Books

Scoob-A-Thon TBR (2021)

Hello friends and fellow book lovers! This is going to be one of two TBRs you’ll be getting within a week so be sure to look out. However, I decided to try and partcipate in two readathons during one week so we’ll see how it goes. Of course, I had to take part in Scoob-A-Thon because my bookish bff Ellyn is the one hosting it.

You can find out all of the info in her post but I’m going to give a quick summary before getting into the books I have picked out.

This round takes place from Oct 25th until October 31st in your own timezone. It’s basically a free-for-all from that point although she did create some prompts to go along with it. I’m actually going to be doubling up so you’ll see a few books that cover multiple prompts but let’s get into the books I plan on reading. 🙂

Scooby-Doo mysteries give the ultimate ominous vibes: Read something spooky

58919169. sy475

The book I chose for this one is one I’m doubling up for another readathon. This was originally set to be published in that Monster Love anthology before it got canceled. Aveda Vice is THAT bitch when it comes to sexy spooky reads so I had to use this one. I honestly don’t know much about this but I know it’ll be spooky in some way.

The Gang is always solving a new mystery: Read a mystery

58040072. sx318

This is a book I know very little about but I saw it on Hoopla as a new release and it seems like a lot of fun. I know that it’s a mystery novel about a woman who can see a text in which another is trying to kill the man she’s with. Then shenanigans ensue and it goes from there so I’m excited to listen to this one.

Mystery Inc. is friend group goals!: Read a found family story

51342413

Keeping with the spookyish theme, I decided to feature Witches of Brooklyn which is a middle-grade graphic novel. However, I saw that this one featured the found family trope so I wanted to read it plus it sounds like a great Halloween read. Plus Ellyn also loves graphics so it’s a clear nod to her. 🙂

Scooby-Doo has been adapted into many different forms since 1969: Read an adaptation

29069374. sx318

The next book I have on my TBR is My Favorite Thing Is Monsters which hasn’t technically been adapted yet. However, the rights for it have been auctioned off so I’m counting it. This book is about a girl living in the 1960s and her obsession with horror, I think?? Either way, it seems like a perfect read for this week.

The Mystery Machine is ICONIC: Read something with green, blue or orange on the cover!

59005617. sy475

The final book I have on my TBR is No Getting Ogre You by Marie Lipscomb. This is a monster romance between an ogre and a woman. I’m just excited to see her pen-name and see how smutty yet strange this book is. Plus this is another double-up for the other readathon I’m doing this week.

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog

Before you finish reading my post, please take the time to look over these attached links to help with Black Lives Matter.

Find me on Twitter & Goodreads

Books

End of The Year TBR (2021)

Hello friends and fellow book lovers. I wanted to come on and write a short little post. This is going to be the books I plan on reading before 2021 ends. In all honesty, I’ve read a lot of books that I’ve had my eye on this year and it’s been a productive reading year for me. However, there are five books I know I want to read before the year ends.

54447129

5. Make It Sweet

This is the final book I have on my five-star predictions list. I know that this book features a hockey player and an actress having a romance plus he’s a baker which sounds amazing. I feel like I should have read this one in the summer but I want to read it before the year ends. This is one I just need to sit down and read already.

52918684. sy475

4. The Dare

The next book I want to read before 2021 ends is The Dare by Elle Kennedy. This is book 4 in the Briar U series by Elle Kennedy. I buddy-read the rest of the series with Ellyn but have yet to actually pick this one up. It’s Conor’s book and I know this book has some questionable plus-sized rep so I’m not actually sure how much I’ll enjoy it but I want to finally complete this series.

25033540

3. Release Me If You Can

The next book I’d like to get to before the end of the year is Release Me If You Can which is the second book in her If You Can series. This romance was hinted at in book 1 so I’m excited to see it happen. I also really want to make an even bigger dent into Christina C Jones’ backlist so this will help. I’m sure I could have sub in any book here but I do plan on reading more from her before 2021 ends.

57558144. sy475

2. With You Forever

The next book is another installment in a series I adore and that’s the Bergman Brothers series by Chloe Liese. This is Rooney and Axel’s story which I’ve been eagerly waiting for. I don’t actually know the rep for this one, but I’m so excited for it. Plus it’s a marriage of convenience so I’m hoping I end up loving it as much as I’ve enjoyed the rest of the series.

59063078. sy475

1. Treble

The final book is another one I’ve been meaning to read and that’s Treble by Rilzy Adams. There’s just something about the way Rilzy Adams writes romance and smut that I adore. Her books are always delightful but this one seems incredibly intriguing. Plus I need to read moer of her backlist, too so it’s a win-win for me.

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog

Before you finish reading my post, please take the time to look over these attached links to help with Black Lives Matter.

Find me on Twitter & Goodreads

Books

Reading Sarah MacLean for the first time + A Short Review

Hello friends and fellow book lovers! If you saw my previous post, you’ll know that I haven’t been feeling the blogging mojo as much lately. With that being said though, I decided to write something up about a new favorite read of mine. However, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to see and how I wanted to structure it.

Instead of writing a review and gushing about everything I loved, I decided to talk about my experience reading an author for the first time. From looking on Goodreads, this is the first book I’ve read by Sarah MacLean and I have to say that I’m honestly extremely impressed.

The book I started with was Sarah MacLean’s latest released which is Bombshell and it’s book 1 in her new series, Hell’s Belles. It’s clear this one is connected to her other series, but I don’t feel like it took away from my understanding. However, I do feel like this book was probably her at her best so I’m a little nervous to dive into her backlist.

56177991. sy475

As for what I thought about her writing style, I enjoyed it for the most part. I do feel like she overexplained a couple of things and went into a bit TOO much detail. It was almost like she kept repeating the same sentences over and over again. I also felt like the pacing was a bit off at times. Sometimes, there would be lots of action, and then it would drag and vice versa.

Nevertheless, I really felt like Bombshell was an incredible story. I loved all of the characters and I especially loved the romance in the story. It’s a sister’s best friend/second-chance romance which was just perfect. I enjoyed the smut and dirty talk from our hero in particular. Overall, the book was a major surprise to me and I can see why it’s been raving about so heavily.

All in all, I feel like Sarah Maclean is an author I’ll be reading more of in the future. However, I do feel like I’m going to have to temper my expectations a bit. Either way, she seems like an author I’ll reach for in the future now.

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog

In a year where I’ve read some duds, this book felt like a breath of fresh air. I’m still not a huge historical romance bitch but she seems like an author I’ll try to keep up with. Before you finish reading my post, please take the time to look over these attached links to help with Black Lives Matter.

Find me on Twitter & Goodreads

Uncategorized

Struggles as a Book Blogger + 2021 in a nutshell

Hello friends and fellow book lovers! To say that this year has been crazy would be an understatement. After 2020, it didn’t seem like things could get any worse, but truly, things have gotten worse. In particular, I’ve really been struggling when it comes to trying to balance everything I have to do and want to do. While it might not seem like a lot for some, 2021 has been an odd year for me.

Starting things off, we were all still wearing masks at my job which only just recently came off within the last six months. Even so, COVID has yet to go away and currently, it’s wreaking havoc on my job. In particular, I knew a few people who are sick and have been out for weeks at this point. However, it’s put a lot more on my plate than I wanted so my book blogging fell to the wayside.

In addition to work mostly taking over, I’m also trying as much as I can to keep up with my freelance writing, reading and spending time with my boyfriend. Those few small pleasures obviously take precedent when I have free time and then everything seems to fall through the cracks.

Then things only seem to pile up and then I never get caught up. As for how this relates to my blog, I end up feeling immense guilt for not posting or for keeping to my normal schedule. That’s not to say that I don’t want to write or don’t have ideas, but rather I don’t feel motivated at the right times. It’s incredibly frustrating as I have so much I want to talk about but never find the right moments to say it.

With that being said, I don’t know what I want to do with my blog. I don’t know if I should just throw my schedule out the window and post when I want, go on hiatus or just completely give up. Honestly if anyone has any tips, tricks or ideas to help, I’d love to know. Until then, I don’t know what’s going to happen with my blog.

Books

5 Halloween romance recommendations

Hello friends and fellow book lovers! For this month’s “5+5” post, I decided to feature 5 Halloween romance recs. I’ll have a TBR with some Halloween romance books on it so I didn’t want to spoil that post. This is going to be a short intro because I have a lot to say about these books and I absolutely love Halloween so let’s get into it.

57091457. sy475

1. Her Soul To Take

The first book I have to recommend is one I just read earlier this month and that’s Her Soul To Take by Harley Laroux. This book doesn’t feature Halloween as the major time of the story but things do happen on Halloween. However, this book is a paranormal romance between a girl and a demon. This book was actually a lot deeper than I thought yet still featured plenty of spice. It does feature a lot of blood, gore and horror elements if that bothers you.

55794006. sy475

2. The Boos and Booze series

This is a book series that a bunch of Black authors released last year on Kindle Unlimited for Halloween. Each series follows a different couple but they’re all set in the same town and they all center around this big Halloween party. While they were all relatively short, the books were incredibly satisfying and sexy so if you’re looking for some steamy yet short Halloween reads, this is a good place to start.

29095423

3. Her Halloween Treat

I know that I’ve recommended this one before, but it’s a delightful brother’s best friend romance set during Halloween. I’m pretty sure that almost all of this book takes place at a secluded cabin which is just delightful. It’s the perfect fall read and I think it’s probably my favorite Halloween romance.

42597921. sy475

4. A Tale of Two Cities: A Halloween Novella

The next Halloween romance rec is part of a series and that’s A Tale Of Two Cities. The series is basically following couples who meet and then live in two different cities so for this one, these two connect during a bachelor-bachelorette weekend trip for Halloween. It’s another super short but incredibly steamy read that really hits the spot.

55772254. sy475

5. Trick/Treat

This is actually a collection of two Halloween stories by Shea Sanders. One is named Trick while the other is named Treat. Both are incredibly short like less than 50 pages but they’re super fun and steamy. This first one is about a disaster blind date turned sexy while the second follows a long-term couple trying to spice things up for each other. I read these super quickly but I adored them and they’re still my favorite Shae Sanders reads.

Books

October 2021 TBR (let’s get spooky!)

Hello friends and fellow book lovers! I must apologize for completely dropping the ball this week since I didn’t end up, planning ahead. However, I decided I wanted to at least mention my October TBR. Even though it’s October 1st, I already finished a book and have plans to hopefully, finish another.

This month is all about reading books I’ve been saving for spooky season. For me, it’s mostly going to be dark romances, paranormal romances or basically anything dark aside from a few other books I’ve been wanting to read. Aside from three secret books, I can share the rest of my picks. 🙂

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog

Happy For Now Members Book Club Picks:

58193892. sy475

1. Stalked By The Kraken

The first book I have on my October TBR is Stalked By The Kraken by Lillian Lark. I’m a member on Happy For Now’s Youtube channel and each month, we buddy-read a book together. This month, we voted and chose two with the first being Stalked By the Kraken which is a monster romance and that’s all I know.

57635178. sy475

2. Headless

The second book we chose was Headless by Aveda Vice which is a polyamorous Sleepy Hollow retelling. Either way, I’m excited for it and I know it’s short but seems like a lot of fun.

Hoemance Book Club Pick:

50648152. sy475

3. A Pizza My Heart

For the Hoemance Book Club I co-host with Ellyn, we’re going to be reading A Pizza My Heart by Teagan Hunter. I’m pretty sure this is a brother’s best friend romance and it’s set at a pizza place. Either way, I’m super excited for it and I already have the audiobook on hold.

Kindle Unlimited TBR:

57922246. sy475

4. What Are The Odds?

This is going to be my first R.M. Virtues read and I’m SO excited for it. I’m pretty sure this is a friends-to-lovers romance and I’m here for it. I just want to read one of heir books already so I’m hyped to see if I enjoy it.

52537313. sy475

5. A Good Demon is Hard To Find

The next read is another paranormal romance and I’m pretty sure it follows a girl who summons a demon to curse her ex. Then the two end up having to fake date, I’m pretty sure. Either way, this cover is everything to me and I’ve been saving it for October so I’m ready.

58012415. sy475

6. The Frock Up

This is an Evie Mitchell book I’ve been meaning to read on KU because the next book is a Halloween romance. Almost all of Evie Mitchell’s books are short and smutty little treats so I just need to buckle down and read this already.

59066449. sy475

7. The Enforcer

The final book I have on my October TBR is The Enforcer by Katrina Jackson. This is book 2 in the Family series by Katrina Jackson and I’m so excited for it. These are all dark mafia-esque romances and I’ve enjoyed the previous books in the series. Plus I love Katrina Jackson so I’m just really excited.

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog

Those are all the books I plan on reading in October. I have lots of books saved up so this is just a small sampling of what I want to get read. As for my blog posts, I’m going to try and get myself motivated so I can get back on track in October but I’ve got a lot going on right now so I’m not making any promises.

Books

Reading 3 books in a new-to-me sub-genre: An Experiment

Hello friends and fellow book lovers! Last month, I decided to branch out to find out if I could find an accidental pregnancy romance I enjoyed. This month, I knew I wanted to do something similar but I decided to read 3 books in a sub-genre I’ve never read before and if I have, I don’t recall.

With that being said, I decided to venture into the “rock star romance” realm and it’s incredibly appropriate as I’ll be at the Jonas Brothers concert when this is posted. For me, I’ve just never seen the appeal in rock star romance as it felt out of my element. I also rarely find rock star romances written by Black authors or featuring Black love but I finally decided to change that.

However, I was a huge fanfiction reader and writer when it came to Jonas Brothers so this should be in my wheelhouse. I wasn’t even thinking about my concert when I did this but here we are, let’s get into the books and my thoughts!

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog
18761654

Book #1: Lick

The first book I started with was Lick by Kylie Scott. This is a rock star romance between David Ferris and Evelyn Thomas who get married in Vegas. It basically follows the fallout of their decision as it was Evelyn’s 21st and she doesn’t really remember anything. This book immediately sucked me in and I couldn’t get enough of it. I loved how sweet their relationship was and slowly watching them fall for each other was so delightful. Plus this one was SUPER steamy and it featured her being a normal person and him being a rock star which was nice.

As for my enjoyment of the trope, I liked this take on it. He was pretty much the typical rock star asshole when we first met him but he eventually opened up and we saw his personality. I especially loved how protective he was of Evelyn like I couldn’t get enough of these two. My only complaint was that I wish it wouldn’t have taken him SO long to warm up to her. 4.5/5 stars

29541818. sy475

Book #2: Idol

Next up is Idol by Kristen Callihan and I can say I can’t wait to read more of her books. This is about Libby and Killian who meet when he passes out on her lawn. They form a friendship while he’s on vacation since he’s staying near her home. Eventually, he convinces her to go on tour with them and it goes from there. This one had a slow start for me, but it did pick up and I ended up really enjoying it.

As for the rock star element, I feel like it was another one he started off as a jerk until we learned more about him and saw what he’d been through. However, I didn’t enjoy how she ended up becoming famous alongside him. Maybe it was just a nitpick but it wasn’t my favorite. I much prefer the non-famous person-rock star pairing but this one was a lot of fun and super steamy. 4/5 stars

57886605. sy475

Book #3: Rhythm

The final book I read during this experiment was Rhythm by Marie Lipscomb. She’s known for writing plus-sized romances so I was excited to see a plus-sized hero who is a rock star. Of all the books, this one felt least like a rock star romance but it did feature him performing in the end which made sense. This is a romance between Beth and Finn who end up staying in a cabin together and it goes from there.

As I said, Finn’s “rock star” status isn’t as in your face as the other son this list but I still enjoyed him. My major complaint about this story was the conflict as it could have been avoided so easily. However, it was super steamy, pretty low-angst and was a fun take on the rock star romance compared to the other two. 4/5 stars

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog

If you couldn’t tell by my ratings, I absolutely adored this sub-genre. I do plan on reading more rock star romances although I want to find some written by non-white authors. Either way, this was a lot of fun and I’m so happy I decided to read these when I did. Hopefully, I have as much fun at my concert as I did reading these. Before you finish reading my post, please take the time to look over these attached links to help with Black Lives Matter.

Find me on Twitter & Goodreads

Books

5 books I’ve #bookedged and ultimately loved

Hello friends and fellow book lovers! Welcome to another week of blog posts and this week, I’m doing a post about books that I’ve #bookedged and ended up really loving. This is actually a term I learned on Bookstagram and it was coined by Amanda from Talk_About_Swoon who has an incredible romance bookstagram.

The entire book is that you wait to read a book until you either absolutely have to or you just wait because you know you’re going to love it.

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog
38326753. sy475

1. From Lukov With Love

The first book that came to mind for me was From Lukov With Love by Mariana Zapata. Since I saw this book on sale, I knew I wanted to get it since it was cheap. However, it’s been sitting on my Kindle since September 27, 2020 and I finally picked it up almost a year ago. This was such an incredible slow-burn romance but I feel like I had a valid reason for waiting since her books are just SO long. Either way, I loved it so I’m annoyed I waited almost a whole year to read it.

51824384

2. Act Your Age, Eve Brown

The next book I’ve #bookedged is Act Your Age, Eve Brown by Talia Hibbert. I’m caught up on her entire backlist so I really wanted to wait on this. I actually waited an entire month after its release until I read it. I ended up loving it so much and I’m sad I waited so long to read it. I am annoyed that I have nothing else of hers left to read, though.

57193235. sy475

3. If She Says Yes

The next book I did this with was If She Says Yes by Tasha L. Harrison. This book is an age-gap interracial romance I used for #SpringIntoLoveBingo, I think? Either way, I waited to read this as it was my last spot on the bingo board. However, I ended up absolutely adoring it. It’s such a beautiful yet sexy story. Ugh, easily one of my biggest bookish regrets is waiting to read this for so long.

51975973. sy475

4. Only When It’s Us

The next book I waited for SO long to read is Only When It’s Us by Chloe Liese. This is a book I waited to read because of the hype and I’m so annoyed with myself. While this isn’t my favorite book of the series, this series quickly became a new favorite. I especially loved how emotional this book was and how adorable the romance was. Definitely more than a little annoyed that I drug my feet so much on this one.

54698575. sy475

5. Make A Scene

The final book that I #bookedged was Make A Scene by Mimi Grace. I saw this cover back when it was released and immediately preordered it. When it finally came out in September 2020, I was so excited to pick it up and then didn’t. Rather, I waited until the start of 2021 to finally pick it up. It ended up being a five-star read so I’m mad I decided to wait but I’m also happy I finally gave in and read it.

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog

Before you finish reading my post, please take the time to look over these attached links to help with Black Lives Matter.

Find me on Twitter & Goodreads

Books

My Rating Scale + How I Rate Books

Hello friends and fellow book lovers! For this week’s Friday post, I was originally going to write a review but I’m going to be honest. Thus far in September, I don’t have a book I’m extremely excited to talk about. It’s sad, but sometimes that happens. Instead, I wanted to talk about my rating scale and how I decide to rate books what I do.

I know that everyone’s rating scale is slightly different so I wanted to write up a key if anyone was ever curious about my feelings and wondering why I rated a book in such a way without explaining myself so let’s get into the first part where I discuss how my rating scale goes.

Let’s start off by saying that I’m not a person who DNFs books usually nor do I give out 1-star reviews unless the book is absolute utter garbage to me so I don’t really have much to say about 1-star books so let’s get right into my 2-star rating.

2-Star Ratings

41945163. sy475

For me, giving a book 2-stars is another rarity but it’s something I’ve become more comfortable with doing. The major reason why I give a book two-stars is that it was marketed as something and it wasn’t. As evidenced by the book above, it was marketed as a romance and focused nothing on the trauma around the 75% mark so I felt like I was purposely tricked into thinking this book was one thing and it wasn’t.

If it wasn’t a bad pitch, it might have been something like a writing style I didn’t jive with, a plot I didn’t like or it just wasn’t a book for me. Either way, the book had at least one thing going for it but I still hated it lmao.

3-Star Ratings

40132776. sy475

Next up are 3-star reads which for me are reads that were average. They weren’t bad but they weren’t great either. They did what the book told me they were supposed to but nothing more in some cases. Another reason I might give a book a 3-star is because I didn’t love the writing, didn’t love the romance or didn’t enjoy a major aspect of the book. For me, this one is tough because a 3-star can mean a lot of different things but generally, I mostly liked the book but didn’t love it and I would recommend it but not very often.

As for my 3.5 star reads, they were slightly better than being a 3 as something tipped them over the edge. However, they definitely aren’t going to be new favorites. Rather, they were more enjoyable than a 3 but weren’t as good as a 4-star.

4-Star Ratings

58699823. sy475

Moving onto four-star reads, this one is another tough one to explain. Usually, my four-star reads are books I loved but don’t see them as a new favorite or something held them back from being a five-star read. Right now, I feel like I’m giving out a lot of four stars since I have a pretty good handle on my reading tastes. A lot of my four-star reads are actually based upon my experience reading as the experience can really make-or-break how I’m going to rate a book.

As for A Lady of Rooksgrave Manor, I thought this book was hot and started off great but it fell a little flat towards the end and the conflict felt incredibly intense. However, I still really enjoyed it so it ended up being a 4-star read instead of a 5.

Then there are my 4.5 star reads which are just slightly better than a 4 but have something holding them back from being a five. Recently, I read Battle Royal by Lucy Parker which I loved but the long chapters and sometimes drawn-out plot made it a 4.5 for me rather than a five.

5-Star Ratings

51824384

Last but certainly not least are my five-star reads. For me, five-stars can mean multiple things as it can be the perfect book for me, a book that I had an enjoyable time reading or a book that made me feel something. Looking back at all my five-stars in 2021, I can say that all of them had great romances and generally made me happy inside. For me, five stars is the ultimate compliments and it might end up being a new favorite of all-time.

Obviously, I had to use a Talia Hibbert book for this and Act Your Age, Eve Brown is the perfect example for me.

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog

Before you finish reading my post, please take the time to look over these attached links to help with Black Lives Matter.

Find me on Twitter & Goodreads

Books

Recommending romances based on your favorite Fear Street movie

Hello friends and fellow book lovers! For this month’s “romance recs based on…” series, I decided to go with a spooky theme. I had another idea I wanted to save for October so this one is getting used for September.

For September, I decided to go with the Fear Street movies on Netflix. These movies are based on R.L. Stine’s Fear Street series and they’ve been everywhere this year. Personally, I marathoned all of them with my boyfriend and it was a lot of fun. In honor of them being so good and unforgettable, I decided to recommend romances based on each part.

Some of these might be a bit far-fetched, but I tried my best. Hopefully, if you loved Fear Street, you can find a romance book that won’t leave you feeling scared when it ends :P.

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog
Fear Street Part One: 1994 (The Weight of the Stars)
36952571

For Part 1, I knew I wanted to feature an f/f romance as Sam and Deena’s relationship is a key part of the story. Additionally, both of these stories feature characters with difficult home lives, mysteries to solve, and lots of angst. Between the two, I’d say that The Weight of the Stars feels a bit more high-stakes. Plus neither really have the romance at the forefront either but rather, it’s just a part of the story. Plus it’s YA and Fear Street follows teenagers, too.

Fear Street Part Two: 1978 (Wonder)
43688305. sy475

The next one is Part 2 which follows Ziggy’s backstory and how she connects to everything. I feel like this one is perfect because these two both feature strong sister relationships, a slightly forbidden romance, lots of action, and an adventure neither of the characters wanted to go on. It also does something new with a somewhat overused story with 80s slasher films for Fear Street and Alice in Wonderland for Wonder.

Fear Street Part Three: 1666 (Budding Romance)
53345432. sy475

The final part in the series is set in 1666 and it’s Sarah Fier’s story which was heavily discussed in the previous installments. Once again, this follows another f/f relationship and I decided to go with one that has similar vibes. Budding Romance does feature older characters with slightly less to lose and less angst, but things are pretty similar. Both stories focus on a somewhat taboo relationship for the time, feature two unique heroines and have satisfying endings but not without the characters going through some trials.

Credit to Pure Imagination Blog

This was just a short fun post that I wanted to do and I ended up getting it done late so here we are. Before you finish reading my post, please take the time to look over these attached links to help with Black Lives Matter.

Find me on Twitter & Goodreads