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First Fire (The Guardians Series Book #0.5) by S. Lawrence – Review by Angela Hayes

First Fire (The Guardians, #0,5)First Fire by S. Lawrence
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

 

First Fire is the first book in The Guardians series by S. Lawrence. It is a fantasy with some mythological aspects to the tale. The author does a great job of adding uniqueness and individuality to the entire story. This novella is the first book that I have read by S. Lawrence, and I am happy to say that it won’t be the last. The story is engrossing, well written and fun. It is a very quick and easy read, but never felt rushed or cut short in any way, like some other novellas seem to. The characters are interesting and fully realised, with wonderful backstories and unique personalities. The story is emotive, with just enough drama and action to be engaging, and to keep me turning the pages to find out what was happening.
We meet Ylva, who is the daughter of a goddess and a berserker- and Asger, who is a berserker warrior, whom the gods have selected to become the first ‘Guardian’. We follow the story and the characters as they hurdle training, ritual, obligations, and love- while learning to control new found powers.
There’s a lot going on in this short story and I enjoyed reading it all. I look forward to more from S. Lawrence in the future.

Thank you, S. Lawrence!

 

Reviewed by @angelahayes

 

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Island Smile: An Action Adventure Romance (Stranded in Paradise, #2) by Lindsay Marie Miller – Review by Jenni Bishop

Island Smile: An Action Adventure Romance (Stranded in Paradise, #2)Island Smile: An Action Adventure Romance by Lindsay Marie Miller
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Island Smile is the second book in the Stranded in Paradise by Lindsay Marie Miller. It is an action romance story where lives are destroyed thanks to one evil and selfish person. The action and mayhem starts almost right from the get go, where something that should be a wonderful and joyous occasion is overthrown by evil and horrific events. When faced with something from their past our main characters are in shock with what they see and what it will mean for them. Of course waiting for the devil to show his true colours doesn’t take long and everyone is thrown into chaos and find themselves in a place they never thought they would see again.

The romance in this story is not in the forefront of the book, the story mainly focuses on the action and boy does it have action. If you like action/romance, this book is definitely for you.

Reviewed by @jennadb

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Refuse to Lose (A Coach’s Love #1) by Alison Mello – Review by Jenni Bishop

Refuse to Lose (A Coach's Love #1)Refuse to Lose by Alison Mello
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Refuse to Lose is sweet and will warm your heart. It is a second chance romance with wanting to instil simple courtesies. How the life lessons and values of one man can affect a whole community. How taking the time to help others and teach respect is the name of the game. How working together as a team can help you accomplish thing you thought impossible. Trystan finds himself in a situation he never thought he would be in, a situation he was forced into, but could it turn out to be the best thing that could have happened to him? Could the best thing that happened to him also be the best thing that happens for others?

Reviewed by @jennadb

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Coastal Spirit: Stranded in Paradise book 3 by Lindsay Marie Miller – Review by Shannon Fowler

Coastal Spirit: An Action Adventure Romance (Stranded in Paradise, #3)Coastal Spirit: An Action Adventure Romance by Lindsay Marie Miller
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The third book to the Stranded in Paradise Trilogy brings us new characters and reunites us with the old ones. Elaine and Henry are still fighting for their lives to get off the island and this time Henry’s sister, Louisa is with them. At the end of book 2 a volcano has erupted and Henry and Elaine barely have the strength to stand thanks to the beating from Judas. Somehow Elaine finds more of her inner strength and is able to get them to safety.

I really liked the adventure these characters took, even though it wasn’t an adventure they chose. In the first story, Jungle Eyes, I found Elaine a little unsettled and possibly bi polar. However, in Coastal Spirit, she is matured, level headed and ready to take on the evil Judas and Frederic. I like the growth this character has taken. I like the twist and surprise that comes with Frederic and with Captain Scarlett. I know there has to be more to his story.

The only thing that really bothered me in this book was that there didn’t seem like enough worry about Lily. I’m not sure if Elaine just put Lily out of her mind in order to survive but I kept thinking, “What about Lily?” “Who’s got Lily?” Thankfully by the end of the story Lily’s situation is revealed.

I highly recommend this book but it is not a standalone. You must start with Jungle Eyes. I can’t wait to see what else Lindsay Marie Miller has in store.

Review by @shannonlovesbooks

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Break Away (The Baltimore Banners, #5) by Lisa B. Kamps – Review by Jana Teppih

Break Away (The Baltimore Banners, #5)Break Away by Lisa B. Kamps
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Break Away is the fifth book in Lisa B. Kamps’ Baltimore Banners series and a hockey romance in its true form! I have not read the other stories in the series but I have read another book by the writer, also a hockey romance, so I knew that I will be graced with something good!
Break Away is the story of Jean-Pierre “JP” Larocque and Emily Poole. These two went through a tragic event five years earlier and it has marked their lives ever since … I can see how some people would feel that they miss hearing more about their backgrounds as everything in the story is shadowed by that tragic event but I do not mind actually as it is a beautiful example of the ‘now’ … how our lives get interrupted and how do we deal with tragedy and what do we need in those horrible moments … Not all of us get a second chance so Break Away is a heart-breaking and heart-warming story of what could happen when the two people who were torn apart by one defining tragic event meet again … is there a way forward, together or are the memories too hard to bear to even remotely to imagine a possible future together…
I love the writer’s style, it is simple and to the point and grabs you by your heart strings. I know I will be reading more of her writing!

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Shifting Ground: A Short Story Collection by Alice Rachel – Review by Sheri Schrader

Shifting Ground: A Short Story CollectionShifting Ground: A Short Story Collection by Alice Rachel
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Shifting Ground: A Short Story Collection by Alice Rachel is a book of twelve romance stories that fit into the Under Ground series. I recommend reading the series in order and the author has listed how each of these short stories fit into the series of novels. The stories are great additions to the series and include the main and secondary characters. Everything is well written and even though the setting is dystopian there is hope in the stories. I will be looking for more from Alice Rachel in the future since I enjoy her storytelling and writing.

Review by @sherimichelle1

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Abandoned Love: A BWWM Sports Romance (Love Sick Series Book 2) by Sydney Aaliyah Michelle – Review by Jenni Bishop

Abandoned Love (Love Sick, #2)Abandoned Love by Sydney Aaliyah Michelle
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Abandoned Love: A BWWM Sports Romance (Love Sick Series Book 2) by Sydney Aaliyah Michelle ​is the second book in this amazing series and is nicely written and is emotional and funny, captivating and the chemistry explosive. This story is about second chances when you feel as though this is all there really is but then believing in yourself.

This story will make you go through an emotional as it has struggles and doubt, forgiveness and yet acceptance. I laughed and cried and yet found myself at times so frustrated that I wanted to scream.

I look forward to reading the next book in this series, and I recommend you grab a copy and settle in and enjoy the ride. I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

Reviewed by @jennadb

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Island Smile: Stranded in Paradise Book 2 by Lindsay Marie Miller – Review by Shannon Fowler

Island Smile: An Action Adventure Romance (Stranded in Paradise, #2)Island Smile: An Action Adventure Romance by Lindsay Marie Miller
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Book 2 in the Stranded in Paradise series is full of surprises! Some good and some not so much! Lindsay Marie Miller can write a story that draws a reader right in. Sometimes a reader wants to be the main character but I am reserving that idea for the happily ever after that is sure to come…right? Please.

The ending of Island Smile leaves everyone, characters and readers alike, wondering what is going to happen! Who will survive the island?! HOW will they survive?! Does anyone ever really die on the island?

Remember this series is set in the 1900’s so men and women were still learning that women could do more than just look pretty. Elaine and Louisa are girl power for sure! I loved the characters in this story so much better than in book one. Elaine seemed a little unsettled, I believe I said bi-polar, during Jungle Eyes. This story has her level headed and determined. I like this version of her better. Henry, her husband, is the protective, loving husband he should be. A little full of rage but really I do not blame him one bit. I also love the character of Louisa, Henry’s sister. We met her in book one, but she has a much bigger part in this story. I can only wonder what is going to happen in the next book.

I am looking forward to reading Coastal Spirit and highly recommend you read this series, starting with book one, Jungle Eyes.

Review by @shannonlovesbooks

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Abandoned Love (Love Sick, #2) by Sydney Aaliyah Michelle – Review by Jana Teppih

Abandoned Love (Love Sick, #2)Abandoned Love by Sydney Aaliyah Michelle
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Abandoned Love is the second book in Sydney Aaliyah Michelle’s Love Sick series. I had not read the first book when I picked up this one and I had not read any other books by this writer either … and now I know that I have lost out on beauty! She is a writer that should be on your radar and she definitely is on mine now!
Abandoned Love is the story of Cody Travis and Briann Hobbs – a wannabe NFL player and a personal trainer … sounds boring, right? In reality, it is a great BWWM Sports Romance that takes place in New Orleans (YEY!) and these two, they are so opposite so that it totally makes sense! I enjoyed the ride that they took me on and even though at times I got a bit annoyed with Briann (though I totally got why she acted the way she did), I still hoped for them to find their way!
It was also great how the writer gave us glimpses of Ryan and Leah who were the leads in her first book … I need to pick up their book as well for sure! What a story they have (at least that is what I got from the bits and pieces that the writer gave us here!). Pick up a copy and join Cody and Briann in the hot and humid New Orleans!

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Then Again (A Juniper Court Series Novel) by Sylvie Stewart – Review by Angela Hayes

Then AgainThen Again by Sylvie Stewart
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

 

Then Again by Sylvie Stewart is a Juniper Court Novel. This is such a sweet and funny story which kept me engrossed from the very beginning. I loved Ms. Stewart’s Carolina Connections series and when I read the blurb on this book, I just knew I would love it too. It didn’t disappoint and is my favourite of the Juniper Court series of standalone- and that’s saying a lot because there are a lot of excellent stories in the collection.
The Juniper Court Series is a collaboration of seven authors who each produced a standalone story that is set on the same street. There are seven stories and each book is individual and unique to its author, the books may vary in style, content and storyline, but they all have the same inspiration- a person/couple who reside on Juniper Court.
This story was a lot of fun to read, with some hilarious quips, banter, one-liners, and antics. There were also emotional moments, as well as sweet and tender touches. I really connected to the character/s and invested heavily in the story. I devoured this book in a flash, I was enthralled from beginning to end. I got to the end and wanted to turn around and read it all over again.
Jenna was blindsided by divorce papers two years ago. To say she was shattered is an understatement. But having her two precious girls meant that she couldn’t give in to her emotions or give up. She had to keep strong for the girls, keep life as ‘normal’ as possible- so that meant putting up a cheerful and optimistic facade- all the while struggling just to make it through the days.
Now she has decided it’s time she took a bite out of life. She thinks a summer fling will be just the thing to get her back in ‘the saddle’. But, all her hopeful ideas don’t go according to plan. And what ensues makes for captivating reading. Will she find her summer fling?
I really recommend this book, and the series- you are bound to love it just as much as I have!

Thank you, Ms. Stewart!

 

Reviewed by @angelahayes

 

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