Review of ‘Unforgettable’ by Elle Spencer.

This book presents two romantic novellas with characters who are unforgettable for different reasons. In ‘Forget her not’ Samantha King is a straight art dealer that wakes up naked in bed with a woman and she doesn’t remember anything about it. She is compelled to know what happened that night of her first and only lesbian experience but, is it just curiosity?

This is my favourite of the two stories, I like that the concept is so original. The two main characters are well rounded and very realistic, specially Sam, who is a very complicated and multi-layered character. The dialogues are natural sounding and their chemistry is off the charts. The story is sometimes funny, sometimes heartbreaking and it has the right amount of angst and drama. Overall, 4.5 stars.

In ‘Forget her never’, Abby Dunn has a one night stand with gorgeous and sexy Kendall Squires who is everything Abby dreams of. Their attraction is undeniable but Kendall is married and that night together should be left in the past. If only they can forget each other…

This is an age gap romance with a bit of infidelity and a lot of drama. Even though I connected with the main characters and their chemistry is hot, the plot doesn’t seem to flow so well and part of the conflict feels a bit forced. There are at least four different points of view which were in my opinion unnecessary. The twists and turns, the angst and anguish were too much for me. However, readers who love their romances with loads of drama might enjoy it much more. Overall, 3.5 stars.

All in all, a very good and entertaining read. 4 stars.

ARC provided by Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Review of ‘Worth the wait’ by Karelia Stetz-Waters.

This is book 3 of the ‘Out in Portland’ series by this author that can be read as a standalone novel. In a high school reunion, television presenter Avery Crown meets Merritt Lessing, her former best friend and teenage crush. After fifteen years, their mutual attraction is still alive but past and present get in the way as Merritt cannot forget an old betrayal and Avery is a closeted lesbian who cannot build a relationship without putting her career in jeopardy. Do they have any hope of having their happily ever after?

I have to admit that I’m not into high school reunion romances or stories about decades-long grudges held from teenage years. Normally my theme preferences don’t influence a book rating or critique. But beyond the subject I’m afraid that I have a few issues with this book, starting with the plot which seems a bit unrealistic and over the top dramatic. Additionally, I couldn’t warm up to the main characters, Avery with her low self-esteem, stuck in her mother issues and self-pity while Merritt… well, much the same. Some of their behaviour or conversations felt childish and immature for a thirty something. On the other hand, the secondary characters were much more interesting, specially DX and the couple of Iliana and Lei-Ling. I would read a book about them as they are quirky and multi faceted.

Overall, an ok read if you are into school reunions and drama. 3 stars.

ARC provided by Netgalley and the author in exchange for an honest review.

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Review of ‘Room service’ by Fiona Riley.

This is an early work by Ms. Riley just published now after the three books of her ‘Perfect match’ series. This is an office romance between interior designer, Olivia Dawson, and Savannah Quinn, her client corporate liaison. As they travel around the country to tackle different projects, their mutual attraction grows making it impossible to ignore. Will their corporate association get in the way of their budding relationship?

‘Room service’ is a slow-burn romance written from the point of view of both main characters. Ms. Riley excels at building their chemistry that slowly grows to sizzling hot. Both characters are a bit too perfect but their relationship works fine. My only concern is that their public displays of affection seem too over the top to be realistic. Despite that, the intimate scenes are well written, specially the phone sex passage which, in my opinion, is one of the best ever written in lesfic. Some of the secondary characters are a bit blurry specially at the beginning but it doesn’t interfere with the enjoyment of the main story.

Overall, a sweet office romance read. 4 stars.

ARC provided by Netgalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Review of ‘Add romance and mix’ by Shannon M. Harris.

This is a slow burn romance between Briley Anderson and her next door neighbour Leah Daniels. Briley is a property developer who loves to bake in her free time, she’s also shy and hopelessly attracted to Leah who is sixteen years her senior, divorced, mother of two and a grandmother. Will Briley be able to overcome her shyness to approach her neighbour and will Leah give a chance to a much younger woman?

‘Add romance and mix’ is a very sweet story, as sweet as the baking goods made by Briley. So much so that sometimes it sounds too good to be true. The main characters show almost no flaws and seem upbeat in a ‘loves conquers all’ way even when life throws them a big curve ball. There’s nothing wrong with upbeat characters like that but the story sounds a bit unrealistic. The secondary characters follow the same pattern of ideal behaviour. It is quite obvious in Leah’s teenage boy and the two year old toddler. The conflicts or tantrums are just mentioned as an afterthought but in the plot’s interactions they act like ideal children, the same as the adults. The story delves a lot in inconsequential details but rushes past conflicts and challenges. Again, too sweet and too good considering the circumstances.

Overall, an ok read if you like baking and don’t mind a bit of ‘too good to be true’ characters. 3 stars.

ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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Review of ‘Marmalade Martini’ by Julie Forester.

This is a debut novel by British author Julie Forester. The plot follows successful architect Jamie Barker’s life after she accidentally drops her keys setting off a chain reaction of life changing events. With London at the background, the story succeeds to describe the city with its beautiful scenery and some hidden gems. Having lived in London for seven years, I enjoyed the depictions of my former hometown but some non UK readers might get lost with the British vocabulary and some local cultural references.

The novel is written in third person from both main characters’ point of view with the exception of a short excerpt written from Jamie’s sister pov which could have been avoided altogether. There is a great amount of drama and angst which is not my cup of tea but some other readers surely will enjoy. It covers family issues, friendship conflicts, sexual harrasment and the ubiquitous crazy ex. With so much happening, the romance was not prominent and I couldn’t feel the chemistry between the main characters. The fade to black sex scenes don’t help to create intimacy either. Additionally, some secondary characters are a bit flat and stereotyped, specially Jamie’s ex. The book ends with some unresolved issues and a cliffhanger so expect a second part coming sometime in the future.

Overall an ok read from a debut author, specially if you are interested in dramatic fiction. 3 stars.

ARC provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

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Review of ‘Bitterroot Queen’ by Jove Belle.

Jove Belle is a solid lesfic author whose books are well crafted and entertaining to read. ‘Bitterroot Queen’ is the first of the series ‘Bitterroot Saga’ so expect some parts of the plot left unresolved and the introduction of some secondary characters who might have a more prominent role in the future installments.

This is the story of Olly, a nomad handy woman who stops at the town of Bitterroot and unexpectedly feels at home in it. There she meets Sam and her daughter Beth, who are in dire need of a person who can help them refurbish their recently purchased but derelict motel. One word of warning, the refurbishment process is described meticulously by the author so if you don’t like DIY, this book might not be for you. I’m not sure if the amount of DIY description balances right within the plot, as it sometimes feels that too much building information is provided. Nevertheless, the characters are well crafted and the plot develops neatly. Just don’t expect too much romance happening as this book deals more with each of the main characters’ family conflicts and soul searching.

Overall, a well written book but might disappoint if you are looking for hot romance. 4 stars.

ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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