#Review Castaways by Lily Harlem @lily_harlem

Description

Olivia Bailey is up for The Challenge. Why the heck wouldn’t she be? With mariner qualifications piled high, engineering experience to rival someone twice her age, she’s ready to take on the mighty Pacific Ocean and win. 

But what about her fellow crew? Five guys, four nationalities. A billionaire’s heir who likes to take charge in every aspect of life, an outback expert with a heart-stopping smile, a Spanish chef with mouthwatering moves and sexy twins who reveal themselves slowly, until it matters, then they act fast. 

An adventure was what Olivia wanted, it’s certainly what she gets. Because things at sea happen in a heartbeat, friendships grow, tempers heat and desire flares. But what about when it all upends? When the unexpected happens? Will they pull together, or will fear drag the crew of Temptress apart? 

Review

What a stonking read from Lily Harlem. The first book in The Challenge series, Castaways takes us on a sea bound adventure with Olivia and her five sexy crew mates.

What I loved most about this book was how different it was to other Reverse Harem’s I’ve read, the settings being completely new and different completely testing the characters mentally and physically.

Olivia is a likeable character who is smart, sexy and keeps her cool in a crisis and boy do these guys have a crisis. The men in her life have very distinct personalities which is something I love in these books.

The book ends setting up nicely for book two which I’m eager to read and already have ready to go.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleCastaways
SeriesThe Challenge #1
AuthorLily Harlem
Genre: Romance | Reverse Harem | Travel
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 15 October 2017
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: Audio
Pages: 203
Buybooks2read.com/u/3yD5Ln

#Review: Raising Amalia by Regine Abel @regineabel

Have you read my previous books in this series? If not, check the links below:

Description

Sevina has never known life outside a slave ship… until today. At twenty-two, she’s sent to Eryon Valis, a Korlethean slave with whom she must mate as part of their master’s psi breeding program. When a prophecy sets a target on her, Eryon secretly shields her and their unborn daughter from those who would harm them.

Unbeknownst to Sevina, her mother Maheva faces her own emotional turmoil while playing a dangerous game to protect her children from the crew and the twisted Guldan beliefs of their Master Gruuk.

As one tragedy compounds another, will Fate forsake them or set the path to a better future?

Review

Raising Amalia takes us back to the events prior to Escaping Fate, it tells us how Amalia’s Great Mother Maheva came to be on the slave ship, a pet to their Master Gruuk, and how her and her daughters were his favourites. This story tells us how Amalia came to be and how her escape as we see it in the first book came about.

What I loved about this book was that it gives us small details about Amalia’s family, and the events that lead to her escape that we would never have known otherwise, that she doesn’t know, that are tremendously moving and help us to see some of the players in a slightly different light.

I was deeply moved by several of the passages in this book as we moved between Maheva’s dialogue to Sevina (Amalia’s mother) and even to Amalia’s Father who she never meets. Their lives as slaves are not easy and knowing that they do the best they can in the face of such adversity is emotionally draining.

I went into this book feeling a little negative I will be honest, I thought do I really need to read this, I just want more of the story I’m already invested in, but actually this added a whole load of extra value to that story while taking me on quite the emotional rollercoaster so I’m super glad I dug in.

Thanks to Regine Abel for the eARC of this book so that I could read and honestly review the book.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleRaising Amalia
Series: Veredian Chronicles #3
Author: Regine Abel
Genre: Romance | Sci-Fi | Aliens
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 10 November 2017
Review Format: eBook
Other FormatsN/A
Pages: 192
Buy: Books2Read (Universal Link Redirects to Preferred Retailer)

#Review: Blind Fate by Regine Abel @regineabel

This is book two in the Veredian Chronicles series…if you’ve missed previous reviews check out my links below:

Description

Born in a breeding compound, Valena has never known a day of freedom. As a child, her master burned her retinas to prevent her from mind-controlling those who meet her gaze. But she still controls people’s thoughts with a touch. Sold to the Xelix Prime Blood Houses, she is forced to use her ability to keep the other slaves compliant. When Fate places a powerful Counselor in her path, she plots and schemes to use him to escape, until her feelings for him complicate matters.

As her master’s plans take on a darker turn, lies, betrayal, and tragedy threaten any hope she ever held of a better future.

This book is standalone and the sequel to Escaping Fate.

Review

I’m well and truly bingeing this series and it’s fantastic! Blind Fate is the second book in the Veredian Chronicles series. Valena, like Amalia, is a psi but has had some of her power taken by being blinded. I love that we have a lead character with a disability it was just such a positive thing to read.

Valena has been responsible for looking after the young women who are used in the illegal blood houses to heal the Tainted Xelixian males. She hasn’t so much as dreamed of a life away from captivity until she meets Zhul. A Prime he has no need for the services at the blood houses, in fact, he is appalled by what goes on there.

Zhul and Valena are the perfect match, but Valena’s master has his own plans for this couple and they have quite the fight ahead of them if they have any hope of getting a happily ever after. In Escaping Fate we see Zhul as one of the more villainous characters yet seeing the full story through Zhul and Valena’s POV’s in this book we see why he acted the way he did and understand the full situation.

We further follow the story of Amalia, Lhor and Khel which works really well with Valena and Zhul’s story. A few of the chapters are from Lhor’s POV and are really enjoyable. Seeing the world coming together and progressing as we learn more about newer characters really adds a lot to the reading experience for me.

Blind Fate can be read as a standalone, but I think for the best reading experience you would want to read the books in order.

I want to send a huge thanks to Regine Abel for the eARC so that I could read and honestly review this book.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

Title: Blind Fate
Series: Veredian Chronicles #2
Author: Regine Abel
Genre: Paranormal Romance | Romance | Sci Fi | Aliens
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 25 August 2017
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: Paperback
Pages: 443
Buy: Books2Read (Universal Link Redirects to Preferred Retailer)

#Review: Losing Amalia by Regine Abel @regineabel

Have you read my previous review of the first book in this series Escaping Fate? If not follow this link to check it out.

Description

This is not a full-length novel. It is a bonus scene from Escaping Fate, Veredian Chronicles Book 1 told in Lhor’s POV. Please read Escaping Fate first to fully enjoy this bonus scene.

EXCERPT
Her sultry voice stirred the embers, deep in my gut, of a fire I had not felt in years. The same powerful connection struck me when our eyes met. My skin tingled and my pulse perked up. Her throat worked and her pupils dilated. She quickly looked away, breaking the bond.

Goddess have mercy.

Review

Losing Amalia is a very quick read about 20 pages covering the fastening which is covered in Escaping Fate. This time though we see it from Lhor’s point of view and so get a new set of emotions and help to understand his emotional state at this time much more.

It’s really best to have read Escaping Fate first so that you fully understand the story surrounding this one. In Escaping Fate we are given this scene from Amalia and Khel’s points of view so this story rounds the whole scene off by giving us Lhor’s point of view.

I was really moved reading this, I felt pulled to Lhor through most of Escaping Fate and then reading this and seeing what he was going through during this early part of the story I felt even more connected to him. I definitely recommend reading.

Thanks to Regine Abel for the eARC of this book so that I could read and honestly review the book.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleLosing Amalia
Series: Veredian Chronicles #1.5
Author: Regine Abel
Genre: Romance | Sci-Fi | Short Story | Aliens
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 19 May 2017
Review Format: eBook
Other FormatsN/A
Pages: 20
Buy: Books2Read (Universal Link Redirects to Preferred Retailer)

#Review: Escaping Fate by Regine Abel @regineabel

Description

Born and raised on a slaver’s ship, Amalia plans to escape before she’s forced to participate in her master’s psi breeding program. She finds refuge on a foreign planet where she meets the cousins Lhor and Khel. Together, they fight against those hunting her down, while attempting to rescue the other victims of her master’s slave ring.

Between her master’s dogged pursuit, deadly rivalries, assassins, and corrupted nobles, can the cousins keep Amalia safe or will their respective feelings for her tear them apart?

This MFM novel is a constant toe-curling, action-packed thriller, and the first book in the Veredian Chronicles series. It is standalone with no cliffhanger.

Review

Amalia has known nothing of life except what she has seen and experienced on the slaver’s ship she has been brought up on. After a failed escape attempt as a teenager she has waited patiently for a chance to run and at twenty-two her chance has come.

After escaping she becomes bonded with cousins Lhor and Khel who help her hunt down her captors and rescue the women he enslaved.

I loved how the story developed, it moved at a steady pace with a good mix of emotion, action and romance. I was deeply moved by the way the taint was a ticking time bomb for Lhor and Khel and the question of if Amalia could save them was always hanging over them all.

I found the romance side of this story captivating and impatiently wanted to move it along while simultaneously enjoying the slower pace of the story.

The world building was fascinating and I’m looking forward to gaining a better understanding of this world as the series progresses.

This is one of those books that makes me realise I don’t read anywhere near enough sci-fi romance. I’m hooked and am super pleased I have more books in this series to dive into straight away.

Thanks to Regine Abel for the eARC of this book so that I could read and honestly review the book. I cannot wait to read the next book…actually I’ve already started it.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleEscaping Fate
Series: Veredian Chronicles #1
Author: Regine Abel
Genre: Romance | Sci-Fi | Menage | Aliens
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 14 April 2017
Review Format: eBook
Other FormatsPaperback
Pages: 459
Buy: Books2Read (Universal Link Redirects to Preferred Retailer)

#Review: A Bed of Brambles by Sam Russell @SamRussellBooks

This was my TBR Topple winner for March. Thank you to everyone who voted and if you haven’t voted this month today is your last chance the poll can be found here.

Description

This was never going to be a conventional love story. No bed of roses. Proud, passionate and wilful, Hettie and Alexander are alike in so many ways. That has to be a good thing, doesn’t it? Or it could be a disaster…both carry scars, and old wounds have a habit of causing new hurt.

Physical attraction draws them together. Hearts and minds can be thorny, less easy to satisfy. One thing is certain, together or apart their lives will move on. Alexander and Hettie’s clashes of spirit will only be part of the story.
Second chances. New Beginnings. The opportunity to make things right. Or to make the same mistakes all over again. Unless fate takes the future out of your hands…

Review

I won a copy of A Bed of Brambles quite a while ago and after winning my TBR Topple poll in March I dove in. I haven’t read book one so I had some concerns about diving into book two but I took the risk.

Hettie returns from South Africa to Alexander the two of them bonding and trying to build their relationship while hitting some bumps in the road. This is a couple who have both made mistakes, but Alexander is one of those self-absorbed men who have one set of rules for himself and another for her.

As the book progressed I liked him less and less hoping that Hettie would find another man to take his place, someone who would appreciate her far more and help her with her business venture not just frown, moan and sleep around. I loved that this was very much centred around stables and horses. That wonderful country feel as you read is all-encompassing and the people in the book are reassuring and friendly.

I found some of the transitions between scenes a little abrupt, and it was sometimes a little slow going but overall this is a really enjoyable romance.

Rating

Book & Buy Links

TitleA Bed of Brambles
Series: Draymere Hall #2
Author: Sam Russell
Genre: Romance | Contemporary Romance
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 3 March 2017
Review Format: Paperback
Other FormatseBook
Pages: 381
Buy: Books2Read (Universal Link Redirects to Preferred Retailer)

#BlogTour: Let Me Love You by Jessica Jayne @JessicaJayne13 @XpressoTours #Review #Giveaway

I’m pleased to welcome you to the blog tour for Let Me Love You by Jessica Jayne. If you want to follow the tour you can do so over at Xpresso Book Tours.

Description

Twenty-three year old Ren Haynes returns home after graduating college with two goals–start his engineering career and claim the heart of his parents’ thirty-one year old divorced neighbor, Stacey Williams.

Stacey is nursing her broken heart and shattered ego. Not only did her ex-husband have an affair, he got the woman pregnant. Picking up the pieces of her life isn’t easy, so when Ren taps into her need to feel desired again, she finds herself in a position she never imagined.

Can Ren help to rebuild her confidence and convince her that age is just a number?Let Me Love You - Tour Banner

Review

I think it’s fair to say that there aren’t enough books like this, where the woman is older. In this case 31 year old Stacey is 8 years older than her neighbours son Ren. He has fancied her for years but she was married and unobtainable. Now she is single and he is on a mission to make her his.

I loved the dynamics in this relationship, not least because rolls reversed there wouldn’t be anywhere near as much concern or outrage about the relationship as there is with this one. I really enjoyed seeing these two dance and make their way to each other, deciding between lust and love.

I really enjoyed this book but I felt like it could have been filled out more, it was quite short and I felt like it was missing a lot of background. I could have read so much more about these two and their journey to love. This is an enjoyable afternoon read.

I’m very grateful to Jessica Jayne and Xpresso Book Tours for the eARC so that I could read and review this book honestly.

Rating

About Jessica Jayne

Jessica is a born and raised small town Ohio girl, who moved to the Sunshine State after graduating from college. She graduated from college with a bachelor’s degree in English. What college major could possibly be better than one that makes you read novels and write about them! Now she is thrilled to be able to share all the hot stories floating around in her head!

Jessica loves to travel and travel often! She shares her love of travel with her husband and children. She’s a huge sports fan, especially football. She  the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Ohio State Buckeyes! She’s a wine-making (and wine-tasting) aficionado. She loves all music. And nothing is better than sunset at the beach!

In the journey of life, she also married a wonderful man and had three beautiful (and sometimes crazy) children. Life is always an adventure!

Author links:
https://jessicajayneauthor.com/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6545547.Jessica_Jayne

https://www.facebook.com/AuthorJessicaJayne/

https://twitter.com/JessicaJayne13

 

Giveaway

$25 Amazon gift card + ebook copy of Let Me Love You

(International Tour-Wide Giveaway – ends April 26th)

Head to Rafflecopter to enter.

Book & Buy Links

TitleLet Me Love You
Series: N/A
AuthorJessica Jayne
Genre: Romance | Contemporary Romance
Publisher: N/A
Publication Date: 18 December 2017
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: Paperback
Pages: 207
Buy: Books2Read (Universal link redirects to your preferred store)