The Beau & The Belle Review

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Synopsis from Goodreads

Beau Fortier starred in most of my cringe-worthy teenage fantasies.

I met him when I was a junior in high school, a time that revolved exclusively around bad hair, failed forays into flirting, and scientific inquiries into which brand of toilet paper worked best for stuffing bras.

That is, until Beau moved into the small guest house just beyond my bedroom window.

A 24-year-old law student at Tulane, Beau was as mysterious to me as second base (both in baseball and in the bedroom). He was older. Intimidating. Hot. Boys my age had chicken legs and chubby cheeks. Beau had calloused hands and a jaw cut from steel. Our interactions were scarce—mostly involving slight stalking on my end—and yet deep down, I desperately hoped he saw me as more of a potential lover than a lovesick loser.

Turns out, I was fooling myself. My fragile ego learned that lesson the hard way.

Now, ten years later, we’re both back in New Orleans, and guess who suddenly can’t take his eyes off little ol’ me.

My old friend, Mr. Fortier.

But things have changed. I’m older now—poised and confident. My ego wears a bulletproof vest. The butterflies that once filled my stomach have all perished.

When I was a teenager, Beau warned me to guard my heart.

Let’s hope he knows how to guard his 

My Thoughts

R.S. Grey has done it again! I swear Rachel is the queen of all rom-coms. I can easily devour her books in one day if I didn’t have to work and well sleep, but who I am kidding, I only get a few hours of sleep when I read her books because of the whole “one more chapter.”

I loved how the first few chapters are set in the past to help build character development and you get a peak at the chemistry that is brewing, but neither one will act on it because of various reasons mainly because of one and that is age difference.

After splitting ways Beau and Lauren run into each other again and their chemistry is like they were never separated. I loved the slow burn romance that builds although there were times where I was screaming just get together already, but I was happy with the pace that book went at.

This book was oh so, so, so sexy! It was also sweet, charming and full of laughs. Lauren was quirky, fun and very straightforward. While Beau is a pure gentlemen. His relationship with his mother made me all heart eyes and swoony (I am a sucker for a momma’s boy 😉 ) He is also a hard-working man thoughtful and so perfect with the slow seduction. Can he be a real person, because I want to be with man like him.

The Beau & The Belle is the perfect slow burn, second chance romance book. It is charming, laugh out loud funny, feel good and will make you fall in love all over again. With the setting in New Orleans it is hard not to fall in love. Now someone make some Beignet’s and I will bring the coffee, because the craving is real after reading this book.

XO

The Upside of Being Single Review

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Synopsis:

If anyone asks, I knew better than to flash my boobs for Mardi Gras beads.

I still don’t know why I did it.
Maybe it was the dare from my two best friends.
Maybe it was the guys on the balcony saying they’d throw Fireball shots with the beads.
Or maybe it was the quiet guy in the corner of that same balcony with piercing gray eyes, wavy dark hair, and a smile so tempting I wanted to climb up there and lick it off his face.
Maybe it was because I never thought I’d see them again.
Not that it matters. Not today.
Because the hotel I manage was finally bought—and the guy who walks in and introduces himself as my new boss is Mr. Tall, Dark, and Silent.

There are many upsides to being single.
Your new boss knowing what your boobs look like?
Not one of them.

My Thoughts

I turned to this book after craving more romantic comedies, but I was not ready to turn back to R.S. Grey, I am trying to stretch out her books instead of binging them all in a row, but Amazon recommended The Upside of Being Single to me after I finished The Beau & The Belle and it sounded intriguing.

At first I adored Mellie. She is a spit fire, slightly a hot mess and completely relatable. But the whole clumsy thing stopped being funny after awhile. It was at first like when she first encounters her new boss and drops the gin all the floor was funny, but the other times it got annoying. I didn’t stop liking Millie, I just didn’t love her.

As for Jake, I loved him! Although come on now how can you get away with the things he did in that office and not get in trouble with HR? And some of his commentary made me shudder. I know it’s supposed to be funny, but some of it hit the mark. At least for me.

So I kind of got the things I didn’t love about the story so here are the things that I freaking loved about this story. Starting with the friendships. Mellie has the best friends and I loved their friendship in this story,  I need more of them please! Millie is not your usual heroine. She is strong, independent and funny! Her banters with Jake were priceless. Plus I would love to go out and get donuts with her. Third the sexual tensions in this book was so, so, so good! I also love how Emma Hart showed how being single is fun.

If you are looking for a fun, quick, and has a great focus on friendship then this is a book for you!

Happy reading!

XO

Stalking Jack the Ripper Review

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Book: Stalking Jack the Ripper

Author: Kerri Maniscalco

Page Count: 326

Publisher: Jimmy Patterson

Rating: 5/5 Stars

 

Synopsis from Goodreads:

“Seventeen-year-old Audrey Rose Wadsworth was born a lord’s daughter, with a life of wealth and privilege stretched out before her. But between the social teas and silk dress fittings, she leads a forbidden secret life.

Against her stern father’s wishes and society’s expectations, Audrey often slips away to her uncle’s laboratory to study the gruesome practice of forensic medicine. When her work on a string of savagely killed corpses drags Audrey into the investigation of a serial murderer, her search for answers brings her close to her own sheltered world.”

My Thoughts Going Into the Story:

Give me anything about Jack the Ripper and I am game.  I am not sure what it is, but I have always been fascinated by Jack the Ripper, I think a majority of what catches my attention is that the cases were never solved. I don’t really read synopsis before diving into a book, because they sometimes tend to give away some of the book and I like to go into a book completely blind. What sold this book was; Jack the Ripper (obviously) and that there was a strong female lead.

Plot:

I was completely hooked starting on page one. Granted it started off kind of gross with the autopsy descriptions, but I enjoyed that part as well (I think there is something not right with me) and I found those parts kind of fascinating since I have a thing for forensic science. I have one major complaint and it is not really even that big of a deal. I wish that the story had dived more into Jack and why he did and why he did it. I was going to give this book a 4.25 star rating until that ending which took me by surprise and had me on the edge of my seat and that is when I bumped it up to a 5 star rating.

Characters:

I adore the characters so much in this story. Audrey Rose is a perfect female lead character who has a passion for forensic science in a time where women were supposed to be attending tea and what nots. Thomas Creswell who I can’t wait to get to know more in the coming books gave me serious Sherlock Holmes vibes and I am okay with that.

Overall Thoughts:

I enjoyed this book overall and I cannot wait to see where the story will go in the series and the character development of Audrey and Thomas. I cannot wait to get my hands on Hunting Prince Dracula!

 

The Sword of Summer Review

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What Courtney a review?!? What is this? Yes this is indeed a review that I am FINALLY posting. With a untrustworthy computer and an internet connection that wants to get knocked out every time it storms or that one time a person took down the pole that held up the cable that is our internet causing our neighborhood to not have internet and cable for two days… yeah that was a thing.

But alas I am back and a more of an excuse will come Sunday, which will be a little update on life and my reading. Really though I have not read a lot lately and it is making me sad/irritated I am not sure what is going this year, but I am having the worst of worst slumps. It is the slump to end all slumps, it’s that bad. Okay I might be a tad overdramatic, but not really. Anyways I will stop jabbering and get on with the review!

The Sword of Summer was everything I wanted and more from a book written by Rick Riordan! It was fun, the characters were complex, the humor was perfect. Everything was perfect!

The chapter headings really set the tone for the story. Something I have always loved about Rick is that he knows how to set up a story whether it is with chapter headings or with his first sentences. There is even a chapter heading that says, “Come to the dark side, we have Pop-Tarts!” I kind of paraphrased that because I don’t have my book with me.

The characters are so good! Magnus is witty and sarcastic and I loved reading out his POV. Also he is the family member that Annabeth mentions in I believe it was Blood of Olympus and it was so good to see her again! I also want to back track and take a second to share my love for the fact that each series is connected in some way or another. As always I enjoyed the side characters as well, especially Sam!

The Gods, where do I even start with them? Unlike the other series that Rick Riordan has done, the Gods in The Sword of Summer did not come across as arrogant Gods. Don’t get me wrong I love the other series, but in those the Gods acted like what you thought Gods would act. In The Sword of Summer they were more relaxed and down to earth.

As always Rick Riordan has created a story that is fun, fast paced and of course one epic adventure. I cannot wait to see where the series goes from here in The Hammer of Thor which comes out October 4, 2016.

Rating: 5/5 stars

The Selection Review

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Author: Kiera Cass

Genre: Young Adult

Page Count: 327

My Edition: Paperback

My Rating: 4/5 stars

Synopsis

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America, Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her, and leaving her home to enter a firerce competition for a crown she doesn’t want.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she begins to realize that the life she’s always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

My rating 4/5 Stars

Review

This book was the perfect slump breaker and the best way to cure my winter blah that I had been in. I read this book in one sitting, while I was curled up on the couch with hot coco sitting by the fire. It was the perfect story just to do just that.

I really liked how this story reminded me of the Bachelor just set in a future dysptopian world of the United States now called Illéa. The plot was entertaining with 35 girls competing to be chosen as The One, who would be princess of Illéa. The girls were all different and from different caste system, which added some interest in the story. You had the nice ones, shy ones and of course your bitchy ones. The caste system was interesting and how each level decided what you did for a living. The political aspect of the story was in the background of this story and I kind of wished that it was more prominent in the story, especially with rebels attacking the palace.

Characters

Every review I have read was about how much people hated America, I actually liked her. Although there were moments where I was tempted to scream in frustration at her. Especially when she would get melodramatic over Aspen, instant eye roll. What I really loved about America she was not like the other girls, she didn’t fall instantly in love with Prince Maxon.

Speaking of Aspen, I hated him from the start. All the no for that boy. Aspen would have been alright, but when he got mad at America when she tried to give him something all because he wanted to the ‘man’ and wanted to do everything for America and provide for her. Just hush. I really like how Kiera Cass tried to break that sterotype that men should be the ones to provide for the woman.

I was instantly charmed by Maxon from the start. Prince Maxon is definitely a character that could make anyone swoon. And his chemistry with America just made my heart happy. I mean he gave her time to figure out what America felt, which made me want to scream at America to fall for him already but I enjoyed the pacing on their relationship. I also have to mention his concern over America and how he is willing to do anything for her.

Overall I would recommend this book to anyone. It is fun, light and the romance in it pulls at your heartstrings. I am so happy that I finally made time for this series.

Happy reading,

Courtney

 

 

Scribd Review

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I recently decided to try out audiobooks, and after looking into a few different places to go to stream audiobooks I went with Scribd. Known as the Netflix for books, which it really is. Not only do you get audiobooks there is sheet music, ebooks and comic books. For $8.99 you get unlimited downloads and access to thousands of books.

What I Like About Scribd

  1. The amount of books that are available in audio format and in ebook format. I have actually finished the first two Game of Thrones audiobooks recently, which by the way are the most expensive audiobooks I have seen for download so I was excited to see that it was available with this streaming service.
  2. When I am in the mood for light reading I can go through the catalog for comics to help me through a slump or to just give me something new to read.
  3. It’s a great way to introduce me to new books or genres that I would probably never would have thought I would like or I would never discover.
  4. Did I mention unlimited downloads? Once a month you can get one audiobook, but the rest of what Scribd offers you is unlimited.
  5. Granted you don’t get to keep the books you finish, but it is still a great service. You also get to keep books as long as you want, there is no time period.

What I don’t Like About Scribd

  1. Even though there is a wide variety of reads, there are a lot of books not available for audio or ebook or even comic. I am sure that is due to the publishers and what not. It is sometimes a little disappointing.
  2. You only get one credit a month for audiobooks. Sometimes I finish an audiobook before the end of the month and I want another one, but I have to wait for the next time my payment goes through to a get new one. I can wait and everything, but sometimes it is a little annoying, because for another credit you have to pay an additional $8.99

Overall I am impressed by Scribd and enjoy it, nothing makes a commute to work better than listening to a good book or when yo don’t have a book with you, you can just pull out your phone and read an ebook. Like I ever leave the house without a book ha ha. I haven’t tried Amazon’s subscription service, so I cannot compare the two. With Scribd  you get a 14 day trial to play around to see if you like it or not, which is nice.

Happy Reading!

Courtney

December’s Owl Crate Review

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I wanted to do this review a while ago, but I wanted to really enjoy the products that came in this months box before doing my review. I am so glad that I decided to go back to Owl Crate, because December’s box was so good! Although I have not finished the book that came last month, but I have started it.

What was inside:

  • Reading Journal
  • Frostbeard Candle Reading at the Cafe
  • Boy Girl Party To Do List Notepad
  • Magnet by Sandra Vargas (it is super pretty)
  • Da Vinci’s Tiger by L.M. Elliot

I was so excited when I opened my box this month. The reading journal is now in constant use and along with Goodreads it is helping me keep my thoughts and what I have read so far this year in order. It is definetly helping me keep organized this year, which was something I wanted to do this year. I love the quotes inside and how there are pages for you to write down books that you want to buy (not that I need to buy anymore). It is also pocket sized so I carry it with me everywhere so I jot down my thoughts on books or write down books I want to read this year.

Frostbeards candle in Reading at the Cafe is perfect. It is the perfect blend of coffee and chocolate. When I light my candle at home it feels like I am at a cafe, except for I am cuddled up in mounds of blankets sitting by the fire at home reading. It also came with a discount code and I cannot wait to use it to buy more from Frostbeard.

Boy Girl Party To Do List notepad is the cutest thing I have laid my eyes on so far. What is cuter than an octupos reading books and drinking coffee? Nothing, that is what I thought. I did not want to write on this notepad because it is so cute. But it is helping me plan out blogs and books that I am reading and keeping me on track. Again another item that is helping me with my New Years resolution. I wanted to blog more this year and I am using this little notepad to my advantage. If I ever run out there is a coupon code that goes came with it, I am also curious what else they offer.

I love the magnet that is made by Sandra Vargas. It is so pretty to look at it and bonus points for the inspiration of the print being from The Little Prince, which is one of my favorite stories. It definetly added some beauty to my otherwise boring fridge.

Last but not least is the book that came last month. Da Vinci’s Tiger by L.M. Elliot. To be honest I have yet to finish the boook, but I have started and so far I am enjoying it. I have been on a historical kick this month and this book is just perfect for that mood I am in. Da Vinci’s Tiger is about a girl named Ginerva de’ Benci who loves poetry and wants to join the artstic ferment of Renaissance Florence instead though she is trapped in an arrange marriage. Bernardo Bembo introduces her to a cirlce of artist, patrons and philosophers. Bernardo commissions her portrait by a young Leonardo da Vinci. Ginerva grows close to da Vinci and she beings to struggle with her voice, artistic companionship and love that desires categoriazation. In the end though it is a battle of powerful families that she and Leonardo face.

Overall I give this box an A+ rating. Everything was so perfect and so right. If you have not subscribed to Owl Crate, I suggest you do. You really can’t go wrong with a new book every month and some fun bookish themed items as well.

I hope everyone has a great day and happy reading,

Courtney

Tokyo Ghoul Vol. 1 Review

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Author: Sui Ishida

Genre: Horror, Paranormal

Edition: Paperback

Pages: 224

My Rating: 5/5 stars

 

 

 

I made it part of my reading new years resolution to include more manga, back in high school that was all that I really read and high fantasy books. For some reason as I got older I kind of stopped reading them, but I never stopped watching anime. I have been interested in Tokyo Ghoul and since Barnes & Noble was having a buy 2 get 1 deal on all manga, well how was a girl supposed to say no to that?

Tokyo Ghoul is about a boy named Ken Kaneki who is just your average shy freshmen in college studying literature. That is until he goes on a date with his crush, Rize who turns out to be a ghoul. An accident occurs that ultimately ends up saving Kaneki’s life but also changing it forever. Kaneki becomes the first half-human half-ghoul.

The first volume is fast paced, thrilling and exciting. I could not put down the book for more than 20 minutes. I am hoping the rest of the volumes explore more about the ghouls and how they came to be since it was not talked about in this book. This volume was about Kaneki coming to terms with his new lifestyle and the struggles of figuring out who he is and where he belongs. I also liked Kaneki’s best friend Hide, I thought he was a great aspect to the story and he was a great comedic relief to a dark story.

I cannot wait to continue on with this manga, so far I am in love with it and I give this a 5 star rating! Also the covers are to die for!

Happy Reading,

Courtney

A Monster Calls Book Review

61vTxJTnOsL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_ Author: Patrick Ness with Illustrations by Jim Kay

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Contemporary

Page Count: 205

My Edition: Paperback

My Rating: 5/5 Stars

So we are only on the second day of October and I have already knocked out a book that was on my TBR. I knew A Monster Calls was short, what I didn’t know that once I started reading the book that I would not be able to set it down or that I would loose track of time and not realize that when I started reading in the morning with my cup or two of coffee that I would be finished by the afternoon where my dog looked at me impatiently wondering when we were going to go on our walk.

I am going to keep this review short and simple mainly due to the fact that I will giveaway the book. One of the things that I will say is the writing is well done. Patrick Ness is a natural story teller, and his writing style is beautiful. That is really the only way to describe it, its just beautiful. This is the first book by Patrick Ness that I have read and I must say that I am now a fan of his work and I will start collecting his books from now on.

The characters in this story are well drawn out, even characters that are only in one or two pages are well thought out and you can tell there was a wealth of time and attention focused on them. Nothing in this story seemed like it was not supposed to be there or that it was a filler. I will say based off the title and the cover I was suprised by the contemporary atsmophere, but it only added to my intrigue to the story.

Not only was the writing beautiful and well done, the illustrations enhanced the story, letting you see what was happening in the story. I liked that the illustrations were not on every page, and that sometimes they took up two pages so you can get the full imagery of what you just read. Like I said earlier everthing was part of the story for a reason and things floated together so wonderfully creating a truly remarkable story.

A Monster Calls will be a story that I will never forget any time soon, in fact I cannot stop thinking about it now, even though I have been trying to move on after I sobbed for a solid hour after finishing. If you have not read this book yet, I highly suggest you pick it up and give it a go. You will not regre it, I promise you that.

I hope you all have a wonderful Friday and happy reading!