WWW Wednesday – march 31, 2021

Happy Wednesday my fellow readers! Somehow it is the last Wednesday in March, I don’t even know where this month went. This is a special Wednesday because I’m actually getting my first shot of my Covid-19 vaccine! I’m so happy and excited that I could cry, just one step closer to getting my life back.

As always, I’m answering the three questions below. Let me know your answers in the comments or share to your own blog.

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?

I am taking a small break from my re-read of ACOTAR after finishing A Court of Mist and Fury. So I picked up my BOTM choice for March, The Final Revival of Opal and Nev by Dawnie Walton. It is told in an oral history style a la Daisy Jones and The Six. I’m really loving it so far and very different than anything I’ve been reading recently.

What did you recently finish?

I just finished re-reading A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas. This book is just so wonderful, I get to watch Rhys and Feyre fall in love with each other and Feyre really discover her self-worth. This is just such a comfort read for me. I also just finished To Love & To Loathe which I posted a full review of on my blog on Monday!

What do you think you’ll read next?

This is always the hardest question to answer. I’ll definitely be picking up A Court of Wings and Ruin to continue my re-read, but I’m not sure what else I might start. It might be Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco, since that hold just became available at my library. Honestly, I’m notoriously bad at this question almost every week.

Review: To Love & To Loathe by Martha Waters

SYNOPSIS (via Goodreads):

“The widowed Diana, Lady Templeton and Jeremy, Marquess of Willingham are infamous among English high society as much for their sharp-tongued bickering as their flirtation. One evening, an argument at a ball turns into a serious wager: Jeremy will marry within the year or Diana will forfeit one hundred pounds. So shortly after, just before a fortnight-long house party at Elderwild, Jeremy’s country estate, Diana is shocked when Jeremy appears at her home with a very different kind of proposition.

After his latest mistress unfavorably criticized his skills in the bedroom, Jeremy is looking for reassurance, so he has gone to the only woman he trusts to be totally truthful. He suggests that they embark on a brief affair while at the house party—Jeremy can receive an honest critique of his bedroom skills and widowed Diana can use the gossip to signal to other gentlemen that she is interested in taking a lover.

Diana thinks taking him up on his counter-proposal can only help her win her wager. With her in the bedroom and Jeremy’s marriage-minded grandmother, the formidable Dowager Marchioness of Willingham, helping to find suitable matches among the eligible ladies at Elderwild, Diana is confident her victory is assured. But while they’re focused on winning wagers, they stand to lose their own hearts.”

REVIEW:

First off, I would like to thank NetGalley and Atria for the advanced reader copy. All thoughts are my own, and I was given this copy for an honest review.

I was sucked into To Love & To Loathe from the synopsis alone. I honestly love a book where two people don’t realize that they’ve been in love with each other for a while, and they are the last to figure it out. So I was very excited to get to read this early.

This was my first Martha Waters book actually, I haven’t read To Have & To Hoax (but now I might have to go back and do that). I really loved her writing style. This book is easy, breezy, and very binge-able. Jeremy and Diana are obviously the heart of this book and their banter and chemistry are incredible. I also loved the awareness of the misogynistic laws and the ridiculous patriarchal standards by the characters. This is often something that can be forgotten or swept aside in historical romances. This novel is also very sex-positive. Sure it is scandalous in society that Diana might take a lover, but none of her friends or acquaintances hold anything against her. Also, the bedroom conversations that Diana and Jeremy have about how important it is to listen to your partner were incredible and definitely unique to what I normally read.

I did have one big problem with this book, and that problem is a bit spoilery but I will try to be vague. One of the characters is revealed to be gay. When Diana has a conversation and this bit of information is revealed to her, the character asks for secrecy (understandably). Diana, in the next scene, tells her two friends and then later tells another person. She swears them to secrecy as well, but this is not Diana’s information to tell, even if this bit of information helps Diana come to terms with her feelings for Jeremy and thoughts on marrying again. This was one of my only problems with this book, but it did bring down my rating.

Overall, I did really enjoy this book and it definitely makes me interested in Martha Waters’s other novel. If you are looking for a well-written historical romance then you should definitely check out To Love & To Loathe.

RATING: 3/5

Publisher: Atria Books
Publication Date (US): April 6th, 2021
Series: The Regency Vows #2
Format: Paperback
Page Count: 384
Genre: Historical Romance/Romantic Comedy

April Releases to Get Excited About

Somehow it is already almost April. March has flown by and I can’t believe it. Below you’ll find some of April’s book releases that I’m most excited. As always, these are books that I am super interested in or have been waiting on for the last couple of months. These just scratch the surface of everything coming out in April.

The Crown of Gilded Bones (Blood & Ash #3) by Jennifer L. Armentrout – April 20, 2021

Bow Before Your Queen Or Bleed Before Her…From #1 New York Times bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout comes book three in her Blood and Ash series.

I have been dying for this book since I finished A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire last fall. It left off on such a cliff-hanger and I’m just so excited to see where this series goes. This series made me a fan of Jennifer L. Armentrout and I highly recommend this series if you haven’t already checked it out.

Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne – April 13, 2021

From the USA Today bestselling author of The Hating Game and 99 Percent Mine comes the clever, funny, and unforgettable story of a muscular, tattooed man hired as an assistant to two old women–under the watchful eye of a beautiful retirement home manager.

I read the Hating Game by Sally Thorne last month and I absolutely loved it! I couldn’t put this book down, neglected errands that had to be done, because I just wanted to keep reading. So Sally Thorne has become a must check out author for me. The synopsis to this book sounds super charming and I’m so excited to read it.

The Intimacy Experiment by Rosie Danan – April 6, 2021

Naomi and Ethan will test the boundaries of love in this provocative romance from the author of the ground-breaking debut, The Roommate.

The Roommate by Rosie Danan was one of my favorite books I read last year. So naturally I’m very excited to read the follow up. Seriously, if you haven’t read The Roommate you need to add it to your TBR immediately. I’m excited to hear more about Naomi and her story. She was an interesting secondary character in The Roommate, so it will be nice to have her as the lead.

Pride and Premeditation by Tirzah Price – April 6, 2021

“Perfect for fans of the Lady Janies and Stalking Jack the Ripper, the first book in the Jane Austen Murder Mysteries series is a clever retelling of Pride and Prejudice that reimagines the iconic settings, characters, and romances in a thrilling and high-stakes whodunit.

As I’ve talked about on this blog before, Pride and Prejudice is my favorite book and Jane Austen is one of my favorite authors. So naturally any time there is a spin on her stories or a modern re-telling of Pride and Prejudice, I’m going to want to check it out. This one honestly sounds amazing! Pride and Prejudice with a whodunit added in, how can you not add this to your TBR?

Blessed Monsters (Something Dark & Holy #3) by Emily A. Duncan – April 6, 2021

The startling conclusion to the instant New York Times bestselling Something Dark and Holy trilogy.”

I was recently recommended this series, and I’ve been waiting to start it until after the third book is released. I don’t always do this with series unless I discover them close to them being finished. Since it only got recommended to me a little over a month ago, I figured I would wait it out. I’m very excited to start it and of course I’ll post all my thoughts here on this blog.

Let me know what April releases you are excited about, and if you are checking out any of these books too!

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WWW Wednesday – March 24, 2021

Happy Wednesday! It’s time for another WWW Wednesday! I’m answering the three questions below. Let me know your answers in the comments, or share to your own blog!

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?


I’m continuing my re-reading adventure of the ACOTAR series by reading A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas. I am honestly loving this re-read. Because I know what is going to happen, I’ve been paying so much more attention to the little things happening. All the little details between Feyre and Rhysand, this re-read has been exactly what I need right now.

What did you recently finish?

I just finished up Storm & Fury by Jennifer L. Armentrout. I’ll have a full review posted soon, but I really enjoyed this book! It is a spin-off of her Dark Elements series. Storm & Fury is an urban fantasy dealing with angels, demons, gargoyles and everything in between. Honestly, I want to pick up the next book right away because it set up a really exciting story, but I have other books I got to read first.

What do you think you’ll read next?

I’m super excited to start To Love and To Loathe by Martha Waters! I received an ARC from NetGalley for an honest review. So this will be my next read since it comes out super soon, and I want to have my review posted right away. This is actually my first ARC since starting this blog, which is a really nice growth opportunity for me as well.

As always let me know in the comments what you are reading or whether you have read any of these books. You can also follow along on Instagram!

Review: Muse by Brittany Cavallaro

SYNOPSIS (via Goodreads):

“The year is 1893, and war is brewing in the First American Kingdom. But Claire Emerson has a bigger problem. While her father prepares to reveal the mighty weapon he’s created to showcase the might of their province, St. Cloud, in the World’s Fair, Claire is crafting a plan to escape.

Claire’s father is a sought-after inventor, but he believes his genius is a gift, granted to him by his daughter’s touch. He’s kept Claire under his control for years. As St. Cloud prepares for war, Claire plans to claim her life for herself, even as her best friend, Beatrix, tries to convince her to stay and help with the growing resistance movement that wants to see a woman on the throne. At any cost.

When her father’s weapon fails to fire on the fair’s opening day, Claire is taken captive by Governor Remy Duchamp, St. Cloud’s young, untried ruler. Remy believes that Claire’s touch bestows graces he’s never had, and with his governing power weakening and many political rivals planning his demise, Claire might be his only and best ally. But the last thing that Claire has ever wanted is to be someone else’s muse. Still, affections can change as quickly as the winds of war. And Claire has a choice to make: Will she quietly remake her world from the shadows—or bring it down in flames?”

REVIEW:

I love alternate-history stories, so when I read the synopsis for Muse I immediately requested it from my library. I did not expect to finish this book in less than 48 hours, but once the plot picked up I was sucked into this story.

The fact that this takes place during what would have been the Chicago Worlds’ Fair really strengthens this plot and setting. Claire is a very passive heroine. She is smart and capable but during this time period, a woman’s place was to be seen and not heard. She is just looking to escape her cruel and mad father, not change the world. Her friend Beatrix is the exact opposite, she wants to start a revolution.

I loved the mystery surrounding Claire and her “powers”. Is this just the raving madness of the geniuses surrounding Claire’s life, or does Claire actually have some kind of magic touch? It was super interesting to try and figure out. I liked the argument presented as well for equal representation. Which is more important, just a woman in power or someone who reflects your ideals?

My one flaw with this book is that I just didn’t like the friendship between Claire and Beatrix. To me, it felt like Beatrix didn’t care about Claire and just used her to her advantage. Talking about her secrets to the D.A.R., not being sympathetic to her father’s abuse, and using her to further the D.A.R’s schemes without truly asking Claire. I just didn’t understand the bond, we weren’t really shown why their friendship was so important.

This book leaves us with a great cliffhanger and I will be eagerly awaiting the next book’s release.

RATING: 4/5

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Royal Book Recommendations

Have you been gobbling up all the gossip since Meghan and Harry’s Oprah interview? Are you looking for juicy stories and romances involving royalty? Well I have a few suggestions that might scratch that itch.

The Royal We and The Heir Affair by Heather Cocks & Jessica Morgan

Cocks and Morgan do an amazing job of showing the toxcity of the Royal family and institution while also capturing the romance and reasoning for why someone would want to deal with all of the problems associated just to be with the person they love. Rebecca and Nicholas are heavily inspired by Prince William and Kate Middleton. Freddie is a stand-in for Harry in his earlier years. These books use the fictional Lyons dynasty, but you can see the resemblance. The Heir Affair is the sequel to The Royal We. Dealing more with Rebecca and Nicholas’s new marriage and struggle with infertility, while also adding on the pressure of being the future of the British monarchy.

The Royal We is a book I honestly still think about from time to time even though it has been over 5 years since I read it. If you are fascinated by the British monarchy, but don’t want a history lesson then I definitely recommend these books.

American Royals by Katharine McGee

American Royals is a bit of alternate history. What if America had a monarchy? George Washington was handed a crown after the Revolutionary War, and he accepted. Now the Washington family has sat on the throne for over 200 years. When this novel starts, Beatrice is on the cusp of becoming America’s first Queen Reagent. This book has messy family relations, high expectations thrown at all of the children, and forbidden romance.

This book is really enjoyable and a fluffy fun read with lots of drama. There is also a sequel called Majesty. I haven’t read it yet, so I can’t quite recommend it, but if you enjoy American Royals I’m assuming you’ll like the sequel.

Red, White, & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

A queer romance for the ages. Alex Claremont-Diaz is the First Son here is the US. His long time nemesis is Prince Henry of the Royal family. To try and help smooth over tensions that could hurt his mother’s re-election campaign, Alex and Henry stage a fake friendship. This fake friendship turns into so much for them.

This is one of the best romance books I’ve read in the last couple of years. The juggling of a secret relationship and the tension of familial expectations keeps you on your toes. Alex and Henry’s relationship is the best and their chemistry is off the charts.

These are just a couple of my royal recommendations and I feel like the standouts in the genre. Let me know if you decide to read any of my recommendations! Or if you have recommendations of your own!

WWW Wednesday – March 17, 2021

Happy St. Patrick’s Day!

Since it is Wednesday, it means another WWW Wednesday! I’m answering the three questions below. Let me know your answers in the comments, or share to your own blog!

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?

I am currently rereading A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas. I told you all it was going to happen. The entire time I read A Court of Silver Flames, I just kept thinking man I want to reread the ACOTAR series. I couldn’t get it off my brain, and I hit a reading slump. So here we are! Honestly, it’s really nice to reread. This series is very much a comfort series for me and I kind of need that right now.

What did you recently finish reading?

I just finished Well Played by Jen DeLuca. Honestly, this book is fine. I had added it to my TBR after reading Well Met at the beginning of last year which I really enjoyed. This book doesn’t really change the game, but that’s ok. It is an enjoyable rom-com and if that is what you are looking for then its perfect. I’ll have a full review posted to my blog soon.

What do you think you’ll read next?

This is really tough because I’ve been in a real reading slump. I think I might read Storm & Fury by Jennifer L. Armentrout. This one has been sitting on my Kindle for awhile, so it might be nice to clear that off the shelf. This is genuinely a tough question to answer right now. So this could change, it is whatever strikes my fancy right now.

Review: The Burning Shadow by Jennifer L. Armentrout

SYNOPSIS (via Goodreads):

“When Evelyn Dasher crossed paths with Luc, she was thrown headfirst into the world of the Lux—only to discover that she was already far more involved in their world than she ever suspected.

Because the Luxen aren’t the only ones with a hidden past. There’s a gap in Evie’s memory, lost months of her life and a lingering sense that something happened, something she can’t remember and nobody is willing to tell her. She needs to find out the truth about who she is—and who she was. But every answer she finds only brings up more questions.

Her search for the truth brings her ever closer to Luc, the Origin at the center of it all. He’s powerful, arrogant, inhumanly beautiful, extremely dangerous…and possibly in love with her. But even as Evie falls for him, she can’t help but wonder if his attraction is to her, or to the memory of a girl who no longer exists.

And all the while, a new threat looms: reports of a flu-like, fatal virus that the government insists is being spread by Luxen. A horrifying illness that changes whoever it touches, spreading panic across a country already at its breaking point.”

REVIEW:

Wow!

The last like 200 pages of this book are just crazy. We get a ton more information on what is happening (Daedalus is up to no good still). We see Luc and Evie’s relationship grow even more. And a ton of people die, this book was crazy and not what I expected at all. The deadly virus hit a bit close to home, so fair warning if you are picking up this book.

Luc and Evie have an insane amount of chemistry that just jumps off the page. It is absolutely the strongest part of this book, and what makes most of their actions believable. This book was a little slow going in the beginning, but once it picked up it really didn’t stop. A lot of things were revealed. Some I expected and some that definitely took me by surprise.

I think that this series has a much better structure than the Lux series. This series has been building in a very organic manner. With the Lux series, there was a new big bad that was somehow way worse than the previous big bad and sometimes grew tedious. With this series, we are really building to something huge, which I really enjoy.

We also finally saw Kat again, so that made me very happy. It was interesting to see where they were and how things had changed since the end of the Lux series.

I’m excited to read The Brightest Night and see what happens especially with that huge reveal in the last couple of pages.

RATING: 3.5/5

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Review: Always Only You by Chloe Liese

SYNOPSIS (via Goodreads):

Ren

The moment I met her, I knew Frankie Zeferino was someone worth waiting for. Deadpan delivery, secret heart of gold, and a rare one-dimpled smile that makes my knees weak, Frankie has been forbidden since the day she and I became coworkers, meaning waiting has been the name of my game—besides, hockey, that is.

I’m a player on the team, she’s on staff, and as long as we work together, dating is off-limits. But patience has always been my virtue. Frankie won’t be here forever—she’s headed for bigger, better things. I just hope that when she leaves the team and I tell her how I feel, she won’t want to leave me behind, too.

Frankie

I’ve had a problem at work since the day Ren Bergman joined the team: a six foot three hunk of happy with a sunshine smile. I’m a grumbly grump and his ridiculously good nature drives me nuts, but even I can’t entirely ignore that hot tamale of a ginger with icy eyes, the perfect playoff beard, and a body built for sin that he’s annoyingly modest about.

Before I got wise, I would have tripped over myself to get a guy like Ren, but with my diagnosis, I’ve learned what I am to most people in my life—a problem, not a person. Now, opening my heart to anyone, no matter how sweet, is the last thing I’m prepared to do.”

REVIEW:

Always Only You has been sitting on my TBR for a couple of months now, and I’m glad I finally downloaded it. This book just gives you that warm and fuzzy feeling throughout.

Frankie is our autistic heroine, not something you usually find while reading romance novels but very exciting to see. The author also falls on the spectrum, which I found super interesting. Her love interest is Ren Bergman, an actual cinnamon roll. Their chemistry is there from the very start of this novel and doesn’t disappoint. While neither might look like it, they are both feel they are outcasts.

This novel has both the unexpected shared space and the forbidden romance troupe. Ren is a hockey player for the LA Kings and Frankie is their PR. As apart of their contracts they can’t co-mingle but are friendly, which leads to the unexpected co-habitation.

I loved every minute of this book and it was exactly what I needed. I think I had read too many fantasy books in a row, so this was the perfect break. I will now have to go back and read the first book in this series. 

RATING: 4/5

WWW Wednesday – March 10, 2021

Happy Wednesday! We have a week of gorgeous weather here in Pennsylvania, so I am very excited!

Since its Wednesday, that means it is time for another WWW Wednesday! I’m answering the three questions below. Let me know you answers in the comments or share to your own blog. You can always follow along on Instagram for more book adventures.

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?

I am currently reading Light of the Jedi by Charles Soule. It is a part of the High Republic series they just launched that spans book series and comic books. I was interested to check this out because I love Star Wars and was definitely excited to read a series that is so separated from the films. This book has been a little slow going, but I’m still interested in what it is setting up.

What did you recently finish?

I just finished up The Hating Game by Sally Thorne. I completely loved this book! Once I started it I couldn’t put it down. The chemistry was off the charts and it was just such a fun and entertaining read. I thought I was going to be in a little bit of a reading slump after A Court of Silver Flames, but not when this was my next book choice.

What do you think you’ll read next?

I think my next read will be Well Played by Jen DeLuca. I’ve been sitting on this book for awhile, but I’ve really been on a romance kick recently so I think this would be the perfect time. I read Well Met by Jen DeLuca early last year and loved it. Romance books always get me out of my reading funks, and I am currently in a bit of one.