Cleaning Up My TBR for 2018

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Hey guys!

2018 is gonna be the year I get my reading life in order. I don' t know why, but my 'Want to Read' shelf on Goodreads had me stressed out last year. I spent many hours deleting books I had lost interest in reading so I could bring the number down to as low as possible. My count for this shelf is currently around 320. My goal is to at least try to get it down to 250 by the end of 2018. So that means binge-reading a few backlist series that I've been meaning to get to for a while now. I'm going to stop making excuses and finally cross the following books/series off my TBR!

Let's begin!

THE EDGE OF NEVER SERIES by J.A. REDMERSKI

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(New Adult, Contemporary, Romance)

I am a die-hard fangirl for Redmerski's In the Company of Killers series, but I've been putting off reading her other books for years. I've had the physical copy of this series collecting dust on my shelf for more than two years now and I'm finally pushing myself to read them this year. These books a quite thick and to be honest, I'm a little bit intimidated by them. I haven't read a physical book in years so hopefully I can get through these two books in a week!

WELCOME TO THE POINT SERIES by JAY CROWNOVER

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(Contemporary, Romance)

I've been putting off reading this series because I don't like the covers. I swear, Jay Crownover is forever getting screwed over when it comes to covers because most of them aren't very good. But I love Jay's books and her writing and her heroes are some of my favorites, so I'm gonna buck it up and finally read this series. I hope it's as good as her Marked Men series!

HE WILL BE MY RUIN by K.A. TUCKER

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(Thriller, Suspense, Romance)

I had originally plan on reading this book when it released, but the mixed reviews made me put off reading it. But I want to read all of Tucker's books this year so I'm hoping it's not as bad as everyone says.

BURYING WATER SERIES by K.A. TUCKER

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(New Adult, Contemporary, Romance)

Continuing with my K.A. Tucker clean-up, I plan on finally finishing the Burying Water series. I read the first book back in 2016 and loved it and I can't wait to see what the rest of the series is all about.

GRAVITY SERIES by SARINA BOWEN

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(New Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Sports Romance)

I've literally read all of Sarina's book except for this series. I know it's her least popular series so I don't have high expectation going into it but I just hope they're not completely horrible.


HOW TO DATE A DOUCHEBAG by SARA NEY

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(New Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Sports Romance)

My blogger friend, Deanna, is forever raving about this series so with the fourth book releasing this year, I think I'm going to finally pick this series up. Plus, I want to read more sports romance this year so I'm crossing my fingers that these bad boys will deliver. 

Have you read or are you planning on reading any of these books/series? If you have or are, let me know in the comments!


Slow Burning Romances and Disappointments || Mini Reviews

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BRAVE by TAMMARA WEBBER
★★★
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“I don't know where I'm going yet, but it's a big wide world, and I'm too young to give up and throw in the towel on my life.”
After waiting over two and a half years, the next book in Contours of the Heart series was finally released. Y'all, I've been dying to get my hands on this book ever since Tammara Webber announced a release date. Not gonna lie, I really had my doubts about whether or not Webber would ever release this book, but once she did, all I wanted to do was devour it.

Brave follows our two main characters, Erin McIntyre and Isaac Matt. Now, if you need a little refresher since it's been a while, Erin is the best friend of Jacqueline who is the heroine in Easy. Erin has just graduated college and she's a bit lost when it comes to deciding her next step in life, so she accepts a job at her father's company. There she is put to work under Isaac Matt who she believes can't stand the sight of her. But despite his cold demeanor, Erin can't help but feel a connection with Isaac but is she willing to risk her new job to find out if he feels the same way too?

Brave is not at all what I had expected it to be. I went into this one expecting a slow-burning romance with a great amount of tension, and don't get me wrong, the romance is exactly just that but the story itself is reminiscent of a coming-of-age story. Erin is a heroine I related to so hard. We're kind of both in a similar position as she too in unsure what she wants to do with her life, which path she wants to take, which career she wants pursue. All her feelings and thoughts were literally things I've been thinking about for the past few months and it was like she was in my head, lol. I admire the fact that Webber showed us this other side to Erin and I enjoyed seeing her find her voice and the courage to eventually go after her dream.

Patience is something you'll need when it comes to the romance aspect in this book. This romance is slow as molasses in January. I'm talking you ain't getting no grand gestures until about 80%, but again the romance isn't the focus of this story. I very much enjoyed the slow-build between these two and once the plot twistis revealed, you will understand why Isaac was hesitant to take things further. Isaac is a boss y'all. I spent most of the book wishing his POV was included as well, but I'm kind of glad now that it wasn't after the twist was revealed. Brave was definitely worth the wait, but I'm hoping that I don't have to wait another three years until Tammara Webber releases her next book. 
WHORE  by WILLOW ASTER
★★
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“No one plans to be a whore. But these are the repercussions. It's my blood. And I will never escape it.
Whore is a book I picked up after seeing it being hyped up on Twitter and Goodreads and I wanted to know why. I'll admit, before this book I've never heard of Willow Aster before but I'm always up for discovering new authors so I hoped that this book would be as good as everyone was claiming it to be.

Whore follows our main character, Lilith Fontenot. Lilith, for a lack of a better word, is a whore. She works at Maison D'amour, which fronts as an upscale spa and is owned by her mother. All her life, Lilith has never been able to make a decision for herself. She's trapped in a life she so desperately wants to escape and when the opportunity strikes for that escape, will she take it?

Fun fact, I have a soft spot for dark romances where the heroine is some type of sex worker or stripper or anything related to this field. I think it's because that these types of heroines are usually put down by all other characters in the story and people don't expect them to be anything more than what they are. That is, until these heroines decide enough is enough and take matters into their own hands. Whore started out in a similar manner. Lili's mother has always controlled her life and now she is forcing her to be with a man who used her a long time ago and has come back to do the same again. But a fire occurs at Maison D'amour and Lili uses this as a chance to escape. The thing with Whore and why I didn't end up enjoying it as much was the fact that the plot was all over the place. The story starts off strong and then we get to about 25% and then things take a strong turn in an unexpected direction and to be honest, it didn't make any sense. It felt very unnecessary because Lili just ends up back at square one again. From about 30-70%, NOTHING HAPPENS. Nothing interesting anyways and by the time the story picks back up again, I had already lost interest.

The romance itself was weak because the plot is all over the place. I didn't have any connection with Soti, who is the love interest and also helps Lili escape in the first place. Everything just felt instant, like I didn't feel like these two had enough time to get to know one another for them to develop such strong feelings. I do like Lili, for the most part. But again, the story itself made it hard for me to connect with her since things were all over the place. Will I read another book by this author? Who knows, but if I do, it won't be anytime soon.
THREE BLIND DATES by MEGHAN QUINN
★★
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“Your heart is never blind.”
When I first read the blurb for Three Blind Dates, I side-eyed the fuck out of it. I absolutely hate romances with geometrical relationships and I wanted to know exactly what type of games Meghan Quinn was playing when she sat down to write this story. Because Meghan was playing some games y'all so you might wanna strap your eReaders to your hands before diving in.

Three Blind Dates is a modern spin on the movie You've Got Mail and follows our heroine, Noely Clark who is a co-host on the TV show Good Morning, Malibu. Noely is tired of the dating scene and is ready to settle down with 'The One'. But first, she needs to find him. She is approached by a new restaurant called Going in Blind and agrees to let them help her find her perfect match. But it's not as simple as it seems when Noely's hearts falls for not one, but three potential matches.

I have never read a book that had me so stressed that I ended up wanting to pull me hair out. Like seriously, if I hadn't had tied my hair up while reading, I would be half-bald. But the stress is so worth it because I am head-over-heels in love with this new series. It's witty with twist and turns that will have you guessing until the end. I absolutely adored the secondary characters. Alex and his wife Lauren are a riot. They're the oddest couple I've ever met and there's never a dull moment when these two are around. While most of this story is on the funnier side, you will need some patience when it comes to the romance, hence why I wanted to pull out my hair.

I completely adore Noely. I love her personality and she has all the damn patience in the world because I would've quit the program once shit started going down hill. Homegirl was just trying to find love and I felt like a cheerleader on the sideline rooting for her to find her Prince Charming! And then we have our three eligible bachelors (sort of): Hayden Holmes, Beck Wilder, and Jack. Now, I'm not gonna talk too much about the guys because I'm not giving away any clues to which one of them ends up being endgame, but I will say that I went in being #TeamHayden. I am bias though since we had already met Hayden in one of Meghan's previous books so I already had a crush on the guy. I'm am so anxious for the next two books in this series, especially after seeing the title for the third book because I need answers. Meghan is definitely not finished playing games but this time I will be ready for them...I think? 


What's on Kindle Unlimited

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What's on Kindle Unlimited is a weekly meme I started to share new and old books in the Kindle Unlimited program for readers (mainly romance) to be able to find their next read a lot easier. I wanted readers to be able to have a place to come to weekly for new books without having to wade through hundreds of books. To see my original posts explaining more click here, here, here, here, here, and here and if you decide to share your own then please link back!! 

  You've Got Fail by [Aaron, Celia] Running Into Love (Fluke My Life Book 1) by [Reynolds, Aurora Rose] Under the Lights: A thrilling, second-chance romance duet. (Bright Lights Book 1) by [Louise, Tia] Three Blind Dates (Dating by Numbers Series Book 1) by [Quinn, Meghan] Burn for You (Slow Burn Book 1) by [Geissinger, J.T.] The Mitchell Sisters: A Complete Romance Series (3-Book Box Set) by [Christy, Samantha] Shear Heaven: (inspired by "Rapunzel") (A Modern Fairytale Book 6) by [Regnery, Katy] The Law of Moses by [Harmon, Amy]


WWW Wednesday: January 17, 2018

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Hey Guys!
WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World Of Words. Simply answer the following questions: 
 What have you recently finished reading?
 What are you currently reading?
 What do you think you’ll read next?

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The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory

ARI: I went into this book not expecting much and ended up adoring it so much. I'm lowkey wondering if any of these secondary characters will get their own books because I'm curious to know more about them.

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ARI: I finished all my review books for this month so I'm just taking a little mini break to catch up with reviews before diving into a new book.

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Hidden Seams by Alessandra Torre



ARI: My fave is releasing a new book and I'm so hyped!



What are you all reading this week? Leave us your links down below!

Man Card || ARC Review

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Title: Man Card
Author: Sarina Bowen & Tanya Eby
Series: Man Hands
Publication Date: January 15, 2018
Publisher: Rennie Road Books
Links: Goodreads || Amazon

Rating: ★★
Synopsis via Goodreads: Nothing ventured, nothing banged...

Ash
I still don't know how it happened. One minute I was arguing with my arrogant competitor--our usual trash-talk over who deserves the larger commission. But somehow I went from throwing down to kneeling down...
It can never happen again. I don't even like Braht. He's too slick. He's a manipulating mansplaining party boy in preppy clothes.
So why can't I get him out of my head?

Braht
There are two things I know without question. One: Ash and I are destined for each other. Two: never trust a man with a unibrow.
Ash is my missing my piece. She's the sweet cream to my gourmet espresso. And nothing gets me going faster than her contempt for me. They don't call her the Ashkicker for nothing.
Eventually I'll win her over...if my past doesn't ruin everything first.

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

Sarina Bowen and Tanya Eby are back with more romantic funnies in Man Card, the second installment in the Man Hands series. Ashley Power is a real estate agent who is all work and no play. But that doesn't stop her competitor, Braht, from turning on the charm and laying it on thick. The two are constantly butting heads and trying to one up each other and things become even more complicated when Braht is transferred to Ashley's branch. Having been burned by love before, Ashley is hesitant to give into Braht's charm, but when a blast from her past comes back to cause trouble, Braht may be the only guy who can help her out. 

Just like with Man Hands, Man Card had me cackling from the start! Sarina and Tanya started the realtor shenanigans right from the first page and I was completely entertained by them. Ash and Braht were willing to pull some wild stunts on each other and it was mostly all fun and games (although I think Ash may have been more serious when it came to closing the deal). I liked the writing a lot more in Man Card and thought the transition from Ash's POV to Braht's POV was more seamless than in the previous book. Also, there wasn't any "talking dick" scenarios this time around which I liked.

Since a relationship between Ash and Braht was somewhat already established in the previous book, I was so here for seeing these two take their relationship to the next level. The romance starts out very light with a lot of sexual tension and back and forth banter, but unlike the first book, things take a more serious turn in Man Card. That is one of the things I liked about this book. I felt like the connection between Ash and Braht was more deeper and there were more moments with these getting to know each other. I totally was feeling all the feels when Ash and Braht were both being so sweet to one another!! Those were some of my favorite moments. 

I already loved Ash when we met her in the Man Hands and I love her just the same in Man Card. She's so relatable and I enjoyed seeing her let her walls down and allow herself to trust someone with her heart again. Braht is hands-down one of the most interesting heroes I've ever read about. I mean let's be honest, his personality can be a bit much at first. He's very into his appearance and making sure he's on point every time he steps out his front door. It took me a while to get on board with his character, but I gotta say the guy knows what he's talking about. It's very refreshing to see a hero who is so secure in his masculinity that he literally gives no fucks about what others have to say. Also, can I just say I'm surprised at how Braht took control in the bedroom. I was totally expecting Ash to have her way with him, but Braht was like let me show you how it's done, lol.

Man Card was a hilariously fun and entertaining read that every rom-com lover should add to their to-be-read pile if they haven't done so already. I'm very curious to see what Sarina and Tanya have in store for us next. I'm hoping that they give Sadie the happpily-ever-after she deserves because damn does she need one.

E X C E R P T
“Name your other favorite movies,” I challenge Braht. 

“All of them?” He chugs his margarita. 

“Hmm. Top ten? Top five?” 

“That’s totally easy,” he says. Somehow I’ve gotten closer to him on the floor. When he sits back, I actually snuggle in beside him. He’s wearing a ridiculously soft shirt that feels good against my skin. And I watch with fascination as he ticks off the names of films on his fingers. “When Harry Met Sally. The Devil Wears Prada. Roman Holiday. Clueless. And Working Girl.” 

I burst out laughing. I can’t help it. “Those are all chick flicks. You should just hand over your man card right now.” 

“Not a chance.” Braht’s expression grows intense. “In the first place, I gave you a very thorough demonstration of my man card last week. I don’t remember hearing any complaints.” 

I swallow hard, because this is certainly true. 

“And secondly, you’re looking at this all backward.” 

“I…am?” And why can’t I look away? He has the most beautiful, intelligent eyes. 

“Yeah, you are,” he whispers. “It’s the guy who has a firm grip on his man card that can hold your purse. He’s not afraid to be seen with that Tory Burch you like to carry—nice color, by the way. He’ll free up your hands because he likes your hands, and he remembers all the terrific things you can use them for.” 

“Oh,” I say slowly. Now my fingers itch to reach out for him. I have to make fists with both hands so I won’t do it. 

“Furthermore, he’s not afraid to quote Working Girl. Because Joan Cusack is a genius. And who wouldn’t want to say Melanie Griffith’s best line out loud?” 

I can’t help saying it with him, and together we sound like the world’s horniest Greek chorus: “I have a head for business and a body for sin.” 

Sin sounds pretty good right now, actually. But Braht’s not done with his speech. “Any man who tells you that chick flicks are for pussies can’t be any good in bed. Because that man does not speak the language of women. He doesn’t know that a little luxury can erase a shitty day of worrying about your ex…” 

Braht takes my hand in his and begins to massage it. He has a great technique, applying gentle pressure between each joint. I relax just a little bit more against him. 

“…That man doesn’t speak the language because he’s afraid of sounding like a girl. But fuck that noise, honey bear. If a man doesn’t have the vocabulary to describe a satin teddy with peekaboo lace and mother-of-pearl snaps at the crotch, he can’t buy it for you and then strategically ask you to wear it. He can’t plan ahead to blow your mind sometime by lifting your skirt somewhere semi-public and dangerous. And he can’t get down on his knees and kiss that lace and then pop open those snaps while you bite your own hand to keep from screaming when you climax.” Braht takes a deep breath and lets it out in one hot gust. “Fuck. What was the point of this speech?” 

“Um…” My voice is hoarse, and my face is suddenly very hot. Let’s not even mention my nipples. “Man cards, I think.” But I’m not sure, because everything tingles. 

“Right,” he says with a sigh. “Still got mine. Shall we watch Working Girl next?” 

“Okay,” I breathe, sinking a little further into his comforting embrace.



WWW Wednesday: January 10, 2018

No comments:

Hey Guys!
WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World Of Words. Simply answer the following questions: 
 What have you recently finished reading?
 What are you currently reading?
 What do you think you’ll read next?

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Whore by Willow Aster
Three Blind Dates by Meghan Quinn

ARI: I didn't end up loving Whore as much as I would've hoped. The beginning was great but the story fell flat as things moved on along and the ending was anticlimactic. I guess I was hoping for excitement, lol. I also finished Three Blind Dates and LAWD, this book had me so stressed out! Meghan Quinn definitely knows how to mess with my emotions.



A Promise of Fire by Amanda Bouchet
BRITT: I've recently finished up A Promise of Fire by Amanda Bouchet and I really enjoyed it!!! Fantasy isn't a genre that I tend to go for a lot, but if it has romance involved then I'm more interested in checking it out. I can't wait to continue on with the series and see what else is in store for these characters.

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Man Card by Sarina Bowen and Tanya Eby

ARI: I'm so excited for Ash and Braht's story. I was totally feeling their chemistry in Man Hands so I can't see how things play out for them.

  

BRITT: I think I may be falling into a slump and I'm so annoyed because I'm trying to start the new year off on a good note. There are so many books that I want to read, and that I'm super excited to read but I just can't focus in right now. I'm trying not to force myself because I know that'll make things worse, so hopefully I'll get in the swing of things soon!!

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The Wedding Date by Jasmine Guillory



ARI: I actually have no idea what this book is about. But I'm in love with the cover which is why I requested it, lol.  




BRITT: Mood.

What are you all reading this week? Leave us your links down below!