gruff guy  who cares greatly but isn’t always always that good  at showing it.  Please romance world write me more guys like this.

Buy:Amazon

Idol by Kristen Callihan — July 18, 2016

Idol by Kristen Callihan

 

Idol is one of those books that I felt I should have loved but for some reason I just didn’t. I thought I would give 10 reasons why I feel I should have liked this book:

  1.  When the hero and heroine first meet he ends up naked on her front lawn
  2. Kinda of a love/hate relationship at start
  3. Massive amounts of witty dialogue
  4. It is a Rock Star romance
  5. It was a great beginning to a series because it made me want to read the other characters books.
  6.  And about those secondary characters they add to the story and the humor
  7.  Both hero and heroine are good people (no asshattery)
  8.  Gives details of the musical part of a rock stars live
  9.  Fantastic sexy times
  10. I have liked or loved everything I have ever read by this author

Now here are 3 reasons why I  possibly didn’t enjoy as much as I expected

  1. I have read several rock star romances this year and might be burnt out on them
  2.  I am in the middle of a book slump (no little blue pill can cure that, even if they had such a thing for women)
  3. I was trying to read multiple books at the same time to get over said book slump

In the end it just didn’t click with me and that’s….okay (totally hearing Al Franken’s voice in my head right now).

Buy: Amazon

Yes Please by Amy Poehler —

Yes Please by Amy Poehler

Every once in a while I get in the mood for a biography and this time around I picked up Amy Poehler’s Yes Please. I knew Amy Poehler Saturday Night Live work but I am more familiar with her work on  the show Parks and Recreation. Loved her character Leslie Knope.  Seriously right now I wish Leslie Knope was real and running for President.

This biography isn’t chronological, she jumps around, but it still flowed well and was easy to follow.  She is very honest about  her triumphs and her mistakes. If you wanted to know more about how her mind worked you get that here. What you won’t get is juicy gossip about  co-workers or the intimate details about her divorce. This isn’t that kind of biography

If you like Poehler you will most likely enjoy this book. She discusses her early improv work along with her work on SNL and Parks and Rec. I really loved that she wrote a little something about each of her P and R co-stars. You also learn  about her family and   her sons

I came away from this book feeling that I knew Amy Poehlet a little better and I still liked her.

Buy : Amazon

Duke Of Sin by Elizabeth Hoyt — July 4, 2016

Duke Of Sin by Elizabeth Hoyt


At the beginning of this book Elizabeth Hoyt writes:

This is for everyone who ever fell hopelessly in love with…the Villain

That fits this book perfectly because Valentine Napier, the Duke of Montgomery,  is a villain that I can’t help loving to read about. I have only read a few of the Maiden Lane books s but it was clear from  that he was not a good guy. A vain blackmailer, who is vengeful and seems to love very few.

Bridget Crumb is simply an awesome heroine, a housekeeper who enjoys her life but is working for Valentine to get the blackmail information he has on bio-mother. She is intelligent, seasonable, and somehow the perfect match for the Duke of Montgomery.There is so much chemistry between these two, she is at first like a puzzle he delights in trying to figure out. The banter between them is witty and the desire is hot.

Valentine himself is fascinating, his view of the world and his actions are completely skewed by a horrific childhood. Not excusing him but I did come to understand him better because of this book.  He will do whatever he thinks he has to do in order to have power over others so that they have no power over him.

So much more I could say but I will just say I loved this book-that is all

 

Buy Link: Amazon

 

Sweetest Scoundrel (Maiden Lane) by Elizabeth Hoyt — June 8, 2016

Sweetest Scoundrel (Maiden Lane) by Elizabeth Hoyt

The Sweetest Scoundrel is the 9th book in the Maiden Lane book. It revolves around Asa Makepeace and Eve Dinwoody. Asa is the owner of Harte’s Folly, Eve’s brother is the main investor and has put her in charge of overseeing that investment. Asa is trying to rebuild Harte’s Folly after a fire, it means everything to him, and  Eve is skeptical of the whole thing. So of course there is much head-butting at first.

As they get to know each other their feelings change. Eve has a dark childhood and is even afraid to be touched at first. Asa is wonderful to her and basically awakes her to life and brings her out of the cold.  Eve teaches Asa that he can love more than just Harte’s Folly. Their romance was realistic and sweet.

While I don’t think you have to read the other maiden lane books I do admit that, because I haven’t read the early books, I was a little lost at who was who in one scene with Asa’s family. It did however make me want to read the earlier books. This book felt a little like a bridge book, if that makes sense, a book that needed to happen so that we could get to Eve’s brothers book. Not the main event but enjoyable anyway.

Buy Link: Amazon

 

Marrying Winterborne by Lisa Kleypas — June 4, 2016

Marrying Winterborne by Lisa Kleypas


Marrying Winterborne is a lovely read. I don’t think I have disliked a Kleypas book yet so my opinion might be a bit biased.  However I still think this book made me happy in away romance books don’t always do, like chocolate or ice cream without the feeling of guilt.

We got acquainted with the Ravenel sisters in the first book  of the series, Cold-Hearted Rake (which you don’t have to read to enjoy this one). This is the story of the eldest sister Helen.  In the last book her engagement to Rhys Winterborne was broken by her family member, who mistakenly thought that was what she wanted,  this book begins with her going to Rhys and letting him know that she wants to marry him.

There is so much to love in this book. I expected Rhys to be the normal alpha-jerk that is common in romance. Nothing against alpha-jerks but it is nice when a character surprises you.  He is a successful business man who came from a common background to work his way to the top with a very successful store.  One of the reasons he originally wants to marry a Lady  is for the social acceptance it will give him and his store.

Once the initial misunderstanding is worked out he really is a wonderful suitor to Helen. I think what liked so much about this book is how fun and drama free their relationship is from the beginning.  I am not saying drama doesn’t exist in the book  but even when a secret reared its ugly head I had a feeling that their relationship could withstand it.

I haven’t said much about Helen but she is a great heroine.  She has a quiet strength that allows her to get through the toughest times. It also allows her to go after the man she wants and do what she feels is right even when others are against it.

I really liked the first book in this series but I love Marrying Winterborne.

buy:Amazon

 

Dirty: A Dive Bar Novel by Kylie Scott — May 21, 2016

Dirty: A Dive Bar Novel by Kylie Scott

Dirty is the first book in Kylie Scott’s new Dive Bar series.

1 runaway bride + 1 down on his luck musician + 1 bar with interesting people  = Dirty: A Dive Bar Novel

Lydia Green has not been in town more then a few months. However in that time she has become engaged to her coworker who is also her  bosses son. It wasn’t a whirlwind romance but Lydia has always wanted a place to belong and thought that maybe she had found it.  Sadly on her wedding day she discovers her fiancee is having an affair with his best man.  This causes her to sneak and runaway with just her wedding dress on her back.

Vaughan Hewson is the down on his luck musician. His band wasn’t hugely famous but now they have broken up. He is home to sell he parents house.  Being there is difficult because he lost his parents in a car wreck and has never real dealt with the emotional pain. He is also low on funds because he borrowed money to help his sister.

These two meet when she climbs into an open window and hides in his bathtub (as one does). Of course he is naked when they do meet as he was about to take a shower. Talk about an interesting and awkward first impressions.

Vaughan and Lydia have loads of chemistry and Vaughan is a amazing supportive guy in her roughest moments. They both end up temporarily working at a bar his sister Nell co-owns. I really like Nell and can’t wait to read her story. There are other interesting secondary characters that add to the story.  Even Mal of Stage Dive makes a quick appearance.

It isn’t all hearts and flowers for Lydia and Vaughan, they both have issues to work through. Still the angst is more on the low level overall. The title is Dirty so there is plenty of sex and sexual tension.   An enjoyable read and if you liked Kylie Scott’s Stage Dive novels you will probably like this one as well.  Personally I thought it was a great series starter novel because it got me to want to read other characters books when they come out. This author did a great job at giving us bread crumbs for the future Dive Bar stories. Seriously, I am not sure I mentioned it but I really want to read Nell’s book 🙂

Buy Link : Kindle  

Paperback