Tag Archives: books: 2.5*

Hot on Ice: A Hockey Romance Anthology by Various

Hot on Ice: A Hockey Romance Anthology (Chicago Rebels, #.5; Station Seventeen, #1.5)ARC received from: the authors

Rating: 2.5*


The rating reflects the average rating for the anthology as a whole. Individual ratings given below.

This book almost defeated me but I was determined to get through it all so I could give it a fair review, even if it meant speed-reading and skimming a few of the stories which really didn’t work for me.

Overall, this anthology is worth buying just for the 4* reads given that a percentage of the profits are going to charity and you never know, you might discover a new favourite author.

Kimberly Kincaid – Deep Check
Love this author and the firehouse series.

Katie Kenyhercz – Bear Naked
An interesting introduction for me to the native American world and the juggling of cultures

Desiree Holt – Body Check
No consistency with the absence of the “Keeper of the Cup” and a hotshot hockey guy thinks he can get his old love back now that he is injured and finally has time for her? Ugh.

Angi Morgan – Breakaway Brook
Paranormal super powers in a contemporary romance? No thanks.

Kim Golden – Under A Midnight Sun
I am sensing a repetitive theme here ….. cocky hockey guys who, once they’ve won the cup, think they can go back to their hometown and reunite with an ex-girlfriend.

Kate Meader – In Skates Trouble
This was what I really tried this anthology for and it didn’t disappoint!
I am really looking forward to Harper’s book, the first full length novel in a new series from one of my favourite contemporary romance authors!

Misty D. Waters – Checking Yes
I’m pretty sure I read this before in this anthology ….. hockey star abandoned his childhood sweetheart when he went off to play hockey and now he wants her back …. This one just has additional family and Southern drama thrown in for good measure.

Robin Kaye – Penalty Box Blues
The hockey star who can’t even remember the girl who used to tutor him every day

Robin Covington – Free Agent
I’m usually not a fan of 1st Person POV but I enjoyed this one more than I expected to

Avery Flynn – Blade
Interesting set-up with two old acquaintances having to work together to stop the cup being stolen

Susan Scott Shelley – Making His Move
Coffee addict hooks up with a sweet girl from his childhood whilst spending more time with his sporty family.

Christi Barth – Check My Heart
Really liked the background of she being his brother’s hospice nurse and loved the chemistry between these two

Heather Long – Blocked
Hockey star helps pop princess avoid the press.

Andie J.Christopher – Full Contact
A virginity story with a difference. Really weird to see Eddie turned into some kind of bad guy though

Lena Hart – Courage
Not really interested in a story about a marriage in trouble especially when the guy is so self-involved

Nana Malone – Ransom (The Player)
A story around the size of a hockey player’s dick and the geeky classmate he lusted for from afar.

Virginia Nelson – Caged
A desperate small town girl tries very hard to get a hockey star to realise he’s in love with her by making him a plastic trophy

Xio Axelrod – The Warm Up
Flirtation on the cancer ward.

Nobody But You (Cedar Ridge #3) by @JillShalvis

Nobody But You (Cedar Ridge, #3)ARC received from: Netgalley

Rating: 2.5*

Chemistry: Low Boil

One-Sentence Summary: The long-lost Kincaid brother falls in love with a woman on a boat

Review: Oh Jill Shalvis, please can we go back to the wonderful days of Lucky Harbor and Wilder and Animal Magnetism?

This series has never managed to win me over and this book just confirmed my feelings that it felt this series was rushed and written in a hurry.

I was intrigued by Jacob’s story from the mentions of him we got in previous books but that got overshadowed by the major case of “insta-love” between him and Sophie. C’mon guys you JUST MET and Sophie you have ex-husband issues.

Moving on from the romance, there was still the family aspect of theMissing Lily book I could enjoy …. except given that this book is so much about family, WHERE THE HELL IS LILY? I mean Aidan barely gets a look in but LILY ISN’T MENTIONED AT ALL. Seriously.

And then the Mitch/Jenna seems to have come out of nowhere and has apparently been chugging along slowly in the background and now I’m really confused as to whether Jenna is even going to get her own book or not (?!).

Throw in the fact that Sophie’s jackass ex, Lucas, has a 180 degree personalty makeover at the end and I am left wondering where is the Jill Shalvis magic that I know and love.

I am really looking forward to her new series if only with the hope that we return to the awesome writing of yesteryear.

Wilde for Her (Wilde Security #2) by @tonyaburrows

Wilde at Heart (Wilde Security, #3)Rating: 2.5*

Trope: Fake Relationship

Chemistry: Damp squid

One-Sentence Summary: It’s not paranoia if people actually are out to get you ….

Review: Well, this was a big fat disappointment. After having to wait 2 years for the latest installment in the Wilde series, I was practically salivating at the thought of another awesome addition the series.

Instead we got this.

It wasn’t AWFUL per say, and maybe my standards are just ridiculously high, but this book just did absolutely nothing for me.

Some things that irritated me:

1. WTF is Greer’s deal?! His brother ends up in hospital and when poor wounded Reese gives him a call he’s basically like “yeah, I knew everything that was going on” but he didn’t think to share that piece of information with his brother?!

2. Vaughan’s obsession with Lara is more than stalkerish. Did we even meet her? I presume so but cannot remember. And some joke about considering suicide by pulling the parachute too late. Not funny.

3. Reese’s finance issues seemed to sort themselves out remarkably easily at the end given the burden they’d been causing him for the whole book.

4. What are the odds that the arsonist just happens to be the same person blackmailing Shelby and just so happened was tipped off by the husband of the woman who was blackmailing Reese who was only doing it to cover said husband’s problems and then sent the blackmail photos to yet another person out to ruin Shelby – and, wait, the PI doing the actual stalking of Shelby to get the blackmail photos gets involved with Shelby’s crazy ass Mum. Confused? I don’t blame you.

5. Shelby and Reese themselves – I was completely uninvested.

6. Shelby’s crazy ass Mum and judgemental sister Eva (the latter broke my heart because I loved her book).

Fiance by Fate by Jennifer Shirk

Fiance by Fate (Anyone But You, #1)Received an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review


Unfortunately the whole premise around Sabrina insistent upon winning back her douche fiancé back one minute and in love with Jack the next just didn’t work for me – the whole “realisation of feelings” for both Jack and Sabrina could have been paced better and drawn out longer to be more realistic.

I think there were too many peripheral characters for such a short book e.g. Sabrina has 2 friends to confide in (Chris and Maddie) when we could have done with just having either one or the other.

I could have done without the psychic thing as well. That’s partly personal preference and also because I don’t think it added much to the story.

Book: 2.5*

Cover: 4*

One Night with Her Ex by Lucy King

One Night with Her Ex2.5*

I really liked the first half of the book.  Whilst I abhor cheaters, the author/Kit/Lily did a good job of realistically explaining how it came about and I liked how Lily and Kit were honest with each other about what went wrong in their marriage the first time.

Kudos for the author for broaching the topic of impotence which rarely gets a mention in romances, especially those with alpha males!

However, unfortunately the book went downhill in the second half.  I really think the author should have left it with their HEA on the tropical island rather than revisiting their angst back in the UK.

I specifically didn’t like the fact that the cheating issue cropped up again and Kit failed to mention that he still works with the woman.

This book gets points for keeping things realistic, but realism and exploring the downs of human relationships isn’t something I really read romances for.  In the end, there were too many ups and downs for me to believe that Kit and Lily get their HEA.

Also Kit is a bit of an odd name for a male romantic lead!

Book: 2.5*
Cover: 4*

Resisting the Hero by Cindi Madsen

Resisting the Hero (Accidentally in Love, #3)Received an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review


I really loved the first two books in the series so I was eagerly awaiting this latest addition.

Unfortunately, I just didn’t feel the chemistry between Connor and Faith no matter how much I really, really wanted to.

As a heroine, Faith just didn’t appeal to me.  She has Daddy issues and is obsessed with her Dad’s death.  I can understand if it happened recently but the fact it happened years ago, I didn’t think it should be taking up as much of the plot as it did.   And there is just too much flip-flopping on the issue of whether she will be able to cope with Connor also being a cop.

I liked Connor more, even if he also had Daddy issues.  Overall the story just plodded along and nothing happened to make me change my mind about the characters.  (Also Faith’s niece was kind of annoying).

Love the author but unfortunately this wasn’t for me.

Book: 2.5*

Cover: 4*

Confessions of a Hostie: True Stories of an International Flight Attendant by Danielle Hugh

Confessions of a Hostie: True Stories of an International Flight AttendantReceived an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review


As a big fan of airports and air travel, I was looking forward to reading this and getting an insight into the life of a flight attendant.  Did it live up to expectations?

Sort of.  The eye-opening tales are included such as the incident with the Polynesian man, what hosties do to get revenge on high maintenance passengers, not to mention the drinking, partying and infidelity in the downtime.

Highlights include the aforementioned Polynesian man and also the last incident described with the man who had a heart attack.

However, ‘Danielle’ came across just a bit too snarky, materialistic and superficial for me to really warm to her and with such a non-fiction book, you kind of have to like the author to truly like the book.

Book: 2.5*

Cover: 2*

The Wedding Plan by Abby Gaines

The Wedding Plan2.5*

I loved the whole basis of the book but unfortunately there was too much back-and-forth in the delivery and towards the end I ended up thinking it would be better for both if they didn’t get their HEA, which is not something that should ever cross your mind in a romance novel.

The pet names really didn’t work – the way two people who have known each other their whole lives could fall effortlessly into fake pet names for each other, even when they weren’t in front of other people so they didn’t have to pretend, just didn’t seem realistic. Also not keen on the ‘now-you’re-pregnant-that-changes-everything-and-we-have-to-stay-together-now’ plot device.

Book: 2.5*

Cover: 3*