Tag Archives: College

Hello Forever (Hello Goodbye # 2)

By Sarina Bowen

Synopsis

A basketball game changed both their lives.

When they were only teenagers, Axel and Caxton were caught making out in the woods at church camp. And afterward, Cax had disappeared from all the youth group activities.

Six years later, Axel is astonished to spot his first love’s face in the crowd of a college basketball game he’s watching on TV—at a school which has just offered him a job. It’s a thousand miles away, in a tiny rural town. But suddenly, he can’t wait to get there.

Cax can’t believe his eyes when Axel appears in the same Massachusetts town where he now lives. And he’s still just as drawn to Axel as ever. But he can’t let himself go there again, because loving Axel will mean giving up everything else he holds dear.

Both men have so much to lose. But as far as their love is concerned, it’s Hello Forever.



Review

My review for HELLO FOREVER is going to be short and sweet, because I’m in the middle of moving and I just don’t have the time to write my usual lengthy review.

I loved this story and I loved it’s two main characters, Cax and Axel.  They are both so kind and sweet, and they really were perfect for each other.  I also loved Axel’s co-worker, Boz, who was hilarious.  He wasn’t really in the story much, but when he was, he was definitely memorable.

One thing I thought was interesting is that, from memory, there are only two female characters in this story: Axel’s mother; and Cax’s best friend, Amy.  Every other character was male.  I’m not saying that’s a bad thing, but it was certainly something that really stood out to me.

HELLO FOREVER is told in dual POVs and, while it’s part of a series, it can be read as a stand-alone.  The previous couple, Josh and Caleb, make an appearance, and it was good to see them again.  Will there be more books in this series?  I’m not sure, but I really hope so.

Hello Forever (Hello Goodbye # 2)

My Rating:  

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Hello Goodbye Series

Fallen Crest Forever (Fallen Crest #7)

By Tijan

Synopsis

Mason Kade is the dream.
He is the promise.
He’s offering what so many would fantasize about, and it’s not that I don’t want it/him/us.
It’s the opposite.
There might be ghosts haunting me, but this man who’s my soulmate is asking me for forever.
How can I say no to someone who already gave me my happily ever after?

The last full-length novel for the Fallen Crest Series!

Review

The Fallen Crest series to me began with Samantha Stratton in FCH and we followed her journey through family breakup and finding her new family and fighting those battles as the “Threesome Fearsome”.    As a reader I was so glad Fallen Crest Forever was in all essence about Sam, her running (that had taken a back seat in the last two books) and all the pieces of her life falling into place both physically, mentally and also repairing so much damage from the adults in her life.   I loved the bond of Sam & Mason and Logan & Taylor growing towards adulthood and Logan was the one to have me tearing up on many occasions.

There were some incredibly hard scenes in this particularly towards the end but they were so needed to develop the characters into the adult world and making life decisions about their futures so to me it was perfect.  All characters to me matured and their inner thoughts upon the pages just tied all the loose ends together.

My comment on the Epilogue, at first I was upset upon reading the last section, I felt left out because as a reader I wanted to know how it all happened as we have followed everything good and bad together but upon reflection Tijan gave them privacy and I am happy they got to that point in their lives, particularly Sam, I feel at peace for her and ready to let her go.

Fallen Crest is just a wonderful series as it has a great group of characters and I really enjoyed all the adults that formed their outer circle.  I would love a book on Annalise and James as their relationship has intrigued me from the first book, James and Mason are such a strong force when upon the pages in the same scene, I would love to get into his head.

Farewell Fallen Crest – looking forward to seeing what other stories lay ahead in the world of Tijan.

Fallen Crest Forever (Fallen Crest #7)

My Rating:  

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Fallen Crest Home (Fallen Crest #6)

By Tijan

Synopsis

It’s been years since my mother was in my life.
I healed.
I learned to accept love.
I lived.
That’s all done. She was away, and now she’s back.
I avoided her for a year and a half, but I couldn’t hide anymore.
Mason had an internship in Fallen Crest, so we headed back for the summer.
And when we got there—no one was prepared for what happened.

Review

Fallen Crest High (#1) has always been my favourite but Fallen Crest Home has surpassed that.  Why you ask? Well we returned to what this is all about Sam and Mason, their relationship with each other, her mother and his father.  So much action, game playing, guessing who is honest and just the fearsome foursome, Mason, Logan, Tate & Sam – they were Home and standing side by side.

I definitely felt that Mason was maturing and as this story progressed you just knew the tides were changing and he lost control at times, the scene after the wedding reception with Sam, how is that going to play out in Fallen Crest High #7?

I do admit I was a little upset that again Sam was being attacked from different sides from old and new threats, I really wanted them to be Home for some peace after all the drama at Cain.  I did not feel calm until Logan appeared as I was worried Mason was alone, no matter who else is  around unless those two guys are together I do not feel calm.I did a little dance when Logan finally gets into town, we were given great humorous moments as at that point in the story I was shaking in my boots in fear.

One favourite part was Mason’s reflection at the wedding ceremony, his realisation of Analise and Sam, it was a stellar scene and my heart filled.  I also felt myself aching with the loss and hurt as Sam dealt with her demons in relation to her mother, at times I thought of reconciliation and other times revenge, it was riveting to follow Sam’s own personal journey of self discovery and allowing herself closure.  The scene with her mother in the hotel reception was another favourite for me and I actually found myself thawing somewhat towards her mother.

Reading Fallen Crest Home to me allowed Sam back into the story, I would have liked David to be involved a bit more however her relationship with Malinda was perfect and exactly what she needed.  I did find myself actually angry at Malinda helping Sam’s mother but then it made sense keep her friends close and your enemy closer as they say and in the end she was looking out for Sam.

Mason and Logan’s speech at the wedding ceremony was absolutely brilliant!

Adam and Becky returned with a vengeance and I did have a hunch on the leak and when all the secrets were revealed well it provided another layer to this story.  I also enjoyed Garrett making an appearance and helping his daughter and Heather continued to prove her worth as a true friend to Sam.

I cannot wait for Fallen Crest High #7 – I am hoping for two things to evolve in their relationship – will they happen? Will there be further reconciliation?

Fallen Crest Home (Fallen Crest #6)

My Rating:  

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Nova (The Renegades # 2)

By Rebecca Yarros

Synopsis

He’s got one shot to make it right…

He’s Landon Rhodes.
The Renegade they call Nova.
Sinfully gorgeous, broody, tatted-up, professional snowboarder.

They say a girl broke him once–
That’s why he’s so reckless, so driven, so careless with his conquests.
But I’m that girl.
They can call me his curse all they want.
He and I both know the truth–
He’s the one who destroyed me,
And I’m too smart to let that happen again

Review

NOVA is the second book in The Renegades series and is a second-chance romance between Landon (Nova) and Rachel.  Here’s what we learnt about them in the first book.  Rachel was dating Paxton (from book 1) but cheated on him with Landon.  They fell in love and made plans for their future, but Paxton (out of anger and jealousy), gave Landon an ultimatum: the Renegades or Rachel, because he couldn’t have both.  Landon chose the Renegades, breaking his heart and Rachel’s in the process.  Flash forward two and a half years later and Paxton regrets his ultimatum and hates what he turned Landon in to.  He has therefore created an opportunity for Rachel and Landon to be on the Study at Sea program together in the hopes they’ll reconnect.

So Landon is your typical manwhore who, after breaking up with the love of his life, went out and slept with every woman who made herself available.  Of course, that bites him in the arse when he tries to win Rachel back and she keeps using his reputation against him.  His reasons for leaving her were kind of stupid, but he does a really good job of proving to her that he will never choose anyone or anything over her ever again.  While you can feel that he really does love her, I was disappointed that he never made any effort to win her back until after he found out she was on board the ship.

I loved that Rachel was never afraid to tell Landon exactly how badly he broke her heart when he chose the Renegades over her.  I liked that she didn’t forgive him straight away, didn’t fall back into bed with him straight away, and that she made him work for her forgiveness.  I thought her conflicting feelings and how she processed them were realistic.

I enjoyed NOVA, although I will admit that I skimmed through it, focusing more on the conversations and skipping over the inner monologue that I sometimes found a little repetitive.  NOVA is told in dual POVs and while it’s part of a series, it could be read as a stand-alone.  There is no epilogue but there is a really sweet HFN ending for Landon and Rachel.  Penna (Rebel) will get the next book in the series, and I hope a little romance will brighten up her not-so-sunny personality she displayed in this book.

Nova (The Renegades # 2)

My Rating:  

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The Renegades Series

Logan Kade

By Tijan

Synopsis

You think you know me?
Player. Partier. Fighter.

You know what? You’re right. I’m all those things. F*ck with mine and I’ll f*ck you ten times harder. Suspensions. Arrests. You think I care?
So yeah, I may fit the bad boy image, but there’s so much more you don’t know.
I’m loyal to a damned fault. I’ll never leave your side. The real Logan Kade isn’t a manwhore. When I love, I love hard and completely.
Taylor saw that side of me. Inside of me. She saw my darkness and pain, and the second she did, she owned me.

You may think you know me…
…but she’s the only one who sees me.

**Full-length standalone

Review

** Please read Fallen Crest High Series 1 to 5 before reading Logan’s story **

I am on team #Logan all the way, ever since I picked up Fallen Crest High, I love Mason & Sam and their love story but Logan’s humour and live life to the fullest always drew me in.  If you have not read Fallen Crest Series, please do, so many characters in here are in that series and although this is a standalone so many of his mannerisms may not make sense.

Logan’s story in this book really opened up him to the reader on a new level, you saw his hurt and learnt more about him and Mason and their younger life and those key moments that changed them.

I enjoyed the dual POV, I really liked how we had more of Taylor’s perspective as I needed to know she was the girl for him and that she deserved Logan.  As a reader you get so invested in the character and I simply needed to know she was good enough.

It is funny that both Sam and Taylor are “Coaches daughters” and their mannerisms are really quite similar in that they do not need a large posse around them, they are very strong and independent young woman who deserve two men such as Mason & Logan that would walk through fire for them.

It was interesting to see Nate in this story and I now would love to see him find the girl of his dreams.  I would have liked perhaps a chapter on Sam, Nate and Mason when Taylor and Logan had their one month break to tie in the obvious conclusions they had come to with Logan falling in love.

The ending was brilliant and I cannot wait to see the big event, which  we will obviously read about in Fallen Crest 6 or 7.

Quote: “Mama Malinda’s rules: Go big or go home”

Logan Kade

My Rating: 

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Shut Up and Kiss Me (Lost Boys # 2)

By Jessica Lemmon

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Synopsis

Cade: I tried. I really tried. I should be out of this small town by now, finishing my law degree and partnering up with my buddies, but I couldn’t resist one last street race. Now I’m sidelined in the hospital, and while my injuries will heal, I’m not so sure my voice will return. What kind of attorney can’t talk? Yeah, exactly. I’m afraid that I won’t be able to come back from this . . . until Tasha Montgomery reawakens every competitive bone in my body.

Tasha: I nearly watched Cade Wilson die on that lonely stretch of road. He’s damn lucky just to be alive, even if he doesn’t realize it. I know he’s destined for bigger and better things, but I don’t mind helping him get there as he relearns everything he took for granted. Cade’s a good student, a real perfectionist; I can tell how much his stutter bothers him. But when he lets his kisses do the talking, everything else disappears. And one day, maybe he’ll be able to tell me that he wants me—as much as I want him.

Review

SHUT UP AND KISS ME was an easy and mostly light-hearted read that I found somewhat enjoyable, but also somewhat unmemorable.

Here you have Cade who is a college dropout, and Tasha who is finishing her final year of college.  Despite being college aged, there was none of that over-the-top drama that can appear in college romances, and I liked that.  There were times I liked the characters and times I didn’t. Cade is a very bitter young man, filled with anger at how his life has changed since his accident, as well as anger towards his mother and his ex-girlfriend.  He spends a good portion of the story treating Tasha poorly when he’s not trying to get into her pants, simply because she reminds him of his ex.  Tasha is a caring young woman who wears her heart on her sleeve, but at the same time she’s a doormat.  Cade, her father and her ex-boyfriend treat her horribly, and she just takes it.  Although to be fair, she does stand up to her ex a little bit, which was nice to see.  She’s very quick to forgive, which could be considered a good trait, but she never lets people know just how badly they hurt her because she doesn’t want to cause issues.

SHUT UP AND KISS ME is told in dual POVs and while it’s part of a series, it can be read as a stand-alone.  That being said, I felt I was on the outside looking in when it came to Cade’s accident and the issue with his mother, so I’m assuming those things were introduced in the previous book and that I’d understand them better if I had read it.  For me, this book was ok, but nothing special.  The characters didn’t grab me, the story didn’t draw me in, and all the conflict was easily forgiven and tied up with a nice little bow by the end.

Shut Up and Kiss Me (Lost Boys # 2)

My Rating:  3 Hearts

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Lost Boys Series

More Than A Memory

By Marie James

br-more-than-a-memory

Synopsis

“You’re gorgeous. Even better looking than the day I fell in love with you.”

The words are a constant reminder of what true love is. Olivia Dawson’s alarm goes off at the same time every day and she disappears into her room to hear Duncan’s voice, see his face, miss him even more for being untouchable. Olivia loves with her entire heart, and her love for Duncan is unmatched, but there’s something about her new roommate she just can’t seem to ignore—no matter how hard she tries. 

“I miss you so much.”
“Can’t be more than I miss you.”

The words are a constant reminder of how unavailable Olivia is, and Bryson Daniels isn’t one for competition off the baseball field, but since the moment he knocked on the door to his new apartment and his roommate “Ollie” wasn’t who he expected, he can’t help but consider bending a few of his rules—even if it means heeding to Olivia’s. 

“I love you, sweet cheeks. Chat with you later?” 

Bryson hears the conversations through the paper thin walls, but there’s a pain inside Olivia he can’t seem to walk away from. He vows to be there for her when the voice on the other side of the computer inevitably breaks her heart, but will he ever be able to compete with someone who’s more than a memory?

Review

Before I get started, I think I need to point out that MORE THAN A MEMORY is set in college, with Bryson and Olivia aged twenty and nineteen respectively.  The synopsis makes no mention of the college setting, nor does the man on the cover look like he’s twenty years old.  Don’t get me wrong, he looks hot and I would totally kick him out of bed only so that I could fuck him on the floor, but he looks too old to represent a twenty year old college student who’s not legally allowed to consume alcohol.  Moving on, like I said the story is set in college and if I knew that at the time, I may not have considered reading it.  College romances can be hard for me to connect with, especially when there’s too much drama and/or too much pushing and pulling between characters.  There was a bit of that here, but thankfully not as much as I’ve read in other college romances.

I can’t say a lot about Olivia other than she’s a recluse suffering from severe depression.  She hasn’t stepped outside her apartment in months and the only physical interaction she’s had is with her mother when she comes to visit.  Normally a character like Olivia would frustrate me to tears with her huge mood swings, but not once was I frustrated with her.  I put that down to reminding myself that she had depression, but I think it’s also because Marie James did such a good job of writing her that you can’t help but feel sad for her every time she suffers a setback.

Now Bryson on the other hand did frustrate me several times.  I did like him, and I loved that he helped bring Olivia out of hiding, but sometimes he flat out treated her terribly.  He tells himself he wants to help her and that he needs to be patient with her, but when she didn’t adjust as quickly as he’d like, or when she’d have a setback, he’d get angry and mean and would pull away from her.  His night with Simone was done deliberately in front of her to humiliate and punish her, all because he wanted her but couldn’t have her.  Quite honestly, I thought his mood swings were bigger than Olivia’s, but then I did have to remind myself that he was only twenty and clearly not equiped to handle her very well.

MORE THAN A MEMORY is told in dual POVs and is currently a stand-alone.  I say currently because the story is left open for two of Bryson’s teammates to get their own story.  I did enjoy the story and it certainly brought out some strong emotions; I was crying so much at one scene that I had to stop and take a break.  It does come with a HEA, but I was left wondering one thing: Did Bryson go pro?

More Than A Memory

My Rating:  3 Hearts

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Tyed

By L J Shen

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Synopsis

Rock bottom has built way more champions than privilege has.

Blaire, an underachieving college student with zero prospects and a ton of issues (hey, being the less-successful twin of a gorgeous supermodel would totally do that to you) needs something from Ty.

Mixed Martial artist Ty, a soon-to-be Welterweight champion of the Xtreme Warrior League and the hottest guy in the Bay Area, wants something from Blaire.

But Ty has a secret.

And Blaire can barely even handle his truths.

Life is about to throw a few knockout punches at both of them. Can they handle the pain?

Tyed is a standalone novel. 

Review

Ty is definitely one dynamic and hot champion and owns the pages who kept me reading this even when I found Blaire for the first half of the book a bit annoying and a bit blah.  She came into her own but my god her sister annoyed me no end and I felt frustrated by their relationship as she was a very self centred character.  I wanted to throttle Blaire’s parents and I just would have liked the family dynamic explored just a little more as they were thrown in at parts and glossed over in others, especially when Blaire graduates.  Blaire had such low self confidence and seeing how her parents and sister walked all over her, well no wonder.   The whole scene at Las Vegas with the wedding just felt weird one day all drama then next at the wedding chapel.

I liked the second half of this book more, it does not slow down and works you up to a ending that is simply perfect and gives you your HEA.  I loved seeing the characters find their own way back to each other and I did not pick Ty’s secret until all was revealed so that was great writing.

Cameron was a great character to introduce when Blaire needed someone and I must say that Shane also created drama and more questions and I enjoyed him.

This is my second book by this author, I have read Sparrow (two times) still one of my favourites  from this year.

Tyed

My Rating:  4 Hearts

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The Goal (Off-Campus # 4)

By Elle Kennedy

br-the-goal

Synopsis

She’s good at achieving her goals… 

College senior Sabrina James has her whole future planned out: graduate from college, kick butt in law school, and land a high-paying job at a cutthroat firm. Her path to escaping her shameful past certainly doesn’t include a gorgeous hockey player who believes in love at first sight. One night of sizzling heat and surprising tenderness is all she’s willing to give John Tucker, but sometimes, one night is all it takes for your entire life to change. 

But the game just got a whole lot more complicated 

Tucker believes being a team player is as important as being the star. On the ice, he’s fine staying out of the spotlight, but when it comes to becoming a daddy at the age of twenty-two, he refuses to be a bench warmer. It doesn’t hurt that the soon-to-be mother of his child is beautiful, whip-smart, and keeps him on his toes. The problem is, Sabrina’s heart is locked up tight, and the fiery brunette is too stubborn to accept his help. If he wants a life with the woman of his dreams, he’ll have to convince her that some goals can only be made with an assist.

Review

Despite having read the previous books, I couldn’t remember Sabrina, but apparently she was considered by many people to be a bitch.  In this book, we learn that she’s not a bitch, but is instead a woman who’s incredibly focused and determined to succeed.  She has two goals: get into Harvard Law School and get away from her stepfather.  Because of that drive, she doesn’t have time to let people in and she really hates to see people get a free pass, which is why her feud with Dean is so strong.  Reading about her home situation was disturbing, and her interactions with her stepfather made my skin crawl.  In the end, I liked her.  I thought she was strong and capable, but I liked her best when she realised there’s more to life than just good grades and achievements.  A life isn’t a life when it’s not filled with love, laughter and friendship.

“We have a baby in this truck, Sabrina.”
“I know.”
“This is fucked up.  We shouldn’t be allowed to leave the hospital with a kid.  I’ve never even had a pet before.”

Tucker surprised me.  Why?  Because he snuck up on me and has become one of my favourite book boyfriends.  He knows he’ll never be an NHL player, and he’s more than ok with that; he’s just happy to be good enough to keep his scholarship.  He’s easygoing and carefree, but he doesn’t coast through life; he has plans for his future and is determined to see them become reality.  He was kind, endearing, soothing and beyond patient.  What I loved most about him was that he was deliciously dirty when it came to sex, but was an absolute gentleman outside of the bedroom.

“I’m bringing my friend Carin and u need to bring the hottest guy u know.”
“I am the hottest guy I know.  Will look for 2nd hottest guy on campus.”

THE GOAL is told in dual POVs and while it’s part of a series, it can be read as a stand-alone.  This book doesn’t take place after THE SCORE, instead a good portion of it runs in conjunction with THE SCORE and certain events in that book are mentioned again here.  As with the previous books, there were laughs to be had, but I felt the humour was a little light on and more subtle.  But there were a couple of scenes that did get me laughing out loud, mainly the ones surrounding Garrett and Logan and their competition for Godfather rights.  Will we see more books in the Off-Campus series?  I’m not sure, given that the original four boys in the house have graduated and left.  But there were a few other teammates mentioned who will be moving into the house, with special attention given to Fitzy.  Maybe he’ll get his own Off-Campus book, or perhaps a spin-off.  Only time will tell.

The Goal (Off-Campus # 4)

My Rating:  5 Hearts

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Off-Campus Series

Wilder (The Renegades # 1)

By Rebecca Yarros

br-wilder

Synopsis

He’s Paxton Wilder.

Twenty-two-year-old, tattooed, smoking-hot leader of the Renegades.

Five time X Games medalist.

The world is his playground—especially this year—and for the next nine months I’m stuck as his tutor on the Study at Sea program.

He’s too busy staging worldwide stunts for his documentary to get to class.

But if I can’t get him to take academics seriously, I’ll lose my scholarship…if I don’t lose my heart first.

Six unlikely friends on a nine-month cruise with the Study at Sea program will learn that chemistry is more than a subject and the best lessons aren’t taught in the classroom…but in the heart.

Review

I enjoyed WILDER and thought it was a great start to a new series from Rebecca Yarros.  In this series we have a trio of adrenaline junkies⎯Wilder (Pax), Nova (Landon) and Rebel (Penna)⎯who are the Renegades.  They’re taking a year off competing in order to finish college, but will film a documentary showcasing all their crazy stunts performed around the world while they spend the school year at sea.  Because of his busy schedule, Pax needs a tutor to help him graduate, and Leah has been chosen for him.

Leah is recovering from a traumatic event and just getting on the ship is the craziest and bravest thing she’s done in two years.  On her first day, she meets Pax and is thrown into a situation that terrifies her.  But she’s strong and brave and handles it like a champ.  She would normally never consider doing the crazy things that Pax does, but he makes her want to step out of her comfort zone and live a little.  I liked that while she thinks about her traumatic past, she doesn’t use it as a reason not to be with Pax.  Pax is cocky and arrogant, but he’s also a nice guy who would do anything for those he cares about.  He’s also haunted by a traumatic event for which he blames himself for, but it’s not his fault at all.  He’s determined to graduate college, gain access to his trust fund and finish the documentary to honour a friend.

There was one thing I didn’t like about the story, and that was how many times Pax and Leah’s “secrets” were alluded to before finally being revealed.  Leah’s traumatic event.  Pax hiding something from Leah.  Pax being the cause of Nova’s man-whore ways.  They were talked or thought about so many times that by the time the secrets were revealed, they weren’t shocking because they’d become easy to predict, and that was disappointing.  But other than that, I liked the story and it’s characters, and I am looking forward to reading Nova’s books next, which comes out in February 2017.  WILDER is told in dual POVs and is the first book in The Renegades series.  It doesn’t end with a cliffhanger and comes with a HEA for Pax and Leah, who I’m sure we’ll see again throughout the series.

Wilder (The Renegades # 1)

My Rating:  4 Hearts

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The Renegades Series