This Chick Read: Kind of Famous (Flirting with Fame #3) by Mary Ann Marlowe

Layla Beckett has a big secret. One that might conflict with her new job running the social media for The Rock Paper, a music magazine. On her first day she meets Jo, the wife of an on the rise rock star, and through her she meets Jo’s friends, including drummer Shane Morgan. As she and Shane get closer, it quickly becomes apparent that her secret of running the top fan sight in the country may stand between their happiness.

I’ve read both of the other novels in this series and was really looking forward to this new installment. This is a rock star series, and yes, there’s plenty of eye candy and sizzling action between our heroes and heroines, but what I like the most is that each story has an underlining plot that brings a more serious tone to what would normally be a light hearted subject. In Kind of Famous, Layla’s secret is part of the main story and it definitely added a huge conflict, even if most of it was inner conflict for the majority of the book. As the book developed I realized there was an additional conflict in their relationship and that was Shane’s insecurity. How can a hot drummer in a rock band be insecure? Good question, and Kind of Famous does a great job of delivering the answer.

When Layla and Shane meet there’s this instant connection and energy. He’s surrounded by these god-like characters in his band but he stand out because of his adorkableness (yes, this is now a word!). He’s cute, has a rockin’ bod, but he’s totally shy. Layla, too, is kind of awkward. She has this online life that allows her to be bold, but in person she’s quiet and let’s face it, pretty stunned to be standing in the same space as people she’s idolized. Her awestruck scenes were totally believable and also added some conflict to she and Shane’s developing romance. I really liked them together and loved the obstacles I could clearly see ahead of them.

When you read a series it’s always great fun to see where the characters in previous books lives are now. Eden, Adam,Micah, and Jo are all integral characters in Layla and Shane’s story and I like how they were true to my memories of them and liked even more that I was given a glimpse into their futures. Next up in this series has to be Noah as he was given a rather sinister light and there is definitely more to his story than we’ve been told so far. Kind of Famous did a good job of moving all of their characters forward in my mind, as well as letting me fall in love with Layla and Shane all on their own. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❣️

I wish this author wrote a little faster and hopefully (?) we may have another Flirting with Fame story by the end of the year. From these words to Mary Ann Marlowe’s ears… keep those fingers typing!

I received an ARC of this book from the author for my honest review and it was honest!

Opinions from around the Blogosphere

“Deeper than it seems on the surface, Kind of Famous explores the treacherous natures of fandom, friendship, and love–and the explosions that can result when those three things collide. Author Mary Ann Marlowe‘s book is a sweet coda of a love song to the rocker universe she created in Some Kind of Magic and developed further in A Crazy Kind of Love. If you loved those books, you’ll cherish this one as well.” Dreaming in Character

Click this link to purchase!* Kind of Famous (Flirting with Fame)

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

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

It’s Monday, what are you reading? (3/30/2020)

This week a new month begins and we can only hope it brings more positive news than negative regarding the Covid-19 outbreak. If you’re tired of all the bad news, you may be escaping into a good book. If you’re looking for one, maybe you’d like to read one of these.

This post originated over on Book Date, so thanks for the idea and letting me continue on the discussion.

JUST FINISHED

I am a huge fan of this author’s and love this series! Kind of Famous is the third in the Flirting With Fame series. If you like rock star romances, you’ll love this book!

JUST STARTED

I love this historical mystery series and can’t wait to see what kind of trouble Veronica Speedwell and Stoker get into!

These are the perfect escape! What books are you escaping into this Monday?

Deb

This Chick Read: Fumbled (The Playbook #2) by Alexa Martin

Poppy Patterson left her hometown at sixteen. Kicked out because of her pregnancy, she found a new home with her aunt in Denver. Now in her 20’s, Poppy is raising her son alone and working as a waitress in a nightclub when Wide Receiver, T. K. Moore is seated at her table. Normally that wouldn’t be a problem except that T. K. is the father of her son… and he doesn’t know it.

This second chance love story had everything the first novel had, and I ate it up. Two great lead characters, wonderful female friendships, and a renewal of a love story that should never have ended. I like that they were an interracial couple and whereas this is a fictional novel I felt like some of the problems they’d see in real life as an interracial couple also played out in this book. However, the biggest conflict in this book was portraying the consequences of head injuries in the NFL. I really liked how real that made Poppy and T. K.’s relationship and how she struggled with helping him see how much his personality had changed since high school. I thought that topic was really relevant. Especially after reading the author’s bio and knowing that her own husband played in the NFL. It may be a real topic in her own household (?).

Once again Alexa Martin hits a home run. Poppy was a female protagonist that a reader loves. She fell on hard times but never gave up, worked hard, and put herself in a place she can be proud of. T. K. was a little more stereotypical but I really liked him once he got past the shock of being a father. This story was a little more serious than the first but once Poppy was introduced to her WAGS group those friendships brought out the fun and funny.

Again, if you haven’t read this series and you are a fan of contemporary romances, you must pick them up! I do think the first couple of books could be read as stand alone’s. After all, I read the third novel first. There’s a tiny bit of backstory with a couple of other characters but I think you can catch on pretty quickly and enjoy the story on it’s own. However, if you’ve got the time to read them in order go for it! ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Opinions from around the Blogosphere

“I really enjoyed reading the book, both times. It made me happy. It’s a good book. Right after I finished it the first time, I read book 1 of this series called Intercepted, which was also really nice.” The Wordy Habitat

“I thought the book was kinda rushed but I didn’t get bored and I’m definitely looking forward to the final book of the trilogy.” My World of Books

Click this link to purchase!* Fumbled (Playbook, The)

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

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

This Chick Read: Undercover Bromance (Bromance Book Club #2) by Lyssa Kay Adams

When Liv walks in on her celebrity chef boss sexually harassing a hostess in his restaurant she rushes to the girls defense only to have the chef fire her and blackball her from getting another job despite her reputation as a great pastry chef she starts plotting revenge. She finds an unlikely ally in Braden Mack one of her brother in law’s friends. Not only does he fight by her side but their chemistry has him fighting for her heart, but he needs his bromance book club’s advice because nothing is working! Undercover Bromance is as fun as the first novel, but a depth that this reader found to be gripping, emotional, and actually very personal.

First the characters. Liv is gun shy when it comes to men. She had a father who left she and her sister when they were very young and that taught her to never trust a man. It also turned her into a fighter. She’s a woman who does not stand by and accept what is obviously wrong. What I loved about her the best is that she fought on behalf of others in this novel. Yeah, sure, she got fired, but she herself wasn’t sexually harassed. She saw it happen and wanted the truth to come out and the chef to bear the consequences of his actions. Braden Mack was clueless when it came to women, which made him charmingly endearing, but he also was a man that wouldn’t stand for a person to be treated improperly. You’ve got to love that! The two of them together provided a lot of heat, but even more importantly, humor! This was a novel that really needed a good laugh to counter the serious subject matter, and it really delivered! I laughed so hard I cried through the last 50 pages of this book.

It used to be that these types of topics weren’t mentioned and especially weren’t tied to a romance novel plot! Sexual harassment has been pushed aside, closeted, wiped under a rug, etc. Introducing this topic as the main plot of a romance novel made this one stand out. The premise of these Bromance Book Club novels is that a group of guys read romance novels to help them figure out their problems with women. Cute theme, right? How exactly does that apply to this topic? Well, Liv wasn’t your usual lady so it actually worked well and the altercations between she and her ex-boss turned this into a kind of romantic suspense plot which worked really well.

I thought this novel hit it out of the park on many levels. It introduced an important subject, provided a great love story, and made me care about the characters. It also made me laugh out loud which is always a winner in my book. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❣️

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

Click this link to purchase!* Undercover Bromance (Bromance Book Club)

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- If you purchase this book through the above link I will receive a small stipend.

This Chick Read: Intercepted (The Playbook #1) by Alexa Martin

Marlee Harper has been dating her boyfriend on and off since high school. When she finally faces up to him being a player she moves out, with the help of brand new Denver Mustangs quarterback and one time fling Gavin Pope. Vowing to never date a pro football “player” again, Gavin has his work cut out for him.

I recently got an ARC and reviewed the third book in this series, Blitzed. I LOVED it and vowed to read the first two in the series immediately. Thank goodness I had a vacation where I could binge read this series. Seriously, I read this book in a few hours, then the second, back to back.

There were a few reasons why I liked this novel so much. 1) I loved how respectfully Gavin treated Marlee. After her horrible prior relationship Gavin’s treatment shone a light on how wonderful she should be treated. 2) Marlee was sassy and smart. I liked that she had self respect and dumped her boyfriends butt. It did take her a little while to want to see how horrible he was, but once she did? It was O-V-E-R. 3) I liked the behinds the scenes look into the wives and girlfriends of pro players. I know this is fiction but it fit what I had imagined to a T. 4) I LOVED the female friendships! I am a sucker for a romance novel with a great group of side characters and this series reminds me of how Kristen Ashley used to write before she went all S&M. Female friendships can be fun and loyal and this novel showed that strength. 5) At first I was put off by the hashtags, but after the third chapter I started to laugh at the intended humor and started to look forward to them. #luvthehumor

So, yeah, I loved this novel. I thought it was fun, had a great message, and loved the characters so much I am asking for a sequel. LOL. Luckily you can catch up with these characters in future novels because, you know, great friendships! If you haven’t yet read this novel and like light hearted romances, well what are you waiting for?!! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❣️

Opinions from around the Blogosphere

“All in all, I’m kicking myself for not picking up Intercepted so much earlier. I fell in love with the characters and the romance and I can’t wait to pick up the next book in this series.” Books and Blends

Click this link to purchase!* Intercepted (Playbook, The)

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

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

It’s Monday what are you reading? (3/2/2020)

Even though I had a busy weekend I found the time to read. My downtime was spent doing what I loved best. What books did I read? I’ll tell you, if you share with me! This post originated over on Book Date , so thanks for the idea and letting me continue on the discussion.

JUST FINISHED

First Sentence Read: “It had been a mistake to invite himself to the wedding.”

JUST STARTED

First Sentence Read: “Professor Hanover’s eyes were affixed to his smartphone with the determined unsteadiness of a man who was exceedingly uncomfortable.”

Both very lighthearted books but just what I needed in my downtime. What books are you reading?

This Chick Read: Bad Bachelor (Bad Bachelors #1) by Stefanie London

Being listed as the worst reviewed bachelor on the hottest new App Bad Bachelor couldn’t have come at a worse time for Reed McMahon, a rising star in the PR business. His father is ill and his clients are starting to turn their backs on them. When he takes on a pro bono job to help a local library raise resources, librarian Darcy Greer is leery of his reputation but can’t pass up the free help. As they work together she starts to see a different side of Reed than what she’s read on the Bad Bachelor App. Should she take the chance and open herself up to a man that may not be revealing his true self?

Just like the legions of women who gave Reed bad reviews on the Bad Bachelor App, I felt like I had the wool pulled over my eyes. I’m pretty careful about making sure I don’t ask to review a book in the middle of a series and Bad Bachelor looked like a fun book. However, the book was released a couple of years ago, and in fact, there are three books out in this series. The cover is new, and it is cute and eye catching, but this ARC could also have been checked out in my own local library. Taking all that and putting it aside, I did find this novel pretty easy to get into and the story engaging.

I easily identified with our heroine Darcy. A young woman who is kind of shy, yet she has this edgier side with her pierced tongue and tattoo sleeves. She’s a little insecure and likes to escape into her library and a good book. Reed is a good looking, charming guy. On the surface he looks to be everything the Bad Bachelor app says he is, but when we see what’s going on behind closed doors he becomes much more interesting. I liked the depth these two interesting characters brought to this kind of light synopsis. I was mildly surprised at how invested I became in this story and really pleased with how the characters evolved and the story ended. You can’t ask for much more than that!

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

Opinions from around the Blogosphere

“What I loved the most about this book is the characterization of the hero and heroine.” Romance Library

Click this link to purchase!* Bad Bachelor (Bad Bachelors)

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

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

This Chick Read: Headliners (London Celebrity #5) by Lucy Parker

If you’re a fan of this series then you’ll remember that Sabrina Carlton and Nick Davenport are rival anchors on competing networks in London and at the end of the previous book Nick had reported news that tore Sabrina’s family apart. So, at the beginning of Headliners when they are both told they would be anchoring a morning show together for one month I knew that the sparks would be flying! When they start the show and realize someone is out to sabotage their chances at making this show a success they band together to find the culprit and all of a sudden there are other kinds of sparks flying.

Just as with the previous novels in this series Lucy Parker really knows how to write great dialog, characters who are not perfect but that a reader can care about, and sizzling romance. I loved that Sabrina and Nick were an interracial pair yet all of the issues they had stemmed from non racial issues. In fact, despite the saboteur at work, this was a “normal” romance…and that is how it should be. Maybe it’s not realistic to talk about issues others may have with their pairing, but truthfully? All I cared about after starting to read was that they were interesting characters and had some great dialog, and most importantly HEAT. Enough said.

So, despite seeing Nick as the bad guy in the previous novel, that one act was all we knew about him. This book allowed us to see his regrets over how that story played out. That insight totally helped me get past him screwing Sabrina and her sister Freddy over. I moved on from dislike to enamored rather quickly, exactly as the author intended. It also helped that in this novel Sabrina and Nick had a common enemy to fight. There’s nothing like banding together to fight evil that makes you think of sex! LOL.

Headliners was a ton of fun to read and I hated that it had to end. I’m trying to think of someone that this series could continue with, maybe Nick’s brother Iain? A single dad who is slightly gruff, but loves his daughter? Hmm. From my lips to the book gods (ok authors) ears in New Zealand… fingers crossed! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❣️

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

Click this link to purchase!* Headliners (London Celebrities)

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

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

This Chick Read: If You Only Knew by Kristan Higgins

Jenny Tate is moving her wedding dress store back to her home town for two reasons. The first is to be closer to her sister and her three nieces and the second is to be further removed from her ex-husband, his wife and their new baby. It’s hard to move on with her life when they (Rachel and her ex) are still so involved in each others lives. Rachel is thrilled her sister Jenny is moving back to town, but when it seems her marriage is on the rocks she has difficulty seeing the truth behind the lies. If You Only Knew is the story of two sisters who are navigating through difficulties leaning on each other but also learning their own inner strengths.

Jenny’s marriage slowly falls apart with her husband eventually leaving her saying he just wants something more. He finds that just three months later and then immediately has the baby Jenny had wanted with him. He remains friends with Jenny, calling her his best friend, and she lets him even though it makes her miserable. When she moves the shop to her hometown she moves into a small complex and meets her downstairs neighbor Leo. He is devastatingly gorgeous and closed off keeping her at a distance with a friends with benefits status. Jenny dreams of a relationship with Leo that may never come. The good thing about their story is that she’s finally weaned off from her ex and didn’t really even notice it happening.

Rachel tries so hard for the perfect life and marriage. She deftly raises her three children and when her husband comes home everyone is spotless and lovely for him to kiss goodnight. When she discovers he’s cheated the walls come crumbling down on her perfect life and she wonders why she tried so hard to keep the love and passion in her marriage. If there was one character I hated in this book I’d say it was her husband. He acted entitled and I just loathed him for how he treated Rachel.

The two sisters have a wonderful relationship, so supportive and are each others champion through life. Even with their problems their love for each other was so apparent, it was lovely. If You Only Knew was filled with angst, pain, and rebirth. It was deftly told and at the end the reader is left with a feeling of completion if not happiness for each sister. Their lives may go through good and bad, but I felt like if they had each other in their lives they could pull through almost anything. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase!* If You Only Knew: A Women’s Fiction Novel (Hqn)

Copyright 2020 Deborah Kehoe The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

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

This Chick Read: Love Her or Lose Her by Tessa Bailey

Rosie and Dominic Vega were high school sweethearts and got married when when he enlisted. They’ve always been each others best friend able to talk about anything and their chemistry? It sizzles! Ever since Dominic came back from Afghanistan their relationship has changed. They don’t talk as much, living together as husband and wife but except for their once a week sex-date not interacting. Rosie is heartbroken but wants to move on and start living out her dream and feels like Dominic isn’t going to stand beside her and help her accomplish them. She asks for a divorce and is surprised by how vehemently Dominic wants to make things work. So she comprises by going to last chance couples therapy. Love Her or Lose Her is a love story that puts communication first while still delivering the heat.

I really liked the premise of this novel and after reading Fix Her Up and liking it a lot, was confident Tessa Bailey would deliver a good story. Did she? Well, yes and no. I was really conflicted and my emotions were all over the place.

What I liked: I really liked Rosie. She obviously loved Dominic a lot but wasn’t going to settle for less than what she thought she deserved from her husband. She was confident, sassy, and her cooking sounded amazing. Seriously, I got hungry for cuban food reading this novel! What I also liked about Rosie was that when she realized she should take part of the blame in their failed marriage, she did…and felt horrified by it. I also liked her friends. Georgie was our heroine in Fix Her Up and she was just as charming in this novel, and Bethany, Georgie’s sister, who will star in her own novel next. Their sisterhood and support system were amazing and I had a lot of fun reading about that group.

What I didn’t like: I’m just going to say it.. Dominic. I usually like an alpha male, but this guy had way too much testosterone. Whew! His old fashioned attitude about what makes a good marriage definitely needed to be brought up to date. The heat between the two of them was crazy hot, but the way he spoke to her during those hot moments, for me, was a complete turn off. I hated his moniker for her… gosh, I’ve blacked it out of my mind, I think it was honey girl? Every time he said it, I just cringed. It seemed like the author was trying way too hard. Would such a taciturn guy really start calling her this name only when they had sex? To me, it was just weird.

So, the fact I didn’t care for half the couple wasn’t a good sign. However, I did like how going to therapy made them open up and see things in each other and in themselves. That, and Rosie’s character elevating their coupledom out of the trash heap with her genuine likability? I gave Lover Her or Lose Her a 3 rating, which on my scale is average. I like this author but I think she missed the mark on this couple. ❤️❤️❤️

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

Click this link to purchase!* Love Her or Lose Her: A Novel

Copyright 2020 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

*Amazon Associate- if you purchase through the above link I may receive a small stipend.