So I decided because I haven’t really done any ‘what I’ve read’ updates, that today, I would tell you what I have read since I’ve gotten to college. It’s really not a ton, but I have loved everything I’ve read, and I truly recommend them!
1. Making Faces: Amy Harmon // 5 out of 5
Ambrose Young was beautiful. He was tall and muscular, with hair that touched his shoulders and eyes that burned right through you. The kind of beautiful that graced the covers of romance novels, and Fern Taylor would know. She’d been reading them since she was thirteen. But maybe because he was so beautiful he was never someone Fern thought she could have…until he wasn’t beautiful anymore.
Making Faces is the story of a small town where five young men go off to war, and only one comes back. It is the story of loss. Collective loss, individual loss, loss of beauty, loss of life, loss of identity. It is the tale of one girl’s love for a broken boy, and a wounded warrior’s love for an unremarkable girl. This is a story of friendship that overcomes heartache, heroism that defies the common definitions, and a modern tale of Beauty and the Beast, where we discover that there is a little beauty and a little beast in all of us.
I LOVED this one! It was so fantastic and moving, and at times, it had me in tears. It has such a fantastic message, and i highly, highly recommend it. I don’t want to go into too much detail, but the characters were so extremely well done. I loved each and everyone, and I fond myself cheering them all on constantly. After finishing it, I was honestly in a mini reading slump, which is a rarity for me.
2. Lux Beginnings: Opal and Onyx: Jennifer L. Armentrout // 4.5 out of 5
There’s an alien next door. And with his looming height and eerie green eyes, he’s hot… until he opens his mouth. He’s infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, he marks me. Turns out he has a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal his abilities and the only way I’m getting out of this alive is by sticking close to him until my alien mojo fades. If I don’t kill him first, that is.
So this is a bind-up of the first two books in the Lux series, both of which were fantastic! Above I just included the first book synopsis, because I don’t want to spoil anything. I had heard such fantastic things about all of J. Lynn’s books, and so when I finally got to dive in I was so excited, and I was definitely not disappointed. This book was such a fun, fast-paced read!
3. Pushing the Limits: Katie McGarry // 5 out of 5
So wrong for each other …and yet so right.
No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with “freaky” scars on her arms. Even Echo can’t remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal.
But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo’s world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the secrets they both keep, being together is pretty much impossible.
Yet the crazy attraction between them refuses to go away. And Echo has to ask herself just how far they can push the limits and what she’ll risk for the one guy who might teach her how to love again.
Pushing the Limits was so fantastic. This is the third Katie McGarry books I’ve read, and she is quickly gaining ground as one of my favorites. She has a knack for writing these storylines that are so well connected and heart wrenching. The characters are complex, which I adore, and she has yet to let me down.
4. The Coincidence of Callie & Kayden: Jessica Sorenson // 5 out of 5
For Kayden, suffering in silence was the only way to survive. If he was lucky, he could keep his head down, do as he was told, and make it through the day. But one night it seemed like his luck — and his life — might finally end… until an angel named Callie appeared just in time to rescue him.
Callie has never believed in luck. Not since her twelfth birthday when everything was taken from her. After the worst was over, she locked up her feelings and vowed never to tell anyone what happened. Now, six years later, she continues to struggle with the painful secret that threatens to consume her.
When fate lands Kayden and Callie at the same college, Kayden is determined to get to know the beautiful girl who changed his destiny. Quiet and reserved, Callie still fears letting anyone else into her world. But Kayden is certain that Callie has come back into his life for a reason. And the more he tries to be a part of her life, the more he realizes that, this time, it’s Callie who needs to be saved…
This was another fantastically well done new adult book. The characters were raw and emotional, and while reading this one, I wanted them to be so completely happy. This ended on a massive cliff hanger, which leads us to the next book I so obviously had to pick up…
5. The Redemption of Callie and Kayden: Jessica Sorenson // 4 out of 5
I’m not going to post a synopsis because spoilers, but if you want to check it out, click here.
I enjoyed this, and I thought it was a fantastic conclusion. I did not enjoy it near as much as the first book, but as a whole, I was extremely satisfied with the way this story wrapped up. I think there may be a third book out for Callie and Kayden, which I will definitely pick up sometime in the near future!
6 (or 6, 7 and 8). The Summer I Turned Pretty Trilogy Bind-up: Jenny Han // 4.5 out of 5
Belly has always lived for the summertime because it means all her favorite things – swimming, the beach and the Fisher boys: Conrad and Jeremiah. She has spent every summer of her life with them at Cousins Beach. All the while Belly has loved Conrad from afar, until finally, one fateful summer, it seems like he might feel something for her, too. But as it turns out, so does Jeremiah.
As the summers go on, Belly must choose between the two brothers and face the inevitable: She will have to break one of their hearts.
This was quite the adventure. Although this book is romantic, it is so much more. The characters have families that they love, and that play a huge part in the entire trilogy. Jenny Han definitely made me cry a few times, but honestly, it was so worth it. She managed to take a story that could have been done strictly romance based, and turned it into something that was so much more powerful and wonderful.
7. The White Rose: Amy Ewing // 3.5 out of 5
Since this a sequel, this is the synopsis for the first book in this trilogy, The Jewel.
The Jewel means wealth. The Jewel means beauty. The Jewel means royalty. But for girls like Violet, the Jewel means servitude. Not just any kind of servitude. Violet, born and raised in the Marsh, has been trained as a surrogate for the royalty—because in the Jewel the only thing more important than opulence is offspring.
Purchased at the surrogacy auction by the Duchess of the Lake and greeted with a slap to the face, Violet (now known only as #197) quickly learns of the brutal truths that lie beneath the Jewel’s glittering facade: the cruelty, backstabbing, and hidden violence that have become the royal way of life.
Violet must accept the ugly realities of her existence… and try to stay alive. But then a forbidden romance erupts between Violet and a handsome gentleman hired as a companion to the Duchess’s petulant niece. Though his presence makes life in the Jewel a bit brighter, the consequences of their illicit relationship will cost them both more than they bargained for.
While I did enjoy this one, I didn’t enjoy it near as much as I enjoyed The Jewel. The plot was extremely slow to start, and while it did pick up near the end, it wasn’t quite enough to make up for the rest of the time. I will be continuing on when the third and finally book comes out next fall, and I am interested and invested in the story and the characters enough so that I am pretty dang excited for it!
8. The Edge of Never: J. A. Redmerski // 4 out of 5
Twenty-year-old Camryn Bennett had always been one to think out-of-the-box, who knew she wanted something more in life than following the same repetitive patterns and growing old with the same repetitive life story. And she thought that her life was going in the right direction until everything fell apart.
Determined not to dwell on the negative and push forward, Camryn is set to move in with her best friend and plans to start a new job. But after an unexpected night at the hottest club in downtown North Carolina, she makes the ultimate decision to leave the only life she’s ever known, far behind.
With a purse, a cell phone and a small bag with a few necessities, Camryn, with absolutely no direction or purpose boards a Greyhound bus alone and sets out to find herself. What she finds is a guy named Andrew Parrish, someone not so very different from her and who harbors his own dark secrets. But Camryn swore never to let down her walls again. And she vowed never to fall in love.
But with Andrew, Camryn finds herself doing a lot of things she never thought she’d do. He shows her what it’s really like to live out-of-the-box and to give in to her deepest, darkest desires. On their sporadic road-trip he becomes the center of her exciting and daring new life, pulling love and lust and emotion out of her in ways she never imagined possible. But will Andrew’s dark secret push them inseparably together, or tear them completely apart?
I really enjoyed this one, it wasn’t my favorite, but it was still great and entertaining. There are some super sweet moments between Andrew and Camryn, and seeing how far Camryn comes over the course of the novel was fantastic. There is a huge plot twist, which was… WOAH AND SO CRAZY SCARY. I was so completely shocked, and I will definitely be picking up the second one very soon!
9. Ten Tiny Breaths: K. A. Tucker // 5 out of 5
Kacey Cleary’s whole life imploded four years ago in a drunk-driving accident. Now she’s working hard to bury the pieces left behind—all but one. Her little sister, Livie. Kacey can swallow the constant disapproval from her born-again aunt Darla over her self-destructive lifestyle; she can stop herself from going kick-boxer crazy on Uncle Raymond when he loses the girls’ college funds at a blackjack table. She just needs to keep it together until Livie is no longer a minor, and then they can get the hell out of Grand Rapids, Michigan.
But when Uncle Raymond slides into bed next to Livie one night, Kacey decides it’s time to run. Armed with two bus tickets and dreams of living near the coast, Kacey and Livie start their new lives in a Miami apartment complex, complete with a grumpy landlord, a pervert upstairs, and a neighbor with a stage name perfectly matched to her chosen “profession.” But Kacey’s not worried. She can handle all of them. What she can’t handle is Trent Emerson in apartment 1D.
Kacey doesn’t want to feel. She doesn’t. It’s safer that way. For everyone. But sexy Trent finds a way into her numb heart, reigniting her ability to love again. She starts to believe that maybe she can leave the past where it belongs and start over. Maybe she’s not beyond repair.
But Kacey isn’t the only one who’s broken. Seemingly perfect Trent has an unforgiveable past of his own; one that, when discovered, will shatter Kacey’s newly constructed life and send her back into suffocating darkness.
So there is about to be some serious gushing because I LOVED THIS BOOK. K. A. Tucker is seriously gaining ground as one of my favorite authors, and this book has made it so hard to pick out a favorite. Trent and Kacey are seriously one of the strongest couple I’ve ever read about. They both have been through so much, and seeing them fight and work was so beautifully done. I have read the other three books in the Ten Tiny Breaths series, and I plan on picking up the Burying Waters series as soon as I have a spare minute.
10. Five Ways to Fall: K. A. Tucker // 5 out of 5
Purple-haired, sharp-tongued Reese MacKay knows all about making the wrong choice; she’s made plenty of them in her twenty-odd-years. So when her impulsive, short-lived marriage ends in heartbreak, she decides it’s time for a change. She moves to Miami with the intention of hitting reset on her irresponsible life, and she does quite well…aside from an epically humiliating one-night stand in Cancun with a hot blond bouncer named Ben. Thank God she can get on a plane and leave that mistake behind her.
Football scholarship and frat parties with hot chicks? Part of charmer Ben Morris’s plan. Blown knee that kills any hope of a professional football career? So not part of the plan. Luckily Ben has brains to go with his knockout looks and magnetism. After three long years of balancing law school with his job as a bouncer at Penny’s Palace, he’s ready to lead a more mature life—until his first day of work, when he finds himself in the office of that crazy, hot chick he met in Cancun. The one he hasn’t stopped thinking about.
If Ben truly were a smart guy, he’d stay clear of Reese. She’s the boss’s stepdaughter and it’s been made very clear that office romances are grounds for dismissal. Plus, rumor has it she’s trouble. The only problem is, he likes trouble, especially when it’s so good-looking…
Since I already have a review up for this, and I just freaked out over my love for K. A. Tucker, I’m just going to tell you that I loved this book. It was fantastic, andI just don’t even really know how to express my love in words for this series.
I hope you enjoyed this little update! I know I haven’t really read a ton, but since I am in college I hope you can forgive me. I’m still trying to adjust and get into a schedule that allows for reading. I think I have finally got a general plan picked out, but I’m still learning and trying to adjust and figure it out.