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Making You Mine by Melissa Foster

Making You Mine – The Bradens & Montgomerys (Pleasant Hill – Oak Falls) - Melissa Foster

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

This really was the perfect book to pick up during a rather stressful week. I found this to be a really enjoyable and uncomplicated romance. I have read a few titles published under Melissa Foster's pen name that she uses for her sweeter titles, Addison Cole, but this is the first I have read with Melissa Foster listed as the author. This book is part of a series but I read it as a stand-alone and thought it worked perfectly fine on its own. I definitely had a good time with this delightful romance.

Knox and Aubrey aren't strangers to each other. They have been hooking up with each other after different events for quite a while. They both want to keep it no-strings-attached until Knox decides that he wants more. I loved watching Knox convince Aubrey to give him a chance. They really make a fantastic couple and had a lot of wonderful chemistry. There weren't a lot of obstacles to their relationship and I thought it was fun to watch them fall for each other.

Andi Arndt and Jason Clarke both did a fantastic job with the narration. I thought that they both handled all of the character voices very well and brought a lot of emotion to the story. Andi Arndt has been a favorite narrator of mine for a long time and I could see myself adding Jason Clarke's name to that list. They both read at a very nice pace and I feel like their performance added to my enjoyment of the story.

I would recommend this book to others. I found this to be a very enjoyable romance filled with wonderful characters. I wouldn't hesitate to read more of Melissa Foster's work in the future.

I received a copy of this audiobook from the author/publicist via Audiobook Boom.

Initial Thoughts
An uncomplicated romance was the perfect thing to pick up during a week like this one. I liked Knox and Aubrey and thought that they had a lot of great chemistry. They really didn't have too many obstacles to their relationship to deal with in my opinion. Their big "fight" almost made me laugh because after 20 years of marriage it didn't seem like a big deal to me at all. I found it to be an easy and enjoyable listen with both of the narrators doing a fantastic job with the story.

Dead Beat by Jim Butcher

Dead Beat: The Dresden Files, Book 7 - James Marsters, Jim Butcher

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I had a great time with my re-read of this book! I originally read this series years ago and enjoyed it so much that I decided to pick up the audiobooks to experience it all over again. I have been slowing working my way through the series for a second time often working a book into my reading schedule when I need a bit of a lift. This seemed like the perfect time for a little Harry Dresden and it proved to be a wonderful escape.

Although this was a re-read, there were a lot of things about this book that I didn't remember anymore. There were a few stand out sections of the book that I was able to recall and enjoyed being able to revisit them. This is the seventh book in The Dresden Files series which is a series that really should be read in order since the character relationships grow and change over the course of the series.

This was a pretty exciting installment in the series. Harry is put in charge of watering Karin's plants while she is on vacation and ends up working to save her reputation for a ruthless vampire. There are some powerful forces searching for a very powerful item that has the potential to do a lot of damage. Harry has to battle several necromancers and their zombies with only the help of his brother and a polka playing mortician. There were some pretty big scenes in this book and I really appreciated Harry's interactions with Sue.

James Marsters brings so much to this story. His narration is really top-notch and I found this book to be a joy to listen to. He does a fantastic job with a wide range of character voices in the series and I love how consistent he has been throughout the series. He is able to add a lot of emotion and excitement to the story through his reading. I believe that I enjoyed this book a bit more during my re-read than I did the first time largely due to his narration.

I would recommend this book to others. This is a smartly written story that is filled with wonderful characters, intense action, a bit of humor, and an interesting plot. I cannot wait to continue with my re-read of this exciting series!

Initial Thoughts
This was a re-read for me. It has been quite a few years since I first read this book and while I remember some key scenes, my memory is poor enough that it was almost like reading it for the first time. Marsters does a fantastic job with the narration and the story was really exciting. I am looking forward to tackling the next book in the series very soon.

Book source: purchased

A Fistful of Charms by Kim Harrison

A Fistful of Charms  - Marguerite Gavin, Kim Harrison

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I had such a good time with this book. I read the first few books in this series years ago and didn't continue for one reason or another. Most of the series probably hadn't been written at that point. A couple of years ago, I decided to start working my way through the series again by listening to the audiobooks. I think that this might have been the first time that I read this book and I really enjoyed it.

This book picks up shortly after the events of the previous book. Rachel learns that Jenks's son Jax might be in trouble along with her ex-boyfriend, Nick, and she feels compelled to help. Rachel enlists the help of Jenks as backup and with the aid of a couple of demon curses, they head off to rescue the pair and things get interesting very quickly.

I really enjoyed the way that Rachel and Jenks worked together in this book. Jenks is such a great character and I tend to enjoy the scenes that he appears in and he was in the bulk of this book. I really appreciated the changes that Jenks went through in this story and I think that we really got to know him a lot better. I also found the developments in Rachel's relationship with Ivy to be intriguing and look forward to seeing how things play out later in the series.

This story was really exciting. There were some pretty intense scenes where I was a bit worried about the fate of Rachel, Jenks, Ivy, and the rest of the group. I wasn't sure how they would get themselves out of some of the situations in this book. I also felt like there were some pretty pivotal moments in the characters' personal lives and there were a few rather surprising revelations.

Marguerite Gavin did a fantastic job with the narration of this book. I think that she is the perfect narrator for this series. She handled all of the different character voices wonderfully and added a lot of life to each of the characters. I love how much emotion and excitement she is able to express with her reading. I feel like her narration added to my overall enjoyment of the story.

I would recommend this series to others. This series is full of wonderful characters facing some pretty exciting situations. This is a series that you will want to read in order but that shouldn't be a hardship since all of the earlier books are just as good as this one.

Initial Thoughts
I really enjoyed this book! I was in the mood to get back to this series and I am glad I did. The narration did feel a little fast to me so I slowed it down just a bit so that it sounded more natural. I know, everyone else is speeding up their audiobooks and I am over here slowing mine down! I stalled after the third book the first time I tried the series and when I started again with the audiobooks a few years ago. This book worked well for me. I liked Jenks a lot in this story and I liked some of the changes in relationships. The premise was well done with plenty of excitement. I cannot wait to read the next book in this series!

Book source: purchased

Smoke Bitten by Patricia Briggs

Smoke Bitten - Patricia Briggs

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I loved this book! I have to admit that I am a giant fan of this series. These are books that I can read over and over without ever growing tired of them. When someone asks me for book recommendations, this series is at the top of my list. I went into this book with really high expectations and they were all met. I enjoyed every moment I spent reading this book. 

Mercy always seems to have a lot of things going on in her life and things are no different in this book. The book starts off with some pack and ex-wife drama and that is before the fae leaves a doorway in their backyard. Before you know it, lives are at risk from the new enemy on the loose. It is a lot for a Volkswagon mechanic to handle.

Mercy is an amazing character. I love how calm she is in even the most extreme situation. When the situation seems to be almost impossible to manage, she is able to make reasonable decisions that have a big impact on the final outcome. Mercy turns into a small coyote but she has the bravery of an entire large pack. I love that if there is a problem with her mate or someone else in the pack, she will address it and if someone or something is threatening those she feels responsible for, she will do something about it.

This was an exciting story. There was plenty of action scattered throughout the story to keep things interesting. I thought that Mercy, Adam, and the rest of the pack had already faced every monster imaginable but Briggs was able to conjure up something really unique that I did not see coming. I loved the way that the book wove together several different threads that I found equally entertaining. 

I would highly recommend this series to others. This is the twelfth book in the Mercy Thompson series which really should be read in order. Trust me, all the books in this series are so good that you don't want to miss any of them anyway. I cannot wait to read more from this amazing author!

I received a digital review copy of this book from Berkley Publishing Group via NetGalley.

Initial Thoughts
Wow! This book was just as good as I hoped it would be and my expectations were incredibly high. Just when I thought that Mercy, Adam, and the rest of the pack had faced every monster imaginable, Briggs conjures up something I never saw coming. This was just a fantastic read from beginning to end. The story kept me guessing, the characters were at their best, and there was enough action to keep things very exciting.

Revenge of the Barbary Ghost by Victoria Hamilton

Revenge of the Barbary Ghost - Donna Lea Simpson

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I really enjoyed this book. After listening to the first book in the series, Lady Anne and the Howl in the Dark, I was pretty excited to get to this installment because I felt like Darkefell and Lady Anne had some unfinished business to deal with. Once I started listening, I was quickly taken with the new mystery in Lady Anne's life and couldn't wait to see how things would work out.

After leaving Darkefell's home, Lady Anne goes to visit a friend for a while. She isn't there for long before she sees the Barbary Ghost and decides to figure out what is really going on. Lord Darkefell isn't ready to give up on Lady Anne and finds her in Cornwall and before long is helping her investigate everything that is happening. I found the mystery to be quite complex and liked the fact that I couldn't quite put all of the pieces together on my own. There were definitely a few surprises thrown into the mix.

Lady Anne and Lord Darkefell make a great team. They really do work well together and they have a lot of chemistry. They are both great characters and I really want to see them work things out. Lord Darkefell is used to being in charge and can become too authoritative with Lady Anne. They both want each other but Lady Anne isn't sure that she wants marriage since it will mean giving up her freedom.

I thought that Danielle Cohen did a fantastic job with the narration of this book. I seem to be enjoying this narrator more and more each time I listen to her work. I like the different voices that she uses and I think that she adds a lot of emotion into the reading of the story. I think she has a very pleasant voice that is easy to listen to for hours at a time and I think that the accent she uses works wonderfully with this series.

I would recommend this series to others. This is the second book in the Lady Anne Addison Mysteries series which is best read in order if possible because of the ongoing character relationships. I cannot wait to get started on the next book in this series.

I received a review copy of this audiobook from the narrator.

Troublemaker by Linda Howard

Troublemaker - Linda Howard

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I thought that this was good. Years ago I read a ton of Linda Howard but I stopped picking up her books for one reason or another. I decided to give this one a try and I found that I do still enjoy her writing. I found this to be a really enjoyable listen.

I really only have one main complaint with this book. I can't believe that I am going to say this but too much of this book was about the dog. I love dogs. My world revolves around my three dogs and I have to admit that they are incredibly spoiled. I love it when dogs are a part of the story. This book took things a bit far even for me. I felt like I had spent hours listening to how Tricks liked to play catch, how smart she was, how she liked to be fed, where she thought she needed to sit in the car, and the list goes on. Do you see that cover? It should have had the dog in the foreground with the humans in the background because that would have been more accurate.

Now, on to the humans. Morgan works for an elite unit and is enjoying some time off at the start of the story. He is attacked near his own home comes close to losing his life. Once he has recovered enough to leave constant medical care, his supervisor arranges for him to go to the home of his step-sister, Bo, who lives in a small remote town. Bo is the part-time police chief of a small town. It's is an administrative position and she fills in the rest of her time with computer work out of her home. She does not expect to find an incredibly sick man on her doorstep but he is in such bad shape she can't bring herself to send him away.

There is a lot going on in this book. Not only do they need to figure out who is responsible for the attack on Morgan at the start of the book, but Bo also has some issues in town that prove to be more dangerous than she counted on. It did feel like nothing happened with the mystery of who was responsible for trying to kill Morgan for the majority of the book and then everything came together really quickly at the end of the story. Bo's situation in town filled in the main part of the book nicely.

I thought that Morgan and Bo worked well together. Morgan was pretty open and shared as much with Bo as he could. Morgan was in pretty rough shape for a long time in this story but when he started to recover he seemed to do so very quickly and that is when things started to heat up between the pair. I thought that they had good chemistry with each other and I liked them as a couple.

I thought that Tanya Eby did a good job with the narration. It did take me just a bit to get used to her voice but once I did, I had no complaints. She handled all of the character voices very well and was able to add a lot of emotion to the story. I had no problem listening to her voice for hours at a time.

I think that readers who enjoy romantic suspense and love dogs will enjoy this one. I didn't think that this was Linda Howard's best work but it was an enjoyable story. I wouldn't hesitate to read more of her work in the future.

I received a digital review copy of this book from William Morrow via Edelweiss and borrowed a copy of the audiobook from my local library.

Initial Thoughts
This was probably closer to 3.5 stars but I am going with 3 for now. I love dogs. I have 3 dogs that mean the world to me and I do adjust my life quite often to meet their needs. I love dogs in books so it pains me to say that there was just too much of the dog in this book. If I talked about my 3 dogs as much as this book talked about, Tricks, nobody would want to be around me. I feel like the book was 50% about the dog with the rest of the story taking a back seat.

I liked Bo and Morgan well enough. It seemed like the book kind of forgot that Morgan was in danger for the bulk of the story until it came back into focus at the very end. Morgan went from being quite frail to almost superhero status in a blink of an eye which seemed odd to me. I thought that the story was interesting enough to keep me going. I listened to this story and thought that Tanya Eby did an acceptable job with the narration.

A Murderous Relation by Deanna Raybourn

A Murderous Relation - Deanna Raybourn

This review can also be found atCarole's Random Life in Books.

This was a fantastic installment in a much-loved series! This is the fifth book in the Veronica Speedwell Mysteries series which is a series that is best read in order. I have been with Veronica since the beginning and am finding that I like this series more and more with each installment. I read this book in just a couple of days and found it to be incredibly entertaining. I really had a great time with this book.

I have grown to love Veronica, Stoker, and some of the other recurring characters in this series. Veronica and Stoker work very well together and obviously are quite good at solving mysteries. They also have a lot of chemistry. We have been gradually watching the heat grow between these two since the beginning of the series and while I do sometimes wish things would move a bit faster, it is obvious how much they care about each other.

The mystery in this book was a bit unexpected. Veronica's heritage is a well-kept secret. Because of her connections, she is asked to look into some of the dealings of the prince. He has given a piece of jewelry that can be traced back to him to a woman who runs a scandalous club and his family wants it back before anyone can find out about it. Of course, things are never easy and Veronica and Stoker must navigate a pretty dangerous situation before everything is settled. Throw in the famous Jack the Ripper murders which are happening and you have quite an exciting story on your hands. 

This book had everything that I hoped it would have. There were some rather light-hearted moments and some pretty intense scenes. I loved the chemistry between the characters and am loving the way Veronica and Stoker are slowly working their way towards each other. There were a few surprises in this book and I really enjoyed the fact that the Jack the Ripper murders were a part of this story. I thought that the pacing of the story was very well done and I found the book hard to put down.

I would highly recommend this book to others. This is a smartly written mystery series with incredibly wonderful characters. I cannot wait to read more of Veronica and Stoker's adventures!

I received a digital review copy of this book from Berkley Publishing Group via NetGalley.

Initial Thoughts
I loved this book! I think that this series just keeps getting better and better. The characters are so well done and I love the chemistry between Veronica and Stoker. I thought the mystery in this book was quite good and I liked that the story touched on the crimes of Jack the Ripper.

The Kingdom of Back by Marie Lu

Kingdom of Back - Marie Lu

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I really enjoyed this story. Believe it or not, this was the first time that I have read any of Marie Lu's work. I love music so I was really drawn to the premise of this story. I read the bulk of this book in a single day and couldn't get enough of Wolferl and Nannerl's story. I am so glad that I decided to give this book a try.

There was a point at the start of this story that I thought that this book was going to be mostly set in the fantasy world of the Kingdom of Back. I was wrong. This book really reads like an historical fiction with short trips into fantasy. The fantasy elements were a nice addition to the story but I felt like the relationship between Nannerl and her brother, Wolferl, and their music was the main focus of the story.

Nannerl is Wolferl's older sister. The world knows Wolferl as Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and he is remembered by everyone. But who remembers his sister who shared his talent? As children, they were both very gifted musicians and played for important audiences everywhere. They were not treated the same though. Nannerl is expected to help supervise her younger brother and knows that being a wife and mother is in her future. She is allowed to play her music but composition is strictly considered a man's domain.

I really enjoyed the magical elements of this story. Hyacinth was a great character and I loved that I was never quite sure of his motivations. I thought that the descriptions of the scenes within the Kingdom of Back made this world come alive. All of the things that they were faced with in this land were exciting and helped to move the story along.

I would recommend this book to others. I thought that this was a very well done story involving a historical figure from a unique point of view. I wouldn't hesitate to read more of Marie Lu's work in the future.

I received a review copy of this book from G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers via Bookish First.

Initial Thoughts
I enjoyed this story. At the start of the book, I thought that the story would spend most of its time in the fantasy world of the Kingdom of Back. Instead, the story read as historical fiction with moments of magic dispersed throughout the story. This is the first time that I have picked up any of Marie Lu's work and there was something about this story of Mozart's sister, Nannerl, that I could not resist. We have all heard of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart but what about his talented sister?

Damaged by Lisa Scottoline

Damaged - Lisa Scottoline

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

This was very good! This is the fourth book in the Rosato & DiNunzio but it reads as a stand-alone novel. This is one of those series where you can just jump in at any point. I have read a couple of the previous books in this series and consider myself a fan of Scottoline so I had a pretty good feeling that I would enjoy this one. I was pulled into this story from the start and was eager to see how things would work out. I am so glad that I decided to listen to this book.

The story opens with Mary taking on a new case. At the center of this case is a young boy named Patrick. Patrick is ten years old and lives with his grandfather, who means the world to him. Patrick has dyslexia and is not getting the services that he needs in order to be able to learn to read. He has also been accused of violence against a teacher's aide. Unfortunately, this is the beginning of the problems that Patrick will have to face.

Like Mary, I fell for Patrick pretty quickly. This little guy has not had things easy but he was still such a good attitude. He was frustrated with school but who could blame him. It was really hard not to like Patrick and his grandfather. Mary fought for them very hard and I loved her dedication to the case. I am not sure that most lawyers would go quite as far as Mary did but it did make the story interesting. This was a pretty complex case that seemed to get more involved as the story progressed. There were some pretty exciting moments and a few twists that I did not see coming.

Rebecca Lowman did a fantastic job with the narration of this book. I think that this is the first time that I have had a chance to listen to this narrator's work and I really liked her work. She has a very pleasant voice that I found easy to listen to for hours at a time. I liked the voices that she used for the various characters and thought that she did a good job adding emotion to the story. I would not hesitate to listen to more of her work in the future.

I would recommend this book to others. I really enjoyed this story and thought that it was emotional at times. I felt bad for Patrick and Mary and wanted to see good things happen for them both. I look forward to reading more of Lisa Scottoline's work!

I received a digital review copy of this book from St. Martin's Press via NetGalley and borrowed a copy of the audiobook from my local library.

Initial Thoughts
This was very good. The book captured my interest right away and held on throughout the book. I was surprised by some of the twists that popped up along the way. I found it pretty easy to root for Mary, Patrick, and the other key players because they really were just good people. I listened to the audiobook and thought that the narrator did a fantastic job with the story.

Trapped by Kevin Hearne

Trapped: The Iron Druid Chronicles, Book 5 - Hachette Audio UK, Kevin Hearne, Christopher Ragland

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I enjoyed this audiobook quite a bit. I have been slowly working my way through the Iron Druid Chronicles during the past couple of years and have really been enjoying myself. I did take a bit of a break in my listening which seemed to work out well since this book picks up twelve years after the previous book. I found this book to be a solid installment in the series and I had a great time with it.

Atticus, Granuaile, and Oberon are still together when this book picks up twelve years after the events of the previous installment. Atticus has been training Granuaile this whole time and she is finally ready to become a Druid. To become a Druid, they must complete a lengthy binding ceremony. Unfortunately, there is a group that would like to see them dead before the ceremony draws to a close. 

I found this to be a very exciting story. There was plenty of action dispersed throughout the book. I loved seeing how much Granuaile has learned during her training and the binding ceremony was very interesting. I loved seeing how the relationship between Atticus and Granuaile has changed during the past twelve years and I was really excited to see things really start to develop. Oberon was as awesome as ever.

Luke Daniels is the perfect narrator for this series. He handles all of the different character voices incredibly well. The voice of each character has been consistent throughout the series. I adore the way that he is able to bring Oberon to life. I think that he really takes this story to the next level and I am sure that I have enjoyed this series just a bit more because I made the decision to listen to the audio.

I would recommend this series to others. This is the fifth book in the Iron Druid Chronicles which is a series that should be read in order. I found this to be a pivotal book in the series and cannot wait to read the next book!

Initial Thoughts
I enjoyed this audiobook quite a bit. This book jumps ahead 12 years which worked out well since it's been a year since I listened to the previous book in the series. Granuaile is ready to be bound to the earth as a druid and is pretty kick-ass from her years of training. Her relationship with Atticus has also progressed over the years. Oberon is just as awesome as ever. I thought that the book was rather exciting and I found this to be a really easy listen. Luke Daniels did a fabulous job with the narration.

Book Source: Purchased

The Secret Chapter by Genevieve Cogman

The Secret Chapter - Genevieve Cogman

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

This book was fantastic! I remember reading the first book in this series, The Invisible Library, right around its publication date and knew that this was going to be a very special series. I have looked forward to each installment and have yet to be disappointed. One of the things that I love about the series is that the possibilities are endless. This book was my favorite in the series to date.

You would think that Irene and Kai would get a bit of a break after all of their work to secure a very important treaty but the fun never seems to stop for this pair. After a quick assassination attempt, they must face Irene's parents which proved to be an eye-opening situation. Before long, Irene is summoned to the Library and given the task to secure a very special book. Irene and Kai dealings with Mr. Nemo prove to be more difficult than expected and they find themselves being put on a team to pull off a very big heist. 

This was a very exciting book. The action started in the few pages and really never let up. Just getting to Mr. Nemo was an adventure but the fun really got started once they made it to his island. It was really interesting to see Irene and Kai work within a group. Irene has a take-charge attitude which doesn't always work with the group. The task that they have seems almost impossible and they have to do it with a group that they don't completely trust. I had no idea how they were going to make it work and I love that the story kept me guessing.

The characters in this book were very well done. I have grown to love Irene and Kai over the course of this series and I liked them even a little more by the end of this book. I was a little sad that Detective Vale only made a quick appearance but there were so many new and interesting characters introduced in this book that I didn't miss him as much as I would have thought. The crew that Irene and Kai must work with were all really unique individuals. I wasn't sure who could really be trusted but there were a couple of individuals that really proved themselves in the end. 

I would highly recommend this book to others. This is the sixth book in The Invisible Library series which is a series that really should be read in order. I loved the excitement of this story and thought that the task was incredibly unique. Once I started reading this book I did not want to put it down. I cannot wait to read more of this wonderful series!

I received a review copy of this book from Berkley Publishing Group.

Initial Thoughts
I loved this book! This is my favorite book in the series so far which says a lot since I have really enjoyed all of them. This is a series that is best when read in order if at all possible. This story kept me guessing and I could have never guessed some of the things that happened. Irene and Kai were amazing as always and it was great to see them in a new setting with a new group of individuals. The task was both difficult and dangerous but it was also very exciting. I can't wait to read more of this amazing series!

Golden in Death by J.D. Robb

Golden in Death - J.D. Robb

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

This was so good! I hate to admit that I have not read a single book in this series before picking up this one. I was a little worried that I might be a little lost jumping into a series at the fiftieth book. I am happy to report that this book does stand on its own and I didn't feel lost at any point in the story. I am sure that if I had read the previous books in the series, I might have had a deeper understanding and appreciation of the character relationships but the mystery in this book was solid and kept me glued to the pages for the entire book. I really enjoyed the time that I spent reading this book.

The story opens with Dr. Kent Abner receiving a package that would quickly end his life. The package contained a golden egg filled with a nerve gas that killed him within minutes. Lt. Eve Dallas has quite the case on her hands. It seems that everybody loved Dr. Abner and there just aren't a lot of leads. She keeps asking questions and checking everything hoping to find something. When a second murder occurs, the pieces finally start to come together.

This mystery really kept me guessing. This was a very suspenseful novel and I had a hard time piecing things together before it was revealed within the story. The story definitely took some twists and turns that I didn't expect and I loved the fact that everything seemed entirely plausible. I also really liked Eve's approach to solving the case. She doesn't seem to miss much and is very dedicated to getting justice for the victims. 

I really liked the way the book was written. I thought that there was a really great balance between the case and Eve's personal life which made her feel very real. The pacing was very well done and there was never a point where I felt the desire to set the book aside. I thought that the descriptions were very well done and I almost felt like I was seeing everything Eve was as she worked to piece the case together. 

I would recommend this book to others. I thought that this was a very smartly written suspenseful story filled with great characters. I am very glad that I finally decided to give this series a try and now have plans to go back to the beginning and read more of Eve's adventures. 

I received a free ARC of Golden in Death by J.D. Robb from Macmillan in exchange for an honest review.

The Janes by Louis Luna

The Janes - Louisa Luna

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

Wow! This book was one heck of a roller coaster ride! I was really excited to start reading this book after thoroughly enjoying the first book in the series, Two Girls Down. This book ended up being just as exciting as the first, if not more. It took me a bit to get into the story but once I did, I didn't want to put the book down. This was a really wonderful read.

Alice Vega is a private investigator and is known for solving some hard cases. She is hired to help out with a case involving two unidentified victims that were killed in a very similar manner. She knows that she is going to need backup so she calls Max Caplan, a former officer, in to help. Because Vega and Cap aren't the police they have a little more flexibility and are more than willing to step over a few lines if that is what it takes to solve a case. They are also very good at their job and will not stop until the case is solved.

I thought that this mystery was very well done. There are so many things at play that I was never quite sure where the story would go next. I don't think I was able to figure anything out until the author wanted me to. I loved the way that Vega and Cap trusted each other and supported any hunches the other might have. There were plenty of twists in the story and I was satisfied by how the mystery was wrapped up.

This book was exciting! There are times that Alice almost seems like a superhero with Max as her sidekick. I mean that woman can do anything and with Max backing her up, she seemed invincible. I will say that some of the action was a bit unbelievable. That didn't bother me though because it was a whole lot of fun. I liked how unpredictable Vega was. I never knew what she would come up with next because it would be in character for her to do just about anything.

I would recommend this book to others. This is the second book in the Alice Vega series but I think it would work as a stand-alone just fine. Although the first book is really good so you really don't want to skip it. I was completely entertained by this exciting story and cannot wait to go along with Vega and Cap on further adventures!

I received a digital review copy of this book from Doubleday Books via NetGalley.

Initial Thoughts
Wow! This was one heck of a roller coaster ride! It took me a bit to really get into the book but once things got going the twists and turns were almost non-stop. I love Vega and Cap and think that they make a great team. The fact that they are not police gives them the freedom to step over more than a few lines. In some ways, Vega almost seems like a superhero. This woman can do almost anything and Cap makes the perfect sidekick. The mystery was rather complex and kept me guessing. This is definitely a series that I want to read more of!

Tweet Cute by Emma Lord

Tweet Cute - Alice Emma Sauerwein Lord

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

This has to be one of the most perfectly named books that I have come across in a long time because this book was really cute! As soon as I read the premise for this book, I knew that I would have to give it a try. It just sounded like such a good time. And it was! Once I started reading this book, I could not put it down and ended up finishing it in a single day. I really enjoyed the time I spent with this book.

Pepper hasn't been in New York all that long. She moved there with her mom and older sister when their family's burger chain started getting huge. She somehow finds the time for her schoolwork, activities, and still helps out with the company's Twitter account. Jack has lived in New York all of his life. His family owns a neighborhood deli and Jack occasionally posts something on social media for the business. 

When the big burger chain is rolling out a new grilled cheese that sounds a lot like the signature sandwich served at the small deli. It's war or a Twitter war, at least. These two are going back and forth and they don't even realize who is on the other end. Until they do. I loved this setup! It was just such a playful way of getting to see these characters get to know each other. 

I loved Pepper and Jack! They both had some family issues to deal with and really had a lot in common. I thought that they were both very smart and resourceful teens. They really were perfect for each other. They had a lot of chemistry but I really felt like they understood each other in a way no one else seemed to. 

I would recommend this book to others. I found this to be a light-hearted story filled with wonderful characters and a few laughs. I will be keeping an eye out for future books by this debut author!

I received a digital review copy of this book from St. Martin's Press - Wednesday Books via NetGalley.

Initial Thoughts
I thought that this was cute! The twitter feud between Jack's family's small deli and the large burger chain owned by Pepper's family was fun. Pepper and Jack had a lot in common and I liked the fact that we got to see both of their points of view in the story. They really did seem like they fit together perfectly. I found this to be a really fun romance.

Secrets of the Chocolate House by Paula Brackston

Secrets of the Chocolate House (Found Things #2) - Paula Brackston

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

I had a great time with this book! After enjoying the first book in this series, The Little Shop of Found Things, I was really excited to see what would happen next in Xanthe's life. I went into the book hoping that I would like it as much as I did the first book and I did. This was a story that was able to grab me from the very beginning and was enjoyable until the end. I am so glad that I made the choice to give this series a try.

Xanthe is able to move through time. She runs an antique shop with her mother in the present time and when she finds certain items, they call to her. Sometimes these items are connected with an event and Xanthe has the ability to go to that time to make things right. When she finds a chocolate pot, she has a vision of Samuel and he is in trouble. She goes back to Samuel's time, the 17th century, to try to help him and find things have become very complicated.

I loved the fact that in this book we learn more about the act of time traveling, or spinning. I have a feeling that we are only at the beginning of learning all about what Xanthe can really do. There were some great characters introduced in this installment and I enjoyed seeing Xanthe interact with the mistress of the chocolate house. I also really liked the fact that Xanthe bounces around in time a bit during the story so we get a pretty clear picture of what is going on in both time periods. She has quite a few challenges to overcome in both time periods. 

I thought that Marisa Calin did a fabulous job with the narration. I loved how consistent the voices that she uses have been throughout the series. Each character has a very distinct sound and I thought that she added a lot of life to the characters. The way she reads the story adds a lot of emotion and excitement to it. I think that I might have enjoyed this book just a bit more because of her narration.

I would recommend this book to others. I do recommend reading this series in order if at all possible since the relationships between the characters do change over time. I had a great time journey through time with Xanthe and look forward to her future adventures.

I received a digital review copy of this book from St. Martin's Press via NetGalley and borrowed a copy of the audiobook from my local library via Overdrive.

Initial Thoughts
What a wonderful story! I had such a good time with Xanthe as she traveled back and forth in time trying to set things in the past right. It was really interesting to learn more about her particular brand of time travel and I enjoyed watching her juggle the demands of the past along with those in her own time. I listened to the audiobook and thought that the narrator did a fantastic job with this story. I can't wait to see what will happen next in this series.

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

Red, White & Royal Blue - Casey McQuiston

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

Oh my gosh, how I loved this book! When I saw this book offered as one of the selections for Book of the Month, I immediately knew that I had to have it. I have heard great things about the book from a lot of different reviewers so I wanted to see what all of the fuss was about for myself. Well, I quickly figured out that this book was worthy of all the hype it has received. I had a great time with this book from start to finish and am so happy that I had the chance to give it a read.

Alex is the son of the President of the United States. His mom is the first woman elected into that office and his father holds a seat in Congress. He plans to run for public office himself someday and enjoys getting involved in politics. He does have a bit of a problem with one of the English princes and he has a royal wedding to attend where he is sure to run into the prince in question and maybe even share a bit of cake. When things go wrong at the wedding, those in charge decided that Alex and Henry need to spend some time together and show the press that they are actually friends. 

I loved Alex and Henry. The story is told from Alex's point of view so we do see more of what is going on in his world but I have to admit that Henry stole my heart. Henry had so many things to deal with and his life was under the control of others. He was such a caring character and I just wanted to see things work out for him. Alex was also amazing. He had a lot to figure out in this story but he wasn't afraid to take risks when necessary. I thought that the supporting cast of characters was also very well done.

I thought that the romance was very well done. I really liked how their relationship developed and enjoyed seeing them turn to each other more and more as the story progressed. Most of the time, these two had an ocean between them but I really enjoyed all of the texts, emails, and phone calls they shared. When they were together, it was special. These two had fantastic chemistry that only grew stronger throughout the book. 

I would highly recommend this book to others. I was swept away by this story and felt like I was right there with Alex and Henry cheering them towards their happily ever after. I look forward to reading more from this author in the future.

Initial Thoughts
I loved this book! I have heard great things about it so when it was offered as a December choice at BOTM, I grabbed it right away. Once I picked it up, I couldn't read it fast enough. I loved Alex and Henry so much and thought that they had fantastic chemistry. It wasn't a perfect book. There were a few times that things happened that seemed awfully convenient or rather unlikely. It didn't matter though because I loved the story and since it is fiction convenient and unlikely works for me. The story is told in the present tense which did throw me a bit but I was so lost in the story it didn't even matter. All in all, this was just a fantastic read!

Book source: Purchased