ARC received from: Netgalley
Trope: Fake relationship
Chemistry: Damp squid
One-Sentence Summary: A girl crawls into the wrong bed at a high school reunion
Review: I loved Ms Sloane’s debut novel in the Brazen line but I’m afraid to say that her followup novel and I just did not get on.
There were just too many frustrating things and then there’s the heroine Georgia who is the definition of irritating.
The plot is based around the premise that Georgia thinks she is sneaking into her high school boyfriend, Brandon’s, room and starts to seduce him, unaware that the lucky guy is actually Gideon the high school geek.
I know that several years have passed since she last saw Brandon but you would kind of think that she would recognise that the guy in bed wasn’t her high school sweetheart before it got as far as it did. Anyway, I was still with the story at this point. Where it lost me was after every single encounter with Gideon, even after they have crazy hot sex, she is still obsessed with getting Brandon back and just using Gideon to make him jealous even though Brandon barely notices her. As a setup this was okay but it just went on waaay too long that I simultaneously felt sorry for Gideon and wanting to slap him for letting himself be used like that.
Every heroine needs a friend to pour her heart out to and in this story it is the hapless Kim who has absolutely no personality and spends the whole of the story in bed sick, apart from when she appears to be Georgia’s soundboard (except not really because Georgia doesn’t tell her she’s doing it with Gideon instead of Brandon). Kim = one dimensional.
The book spends a good proportion of time highlighting that the story is based on a ‘fake relationship’ trope and building up to the favour that Gideon needs – a fake girlfriend. However, we never get to see that play out because they get their happily ever after before the dinner and therefore a good trigger for tension and play-acting is lost.
Finally, as I said at the start Georgia is just plain unlikable.
The music has always been my favourite thing about Nashville so I was so happy to be able to get tickets for when Chris Carmack, Sam Palladio, Clare Bowen and Charles Esten came to town. I mean who would have thought that a group of country singers are so popular in London that they had to add two extra shows!!
Anyway, what a talented group of people! They act, play multiple instruments, song-write and have wonderful singing voiced to boot.
The concert started out with each of them coming on stage individually to do a song and then introduce the following act. Then they all came on individually again to do a few songs each – a combination of songs from the show, original material and covers.
If I’m going to be honest, I was a little disappointed with the song selection. I really wanted Clare to do Black Roses, not to mention more Scarlett/Gunnar songs and even some of the upbeat songs from The (Triple) Exes which the whole team could have done.
However, what we were given was still exquisitely performed. Needless to say Clare’s song that was written for her about her brother’s cancer completely stole the show. It was absolutely amazing and so full of emotion. I looked on iTunes as soon as I got home to see if I could buy it but unfortunately it’s not out there to buy.
Whatever songs they chose to do, I definitely think we could have done with more than two songs with the four of them on stage together but it was enjoyable all the same.
Click here to see my photos from the concert – not too shoddy if I say so myself, even though we were up in the Circle, Row P.
ARC received from: The wonderful Kate Meader herself
Trope: Brother’s best friend
One-Sentence Summary: Olivia uses her brother’s best friend for his body but ends up wanting more
Review: Aaaaaand Kate Meader is back with another sexy slick read.
For those of you who read the preceding book in the series, Taking The Score, you will have already had a glimpse at Flynn and Olivia’s explosive relationship and in this book that relationship, well, explodes, both figuratively and orgasmically.
The start of the book finds Olivia drowning her sorrows at a hotel bar on her wedding day after finding her fiancé in the throws of it with her maid of honour, and like any self-respecting woman in her situation, Olivia is determined to make up for lost time by having lots of one-night stands. Enter Flynn, a perfect candidate and willing to be used for his body – the only downside being the oodles of history between him and Olivia and of course the ever-present “bro-code”.
Whilst the fact that Flynn’s best friend Brody is Olivia’s brother is of course the source of some tension, Meader does what most authors do not in this trope and avoids making it the main source of conflict between the couple. That honour belongs to the fact that throughout their friendship, Olivia feels that Flynn has been blowing hot/cold and coming in and out of her life as he pleases. Now Flynn has to prove that he is here to stay.
This book is a Brazen and needless to say full of sexy, hot scenes so best avoided as a lunchtime read at work!
“I disagree. A book can give you most things a relationship can. It can make you laugh, it can make you cry, it can transport you to different worlds and teach you things. You can even take it out to dinner. And if it bores you, you can move on. Which is pretty much what happens in real life.”
ARC received from: Netgalley
Trope: Friend’s brother
Chemistry: Low boil
One-Sentence Summary: A relationship-phobe falls in love with her best friend’s perfect brother
Review: For all those longterm fans of Sarah Morgan out there, you’ll be as pleased as I am to learn that this book revisits the setting and characters from her previous trilogy and a large chunk of the story takes place on Puffin Island. Yay! It was a real pleasure to go back to that idyllic setting and make a pit-stop in the lives of those couples.
For those of you who have never read the Puffin Island books then a) you’re missing out but, b) don’t worry, it’s not a prerequisite to enjoying this book.
Focusing on the central romance in this book though, I have to say I was a tad disappointed. It’s always interesting to read a romance where the guy is more invested in the relationship than the girl and has been pining away for awhile, and I liked Matt for that. However, I have to say he was just a bit too perfect to be a nice match for Frankie.
As for Frankie, I really liked her at the start because we have a lot in common (book > socialising) but man she had enough issues to sink Puffin Island. I get it, we all have issues as do our heroes and heroines, that’s what makes their stories interesting but it seemed that all the characters were focused on in this book were these issues: Frankie herself and Matt and all her friends spent a huge proportion of time talking about her issues, discussing her issues and using her issues as an excuse etc. etc. It just weighed down the book so much for me that when Frankie started to let herself enjoy being with Matt, I wondered if this was even still the same character!
ARC received from: Netgalley
Trope: Friends to lovers
One-Sentence Summary: Two childhood friends reconnect
Review: Why is it that during all my years at the University of Edinburgh, a Nash didn’t come into my life?! Sad times.
Anyway, that aside, it took me a little while to really fall in love with this book: the start seemed a bit of a repetition of Cade/Monroe’s story with Tally/Nash playing in the river when they were young followed by years of separation. Then there was the emphasis that they were best friends in present-time but they hadn’t seen each other in twenty years – I’m sorry but you’ll never convince me that you can stay away from each other for two decades and immediately slip back into the best friend status.
So I was convinced that this book was a 3.5* all the way until the last third where it finally clicked for me and I fell in love the story. The added layer of Tally’s Uncle and Nash’s Aunt made it all the more interesting as did Nash’s reconnection with his Dad.
Overall though, whilst I ended up enjoying it a lot more than I thought I would at the start, I still feel that this is the “filler” book for me, bring on Sawyer/Regan’s story!
I loved the first season of the show but by the end of the second season my interest started to wane so when it came to start this series, I couldn’t even remember that TC and Jordan broke up! I’ve got to say that I am so tired of them being off/on, off/on and it looks like this season is going to be more of the same.
The first two episodes of this season though were quite interesting mainly because of the awesome guest star Jennifer Beals and her character’s relationship with Drew in Afghanistan and their story. I wish they’d make her a regular, that would definitely bring some life to the show.
I’ll keep watching for now as it’s my only show on over the summer – I just hope they don’t make the TC/Jordan too tedious.
Season 2 of CBS’ Code Black is excising both NYPD Blue vet Bonnie Somerville and Smash alum Raza Jaffrey from its cast, where they played Christa Lorenson and Neal Hudson
Surely the most perverse decision ever.
I am sure a great proportion of people watched the show for Neal and Christa. How many people ever watched the show for the equally irritating characters of Heather and Campbell?!
I was really happy when I heard this show got renewed for a second season but I don’t know whether I’ll bother with it after this news.
I was really excited about this spinoff from Criminal Minds, mainly because of the fantastic cast line up in Gary Sinise, Alana De La Garza and Daniel Henney.
Unfortunately the majority of the season failed to deliver for me. Most of the episodes were just ….. boring. Yes, I’m surprised that that is even possible given the cast, the tried and tested formula plus the “exotic” locations (read: green screens). It even got to the point where I was actually kind of disappointed that the show got renewed for a second season because I know I won’t be able to stop watching without giving it another chance.
However, I’m delighted to say that I enjoyed the finale and this was everything that I would expect from a Criminal Minds finale, down to the opening and ending with family and team family moments.
Whilst I felt sorry for the American family, I also really felt sorry for the perp given all that she had gone through. The case was interesting and there wasn’t any of those awkward scenes where Monty has to confront the worried parents by himself.