A little of this and a little of that.

My Thoughts

Sometimes I write about what I read.

***

19 September 2018

Once Upon a Real Good Time by Lauren Blakely


Once Upon a Real Good Time by Lauren Blakely
Heartbreakers #1
Kindle Edition
Published September 10th, 2018
by Lauren Blakely Books
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ 
That smoking hot one-night stand with a former rock star? Turns out he's my son's new music teacher. Oops.

But I didn't know that the night I met Campbell. All I knew was he played my body the same way he played a guitar — like he owned it. My libido is still high-fiving me after being self-served for too many years, and we’re both ready for another night or two of fun, especially since we don’t just have chemistry in bed — we connect over everything.

 That is, until I learn he’s the man who’ll be coming to my house twice a week to teach my son — the best music lessons money can buy. Time to turn down the volume on our shenanigans. Only that’s easier said than done.
 ***
 I can rock a guitar solo in front of thousands, I can write chart-topping tunes, and I can absolutely stop thinking about my student’s mother naked. After all, I’m a single parent too, and I know what it’s like to put your kid first. That’s what I do every damn day.

 Trouble is, now that I’ve had Mackenzie, it’s hard — and I do mean hard — to stop wanting her. Harder too when I get to know her, and learn she’s an awesome mom, a great friend, and, oh yeah, she happens to get along perfectly with my daughter.

 All we have to do is set some rules. No dating, no nookie when the kids are around, and no one gets hurt. It’s all working out beautifully. Until we start breaking the rules, one by one.

 Making music with her in the bedroom is easy. But will we be more than just a real good time when the music stops?

My thoughts…

Mackenzie is a single parent whose idea of a good time is dominating at trivia night at her favorite bar. Campbell, the sexy lead guitarist in a band playing at the bar mouths her the answer to a trivia question. There is an instant attraction between these two, which later leads to a scorching hot one-night stand that shows promise of perhaps becoming more.

Mackenzie became pregnant her final year of college by her best friend. She had her son, Kyle, graduated and then built a very successful career as a graphic designer. Campbell is a single dad who wants a normal simple life with his daughter Samantha. As a former rock star who graduated from Juilliard, Campbell plays several musical instruments and teaches music to other child prodigies. He loves what he does, teaching, singing in his band, playing gigs where no one knows who he is.

The man Mackenzie finds herself lusting after is none other than her son’s new music teacher. They decide to keep things professional between them and to put the best interests of their kids first. They can’t take a chance of their relationship possibly not working out, but they are having a difficult time staying away from each other and the sexual tension between them is off the charts. Campbell is a dirty talker who is making it extremely difficult for Mackenzie to keep her resolve.

With a little push from Jamison (Kyle’s father & Mackenzie’s best friend) and with a little parent trapping planned by Samantha and Kyle things finally come together for Mackenzie and Campbell.

Once Upon a Real Good Time is a fun, flirty, entertaining read that is full of laughs and good times. The characters, the storyline, and the romance came together nicely. It captivated me right from the start and held until I reached the end. Once Upon a Real Good Time is the first book in the Heartbreakers series, and book two will feature Campbell’s brother Miller.

Happy Reading!



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18 September 2018

Britt-Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman


Britt-Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman
Joan Walker (Narrator)
Audiobook; Duration: 09:18:07
Published May 3rd, 2016 by Simon Schuster Audio
⭐⭐⭐

Britt-Marie can't stand mess. She eats dinner at precisely the right time and starts her day at six in the morning because only lunatics wake up later than that. And she is not passive-aggressive. Not in the least. It's just that sometimes people interpret her helpful suggestions as criticisms, which is certainly not her intention.

But at sixty-three, Britt-Marie has had enough. She finally walks out on her loveless forty-year marriage and finds a job in the only place she can: Borg, a small, derelict town devastated by the financial crisis. For the fastidious Britt-Marie, this new world of noisy children, muddy floors, and a roommate who is a rat (literally), is a hard adjustment.

As for the citizens of Borg, with everything that they know crumbling around them, the only thing that they have left to hold onto is something Britt-Marie absolutely loathes: their love of soccer. When the village's youth team becomes desperate for a coach, they set their sights on her. She's the least likely candidate, but their need is obvious and there is no one else to do it.

Thus begins a beautiful and unlikely partnership. In her new role as reluctant mentor to these lost young boys and girls, Britt-Marie soon finds herself becoming increasingly vital to the community. And even more surprisingly, she is the object of romantic desire for a friendly and handsome local policeman named Sven. In this world of oddballs and misfits, can Britt-Marie finally find a place where she belongs?

Zany and full-of-heart, Britt-Marie Was Here is a novel about love and second chances, and about the unexpected friendships we make that teach us who we really are and the things we are capable of doing.

My thoughts...

Britt-Marie Was Here is a story about Britt-Marie, a rather particular elderly woman who finds herself thrust into a new situation in life. She's been a devoted wife, giving over her entire life to Kent. But Kent hasn't appreciated her brand of obsessive loyalty and has had an affair and she has left him.

“It’s difficult to know when love blooms; suddenly one day you wake up and it’s in full flower. It works the same way when it wilts—one day it is just too late.” Fredrik Backman, Britt-Marie Was Here

Britt-Marie is difficult, frustrating and socially awkward. She is also insensitive, obsessive about how things should be done and kind of rude. She finds a job and is forced to move to a small town. In the process she finds a sense of humor, discovers that she can make friends and finds her sense of self. She is slowly beginning to live life, and is needed, particularly when things take a tragic turn.

“A human being may not choose her circumstances, but she does choose her actions”
Fredrik Backman, Britt-Marie Was Here

Fredrik Backman has this interesting way of creating such endearing characters and making old grumpy people likeable. I struggled with the first part of the story but then got caught up in the characters and was really enjoying it. And then came the totally ambiguous ending that left me feeling irritated.  

Happy Reading!




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17 September 2018

The Real Deal by Lauren Blakely


The Real Deal by Lauren Blakely
Paperback, 368 pages
Published July 10th, 2018 by St. Martin's Griffin
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
April Hamilton wants you to know she hasn't been on Craigslist since that time she sold her futon after college. She doesn't even spend that much time online. And even if she did, she would not be looking up personal ads. But going home alone for her family's summer reunion is an invitation for every single relative to butt into her personal life. She simply can't handle another blind date with the butcher, the baker or the candlestick maker from her hometown. So, when she finds the Craigslist ad for a boyfriend-for-hire, she's ready to pay to play.

 Heading Home and Need a Buffer? I'm the REAL DEAL.

 Theo Banks has been running from the past for years. He's this close to finally settling all his debts, and one more job as a boyfriend-for-hire will do the trick. He's no gigolo. Please. He's something of an actor, and he knows how to slip into any role, including pretending to be April's new beau -- the bad boy with the heart of gold.

 Even if it means sleeping in close quarters in that tiny little bed in her parents' inn. Even if it means spinning tales of a romance that starts to feel all too true. What neither one of them counts on is that amid the egg toss, the arm wrestling, and a fierce game of Lawn Twister that has them tangled up together, they might be feeling the real deal.

 She only wanted to show her family once and for all that she had no need to settle down.

 He didn't expect to have the time of his life at her parent's home.

 They didn't plan on loving every single second of the game.

 But can a masterful game of pretend result in true love?

My thoughts…

April is desperately in need of a boyfriend. She needs to keep her family of matchmakers from setting her up with someone from her hometown during the annual family reunion. Her best friend Xavier was originally going to be her fake boyfriend. That is, until a job opportunity came up out of the country that he couldn’t pass up.

Xavier puts April in touch with a friend of his, Theo, an actor for hire, who rents himself out as a platonic boyfriend. Theo is trying to pay off debts and has time to attend the family reunion as her new boyfriend. He isn't an escort, sex is the only thing that he will not do for his clients. When Theo and April meet, the sparks immediately fly, they have instant chemistry.

Normally I dislike books with insta-love, in this book I had no problems with them falling in love over the five days they spent together. Lauren Blakely made it work and liked that Theo and April didn't get intimate the first or second night of them being alone together. Their banter and conversations together were heartwarming, along with the role playing and the impromptu stories they made up about themselves.

The Real Deal is an adorable, sexy romantic comedy.

Happy Reading!




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16 September 2018

Inky Edition of the Sunday Post

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly @ Caffeinated Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news - A post to recap the past week on my blog. Showcase books and things I may have received. Share a bit of news about myself and what to expect on my blog in the upcoming week. 

#20


Everyday Life:

I had a good reading week, okay, only three books, but one book was 725 pages! I did it, I finally finished The Mortal Instruments series, it really reminded me why I loved this series so much when I first started reading it.

My husband and I attend an RV show this weekend, there is a lot of options to choose from. So far, we like what we see with the Mercedes-Benz Diesel Motorhomes. The Class-A Motorhomes are beautiful and huge. I would have to get a part time job as a school bus driver just to learn how to drive something that large. We still have a couple years to learn all about RV’s before we make a purchase. Any suggestions from any RV’ers?

After the RV show we took a road trip up the mountain. It’s starting to look a little like Fall with the Aspens changing color. In a couple weeks we should have more color, but nothing like you would see in the Northeast. 


What I am currently reading/listening to:



Meet Jane Hawk—a remarkable new heroine certain to become an icon of suspense, propelled by the singular narrative genius of #1 New York Times bestselling author Dean Koontz.

“I very much need to be dead.”

These are the chilling words left behind by a man who had everything to live for—but took his own life. In the aftermath, his widow, Jane Hawk, does what all her grief, fear, and fury demand: find the truth, no matter what.

People of talent and accomplishment, people admired and happy and sound of mind, have been committing suicide in surprising numbers. When Jane seeks to learn why, she becomes the most-wanted fugitive in America. Her powerful enemies are protecting a secret so important—so terrifying—that they will exterminate anyone in their way.

But all their power and viciousness may not be enough to stop a woman as clever as they are cold-blooded, as relentless as they are ruthless—and who is driven by a righteous rage they can never comprehend. Because it is born of love.


What I read/listened to this past week:


The Real Deal by Lauren Blakely ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instruments #6) by Cassandra Clare ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Once Upon a Real Good Time (Heartbreakers #1) by Lauren Blakely ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐


Stacking the Shelves #52:

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews and co-hosted by Reading Reality. It’s all about sharing the latest books I've added to my shelves; may it be physical or virtual. I include books I borrow from the library, audiobooks, gifts and of course eBooks.

The two Kristen Ashley books that I purchased this week are book’s that I’ve already read and own on Kindle. I know crazy right?! I liked them so much that I wanted to add them to my bookcase and chances are I will read them once again. Kristen Ashley is a must buy author for me.  

Books purchased:


eBooks purchased:



Last week on the blog:



Random photos:




Thank you for visiting and I have a lovely week ahead.
Jovita


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13 September 2018

Books from the Backlog: Villette by Charlotte Brontë



Books from the Backlog is a fun way to feature some of those neglected books sitting on your bookshelf or e-reader unread.  If you would like to join in, please feel free to enter your link at Carole’s Random Life, then spend some time visiting some of the other posts.


This week's neglected book:

Villette by Charlotte Brontë
Paperback, 672 pages
Published April 7th, 2009 by Vintage
(first published 1853)

Charlotte Brontë's final masterpiece powerfully portrays a woman struggling to reconcile love, jealousy, and a fierce desire for independence.

 Having fled a harrowing past in England, Lucy Snowe begins a new life teaching at a boarding school in the great capital of a foreign country. There, as she tries to achieve independence from both outer necessity and inward grief, she finds that her feelings for a worldly doctor and a dictatorial professor threaten her hard-won self-possession.

 Published in 1853, Charlotte Bronte's last novel was written in the wake of her grief at the death of her siblings. It has a dramatic force comparable to that of her other masterpiece, Jane Eyre, as well as a striking modernity of psychological insight and a revolutionary understanding of human loneliness.

Why did I add Villette to my bookshelf?

Two of my favorite classics are written by the Brontë sisters. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë and Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë. I have multiple editions of each book and I was hoping that Villette will be my third favorite classic. I picked this up at Border’s Bookstore, before they closed for good in 2010.  

What are your thoughts? Have you read this book? Would you recommend it to others?

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12 September 2018

#famous by Jilly Gagnon


#famous by Jilly Gagnon
Hardcover, 384 pages
Published February 14th, 2017
by Katherine Tegen Books
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

In this modern-day love story, Girl likes Boy, Girl takes photo of Boy and posts it online, Boy becomes accidentally insta-famous. And what starts out as an innocent joke spirals into a whirlwind adventure that could change both their lives—and their hearts—forever. But are fame and love worth the price?

 Told in alternating points of view, #famous captures the out-of-control thrill ride of falling for someone in front of everyone.

My thoughts…

I just knew I was going to enjoying this book after reading page 2.

“Sure, mom.” I’d be pretty shocked to see my mom commit to a shirt she had to lace herself into. Usually her style tended toward neutral-colored sacks, but if she really wanted to dress like a vampire, I wasn’t going to tell her no. Besides, it’s kind of awesome when parents try to be cool, like watching a baby sloth play the piano or something. Jilly Gagnon, #famous

The storyline is about Rachel takes a picture of her secret crush, Kyle, while he's working his shift at the Burger Barn, and then sending it to her best friend over social media.  

“@Mo_than_you_know I’m digging what they’re serving up at Burger Barn today. #idlikefrieswithTHAT” Jilly Gagnon, #famous

Rachel only has a handful of followers and only expects her best friend, Mo, to see it. The picture then was reposted by a bunch of other people, and suddenly Kyle became instantly famous and Rachel just wants to hide, everyone now knows about her silly crush. The cyberbullies come out against Rachel, but Kyle is there to speak up for her. When the Laura Show comes calling, both agree to a series on her talk show.

Kyle and Rachel build a connection over the course of several weeks. Their friendship grows into more, but Rachel is not sure she can trust Kyle's intentions. Is his feeling real or is he just playing for the cameras? Rachel and Kyle are both ridiculously loveable, their banter is hilarious, and I spent a huge portion of the book with a smile.

“Rachel,” Dad said as I was rushing out the door. I turned, fingers tapping my impatience out against my leg. “There’s no such thing as a boy that’s out of your league. If he doesn’t realize that, he’s not good enough for you in the first place.”

God, dads were so perpetually blind to reality. Still, your dad should believe that. Even if he’s wrong.

“Thanks, Dad.”
Jilly Gagnon, #famous

Of course, there are those pesky mean girls: Emma, Kyle’s ex-girlfriend who is desperately trying to get back together with him now that Kyle is famous. Then we have Jessie, Rachels childhood friend, who started posting not so great photos of Rachel online. Jessie also bullied and encouraged others at school to bully Rachel. I didn’t understand why Jessie was so intent on causing Rachel pain, I’m guessing jealousy. I think that whole scenario could have been left out.

The ending to this was a happily ever after, and I was pleased that things worked out okay in the end. If you're looking for a cute, entertaining, quick and easy read, I'd recommend reading #famous.

Happy Reading!


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09 September 2018

Inky Edition of the Sunday Post

The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly @ Caffeinated Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news - A post to recap the past week on my blog. Showcase books and things I may have received. Share a bit of news about myself and what to expect on my blog in the upcoming week. 



Everyday Life:


We had a fabulous visit in Illinois with family, but it’s always great to be back in Colorado. 



What I am currently reading/listening to:



After catching up on the previous books in The Mortal Instruments series (with the help of Recaptains), I am determined to finish this series. Then hopefully complete The Infernal Devices series, once again it’s the last book I need to read, Clockwork Princess.



What I read/listened to this past week:


His True Queen (The Smoke & Mirrors Duology #2) by Jodi Ellen Malpas ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
Face Off (The Evelyn Talbot Chronicles #3) by Brenda Novak ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
From Here to You (Crash and Burn #1) by Jamie McGuire ⭐⭐



Stacking the Shelves #51:

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews and co-hosted by Reading Reality. It’s all about sharing the latest books I've added to my shelves; may it be physical or virtual. I include books I borrow from the library, audiobooks, gifts and of course eBooks.

On the way home from Illinois we stayed the evening in Topeka, KS. There just happened to be a Barnes & Noble down the street from where we had dinner, I had to stop in. My husband thought I was nuts, since we do have two B&N's in Colorado Springs. My reply was “sometimes they have different inventory” and I’m sure the Colo Spgs stores carry these titles. 

Books purchased:


Sold on a Monday by Kristina McMorris
2 CHILDREN FOR SALE - The sign is a last resort. It sits on a farmhouse porch in 1931, but could be found anywhere in an era of breadlines, bank runs, and broken dreams. It could have been written by any mother facing impossible choices.

Inspired by an actual newspaper photograph that stunned the nation, Sold on a Monday is a powerful novel of love, redemption, and the unexpected paths that bring us home.

The Real Deal by Lauren Blakely
April Hamilton wants you to know she hasn't been on Craigslist since that time she sold her futon after college. She doesn't even spend that much time online. And even if she did, she would not be looking up personal ads. But going home alone for her family's summer reunion is an invitation for every single relative to butt into her personal life. She simply can't handle another blind date with the butcher, the baker or the candlestick maker from her hometown. So when she finds the Craigslist ad for a boyfriend-for-hire, she's ready to pay to play



Last week on the blog:




Random photos:

Since I purchased my Canon 60D, I’ve never took the time to learn all the settings. The night of the fireworks I handed my camera to my nephew JP, (who is a filmmaker) and these are two of the many photos he took that evening. 




Thank you for visiting and I have a lovely week ahead.
Jovita


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