ARC Review: Starry-Eyed Love by Helena Hunting

Special thanks to St. Martin’s Press for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Goodreads: Starry-Eyed Love (Spark House #2)
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Publish Date: 10 May 2022
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Panda Rating:

(3.5 pandas)

Charming, hilarious, and emotional, Starry-Eyed Love is Helena Hunting at her very best!

Having just broken up with her boyfriend, London Spark is not in the mood to be hit on. Especially not when she’s out celebrating her single status with her sisters. So when a very attractive man pays for their drinks and then slips her his number, she passes it right back to him with a ‘thanks, but no thanks’. As the business administrator for their family’s event hotel, the Spark House, London has more important things to worry about, like bringing in new clientele.

As luck would have it, a multi-million-dollar company calls a few months later asking for a meeting to discuss a potential partnership, and London is eager to prove to her sisters, and herself, that she can land this deal. Just when she thinks she has nailed her presentation, the company’s CEO, Jackson Holt, walks in and inserts himself into the meeting. Not only that, but he also happens to be the same guy she turned down at the bar a few months ago.

As they begin to spend more time together, their working relationship blossoms into something more. It isn’t until their professional entanglements are finally over, that London and Jackson are finally ready to take the next step in their relationship. But between Jackson’s secretive past and London’s struggle with her sisters, London must question where she really stands – not just with Jackson, but with the Spark House, too.

TL;DR: I genuinely enjoyed this so much more than the first book! Although it was slow at the start and there were communication issues that I wished had been handled better, London and Jackson had great chemistry and I liked how their romance played out. They had sweet moments with just the right amount of cheese to make it cute and I really liked how they supported each other. I also loved the sibling dynamic between the Spark sisters and although I’m not sure if Hunting’s books are 100% for me, I’m looking forward to Harley’s story because she’s my favourite sister so far!

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ARC Review: Burning Up by Tara Wyatt

Special thanks to the author for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review!

Goodreads: Burning Up (The Prescotts #6)
Publication Date: 26 April 2022
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Panda Rating:

(4 pandas)

We have to burn to rise from the ashes.

Nearly two years after her divorce, Felicity Hawthorne is ready to date again. At least, she thinks she would be, if the idea of dating wasn’t so freaking terrifying. But then she wins a date with sexy, swoony firefighter Noah Prescott at a charity bachelor auction, and everything changes.

FDNY captain Noah isn’t looking for a relationship. Since losing his father as a teenager, he’s spent the past twenty years shouldering heavy responsibilities, and he knows he doesn’t have the time or energy to be anyone’s boyfriend. But one date with sweet, charming Felicity has him wanting things he shouldn’t want.

Which is why Noah suggests Felicity practice her budding dating skills with him. He wants more of her, and practice dates are as close as he can come to having her in his life without hurting her. But then dating practice turns into practice of another kind—the kind that involves moans and sighs and orgasms—and Noah knows he’s going to fall. Hard.


GET A COPY:

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ARC Review: Tanked by Mia Hopkins

Special thanks to Little Stone Press for providing an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!

Goodreads: Tanked (Eastside Brewery #3)
Publisher: Little Stone Press
Publication Date: 26 April 2022
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Panda Rating:

(3.5 pandas)

A fighter without a purpose. A crusader with nothing to lose. Can she trust him with her heart, or is he just another lost cause?

Angel
By day, I do all the grunt work at my family’s struggling L.A. brewery. By night, I blow off steam at an underground fight club. I never thought the pandemic would bring Deanna Delgado back into my life—the woman who ghosted me three years ago after one unforgettable night. But the brewery needs a miracle to survive. And that miracle could cost me the only person who’s ever had faith in me.

Deanna
My family calls me an idealistic do-gooder, but I see a better, brighter future for my community. My biggest problem? I’ve just lost the job I love. To ease my pain, I’ve hooked up with Angel Rosas, the filthy-sweet one-night stand who’s somehow dropped back into my life. There’s so much more to Angel than he lets on. Is he the man I can trust with my body and my heart? Or is he just another lost cause?


GRAB A COPY:

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Romance Mini-Reviews: Talia Hibbert Edition

I’m back with more mini(-ish) reviews and today it’s for two Talia Hibbert books that I’ve read in 2022 but still haven’t reviewed. Talia Hibbert is one of my auto-buy romance authors—she brings the swoon and the steam and while I’ve read one or two of her books that didn’t entirely sweep me away, for the most part, her romances have been winners! Without further ado, let’s get to it.


WORK FOR IT BY TALIA HIBBERT

Goodreads: Work for It (Just For Him #4)
Publisher: Nixon House
Publication Date: 03 September 2019
Genre:
Contemporary Romance, M/M Romance

Panda Rating:

(4 pandas)

For men like us, trust doesn’t come easy.

In this village, I’m an outcast: Griffin Everett, the scowling giant who prefers plants to people. Then I meet Keynes, a stranger from the city who’s everything I’m not: sharp-tongued, sophisticated, beautiful. Free. For a few precious moments in a dark alleyway, he’s also mine, hot and sweet under the stars… until he crushes me like dirt beneath his designer boot.

When the prettiest man I’ve ever hated shows up at my job the next day, I’m not sure if I want to strangle him or drag him into bed. Actually—I think I want both. But Keynes isn’t here for the likes of me: he makes that painfully clear. With everyone else at work, he’s all gorgeous, glittering charm—but when I get too close, he turns vicious.

And yet, I can’t stay away. Because there’s something about this ice king that sets me on fire, a secret vulnerability that makes my chest ache. I’ll do whatever it takes to sneak past his walls and see the real man again.

The last thing I expect is for that man to ruin me. 

Continue reading “Romance Mini-Reviews: Talia Hibbert Edition”

Romance Mini-Reviews: Kiss and Don’t Tell, The Last Eligible Billionaire & A Deal with the Devil

I’ve got quite a backlog of reviews that I want to share on my blog but with the number I’ve got going, it’ll take me forever to get many of them up so today I’m sharing mini-reviews for three romances that I’ve read in the last month! If you’re interested in reading any of these, all of them are available on Kindle Unlimited (at least for Amazon UK) if you have a subscription. 😊


Kiss and Don’t Tell by Meghan Quinn

Goodreads: Kiss and Don’t Tell (The Vancouver Agitators #1)
Publication Date: 21 September 2021
Genre:
Contemporary Sports Romance

Panda Rating:

(4.5 pandas)

Five hockey players, a cabin in the woods . . . and little old me, Winnie Berlin.

Sounds like the start of a fantasy, right? But it’s not. It’s my reality.
It all started when I got lost in the middle of the Canadian Rockies. A wicked thunderstorm sent my car mud sliding into a ditch and for a girl whose survival skills involve finding the nearest Starbucks, I was in deep trouble.
Forced to abandon my car in search of help, I stumbled upon a cabin in the middle of nowhere. Soaking wet, irritated, and in desperate need of a hot shower, I knocked on the door for help only to be greeted by five boisterous, burly, and insanely attractive men.

Not just men.
Professional hockey players.
I hit the motherload of fantasies, right? Wrong.
Because as it turns out, one of them is my ex-boyfriend’s half-brother. And when I end up crashing in their spare bedroom for the night, things take a very unexpected turn. I’m not sure any amount of survival skills can protect my heart from Vancouver Agitators star goalie, Pacey Lawes. But as long as we kiss and don’t tell, maybe everything will be okay . . .

Continue reading “Romance Mini-Reviews: Kiss and Don’t Tell, The Last Eligible Billionaire & A Deal with the Devil”

ARC Review: Those Three Little Words by Meghan Quinn

Special thanks to Meghan Quinn and her team for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review!

Goodreads: Those Three Little Words (The ancouver Agitators #2)
Publication Date: 05 April 2022
Genre: Contemporary Sports Romance
Panda Rating:

(4.5 pandas)

I knocked up my best friend’s sister.
Figured I would get straight to the point because how it happened is a mere snippet of the story I have to tell. The real meat and potatoes is what happened after.

Let’s start with how she decided to inform me and Pacey the news…together. Imagine that nightmare. I was going into what I thought was a hockey marketing meeting and then BAM! I’m going to be a dad and my best friend/teammate is attempting to imprint my face with his fist.
It wasn’t pretty.

Threats were tossed around, friendships were revoked, and then I was marched up to her apartment, suitcases in hand, and forced to live with her so I could take care of her every need. Given how much I’ve pined for the girl, you would think that wouldn’t be a hardship.
Wrong.

This is my one shot to win my teammate back. Pacey is the only family I’ve got, so hooking up with his sister isn’t a mistake I can make twice…despite the fact that she’s pregnant with my child. But with every mood swing, every pair of pants that doesn’t fit right, and every late night run to find the perfect donut, I’m finding it harder and harder not to fall for my best friend’s little sister.
Especially when she kisses me…

  Download today or read for FREE with Kindle Unlimited!

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ARC Review: One-Timer by Teagan Hunter

🎉 HAPPY RELEASE DAY! 🎉

Special thanks to Valentine PR for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review!

Goodreads: One-Timer (Carolina Comets #3)
Publication Date: 24 March 2022
Genre: Sports Romance, Romantic Comedy
Panda Rating:

(3.75 pandas)

“I’m pregnant.”

That’s what my teammate’s sister-in-law told me after our one-night stand.

I didn’t expect to see Hollis again, let alone end up raising a child with her.

We set some ground rules–we’ll raise the baby together, but that’s it.
No relationship, no future, and definitely no kissing.

But the more time we spend together, the harder it is to keep track of where the lines were once drawn.

I’m known for my one-timer on and off the ice, but this game with Hollis just got a lot more complicated…

  Download today or read for FREE with Kindle Unlimited!

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Book Review: Don’t You Forget About Me by Mhairi McFarlane

Goodreads: Don’t You Forget About Me
Publisher: HarperCollins
Published: 10 January 2019
Genre: Women’s Fiction, Romance

Panda Rating:

(4 pandas)

You always remember your first love. Don’t you?
It began with four words.
‘I love your laugh. x’

But that was twelve years ago. It really began the day Georgina was fired from The Worst Restaurant in Sheffield (© Tripadvisor) and found The Worst Boyfriend in the World (© Georgina’s best friends) in bed with someone else. So when her new boss, Lucas McCarthy, turns out to be the boy who wrote those words to her all that time ago, it feels like the start of something.

The only problem? He doesn’t seem to remember Georgina – at all…

TL;DR: Wow, despite not being at all what I expected I still really enjoyed this book! Like, I read this overnight because once I started I didn’t want to put it down. It’s deeply emotional and had me in tears at the end but it was well-balanced with sarcastic quippy humour that had me frequently laughing out loud. I really enjoyed MacFarlane’s writing and the characters, especially the group of friends, were fantastic! I can’t wait to read more by this author in the (near) future. 😍

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ARC Review: Chef’s Kiss by Jarrett Melendez, Danica Brine (Illustration)

Special thanks to Oni Press for providing an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!

Goodreads: Chef’s Kiss
Publisher: Oni Press
Published: 12 April 2022
Genre: Graphic Novel

Panda Rating:

(5 pandas)

Watch things start to really heat up in the kitchen in this sweet, queer, new adult graphic novel! 

Now that college is over, English graduate Ben Cook is on the job hunt looking for something…anything…related to his passion for reading and writing. But interview after interview, hiring committee after hiring committee, Ben soon learns getting the dream job won’t be as easy as he thought. Proofreading? Journalism? Copywriting? Not enough experience. It turns out he doesn’t even have enough experience to be a garbage collector! But when Ben stumbles upon a “Now Hiring—No Experience Necessary” sign outside a restaurant, he jumps at the chance to land his first job. Plus, he can keep looking for a writing job in the meantime. He’s actually not so bad in the kitchen, but he will have to pass a series of cooking tests to prove he’s got the culinary skills to stay on full-time. But it’s only temporary…right? 

When Ben begins developing a crush on Liam, one of the other super dreamy chefs at the restaurant, and when he starts ditching his old college friends and his old writing job plans, his career path starts to become much less clear. 

TL;DR: This was an absolute treat to read and I would highly recommend it if you’re looking for a wonderfully illustrated graphic novel about new beginnings and finding your way in the world, with wonderful characters and great friendships that are sure to make you smile!

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ARC Review: What the Fang? by Stacey Kennedy

Special thanks to Stacey Kennedy for providing an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!

Goodreads: What the Fang? (Undead Ever After #1)
Published: 25 January 2022
Genre: Paranormal Romance

Panda Rating:

(3.5 pandas)

Willa Farrington’s magic is broken. Shunned by her coven for failing to pass the Summer Solstice Rite, Willa escapes to the one place no witch belongs – Charleston, a city that belongs to vampires. Determined to embrace her new life, Willa opens Cauldron Boil Books, and unexpectedly finds some friends among the vampires…

Until one terrible night Willa ends up on the wrong side of a pair of fangs. Thankfully, her captor’s plan is ruined when Killian Constantine, the drop-dead gorgeous Warden of Charleston, shows up to save her. But just when Willa thinks she’s safe, Killian, rumored to be the most feared vampire in the city, furiously demands to know why she – a witch – telepathically called him for help.

Intent on finding answers, the two embark on a journey to unravel the mystery behind Willa’s attack and their unusual connection. As they get closer to the truth, the fiery passion between them ignites. But their forbidden romance isn’t making them many friends, and just as Willa starts to think that her entire existence is a lie, deadlier forces come out of the shadows. She will need to believe in her malfunctioning magic, trust bloodthirsty vampires, and cross her fingers that she and Killian make it out together… and that neither end up dead.

TL;DR: What the Fang? is one of those books that I would recommend picking up if you’re simply looking for a purely entertaining read—it’s one that you don’t have to think much about and can happily consume in the span of a few hours, which is what I did and it was exactly what I was looking for!

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