Sunday, 27 July 2014

Review: Reluctantly Royal by Nichole Chase

Title: Reluctantly Royal (Suddenly #3)
Author: Nichole Chase
Release date: August 26th 2014
Publisher: Avon
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Format: eARC
Pages: 193
Source: Edelweiss

Maxwell Jameson Trevor, prince of Lilaria, hates his royal role. Despising the limelight, he takes solace in his art studio and steers clear of any drama. But when one of the newly discovered royals passes away, Maxwell's brother Alex asks him to break the news to the old man's granddaughter. Though he hates to be the bearer of doom and gloom, he doesn't want the poor girl to find out from the tabloids. For Maxwell knows all too well how devastating that could be.

Coming from a broken home and modest background, newly ordained Lady Meredith Thysmer has seized her chance to make a better life for herself and her son. She's not afraid to use her best assets to get what she wants. But when the unpretentious yet devastatingly handsome Max delivers his news, her plans for the future come crashing to a halt. In the challenging days ahead, Max's compassion, humor, and steadfast loyalty to Meredith and her son win her over. She quickly finds herself doing something she swore would never happen again: falling in love. And yet Maxwell still refuses to completely drop his guard. Somehow Meredith's got to find a way to seduce this reluctant royal.

We finally get to read Max's story! He's always intrigued me in the previous two novels, because he really hates being in the spotlight and I always wondered why, or how it affected him. Well, now we get to see how things play out when Max falls for a girl who's likely to drag him out into the media glare again.

Max is sent to tell Meredith about the death of her grandfather, which means she needs to return to Lilaria and take care of things, being newly ordained. Meredith's afraid of staying in Lilaria with her drunk of a father, since she has her six-year-old son, Marty, to take care of. As Meredith's life falls apart around her, Max is there to support her however she wants it. And both of them end up falling for each other - something they never thought would happen, Meredith still hurting from Marty's dad leaving and Max being the player he is.

I have to admit I didn't particularly like Meredith through most of the novel. She just kind of bugged me most of the time, and I can't quite put my finger on why. I guess it's partly the way she uses people (and Max), and partly her inability to do anything besides stand there as her father insults or hits her. Grow a pair, Meredith! You have a son to look out for.

Max, of course, I adored. He's easy to relate to, possibly the easiest of the three siblings since he seems more detached from all the royal happenings around him. I liked what we saw of him in the previous novels, but we get to see so many sides of him in this! I think my favourite was his interaction with his family - old and new. Especially with Sam, who by the way is pregnant with Alex's child! If you haven't read Suddenly Royal you won't know who I'm talking about, of course. But we do get to see quite a bit of Sam in this book. Max is incredibly protective of her, and I loved seeing how concerned he is about her and how much he's accepted her into the family. It was also amazing seeing how he is with Alex and Cathy, his sister. Max is also really protective of Meredith, even going out of his way to make her and Marty comfortable. He has a really big heart.

Marty, Meredith's son, is another adorable addition to the novel. He and Max hit it off pretty well, bonding over video games and fishing (sort of). It's obvious that Max is great with him, and they're both so comfortable around each other from the start. I loved seeing their interaction too. Of course at some point I'll have to mention Max and Meredith together, so here goes. Since I didn't really like Meredith and couldn't connect with her, I wasn't a huge fan of the romance. I mostly looked forward to Max interacting with Marty or Sam or basically anyone but Meredith. They really do care for each other, even though it takes them a while to recognize and accept that.

Reluctantly Royal is another intriguing insight into the royal family of Lilaria, and I'm sad to see that it was the last. I've loved seeing through Max's eyes, as well as his siblings before that. Also, the epilogue of this book is kind of perfect. It's a great end to the series!

*Thank you to HarperCollins for providing me with an eARC for review*

Rating: 3/5

Friday, 25 July 2014

Review: Get Even by Gretchen McNeil

Title: Get Even (Don't Get Mad #1)
Author: Gretchen McNeil

Release date: September 16th 2014
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Genre: Young Adult Thriller
Format: eARC
Pages: 291

Source: Edelweiss

The Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little Liars in Gretchen McNeil’s witty and suspenseful novel about four disparate girls who join forces to take revenge on high school bullies and create dangerous enemies for themselves in the process.

Bree, Olivia, Kitty, and Margot have nothing in common—at least that’s what they’d like the students and administrators of their elite private school to think. The girls have different goals, different friends, and different lives, but they share one very big secret: They’re all members of Don’t Get Mad, a secret society that anonymously takes revenge on the school’s bullies, mean girls, and tyrannical teachers.

When their latest target ends up dead with a blood-soaked “DGM” card in his hands, the girls realize that they’re not as anonymous as they thought—and that someone now wants revenge on them. Soon the clues are piling up, the police are closing in . . . and everyone has something to lose.

Gretchen McNeil does it again! I've adored every book I've read by her, and Get Even is no exception. I wasn't sure if I'd like it initially because I'm not into the Pretty Little Liars kind of thing. Haven't read them, though. Anyway, as soon as I began this I knew it would be amazing. It's got the perfect amount of mystery, thriller, action, and romance.

This book follows four girls - Bree, Olivia, Kitty and Margot. All completely different, but these four created Don't Get Mad, an organization that doles out justice to the school bullies, students and teachers alike. They've never been caught, but when one of their targets ends up dead with the letters DGM at the crime scene, they know they're in danger. Especially when all four receive anonymous letters from someone who clearly knows everything about each of them. And this person is very likely the killer. Can the four of them find out who it is before it's too late?

Out of the four protagonists, Bree is clearly my favourite. She's the blunt, daredevil, carefree one. Bree does what she likes, and even tries to get into trouble to piss off her dad, a state senator. Her parts were the best to read, I think, because she's confident and strong-willed, and in a way she embodies something all of us want to be.

Olivia is the popular one, hanging out with the mean crowd, most of which are or could be DGM targets. She's an amazing actress, and is the lead of most theatre productions. One in particular, Twelfth Night, plays a key role in this book. Why? Because every freaking character in this book is part of the production in some way or the other. Yeah, that's right! Very soap opera-like. But it works.

Margot and Kitty, I didn't like so much. Margot's got kind of an inferiority complex on account of how she used to look in junior high, and there was a suicide attempt in her past. She's trying to move on, though. Kitty is the student body vice president and the unofficial leader of DGM. Honestly, she didn't seem very leader-like to me. In or out of DGM.

There are a lot more characters we get to know - some are targets, some are suspects, and some are the love interests. There's definitely lots of teen drama going on in that aspect, and so many things are fairly ridiculous, like in a soap opera. I really liked John, Bree's best friend. He plays a big part in everything that's going on, and he has his own thing in the background as well. A music thing, to be more precise. He's in a band, and I tend to always like musicians best.

I'm not too sure about the other guys yet, and frankly not entirely sure of John either. But I do like him. And I don't know if I like the others yet. There are so many characters to keep track of, though I didn't find it confusing at all despite the fact that there's always something happening.

The plot is very unpredictable, and thickens as the book goes on. I hated that it ends on a cliffhanger! Especially since we don't get any proper answers in this book. Which basically means I'm now dying for the next one. I would do anything to get my hands on it right now! Gretchen's definitely got me hooked on this one.

*Thank you to HarperCollins for providing me with an eARC for review*

Rating: 4.5/5

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Waiting on Wednesday #76: Captive

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine, which spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

My pick for this week's WoW is...


Captive by Aimée Carter


Title: Captive (The Blackcoat Rebellion #2)
Author: Aimée Carter

Release date: November 25th 2014
Publisher: Harlequin TEEN
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian

For the past two months, Kitty Doe's life has been a lie. Forced to impersonate the Prime Minister's niece, her frustration grows as her trust in her fake fiancé cracks, her real boyfriend is forbidden and the Blackcoats keep her in the dark more than ever.

But in the midst of discovering that her role in the Hart family may not be as coincidental as she thought, she's accused of treason and is forced to face her greatest fear: Elsewhere. A prison where no one can escape.

As one shocking revelation leads to the next, Kitty learns the hard way that she can trust no one, not even the people she thought were on her side. With her back against the wall, Kitty wants to believe she'll do whatever it takes to support the rebellion she believes in—but is she prepared to pay the ultimate price?

I loved Pawn, the first book in this series. It's a great dystopian with a really intriguing storyline, and I'm so excited to see where this series is going! I'm sure this one will be just as awesome as the first one. Plus, that blurb is making me really really curious.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Review: Deliverance by C.J. Redwine

Title: Deliverance (Defiance #3)
Author: C.J. Redwine

Release date: August 26th 2014
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian
Format: eARC
Pages: 348

Source: Edelweiss

Everything hangs in the balance, and nothing is certain: Rachel has been kidnapped by enemy forces and is being taken to Rowansmark while Logan, imprisoned and awaiting trial, is unable to leave Lankenshire. Separated from each other and their Baalboden comrades, each must find a way to achieve what they desperately want: to rid their world once and for all of the Commander and the tech that controls the deadly Cursed One.

Fighting through her pain and embracing the warrior she’s become, Rachel will do whatever it takes to escape her enemies’ clutches and join Logan in his fight. But when she learns a secret that changes everything, she realizes that escaping Ian and his tracker friends is no longer an option if she wants to save the people she loves. Instead, she’ll have to destroy Rowansmark from the inside out—if she can survive the journey through the Wasteland.

Logan needs allies if he wants to thwart Rowansmark’s power grab and rescue Rachel. But securing allies will mean betraying his beliefs and enlisting the help of the man he hates more than anyone: Commander Jason Chase. Driven by his fierce love for Rachel and his determination to make their world safe, Logan may be just the weapon the city-states need to defeat the Cursed One.

But as Rowansmark bears down and uneasy alliances are tested, will Rachel and Logan’s love for each other be enough to surmount the unbelievable odds against them?

Deliverance is the conclusion to the incredible Defiance series, and it lived up to every expectation I had. Full of action, danger, secrets, and love. It was awesome! We get both Rachel and Logan's POVs and I loved being in their heads for the last time.

This picks up where the previous book left off - Rachel is kidnapped by Ian and being taken to Rowansmark to be held as ransom. Logan is still leader of the Baalboden people, but he has a lot of obstacles to cross before he can get to Rachel. Rachel is determined to do whatever she can to make things harder for Ian and his followers, while Logan is desperate to find a way to save everyone he cares about and is responsible for. Both tasks are unbearably hard, and the two are put to the test of their lifetime.

Rachel gains back the spirit she lost in Deception, so we get to see a really badass version of her. Not the old Rachel, because that girl is long gone. This Rachel has scars, both physical and emotional. But she uses them to make herself stronger. I adored her in this book! Her strength really stands out, and it's so amazing to see who she's become despite everything she's been through.

I can say the same for Logan - who would've thought he used to be a poor outcast boy? Logan shines as a leader, and even though he makes mistakes sometimes, he always manages to find a way out. Logan is brilliant. And I loved seeing his brain work. It's also really sweet to see how he's constantly thinking about Rachel and how much he loves her.

It annoyed me that Rachel and Logan were apart from each other for almost the entire book. But the wait is worth it, I guess. Such a long wait! But there's loads going on, though. I adore Quinn and Willow, and I'm sure everyone does as well. So you'll be glad to know there's lots of them in this book. Especially Quinn! Did I mention I adore him?

One warning though, this book is really long. Like I actually had to read it over the span of three days (I normally finish a book in a day or two) because I just couldn't rush it. I feel like some parts dragged on a bit, and several bits could definitely have been cut out. But I'm not complaining because we get more of the characters!

It's interesting to see the character development not only in Rachel and Logan but in everyone else too. Even Ian. There's a depth to these characters that's quite rare in YA, and I'm so glad I picked up Defiance two years ago, because I got to know these amazing characters.

Bottom line, this is a fantastic series. Though I think I enjoyed the previous books more than this one, I loved this too. And I'm definitely quite heartbroken to say goodbye to Rachel and Logan and Quinn. And the others, of course.

*Thank you to HarperCollins for providing me with an eARC for review*

Rating: 4/5

Monday, 21 July 2014

Release Day Launch Review + Giveaway: The Hazards of Sex on the Beach by Alyssa Rose Ivy

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We are so excited to bring you the Release Day Launch for Alyssa Rose Ivy's THE HAZARDS OF SEX ON THE BEACH! THE HAZARDS OF SEX ON THE BEACH is a contemporary romance and is a part of Alyssa Rose Ivy’s Hazards Series. It is priced at just $.99 right now. This will last for a limited time only to celebrate the release!


The Hazards of Sex on the Beach Cover
Title: The Hazards of Sex on the Beach (Hazards #3)
Author: Alyssa Rose Ivy
Release date: July 21st 2014
Publisher: Self-published
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Format: eARC
Pages: 166

Source: Inkslinger PR
Purchase links: Nook | iTunes | Kobo | Google Play

One broken heart, one drink too many, one steamy night in the sand...

No one warns you about the dangers of drinking with a broken heart. At least no one warned me. I never imagined I'd fall for a musician, especially not one like Chase, but then again I never expected to have my heart broken into a million pieces by the frat guy I thought was the love of my life.

Sometimes it's the rash decisions, like hooking up in the sand, that lead you to the best places—the kinds of places where it's possible to let yourself fall in love again.



I’ve been in a reading slump since the month began, and unfortunately this book is a victim of that. Not to say that I didn’t enjoy it, because I did. But I would have liked it way better had I read it at another time. The Hazards of Sex on the Beach is funny, romantic, and light. A great summer read. It follows Cara, the third best friend out of the Juliet-Mallory-Cara trio.

In the previous books, Cara has had a boyfriend, Aaron. They’d been dating over a year, but are now broken up on account of Cara finding out about Aaron cheating on her with his ex. So Cara’s pissed off, and makes a rash decision to sleep with a guy she meets at a party. And she then runs off without even telling him her name. The last thing she expects is to see him again, least of all on stage singing at a concert her friend drags her to. Cara and Chase meet again, and this time he isn’t going to let her go.

I liked getting to know Cara, and she seems like an even better person away from Aaron. She’s smart, though of course there are lapses in judgment. She’s had her heart broken, and she’s built a wall around it now – a wall that Chase slowly breaks down. She did annoy me at times, mostly when she’d made up her mind that Chase would eventually leave her. He’d been doing so much for her, and it pissed me off that she was in so much denial.

Chase was just awesome, though. I love musicians, so of course I instantly loved him. He’s charming and sweet and I loved how he never gives up on Cara, ever. They’re incredible together!

I also loved seeing old characters again. We get to see quite a bit of Juliet and Mallory, and even Reed! Not too much of Colton, though. We meet Jade, Mallory’s little sister, and I really liked her. She’s really into music, and just so likeable. I hope we get a story about her soon!

What I didn’t like was seeing how Aaron was in this book. In the previous books, he and Cara are like the perfect couple, and he’s always seemed like a nice guy. In this, he’s creepy, mean, and desperate. I didn’t like the drastic change in personality, and I didn’t get the point. Sure, Cara is with Chase now but Aaron could still be Aaron, right?

And there aren’t just these two guys vying for Cara’s affections. No, there’s another too! This guy, Jimmy, is also in a band, and he’s way creepy. Like seriously creepy. And he has a thing for Cara. But the issues with him, and with Aaron, aren’t completely resolved by the end of the book. I thought they should be, but the book felt like it ended too early for me.

Anyway, I did enjoy reading this and I like how light this NA series is. Most NA contemporaries have way too many issues. This one’s a fun read! Can’t go wrong with college romance.

*Thank you to Kelly at Inkslinger PR for providing me with an eARC for review*


Rating: 3/5


Excerpt

He took a strand of my hair and studied it. “Is this your natural color?”

“Yes.”


He dropped the strand. “I’ve never dated a girl with blonde hair.”


“Well, you’re not dating me.”


He gently brushed his fingers down my bare arm. “No, but I want to kiss you.”


“Then kiss me.” I was used to pushy guys. The kind that knew what they wanted and took it.


“Okay.” He smiled before leaning in.


The kiss was hesitant at first, the kind of kiss that gets your whole body excited because you know there’s more to come. I waited—hoping he’d take it further. His hand slid just under the hem of my shirt, brushing against my skin. The touch was light, but it was still enough to get a response out of me. I moaned.


That must have been what he was waiting for. He deepened the kiss, pushing into my mouth with such force I was taken by surprise. I kissed him back, enjoying the sweet taste of his mouth, and the way his hand slowly inched its way up my stomach. Blazer moved from zero to sixty. I didn’t mind it. I moved onto his lap, welcoming the arm he put around me to pull me closer. I wrapped my arms around his neck.


His hand moved higher, cupping my breast over my bra. I was drunk and hot, and so turned on I was going to lose it.


That’s when the door to the roof opened. The loud laughter of a group of girls pulled me half out of my lustful stupor.


“Want to go for a walk?” His question was asking something else entirely. I knew that when I answered with an enthusiastic yes.


Blazer held my hand as we made our way through the crowds. I looked briefly for Gabriella, but I didn’t see her. The normal Cara would have called her to tell her I was leaving with a random guy—but was Blazer random? We had chatted for hours already.


Before I could worry about it long, we were walking along the dark and nearly vacant beach. It was January on the South Carolina coast, and the crowds were months away.


“You never told me your name.” He said it as a statement as he led me further away from the party.


“Cara.”


“Hi, Cara. I’m Chase.”


I smiled. “Isn’t it a little late for introductions?” I stopped and turned toward the ocean.


“It’s never too late.” He drew something on my arm with his finger. The sensation felt good. I closed my eyes.


“You look so gorgeous. The moonlight, that look on your face.”


I opened my eyes and his face was inches from mine. “If you’ve never dated a blonde, does that mean you’ve never had sex with one?”


“Why? Are you looking to change that?” His eyes were lidded.


“I’d like to.” I slipped a finger into the waistband of his jeans.


“Should we go back to my hotel room, or do you have one?” He looked down. “I’m going to be honest here. I haven’t done this before.”


“Please don’t tell me you’re a virgin.” That would be just my luck.


He laughed. “No. Not saying that at all. I just don’t generally hook up with girls I’ve just met.”


“At least you know my name.”


“I do know your name, don’t I, Cara?”


Something happened to me when he said my name. I needed him. I reached up again, wrapping my arms around him. I crushed my lips into his.


We came up for air only after ending up horizontal on the sand. He laughed. “Or we can just pick things up right here.”




About the author:

Alyssa Rose Ivy- Author PhotoAlyssa Rose Ivy is a New Adult and Young Adult author who loves to weave stories with romance and a southern setting. Although raised in the New York area, she fell in love with the South after moving to New Orleans for college. After years as a perpetual student, she turned back to her creative side and decided to write. She lives in North Carolina with her husband and two young children, and she can usually be found with a cup of coffee in her hand.

Find Alyssa on:

Goodreads | Website | Facebook | Twitter




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Friday, 18 July 2014

Review: Chasing Before by Lenore Appelhans

Title: Chasing Before (The Memory Chronicles #2)
Author: Lenore Appelhans
Release date: August 26th 2014
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: Young Adult Paranormal
Format: eARC
Pages: 371
Source: Edelweiss

Felicia and Neil have left Level 2 behind, but another level stands between them and Heaven: Level 3. While the purpose of Level 2 is to relive your time on Earth and make peace with your memories, the objective of Level 3 is to completely detach from life and prepare for your divine vocation.

During Felicia and Neil's training period, a series of explosions destroy the portals out of Level 3. Tension is high, and casualties are mounting. Though Neil wants to become either a Muse or a Healer to help, Felicia is drawn to the Seraphim Guard. A rift forms between the pair, one that grows wider when Felicia receives memories from the Morati. The memories cast doubt on the people she loves the most, but Felicia can't stop her curiosity. She has to know the truth about her life before she moves on--if she can manage to evade old enemies long enough to find a way out of Level 3.

We don’t erase the past. Our triumphs, our failures, our loves, our betrayals – they all provide the clarifying context that makes life more meaningful. Without our roots we might be carried off by the first wayward wind.
But we also need to realize we can fly.
I've got to admit this is the first series where I've seen a blend of dystopian and paranormal. Though Chasing Before focuses more on the paranormal, with the Morati still being a problem even in Level 3. This book is primarily about development, of both the characters and the plot.

Felicia has escaped to Level 3 along with her boyfriend Neil, and she's relieved to be free of the Morati. But soon enough, she realizes they have ascended up to Level 3 with her, and still pose a major threat. On top of that, she has no idea what happened to Julian, the angel boy who rescued her. Felicia and Neil both have a lot to discover about themselves and about their time on Earth, but both deal with the truth in their own way, which creates a rift between them. They need to figure things out before the Morati manage to destroy more lives.

Level 3 confused me even more than Level 2 did. People go to training classes and pick careers. They have jobs! The idea of afterlife careers seems quite ridiculous to me. I mean, you're dead, aren't you? I'd do what the hell I wanted. The impeccable order and organization on the level really surprised me, considering the situation.

Felicia really bugged me in this book. She's entirely fixated on retrieving her lost memories, and honestly doesn't seem to care about any consequences of getting them back. And the whole love triangle thing with Neil and Julian annoyed me to no end. You're with Neil, don't freaking kiss Julian. And if you want Julian, break it off with Neil. Don't string both of them along for who knows how long!

Neil I have mixed feelings about. On the one hand, he's really sweet and genuine. He cares about the people around him, and he's so compassionate. You don't see many YA guys like that anymore - most of them are pretty jerk-like. Kinda like Julian. Neil is one of a kind. And his ability to calm a whole hall of people down with his voice... wow. I wish I could hear him sing. But on the other hand, his rigidity pissed me off. Yeah, he's a devout Christian with very firm beliefs. But I totally empathizes with Felicia on this one. He's dead, why can't he just share a freaking room with his girlfriend? It's not like they have to actually do anything he doesn't want to, and it's not like they're going to get married in the afterlife. Sometimes Neil and Felicia just don't get each other, and I'm surprised their relationship has lasted this long.

Julian is probably the only character I fully like. Okay, so I tend to gravitate towards the bad ones. But Julian's very straightforward about who he is and what his intentions are. He doesn't play a stupid cat and mouse game like Felicia and Neil. And I could tell he really cares for Felicia, I wish she'd see that too. I'm hoping for lots more Julian in the next book!

We get a few new characters in this book of course, since it's a new level. And an old character returns. I won't say who! But definitely with all the new additions, I can say one thing - no one is what they seem. What I really liked about this book is that you never know who's on what side, and when it all comes together in the end, it's epic. There's a lot of mystery surrounding the plot and the missing memories, and Felicia gets way more shocks than she's prepared for. So did I!

Overall, I enjoyed Chasing Before more than the first book, and I'm definitely looking forward to seeing what's next. But I'm also hoping the characters shape up a bit more, because I can't stand annoying protagonists. If you've read the previous book, you'll definitely want to pick this one up ASAP.

*Thank you to Simon & Schuster for providing me with an eARC for review*

Rating: 3/5

Thursday, 17 July 2014

Until We Fly Blog Tour: Review + Giveaway


Hi guys! Today I'm taking part in the blog tour for Until We Fly, the 4th novel in Courtney Cole's Beautifully Broken series. I adored this book! Check out my review below and enter the giveaway. Thank you to Kelly at Inkslinger PR for letting me take part in this tour!

Title: Until We Fly (Beautifully Broken #4)
Author: Courtney Cole

Release date: July 7th 2014
Publisher: Lakehouse Press
Genre: New Adult Contemporary Romance
Format: eARC
Pages: 250

Source: Inkslinger PR
Purchase links: Amazon | Barnes and Noble

Ex-Army Ranger, Brand Killien, has always been good.

A good friend, a good soldier, a good everything. .
The problem is, good hasn’t gotten him anything but a crushed heart.

So after licking his wounds, he decides to move on. And moving on doesn’t include being good anymore.

Bad sounds so much better.

Jaded and detached, Brand is determined to never open himself up to anyone again. It’s not worth the pain. Instead, he becomes closed, hardened, aloof.

But then he’s called back home for a family emergency… a family that he is estranged from. A family that he put out of his mind a long time ago for very good reasons…reasons that involve secrets and pain. Reasons he tried hard to forget.

But home is where the heart is, and it just might be where Brand finds his again.

Why? Because home is where Nora Greene is. A fiery, red-headed spitfire, Nora is a thing from his past. A beautiful, feisty thing. When Brand left, she was away at boarding school.

But she’s back now.

And she wants Brand, scars and all.

I've been looking forward to Until We Fly ever since Courtney announced that Brand was getting his own book. I loved him in Before We Fall, and I was really hoping for his story. And he does not disappoint! I completely adored him in this. In fact, he might be my favourite guy in this series.

Brand's heart is broken after the girl he loved, Jacey, rejected him and fell for another guy. On top of that, he gets a call that his dad just died, and he needs to take care of things back in his hometown. It's disaster upon disaster when he gets injured trying to save people from a fire when he returns home. Now Brand can't walk, and he has no one to help him. Until Nora Greene shows up. Nora's loved Brand ever since she was a little girl, but he never knew she existed. Well, he sure does now. Nora's got demons of her own, but she's determined to have Brand for the summer, forgetting everything else. But the dark secrets they both harbour may end up destroying anything they hold dear.

Brand. Freaking. Killien. This guy... he's not like most NA protagonists. No, he's an incredibly good guy. As good as they come. And the fact that he was a Ranger just adds to his allure. Brand is deep, passionate, and he can be pretty broody but I loved him so much throughout the book. Seriously, he's the reason I loved this. I could go on and on about how amazing and strong-willed and incredible he is, but maybe I'll let it go for now.

Contrary to that, I found I didn't really like Nora. She struck me as desperate, and honestly her shenanigans involving Brand just pissed me off. I do have a lot of sympathy for her, though, because of her situation. I'm not gonna lie, this is a pretty dark book, darker than the previous one even. And Nora's family issues are just.. I can't even imagine. Her family is just the most messed-up and creepy one I've ever come across. I'm shuddering even thinking about it. 

At first I wasn't sure whether what Nora feels is love or just infatuation. I think it was definitely infatuation in the beginning, because she didn't really know him, or him her. But as they spent more time together in the cabin, the feelings developed. And they both help each other out a lot, regarding their demons.

Courtney's writing drew me in like always, and it felt great. There's a certain feel I get when I read this series that I don't get with other NA books. Though a lot of situations are really dramatic, they still feel real to me. Which is why I'm so creeped out by some things in this book! It was awesome getting to know Brand in this, and I'd reread this just because I want to experience that again. I think fans of this series will be really happy with this one - I know I am!

*Thank you to Kelly Simmon at Inkslinger PR for providing me with an eARC for review*

Rating: 4/5




Don’t miss the other Beautifully Broken books, now available:

Beautifully Broken series 1-3


Praise for the Beautifully Broken series:

"I loved If You Stay. Like, really really loved it. The kind of love that kept me reading until 2:40 am and left me crying, smiling, devastated, and elated. The best kind of book love." - Andrea, The Bookish Babe

"Beautiful, raw, gritty, emotional and breath-taking are just a few of the words I can find to describe this book...reading this book was one of the best experiences I have had." -Amanda, Globug and Hootie Need a Book

"In If You Leave, we continue the wild ride Courtney Cole started us on in If You Stay. This raw story of heartbreak and hope solidifies Cole's standing as a rising star in hot contemporary romance." --- New York Times Bestselling author of Down to You, M. Leighton

"Another raw, gritty masterpiece with a sexy-as-hell Army Ranger to swoon over." --- K.A. Tucker, author of Ten Tiny Breaths


About the author:

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Courtney Cole is a novelist who would eat mythology for breakfast if she could. She has a degree in Business, but has since discovered that corporate America is not nearly as fun to live in as fictional worlds. She loves chocolate and roller coasters and hates waiting and rude people.

Courtney lives in quiet suburbia, close to Lake Michigan, with her real-life Prince Charming, her ornery kids (there is a small chance that they get their orneriness from their mother) and a small domestic zoo.

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