26 December 2015

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

My greeting's a little late, but Merry Christmas to everyone! If you don't celebrate, then Happy Holidays (though it wasn't exactly merry for me since I was sick the whole day).

I'm currently recovering from being sick and let's not forget, the mini-food induced coma as well. I hope you guys had a great celebration, and enjoyed your presents, even if they're not much. It's always the thought that counts.

2015 hasn't really been a very productive year for me, but what the heck, I still met new people, made more friends, gained more followers, and read more amazing books, so that still says something right? There had been some ups and downs as well, and some unfortunate situations that happened in the blog community which involved some of the people I know and it was a very heartbreaking situation for me, but with the year ending, I think it's best we forget and move on, and welcome 2016 with a bang!

Here's to hoping for another amazing year with you lovely people!

22 December 2015

Burying Water by K.A. Tucker — "The heart wants what it wants."

Burying Water (Burying Water #1)
by K.A. Tucker (Goodreads, Twitter, Website)
Published by Atria Books on October 7th, 2014
Genres: New Adult, Romance, Contemporary, Suspense
Edition: eBook (369 pages)
Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository

The top-selling, beloved indie author of Ten Tiny Breaths returns with a new romance about a young woman who loses her memory—and the man who knows that the only way to protect her is to stay away.

Left for dead in the fields of rural Oregon, a young woman defies all odds and survives—but she awakens with no idea who she is, or what happened to her. Refusing to answer to “Jane Doe” for another day, the woman renames herself “Water” for the tiny, hidden marking on her body—the only clue to her past. Taken in by old Ginny Fitzgerald, a crotchety but kind lady living on a nearby horse farm, Water slowly begins building a new life. But as she attempts to piece together the fleeting slivers of her memory, more questions emerge: Who is the next-door neighbor, quietly toiling under the hood of his Barracuda? Why won’t Ginny let him step foot on her property? And why does Water feel she recognizes him?

Twenty-four-year-old Jesse Welles doesn’t know how long it will be before Water gets her memory back. For her sake, Jesse hopes the answer is never. He knows that she’ll stay so much safer—and happier—that way. And that’s why, as hard as it is, he needs to keep his distance. Because getting too close could flood her with realities better left buried.

The trouble is, water always seems to find its way to the surface.

I'm completely shocked by the fact that I did not pick this book up sooner, and although I don't regret reading Chasing River first (because it made me fall in love with K.A. Tucker's tremendous writing), I wish I had read this first before I picked up the third book. And let me tell you, Burying Water left me speechless (or screaming “yooooooo!” probably 99.9% of the time. Let’s leave the 0.1% alone for the sake of my sanity).

Now, I always tend to stay away from amnesia stories because they break my heart most of the time. Imagine being with someone, then next thing you know, something tragic happens and then they don’t have any memory of you anymore? Good lord, do you hear that? That’s the sound of my heart shattering to billions of pieces. But because I’ve been so intrigued by this series, I needed to step out of my comfort zone and pick it up, because hello, I’m definitely not going to miss a K.A. Tucker book.

Step aside, Nicholas Sparks. There’s a new player in town. 

Nicholas Sparks’ books may have been amazing as they’re similar to dramatic Lifetime movies, particularly the classics he’s written that have been turned into exceptional movies that definitely tore everyone’s hearts out; a.k.a. The Notebook and A Walk to Remember. However, in my honest opinion, his newest works don’t capture my heart as it used to before.

K.A. Tucker’s style falls in the same category: the dramatic lifetime movie style filled with intense, raw and unapologetically unrefined stories, with a great amount of suspense on the side. There’s no dilly-dallying in Tucker’s writing style—exceptional, straightforward and eye-opening, and although [she] doesn’t go extreme lengths to the point of explicitness; sugarcoating is definitely not in her vocabulary.

"The mind, it can be a deceitful thing. But it is no match for the heart."

Her characters are painfully realistic, from the main to the secondary characters. Each and every significant character mentioned will surely give you an emotional reaction. Burying Water is told in alternating POVs between Jesse and our ‘Jane Doe’ (Water), with mixes of flashback and present day chapters (just like in Bad Romeo by Leisa Rayven), which gives us the opportunity to explore not only the two main characters, but also various sides of the plot.

Water’s character (pre-amnesia as ‘Alex’ and during) ignited so much feelings. She’s a smart woman who had hailed from an unfortunate childhood with dreams of a brighter future, but a wrong decision has led her to a disastrous marriage. After the tragic accident that resulted to her memory loss, Water didn’t wallow in a self-pity and continued to stay strong for her own sake. On the other hand, Jesse, our hero, is a character you’d definitely feel for. He’s a misunderstood young man who’s made wrong choices in life as the black sheep son of the town sheriff, but seeing him go through the tremendous heartbreak just broke me. He was a total sweetheart whom will make you swoon.

K.A. Tucker’s take on their relationship was fantastic and beautifully written; both past and present, and bloomed wonderfully, despite how it seemed abrupt in the beginning. Jesse and Water had so much chemistry together, even in her “new” life. It’s passionate and intense, with hints of suspense, in either timeline which will keep you on the edge of your seat as your read on.

“The truth is like that water: it doesn’t matter how hard you try to bury it; it’ll always find some way back to the surface.”

Burying Water has captured my heart in many ways and every turn of a page packed an emotional punch and will render you speechless, and none of those cliché bullcrap that will make you hurt your eyes from all the rolling.

If you haven’t tried anything from K.A. Tucker, I suggest you give this series a go. But let me warn you, again, this is no cliché novel and if that’s what you’re looking for, then I suggest you move on because you won’t find that here. However, if you’re willing to step out of your cliché romance comfort zone, let this series be the first on your list.
12 December 2015

Say You're Mine by Diane Alberts + Giveaway!

Say You're Mine (Shillings Agency #5)
by Diane Alberts
Published by Entangled: Brazen on December 7th, 2015
Genres: Erotic Romance, Contemporary
Edition: eARC (181 pages)

She’s a challenge he can’t afford to lose…

Navy SEAL Steven Thomas has only ever been able to count on three things: waking up in the morning, going to sleep sometime during the night, and Lauren Brixton. She’s been his best friend since grade school, and what they have is the only relationship he’s managed not to ruin.

Until one drunken night puts that all in jeopardy.

Lauren’s watched Steven flit from one-night stand to one-night stand, seemingly not interested in something more. So when the long-ignored attraction between the two of them blows up in their faces, she does the only thing she can—she pretends she doesn’t want him. But all’s fair in love and war, and Steven’s not about to lose the only person in his life who matters…

*I received a review copy courtesy of the author/publisher. This does not affect my opinion or views regarding the book whatsoever.

Diane Alberts brings you another sexy installment of her Shillings Agency series and although it's not as amazing as the third book (which I adored the most and listed as one of my favorite reads of 2014), it doesn't stray from [her] sexy, sultry writing style I always look forward to, and the awesome thing is the fact that it's a best friends to lovers romance which is one of my favorite tropes ever!

Another ex-military hero with a broken past and a member of the Shillings Agency, Steven Thomas (whom we've met in the previous novel as the heroine's older brother) suddenly finds himself attracted to his long time best friend, Lauren. And obviously, she's not going to deny that she's also been attracted to him, and the funny thing is, their circle of friends definitely believe they're meant to be. An unexpected turn of events suddenly bring them closer than ever, and then sparks definitely fly. Must be a sign, eh?

Steven's personality doesn't fall too far from the tree. He's as broody as the rest of the Shilling Agency men, equipped with his fair share of a terrible experience that he's not proud of at all. But to cover it all up, he's an unapologetic manwhore and an alcoholic. However, despite his promiscuity, Lauren is the only person he trusts all too well, and he would do anything for her in a heartbeat. His loyalty towards Lauren is what made me adore his character the most.  She's his "cupcake" and his best friend and definitely a breath of fresh air in Steven's life.

Say You're Mine was absolutely entertaining. The best friends to lovers romance might be a common trope, but Diane Alberts brings her own style (although a little predictable) within the drama and the romance that makes it a worthwhile read. It's fast-paced and intense and will surely keep you reading all night! Pick this up, and you absolutely won't regret it.




Diane Alberts is a multi-published, bestselling contemporary romance author with Entangled Publishing. She also writes New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling new adult books under the name Jen McLaughlin. She’s hit the Top 100 lists on Amazon and Barnes and Noble numerous times with numerous titles. She was mentioned in Forbes alongside E. L. James as one of the breakout independent authors to dominate the bestselling lists. Diane is represented by Louise Fury at The Bent Agency. 

Diane has always been a dreamer with a vivid imagination, but it wasn’t until 2011 that she put her pen where her brain was, and became a published author.  Since receiving her first contract offer, she has yet to stop writing. Though she lives in the mountains, she really wishes she was surrounded by a hot, sunny beach with crystal clear water. She lives in Northeast Pennsylvania with her four kids, a husband, a schnauzer mutt, and a cat. Her goal is to write so many fantastic stories that even a non-romance reader will know her name.


09 December 2015

MISCHIEVOUS MUSINGS: The Despairs of Being a Moody Reader

Book blogging is a tedious job. Granted, we don't exactly get paid, but I still consider it as a job. There's a whole list of stuff to do: Read ARCs, back listed review copies, write reviews, post book tours: a whole LOT of schedules and deadlines. I can't even catch up with myself. I'm either ahead or way behind schedule. There is no in-between. 

But what sucks more is when I can’t bring myself to read a book, just because I'm just not in the zone. Which ends up with cramming or missing the release/tour date (which is totally an unprofessional thing to do). In short, I'm a moody reader. I can't make myself read a Fantasy book when I'm still hungover a Contemporary Romance. It's like trying to work out on the day of your period, it just doesn't work (weird analogy, I know). 

And as much as we I want to be like Matilda, speeding through books like it's her everyday job, I just can't. So, for those who are not or claim to not be moody readers, here's a look in our everyday life so you can definitely sympathize with us. Your hugs are totally welcome.

1. When themed TBR lists do NOT go your way.  

Image from Tumblr.com

Spring TBR? Fall TBR? Winter TBR? Halloween TBR? Sure, I’ve got a list to read. And I totally finish before the next themed month. *looks at the floor and shuffles feet awkwardly* yip. 

Instances where I failed so terribly would be the time I wanted to read Fantasy books for a month, but ended up reading just one book (because it took me nearly two months to finish) is pretty common. Exhibit A: Red Queen (2 months). Exhibit B: Cinder (2 and a half). And exhibit C: A Court of Thorns and Roses (3 months). Totally don’t wanna admit that Fantasy turns me into such a super slow reader. Don’t judge me. 

Obviously, I would massively fail TBR challenges if I ever decided to join, which brings me to my point number 2. 

2. TBR Schedules and ARCs a.k.a. “I’ll read it tomorrow.” (Also correlated to number 1)

For someone who’s trying to be an organized person (but is massively failing), creating a timeline is easy, but following it, is not. Have you met me? I'm queen of procrastination. I put the 'pro' in procrastinator (or at least I think I do), but of course, my logical, sensible self would often say, "Read it now, or else you'll regret it later," to which I'll say, "Okay!" and the moment I pick it up, and probably reach 10% or when the gods permit, at least 45% of the book, I'd be like "Meh, I’ll continue tomorrow”, then pick up something else that’s more under my radar (ya nasties know what I’m talking about *winks*).

At the end of the day, I’d end up crouched at the corner of the room with a pint of ice cream, sulking because I just effed up my life. 

3. The Never Ending TBR pile because, let’s be honest, we all need to be in a Book Buying Ban.

I should be banned from bookstores, because 80% of my purchases this year have remained unread and collecting dust on my bookshelf. But that’s definitely not gonna stop me from buying more… right? Riiiiiight. 

4. The dreaded “I’ll Get Back to You Later” pile. 

Image from Tumblr.com

Contrary to popular belief, this is much worse than the Never-ending TBR pile. Why? Because sooner or later, you’re gonna lose interest, and never find out how Percy Jackson kills Voldemort (Wait, wrong book. Oops). 

I’ve got 10 books on my pile right now! And why I never finish, I have no idea. It’s just there, sitting in the corner of my room, silently judging me because I simply left them with a promise of returning… just like 70% of failed relationships. Oops, too soon? 

5. When you have no idea what to read next and end up in a massive reading slump. 

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Logically, how is this even possible? There’s so many places to choose from. There’s the TBR pile, and the 'I’ll Get Back to You Later' pile, but noooooooooo, there’s nothing, and I mean NOTHING, that’s calling out your name. Even old favorites that are worthy of rereads don’t even appeal anymore! Even ARCs that you’ve been dying to read ever since they landed on your doorstep are now giving you the “meh” vibe. 

It’s like a terrible flu but there’s no cure… or maybe there is, and we’re just not aware. Reading slumps just hit us, all of a sudden and they either stay for a day or a couple that would turn into weeks, and god forbid, months (oh jeebus, better call the SWAT team now), but they're definitely bound to disappear sooner or later. The question is, how? How do you even recover? I have no idea. 

My only guess is to try to offer coffee and chocolate to the bookish gods. That's at least going to count as a possible cure.

Now, if these all apply to you, then obviously you're a part of our team. Congratulations. You've earned the Moody Reader Ribbon *throws bacon confetti*. If not, we'd totally want your understanding and hugs. But hugs are a priority. Definitely mandatory.

Now, homework: 
Are you a moody reader? Share your troubles below and help out a fellow moody reader!