Thursday, November 6, 2014


In February of 2011,  I joined twitter and inadvertently found a wonderful community there. The blogging community. For someone who loves to read, loves to talk about books, it was a joy. I was a stay-at-home mom with two little ones, and I was grateful for a connection. I made tons of them! It's a world of smart, insightful, passionate readers, and I'm so lucky to have the privilege of sharing thoughts with them.

In late March of that year , I took a deep breath and started my own blog . It was a wonderful experience. To be able to purge my feelings about the book I'd just read to people who actually cared? That was incredible feeling.

I've decided it's time for me to move on now. I still love to read. I've loved the friendships I've formed. You are amazing,  intelligent,  caring people and I'm so very lucky to call you my friends. I will continue to read your blogs,  to chat with you. I'm just tired. And it's my fault. I've spent so much time in this wonderful world,  too much honestly. And I don't want life to continually pass me by. I joke with my husband that it's weird to say, I need to read less. Like I said, I love to read still, but I think not blogging is making me love it more.

To slowly savor a book? To wallow in a thousand page story, and not worry about rushing onto the next? That had been a reawakening of sorts.

I was hesitant to even write this post, so thank you to Autumn for the encouragement. And thank you for becoming my best friend.  I'm the person who mostly tries to avoid a lot of attention, and I don't want anyone to think I'm just looking for some. Nothing has "happened" to make me stop blogging. I will admit the cattiness and drama doesn't help things, but I've been decent about blocking it out.

So the point of this, is to say thank you. Thank you to the authors who valued my opinion, and even to those who didn't. Thank you to the fellow bloggers. You've been such a wonderful joy to me. And you always will be. Thank you to so the silent blog readers. We may not have ever interacted,  but I thank you for giving me your time.

I'm still going to be around, probably being silly. And snarking at twitter. (In the nicest way!) I will still be hanging around Goodreads. And y'all know I'll be sharing my favorite quotes as I read. Especially when it comes to Jamie Fraser. (good lord that man!) I hope to see you around!

So I guess this is goodbye to the blog. But not to you. And THANK YOU. Truly.

 photo AndreaSig_zps3f75055b.jpg

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Courtney Reviews: Love and Shenanigans by Zara Keane

Love and Shenanigans (Ballybeg, #1)Series: Ballybag #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Beaverstone Press
Publication Date: 5/17/14
Source: Author

GoodReads  |  Amazon  |  B&N

Vows in Vegas...True Love in Ireland.

Three days before leaving Ireland on the adventure of a lifetime, Fiona Byrne returns to her small Irish hometown to attend the family wedding from hell. When she discovers the drunken vows she exchanged with the groom during a wild Las Vegas trip eight years previously mean they're legally married, her future plans ricochet out of control. Can she untangle herself from the man who broke her heart so long ago? Does she even want to?

Gavin Maguire's life is low on drama, high on stability, and free of pets. But Gavin hadn't reckoned on Fiona blasting back into his life and crashing his wedding. In the space of twenty-four hours, he loses a fiancée and a job, and gains a wife and a labradoodle. Can he salvage his bland-but-stable life? More importantly, can he resist losing his heart to Fiona all over again?

WARNING: This book features a crashed wedding, a labradoodle with attitude, sexy times, and love and laughter, Irish-style.

ROMANCE TROPES: Second Chance at Love; Marriage in Trouble; Vegas Wedding; Irish hero

Courtney's Review

Love and Shenanigans was everything I hoped it would be. It was hilarious, engaging, had a good, thick and juicy plot, but also had real life characters that made me smile and hurt with and for them.

We meet Fiona when her frenemy/cousin tries to make her wear a chartreuse (lime green, if you aren't married to a fishing fanatic that would make you know this color) bridesmaid gown that is too small for her curvaceous frame. We meet most of the people who are going to create the shenanigans in this scene including Wiggly Poo (the rambunctious Labradoodle puppy that Gavin wants to hate, but just can't!). It is clear that they somehow have some history, and of course we find this out in a grand, wow, wedding crashing fashion.

Gavin and Fiona realize *almost* too late (yikes, polygamy) that the wedding they thought was pretend was actually registered...and omigawd does Ireland REALLY make you wait FIVE YEARS for a divorce. Somebody needs to look that up for me, because OH WOW! O_O. Anyways, so, good thing her friend found out about this before the actual doomed-from-the-start wedding took place, so we could say hey look, maybe you should shag, because you're ALREADY married!

There are lots of love and shenanigans in this novel. And there are a lot of Irish slang (hello, love it!) that made the setting feel like a rich character as well. That is my favorite, and so are the secondary characters that we like, and even those we don't like! I really enjoyed it a lot, and can't wait to see what the rest of the characters stories unfold with because yep, there will be more books! (Probably are already more...but I need to go now, and look for them! Hah!) Check this one out.

Rating: 4 stars

Zara KeaneZara Keane grew up in Dublin, Ireland, but spent her summers in a small town very similar to the fictitious Ballybeg.

She currently lives in Switzerland with her family. When she’s not writing or wrestling small people, she drinks far too much coffee, and tries—with occasional success—to resist the siren call of Swiss chocolate.

Website  |  Mailing List  |  Twitter  |  Facebook  GoodReads 

Monday, November 3, 2014

Short and Sweet Review: The Science of Attraction by Verity Jacobs

The Science of AttractionSeries: Standalone
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Self-Pub
Publication Date: 5/26/14
Format: ebook
Pages: 203
Source: Author
Rating: 4 stars

GoodReads  |  Amazon  |  B&N  |  Smashwords

Kate Ramsey is at the top of her game.She’s the hot new recruit at the most prestigious research institute in Germany, and she’s determined to live up to the hype — even if it means working day and night. Stress relief comes in the form of a no-nonsense affair with her neighbor, who also happens to be the director of the institute. Who says sex should be anything more than a contract between two people who have other things on their mind?

So when Tom Baker saunters into her life, Kate is understandably upset to see this well-oiled machine splutter and seize. Tom is young and smart, and far too pretty for his own good. Kate can’t help but be drawn to him, even if giving in to the attraction would mean risking everything she’s worked for. 
My Short and Sweet...

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Short and Sweet Review: Guarding Poppy (Men of Brahm Hill #2) by Christine Wenrick

Guarding PoppySeries: Men of Brahm Hill #2

Category/Genre: Adult Paranormal Romance
Publisher: Red Tree House Publishing
Publication Date: 8/1/14
Format: eARC
Pages: 318
Source: Author
Rating: 3.5 stars

Someone Else's Sky (review)

One night . . . one violent, supernatural battle . . . and five stories of the men whose lives will be changed by it.

Alec Lambert was born to lead. He’s a ruling Elder of The Brethren, possessing steely confidence, natural smarts, and decisive problem solving abilities . . . and he’s not too bad on the eyes, either. Everything in his life has gone exactly according to plan—until the night of Brahm Hill. Alec loses his best friend at the hands of the uncle he trusted like a father, along with his previously unshakable faith to lead those with whom he’s charged. Despite this, he continues to press ahead, and for his next assignment he’s asked to protect a very beautiful but very clumsy Dhampir who’s being hunted by a powerful warlock. Suddenly, he finds his whole Brethren world is turned upside down . . . and he finds himself harboring a desire for her he can’t explain.

Poppy Honeywell knows she’s far from perfect. Bad things tend to happen when she’s around. She’s more than a little clumsy, with a phobia or two mixed in. Not to mention that her name is certainly unusual. But she doesn’t have time to worry about all that because she’s on the run and not about to back down from the arrogant Elder who’s just been assigned as her protector. The real problem, though . . . she’s irresistibly drawn to this man who faces constant danger and takes charge so naturally. But Poppy also sees that taking charge of others helps Alec mask his own very deep pain.

Will Alec find his way out of the darkness and surrender to his feelings for Poppy before the warlock chasing her catches up to them both?

My Short and Sweet

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Short and Tweet Reviews: Spiral of Bliss Series / Break the Sky by Nina Lane

Arouse (Spiral of Bliss, #1)Series: Spiral of Bliss #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Snow Queen Publishing
Publication Date: 12/24/12
Format: ebook
Pages: 394
Source: Purchase
Rating: 4.5 stars

GoodReads  |  Amazon  |  B&N

"One day I'm going to touch you in a thousand different ways and show you how to touch me," he said. And he did.

Struggling with a tormented past, undergraduate Olivia Winter once led a practical but isolated life. Then she met Professor Dean West, a brilliant scholar of medieval history who melted Liv's inhibitions and taught her the meaning of both love and erotic pleasure. But after three years of a blissful, lusty marriage, Liv and Dean now face a crisis that threatens everything they believe about each other. And when dark secrets and temptations rise to the surface, the fallout might break them apart forever.

Opening Lines -  He didn't touch me. He could have -- he had the perfect reason to -- but he didn't.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Short and Tweet Reviews: Loving Him Off the Field / Final Lap / Hot as Hades / Stone, At Your Service

I am in such a weird place right now, with blogging. A slump, I guess. So in an effort to keep me going, and less overwhelmed, I'm switching over to Short and Tweet reviews for a bit. We'll see how it goes!

Genre: Contemporary/Sports Romance
Publisher: Intermix
Publication Date: 6/17/14
Format: eARC
Source: Publisher

GoodReads  |  Amazon  |  BN

Sometimes the best defense is a good offense…

Aileen is a sports reporter trying to make a name for herself without relying on her looks, And what better way to do that than to break a scandal about one of the fastest rising stars on the Santa Fe Bobcats? Killian seems too good to be true, so she knows he must be hiding something…

It’s hard enough breaking into the NFL—even more so when you’re a single dad. Killian isn’t proud that he’s keeping his son a secret, but his ex has a reputation that could tarnish his squeaky clean image for good. So when Aileen starts sniffing around, Killian decides to distract her by any means necessary. But Aileen is more than capable of giving as good as she gets…

My review  - One Night with a Quarterback

First Line  "Sweet Christ." It was the last thing Killian Reeves remembered uttering before having a heavy, unfortunate smelling man slam him to the ground.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Reviews: Coming in From the Cold and Falling From the Sky (Gravity #1-2) by Sarina Bowen

Coming In From the ColdSeries: Gravity #2
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Harlequin E
Publication Date: 5/1/14
Format: ebook
Pages: 193
Source: Author

GoodReads  |  Amazon  |  BN

Alpine ski champion Dane “Danger” Hollister does not do relationships, though he has an excellent reason. No woman would ever say “I do” to a guy whose faulty DNA will eventually cost him everything: his spot on the US Ski team, his endorsements, and the ability to fly downhill at 90mph.

While Willow Reade moved to rural Vermont to get back to the land, that wasn’t meant to include a night stranded in her vehicle during a blizzard. Luckily, the hot ski racer she practically ran off the road has granola bars and a sleeping bag, and is happy to share. Maybe it’s the close quarters, maybe it’s the snow, but soon the two are sharing a lot more than conversation.

Yet neither can guess how their spontaneous passion will uncork Dane’s ugly secret and Willow’s tentative peace with her own choices. Only their mutual trust and bravery can end the pain and give Willow and Dane a shot at hard won happines

First Line  Willow needed to keep the old truck on the road and out of the snowy ditch for just one more mile.

Poor Willow. She doesn't keep her old truck on the road and inadvertently runs champion Dane Hollister off the road as well. But their loss is their-and our-gain because one snowy night in a Jeep is the beginning of a sexy, emotionally challenging, wonderful story.

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