This Chick Read: Maggie Moves On by Lucy Score

YouTube star Maggie Nichols flips houses and films them for her channel, earning a million followers with her charm and talent. When she finds her next house in Kinship, Idaho, she immediately starts interviewing the local contractors to help her get this Victorian mansion ready for re-sale. When she meets hot landscaper guy, Silas, and his sweet dog she feels a clinch in her.. heart, a feeling that Silas definitely returns. Has she finally found a place she can call home?

Maggie Moves On is sweet, funny, and tugs on your heartstrings and if she hadn’t let Silas finally “catch” her, I would’ve written myself into this story and captured him myself. This was one romance novel where the hero is actually someone I could see myself also falling for, and his dog was the icing on the cake.

I loved Maggie and Silas together, but I also loved all of the characters that made up this sweet story. If Kinship Idaho were a real town, this book would have people moving there in droves. I loved the sense of community, the quirky characters, and the love everyone feels for each other. When someone faces adversity the whole town shows up to help them get through that difficult time. Ahhh, I love romance novels and the small towns where their stories reside.

It’s hard to pick out a favorite moment in a book that is filled with great moments, but I’d have to say that when Maggie and Silas meet is probably a meet cute that I will never forget. I won’t spoil it for you all, but if if you’re even going to crack this book open, you need to at least read through their first meeting. I bet if you get that far, you’ll keep turning the pages. This story and these characters are pretty irresistible. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase this book!* Maggie Moves On

Copyright 2022 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

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This Chick Read: The Will (The Magdalene Series #1) by Kristen Ashley

I own almost all of this author’s novels and lately I’ve been re-reading some of them and writing small reviews, which I didn’t do when I initially read the books. I purchased The Will in 2015 when it came out and funny enough, didn’t remember it all other than a general sense that I’d liked it. It turns out I was correct, although I saw a few things this time that I didn’t note when I first read it.

The premise is that Josephine Malone had a beloved grandmother who lived in an awesome house in a small town. Josephine would spend summers with her and as an adult would come to town and visit with her frequently. When her grandmother dies, Josephine inherits the house and comes back to town for the funeral and to go through her grandmothers things. She has spent her adult life as an admin assistant for a famous photographer, collecting knowledge about clothes, fashion, music, and famous people which makes her very interesting to read about. Anyway, when its time for the will to be read, Josey and ex boxer, strip club owner, Jake Spear are the only two people at the will. Apparently Jake and Lydia were great friends, something that was news to Josephine but she shrugged it off. What couldn’t be shrugged off was that Lydia gave Josephine to Jake in the will. Of course, you can’t give one person to another, but it did open the door to the two of them getting to know each other better, which was the point. The Will is their story.

What I really liked about this story is that these two very different people over-looked all of their differences to just be together. Isn’t that what love is all about? Josephine became Josey, despite her upper class dialect and well, Jake didn’t change very much at all, but he did find all that was Josey cute and wonderful which was good enough for me. He was a father to three children, something that KA writes about frequently, and Josey becomes inseparable from those kids, enmeshed in their lives almost immediately. I liked the family dynamic, but I also loved the story between Josey and Jake.

I won’t say this was the most original book that Kristen Ashley has ever written. She has a formula that works for her and this story followed that formula. It didn’t really hold any surprises for me, but I enjoyed reading the story and getting to know these characters again. I spent the afternoon (and evening because boy her books can be lengthy!) with old friends and they made me feel good! That’s what a good romance novel is supposed to do for it’s reader, isn’t it?

❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase this book!* The Will

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This Chick’s Mini review: Below Zero by Ali Hazelwood

This final book in Ali Hazelwood’s mini series about three best friends. This book follows NASA aerospace engineer, Hannah. In grad school Hanna needs to interview someone for an assignment and her best friend Mara hooks her up with her cousin Ian who is in the same industry and who was on the team that sent the last rover to Mars and they have instant heat but years later they are arch-rivals.

Out of the three Women of STEM books, this one was the book that I’d have liked to see as full length. There was obvious chemistry between Hannah and Ian and I would’ve liked to have explored each character a little more fully to develop that chemistry into full fledged heat. Hannah had a really interesting back story that begged to be told and I would’ve liked to have known a bit more about Ian’s personality that wasn’t just limited to young genius.

What I liked the best about this novel was how each of these characters were so strong and independent but they needed each other and were better together than by themselves. At least they were in my mind. LOL.

I love all of Ali Hazelwood’s novels. The characters are interesting, funny, and smart. The dialog is sassy and you just want to be their friends in real life. (I also wouldn’t mind taken home my own Ian…)

❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase!* Below Zero

Copyright 2022 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: The Boy with the Bookstore by Sarah Echavarre Smith

This one has a pretty simple premise. Baker, Joelle Prima has a mad crush on Max Boyson, the man who owns the book store next door. Every morning he comes in for his latte and mildly flirts. Joelle, is super shy and just when she gets up her nerve to ask Max out they find out that their landlord will be remodeling and the two of them will have to share a very small space in the back of the building until the build gets finished. Needless to say, sharing a small space is eye opening and sparks fly.

I thought Joelle’s character was really well written. She is of Filipino descent and her bakery has a lot of that cultures flavors. It all sounded totally delicious and I wanted to get my hands on an ube latte after finishing this book. It sounds intriguing! Unfortunately, Joelle’s family and the ube latte were what kept me reading this book. I loved her multi-generational family living situation and how she was so close to her family. What bothered me was Max’s character. His background of being brought up by an alcoholic mother and raised by relatives who didn’t want him around really affected his character. He was so mean! I had a really hard time looking past his anger and finding the thing (other than his looks) that would sustain a relationship with Joelle. I won’t give away the story, but yes, this is a romance and they do get together at the end, but boy does Joelle have to work hard to get there. Max just got lucky finding someone who would put up with all his baggage. I’m not sure I would have stuck around after the first argument.

When the story reverted back to Joelle and her family I was intrigued, but this is a love story and unfortunately for me it fell a bit flat. I could connect with Joelle, but Max didn’t have a lot of redeeming qualities other than his good taste in finding Joelle. I do realize that reading is subjective, so if this synopsis sounds good to you, please read this book. It just wasn’t to my taste. ❤️❤️❣️

I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for an honest review and it was honest.

Click this link to purchase this book!* The Boy with the Bookstore

Copyright 2022 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you should purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: Love on the Brain by Ali Hazelwood

Bee Königswasser lives by a simple rule: What would Marie Curie do? So when NASA offers her the co-lead on a neuro-engineering project she accepts, despite it also being led by Levi Ward. Levi, made it very clear in grad school that he disliked Bee, so how would they lead this project together?

I love Ali Hazelwood’s women of STEM romance novels. She is the queen of awesome dialog and heated chemistry and Love on the Brain delivers in both of those areas. Bee is not only brilliantly smart, she also has a very smart mouth. She stands up for women and doesn’t let mansplaining dissuade her from her purpose on this project to create the best model for NASA and somehow get along with Levi. Despite having heated dreams of Levi breaking her concentration. Love on the Brain is a slow burn story, but Ali Hazelwood heats up the pages when it’s time for her characters to get together.

I loved all of the Marie Curie references as well as the science speak. Smart chicks are cool, and Bee is one of the coolest leading smart chicks that I’ve read to date. She’s colorful in character and brilliant of mind, but most of all, she’s a great person and an easy character to like. She has one foible, she wants stability and a home. She was brought up by various relatives around the world and wants to find her person, but she’s not quick to trust because of her past. Levi has a lot of work ahead of him! Yeah, Levi doesn’t really hate her, he’s just socially awkward and doesn’t know how to show his feelings.

Love on the Brain was smart, cute, funny, and at times brilliant. It was the perfect vacation read and I loved the feelings that it evoked in me. I know I’ll be picking up the audiobook as soon as it comes out so I can enjoy it again in a different way. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❣️

I received a copy of this ARC for my honest review and it was honest!

Click this link to purchase!* Love on the Brain

Copyright 2022 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: Artistic License by Elle Pierson

Shy art-student, Sophy James, is sketching a world famous art collection when a man’s face catches her eye. Beautiful to her artist’s eye, she starts sketching him instead when he’s not looking. She makes promising progress when she realizes that she is witness to an art heist. Security expert, Mick Hollister manages to thwart the thief, but manages to mow down a much smaller and asthmatic Sophy down where she is unable to catch her breath and must be taken to the local hospital. When Mick tracks her down she manages to convince him to pose for her which is the start to a beautiful friendship. Artistic License is a beautiful friends to lovers story about two people who’s insecurities keep their hearts safe but taking a chance might bring them a new world of happiness.

Mick is used to most women being attracted to his body but finding his face unappealing, so when gentle and sweet Sophy finds him attractive he wants to take a chance but her shyness holds them both back from being more than friends. I don’t think I’ve ever read a novel where the hero is not described as attractive, yet is made attractive through the eyes of our heroine. I loved Mick’s protective personality, and wanted to nudge Sophy to give him a chance a lot quicker than our author played this story out. However, Sophy had a reason for not wanting to upend her world by taking a chance at romance. Her severe asthma might be the reason they met, but it’s also kept her in an insulated world keeping new discoveries at arms distance. I cheered for them when they finally got together and ended up really enjoying their journey.

I don’t read a lot of books set in New Zealand but loved how this book made me feel like I was learning a new culture, seeing new scenery, and hearing their accents and different patterns of speech. This may be Elle Pierson’s first novel, but she also writes under the name Lucy Parker and that feeling of traveling to a new place is something she brings to all of her novels, be they set in New Zealand or England. I’m a huge fan and was excited to discover this new name to add to my author list on Goodreads and Amazon. Here’s to hoping another book by either author will be out soon.

If you like slow burn love stories, you may want to give Artistic License a try. I really enjoyed the pace, the characters, and the journey to a different country. I found myself really invested in why these two were holding themselves back from being together and when they finally took that leap I felt the satisfaction of a book well written.

❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase this book!* Artistic License

Copyright 2022 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

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This Chick Read: Lucky Stars (Ghosts and Reincarnation #5) by Kristen Ashley

I have been re-reading some books that I’ve read many years ago by favorite authors and recently grabbed this book when it was on sale. Lucky Stars is the last book in the Ghosts and Reincarnation series, written early on in Kristen Ashley’s career. This series has a haunted theme and each book has been fun to re-read and has reminded me why I always give this author a look even after she went deeper towards writing erotica (thank goodness she seems to have backed off of that a bit). Lucky Stars is about Belle Abbot a young woman who is rather shy and normal (but gorgeous) who happens upon a bus that is submerged in water and goes in after all of the children and driver gaining a bit of notoriety that she tries to ignore. She meets James Bennett while on a date with his brother and feels an immediate connection to the point that she does something she has never done, sleeps with him on the night she has met him. That one act starts the two of them on a fated journey, one that they have lived through in a previous life.

There were many things to like in this novel. I loved the premise of the two of them being reincarnated and destined for a future together. What woman doesn’t love the idea that their one true love is written in the stars? Belle, while shy is a lovely, very nice woman and very easy to like. She does have a bit of a run away and hide attitude that made me want to skip pages but I did like her and when you find out the reason for it you understand where she’s coming from. However, it takes a really long time to get to that point. James is this author’s typical alpha male, strong and thinks he knows what’s best for everyone. He is also stubborn and almost misses his chance and gaining his one true love. There are goofy side characters, some of which carry through from other novels in this series. I always enjoy the other characters in KA’s novels and get the sense that she has a ton of fun writing them and figuring out their characters. It comes through on the page.

The reincarnation story is what makes this book both enjoyable and also predictable. They were meant for each other because of something that happened to them in a past life. This story has been done repeatedly and there weren’t too many surprises but I did love reading it anyway. Lucy Stars was just a fun way to spend a weekend. I enjoyed my time reacquainting myself with Belle, James and the gang and seeing them reach for and attain their happily ever after. I think this is why I re-read novels that I can’t quite remember but know I liked. It’s like seeing a best friend from your past and picking right back up again gabbing away like you’ve never stopped talking.

You can read each book in this series separately. Other than a few minor characters who show up in each book but aren’t really integral to the love story itself each novel stands on its own. However, if you’re like me you’ll like it better if you read them in order. They are all a lot of fun. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase this book!* Lucky Stars

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This Chick Read: Ripple Effect (Disaster Flick Romance #2) by J. Bengtsson

SPOILERS AHEAD.

Retired boy bander RJ Contreras is hiding out in a sub-par apartment in LA licking his wounds after his solo career tanked. Living under the name Chad Woodcock he spends his days growing a beard, working out, and playing loud music. Dani is a grade school teacher who loves following the rules and when the guy next door starts getting annoying she doesn’t have a problem dropping hints and leaving post-its about how to be a good neighbor. Chad Woodcock doesn’t care if he’s a good neighbor at all and deliberately antagonizes her, pushing buttons and hoping to make her snap. Until one day when a disaster strikes and all they have is each other.

I tend to auto-buy books by my favorite authors and then forget about those books for a little while until I’m in the right mood to pick it up. Generally I do this without re-reading the synopsis, which is what happened with Ripple Effect. Guys, I had no clue this book was going to take me into a natural disaster romance! I know, it says it in the title, and this author doesn’t shy away from difficult subject matter, but wow was I surprised!

The author and I have something in common. We are both from Southern California, and in fact I grew up in the town where she now lives, so I love to catch “California-isms” in her novels. Even if it’s just small things like the weather, or a SoCal/NoCal reference. Ripple Effect draws on a topic that all Californians are familiar with… earthquakes. When you grow up with them you learn to gage the strength of one and decide instinctively if you need to get up and move or if you are good hanging on your couch through the trembler. The earthquake in this novel took me completely by surprise. Again, yes I know it’s a disaster flick romance novel, but I wasn’t expecting to flashback to my own experiences with the Northridge quake, which I can only think Ms. Bengtsson drew from for this novel. Without giving too much away, I’ll just say that our two main characters get trapped in their complex and need to rely on each other to get out.

Life-changing moments like a natural disaster create a bond and needless to say, our two main characters who started off hating each other ended up together. This seems like a fait accompli, but through witty dialog, snarky humor, and heartbreaking moments, the transition from enemies to friends seemed seemless. A truly huge feat when you take all of the angst and pain that are built into this story. The funny moments were a great balance for the more emotionally charged which made this a really great novel. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase!* Ripple Effect

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This Chick Read: Just Another Love Song by Kerry Winfrey

When they were teenagers Sandy MacIntosh and Hank Tillman were high school sweethearts. Completely in love, both wanted to experience the world outside their small town, Hank through his music and Sandy painting the landscapes where they’d travel. Sandy’s dream unraveled when her scholarship to college got pulled and she remained at home going to the local community college. Not wanting to hold Hank back, Sandy made the difficult decision to break up with him so he could carry out his dream. 15 years later Hank is back in town, divorced, and with a son. Can Sandy live through another heartbreak of Hank leaving her again?

I’m a fan of Kerry Winfrey’s and knew that I was going to read this book as soon as I saw that she had a new release. She’s a clever writer, building great characters and snappy dialog. Just Another Love Song was exactly what I expected to read yet also a complete surprise. Almost from the moment Sandy lays eyes on Hank again, I was teary-eyed and reaching for the kleenex. This novel was not only funny, but it was also thoroughly romantic using flashbacks to tell Sandy and Hank’s teenage love story and their reunion in current time. I feel in love with both of these characters, but Sandy tugged at my heart in a way a character hasn’t in quite awhile. Her mix of nostalgia, uncertainty, and hope created a wonderfully emotional (and funny!) character. Hank too was brilliantly written, but he had parts of his dream come true and Sandy’s journey was really just beginning.

Another thing I really like about Kerry Winfrey is that she gives her heroine’s a wonderful group of friends to lean on. Her best friend Honey was the friend that all of us want to have, supportive, generous, and brutally honest with truths that may be hard to face. There were so many great characters who added moments of humor and warmth. Just Another Love Song struck all the right chords, fun, romantic, and characters who felt real. If an audiobook comes out I’ll definitely be using a credit for a re-read. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

I received a copy of this book through NetGalley for my honest review and it was honest.

Click this link to purchase this book!* Just Another Love Song

Copyright 2022 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: Something Wilder by Christina Lauren

Daughter of a world famous treasure hunter and somewhat deadbeat dad, Lily Wilder makes a living off the legend that her father pursued throughout her childhood, guiding tourists on innocent treasure hunts for Butch Cassidy’s hidden treasure. When she meets her newest group of city slickers she is shocked to find her first love, Leo Grady. Her sweetheart who left her for a family emergency and dropped off the face of the earth. A week on the trail with her ex is not what she bargained for, but how much worse can it get? This story of lost love found again has quite a few hidden surprises and a whole lot of adventure.

Prior to her mother leaving, Lily loved the tales and riddles her father created, but after she left Lily’s resentment for those stories grew. She became more reserved staying loyal to those who were true to her. Ten years have gone by since Leo’s disappearance and despite her anger, this is a chance for her to find out what happened and get closure. Leo is gobsmacked when he sees Lily walking through the camp towards him, having no idea that she was heading their week of fun. He’s instantly struck by what attracted him to her and reminded of why he fell in love with her all those years ago. Their chemistry is off the charts and the reader is left dying to know why they were no longer together. The set-up to the two of them meeting was so well done and immediately grabbed the reader locking them into this adventurous love story.

Lily and Leo are not alone on this journey, and the cast of characters run from friendly to annoying but all of this adds to a story that about a third of the way in takes a right turn and takes off like a rocket jolting the readers heart and makes them unable to put this book down, at least it did for me. This trip goes completely awry and the fake treasure hunt takes center stage. Do these clues in her fathers journal actually lead to real treasure? It becomes a life or death hunt for Lily and Leo that draws them closer to each other and also to the possibility that their dream of being together can come true. Something Wilder is a cute play on words as Wilder is Lily’s last name, but it’s also a clue to the journey that the reader will take while reading this book. It starts off pretty steady but this reader was suprised as it shifted to a wild, rollicking, adventure. I eagerly flipped pages and settled in, this story took me on a wild ride and I loved it. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase!* Something Wilder

Copyright 2022 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase this book through the above link I’ll receive a small stipend.