L

Lauren

@laurenmr

Enthusiast

This book ranks just under four star, because of all of the “babe” and “baby” nickname calling. I liked the storyline for the book and the character growth throughout the book. However, Iris just felt a little too immature for me based on the life circumstances she went through. There was a lot of inner dialogue from her character, and sometimes it didn’t feel like it added to the story, and it only took away from trying to get to the main point. Dex felt just slightly morally grey for me and the entire motorcycle club follow the same lines. It all felt a tiny bit manipulative and it didn’t quite sit right with me. Overall, it was a really good story, but didn’t live up to my standards of Mariana Zapata. 3.75⭐️, 3🌶 PS - MZ: can you please stop having a turning point in social interactions happen because of farts in your books? It’s getting weird.

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Under Locke

Books | Mariana Zapata

Firstly, I would never say this book is a romance. I think it’s definitely more in the category of women’s fiction even though I hate that category, the book shows a lot of growth for many of the characters. It just so happens the main character goes through a journey of understanding her Past current and future romances while also being a wedding photographer. I think there is a lot of character development which is great but at sometimes it feels like a detriment, because it just takes so long to get to some of the main points. I felt like it was a little too long and had too many useless details in it that didn’t add to the story . Overall, I think the store itself was excellent and it was a really a woman discovering who she is and overcoming past traumas. It ends hopeful, but it really is a journey to get there. 3.75⭐️, 1🌶

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Mad About You

Books | Mhairi McFarlane

This may just be the best book in the series! I adore Gretchen and her grumpiness, but I love how well her backstory is done! She has such depth as a character and I feel incredibly connected to her. Colton is also fantastic. I love seeing his perspective so you have an idea of what’s going on with the rest of the men in the Bromance book club (but you don’t have to read the other books). Colton and Gretchen have such chemistry and all their interactions are fantastic. I love how mature their relationship seems, if even some moves by the characters can feel a tiny bit immature, it’s explained by their backstory. I wish I could read this series all the time! 2/5 🌶

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A Very Merry Bromance

Books | Lyssa Kay Adams

I went into this book with high expectations; I’ve loved previous books written by Penny Reid. This is a good book, but it didn’t meet my high expectations. Jess is a calculus teacher and I love how Penny uses smart women in her novels. However, Jess didn’t come off as just being brainy or loving math so it seemed weird other than the occasional mention of someone Jess admired who worked in mathematics. Also wasn’t sure how she ended up teaching Cletus who is older? Jess is just a little too southern and has wayyyyy too much repetitive inner dialogue. Dwayne is a nice sturdy character and seemed like the perfect man in most instances. However he feels a little one dimensional and the entire side story with the biker gang felt so unnecessary. The biker gang felt like it was added to make the Winton brothers be the perfect amount of dangerous and attractive but it all just seemed really stupid. Overall, it was a good book (narration wasn’t my fave for audiobooks) but I’m hoping the other brothers have a better story. 2/5🌶

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Truth or Beard

Books | Penny Reid

The Lovelight Farms series certainly does not disappoint. I loved Stella and Luka, but I may love Beckett and Evie even more. I love the depth of the characters that the author manages to capture that makes me feel like I’m right there with them. The dual perspective in this was very well done and I really enjoyed seeing Beckett’s perspective. I feel like a relate to Beckett and I loved seeing Evie’s gentle and sweet way of being with him. I also feel deeply for Evie as she navigates feeling lost. Beckett is such a sweetheart with her and their relationship, even as friends, is so sweet. I can’t wait to see glimpses of them in the next Lovelight Farms book! I also want to see stories for all of Beckett’s sisters! Really, really recommend checking out this series for a feel good, curl-up-with-your-blanket read. 2.5🌶/5

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In the Weeds

Books | B. K. Borison

This book was so good and went so much deeper than I expected. Leah is such an amazing character and I really felt her struggles and emotions throughout the novel. Eli was such a sweetheart, misguided at times, but still sweet. I adored the friend group that surrounded Eli (and then Leah) and how authentic their interactions were. Even though this is a romance, Leah and Eli both have growth throughout the story and this book also highlights the foster care system and foster kids. It balances the deeper moments well where they don't feel too heavy but you know they still matter. This was mostly closed door romance (nothing graphic beyond making out) so 1/5 for spice. Really recommend checking this out for a deeper-connecting romance. 4.5/5 I also hope to get more stories from this town and friend group in the future!

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The Rom-Com Agenda

Books | Jayne Denker

This is such an adorable read! I love the strong friendship between Stella and Luca! This is really a good friends-to-lovers through fake-dating. I love the Christmas setup and the small town feels. The entire plot is so well done that it doesn’t feel contrived and it seems like a real place! This doesn’t feel forced and I was rooting for Stella and Luca the entire time! Really excellent read and I can’t wait to listen to the next one! 5⭐️, 2.5🌶

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Lovelight Farms

Books | B. K. Borison

This book is an adorable clean-romance read! I was in a bit of a book slump before reading it, but this is such a feel-good book to get you out of a slump. It’s a relatively quick read, which I appreciate there not being parts that don’t add to the story. It got my attention from the very beginning when the main character shows her inner mischievousness with gender revel cakes! I found myself smiling and really enjoying the humor in this book. I love the four perspectives throughout the book and found it to give a really well-rounded story. I loved seeing the two potential romances grow side by side and the overall growth of the characters. The ending did wrap up rather quickly and a little cheesily, which is my only reason it’s a 4.5 instead of a 5 for me. Overall, this is a really excellent read and I am looking forward to reading more books by this author! This ebook was provided to me in exchange for an honest review.

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Romancing Blake

Books | Jen Atkinson

I read Kierra Cass’ Selection series as a teen and absolutely adored them. This book is no different. The world she creates is easy to fall into and the dual perspective really adds to the dynamics. Annika is such an amazing character, with enough rebellious spirit while still caring about her kingdom over herself. Lennox has such growth through the story and I love how the two characters come together. I adore the quote “Love has a sound. It sounds like a thousand heartbeats happening at the same time.” I was happily surprised when there were twists I didn’t expect, but were really well incorporated. The romance didn’t go beyond kissing and cuddling (0/5🌶) but really built a sweet romance. Really excellent read for all ages!

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A Thousand Heartbeats

Books | Kiera Cass

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