Rock F*ck Club – Michelle Mankin

This book is suitable for 18+ due to mature content.

10 cities in two weeks 10 famous rockstars. On my knees. Against the wall. On my titsI don't care. As long as I get the evidence to prove it. Why? Because I caught my former prick of a boyfriend from Heavy Metal Enthusiasts doing a groupie doggie style backstage on the night we were supposed to be celebrating our 1 year anniversary.

He told me I was too uptight. Too vanilla. Too boring. So I got drunk with my bestie, Marsha West, the aspiring videographer. I ranted. I raved. I came up with a crazy idea. What I didn't know was that my best friend recorded me. Marsha put the video up on YouTube. It went viral with 10 million hits. Now I've got fans and sponsors offering me big bucks.

Rockstars are volunteering to be my f*ck buddy. Hollywood is calling. I get to choose which rockstars I want. The stakes are high. This sh*t just got real. What could go wrong?

Rock F*ck Club by Michelle Mankin
Series: Rock F*ck Club #1
Genres: Romance, New Adult
three-half-stars

This is a book I’ve been seeing random posts about here and there in the romance community. I’ll be honest: while I’m a huge fan of rock star romance, I was extremely apprehensive about this book as I’m not super into the whole “having sex for sex’s sake” thing. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy the steaminess, but if there’s no heart to it, I have a bit of a difficult time getting into the story. So the fact that the entire premise of this book was that she created the “Rock F*ck Club” for the sole purpose to f*ck rock stars and “take back control” by treating them the way they treat women … well, I wasn’t super impressed with that thought. So, while I’d been hearing pretty good things, I kept putting it off.

Well, I’d recently gotten the opportunity from the author to read the follow-up novella as well as an ARC for the sequel, so while the first book is available for free on Amazon right now, I decided I’d better pick it up and read it so I would be able to review the next two books to the best of my ability.

And let me just say … while I wouldn’t say I was blown away by this book (no pun intended), I am glad I finally got around to reading it. It was worth it, no matter how frustrated I felt while reading.

In my completely honest opinion, the heroine, Raven, made me a little crazy. There were moments I didn’t much care for her at all–especially when she was so obviously regretting her choices and just flat out refused to communicate with the guy she had fallen for to attempt to come up with another choice. I wanted to scream at her that she didn’t have to go through with it when she was having second thoughts, especially if she felt she was forced into it by circumstance (which she did). Raven has a lot of issues, and while a part of me understood where her fear was coming from, the other part of me was just plain irritated with her. There’s also a part where View Spoiler »

And then there’s our hero of the story … Lucky. Yes, that’s really his name. He’s a beautiful, sarcastic, sensitive, wise, talented musician who falls so hard for Raven that his feelings are nearly palpable while you’re reading. He never gives up on her, even when it seems like he has, and he knows just what to say to her to make her rethink her ideas and actions. I absolutely adored Lucky, and he’s honestly most of the reason why I stuck it out through reading sometimes. If she didn’t have a love interest like him, I don’t think I would have enjoyed the book much at all–that’s how essential his character was for me.

Anyway, the love story at the heart of this book is what makes it worth reading. I wasn’t a fan of the concept of the club, nor was I a big fan of the meaningless sex she had (even though there were definitely some memorable scenes!), but the love story? Ugh, yessss, give it to me (again, no pun intended).

My chest ached while reading as I hoped beyond all hope that they would get the happy ending that I felt they so deserved. There were several times when I just had to set the book aside and do something else for a while so I could give my poor heart a break from the angst-ridden literature. BUT, I was so satisfied with the ending. I honestly can’t remember the last time I read a standalone this full of angst that had an ending I was this happy with. It was so perfect and sweet and everything I could’ve hoped for these characters.

My rating falls somewhere around 3.5/4 stars, but I definitely recommend reading it and deciding for yourself how you liked it 🙂

 

 

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three-half-stars

Broken Compass by Jo Raven

This book is suitable for 18+ due to mature content.
Broken Compass by Jo Raven

What if you were in love not just with one, not just with two, but with three hot guys?And what if they wanted you back?

There are three of them. Three boys. We’re friends. Neighbors. Our lives are linked through disaster, fear and pain. I love them all. Not sure I can live without them. Can we just stay friends? Can we ignore the desire flaring when we’re around each other? Can I kiss one and not the other? I can’t choose. Don’t want to choose. And I’m not sure they can, either. This story will either end up in heartache, or as any story should: in a happy ending.

Love is not a road. It’s a country. A sprawling galaxy. Love has no compass. No rules. No limits. Love is a universe. Lose yourself in it.

*** This is a Reverse Harem romance - that is, one girl and three boys all ending up together happy after many adventures. It can be read as a complete standalone. Full novel length. ***

*This is the story of Sydney and her boys. You met Sydney in Bad Wolf - she is Gigi's best friend. *

COMING June 19, 2018Cover reveal coming in June 2018

Broken Compass by Jo Raven
Genres: Romance, New Adult, Reverse Harem
Format: eBook
four-half-stars
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Goodreads

Jo Raven is one of those authors that I’ll one-click without even reading the description. I’ve been a huge fan of hers since I read the first book in the Inked Brotherhood series several years ago (which is amazing–you should go read them!) and since I’ve been in a bit of a reverse harem kick as of late, I flipped out when I discovered she was writing one. I bought the book as soon as I was able to and finished it in two days.

As is her MO, this book is raw. It’s angsty, it’s gritty, it’s explicit, and it breaks your heart into a million pieces before you’re finally–finally!–given the happy ending. I guess that’s part of what makes the happily ever so sweet; you feel like the characters truly deserve all the love and happiness that comes to them after the crappy cards they’re dealt all their lives.

The feels in this book are major, and I definitely wouldn’t recommend it to anyone who dislikes angst or themes of abuse. It goes there and beyond. I don’t know how she does it, but Jo consistently gets me to feel like my heart is being ripped from my chest while dangling that glimmer of hope in front of my face. There were times I honestly had to step away from this book for a bit just to calm my erratic nerves. These breaks didn’t last long, of course, because I had to know what happened next 😉

The book shifts between all four characters’ points of view, which is something I loved. It feels like you get a better understanding of the emotions each character feels and the headspace they’re in when you’re able to read it from their own unique perspective. It also allows you to see how much each person means to them individually, and it was neat to be able to get inside their heads and understand where they’re coming from; why they grow to love the other people in this relationship and what each relationship means to them–individually and as a whole.

Each person in this relationship has some sort of hang up stemming from long-kept secrets and broken hearts. While some have been abused more in the physical sense, each has been abused mentally and emotionally, and a lot of the time, that type of abuse is harder to heal from. Physical scars fade over time, but mental and emotional scars can stay with you for years. This story also touches slightly on mental illness and addiction and you’re taken on a tumultuous ride with each person as they fight his or her demons in an attempt to finally heal.

There’s also a part in the book, around the middle all the way toward the end (and no, I’m not going to share because it’s too spoiler-y), that I honestly felt like I couldn’t breathe. My chest hurt, my nerves were fried, and I kept yelling at the book, asking “how can this be?!” I knew–or at least, I sincerely hoped–that all would work out, as per Ms. Raven’s usual storytelling, but that didn’t help a whole lot in the moment. Once I hit that part, I could. Not. Put. The. Book. Down. If I thought I was glued to the words on my kindle before, it was nothing compared to when I got to the middle of the book. That was it. Nothing else was going to get done until I finished that book. lol.

Of course, like my head continuously tried to reassure my heart would happen, there is a happy ending. It’s flawed. It’s heartwrenching. It takes a long time to get there. But it’s beautiful. This story is beautiful. I absolutely adored it.

If you’re a fan of the reverse harem subgenre and enjoy angst-ridden reads that will bring you to your knees and flawed characters that you can’t help but fall in love with, look no further. I highly recommend this book (and any other Jo Raven book, because let’s face it: her books are like crack for me). And if you do read it, please let me know how you like it!

 

**If you purchase the paperback using my link with The Book Depository, I’ll make a small commission.

*All pictures used are from Unsplash and edited by me unless otherwise stated.

 

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four-half-stars

NEW RELEASE: Slow Burn by Rose Harper

BLURB

Declan

She’s a rare rose no beast like me should touch.
A fine wine that quenches the thirst of a dying man.

She’s a little bird, yearning to spread her wings and fly.
While I’m the cage that keeps her firmly within my grasp.

Sparrow has always been innocent … until she wasn’t.
Now, the only thing I see—instead of the perfect, timid creature before me …

… is a liar … a deceiver …
A woman I still love more than anything.

Sparrow

He’s a bad boy from the wrong side of the tracks.
A temptation no woman can resist.

He’s a fierce, dominant, yet innocent bird handler.
And I’m the one that gave him the key to my cage at eighteen.

Declan has always been the one I couldn’t resist.
Now, the only thing I see—instead of the loyal, protective man before me …

… is a jerk … a stranger …
A man that can still cause a slow burn to encompass me.

Author’s note – Slow Burn is a serial in the Archer Brother’s Series. Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18. Does end in a cliffhanger. Part two will be available on preorder soon!

 

Congratulations, Rose Harper!!

 

Gas or Ass by Eden Connor

BLURB

Not every relationship is about love.

The odometer on my sex life was stuck at zero the day my mother dragged home a husband I’d never met. Dale brought his two grown sons to help pack and move us into their house. Both were hard-bodied and handsome, but Caine didn’t speak to me. Colt, on the other hand, said crude stuff like, “Wanna ride with me? Then I’m gonna need gas or ass,” but I couldn’t take my eyes off his rippling muscles and challenging blue eyes.

Some are about speed, sex, and defiance.

When Colt offered me a ride to school, I thought the ‘gas or ass’ thing was a joke, but he wasn’t kidding. Though he barely touched me, he shattered the innocence I couldn’t wait to shed. Even then, I sensed I’d never be the same. He and Caine soon upped the stakes, putting me behind the wheel of cars that could reach insane speeds. They kept challenging me to find my inner wild child, pairing illegal drag races with high-octane sex games, games like ‘winner gets head’.

And some are about trying to break you.

It wasn’t long before I was hooked, but I always planned to walk away. Then everything spun out of control and walking wasn’t an option. 
I had to run.
_____

**Disclaimer: This is a tale of a young girl’s crush that turns to hatred and back to love. Gas and Ass is the crush-to-hate part of the story. There’s no HEA inside these pages, so if that’s a must, this isn’t the story for you. If you can delay gratification, however, the hatred-to-love part is the basis of the sequel, Turn and Burn.
(Description provided by the GoodReads page)

Whew boy. I’d been seeing this series recommended in several book groups I’m in, but never gave them a shot before. I’ve always thought they sounded interesting, but I just kept putting it on my TBR pile and read something else.

Well.

I was in the mood for a dark romance, so I thought, sure, why not? and downloaded this bad boy. I’m brand new to the author and aside from the blurb and a few hints here and there, I had no idea what to expect, so I was going in blind.

Holy. Freaking. Crap.

To say this is dark is being polite. To say it’s taboo is putting it mildly. This is the first book I’ve read in a while that was truly difficult for me to read. That isn’t to say I didn’t enjoy it–I sure as heck did–but it was definitely not an easy read.

Shelby is blindsided when her mom comes home one day announcing the fact that not only did she get married without telling her daughter (to a man she’d been dating for just a few weeks at that), but the man she married comes with two adult sons–both of whom catch Shelby’s eye immediately. Colt and Caine Hannah are undeniably sexy, frustratingly self-assured, and completely off limits.

What follows their meeting is a relationship that awakens Shelby’s sexuality and forces her to grow up quick. She knows it’s wrong to have the kind of relationship she, Caine and Colt have, but she can’t bring herself to stay away from them–even when multiple “red flags” tell her she should.

Shelby is insecure–sometimes frustratingly so. But you have to keep in mind that she’s still a teenager, not to mention that she never knew her father and has watched her mother have a revolving door of boyfriends growing up. At the beginning of the book, Shelby doesn’t really know who she is, but you really see her progression as you read–not all of it good, but compelling, nonetheless.

You really go through the ringer with Shelby in this book. There are so many conflicting emotions on top of being a young adult and learning who you are in the world. I went from raging at the pages to fanning myself to wanting to strangle the brothers to wanting to shake Shelby and her best friend to wanting to high five her throughout the story. There are so many things you feel while reading this book. There are also plenty of moments that heated my cheeks and made it difficult to read. There’s a level of promiscuity in this book that I had never read before, short of those that deal with sex trafficking (and that’s another issue entirely) and while I did find it somewhat tasteless at times and just plain hard to read, it fit the story and I think the author was going for something raw and brutally honest, which I can appreciate. Also, despite the fact that it was different from my usual read, I still managed to devour it in one day…so it obviously didn’t bother me enough to set it aside 😉

The story is also heavily influenced by NASCAR as the stepfather works for the company. This is so completely out of my interest range, but the great thing is that Shelby isn’t too interested in NASCAR either, so I wasn’t being bombarded with a sport I don’t particularly understand or care for. I’m not knocking anyone who has this interest, I would just rather spend my time reading or playing video games (read: being a nerd) than follow sports. I do think the author does the sport justice for those who are interested, though. She obviously has some level of comprehension just to be able to write about it, and if that’s your thing, then that’s one more plus in your direction 🙂

While reading this book, I was pretty certain it was going to end a certain way–the author herself even says this book doesn’t have a happily ever after (you have to keep reading the series to get the full story)–but I didn’t see the ending coming. If you think you got angry with the brothers before, it’s nothing compared to the bomb that’s dropped on you at the end of this book and it sent me reeling.

So, if you enjoy very out of the norm stories with taboo and/or dark subject matters–or if you’re just willing to read with a bit of an open mind–check this book out. Seriously. I honestly loved it. There were a few times where I had to take a break and step back from the book for a bit, but in all honesty, it was only for a few minutes because I had to get back to it to find out what happened next, lol.

4 stars 🙂

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REVIEW: The Demon’s Possession

BLURB

A love that spans the edges of the universe…

Trapped on the battleship Extarga by a tyrant, Analia is alone. For all she knows she is the last of her kind. With no memory of life before captivity, her mysterious gift is the only indication of who her people are, but she has given up hope of ever returning to them…

Until one fateful evening, she escapes and stows away on the merchant ship Marada, planning to depart at the very next stop and finally claim her freedom. Unfortunately for her, there is no next stop. The crew is planning a delivery that could take months with no way off the ship until the package is delivered.

When Analia is discovered by the fearsome demon captain, Sebastian, she must adapt to her new role on the ship and learn to master her powers…while contending with her freshly awakened desire for the brutally handsome demon.

Can she handle a demon’s passion?

This is the first book of this author’s that I’ve read, but I can guarantee it won’t be my last. Up until about three months or so ago, I steered clear from anything that had “sci-fi” in the description because it wasn’t my “thing”–or at least, I thought it wasn’t–but I took a chance on a Ruby Dixon novel and I’ve been devouring any sci-fi romance I could find since. When the opportunity arose to get a copy of this book to read, I jumped on it. I’m so glad I did.

Analia has spent her entire life in captivity being abused and misused by her captor. She doesn’t remember being shown any kindness in all her life and when the opportunity arises to escape, she jumps at it. Little does she realize, her life is about to change tremendously.

She stows away on a merchant ship with the hopes of escaping her terrible life. Once on board, while she’s hiding pretty much in plain sight, she discovers that the Marada has no intention of stopping–not for several months, at least. Hungry, scared, feeling alone but determined, Analia decides she would rather face certain death than return to her evil captor. Once her decision has been firmly made, she lies in wait–either for freedom or for death. When she finds herself face to face with the captain of the ship she’s taken refuge on, she discovers feelings she’s never had before … but will he prove to be just as bad as the other men she’s come into contact with before?

Sebastian is a demon–and in this book, it’s meant literally. He’s one of just a few survivors of his race and he’s become bitter and jaded from past experience and the treatment he’s received throughout his lifetime. Demons are viewed as volatile, despicable, vile beings who are treated as the monsters others claim they are.

Sebastian also refuses to fall in love. He’s seen exactly what loving and being mated to someone has done to his brother, who is nothing but a shell of who he once was after being betrayed by his own mate. Sebastian has no desire to be hurt in the same way; it was bad enough feeling his own betrayal with someone he wasn’t in love with. 

Everything changes when Sebastian first lays eyes on Analia. Though she’s dirty and smelly and can barely keep her eyes open, Sebastian is inexplicably drawn to her. The feeling is mutual and Analia doesn’t know what to do with these newfound emotions and physical stirrings. To say they drive each other crazy is quite the understatement–in more ways than one.

Without giving too much away, their relationship progresses and I greatly enjoyed the way Ms. Fay developed these characters and their emotions. They don’t fall for each other overnight and the tension that’s felt throughout the story is so beautifully written; I could feel the emotions these characters were dealing with as I read every page. I’m normally pretty strict about reading books that are the first person POV, but it honestly didn’t matter for me when reading this book because it was just that good.

This story was full of passion, romance, a determined and goal-oriented heroine, an alpha male, and it even had some humor thrown in for good measure. I enjoyed it and will more than likely be reading the rest of the series as I’m dying to know what happens with the other characters 🙂

I will say, though, if you have any triggers, be aware that there are some slightly graphic details about abuse in this story that could potentially be upsetting.

If this book sounds like your thing, I highly recommend it!

Add it to your Goodreads here 🙂

Caveman – Jo Raven

35230789Matthew Hansen is the kind of handsome that has grown women whispering behind their hands and giggling like schoolgirls.
Dark, tall and mysterious, he’s a newcomer to our little town. He’s a gritty, grease-covered mechanic, and a single daddy.
Sweet, right?
Plus he’s looking for a nanny – and I am desperately looking for a job.
Sounds like the perfect deal.
Only he’s a jerk. An uncivilized, hulking brute. Zero manners. Zero interest in making me feel welcome in his home. Downright rude.
But oh so sexy.
And I need the job. I can do this.
One thing is for sure: I can’t fall for the Caveman. No matter how sexy he is. How mysterious. How tortured.
That’s the only rule – and one I’m about to break.
Jo Raven is one of my all-time favorite authors. I’ve greatly enjoyed almost all of her books, and this one was no exception. Somewhat typical of her books, it was major on the angsty radar with a heaping dose of feels. After losing his wife, Matt kind of goes a little insane and withdraws completely from everyone and everything, including his two young children. When Octavia enters the picture looking for a job as his kids’ nanny, he immediately slams the door in her face. So begins a tumultuous, strange relationship between the two. It also doesn’t help that there is a little over ten years age difference between the two, which Matt balks at all throughout the novel.
There is more of a sinister aspect to this book than has been touched upon too heavily in her previous novels that was extremely intriguing and thrilling. It was also interesting to see the hero struggling with anxiety and panic attacks, which is something you normally ever read the heroine ever experiencing. I liked that there was kind of a quiet vulnerability to Matt that he hid underneath a hard and angry exterior.
Okay, so let me explain a couple things about this book: I’m rating it based on how I enjoyed the story and nothing else. It isn’t my favorite of hers, but it also isn’t my least favorite. The next thing I noticed is that it does need a little extra editing and proofing, which tends to be a common occurrence in her novels. Now, for me, this doesn’t really detract from the story itself, but it can definitely be a little distracting and if you’re someone who tends to struggle with reading novels with some editing issues, be aware of this. I would encourage you to read the story for yourself, but I do think this is an important component to touch upon.
I’m of the opinion that I will pretty much one-click whatever Jo writes, as I have loved her books so much over the past couple years. All in all, this was a good read and I finished it fairly quickly.
(Original Review)
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Amazon UK: https://goo.gl/fzVuvk
Amazon CA: https://goo.gl/6HZ7yD
Amazon AU: https://goo.gl/tJepy9

NEW RELEASE: Bound By Chains – L.M. Roberts

bound by chainsHappy release day, L.M. Roberts!
WARNING
Description contains explicit content.
 
Bestselling Author, L.M. Roberts, brings Book Two of the Shattered Hearts Trilogy to steam up your device. This is a continuation from the first book, Condemned by Him. 
Revel in the darkness, lust, and desire that is Talon Davis and Everly Thompson. 
“My pet … She’s a fucking fighter, an alpha female, and she belongs to me.”
Talon
There are only a few things that blow my mind.
A good suck. Rough fuck. And a woman by the name of Everly.
I never know what I’m getting when it comes to her. This entire time I thought she was a docile, fragile little flower I could break with a snap of my fingers. Damn, was I wrong.
She’s a fighter.
A fucking alpha female.
And I can’t wait to get my hands on her again.
Everly
Bitch boy.
That’s my new nickname for Talon. He thinks he’s too hot to trot, but does he have another thing coming.
I’ll show him hot.
And I’ll make him drool while I do it.
➺Amazon US: https://goo.gl/ExhixE
➺Amazon UK: https://goo.gl/S2rwte
➺Amazon CA: https://goo.gl/mfSdhv
➺Amazon AU: https://goo.gl/nOMxJQ
➺Apple: https://goo.gl/w2o1OG
➺Kobo: https://goo.gl/6V9xA7
➺Barnes and Noble: https://goo.gl/9nNv0M

Ocean by Jo Raven

oceanBLURB
I thought I was a normal kid once. Do normal kids have to beg from door to door for food? Not sure. It wasn’t always that bad, I guess – and then it was. Really f***ing bad.
I tried to protect my younger brother from the fallout. Lied to him about how bad things were.
But it wasn’t enough. And when the accident happened, he blamed me, like everyone else.
I’m guilty of many things. He’s right about that, at least. So d**n guilty I’m sure everyone knows and will call me out on it.
Except they don’t. Nobody does, except my brother.
Not even Kayla, sexy and sweet and coolest girl ever, who keeps buying me coffee and trying to read my future. But my future isn’t in the g*****n cards, or even in my hands. I don’t see a future. I deny fate, but fate has me pinned like a moth and won’t let me walk away.
Won’t let me escape.
And yeah… you know you’re losing grip when the girl you want reads your palm and you’re scared to hell of what she’ll see and of the pain you can tell is coming.
**WARNING** This book is NOT for the faint of heart. If you have issues reading about abuse (physical or mental), then please DO NOT read this book. 18+ for sexual content, language and violence.

(Photo and description from the GoodReads page)
I’m a huge fan of Jo Raven’s. She is one of those authors I one-click immediately, even before reading the premise of the book, just because I can almost guarantee I’ll like it since she’s the one who wrote it. I certainly wasn’t disappointed in this book. I’ve been following the lives of the Inked Brotherhood and Damage Boyz for quite some time now and feel pretty invested in these characters, and Ocean has always been a mystery. There was always something beneath the surface that had me scratching my head in wonderment. Thankfully, we get some answers in Ocean that explain more than I expected.
Per the very apt title of Damage Boyz, Ocean is very notably damaged like the rest of his “brothers” in his workplace. Thinking he is someone unworthy of love, Ocean spends his time wallowing in guilt and self-hatred. He works hard to help his undeserving mother get through her sickness, and he is desperately trying to piece his relationship with his brother, Raine, back together.
Kayla is a unique soul following the sound of a drum only she can hear. She loves fashion and colors, and is very into tarot cards and the answers she hopes to find in them. Kayla doesn’t believe love exists. She’s spent all her life watching her parents go through a loveless marriage and she doesn’t want to end up like them, so rather than take a chance and try, she has stayed away from relationships altogether. That is, until she meets Ocean. There’s just something about him that makes her want to delve beneath the surface and get to know who he is underneath his fun-loving and tattooed exterior.
The two watch each other from afar for some time before one night when Ocean takes Kayla home after having too much to drink and sparks start to fly. Next comes a tumultuous relationship with more ups and downs than a roller coaster. When they realize they’re falling in love with each other, they have a choice to make: stay where it’s safe, but live a sad and lonely life, or risk having their hearts broken, but possibly have the love they’ve always desired.
Ocean is a beautifully flawed love story that will tear at your heart and leave you breathless and rooting for these two people who you can’t help but love. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in the romance/new adult genre with a bit of edge. And if you do read it, be sure to tell me what you think 🙂
Get your copy here!