I’m Jake Masterson, single dad, and the General Manager of Seattle’s NHL team. I walked away from a career as a player so I could raise my daughter. For the last twenty-plus years, Queenie has been my main priority, but now she’s getting married.
And there’s a small complication.
A beautiful, sexy complication named Hanna.
She’s my son-in-law’s older sister. Or at least that’s how they were raised. The truth is a little more scandalous than that.
I’ve been drawn to her from the moment I laid eyes on her. And I spent months trying to keep a lid on that attraction.
Until we finally give in.
It starts with one searing kiss, but quickly ends with us between the sheets—and in the shower, and the hot tub, you get the picture—and turns into months of sneaking around.
Here’s the problem: we live on opposite ends of the country. It can’t be anything but casual. And as I’ve already said…it’s complicated.
But when Hanna finds out she’s pregnant…suddenly things get real serious.
Hello Friends!! I am here today with an ARC review! I hope everyone is having a great week so far!
This is the 7th book in the Wildstone series and the great thing is that you can read them in any order because the characters do not overlap. In this book we are following Emma who was just released from the hospital after spending 2 months in a coma and then almost a year in recovery relearning how to walk and use her arm. Also upon waking up Emma learns that her best friend and her fiancé decided to start a relationship, after being there for two weeks she has had enough! With no job or income her PT Simon helps her get a place in the same building he lives in. Through some weird turn of events Emma and her high school nemesis Ali decide to go into business together to operate a doggy daycare that also takes the elderly.
This book gave me all the feels and I binged it so fast! I think the books in this series are some of my all time favorites and this one might be at the top of that list. I loved Emma and how she never gave up on what she wanted, yes she struggled at times because of guilt but it never really stopped her. Simon was great in this book, not only as her PT but also as her friend encouraging her to get what she wants. Although he frustrated me at times because he has his own issues to deal with. I also loved the other relationships in this book, Jill writes all her characters so well that you feel like you know them all by the time the book is finished. Ali was a great partner for Emma because the two are so different and they compliment each other so well. But I think my favorite character in the book was Simon’s dad. He reminded me of Marty Crane from Frasier, very surly but lovable at the same time.
When I first started this book it gave me major How To Walk Away vibes. Both are about a woman recovering from a horrific accident and learning to move on with their new life. So if you liked that book I would highly recommend this one! Both books were 5 Star reads! Thank you William Marrow and Netgalley for my gifted copy for review!
Each chapter had a step in the beginning at they were steps on how to have a relationship, I took for all kinds not just romantic. These are a few of my favorites along with one quote that I loved!
Step 1: Get over yourself, the fear is all in your head.
Step 3: Be aware of your RBF—resting bitch face.
Step 5: Don’t give in to the fear.
“I don’t think you understand the difference between want and need,” she told Emma. “Like, I want a nap, but I need to work. Another example—I also want abs, but I need food.”
Hello Friends!! How was everyones week? Not a lot going on here just waiting for warmer weather and we have been spending a lot of time with family! For April I read 17 books which is a lot for me. I have been listening to a lot more audio books than usual and that is helping with my numbers. My favorite this month was a tie between Twice Shy and Second First Impressions both just hit me in the feels and I loved them! My least favorite was Love Her Or Lose Her, I just didn’t like it.
What was your favorite book this month?
Books I readin April
Physical Books – 7 Books
E-Books – 6 Books
Audio – 4 Books
Library Books – 5 Books
ARC’s – 6 Books
DNF’s – 1 Books
Pages Read – 6,021
Contemporary Romance – 7 Books
Thriller/Mystery – 4 Book
Historical Romance – 1 Book
Paranormal Romance – 1 Book
Scifi and Fantasy books – 2 Books
Contemporary Fiction – 2 Books
( I am only putting each book in what I think is the most prominent category )
Year Book Was Published
2017 – 1 Book
2018 – 1 Book
2019 – 1 Book
2020 – 2 Books
2021 – 12 Books
2 Stars – 2 Books
3 Stars – 7 Books
4 Stars – 5 Books
5 Stars – 3 Books
Like Cats and Dogs by Kate McMurray
Love Her or Lose Her by Tessa Bailey
Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Maggie Finds Her Muse by Dee Ernst
Prime Meridian by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
The Sanatorium by Sarah Pearse
Her Dark Lies by J. T. Ellison
To Love and To Loathe by Martha Waters
The Last House Guest by Megan Miranda
The Girl With Stars In Her Eyes by Xio Axelrod
Every Last Fear by Alex Finlay
Last Tang Standing by Lauren Ho
Lover Unveiled by JR Ward
The Secret Bridesmaid by Katy Birchall
How To Walk Away by Katherine Center (Re-Read)
Twice Shy by Sarah Hogle
Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne
ReCap on my April Challenges
For my Backlist book I read – Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia, Last Tang Standing by Lauren Ho, Love Her or Lose Her by Tessa Bailey, The Last House Guest by Megan Miranda
For Kayla’s Buzzword – This month was a word associated with Space – The Girl With Stars In Her Eyes by Xio Axelrod
Goodreads Goal – 52 out of 125 – 41%
Buddy Reads and ARCs I wanted to get too
Every Last Fear by Alex Finaly – ARC – 4 Stars
It Had To Be You by Georgia Clark – ARC and Buddy Read – Started and still reading
Like Cats and Dogs by Kate McMurray – ARC – 2 Stars
The Most Beautiful Girl in Cuba by Chanel Cleeton– ARC – Started and still reading
The Newcomer by Mary Kay Andrews – ARC
Every Vow You Break by Peter Swanson – Buddy Read – Started and still reading
Twice Shy by Sarah Hogle– Buddy Read – 5 Stars
How to Walk Away by Katherine Center– Reread and Buddy Read – 5 Stars
I used to really enjoy YA books until probably the last year or two. I kept finding it harder and harder to relate to the characters and their situations because they are so different than what I experienced when I was that age or my age now. Thats not to say that I can’t still find some I enjoy, I am just a lot more picky when it comes to picking them up. I will always pick up a Megan Miranda or Sandhya Menon book and I still have quite a few on my tbr that I want to read like my Karen M. McManus, Katrina Leno and some of my owlcrates.
Do you still enjoy YA or Middle Grade Books? Let me know your favorites in the comments below!
The fur flies in this hilarious romantic comedy where the owner of a Brooklyn-based cat café and the local vet go ahead to head. The attraction is instant, but can you fight like cats and dogs and still be perfect for each other?
Things are getting ruff in this Brooklyn neighborhood when new veterinarian Caleb Fitch moves in next door to the Whitman Street Cat Café and gets on the wrong side of café owner Lauren Harlow. Lauren has a few things to teach the new vet on the block, and rescuing kittens is only the start…
Lauren can’t ignore her attraction to Caleb, but he gets her even more riled up when he argues with her about how best to treat the cats in her care. Determined to smooth things over, Caleb comes to the rescue when a new litter of abandoned kittens is left on Lauren’s doorstep, and they confront the fiery attraction that’s been building between them from the start. But saving the baby kittens getting them ready for adoption is only the first challenge Lauren and Caleb have to face, and when a real estate developer comes sniffing around their block, they’ll have to work together, or risk losing everything…
Kate McMurray writes smart, savvy romantic fiction. She likes creating stories that are brainy, funny, and, of course, sexy. She advocates for romance stories by and for everyone. When she’s not writing, Kate edits textbooks, watches baseball, plays violin, crafts things out of yarn, and wears a lot of cute dresses. Kate lives in Brooklyn, NY, with two cats and too many books.
Evan walked into the Whitman Street Cat Cafe, pushing through the second door and grinning at Lauren like he’d already had three cups of coffee.
“Derek got married this weekend,” Lauren said by way of greeting.
“Aw, honey, I’m sorry,” said Evan. “Anything I can do?”
“Drive to New Hampshire and punch him in the face?”
Evan tilted his head and seemed to consider doing just that. “As fun as that sounds, Derek is kind of a big guy. He might punch back, and I bruise like a peach.”
Lauren laughed despite herself. She shoved her phone in her pocket. “I’m over it. So my ex got married? It’s fine. I’m fine.”
“Attagirl.” Evan looked up at the menu like he didn’t get coffee here nearly every morning.
“Not that I’m sad for the business,” said Lauren, “but where did all these people come from?”
“Didn’t you hear? The Star Cafe closed last week.”
The Star Cafe was a great independent coffee shop that had, apparently until last week, been right across the street from the Cat Cafe. If it had closed, that explained all the people here, the last place that served coffee between Henry Street and the subway entrance on the next block.
“I’m devastated,” Evan continued.
Lauren raised an eyebrow at him. “If anything, this is probably better for your health. There are only so many cups of coffee you can drink per day because you think the barista is cute before the caffeine gives you heart palpitations.”
Evan sighed and leaned against the counter next to Lauren. “Pablo gave me heart palpitations.”
“Any idea what he’s up to now?”
“When I got my caramel vanilla latte on Friday, he told me he’d applied to work at that little indie bookstore a few doors down. Hope springs.”
“Crazy idea, but you could, like, ask him out.”
Evan gasped dramatically. “Where’s the romance in that? We’re performing an elaborate dance.”
“Right.” Lauren glanced behind the counter, where Monique looked panicked as she took another order. “Maybe I should hire him.”
“He makes a mean caramel vanilla latte.”
A bewildered man with light brown hair walked into the cafe then. Lauren had never seen him before, and she would have noticed. He was so handsome, Evan sucked in a sharp breath.
Lauren had sworn off men ever since Derek had announced his engagement, because she was tired of getting her heart stomped on, but that didn’t mean she couldn’t look. Because this man was pretty foxy. He was tall and fit, with neatly trimmed hair, a square jaw, and blue eyes that sparkled even from behind the dark-rimmed glasses he wore.
“Hello,” said Evan.
The man looked around. When Sadie trotted over to investigate him, he looked a little startled by her presence.
“Oh,” he said, catching Lauren’s eye. “I’ve heard about places like this, but I guess it didn’t occur to me that the cats would just be… out.”
“Only Sadie has free rein in the cafe,” said Lauren. “She’s in charge. She’s also terrified of cars, so she doesn’t try to escape. The rest of the cats are through that door.” She pointed.
Lauren wasn’t really sure what to say next. Evan elbowed her, though, so she said, “Did you want to see the cats, or—”
“I just need a cup of coffee for now. This place is hopping.”
“Go on,” Lauren said. “I’m not in line and you look like you’re in a hurry.”
The man pulled a phone from his pocket and glanced at the time. “Yeah, a little.” He slid forward. “Thank you.”
“Are you new to the neighborhood?”
“Yeah. Just moved to Brooklyn a week ago, actually.”
He shot her a bashful half smile and nodded. “Thanks.”
Monique said, “Next!”
The light-haired man nodded at Lauren and then walked to the register.
Victor, the other barista, must have noticed this guy was a little twitchy, probably with a job to get to—he was wearing a blue oxford shirt tucked into navy blue slacks, the uniform of the Midtown office worker—and he grabbed the pot and poured a cup of coffee right away. Once the man paid, Victor handed him the cup and said, “Milk and sugar are at the end of the counter.”
“Great.” The man took his cup.
“The usual,” Lauren said to Monique now that the line had dissipated. Then she walked over to the man as he shook a sugar packet. “I’m Lauren, by the way.”
The man gave her a genuine smile this time. “Caleb. Maybe I’ll see you around, Lauren.” Sadie meowed and sat at his feet. “And you, too, Sadie.”
Handsome and he liked the cats. No wedding ring. This had some potential.
Oh, except for the part where Lauren was not dating in order to concentrate on making a fulfilling life for herself without a man.
Caleb walked back outside.
“Girl,” said Evan. “He was totally checking you out.”
Warm excitement spread through Lauren’s chest. It had been a while since she’d met anyone who made her pulse race like this. She wondered if Caleb would come back.
“Boss, your coffee’s ready,” said Monique.
Lauren took it gratefully. “All right. Do you have to work today, Ev, or do you want to meet our newest resident? We’ve got a gorgeous new calico named Lucy.”
“I’m meeting a client at ten, so I gotta go, but you can tell me all about Miss Lucy and report back on that tall guy over drinks tonight.”
“Pop at seven?”
Monique handed Evan his coffee, which he took with a grin. He blew Lauren a kiss with his free hand and then walked out the door.
“Come on, Sadie,” said Lauren. “Let’s get to work.”
Excerpted from Like Cats and Dogs by Kate McMurray. Used with permission of the publisher, Sourcebooks Casablanca, an imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. All rights reserved.
Like Cats and Dogs by Kate McMurray – 2 Stars I thought the idea of this one sounded cute but the reality was that I just didn’t click with it. We first meet Lauren who runs a cat cafe and has a flirtation with a new patron, this patron turns out to be the new Vet, Dr. Caleb Fitch who works at the clinic next door. By chapter 3 I knew this book was going to be hard for me. I am not really an animal person (I like them just not to the point where I think one is better than the other) and this book relies heavily on the cat vs. dog mentality. A few days after meeting Dr. Fitch, Lauren takes her cat into the vet thinking they have a UTI but Caleb wants to run tests to make sure it’s not something else. Lauren then begins to argue with him, THE DR. about whats wrong her cat and the fact that she owns a bunch means she can diagnosis it. I found this scene so irritating! She is not a doctor, he is and yet she fights with him about how to treat the cat!! Then in the middle of this she yells “you’re a dog person aren’t you?” Really!! At this point I was done! Why did this become a thing? Why is there a trope for this!
I decided to keep reading to see if the book gets better and the answer is not really. I liked her writing and there was definitely some funny lines like when she she was equating a dog and cat person to a coke vs. pepsi person. Here again, I will gladly drink both and do not have a preference so maybe Im not the best judge. One other small qualm I had with the story is that they were trying to portray Caleb as a grump and he was in no way one. I love grumpy main characters and Caleb was not that. There was enough in the writing that made me want to be interested so I will definitely pick up another book by Kate McMurray, just not one about cats vs. dogs people.
Overall I think this book can work for some people but just not me. Thank you Sourcebooks Casablanca for my gifted copy for review.
As I said I did find her writing funny so I added some of the quotes I that I enjoyed.
“Look, he’s… Yes, he’s foxy as hell. But he’s also kind of a dick. He thinks he knows everything, he’s stubborn, he doesn’t seem to have normal human emotions, and he’s a dog person. A dog person, guys. I can’t date a dog person.”
Caleb couldn’t decide if that was cute or crazy. Some of both, he decided.
“It is I, chopped liver,”
“The Empire dating the Rebel Alliance.”“A Coke person dating a Pepsi person”
Lauren had read recently that cats likely purred not to display happiness but rather to lure prey into a false sense of security. She leaned down and pet Sadie’s head anyway.
Have you read this one? I would love to hear your thoughts on it!
Hi Friends! I am with my April Book Haul and it was a big one! I had 24 books that I bought or that were sent to me in April and this does not include my thrift hauls! I did win quite a few giveaways which added to this but I also bought more than usual. So for May I am going to try real hard to not get FOMO and buy more books. We will see how that goes.
Have you read any of these? If so whats your favorite?
Books I Bought
Meet Me In Paradise by Libby Hubscher
Later by Stephen King
The Return by Rachel Harrison
Twice Shy by Sarah Hogle – 5 Stars
Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne – 5 Stars
Untamed Shore by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – 4 Stars
Hana Khan Carries On by Uzma – Currently Reading
Just Last Night by Mhairi McFarlane – May Buddy Read
Dial A For Aunties by Jesse Sutanto – May Buddy Read
The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Cleaning The Gold by Karin Slaughter and Lee Child
The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz – ARC
One Gone Away by S. A. Lelchuk – Booksparks
The Drowning Kind by Jennifer McMahon- Gift – May Buddy Read
The Siren by Katherine St. John – Giveaway Win – May Buddy Read
The Lion’s Den by Katherine St. John – Giveaway Win
All That Falls by Kris Calvin – Giveaway Win
Heard It In A Love Song – Giveaway Win
What If You And Me by Roni Loren – Giveaway Win
Coming Home To Seashell Harbor by Miranda Liasson – Giveaway Win
Books from Books Boxes
People We Meet On Vacation by Emily Henry – BOTM – May Buddy Read
The Hunting Wives by May Cobb- BOTM – May Buddy Read
Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm and revived by Sam on Taking on a World of Words. All you have to do is answer the three questions below and leave a link to your post in the comments for others to look at. No blog? No problem! Just leave a comment with your responses. Please, take some time to visit the other participants and see what others are reading. So, let’s get to it!
The three Ws are: What are currently reading? What have you finished reading? What will you read next?
What are you currently reading?
A House At The Bottom of The Lake by Josh Malerman – Physical Book
Hana Khan Carries On by Uzma Jalaluddin – Physical Books
Last Guard by Nalini Singh – ARC
Make Up Break by Lily Menon – Audio
What did you recently finish reading?
The Most Beautiful Girl In Cuba by Chanel Cleeton – ARC
Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne – Physical Book
Love Her or Lose Her by Tessa Bailey – Audio
The Last House Guest by Megan Miranda – Audio
What do you think you’ll read next?
It Had To Be You by Georgia Clark – ARC
The Plot by Jean Hanff Korelitz
Certain Dark Things by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
People We Meet On Vacation by Emily Henry
What are you currently reading? Let me know in the comments below!
At the end of the nineteenth century, three revolutionary women fight for freedom in New York Times bestselling author Chanel Cleeton’s captivating new novel inspired by real-life events and the true story of a legendary Cuban woman–Evangelina Cisneros–who changed the course of history.From Goodreads
On sale May 4th, 2021
“I’m here for a job if you have one. As a reporter. I’ve spent the last few years writing for smaller papers, getting experience where I could.” I gesture to the leather folio in my lap. “I’ve brought samples of my work if you’d like to look at them. They’re not necessarily the kinds of stories I want to cover, but they’re a start.”
“Why do you wish to work here, Miss Harrington?” Pulitzer asks, making no move to take the folio from me.
“Because of the stories you cover, the impact you have. The World has one of the largest circulations in the world.”
Indeed, Mr. Pulitzer has just slashed the World’s price to one cent, saying he prefers power to profits, circulation the measure by which success is currently judged.
“You have the opportunity to reach readers, to bring about change, to help people who desperately need assistance,” I add. “I’ve admired the work you’ve done for years. You’ve long set the tone the rest of the New York newspaper industry follows. You’ve filled a gap in the news, given a voice to people who wouldn’t have otherwise had one. I’ve read the articles you wrote when you were a reporter yourself in St. Louis, and I admire the manner in which you address society’s ills. You’ve revolutionized the newspaper. I want to be part of that.”
“That’s all fine and good, but why should I hire you? What would you bring to the World that someone else wouldn’t?”
“My gender, for one. A woman knows what it’s like to be pushed to society’s margins. There are some who might argue that a woman cannot do this job as effectively as a man. They would be wrong. Nellie Bly has proven that. You did, too, when you hired her.”
“And what do you know of Nellie Bly?”
“You gave her a chance when others wouldn’t.”
“Cockerill gave her a chance,” he replies, referring to his editor.
“With all due respect, Mr. Pulitzer, we both know this is your paper. You saw something in Nellie Bly. And now she’s gone, and you need another reporter who can take on the kinds of stories she did and can go places your male journalists can’t. What she accomplished at the Women’s Lunatic Asylum”—the words “lunatic asylum” fall distastefully from my mouth—“on Blackwell’s Island, going undercover like that, was nothing short of extraordinary. Those women’s lives have been changed because of Miss Bly’s courage and her daring. Those placards out there, the philosophy with which you run your newsroom—I promise to uphold it every single day I work for you.”
Pulitzer leans back in his chair. “You’re plucky like Bly, I’ll give you that.”
Chanel Cleeton is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of Reese Witherspoon Book Club pick Next Year in Havana, When We Left Cuba, The Last Train to Key West, and The Most Beautiful Girl in Cuba.
Originally from Florida, Chanel grew up on stories of her family’s exodus from Cuba following the events of the Cuban Revolution. Her passion for politics and history continued during her years spent studying in England where she earned a bachelor’s degree in International Relations from Richmond, The American International University in London and a master’s degree in Global Politics from the London School of Economics & Political Science. Chanel also received her Juris Doctor from the University of South Carolina School of Law.
My Thoughts – 4.5 Stars
I have been in love with Chanel Cleeton’s writing since I read her first book Next Year In Havana a few years ago. She has a way of writing that just envelopes you into the lives of the woman in her stories. In her newest book we are following 3 different woman who all play a role during The Cuban War of Independence and The Spanish American War in the late 1890’s. We are first following Grace Harrington as she pursues a career in Journalism in New York City. Grace tries to get a job with Joseph Pulitzer at The World but says he will only hire her if she spies on William Randolph Hearst for him. Wanting the job she goes straight to The Journal and asks Hearst for a job which he grants her. Over the course of a couple years, Grace realizes that she respects Hearst and comes clean about the spying and continues to work from him.
At the same time we have Evangelina Cisneros and Marina Sandoval. Evangelina is from a wealthy family who sides with the revolutionaries for Cuba’s independence. The local man in charge took a liking to Evangelina and tried to assault the result which landed her in jail. While Marina was forced from her home and put in a reconcentration camp. Evangelina became a rally cry for the Americans to get involved with war in Cuba. Hearst used her story to bolster his paper sales and at the same time gain sympathy for whats going in Cuba. Marina who is frustrated that she can not help the revolutionaries decides to start carrying letters hidden in her laundry that she does for others. Eventually all 3 of these woman’s lives will intersect and how they each helped the other in a time when woman seemed to be forgotten.
I really enjoyed this book and the stories that were told. Every time I pick up one of Chanel’s books I always know I am going to learn about a time in history that I am not knowledgable on. I found myself googling Evangelina Cisneros ( who is a real person ), The USS Maine and of course the rivalry between Hearst and Pulitzer. While I was not as invested in one of the ladies stories I still loved this book. Grace was such a great character read about and I would have been happy if the entire book was about her! Thank you so much to Berkley for my advanced copy and for letting me apart of the blog blitz for this incredible book!
Happy Monday friends! How was everyones weekend? We went to a wedding and then had some family time. I din’t get much reading done but thats ok as we still had a great weekend! I tried to pick authors for this months spell the month that are AAPI.
M – Make Up Break Up by Lilly Menon – Contemporary Romance
A – Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala – Cozy Mystery