Source: Gifted

Week in Review (82)

Posted March 19, 2018 by Rowena in Books, Features | 0 Comments

First and foremost, happiest of birthdays to my nephew Luke. This little boy is such a joy to have in our family and I love him oh so much. Happy Birthday, Lukey!!

What a week, what a week. It’s been a pretty busy week for my family but it was a fun week so I wasn’t too whiny about it. The week started off with my niece Meghan turning 21 so plans for a weekend getaway to Vegas are in the talks. I can’t wait. Meghan’s been busy at Nationals, playing game after game after game. Their season ended in the Elite Eight as they lost to some team, I forget their name. *shrugs*

Friday night, I went to my niece’s Maleah and Makaela’s Multicultural Week show where they showcased their culture by performing Polynesian dance numbers for the following islands: Samoa, Hawaii, Tahiti and New Zealand. The dances were great and I really enjoyed the whole show. Our high school is very diverse and we saw dance performances for cultures from all over the globe. Vietnam, China, Japan, Korea, India, Africa, Philippines, Mexico, Cuba, and a whole lot of other countries were represented and overall, it was a really good show. After the Multicultural show, I went next door to the small gym where Brenna was on a cousin date with my niece Brooke. Brooke is in elementary school and her school held their Spring Jam Dance for the students and their families and the kids had a great time at that.

I went to a wedding on Saturday for my co-worker and that was a lot of fun. The food was great, the dessert table was bomb as hell and my friend was a gorgeous bride.

Sunday was for my book friends. I drove out to Victora Gardens (about an hour from where I live) to hang with my book friends Lori, Tracy, Rosie, Nikki, Wendy and Holly. Lots of book discussions were had and book recommendations and rants and just all over great book talk. We had great food as well. It’s always nice getting together with old friends and catching up. I love my book friends!

Now, onto the books…

What I’m Currently Reading

Week in Review (82)Bayou Moon by Ilona Andrews
Series: The Edge #2
Published by Penguin, Berkley, Ace on October 1st 2010
Genres: Fantasy, Romance
Pages: 447
Format: eBook
Source: Gifted
Add It: Goodreads

The Edge lies between worlds, on the border between the Broken, where people shop at Walmart and magic is a fairytale–and the Weird, where blueblood aristocrats rule, changelings roam, and the strength of your magic can change your destiny…

Cerise Mar and her unruly clan are cash poor but land rich, claiming a large swathe of the Mire, the Edge swamplands between the state of Louisiana and the Weird. When her parents vanish, her clan’s long-time rivals are suspect number one.

But all is not as it seems. Two nations of the Weird are waging a cold war fought by feint and espionage, and their conflict is about to spill over into the Edge—and Cerise’s life . William, a changeling soldier who left behind the politics of the Weird, has been forced back into service to track down a rival nation’s spymaster.

When William’s and Cerise’s missions lead them to cross paths, sparks fly—but they’ll have to work together if they want to succeed…and survive.

My reading to start off the week has been slow going but I do plan on jumping into this book tonight since Brenna and the rest of my family is celebrating Luke’s birthday. I’m a little salty at that, too. 🙁

What I Read

On the Edge by Ilona Andrews | 4.5 out of 5
On Hart’s Boardwalk by Samantha Young | 4 out of 5

It was a slow reading week for me because I chose to spend more time with baby Caiden since our time with him is coming to a close, faster and faster. Still, the books that I did read were good ones and I’m looking forward to digging into the next Edge book by Ilona Andrews.

What I Reviewed

Hurts to Love You by Alisha Rai | 4 out of 5
Love between Enemies by Molly E. Lee | 2.5 out of 5
A Knight in Shining Armor by Jude Deveraux | 4 out of 5 for story, 1 out of 5 for ending
Irresistible You by Kate Meader | 4 out of 5
Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews | 4.5 out of 5 and 5 out of 5

What I Posted

Week in Review (80)
Bookish Thoughts: Santino Hassell, Sarah Lyons & Riptide Publishing, Crimson Romance and RWA Awards
A Statement on Santino Hassell

What I Got

Switch Hitter by Sara Ney
Bad Bachelor by Stephanie London

What I Got for Review

Hooked on You by Kate Meader
The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang

There you have it, my week in review. How was your week?

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Buddy Review: Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews

Posted March 14, 2018 by Rowena in Reviews | 2 Comments

Buddy Review: Burn for Me by Ilona AndrewsBurn for Me by Ilona Andrews
Series: Hidden Legacy #1
Published by Harper Collins, Avon on October 28th 2014
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Point of View: First Person
Pages: 400
Format: eBook
Source: Gifted
Add It: Goodreads
four-half-stars

#1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews launches a brand new Hidden Legacy series, in which one woman must place her trust in a seductive, dangerous man who sets off an even more dangerous desire…

Nevada Baylor is faced with the most challenging case of her detective career—a suicide mission to bring in a suspect in a volatile case. Nevada isn’t sure she has the chops. Her quarry is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, who can set anyone and anything on fire.

Then she’s kidnapped by Connor “Mad” Rogan—a darkly tempting billionaire with equally devastating powers. Torn between wanting to run or surrender to their overwhelming attraction, Nevada must join forces with Rogan to stay alive.

Rogan’s after the same target, so he needs Nevada. But she’s getting under his skin, making him care about someone other than himself for a change. And, as Rogan has learned, love can be as perilous as death, especially in the magic world.

Burn for Me is the first book in the Hidden Legacy series by Ilona Andrews and it really sets up this series nicely.

Nevada Baylor is a private investigator who takes her job very seriously. She’s the head of her family PI firm but when her employees are all in school, she’s the only full time employee that can actually do the work. Her latest case was forced on her and she hasn’t a prayer of surviving it but she has to try to figure things out anyway because her family is at stake. Nevada will do anything for her family.

When the case brings Mad Rogan into her life and he kidnaps her, Nevada finds herself partnered up with the head of House Rogan, who also happens to be Hurucan, the guy that can break cities. They’re partnered up and going after Adam Pierce, a Prime Pyrokinetic, who is trying to burn down Houston. Something bigger than Adam Pierce is going on and they’re determined to figure it out and stop the bad guys from harming anymore people.

Rowena: Alright, Ames….spill. How much did you freaking love this book and Mad Rogan?

Ames:: OMG I loved this book so much I jumped right into the second one…and as I’m writing this I’ve already started the third! haha

I love the Kate Daniels series and Ilona Andrews has definitely created another heroine I can get behind! For Nevada Baylor, family is everything. And that remains true for her character. She’s so strong and kick-ass and awesome. And every great heroine needs an awesome partner and Rogan definitely has the makings of a great hero. He’s a Prime…meaning super powerful and he’s definitely an alpha hero. But he’s in no way an alpha-hole. I heart Rogan. So bad. LOL Seriously, he gives me heart eyes.

But the book isn’t just about Nevada and Rogan. Nevada’s whole family plays a big part in the story and I loved all of them. Her 70 year old mechanic grandma, her sniper mother, her gifted cousins and younger sisters. They’re all awesome.

What about you Wena? I’m so glad you got me to read this book!

Rowena: Oh man, did I love this book. I’m super thrilled that Holly has been on me to get this book read because wasn’t it just the best book you’ve read this month? Gah, I loved the heck out of this book. There wasn’t much that I didn’t like about it.

I loved Nevada, Rogan, Nevada’s family and the way that they functioned as a unit. When we start to get to know Rogan better and better, I thought he was such an asshole but I still loved him to pieces. I wasn’t expecting how funny this book was going to be. I prefer my paranormal books to be on the more serious side and even though this isn’t a paranormal book, I thought that it would be a little more serious but holy cow, the humor had me up late into the night giggliing like a little school girl. Brenna came into my room and told me to knock it off because I was giggling so much that it was creeping her out. She was right. I was giggling a lot but I don’t care that I was creeping her out because I had a good ol’ time with this one.

When Rogan called Augustine Pancakes? I about died laughing. When he couldn’t get over her circle work? I couldn’t stop laughing. When they were flirting back and forth and she told him she wasn’t going to handle his snake? I laughed and laughed and laughed. Gah. I can’t say that I loved this book enough. It gets all of my heart eyes.

Ames: Oh yes, the humour was excellent! I liked that for sure. Even Rogan’s attitude about killing people – I know this is awful to say but it is fiction – it was somewhat funny, especially when he uses a building to get the job done. Like he just doesn’t give a shit. And that’s why this book works. Yes Rogan is all super-powerful but Nevada brings him back down to earth. She’s reminds me of his humanity and keeps it real for him. She’s equal in that way. The other thing is she keeps him on his toes. She’s full of surprises.

Honestly, I can’t think of anything about this book I didn’t like. Even the mystery surrounding Adam Pierce was engaging. The world-building was excellent and the way Andrews describes settings and scenes, I could picture everything so clearly in my head.

Rowena: I agree. It’s very easy for me to read quickly through scenes where there’s a lot of description, scenes that kind of set something up and I’ll gloss over scenes but I read every single word and enjoyed every single word that was written in this book. Ilona Andrews has the magic writing stick because I was wrapped up in everything from beginning to end.

Adam Pierce was an interesting antagonist and his whole story was interesting as well. I was really curious to read more about this shady business he was a part of because with the ending, you just know that there’s gonna be more drama to come. This stuff isn’t over and I’m so.here.for.it.

Overall, the book was wonderful. The world was magical and the characters were the best. I give this book a 5 out of 5. You?

Ames: Oh I liked that Adam’s story was wrapped up extremely satisfyingly but that there was a whole bigger arc to the story that joins all three books. I’m looking forward to finding out more in book 3!

I’m stingy with my 5s so I’m giving this one a 4.5 out of 5. Still a high recommendation from me!​

Final Grades

Ames: 4.5 out of 5
Rowena: 5 out of 5

four-half-stars

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Week in Review (81)

Posted March 12, 2018 by Rowena in Books, Features | 4 Comments

It was a pretty quiet week for me on the homefront. Basketball is pretty much done, with the exception of Meghan who is playing at Nationals right now so I’ve had plenty of time to do things, only it’s been cold and rainy so I’ve stayed close to home and hung out with this little one…

Baby Caiden is here in California with us for the next three weeks while his parents are in Samoa for his Daddy’s family business (a funeral and a birthday party). It’s been such a good time coming home to his sweet face and his even sweeter baby voice. I’m going to enjoy every minute that he’s here because I’ll be so sad when he leaves. 🙁

Now, onto the books…

What I’m Currently Reading

Week in Review (81)On the Edge by Ilona Andrews
Series: The Edge #1
Published by Penguin, Ace on October 29th 2009
Genres: Fantasy, Romance
Pages: 309
Format: eBook
Source: Gifted
Amazon|Barnes & Noble
Add It: Goodreads

Rose Drayton lives on the Edge, between the world of the Broken (where people drive cars, shop at Wal-Mart, and magic is a fairy tale) and the Weird (where blueblood aristocrats rule, changelings roam, and the strength of your magic can change your destiny). Only Edgers like Rose can easily travel from one world to the next, but they never truly belong in either.

Rose thought if she practiced her magic, she could build a better life for herself. But things didn’t turn out how she planned, and now she works a minimum wage, off the books job in the Broken just to survive. Then Declan Camarine, a blueblood noble straight out of the deepest part of the Weird, comes into her life, determined to have her (and her power).

But when a terrible danger invades the Edge from the Weird, a flood of creatures hungry for magic, Declan and Rose must work together to destroy them—or they’ll devour the Edge and everyone in it.

My friends and I are obsessed with all things Ilona Andrews right now. I’m reading books on my TBReviewed list but as soon as I get a chance, I’m jumping right back into Ilona Andrews’ books. My goal for this year is to have every single book by her read before the end of the year. Wish me luck.

What I Read

Wildfire (Hidden Legacy #3) by Ilona Andrews | 4.75 out of 5
Over Us, Over You by Whitney G | DNF
Hello Stranger (Ravenels #4) by Lisa Kleypas | 4.5 out of 5

My favorite read of the week goes to Wildfire by Ilona Andrews because that book was just flat out good. I love me some Mad Rogan and Nevada and everyone they love because they’re just the bomb like that and I’m still super sad that I’m all done with those books (for now, fingers crossed).

My least favorite read is the one that I couldn’t even finish because both the hero and the heroine was freaking brats. Ugh. I might have to give up Whitney G. because the last few books that I read were not on par with the book that I absolutely loved by her. Gah.

What I Reviewed

The Truth about Love and Dukes by Laura Lee Guhrke | 3.75 out of 5
The Trouble with True Love by Laura Lee Guhrke | 4.25 out of 5
Throwback Thursday: Silk is for Seduction by Loretta Chase | 4.75 out of 5

What I Posted

Week in Review (80)
Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Quotes
Throwback Thursday (33)
Book Boyfriend of the Week: Connor “Mad” Rogan

What I Got

Then There was You by Claire Contreras

What I Got for Review

If You Don’t Have Anything Nice to Say by Leila Sales

There you have it, my week in review. How was your week?

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Book Boyfriend of the Week: Connor “Mad” Rogan

Posted March 9, 2018 by Rowena in Features | 4 Comments

This week’s book boyfriend is someone that is responsible for the reading hangover that I’ve been in since Monday of this week. I have not been able to move on from his set of books and it’s all because I love the hell out him and his heroine and the world that was created for them to live in.

Mad Rogan is the hero in the Hidden Legacy series by Ilona Andrews and he’s a complete dreamboat. He’s an asshole but he’s an asshole that lives by a code and the more I got to know him, the more I fell in love with him.

Book Boyfriend of the Week: Connor “Mad” RoganBurn for Me by Ilona Andrews
Series: Hidden Legacy #1
Also in this series: Burn for Me
Published by Harper Collins, Avon on October 28th 2014
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 400
Format: eBook
Source: Gifted
Add It: Goodreads

#1 New York Times bestselling author Ilona Andrews launches a brand new Hidden Legacy series, in which one woman must place her trust in a seductive, dangerous man who sets off an even more dangerous desire…

Nevada Baylor is faced with the most challenging case of her detective career—a suicide mission to bring in a suspect in a volatile case. Nevada isn’t sure she has the chops. Her quarry is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, who can set anyone and anything on fire.

Then she’s kidnapped by Connor “Mad” Rogan—a darkly tempting billionaire with equally devastating powers. Torn between wanting to run or surrender to their overwhelming attraction, Nevada must join forces with Rogan to stay alive.

Rogan’s after the same target, so he needs Nevada. But she’s getting under his skin, making him care about someone other than himself for a change. And, as Rogan has learned, love can be as perilous as death, especially in the magic world.

Connor “Mad” Rogan is a Prime Telekinetic. He’s a magic powerhouse who can level cities and has leveled cities while working for the US Army. He’s mostly known for the destruction he brought upon Mexico and he’s known the world over for what he has and can do with his magic. He’s a bad ass who is deadly but what I loved about him was that he was also pretty normal and could definitely make fun of himself.

“Yes, I’m a hermit. Mostly I brood,” Mad Rogan said. “Also, I’m very good at wallowing in self-pity. I spend my days steeped in melancholy, looking out the window. Occasionally a single tear quietly rolls down my cheek.”

As deadly as Connor was, he was also the biggest flirt whenever Nevada Baylor was around and I freaking loved it.

“He glanced at me, his eyes dark. “Would you rather talk about your dream?”

“No.”

“Considering that I was featured in it, I think I deserve to know the particulars. Were my clothes missing because we were in bed? Was I touching you?” He glanced at me. His voice could’ve melted the clothes off my body. “Were you touching me?”

Hahaha, what a great scene this was. And so was this next one.

“Did you send an escort with my family?”

“Yes. They’re a target.”

“How did you know they would be leaving?”

“My people saw them load up, called me, and I told them to follow.” Duh.

“Thank you.”

“You’re welcome. I plan to hold them hostage until you sleep with me.” I stumbled. He turned and gave me a brilliant, impossibly handsome smile. “Just kidding.”

Damn it.”

I swear there are so many reasons to love this guy and you should read the Hidden Legacy series to find out all of those reasons. This series rocked my socks. For real. This was me every time Rogan was on the scene.

Yep. That’s right.

Here’s what Mad Rogan looked like in my head.

Buy the Book

Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews
October 28, 2014
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Google Play | Kobo

Series Order

Until next week…enjoy!

Who are your book boyfriends for the week? Anyone I should meet?

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Book Boyfriend of the Week: Sean Evans

Posted March 2, 2018 by Rowena in Features | 4 Comments

This week’s book boyfriend is one that I met a few months ago (after being late to the Innkeeper Chronicles party). He was such a memorable character that I wanted more of him in the next books and boy was I not prepared for the more that we got.

Sean Evans is a fierce super soldier werewolf that meets and protects Dina Demille, the innkeeper for Gertrude Hunt, his next door neighbor. When we first meet him in Clean Sweep, he was such a smart ass, care free but super protective werewolf that peed on Dina’s apple trees and pissed her the hell off. They come a long way from that first meeting and man was I here for all of their shenanigans.

Book Boyfriend of the Week: Sean EvansOne Fell Sweep by Ilona Andrews
Published by Ilona Andrews on December 20th 2016
Genres: Urban Fantasy, Romance
Pages: 340
Format: eBook
Source: Gifted
Add It: Goodreads

Dina DeMille may run the nicest Bed and Breakfast in Red Deer, Texas, but she caters to a very particular kind of guest… the kind that no one on Earth is supposed to know about. Guests like a former intergalactic tyrant with an impressive bounty on her head, the Lord Marshal of a powerful vampire clan, and a displaced-and-superhot werewolf; so don’t stand too close, or you may be collateral damage.

But what passes for Dina’s normal life is about to be thrown into chaos. First, she must rescue her long-distant older sister, Maud, who’s been exiled with her family to a planet that functions as the most lawless penal colony since Botany Bay. Then she agrees to help a guest whose last chance at saving his civilization could bring death and disaster to all Dina holds dear. Now Gertrude Hunt is under siege by a clan of assassins. To keep her guests safe and to find her missing parents, Dina will risk everything, even if she has to pay the ultimate price. Though Sean may have something to say about that!!

Here are some of the reasons that I love Sean Evans. He was such a great love interest for Dina and seeing them both in action was so much fun.

When Dina tells that she can’t decommit from being an innkeeper and that if that isn’t what he wants, she can’t be with him…his response completely melted me.

“But would I get you, if I were an innkeeper?”

Gah. I love him.

Then when he tells his Mom about his girlfriend? So stinkin’ cute!

“Mom”, Sean said gently. “You’re not making a good first impression.”

“Sean William, let go of me this instant!”

“I can’t do that.”

She strained against him. The muscles on Sean’s arms stood out.

“That girl over there,” Sean said quietly. “That’s my girl. If she’s forced to bury you in the floor to hold you still, it will be awkward.”

And then….this. Just all of this. *swoon*

“About that sonnet,” he said.

“Yes?” It felt like my whole life depended on what he would say next.

“I love you.”

That was all I wanted to hear. I didn’t even know until now how much I wanted him to say these words to me. He’d said it before, when I was under, but it was different then. Now it was everything.

“I’ll never leave you,” Sean said. “If you want to stay an innkeeper, I will be one with you. If you want to do something else, I will do that with you. Whatever comes next, I’ll be there, because I want you more than anything I’ve ever wanted. That’s it. That’s all I’ve got.”

For most of this book, I looked like this because I just could not get enough of Mr. Sean Evans. The devotion he had for Dina is the stuff girls dream about and the lengths he went to protect Dina at every turn was just out of this world great. I absolutely love him.

In Clean Sweep, there’s an illustration of Sean and he looks a lot like Robbie Amell from The Flash and The DUFF. So here’s what Sean looks like in my head…

*happy sigh* He’s such a good looking guy and I really think he’s perfectly cast as Sean. Sean freaking rocks.

Buy the Book

One Fell Sweep by Ilona Andrews
December 20, 2016
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Series Order

Until next week…enjoy!

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