Mini Reviews: Angst, Angst & More Angst

THE BEAUTIFUL GAME by A. MEREDITH WALTERS

★★★★


34180856“This isn’t a game. Not for me. Not since I realized you didn’t give a toss who I was. That you only cared about how I was. You make me a better person, Morgan.”

A. Meredith Walters absolutely slays when it comes to writing emotional romances. My two favorite books by her, Butterfly Dreams and One Day Soon, left me in tears and I immediately added her to my auto-buy list after that. But when I heard that Walters was writing a sports romance, I did a bit of a double-take as this is not her usual brand of romance so I wasn’t quite sure to expect. I could only hope that my fave wouldn’t let me down…

After landing a job across the pond, Morgan Carter hopes that this experience will bring about new adventures and possibly a new career. However, keeping up with the work load has proven to be a struggle and she starts to doubt ever accepting the job in the first place. But a night out on the town and one too many drinks leads to a wild night with famous British football player, Lucas Bradley. Sparks fly and the two eventually develop feelings for one another. But love comes at a cost and these two are going to have to decide whether or not their love is worth the price. 

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When It’s Real by Erin Watt

❝ I don’t know when that happened, but somewhere along the line Vaughn went from the girl I was forced to have on my arm to the girl I want in my life.❞

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Title: When It’s Real
Author: Erin Watt
Publication Date: May 30, 2017
Publisher: Harlequin Teen

Links: GoodreadsAmazon | Barnes & Nobles  

*I received a copy of this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review.* 

Rating: ★★★★

Synopsis via Goodreads: From #1 New York Times bestselling author duo Erin Watt comes the addictive contemporary tale of a teen rock star in need of an image makeover and the teen girl hired to be his fake girlfriend.

Meet Oakley Ford-teen celebrity, renowned pop star, child of famous movie stars, hottie with millions of fangirls… and restless troublemaker. On the surface he has it all, but with his home life disintegrating, his music well suddenly running dry, and the tabloids having a field day over his outrageous exploits, Oakley’s team decides it’s time for an intervention. The result: an image overhaul, complete with a fake girlfriend meant to show the world he’s settled down.

Enter seventeen-year-old Vaughn Bennett-devoted sister, part-time waitress, the definition of “normal.” Under ordinary circumstances she’d never have taken this gig, but with her family strapped for cash, she doesn’t have much of a choice. And for the money Oakley’s team is paying her, she figures she can put up with outlandish Hollywood parties and a team of publicists watching her every move. So what if she thinks Oakley’s a shallow, self-centered jerk? It’s not like they’re going to fall for each other in real life…right?

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Mister Romance by Leisa Rayven

❝ Sex is for the body. Romance is for the soul.❞

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Title: Mister Romance
Author: Leisa Rayven
Series: Masters of Love
Publication Date: April 30, 2017
Publisher: Self-published

Links: GoodreadsAmazon | Barnes & Nobles  

Rating: ★★★★★

Synopsis via Goodreads: Max Riley is the man of your dreams. Or at least he will be, for a price.

As his alter-ego Mister Romance, Max is a drop-dead gorgeous escort who makes romantic fantasies come to life. No sex, just swoon-worthy dates to die for, and the cream of New York’s socialites can’t get enough.  Whether they want a dominating billionaire, bad boy with a heart of gold, hot geek, sexy biker, or best friend who loves them from afar, Max can make it all happen, but he’s careful to keep his real identity a secret.

Enter investigative journalist Eden Tate. Having caught wind of the urban legend of Mister Romance from a lovestruck client, Eden is determined to publish a scathing expose on Max and his ability to swindle lonely society women out of their fortunes.

Desperate to protect his anonymity and his clients, Max challenges Eden to give him three dates. If she doesn’t fall in love with him, she can run her story with his blessing. If she succumbs to his charms, the story dies.

Cynical Eden has no doubt she can resist his fake romance personas, but when the real Max admits he’s falling for her, she has to decide if the professional liar is telling the truth, or if the passionate man with the mysterious past is just one more character designed to con her out of her career-making story.

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Buns by Alice Clayton

❝ I’m not my past, I’m my present. And my future is wide fucking open. I can make whatever kind of life I want for myself, and the life that I want for myself is with you, only with you.❞

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Title: Buns
Author: Alice Clayton
Series: Hudson Valley
Publication Date: May 23, 2017
Publisher: Gallery Books

Links: GoodreadsAmazon | Barnes & Nobles  

*I received a copy of this book from the author/publisher in exchange for an honest review.* 

Rating: ★★★½

Synopsis via Goodreads: Clara Morgan is living the dream, if you can call rebranding hotels that are desperate for a new life and running any kind of marathon a dream. Which she does. But the career she loves and the endurance races that keep her adrenaline pumping have kept her too busy to put down any roots. Growing up in foster care, she’s never been able to establish traditions of her own, which may be why she’s fascinated by the rituals that generations-old family resorts are known for. She’s especially interested in the Bryant Mountain House, and not just for their secret recipe for the yummy, gooey, can’t-get-enough-of Hot Cross Buns….

Archie Bryant, the man with the Buns, is fifth generation and one-day-owner of the charming yet run-down Bryant Mountain House in Bailey Falls, New York. He’s determined to save his family’s legacy from the wrecking ball the old-fashioned way—by gritting his teeth and doing what needs to be done. There’s no way Archie will be influenced by the new hotel branding expert his father brought in to turn one hundred and fifty years of tradition on its head just to attract a faster, younger, slicker crowd. But when some of Clara’s ideas start bringing in new, paying customers, Archie can’t deny that she may have just given him a shot at keeping his resort open.

It’s sticky, it’s messy, it’s sweet, it’s Buns.

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Mini Reviews: Forbidden Romance, Second Chances & New Beginnings

BEFORE I EVER MET YOU by KARINA HALLE

★★

34621496“I could be good for you. Let me be good for you.”

Before I Ever Met You is the second contemporary romance I’ve read by Karina Halle and after having read two dark romances by her this year, I was in definite need of some fluff to balance out the dark. However, while this story may be fluffy and sweet, the romance was a bit of a let down for me and unfortunately left me feeling unsatisfied.

Before I Ever Met You starts off with a bang after William McAlister’s marriage of fifteen years comes to an end when he discovers that his wife is pregnant…by another man. No longer able to work in such close proximity with his wife, he returns back home in hopes of gaining some sense of normalcy and move on from his divorce. Jackie Phillips has made her fair shares of mistakes and she ready to leave her past behind for a fresh start as she returns home and takes up a new job as William McAlister’s new assistant. Sparks fly between the pair and they will have to decide whether or not they are willing to cross the lines of professionalism for one more shot at a happily ever after.

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