Love Story Reads


my romance book reviews and recommendations

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August 1st, 2017

Review: You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me by Sarra Manning

SYNOPSIS:
Sweet, bookish Neve Slater always plays by the rules and the number one rule is that good-natured fat girls like her don’t get guys like gorgeous, handsome William, heir to Neve’s heart since university. But William’s been in LA for three years, and Neve’s been slimming down and re-inventing herself so that when he returns, he’ll fall head over heels in love with the new, improved her.

So she’s not that interested in other men. Until her sister Celia points out that if Neve wants William to think she’s an experienced love-goddess and not the fumbling, awkward girl he left behind, then she’d better get some, well, experience.

What Neve needs is someone to show her the ropes, someone like Celia’s colleague Max. Wicked, shallow, sexy Max. And since he’s such a man-slut, and so not Neve’s type, she certainly won’t fall for him. Because William is the man for her… right?

MY REVIEW:
Initial Cover Thoughts:
The image didn’t really offer any information on the book but the blurb had me intrigued.

Read and Reviewed:
Not really 4 stars but more like 4.5 if I’m honest. I have to say that I enjoyed this book very much. Sure at times I wanted to smack Neve because she got on my nerves with over thinking things and she came off a lot older than she was, but I enjoyed it.

As per the book synopsis, Neve is a sweet overweight girl who has her eyes on the sophisticated and handsome William. William and Neve part ways due to work and school and Neve takes that time to transform her body and confidence to what she deems is good enough to win William. Throw in the sexy and Max who offers to be aid her and be used as a guinea pig and it’s nothing but laughs, deep conversation, and dare we say.. conflict of the heart?

I loved Max and I really didn’t find anything appealing about William. le shrug. I enjoyed this book and the message and beauty within its pages, but I took half a star off because I felt that all of the characters talked way more mature and sophisticated for their ages even when they weren’t really sophisticated types of character. I imagined them all like 5 or 7 years older to make the story more believable.

The story gave a great message about beauty without really being preachy. Neve’s thoughts were very accurate 80% of the time and she really embodied a real curvy woman. I recommend this book to anyone who has ever felt imperfect or didn’t feel as if they quite measured up. The love story slowly hooks you and you find yourself cheering for the bad boy rather than the poet, or at least I did. Team Max!

Quote Me:

“This book was a beautiful hidden treasure I stumbled across and truly enjoyed. ”
– Girl Jay, Love Story Reads (Blog Review)

A Taste:
“That was the worst thing about having a relationship with someone, even a pretend relationship. You opened up, let someone in, and when it was over, they had all the ammunition they needed to completely destroy you.”

Ten Keywords To Describe This Book:
Unrequited, Love, Pretend, Pancakes, BBW, Real, Insecure, Funny, Smart, Sassy

Book Boyfriend Rating:
8/10

Wishful Thinking:
More Max.. simply because he was my favorite part of this book.

BUY A COPY:
Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Good Reads Page

RATING:
4 Heart Rating

NOTE TO THE AUTHOR(S) OF THIS BOOK:
Feel free to quote me or any portion of my review to help promote this book. Thank you for writing this piece of work and allowing me to live in your world amongst your characters for a little bit.

April 20th, 2017

Review: Duly Noted by H.M. Shander

SYNOPSIS:
PTSD sucks.
Just ask Aurora.
She’s dealt with it for the past two years. Effing car crash.

Resigned to live a mediocre life, she’s coped all on her own with only her friends Percocet and Xanax along for the ride. Broken and damaged, she doesn’t need anyone, thank you very much. Until she meets him.

Shy but smoking hot, Nate Johnson has a mouth as smart as hers, and can handle every ounce of sass she dishes out. Immediately, he’s hooked by Aurora’s sarcastic wit. A man on a mission, he wants to help her over her fear of cars. He needs to, if he’s ever going to have her as part of his world – a passion he’s kept hidden from her. As he succeeds with the impossible goal, he finds he’s curing more than just her PTSD, he’s healing her heart.

But when the unthinkable happens, it drives Aurora away.
From him.
From them.
From the best thing to ever happen to her.
Because sometimes love just isn’t enough.

However, Nate wants her back and he’s willing to give up everything he loves for her. Aurora refuses to have him sacrifice his passion because of her, and dreams up a risky plan to stop him. It’s dangerous. It’s foolish. And if it doesn’t kill her first, it could just save them both.

MY REVIEW:
Initial Cover Thoughts:
The cover was cute and appealing to the love story reader. It made me think the novel would be cutesy and lovey dovey.

Read and Reviewed:
Aurora has PTSD from a car crash and it consumes her life. She can’t go anywhere unless it’s in walking distance. She works at a library near her house and there she meets Nate who is working construction at the library. Once he discovers her PTSD to cars he comes up with his own “baby steps” method of trying to help her overcome her trauma. Does it work? You’ll have to read to find out.

The book was okay read. The synopsis of this book is what attracted me to this book. It didn’t exactly scream “best love story ever” but the overcoming her PTSD together sounded different. I think my expectations for a new kind of love story was a bit high. I went into the story rooting for Aurora and Nate. The problem was that I just didn’t really like Aurora. She was very much about herself and it turned me off the character. She constantly only thinks of herself throughout the book. Nate was persistent in helping her overcome her PTSD, sometimes more than he should have been. The story moves quickly which leaves little room for those breath-taking lovey dovey scenes. It’s almost like the love story borders on semi-instalove because of how fast they became a couple.

The book did have some good points. I did like the character of Nate and his family. The PTSD angle was different and interesting but I feel like it could have been better if the story around it had more depth and conflict. I don’t want to spoil on this so I will leave it at that.

Also the synopsis mentions how they have these smart mouths. I love witty banter and humor. There were maybe a handful of remarks that would be categorized as witty but there was nowhere near enough to categorize the book as such.

Quote Me:

“A different kind of love story..”
– Girl Jay, Love Story Reads (Blog Review)

A Taste:
“They had taken a damaged bird and helped bring her back to life.”

Ten Keywords To Describe This Book:
PTSD, Cars, Trauma, Frustration, Drugs, Conflicted, Motivational, DIY, Secrets, Cheater

Book Boyfriend Rating:
6.8/10 – Sometimes he was too pushy although his intentions were good.

Wishful Thinking:
I wish there would have been more conflict in the story. Most of it was about her PTSD with cars and the ending was rather rushed. I would have liked to see more romantic scenes and really see Nate and Aurora’s relationship grow on a romantic level. I felt like they were just friends with crushes on one another for most of the book.

BUY A COPY:
Amazon| Barnes and Noble | Good Reads Page

RATING:
3 Heart Rating (for me personally it was more like a 2.8 but I’ll round up.)

NOTE TO THE AUTHOR(S) OF THIS BOOK:
Feel free to quote me or any portion of my review to help promote this book. Thank you for writing this piece of work and allowing me to live in your world amongst your characters for a little bit.

March 30th, 2017

Review: Wait For It by Mariana Zapata

SYNOPSIS:
If anyone ever said being an adult was easy, they hadn’t been one long enough.

Diana Casillas can admit it: she doesn’t know what the hell she’s doing half the time. How she’s made it through the last two years of her life without killing anyone is nothing short of a miracle. Being a grown-up wasn’t supposed to be so hard.

With a new house, two little boys she inherited the most painful possible way, a giant dog, a job she usually loves, more than enough family, and friends, she has almost everything she could ever ask for.

Except for a boyfriend.

Or a husband.

But who needs either one of those?

MY REVIEW:
Initial Cover Thoughts:
The design was cute and the photo actually makes sense when you finish the book. I wasn’t sure if I would like this book to be honest. The synopsis didn’t really cut it for me, but I’m a huge Mariana Zaptata fan and have yet to read a book of hers I didn’t love. So I tackled Wait For It the day it was released. I read the entire book in 2 maybe 3 long sittings.

Read and Reviewed:
I loved this book, it was so cute. The little boys were adorable and cracked me up. I love the way Mariana writes. She has this humor in her writing that I can’t get enough of.

The romance is a very slow burn romance which is common in her books and something that I really enjoy. Diana buys an old house with her nephews and Jackson is basically Diana’s sexy neighbor. He runs kind of hot and cold with her which just frustrates her and constantly makes her wonder what she’s doing to get on his nerves. She’s constantly trying not to make things weird which just makes things weirder and more amusing to the reader. I found myself looking forward to all of their interactions in pages to come. His interactions with her boys is great also.

There were a bunch of minor characters that were entertaining from family to neighbors to coworkers.

I added this book into the ‘love and sports’ category because Jackson does play sports and Diana is always at the games with her boys. Their interactions at the games and surrounding the games are a nice chunk of the story.

It actually has cameos from characters from Mariana’s other books Wall of Winnipeg and Kulti which was a nice surprise. This book does a good job of incorporating some of our other Zapata favorites into Diana’s world in Wait For It.

Quote Me:

Wait For It is fun, charming, and destined to be read more than once.”
– Girl Jay, Love Story Reads (Blog Review)

A Taste:
“You two are…savage. You’re honest, and you’re loyal and love the shit out of things. Both of you give everything to what you care about…”

Ten Keywords To Describe This Book:
Family, Neighbor, Stalker, Flirting, Humor, Caring, Sexy, Loss, Baseball, Honorable.

Book Boyfriend Rating:
8/10

Wishful Thinking:
I wish there was more actual physical romance in the book. Like I said earlier it is a VERY slow burn romance which I don’t mind one bit but it left me itching for more physical romance scenes towards the end.

BUY A COPY:
AmazonBarnes and Noble | Good Reads Page

RATING:
4 Heart Rating

NOTE TO THE AUTHOR(S) OF THIS BOOK:
Feel free to quote me or any portion of my review to help promote this book. Thank you for writing this piece of work and allowing me to live in your world amongst your characters for a little bit.

MY RATING SYSTEM:
- I LOVED IT! I marked it as a favorite and will eventually reread it. I highly recommend this book!

- I felt this book was really good. I wouldn't call it a favorite but I would highly recommended.

- This book was a good read. I would recommend it.

- I felt this book was OK. Would suggest it casually if asked.

- I did not like this book and wouldn't recommend it to others.