Posted in Fast-Forward Friday

Fast Forward Friday: The Fastest Way to Fall, 11/2/21!

Hey y’all! In contrast to Throwback Thursday, I like to use Fridays to look forward to an upcoming release that I’m excited about! Today’s is The Fastest Way to Fall by Denise Williams.
Expected Release: November 2, 2021

Why wait on this one?

  • Oh man, maybe it’s just because I’m deep into my first read of Lore Olympus, but the idea of the forbidden love is making me swoon! Mostly because it’s only lightly forbidden, since Britta is technically Wes’s client and he probably shouldn’t bang her (bad PR). Plus, Britta is technically doing a review of this guy and his company… so she probably shouldn’t seemed biased toward him (aka by banging him).
  • Weirdly, I’m pretty into the fitness angle here too. Since Wes is Britta’s personal coach and she’s into body positivity, I’m feeling some connection to my recent attempted foray into healthier living. (Note the word attempted…) So maybe reading about two people who really love being healthy (plus each other) can reinvigorate me to move a little more myself!
  • Although I never actually ended up reading it, How to Fail at Flirting was a book I wanted to read (and still do!). So if Denise Williams also wrote that one, then it’s no surprise I’m interested in this other title by her! Plus I just saw How to Fail at Flirting is available at the library, so maybe I’ll grab a copy and use that to whet my appetite for now. 😊

Summary

Britta Colby works for a lifestyle website, and when tasked to write about her experience with a hot new body-positive fitness app that includes personal coaching, she knows it’s a major opportunity to prove she should write for the site full-time.

As CEO of the FitMe app, Wes Lawson finally has the financial security he grew up without, but despite his success, his floundering love life and complicated family situation leaves him feeling isolated and unfulfilled. He decides to get back to what he loves—coaching. Britta’s his first new client and they click immediately.

As weeks pass, she’s surprised at how much she enjoys experimenting with her exercise routine. He’s surprised at how much he looks forward to talking to her every day. They convince themselves their attraction is harmless, but when they start working out in person, Wes and Britta find it increasingly challenging to deny their chemistry and maintain a professional distance.

Wes isn’t supposed to be training clients, much less meeting with them, and Britta’s credibility will be sunk if the lifestyle site finds out she’s practically dating the fitness coach she’s reviewing. Walking away from each other is the smartest thing to do, but running side by side feels like the start of something big.

Posted in Chatty

How the times have flipped!!!

Hey y’all!

I had heard of this new release that sounded super cute and just like what I was looking for: The Charm Offensive by Alison Cochrun. I’ll put the book details at the end, but it’s a lot of fake dating and reality TV and mental health and sexual identity and cute AF moments with truly loveable, whole characters.

So obviously I was incredibly pumped to read this, until I went to place a hold on it from the library and saw something like 82 people ahead of me and an estimated wait time that was “incalculable” because it was so long. 😅 That was dismaying, but then I remembered something:

Continue reading “How the times have flipped!!!”
Posted in Fast-Forward Friday

Fast Forward Friday: No Words (9/28)

Hey y’all! In contrast to Throwback Thursday, I like to use Fridays to look forward to an upcoming release that I’m excited about! Today’s is No Words by Meg Cabot.
Expected Release: September 28, 2021

Why wait on this one?

  • Alright, a lot of what drew me in (besides the cover) is MEG CABOT!! That is a name from my childhood and teen years and twenties and still. It’s just such a comfortable thought, to read a Meg Cabot book. It’ll be something familiar, that I can trust to entertain me, without much possibility of breaking my heart.
  • It also doesn’t hurt that this sounds very much like Beach Read by Emily Henry, which was fab. Authors, and a book about books, and a warm sunny beachy destination, and two people with a past. Wait, which book am I describing again?
  • But seriously, lovers with a history. I adore that! I love getting to know their tidbits of how they knew each other, and watching it get fit into who they see now, and the decision of whether or not they want to learn more in the future. I don’t even know if they’ll end up being lovers! But it’s Meg Cabot. So I keep the faith. ^.^

Summary

Jo Wright always swore she’d never step foot on Little Bridge Island—not as long as her nemesis, bestselling author Will Price, is living there.

Then Jo’s given an offer she can’t refuse: an all-expense-paid trip to speak and sign at the island’s first-ever book festival.

Even though arrogant Will is the last person Jo wants to see, she could really use the festival’s more-than-generous speaking fee. She’s suffering from a crippling case of writer’s block on the next installment of her bestselling children’s series, and her father needs financial help as well.

Then Jo hears that Will is off-island on the set of the film of his next book. Hallelujah!

But when she arrives on Little Bridge, Jo is in for a shock: Will is not only at the book festival, but seems genuinely sorry for his past actions—and more than willing not only to make amends but prove to Jo that he’s a changed man.

Things seem to be looking up—until disaster strikes, causing Jo to wonder: Do any of us ever really know anyone?

Posted in Fast-Forward Friday

Fast Forward Friday: A Midwinter Match, 8/19/21!

Hey y’all! In contrast to Throwback Thursday, I like to use Fridays to look forward to an upcoming release that I’m excited about! Today’s is A Midwinter Match by Jane Lovering!
Expected Release: August 19, 2021

Why wait on this one?

  • This first reason is pretty hyper-local for me, but nonetheless: my town is in the middle of a heatwave. It’s been over 100 for a few days in a row which is EXTRAORDINARILY RARE and it’s even a bit too hot for me. 😅 So thinking about anything “midwinter” is actually not sounding so bad right now! The cover looks like it was drafted straight from Boston Gardens so I love it already! (It’s York, though, so… not Boston. But still!) xD
  • I assume it will end up being a to-lovers story, but I’m intrigued about the “enemies” bit! Since Ruby and Zac have to compete against each other to keep the one position remaining that they each currently have, it’s more of a circumstantial problem than a personal dislike of each other. That sounds much harder to navigate, and like it has options for exploring a lot of real-life difficulty.
  • Zac is being painted as the happy-to-cover-a-tragic-past character, which I’m a little bleh on, but I’m often drawn to women who have their life go wildly off plan and then change things up to recreate their own true happiness. According to books, this is bound to happen to me within about 5 years so I better get some ideas on how to handle it now from Ruby. 😁

Summary

Ruby Oldbridge needs to learn to take her own advice. A brilliant counsellor at work in York, she is however floundering in her own life. Her romantic track record is woeful, her finances are in a pickle, and she’s back in a house-share after splitting up with her useless ex. But one thing Ruby is brilliant at, is helping other people find a way through their problems, and she excels at the job she loves, doing just that. 

Happy-go-lucky, Mr Positivity, Zac Drewe also loves his job – the trouble is, it’s the same as Ruby’s, and the management have decided to ‘rationalise’ their department. There’s only room for one of them.

As the snow and winter close in on York, Ruby and Zac have everything to lose, and Ruby starts to wonder if the happy face Zac shows the world, might be disguising a sadder secret.  Set against one another, they are unlikely friends. But perhaps, if they could take the time to understand each other, they might discover that rather than rivals, they could be the best thing that ever happened to one another… 

Posted in Reviews

ARC Review: Punderworld, Volume 1 by Linda Šejić (Aug 31)

Punderworld, Volume 1 by Linda Šejić

Recommended: YES!!!
For absolutely stunning art, for clever details that bring so much extra life to the characters, for characters you fall in love with and cheer for and laugh at, for a really wonderful take on a classic story
Expected Release: August 31, 2021

Summary

The classic tale of Greek mythology, but 100% more awkwardly relatable. Hades is the officious, antisocial ruler of the Underworld; Persephone, daughter of Demeter, is an earth goddess of growth and renewal – they’ve been crushing on each other for the past two centuries. But when a festival (and a little liquid courage) present an opportunity to put an end to their Olympian will-they-won’t-they, a meddlesome pantheon and several titanic mis-assumptions threaten to give every god in the sky the wrong impression… and leave their romance dead before it can bloom.

Thoughts:

I started reading Punderworld through it’s publication as a comic series on WebToon, and I am so excited to have a print copy of it! Because you’d better believe that I already have my pre-order in to have a copy of my own.

I’ll be honest: I know just the bare basics of the classic story of Persephone and Hades that this is based on. And frankly, I don’t care, because the way Linda Sejic tells the story is the story I want to read, regardless of authenticity or accuracy to the original. She’s made it a funny, fledgling love story.

Continue reading “ARC Review: Punderworld, Volume 1 by Linda Šejić (Aug 31)”
Posted in Book Talk

Barnes & Noble’s beach read recos are spot on!

Hey y’all!

I was just perusing Barnes and Noble’s website for my friends’ registry when I saw their recommended beach reads list. I had to laugh, because several of them are ones I have read (though not necessarily at the beach) and definitely agreed with!

The list

Meet Cute Diary by Emery Lee

One of the few on this list that I haven’t already heard of! Judging 100% by the title and cover this might be a little too saccharine sweet for me right now, but does have a quick read beach book feel to it. ^.^

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

Well, I definitely read this one! I think I was actually a little late to the party when it came out, but daaaang did I love it! This is a slightly chunky read but it goes by super fast because of how much you love the characters. Just be aware that it does get, ah, somewhat steamy at points, so if you do read it on the beach be warned! xD

That Summer by Jennifer Weiner

I haven’t read this but it’s on my list. After reading Big Summer by her last year, I knew to go for it when I saw her name!

People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry

I just read this from BOTM and it was WAY better than I expected. It had a lot more character depth than I anticipated, and the main conflict is one that’s a true problem and says a lot about the insight and aspects of the characters as they navigate it.

Beach Read by Emily Henry

It should be no surprise to avid chick-lit or beach-book readers to see Emily Henry on here twice! And it should be no surprise to ANYONE to see that a book titled “Beach Read” is on a list about books to read at the beach. No brainer. This one definitely fits the mold though, and I quite enjoyed it when I read it. I preferred People We Meet on Vacation, but maybe just because I’ve read it more recently. 😅

The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

My only qualm with calling this a beach read is that it starts out with a bang. A literal one. Of the bedroom variety. You can probably guess that it doesn’t lighten up from there, so be prepared for some steam if you’re reading this on a hot beach!

The Layover by Lacie Waldon

The only other title on this list I haven’t already heard of! Judging this one as well by it’s title and cover, I’m probably going to be adding it to my tbr. If it’s anything to do with locations far from home, I’ll all about it!

Are any of these books in your bag to pack for the beach this summer? ⛱

Posted in Book Talk

6 Books with Weddings

Hey y’all! I saw people besides my significant other and family for the first time this weekend and my friend’s wedding! If you happened to notice that I didn’t post anything on Saturday it’s because I was too busy celebrating!

It was so fun and so lovely and beautiful and I’m so happy for them! And I also wanted to use this as some inspiration for a post because I started thinking about all the books with weddings in them, and how they’re not always the way you might expect a book with a wedding in it to be.

By that I mean, sometimes the wedding goes wrong. Sometimes it’s in a horror and someone’s being forced to get married. Sometimes it totally is just an excuse for a bunch of romantic novel tropes and you know it, but you love it anyway. Weddings come in all kinds of ways in books! So here are a few that I immediately thought of when making this list that showcase the variety that you can get with weddings in books.

Ahh, the fake date

A juicy fake-date trope, Lucie decides to take a vacation to Scotland with a total stranger as his date to a wedding. The wedding, the hotel, the exotic locale, two hetero people… you can guess where this is heading.

Lure him in

Although Poppy and Alex are not the ones getting married, she DOES use the wedding as an excuse to lure him into a vacation together, after years of their broken tradition. Ends with a wedding, but the good stuff is all before!

Continue reading “6 Books with Weddings”
Posted in Fast-Forward Friday

Fast Forward Friday: From Little Tokyo With Love, 5/11

Hey y’all! In contrast to Throwback Thursday, I like to use Fridays to look forward to an upcoming release that I’m excited about! Today’s is From Little Tokyo, With Love by Sarah Kuhn.
Expected Release: May 11, 2021

Why wait on this one?

  • I get I Love You So Mochi vibes from this, and that book was terribly adorable so I can only hope for the same here! It seems like it will be a little bit sweeter than reality, and maybe I’ll need to suspend cynicism to enjoy it, but I look forward to that. (Edit: I’m such a dope. Just realized this is THE SAME AUTHOR that wrote ILYSM so it’s not a surprise I get similar vibes! 😅)
  • There are bound to be plenty of identity and family woes as Grace is an orphan and biracial. The blurb highlights those facts, so I can only assume that they will become fairly central to the story in some way as she explores with Local Cutie Celeb. ^.^
  • The setting seems quite whimsically light, what with the meet-cute at a festival with a high-profile cutie. (K-Pop Confidential, anyone?). I guess I’m into the “secretly/accidentally dating someone famous” trope, who knew?

Summary

If Rika’s life seems like the beginning of a familiar fairy tale–being an orphan with two bossy cousins and working away in her aunts’ business–she would be the first to reject that foolish notion. After all, she loves her family (even if her cousins were named after Disney characters), and with her biracial background, amazing judo skills and red-hot temper, she doesn’t quite fit the princess mold.

All that changes the instant she locks eyes with Grace Kimura, America’s reigning rom-com sweetheart, during the Nikkei Week Festival. From there, Rika embarks on a madcap adventure of hope and happiness–searching for clues about her long-lost mother, exploring Little Tokyo’s hidden treasures with a cute actor, and maybe…finally finding a sense of belonging.

But fairy tales are fiction and the real world isn’t so kind. Rika knows she’s setting herself up for disappointment, because happy endings don’t happen to girls like her. Should she walk away before she gets in even deeper, or let herself be swept away?

Posted in Fast-Forward Friday

Fast Forward Friday: Where the Rhythm Takes You, 5/11/21

Hey y’all! In contrast to Throwback Thursday, I like to use Fridays to look forward to an upcoming release that I’m excited about! Today’s is Where the Rhythm Takes You by Sarah Dass!
Expected Release: May 11, 2021

Why wait on this one?

  • TOBAGO! That is a place I have never been in real life or in a book, and that is guaranteed to attract me to a story. While this story will primarily take place at a resort, I’m hoping I can learn some about the country and people.
  • A resort, a crazy successful DJ, and first-lost love. Also inspired by Jane Austen’s persuasion apparently? I haven’t read Persuasion, but Where The Rhythm Takes You sounds like it will blend grief and love and growing up and taking risks and moving on and all kinds of strong and difficult themes of LIFE together. The plot basically sounds really strong and like if it’s done well, it will be utterly captivating.
  • And, oooooooh I feel like this might also have some really delicious tropes to enjoy in the romance-y part of it! It’s a fancy resort? On a tropical island? And they have HISTORY TOGETHER? Yup, if there’s not some kind of accidental-falling-on-each-other moment, or getting caught in the rain, or the double take when they realize how close they’re standing, I’ll be surprised. The rest can be deliciously original. I just want a few! ^.^

Summary

Seventeen-year-old Reyna has spent most of her life at her family’s gorgeous seaside resort in Tobago, the Plumeria. But what once seemed like paradise is starting to feel more like purgatory. It’s been two years since Reyna’s mother passed away, two years since Aiden – her childhood best friend, first kiss, first love, first everything – left the island to pursue his music dreams. Reyna’s friends are all planning their futures and heading abroad. Even Daddy seems to want to move on, leaving her to try to keep the Plumeria running.

And that’s when Aiden comes roaring back into her life – as a VIP guest at the resort.

Aiden is now one-third of DJ Bacchanal – the latest, hottest music group on the scene. While Reyna has stayed exactly where he left her, Aiden has returned to Tobago with his Grammy-nominated band and two gorgeous LA socialites. And he may (or may not be) dating one of them…

PS: here’s a map for anyone who has no idea where Tobago is. Learn something new every day! 😀

Posted in Reviews

2 Second DNF Review: Undercover Bromance by Lyssa Kay Adams

Wow did I hate this. Really strange given that I really enjoyed the first one. I can’t read that Mack winks one more time because I’m 30% through and it’s been like two times a page and I can’t deal with this vom-inducing guy. I also hate the “you know you love me” attitude. Shut up dude and don’t tell me how I feel. I’m not a huge fan of Liv either, with her constant fake gagging and anger at everything. Basically no one is likable in this book, to the point where the idea of sexual tension between them is off-putting since I dislike them both. Ugh.

Other issues:
– There are tons of typos and incorrectly used words in the digital copy. Especially weird because it’s a digital file so updates can be made and spell check exists.
– A romance based around a sexual assault and revenge? Maybe a bit of an inappropriate combination?
– Flat characters. Felt like they existed only to each personify one extreme trait to make it enemies to lovers.
– The reason they’re enemies is because… he once ate her leftovers. Seriously?