Books · Reviews

Spoiler-Free Mini-Reviews: Just One More by Jodie Slaughter and Candy Hearts by Erin McLellan

Hello friends and fellow book lovers! For this week’s review, I wanted to talk about two recent books I read and enjoyed. To be honest, both of these books are ones I read in preparation for Valentine’s Day which was last week. However, I’m super excited about them and I think they could work for any time of the year if you didn’t mind the Valentine’s Day setting too much.

If you haven’t read any of my other spoiler-free mini-reviews, then I’ll give you a brief idea of what I do. For each book, I’m going to feature the synopsis, talk about 2 things I enjoyed and one thing I didn’t so let’s get into the books. 🙂

These are my spoiler-free mini-reviews of Just One More by Jodie Slaughter and Candy Hearts (So Over the Holidays #2) by Erin McLellan.

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Tattoo artist Whitney Harris loves Valentine’s Day.

The bright colors, giant hearts, and sugary sweet coating that seems to cover the world on February 14th make her feel all kinds of warm and fuzzy inside. She may be more festive than the average person, but her plans for her long weekend off are pretty tame. As long as she gets to stay in her bed, marathon a ton of romantic movies, and eat at least three of her favorite pink heart cupcakes, she’ll count it as a win. The very last thing she expects is for a handsome stranger to get in the way of that.

The only thing Victor Grant enjoys more than being a barber is Valentine’s Day.

For him, it’s all about the experience of romance and the possibility of forever. The man loves love and he’s determined to be apart of his own great love story someday. Even if that means taking a few losses along the way when things don’t work out. Just when he thinks his Valentine’s Day has turned into a total bust, a beautiful stranger crashes into his life and suddenly makes his long weekend a lot more interesting.

A near-disastrous first meeting brings them together, but with both chemistry and desire running high, one sexy night together doesn’t feel nearly enough like true satisfaction.

If you didn’t know, I plan on reading Jodie Slaughter’s backlist and this was the perfect book to kick off that journey in 2021. It’s a novella set on Valentine’s Day and features such an interesting meet-cute. Before I get into the things I enjoyed, I have to say that Jodie Slaughter is quickly becoming one of my new favorite authors and I can’t wait to read more from her.

As for the two things I liked, I felt like Jodie Slaughter wrote so much chemistry between these two. Every scene between the two of them really leapt off the page and it was clear she had either experienced something similar or just knew how to write such explosive chemistry. Another aspect I really enjoyed was how much these two characters loved Valentine’s Day and they weren’t ashamed of it. Rather, they loved the holiday so much and weren’t afraid to be a little bit cheesy with each other which is irresistible for me.

My main drawback with this one was that I felt like the story almost tried to pack in too much within such a short amount of pages. It felt like Jodie Slaughter kept adding these unnecessary plotlines that could have easily been removed or just given a small amount of attention. Maybe I’m just nit-picky but this book really felt like it suffered from trying to do a little too much. Either way, it was still a lot of fun so I can’t complain much. 4/5 stars

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Mechanic Benji Holiday is so over Valentine’s Day and men who don’t get him. A weekend getaway with friends to escape the holiday hubbub is exactly what he needs. But William O’Dare—a stern and silent nightclub owner with “Be My Valentine” practically stamped on his forehead—throws a wrench into Benji’s plans.

William has spent years focused on his career, and it has cost him friendships and love. Inexperienced in the business of romance, he’s on the hunt for the perfect partner, and he’s armed with specific criteria to guide him. But William didn’t expect a hunky mechanic wrapped in satin and lace to show up on his doorstep.

Unable to resist their attraction, Benji and William agree to be secret fake valentines for the weekend, but secrets have a way of getting out. William gets struck by Cupid’s arrow, and as the weekend winds down, he doesn’t want fake or secret. He wants Benji to be his valentine for real and for keeps.

This was the last book in So Over The Holidays series that I had left to read and honestly, I’m so upset that I don’t have anymore books in this series to enjoy. I can only hope that Erin McLellan decides to write more. Anyways, let’s get into what I enjoyed about Candy Hearts.

One thing I LOVED about this book was the dynamic between Benji and William. These two should not have fit but they somehow did. It was so lovely, watching them adapt to each other and move past the physical aspects of their relationship. I truly had heart eyes every time they moved forward with things other than hooking up. As for the other thing I enjoyed, this book featured such open communication about kinks and openness about their sexual wants/preferences which was just delightful.

As for what I didn’t enjoy, it’s tough to explain as this book didn’t really have a third-act breakup but I didn’t like the conflict between them. It was resolved rather quickly but it felt like it could have been handled differently. Either way, this was another delightful Valentine’s Day read and I’m happy I finally read all the books in this series. 4/5 stars

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog

Those were my two mini-reviews of my Valentine’s Day reads and I have to say I’m pretty happy with how my reads turned out and how my Valentine’s Day turned out. I mean I’m pre-writing this post but I have high hopes. Either way, I hope you found some new V-Day reads for next year or if you want some romantic yet steamy reads which is always a treat. Before you finish reading my post, please take time to look over these attached links to help with Black Lives Matter. 

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