Kiss Me First by Anna B. Doe

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Original post from my IG @booksofthemuggleborn

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• BLURB •

Katherine Adams never thought she’d end up in a small town in Texas, but when things start to go south, it’s the perfect place to escape to.

Emmett Santiago, Bluebonnet’s golden boy, never imagined he’d fall so quickly, but one glance at Kate and he’s a goner.

Moving in with Katherine’s aunt her junior year of high school is the safest choice for her sister, and Katherine plans to do everything she can to make Bluebonnet their home. That most definitely doesn’t include flirting with a certain boy, no matter how charming his smile is.

Katherine might not believe in love, but Emmett is determined to win her over. When the sparks start to fly, who’ll be the one to make the first move?

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• MY REVIEW •

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Lé siiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiigh. 😍😍😍

This is just what I needed — a good ol’ wholesome and heart-filled romance story! This may be a prequel in the Blairwood University series and set in Bluebonnet but it gave just as much (if not more) feels as the other books already released. Ugh. I am officially calling Emmett my new favourite hero of this series! As much as I love a bad boy as the next chick, there’s something so special about a young well-mannered, sweet and caring gentleman!

I wholeheartedly believed Emmett whenever he set his mind to something or whenever he made a vow to Kate. He’s a straight-up good guy! There’s just nothing else to say. He’s one of those one in million guys any girl would kill to find… and it just so happens Kate managed to snag him without even trying! Dagnammit! 😄

What I truly love about this series is the groups of characters Doe creates to enhance her stories, and this book was no exception. I don’t think there was a single secondary character who wasn’t a friend or family member of Emmett’s who I didn’t like. They bring such contrast and dynamic to the group and their relationship with not only Emmett but Kate as well. I have to be honest there’s a couple of characters I’m actually hoping would one day get their own book, just so I can see what they’ve gotten up to since the time here. They’re just as developed as the protagonists with side stories of their own that I found just as entertaining to read through.

Whilst Emmett brings in the loyalty, openness, and trusty country boy charm to this story, Kate on the other hand is the new girl and comes off as someone who’s a little guarded and sceptical of trusting people (and rightfully so) — that is until Emmett (along with his best friends) brings her out of her shell and starts getting her to really open up and give Bluebonnet a chance.

There’s nothing to hate about either one of the lead characters. Kate may have her little hang ups but there’s a reason for it, but it no way makes her a disagreeable person. It’s the exact opposite, really, and it’s what makes her human and so relatable.

One thing that constantly popped into my head about this book is it has a lot of heart. I was almost taken aback by how much these characters are willing to go and beyond for those they love. Call it a cliché but this is definitely one of those “love conquers all” type of stories and I was digging it! ❤

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It’s a coming of age, young adult romance that had me teary-eyed practically from start to finish. Doe has successfully gotten me invested in not only Emmett and Kate’s blossoming love story but their own personal stories as well. It evoked such emotion out of me. Ugh. I can’t say enough positive things about this book. I even reread it right after the first time because I was nowhere near ready to close the book (excuse the pun) on Bluebonnet.

Besides the slow-ish burn (but luckily not cruel) romance, you’ll find out the reasons behind Kate and her sister’s move to Bluebonnet. It’s unsuspecting, gave this story more dimension, and keeps you second-guessing the direction in which the story will head. Told from both Emmett and Kate’s points of view, the storytelling is very well-paced and had me hooked with the gradual development of their relationship. With high school drama, family struggles, secret crushes, and new friendships, it honestly gave me such nostalgia. Ahh youth. Hehe.

  • Young Adult Fiction
  • Small Town
  • Sports Romance
  • Contemporary
  • Instant Attraction

There’s so many romance subgenres/ tropes within this storyline yet they all work so well together. Even if you’re not a huge fan of sports (football) in your romance reads, this will still hold your attention. All the relationships in this book whether they were purely platonic or romantic, were believable and in my opinion developed quite organically. It didn’t feel forced or written in to pad the story. There’s hilarious banter, a little fire between our hero/ heroine, and honest to goodness moments throughout that’ll have you happy sighing.

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*singsong voice* Loved it! It’s one of those books you can read over and over again and not get tired of. One of the best small town, teen romances I’ve read in such a long time. I would absolutely recommend not only this book but the rest of the books in this series. Such a great insight to a couple who were not necessarily in the foreground of the Blairwood University series but were always a couple that held my interest because of how easy-going and happy they always seemed within the group. So chuffed we got to see Emmett and Kate’s story. Well deserved and beautifully told!

If you’re looking for a feel good, lighthearted read, you have got to add this one to your reading list. You’ll sure giggle, swoon, tear up, and possibly hold your breath on more than one occasion reading through it. Amazing world-building where you truly feel transported to small town living, a tightknit community, and fresh country air! 😉

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Thank you Anna B. Doe for the opportunity to read an advanced copy! 💛

🔔 Interested in reading Kiss Me First? Grab your copy here: Universal Link

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Read my reviews for the books in Blairwood University!

📔 Kiss To Conquer by Anna B. Doe

📔 Kiss To Forget by Anna B. Doe


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

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Fragile Wings by J.L. Beck & C. Hallman

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•••

• BLURB •

Broken Beginnings Prequel

I thought the world of him. Then he showed the dark monster lurking beneath.

He says he’ll protect me from anything. He doesn’t know the only thing I need protection from is him.

•••

• MY REVIEW •

Lucca and Claire’s story was one that I was looking forward to reading ever since snippets of it were shared in Violent Beginnings. I would have happily waited for the release of Broken Beginnings but when J.L and Cassandra shared the news that a prequel to Lucca’s life when he just started working for Julian (Moretti Crime Family) and how he first met Claire was available (and free mind you), I knew I had to jump onto it first before the Broken Beginnings release.

There’s very little to go on about Lucca so far, but after reading this little story, you’ll definitely have a better understanding of the current situation he’s gotten himself into since we last heard of him in Violent Beginnings, his relationship with Claire, and why she’s so important to him.


“Hey, butterfly.”


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“Claire… My name is Claire.”


Honestly, this was both a juicy and cruel teaser to what’s to come in their full-length novel, because there was once full of heart, understanding, and an innocence to their unique bond and friendship, that easily turned into one of heartbreak and shattered rose-coloured glasses.

This may be short but it already provides readers with both protagonists’ points of view. With Claire being a child, still dependent, and with Lucca just starting out his independency, the dynamic between their mindsets and different mentality are evident — especially during the event the changes everything for both of them.   

You feel for Claire. She’s young and fragile in this prequel, and I can only imagine how she’s turned out over the years since. With the drastic and life-altering events that occurred to her, I’m eager to see how she’s coping with life. Lucca’s new to the mob life, still relatively young himself, but he already had a aura of danger and power surrounding him, I can only imagine it growing ten-fold over the years too. But I’m most looking forward to reading Broken Beginnings to see how Lucca will rectify his relationship with Claire.

  • Age Gap    
  • Next Door Neighbours
  • Dark, Mafia Romance
  • Friends to Enemies to Lovers

Great chemistry created (despite their age gap), amazing world-building introduced, and a storyline I’m already blubbing over with anxiousness to continue in Broken Beginnings!

RATING: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

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FragileWings_FreeTeaser

Read Fragile Wings FREE!

📙 Broken Beginnings Prequel

(Limited time only)

•••

Read my reviews for the previous books set in the Moretti Crime Family world!

Prequel: Stolen Bride by J.L. Beck & C. Hallman

Book One: Savage Beginnings by J.L. Beck & C. Hallman

Book Two: Violent Beginnings by J.L. Beck & C. Hallman

Christmas Novella: Savage Christmas by J.L. Beck & C. Hallman

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Happy New Year! Happy reading and as always, catch you in my next one! Xo

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Stolen Bride by J.L. Beck & C. Hallman

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•••

— BLURB —

Stole in the dead of the night I forged her signature on an unbreakable contract.
She would become my wife.
She would give me a heir.
She would help me destroy her father and get my revenge.

**This is a prequel to Savage Beginnings which is a +125,000 words standalone dark mafia romance novel.**

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— MY REVIEW —

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This was a nice introduction to what’s to come in Savage Beginnings. There’s enough intrigue and mystery in Julian who’s come out of nowhere to take Elena as his.

I’m usually not a fan of prequels (especially if the main novel hasn’t been released yet) because it’s literally a teaser. But there’s some positive aspects to prequels as well — There’s enough to give you a gist of what you could expect in the storyline, between the characters, and you get an idea of what the author (or in this case; authors’) writing style is like.

J.L. Beck and C. Hallman are both new-to-me-authors but after having read this little novella, I’m sold that I’ll have to check out their other collaborations. There’s a nice flow and pace to their storytelling. It’s easy to follow. Right from the beginning I was already curious about Julian’s motive and why he wants Elena so badly. The mood is set and it’s deviously juicy! 

With very little revealed in this novella of how this story will develop (other than the contract), I did gather that Julian is the big bad mafioso that you don’t want to mess with, and Elena is pretty much the innocent young lady who’s going to change everything. Hehe 🤭

Mafia Romance? ✔

Arranged Marriage? ✔

Suspense? ✔ Revenge? ✔ Betrayal? ✔

Chemistry? ✔✔

If any of these elements call out to you, then you might want to add this one to your TBR. 

Sidenote: I’m currently reading an ARC of Savage Beginnings and yes, I highly recommend you read this prequel just before or when Savage Beginnings is released so that you won’t have to wait too long to see the interactions between these two leads. Trust me, you won’t want to wait! 😉      

I normally wouldn’t bother rating a prequel because like I said earlier, it’s an introduction to a book… but for the sake of this mini review (and in conjunction with my upcoming review for Savage Beginnings), I’ll add one in.

RATING: ♥♥♥♥/5

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Read this prequel before the upcoming release of Savage Beginnings!

🎁 Grab your copy of Stolen Bride now!

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK  |  Amazon CA  |  Amazon AU



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Savage Beginnings by J.L. Beck and C. Hallman

Release Date: July 17, 2020

Add to your TBR: Goodreads

📒 Pre-Order your copy NOW!

Amazon US  |  Amazon UK

Amazon CA  |  Amazon AU


•••

See the teasers for Savage Beginnings!

Savage Beginnings Teaser

Savage Beginnings Teaser 2

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

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The Assassin’s Blade by Sarah J. Maas

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— BLURB —

A prequel to the Throne of Glass series. Contains all five novellas.

Celaena Sardothien is Adarlan’s most feared assassin. As part of the Assassin’s Guild, her allegiance is to her master, Arobynn Hamel, yet Celaena listens to no one and trusts only her fellow killer-for-hire, Sam. In these action-packed novellas – together in one edition for the first time – Celaena embarks on five daring missions. They take her from remote islands to hostile deserts, where she fights to liberate slaves and seeks to avenge the tyrannous. But she is acting against Arobynn’s orders and could suffer an unimaginable punishment for such treachery. Will Celaena ever be truly free? Explore the dark underworld of this kick-ass heroine to find out.

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— MY REVIEW —

Before I get on with my review. I have to admit that I read this book back in May but with life getting in the way of fangirling and book blogs, my blog took a backseat the whole of June (hence my lack of recent blogs) but I’m hoping to slowly but surely catch up on my book reviews. Phew! Please bare with me! 💜

I loved this book! I loved reading about where and how Celaena started as an assassin.

Sarah J Maas advised to read this one after Heir of Fire and before Queen of Shadows, so if you read the first three books like I did, you would know Sam (her first and in my opinion true love) had died. So you would think coming into this book you wouldn’t necessarily develop a deep connection with Sam because you would’ve already fallen for Chaol or even Dorian for Celaena. You’ve had three books worth to get a feel for a character and to fall for them but let me tell you, this book…omg this book..totally changed everything. It was such an insight to Celaena’s past and you finally get to see the man Celaena is still hurting over.

I thought when I first read Throne of Glass that I wouldn’t fall in love any other character for Celaena than Chaol himself (then of course that changed with Rowan coming into the picture later on). But after getting a glimpse of Sam here and there throughout the first 3 books, I was really curious to read more about him and why he impacted Celaena’s life so much.

If I didn’t say it before, I’ll say it again. I wish Sam didn’t have to die.

I WISH SAM DID NOT HAVE TO DIE! I would have loved to see more of what could have been between Celaena and him. And see him as character develop more into a man. I was seriously reading the book knowing ok..he’s going to die.. but question is when? You think I would’ve already prepared myself, right?

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Wrong!

It was a weird experience reading it. You could see it coming but then again you couldn’t. Does that make sense? I don’t know how else to say it. I was in panic mode the whole time I was reading it (hoping even),that he would survive! Or at least not die the way he did! 😢

Ohhhh how I loved these novellas. There’s 5 in total but I loved  The Assassin and the Pirate Lord and The Assassin and the Underworld the most.

Besides getting to know the beautiful Sam, you also get the pleasure of knowing how cruel and vindictive Arobynn really is. If you thought he was already a shitty piece of crap from the way Celaena talks about him in TOG, then you’re about to get to know him first hand! Enjoy!

All kidding aside, I really recommend that you guys don’t skip this book. It really does give you insight to why Celaena became the way she did and it really shows how far she’s come from since. And I’ll give you a little hint – Some of the things you read from this book may just come back around in the series (and you wouldn’t want to be lost when you do read on, would you?) 😉

It’s actually one of my favourite books from the series. I would’ve given it full ratings if it weren’t for some of stories being a little slow paced for my liking. I kid you not, if I wasn’t so picky about tiny things like that this would be 5/5 in my opinion. So don’t even take my rating seriously. Lol.

RATING: ♥♥♥♥½

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📚 Read my reviews for the series!

(In reading order)

Book One: Throne Of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Book Two: Crown Of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

Book Three: Heir Of Fire by Sarah J. Maas

Book Four: Queen Of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

Book Five: Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas


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Thank you stopping by! Catch you in my next one! Xo

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