Not so Vanilla by Morgan Noel


Five out of Five Stars

The Summary: Bartholomew’s life is perfect. He’s got a job he loves, he’s in a committed relationship with his loving boyfriend who appreciates his neurotic tendencies, social anxiety, and general awkwardness. It’s not ‘white-picket-fence-and-Golden-Retriever’-perfect, but their nice little apartment in the city and the cat they rescued from the shelter come pretty close.
The domestic bliss gets disturbed when his boyfriend Kyle brings a very hot friend from high school into their sanctuary, making both of them wonder if perhaps ‘perfect’ is as relative as good sex.

This book is a sticky and delicious MMM romance that is hot and a little dirty with a surprise for anyone with a sweet tooth.


The Review

I had the opportunity to listen to the Audiobook that was narrated by Piers Ryman. And it was probably the best audio experience I’ve ever had. Piers is British so that kind of made it all kinds of awesome for an American listener.  There was no hesitation during certain scenes and his voice flowed smoothly. Anytime Mew had stuttering, cut off thoughts, it felt right. You could hear the different characters with different inflections of his voice but it wasn’t like he changed his voice. He just spoke softer, or more quickly, or there was a lilt for another character. Hands down, I loved listening to him and plan on snagging anything else he narrates.

That being said, I will give you a few disclaimers. DO NOT LISTEN TO THIS AT WORK! I’m notorious for listening/writing inappropriate things at work, in a car filled with family members, in class. DON’T DO IT! ABORT! Also, you will never, ever, look at donuts in the same way again. I’m pretty sure I blushed the first time I saw donuts at the bakery.

I loved Mew (Bartholomew). He was so awkward, adorable and curious that I couldn’t help but relate to him a bit. I have that stuttering, social anxiety that he had. And I love my cats. Kyle also, so supportive of Mew. Even if he wanted something more you could tell that he was willing to go slow for Mew because he loved him.

Adam *fans self* oh boy. Temptation on legs would be an apt descriptor for him. It was interesting to see him lightly push at Mew’s boundaries but never go over the line. He stopped. There was teasing from Adam and Kyle but it was never too much. Sometimes I have a problem with the teasing and pushing boundaries but this didn’t make me uncomfortable. It felt like a playful push and pull kind of relationship.

This was definitely explicit. But it was a good explicit? It wasn’t overly done where you have the characters cursing every other word or weird phrases like cum gutters. This was well written sex between two/three agreeable parties. Plush I’m pretty sure I was red as a tomato while listening to this at work, but I couldn’t stop myself from listening.  I also gave my coworkers a play by play and they were dying. So that made it so much fun.

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Dark City by Sarah Kay Moll


Four out of Five Stars

The Summary: Jude has a tender heart. Yet he was born into a criminal empire and groomed from childhood to step into his father’s violent footsteps. To survive, he created a second personality. Ras is everything Jude isn’t—cruel, remorseless, and utterly without fear, as incapable of love as Jude is of malice.

But when Ras meets a ruthless socialite, he begins to feel a strange stirring of emotion, a brush of Jude’s passion against his own dark heart. Meanwhile, Jude finds himself with a knife in his hand, the evil in Ras’s soul bleeding into his own.

As the walls between them crumble, they could lose everything—their lovers, their family, and their hold on the dark city itself.

Coming together could break them…or make them whole.

The Review

If you are looking for a dark, gritty, organized crime centered tale of survival then this is a book you definitely need to check out.  In order for Jude to survive Jude’s mind split and created Ras to protect himself from the evil that he faces as the son of the boss of a crime syndicate. The two have always been separate from each other. Jude is kind, loving and compassionate where Ras is animalistic, unafraid to take lives and to hurt those who are a threat to his father’s reign.

As horrible as the events Jude went through to end up with the personality split, I needed to understand how this happened to him and why it was important to survive this way. Jude has gone through hell. He’s still going through hell. I liked the way it the novel was set up. There was the current events happening but then there was also glimpses into the first fractures and splits of Jude’s mind.

What was fascinating was that Jude liked men and Ras was attracted to women. Jude was hopelessly in love with Ash. Ash felt drawn towards someone who had an equally dark past and future in her life, Scarlett Bancroft.

There is so much that I want to tell you and talk about but I don’t want to give any of it away. The violence, the action it was all necessary to move Jude/Ras’s story along.

Eli, Jude’s brother, broke my heart a bit. He fought so hard to be the person his father wanted, but he loved his mother and his brother. Finding out who was behind Ras, I think it broke him.  I hated how this life style tore what had been such a caring family to pieces. But that’s the sad reality of it.

This was more plot centered than romance centered. As soon as I started reading, it was easily to get lost in the world created. No matter how bad it got, I needed to know what happened. The action, the flow, the pacing kept me engaged. I may have also got caught finishing this at work because I hit a spot during my lunch break that I couldn’t wait until I got home to finish it.


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Badlands by Morgan Brice


Five out of Five Stars

The Summary: Medium and clairvoyant Simon Kincaide owns a Myrtle Beach boardwalk shop where he runs ghost tours, holds séances, and offers private psychic readings, making a fresh start after his abilities cost him his lover and his job as a folklore professor. Jaded cop Vic D’Amato saw something supernatural he couldn’t explain during a shootout several years ago in Pittsburgh and relocated to Myrtle Beach to leave the past behind, still skeptical about the paranormal. But when the search for a serial killer hits a dead end, Vic battles his skepticism to ask Simon for help. As the body count rises, Simon’s involvement makes him a target, and a suspect. But Simon can’t say no, even if it costs him his life and heart.

The Review

There’s more than meets the eye when it comes to Simon Kincaide and the employees who work along boardwalk at Myrtle Beach. Some of them have have touches of psychic abilities and they are being targeted by a serial killer dubbed, The Slitter. By chance homicide cop, Vic D’Amato stops in Simon Kincaide’s shop to see if maybe a psychic might give them some type of lead to work off of.

As it turns out, Simon was about to give the cops something to work off of and throughout he continues to get information from ghosts of the victims and bursts of feelings from the killer himself.

The characters had me enthralled with this book. Once I started reading I didn’t want to put it down. I felt like I was on the boardwalk with how vivid the details were. Simon was extremely authentic. He had been through so much before moving to Myrtle Beach and once he landed he didn’t harden himself. He remained authentic, honest and compassionate. He doesn’t push critics to believe him. He just does what it true to himself. I loved that about Simon.

The attraction between the two is instantaneous and real. Even after what Vic went through previously, he still remains cautious and weary of what he can’t prove with evidence. If Vic wouldn’t have acted the way he did, if he would have just fallen into understanding and believing, I would have had a, huh? moment. But this was right.

Their relationship didn’t happen fast and I liked that. I like a bit of a slow burn romance between to characters trying to find their footing together, especially with a serial killer on the loose. I think with their pasts, having someone who understood the unusual and didn’t force the need for ‘normal’ really helped keep them together. There were parts I knew were hard for Vic. And I hurt for both him and Simon.

This was the first book I’ve ready by Morgan Brice. I plan to read Witchbane as soon as I get the chance and to look at all the books written under her other name, Gail Z. Martin.


Go buy this now! You won’t regret it. 

Vanilla Clouds by Roe Horvat


Four out of Five Stars

The Summary: Sex and chocolate are the two pleasures Michał enjoys most in life.

His sex life has been nonexistent for some time, though. After a particularly bad hookup, he keeps mostly to himself. That leaves chocolate. Luckily, he works surrounded by the most delicious, extravagant produce in Gothenburg. Beside his job at the chocolaterie, his main source of excitement is his online friend, Magnus, whom he stubbornly refuses to meet in person.

A customer turns up at the chocolaterie one day—tall, shy, and charming. He could be just the right man. If Michał can step out of his overly safe shell, there might be not only chocolate, but sex, too. Maybe chocolate-flavored sex. And if he’s lucky, maybe even love.

The Review

The first thing that made me immediately want to read this was the fact that the main character who worked in a chocolaterie, but also the online friend. I live a lot of my life online and my inner-romantic has been dying to come across a story like this one.

Michal and Magnus have been talking to each other online for years. They were initially supposed to meet each other but a stomach bug foiled their chances of meeting face to face. Magnus ended up in Germany for work and Michal stayed in Gothenburg. Over the years their friendship grew, flirting occurred and joking mentions of meeting each other happened. When Magnus reaches out with a serious inquiry about meeting again, Michal get scared. Which for any of us with social anxiety, that is scary. You have the perfect friend and what if meeting in person ruins everything? I couldn’t imagine losing someone that special and important to me. So why chance it?

[I was terrified that would have happened to my best friend and I when I drove fourteen hours to finally meet face to face. Side note, we’re still besties. I’ve been to hers another time, we’ve gone to Pittsburgh for hockey and a book signing and she’s going to come down to see me soon.]

Then someone shows up at the chocolaterie that rocks Michal’s world. He’s everything that Michal wants. He’s tall, broad, strong and adorably charming. Michal gives him a chance and their chemistry is intense and hard to resist. I definitely experienced some “You’ve Got Mail” vibes and I freaking loved it.

I feel like Michal’s reaction was honest and fitting. I’d sure be surprised and unsure of how to feel about the situation. I can also see from Magnus’s point of view also. If you love a person you may do anything to get to see them in their element.

I put my romance glasses on and loved every second of this. I was able to read it in one sitting and it left me feeling happier and lighter. I connected with both Michal and Magnus. I was rooting for their relationship to work out with every pages. The explicit scenes were well written. The pacing was good. And the fact that we got messages in message format between the two made me squee with delight. I love see texts and such included. It adds a bit of a personal touch. I just wish this was longer! There was so much more I could see hapenning.

Go buy this now!!

Skating Through by Jennifer Crosgove


Five out of Five Stars

The Summary: There are two things Ben Lewis has convinced himself he can never have at the same time: playing hockey and being openly gay. Hockey is looking to be his only choice. Until now. Being captain of the team and starting his senior year of high school is a lot to handle. Throw in a budding friendship with his crush, Marcus, and Ben is faced with deciding if he’s brave enough to take the next step.

Fortunately, courage can come from unexpected places. His BFF Ryan, new friends, and a voice from the past are great assists to his determination to be true to himself and keep playing the game he loves, but will they be enough?

The Review

Skating Through combines some of my favorite things to read: hockey, young adult, and first times. It was sweet, a bit emotional in parts and extremely fun to read.

Ben Lewis is a high school senior and he’s the captain of the hockey team. He isn’t your average jock either. He’s shy, quiet, closeted and has one best friend Ryan encourages him to get out of his shell. In all manners, like going to parties, finally talking to the boy he’s had a crush on since freshman year and finding a little bit of happy that’s outside of hockey.

As Ben slowly starts to find himself, he starts to open up to more possibilities of how his life can be if he were to come out of the closest. Everything happened in stages. It isn’t like a switch that flipped and everyone knew. He told the people he cared about the most and went from there. There were times I could see how anxious and afraid he was and then I could feel his relief. They were adorable together and every date like scenario made me root more for them.

There was a bit of a side story happening too. Ben found letters from WWII in his Gran’s attic and turns out there was a little bit of a love story there as well. There is so much of me that wishes there were dual storylines happening the entire span of the book. I wanted there to be more letters, to see the war time romance as well. I was extremely intrigued and now I’m looking for more books like that.

I enjoyed being able to see Ben’s journey and how everything would unfold. I read this book in one sitting, about two hours. I couldn’t put it down once I started reading. I loved this and now I want to read everything by Cosgrove.

Get your copy here!

Take A Chance by D. Jackson Leigh


3.5 Stars out of 5

The Summary:   A Pine Cone Romance

Veterinarian Trip Beaumont likes being a big fish in a small pond. There’s hardly an animal she can’t heal or a woman she can’t charm within fifty miles of Pine Cone, Georgia—except for the irritating and elusive new cop who keeps leaving parking tickets on her truck.

Officer Jamie Grant has never liked rule breakers, but she’s especially incensed when she discovers Trip owns the truck that is constantly parked illegally. She’s searched carefully for a quiet, eclectic community to settle down with her drug-sniffing—albeit gastric-challenged—canine partner, Petunia. Instead, she finds herself on a collision course with the woman who stole her college girlfriend and broke her heart after an ill-conceived threesome.

The Review

Interesting fact about the Pine Cone Romance series, each book is written by a different author.  I didn’t know that coming into reading this and now I kind of want to go back and read the first installment to see what I missed. Saying that, these are stand-alone books so don’t worry if you haven’t read the first book in the series. You won’t be lost.

Trip Beaumont definitely has the golden touch when it comes to charming the ladies of Georgia.  She’s managed to charm everyone but the new cop in town who keeps writing tickets every time she parks illegally. She’s pretty much funding the police department with home many fines she’s going to have to pay. Little does Trip know that the cop causing her so much trouble is former college friend, Jamie Grant. Jamie has changed a lot sing Trip last saw her. She joined the army after the attacks on 9/11, ended up getting a job in law enforcement and has a trained drug dog with quite a heart breaking medical history.

At first, Jamie doesn’t want to have anything to do with Trip. Having her heart broken in college and then run the risk of it happening again? No thank you. But slowly they’re drawn together.  Trip is an amazing veterinarian with access to treatment options for Petunia.

Their romance was well paced. They didn’t immediately jump into bed together. If they would have after the backstory we got, I would have been more than a little annoyed. They spent time together and started to understand each other as adults.

There were bits that bothered me. Like how is a town that small full of that many LGBT people? I’d love to find a place like that in real life, especially in the deep south. So please, tell me this secret! There were a lot of clichés and I felt that it added to the bleh factor.  That’s kind of why the rating dropped from a four star to a three-point-five star rating.

It was an easy, quick and decent escape from what my week has been. I’d give it a try if I were you. I’m definitely going back to read the first book in the series to see if it lives up to everyone’s reviews.

Get Your Copy Here!

Nobody Else’s by Nell Iris


Five out of Five Stars

The summary: Mars enters Pisces, giving Beckett Cooper the opportunity to assert himself when it comes to a secret infatuation; his best friend’s younger brother Levi. But can Beckett trust what’s in front of him and be brave enough to take what he wants?

With Venus in Virgo, people usually become more reserved, but Levi Byrne always takes the opposite road of what’s expected of him. So, instead of pulling back, he reaches out for a man he’s been interested in for years; Beckett Cooper.

Is it the celestial bodies aligning to bring together two people destined for each other? Or is it a simple tale of boy meets boy, boy likes boy, and boy wants to kiss boy? Do Beckett and Levi even care, or are they too busy getting to know each other … and falling in love?

The Review

I really enjoyed Nobody Else’s! There’s no other way of putting it.

Beckett Cooper has secretly been attracted to his best friend’s little brother, Levi. Beckett’s self-confidence isn’t good, so when he starts seeing signs that Levi may be interested in him, it’s hard for him to want to act. The fear of rejection and of causing a rift between his best friend is enough to put him on edge. But once Levi opens up more, Beckett can’t resist what he’s being offered. A chance of happiness.

I thoroughly enjoyed the horoscopes at the beginning of each chapter. You will too. I was cracking up laughing at some of them and was so glad they were included. Don’t shy away from this if you’re worried you’ll be immersed in astrology, you won’t. But it is a great addition to each chapter and very fitting to the story line.

Beckett is in no way perfect and I found myself relating to him, very much so. He doesn’t have abs, or large muscles, Beckett is your normal guy who is also Harry Potter geek. (I secretly fist pumped with that because I was like there is hope out there for weirdos like me!) He doesn’t expect people to be attracted to him and puts up with his friends inappropriate comments about LGBT people.

I think what made this shine was how Beckett reacted to Levi and Levi’s interest in him. It felt real and honest. Like I would have had the same worries that Beckett had. How could Levi be attracted to someone like him? Well Levi made it very clear that he loved Beckett exactly the way he was. That is what made me love this so much. How they were with each other, reassuring and honest, but always willing to communicate about their uncertainties.

So, the question is, should you read this? It’s about 20K of awesome and I read it in a quick 45 minutes but it left me feeling happy. So yes. Read it. If you need a quick escape, or a book to keep loaded on your kindle to reread, this is one that I’d recommend for that.

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A Dance for Two by Colette Davison


Four out of Five Stars

The Summary: Adam and Luc used to be close. At least they were before Luc distanced himself from Adam at fourteen, then eventually left home. Adam never got over the sting of betrayal, or the loss of his one-time best friend.

When Luc is invited back home to help get his parents’ failing dance school back on track, Adam isn’t sure he can cope with having his stepbrother back in his life. Especially when he discovers Luc’s decade old secret.

Luc left home because he was sure no one would understand that he had fallen in love with his stepbrother.

Convinced that the years of distance he has put between them will have erased his desire, Luc doesn’t hesitate to return home to help the business that means everything to his parents. Confronted by Adam once more, Luc’s past feelings re-awaken. But will revealing his true feelings to Adam heal the rift between them, or drive them even further apart?

The Review

So if you’ve been following my reviews from the beginning, you know that I will read pretty much anything. That includes step-brothers loving step-brothers. So if that’s not your jam, you should probably back away now or keep reading and let me convince you to read A Dance for Two.

Luc has been in love with his step-brother since they were teenagers. He’s always done the one thing he could think of to keep the boundary of step-brothers between he and Adam. He pushed Adam away, fought his attraction tooth and nail and in the process he lost any kind of relationship he once had with Adam.

When he learns that his parent’s business is in jeopardy and he has the marketing skill that may make a difference, he can’t stay away. Even if Adam is going to be there. They’re antagonistic towards each other. You can see how hurt Adam is by the fact Luc basically left him in the dust but he’s so confused too.

Luc had mastered hiding his feelings for Adam but being this close, with the both of them as adults, it’s hard to stop himself from looking. It’s even worse trying to stop himself from admitting why he caused such a rift between them as teenagers and even now.

I could see the men that Luc and Adam had grown into. Luc business minded and Adam the dancer and instructor. Whenever Adam danced, I could see it in my mind. I loved that it was like watching a movie. Everything in this story was fluid, well paced and offered an escape from the real world for me.

There were moments I could feel the emotions they were going through. It was a rush from discovery, understanding, curiosity and the white hot attraction between them. And their chemistry once they allowed themselves to move past the boundary of step-brothers, it was breathtaking.

The reactions to their relationship, their feelings for each other, made sense. It wasn’t all roses and perfect. They had to want this relationship one hundred percent because of the consequences they were going to be facing.

The relationship between Luc and Adam was a very much a dance for two.

Would I recommend this book to others? Most definitely. How does the author measure up? Well, pay day was Friday so I may have bought a couple of her other books.

Go buy it Here!



The Mage Heir by Kathryn Sommerlot


Four out of Five Stars

The Summary: Traitor: that’s what Tatsu is now. On the run from both Runon and Chayd, Tatsu and Yudai’s only hope for survival is to disappear into the wilds. However, when the siphon’s deadly curse returns, they have no choice but to travel into the desert kingdom of Joesar in search of a cure.

Battling the unforgiving elements of the sands, Tatsu starts to realize that the path towards destroying the siphon may claim Yudai’s life. Time is running out as Nota’s fury—and the siphon’s hunger—begin to spiral wildly beyond their control.

As their options slowly fall away, the only thing Tatsu and Yudai can count on is each other.

The Review

First let me tell you how excited I was to have both books in my possession when I finished The Life Siphon. I immediately grabbed for The Mage Heir and started reading. There was no way I was going to take a break. I needed to know what was going to happen with Yudai and Tatsu as they separated from Alesh and Ral.

The pair are running from Nota but also looking for a way to help Yudai and the way his magic acts as a siphon, stealing the energy and life of the environment around him.  My absolute favorite part of book two was getting to learn more about Yudai as he regained his strength. Yudai was smart, stubborn, a little frustrating at times, but you could honestly see how much he cared for Tatsu.

Their journey into the desert of Joesar is quiet intense. There were times I felt my mouth go dry from the heat and dryness of the sand. It was dangerous and just when you think they catch a break, they don’t. Poor Tatsu, he had thought they had reached safety and instead ended up suffering from the sting of a scorpion. This is where Yudai and Tatsu’s roles are reversed and Yudai has to help take care of Tatsu.

They took care of and pushed each other on wards during their journey. It wasn’t just one man being the savior. They were both saviors and if you didn’t have one of them, I don’t think you would have gotten the result we did at the end of the book.

My heart raced during certain scenes. My chest ached in others because I was worried about what was going to happen. I became invested in seeing this through. I needed them to come out on top. The settings were just as intense and important as they were in The Life Siphon. I would have been disappointed if they weren’t. I’m glad I wasn’t.

Yudai and Tatsu … Alesh and Ral … You can’t really have one with out the other, can you?

Ral was a wonderful surprise. Like I mentioned in my previous review, I knew there was something special about her. She always had the ability to make it through perilous situations, understand what was happening around her and she’d know what was coming. There was a reason for that and to see her character as not just a sister with a disability, but someone just like you and I, that made me particularly happy. She wasn’t disabled. She saw and experienced the world differently than those around her.

Tatsu chose to do what he could for the betterment of the world around him, even though he risked his own life to do so. To be faced with a decision of that magnitude, not once but twice, and he still chose the same, it made me proud to consider him one of my favorites.

Now for the romance, oh boy. Those kisses. There weren’t sex scenes but it wasn’t needed and wouldn’t have worked in this book. But those kisses. Yudai and Tatsu were gorgeous together and in a world of fairy tales, I would say they were made for each other. They just had to find each other.

If you’re a fan of fantasy novels, grab this duology. It is well worth it. I was able to lose myself in this world and when I was done reading the books, I was satisfied. You know how it is, where you just curl up in bed and let out a pleased sigh while you think about what could happen next for Yudai and Tatsu.


Buy it here!

Addict by Matt Doyle


Four out of Five Stars

The Summary: New Hopeland was built to be the centre of the technological age, but like everywhere else, it has its dark side. Assassins, drug dealers and crooked businessmen form a vital part of the city’s make-up, and sometimes, the police are in too deep themselves to be effective. But hey, there are always other options …

For P.I. Cassie Tam, business has been slow. So, when she’s hired to investigate the death of a local VR addict named Eddie Redwood, she thinks it’ll be easy money. All she has to do is prove to the deceased’s sister Lori that the local P.D. were right to call it an accidental overdose. The more she digs though, the more things don’t seem to sit right, and soon, Cassie finds herself knee deep in a murder investigation. But that’s just the start of her problems.

When the case forces Cassie to make contact with her drug dealing ex-girlfriend, Charlie Goldman, she’s left with a whole lot of long buried personal issues to deal with. Then there’s her client. Lori Redwood is a Tech Shifter, someone who uses a metal exoskeleton to roleplay as an animal. Cassie isn’t one to judge, but the Tech Shifting community has always left her a bit nervous. That wouldn’t be a problem if Lori wasn’t fast becoming the first person that she’s been genuinely attracted to since splitting with Charlie. Oh, and then there’s the small matter of the police wanting her to back off the case.

Easy money, huh? Yeah, right.

The Review

It was supposed to be easy money. P.I. Cassie Tam takes on what should be an open and shut case, Eddie Redwood’s accidental overdose and death. He’s a VR addict. It makes sense. All she’d have to prove to Eddie’s sister, Lori, is that his death was exactly what it appeared to be and pocket a pretty penny in the process.

She probably should have known that it wouldn’t work out that way.

As she digs deeper and deeper, Cassie is thrust into more than she asked for. There are assassins, drug dealers, cops who want her to back off, and the world of Tech Shifting. And it’s the first time she’s felt a tug of attraction to anyone since her last breakup. Of course it’d be Lori Redwood, her current client who spends time as a tech shifted.

Right from the first pages, you get Cassie’s sarcasm, snark and wit. Think, Veronica Mars as an adult in a tech heavy world with a touch of crime noire. She doesn’t change who she is for anyone. She is one hundred percent Cassie every minute of the day.  The fact that Bert, who I refuse to spoil you on, is just as snarky as Cassie, it’s perfect.

The tech in this world, it went beyond my expectations. I didn’t think of applying it in the methods that Matt Doyle did in this novel. It was vivid, understandable and just as much of the setting as Cassie’s ratty apartment was.

As for the romance, Cassie and Lori flirt throughout. There was a part of me that was all about that. I’m not a fan of characters just jumping into bed. Cassie’s caution but ability to learn why Lori is a tech shifter was a dynamic you don’t really see explore. Cassie rolled with it and took the time to understand. Towards the end is when you get the most action romance wise.

There were times that I forgot there was a mystery happening. I was more interested in Cassie and Lori. I couldn’t help myself. I’m a sucker for a slow burn. I also did not see the reason behind Eddie Redwood’s death coming. It was a surprise but one I felt there could have been a little more build up to. So it was good that I didn’t see it coming but it felt a little flat to me.

Am I going to read the next book when it comes out? You better believe I am. I thoroughly enjoyed this and I’m glad I got the opportunity to read and review it.

Go get your copy Here!


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