Saturday, December 31, 2022

The Perfect One

The Perfect One (Love in a Small Town Book 4)The Perfect One by Tawdra Kandle
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Love love loved this one! Ever wonder how Alex, the ever-present best friend in a small town, meets his match? Well this is the short story that introduces Cal into the Burton universe. These two are adorable from the start. Cal certainly makes Alex work for it, but the HEA here is completely worth it! These two are great to see in future installments, and even more interesting to see as they work towards a wonderful romance!

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Be my Boo in a Small Town

Be My Boo in a Small Town: A Year of Love in a Small TownBe My Boo in a Small Town: A Year of Love in a Small Town by Tawdra Kandle
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This story was super short and definitely different than the rest in this series. We join a supernatural hunting duo who are paired together and fighting an attraction. Since Chrissy is a hunter and Nash is a shifter, they shouldn’t want to get along, and they don’t until they end up face-to-face with another couple fighting against fate. It was interesting to look deeper into the supernatural side of Burton and was definitely a different spin on the expected small town romance.

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Tits the Season

Tits The Season: A Christmas Romance in a Small Town: A Year of Love in a Small TownTits The Season: A Christmas Romance in a Small Town: A Year of Love in a Small Town by Tawdra Kandle
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Celeste and Ty’s story is short and sweet. While there has been a lot of built up expectations and some resentment on Celeste’s part, they are able to come together (for a good cause, too!) and share some romantic Yuletide cheer. It was really sweet watching Ty try to win her over and even better when we got a satisfying HEA.

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Sunday, December 11, 2022

King of Midnight

King of Midnight (Midnight Breed #18)King of Midnight by Lara Adrian
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

It’s sad to think this is the end of this series. While there have been ups and downs along the way, the series as a whole never failed to be interesting and engaging. The ending was satisfying, and what more could you ask for?

I was definitely a little worried about how much carnage would be involved in the last of the series. With no further books, they could kill anyone! We are joining this book already in the midst of a post-apocalyptic fight between the Order and rogues (or the big bad behind the rogues). The odds aren’t looking so good, honestly, and the bad guys appeared to have the upper hand in the latest battles. One miscalculation ends up hurtling the order into chaos that had me screaming at the choices made that led us here.

Darion ends up stepping up to take the lead while his father is out of commission and boy does that change things. He views rules with a little more latitude than the others, willing to take the risk to win the war. Lucky for us all, it starts to pay off almost immediately. Unlucky for him, Selene takes notice of him and Order again. Here’s another shocker to me - Selene, the ominous big bad for many books, was somehow… likable by the end of this. Darion and Selene are the key players in this story (with many cameos from familiar faces, too), and the author managed to convince me that this villain was ok.

The larger storyline, which I thought we would leave hanging, ended up being about the ancient. Remember the big explosion and crystal theft? Well that all comes back to bite them. Had everyone just worked together, none of the end battles would have happened. Sigh. Turns out, though, that we get a solid HEA for the survivors which is all we could wish for. I’m happy everyone ended up mated, happy, or satisfied at least. It’s been a long journey, but I think this is a book that will satisfy the long time readers.

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Hoppy Easter in a Small Town

Hoppy Easter in a Small Town (A Year of Love in a Small Town, #4)Hoppy Easter in a Small Town by Tawdra Kandle
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is definitely my new favorite of the series! It was filled with all the sweetness you’ve come to expect in these small town stories, but just won me over from the start. Who would’ve thought I would be rooting for these two but I was so happy when they got their happy ending!

Grace is a waitress at the local diner. She also happens to be pregnant. Is she with the father of her child? That’a a “hell not” but in Burton you’re never truly alone. The town has rallied behind her 100%, as they do, but she’s also determined to make her own way. Spencer moves to town and is quickly thrown into the thick of things when his boss at the law firm abruptly takes paternity leave. On the way to his first eventful day he stops for breakfast at the diner and tumbles right into love with Grace.

I didn’t realize I would enjoy a love at first sight book so much, but these two are just amazing and adorable. Even if you’ve never read a single story set in this universe, I guarantee you will like this one.

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My Lucky Day in A Small Town

My Lucky Day in A Small Town (A Year of Love in a Small Town, #3)My Lucky Day in A Small Town by Tawdra Kandle
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Faith & Isaac - what an unlikely pair! For those of you who haven’t been previously introduced to the wonderful town of Burton - welcome! This world is full of rich characters who always surprise you. I highly recommend getting the full experience, but these short stories are wonderful little introductions.

Isaac has a bit of baggage when it comes to dating. Raised in a very conservative household, he’s managed to skip over dating for most of his life. He has, however, developed a crush on a newcomer to town - Faith. Faith has traveled from her hometown in Ireland to take over the hospitality business part of a set of cabins that Isaac has helped with. These two seem rather different at first, but after a bit of commiserating at a St Patrick’s Day party and a surprise snowstorm, they end up in a completely different spot. There’s a lot more to this story than a simple romance, but I was 100% on board by the happy ending.

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Be My Valentine in a Small Town

Be My Valentine in a Small Town (A Year of Love in a Small Town, #2)Be My Valentine in a Small Town by Tawdra Kandle
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Matt is a local resident of Burton who ended up rapidly climbing to success. As with most Burton stars, he ends up back at the Road Block to play as a favor for his mentor. While he started there as a bus boy, it’s neat to see the change in dynamic when he comes back. There’s also a little added wrench thrown in to his seemingly simple return home. As part of a publicity stunt that Matt’s PR person cooked up, he’s fake engaged to another celebrity, Alexandria. It seems to suit them, until they are placed under small town scrutiny. Does it blow up in their faces? No, actually quite the opposite. Seems that they were both “faking it until they made it” for their own true love story! This was an adorable story and I wanted even more of these two by the end!

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A New Year in a Small Town

A New Year in a Small Town (A Year of Love in a Small Town, #1)A New Year in a Small Town by Tawdra Kandle
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Regan & Jackson do not disappoint in this short story set in Burton. While you don’t necessarily need to know the whole gang from Burton, it’s nice to revisit some familiar faces along the way.

Regan has returned to her hometown after a bit of a surprising breakup. While she’s come to terms with it as a good thing now, it leaves her in a bit of a bind because she drunkenly proclaimed she would be engaged when next she saw her hometown friends. Her mom and Jackson’s mom, however, have a plan for that, putting them both under the impression that they should go to the transitional New Years celebration together. Being good kids, they agree, but it’s awkward.

Jackson alway assumed that his crush was not reciprocated. Regan assumed the same. Together they wasted a lot of years, but that all comes to light on this wonderful New Years. Misunderstandings are remedied, with sexy results!

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The Immortal

The Immortal (Rise of the Warlords, #2)The Immortal by Gena Showalter
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Book 2 in the series and I’m not sure what I expected. The first book really took you for a ride that had a lot of choices along the way that I questioned. I’m happy to report that this book didn’t use the template of the first so we get some new stuff introduced along with some more(?) likable characters.

Ophelia is known as a failure by the other harpies. She’s a mix between a nymph and a harpy so has already broken the (now removed) rule of chastity among those looking to fight for general status. She’s also been burned by someone she thought she loved, so she’s a little gun shy when it comes to men. Halo is known as the machine and for good reason. As one of the group of warlords currently occupying the kingdom, he’s not been known for his emotions or anything akin to human-ness. As the next task approaches, Halo knows he will have to win to make up for the favor lost in the last round.

This story reads a bit like Groundhog Day meets that Tom Cruise movie, where there’s a lot of relived death and resetting the timeline, but an overall goal that will get them out of the loop. While Ophelia and Halo both agree to not be romantic, it blows up in their faces when their true natures are screaming at them about the fated mate status. We get a good amount of smut, paranormal epic fights, mythical beings & powers, and overall a good chance at a solid step forward for the big war brewing. I was surprised how much I enjoyed this one after a little hesitancy to re-commit. This book got be back on the warlords train, so happy to continue on with the next book!

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Witcha Gonna Do?

Witcha Gonna Do?Witcha Gonna Do? by Avery Flynn
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

For the start of a series, this book definitely reads like a story set in a fully established world. I was surprised to find that we are only at the beginning and excited to watch the books further evolve all these interesting characters!

Tilda is the “dud” of the family. Her family also happens to be the tippy top of the witch hierarchy, so it’s especially embarrassing. The add to her already heaping plate, she somehow keeps getting matched with Gil, an infuriating witchy sort with his own hidden baggage. These two dance around the issue until an absolutely shocking turn of events - Tilda unknowingly triggers something that only witches and one particularly rare book can undo. Enter Gil, to save the day (sort of)!

Tilda is definitely not the damsel in distress type, and has surrounded herself with the folks in town that also don’t fit their expectations. It’s this crew that rallies around her to really save the day. This story ends up resolving itself in a HEA, but I have so many questions about the other characters! I guess that ended up getting me hooked and I’m eager to learn more about this universe!

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