Sunday, 12 March 2017

Suanne Laqueur - Give Me Your Answer True (The Fish Tales #2)

*Contains adult themes (mental health triggers)
**Review by Stacey

"What I feel has no name..." 

Suanne Laqueur's award-winning debut novel The Man I Love thrilled readers with its memorable characters and depth of emotion. Erik Fiskare's journey of love, recovery and forgiveness captivated hearts but also left questions unanswered. Now Daisy Bianco has a chance to tell her story. 

It's been three years since a single lapse of judgment cost Daisy the love of her life. Erik was a conduit to her soul but now he's chosen a path of total disconnection, refusing to speak to her or acknowledge her betrayal. Alone and shattered, Daisy attempts to take responsibility for her actions while building her career as a professional dancer in New York City. But Erik's unforgiving estrangement proves too much for her strength. Plagued by flashbacks to the Lancaster shootings, she falls into a dangerous spiral of self-harm, cutting into her own skin as a means to atone. Only the timely appearance of an old friend, John "Opie" Quillis, saves her from self-destruction and gives her a chance to love again. 

Laqueur skillfully weaves flashbacks to the college years with Daisy's present life. Supported by John's patient affection, she works to separate her evolution as an adult from the unresolved guilt and grief of her youth. As her professional accomplishments lift her out of depression, Daisy learns to hold onto her accountability without letting it become her identity. Years pass and she builds a beautiful life filled with dance and friends. Lovers come and eventually go, leaving her on her own with the old thought: Come back to me. 

In this parallel narrative, Laqueur peels open the beloved characters from The Man I Love to reveal new and complex layers of vulnerability. The scars from the shooting are deep and pervasive within this circle of friends. Like Daisy, they are trying to evolve without being fully resolved. But when questions from the past go unheeded, you alone must find and give your answers true.

After I had read The Man I Love I had a little bit of a hangover as I wanted to know where Daisy & Erik's story went. GMYAT isn't necessarily a sequel, but rather the same story from Daisy's POV instead of Erik's.

Throughout TMIL although Suanne touched upon Daisy I always wondered what had become of her after the shooting and Erik, and wanted to know more. This is exactly what we find out in GMYAT. Why Daisy did what she did. How truly sorry she was for Erik and how much she wanted to fix things.

If you have read TMIL then you will know the basic plot of the story. GMYAT is obviously the same but it is written slightly differently in that it is all from Daisy's POV rather than all of the characters. It does go back & forth between past & present though which I liked as a reminder. 

The first half of the book is set during Daisy's therapy which she began after starting to self harm. I love the relationship between Daisy and her therapist as I myself know it's hard to find someone you connect with. It was such a release to find out exactly how Daisy felt; in TMIL I kind of disliked her after what she did to Erik but I really warmed to her in this.

The second half of the book involves Daisy's relationships and how she just couldn't find "the one" as all she ever really wanted was Erik. 

John said the sweetest thing: "It feels like your darkest time. But I think it's going to be your finest hour."

There is a ten year anniversary reunion, and everyone but Erik attends. This devastates Daisy, and also Erik when he hears it, and Daisy's voice, on the radio.

Brave and beautiful, she ran down the diagonal. Ran to Will. Caught his hand, threw her leg. Rolled over his back and caught him safe.
She came to a stop, poised in arabesque on his shoulder. Waited to hear a shot ring out. 
Only applause.

The story ends in the same context as TMIL in that years later Erik finally gets back in touch with Daisy and they both want to right all of their wrongs. The emotion in GMYAT is yet again incredible and brilliantly written. Suanne's writing is so different to anything I have read before.

"We have nothing but time now," she said. "Come lie down with me. Tell me everything. We'll talk forever."

I believe that you actually don't need to read TMIL before this one as it gives the whole story but in a totally different way; though they are both brilliant books and should definitely both be on your to read list. Once again I had a book hangover when I finished this, and it will be on my recommended reads for a long time. Another definitive five of five stars from me.

You can keep up with Suanne and news about her books on her websiteFacebookTwitter, and Goodreads.

Get your copy of Give Me Your Answer True here (UK) or here (US). Add to your Goodreads TBR here.

I was sent a copy of this book to review. All thoughts & opinions are honest & my own.

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Renea Porter - Criminal Attraction

*Contains adult themes
**Review by Stacey

Keep your friends close and your enemies closer. 

For Rose Hart, Luca Fascinelli is enemy number one. He's the means to an end. She’s been waiting years for this. Everything she has worked for has led up to this point. 


Instead of being the one with the gun, Luca is now facing the barrel of one. Rose has questions and Luca may have the answers. But will it be the answers she’s looking for? 

Will she be able to pull the trigger? Or has Luca snuck his way into her heart?

This story was my introduction into the world of Renea Porter who is a completely new author to me. I can safely say I wasn't disappointed.

Criminal Attraction introduces us to Rose, an assassin who has been given the job of avenging her father's death many years ago; her target being Luca, the son of her father's murderer. Luca is lured in immediately and they soon forge a relationship built on secrets and lies - on Rose's part anyway.

Surely, it's the darkness that resides in both of us that brings us together.

I couldn't help but love Luca, as even though he works for his mob father and is a bad boy, he was so caring and loving towards Rose that I kind of always wanted him to survive! I did love Rose too, she is a proper bad ass who doesn't need a man to take care of her - or does she?

Somehow, you captured my heart and never let go.

I was completely drawn into this dark romance and could barely put it down, it was so gripping wanting to know what was going to happen next. There were many twists and turns along the way too. And hot sex too, always a bonus!

I'm giving it 4.5* as there were a couple of inconsistencies and a few parts felt rushed, but overall a brilliant story that I highly recommend!

You can keep up with Renea and news about her books on her website, Facebook, Twitter, or Goodreads.

Get your copy of Criminal Attraction here (UK) or here (US). Add to your Goodreads TBR here.

I was sent a copy of this book free of charge to review. All thoughts and opinions are honest & my own.

Monday, 20 February 2017

Addison Kline - Black Horse (Breaking Black #1)

*Contains adult themes (violence)
**Review by Susan

There is no sensation, no experience more delicious and tempting to the senses than the taste of forbidden love. The longing… The desire… The unquenched thirst for his touch. He was the man I was never supposed to love. I was supposed to hate him. I suppose part of me did and that is what made the desire so much more intense. He set a fire under my skin that burned white hot with every smoldering glance. He sets my soul ablaze, the slow burn of passion aching in every inch of my body. 

Black Horse. The name haunted my dreams… But regardless of family vendettas, old hurts and contemptuous blood shed, the heart wants what it wants… and mine has a mind of its own and my mind is set on Colton McClain.

His family is known by his father’s nickname: Black Horse. Like one of the four horses flying out of the gates of hell, Tom “Black Horse” McClain ripped my world apart fifteen years ago. I was only seven when I found my mother and father dead in their beds, with Tom McClain standing over them with a blood stained butcher knife. He would have come for me, too, had my brothers not saved me. Seth, my older brother, swooped me up before I had the chance to scream and covered my mouth with his hand.

Tom McClain sought out the services of my father in a time of great need. My father, Nathan Ford, was a highly reputable criminal defense attorney, who took on Tom’s case when he was accused of murdering his wife after she was caught in bed with another man. Tom didn’t have the money to pay for my father’s services, so he took on the case pro bono because he believed in Tom’s innocence. I remember my dad meeting with Tom in his study while my mother looked after Colton, my brothers and I in the kitchen. We had become very close. My brothers once considered Colton their best friend. Not anymore. 

My father got Tom off on a technicality. The prosecution had no reliable witnesses and they weren’t about to rely on the testimony of a five year old boy; Colton himself. He had witnessed the whole ordeal himself. How does Tom repay my father for his kindess and generosity? He murdered him in his sleep. He killed Daddy first. Momma screamed when she saw a man standing over her bed, and that is what woke me. In just my nightgown and socks, I tip-toed down the hall past Timmy, Randy and Seth’s bedrooms and as I entered the doorway to Momma and Daddy’s room, Tom McClain plunged a knife through my mother’s chest. My blood ran cold. I tried to scream but no sound would come out. The next thing I knew, Seth had his hand over my mouth and we hid in the hall closet. Tears streamed down my face as my arms and legs shook. I could her Tom’s boot echo against the hard wood floor of the hall. 

“Sssh… Don’t say a word…” I remember Seth urging. 
The air in the closet was stifling; warm and dead like a coffin. I could hear my brothers’ heavy breathing. Our dog Micah’s frantic barking from the back yard. She knew something was horribly wrong. His bootfalls were getting closer… louder… I took a deep breath and didn’t dare exhale in fear that he would hear me. Somehow, I was able to stifle my tears, but something happened that was out of my control. My thought caught from my sobbing. Tom heard it. The foot steps intensified, beating a path to the closet door. Seth, still firmly holding me, swung around so I was facing the inside of the closet. I focused on the faded floral pattern of the shelf lining that was barely visible in the dark lighting of the closet. I focused on anything but the sound of Tom McClain’s approaching footsteps. Then a loud clicking sound made it impossible. The sound of a shot gun barrel banging into place. He didn’t even bother opening the door. 

Bang! Bang! Then silence.

Out of instinct I jumped into the shelf before me and cowered behind the extra blankets mother kept neatly stored on the shelf. I was stunned that I was still alive, until reality set in. Seth had slumped down against the door of the closet, unrecognizable and motionless. The shotgun blast had obliterated his once handsome face. 
I am supposed to hate Colton McClain, but I can’t. When the police showed up the next day, they found Colton locked in his father’s pick-up a block away, hungry, thirsty and distraught. He was taken away by the state and put in foster care because none of his relatives wanted to have anything to do with the Black Horse name. Black Horse was caught trying to jump the border with my father’s wallet in his pocket and $10,000 in cash in a duffel bag. He traveled alone, having abandoned Colton in his truck back in Oakely. I guess his boy knew too much. When officials apprehended him, they ran my Daddy’s license and discovered that he was found murdered. Tom pleaded insanity, but after a thorough psychiatric evaluation, it was concluded that Tom McClain knew exactly what he was doing. He was sentenced to prison for twenty years, having received a lenient judge; a rarity in the State of Texas.

My surviving brothers Randy and Tim could never know about Colton and I. They’ve had it out for him for years. Bloodlines run thick around here. The sins of the fathers will forever haunt the sons, and women are to stand back and stay out of the way. Well, I have something to say about that… Fuck that, Colton McClain didn’t murder my family. His father did… and he suffered just as much as we did. Now fifteen years after the crime that screwed both of our lives up royally, Black Horse is getting out of jail. Just four days until his release. Colton wants to hide me. He said we can run… Start over somewhere else. My brothers are armed to the teeth and a war is about to break out. I have no intentions of sitting down or running away like a little girl. We cannot hide from this anymore. 

Our past does not own us, and we owe it to our hearts to show the world that love can arise from the darkest of places.

So after just finishing Addison Kline's Shadow series, I went into Black Horse blind (as I like to do!). But the feel of this book was completely different to the previous series.  

Black Horse, an evil man with tremendous power, even after serving jail time for the murder of many innocents, lastly the Fords parents and eldest son, leaving behind Averi who at six years old witnessed the horror and destruction of the devil known as Thomas McClain.

Black Horse is an animal with no regard for human life...Tom McClain is a sociopath with no remorse, no sorrow for what he has done and there is no end to his depravity.

But the one good thing that did come from Thomas McClain was his son, Colt. Embarrassed but living in the shame of his father's callous and evil history faces a hard time from the family of Averi, his one true love.  

The childhood sweethearts, despite the trauma of the pair losing their families through the same man, held strong. Helping one another through their sheer love for one another.  

They started as friends when they were still in diapers, and they remained friends on the deepest level. She was his oldest friend. He was her first love. And they fought against the sins of his father to ensure that they remained one.

I love that Addison's books are broken down into parts. The other books following a similar layout of retelling the present, past and ending. It makes my OORD (occasional obsessive reading disorder) very content ;) giving the reader all the information from not only one perspective, but a grasp of the history surrounding the characters too. Even the victims who were murdered at the hands of the Black Horse.

No one knew his name, they only knew him for his crime. That horse became his accomplice; more durable and trustworthy than any truck or car...Tom McClain and his ebony steed were one and the same. Unwanted creatures with a heart crafted by the devil, himself.  

But the story of love, overdue vengeance, bloodshed and suspense will have you hooked. All the while falling for the love struck pair, Averi and Colton. After all the heartache the pair had endured...they were overdue a happily ever after, right?

They found love in the darkest of places, it saw them through the depths of hell and sailed them into brighter harbours. Despite all of their struggles, all of the bloodshed and heart ache, the heart wants what it wants.

A gripping and edge-of-your-seat incredible book that I devoured in one sitting because I simply couldn't put it down. I can't praise this book enough. The ending already has me desperate to start book two in the Breaking Black series. But for now, please go one click this incredible story!

Our past does not own us, and we owe it to our hearts to show the world that love can arise from the darkest of places. We only had to survive the tale.  

You can keep up with Addison and news about her books on her websiteFacebookTwitter, or Goodreads.

Get your copy of Black Horse here (UK) or here (US). Add to your Goodreads TBR here.


I was sent this book free of charge to review. All thoughts and opinions are honest & my own.

Friday, 17 February 2017

Lisa J Hobman - The Worst Of Me

*Contains adult themes (sexual content)
**Review by Stacey & Susan

Nick Dacre is the epitome of the classic rock star. Women, booze and luxury are handed to him on a daily basis and life is great.

Until another alcohol fuelled sexual encounter forces him to realise that, in spite of his many achievements, his life and the relationships therein have no real meaning.

Now feeling trapped in a life he is expected to continue leading a terrifying event forces him to re-evaluate his future.

The words of a stunning and feisty, Scottish chambermaid, met whilst on tour in London, return to haunt him.

Are her words the key to the drastic changes he needs to make?

Will he find himself but lose his heart in the process?

Stacey's review:

As usual I have to mention the cover here first - I bloody flove this one! Though I usually like to form my own picture from character descriptions this is exactly what I would have imagined Nick to look like - even hotter with his man bun I'm sure ;)

On meeting Nick I thought "Oh just another one of those rock stars" but where Lisa took us with him...incredible. Suffering from anxiety myself I identified with his breakdown and fell for him, there & then.

I love Lisa's books being set in Scotland as I adore the place myself, and having previously visited Gairloch it was wonderful to be transported back, though her descriptive writing of where the book is set helps you form a beautiful picture if you haven't.

Anyway! The story itself is of finding love in the most unexpected places and fighting for that love when you can feel it breaking down - though I did curse at Cat a lot and did a lot of shouting! Complete with a lot of "Nooooooo"'s on Nick's part - I did want to bang their heads together at points! ;)

Gone is such a sad word with such negative connotations, and Cat wondered how the hell she would be able to carry on with life as normal when he was no longer in it. There was no point in trying to keep things going.

I was hooked though and was desperate for them to finally see sense. All I can say is err mah gerd!! That's o m g if you're not familiar with Yorkshire language ;) 5 rockin' *'s!

Susan's review:

The Worst of Me had me questioning if I really wanted to read another rock star romance book, but the cover, I've got to say dragged me in (and I've got to say I'm not normally too fussy on covers!).  

The story of the fledgling and emotionally maxed out Nick Dacre aka random rock star (then to be renamed Randall through some hilarious drunk shenanigans) decides to take a take some time out. With the help of his mother he avoids the press and heads for Scotland. Where else right? *says the Scot in the room!*

Him arriving to this beautiful, secluded little town wearing jeans, cowboy boots and not to mention the Porsche had me loving him already. I just loved this character and his down to earth attitude. 

Yep, Nick, you're pretty much camouflaged.  Blending right in, you t*t.

**insert Susan's hysterical laughter**

Upon meeting 'Cat for short', she would fear for her small local town, its people and chat would become of this rock star barging into her life. But as he pleads his case and explains his need to be away from the spotlight, can she let go of her suspicions and trust him to do what he says?  

"Please?  I need to stay to stay out of the tabloids and I need to just be...left alone," he pleaded with the woman who, to all intents and purposes, was a total stranger and owed him nothing, least of all loyalty.

The pair seemed like chalk and cheese, her being classically trained, he being the rock god...but they do say opposites attract! ;) With Nick getting the time away he needed to reevaluate his time in the band and what he wanted generally, he wouldn't expect to find the answers in a group of young teenage boys. But in helping them, would he turn around the one woman he holds in such high esteem? 

I think the fans and the money brought out the worst in me.  But now...I think I want more.  I want something for me.  Someone for me.  Someone I can trust and who's...real.

For me, it's probably one of my favourites of Lisa J Hobman and I love many of her books. But this for me, struck a chord like her earlier stories when I first started reading indies. It just took me back to the roots of her writing and I adored it. Not to mention one of her steamiest books yet! A stunning page turner that had me at the end before I was ready to let go.  

Stunning five stars for Lisa J Hobman!

You can keep in touch with Lisa and news about her books on her websiteFacebook, Twitter, or Goodreads.

Get your copy of The Worst of Me here (UK) or here (US). Add to your Goodreads TBR here.


We bought a copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are honest & our own.

Sunday, 5 February 2017

LA Cotton - The First Time is the Hardest (Austin Brothers 0.5)

*Review by Susan

Mila Austin and her best friend, Lucas Gennery, made a pact: graduate college, return home, and start the rest of their lives … together. 

One phone call changed everything. 

Now, Mila is back in Radeno, Texas, lost and alone with an ache in her heart eased by the one person she shouldn't get close to—Lucas’s older brother, Ryan.

Grief bonds them, tethers them in a way Mila didn't see coming, and when it's time to let go, she's not sure if she can. 

Because finally letting go of Lucas could mean losing Ryan as well. 

Saying goodbye is never easy, but the first time is the hardest.

From the very first page l just had this feeling I was going to fall in love with this story. And I truly did. Head over heels!

Lucas Gennery was my best friend.
He was supposed to be my everything.
My future. 
And he was gone. 

This absolute tearjerker of a story sees the devastating loss of a best friend, a brother and a much loved son. The impact of that loss is felt by everyone...

I was broken.
Something had changed inside me.  My heart continued to beat, but I felt lifeless.  A living rag doll going through the motions.

But as Mila and Ryan try to navigate their way through their shared grief, they find something between each other that neither expected...

Two people brought together in painful circumstances, finding solace in one another, realising that maybe, just maybe, there was more than losing someone they loved between them.  

A truly amazing and beautiful story of coming to terms with loss, not overcoming grief...(because I don't think anyone ever overcomes losing someone they love) and the future. I truly adored it and read in one sitting....would highly recommend a box of tissues as soon as you one click!   

Five stars doesn't seem enough! 

You can keep up with LA Cotton and news about her books on FacebookTwitter, and Goodreads.

Get your copy of The First Time is the Hardest here (UK) or here (US). Add to your Goodreads TBR here.


I was sent a copy of this book to review. All thoughts and opinions are honest & my own.

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Corinne Michaels - Conviction (Salvation #4)

*Contains adult themes
**Review by Stacey

I fell in love with Liam only to be left shattered into a million pieces. Again. The idea of being without him cripples me but the reality is, he’s gone.

He doesn’t understand and I can’t make him. 

If only he’d see the conviction behind my words—then Liam would still be here.

After finishing Consolation I had such a bad book hangover so it felt like ages until I was able to read this. After Consolation's cliffhanger this begins right where it finished, with Aaron's return home. We find out that he had been taken hostage and it was only because he lost a finger that he was thought to be dead.

With Aaron having fought to keep alive to get back home to his family, where does that leave Natalie & Liam? With Lee in shock and Aaron immediately discovering about their relationship, Liam decides to give the couple space for them to talk and Lee to discover who she wants - though he knows she will go back to him.

"There will never be a day you feel unloved by me. And if you ever should, you have permission to slap me."

Lee is broken, you can feel her pain. The husband she longed to come home, but no longer wants. In fact all three of them are broken as they both want Lee and will fight for her. There is a huge surprise that rocks the whole book, though I did guess it was coming, but it could change everything.

Sometimes you have to wade through the bad to find the good. Life isn't easy, but with Liam by my side, I know I don't have to carry it all on my own. Our love will heal us and lift us up.

As with Consolation, I absolutely adored this and the wait was worth the while. Such a whirlwind of emotions brought to life by Corinne's writing, it made me laugh, gasp, cry. I wanted all of them to have a happy ending (but Dreamboat is mine!) though it might not have been - you will have to read to see! 

I definitely got lost in this book as Corinne completely draws you in and you really get a feel of life in the SEAL world. Another five star read!

You can keep up with Corinne and new about her books on her websiteFacebookTwitter, or Goodreads.

Get your copy of Conviction here (UK) or here (US). Add to your Goodreads TBR here.


I bought a copy of this book and wasn't asked to write this review. All thoughts & opinions are honest & my own.

Other reviews in this series
Consolation (Salvation #3)