Summer of Series: The Return to Me Series by Corinne Michaels

Y’all we have officially reached the end of summer, which means this is my last Summer of Series post.

*sobs*

You know it’s funny, about halfway through this summer I didn’t know if I’d even finish one series. You see work took up a big chunk of time, and then things were just crazy and I couldn’t get my head to focus on reading. Even though reading is the one thing that helps me in all of the craziness, I just couldn’t read. But then I thought about all of the books I had set out to read, all of the series I wanted to devour, and I jumped in. I jumped in heart first ready to read.

I finished my first series of the summer in August and I didn’t look back.

Since then I have spent the last 4 weeks devouring books. I have spent the last 4 weeks traveling from prisons to Oxford, spent my days with some cocky men and two men who couldn’t be more right for one another, and I just spent my last week with 3 brother bound and determined to break every one of my emotions.

It’s 4 weeks later and I have just finished my fifth, and last series of the summer.

And boy was this series the PERFECT one to close out the summer with. 

It was emotional. It was consuming on the deepest of levels. It was so raw and real that it physically hurt my heart at times and stole my breath at others. It was unforgettable. It was everything. 

So without further ado and fanfare, I bring you, my last series of my Summer of Series:

The Return to Me Series by Corinne Michaels

Now let me start this write up by saying that this series is probably one of the most emotionally murdering series I have ever had the pleasure of reading, and that is just part of what made this series SO DAMN GOOD. This series was HIGHLY emotional. It was bursting with every feel you can think of. It was angsty to the point I thought I, and these characters, might not make. It was bursting with tension and heartache and so many emotionally gripping twists and turns that turned my heart and soul upside down.

It was a series that owned every part of me while I was reading. And honestly, I have a feeling this series will own a piece of me for the rest of time.

That’s how good it was. That’s how unforgettable it was. That’s how utterly incredible it was. 

Now I should have known going into this book and this series that Corinne Michaels would deliver some serious feels and emotional murder to me. You see, I have been a fan of hers since the very beginning. I read her first book Beloved on the 4th of July right after it came out. (I honestly think that’s a huge sign that you’ve met an author or a book you will never forget when you can remember what day you read the book.) I read that book in a day. I was emotionally murdered by that book in a day. (And I LOVED it!) And I knew in a day that Corinne Michaels was going to be one of my favorite authors.

But honestly, as much as I thought I was prepared for the emotional murder I thought these books would give me, I definitely was not adequately prepared for the emotions and feels she would give me as I traveled to Bell Buckle Tennessee with her Hennington brothers.

I was not prepared for what those men would make me feel. I was not prepared for the women of this world who would equally shatter my hearts to pieces. I was not prepared for the first chapter of Say You’ll Stay which EVISCERATED me. I was not prepared to be so enamored and consumed with this world and these characters that truly took ahold of my heart. I was not prepared for the emotional rollercoaster these books would take me on, and I was certainly not prepared to feel it ALL with them along the way.

But you know what? I might not have been prepared, but I loved it. I loved every incredible, unforgettable, and all-feeling word of it. 

This series is hands down one of the most emotionally charged, angsty, and all-feelingly intense series I have EVER had the pleasure of reading.

From the moment I jumped into this world, I was so taken and owned with its characters. With their struggles and heartbreaks. With their anguish. With their choices that took them all to so many different places they were not prepared for. With their hearts and who they all were. With everything about them. I was taken. I was taken for one hell of an emotional ride that I will never forget.

You see those Hennington boys and their special lady friends (aka the women they were all so meant to be with), well they kind of broke me. And I LOVED it. I loved it so so much. 

They made the emotional masochist in me so beyond happy because not only did they give me some of the most emotionally unforgettable stories I’ve ever read, they let me feel and live and breathe it all right along with them.

They broke me. They made me cry. Like a lot. They made my chest physically ache. They shattered me. There were actual moments reading these stories where I was pacing the room because I wasn’t sure if these characters (and I) were going to make it through everything that came their way. They killed me and my feels, but you know what? They also made it better. They took me through their pain. They showed me their true selves, who they were and what they wanted, and they all showed how far they were willing to go and how hard they were willing to fight for the one who really mattered. For the one meant everything. For the one who changed it all.

These characters might have tried to break my emotions and all my feels, but they also made it better. They showed me what could be. They gave me that more. They showed that hope can truly be found even in the moments when you feel all is lost. Along with that they gave me love stories that I will never forget reading and experiencing, and they showed me again and again that true love can triumph even when you think all is lost.

They showed me that sometimes second chances really do exist, and that they can give you it all and more than you could’ve ever imagined, as long as you’re open to them.

They showed me that sometimes unexpected turns can lead to the most amazing and life changing things, and that even when those turns don’t turn out like you hoped or expected, it doesn’t make them any less meaningful or amazing.

They showed me that sometimes the one person who’s always been there and the one person you can’t seem to let go of might just be the one person you need to hold onto with all that you have.

They showed me that sometimes it takes opening your eyes and your heart to what’s always been right in front of you to find exactly what you’ve always needed.

Corinne Michaels completely connected me into this world, heart first and on a soul deep level, in way that I will never forget. 

Her writing and storytelling truly made this series what it was. She put me in the thick of it with Zach and Presley, with Trent and Grace, with Cooper and Emma, and with Wyatt and Angie. She let me get get them all. She let me understand each and every one of them, and she let me get exactly why things went the way they did for all of them. Even in those moments when she had me crying and aching for their struggles, her writing and thoughtful storytelling is what pulled me through. It is what showed me that these characters needed to feel these things. It is what had me believing in them and what could be. She let me know and feel and completely understand they had to struggle in order to try to get to that better place and to something more.

She let me understand them all in such a real way that was so honest and heartfelt. She let me see them. Their raw and messy and complicated selves, and most of all, she let me love them. She made it so there was no way that I couldn’t love those stubborn assess and strong willed women. Even in those moments when I wanted to jump into these books and shake some sense into all of them, she had me knowing through her writing and through what I was getting with them that it would all somehow be okay. Even in those moments that threatened to tear me and my heart apart, I knew that in my bones and that was everything to get.

It was everything and more. 

Now don’t get me wrong, while these books will break all of your emotions and push you to the edge about a bajillion times, it will also give you some seriously swoony and amazing love stories. Love stories packed with more heat and connection than you can shake a stick at. Love stories that still have that lightness to them, even with all of the glorious angst that push and pull you through it all. These love stories will own every part of you, and even when you think you can’t go on, they will show you the light and the hope of it all.

And they will have you knowing with everything you have that these characters are meant to be and that the love they share is something else.

Something so much more. Something truly special. Something you have to have with your entire heart and soul.

If there is one series you read this year, I highly recommend this one. It is emotional, gripping, and consuming on the deepest of levels. It will make you cry and hurt and feel like there is no happiness in sight, but then you will turn that corner. You will see the light. You will feel that hope that these characters do. You will feel it and see it and practically touch it, and it will show you that if you stick with it, if you stick with these characters, they will give you it all and they will make it better. They will show you just how amazing love can be if you fight for it, if you give your all for it, and if you find that one person to share it all with.

This series is one of the best I have ever read, and as sad as I am to leave the world of Bell Buckle, I cannot wait to get my hands on more books by this amazing author because her words are giving me everything right now!

And I am beyond desperate for more.

I’m basically an addict now. An emotionally masochistic addict who needs more emotional murder…and Corinne Michaels is my dealer of choice and I am READY for more of her words in my life!

The Hennington men and the women who bring them to their knees gave me stories that were meaningful, emotional, and all kinds of consuming. They definitely made me work for it and they sure as hell didn’t make it easy, but that is why I loved them SO MUCH. It’s the hard work, the feels and emotion, and the fight that exemplify who these characters are and why they’re all so meant to be.

I’m telling you, if you read these books, if you keep you’re heart open to these characters and what could be for them, you won’t be disappointed. 

Not one little bit. 

And in the end, you’ll be damn glad you took that emotional and breathtaking ride with them, because that ride? It’s everything. And then some. 

Find Out More About The Return to Me Series

~Say You’ll Stay~

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One word.

Stay.
It was all he had to do. Instead, he got on that bus and took my heart with him.

That was seventeen years ago.

I moved on. Marriage. Kids. White picket fence. Everything I ever wanted, but my husband betrayed me and I was left once again.

Alone, penniless, and with two boys, I had no choice but to return to Tennessee. He wasn’t supposed to be there. I should’ve been safe. However, fate has a way of stepping in.

This time around, the tables are turned. It’s my decision. Second chances do exist, but I don’t know if we can repair what’s already been broken . . .

Read My Review

~Say You Want Me~

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There’s no way I’ll fall for Wyatt Hennington.

He can keep his Southern drawl, irresistible smile, and those pick-up lines all to himself. I made the mistake of sleeping with him not once, but twice. I’m not stupid enough to give him round three, especially after he left me in the middle of the night so I could see myself out. I vow to return to Philadelphia and forget him.

It proves easier said than done.

When the doctor informs me I’m the winner of door prize number two, I put my life on hold and head back to Bell Buckle. Three months and if we can’t make this work, I’m gone.

The problem is—when the cards are stacked against us, and I can’t bring myself to leave him, I’ll finally know if he truly loves me or if all my fears were real . . .

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~Say I’m Yours~

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I spent twenty years waiting for Trent Hennington to open his eyes and see me. But it was all for nothing. He chose to keep himself guarded and let me walk away, proving that my time and efforts were wasted.

I’m done being invisible.
It’s time to move on.

A single dance sets my new reality into motion, and I welcome it. After all, Cooper Townsend is perfect. He’s kind, sexy, and attentive—everything a girl could want.

I thought I got it right this time.
That my heart could mend, and I would be happy.
Apparently, some things really are just too hard to walk away from.

Read My Review

~Say You Won’t Let Go~

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Emily Young had two goals in her life:
1. Make it big in country music.
2. Get the hell out of Bell Buckle.

She was doing it. She was on her way, until Cooper Townsend landed backstage at her show in Dallas.

This gorgeous, rugged, man of few words was one cowboy she couldn’t afford to let distract her. But with his slow smile and rough hands, she just couldn’t keep away.

With outside forces conspiring against them, Cooper hires the McKay-Taggart team to protect her. Emily refuses to let Cooper get hurt because of her. All she wants is to hold onto him, but she knows the right thing to do is to let go . . .

Read My Review

So there you have it y’all. My Summer of Series is officially done…and as sad as I am for both summer and this blog post series to be done, I’m so excited to jump into more books! I’m planning on binge reading more of Corinne’s books and then who knows where my reading mood will take me! The sky’s, or should I say my never-ending book pile, the limit. I want to thank you all for joining me this summer through this blog post series. I have read some incredible books, and I have loved sharing them with y’all! And I honestly can’t thank you enough for your support of me and this blog. I hope you know it means the world to me. 

Summer of Series: The PresLocke Series by Ella Frank & Brooke Blaine

Y’all I am IN LOVE with two men. Like I am deeply, wholly, and completely in love with two men.

And you know what?

I am 100% okay with that because these men, well they’re everything.

They are compassionate. They are sexy as hell. They are real and authentic. They are pure fire and goodness. And they are probably two of the best characters I have ever had the pleasure of reading and falling in love with.

They also happen to be beyond right for one another, and getting to read their love story is something that I will NEVER forget. Like ever. I am 100% positive these two men and their story will always own a part of my heart and I just love it. When I tell you there is something so special and so beyond right about the two of them and what you get with them, I mean that with every fiber of my soul.

These two are perfection in every sense of the word. They are fate defined. They are them through and through, and that is just part of what makes them my new fictional husbands and two utterly amazing characters that wooed themselves into my heart something fierce. 

So without further ado, I introduce my husbands to you…Ace Locke and Dylan Prescott aka PresLocke. (aka the current owners of my heart and soul.)

The PresLocke Series by Ella Frank and Brooke Blaine

Let me start this series write up by saying that I have not read a story so consuming, so all-feeling and meaningful, and so full of fire in quite some time. When I say this book consumed me, I mean it OWNED me. From the very first page until the very last, I DEVOURED these books. I think from start to finish I read these books in 36 hours.

That’s how good they were. That is how much they owned me. That is how much I LOVED every moment with Ace and Dylan. That is how much I was wooed something fierce by this story. 

I could not put it down…I couldn’t put them down. I couldn’t turn away from Ace and Dylan. I couldn’t stop reading their story with everything that I had. I couldn’t stop feeling and living and breathing it all with them. I seriously chugged iced coffee at 11 o’clock at night to be able to stay up to finish these books. That’s how consuming they were. That’s how much I NEEDED everything with them. That is how much I LOVED these books.

I truly wish I had a stronger word than loved to use to describe what I felt for these two and what I got within their story. Love just doesn’t seem adequate enough to fully capture what I felt for them along the way. It just doesn’t seem like a strong enough word to describe the amazing, all-feeling, and unforgettable reading experience they gave me.

It just doesn’t seem like enough to capture them.

But honestly, I feel like that’s also fitting for Dylan and Ace and what I got with them because what those two share, what those two feel for one another, and what those two experience with one another is beyond words. 

It’s just so much more. So much glorious more. 

What Brooke Blaine and Ella Frank created in this series was spectacular. It was emotional and heartfelt. It was honest and real. It was funny and sweet. It was BURSTING with so much fire and connection. It was vulnerable and full of feels. It was Ace and Dylan. It was their story of love that felt so written in the stars that everything felt beyond right and meant to be. It was just everything.

It was everything and then some.

The PresLocke Series follows Ace Locke, the world’s number 1 action star, and Dylan Prescott, an up and coming model who cross paths in more ways than one. The two of them have a very memorable first meeting, and from there it’s off to the races for those two. Their connection is fierce. The pull they have to one another is fire. The feelings growing between them have the effect of the strongest magnet possible, and no matter how much is stacked against them, they want each other. They need each other. And the more they get to know each other and the more they start to fall off that edge into their sea of feelings, the more they realize that they might have just met the one person who will change everything.

The three books in this incredible series follow the development of their relationship as they face their fair share of troubles and hurdles, as they get to know one another on the deepest of levels, and as they see what true and honest love can bring them. Through every turn of that page, everything that comes their way, and through every twist and turn, you are in it with Dylan and Ace. You are in it with your heart wide open, feeling and experiencing it all with them, loving and living every second.

And it is the actual best.

That is a true testament to what Brooke Blaine and Ella Frank so fantastically create within this series that you get all of that and more. 

What I loved about this series was that it allowed both Dylan and Ace to be their true selves. It allowed them to feel. It allowed them to be who they are and who they were always meant to be. It allowed them to truly see themselves and to find everything they didn’t even know they didn’t. This story and what you get with them allowed them to be them. It allowed them to fully embrace everything. The fire, the pull, the spark, the emotions, and the reality of what was between them. It allowed them to live their truths, with full hearts and open eyes, and with a love that literally gave them everything.

It allowed them to give their hearts so honestly and deeply to one another, and for you as the reader, this story allows you to be through every second of that feeling it all. This series and its events weren’t always easy for these two, but let me tell you what they share and their love makes it all worth it.

So. Beyond. Worth it. 

What you get with Ace and Dylan will have you believing in the power of love. It will have you believing in everything that could be. It will have you knowing that there is something so inherently right about the two of them. And it will have you knowing with every fiber of your being that those two men are the perfect match for one another.

This series will give you everything you need and more.

It will make you melt and swoon. It will woo you. It will consume you in every way possible.  It will have you knowing that they were never to people more meant to be together than Ace and Dylan. Every word with them will have you knowing and believing that with all that you have. And when you reach that last page, and when you reach the end and are overwhelmed in the best way with their love and heart and just who they are, you will truly be forever grateful that you had the chance to experience it all with them.

I know I am.

I am truly and forever grateful that I met these two amazing men.

Their story is wholly and uniquely theirs. It is the pinnacle of emotion, vulnerability, and pure fire and connection. It is the story of what happens when you meet the one person who changes everything, who makes you see yourself, and who allows you to be the best you possible. It is a story of love. True, deep, selfless, feel it with every part of your heart, love.

It is a story of fate, of soul touching love, of fight and heart and of so much healing that will put every part of you together again.

It is truly one of the most special stories I have ever had the pleasure of reading. And as sad and a little devastated as I am as I sit here knowing that my time with them is done, I can’t help but just feel so beyond happy and thrilled and grateful that I had the chance to experience their story with them. It is truly something else and I will be forever grateful that I had the chance to experience their literal magic and amazingness.

So seriously, RUN yourself to these books and what these authors so beautifully and meaningfully created. I truly cannot recommend this story enough to y’all. It is hands down one of the best series I have ever read, and I will truly cherish the time I got with Ace and Dylan.

They made me laugh. They made me melt. They made me swoon. They made me feel and live and love. They made it all amazing. They made it them, through and through, in the most memorable and incredible way possible. 

And that, well that is the actual best. Just like them and just like these books.

Find Out More About The PresLocke Series

~Aced~

One Click

What happens when these two worlds collide?

Ace Locke is Hollywood’s hottest action hero. Women across the globe fling their panties in his direction, but Ace isn’t interested in those—he’s more of a boxer briefs kind of guy. Specifically, those of the nearly naked male model on a billboard he drives past every day.

Though he recently made headlines for his public coming out, Ace is wary about pursuing a relationship, fearing what the court of public opinion will do to his career. But there’s something in the model’s expression that intrigues him and has him wondering what if?

Dylan Prescott just scored his biggest modeling campaign yet. One that has him plastered all over L.A. in not much more than what he was born with. And when he’s cast in Ace’s latest blockbuster, it puts him in close proximity to his ultimate fantasy.

Outwardly confident, Dylan has no problem with his sexuality or his pretty-boy looks, and uses both to his advantage to get what he wants. And what he wants is the impossible—Ace Locke.

Read My Review

~Locked~

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“ACE LOCKE JETS OFF TO SIN CITY WITH MYSTERY MAN”

Sorry, ladies—and fellas—Hollywood’s hottest action star, Ace Locke, is officially off the market!

The man on Locke’s arm has been identified as Dylan Prescott, the sexy new “it” model currently featured in the latest Calvin Klein ads. Sources tell TNZ the men met on the set of Locke’s upcoming action film Insurrection 2, and that “they only have eyes for each other.”
This is the first public gay relationship for Locke, who came out a year ago, and there has been much speculation on who would finally be the one to catch his eye.

According to multiple eyewitnesses, Locke whisked Prescott away on his private jet for a romantic weekend at Syn, the most exclusive hotel on the Las Vegas Strip. After pictures recently surfaced of the new couple, affectionately named PresLocke, it appears from the possessive way Locke keeps his new beau close that things are heating up.

The world is watching #PresLocke, and we’ll be sure to keep you up to date on this budding relationship!

Read My Review

~Wedlocked~

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Because you have believed in them,
Celebrated with them,
Loved and encouraged them,

Ella Frank and Brooke Blaine
Invite you to join

Ace Samuel Locke
and
Dylan Prescott

Saturday, the twenty-fourth of May
at six o’clock in the evening

The Floridian Hotel
4406 Palm Way
Orlando, Florida

For love, laughter, and a happily ever after.

Read My Review

 

So there you have it y’all, another must read series has been read and I could not be more in love! I am so glad I decided to do Summer of Series again because I have read some AMAZING books this summer and it has been the best! I thought this was going to be my last series I read before the end of summer, but since I devoured these books so quickly, I have time for another! I don’t know what I’m going to read next, but I know that I can’t wait to decide!! If you have any thoughts on what you think I should read next, be sure to let me know! I’d love to hear from you!

Summer of Series: The Cocky Bastard Series by Penelope Ward & Vi Keeland

Let me tell y’all, when I first started this blog post series I knew I had lofty goals. I mean I think I picked 20 different series that I was hoping to somehow read between Memorial Day and Labor Day. And here we are just 2 weeks before Labor Day and I’ve read 3 series…but you know what, I am 100% okay with it.

You know why?

Because this summer I have read 3 new and utterly amazing series by 4 authors I had never read before. And that, well that is just kind of the best.

New books. New authors. New series. New words to fall in love with. It really doesn’t get much better than that. 

So am I going to even read a quarter of the series I set off to read? Probably not. But have I had the chance to read some amazing stories this summer that have owned my heart something fierce? YES!

And it truly doesn’t get better than that. 

I started this summer wanting a forbidden romance, then found myself in the middle of a paranormal romance that I became fully obsessed with, and now I’ve just finished a series that’s a bit on the cocky side and all kinds of incredible.

So without further ado, the third series in my Summer of Series….

The Cocky Bastard Series by Penelope Ward and Vi Keeland

The Cocky Bastard Series is a series of standalone novels that I have owned for longer than I would like to admit. Like I seriously want to kick myself for having these books for so long and not reading them. I am the worst y’all. The actual worst for waiting on these books because these books were EVERYTHING.

They were swoony. Funny as hell. Romantic. Full of some feels and moments I was not prepared for, and some serious twists I was really not prepared for. Filled to the brim with some very memorable characters, personalities, and dynamics, this series had it all.

It had every kind of story. It had characters that each took a piece of my heart with what I got with them. It had the romance that I die for. It had such a consuming pull within it that connected me into every part of these stories. It had the full package, and truthfully that is just part of what made me love these books so much.

These books are cowritten by Penelope Ward and Vi Keeland, two authors who I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and who wrote some seriously good books. I am so ashamed to admit that I haven’t read these authors prior to this series (except for one book by Penelope Ward that I loved and read years ago), so I was super excited to read these books. I had heard such great things about these books and what these authors had created, and let me tell you I was not disappointed one bit in what I got from these stories!

They were exceptionally written, memorable in every way, and just so damn enjoyable to read. 

The Cocky Bastard Series truly is a series of standalone novels. (In fact when you look on Amazon and Goodreads that’s the title of this series!) You can read them in any order, since they do truly stand alone…though I would recommend reading Cocky Bastard first because that’s where it all starts and you’ll just love that book. (And the rest that follow it.)

What I think I loved most about this series was that even though these books were all different, with different couples, taking place across different places of the world, there were still things and aspects that made it feel like a connected series.

There was always a funny and memorable as hell first meeting. There was always a twist that changed everything. And I mean everything. There was always characters who were seemingly opposite or who should’t work together, yet so inherently did. There was always that little bit of fun too. That along with the romance, the heat and fire and connection between all of these different couples, and the writing and storytelling that brought it all together made for a series that I will never forget reading.

These books were just exactly what I needed right now. 

They were consuming on the deepest of levels. Every time I sat down to read one, I didn’t stop until that book was finished. I stayed up reading these books into early hours of the morning because I needed every word of them. I needed all the time with these characters and after each twist, I NEEDED to know how it would all come together. I seriously couldn’t stop with these books, and more than that I didn’t want to. I wanted every word. I wanted every character. I wanted every moment I was living within these books.

I wanted it all.

I especially loved these books because they just had some serious swoon to them and some of the best characters that I have ever had the pleasure of reading. These different characters made me work for it, they pushed me to the edge time and time again, and they dug themselves into my heart through every turn of that page. Each of them were different and unique and wholly them, but they were all so real. So real, so charming, so vivid in their own ways, and just so them. They were all so easy to love and root for…even those ones with their guards up and those hardened exteriors, and I loved them all.

I loved getting to be in the thick of it with them. I loved every adventure I went on with them. I loved every leap of faith and risk they took, even when it scared them out of their ever loving minds. I loved every bit of what made them who they were. I loved every moment that showed me and the person that they wanted to be with that they were so worth every bit of struggle and fight to get to that happily ever after. I loved that every turn of that page just solidified what I felt for them and how hard I was loving their story.

I loved it all. I loved them all. And then some. 

These authors wrote 6 exceptional stories that I just loved every word of. I loved the fun and spark. I loved the romance and feels. I loved that they kept me on my toes. I loved that they made me work for that ending as much as they made their characters work for it, and how it never felt like too much. It always felt right. It always felt like just enough. It always felt like it was meant to be.

And it always had that genuinely enjoyable sense of cockiness…and that was just the best amount of everything. 

From chance meetings at a rest stop in Nebraska, to lost phones on the subways of NYC. From an airport bar, to a broken down elevator pitched in darkness. From a fishhook in an area it so shouldn’t be, to a fender bender over a parking spot. These books span the different parts of the world and different ends of the country that bring a world of adventure and life and spark and change to these characters lives. This series takes you on sweeping journeys of the heart that will have you believing in every possibility of what could be for these characters.

Through it all, each of these stories and its characters give you it all. They invest you, they woo you something fierce, and in the end they show you that with a little cockiness, a little sass and fire, with a healthy dose of feels and heart thrown in, you can truly find what and who you didn’t even know you needed in your life. 

And it truly doesn’t get better than that.

So please, I beg of you, do not be like me an wait to dive into this series or the amazing writing of these authors. It would be wrong to do that and you would be missing out like I was for so long. So seriously, run yourself to this cocky world. Get lost in it. Live and feel it all. And just love and treasure every second of it.

I know I did.

So fucking much. 

Find Out More About Each Book in the Series Below

~Cocky Bastard~

One Click

He was someone who belonged in my wildest fantasies instead of a rest stop in the middle of Nebraska.

A sexy, cocky, Australian named Chance was the last person I expected to run into on my cross-country drive.

When my car broke down, we made a deal. Next thing I knew, we were traveling together, spending sexually-tense nights in hotels and taking unplanned detours.

My ordinary road trip turned into the adventure of a lifetime. It was all fun and games until things got intense.

I wanted him, but Chance wouldn’t make a move. I thought he wanted me too, but something was holding him back.

I wasn’t supposed to fall for the cocky bastard, especially when I knew we’d be going our separate ways.

All good things must come to an end, right?

Except our ending was one I didn’t see coming.

Read My Review

~Stuck-Up Suit~

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It started out like any other morning on the train.
Until I became mesmerized by the guy sitting across the aisle.
He was barking at someone on his phone like he ruled the world.
Who did the stuck-up suit think he was…God?
Actually, he looked like a God. That was about it.
When his stop came, he got up suddenly and left. So suddenly, he dropped his phone on the way out.
I might have picked it up.
I might have gone through all of his photos and called some of the numbers.
I might have held onto the mystery man’s phone for days―until I finally conjured up the courage to return it.
When I traipsed my ass across town to his fancy company, he refused to see me.
So, I left the phone on the empty desk outside the arrogant jerk’s office.
I might have also left behind a dirty picture on it first though.
I didn’t expect him to text back.
I didn’t expect our exchanges to be hot as hell.
I didn’t expect to fall for him―all before we even met.
The two of us couldn’t have been any more different.
Yet, you know what they say about opposites.
When we finally came face to face, we found out opposites sometimes do more than attract―we consumed each other.
Nothing could have prepared me for the ride he took me on. And I certainly wasn’t prepared for where I’d wind up when the ride was over.
All good things must come to an end, right?
Except our ending was one I didn’t see coming.

Read My Review

~Playboy Pilot~

One Click

Money or love? Which would you choose?

You probably just answered the question in your head thinking it’s an easy decision.

For me, it’s not. Did I mention it’s a lot of money? A hell of a lot.

I needed to go far away to think it through.

As I embarked on an impulsive trip, I hit a detour when I met sexy Carter in the airport lounge. We struck up a heated conversation.

Then, he left.

I thought I’d never see him again.

But fate had other plans.

Surprise! He was the pilot of my flight.

The bigger surprise was the adventure that followed after the plane landed.

Carter was dangerous and always on the move.

Even though our connection was magnetic, I knew it was only temporary.

He would give me tickets, and I would follow him around the world to exotic places.

A bevy of flight attendant exes and rumors about Carter’s reputation were never far behind.

I didn’t know what to believe.

But I was addicted. Nothing else mattered anymore. And I was going to get hurt. Because a part of me wanted to be the one to finally ground the playboy pilot.

At the very least, he was taking me on a thrilling ride.

All good things must come to an end, right?

Except our ending was one I didn’t see coming.

Read My Review

~Mister Moneybags~

One Click

I met Bianca in an elevator.

She was on her way to interview me when we got stuck.
The beautiful raven-haired reporter assumed I was a delivery guy because of the way I was dressed.

She had no clue I was really Dex Truitt, the wealthy, successful businessman she’d dubbed “Mister Moneybags”―her afternoon appointment.

Bianca told me how much she hated Dex’s type―snobby, over educated, silver-spooned men who didn’t appreciate the simple things in life.

So, after the elevator finally started moving again, I cancelled the interview and let her believe I was someone I wasn’t―a bike messenger named Jay. I loved the way she looked at the fake me and didn’t want it to end.

I began dating her as “Jay”―all the while letting her interview the real me over email.

I didn’t expect that our chemistry online would be just as hot.
I didn’t expect the mess I’d gotten myself into.
I didn’t expect that Jay and Dex would fall in love with her.

And she was falling for two men.
Only, both men were me.
And when she found out, we were both going to lose her.

Nothing could have prepared me for that day. And I certainly wasn’t prepared for what came after.

All good things must come to an end, right?
Except our ending was one I didn’t see coming.

Read My Review

~British Bedmate~

One Click

Please note: This book was previously published as Dear Bridget I Want You. Only the title and cover have been changed. All other content remains the same.

Dear Bridget,
I’m writing this letter because it’s highly doubtful I’ll ever garner the courage to say this to your face.
So, here goes.
We’re totally wrong for each other. You’re the proper single mum with a good head on your shoulders. I’m just the carefree British doctor passing through town and temporarily living in your converted garage until I head back to England.
But here’s the thing… for some bloody reason, I can’t stop thinking about you in very inappropriate ways.
I want you.
The only reason I’m even admitting all of this to you right now is because I don’t believe it’s one-sided. I notice your eyes when you look at me, too. And as crass as I appear when we’re joking around about sex, my attraction to you is not a joke.
So, what’s the purpose of this note? I guess it’s a reminder that we’re adults, that sex is healthy and natural, and that you can find me just through the door past the kitchen. More specifically, it’s to let you know that I’m leaving said door cracked open from now on in case you’d like to visit me in the middle of the night sometime.
No questions asked.
Think about it.
Or don’t.
Whatever you choose.
It’s doubtful I’ll even end up sliding this letter under your door anyway.
–Simon

Read My Review

~Park Avenue Player~

One Click

It started out like any normal day.

Then the fender bender happened.

The guy I collided with drove an expensive car and was drop-dead gorgeous. Too bad he was also a total jerk. We argued over whose fault it was and any other thing that came out of his condescending mouth.

Eventually, the police came and we went our separate ways. The insurance companies would have to figure things out. I had a job interview to get to anyway—one I was excited about.

Though that excitement changed to disappointment the moment the person interviewing me walked in. The guy from the accident.

Whoops!

Yeah, so I didn’t get the position.

The problem was, I really wanted it. No, I needed it. Anything to get me out of my current career and back into working with kids.

So, even though Hollis LaCroix was as intimidating as he was devastatingly handsome, I went back to see him and begged for a chance.

To my surprise, he gave me a shot taking care of his troubled niece.

At least my attraction to him wouldn’t be able to go anywhere. I wasn’t about to jeopardize my job or the strong bond Hailey and I formed.

But resisting the magnetic pull between us wasn’t that simple. (Then there was our little underwear game—don’t ask.)

We continued to flirt without crossing the line—until it finally happened.

This is the part of the story where we fall in love and live happily ever after, right?

Well, life has a way of throwing some major curveballs.

Ours was one I didn’t see coming.

Read My Review

So there you have it y’all, series #3 of the summer has been read, and it was a damn good one! I am so happy I finally read these books! Now with just a few weeks left of summer, I’m pretty sure I only have time for one more series…and I think I already know what I’m going to read. It’s another cowritten series by a writing duo I have been DYING to read and it’s got some characters that I think I’m ready to start falling in love with…so stay tuned for my next series of Summer of Series coming very soon!

Summer of Series: A Pound of Flesh Series by Sophie Jackson


Y’all I finally did it!

I read a series!

This summer has been utterly crazy so far. I started off the summer with grand plans of reading allllll the series, and here it is, the beginning of August and I’ve just finished my first one….but it was a damn good one! And it was so worth the wait!!! I may be a bit behind where I wanted to be, but I am so excited to share the first series I’ve read this summer:

The A Pound of Flesh Series by Sophie Jackson

I have had this series on my shelf for longer than I’d like to admit. The minute I read the blurb for the first book and found out it was a forbidden romance, I knew I needed it in my life. From the moment I started reading it a few weeks ago, I knew that I was a fool for having waited so long to finally read this series.

These books are everything.

They are gritty, raw, unforgettably emotional, and utterly consuming. They were truly unlike anything I’ve ever read before, and that is just part of what made me love them so much! From the first book through the very last, I was swept up into this world. And let me tell you, this world was everything I didn’t know I needed in my life. It was a world where there is way more to characters and people than meets the eye. It was a world brimming with second chances and so much fire and connection. It was a world that was so real, yet full of a magic that truly blew me away.

The world of these books was incredible to be in, and I truly never wanted to leave it.

The characters that make up this series seared themselves to me from the moment I met them, and getting their stories was nothing short of everything. Each of their stories was different and wholly theirs, yet there was this thread tying them all together in a way that pulled me in more to each of them. Every book in this series was a little forbidden, emotionally charged to the brim, and sure to push the boundaries in the best way. I loved getting each and every one of these characters’ stories.

This series follows a group of friends who have had their share of hard times, but yet show what a little hope and love with a wee bit of faith can do for a person. Carter, Max, and Riley have a friendship that will make you smile, while simultaneously pulling your heart to all three of them. Those 3 definitely don’t have the easiest of stories that’s for sure. They’re experienced trauma, pain, more anguish and heartbreak than you can shake a stick at, and yet they’re still fighting. They’re still breathing, and they’re still pushing through to see what could be.

Each of their stories is unique and completely theirs in many ways with their distinctive personalities shining through every bit, but a common thread of second chances, so much heart, and all of the feels and fire permeates their journeys in the best ways.

There’s forbidden romances, second chance romances, and romances that will make you feel it ALL…and that is just the tip of the iceberg with this series. I loved each and every one of these books. I loved what they made me feel, I loved what they allowed me to experience with these characters along the way, and I loved getting to be there with each and every one of them as they tried to see what could be and took that little (or sometime humongous) leap of faith.

I think one of my favorite parts of this series is that each of these books personifies the idea that there can be more. That there can second chances. That there is more life and love to have after unimaginable heartbreak and turmoil. That no one bad choice, or many bad choices for that matter, or no flurry of choices you regret with your whole heart, can define you.

This series and these books encapsulate you wholeheartedly within the idea that second chances do exist. That healing can happen after the unimaginable. That there is a hope for more, even when you never thought it was possible. That what does define you is what you do in the present, with the future, and with the new set of choices you have been given. 

These books were incredible, and I truly can’t recommend them enough. They were exceptionally written, bursting with emotions, feels, and some serious fire and connection, and they gave me world of characters and stories that I never wanted to have end.

This series made me laugh, and made me smile until my cheeks hurt at times. It made me melt and swoon at others. It pulled at every part of my heart in so many ways, and in the thick of some of the most glorious angst and push and pull I have ever experienced in a book. It perfectly blended every aspect together through every word to create three stories that truly had it all.

These books gave me 3 romances I will never forget reading, and let me tell you, as sad as I was to have them come to an end, when I read those last words and turned that last page, I did so with a heart that was bursting with so much love for these characters and what they gave me.

If you are looking for books that will wow you completely, run yourself to these books!

Do not wait like I did. It would be wrong to wait on these books and to miss out on their literal amazingness.

Find Out More About Each Book Below!

~A Pound of Flesh~

One Click

Orange Is the New Black meets Jennifer Probst’s New York Times bestselling Marriage to a Billionaire trilogy, featuring a strong-minded prison tutor who discovers that her sexy bad-boy student is far more than he appears to be.

Haunted by nightmares of her father’s street murder fifteen years ago, Kat Lane decides to face her fears and uphold his legacy of helping others by teaching inmates at a New York prison. There she meets arrogant Wesley Carter, who’s as handsome as he is dangerous, as mysterious as he is quick-witted, and with a reputation that ensures people will keep their distance.

As teacher and student, Kat and Carter are forced to leave their animosities at the door and learn that one should never judge a book by its cover. As Carter’s barriers begin to crumble, Kat realizes there’s much more to her angry student than she thought, leaving them to face a new, perilous obstacle: their undeniable attraction to one another.

Read My 5 Star Review

~Love and Always~

One Click

Orange Is the New Black meets Jennifer Probst’s New York Times bestselling Marriage to a Billionaire trilogy, in this e-novella of love and redemption in the sensational A Pound of Flesh series.

When prison tutor Kat Lane met arrogant inmate Wesley Carter in A Pound of Flesh, it was hate at first sight. Carter’s quick wit and reputation for being as dangerous as he was handsome kept her at a distance. But as they grew to know each other as teacher and student in the New York prison, Kat found there was much more to Carter than she thought.

In Love and Always, Kat and Carter’s story continues as they share the news of their engagement—which doesn’t go over well with Kat’s mother. On top of it all, Carter has a new role as CEO of WCS Communications, which adds more pressure to his new life outside prison. Trying to juggle family, a billion dollar business, and Carter’s best friend Max’s rehab stint doesn’t leave much time for the happy couple to enjoy each other. How will Kat and Carter handle the pressures of marriage, family, and work—and keep the passion alive through it all?

Read My 5 Star Review

~An Ounce of Hope~

One Click

From the fanfic phenom whose debut A Pound of Flesh had over 4.5 million reads, this sequel, An Ounce of Hope, tells the passionate love story of Carter’s best friend, Max.

Max O’Hare can’t seem to let go of his past: his drug habit, the end of his relationship with Lizzie Jordan, the woman he knows he’ll never get over, and the loss of their unborn son.

After successfully completing rehab and learning to explore his deepest fears and dreams through painting, Max meets Grace Brooks. With her innate optimism, and her love of art and photography, Grace appears to be the perfect girl. Yet no one knows where she came from, or why she keeps her past so closely guarded. Over time, Max and Grace gradually allow each other in—but will he ever be able to fully let go of his past? Or will his heart remain closed forever?

Read My 5 Star Review

~Fate and Forever~

One Click

Sophie Jackson’s award-winning Pound of Flesh novels reignite “that feeling of sneaking risqué books under the bedcovers with a flashlight” (RT Book Reviews)! Join her millions of online fans with this irresistible enovella that takes the intimate relationship between a gutsy prison tutor and her sexy bad-boy student to the ultimate level.

When tutor Kat Lane met her brooding, dangerously tempting student Wesley Carter behind bars, she never dreamed of the day she would be excitedly planning for their wedding. It won’t be long before they’re man and wife, and neither Kat nor Carter can wait. But as they settle into the joyful haze of nearly-newlywed bliss, all their friends seem to be one step ahead. Everywhere they turn, couples are becoming parents, and the longing in Kat’s eyes worries Carter. What if she gets baby fever…and he’s not so sure? Carter’s childhood was rough, and his father was no example for how to be an upstanding man—or a good parent. Can Carter create a happy, safe, supportive home for his future children with Kat—the life he never had growing up? He had better figure it out soon…because Kat just told him she needs to take a pregnancy test.

Read My 5 Star Review

~A Measure of Love~

One Click

Life in New York for ex-con Riley Moore is pretty damn good, until a call from his mother shatters the calm: his father has suffered his second heart attack in two years and is in a critical condition. Leaving everything behind, Riley flies home to Michigan for the first time in five years to support his mother and do his best to make amends with his father. He also tries not to think about Lexie Pierce, the only girl he ever truly cared about, and who broke his heart.

When they inevitably meet, memories of their love make Riley yearn to reconnect, despite the pain they both suffered. Though she’s wary, and has a secret she’s hidden from him for five years, Lexie has little willpower when it comes to Riley and she agrees. Besides, after all that has gone before, she owes it to both of them to find out if they can love each other again.

Can they both overcome their sorrow and secrets and finally share their life together?

A powerful new voice in modern romance, Sophie Jackson has crafted a passionate love story with unforgettable characters that will stay with you long after you’ve turned the last page.

Read My 5 Star Review

 

So there you have it y’all, my first series of summer is read and it was AHHMAZING!

I am so excited to jump into my next series…I”m feeling something a little more otherworldly, so stay tuned for what’s up next! And as always, thanks for following along! If you’d like to learn more about my Summer of Series  click the post link to see what I’m planning and what I might be reading next.

Summer of Series: You Still Haven’t Read That?!

If you have been following this blog for a few years (and if you’re still with me allllll of these years later or just joining the fun now, THANK YOU! Your support means everything!), you might remember that a few years back I did a blog post series titled: Summer of Series.

Summer of Series was all about my love of a good series. It was all about me trying to read some of the MANY completed series I own, while also trying to read some new to me authors. I loved doing Summer of Series, not only because it allowed me to read more books, but it introduced me to some series and authors that I will never forget.

I did my original Summer of Series in 2015 and then I followed it up with my Summer of Series: You Haven’t Read That? in 2017. Over the past few weeks I have been thinking about how much fun it was to do Summer of Series, and how many books I read and loved during those summers, so you know what?! I decided to do it again!

I am titling this summer’s endeavor Summer of Series: You Still Haven’t Read That?!

I figured that title was quite appropriate since there are SO many series I own and have yet to read.

So I bet you’re wondering what Summer of Series entails? (You might not be wondering that, but I’m gonna tell you anyway.)

Summer of Series is all about the love a good series. It’s all about reading series and sticking with a group of characters for whatever length of time it takes to read all of their books. What it means is that starting this week I will only be reading series, and will be doing so all summer. And I can’t wait!!! Luckily I have a lot of different series to choose from. Each time I finish a new series I will write up a post and share all the series goodness with y’all! Each post will include my reviews, some favorite quotes from the books, as well as more about each series that I’m highlighting and reading. I might even throw in a little giveaway with each series post I do! 😉

Now to the good stuff…the books I chose for this summer!

I kind of want to duck my head in shame to admit that I have way more unread and completed series than are pictured here, but I figure it’s better to start somewhere! We will also just ignore the fact that there are some series in this picture that were a part of my original Summer of Series back in 2015…whoopsies!

Let’s just say I have a lot of reading to do and I am so excited to do it!

When picking series for this summer, I tried to pick a wide range of series that ranged in length, genre, and trope. I picked some YA, a lot of contemporary romance with various tropes and themes, as well as a paranormal romance series. Some of the series are interconnected standalones, while others follow the same couple/characters for multiple books. I also tried to pick a good number of series by authors who I haven’t read before. I even picked a couple of co-written series by new to me authors!! I’m really trying to read more new to me authors this year, so I definitely want to keep that going during Summer of Series!

So without further ado, here are the books I hope to read during my Summer of Series!

I already know I’m being ambitious with how many series I selected, and I know it’s more than likely I won’t get through even half of them, but I am eager to try! I can’t wait to dive into these series and to start sharing them with all of you. I think there is just something truly special about being with a group of characters over multiple books. The level of connection you get with those characters, the journeys you take with them, and just the feeling of it all is simple the best. I am and always have been a true lover of series, and I can’t wait to fall in love with the characters I am going to meet along the way during this Summer of Series!

Summer time is almost here y’all, and I don’t know about you, but I am more than ready for a little summer fun and reading. I have about 15 ish school days left with my tiny humans (virtually, of course!), and then summer officially starts. And while I am going to miss my tiny humans something fierce, summer is the break I look forward to every year, and I’m even more excited to read some great series this summer!

So are you ready for summer and Summer of Series?! I know I am!

I can’t wait to get started with Summer of Series and reading all the good books!

Let’s do this.

Let the Summer of Series begin!

p.s. If there is a series pictured you’ve read and loved, please let me know! I’d love to know what series you’ve read and loved! I’d also love to know which series you think I should start with! 

Find out more about the different series in Summer of Series below (the link for each series will take you to the Amazon page):

A letter to E.L. James

Dear E.L. James,

Longtime fan, first time caller.

(Or should I say writer? Never mind, I digress.)

I have wanted to write this letter for quite some time. I’ve had a lot of things on my heart and mind that I’ve wanted to tell you for what seems like forever, and I have finally found the time to do it.

So here it goes…

You changed my life.

Your books changed my life.

Let me explain.

I can still remember the first time I read your book Fifty Shades of Grey. (I say first time because I have honestly lost track of how many times I have read that book, and the others that came after it, over the past years.)

A picture from that beach trip back in 2012.

It was the summer of 2012 right before my senior year of college. I was on a beach trip with one of my best friends, and she had brought the book to read at the beach. I had seen the book around and was curious what it was about, since I had yet to really look into it. My friend told me it was a romance that she could not put down, and I knew if she loved it I would too, so I immediately made her take me to the bookstore so that I could get my very own copy.

Fast forward about 48 hours later and I had devoured the entire series. I stayed up until the wee hours of the morning each night reading Fifty Shades of Grey on that trip. I read Fifty Shades Darker the entire car ride home from North Carolina to Maryland, and when I got home from that trip I drove straight to Target to get the third one. Fifty Shades Freed was finished about 5:30 the next morning as the sun was coming up.

It was official: I was hooked, lined, and sinkered to your words and your characters and your books from that moment on.

I couldn’t remember the last time I had been that intensely addicted and consumed by a book or series. Probably not since I read the Harry Potter Series or The Twilight Saga years earlier, or even or The Hunger Games Trilogy that I had devoured earlier that year. I thought about your characters, I became invested on such a real level to them, and I just couldn’t get enough of them.

The moment I finished your books after that fateful beach trip, I started them again because I just wasn’t ready for them to end. I just wasn’t ready to say goodbye to Christian or Ana or what they allowed me to feel with them as I experienced their story. I wasn’t ready for their love story to come to a close. I just wasn’t ready for it to be over yet.

I can remember wanting to talk to everyone about your books after I read them. I talked to my friends at home and my friends at school about them. I even talked to my boss at the time because she was reading them too, and we had many discussions about everything Christian and Ana. I couldn’t stop talking about them, or thinking about them, or wanting to find more people to talk about them with.

Until I read your books, I had never read a book or series like yours. And I don’t just mean because there was sex or BDSM or themes of dominance and submission. I mean that I had never read a story with a love that was that intense or real or raw or that vulnerable at times. I had never been on that kind of an epic and whirlwind emotional and love filled journey with characters before. I had never felt quite so connected and entranced by everything I was reading and experiencing before.

I mean sure I’d walked the halls of Hogwarts, and fallen in love with a vampire (and a werewolf), and even defeated a dystopian empire a few times by then, but I’d never before felt what I did when I read your books.

You see I had never read real romance before.

I had never ventured into that aisle of the bookstore until I read your books.

Sure I’d read my fair share of love stories in young adult novels and even in some of the women’s fiction books I loved, but I had never read anything that was truly a romance. I had never read a story where the love story was the focus. I had never read a book that gave me every complicated and wonderful and emotional and consuming and heartbreaking and magical moment of falling in love and meeting that one person who changes everything.

I had never read anything like that until I read your books, and it completely changed my life as a reader going forward.

I have always been an avid reader as long as I can remember. My parents quickly figured out that taking me to the bookstore meant I was going to grab as many books as my little arms could hold onto. You could find me in those aisles of young adult and mystery and fiction novels for hours at a time…and after I read your books, I found a whole new set of aisles to explore.

Romance.

And all the many subgenres that come with it.

I’ve always LOVED to read, but it was your books, and your words, and your characters that pushed me into the wonderful world of romance and those new aisles….and it is where I’ve been happy to stay ever since.

As I went into my senior year of college, I found myself rereading your books on a never ending loop. You see I was deep in the middle of my student teaching internship, other classes, and working part time at a children’s shoe store, so free time was a luxury I didn’t have. I loved to read, but didn’t have the time to jump into new books, so I reread yours. Again and again. That, along with a serious amount of caffeine and support from my friends, is what got me to graduation.

This is where the life changing part comes in.

That next summer, after I found my job as a special education teacher, I finally had the time to go back to my first love: reading. And I promptly started devouring every romance book I could get my hands on. After rereading your series again, I jumped into the Crossfire Series by Sylvia Day, then it was Unteachable by Leah Raeder, right after that it was the Breathless Trilogy by Maya Banks, and so on and so forth with so many books and love stories.

It was right in the middle of that that I got the idea to start a book blog. This book blog. It was just a random idea I had one day, but it was one I could not get out of my head. At that time I didn’t know anyone who had a blog, but I did know that I LOVED reading. I also knew that I especially loved reading romance. I wanted to find a way to share that with the world and connect with others who shared that love. So I pulled my less than stellar technological skills together and created The Never Ending Book Basket.

I never knew when I started this book blog that it would bring me into a community of authors, bloggers, and fellow readers that I will NEVER want to leave.

This community includes self-published indie authors, hybrid authors, traditionally published authors, bloggers, editors, formatters, and readers of all kinds. It has people from around the world, in dozens of countries, who come from all walks of life. It has some of the most amazing and incredible people I have ever met within it, who have since become some of my closest and dearest friends. This is a world I didn’t even know existed 5 years ago when I read Fifty Shades for the first time, and 5 years later I don’t know what I would do without this world or the incredible people in it.

I would have never known about any of it or any of them, or been lucky enough to find and join this amazing community, if it wasn’t for you E.L. James.

You changed my life.

You changed my world.

And I do not say that lightly.

Your books, your words, and your epic love story of Ana and Christian were the catalyst for bringing me into this world. It is what made me a lover of love stories and romance. It is what brought about this very book blog. It is what brought me into this amazing and wonderful and inspiring book community of readers and authors and bloggers and other professionals, who just love a damn good love story. It is what has brought me some of my most treasured friendships, it has allowed me to connect with other readers around the world and down the street from my own house, and it has let me experience so many unforgettable moments over the last 5 years.

And honestly, I can’t thank you enough for that.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

I could say it a million times, and I don’t think it would ever be enough. It wouldn’t even scratch the surface of being enough. It wouldn’t be enough to truly capture what your books and characters and words gave me, what they opened inside of my own head and heart, and the doors and pathways they opened in the world around me.

I have so much respect for you as a writer, as a businesswoman, and as a human being. I hope one day I have the pleasure of meeting you and thanking you in person for all that you’ve given me and brought to my world. (I’ve got my fingers crossed that it will happen next month at Book Bonanza in Denver.) If that ever happens I’ll l try not to go completely fangirl crazy, but I make no promises. I’ll also try to remember to use words and to not flail with excitement. I’ll try not to tear up and cry too, like I’ve been doing the entire time writing this post, but I especially make no promises with that one.

I just truly can’t say thank you enough for everything.

For the books, for the movies that came after, for the memories and moments you and your stories have created that I will never forget, and for bringing me into a world that I will be forever grateful for.

I could seriously go on and on about how much you and your books have given me.

I could tell you about the time my best friend and I were snowed in at the movie theater and saw Fifty Shades of Grey twice in the same night. (I mean what else were we supposed to do?! I think we made the best decision that night.) I could tell you about how I’ve been to every midnight showing of the movies with some of my closest friends, and how immediately after I go to another showing with my brother and his best friend. (He loves the movies, he just won’t admit it out loud yet.) I could tell you about that time I got a signed copy of Grey in my Bookworm Box and almost cried, while simultaneously shrieking so loud my dad was highly concerned about my welfare.

I could tell you about how the soundtracks from the movies and the ones from the books are usually on a constant loop of some sort. (And I may or may not be listening to the Freed soundtrack right now as I write this post.) I could tell you about how I still find myself going back for a quick minute to reread one of my many favorite scenes from the books, which usually then turns into an hours long rereading of whichever book I’m rereading. I could tell you so many things, so many other memories or moments that you were the catalyst for, but I’ll try to wrap it up here because I really could go on and on for quite some time about all that you and your books and your words and your movies have given me.

I could go on and on, and it still wouldn’t be enough.

And while I feel as if my words will never be enough to truly thank you and to really capture all you have brought to my life with these characters and this series, and what you’ve done for this wonderful book community and world, I truly can’t say it enough.

Thank you.

Thank you.

Thank you.

You changed my life. You changed my world. And I will be forever grateful to you for that and for everything else along the way.

All my best,

Megan Cooke

(One of your many fans.)

My Epically Late Top Reads of 2017 List!

Welcome to 2018 y’all….where I’m still epically late on getting out my Top Reads list for the year.

Y’all didn’t expect anything else from me, right? Right. 

I’m glad we’ve all accepted the fact that I will NEVER be on top of things. Ever.

Despite the fact that I am once again so behind on getting this list out, especially considering it’s almost May (<—That’s how long it’s taken me to finish this post that it was almost May when I started it, and now it’s almost June), I LOVE making this list. I also kind of hate it in a way because narrowing my Top Reads of the year down to anything under like 100 books is super hard. Like for reals. But seriously, I love it. I love getting to go back through the books I read, getting to think about why I loved them in the first place, and creating this list honestly just reminds me again and again why I love reading so much.

Compiling this list just makes my little book blogger heart so damn happy, and I love getting to share some of my favorite reads of the year.

2017 was another phenomenal year of reading for me. I read books I had been wanting to read for years. I read standalones, duets, and series. I read books ranging from contemporary romance to male/male romance to some of the most suspenseful and emotional books I have ever had the pleasure of reading. These books made me laugh out loud, made me smile until my cheeks hurt, made me feel like I was getting emotionally murdered again and again, and put my heart back together in ways that I will truly never forget.

Each of these books represents a reading experience I loved, and one that I will never forget. What I got within these books, and many of the other books I read in 2017, were stories that took me all over the world, stories that were so beautiful and meaningful and special, along with characters that made me feel and question and think, and reading experiences that were life changing. And I don’t say that lightly. I truly believe books can change your life if you let them, and this year of reading showed me that in more ways than one.

I ended 2017 with having read 226 books, and I honestly just feel lucky that I got the chance to read each and every one of them. Every one of those books represents a different story and author and set of characters that gave me a unique and memorable reading experience.

I honestly just can’t wait to read more books this year and to continue experiencing the unique magic that books can give you.

So here is my Top Reads list of 2017! I loved each and every one of these books for so many different reasons, and I can’t recommend them enough to y’all! I promise if you give them a chance, you will not regret it…in fact, I think you’ll find that you absolutely love what any of these books will offer you.

Here’s to another year of great reading, another year of unforgettable stories and characters, and another year of the best books you could ask for!

**All books selected were read by myself in 2017. Scroll below to read and find out more about them all (they aren’t listed in any kind of order), and as always, thank you for visiting The Never Ending Book Basket.**

~The New Camelot Series: American Queen, American Prince, & American King by Sierra Simone~

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“I want to go the brink of not knowing myself, I want someone to take me there and hold me by the neck and make me stare at an entire reckless realm of possibility.”  -American Queen

“It was the purest heavens in the midst of the worst hell, and I loved every minute of it, even though it was all underpinned by a lie–my lie—and I knew one day it would burn down around me.” -American Prince

“Every time you gave me your trust, your obedience, and your surrender. Every time you fought me knowing you would lose, every time you carried me when I couldn’t limp along myself, and every breath and kiss you ever shared with me—it was all you saying yes, every moment of it. You’ve said yes to me so many times I’m surprised I could even hear the word no.”   -American King

The New Camelot Series by Sierra Simone is one of the best series I have EVER read. The writing in this series, what you get with Greer, Embry, and Ash is something you will never forget. Trust me. This series completely owned me and consumed me through every word, and I still think about it! I think about how it took my breath away, how it made me blush something fierce, how it pushed my boundaries and my heart, and how it gave me a love story that is truly unique. This take on King Arthur is in a league of its own, and I am telling you if there is one series you take a chance on, it should be this one. This series shocked me, wowed me, and literally took my breath away more times than I could count, and that is just part of what makes it so incredible. I’m telling you, you will never forget this series!

Read My Review of American Queen – Read My Review of American Prince – Read My Review of America King

~All the Ugly and Wonderful Things~

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“I liked learning things. How numbers worked together to explain the stars. How molecules made the world. All the ugly and wonderful things people had done in the last two thousand years.”

All The Ugly and Wonderful Things is one of the most exceptional books I have ever read. As a fan of forbidden and taboo romances, this book had my name all over it, and I loved every single word of it. What it gives you as you follow along the years of its main character Wavy’s life is a story of love that grows and evolves over time. This book will make you think and question every part of your moral compass, and it will have you wondering if you’re truly okay with what’s happening. But more than that it will give you a story that will show you how things happen the way they do, and how a relationship and friendship can grow out of the darkest and most dire of situations. Wavy and Kellan’s relationship is meaningful, provocative to say the least, but so breathtakingly honest, and you will feel so much with them as you take this unforgettable journey with them in this book.

Read My Review of All the Ugly and Wonderful Things

~The Darkest Sunrise & The Brightest Sunset by Aly Martinez~

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“I assure you I have zero interest in commiserating with you. I wouldn’t understand your demons any more than you would understand my personal circle of hell.”

Her sad eyes flicked back to mine. “Then what do you want?”

I sucked in a deep breath that did nothing to calm the eternal storm brewing within me. “Just a little company in the darkness. No questions. No judgments. No faking it.”   -The Darkest Sunrise

“It’s always darkest before dawn … We just have to wait a little longer. The sun always rises, baby.” -The Brightest Sunset

If you have been following blog, you know I am HUGE fan of Aly Martinez, and that woman knows how to write one helluva duet. It’s like duets were made for her kind of storytelling and emotional murdering, and The Darkest Sunrise and The Brightest Sunset proved that over and over again. Porter and Charlotte seared themselves to my heart from the very beginning of this epic and emotional story, and I loved every unforgettable moment of their life changing story. Aly Martinez crafts the perfect amount of romance, fire, suspense, and banter into a story that will have the strongest and most amazing grip on your heart through every word as the story unfolds around these characters falling so fiercely for one another in the darkness. This duet exemplifies what it means to find that one person who’s broken pieces might just match yours in a way that you would’ve never expected. With twists and turns and shocking moments galore, this duet delivers one of the most consuming stories I’ve ever read!

Read My Review of The Darkest Sunrise – Read My Review of The Brightest Sunset

~All the Way by M. Mabie~

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“So handsome. So fun. So damn weird. So good at making it all seem real. That was the moment I realized Cord had the power to rip my guts out, and I was probably going to let him. “

Mabie is one of my all-time favorite authors for so many reasons, and All the Way proved that to me again and again. She always creates memorable and dynamic characters that have a story that is real, that is full of the most honest love, and that is bursting with charm and vibrancy. All the Way follows Cord and Dana, as she decides to have one last little fling and some fun before getting serious, while he tries to convince her that he means everything he’s saying and that he wants her. Those two have a back and forth that is out of this world, their chemistry is through the roof, and every part of their story just showed me again and again how incredible they were and could be together. Getting to be with these two as they felt what they did, as they saw what was real, and as they fell so hard into something they didn’t expect was nothing short of everything!

Read My Review of All The Way

~The Line by Amie Knight~

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“I wanted his hushed conversations, his stories that transported me to another place. A place where homeless girls didn’t live in train stations. A place where there wasn’t hunger or cold. A place only my cowboy had taken me. I needed to figure out how to get there, and I needed more info on Cole to do that.”  

There are some books you read, there are some book you live and breathe, and then there are book that own your through every word. The Line by Amie Knight was one of those books. This story is so special and meaningful to me, and I literally cannot say enough how much I loved it. What I got with Cole and Everly was emotional, heart melting, and so real and intense. I loved those two. I loved unfolding the pieces of their story, I loved how it literally left me breathless, I loved how this book gave me a family and a world that I NEVER wanted to leave, and I loved every unforgettable word that Amie Knight crafted in this book. Amie Knight is one of the best writers I have ever read, and The Line highlights her true writing and storytelling talent. She allows you to live and feel and be in the heart of this book, and that will give you it all with Cole and Everly. Trust me.

Read My Review of The Line

~The Royals: Paper Princess, Broken Prince, & Twisted Palace by Erin Watt~

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“You’re poking a tiger.”

I shrug. “He poked me first.”

Callum shakes his head. “And I thought raising five boys was an adventure. I haven’t seen anything yet, have I?” ~Paper Princess

“I’m done playing games, Ella. No other girls exist in the world for me. If you see me talking to one, know that I’m talking about you. If you see me walking next to someone, I’m wishing it was you … You’re the only one for me.” ~Broken Prince

“Ella has no idea how gorgeous she is. Every girl at Astor Park would die to have those curves, that golden hair, the flawless features. She’s pure and total perfection. And she’s all fucking mine.” ~Twisted Palace 

The Royals Series by Erin Watt is probably one of the most addicting and consuming series I have read in quite some time. This book was like crack while I was reading; I could not get enough, and I was completely entranced with every part of this series. It has a serious Cruel Intentions feel to it, and it brings to life a world of backstabbing, the upper crust of society, and a mystery that involves everything from lies to secrets to murder. I could not get enough of this series, and even though Reed Royal is one hell of an asshole, he was an asshole who I LOVED to hate. The back and forth between him and Ella as she pushed and challenged him, as he pushed right back, and as she tried to find her place in this world that she knows nothing about was spectacular. This series brought a world to life that was equal parts alluring, mysterious, and intense. I loved getting to be there as it all unfolded, and I can’t wait to read more about those Royals because they really do ruin you….in the best possible way.

Read My Review of Paper PrincessRead My Review of Broken PrinceRead My Review of Twisted Palace

~Starving for Southern Series: The Sweetness of Life by Kathryn Andrews~

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Two weeks. His wine. Her recipes. A feature article in a special issue of a world-renowned magazine. Pairing wine with food is one thing, but two hearts is another.  

Kathryn Andrews is an author who creates such vibrant, beautiful, and memorable worlds in all of her books. From the beach, to the mountains, to the hills of a winery, she always takes my breath away with the worlds and characters and stories she so beautifully crafts and creates. The Sweetness of Life is a phenomenal enemies to lovers romance that follows Shelby and Zach as they do all that they can to make their dreams come true. Set in the Georgia wine country, this book follows Shelby and Zach as they push each other’s buttons, as they start feeling a fire that no amount of water could put out, and as they start to realize that what started off as 2 weeks of work, soon might be something more than they realized. The chemistry and connection they share, the magical location of this story, and every ounce of what you get with them will blow you away!

 Read My Review of The Sweetness of Life

~A Life Less Beautiful by Elle Brooks~

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“She was effortless, it took no exertion or strength to love her, and when I was with her she made everything brighter.” 

A Life Less Beautiful by Elle Brooks is one of the most emotional and breathtaking books I have ever read. Told through alternating past and present, the unforgettable story of Ellis and Harlow unfolds as you meet them, as you see what broke them apart, and as they attempt to put the pieces of it all back together again. Second chance romances are my favorite, and this one goes in the books as one of my favorites ever with what I got with Ellis and Harlow. Their story hurt me, it made me, and it gave me everything along the way. The literal amazingness of this story, its unforgettable ending, and what I felt with Ellis and Harlow as they lived their story and felt everything so deeply and truly is something I will never forget. This book was all about the beauty and power and emotions of the heart, and the love, anguish, and breathtaking feels it can bring you along the way.

Read My Review of A Life Less Beautiful

~The Fall Away Series: Bully, Until You, Rival, Falling Away, Aflame, & Next to Never by Penelope Douglas~

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“You were my tempest, my thunder cloud, my tree in the downpour. I loved all those things, and I loved you. But now? You’re a fucking drought. I thought that all the assholes drove German cars, but it turns out that pricks in Mustangs can still leave scars.” ~Bully

“Girlfriend isn’t enough to describe you, Tate. That term is disposable. You’re not my girlfriend, my girl, or my woman. You’re. Just. Mine,” I bit out every syllable, so she would fucking understand. “And I’m yours,” I added, a little calmer.” ~Until You 

  “You’ve always wanted me. You know why? Because I don’t try to kill your demons. I run with them.” ~Rival

“I wrapped my arms around his waist. “You called me your girl.” I nodded, waggling my eyebrows. “And,” I continued, “you’d better believe this little wallflower will cut a bitch with that knife of yours if anyone lays a hand on you.” ~Falling Away

“I’m never letting you go again, Tate,” I whispered, almost desperate. “I’m your friend forever, and if that’s all I get, then that’s what I’m taking, because only when you’re here”—I took her hand and placed it on my heart—“do I feel like my life is worth a damn.” ~Aflame

“No one else can make you happy, and putting that expectation on the other will doom both of you. You don’t look at someone and say, “You can make my life better.” You look at someone and say, ” I can make your life better.” Be a blessing, not a burden.” ~Next to Never  

The Fall Away Series has probably been recommended to me at least 50 different times over the past few years, and I will be the first person to admit that I am so dumb for waiting so long to read these books. This series was incredible. It was new adult gold, and I have since dubbed Penelope Douglas the queen of that sub genre because she 100% knows how to create a new adult romance with the angst, the intensity, the glorious push and pull, and every bit of what makes that genre what it is. What I loved about each and every one of these books was how the guys were all assholes in their own way, yet they were all so redeemable with so many layers to them and why they were the way they were. Getting their stories, getting to see who they were and what they felt, and getting to be with them as they fell so hard for the strong and fierce women that could bring them to their knees. Each and every story in this series had me so in love with this world and had me knowing that I never wanted to leave them all. Whether it was Jared and Tate, Madoc and Fallon, or Jaxon and KC I was enamored with them all and completely besotted with them all, with the intensity they all shared, and how they all made up one crazy wonderful family that I always want to be a part of. You will love these characters, you will hate them, and you will feel every emotion in between with them, and that is just a fraction of what will make you LOVE every word of what you get with them.

Read My Review of BullyRead My Review of Until YouRead My Review of RivalRead My Review of Falling Away Read My Review of AflameRead My Review of Next To Never

~Strong Enough by Melanie Harlow & David Romanov~

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“I was lost. Lost to him, lost to myself, lost to this aching, pulsing need inside me to let go. To stop pretending I didn’t want this. To surrender to it because I wanted it and it felt so fucking good.”

Strong Enough was a male/male romance that explored the budding relationship and connection between two men, one of whom knows he’s gay and is looking for a new start in America, and one of whom who is not accepting of the attraction he feels to men. This book explores what happens when these two men start sharing something so real and so powerful, as they struggle to find their way, and as Derek finds out what it means to be faced with what he really feels and what has always been there. This is as much of a love story as it is a story of acceptance and faith in yourself and in those around you. This book was beautiful, these characters were dynamic and their struggles completely struck my heart in so many ways. Melanie Harlow and David Romanov crafted a heart touching story that was real, that was heartbreaking at times and so full of hope at others, and through it all it told a story of discovering who you are, what you want, and what you’re willing to fight for.

Read My Review of Strong Enough

~Autoboyography by Christina Lauren~

“Love fails for a million reasons – distance, infidelity, pride, religion, money, illness. Why is this story any more worthy?
It felt like it was. It felt important. Living in this town is suffocating in so many ways.
But if a tree falls in the woods, maybe it makes no sound.
And if a boy falls for the bishop’s closeted son, maybe it makes no story.”  

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Christina Lauren is one of my all-time favorite writing duos. Their books are incredible, and Autoboyography is one of the most beautiful books I have EVER read. This story was powerful, it was unforgettable, and it was breathtaking. This young adult novel follows what happens between Tanner, a boy who is back in the closet now that he and his family are living in Utah, and Sebastian, the son of a Bishop in the Mormon Church. What starts as a friendship soon becomes more than either of them expected. What they share together is special, its magical and its real, yet it could lead to consequences and outcomes that neither of them are really prepared for. What Christina Lauren creates in this story is nothing short of spectacular. With the perfect amount of beauty, and with a story that is meaningful in every way possible, this story explores what happens when a love that is so true and deep and real grows out of the most impossible of situations. I literally do not have enough words to tell you how beautiful and special this story is. What you get with Tanner and Sebastian will move you and own you, and you will love every second you get with them because their love is everything and beyond worth fighting for.

Read My Review of Autoboyography

~The Bars Between Us by A.S. Teague~

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“There’s sadness and loss everywhere. No matter how much money you have. That common thread is what binds Bronn and I together.”

The Bars Between Us was a story that enraptured me right from the start. Grace and Bronn are two seemingly opposite people, who share a world of connection and fire that draws them both closer together. He’s from the wrong side of the tracks and has had so much struggle his entire life. She’s from a world that is so unlike the one he was in, yet she can completely relate to the feelings and struggles he’s had. They may seem so different, but there is something so right about these two. Their story in this book follows them as they face those struggles, as they put the pieces of themselves and each other back together again, and as they realize there may be more working against them than they realized. Through A.S. Teague’s fantastic writing, this world and these characters are brought to life in a way that will have you loving every piece of what you get with them.

Read My Review of The Bars Between Us

~The Black Dagger Brotherhood Series: Lover Awakened, Lover Eternal, Lover Revealed, & Lover Unbound by J.R. Ward~

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“I was dead until you found me, though I breathed. I was sightless, though I could see. And then you came…and I was awakened.” ~Lover Awakened

“I will not fall in love with you,” she said. “I can’t let myself. I won’t.”

“That’s all right. I’ll love you enough for the both of us.” ~Lover Eternal

“I liked you, cop. From the moment I met you. No… not the first moment. I wanted to kill you when I first met you. But then I liked you. A lot.” ~Lover Revealed

“You so need to lighten up about that potato-launcher incident,” Butch said.
Phury rolled his eyes and eased back in the banquette. “You broke my window.”
“Of course we did. V and I were aiming for it.”
“Twice.”
“Thus proving that he and I are outstanding marksmen.”  ~Lover Unbound 

“What brings you onto my property?” Rhev said, cradling his mug with both hands trying to absorb its warmth.
Got a problem”
I can’t fix your personality, sorry”
~Lover Enshrined

The Black Dagger Brotherhood Series is one that I have heard about so much over the year. I started devouring these books after some not so subtle pushing from some friends of mine, and I am so happy they told me to read these books. They are incredible, addicting, and so unlike what I normally read, but so phenomenal. I love these characters, I love the world they live in, and I love getting explore more and more of the action, history, and pull that brings them all together. The first book in this series was on my top reads list last year, so it was no surprise to me that the next books in the series were too. I am behind on catching up with these books, but I have no doubt that one day I will catch up and that I will continue to be blown away by this series because these books and J.R. Ward’s writing are that incredible. These books are intense, action packed, and tell the story of a world of vampires and the people around them who change their lives. I love that all of these characters are really different, they add a new dynamic to everything, and I am beyond ready to get my hands on the rest of their stories. (I’m looking at you John Matthew.)

Read My Review of Lover Awakened – Read My Review of Lover Eternal – Read My Review of Lover Revealed – Read My Review of Lover UnboundRead My Review of Lover Enshrined

 ~Guardian Protection Series: Singe by Aly Martinez~

 

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“Love rarely makes a man smile. Especially if said man is me and he has to deal with a crazy woman like you. That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t burn the world down for you. Extinguish an entire species. And then place their ashes at your feet if it meant you’d smile. But I probably won’t be grinning while I do it.”

Aly Martinez knows how to start a series, and Singe, the first book in her Guardian Protection Series had me knowing that this series and this world of characters was going to give me everything I needed and more. Told through her explosive and exceptional writing, Singe lets Rhion and Jude’s story unfold in a way that will literally blow you away. You will get the pieces of them, their shared past, and every ounce of the fire that consumes them in a way that will let you know that what they share is truly unforgettable. This book was the perfect start to this series. It let me back into a world that I LOVE, it gave me so many characters that I couldn’t wait to know more about (I’M LOOKING AT YOU SO HARD RIGHT NOW JOHNSON!), and it let me jump into a family that would do anything to protect their own. This story was emotional, breathtaking, and fiery in more ways than one. It shows both of their struggles, both of their hearts, and it allows you to understand every facet of them. If you have ever read a book by Aly Martinez, you will love and enjoy every second of how this book unfolds and what it gives you.

 Read My Review of Singe

 ~A Steel Heart by Amie Knight~

 

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“She was gonna fucking fill me, this woman-girl who didn’t realize what she did to me with her body. With her personality. With her snarky wit and sweet eyes. She was a lethal combination and completely fucking clueless.”

Just when I think I can’t love Amie Knight’s writing and books more, she writes A Steel Heart and gives me everything I need and more. This book was phenomenal. It was charming, it was emotional, it was real and full of heart and pain and anguish, and it told a story of what happens when you meet that one person who changes everything. Miranda was a gem of a character, with the best personality and quirks and a heart of gold. Holden Steel was a man who had been through so much and constantly in a world of pain because of the anguish of it all. What happens when these two are together sets this book apart, and gives you their story of heartbreak, healing and hope. This story made me cry so many times. It allowed me to feel it all, and it gave me one hell of a story that touched every single emotion I had. Amie Knight is an exceptional author with a pure talent for allowing you to feel it all, bringing all of her words to life, and giving you the hope of second chances. A Steel Heart is a story that you will not soon forget!

 Read My Review of A Steel Heart

~Misadventures of a City Girl by Meredith Wild & Chelle Bliss~

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“This man…his words and his body, and the way he’s managed to rescue my heart from the depth of my misery and pull it into the warmth of his love. What did I ever do to deserve him?”

The Misadventures Series is one that I am loving! These quick, steamy, and consuming reads are so fun and cover every kind of story you could ever want. Misadventures of a City Girl was such a great read. The combination of Meredith Wild and Chelle Bliss’s writing was vibrant and memorable and so enjoyable. I could not put this book down from the moment I started it. I loved the premise of this book, I felt every ounce of heat and fire these characters shared, and I especially loved that even though this was certainly a quick read, it didn’t when it came to its incredible story. Meredith Wild and Chelle Bliss created a book that I never wanted to end, and they simultaneously created a book that made me blush, made me melt, and had me hoping with all that I had that this city girl and her mountain man would find a way to make it work. Sometimes you just need a book that is easy to read and enjoy and love, and this book fit that bill tenfold!

Read My Review of Misadventures of City Girl

~The Beautiful Series: Beautiful by Christina Lauren~

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“It’s too bad I’m too eccentric for you. It’s too bad you’re too busy for me. It’s too bad I’m only learning my heart and you have yours rolled up in bubble wrap.”

I am HUGE fan of series and getting to spend as much time as I can with a group of characters. That is just part of the reason I LOVED The Beautiful Series by Christina Lauren. I have become so invested in each of these characters’ lives, and as sad as I was to see the series come to an end, Christina Lauren brought it all to a close in a way that gave me it all. They wrote the perfect last book, they created the perfect last love story, and they brought it all to a close in a way that perfectly fit this series, its characters, and the vibrancy and life and love that defined it. I could not have asked for more with this book. Getting to experience the blossoming feelings between Pippa and Jensen, getting to be there in the middle of how right it all felt, and getting one last little taste of this world was everything I needed. Beautiful was all about finding love in the most unexpected places and what that love can give you if you let it. Christina Lauren’s words brought the life and personality of this series to life one last time in such an incredible way, and I truly could not have asked for more.

Read My Review of Beautiful

~The Beneath Series: Beneath This Mask, Beneath This Ink, Beneath These Chains, Beneath These Scars, Beneath These Lies, Beneath These Shadows, & Beneath The Truth by Meghan March~

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“I knew you were something special, and I wasn’t going to take the chance that I’d only get a taste. I knew that once I did, I’d be addicted. That I’d have to have more. I needed you to be as off balance as I was.” I kissed the corner of her mouth. “And it worked.” ~Beneath This Mask

“Her knee shot up and caught me unaware. I stumbled back a step, grunting, and bent over as the sick feeling in my gut twisted. “Fuck, woman. Did you have to crush my balls?” She must have lowered her head because I could feel her breath on my ear when she spoke. “One, don’t ever talk to me like that again. I’m a fucking lady.”  ~Beneath This Ink

“Don’t know how I got so lucky, but I’m not letting you go. Whatever happens, Elle, you’re mine, and you’re staying mine.” My words came without thought: “Like I could ever be anyone else’s.” ~Beneath These Chains

“No one makes it through life without scars. It’s impossible.
But they’re not signs of shame;
they’re badges of honor
showing that you fought and survived.”
~Beneath These Scars

“She was mine. He might be the better man, but I didn’t care.
I’d laid my claim, and I wouldn’t give her up for anything or nothing!” ~Beneath These Lies
 

“I want you. I’m not making any secret of that, but now I’m going to wait until you admit that you want me just as much.”~Beneath These Shadows

“I’m going to touch every inch of you. Memorize you. Drive every other thought from your head except how perfect you are. How much you matter to me.”  ~Beneath The Truth 

I will be the first to admit that I am way late to the game on reading Meghan March’s books, and I am the worst for waiting so long to read them because she is a phenomenal writer who knows how to craft a consuming, action packed story, that has the best amount of heart and fire woven through every word. Her Beneath Series was incredible. I’m pretty sure I devoured every book in this series in less than 5 days. That’s how entrenched I was with these characters and the world she gave me in this book. Set in the illustrious city of New Orleans, the Beneath Series follows a set of characters with a world of connection, some mysterious pasts, and more personality than you can shake a stick at. Meghan March made every book in this series full of twists and turns, alpha men and women who brought each other to their knees, and a sense of connection that showed what an utterly incredible world this series was. As sad as I was to see it all end, I can’t say enough what Meghan March gave me within the pages of these books. She gave me some of the most dynamic characters I have ever met. She gave me mysteries and action and painful pasts. She gave me honesty and truth and the reality that all of these characters. She gave me the light and the dark and every shadow and beam in between. She gave me it all, and I loved getting to be so swept up in it all because it gave me a world of characters and stories that I absolutely loved with all that I had.

Read My Review of Beneath This MaskRead My Review of Beneath This InkRead My Review of Beneath These Chains Read My Review of Beneath These ScarsRead My Review of Beneath These LiesRead My Review of Beneath These ShadowsRead My Review of Beneath The Truth

~The Quantum Series: Delirious by M.S. Force~

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“I summon the courage to go for what I want. Having cancer has left me less afraid than I used to be. I’m painfully aware that life is short and we’ve got to seize the moment, especially when the moment is lying in my arms, hard and hot and sexy and so tormented.
… “Time wasted is time we never get back. I don’t believe in playing games or mincing words.”
            

The Quantum Series by M.S. Force is one that I have loved so much! All of these books have been on my Top Reads list for the past few years, so it was no surprise to me that Delirious was one of my favorite reads too! I loved this book. I loved how emotional it was, I loved how it told a story of unexpected love, and I loved getting to be in every part of this beautiful and meaningful love story. What Aileen and Kristian shared in this story was raw, authentic, and it pushed both of these characters. It pushed her to fight for everything she wanted and to be the woman she wanted to be, and it pushed him to be accepting of love and the life and relationship that Aileen wanted to share with him. I loved every single part of this story, and with the best supporting characters and family around, M.S. Force once again made this a book and series that I could not get enough of. This book can technically can be read as a standalone, but I HIGHLY recommend reading the other books in the series because they are seriously amazing and it will heighten everything you get in this book.

Read My Review of Delirious

~Ten Tiny Breaths by K.A. Tucker~

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“Just breathe. Ten tiny breaths … Seize them. Feel them. Love them.”            

Ten Tiny Breaths is one of those books that I have had for forever, but never got around to reading. It was one of those stories that everyone I knew loved, but I just hadn’t had the chance to read, and this year I was bound and determined to fix that. What I found in this book was a raw and highly emotional story of what happens when your whole life comes crashing down. This book was powerful, it was emotionally breathtaking, and it blew me away. This is the first book I have had the pleasure of reading by K.A. Tucker, but it will not be the last. I found her writing style to be so easy to sink right into, and she brought a world to life that was memorable, dynamic, and that made me love every word of what I was reading. Kacey’s story in this book is something I will never forget. It wasn’t easy, in fact at times it was downright hard to read because of what she’d been through, but I loved it. I loved it all. I felt it all. I breathed it all. And in the end, this was probably one of the most spectacular books I’ve ever read.

Read My Review of Ten Tiny Breaths

 ~The Renegades: Nova & Rebel by Rebecca Yarros~

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“Does she still hate me? I hope so. I deserved it. Lord knew I hated myself enough for the both of us. The problem with love was that once it was gone, there was no filing that hole, no substitute for that euphoria.” Nova

 “You are a headstrong, independent, stubborn woman surrounded by a sea of boys, when what you crave—what you need—is a man. One who isn’t going to hold you back but isn’t afraid of you, either. One who knows the delicate balance between watching you fly and protecting you so you don’t fall. Hell, I’m not sure any of those boys would even know what to do with you if you ever let them get their hands on you.” ~Rebel

Rebecca Yarros is hands down one of my all-time favorite authors. All of her books have made it on this list in some way, shape, or form, and I have no doubt that whatever she writes will be on this list because that woman knows how to write a damn good book. Her exceptional writing and storytelling weaves together the perfect amount of emotion, romance, and angst in a way that is unlike any other author I have ever read. Her Renegades Series adds a pure sense of adrenaline and adventure to all of that. Nove and Rebel were two incredible, pulse pounding, and all-consuming stories that combined the stunts and literal spark of the X-Games, the travel and wonder and awe of Semester at Sea and travelling abroad, and all of the incredible emotion and heart touching moments of an honest to goodness love story. These books had it all, and my heart was in every word of what these characters experienced. Whether it was Rachel and Landon’s second chance at it all, or Penna and Cruz’s unexpected and so not allowed romance, these books will own you in every way possible way. Rebecca Yarros delivers romances in these stories that are full of adventure, pulse pounding moments, unforgettable emotion and angst that will have you feeling it all with these characters. Trust me when I say you NEED these books in your life. Stat.

Read My Review of Nova Read My Review of Rebel

 ~The Forbidden by Jodi Ellen Malpas~

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“Because he was always mine. And I was always his. Even before we knew it. Even before we found each other.”

Jodi Ellen Malpas is an incredible writer. She gifted me the one and only Jesse Ward, and for that I will always be a fan of her books. The Forbidden is her second standalone ever, and I have to say that she has a real talent for standalone stories. I love her series too, but there’s something about her standalones that make them so special. The Forbidden is a story that isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s raw, it pushes the boundaries of what is right and wrong and okay. It’s real in a way that you will not soon forget, and it is not easy to these characters. It pushes and pulls them in so many directions, and yet in the same breath it completely allows you to understand how and why things happen the way that they do. What you get with Annie and Jack will give you it all, will break you in ways, and will show you how love can grow even in the most unlikely and forbidden of situations…and how that love can change your life and your future if you let it.

 Read My Review of The Forbidden

~The Royally Series: Royally Screwed, Royally Matched, Royally Endowed by Emma Chase~

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“I’m not sleeping with you for money.”
“Why not?”
“Because I’m not a prostitute.”
“Of course you’re not. But you’re young and beautiful, I’m handsome and rich. The more applicable question is why aren’t we fucking already?”
“That is a strong argument.” ~Royally Screwed

“I’ve never been very good at doing what I’m told.
It’s a problem.
Or a reflex. If they say left, I go right. If they say sit, I jump. If they say behave, I get drunk and spend the weekend screwing all three of the Archbishop’s tripled nieces.
They were nice girls. I wonder what they’re doing this Friday?”  ~Royally Matched 

“I’ll save her.
Because that’s who I am. That’s what I do. Why I’m here – the only reason I’m here.
And she belongs to me.
Ellie is mine to have and to hold. To save and keep. Forever and always.”
~Royally Endowed

Emma Chase is the queen of romantic comedies in my opinion. She is the woman who created Drew from Tangled, and she certainly knows how to create a romance that will make you laugh out loud as many times as it’ll make you swoon. The Royally Series was such an incredibly fun series to read. It was funny as hell, it had such memorable characters, and it had Royalty…so honestly what’s not to love?! Emma Chase’s extraordinary writing brought each of these stories to life in a unique and memorable way. Whether it was Nicholas and Olivia falling in love when everything was against them (aka a prince and a commoner), or Henry and Sarah falling for each other in the craziest of situations (aka a reality television show), or Ellie and Logan’s story of longing and wanting more (aka no one’s allowed to date the royals younger sister)…these stories blew me away. They were romantic and swoony and memorable and so fun. They balanced the perfect amount of humor and lightness, while also having some serious feels, and I’m pretty sure I’m still swooning over them all!

Read My Review of Royally ScrewedRead My Review of Royally MatchedRead My Review of Royally Endowed

~The Family Justice Saga: Everlasting by Suzanne Halliday~

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“He wanted to take her. Now. Here. Surrounded by all these people. She didn’t have to wonder if her wicked lawyer lover had a hidey-hole already picked out where he could do gloriously unspeakable things to her. It wouldn’t be the first time. How she got through a casual conversation that turned into a planning session without losing her mind was a miracle.”

If you have been following my blog, then you know I am  HUGE fan of Suzanne Halliday and her Family Justice Saga. My heart is so entrenched with these characters, and Everlasting was the next phenomenal installment in this series. It was full of marriages, and babies, and suspense, and action, and more love, loyalty, and friendship than you can shake a stick at. It is suffice to say that I would read anything that this author writes, and I can guarantee you that as long as she is writing this series with this group of characters, I will be reading and loving it. These books do need to be read in order, and I am telling you the moment you start them you will be hooked. You will love the Justice family, you will love the craziness and adventures they get into, and you will how your heart will be owned and melted by each and every one of them. Suzanne Halliday is a phenomenal storyteller, and the way she steals your heart and gives it over to this incredible group of characters will have you loving everything she gives you in her books. This series really is a saga, and you will LOVE every moment you get to experience within it. Trust me.

Read My Review of Everlasting

~Easy & Breakable by Tammara Webber~

 

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“Love is not the absence of logic but logic examined and recalculated heated and curved to fit inside the contours of the heart”  ~Easy      

     “I dreamed about the future because that’s what people persuade you to do when you’re a kid, but that’s the biggest lie of all–that you can plan. Reality is, you have no fucking clue what’s coming and neither do they.” ~Breakable

Easy and Breakable by Tammara Webber were two of those books that everyone had read that I was once again so totally behind on. Like for reals y’all. I have had these books for years and I could kick myself for waiting to read them because they were so dang good! They were new adult gold and I loved every angsty word of them! This story was one that I could not put down, it was one that had the feels, had the glorious angst that makes new adult romance what it is, and it had this level of heart and suspense through every page that I just loved. This book is all about secrets, emotions, the pain of the past and its impact on the present, and I loved every single word of it. I loved what it allowed me to feel with these characters, I loved how each book gave me a different perspective on a story I loved, and I loved how it ruled my heart through every single word. Like I said, I was so beyond dumb to wait to read this duet, and I am so glad I finally did. The heart, the heartbreak, the feels and emotion of it all was something I absolutely loved in these books!

Read My Review of EasyRead My Review of Breakable

~Hot Cop by Laurelin Paige & Sierra Simone~

 

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His blue, blue eyes. They’re pools of cobalt, and I forget to blink when I look into them. Forget how to breathe. Forget how to look away. Now this is what they mean by ovaries exploding. Mine are exploding. They’ve exploded. Kaboom. His manly aura has sent signals to my baby-makers and caused instant combustion. ”

Now you may not know this about me, but I have a thing for books about characters making babies. Like seriously. Whether it’s a secret baby, a whoopsie baby, or someone trying to get knocked up, I am all about those kinds of books, so when two of my favorite authors teamed up to write a story about a librarian getting knocked up by a hot cop, I was all for it! This book was super heated and practically on fire with what these two share. What I loved about this story was that while it was fun and light, it also had that serious pull to it and that heart that made me swoon something fierce with what these characters were sharing. This story is all about two very different people trying to help each other out. Livia wants a baby and no relationship, and Chase is a guy who’s not really looking for anything serious and who’s always up for a good time. What starts off as the two of them having fun soon becomes more than they bargained for, and you will love getting to be a part of every second of that. Seriously y’all, it’s a hot cop, a sweet as all get out librarian, and some good old fashioned baby making…what’s not to love?!

Read My Review of Hot Cop

~The London Lovers: The Seduction of Molly O’Flaherty, The Persuasion of Molly O’Flaherty, & The Wedding of Molly O’Flaherty by Sierra Simone~

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“And I wanted to taste his. I wanted to taste his everything—thoughts and feelings and pain and pleasure and everything that made Silas himself, I wanted it all. For the rest of my life.” ~The Seduction of Molly O’Flaherty

“You deserve my blood and my pain and my torture. You deserve to watch me branded with hot iron, and I would do it gladly, if only to spend that much more time with you.” ~The Persuasion of Molly O’Flaherty

“All the shame and all the fear and all the hate, and I want you to let it all go. Give it to me, give yourself to me, and I will carry it all for you. For the rest of eternity or even just for a few minutes. Give it to me.” ~The Wedding of Molly O’Flaherty

Let me start this review off by saying that I am not normally a fan of historical romances. I don’t have anything against them, but they just aren’t my normal go to genre of books to read. But when I found out that Sierra Simone, who is one of my favorite writers, had written historical romances, I knew I had to read them, and boy am I glad I did! This series was unputdownable. It was consuming, full of fire and passion and heat, and it had a story that was full of intrigue, suspense, and a bit of mystery that had me in every breath of what I was reading. Sierra Simone always weaves together some serious romance and heat with some serious feels, and I got to experience that once again within this series. These books are definitely quick reads that you will want to devour as soon as humanly possible. You will love the feel of them, you will love getting transported back in time, and you will love getting to be there as it all unfolds. Sierra Simone brings her A game once again in the London Lovers story and you will bask in every glorious moment of it!

Read My Review of The Seduction of Molly O’FlahertyRead My Review of The Persuasion of Molly O’FlahertyRead My Review of The Wedding of Molly O’Flaherty

~The Enamorado Series: I Don’t & I Want by Ella Fox~

 

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“Nothing had changed. With one look, we were the only two people in the universe. A million butterfly wings fluttered inside of my stomach and chest as I licked my lips and tried to get my bearings.” ~I Don’t  

“Nothing had ever felt so right—like my lips had been waiting to meet his forever and, finally, things were unfolding the way they were meant to. Within a minute or two sweet gave way to wild and the kiss grew into something larger than life—like a hurricane that had been waiting off shore, gathering strength.” ~I Want

I can always count on Ella Fox to deliver a read that is so easy to fall right into, that has the feels and some serious romance, and that will make me swoon with all that I have. Her Enamorado Series is the perfect trifecta of Spanish alpha male goodness, strong and memorable female characters, and with the perfect amount of heat and heart that will have you swooning and melting through every single page. I love this series, I love getting to know and fall in love with all of these characters, and I love how each of these stories allowed my heart to be so in it with these characters. These books made my heart beat a little faster, they brought me into a world of characters I truly never want to leave, and they gave me two love stories that I know I won’t forget. (Plus I have reread these books multiple times just because I LOVE them so much, and I love the feels and swoonworthy moments I get with these characters!) I am telling you these books will own you, they will make you smile and swoon and melt, and in the end they will have you so desperate for more of all of these characters and stories!

Read My Review of I Don’tRead My Review of I Want

~The Markham Hall Series: The Awakening of Ivy Leavold, Education of Ivy Leavold, The Punishment of Ivy Leavold, & The Reclaiming of Ivy Leavold by Sierra Simone~

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“You taste so good,” he said in that growling voice of his. “I could do this all day. Would you like me to?” I nodded. I wanted his mouth on me always. And yet, as I looked down and saw the stiff outline pressing against the front of his pants, I thought I could also happily trade places and spend my days with my mouth on him. The mere thought made me almost wild with desire.” ~The Awakening of Ivy Leavold

“Was I excited or was I scared?
And given what I had realized about myself – and about us – did it matter which?
I turned and faced him, my fiancé and master, pressing my back against the door. Blood and warmth and want pooled in my core as I watched him watching me.” ~The Education of Ivy Leavold

“I knew what he was going to do as soon as he lifted the hem of my dress and tugged the interfering clothes away. I should have said no. I should have said that we had to keep away from each other until we could make decisions about our future. But the tired apathy was blasted away in his intense presence, leaving only a quickening pulse and a growing hunger in its wake.” ~The Punishment of Ivy Leavold 

“Go ahead.
It was almost like a taunt, a dare, daring me to try to make her want me, and I had never been one to turn down a dare.” ~The Reclaiming of Ivy Leavold

Set in the same world as The London Lovers Series, The Markham Hall Series is a serial that will have you wanting to jump back in time a hundred years just to be with all of these characters. This serial was full of the most visceral passion and heat, it told a story that was dark and edgy and twisty, and it captured my heart just as much as it made me blush. I loved this series, I could not put it down, and I was captivated with the pull and the desire and the fire these two characters shared. I once again was blown away by Sierra Simone’s exceptional writing, and how she immersed me in a world that was unique, that was memorable, and that was unlike any other book world I had been a part of. This story will definitely have you blushing something fierce, it’ll push your boundaries in the best way, and it’ll have you realizing that 19th century London was definitely the place to be!

Read My Review of The Awakening of Ivy LeavoldRead My Review of The Education of Ivy LeavoldRead My Review of The Punishment of Ivy LeavoldRead My Review of The Reclaiming of Ivy Leavold

~Chased by Hazel James~

 

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“I want a man who’s above comparison . I want the butterfly – infested romance from the books I read . The kind of romance that makes me crazy when I’m with him and crave him when he’s gone . I want my relationship to fuel me the same way it fuels him . Screw the paper , I want chemistry.”

So a fun fact about me is that I am slightly obsessed with natural disasters and weather. I have found very few books that have combined that love of weather with a love story, so getting the chance to read Chased by Hazel James was fantastic. I loved every heart pounding, emotional, and intense word of this book. I loved how this story not only combined elements of storm chasing and romance, but it also told a story of healing from the pain and anguish its main character DH had gone through. This book was phenomenally written, it was meaningful, emotional, and powerful with the story and moments it gave me, and it had a level of emotion to it that I absolutely loved. Hazel James brought it all to the page in this book, and showed exactly what can happen when two people come into each other’s lives at a time when they weren’t expecting it, but in a way that will change them both forever. Chased had all of the heart and emotion and the adrenaline pumping moments in it that literally took my breath away, and I loved every single second I got to experience within its pages.

Read My Review of Chased

~Bad Penny by Staci Hart~

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‘I wanted zero commitment. I wanted the fun and the thrill and to call it before things got messy. Sticky. I always skipped out the door before those pesky old feelings got involved and wrecked the whole train.’

When I read the first line of this book and read Penny compare the color of guys lips to the colors of a certain head they have…I knew that I was going to love that girl something fierce. And boy was I right about that one! Penny and Bodhi were the absolute best. They were hysterical, they were real and themselves through every single word, and they just brought it all to the table. I loved every unforgettable moment of their story, and getting to be smack dab in the middle of their craziness, their back and forth, and what they were sharing together. She’s the girl who doesn’t do any commitments or anything serious past date 3, and he’s the guy who wants to show her what could be. What I loved about this book was that it was the perfect blend of humor, laugh out loud moments, the best amount of heat, and two characters realizing that what they might be sharing could just be the real thing. Staci Hart completley rocked this story and had me LOVING every antic of these characters and in complete love with all that they shared. Trust me, if you’re looking for a fun and memorable read, then run yourself to this one this very second.

Read My Review of Bad Penny

 ~Misadventures of the First Daughter by Meredith Wild & Mia Michelle~

 

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“I want to crawl inside her soul, possess her, save her, ruin her from ever wanting another man.”

The Misadventures Series promises quick, steamy, and fulfilling reads and Misadventures of the First Daughter was all of that and more! I mean what’s not to love about a story with the first daughter and a secret service agent?! Let me tell y’all this book made me blush something fierce. It had me on the edge of my seat with what these characters share, it had me loving every twist and turn the next page would bring, and it had me so in love with these characters. What Charlotte and Zane share is so full of unadulterated passion and fire, and will have your heart in every single world. Meredith Wild and Mia Michelle know how to write one hell of a captivating read, and it’s easy to say that I could not get enough of what I was reading in this book! It was intense, captivating on every level, full of the most mesmerizing fire and connection, and it had that taboo element to it that had me loving everything I was reading. When I say you will love this book, I mean it! It is quick, dirty in the best possible way, and full of the heat and love that makes a good love story.

Read My Review of Misadventures of the First Daughter 

~Real Good Man & Real Good Love by Meghan March~

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“We’re going to get to know each other. I’m going to take you out on dates and show you what we’ve both been missing. You’re gonna fall in love with me, Banner. That’s where we’re going from here.” ~Real Good Man

“If you feel half of what I’m feeling, then you’re so in love with me, you wouldn’t notice if she twerked on your dick in the middle of church.” ~Real Good Love

Everything Meghan March writes ends up on my Top Reads list because that woman knows how to write one hell of a book that has the love, the dynamic and distinctive characters, and the stories that just don’t quit. Her duets have been some of my favorites to read, and she manages to keep you hooked in through every word, while having you practically salivating for more! Real Good Man & Real Good Love made me laugh out loud with the banter between Logan and Banner, had me melting all over the place for what those two shared, and staying the color of an apple from the heat those two had. They were the best. They were strong willed, funny as hell, and they just couldn’t quit each other, and even though they came from two different worlds, they couldn’t help but be drawn closer and closer to one another. I loved every part of their story and getting to see more of the amazing characters Meghan has created. I am telling you, if you start this duet, you will be in love with what you’re reading and getting with these characters and you will need and have to have more of them because that’s how amazing and spectacular and memorable they are!

Read My Review of Real Good ManRead My Review of Real Good Love

***Be sure to check out my previous Top Reads lists!***

2014

2015

2016

And if you acutally made it all the way to the bottom of this post…well then you deserve all the prizes in the world!!! Thanks for sticking with me, and I hope you enjoyed my Top Reads of 2017!!  

 

Summer of Series: You Haven’t Read That?!

Happy almost summer everyone!!

As I sit here writing this post, it is the day before Memorial Day and there are officially 12 school days sitting between me and summertime. *insert caffeine aided shriek here* Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE teaching my tiny humans, but I am beyond ready for summer, and you know what summer means….

LOTS AND LOTS OF READING!

Summertime for me means trying to catch up on all the books I have to read, and I can’t say enough how ready I am for another summer filled with good times, good people, and of course, lots and lots of good books.

It’s obviously no secret that I am perpetually behind on reading all the books I want to read. I feel as if that is pretty much the story of my life at this point. It’s also no secret that I have a ton of unread books that seem to be piling up quicker than you can say “How many books do you have?” My real life never-ending book basket is proof of that, and that thing keeps expanding every day. (Sorry Mom!)

Now a few years back I did a blog post series that I titled Summer of Series. My goal with that blog post series was to read through some of the many series I own. You see I have a thing for books, and especially series. I LOVE me a good series. (That’s probably why over the years I’ve continued to buy complete series like I need my next breath.) There’s just something about a good series, where you spend multiple books in one world with a set of characters that gets my heart beating just a bit faster in the best kind of way. Like for real y’all. Don’t get me wrong, I love me a good standalone novel too, but a good series is my absolute favorite and is something I live for!

When I did my original Summer of Series I had set out to read around 20 different series, and I’m sure you won’t be surprised to learn that I failed at reading even a quarter of those series during that summer. But that being said, I haven’t given up on my love of series and I haven’t given up on my love for this blog post series, which is why I decided to bring it back for another summer filled to the brim with some amazing series. And I for one couldn’t be more excited to get this all started again!

So welcome to Summer of Series: You Haven’t Read That?!

For this summer I decided to pick some series that have been recommended to me for forever. These are the books and series that when I mention I haven’t read them yet, I get some serious side eye….hahaha, just kidding, but I do have a lot of people that ask me “You haven’t read that yet?” Many fellow readers, bloggers, and even some authors have told me I NEED to get to reading these books stat, so I guess it’s high time I start listening to them.

For this post series, I decided that I would focus in on those highly recommended series to finally see what I have been missing out on all these years. (It also made for a pretty great blog post series title, if I do say so myself.) Some of these series I originally intended to read the last time I did my Summer of Series, and others have been added to my list over the years. Some of these series came out years ago, and others are more recent, but they’re all ones that I’ve been dying to read, and they all have been recommended to me sooooooo many times before.

I know there are hundreds of more books and series I could focus on, and believe me I want to read them all, I just chose to focus on these ones because some of them have been in that big old never ending book basket for years, and they needed to see the light of day. Y’all get my crazy thinking, right? Right.

I’m hoping that this summer and this blog post series will allow me to get to as many of them as I possibly can, while also allowing me to connect with some of y’all about these books and how great I know they’re going to be!

Now for the sake of realism, I realize that I’m yet again being a bit ambitious with how many series I selected to try to read, but I figure there’s nothing wrong with aiming high.

So without further ado, let’s get this Summer of Series off to a good start!

I’ve got some great posts, some giveaways, and some good books planned for the summer, and I hope y’all are as excited as I am! I also hope y’all have some great books you plan to read too because you know I’d LOVE to talk about them!

So here’s to the next 3 months filled with some amazing series that I can’t wait to dive into!

p.s. If you have a series from the picture that you would recommend me starting with, please feel free to comment with your recommendation!

Listed below are the series pictured that will be part of Summer of Series. Click the series title to head to Amazon for that series, and click the author’s name to head to their website.

 

My Super Ridiculously Late List of Top Reads from 2016!

It is officially 2017 y’all!! giphy3

*whoop whoop*

And before you say it, yes I know this post is so beyond late since we’re already 4 months into 2017. (I’m sure y’all were all waiting on baited breath for this post, right? hahaha!) Life’s craziness has kind of gotten the better of me these past few months, but I knew I wanted and had to do this list to share out my Top Reads because even though I hate picking favorites, I couldn’t not pick favorites. That makes sense, right? Right.

I must say making this list each year is equal parts fun and hard. It’s so much fun to look back on all of the books I read and loved in a year, but each year I think it gets harder and harder to narrow down my list of favorites. (That’s probably why this list seems to be getting longer and longer each year, haha!) There are just so many good books out there, and I think this year of reading showed me that more and more.

2016 overall was a pretty amazing, crazy, and wonderful year for my little blogger self. It brought some lows, but mostly highs, and I for one couldn’t be more thrilled with the books that I had the chance to experience, read, and love this year. This year I found myself reading and loving soooooo many books I had been meaning to read for ages. I loved being able to finally read them all, and getting to know exactly why all my friends said I needed to read them. (They were so damn right, by the way!)  This year also brought some new authors into my reader heart that I’m keeping forever, while also giving me some incredible books from my all-time favorite authors that were utter perfection and continued to show me why they’re my favorite authors in the first place.

I ended up reading 243 books in 2016, and I would honestly recommend any of them to y’all. (If you click that link it’ll take you to the full list of books I read in 2016.)  These 243 books represent so many different stories, characters, genres and subgenres (though the vast majority are some kind of romance), and authors. Some of these books made me cry my eyes out, others had me laughing my ass off on just about every page, while they all had me swooning something fierce and feeling the love and lives of these characters. Some of these books hurt and broke my heart in the best way, while others filled it up in ways I never knew possible. Some had the best feels, others had the most consuming heat, but they all shared the fact that they gave me one helluva read.

Some of the books on this list are a part of series, others were standalones, but they all stuck with me in some way, shape, or form. I HIGHLY recommend all of the books on this list, and I am telling y’all that you will LOVE them. You will feel these authors’ words, you will fall head over heels for the distinctive characters these books have, and you will experience, love, live, and breathe every ounce of their stories.

So without further ado, here is my Top Reads of 2016 list! I hope 2016 was as good to you and your reader life, as it was to mine! Here’s to a 2017 filled to the brim with the best books, and more wonderful crazy than you can shake a stick at!!

**All books selected were read by myself in 2016. Scroll below to read and find out more about them all (they aren’t listed in any kind of order), and as always, thank you for visiting The Never Ending Book Basket.**

~The Tristan & Danika Series: Bad Things, Rock Bottom, & Lovely Trigger by R.K. Lilley~

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“I want you to let go. i want you to submit. I want to make you lose your mind. I want you to be so far gone that the only word left in your vocabulary is my name.”   ~Bad Things

“She was the one. If I’d ever had a doubt, I didn’t now. She was the one I’d be thinking about, longing for, until I took my last breath. If I lost her tomorrow, I’d pine for her like a lovesick fool. This was the kind of love that only hit you once in your life.” ~Rock Bottom

“Love doesn’t let you walk away clean. Love is messy. Love takes a fucking piece of you before it’s done.” ~Lovely Trigger

The Tristan and Danika Series by R.K. Lilley is one of the most intense, all-feeling, and heart wrenching series I have EVER read. To say these books squeezed my heart and made it ache something fierce it putting it too mildly. These books shook me to my core. They eviscerated my heart again and again, and I just kept going back for more because that’s how powerful and consuming Tristan and Danika’s love was. This series is proof that while love might not be easy, and while it might bring you to your very knees more than you ever thought possible, it is well worth the fight to get it. This series will stay with me forever, and Tristan and Danika’s emotional and sensual fight for their forever is one that you should read as soon as humanly possible…just have the tissues and wine ready.

Read My Review of Bad Things, Read My Review of Rock Bottom, Read My Review of Lovely Trigger

~Knot by M. Mabie~

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“Sometimes I thought we were both cats hunting the same mouse named Love. Other times we were both mice scrambling, both trying to avoid being eaten alive by a monster with the same damn name.” ~Knot

If you know me, then you know my love of M. Mabie’s writing is fierce, and you probably know that my love affair with one Reggie Warren has been going strong ever since I met him for the first time in Bait two years ago. To say that I LOVE that man is probably the understatement of the century, and while it ain’t easy to share him, if there was one person I’d want to share him with it’d be Nora. Knot follows Reggie and Nora’s emotional, mesmerizing, and breathtaking story that spans years of time as they explore the literal explosiveness that’s between them. This is a story that shook these characters to their cores, made them reevaluate what it is they actually wanted, and pushed them to their very limits, and along the way I felt it ALL with them. This book was EVERYTHING I needed and wanted, and it just goes to prove that Reggie Warren and his special lady friend Nora know how to make one helluva lasting impression that still holds a piece of my heart.

Read My Review of Knot

~The Retrieval Duet: Retrieval & Transfer by Aly Martinez~

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“I’d lived twenty-six years of life before that night. But, suddenly, I was alive for the very first time. I knew absolutely nothing about that man. But I knew he was mine. And I was meant to be his. ” ~Retrieval

“I don’t believe in wishes, but somehow, I’ve found myself in a situation where a silly wish is all I have left. If I’m lucky enough to catch 11:11 again tomorrow, it means we’ve survived another day.” ~Transfer

If you are looking for a duet that is bursting with the best amount of gripping suspense, all-feeling romance, and fiery heat that will literally have you on the edge of your seat the entire way through, then you NEED The Retrieval Duet in your life this very second. Retrieval and Transfer are two of the most incredible reads I’ve ever read. They told the interwoven stories of characters who had been through so much, who had struggled, who had felt and breathed and lived every emotion under the sun and were still fighting with all they had to get to where they needed to be.  These books will grip your heart and take you through every emotional twist and turn this duet has to offer, and you will bask in every word of it as it all unfolds in front of your eyes. Your heart will race, squeeze, melt, and fall so totally for these characters, and that is just part of what makes this duet so unforgettable and thrilling to read.

Read My Review of Retrieval    Read My Review of Transfer

~Hallowed Ground by Rebecca Yarros~

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”We stood on the edge of something I couldn’t fathom, and I had no clue how to bring us back. Not without him fighting for us equally as hard.” ~Hallowed Ground

I don’t think I have ever cried as much reading a book as I did with Hallowed Ground. (I actually cried writing my review for this book because that’s how much I was so consumed in the emotion of it all. That has never happened to me before in all of my blogging, and it hasn’t happened since.) This book, and really this entire series just hit me on another level. These character engrained themselves in my heart so deeply, I felt their struggles and their own journeys so truly, and I was invested in every humanly way possible in their story. Maybe that’s why this story affected me so much, and maybe that’s why I still think back on it often, either way, Rebecca Yarros’s Flight and Glory Series is amazing. Hallowed Ground was literal perfection, and even though it tore my heart to shreds from time to time, I loved every single second of being encapsulated within Josh and Ember’s story. Those two had a story of loss, fight, and a deeply felt love that was trying with all it had to pull them through, and I can’t say enough how much I loved and felt their journey in this book. It’s something I know I will NEVER forget. Ever.

Read My Review of Hallowed Ground

~Shameless by Lex Martin~

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“I’m a pale canvas next to his tattoos. Something about our juxtaposition makes me feel bland. Like I’m whatever nameless piece of art that’s mounted next to the Mona Lisa. I’m a little girl from Texas, and he’s this beautiful tattoo artist from Boston. He’s edgy and biting and brisk, and I’m all Southern hospitality and polite welcomes. Except nothing about my legs dangling open on either side of his face is polite.” ~Shameless

Lex Martin continues to be one of my favorite authors, and all of her books just remind me of that again and again. The way she creates the best blend of banter, laugh out loud humor, fun, with the perfect dose of romance and connection is the everything. Shameless was such an incredible read that had everything I’ve come to know and love about a book by Lex Martin. It was phenomenally written, it had some good feels and one heck of a romance, all thrown in with this effervescent spark that was felt on every page of the book. Shameless was a story that tugged at my heart, just as much as it made me blush and swoon, and it was that perfect combination that had me falling fast for Brady and Kat, and wishing like crazy that those two would be able to figure it all out. If you’ve never read a book by this author, then that must be fixed this instant, and I am telling you, Brady and Kat, their authenticity, their connection, and the feels they give you will sweep you up with all they have in the best possible way!

Read My Review of Shameless

~Porn Star by Laurelin Paige & Sierra Simone~

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“You know me. Come on, you know you do. Maybe you pretend you don’t. Maybe you clear your browser history religiously. Maybe you pretend to be aghast whenever someone even mentions the word porn in your presence. Maybe you even wish you didn’t know my name, just like you wish you didn’t have that drawer with the lotion or the toy. Everybody knows Logan O’Toole, world famous porn star. ” ~Porn Star

I have LOVED each and every one of Laurelin Paige and Sierra Simone’s books’, so when getting the chance to read what these two phenomenal authors wrote together was fantastic in every way. This book thrusts you right into the world of two porn stars, embarking on a new series, who soon find themselves feeling much more for one another than they ever expected. What I loved about this book was that Sierra Simone and Laurelin Paige do such an incredible job of putting you right into the thick of this world. They show you its nuances, what it’s like to be in this industry, and they show you the intricate dynamics that make up what it really means to be in the porn world. Their attention to detail and how real they made it feel set this book apart for me, and truly let me understand a world I didn’t know much about. That coupled with the phenomenal and fiery love story between Devi and Logan had me blushing and melting with all I had for these two and all that they shared. If there’s one book you should take a chance on, I vote you do it with this one!

Read My Review of Porn Star

~The Bridge Series: Into the Fire & Over the Edge by Meredith Wild~

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“Vanessa was different. Everything about her revved me up. The way she moved, the way she brushed me off because even if she might have wanted me, she didn’t need me….She took every inch of me, over and over. It was an erotic sight. Satisfying and arousing. Enough to push me over…Her hands were everywhere. Every desperate touch spread fire over my skin, tugged somewhere in my gut as I fought the urge to bring our bodies closer. It was all too much. Something triggered inside of me.” ~Into the Fire

“Thousands of pretty girls in New York, but the irrefutable truth was that no one could hold a candle to Olivia Bridge. She wasn’t a diamond in the rough. She was just a fucking diamond— beautiful, refined, smart. A prize for any man. Except she was Darren’s sister …and Will’s new fucktoy.” ~Over The Edge

The Bridge Series is one of my all-time favorite series, and Meredith Wild brought it to a close in the most outstanding, fiery, and amazing way with Into the Fire and Over the Edge. These books told the stories of Darren Bridge and Olivia Bridge and their own individual searches for love. Each of their stories were jam packed with the most sensual heat, the most mesmerizing amount of connection, and enough twists and turns to have you beyond ready to see how it would all play out. While each of these books are standalones, I definitely recommend reading them in order starting with On My Knees and then jumping into these two books. The Bridge siblings definitely kept me on my toes through both of their books, and had my heart feeling it all with them along the way. Meredith Wild’s incredible writing keeps you hooked into every word, ready for what each new page will bring. Through every word of these books you will love what you get with these dynamic characters as they push themselves and their own boundaries in their unforgettable searches for love.

Read My Review of Into the Fire    Read My Review of Over the Edge

~So Much More by Kim Holden~

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“Life blooms in second chances.” ~So Much More

Oh Kim Holden and her incredible words…..there are not enough words in the dictionary to accurately capture how much I love this woman’s books. They are unforgettable, emotional, real, raw, and beautifully written. Her books are in a league of their own for me, and So Much More was another book that proved that again. This book isn’t easy. It tells they very real and difficult story of what can happen when your life is completely upended, when you have no idea how you’ll make it through, and when each new day seems to bring on a new set of challenges waiting to tear you down…yet in the same breath how those challenges and difficulties might ultimately bring you to the exact place you need to be. So Much More is all about second chances, letting go, and the unforgettable and amazing things that can happen when you embrace the love and life around you for what they really are and for what they can give you. I promise that you will love this book, these characters, and their emotionally breathtaking journey of second chances…you’ll even love Miranda. Trust me.

Read My Review of So Much More

~It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover~

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“It ends with us.” ~It Ends With Us

If there is one book in the world that I could recommend everyone read, it would be It Ends With Us. Every man and woman, no matter what age they are, no matter where they come from, no matter what their background or relationship status is, NEEDS TO READ THIS BOOK. I can’t say that enough. This book brought me to tears and shook me to my core. It changed me. It made me cry like a baby in the middle of a Red Robin as I told my mother about it, how much it struck me, and how much it meant to me. It evoked so many thoughts and feelings and discussions that I will never forget feeling or thinking or experiencing. This book is EVERYTHING. And I can’t tell you anything about it really because you need to go into this book blind and just live it. Live it, breathe it, and feel every ounce of it. I have read all of Colleen Hoover’s books, and this is by far the most powerful and emotional book of hers to date. Lily, Ryle, and Atlas will change you in this book, and their story will stay with you long after you close that last page. That’s how unforgettable it is. That’s how unforgettable they are. If there is only one book you read this week, this month, this year…it NEEDS  to be this book.

Read My Review for It Ends With Us

~The Beautiful Series by Christina Lauren~

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“If only he would keep his mouth shut, he’d be perfect. A piece of duct tape would do the trick. I had some in my desk that I’d occasionally pull out and fondle, hoping someday I could put it to good use.”   ~Beautiful Bastard

“So?” she said, giving me a slow, wicked smile when we accelerated forward. ” You told Will you found a woman who likes to have sex in public?”
“Not in my cab!” the cabbie yelled so loud we both jumped and then broke into laughter. He pumped the brakes, jolting us. “Not in my cab!”
“Don’t worry, mate,” I told him. I turned to her and murmured, “She doesn’t let me fuck her in cars. Or on Tuesdays.”
“She doesn’t,” she whispered, though she did let me kiss her again.
“Shame,” I said into her mouth. “I’m good in cars. And especially good on Tuesdays.”   ~Beautiful Stranger

“See, the problem with boobs is if you have big ones, you can never look thin. You get these burns on your shoulders from bra straps, and your back hurts. And unless you’re using them for their intended purpose, they’re always in the way.”
“In the way of what? My hands, My face? Don’t you blaspheme in here.” He looked up to the sky. “She didn’t mean it, Lord. Promise.”   ~Beautiful Player

“Ruby?”
“I’m having a moment, just give me a second,”
“Was I too forward?”
“No, I just had an out of body experience. Niall Stella just took off my shirt and admired my chest.”
“Do you need to text someone?”
“I just need to remember to add it to my spreadsheet of Niall Stella Moments,” ~Beautiful Secret

I have never been more grateful for a humongous winter storm because that’s what finally allowed me to devour the Beautiful Series by Christina Lauren. This series is equal parts fun, equal parts sexy connection, and equal parts amazing. With interconnecting characters, this series brings you one unforgettable group of friends who all find themselves smack dab in the middle of some pretty unforgettable love stories. This series gives you every kind of love story you could want and need from enemies to lovers, to sweet and heart melting, to the playful back and forth banter and sass all these characters seem to have. I LOVED every word of every novel and novella in this series. This series showed me exactly why I love series in the first place. The way Christina Lauren’s spark filled writing allowed me to connect in with all these characters, the way they invested me in them all and their stories, and the way they allowed me to see what happened after the last page of each book with the novellas was outstanding. This is a series that gives you a bit of it all, and you will eat it all up and love the blush and swoon it gives to your heart.

Read My Review of  The Beautiful Series

~The Cranberry Inn Series: Room for You, Room for More, Room for Just a Little Bit More by Beth Ehemann~

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“Brody, are you sick?” asked Piper.
“Yeah, do you have a fever?” Lucy asked, tugging on my shirt.
I bent down to her level as she felt my forehead. “Nope, not sick. Why?”
They looked at each other and shrugged.
“Mom was on the phone with Auntie Alexa and she said you were hot. If you’re hot, you have a fever. Do you need medicine?” ~Room For You           

“You are my future, Kacie. You’re my present and my future and if I could figure out a way to invent a damn time machine, you’d be my past.” ~Room For More

“You called God’s name so many times last night that either you were enjoying yourself or you were having a massive prayer session while in bed with me.”   ~Room For Just a Little Bit More

The Cranberry Inn Series by Beth Ehemann is one of the sweetest and most swoonworthy series I have ever had the pleasure of reading. It also has me wishing with all I have that The Cranberry Inn will become a real place as soon as humanly possible because I NEED to be able to visit that magical place. This series has it all: a heart meltingly sweet and good looking hockey player, a single mom with a heart of gold, two little twin girls with more charm and sass than you can shake a stick at, and a plethora of other supporting characters that bring it all home. I could not put these books down from the very first page of them, and I was immediately swept up into the sweet and beautiful love story of Brody and Kacie. Those two owned my heart through every word, swept me up so truly into everything they shared, and let me experience the literal magic that happened when they were together. This series is the epitome of a honest to goodness amazing love story, and it is one that made me fall in love with this world, its characters, and Beth Ehemann’s incredible writing. I’d pay the toll a million times over just to get into this world more because it is that incredible, and that damn sweet.

Read My Review of Room for You    Read My Review of Room for More

Read My Review of Room for Just a Little Bit More

~The City Limits Series: Roots & Wings & Sunshing & Rain by M. Mabie~

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“He’d magically turned all of my rough edges to silk when he touched me. Made all of the empty and lonely spots full with his attention. When his fingers moved over me, everything male in him spoke to everything female in me, and I felt beautiful. Fragile and vulnerable.”   ~Roots and Wings

“I wanted to kiss you last night and all day today.”
He ran his fingers over my hair as I pulled back to look at him, my confession making my cheeks flush hot.
“I’ve wanted to kiss you my whole damn life. I win.”  ~Sunshine and Rain

The City Limits Series by M. Mabie is a world of sweet, damn good, small town love stories that show you the magic and wonderfulness that small town life can bring you. These stories are easy reads that are low on angst and drama, but high on love and some serious feels. These books give you the wonderfully distinctive dynamic that exits in the small town of Wynne, and it gives you all the authentic and easy to love characters that make this special place what it is. M. Mabie brings her dynamic writing out in these books, and allows you to fall heart first into a world of fishing, campfires, water towers, radio stations, and real-life romance that is going to have you feeling all of the butterflies as these stories unfold. Whether it’s with Vaughn and Mutt as she welcomes him to small town life and he helps he find the balance of her roots and wings, or whether its Sunny and Rhett as these two see what really could be if they gave up their pre conceived notions of one another…Wynne is the place to be. I can’t accurately describe how good these books felt to read and how right they were, so grab yourself a sweet tea and park a spot outside, and get to loving these books.

Read My Review of Roots and Wings   Read My Review of Sunshine and Rain

~The Spiral Down by Aly Martinez~

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“The ground was shaking and my decade-old walls were starting to crumble. I could lose myself trying to rebuild them while the super storm known as Henry Alexander ominously hovered over me. Or I could sit back, relax, and enjoy the thunder. Even the strongest hurricanes had to die out eventually. Maybe Henry was mine.
Or, more likely, he’d be the earthquake that was going to break me down before swallowing me whole.
Either way, I wasn’t going to be left standing.” ~The Spiral Down  

Oh Henry and Evan…those two still own a piece of my heart even a later after reading their unforgettable and all-consuming love story. To say I loved these men with my whole heart is the understatement of the century. These two OWNED me and my heart through every word of this book. They owned my breaths, my feelings, my heart, my blushes, my very soul as their breathtaking and highly emotional story unfolded in front of me. This book was perfection for me. With its heavy feels, deeply emotional journey as these two men tried to pull their heads out of their butts and feel what they so needed to feel, all thrown in with the BEST back and forth and personality, The Spiral Down gave me it all. It was probably only the third male/male romance I’ve ever read, but it just showed me through every word that I need to read more in this series like I need my next breath. Once you read Henry and Evan’s story I think you’ll feel the same way. You’ll also have a heart that is bursting for those two and all that they share as they try to shed the labels, the past, and the walls keeping them apart…and let me tell you, the spiral down through it all never hurt so good.

Read My Review of The Spiral Down

~The Gabriel’s Inferno Series by Sylvain Reynard~

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“Look at me. Look into my eyes.” His eyes fixed on hers as they fluttered open.
“I’ll give you anything. My body, my soul, Take them. Take everything.” ~Gabriel’s Inferno

“I wandered in the darkness looking for something better, something real. I found you, and I’ll be damned if I’m going to lose you.”   ~Gabriel’s Rapture

“For you, my love, I would endeavor to pluck the stars from the sky, only to shower them at your feet.”
“How do you do that?’
“Do what?”
“Say things like that. That’s beautiful.”
“I’ve spent years studying poetry, Mrs. Emerson. It’s in my DNA.”   ~Gabriel’s Redemption

The Gabriel’s Inferno Series is one that has been recommended to me for years, and every time I had to admit that I hadn’t read it, I always expected some serious side eye because I know how much fellow readers have loved this series. It was that push that finally had me diving into this series, and let me just say that I couldn’t be happier that I finally gave this series a chance. It was INCREDIBLE. So outstandingly written, with beautiful and flowing writing, that told a love story for the ages. What Julianne and Gabriel shared as their story unfolded was intense, very real, and had my heart aching for all that those two go through. I love me a good series, and this series captured that a million times over as it let me become fully invested in this story with Julianne and Gabriel. I also have a major soft spot for student teacher romances, and this is by far one of the best one of those, and series I have ever read. With a story that felt poetic, breathtaking, and deeply emotional, this series paints a beautiful portrait of what love and redemption can give you if you only open yourself up to it.

Read My Review of Gabriel’s Inferno    Read My Review of Gabriel’s Rapture

Read My Review of Gabriel’s Redemption

~The Love is War Duet: Breaking Him & Breaking Her by R.K. Lilley~

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“Love is never satisfied with half-measures.  It won’t take parts of you.  It will own all of you, every single, longing piece.  “Love will make you its slave,” I stated venomously.  “It will ruin you.  Grind you under its heel until you don’t recognize what’s left.   “Love will take your soul.”  ~Breaking Him

“Love changes you. No matter how strong you are, it makes you stronger. No matter how weak you are, it makes you weaker. No matter how hard you are to conquer, it will bring you to your knees.”  ~Breaking Her

Having loved every single word of the angst and emotion filled Tristan & Danika Series, it is no surprise to me that I LOVED  the This is War Duet as much as I did. I mean I think R.K. Lilley puts the angst in angst with what she puts her characters through, and I absolutely freaking love it because it gives me one helluva read that has the most intense emotion and connection and fire weaving their way through it. Dante and Scarlett’s story ain’t easy y’all. In fact it’s probably one of the most hard fought love stories I have EVER read. It pushed my heart to its very limit, right along with Dante and Scarlett. Breaking Him and Breaking Her follows Scarlett and Dante as they go from lovers, to enemies, to some kind of messed up version in between. Told with alternating past and present, this story fills in how these two came to eviscerate one another and their hearts, and lets you know exactly why they seem to always come back to more….It’s all a puzzle, and when it all comes together you will be left with one helluva intense, breathtakingly emotional, and mesmerizing picture.

Read My Review of Breaking Him     Read My Review of Breaking Her

~The Cocktail Series: Wallbanger & Last Call by Alice Clayton~

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“Fucking Wallbanger,” I hissed, frozed on the spot.
His grin slid off as well as he played place-the-face for a moment. “Fucking Pink Nightie Girl.” ~Wallbanger

“Early the next morning, I drove him to the airport, kissed him good-bye, told him I wasn’t wearing any panties, and then kissed him once more while he tried to push me back into the car to see if I was bluffing. I was not. Kissing him a final time, I told him I loved him and I’d see him in two weeks. No one ever tells you to remember these moments. To photograph them in your mind, develop them into memories, to have them easily accessible and on instant recall when you’d need them later. To try and replay and re-create the last time you see someone.”   ~Last Call

Wallbanger and Last Call and the rest of the Cocktail Series by Alice Clayton were books I had been meaning to read for like ever. I had heard such great things about these books, plus with a title like Wallbanger, who could really resist this series. What I got in these books was a laugh out loud funny story that had my cheeks hurting from how much I was laughing and smiling at the antics of these characters. Simon and Caroline’s story definitely starts off in the most memorable of ways, with her hearing him with other women through her bedroom wall, and what ensues in their story is a charming, memorable, and perfectly outlandish story of what happens when two seemingly opposite people start to fall for one another. The banter and humor of this book is off the charts and had me almost peeing my pants I was laughing so hard. (I’m not afraid to admit that.) This book and this entire series kept me beyond enamored, but there was just something about Simon and Caroline and their push and pull that really spoke to me. Their fun and memorable love story made Wallbanger and Last Call two great, well written, and highly enjoyable reads with more crazy ridiculous and wonderful moments than you can count!

Read My Review of Wallbanger     Read My Review of Last Call

~The Bird and the Sword by Amy Harmon~

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“Swallow Daughter, pull them in, those words that sit upon your lips. Lock them deep inside your soul, hide them ’til they’ve time to grow. Close your mouth upon the power, curse not, cure not, ’til the hour. You won’t speak and you won’t tell, you won’t call on heav’n or hell. You will learn and you will thrive. Silence, daughter. Stay alive.” ~The Bird and the Sword

Now let me start this by saying that I am not normally a fantasy reader. I am pretty much a strictly romance reader who sometimes dives into other subgenres, but that being said I have LOVED every single book I have ever read by Amy Harmon, so there was no way I was going to not read this book. The Bird and the Sword completely changed the game for me. It opened me up to an entirely new genre to read, and it swept me up in what felt like a mixture between and episode of Game of Thrones and the sweetest fairytale. This book gave me a love story intertwined with the fight for power, and it was incredible. The magical world that Amy Harmon creates in this book feels so real, it was as if I was actually in that world while I read this book. This book perfectly encapsulated Amy Harmon’s magnificent and beautiful writing, and gave me a story filled with magic, twists and turns, light and dark, and one little girl who holds all the power. It was incredible in every way, and I am so glad I took a chance on this book because it was so so good.

Read My Review of The Bird and the Sword

~The Beauty Series: Beauty from Pain, Beauty from Surrender, & Beauty from Love by Georgia Cates~

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“We’re heart to heart and he fades into me until I don’t know where I end and where he begins.” ~Beauty from Pain

“Every song I write from here on out will be about Jack Henry. That’s how our tale will go on and on forever—through my music. He will always be every song I sing”   ~Beauty from Surrender

“You were once my beauty from pain, before you became by beauty from surrender. Now you’ve adapted into something different again.”
“And what is that?”
“My beauty from love-both of you. Forever.”   ~Beauty from Love

The Beauty Series by Georgia Cates is another series I had been meaning to read for so long, and am so glad I finally took the chance to read these books. This a series about Jack Henry and Laurelyn, that spans continents, separations, and heart squeezing moments that threaten to tear these two apart. What starts as a simple proposition soon becomes so much more for these two as they soon realize that they might have just stumbled upon the exact person they need, even though that throws them both for a serious loop. I loved the whole premise of this story, I loved that it took place for the most part in a place that I had never been before, and I loved that it pushed these two to be real with each other and themselves about what they really wanted. These books weren’t the easiest on Jack and Laurelyn, and they both have their share of struggles, but this series is all about the glorious feelings and moments you can have if you try to heal from the pain, surrender to what you feel, and embrace the love that the right person wants to give you.

Read My Review of Beauty from Pain    Read My Review of Beauty from Surrender

Read My Review of Beauty from Love

~The Vixen and the Vet by Katy Regnery~

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“And I’ll tell you something else. I’m not worried that you’ll find someone else, because there isn’t anyone else on the face of the earth who could ever love you as much as I do. It’s impossible because no man has ever loved a woman as much as I love you. And I’m not worried about me finding someone else, because you brought me back from the dead and gave me a second chance at life. You’re my miracle, Savannah, and I will always belong to you.”   ~The Vixen and the Vet

The Vixen and the Vet is a re imagining of Beauty and the Beast, and that fact alone had me knowing that I would love this book. With a story bursting with meaning, struggle, and a love story between a girl with some serious fire and sass, and one stubborn as all get out man, this book gave me a love story that felt magical. Asher is a veteran who returned home looking and feeling different than when he left, which has led him to withdraw from the small Virginia town he calls home. Savannah is a reporter who returns home after being forced to leave her old writing job behind. He wants to stay hidden in the shadows, and she’s looking for a story that could put her right back where she needs to be with her career, and the thought of bringing Asher into the light suddenly becomes very intriguing for Savannah. What you get in the Vixen and the Vet is a story of healing, connection, and what happens when you meet that person who might just bring you to exactly where you need to be. With some seriously swoonworthy moments, this book had my heart the whole way through!

Read My Review of The Vixen and the Vet

~The Legacy Series: Point of Origin & Ignite by Rebecca Yarros ~

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“There’s no ignoring the fact that I know you better than almost anyone on this planet, Emerson. That I know exactly how it feels to have you under me, so deep inside your body that I’m pretty sure I left a piece of my soul there. There’s no ignoring what we had, or how badly I fucked it up.”   ~Point of Origin

I pulled back slowly, scared to see what lingered in her eyes, and prayed it wasn’t disgust. What the hell had I been thinking to kiss her like that? We’d never shown any signs of crossing the line, and I’d just jumped across it. Her eyes were closed, giving me no hint of what she was feeling.

“Avery?” I asked softly. Her pulse raced under my hand. Her eyes fluttered open and there was no anger, just surprise.

“You want me?”

“I have always wanted you.” With a soft cry, she met my mouth, opening hers in a hungry kiss. My tongue swept inside the mouth I’d dreamed of for years, and holy shit, she tasted even better than I’d ever fantasized. She tasted faintly of the peppermint tea she loved and pure, sweet Avery.   ~Ignite

It’s obviously no secret that Rebecca Yarros is one of my favorite authors. I mean 2 of her others book are on this list, so it’s pretty easy to say that I LOVE that woman’s writing and storytelling with all that I have. Her Legacy Series is one that is full of fire, both literally and figuratively, and it is one that I can’t wait to get more of. Point of Origin and Ignite follow two of the firefighters of the mountain fire crew that is coming back together. This series will continue with more of these intense and adrenaline filled books, and I for noe am beyond excited for more. Point of Origin is a second chance romance of Bash and Emerson as she and him fight to get back the crew that took their parents, yet is still a huge part of their soul. Ignite gives you the friends to lovers story of Avery and River who are struggling with their feelings, coupled with the expectations placed upon them both. These books have the best amount of heat, and I don’t mean those fires they fight. What these characters share is raw, powerful, and consuming in every way possible. These books will have you wanting to hightail it to Colorado ASAP because that’s how alluring and wonderful and consuming these characters and their stories are. Legacy is all about family, friendships, past, and present, and it is a series that I know will continue to deliver!

Read My Review of Point of Origin     Read My Review of Ignite

~Edge of Chaos by Molly E. Lee~

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”Dash and I were the same, pulsing with a calling in our blood to stand on the edge of chaos.” ~Edge of Chaos

Fun fact about me: I am fascinated by extreme weather and storm chasing, so when I found out Molly Lee was writing a book that included that, and one killer romance, I was beyond sold. This book was equal parts adrenaline and adventure, and emotional heartfelt romance that swept me up with all it had. Dash and Blake’s story was as intense as the storms they were chasing, and Molly’s incredible writing allowed me to be there through every word of that. She let me get right to the heart of those storms, and the emotion and connection that Dash and Blake were sharing and it was phenomenal. It was real, raw, impactful, adventurous, and made for one wild ride that starts this series off in the most amazing way. This book takes love to the edge, and I am telling you, what you get on that edge and what you get with these two will hook you into this series and this incredible author’s writing with all that you have, and will have you even more ready for that next adventure she has in store for you!

Read My Review of Edge of Chaos

~Franco by Kim Holden~

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“I don’t know if it’s just the accent, but I get the feeling she’s the type of person who could tell you to, Fuck off, and you’d take it as a compliment and respond with, Thank you very much.”   ~Franco

Franco was a fun, lively, and vibrant meeting of two incredible characters with two very memorable personalities. Franco and Gemma had that spark that could not be denied, and that coupled with the humor and fun that ensued every time those two were together had me loving the antics, the connection, and the pull those two shared. This book is the third book in the Bright Side Series, and I really can’t say enough how phenomenal it was to get back with the gang of Rook and to be in a place where my heart is damn happy. This series means the world to me, and getting more of it was something that was just the icing on top of the best damn cake in the world. Franco and Gemma’s story in this book was about just how far you might be willing to go when it really matters, and it exemplifies that the heart truly can know no distance. This book was a perfect addition to this series, and though I will probably always want more of this world, if I never got another word from these characters, my heart will still love them all fiercely and will LOVE what they gave me in this series with their charm, their wonderful distinctiveness and their music, lives, and loves.

Read My Review of Franco

~Aced by K. Bromberg~

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“Rogue, rebel, reckless. Those words still apply to him. As do so many others that would make him blush, roll his eyes, and play them off because they make this stoic man uncomfortable. My rock is the one I can’t seem to get out of my head. Because that’s exactly what he has been to me. My everything.” ~Aced

Rylee and Colton have got to be one of my favorite literary couples that I have ever had the pleasure of reading. Their story has torn me and my heart to shreds, and put me all back together again through every emotional and breathtaking word of their journey together. Those two have stuck with me in so many ways, so getting more of them was something I loved. Aced was their story of what happened in the in between of the ending of Crashed between the different epilogues. It filled in so much of that gap and all of the questions I had about what had happened to those two, and it was glorious. In true Rylee and Colton fashion, those two didn’t make this book or what happens to them easy. They made it damn hard, damn emotional, and gut wrenching at times as these two struggled, yet in just as they always do, Rylee and Colton kept me with them through every word and breath and feeling as they tried to put themselves back together again. Aced is their story of struggle, triumph, and happily ever after, and it was the perfect conclusion to everything from A to mother effing Z that those two had shared.

Read My Review of Aced

~Sweet Thing & Sweet Little Thing by Renee Carlino~

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“You have to teach your heart and mind how to sing together… then you’ll hear the sound of your soul” ~Sweet Thing

“I learned that you can’t predict your future, there’s no crystal ball or formula for happiness. You can’t control the weather just like you can’t control the way others behave, but what you can control is how much love you give. Surrendering to this crazy thing called life is hard, but we don’t have to be the soulless sheets of paper tarrying along in the wind. We can find our people, love, respect them, and then hang on for dear life because it’s not where you go on this journey but who you’re with that matters the most.”   ~Sweet Little Thing

After reading Sweet Thing and Sweet Little Thing, Renee Carlino has solidified herself as one of my favorite authors. The way that she wove together an emotional, angst filled, and lyrical story in Sweet Thing between Mia and Will showed the power of music, family, friendship and love. This book and Mia and Will’s journey tugged at my heart so much as those two put each other through the wringer. I felt it all with those two as they went back and forth, as they pushed each other to their limits, and as they tried to figure out what in the world they were doing with one another. This story was a phenomenal coming of age romance that pushed Will and Mia to see what they really wanted, what they were willing to fight for, and how far they were willing to go for the one they wanted. With the most incredible sense of build and push and pull, Renee Carlino kept me right in the thick of it during every word of this book as Will and Mia got closer and closer to where they’d fought so hard to get.

Read My Review of Sweet Thing     Read My Review of Sweet Little Thing

~The Game On Series: The Hook Up, The Friend Zone, & The Game Plan by Kristen Callihan~

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“Why won’t you let me kiss you, Anna?”
I can’t breathe.
“Why, Anna?”
“It’s too much,” I rasp.
“Not when I want everything.” He says it so deep and strong, a staking of a claim. “And I want everything with you, Anna.”   ~The Hook Up

“GrayG: Just to clarify, putting the perfectly reasonable and technically correct name aside, shenanigans are a go?
Laughing now, I lean back more comfortably in the ugly plastic airport seat and answer.
IvyMac: All night, Cupcake. I can’t wait to taste your frosting.
A couple seconds pass and then,
GrayG: Mac, you sent a dirty text. I just shed a tear of pride. I also have a hard-on. I think the little old lady sitting next to me is checking it out.” ~The Friend Zone

“Not necessary. Man-buns are hot. I blame Jason Momoa. There was only so much watching him bang Khaleesi the female population could take before they wanted their own Khal Drogo.” ~The Game Plan

Now I love me a good sports romance, and The Game On Series by Kristen Callihan delivers three distinctive, personality driven, and completely wonderful sports romances. Each of these books has a couple you won’t soon forget with their memorable personalities, back and forth, and the charm that bursts out of all of them. These interconnected standalones are so fun, so enjoyable, and are full of some serious heart and heat. They fantastically weave together everything you love about a good sports romance, while also making you smile and blush on just about every page. I loved how fun and light these books were, yet at the same time I loved how much meaning they had as well. Kristen Callihan exceptionally balanced bringing out the fun and the heart in these books, and I finished all 3 with a full heart and one big old smile on my face from these couples. With some serious charm and personality, these books are not to be missed… trust me on that!

Read My Review of The Hook Up   Read My Review of The Friend Zone

Read My Review of The Game Plan

 ~The Legal Briefs Series: Overruled, Sustained, Appealed, & Sidebarred by Emma Chase ~

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“Young love is strong. First love is powerful. But what you don’t know when you’re young—what you can’t know—is how long life actually is. And the only dependable thing about it, besides death and taxes, is change.”   ~Overruled

“I want her – this fearless, stunning woman. And I want the kids. Those perfect, awful, amazing children – whom she loves with every inch of her soul. I want them to be mine. Mine to hold, mine to protect and teach. Their joy, their laughter, their love. I want to come home to it, bask in it, be the reason for it. But even more than that, I want to deserve them.”   ~Sustained

“What if the reason I’ve never let myself fall in love with a woman is because I didn’t have anything to give? Because I’d already given my heart to her when we were seventeen years old? And all these years…I’ve just been waiting for her to come back to me with it.”   ~Appealed

“She’s my love, my home, the solace to my soul, the keeper of my heart, the center of my entire fucking world. The only reason I really believe in my own goodness is because I see it reflected in her eyes.”  ~Sidebarred

Emma Chase wowed me last year with her Tangled Series, so when I jumped into her Legal Briefs Series, I knew that I would most likely love it…and as it turns out, I was so right. This series was brought to life by Emma Chase’s sparkling and vibrant writing. I swear that woman is the queen of the male point of view, and the way that she continues that in this series with the males of the legal world was phenomenal. She made every moment of reading this series distinctive. She made it fun, charming, dynamic, and lively in only a way that she can, and I loved every single second of getting to be a part of that. This series let me fall in love with a whole new set of characters, and these interconnected standalones kept me loving them through every new book. I laughed, I smiled, I felt my heart fall something fierce, and I just enjoyed these well written, personality driven reads that gave me a whole new world of characters to root for. If you loved her Tangled Series, you will love these books so much!

Read My Review of Overruled    Read My Review of Sustained

Read My Review of Appealed   Read My Review of Sidebarred

~Him & Us by Sarina Bowen & Elle Kennedy~

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“I have the same damn weakness I’ve always had. It’s still there as I stare up at the big screen. As I watch up at that big screen. As I watch Jamie Canning stop another dizzying slap shot. As I admire the grace and deadly precision with which he moves. My weakness is him.” ~Him

“There’s an old quote my mother once painted on a ceramic platter. Love is friendship set on fire. I get it now.” ~Us

Him and Us by Sarina Bowen and Elle Kennedy are the books that popped my m/m cherry. These books were AMAZING. They were heated and sensual, they told a story of heart and discovery, and they gave me Jamie and Wes, two men who will always own a part of me. Those two guys shared something so real, so intense, and so worth it. Him and Us explores their journey to one another, and while it isn’t easy on either of them, and it pushes them both to realize what they truly want, it is their story all the way through and it just seared my heart to these two incredible guys. Both Jamie and Wes owned my heart through every word of these books. Those two made me blush, they had my heart feeling like it was beating out of my own chest with all that they go through, and they had me rooting with all I had that they would figure out a way to make it all work. This book isn’t just an m/m romance, it’s a story of second chances, and finding your true self and the love you deserve. This duet is beautiful, meaningful, and did I also mention that it was really freaking hot?!?!

Read My Review of Him   Read My Review of Us

~Fighting Solitude by Aly Martinez~

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“She entered my life during a brief period when all the stars had momentarily aligned.
It wasn’t until it all exploded, throwing my entire world out of orbit, that I realized she was the greatest gift I’d ever been given.”   ~Fighting Solitude

Oh those Page Brothers….how they continue to wow and awe me. I loved every book in Aly Martinez’s On The Ropes Series, but I have to admit that the Page brother I was most excited to get my hands on was Quarry. That foul mouthed little instigator was who I NEEDED in my life, and boy did his story pack some kind of emotional punch. Quarry and Liv’s story in Fighting Solitude is raw and intense and consuming in every way. I think I cried reading this book more than I did any of the other books in this series, and the vulnerability and openness I got with these two seared them to me in ways I didn’t even know was possible. Fighting Solitude is a story of overcoming the darkness that threatens to consume you, it’s a story of second chances, it’s a story of what your heart and soul hears, and it’s a story of pushing out from the solitude you’ve found yourself in to end up in the exact place you were always meant to be. Quarry Page was a bundle of personality and vibrancy, and Liv James was no wilting flower with her fire and determination. Getting to experience these two fight for it all was everything… and then some.

Read My Review of Fighting Solitude

~First Touch & Last Kiss by Laurelin Paige~

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“He was always rough. Always raw. He fucked me however he wanted— fucked my tits, my mouth, my cunt. He’d tell me when he wanted my ass in the future, he’d take that too. And then sometimes, rarely, in the middle of the night, he’d be sweet. Pulling me into his lap, kissing me, caressing me. Letting me fly but anchoring me with his eyes. Speaking words he’d never dare say in the light of day. Words that I’d never dare say in return. It was these times that I felt the most connected to him. It was these times that he scared me most.” ~First Touch

“Whoever had decided that damnation was fire and brimstone was wrong. Hell was cold and ice and emptiness. Hell was watching the one I’d grasped to so tightly slip through my fingers.
Hell was realizing the one I’d come to love would never choose to love me.”   ~Last Kiss

First Touch and Last Kiss was a provocative, dark, and sensual story of romantic suspense that had me on the edge of my seat through every pulse pounding word. Laurelin Paige delivers and incredible duet with these books, and she had me in awe of what was going on with these characters. Emily is a person on a mission searching for her oldest friend when she hears a message with a hidden signal in it, and that message is what leads her to Reeve, a dark and mysterious billionaire who’s got some serious mystery and darkness surrounding him. The more Emily digs and the closer she gets to Reeve, the more she finds herself entwined within a dark and pleasurable web of everything surrounding Reeve. As much as she knows she should fight it, she can’t help but be drawn to it, but the closer she gets, the more tangled she gets. This book is filled to the brim with twists and turns, the most sensual heat, and two characters who shouldn’t have ever met, yet still can’t help but feel what they do for one another. Be prepared to read these books in one sitting because you will not want to put them down!

Read My Review of First Touch     Read My Review of Last Kiss

~The Family Justice Saga: Unchained & Unforgettable by Suzanne Halliday~

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“Loving her was his salvation, but that didn’t mean all those feelings and the inner agony he felt over the whole fucking war was going to magically go away.” ~Unchained

“His masterful kiss set her on fire and unleashed a heady mix of desire and ecstasy. She surrendered instantly. His firm, insistent mouth demanded a response so she kissed him back with a ravenous hunger. Raising his lips off hers, he gazed into her eyes and brushed a gentle kiss on her forehead. “Don’t give up on me, counselor,” she whispered.

“From your first day angel baby, our souls have been connected. I could never let you go.” ~Unforgettable

The Family Justice Saga continues to be a series that fills my heart and gives me it all. To say I love these characters isn’t enough. I feel so beyond connected to them all and their stories, I feel as if I am a part of their family, and I feel like I will never get enough of their stories. Suzanne Halliday has woven such intricate and interwoven stories together in this series with all of her distinctive and memorable characters, and Unchained and Unforgettable continued my love of all things Justice. These books gave me more with all of the characters I love, had me feeling once again like I was a part of the big and loveable Justice family, and had me already ready for more with this crew. This series will continue to be one of my all-time favorites. If you’re looking for series that truly invests you with a group of characters, puts you through it all with them, and has you falling and loving and laughing and just enjoying every second you get with them, then you NEED  these books in your life. Stat.

Read My Review of Unchained    Read My Review of Unforgettable

~Dark Notes by Pam Godwin~

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“I wouldn’t need words, just her awareness of my body, my intent, and my confidence to give her what she craves. She may not know it but she needs clearly-defined boundaries, discipline, and a man she can trust to push her beyond her comfort zone. She may not yet recognize me as that man, but she will.” ~Dark Notes

Dark Notes is the first book I’ve ever read by Pam Godwin, but it will certainly not be the last. This book pushed my boundaries. It was dark and raw and intense as all get out. It gave me a story that wasn’t easy. It told a story that was gritty and messy and hard, but yet oh so good in the same breath. Emeric and Ivory were one helluva couple, with a dynamic and pull that I felt in my bones. Those two had a fire that could not be denied, despite the fact that they were teacher and student. This book isn’t for the faint of heart, but I am telling you, it will give you EVERYTHING. It will grasp you, shock you, break you, and make you, and in the end you will be damn glad you gave this book the chance it so rightfully deserves. Dark Notes was a pulsating read that had me needing the closest fan I could find, all while I fell damn hard for what Emeric and Ivory shared as they explored that dark and very real fire between them.

Read My Review of Dark Notes

~Me Before You By JoJo Moyes~

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“Hey Clark’, he said.’Tell me something good’. I stared out of the window at the bright-blue Swiss sky and I told him a story of two people. Two people who shouldn’t have met, and who didn’t like each other much when they did, but who found they were the only two people in the world who could possibly have understood each other. And I told him of the adventures they had, the places they had gone, and the things I had seen that I had never expected to. I conjured for him electric skies and iridescent seas and evenings full of laughter and silly jokes. I drew a world for him, a world far from a Swiss industrial estate, a world in which he was still somehow the person he had wanted to be. I drew the world he had created for me, full of wonder and possibility.”   ~Me Before You

Would you like to read a book that will rip your heart out and that you will never get over, yet you’ll find yourself loving every emotionally masochistic word of it?! Well come on down because Me Before You is the book for you. This book broke me. It made me sob and break and cry like there was no tomorrow. It was emotionally gut wrenching across the board, yet in the same breath it was one of the most powerful and meaningful stories I’ve every had the pleasure of reading. JoJo Moyes completely allows you to understand her characters, their motivations, their reasons, and their hearts with every page in this book, and even though this book still broke me (and I’m pretty sure there is still a part of my heart broken from it) I LOVED THIS BOOK SO MUCH. It isn’t light and it ain’t easy, but that’s what makes it what it is, and that’s what sets it apart. This book is perfection. It will take a chunk of you, but you’ll gladly give it for what Will and Lou give you, and in the end you’ll be damn glad you gave this book what you did.

Read My Review of Me Before You

Read My Review of Falling

~All That Jazz by Natasha Boyd~

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“You’re like a hurricane, Jazzy Bear. You would have changed everything. If you’d asked, I’d have given up my plans and dreams.” ~All That Jazz

The Eversea Series by Natasha Boyd is wonderful, southern, and charming series with the most phenomenal writing. I have loved every single book in this series, and I had been waiting for Joey and Jazz’s story ever since I met the two of them and had felt that there was one helluva story between those two. All That Jazz fills in all the questions you have about those two, all while putting you right back in the heart of Butler Cove with all its personality, charm, and warmth. The back and forth between Joey and Jazz had me on edge through every word of this book, and had me NEEDING for those two to figure it all out. What Joey and Jazz share is built on a past and present that collide in this book, and every heart melting and pulling word of this book will have you rooting for those two. Throw in the best dose of southern charm, and you have a book that is as vibrant and authentic as the south. If you have loved the Eversea Series, then I promise you will love this book so so much!

Read My Review of All That Jazz

~Dark Lover by J.R. Ward~

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“I’m going to talk to her.”
“And how’s that going to go? You’re just going to walk up to her and say, ‘Hey, I know you’ve never seen me before, but I’m your dad. Oh, and guess what? You’ve won the evolutionary lottery: You’re a vampire. Let’s go to Disneyland!”   ~Dark Lover

So I will admit that paranormal romance is so not my typical genre of romance that I like to read. It’s not that I haven’t loved the paranormal romances I’ve read, it’s just that they’re not the books I typically lean towards. I was told by a friend of mine that if I didn’t read this series, I would be disowned, so with that push I finally decided to give it a go. I had heard such incredible things about this series from so many of my friends, but I’ll still admit I wasn’t sure if I was going to love it or not. That being said, I LOVED every single word of Dark Lover by J.R. Ward. This book was all kinds of consuming, and I found myself so entwined with this brotherhood of vampires and the phenomenal world J.R. Ward creates. I couldn’t get enough of Wrath and Beth’s love story that was interwoven into all of the action of this book, and I have since read almost half of this series. I am hooked and addicted and everyone who told me to read this series was so fucking right because these books are soooooooo good. They’re romances with the best amount of paranormal to them, and I can’t get enough. (So you were right Aly & Ashley, okay?! hahaha!)

Read My Review of Dark Lover

~Wilder by Rebecca Yarros~

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“I knew why everyone got sucked in. He was magnetic, hypnotizing. It wasn’t just the body, the face or the tattoos. He made me feel anything was possible, like there was a whole shiny world waiting for me to step inside and explore. He was everything I wasn’t, but he made me feel like I could be.”  ~Wilder

Wilder is the first book in Rebecca Yarros’s Renegades Series, and this book was packed to the brim with action, adrenaline filled moments, and a love story of two seemingly opposite characters who couldn’t help but be drawn to one another. This book spans continents and countries, sets your pulse and your heart on fire with the action and antics of these renegades, and still gives a love story that is bursting with heart and feels galore. I loved and experienced every word of this book because of Rebecca Yarros’s exceptional writing. She puts you right in there with her characters, she lets you get them, she lets you understand their motives and fears and questions, and she lets you be with them as they fight to overcome what holds them back. Getting what I did  with Paxton and Leah in this book set my heart on fire, had me feeling it all for those two, and had me wishing like hell I had done Semester at Sea. The Renegades give you one wild and heart filled ride, so be sure to jump on their train…or boat, this very second!

Read My Reviews of Wilder

~Forever Rockers by Terri Anne Browning~

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“I love you. That is all that matters, do you hear me? I love you and all I need is you.” ~Forever Rockers

The Rocker Series by Terri Anne Browning is a series that I will never get enough of. I have been with this series since the very beginning. I have been through it all with these characters. Their highs and lows, their fights and wins, their losses and heartbreaks, and every twist and turn and up and down these books have brought them all. It’s safe to say I love these books with all that I have, and while I can’t pick favorites…yet it’s pretty safe to say that Shane and Harper have a special place in my heart. Their story is very special, very emotional, and so easy to understand and feel. Those two have struggled and been through it all, and the events of Forever Rockers gives you one last little bit with them as they try to create the family they’ve always dreamed of. In true Rocker Series fashion, there are forces and people out to get the rockers and the ones they love, and this book is jam packed with so many twists and turns that will have you dying to know what happens. I loved every word of this series and every word of Forever Rockers brought this series to a close in the most fitting and all-feeling way.

Read My Review of Forever Rockers

~One With You by Sylvia Day~

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“I hadn’t known Eva was out there, had been afraid to even dream of finding the one person in the world who would accept and love every facet of me.” ~One With You

The Crossfire Series is one of the first romance series I ever read. This book is part of the reason I love romance so much. Gideon and Eva’s emotional love affair is what showed me I loved me a good love story. Their sensual, emotional, and very raw love story told through Sylvia Day’s phenomenal writing is what made me love these two as strongly as I did. To say I was anticipating the conclusion to this series is putting it lightly, and I didn’t know what this last book for them would bring, but what I got with them was a beautiful, meaningful, and powerful story of love. This was the best conclusion I could have asked for with this series, and even though I am so sad to say goodbye to these two, their love and their fight to overcome the demons of their past will stay with me forever. Gideon and Eva’s love may not have been perfect, but it was real and it was theirs, and this series brought that love to life in the most incredible way.

Read My Review of One With You

~The Quantum Series: Valorous, Virtuous, Victorious, Rapturous, & Ravenous by M.S. Force~

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“The more time I spend with her, the more I want her. I want her to be mine. It doesn’t matter that I might not be good for her. I can be someone different for her. I’ll be anyone she needs me to be if it means I get to have her in my life.”  ~Virtuous

It had come down to a choice — her or the lifestyle. I’d chosen her. I’d choose her every time. I need her more. It’s that simple. She’s everything I didn’t know I needed until she literally slammed into me and turned my life upside down….” ~Valorous

“People don’t understand that it’s not all about the sex. It’s much more about the emotion. When two people are fully invested in a scene, it can be the most intensely emotional experience you’ll ever have — and that’s before anyone has sex.” He cups my face and slides his thumb over my cheekbone. “That’s magnified a thousand times when you’re in a scene with someone you love.” ~Victorious

“I’m her partner. Me. No one else. I realize tears are running down my face, and I don’t care that I’m crying for the first time in my adult life in front of someone I barely know. My heart breaks at the thought of her doing those things with anyone but me.”  ~Ravenous

“My body ignites at the images that scorch my brain in the scope of five seconds. Holy shit. Have I gone blind, deaf and dumb, or is Jasper Autry telling me he wants to have sex with me— and make a baby with me?”~Ravenous

The Quantum Series by M.S. Force is my new guilty pleasure. This series explores the themes of BDSM, friendship, and love and how all three can combine when given the right set of circumstances. This series has captivated me from the beginning with Natalie and Flynn, it continued with Hayden and Addison, and it got even stronger with Jasper and Ellie. The Quantum Series is so mesmerizing, and explores the love lives of a group of friends who also have a proclivity to the BDSM scene. This series explores their attempts at finding love, every emotional up and down, and every twist and turn that comes their way as they try to figure out exactly what they’re doing. This series is addicting, perfectly heated and sensual, and bursting with a group of dynamic characters I can’t wait to get more of!! M.S. Force has created a world where love has no boundaries, where there is power and submission, and where there is unyielding friendship and loyalty bursting from the pages of these books. I love this series so much, and I am beyond ready to see where this gang is headed next!

Read My Review of Virtuous        Read My Review of Valorous     

Read My Review of Victorious    Read My Review of Rapturous

Read My Review of Ravenous

So there you have it folks! My Top Reads of 2016. (If you’ve stuck with me all the way to the bottom of this uber long post, you deserve a gold medal. Seriously.) All of these books were AMAZING, and they blew me away with everything they had. I hope you take a chance on any or all of these books because I HIGHLY recommend them all. So please, do yourself a favor and check them out. Trust me. You won’t regret reading any of these books!

Three Years of Blogging and All I Really Want to Say is Thank You.

Y’all guess what.

Come in real close so I can tell you because it’s a secret….

Well really it’s not so much of a secret because the title of this blog post kind of reveals what I’m about to tell you, but we’ll just disregard that for right now. Okay? Okay.

So come in real close y’all because I have something to tell you…something big…something fantastic…something worth celebrating….

The Never Ending Book Basket is officially 3 years old!!!

*insert confetti toss and simultaneous twirling here*

confetti

Can we all just take in the fact that I have somehow managed to keep this blog alive for over one thousand days?!?!?!

This is coming from a girl who somehow managed to kill a plant that’s not even supposed to need water. (Though in all actuality I think all plants need some kind of water, so that might’ve been where I went wrong with that one, but I digress…) You heard that right, I killed a cactus. A mother effing cactus that barely needs any maintenance, and yet I still managed to kill it, so the fact that I have kept this blog going for 3 years now is something I’m pretty damn proud of.

You heard that right, this book blog turned 3!!

So I guess this is really like a thing now. Like this whole book blogging thing is really going to stick. Like for reals y’all, and I for one can’t say enough how happy that makes me because I truly don’t know where I’d be without this blog and what its brought to my life.

What it looks like when I try to reorganize my TBR pile...

What it looks like when I try to reorganize my TBR pile…

Now once again I must admit that this blogiversary post is a bit delayed for the second year in a row since The Never Ending Book Basket’s actual blogiversary is November 7th. Last year I spent my blogiversary at the Indies Invade Philly book signing with two of my best friends, which was ahhhmazing in so many ways. This year I got to spend my blogiversary adulting at the car repair shop and writing a paper for my grad class, which was so not as much fun as Indies Invade Philly.

But if I’m being 100% honest, I’m actually kind of glad I was delayed in writing this post because its sentiment fits the time of year just right. You see the biggest thing I feel right now, as I write this third blogiversary post, is thankful.

I am so damn thankful.

I’m thankful for the unforgettable experiences and people and books this blog has brought to my life.

I’m thankful for my friends and family accepting and supporting my little blog in any way that they can, and for their understanding that my book obsession is literally never going away.

I’m thankful for what creating, running, and writing this blog has shown me about myself, my passions, and my dreams.

I’m thankful for the authentic and cherished relationships this blog has allowed me to create with other bloggers, fellow readers, and some of my all-time favorite authors, who are all literally some of the best people on the planet.

I’m oh so thankful that when my little blogging world was turned upside down this year, I found I had the best kind of support system a girl could ask for.

Like I said, I am thankful for it all. So. Damn. Thankful. 

When I started this blog I had no idea how it would literally change my life in so many amazing ways. I had no idea how it would bring some of the most phenomenal books into my life that I will literally never forget or stop feeling. I had no idea that it would allow me to cultivate the most amazing friendships with people all over this great big world. I had no idea that it would allow me to help and support authors in ways that I didn’t even know were possible. I had no idea that it would fulfill me as much as it has, but fulfill me it does.

What started as just a little idea, bloomed into something I never could have expected, and I am grateful every day that I have this blog and this amazingly wonderful community to be a part of.

Through all of life’s craziness, this blog, this community, and all the book love have grounded me. They have helped keep me sane-ish *heavy on that ish*, and have shown me that this community of readers, authors, and bloggers is where I want to be as long as humanly possible.

Don’t get me wrong, this blog and everything that goes along with it is work, but it’s the best kind of work a girl could ask for, and I wouldn’t trade a single second of it all. This little book blog of mine makes my heart happy on a daily basis, and I truly don’t know where I’d be without it.

So THANK YOU! giphy2

Thank you for supporting me and my crazy book loving self, thank you for supporting this blog in every way that y’all do, and thank you for letting me spread the book love in every way that I can.

You’ll never know how much it means to me. If I could give you all bookstore gift cards, hugs, and copious amounts of coffee as a thank you, I would because y’all are the best and you’ve made me the happiest book blogger on the planet with the support I’ve received.

So now while I can’t hug you all, or give you gift cards and coffee, I can give you my annual list of things I’ve learned in the last 3 years of book blogging, which is pretty much the same thing….right? Right.

(It’s sooooo not the same thing, but let’s just go with it!)

What I’ve learned in the last 1,095 days of book blogging:

  • Amazon, you hit like a bitch. If you’ve followed this blog then you know that this year I was banned from reviewing on Amazon, and had all of my hundreds of previous reviews removed. *insert middle finger to Amazon here* It’s funny that in my 2nd blogiversary post last year, I wrote about being worried that that very thing would happen, and just a mere 3 months later it did. And you know what, it fucking sucked. Like a lot. But you know what happened too? I realized that being banned from Amazon wasn’t the absolute worst thing in the world. I also realized that there was no way being banned from Amazon was going to stop me on my book loving, book blogging brigade. Sure it changed the way I go about blogging in some minor ways, and it still pisses me off that I literally can’t post a review for anything on that damn website, but it in no way stopped me from being the kind of book blogger I want to be. It also led to my most viewed blog post ever, with that oh so catchy title that I’m kinda really proud of, which to this day gets viewed almost daily. Sure getting banned from Amazon was so not in the plan, but the support I received from this book community when that happened, and have since received since being banned, is something I will truly never forget. Ever. So fuck you Amazon, and goodnight.

    I *might* have a book buying problem...

    I *might* have a book buying problem…and the floor beneath all those books *might* be collapsing soon…

  • I *might* have a book buying problem. So in my three years of blogging I have come to the conclusion that I *might* have a slight problem with buying books…and when I say slight, I mean that I’m actually worried the floor in my room in going to collapse because I have soooooo many books. What can I say?! Books are my jam, and I will not apologize for that, nor will I apparently stop buying books no matter how many unread ones I have at home. No matter where I seem to go, I always seem to find some books that need to find their way to my home, and as much as my mother might hate that, I think she just accepts that my book buying isn’t stopping anytime soon. So I guess as much as I tell myself I won’t buy any more books until I read more of my literal TBR pile, the lie detector test has officially determined that to be a lie….and I’m kind of really okay with that because what in the world could be wrong with buying more books??? (Fun fact: there is nothing wrong with buying more books.)
  • Hanging out with fellow readers, bloggers, and authors is the best. THE ABSOLUTE BEST. This year I got the amazing chance to travel to 7 book signings, in 4 different states, all while hanging out with the best people. (And also while adding to my actual never ending book basket of course!) I will literally never get enough of meeting my favorite authors, fellow readers, and other bloggers who all share the same book love. Getting the chance to talk and interact with them makes my little heart happy, and this year has given me some of the most unforgettable memories that I will cherish forever. Whether it was hanging out with my favorite people who I don’t see near enough, whether it was running into familiar faces at book signings while we all made our way through all the craziness and lines, or whether it was meeting new friends online and in person, this year burst my heart with all that it gave me. Meeting people who not only get and accept, but love your crazy never gets old. I will literally never get enough of meeting and connecting with people from this community whether it be in person, online, or anywhere in between, and I look forward to another year of doing just that!
  • I still use all the words, and I still LOVE using all the words. Words are my jam. They make me happy, and I love them something fierce, which is probably why I like to use all of them. All the damn time. Yep, I am still wordy as fuck, and I am really okay with that. Sure my book reviews are typically over 1500 words at minimum, and let’s not even get started on the trees being killed by the length of my beta notes, but in my book, using all the words is okay. (Lord help me when I actually get to writing that book I always say I’m going to write. That book will probably be longer than the phone book!) And let’s be honest, being wordy is kind of my schtick at this point. So I’m going to keep being wordy, and I hope y’all are okay with that because I don’t think I’ll ever stop being wordy because where’s the fun in that?!
  • Books are literal magic, and they can give you it all, if you let them. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, books can bring us together if we let them, and that is something pretty damn amazing. I truly believe books can give us the most unforgettable feelings, tumblr_mwy0p7ssz81rc5z1po1_500moments, and experiences within their pages, all we have to do is give them a chance to wow us with their magic. Books have literally changed my life. They have let me live so many different lives, with so many different characters in so many different worlds, and it honestly doesn’t get better than that. They have made me full on ugly cry, laugh to the point of my cheeks hurting, practically made me stop breathing at times, and they have pushed me and my heart to their very limit. Whether it’s a romance novel that has me melting and swooning, or the most thrilling mystery that has me dying to know what will happen next, or an honest memoir that amazes me with its authenticity and realness, or a magical world that lets me believe in magic and possibilities and what could be…books have given me it all, and then some, and for that I can’t say thank you to the book gods enough.

So there you have it folks. Three years of book blogging is officially in the books!

deo5r*wooooohooooo*

Here’s hoping that there are many more of these blogiversary posts to come in the future! I don’t know about you, but I can’t seem to get enough of this book world or the book love it contains, and I’m really looking forward to experiencing more of it in the days to come.

I know this post is ridiculously long, and I know I probably lost most of y’all when the bulleted list started, but to quote one of my favorite movies even though I keep fumbling for the right words, all I really wanted to say was thank you.”

That’s all I really wanted to do with this post. I wanted to say thank you. From the bottom of my heart. A million times over.

Thank you for supporting this blog and for supporting me. Thank you for accepting my book loving crazy ass, and for allowing me to be a part of a world that makes me happy and fills my heart on a daily basis. Thank you for every word of encouragement, every like, every comment, and every kind and thoughtful word you’ve given me.

Thank you to the authors for creating the unforgettable books and characters and worlds we all love and need to get lost in, and thank you for letting me read and review your books because it truly means the world to me.

Thank you to my fellow bloggers for being the best group of coworkers a girl could ask for, and even though I’ve never met most of y’all, I think we’d all agree that this is the best *job* to have.

Thank you to my fellow readers for all the fantastic book recommendations, for being you and getting as excited as I do over books, and for loving books as passionately as you do. There is truly nothing better than that, or you.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.

I truly can’t say it enough.