The Reed Rivers Trilogy by Lauren Rowe

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

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BOOK ONE: Bad Liar

• BLURB •

Swallowing lies has never felt so good.

Reed freaking Rivers. I wouldn’t trust a word out of the arrogant music mogul’s mouth if his gold-plated tongue were notarized. The Man with the Midas Touch would say anything to get me into his bed, and I know it. But that doesn’t mean I don’t want him to succeed.

Indeed, the moment I laid eyes on Reed while he was speaking at an on-campus event I’d crashed, my body physically ached to feel his golden fingers—and tongue—all over me. Unfortunately, though, I can’t give into my powerful craving to jump Reed’s cocky bones. Not until I’ve figured out my best strategy with him . . .

The truth is Reed has something I desperately want. Something my heart desires even more than my body craves one night of delicious fun with the yummiest man alive. Reed assumes he’s running this game of seduction. He thinks he’s a thirty-four-year-old big cat on the prowl, and I’m nothing but a blushing twenty-one-year old field mouse with stars in my eyes.

Yeah . . . no.

As Reed is about to find out, he’s not the only cat on the hunt in this game of cat-and-mouse . . . .

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• MINI REVIEW •

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Ooh okay. This was an interesting introduction to Reed, Georgina, and their wild, whirlwind relationship. Right from the very beginning, you see an instant attraction with these two when they spot each other from across the room. Based on the blurb, I expected Reed to be this cocky manwhore type hero, but what I hadn’t expected was Georgina to be just as bold, and confident about herself. It’s an age-gap romance that certainly grabbed hold of my attention early on with their witty banter, extreme sexual flirty chemistry, and the fact that I was completely on my toes not knowing what I could expect next. One minute they’re getting to know each other on a serious level, next they’re flirting up a storm, and then in a blink of a eye, they’re spitting fire at each other and the level of intensity around them them amps up.

Relatively well-paced storytelling told from dual points of view. You get a gradual scope of Reed’s life— starting from the bottom and all that… as well as Georgina’s aspirations, and how she’s come to be in the present day (wanting to meet Reed Rivers, music mogul).

I very much enjoyed the premise, and I think Rowe has executed giving her readers an introduction to Reed, Georgina and their lives in such a vivid way. By the end of this book I was already basking right alongside Georgina in the glorious world Reed has made for himself. Before Rowe, I hadn’t read much contemporary romance with a backdrop in music/ rock star atmosphere (it was just a sub-genre that never appealed to me), but this was effortless to follow and get invested in. It’s an obvious age-gap romance (but written in a quirky way), with a cinderella-esque trope included.

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BOOK TWO: Beautiful Liar

• BLURB •

The more beautiful the lie, the more painful the truth…

I’ve finally got feisty Georgina right where I want her. In my bed. In my swimming pool. Strapped into the kinky swing hanging in my home gym. And through it all, Georgina’s clearly becoming more and more physically addicted to me. A junkie in constant need of her next fix. Exactly according to plan.

But, to my shock, I’m beginning to think she’s not the only addict here. Any more than she’s the only liar. In fact, as crazy as it sounds, this fiery, relentless woman has been breaking down my walls. Burrowing underneath my skin and slithering her way into my bloodstream.

Indeed, when it comes to the indomitable force of nature that is Georgina Ricci, the gorgeous woman can have anything her heart desires… Well, anything, that is, besides the truth.

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• MINI REVIEW •

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Ooh-wee! This book is my favourite of the three. It had the hearty chunk of the storyline with Reed’s and Georgina’s relationship becoming more than sexual attraction and a summer “hookup”. There was so much drama and so much feels that this book legit had me glued to the pages and wrapped up in seeing how their relationship would play out. A roller coaster storyline, full of suspense and plot twists I had not seen coming. It resulted in some jaw-dropping moments and an ugly cry from me! I kid you not! 🙈

The first book introduces you to Reed, Georgina, and scratches the surface of their lives. This book further shares that by getting to know their families, friends, and in Reed’s case the artists he’s signed onto his music label. The world-building expanded so much from the first book. You’re really in the heart of Reed’s world now. What I liked is that you get to see it through both Reed’s eyes (where it’s become a norm to have the extravagant lifestyle and have the means to attain what you desire), and in Georgina’s (in awe, living the dream, and in some ways, through rose-coloured glasses). There’s a cool dynamic between the two of them that was entertaining to see. The fiery banter hasn’t wavered in this book, if anything it’s heightened the more their relationship grew. You learn a lot more of Reed’s difficult childhood, and how he started his business. But there’s also secrets surrounding him that Georgina is bound to uncover and you’re just as curious to see revealed. This book concluded on a heartbreaking cliffhanger.

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BOOK THREE: Beloved Liar

• BLURB •

Secrets have now been revealed . . . lies uncovered . . . and stubborn walls broken down. Reed always says everyone’s got a price . . . It’s been his mantra for as long as he’s had money in the bank. And now, he’s desperately trying to figure out Georgina’s before it’s too late.

The scorching-hot love story of Reed and Georgina began as a simple game of cat and mouse, a game of seduction between a music mogul and a young, aspiring journalist. In the beginning, both sides considered themselves the hunter. Both sides thought they were running the game. But what unfolded between them was an unexpected bond neither of them saw coming. A once-in-a-lifetime soul connection. Unfortunately, though, betrayals and lies have come between them now, leaving two hearts on the brink of total decimation . . .

Will the truth finally set Reed and Georgina free to find the happiness they both so desperately desire . . . or have they lost their chance at love forever?

• MINI REVIEW •

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I felt like this one was slower-paced storytelling in comparison to the first two books, only because Reed and Georgina have finally resolved their differences and have an understanding of one another’s personalities. Once the secrets were revealed the ball started rolling from there. Things started falling into place not only with their relationship but with careers once the secrets were exposed, right along with any lingering issues from their past were resolved. My only concern whilst reading this book is that at times it felt like things were coming together too easily that it become somewhat predictable..?

Although I must admit this part of the storyline took a direction I didn’t think it would become a focal point for the majority of the book. It almost become more of an investigative plotline resulting in their romance taking a bit of a back burner for a chunk of it. It still had a few swoon-worthy moments but mostly towards the end where Reed and Georgina finally have their relationship down pat. I was happy to see the secondary characters once again added dimension and really gave the world-building some contrast. I also liked the fact that this story was an introduction to the other characters’ stories. I, for one, am I’m eager to move onto certain characters’ books next.

This book was a sweet ending to the trilogy. Yes, when you look back at where their relationship began, things did progress relatively quickly (especially considering Reed wasn’t one for a committed relationship before Georgina), but it still worked. It didn’t feel rushed or “insta-love” with how much had happened in the short span between them. The epilogue also provided longevity in their coupling to make their whirlwind romance authentic. Nothing was left unanswered (which I appreciate), and you’re left knowing that Reed and Georgina are living HEA!

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I have quickly become obsessed with this world Rowe has created. The behind the scenes look at the music business, the artists, their lives in and out of it, and all the drama that’s wrapped around it all. Ugh. Amazing! I read these books after having read my first books of Rowe’s; The Hate-Love Duet, and I knew halfway through that I wanted to read the other characters’ stories especially Reed’s.

This story was vivid, multi-faceted, absorbingly intriguing that I couldn’t put it down until I was finished with the entire trilogy. It’s a contemporary romance story full of heart and such depth. The character developments were phenomenal to see the further I progressed through the books, and the rocky relationship between Reed and Georgina was truly addictive to see play out. I laughed throughout, gasped at times, and even shockingly cried during one heartbreaking scene. A highly recommend read!

OVERALL RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐½

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Read more of my reviews for Lauren Rowe’s books!

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

🎸 The Hate-Love Duet

Book One: Falling Out Of Hate With You by Lauren Rowe

Book Two: Falling Into Love With You by Lauren Rowe


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Happy reading, guys! And as always, catch you in my next one! Xo

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Dangerous Romance Club Spring Box

So… something cool happened a month back. I was lucky enough to score a gig as a rep for the #DangerousRomanceClub! I am officially a rep for their Spring box! 🙌🙌

What with the box coming from the US and me living in Australia, I had already anticipated receiving mine later than most of the other reps. But it’s all good. It’s finally here! Would you check out all the goodies below!? 

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

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Dangerous Romance Club is a seasonal subscription box. It comes in three different sizes (Standard, Grand, and Lux) depending on what your preference and budget is. 

The box pictured is the Spring Standard Box. Here’s a list of what’s included:

  • Tales of Darkness and Sin (paperback)
  • Stolen Hearts (special cover edition paperback)
  • Bookmarks and Author Bookplates
  • Exclusive DRC 1000 piece jigsaw puzzle
  • A pair of #happibox hair ties
  • Bookish quote tote bag

It’s honestly perfect for fans of romance books and amazing to give as a gift! They ship internationally. If you’re interested in grabbing one, they’re still available in store. But you got to hurry — The next seasonal box is coming soon!

Side note: I’ve read both the Tales of Darkness and Sin Anthology and Stolen Hearts, and they are both phenomenal reads! Just one reason as to why I think this box is a gem for any romance book lover! 💗 

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DangerousRomanceClub_Logo

“These are the books they warn you about.”

🌹 Dangerous Romance Club 🌹

Use my discount code to save on your order:

BOOKSOFTHEMUGGLEBORN10

(Discount code valid for both subscriptions and the anytime shop)


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Happy reading, guys! Catch you in my next one! Xo

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Kiss To Forget by Anna B. Doe

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

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— BLURB —

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— MY REVIEW —

This was a much anticipated read for me. I immensely enjoyed the first book in the series, and the way Yasmin and Nixon were first introduced in it gave me such a buzz for their story. They had such electricity between them in the little interaction they had in that book that I could only imagine the level they would reach when it was their turn to be in the forefront.

Kiss To Forget does not disappoint. I was invested and deep within the world of Blairwood University right from the very first chapter. This is only my second book of Doe’s but I feel like I’ve been missing out on all her addictive storylines and effortless writing style.

Omigosh. This book is a gradual build-up of pure excellence. I loved every minute of it. There is such sorrow and heartbreak throughout that it was difficult not to get affected by these characters and their lives. When I think about the emotions I went through reading this book, the one that stands out to me the most is gut-wrenching sadness. I was constantly teary-eyed. I think Doe has scored a touchdown with this one! There’s such layers, world-building, character development, and constant growth within all the relationships. It’s hard to fault when there’s so much depth and substance exhibited.

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Kiss to Forget is now one of my favourite contemporary romances read this year and one I am sure to read over and over again. Yes, I am willing to break out more tears over Nixon and Yasmin!

Steadily paced and told from both their points of view. Nixon and Yasmin may very well be dealing with separate issues in their lives but they work at it together seamlessly. I don’t know how else to say it… it just works! The way they share, listen, and simply provide any kind of support they can is what truly makes their relationship one you can’t help but dreamily sigh over. What started out as an entertaining battle of glares, snarky comments, and heated arguments, gradually turns into a slow realization that they may actually have more in common then they initially thought. It’s a sight to see! 😍 An organically developed relationship formed from understanding and acceptance — to friendship — to blossoming love.

I was instantly enveloped in the world-building that was introduced in the first book — the friendships, the different dynamics, and the overall campus atmosphere. This book just expanded that world into so many more layers and possibilities — not only with the current secondary characters, but with new ones introduced that leaves you just as intrigued. Not only are you excited to read Nixon and Yasmin’s story, but in the back of your mind you’re anticipating the next set of characters to be featured.

But let’s go back to Nixon and Yasmin for a minute here…

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I can’t put into words worthy enough to describe how much chemistry and zing these two have with one another. It didn’t matter if they were throwing hateful words back and forth or if they’re doing a complete 180 and being supportive, no questions asked. Their connection’s just palpable, swoony, and so relatable.

It’ll be tough to top this couple and their relationship off in my books. They physically, emotionally and mentally went through a roller coaster. Whilst there was a shit ton of heartbreak, Doe has wonderfully added enough lightness in between to keep this book from going too dark and depressing.

The dynamic between Nixon and Yasmin is one that goes so well with the enemies to lovers/ hate to love romance trope. It may be a stereotypical story of the popular jock and the overachieving nerd who eventually fall in love, but it damn well works!

But in saying that, these characters are so much more than their status quo. For one thing, Nixon isn’t all about sports, parties and hookups. You’ll see a different side to him here. One that’ll have you falling for him. Hard! But what got to me most was his imperfectness. He has flaws and makes mistakes, but what is so endearing about him is his willingness to try, his reliability, and most importantly his heart. You won’t always agree with his decisions, but you’ll sympathize because you know overall his heart is in the right place.

Yasmin on the other hand comes off as a no-nonsense young woman, who’s ambitious and goal-oriented. She practically has her future all planned out, but what happens when unexpected events get in the way of all those plans? The way Yasmin grows and evolves throughout this journey is just as emotional. You’ll feel for her and her vulnerability.

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It’s amazing how two very different people from different backgrounds, who are dealing with completely different life changing matters, together find peace and common ground.

I can’t tell you guys enough how much this story unexpectedly blew me away. I already found it at such a high level of quality storytelling in the first half of the book, but once things escalated further in the second half, it reached an entirely new level. Everything from the atmosphere, to the relationships, to the build-up of their emotions was intense. You’ll discover relatively early that not everyone comes away from this story unscathed, yet there’s such suspense to see how things will unravel.

Kiss to Forget is new adult contemporary romance, that consists of an uphill journey, complex characters, a spectrum of feels, and one that’ll leave you both exhausted yet soothe at the same time. As Nixon is a college football player, there’s somewhat of a sports (American football) theme in the background but very minimal.

The story mirrors real life situations with certain subject matters that can be triggering for some readers. But it’s also an eye opener to the struggles some people go through in their lives. Beautifully told with all the highs and lows. It may be a work of fiction but I felt like it was portrayed with such realism that you cannot help but connect with these characters and go through their journey right alongside them.

I am all in for the secondary characters too! The support system they’ve created for one another, and the overall vibe of each personality that gives their group such diversity. All I can say is I hope we get a chance to see a lot more of them in the future!

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You will get invested fairly quickly. It’ll break you (even if it’s only a little bit) but it will be well worth it. Have tissues at hand — you’ll need them! I highly recommend this series and especially this book! It can technically be read as standalone but you’ll be doing yourself a favor by reading Kiss To Conquer first to get this world and the characters in all its entirety.

RATING: ♥♥♥♥♥/5

Thank you so much to Anna B. Doe for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💗

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Read my review for Kiss To Conquer!

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Blairwood University (Book One)

📔 Kiss To Conquer by Anna B. Doe


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Sending out good vibes to you guys! Happy reading and as always, catch you in my next one! Xo

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For Love And Honor by Jody Hedlund

Another old review I never posted. 🙈 But better late, than never!

This was one of the very first historical romances I ever read (before I even knew it was considered “historical romance” because at the time I was clueless about sub-genres). But anywho — I borrowed it at my local library on a whim. Glad I did too!

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— BLURB —

Lady Sabine is harboring a skin blemish, one, that if revealed, could cause her to be branded as a witch, put her life in danger, and damage her chances of making a good marriage. After all, what nobleman would want to marry a woman so flawed?

Sir Bennet is returning home to protect his family from an imminent attack by neighboring lords who seek repayment of debts. Without fortune or means to pay those debts, Sir Bennet realizes his only option is to make a marriage match with a wealthy noblewoman. As a man of honor, he loathes the idea of courting a woman for her money, but with time running out for his family’s safety, what other choice does he have?

As Lady Sabine and Sir Bennet are thrust together under dangerous circumstances, will they both be able to learn to trust each other enough to share their deepest secrets? Or will those secrets ultimately lead to their demise?

*** This is Book 3 in the An Uncertain Choice series (aka Noble Knights Series).

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— MY REVIEW —

As mentioned earlier, I borrowed this book from my local library on a whim liking how the blurb sounded. But I hadn’t realized at the time that this was part of a series… and the last book too (check the edit below)! What were the chances?!

(But note to self — Get onto Goodreads first and research before borrowing books!)

I’m usually not a fan of reading books out of order in a series, despite the fact that they can all be read as standalone. I’m obsessive compulsive that way, but I didn’t want it to go to waste before I had to return it so… I read it! 😄

Thank goodness each book in the series has different protagonists with completely separate story lines. The thing that connects each book is that the characters all know each other one way or another.

I feel like I’ve been reading YA fantasy fiction with so much detailed romance (that it should technically be in the NA category), so this was a nice, simple change of pace. This book was quoted as “clean” historical fiction and I absolutely agree. It has the cute, lovey-dovey, hallmark romance going for it that still makes you grin.

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Sabine is a spunky, strong-willed protagonist who has her moments of teenage rebelliousness. But you gotta love her for it. Her lighthearted banter between her grandmother and especially with Sir Bennet is what made this story all the more enjoyable. Yes, they were stuck in the middle of a dangerous battle with secrets up in the air but boy, I couldn’t help but swoon during the scenes where Sabine and Bennet were together and wondering how the other truly feels about.

There’s a little bit of magic and curses wrapped around Sabine that’s affected her ability to trust and open herself up to new people. Things are not what they seem.

An overall nice, steady developing romance with just a little bit of suspense and secrecy thrown in that’ll keep you engaged. There’s a simple little world-building here, enough to keep you picturing castles, pretty dresses, chivalry, and with it — seedy minions! 😜

RATING: ♥♥♥½

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This was an enjoyable read! 👍 If you have a few hours to kill and looking for a quick read, I highly recommend this one! Ooh and the rest of the series too!

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Side Note: After checking Goodreads, there’s apparently a fourth book; A Loyal Heart to be released sometime this year! I hope it does get released, I’m liking this series so far.

**EDIT: Since this is a super old review that I never got around to posting, my guess is the fourth book HAS been released. Although I can’t say for sure as I never did get around to finishing this series (and I hadn’t looked at on Goodreads since). 😅 But I still would recommend it though. It’s clean, adorably sweet, clean romance books. 


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Catch you guys in my next one. Happy reading! Xo

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Finding Cinderella by Colleen Hoover

This was a reaaaally old review (I’m talking years old) that for some unknown reason I never got around to posting. Even this pic from my Instagram is old. Haha. But after a little tweaking here and there, here it is! 😅

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

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— BLURB —

A chance encounter in the dark leads eighteen-year-old Daniel and the girl who stumbles across him to profess their love for each other. But this love comes with conditions: they agree it will only last one hour and it will only be make-believe.

When their hour is up and the girl rushes off like Cinderella, Daniel tries to convince himself that what happened between them only seemed perfect because they were pretending it was perfect. Moments like that with girls like her don’t happen outside of fairytales.

One year and one bad relationship later, his disbelief in insta-love is stripped away the day he meets Six: a girl with a strange name and an even stranger personality. Daniel soon realizes the way he pretended to feel about Cinderella and the way he really feels about Six may not be so different after all. Especially when the two loves of his life end up being one in the same.

Unfortunately for Daniel, finding Cinderella doesn’t guarantee their happily ever after…it only further threatens it.

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— MY REVIEW —

Well apparently I shouldn’t have read this one before reading the rest of the books in the “Hopeless” series. This is how much of a CoHo newbie I am that I didn’t even know that she had book series. I seriously thought all her books were standalone contemporaries…

FindingCinderellaCoverI should’ve checked Goodreads first! Eeep. 😅😅

Anywho — I can’t do much about it now. I already read the book. Haha!

Books that are inspired from, or is a retelling of a fairy tale will always peak my interest. It’s mostly the reason why I decided to start with Finding Cinderella before any of her other books.

The main difference with the classic tale and this modern take is that the protagonist is not “Cinderella” but “Prince Charming” himself — aka Daniel. This is YA fiction and I’d say he’s a pretty typical teen.. with realistic mannerisms and attitude (he actually reminded me of a few guys I used to go to high school with). Picture the cool guy in class who loves to make jokes and who doesn’t seem to be phased by anything — yeah, that’s Daniel… at least on the surface. This is a great example of not to judge a book by its cover (no pun intended). Daniel, is actually a fairly nice, caring person. I loved his relationship with his family and their interactions together. The way they can joke about things with each other and take it lightheartedly, it surprisingly made me laugh out loud.

It’s an enjoyable easy-going read with a steady pace, and I thought the overall story was okay. This is a novella so I wasn’t expecting a deep, long storyline but it could’ve easily have reached that point near the end, unfortunately Daniel and Six’s story wrapped up a little too conveniently for my liking and with I guess you would call “a happily ever after” ending.

All in all, it’s not a bad book to start off with when it comes to Colleen Hoover, but then again… as many people have said all of CoHo’s book are pretty good. She’s not a best selling author for nothing! 😉 I’m looking forward to reading more of her books!

RATING: ♥♥♥½

**EDIT: I just checked Goodreads and this was the first thing that popped up before the synopsis —This novella is a companion novel to the Hopeless series, but can be read as a standalone.” 

— Wooo! I don’t feel too badly for reading this now before the other books! 🙌😜

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Finding Cinderella by Colleen Hoover is FREE to read!

🎁 Download your copy now!

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK  |  Amazon AU



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Catch you all next time. Happy reading, guys! Xo

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The Mistake by Elle Kennedy

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— BLURB —

He’s a player in more ways than one…

College junior John Logan can get any girl he wants. For this hockey star, life is a parade of parties and hook-ups, but behind his killer grins and easygoing charm, he hides growing despair about the dead-end road he’ll be forced to walk after graduation. A sexy encounter with freshman Grace Ivers is just the distraction he needs, but when a thoughtless mistake pushes her away, Logan plans to spend his final year proving to her that he’s worth a second chance.

Now he’s going to need to up his game…

After a less than stellar freshman year, Grace is back at Briar University, older, wiser, and so over the arrogant hockey player she nearly handed her V-card to. She’s not a charity case, and she’s not the quiet butterfly she was when they first hooked up. If Logan expects her to roll over and beg like all his other puck bunnies, he can think again. He wants her back? He’ll have to work for it. This time around, she’ll be the one in the driver’s seat…and she plans on driving him wild.

** Each book in the series can technically be read as standalones but I recommend you read them all, in order.

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OK. Without further ado.. Read on for my thoughts on this hotness of a read! 🙂

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— MY REVIEW —

Ahhh yes another fun and addictive read! I don’t know how I could’ve not known about Elle Kennedy until now. This is only book two in the Off-Campus series and it’s already become one of my fave contemporary romance series’. This is also my second book EVER by Elle and I’m already addicted enough to her style of writing that I’m already looking at her other books.

Now. This is Logan’s story. When I was reading The Deal (book 1) and Logan was introduced as Garrett’s best friend, I was immediately interested in what his deal was, so you can bet I was excited for this one 🙂

It didn’t disappoint. It had the same type of humor, banter and swoony romance as its predecessor.

The only reason why I didn’t give this one full ratings is because I found the issues that Logan was dealing with throughout the book was resolved too abruptly and within the last couple of chapters for that matter. In opinion the conclusion was rushed; considering he was going through these family problems the entire time with the same resolve – where he felt he had no choice in the matter and that was that. Then all of a sudden a convenient solution pops up and bam it’s all fixed.. and just in time for the story to wrap up between Logan and Grace, and his final year in college. Hm.

But other than that I loved reading it! Logan was as swoony as ever. And Grace is another female protagonist I can add to my non-annoying-don’t-want-to-throat-punch list! Yaaaay! She’s now right alongside Hannah.

I tell ya.. if Elle keeps up with these awesome, smart, relatable, independent female characters who don’t go all out bimbo the second a sexy male comes along then I’ll have no choice but to keep up with all the happy-chappy words in my reviews for the rest of the books!

I love the pace. I say this about the first book too in this series. There’s not a single dull, boring part in these books. Besides the oh-so drool worthy romance, humor and banter between the characters – there’s actually a very well written plot that keeps you flipping those pages to see what happens next.

So… If you like the following then I suggest you give this one a try:

  • NA Contemporary
  • Sports Romance
  • Books set in school
  • Banter
  • Detailed (but tasteful) sex scenes
  • Awesome friendships

Please note, I am adding a possible trigger warning for this book. Alcohol abuse (alcoholism) and the effects of it is present. If this is a sensitive subject for you, I suggest skipping this one. 

RATING: ♥♥♥♥/5

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Read my reviews for the books in the Off-Campus series!

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(How amazing do these paperback editions look? I may actually love them more than the sexy abs version)
Book One: The Deal by Elle Kennedy
Book Three: The Score by Elle Kennedy
Book Four: The Goal by Elle Kennedy

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Happy reading, guys! Catch you in my next one! Xo

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The Deal by Elle Kennedy

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— BLURB —

She’s about to make a deal with the college bad boy…

Hannah Wells has finally found someone who turns her on. But while she might be confident in every other area of her life, she’s carting around a full set of baggage when it comes to sex and seduction. If she wants to get her crush’s attention, she’ll have to step out of her comfort zone and make him take notice… even if it means tutoring the annoying, childish, cocky captain of the hockey team in exchange for a pretend date.

…and it’s going to be oh so good.

All Garrett Graham has ever wanted is to play professional hockey after graduation, but his plummeting GPA is threatening everything he’s worked so hard for. If helping a sarcastic brunette make another guy jealous will help him secure his position on the team, he’s all for it. But when one unexpected kiss leads to the wildest sex of both their lives, it doesn’t take long for Garrett to realize that pretend isn’t going to cut it. Now he just has to convince Hannah that the man she wants looks a lot like him.

** Each book in the series can technically be read as standalones but I recommend you read them all, in order.

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

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— MY REVIEW —

Couldn’t fault it! Enjoyed every second of this book. If I didn’t need sleep I would’ve read it in one night. I can’t believe I didn’t read it sooner when I’d had it on my kindle for months.

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A New Adult, contemporary sports romance and it checked all the boxes for me.

– The characters. Well written, developed and most importantly mature thinking adults. For characters who are 20/ 21 years old, there was no annoying, immature mentality when it came down to the nitty gritty.. which was soooo refreshing to see from a NA novel.

– The serious matters. The leads; Hannah and Garrett both have very serious traumatic pasts. There’s dealings of rape, and physical, mental and verbal abuse. Reading this scenes (although heartbreaking) wasn’t too graphically detailed that tend to put some readers off. I also love the fact that both Hannah and Garrett (especially Hannah for me) were strong characters. They didn’t want their pasts to dictate their futures or ruin what dreams they may have for their lives.

– The humor. Big part of why I flew through this book. There was just the right amount of humor in just the right places throughout the story to break tension and to keep it from getting too serious and deep in the issues the characters were dealing with.

– The romance. On point. Garrett may have been a guy who liked to hook up, have fun and was not at all interested in a serious relationship but he was no jerk either (at least not intentionally) towards the women. He’s your stereotypical jock persona on the outside but who’s really sweetheart once you get to know him.. Which Hannah did. The connection between these two even before they became friends was siiiizzling! I love a good banter. LOL.

– The friendships. There were quite a few different friendships going on here but all were amazing. They added more to the story rather than take anything away from the main characters. It’s rare for me to actually love ALL the characters (there’s usually at least one friend who I find craps and ruins things) but amazingly not a single one here!

And finally – the sports to romance ratio. This is a sports romance (specifically college ice hockey). I haven’t read a lot of sports romance but the majority of the ones I’ve read I found the sporting aspect were little to non-existent.. (a few mentions here and there but no real details), and whilst this was not overly heavy on the sports part either, it did have plenty to make you see that Garrett and his friends (who are also his team mates) are very much into hockey.

Like I said earlier – all boxes checked and I couldn’t fault it 🙂 In fact I enjoyed this one so much that I’d downloaded the other 3 books in this series and plan to read them back to back asap!

So, it’s safe to say I would recommend this to all fans of contemporary romance, who don’t mind a smidge of sports in it. Even if this book is technically NA it can absolutely be read and enjoyed by those not in the NA age group ;-p (Hey. I’m not, and I did!)

I should mention before I end this review that be aware there is a serious trigger related issue (sexual abuse) in this book. Not at all graphic. In my opinion, Elle wrote it in a way were it sheds light, gives more awareness, and gives the courage to openly speak about it. But nevertheless, I wanted to give a warning. 

This book was beautifully written and well balanced. Character development and story building was on point. I loved every minute of reading it.

RATING: ♥♥♥♥♥/5

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Read my reviews for the books in the Off-Campus series!

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(How amazing do these paperback editions look? I may actually love them more than the sexy abs version)
Book Two: The Mistake by Elle Kennedy
Book Three: The Score by Elle Kennedy
Book Four: The Goal by Elle Kennedy

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Happy reading, guys! Catch you in my next one! Xo

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Twisted Emotions by Cora Reilly

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— BLURB —

Nino Falcone is genius and monster. As the right hand man and brother of the Capo of the Camorra, his lack of feelings is a blessing, not a curse – until his brother asks him to marry for the sake of the Camorra.

Kiara Vitiello, cousin of the Capo of the New York Famiglia, is chosen to marry Nino Falcone to prevent war with the Camorra, but what she hears about Las Vegas makes her veins pulse with terror. After her father betrayed his Capo and paid with his life, her family thinks marriage is her only chance to bring honor to her name; but only Kiara knows she’s a faulty prize given in return for peace.

A man incapable of emotions and a woman scarred by the past – an arranged marriage with the potential to unite, or destroy…

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— MY REVIEW —

 

Now. Onto my honest and spoiler free review (at least until it’s officially released on Jan 8, then I’ll spill my guts out.. spoilers and all! 😉

Twisted Emotions is the second book in the Camorra Chronicles and centers around the second oldest Falcone brother; Nino. In the first book, he was described as somewhat cold, calculating and the unfeeling one, and honestly his lack of emotion was what had me curious to read his book (more so than the oh-so hot Remo). I just needed to know what made him tick!

I don’t know how Cora manages to get us to fall in love with each one of her mafia men by the time their story is up next.. and what’s more is she always has THE perfect heroine for these powerful, possessive (but protective), swoony bad boys!

Nino was so much more than what I had originally imagined in my mind. Definitely different from the rest – One of a kind, especially in the Mafia world.

Kiarra.. *phew* what a brutal life she’s had already and she’s still such a young woman. All I can say without adding spoilers is.. We couldn’t have asked for a better man than Nino to be by her side! And vice-versa!

I couldn’t read through Twisted Emotions fast enough. I loved seeing bits of him revealed little by little and still being in awe that he is a Falcone!

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With all of Cora’s books, you’ll always see some OMG scenes, a few twists here and there.. and definite “I knew it!!” moments — this was no different. You get to see more of the Falcones as a “family” (dysfunctional be damned!) .. a band of brothers and less of the Mafia side, which don’t get me wrong I loved, but also left me wanting more of the action and violence … I think that’s what was missing and a good chunk of the reason why I couldn’t give this one full ratings. It felt tamer than her other books.

But if you love more romance and less of the bloodiness, killings, Mafia side then I say this one is perfect for you. If you like a balance of both like me, then you’ll still enjoy this one (I promise) but probably not as much as Twisted Loyalties.

Beautifully told. The story flowed easily and it didn’t drag on whatsoever. No skimming through pages, that’s for sure! Plenty of (good and bad) scenes that made my heart stop. I won’t lie.. a few teary moments too. But lots of laughter. I didn’t think I would snort unexpectedly, but I did. I so did! Geez. The dynamics of these brothers.. I swear.. LOL!

I don’t know how I’m going to survive the wait for Twisted Pride! No joke. This is me:

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This book gave little delicious teasers for Remo’s upcoming story and there’s so much anticipation in the air! Cora, this spin-off series is an effing hit!

RATING: ♥♥♥♥/5

Thank you to Cora Reilly for the opportunity to read an advanced copy!

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📚 Read my reviews for the series!

(In reading order)

Book One: Twisted Loyalties by Cora Reilly

Book Three: Twisted Pride by Cora Reilly

Book Four: Twisted Emotions by Cora Reilly

Book Five: Twisted Bonds by Cora Reilly

Book Six: Twisted Hearts by Cora Reilly


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Hope you enjoyed my review! Happy reading, and as always, catch you in my next one! Xo

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Twisted Loyalties by Cora Reilly

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— BLURB —

Fabiano was raised to follow in his father’s footsteps as Consigliere of the Chicago Outfit – until the man abandons him. Left to fend for himself, Fabiano is forced to fight for a place in the mafia world. As a ruthless street fighter, he quickly earns his place as the new Enforcer of the Las Vegas Camorra – a man to fear.

Leona wants to build a decent life for herself, away from her drug-addicted mother. But soon she catches the attention of a dangerous man – Fabiano Scuderi. Staying out of trouble and living a normal life are near impossible with a man like him.
Leona knows she needs to avoid Fabiano, but men like him aren’t easy to shake off. They always get what they want.

Fabiano cares about only one thing: the Camorra.
But his attraction to Leona soon puts his unwavering loyalty to the test. Is Leona worth risking everything he’s fought for, and ultimately his life?

Author’s note: Spin-Off-Series to my Born in Blood Series set in Las Vegas. You don’t have to read the Born in Blood series to understand the book.

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— MY REVIEW —

I LOVED IT! I am so freaking ecstatic that Cora has returned to writing more Mafia romances… and even better decided to write a spin off series off of the ‘Born in Blood’ series 😊 A spinoff that lives up to the original series!

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I didn’t think I would picture Fabiano any other way than as the teenage boy he was from the Born in Blood series.. but boy oh boy that quickly changed just from reading the first two chapters of this book.

I’m curious to see how Fabiano will deal with the Outfit (New York) and the Camorra (Las Vegas) war knowing he’ll be fighting against his sisters side.

Leona was THE perfect partner for Fabiano. They complimented and balanced each other so well. I felt for her.. having such troublesome parents like she did. Every time Fabi was frustrated with her parents and wanted to crack some skulls.. I was like yup! I hear ya. I hear ya, man!

She had a good, strong head on her shoulders. I liked that she was actually a practical thinker with common sense and survival instincts. (You’d be surprised by how many heroines I’ve encountered in Mafia stories where they’re supposedly independent and strong but the minute a guy comes along, they become complete doormats! Ugh). Leona is very much a likable character and honestly has become one of my faves female characters from this series.

Aaaaaaand… I can’t wait to read the rest of the series. I’m already very curious and eager to read Nino and Remo’s stories and seeing the ladies that would totally spin their worlds around! *evil laugh* Bahaha! 😁

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There wasn’t a single part of the book that I didn’t enjoy reading. It flowed so well, the plot was engaging (there was always something going on) and the characters’ mysteriousness had me desperate to know what was going on in their little Camorrista heads! 😅

This has now become one of my faves from Cora! I only wish it was longer. 😜 If you’re into dark mafia romances, then I highly recommend you read this one (and check out the entire Born in Blood series!)

RATING: ♥♥♥♥½

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📚 Read my reviews for the series!

(In reading order)

Book Two: Twisted Emotions by Cora Reilly

Book Three: Twisted Pride by Cora Reilly

Book Four: Twisted Bonds by Cora Reilly

Book Five: Twisted Hearts by Cora Reilly


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Happy reading, guys. Catch you in my next one! Xo

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Disney Treasures February Box

The theme was “Ever After Castle”.

Before I get on with the details I have to point out that I got my box through eBay. By the time I discovered this box it was already sold out. Annnnnd I wasn’t (and still not) subscribed to this Disney sub box at all!

I should also point out that I probably got this box at double (maybe even triple) the original cost. It was a pretty hot item! Everyone and their mother wanted this box! And you’ll see why that is when you see my pics below! 😉

Now, if I’m not mistaken, most… or all of the items in the box are Disney exclusives so they’re not available for sale anywhere else (unless you find them on eBay, like I did).

Ok! Let’s get down to it ↓↓

Starting with the crème de la crème! Why this box is sold out and had people who missed out either crying buckets or scrambling around looking for other people who were selling theirs. I know I would’ve been devastated if I couldn’t get my hands on this one.

Ariel and Eric Funko Pop Vinyl (2 pack)

I’m still hoping they release them separately, or something similar to the public in the future because I know there a tons of Disney fans who’ve been anxiously waiting for Disney Princes’ to be made into funko pops. I’m always petitioning! Hehe 😛

Donald and Daisy Duck pin 

This is one of those fancy-schmancy enamel pins. Haha. I’m sorry I don’t collect a lot of pins, I don’t know what else to describe. But this one is great quality and the… whatcha-ma-call-it — the cover/lid thingy for the pin is shaped like Mickey’s head, which I thought was a nice touch.

Lumiere patch 

This is a pretty standard iron-on patch. Nothing much else to say. It’s nice.

Lady and the Tramp keyring set

This was uber cute! The packing was also on point (good work, Funko!) My sister called dibs when we saw it and I’m happy to give it to her — she likes her keyrings lol.

Minnie Mouse figure

She’s adorable and was nicely painted. It’s no surprise to collectors that Funko are known to have paint issues with their funkos, dorbz and figurines but this one was *thumbs up*!

P.S. Minnie came in a tin container.

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OK. Let’s wrap this review/ unboxing up!

This is my first (and probably last) Disney Treasures box so those who are subscribed will be eye-rolling at this.. buuuuuut I love their packaging box! Lol.

FYI — I’m a packaging collector. If I find it cute, I keep it! 😀

There are 5 items in this box. I don’t know if this is the norm.. or if it depends on the theme but I thought this box could’ve used another item. As much as I looooooove love love love Ariel and Eric (and the ONLY reason why I wanted this box), but when I did unbox  — “This is it..?!?” came to mind – especially for the price and international shipping.

I won’t say “never” to getting another Disney box, especially if they plan on releasing more Disney Princes’ exclusively. But I wish it was a little more affordable.

But all in all — Still love the box! Loved all the items!

RATING: ♥♥♥♥.5/5

Box and shipping costs took half a rating off for me. Like I said I wish it was more affordable. But meh. I know anything shipping from the US to any other country is always expensive (especially if you live on the other side of world like I do).

Anywho — Happy reading. Happy bookish shopping! Catch you in my next one! ♥