Reviews & Ramblings: August 2019

Welp, I have fallen WAY behind!! The two jobs is taking at toll, so I’m trying to catch up this week! Here’s my August reviews ♥

#ReviewsAndRamblings #AngiesReviews #AngiesRamblings #Bookreviews #ElizabethKnox #ErinNicholas #HelenaHunting #IlsaMaddenMills #KatiaRose #LauraLee #LindsayBecs #NinaBocci

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Beauty and the bayou.jpgBeauty and the Bayou (Boys of the Bayou #3)

by Erin Nicholas

I LOVED Sawyer and Juliet!! They may have seemed super different on the outside, but I loved how similar they were. They are both super hard working with great morals. They even have some similar fears.

I’ve been dying to see Sawyer be happy! He’s been so sad and surly, and I’ve been really impatient to see what’s under all of that. Everything that happened with Tommy, one can definitely understand why, but it was about time he started living life!! Then we have Juliet who isn’t unhappy but not living life to the fullest because of past reasons also. She is such an AMAZING person though! Who else would not only make their brother do some hard work for payback, BUT DO THE WORK WITH HIM? The best girl in the whole world would!

These two really had a special connection though. All of these things they had in common, but I think also their differences really brought them close. Their interactions were super flirty and steamy, that I could not wait to see what would happen!!! Their “meet cute” was super adorable too!! Then of course you have the family, who everyone falls in love with. I loved how they took Chase under their wing even, completely looking past his reasons for being at the Bayou.

Oh man was this book FUNNY! I was howling throughout this whole book. On top of funny, it had just about every other emotion too! The best part about a romcom is when it truly is more than just a comedy. And THAT was exactly this book! It was so much more than a comedy and had so many layers. I cannot wait to see what is in store for us next!!!

~~♥~~

47174430._SY475_.jpgAlways You (Always #4)

by Lindsay Becs

You know, sometimes when you read a book from your favorite author, you think, there’s no way they can top this. BUT THEN IT HAPPENS! Lindsay is always surprising me, and I fall more and more in love with these characters with each book. I can easily say that of the children’s books, this is BY FAR, my favorite. To me, this book was just so much more special. We didn’t really know Penny in Always, but we got these awesome glimpses of her throughout Always there and Promise Me Always. That being said, We TRULY got to see Penny in every way in this book.

I absolutely adored how Lindsay took us through Jesse and Penny at different points in their life. How she showed us a few really special moments as they grew together. And by grew together, I mean in so many ways! Growing up to be adults, growing together as friends, and growing together as a couple. This was one of the sweetest and slowest burns you could have. I truly think that Jesse and Penny always knew they’d be together, but they really had to find themselves first. When we first meet Jesse, I loved how Penny was trying to take care of him. Seeing her do this really made me think of her mom, and I think that was super special. I am crying writing this because there were so many special moments like this where you think of Josie. These two were so great together. I love how they were totally different, yet really complimented each other. Penny grew into this amazing young woman, and I really loved that she works with her Dad. Penny and Jesse both had some pretty significant curve balls in this story too. The biggest being Jesse’s, but I think both of these things really helped them grow. Sometimes being apart from each other is the best thing for you. For these two, it really meant a lot of different things.

One of my favorite parts about this series is the letters that Josie has left for everyone. Every. Single. Time. I CRY! It’s just the sweetest, most adorable thing, and I can’t help but cry for this family. Travis had dealt with so much throughout these books, and seeing Penny and him transform was just so beautiful. Then, to see Penny grow into someone who is so much like Josie, dear lord. Cue the darn waterworks. Ugh, I’m so emotional and this book is so emotional. But, perfectly emotional. There were so many funny parts, sad parts, angry parts, it’s just so perfectly balanced.

And as usual, I LOVED seeing Tatum, Ollie and Travis! Seeing them with Jesse and Penny was so cute. Add in Jesse’s Aunt Tillie, it was just absolutely amazing. This family is so amazing and so close. Lindsay really writes them to make you feel like you are there and apart of it. Oh and I can’t forget Bear!! I loved their dog Bear, he was like another character!!

I cannot wait to see where Lindsay takes us from here ❤

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41150495._SY475_.jpgHandle With Care (Shaking Up #5)

by Helena Hunting

This series is quickly becoming a favorite of mine. I love how witty and different all of the characters are. I also think, that so far, Lex is my favorite! I love how he was this mountain man turned CEO, yet still kept to his “mountain man” roots. With this, insert Wren. This woman is EPIC! I love that she can bring a man to his knees in seconds both literally and figuratively. I think that makes her so fierce, and nothing is better than a fierce female lead. She totally has Armstrong in check and cowering, and then she definitely had Lex on the right path. Together, I think these two could be such a power couple!!!

So let’s back up a little. I really adored that Lex did not care about this rich and high profile life. This means he has MORALS! In this family, morals seem to be like lost treasure, hidden! Having read everything that had gone on with Armstrong in other books, and listening to his coversations with Griffin, I was so super curious about him. I mean the difference between him and Armstrong were absolutely insane. Having known so little about him, I loved learning everything. Since we had no clue who Wren was, I think it was almost equally awesome learning about her. It was as if we were learning about each other right along with them. Although have a similar type of status family, I adored how their main focus was the greater good. From the well-being of the people working for them to helping out third world communities.

It’s so hard to put together cohesive thoughts about this book. I loved every second, and I had certain pages with little slips of paper holding their spot because they were so great. But, I really can’t talk about those great moments because it’d give so much away. So to cover the basics and be totally vaguebook about it. I LOVED the drama, the crazy secrets, the spiciness between Lex and Wren, and I especially loved G-Mom. G-mom is everything I would have wanted in a grandmother! Having said the things I loved, this book was a crazy roller coaster of emotions and Helena slammed us in the face with a few curve balls that really left me reeling and DYING for more.

Whatever you do, GO READ THIS BOOK! It is my favorite of the series so far and for the most part, it can be read as a stand alone. There are so many awesome moments, the perfect amount of emotions, nothing is what you expect and LOTS of laughs!!!

~~♥~~

42587433.jpgOn the Corner of Love and Hate (Hopeless Romantics #1)

by Nina Bocci

HOLY CRAP ON A CRACKER!! This story was so darn cute!!! I have this odd love for political drama, so I absolutely loved that this book revolves around the mayors office. And then of course, who doesn’t love a love to hate story?

Backing up a wee bit. I adored everything about Emma and Cooper. I really loved their names, Emmanuelle and Cooper aren’t popular names. But more than anything I loved their odd dynamic. Emma and I share sooo many qualities. She is such a go getter and a workaholic. She will basically do anything for a good cause. Add in her riding her bike to work in this adorable small town. FREAKING SWOON. Now, let’s throw in her hot, lifelong friend. Cooper had the best timing in this book. The very first seen we are thrown in to had me cracking up. His work relationship with Emma while running for Mayor was horrible, but the way he went about things was super funny.

There are so many things I could talk forever and forever about, but I don’t want to spoil anything. The dynamic between Emma and Cooper on a personal level and on the campaign level were so different. It made everything so much more interesting!! Add in the campaign itself, the towns people, their family and friends, IT’S MAGIC! Nina has the best character development in this book. Nancy, Nick and Henry are such amazing secondary characters. To me, secondary characters can make or break a book, and they were the best additions to this book!

I cannot write a review without talking about the town, Hope Lake. I loved this town so much!! It’s the perfect small town for a book. I adored that they all knew each other, they had the gossiping old ladies and they had things like the CDO to help their town grow and prosper. This book would have been sooo different with a different setting. So the setting being this amazing small town is so perfect. Makes you want to move there!!!

I cannot thank Nina enough for writing this book. I can’t wait to see what is next!!!

~~♥~~

I hate you.jpgI Hate You

by Ilsa Madden-Mills

I have been so impatiently waiting for this book! I am so excited that it is finally here!!! I LOVE Charisma soooo much, and Blaze, he is EVERYTHING I’d hoped he would have been. I love when “jocks” are so far from the stereotype, and other than his live revolving around football, Blaze is not any sort of stereotype!

Let’s talk Charisma first. I love how sassy she is, how she dresses, and how real her feelings are. I connect with her in so many ways! But more than anything, I love her strength!!!! Then we have Blaze. He’s so confident on the outside, but on the inside he has so much turmoil! This man went through so much as a kid and continues to deal with it as an adult. It was heartbreaking. Insert Charisma. I really don’t think that either of them were truly prepared for the impact they had on each other. We know from the blurb that they had a nasty “break-up”, but Ilsa goes into a lot of depth on this. These two were both SUPER stubborn, and didn’t express the correct feelings. Neither of them wanted this break up, but they both didn’t want to speak how they felt! They really had a lot going on in their family life too, but in such different ways. I think both of these families had A LOT to do with their issues

Fast forward a little, I LOVED how these two interacted together in class and even outside of class. They were like moths drawn to a flame! The banter WAS SO GOOD! I especially loved how their teacher got involved. It made for a few really hysterical moments. There were a lot of really special parts to those funny parts though. Ilsa is the QUEEN of mixing in the perfect amount of emotions with her humor to make the book have the perfect amount of depth. Before I mumble too much, WE GOTTA TALK ABOUT THE SPICE! These two had some super spicy moments, I was definitely left fanning myself a few times. They had the perfect chemistry. I loved how the chemistry is really what kept them going. It helped them realize that maybe they should be together?

I cannot talk about this book without mentioned a few key people. Of course we have Penelope and Ryker, even Dillion, but can we PLEASE talk about Vampire Bill? HE IS THE BEST PET EVER! He had me cracking up so hard throughout this entire book. Between him, Dillion’s whorish ways, and the silly banter between Blaze and Charisma, I had so many good laughs.

What I’m really trying to say is, GO BUY THIS BOOK NOWWWWWWWWWWWWWW lol

~~♥~~

43620681._SY475_.jpgSweet Temptations (Novella)

by Laura Lee

This was such a great spicy and short read! I absolutely loved the way Laura took us back to when Ethan & Gabby first got together and then to present day. I always love when authors do that! Laura did it in such an amazing way. She knew exactly when to transition between the two times.

Ethan and Gabby are such awesome leads. I love how different they are but also love that their passions brought them together. There was so much hate though after everything that happened in their past. It was awesome to see how they were when they came back together. There was SO much passion between them. Whether it’s hate or sexual passion, just so much passion.

A lot of times in short stories you feel a little jipped, but not with this one. Laura gave us the perfect amount of content. It had the perfect amount of emotion and story line. It was great!

~~♥~~

bar next door.jpgThe Bar Next Door (Barflies #1)

by Katia Rose

When you have an author you love, you always think that you have a favorite book. THEN comes their new book. Then THAT book is your favorite. I feel like that with all of Katia’s work that I’ve read. At this point, I’m only going to say I have favorite characters. Monroe was someone who I adored in Your Chorus, so I was so super excited that she got her own book. Monroe is definitely going up on the shelf of favorite characters how!!!

This whole book was just so good and so enticing. It was all I could do to stop myself from staying up until wee hours of the morning reading it. Monroe is a character that so many people can connect with and I definitely felt like I connected with her. Then throw in Julian, the gorgeous Frenchman, it felt like fate was dropped into Monroe’s lap. One of the things I loved most about Julian and Monroe was how they met. Their “meet cute” was so adorable. They were both so taken by each others looks. Kind of like a lust at first sight.

One of my favorite things an author does is when they put a character in their book that has a love of literature. It almost makes you feel like you could be that book character. Monroe and Julian’s love of literature really took me for a loop. I ADORED this!! Heck, Monroe even has a large Charles Dickens poster!! And the description of Monroe touching the spins of Julian’s books… SWOOOOONNNNNNNN. Monroe and Julian were pretty different, but I loved that they had this as one of the things they had in common. Speaking of things in common, their love for their spirits. Julian with his wine and Monroe with her craft beers. They both just have so much passion for their craft, it was pretty inspiring!

This story had so many layers. There was the whole love/hate thing with Monroe and Julian, there was the layer of Monroe trying to save her bar, the lives of these amazing characters, their personal lives and all of the in-between. Between the layers and the emotions, it was just so beautifully written! Katia has this way of taking you on her own special roller coaster with characters, it’s a beautiful and satisfying ride and this book was no exception to that. I could probably go on and on about this book, but I don’t want to give too much away. Katia, thank you for writing this masterpiece, I CANNOT wait for the next!

~~♥~~

Protecting a SteeleProtecting A Steele (Steel Bros #3)

by Elizabeth Knox

Holy cow. I really needed this book. I love everything about Liz’s writing, there’s just something about it that makes you feel good. When I’m in a funk, her books always pull me out of it.

I missed the Steele books, and I didn’t realize it until I had finished the first chapter. This is a deferent realm of books, so it seems, than what I’ve been reading of hers. It was refreshing, but not in a bad way! I loved seeing something different. BUT just like the others, this book had so much depth! It was the perfect roller coaster. It was perfectly emotional, had a great amount of drama, had an awesome love story, just everything! There were even some really tough topics, with parents and with women, that Liz wrote about so beautifully. She makes you remember, that you aren’t alone.

Now, Reggie and Madigan. Oh how I love these two. I’ve always adored Reggie, but Madigan was kind of like a slap in the face. But in a good way? She was epic! She was everything you would hope for in a “came out of no where” Steele sister. I really loved seeing her dynamic with the family the most. She kind of just slipped right in like she was there her whole life . Seeing her bicker and really be a family with the boys was great. I also really loved how she grew to love and trust their significant others too!! Then of course we have her relationship with Reggie. OOOOOweeeeee. They were spicy! I loved the flirting and the little apps where and there. They were just so awesome. I love the “insta-love/lust” between them too. Those “first moment” looks always great, and this one was definitely great.

I cannot wait to see where she takes us with this family. Just like her other series I really want it to never end!!!!

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