Wildfire by Ilona Andrews : Book Review

ay34w8Storyline Rating : 5/5 stars

Series : Book 3 of Hidden Legacy

Brief Summary from Goodreads :

Just when Nevada Baylor has finally come to accept the depths of her magical powers, she also realizes she’s fallen in love. Connor “Mad” Rogan is in many ways her equal when it comes to magic, but she’s completely out of her elements when it comes to her feelings for him. To make matters more complicated, an old flame comes back into Rogan’s life…

Rogan knows there’s nothing between him and his ex-fiance, Rynda Sherwood. But as Nevada begins to learn more about her past, her power, and her potential future, he knows she will be faced with choices she never dreamed of and the promise of a life spent without him.

As Nevada and Rogan race to discover the whereabouts of Rynda’s kidnapped husband and are forced to confront Nevada’s grandmother, who may or may not have evil motives, these two people must decide if they can trust in each other or allow everything to go up in smoke.

My Point of View :

ERMYYYAGAAADDD….! THAT EPILOGUE! ANOTHER BOOK! I NEED IT……RIGHT NOW! ARGHHHH………WHYYYYY?!?!?!?! Okay….I think I got it out of me, but it will take be awhile to move on to the next book since I will be pondering and wondering what will come next for Nevada and Rogan (and who in the world is the Caesar!).

It’s been a loooong while since I’ve read a book that made me rage for the next, AND I couldn’t resist but finished this one in one sitting. I think the last time I felt this way was when I read Court of Mist & Fury by Sarah J. Maas, but I think that felt worse because I could write only a few sentences for that book as a review. I’ve read other series written by Ilona Andrews. This series and Kate Daniels series are by far the only two series I absolutely love. I guess you could chalk it up to similar hero/heroines and the romance in both series. I just hope this one wouldn’t drag out to um…..10 books? Mainly because I think I will die from the anticipation every single time I finish a book in the series.

So, back to Wildfire. The story begins with Nevada accepting a job from Rynda Charles (daughter of the dead Olivia Charles, refer to Book 2) to locate her missing husband, Brian Sherwood. It’s difficult for Nevada to accept a job from the person who was once her love’s ex-fiancee on top of being the daughter of the person Nevada had a hand in uh…killing (technically it was Rogan who killed Olivia, but you get the picture). Nevada accepted the job anyway. At the same time, Nevada have decided to start House of Baylor to protect her from her grandmother, Victoria Tremaine. She and her sisters and cousins have to go through trials to prove their worth in front of selected witnesses.

Basically, long story short, reading this book feels like a roller-coaster ride. I can’t help but laughed at Nevada’s witty retorts and her banters with Rogan. Then, I can’t help but feel surprised with the plot twists this story presents. Though, I have to admit that the trials part was a tad bit short. I actually thought it would be lengthier and possibly made it into the next book. Or maybe there’s more to setting up a House later on? ARGH….I guess I will never know till the next book.

P.S. I know I have not review the first two books, but I believe this is by far the best book in the series, so I can’t help but reviewed it. It’s the book where Rogan and Nevada’s relationship develops further, various action taking place (as always), and secret abilities revealed everywhere (okay, maybe I exaggerate).


My Top 10 Romance Series

I just realized that I have never done Top 10 lists before. But hey….it’s never too late, so today I would like to start with my Top 10 Romance Series. These ten series are my all time favorite (at least up till July 2017) and I re-read them quite often (okay….maybe I skip read for the most part, but hey….I love re-reading my favorite romantic scenes).

1. The Collector’s Society by Heather Lyon


Whenever people ask me to recommend the best romance series, I will definitely recommend this series. No other romance series I’ve read tops this one, so this one’s definitely my first on the list. I love EVERYTHING about this series! From the covers to the content. So, basically this series follows the journey of Alice (the Alice in Wonderland) and Finn (the Huckleberry Finn) of collecting and saving catalysts from different Timelines (famous storylines) so that their world would not be destroyed. As their journey progresses, so did their relationship. Never in my imagination that famous characters of different well-known classics can fall in love. ❤

2. Deep in Your Veins by Suzanne Wright


I came across this series through stalking a friend’s Goodreads account a few years ago (wow….I must’ve been desperate for some good romance). The covers are alright I guess, it pretty much look the same for all three books. What I love about this series was the kickass heroine, Sam Parker, who gave in to nothing even when confronting alpha males throughout this series. She’s strong and so bad-ass that I wish I could be her (even if I have to be a vampire like her). Her banter with Jared is definitely the highlight of this series hands down (at least for me it is).
P.S. There are two more books after the third, but I’ve decided not to include them as they are not Sam and Jared’s story.

3. Tairen Soul by C.L. Wilson


This series tells the story of Ellysetta Baristani and Rain Tairen Soul as they fight to save the tairen (panther-like creature that can fly….at least that’s how I imagine them to be) and the Fey, defeat the dangerous power of the Eld Mages, and complete their truemate bond. I remember the first time I read the first book, I felt the story was progressing a little too slow (I tend to favor fast-paced stories). However, once I got into the story, I could not stop reading and I actually finished the whole series in four days. I guess it’s probably the whole true mate thing that made me love the series so much, since I’ve always love the idea of soul mates.

4. A Court of Thorn and Roses by Sarah J. Maas


I have always love the fairy tale Beauty and the Beast, so when I found out that Sarah J Maas is writing a series based on my favorite fairy tale, I just have to read them. In all honesty, the whole story is only loosely based on the fairy tale. It may not have follow the actual fairy tale closely, but I find myself drawn to Feyre and Tamlin, and later Feyre with Rhysand (Feyre first thought she love Tamlin, but after various trials and tribulations, she finds herself falling for Rhysand instead). I remember every time I finished a book from this series, I was screaming “WHY?????” as in why in the world did it end there, since the book isn’t going to be released until the following year. That feeling of devastation……and want for the next book. I guess it’s one way to exercise my patience.
P.S. There are three more sequels following the third. I’m not sure if it’s still about Feyre/Rhysand/Tamlin.

5. The Tiger Saga by Colleen Houck


This series tells the story of Kelsey on a journey to break a 300-year-old Indian curse, along side a white tiger named Ren. I first read this series in the form of ebooks, but after I finish the entire series….I just have to own the hardcopy. It wasn’t a popular series in Malaysia like it was in US back then, so it was difficult to get my hands on the hardcopy (I successfully got them all by the way). So….back to this series, aside from the sweet relationship between Kelsey and Ren, I do love the element of foreshadowing the author used throughout the story. It’s one of the things that kept me reading. I have waited six years for the fifth book – Tiger’s Dream, but there are no news regarding the release. Sigh….hopefully it will be released and not shelved.

6. Significance by Shelly Crane


Before I found the series mentioned earlier, this series was my number one favorite romance series. It’s one of those soul mate kind of story (one of my favorite kind). It follows the journey of Maggie and Caleb, from when they first met to when they got married. The only difference with contemporary romance, is that the main characters in this series have abilities once they imprinted on their soul mates (basically, what I mean is, they aren’t typical humans).

7. Fantasyland by Kristen Ashley 


Each book in this series follows a different couple from a different area of an alternate reality. All the couple plays an important role near the end of the fourth book, so I guess they are somewhat related. Each couple comprises an alpha male and a damsel-in-distress kind of woman in their 30s (the women can be strong when they want to be). I guess what I do like about this series is the setting, where man and woman can understand animals, and the existence of soul mates. I would have ranked this series higher if the main characters (hero & heroine) didn’t sound so similar in all four books. Even their personalities seemed to mirror one another, even though they are suppose to be different people.

8. Relentless by Karen Lynch


Out of the entire list, this one’s probably the one other series from the young adult genre (aside from Tiger Saga). There are only kisses between the hero & heroine, and no intense sexual scenes. I pretty much (not entirely) left YA genre behind me once I got into my 20s, as I prefer reading romance with more intensity (ahem….more x-rated scenes). Despite the mild kissing scenes, this series still got me hooked once I started the first book. Basically, this series follows Sara Grey’s quest for answers about her father’s death. She later met Nikolas Danshov, who told her that she is actually a Mohiri – warriors with inner demons that fights against evil demons. When they first met, their inner demons both recognized each other as their true mate, and voila another soul mate story.
P.S. I wish more authors write stories like this…..sigh….

9. Slammed by Colleen Hoover


I think this is the only contemporary romance series that made it to my Top 10 list. I know I said Colleen Hoover is my all time favorite author, but I can’t seem to make myself rank this series higher that the ones before. I love the romance between Layken and Will, and I absolutely LOVE the poems written throughout this series. It’s definitely one of a kind series, but I guess I love the author’s standalone novels more (namely Ugly Love and Hopeless).

10. Healer by Maria V. Synder


And finally, Healer series by Maria V. Snyder! This is my final pick for my Top 10 Romance Series list because I absolutely love the kick-ass heroine, Avry, who is a Healer but is hated and hunted by everybody as they believe Healers are the one who started a deadly plague. In the beginning of the first book, she was almost executed but was saved by Kerrick. I guess you can probably surmise by now that they both got into a tumultuous relationship and thus the three novels in the series 🙂

So, that’s the end of my list. I have read a lot of series throughout the years, especially the popular romance series like Twilight Saga, Throne of Glass, Mortal Instruments…etc. But if I were to ask to pick ten series to read for the rest of my life………………..okay who am I kidding, I can’t survive with just ten series for the rest of my life. Well…….I guess this list of series are just the ones I love so much that I have re-read my favorite scenes more than any other series.

Chasing I Do by Marina Adair : Book Review

2zjkkk9Storyline Rating : 3/5 stars

Brief Summary from Goodreads :

Darcy Kincaid might be a runaway bride, but she still believes in happily ever after, which is why she’s devoted to helping couples orchestrate their perfect I do. Even though her fiancée turned out to be unfaithful and a big disappointment, Darcy walked away from her wedding fully committed—to her unborn daughter. Now, a single mom, it’s up to Darcy to secure her daughter’s future, which is why she’s invested her life savings into renovating Belle Mont Manor, Portland’s oldest, and nearly forgotten, wedding venue. So when Wedding Magazine offers her the cover for their June issue, in exchange for planning the wedding of a high-profile couple, Darcy thanks her lucky stars. Until the star’s best man turns out to be her ex’s brother… 

The last time Gage Easton saw Darcy, she was sneaking out the back door of her own wedding—destroying his brother’s life. No way is he going to entrust the gorgeous jilter with his biggest client’s special day, no matter how much in love with her he secretly was. Determined to take his client’s wedding elsewhere, he confronts Darcy, only to meet a toddler with Darcy’s blonde curls and the Easton blue eyes that has him renegotiating—the wedding for a chance to know his niece. But when a fun day in the park leads to warm family dinners, Gage finds himself stuck between his loyalty to his brother—and the two women who have stolen his heart. 

My Point of View :

It’s been awhile since I reviewed any books since nothing inspired me to write any. Sigh…I hope I haven’t already run out of awesome romance to read. I’m sorry that my first review after awhile is going to be one to criticize instead of singing praises.

I think I’ve been reading a string of okay-romance for awhile now, and this is one of them. Chasing I Do started out promising, introducing the heroine, Darcy – a wedding planner and the owner of Belle Mont Manor, meeting her dead fiance’s twin brother, Gage. In fact, the synopsis basically sums up about 50% of the story. During their first encounter, it is obvious (to the readers, I suppose) issues between Darcy and Gage’s family and those issues were hinted during their conversations, but not revealed in great detail. I suppose that was what kept me reading. Though, there are still things that I wish was explain thoroughly. Darcy’s background is one of them. It was mentioned throughout the story that her family was not a good one and Darcy did not have a good childhood in her family, but specific issues were not mentioned. Then, there’s her relationship with Kyle. The only thing I know about Kyle is that he cheated on her before their wedding and died shortly after. Darcy must have some good memories of Kyle….right? Or else, why would she go with Kyle even though she loved Gage? I wish there was some flashback scenes on her, Kyle, and Gage’s past. At least then the story would be a lot clearer.

The ending was a tad bit rushed and abrupt. I thought there was a sequel, where Darcy and Gage’s story would continue. But…no…….it really was the end for them, while the sequel is on Rhett and some girl name Laney. I wonder if Margo will ever come around and forgive Darcy (for what Darcy didn’t intentionally caused) and if Darcy will allow Kylie to meet her grandma. I guess there is a lot of things to wonder about….since many things weren’t explained in detail. This story is definitely one of those “it-could-have-been-good” kind of story.

Favorite Quote : None from this book.

Red Rope of Fate by K.M. Shea : Book Review

w36bfr4Storyline Rating : 5/5 stars

Brief Summary from Goodreads :

In a land where humans and elves find it difficult to communicate, Tari—an elf—is bound to Captain Arion—a human military officer—in a ceremony designed to promote friendship between the two races. When the ceremony is over the pair discover that the impossible has happened: they can understand each other in spite of the language barrier.

Thrown into a storm of politics, Tari and Arion are put in danger by those who want humans and elves to remain separate.

To make matters worse, Tari realizes she has fallen in love with Arion, who has the emotional capabilities of a rock. As both societies dictate that an elf and a human can never be together, Tari must conceal her feelings. Unfortunately the taciturn Arion is watchful and attentive to Tari’s well being, constantly pushing her to her limits with his loyalty, friendship, and dreadfully informal habit of touching her.

If Tari and Arion survive, their tumultuous relationship will either strengthen their countries’ alliance, or cripple the human courts of nobility. The deciding factor will be Arion, and his indecipherable feelings for Tari.

My Point of View :

I was surprised at how much I actually like the story, since I was quite confused with the dynamics between elves and humans in the story in the beginning. It started with Tali – an elf, feeling excited over her upcoming bonding ceremony, which I though was some mating thing. To my disappointment it was some “goodwill act” between the elf and the humans – Tali is bonding with a human that she wouldn’t know till the ceremony. The disappointment was short-lived once Tali begins interacting with Arion, the human who was chosen to bond with her. The way both of them try to understand the other’s culture (also their slow progress of falling in love with each other) is just…..cute and admirable.

After I got over the dynamics between elves and humans, I couldn’t stop wondering what in the world is an Evening Star – a role/job that Tali is holding. It was said to be a really important role within the elf community, so to find out that Evening Stars are dancers were quite…..perplexing. Their true roles weren’t explained until the near end of the story, which you would have to find out yourself if you ever plan to read this book.

Personally, I would love to see the main characters interact with their family members more, maybe that way I could understand the minor characters more (what motivates them to do what they did). Still, I would totally recommend this book if you love fantasy romance and if you want a fast read. I find it truly astonishing that the whole story fits into 160+ pages (Kindle version), I actually felt as though I’ve read 250+ pages worth of story.

Favorite Quotes : None from this book.

Protecting Alabama by Susan Stoker : Book Review

2z5su3aStoryline Rating : 4/5 stars

Brief Summary from Goodreads :

Alabama didn’t have a good start to life. Emotionally and physically abused by her mama, Alabama spent her high school years in foster care. People let her down, time after time, and she’d learned to rely on only herself.

Christopher “Abe” Powers earned his nickname because he tolerated nothing less than absolute honesty from the people around him. Finding the bar scene stale and having watched his friend and teammate, Wolf, find the woman of his dreams, Abe was determined to find someone to share his life with too.

Alabama and Abe had no idea their paths would cross and their prayers would be answered, but like most things in life, nothing is ever as easy as it seems at first. Two words would change both their lives and they’d have to fight hard for their happy ever after.

My Point of View :

Probably one of the cheese-iest, corniest, insta-love stories I’ve read……AND….I actually quite like it. It may be a tad bit (okay….very….) unrealistic, but once in a while, it is nice to read romance that’s sounds unreal and then wishing guys as great as the hero exist.

The story started out with a chapter (that would probably work well as a prologue) introducing Alabama’s horrible childhood – started with her mother screaming vulgar words at her at the age of 2 to physically abusing her at the age of 12. She was later sent to a foster home when her mother was caught for abusing her to the point that she needed to be sent to the hospital. The next chapter introduces “Abe” aka Christopher, where he was attending some gathering/party with a girlfriend (friend-with-benefit is the more appropriate title). He bumped into Alabama, quite literally, and “boom” he felt as though she is THE ONE.

Since this is one of those insta-love story, it is no surprise that everything else in their relationship progresses pretty fast after that – it took about 3 dates (about 1-2 weeks I think) before they had their first sex. Christopher came across a bit too aggressive if you ask me – he actually utilize his “connections” to track down where Alabama live after their first meeting which lasted about 5 minutes. He could have passed off as a stalker/pervert if not for his Alpha-male tendencies and sweetness towards Alabama. Alabama, on the other hand, sound quite childlike and innocent. I actually thought she was in her early 20s with her virginity intact, so I was quite surprise when it was mentioned later in the story that she is actually 30 and lost her virginity ages ago. Both main characters’ characteristics mentioned is probably why I gave the story 4 stars instead of 5, seeing that I nearly stopped reading after Christopher’s aggressive personality, as well as Alabama’s childlike innocence that does not match her age. BUT I kept reading because I’m a sucker for Alpha males and sweet kind of romance.

Overall, it is a good story and a great one if you love and don’t mind cheesy, insta-love romance. You don’t even have to read the first book to read this one – duh…standalone. I would probably appreciate the story even more if I started with the first, but I guess this one is enough for now. Maybe I’ll read the first one if I run out of good books to read.

Favorite Quote : None from this book.

The Moon in the Palace by Weina Dai Randel : Book Review

2l9js7kStoryline Rating : 5/5 stars

Series : Book 1 of Empress of Bright Moon

Brief Summary from Goodreads :

A concubine at the palace learns quickly that there are many ways to capture the Emperor’s attention. Many paint their faces white and style their hair attractively, hoping to lure in the One Above All with their beauty. Some present him with fantastic gifts, such as jade pendants and scrolls of calligraphy, while others rely on their knowledge of seduction to draw his interest. But young Mei knows nothing of these womanly arts, yet she will give the Emperor a gift he can never forget.

Mei’s intelligence and curiosity, the same traits that make her an outcast among the other concubines, impress the Emperor. But just as she is in a position to seduce the most powerful man in China, divided loyalties split the palace in two, culminating in a perilous battle that Mei can only hope to survive.

My Point of View :

I finally found a book that tells the tale of a famous Chinese historical figure that resembles Empress Orchid by Anchee Min. I have read and reviewed that book a couple of years ago, and have been searching for something similar. I came across this book when I was voting for Goodreads Choice Awards 2016 and I am really glad I did.

While Empress Orchid by Anchee Min is about Empress Cixi – a famous female historical figure in China, The Moon in the Palace by Weina Dai Randel is about Empress Wu – the only Empress regnant of China. As I have watched Empress of China (a China drama) recently, I was really into Empress Wu’s history and I was excited to see how Weina Dai Randel portray Empress Wu. How could I not when every time I think about Empress Wu’s history, I have Fan BingBing’s (a well-known Chinese actress in case you don’t know) face seared into my memory as Empress Wu in the China drama, Empress of China. Yes, I know the real empress does not look like her, but still…..look at this poster of the drama….


So…..I am happy to say I was not disappointed! Once I have started reading the book, I could not put it down. I started the second book almost immediately after I finished the first, burning with the desire of knowing what would happen to Mei (future Empress Wu’s name in this book) next. This book is basically Part One to Mei’s life – how she entered the palace, facing the realities of a palace life, meeting Emperor Taizong and also Pheasant (the would-be Emperor Gaozong).

Mei was somewhat naive and innocent when she entered the palace, but that somewhat changed as the story progresses. If you have some knowledge of Empress Wu’s history, you would expect Mei to change into a somewhat jaded character or a character that wants revenge, but surprisingly Mei never really lost her innocence, even after what she have been through by the end of the story. I mean, Mei still feels guilty, retains her kindness, ability to love and also to somewhat forgive. Something that I wasn’t expecting, so I guess I kind of love she’s not evil (as how history indicated). I also love her and Pheasant’s relationship – which was really the main thing that kept me reading because I could not help but wonder what will happen to their relationship! Yes….I do know they will end up together based on history……still I really love to read how they develop their relationship (fictional or not).

Overall, it’s an awesome book if you are intrigue by Chinese history (and especially the romanticize version of it). However, if you prefer historical fiction that follows the history closely like Empress Orchid by Anchee Min, then you might not like The Moon in the Palace as much because it does not really follow the history.

Favorite Quote : None from this book.

No More Secrets by Lucy Score : Book Review

15yaosnStoryline Rating : 5/5 stars

Brief Summary from Goodreads :

Carter Pierce is a man who believes in signs. He just doesn’t know what to do with this one.

In the small town of Blue Moon Bend, where everybody is a matchmaker, Carter wants to be left alone to tend the family farm. After returning from Afghanistan with scars, his only goal is recovery. He doesn’t need any distractions, and definitely not one with silver-blonde hair and lips that beg to be kissed.

Summer Lentz is a journalist from the city sent to interview Carter and his family. She’s out of place in the small town, with her designer wardrobe and workaholic lifestyle. She asks too many questions and doesn’t take no for an answer, threatening to destroy the peace and balance that Carter has been working towards. She thwarts every attempt Carter makes to retreat back inside himself, somehow bringing him closer to being whole again.

Summer has secrets of her own, but she never planned to open up to anyone – let alone the scowling, secretive farm owner whose story she’s after. But as she gets drawn into the community, she starts to realize that she can’t stay closed off forever.

And what’s more, she doesn’t want to.

My Point of View :

A book that definitely deserves a 5 star rating. It’s been awhile since I’ve rated any romance books 5 stars – one reason is that I have read a fair share of romance books that most romance books that I read later on seemed cliche and boring. This story may not be over-the-top-special or incorporates an unexpected plot twist as compared to other romance than I have read, but I can’t help myself falling in love with the story and the characters.

The story started off with Summer (the heroine) journeying to Blue Moon Bend, a small town 3-hours away form New York. She’s there for a week to interview Carter (the hero) and his family for an article she’s going to write for Indulgence, the magazine she’s working for – she’s writing about Pierce Acres (an organic farm) owned by Carter. When Summer accepted the assignment, she never expected to fall in love with the soldier-turned-farmer and his beautiful town. However, Summer keeps a secret that she believes will hinder her future with Carter – a secret that you will have to find out yourself by reading the book.

One of the things I love about the story is that there’s no “bitch” character – you know…the one female character that have slept with the hero and can’t seem to remove her claws from him? I don’t have to constantly wondering when some “bitch” is going to show up and try to snatch the hero away – somewhat cliche and annoying at times even if they are necessary minor characters. Also, it’s my first time encountering a hero that is a vegetarian. It’s really refreshing how his veganism somehow influenced the heroine’s diet too, just as how a real life relationship would probably pan out – though I’m not turning into a vegan anytime soon.

I’m not sure if I will read the next book in the series because I wouldn’t want to ruin the first book. You know those sequels where it does not live up to the first? I’m kind of afraid the next book would be “those” kind of sequel. So, I will probably be content with just reading this book.

P.S. This book is recommendable to those to love contemporary romance, especially if you don’t like story full of angst.

Favorite Quote : None from this book.

Emerald Island by Fiona Blake : Book Review

25hkdh2Storyline Rating : 3/5 stars

Brief Summary from Goodreads :

Hot, sandy beaches. Clear blue ocean. Gorgeous people. Private islands are playgrounds for the wealthy and glamorous.

Sophie Montgomery is decidedly not wealthy or glamorous. A college dropout and owner of a struggling business, she can’t remember the last time she had free time, much less taken a vacation.

But when Sophie’s best friend lucks into a free trip to billionaire’s paradise Emerald Island, Sophie has no choice but to go.

What was supposed to be a bonding trip for two girlfriends takes a turn when Sophie meets a handsome but mysterious man. Who is he? What does he want with Sophie? And will what happens on Emerald Island stay on Emerald Island, or will Sophie’s life be forever changed?

My Point of View :

Copy given by author for an honest review

It’s my first time receiving a copy of book from an author for an honest review! It’s an honor to be approached and asked to review a book, because I know it can be difficult for other people to read your work and critic your writing.

So, the book…….it’s a fairly light romance (does not include any heavy themes like death, rape…etc.) and quick read (I finished it in one sitting). The story goes pretty much the way the synopsis/blurb indicated. Sophie dropped out of college due to her father’s fatal heart attack and as years pass, Sophie begins to struggle with her online-turn-physical boutique business. She couldn’t remember the last time she went on a vacation, so when Kristen (her BFF) invited her to go to an ALL PAID TRIP to Emerald Island, she decided to take a chance and said yes. There, Sophie meets a mysterious handsome man, who turns out to be the owner of the island!

I can’t say I love the book, but it’s an okay-story where you won’t stop reading after first few pages and label it as DNF – trust me when I say I have experience in reading books where I stop reading after the first chapter because the story is not promising as the synopsis indicated. The story is written fairly well – it flows from one chapter to another despite having some parts of the story not explained thoroughly.

First off, there were names/characters briefly mentioned that I would love to know more about. I mean if their names are there in the book, that must mean they are/were important people in the main character’s life. There’s a mention of a Jason, who I assume is Sophie’s ex boyfriend. He must have hurt Sophie a lot because Sophie do not want to even think about him. Another name mentioned but was not elaborated would be Oscar, who I think is one of Sophie’s close friend (a gay one) aside from Kristen. He was mentioned somewhere near the end of the book when Sophie was interacting with the gay Danish designer. I would love to know if they have kept in touch or something. These very minor characters may not seem important but I believe readers would understand Sophie even more, as in what makes her who she is today before meeting the mysterious handsome billionaire.

The romance progressed pretty fast. I didn’t realize Sophie was already crushing on the mysterious man until it was mentioned explicitly (there are times when you read a romance and know the characters are in love without being told). I was still in the mind set where Sophie sort of hate the mysterious man for making her feel unworthy of such a luxurious vacation. So, I think the relationship between the hero and heroine could be improved.

Overall, it’s an okay read if you are looking for a light romance or a quick read.

P.S. The blurb on Goodreads mentioned “If you’re a fan of Fifty Shades of Grey, Meredith Wild or Kendall Ryan, you’ll love Emerald Island…….”, which I don’t think is true…..because it’s nothing like the dark, erotic FSoG.

Favorite Quote : None from this book.

Harley & Rose by Carmen Jenner : Book Review

20uelx42Storyline Rating : 3/5 stars

Brief Summary from Goodreads :

Ever since she was a little girl, thirty-year-old Rose dreamed of the day Harley would carry her across the threshold on their honeymoon. So what if this isn’t her actual wedding day, and that she’s only here because Harley was left at the altar just a few hours earlier?

Trading San Francisco for paradise and swapping her bridesmaid’s bouquet for a Blue Hawaii, Rose hopes she can finally escape the friend zone.

Once upon a time they had been more than friends, but life got in the way. She’s spent every day since wishing Harley would get a clue.

My Point of View :

I went into this book thinking there’s going to be HEA, I mean look at the title…….the main characters’ names are together. I know I shouldn’t really make assumptions before reading it but……I always judge the cover, then the title, and then the synopsis. So, there you go, if you’re the kind of romance-reader that loves HEA stories (like me)……this is not it. I rarely finish a story that does not end HEA, but I was already 70% through the book when I found out……so…..I just finished it.

The story begins with Rose going on a “honeymoon” trip with Harley but she’s not the wife. Harley’s fiancee left Harley at the altar and in order to not let the honeymoon trip go to waste, Rose suggested that they go on the trip. During the trip, we (us readers) find out that Rose and Harley’s past is not as simple as just BFF, they were a couple at one point of their life but what we don’t know is how they broke up and still maintain the BFF status – which we will find out after they return home from the trip.

The story will occasionally flash back to Rose and Harley’s past, where we find out how they met, when they fell in love, got together as a couple and how it ends. Also, don’t be fool by the headings at the beginning of each chapters where “Rose”‘s name is up. It’s not really told from BOTH Rose and Harley’s POV. Harley only had ONE MINI chapter told from his POV. I think the author should have just labeled that one chapter. I was reading each chapter hoping to read Harley’s POV – like why did he do some things and said some things. Sigh………

I really like Rose as the heroine, but not so much for Harley (despite knowing why he did certain things near the end). Nothing justifies the way he replaced Rose with another girlfriend in just two months after they broke up and he didn’t even really try to fix their relationship after. They could have a happy marriage for a few years before things went South, but all Harley did was break Rose’s heart over and over again.

It’s not a bad story if you can take not-so-happy ending. I’m just a hopeless romantic that really love childhood romance that ends with a HEA.

Favorite Quote : None form this book.

Branding the Virgin by Alexa Riley : Book Review

Storyline Rating : 4/5 stars

Brief Summary from Goodreads :

Mary-Jane wasn’t looking for drama. All she wanted was a family of her own, so she decided to make that happen. A mix-up at the sperm bank leaves her with a baby in her belly, but the father is none the wiser.

Ty was injured in a bull-riding accident, and now all he plans on doing is working on his ranch and keeping to himself. That is, until a little dark-haired woman shows up on his doorstep.

When their paths cross, will Mary-Jane be able to reveal to Ty that he’s the father? Will Ty be able to keep Mary-Jane from running? Will there be a lot of steam in this book? You betcha!

My Point of View :

The story is too short and fast-paced for my liking. The relationship between the hero and heroine is somewhat underdeveloped – it’s like (*blink*) They fell lust for each other. (*blink*) Fell in love. (*blink*) Got married. (*blink*) The End. Not much in between was explained, they fell in love within 3 days they have met without really knowing each other. I would have like that Mary-Jane’s background explained – e.g. Why was her childhood lonely? Did she live with her foster parents? What lead her to wanting a child through IVF?

I do love the idea of the story, especially the part where the hero’s nuts was stomped by a bull (one would think that his nuts are crushed…..but….surprisingly they survived) which causes him to have problems with getting an erection for years…till he met Mary-Jane. I think the story could be a whole lot more interesting if each character are developed even more.

Favorite Quote : None from this book.