Reviewing the Unreviewed [3]

Posted February 28, 2020 by Kim in 3 Stars, 4 Stars, 5 Stars, In Review / 1 Comment

One of these days I’ll get back around to sharing individual reviews, but for now, the Reviewing the Unreviewed format is working quite well for me. This edition is all about the books I read in January but never got around to reviewing.

Some of these reviews will be really short. Like, shorter than the book’s blurb short. It might look a little weird, but I want to keep my review archive with Ultimate Book Blogger going, so bear with me. 

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Reviewing the Unreviewed [3]Throw Like a Girl by Sarah Henning
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publication date: July 7, 2020
Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Format: ARC, 369 pages
Narrator: Alexander Cendese, J.F. Harding
How I got it: From the publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon
My rating:

When softball star Liv Rodinsky throws one ill-advised punch during the most important game of the year, she loses her scholarship to her fancy private school, her boyfriend, and her teammates all in one fell swoop. With no other options, Liv is forced to transfer to the nearest public school, Northland, where she'll have to convince their coach she deserves a spot on the softball team, all while facing both her ex and the teammates of the girl she punched... Every. Single. Day.

Enter Grey, the injured star quarterback with amazing hair and a foolproof plan: if Liv joins the football team as his temporary replacement, he'll make sure she gets a spot on the softball team in the Spring. But it will take more than the perfect spiral for Liv to find acceptance in Northland's halls, and behind that charming smile, Grey may not be so perfect after all.

With well-drawn characters and a charming quarterback love interest who's got brains as well as brawn, Throw Like a Girl will have readers swooning from the very first page.

I received a complimentary copy of this book for review consideration.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

In Review: My Thoughts

Though I don’t read a lot of YA these days, I had total grabby hands for Throw Like a Girl as soon as I saw the cover. A female quarterback? Yes, please. My feminist heart sings. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I’m a big football fan, so I was happy to see the aspects relating to the sport itself were really well done. I also liked that it touched on other issues, too. And unsurprising to anyone, I loved the romance. Overall, this book was mostly light and fluffy (and I mean that in a positive way) with likable characters and just a smidge of angst. What a super fun read from a new-to-me author!

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About Sarah Henning

Sarah Henning is a recovering journalist who has worked for the Palm Beach Post, Kansas City Star and Associated Press, among others. When not writing, she runs ultramarathons, hits the playground with her two kids, and hangs out with her husband Justin, who doubles as her long-suffering IT department. Sarah lives in Lawrence, Kansas, hometown of Langston Hughes, William S. Burroughs, and a really good basketball team.

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Reviewing the Unreviewed [3]Damaged Like Us by Krista & Becca Ritchie
Series: Like Us #1
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, LGBTQ
Publication date: September 19, 2017
Publisher: Audible Studios
Format: Audiobook, Length: 10 hours and 27 minutes
Narrator: Alexander Cendese, J.F. Harding
How I got it: I bought it!
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon
Reading Challenges: 2020 Audiobook Challenge, 2020 Romanceopoly, 2020 Tackle My TBR Challenge
My rating:

Don’t date your bodyguard.
It was the one rule he had to break.

Maximoff Hale is a force of nature. A ship unwilling to be steered. Headstrong, resilient, and wholly responsible — the twenty-two-year-old alpha billionaire can handle his unconventional life. By noon, lunch can turn into a mob of screaming fans. By two, his face is all over the internet.

Born into one of the most famous families in the country, his celebrity status began at birth.

He is certified American royalty.

When he’s assigned a new 24/7 bodyguard, he comes face-to-face with the worst case scenario: being attached to the tattooed, MMA-trained, Yale graduate who’s known for “going rogue” in the security team — and who fills 1/3 of Maximoff's sexual fantasies.

Twenty-seven-year-old Farrow Keene has one job: protect Maximoff Hale. Flirting, dating, and hot sex falls far, far out of the boundary of his bodyguard duties and into “termination” territory. But when feelings surface, protecting the sexy-as-sin, stubborn celebrity becomes increasingly complicated.

Together, boundaries blur, and being exposed could mean catastrophic consequences for both.

In Review: My Thoughts

Seriously y’all, why did no one tie me down and make me read this book before now? I know, I know. You tried. I can’t blame you.

I’m being totally honest, I wasn’t sure I was ready to read about my beloved Addicted and Calloway Sisters series characters as parents. I guess I’m ready now. It was so wonderful to be back with them again AND get to fall in love with new characters like Moffy and Farrow. (Not to mention Jane and Sully and, well, most of them I suspect.) This audiobook was absolutely addicting. I simply couldn’t get enough of Moffy and Farrow and their chemistry. (Holy hotness, y’all.) I think I was partially afraid this spinoff wouldn’t quite live up to the original series, but I couldn’t be more wrong. I can’t wait to make time to get caught up on it.

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About Krista & Becca Ritchie

Krista & Becca Ritchie are identical twins. They write New Adult books that make you cringe, gasp, and go ooh-la-la. (If you do that sort of thing.) They are currently working on the spin-offs and final books in the Addicted series. Connect with them on Twitter and their website: kbritchie.com.

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Reviewing the Unreviewed [3]Heidi's Guide to Four Letter Words by Tara Sivec, Andi Arndt
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Publication date: September 3, 2019
Publisher: Audible Original
Format: Audiobook, Length: 6 hours and 15 minutes
Narrator: Andi Arndt
How I got it: From the publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon
Reading Challenges: 2020 Audiobook Challenge, 2020 Tackle My TBR Challenge
My rating:

Nothing good ever comes from drinking a box of wine alone. So when I decided to entertain my drunken self by setting up some hand-me-down podcasting equipment and reading the steamy parts from romance novels, I never thought anyone would actually listen. The fact that I admitted my huge crush on my sexy next door neighbor made the whole thing even more mortifying. But sometimes life surprises you, and that’s how my podcast, Heidi’s Discount Erotica, was born.

Now I, Heidi Larsen, a sweet former kindergarten teacher in Waconia, Minnesota, lead a scandalous double life reading erotic novels to the listening world. And with each episode, I find myself embracing my new alter ego more and more. Now I’m starting to feel more comfortable in my own skin and do things I never would have dreamed of - like kissing my neighbor.

Look out, Waconia, because Heidi’s on the loose! She’s in your ears, in your hearts, and down your pants...wait, that didn’t sound as good as it did in my head. Well, you get the picture, don’tcha know!

I received a complimentary copy of this book for review consideration.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

In Review: My Thoughts

I have a lot of mixed feelings about Heidi’s Guide to Four Letter Words. But first, a quick flashback to ApollyCon a couple of years ago when Andi mentioned her idea for Heidi’s Discount Erotica during a panel. It sounded freaking amazing. I was over the moon when I learned she’d paired up with Tara Sivec to bring it fully to life. Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy it as much as I hoped I would.

Here’s the deal, I have issues with anyone shaming someone else for reading romance. I know it’s all part of the storyline of Heidi finding her voice, but I had problems with the romance-shaming early in the book. There’s a slight chance I’m overreacting, but the use of the word “dirty” to describe romance is seriously off-putting to me. I had to work to get past that.

Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way, I can say the book was hilarious. Awkward as hell, but hilarious. I lost track of how many times I literally laughed out loud while reading. I also lost track of how many times I cringed. I’m not kidding when I say I listened to some of it with my hands over my eyes because I was embarrassed for her. Heidi was super naive, painfully awkward, but also charming. Every character — save for Brent — was totally over-the-top, but none more than Heidi’s parents.

All in all, it was a fun way to spend 6 hours of my life. Andi Arndt is a goddess. Even with a Minnesota accent. If I gave half stars, this one would get 3.5 but I just couldn’t go to 4 stars given my feelings about the romance-shaming.

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About Tara Sivec

Tara Sivec

Tara Sivec is a USA Today best-selling author, wife, mother, chauffeur, maid, short-order cook, baby-sitter, and sarcasm expert. She lives in Ohio with her husband and two children and looks forward to the day when they all three of them become adults and move out.

After working in the brokerage business for fourteen years, Tara decided to pick up a pen and write instead of shoving it in her eye out of boredom. Her novel Seduction and Snacks won first place in the Indie Romance Convention Reader's Choice Awards 2013 for Best Indie First Book and she was voted as Best Author in the Indie Romance Convention Reader's Choice Awards for 2014.

In her spare time, Tara loves to dream about all of the baking she'll do and naps she'll take when she ever gets spare time.

About Andi Arndt

Andi Arndt is an audiobook narrator and producer with a growing catalog of titles in a variety of genres, both fiction and non-fiction.

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Reviewing the Unreviewed [3]Suddenly You by Lisa Kleypas
Genres: Historical Romance
Publication date: November 8, 2006
Publisher: Avon Books
Format: Paperback, 384 pages
How I got it: I bought it!
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon
Reading Challenges: 2020 Romanceopoly, 2020 Tackle My TBR Challenge
My rating:


She was unmarried, untouched and almost thirty, but novelist Amanda Briars wasn't about to greet her next birthday without making love to a man. When he appeared at her door, she believed he was her gift to herself, hired for one night of passion. Unforgettably handsome, irresistibly virile, he tempted her in ways she never thought possible, but something stopped him from completely fulfilling her dream.

Jack Devlin's determination to possess Amanda became greater when she discovered his true identity. But gently bred Amanda craved respectability more than she admitted, while Jack, the cast-off son of a nobleman and London's most notorious businessman, refused to live by society's rules. Yet when fate conspired for them to marry, their worlds collided with a passionate force neither had expected... but both soon craved.

In Review: My Thoughts

I absolutely adored this book. The unconventional meet-cute, the older (and curvy!) heroine, the Irish rake… it was perfection. It was also super steamy. (Carriage sex, y’all!) Amanda and Jack were just amazing together. The banter, the chemistry, the passion. I was here for all of it. I do love a good strong and independent heroine, no matter the genre, but there’s something even better when she’s in a historical romance. And, come on, who isn’t going to swoon over a rake with a heart of gold? I loved everything about it.

I really need to make time this year to binge ALL of Lisa’s backlist. Of course, I say this each time I finish one of her books, but I mean it this time. She’s the queen of historical romance for a reason. My LK TBR is absolutely out of control and it’s high time I do something about it.

Favorite Quotes:

“How do I look?”
“Like you’ve been ravished.”
“Hurry, please. I want to go inside my house and consult a looking glass. I’ve always wanted to know what a ravished woman looks like.”

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About Lisa Kleypas

Lisa Kleypas graduated from Wellesley College with a political science degree. She is a RITA award winning author of both historical romance and contemporary women's fiction. Her novels are published in fourteen different languages and are bestsellers all over the world. She lives in Washington State with her husband Gregory and their two children.

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Reviewing the Unreviewed [3]The Duke with the Dragon Tattoo by Kerrigan Byrne
Series: Victorian Rebels #6
Genres: Historical Romance
Publication date: August 28, 2018
Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks
Format: Paperback, 333 pages
How I got it: I bought it!
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon
Reading Challenges: 2020 Romanceopoly, 2020 Tackle My TBR Challenge
My rating:

He is known only as The Rook. A man with no name, no past, no memories. He awakens in a mass grave, a magnificent dragon tattoo on his muscled forearm the sole clue to his mysterious origins. His only hope for survival—and salvation—lies in the deep, fiery eyes of the beautiful stranger who finds him. Who nurses him back to health. And who calms the restless demons in his soul…

A LEGENDARY LOVE

Lorelei will never forget the night she rescued the broken dark angel in the woods, a devilishly handsome man who haunts her dreams to this day. Crippled as a child, she devoted herself to healing the poor tortured man. And when he left, he took a piece of her heart with him. Now, after all these years, The Rook has returned. Like a phantom, he sweeps back into her life and avenges those who wronged her. But can she trust a man who’s been branded a rebel, a thief, and a killer? And can she trust herself to resist him when he takes her in his arms?

In Review: My Thoughts

A long, long time ago I discovered a new-to-me author thanks to a book giveaway. The book was The Highwayman and the author was Kerrigan Byrne. I’ve since read a few of her Victorian Rebels books, but I’ve not been great at sticking with the series, though I love it. I finally picked up The Duke with the Dragon Tattoo for Romanceopoly and I remember what I’m missing by not reading her books. I need to go back and read the books I skipped while I wait for the next book(s) to be released.

But, this book? Oh, my word. What a ride. Lorelei and Ash gave me feels for days. As is always the case with Kerrigan’s books, I was hooked from the very first chapter. Her characters are always phenomenal and complicated, and Ash especially was no exception. If you’ve read Kerrigan before, you know her books are on the darker side. They’re certainly darker than most of the historical romance I read. They’re gritty. Ash is a pirate with one hell of a past and he’s a hard man. (Side note: I think this was my first pirate novel and I simply must read more.) I don’t even know that I would call him a good man, but he had a good heart. At least when it came to Lorelei. These two put me through it and I couldn’t have loved it more.

Favorite Quotes:

“Lorelei. There are only two indisputable facts in this world. One, that the sun will set in the west. And two, that I’ll come for you. Always.”

“I was born the moment I heard your voice commanding me to live. And you have been mine ever since.”

“Love is soft. Love is kind. I know nothing of that. What I feel for her is… well, it’s neither of those things. It’s too obsessive. It’s marvelous and terrifying. It is the cruelest affliction for a merciless man. Because it leaves me at her mercy. So unprotected. So easily damaged. It is a bizarre thing to accept, that when entire armies have failed to destroy me, one word from her lips could dismantle me.”

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About Kerrigan Byrne

If you're anything like me, the best night is one spent with a brawny highlander, a mysterious werewolf, a conflicted vampire, or a hot-headed Irishman. My stories span the spectrum of romantic fiction from historical, to paranormal, to romantic suspense. But I can always promise my readers one thing: memorable and sexy Celtic heroes who are guaranteed to heat your blood before they steal your heart. Lose yourself in the enchanted Celtic Isles, you never know who, or what, will find you...

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Let’s Chat

Have you read any of these books?
What’d you think?

Kim Sig

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