Blog Tour Review: Zyla & Kai by Kristina Forest

Rating: 4 out of 5.

A cute coming-of-age romance with amazing character development

Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond Tours and Kristina Forest for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary ARC and media kit!

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Blog Tour Review: A Wish for Jo by Audrey Davis

Rating: 3 out of 5.

A solid sequel in the enchanting and magical small town we first encountered in A Wish for Jinnie

Foreword

Thank you so much to Rachel at https://www.rachelsrandomresources.com/ and Audrey Davis for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary eARC and blog tour media kit!

Purchase on Amazon (affiliate link): https://amzn.to/3y161Um

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Blog Tour Review: The Edge of Summer by Erica George

Rating: 4 out of 5.

A story about loss, grief, and learning to love.

Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond Tours and Erica George for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary eARC and media kit!

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Blog Tour Review: Before Takeoff by Adi Alsaid

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Unlike anything I’ve read before

Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond Tours and Adi Alsaid for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary eARC and media kit!

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Blog Tour Review: Home Field Advantage by Dahlia Adler

Rating: 3 out of 5.

A coming-of-age story about two queer girls struggling to survive at a not-so-welcoming school.

Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond Tours and Dahlia Adler for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary eARC and media kit!

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Blog Tour Review: Jingle Bells in June by Rosie Green

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Rosie Green is really hitting my emotions hard in these Little Duck Pond Cafe books!

Foreword

Thank you so much to Rachel at https://www.rachelsrandomresources.com/ and Rosie Green for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary eARC and blog tour media kit!

Purchase on Amazon (affiliate link): https://amzn.to/3Q0ZY9m

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Book Review: The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood

Rating: 5 out of 5.

This was a cute and fun romance novel! Definitely recommend if you’re not opposed to the premise of teacher/grad student relationships.

Book CWs: For a list of content/trigger warnings, tropes, and representation found in this book, check out its page on BookTriggerWarnings.com!

Premise (from Goodreads)

As a third-year Ph.D. candidate, Olive Smith doesn’t believe in lasting romantic relationships–but her best friend does, and that’s what got her into this situation. Convincing Anh that Olive is dating and well on her way to a happily ever after was always going to take more than hand-wavy Jedi mind tricks: Scientists require proof. So, like any self-respecting biologist, Olive panics and kisses the first man she sees.

That man is none other than Adam Carlsen, a young hotshot professor–and well-known ass. Which is why Olive is positively floored when Stanford’s reigning lab tyrant agrees to keep her charade a secret and be her fake boyfriend. But when a big science conference goes haywire, putting Olive’s career on the Bunsen burner, Adam surprises her again with his unyielding support and even more unyielding… six-pack abs.

Suddenly their little experiment feels dangerously close to combustion. And Olive discovers that the only thing more complicated than a hypothesis on love is putting her own heart under the microscope.

Purchase this book (affiliate link): Amazon

Review (No Spoilers)

Okay, I 100% feel the need to preface this review by saying I had no idea this was supposed to be a Reylo Fanfic; send help. Once I learned this, I simply proceeded pretending that I hadn’t. I honestly can’t stand the Reylo pairing (or that entire film disaster that was The Rise of Skywalker), so really that was the only way I had a hope of enjoying this book as it’s own product.

The Love Hypothesis is a fake dating workplace (academic) romance with a dash of hate-to-love. I know that the nature of the romance (grad student and tenured professor) will be off putting to some people, but I think the book handled that dynamic fairly well. It was only when there was a second pairing of this type featured in the book that I got a bit weirded out and skeptical about whether or not the author just secretly has a professor kink thing going on. If that kind of thing make you uncomfortable, you might want to give this one a pass for now.

That being said, I really enjoyed the characters in this book and the dynamic between them. As someone who has a Masters in a STEM field and is currently a PhD student (not in STEM), I was a bit worried about how things would be portrayed, but the author herself was a PhD STEM student, so I have no doubt that her experiences helped make the characters and plot realistic.

I will give a bit of a warning that this book does deal with sexism/misogyny and sexual harassment, but I thought Ali Hazelwood did a good job of not pushing that story arc too long or too far. It occurs fairly late and is resolved fairly quickly. I would definitely say the part I most enjoyed about this was the grumpy x sunshine dynamic and the strong friendships portrayed throughout. I admit that I’m still not sure how I feel about Adam’s character, being that he is a bit of a condescending jerkface and I’m not quite sure that he ever really learned this about himself, even by the end of the novel. I’ll just have to be satisfied with my headcanon that he got better.


Disclaimer: Most posts made on this blog will include affiliate links, identified by the phrase (affiliate link). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This comes at no additional cost to you.

#TheWriteReads #BBNYA #BlogTour Review: May Day by Josie Jaffrey

Rating: 4 out of 5.

The adult fantasy/romance that my adult self was looking for.

Thank you so much to The Write Reads and Josie Jaffrey for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary eARC and media kit!

Purchase this book (affiliate link): Amazon

About the Author

Josie is the author of multiple novels and short stories. Most of those are set in the Silverse, a pre- and post-apocalyptic world filled with vampires and zombies.

She is currently working on a range of fantasy and historical fiction projects (both adult and YA). Ultimately, she hopes to be a hybrid author, both traditionally- and self-published.

After finishing her degree in Literae Humaniores (Classics) at the University of Oxford, Josie wasn’t sure what to do with her life.

She slogged through a brief stint working for an investment bank in London during the 2008 credit crunch, then converted to law and qualified as a solicitor specialising in intellectual property. She worked at a law firm for five years before moving to a UK-based international publisher in 2016. Whilst she loved law, in the end she didn’t love it quite as much as writing, which she now does almost full time.

Josie lives in Oxford with her husband and two cats (Sparky and Gussie), who graciously permit human cohabitation in return for regular feeding and cuddles. The resulting cat fluff makes it difficult for Josie to wear black, which is largely why she gave up being a goth. Although the cats are definitely worth it, she still misses her old wardrobe.

Review

Book CWs

For a list of warnings, tropes, and representation for this book, check out its page on BookTriggerWarnings.com.

Premise

If the murderer you’re tracking is a vampire, then you want a vampire detective. Just maybe not this one.

It’s not that Jack Valentine is bad at her job. The youngest member of Oxford’s Seekers has an impressive track record, but she also has an impressive grudge against the local baron, Killian Drake.

When a human turns up dead on May Morning, she’s determined to pin the murder on Drake. The problem is that none of the evidence points to him. Instead, it leads Jack into a web of conspiracy involving the most powerful people in the country, people to whom Jack has no access. But she knows someone who does.

To get to the truth, Jack will have to partner up with her worst enemy. As long as she can keep her cool, Drake will point her to the ringleaders, she’ll find the murderer and no one else will have to die.
Body bags on standby.

May Day is the first book in Josie Jaffrey’s Seekers series, an urban fantasy series set in Oxford, England. 

Review (No Spoilers)

I was so excited to get a chance to read May Day because I missed the first tour that TheWriteReads hosted for it. I’m not sure why I didn’t sign up the first time around because this novel was perfect for my vampire-obsessed self.

My obsession with vampires probably started when I was in middle school and my sister introduced me to Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Following that, I read and watched many vampire stories including Angel, The Vampire Diaries, Twilight, Being Human, and Dracula. I was always a sucker for a good vampire romance. On top of that, I also grew up watching and reading many detective/police/mysteries. So when I saw that May Day is not only a story about vampires but a story about vampire detectives, I knew I had to get my hands on a copy.

May Day follows the story of a queer female vampire detective named Jack Valentine (amazing name btw). Jack and her colleagues are investigating the murder of a human that appears to be supernatural in origin. Instead of having a straightforward investigation however, what Jack gets is a twist and tangle of dark secrets, hidden societies, and dangerous men.

I enjoyed reading this novel a lot, even despite the inclusion of the despised love triangle trope that always manages to pop up in vampire fantasies. The pacing and plot keep you hooked until the very end and the world that Josie Jaffrey has built is well-thought out and interesting. She also did a great job in making the characters relatable and realistic, despite their undead and otherworldly nature. I’m excited to see where this story takes us, especially since the temperature on the hate-to-love romance brewing in this novel seems to slowly be edging its way towards flaming hot.

This tour includes reviews of both book 1 (May Day) and book 2 (Judgement Day) in the Seekers series, so be sure to keep an eye out for all of the amazing reviews being shared! If you’d like to follow along with the rest of the tour, you can find the tour schedule here.


I received this book to read and review as part of the 2021 BBNYA competition and the BBNYA tours organised by the TWR Tour team. All opinions are my own, unbiased and honest.

BBNYA is a yearly competition where Book Bloggers from all over the world read and score books written by indie authors. If you are an author and wish to learn more about the BBNYA competition, you can visit the official website http://www.bbnya.com or twitter @bbnya_official. 

The sign-ups are now open for BBNYA 2022 for authors and panelists. 

Click here to enter your book.
Click here to sign up to be a panelist.


Disclaimer: Most posts made on this blog will include affiliate links, identified by the phrase (affiliate link). As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This comes at no additional cost to you.

Blog Tour Review: Love From Scratch by Kaitlyn Hill

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Incredibly cute new-adult love story with a generous serving of feminism

Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond Tours and Kaitlyn Hill for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary eARC and media kit!

Book Information

Genre: NA Romance
Publishing Date: April 5, 2022

This summer, Reese Camden is trading sweet tea and Southern hospitality for cold brew and crisp coastal air. She’s landed her dream marketing internship at Friends of Flavor, a wildly popular cooking channel in Seattle. The only problem? Benny Beneventi, the relentlessly charming, backwards-baseball-cap-wearing culinary intern–and her main competition for the fall job.

Reese’s plan to keep work a No Feelings Zone crumbles like a day-old muffin when she and Benny are thrown together for a video shoot that goes viral, making them the internet’s newest ship. Audiences are hungry for more, and their bosses at Friends of Flavor are happy to deliver. Soon Reese and Benny are in an all-out food war, churning homemade ice cream, twisting soft pretzels, breaking eggs in an omelet showdown–while hundreds of thousands of viewers watch.

Reese can’t deny the chemistry between her and Benny. But the more their rivalry heats up, the harder it is to keep love on the back burner…

Content and Trigger Warnings

For a list of warnings, tropes, and representation for this book, check out its page on BookTriggerWarnings.com.

About the Author

Kaitlyn Hill is a writer, reader, and sweet tea enthusiast who believes that all the world is not, in fact, a stage, but a romance novel waiting to happen. Her debut novel Love from Scratch comes out 4/5/22 from Delacorte Press/Penguin Random House.

Kaitlyn has a BA in Sociology/Anthropology and German Studies, which means that she can tell you way too much about the Communist Manifesto in Karl Marx’s mother tongue. Before landing on writing, she worked in roles from city government intern in a small German town to Haunted Mansion Maid at Walt Disney World, and most recently, at her hometown public library.

Aside from books, Kaitlyn’s favorite things are giraffes, ABBA, and excessively long naps. She lives with her real life romance hero in Lexington, Kentucky.

Author Links:

Review (no spoilers)

If you’d like to follow along with the rest of the tour, you can find the tour schedule here.

Y’all, this romance novel was so incredibly cute. I was literally grinning my face off at the end when a particular scene happened and that one scene single handedly elevated my rating half a star. I want to start off this review by mentioning that this is pegged as a YA romance novel, but I would definitely say it is a NA romance instead, as I’ve written above. The main characters are both 18 and recent high school graduates. The novel follows these two interns as they’re thrust into a sudden workplace partnership filming cooking videos under a segment titled Amateur Hour. I don’t know about you, but all of that screams new adult to me.

There are so many glorious tropes thrown into this one. We have workplace romance, food themes, and rivals/workplace competition. While there were a few tropes that I could have definitely done without such as workplace misogyny (a particularly taxing trope for me as a queer woman of color in a cis-het white male dominated field) and miscommunication (boo!), the main and supporting characters were just so lovely that I couldn’t really be upset for long.

One of the many things that I think this book handled really well was feminism. Misogyny and sexism in the workplace and on the internet is something that basically every woman can attest to. This book tackles this head on and fights back in a way that I was particularly proud of. We had some fantastic male allies come to bat as well as a healthy dose of women supporting women. While I do think it could become a bit preachy at times and that there could have been a bit more intersectionality with trans/non-binary folks, I thought it was really well handled.

This is definitely a book that I’ll file under comfort reads for future sad times. I see myself revisiting these characters and this story multiple times in my future.

Love From Scratch is out now, so if you’re interested, definitely check out some of the links listed above!

Blog Tour Review: The Matchbreaker Summer by Annie Rains

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

A coming-of-age novel about the important of open communication

Thank you so much to TBR and Beyond Tours and Annie Rains for allowing me to be part of this experience and also providing me with a complimentary eARC and media kit!

Book Information

Genre: YA Contemporary Romance
Publishing Date: April 5, 2022

A pitch-perfect summer camp rom-com about two teens with nothing in common who come together to help break up a romance and unexpectedly start one of their own

Sixteen-year-old Paisley Manning has been attending Camp Seabrook since she was a little girl, when her parents ran it together. For the last few years, since her father’s death, she’s been the one helping her mom run the camp behind the scenes. This year, however, will be Camp Seabrook’s last hurrah because Paisley’s mom has met a guy online and they’re getting married.

Enter Hayden Bennett, who is working alongside Paisley. Paisley and Hayden are like oil and water. She follows the rules, and he seems to live to break them all. But when Hayden catches wind of Paisley’s predicament, he has an idea. If a matchmaker in some computer algorithm caused the issue, a couple of real-life matchbreakers can fix it.

As they work to break up the happy couple, Paisley discovers that maybe Hayden’s not so bad after all. Has she met her own perfect match in her fellow matchbreaker? Underlined is a line of totally addictive romance, thriller, and horror paperback original titles coming to you fast and furious each month. Enjoy everything you want to read the way you want to read it

Content and Trigger Warnings

For a list of warnings, tropes, and representation for this book, check out its page on BookTriggerWarnings.com.

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author Annie Rains lives in a small, coastal North Carolina town, full of lovable folks, scenic downtown areas, and breathtaking nature—similar to the towns she writes about in her books. Annie’s love of reading and writing grabbed hold of her at a young age and never let go. Her first book was published in 2015, and she’s been writing heartfelt, page-turning stories ever since. When Annie isn’t writing, she’s reading from her never-ending TBR stack on her bedside table, taking long walks while plotting her characters’ happy endings, and living out her own happily ever after with her husband, three children, feisty rescue cat, and mischievous dog.

Author Links:

Review (no spoilers)

If you’d like to follow along with the rest of the tour, you can find the tour schedule here.

What should you do when your mom is willing to sacrifice everything you know to move with her new boyfriend? That is the question Paisley Manning finds herself forced to answer when her mom suddenly announces not only that her boyfriend is moving, but also that both of them will be going with him. As a result, the camp that Paisley’s late father helped build–and that Paisley loves–will have to be sold to accommodate the impending move.

It’s her last summer at Camp Seabrook (called Camp Starling throughout the novel) and Paisley decides that the best course of action is to team up with rule-breaker Hayden Bennett in an attempt to break up her mother’s happy relationship. No relationship, no move. What could possibly go wrong?

The Matchbreaker Summer is a young adult coming-of-age story that teaches readers lessons about being true to oneself, the importance of honest communication, and the acceptance of necessary change. This novel was a quick and easy read for me, and the overall plot arcs were pretty darn cute. My main complaint is that I think it was marketed to the wrong audience.

The book is labeled as young adult, with the main characters being 16, but both the writing and the story would have much better fit characters who were younger in age. While I could believe that Hayden and the other camp counselors were 16, Paisley’s character struck me as strangely immature. Her motivations and actions didn’t seem aligned with her age, and I kept finding myself imagining she was around 13 years old instead. There are admittedly several times where her more mature aspects come out, but that also happens with younger teens as well, so I do think her character still would have worked better if she were of younger age.

That being said, I very much appreciated the commitment to emphasizing the importance of open communication to avoid/solve problems. The adults in this book (aside from the select few) were actually very supportive and caring, which is kind of unusual for YA contemporary novels. I wish more books had healthier depictions of adult-teen relationships like this one.

The Matchbreaker Summer was just released yesterday, so if you’re interested, definitely check out some of the links listed above!