This Chick Read: Made In Manhattan by Lauren Layne

Violet was brought up in the privileged upper east side of Manhattan and knows how to navigate that world. When she’s asked to help introduce Cain Stone to society as a possible heir apparent to the family business, she knows she’s going to have to do a little Eliza Doolittle-ing. Cain’s New Orleans joie de vivre is all man, but it’s not an upper east side man. As Violet gets to know Cain she realizes that he is smart, driven, and it shouldn’t matter what he looks like if he’s the right man for the job.

I love opposites attract novels. Violet seems to be all uptight upper east side, and Cain is low-country New Awlins casual and you wouldn’t think those two would bring the heat, but there’s an immediate tension between the two characters that makes their story fun. There is also some depth to these two characters. Violet was orphaned as a child and raised by Cain’s grandmother and wants to belong to a family. Cain never knew his father but built a business and has created his own sense of worth through that success. They are both insecure when it comes to family and that connects them despite their outside differences.

I read Lauren Layne novels because I know I’m going to get characters who I can believe in, an easy to read story, and hidden depth that somehow always surprises me. Made In Manhattan is all of that plus some sizzling tension between our hero and heroine that made me want to keep turning the pages. This is the perfect weekend read, so snuggle into that blanket and check out Violet and Cain’s story. You’ll be hooked from the first page. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

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

Click this link to purchase!* Made in Manhattan

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.

It’s Monday, what are you reading? (1/17/22)

If you had bad weather as the southeast and northeast did in the US you may have spent your weekend curled up with a book. Or streaming some fabulous shows on Netflix or HBO Max. I did a bit of both. I also backed some yummy banana chocolate chip bars with some extra ripe bananas we had in the house. It was a perfect winter weekend. LOL. Here is what I was reading.

Thanks to the Book Date who started this topic on her own blog. It’s a fun way to share what you’re reading on a daily basis.

JUST FINISHED

This book started off quick and it was easy to get hooked to the tension between the two main characters. A fun, fast weekend read!

JUST STARTED

I literally just started this one this morning but my hope is that it’s as good as the hype. I love a good enemies to lovers trope. Fingers crossed!

What book has you wishing you could stay at home curled up on your couch today?

Happy Monday and happy reading!

Deb

This Chick Read: The Family You Make (Sunrise Cove #1) by Jill Shalvis

Levi Cutler has come home to Sunrise Cove for a visit with his family but decides to take the Gondola up the mountain to catch the view from high above. As he is heading to the top a storm sweeps in and the mountain evacuates, including a nurse named Jane. A strong wind snatches the gondola right in front of theirs off the line leaving Levi and Jane clinging to their lives, and each other. Levi’s phone picks up a signal and he calls home to say goodbye but can’t break his mother’s heart. Instead he tells her he has a girlfriend named Jane which he knows will make her ecstatic. Of course, they survive this incident but now they have his family and a fake relationship to navigate. A relationship that Levi would like to make real.

This novel had a real fast start as the first scene is inside the gondola and sets the pace pretty quickly. Our two protagonists are pretty different. Levi is a tech guy who was brought up in an outdoorsman family and Jane is a loner who had been shuffled from family member to family member, never really belonging to anyone. Surprisingly it was easy to see how they were a good fit. Levi also was an outsider within his own family, or at least that was how he saw it. He understands Jane and doesn’t let her standoffishness scare her off. I liked his persistence and loved that she was hesitant but also bold.

I can always count on Jill Shalvis to write in a great group of friends who are quirky and interesting, giving the main characters some relief from having to carry a book. There is a side romance in this novel between Levi and Jane’s best friends that is interesting and cute. I am hoping we get to explore their relationship further in a future book! I am also looking forward to seeing Levi’s sister get her own story as she’s got an interesting arc of her own that needs exploring!

If you’re looking for a good weekend read that won’t take too long to get through, then The Family You Make may be the right book for you. I read it on my vacation and it hit my sweet spot for fun characters that will take me away from the drag of hours of flying, making the time go by quickly. It was a sweet, cute story with some emotional depth for our main characters and the right book at the right time for me!

❤️❤️❤️❤️

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

Click the link to purchase!* The Family You Make: A Novel (The Sunrise Cove Series, 1)

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 Becoming (The Dragon Heart Legacy #2) by Nora Roberts

At the end of the previous novel The Awakening, Breen had left her legacy in Talamh to go back home to the US to see her friends and tidy up the life she’ll be leaving behind when she returns. She knows that despite the growth of her powers she still needs training and can’t remain in the US too long while her evil Grandfather is trying to break through to Talamh to conquer and rule. Despite her saying she would return Keegan, the man who leads Talamh, and her lover, can’t take the chance that she won’t return and comes to take her back, and accidentally transfers her best friend Marco as well. Now she and Marco are in Talamh, where fairies, dragons, and mermaids reside to try to help save Talamh.

The uber talented Nora Roberts doesn’t always hit a home run when she writes fantasy novels and The Becoming, for me, follows that theme. I love the world she has created. Talamh is one of those places we’d all like to visit, a veritable fantasy land filled with gorgeous creatures both animal and human. Despite our heroine’s love for her family in this world I just don’t feel a connection between she and Keegan who is her love interest. He seems to have a switch that turns on and off. He wants her, he doesn’t have time for her, he is a taskmaster, and then he is a lover. It may just be that if I were Breen I would’ve looked elsewhere for a partner. Yes, Keegan is their leader, but leading is not always the best qualification for love.

I was so happy that Marco’s story arc expanded. He is so much fun and his own love story gave me what I needed. Romance! It also helps that he is just so likable and seeing Talamh through his eyes is so much fun.

I am looking forward to the third novel in this series because I want to see how the author will tie everything up. Keegan needs to show a little emotion for Breen. How will they end their war with her grandfather? Will Marco and his lover find happiness? There are a lot of pieces that need resolving and Ms. Roberts is very good at capturing all of those loose ends into a fancy bow.

❤️❤️❤️❣️

Copyright 2022 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved.

Click this link to purchase!* The Becoming: The Dragon Heart Legacy, Book 2 (The Dragon Heart Legacy, 2)

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

This Chick Read: Golden Trail (The Burg #3) by Kristen Ashley

Tanner Layne and Raquel Merrick fell in love when they were young. Happiness reigned supreme until Rocky left suddenly without any explanation, moving back in with her family. Heartbroken and drunk, Tanner makes the mistake of sleeping with a woman who then becomes pregnant and doing the right thing, he marries her. They go on to have another boy before he divorces her and moves across country to get away from his memories. After many years he moves back to be close to his kids and becomes shot while undergoing an investigation. This incident brings Rocky back into his life. At first he’s not sure he wants her there, but then he sees her goodness and holds tight. This time, willing to fight her demons with her to keep her in his life.

I am re-reading the Burg series, and recalling why I’m a fan of this author. Tanner and Rocky’s story is good old fashioned Kristen Ashley. Full of emotional angst, drama, romance, laughter, and tears Golden Trail still has the KA sizzle, but it also has a great story intertwined with all of that heat. For a few years this author was trying new things and I’ll admit, they just weren’t for me. Golden Trail reminds me of her more recent books like Still Standing where the men are alphas and their actions were filled with emotions.

Reading a novel like Golden Trail, after not having read it for years was like coming home to one of my favorite stories. I did remember the emotional trauma that filled this story but it didn’t tint my memories with anything but gold. This is a really good book folks and if like me, you haven’t read it for awhile I would recommend picking it up again soon. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase this book!* Golden Trail (The ‘Burg Series Book 3)

Copyright 2021 The Reading Chick All Rights Reserved

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

This Chicks Sunday Commentary: My Top 3 Book Releases for Jan’22

How crazy is it to be looking towards a new year? Despite the ups and downs the one thing that remained steady were that there are always some great books being published that need to be celebrated. Here are my top 5 for the month of January.

#1 BOOK RELEASE

If this novel isn’t on your radar it should be! I’m reading it right now and it is so good. Our hero is of Indian and English mixed heritage. Living in London, Ahmad Malik is trying to make a name for himself as a tailor in order to start his own business and support he and his cousin. Evelyn Maltravers is a horsewoman first, and a loving sister second. When her older sister runs off with a man to become his mistress she and her younger sisters are left hanging. In order to save her own family she must marry well. She turns to Ahmad to create her unforgettably fashionable riding habits that she hopes along with her exceptional horsemanship will separate herself from the crowds. What they don’t count on is an extreme attraction. This book is well written and riveting!

Synopsis:

Victorian high society’s most daring equestrienne finds love and an unexpected ally in her fight for independence in the strong arms of London’s most sought after and devastatingly handsome half-Indian tailor.

Evelyn Maltravers understands exactly how little she’s worth on the marriage mart. As an incurable bluestocking from a family tumbling swiftly toward ruin, she knows she’ll never make a match in a ballroom. Her only hope is to distinguish herself by making the biggest splash in the one sphere she excels: on horseback. In haute couture. But to truly capture London’s attention she’ll need a habit-maker who’s not afraid to take risks with his designs—and with his heart.

Half-Indian tailor Ahmad Malik has always had a talent for making women beautiful, inching his way toward recognition by designing riding habits for Rotten Row’s infamous Pretty Horsebreakers—but no one compares to Evelyn. Her unbridled spirit enchants him, awakening a depth of feeling he never thought possible.

But pushing boundaries comes at a cost and not everyone is pleased to welcome Evelyn and Ahmad into fashionable society. With obstacles spanning between them, the indomitable pair must decide which hurdles they can jump and what matters most: making their mark or following their hearts?

Click this link to purchase!* The Siren of Sussex (Belles of London)

#2 MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK RELEASE

Wibberley and Siegemund-Broka normally write young adult novels, or at least those are their books I’ve read previously. This adult novel about two authors who partner to write romances but had a falling out looks like it could be a winner. I can’t wait to learn why they had their falling out and what will bring them back together, besides that last book they have to write.

Synopsis:

They were cowriting literary darlings until they hit a plot hole that turned their lives upside down.

Three years ago, Katrina Freeling and Nathan Van Huysen were the brightest literary stars on the horizon, their cowritten book topping bestseller lists. But on the heels of their greatest success, they ended their partnership on bad terms, for reasons neither would divulge to the public. They haven’t spoken since, and never planned to, except they have one final book due on contract.

Facing crossroads in their personal and professional lives, they’re forced to reunite. The last thing they ever thought they’d do again is hole up in the tiny Florida town where they wrote their previous book, trying to finish a new manuscript quickly and painlessly. Working through the reasons they’ve hated each other for the past three years isn’t easy, especially not while writing a romantic novel.

While passion and prose push them closer together in the Florida heat, Katrina and Nathan will learn that relationships, like writing, sometimes take a few rough drafts before they get it right.

Click this link to purchase!* The Roughest Draft

#3 MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK RELEASE

I am heading off on vacation next week for the holidays and nothing screams vacation novel like a great Jill Shalvis book. I am so looking forward to meeting these characters and the group of friends that I’m sure we’ll be reading all about in the future.

Synopsis:

Beloved New York Times bestselling author Jill Shalvis begins a new series—Sunrise Cove—set near beautiful Lake Tahoe, with a heartwarming story of found family and love.

During the snowstorm of the century Levi Cutler is stranded on a ski lift with a beautiful stranger named Jane. After strong winds hurl the gondola in front of them into the ground, Levi calls his parents to prepare them for the worst…but can’t bring himself to say goodbye. Instead, wanting to fulfill his mother’s lifelong wish, he impulsively tells her he’s happily settled and Jane is his girlfriend—right before his phone dies.

But Levi and Jane do not.

Now Levi’s family is desperate to meet “The One.” Though Jane agrees to be his pretend girlfriend for just one dinner, she’s nervous. After a traumatic childhood, Jane isn’t sure she knows how to be around a tight-knit family that cherishes one another. She’s terrified, and a little jealous. But an unexpected series of events and a host of new friends soon show Jane that perhaps this is the life she was always meant to have.

As Jane and Levi spend more time together, pretend feelings quickly turn into real ones. Now all Jane has to do is admit to herself she can’t live without the man she’s fallen in love with and the family she has always dreamed of.

Click this link to purchase!* The Family You Make: A Novel (The Sunrise Cove Series, 1)

I know I usually do 5 books but despite all of the books coming out none of them jumped to the top of my list. So this month it’s my top 3. I don’t think anyone will mind. If you’d like to share a book you’re looking forward to, please bring it to my attention! I obviously need to be a little more aware of the great offerings coming out next month.

Have a great rest of your December!

Deb

This Chick Read: At Peace (The Burg #2) by Kristen Ashley

Widow, Violet Winters and her two daughters, Kate and Keira, move in next door to Joe Callahan. From the instant they meet sparks fly and Violet gives in to her passion with Joe hoping that love might again be in her life. What she doesn’t realize is that Joe’s past is filled with pain and he’s buried those kinds of emotions deep. Knowing he needs to let her go, he cuts her loose breaking her and her girls hearts. What he doesn’t realize is that Violet has a stalker, one that killed her ex and is looking to make her his. Joe has to fight his own demons to help protect Violet and in doing so he realizes that she and her girls fill up that empty place in his heart to bursting.

It’s been a few years since I’ve read this book but I instantly remember the heat and tension that fill the pages. The book is named At Peace because Violet and her daughters finally bring that peace to Joe’s life, but as you’re reading it it’s anything but filling me with peace. This novel is action-filled and brings the sizzle into every scene that has Violet and Joe in it. Can two people really have chemistry that’s this intense? That’s a question a lot of readers probably ask themselves, but regardless of if they’ve ever felt it in this way they enjoy the feelings that are written into these pages.

As with the first novel in this series, At Peace is a woman in jeopardy romantic thriller. Violet is running away from the Chicago mafia, the man in charge having taken an instant like to her looks after killing her husband. It takes a lot of cajones to kill a womans husband and they try to make her yours. Well, luckily, a security specialist to the stars lives next door and Detective Alec Colton lives across the street! Vi moved into the right neighborhood because nothing will happen to her family while living under their protection. Unless Violet herself chooses to let it in.

This novel was just as much fun as the first in the series, and just as I promised, the Burg reunites to help protect Vi and so we see some of the characters we learned to love (and hate) in the first novel reappear. It’s nice to get a glimpse into how those lives have moved forward in the year or so since the end of the previous novel, but it’s Vi, Joe, Kate, and Keira who are front and center in At Peace and you do not want to miss their story if you haven’t read it yet. ❤️❤️❤️❤️❣️

Click this link to purchase this book!* At Peace (The ‘Burg Series Book 2)

Copyright 2021 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: For You (The Burg #1) by Kristen Ashley

Colt and February were a legendary couple. High school sweethearts and destined to always be together until one night it ended and only February knew why. Years later, after they both were married and then divorced, Feb is back in town to help run the family bar. When one of their customers is murdered behind the bar, it’s Colt that sent in to investigate and what he finds pushes them back together. He becomes her protector and their passion reignites.

This is the third time I’ve read For You. This story about the fated couple who somehow drift apart to be brought back together by a serial killer is seriously good. This woman in jeopardy romantic thriller is one of my favorites, and when the story and tension backs up the promise of great characters you know you will keep coming back. Every few years I find myself picking it back up again.

February is the woman that every man wants and every woman wants as their best friend. She’s gorgeous, loyal, and funny. She is a hard woman to resist and Alexander Colton doesn’t have a reason to resist any longer. The novel starts with them being distant with each other and as the danger amps up and people close to Feb are being killed the tension threatens to explode. It does, in very hot detail. This is one of those mysteries where you are on the edge of your seat but the romance has you relaxing back and dreaming of your own alpha hero. One of the best early Kristen Ashley novels, if you haven’t read it you need to give it a look.

This author writes great romance novels, but what I really love about her books are the friendships. She gives you background into the surrounding characters to the extent you either love or hate them and some of them turn up as the heroine/hero’s in a future novel. Also, you know that you aren’t seeing the last of them, that they will take part, even in a small way in a future story. So never fear, if you love Feb and Colt, you’ll see them again! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❣️

Click this link to purchase!* For You (The ‘Burg Series Book 1)

Copyright 2021 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 Ex Hex by Erin Sterling

When Vivienne Jones had her heartbroken at 19, she acted as any young witch her age would, she drank vodka, ate ice cream, took a bubble bath, and with the help of her BFF cursed the man who had just broken her heart. Nine years later and Rhys Penhallow is back in town to re-charge her town’s ley lines and from the moment he gets close the curse kicks in and everything starts to turn wrong. Having to fess up to her actions, Vivi works with Rhys to try to break the curse. Surprisingly their chemistry and feelings haven’t really changed and they quickly fall back into old habits.

I was surprised at the hidden depth in this light and fluffy Halloween inspired love story. Don’t get me wrong, it did not stray far from the light and fluffy but the story was really well written and I was able to fall into huge like with the characters and was interested enough to see how their love story would end.

These quirky and fun characters were easy to like but I also loved the side characters. Rhys’s surly brother, and Vivi’s cousin and best friend helped add depth but also were part of why the book came to life. It might be interesting if these two characters somehow got connected? Possibly at a wedding in Wale? Hmm, my from lips to this authors ears!

If you’re looking for a fun, light, romance than give this one a chance. Despite the witchy plot I think it can be read and enjoyed on any holiday, or just a plain old weekend. ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Click this link to purchase this book!* The Ex Hex

Copyright 2021 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? (11/29/21)

I love the long Thanksgiving weekend. With the exception of spending time in the kitchen it’s all about relaxing. We even put up our tree last weekend so that chore was checked off the list. What have I been doing? You got it! Reading! Here’s what I’ve been reading.

JUST FINISHED

My favorite writing duo dropped a book from an old series last week and I eagerly dove into it this weekend. It’s novella length so it didn’t take me long to read, but it was a fun new world to relearn and the characters were great!

JUST STARTED

The series that got me started with binging Kristen Ashley novels. It’s been awhile since I’ve read these so I decided to read one or two. They are so fun!

Now that you know what’s on my coffee table, what books did you read this weekend?

Happy Monday!

Deb