Never Got Over You – S.L. Scott
Nick and Natalie meet at a party. Natalie just got out of a bad relationship and swore off men until she had met Nick. She leaves the next morning regretting that decision from walking away from a potential good relationship. Nick is disappointed and angry for not getting her number and she slips away. Months later their paths cross once more but she leaves her number and he asks her out. Their fate and stars finally realigned for the best.
This was an alright romance novel. I wasn’t too keen on this but I was fine with the plot. The writing is excellent and pacing was just as excellent. I wasn’t hyped up about them always hooking up or nearly hooking up and not actually getting together until half way into the book. I kept getting mad at them for making horrible decisions and when they made the right one is when I started liking them again. Anyways I liked this book and anyone who is a romantic would most likely enjoy this much more than me.
Wolfsbane – Andrea Cremer
Wolves, supernatural, fiction, young adults, identity, interpersonal relationships.
Calla was captured by the enemy. Only to find out the truth and that Shay was telling the truth of the reality she is now faced with. She has to work with them to fight her true enemy. In order to go back to rescue her pack, she must train and be prepared. She has to protect Shay as he is the key to the future. Even though she turned him into the wolf so he can give her pack blood in order to save his life, he is still in need of protection. She has to trust her own heart to make the right decision.
I, of course, couldn’t resist getting the entire trilogy of this series. I loved this series as a teenager and even love them more as an adult. The synopsis is short because most of the book has a lot of details and I wouldn’t want to spoil. Andrea Cremer does such a good job world building and making lovable, as well as hateable, characters. This book was fairly paced and well written. A bit shorter than the first novel but definitely action packed. Calla going through the whole identity and purpose crisis was really character building and has made her better. I still find it funny that her other love interest, Shay, is now a werewolf. He hasn’t fully adjusted and it’s quite humoring. I might hold off reading the final book, BloodRose because I want to enjoy this series and relish the moments. I will also work on getting the prequel series that goes along with this book that gives background information of the history behind all what is going on in this series which I also had read back in middle school when I had that werewolf witch phase. I wasn’t on the team Edward lol. I was on the werewolf team. Go find this book series and read it if one is into werewolves and witches.
A Pho Love Story – Loan Le
Romance, comedy, rival pho restaurants, Vietnamese-Americans, young adult, fiction.
Linh and Bao’s families are rival pho restaurants. They are always competing against each other to the point where sometimes nasty words are said. Sometimes rumors are spread that are lies. Linh and Bao try to have a relationship and navigate the rough waters of their families’ rivalry. Both vowing to make it work for both of them and their families.
I was curious about this book as I was looking at the new YA section and wanted to read something different so I picked this book and some others. I liked this. I felt that this is a great and better replacement of Romeo and Juliet with a happier ending with more diverse characters. We need more diverse books in the public school curriculum that aren’t just old racist dudes. I’m sure that this is much more enriching than a tale of two people deciding to end it all if they can’t be together. These two people, Linh and Bao, work it out between their families. I can see this happening in real life and love that there is food involved. I never really tried pho but now I want to try it. Besides, I love both characters and feel for them. Go get this book and read it.
Plain Bad Heroines – Emily M. Danforth, with illustrations by Sara Lautman
Mystery, horror, haunting, sapphic, romance, fiction.
At the school for girls, Brookhants, experience a horrific tragic accident involving two students who were in love and their story was told by a fellow student who witnessed their affair. The students’ names were Flo and Clara and the third student was named Mary. The school had to shut down as more students were dying from Yellow Jackets stinging them and they were found with Mary’s book. Nearly a century later, the school is haunted and is being used to film the movie based on their lives. The bestselling author is helping make sure everything that happened remains authentic. Just as filming production occurs, the terrors and haunting begin.
I saw that this book was extremely hyped for being sapphic and mystery horror. I have to say that the mystery horror was sort of expected to be predictable. I loved the sapphic parts of the novel. I enjoyed that at least. The pacing could have been a bit quicker. I loved world building and storytelling. I do recommend this novel for those who might be into this more than I did. I didn’t hate it. I felt it was an alright novel. I would maybe in the future reread it to see how I feel about it.
Fly Me to the Moon Vol 4 – Kenjiro Hata
Romance, contemporary, young adult, manga, fiction.
Nasa and Tsukasa return from touring the Kyoto area and getting to know his parents to find that his home got burned up. Now they have nowhere else to go, one of his friends offers a room at the place he is a regular. Throughout this, they find romance and make memories with each other. Nasa learns what it is like to treat his wife to things that she deserves. Their next adventure would be finding their own place to live at.
Okay, this one was definitely cuter than the previous volume. They are so cute that one has to obviously ship the two. There are some pervy parts in this one but there is too much romance and fluff that it goes unnoticed. I’m so happy to have found this series and can’t wait for the rest to come out. I am 100% deeply invested in this manga series.
Fly Me to the Moon Vol 3 – Kenjiro Hata
Romance, contemporary, young adult, manga, fiction.
Nasa realizes that their home is small and sort of cramped. He wants to move to a bigger space but she is happily content. He convinces her that they can get a bigger space for the two and get more stuff that she likes. Now that she’s on board with that idea but points out that a new bigger home would be costly. Nasa knows who to go get help for a bigger place, his parents. In realizing this, he forgot to inform them that they got married. He wants the best for his wife and will do anything to prove that he loves her.
I was struggling to find this manga volume. As one can tell, I am deeply invested in this series. There are a lot of cute and hilarious moments. Moments that made me go aww and cried cause it was so much fluff and romance. I’m so happy when I found this and I found the fourth volume as well. I sincerely recommend this manga series because there is a lot of cute fluff and moments that will make one’s heart melt. The artwork and dialogue are perfect and well done. Unfortunately there are only four volumes but this can be a way to catch up if there is more coming out later this year. I saw at Barnes & Nobles that there are four more coming out this year which is great news.
Fly Me to the Moon: Vol 2 – Kenjiro Hata
Contemporary, romance, manga, older teens, fiction.
Nasa takes his new wife, Tsukasa, to the bathhouse since his living arrangements currently don’t have a shower or bath. They come back when her sister arrives and declares that she doesn’t approve of Nasa. Her sister kidnaps him and tries to ruin the relationship but he is loyal to Tsukasa. Tsukasa sees the loyalty and Nasa proposes to her, even though they are married. We follow them through their lives together.
I was hunting down this series like a mad woman. I needed to read more and more of this. I want to know who and what Tsukasa is. There are some hints of possibly a being from the moon and or different planet. The artwork is splendid and the dialogue. I was laughing and going ‘aww’ throughout this volume. I highly recommend reading this manga series. This might take a while to complete but one hundred percent worth waiting.
Malice – Heather Walter
LGBTQ+, retellings, Sapphic, Sleeping Beauty, fiction.
Alyce is known as the Dark Grace. Her blood is green and more deadlier than her fellow Graces. However, she is made harmless as she can’t use magic to cause harm as it is illegal. Her ancestors cursed the Briar’s women. The women unless they kiss their true love they die at the ripe age of 21. Aurora, the last surviving heir, is almost turning 21 and she must find her true love so that she can rule and change the rules. She meets Alyce and both combined alliances work towards making the world fairer towards Graces. Alyce finds her father and he reveals that Alyce is not only half Grace but half Shifter. He slowly teaches her about her untapped potential. There are darker forces at hand that do not want change for the better but rather for the worst. The one who breaks the Aurora’s curse is one twist that no one in the Kingdom would expect.
I had heard and seen this book everywhere. I don’t really love Sleeping Beauty but I don’t hate her. She is an alright princess. However, this book was hyped and I understand why. This was so well written and kept me hooked from page one to the last page. I finished this within a day which is hard because some days are busier than others for me. I just was like thrown into this world I didn’t want to leave. Another book caused me to have a book hangover. The whole idea that Maleficent and Aurora together really was something I wasn’t expecting. I highly recommend this book. It is so good and I can’t wait for the sequel. I’m anticipating the sequel since this was marked as the first in a duology.
This Much is True – Tia Louise
Romance, single fathers, fiction.
Hope was drunk and passed out in the backseat of the chevy impala she technically sold. J.R. was in a need of a vehicle to get him to go see his son and confront his dad. He was locked away for two years for being caught up in a drug trade he was not involved with. He enlists his brother to come help prove his innocence in a crime he didn’t commit when he finds a stowaway in the backseat. Hope is flustered and angry with J.R. and tells him he has to take her back but unfortunately there is no turning back. J.R. picks up his brother, Scout, and the trio head off on a road trip. She learns more about J.R. and Scout and they learn about her and her family. J.R. slowly grows more in love with Hope and vice versa. They arrive at the destination. J.R.’s grandma and brother want him to marry Hope because she is a keeper and he doesn’t want to drag her into the mess. However, she proves resilient and proves that she wants to be with J.R. She helps him prove his innocence and save his life.
I really enjoyed reading this novel. I was simply amazed by the plot and the timing that the novel takes place in. The characters felt so alive and the interactions felt so genuine. I really enjoyed the different perspectives, one for Hope’s POV and J.R.’s POV. This was organized and there were a lot of emotions I felt through the characters. There were times I laughed and cried throughout this novel. I didn’t really want this novel to end but unfortunately there was an ending that was perfect. The author did an excellent job of storytelling and the perfect amount of romance with some steamy moments that were unexpected. Overall, I finally understand the hype for some romance novels and before I hardly never read them because of the premise that there is strictly only sex everywhere. This was not the case. There was a lot of substance and action happening that wasn’t sexual. I do recommend this novel because it’s a really good read.
Written in the Stars – Alexandra Bellefleur
Romance, contemporary, fiction.
Darcy never wants to be involved with love after her disastrous relationship that left her jaded. However, her brother sets her up with one blind date too far and she tells him that she can’t attend this speed dating because she is already into the blind date, his business partner, Elle. Her brother is happy that she found a potential partner. Elle is not amused with the lie that Darcy told and both agreed mutually that they will fake it until an expiration date. However, the stars have different plans for the two.
I saw this trending and of course I had to read to see what the hype is all about. All I can say is that I think the hype was not enough. I love this fake it trope that leads to actual love and romance. This was really sweet and I found it so adorable. Love sometimes happens and one has to be fully prepared. My heart melted so many times while reading this and I can’t get enough of this romance. I wish this was longer but a standalone is just perfect and the length here was good. There are an awful lot of constellations and astrological references which all makes sense and I was like wow the author is into this stuff or did a lot of research. I felt myself rooting for Darcy to like being into the stuff but she gives in at some point. This book would be great for astrological enthusiasts. I loved this book and definitely would reread this book and or gift to others.