Bite Sized Books // Let’s Talk About Some Romance Reads

13 February 2017

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Well, I’m a little behind in some of my reviews so here are few reviews for some romance I’ve read in the past few weeks. I read a lot of romance and I would have done individual posts for each one but then I wouldn’t manage to get reviews up for weeks because I am on a reviewing roll and I don’t like posting everyday. So instead Bite Sized Books romance post happened so please enjoy.

Published: 7th February 2017
Source: Publisher (NetGalley)
Genre: Romance, Contemporary
My Rating:
The best journeys take us home….
When Tessa Alexander came to Sanctuary Island, she left behind a marriage to a man who didn’t love her the way she loved him. When she finally found the strength to set them both free, she discovered friendship and self-acceptance in her adopted hometown. Now she’s settled into a quiet life on her own—never expecting to see her husband again.
Johnny spent almost two years deep undercover, unable to let his wife into his cold, dangerous world. He’s shaken to the core when he comes home to find her gone. It’s painfully clear that Tessa is no longer the timid young woman he married—she’s become a force of nature, a brave and determined beauty. Johnny can’t let her go without a fight so he sets out to seduce his own wife. But will passion alone be enough to convince Tessa that her new life should include a second chance at happiness with a man who must learn to believe in love?

I was emailed about this book and had never heard of Lily Everett before. I am not normally one for reading books part way through a series, I mean this is book 5 and I know sometimes it can feel like you’re missing bits because you’ve not met all the characters before. Not so with this one, it felt like it was the perfect point to begin reading as you see Sanctuary Island through an outsiders eyes anyway. Johnny is in Sanctuary Island to get his wife back and do his required therapy after returning from an undercover op.

I have to say right off the bat this book is one of this dramatic reads which won’t be to everyone’s tastes but it was strangely addictive and such a quick read and I loved it for that. I did find myself more absorbed by the romance between Quinn and Marcus, but since that is the next book in the series (and another I plan to review) I am not too upset that I cared more for the secondary characters since I know there is more to come for them.

It’s not that I didn’t like the romance between Tessa and Johnny, I just wasn’t as absorbed by it. I loved that Tessa had left the marriage she thought was all about obligation and had no love. I loved she had grown as a person and learnt to stand up for herself. And I loved the spark between her and Johnny. I just didn’t feel the same tension between them because it seemed so inevitable they would get back together as they both clearly loved one another. I mean, even though neither seemed to know how the other felt, and Johnny obviously had some issues to deal with, I just didn’t feel the same tension because it seemed so inevitable. I know romances always do, but usually the twists keep you hooked and the twists just felt added for effect.

That being said, I didn’t dislike the romance, I just felt it built more for the next book for me. I will definitely be checking out more of Everett’s books in the future, anyway.

Published: 28th October 2014
Source: Bought
Genre: Romance, Contemporary
My Rating:
Her mission: six-months without men.
But he has other ideas.

As Stiletto magazine's foremost relationship expert, Grace Brighton should have seen it coming - her boyfriend has been having an affair right under her nose.

Jake Malone is one great story away from editor, and the company challenges him to a little friendly competition with Grace Brighton - who has a bet
I thought I enjoyed the first book in this series but this one just took it to a new level. I mean, the chemistry between Jake and Grace was great and you get fully absorbed into the will they won’t they aspect of the romance. We also officially get introduced to the Oxford magazine so I can see this will lead into Layne's next series as well. I loved everything about this, I mean Julie’s romance with Mitchell was good in the first book but this book definitely worked better for me. I was more interested in the characters and the story.

I think the real reason it worked is because Jake and Grace were good together. There is always playful banter in a romance (I mean always) but there’s was so fun! Especially during their men vs women dates where they were trying to one up each other for their respective magazines. That playfulness between when they were together was great, and the fact they easily teased one another just got me. Basically, I loved that these two were fun together. I like fun in a book.

Even the things which usually annoy me in romance didn’t annoy me. The ridiculous obstacles the characters create for not being together didn’t frustrate me like they usually would. I didn't even care Grace was creating obstacles where there should be none with her ridiculous reasons for wanting to be single and her continual attempts to keep Jake at arms length. I didn't care that Jake was keeping secrets and causing issues because he didn't know what he needed. Convincing himself that he was missing something and being too stupid to know what it was. None of it bothered me and that’s probably because Layne is a great romance writer and these characters were great together.

Time and again Lauren Layne proved to me she knows what she doing. She is a fave in the contemporary world for me and it's all Nick's fault. I'm glad I started reading and you should too.

Published: 21st August 2007
Source: Bought
Genre: Romance, Mystery, Chick Lit
My Rating:
Take one food writer named Cranky Agnes, add a hitman named Shane, mix them together with a Southern mob wedding, a missing necklace, two annoyed flamingos, and a dog named Rhett and you've got a recipe for a sexy, hilarious novel about the disastrous side of true love…

Agnes Crandall's life goes awry when a dognapper invades her kitchen one night, seriously hampering her attempts to put on a wedding that she's staked her entire net worth on.  Then a hero climbs through her bedroom window.  His name is Shane, no last name, just Shane, and he has his own problems:  he's got a big hit scheduled, a rival trying to take him out, and an ex-mobster uncle asking him to protect some little kid named Agnes.  When he finds out that Agnes isn't so little, his uncle has forgotten to mention a missing five million bucks he might have lost in Agnes's house, and his last hit was a miss, Shane's life isn't looking so good, either.  Then a bunch of lowlifes come looking for the money, a string of hit men show up for Agnes, and some wedding guests gather with intent to throw more than rice.  Agnes and Shane have their hands full with greed, florists, treachery, flamingos, mayhem, mothers of the bride, and--most dangerous of all--each other.  Agnes and the Hitman is the perfect combination of sugar and spice, sweet and salty--a novel of delicious proportions.
I was a bit confused at first. I am a massive fan of Jennifer Crusie and I cannot believe I haven’t read this book. I’d heard positive things from both Nereyda and Kaja so I decided ‘screw it’ and bought myself a copy since my library seems to have gotten rid of all the Jennifer Crusie books it used to have a couple of years ago (what the hell?) so I need to invest in my own copies going forward. Anyway, for some reason I’d not read this release from her and I am questioning why.

Anyway, as I said, I was a bit confused at first. The book throws you into the story with little introduction so I was a bit confused how everyone was connected for a while. I figured it out quite sharpish and once I got over the confusion I was hooked by the book. The story was so interesting and I loved the humour in the book. It was witty and hilarious and it was probably why I enjoyed reading so much. I already knew I liked Jennifer Crusie’s writing style, but her writing with Bob Mayer is just as good.

Agnes was such a cranky and grouchy woman and I loved it. None of this bright shiny happiness you get in a lot of romance. Instead, she is grouchy and human and fed up with everyone. She has no time for your crap and can fully accept your alternate career choice of hitman, although she definitely doesn’t want to know the details because dead bodies aren’t cool.

In the end, I really enjoyed the book although it was a bit different. I liked the humour. I loved the southern setting (I don’t know why I let books set in the south, but I do) and basically it all combined together to work for me. I have to say, the book did make me want to eat a lot of food. All the baking in it! I wanted cake and food and just to eat a vast amount all because of this book. But also it was funny and the romance was sweet and I just loved it basically and it made me want to reread all of Jennifer Crusie’s books which is why I need to buy copies of the ones I don’t own because my library is working against me!

Have you read any good romance lately? Please give me the title and say how much I need to read it?
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